Born for You | Character Interview

Y’all, I am so thrilled to feature my sister’s novella today! It’s available in the same novella collection as mine, The Heart of Christmas.

I’m not sure that I don’t like hers better than mine.

So please let me present Born for You by Leah Fornier.

born-for-you-cover

Ryder has never set foot in a church. But when his best friend, Kenna, begs him to direct a church Christmas play, he can’t refuse. As he and Kenna work through a series of mishaps, Ryder finds himself drawn to the One born for him. And also to Kenna.

(Isn’t the cover lovely?) I laughed so much in this story. But there were also scenes that broke my heart. It’s a very sweet romance. So I might be biased, but I think my sister’s a pretty good writer. 🙂

And I have an interview today with a secondary character from the story—Audra, Kenna’s younger sister.


Audra, thank you so much for visiting with us! I loved meeting you in Born for You, so I’m delighted you’ve agreed to answer a few questions for us today.

1) You and your older sister Kenna seem to have a close relationship, but I know all sisters have some friction (I have two sisters myself). Have you always been close? What would be your main source of friction these days?

Audra: Kenna and I have always been close. We kind of had to be since it was only the two of us growing up. But she’s my big sister. Despite her best intentions she’s still bossy. She’s still trying to manage my life. And my lack of ambition frustrates her to no end. I really like to just float through life, and to super-active, super-responsible Kenna, that is unthinkable. She means well, but occasionally we still lock horns over it.

2) In your estimation, what is Kenna’s greatest weakness? What is her greatest strength?

Audra: In some ways Kenna’s greatest weakness is also her greatest strength. She’s a fixer. She wants to fix everything – me, Ryder, the medical field, the world. You name it, she’s thought long and hard about what’s wrong with it and how to fix it. So it can be very stressful for her when things spiral out of her control. She’s learned a lot about trusting in God’s strength and not her own in the past several years. On the flip side, when things fall apart she can usually pull them back together. She’s always ready to help someone and volunteer her time for something no one else wants to do. She is the most helpful person I have ever known, and I know I can rely on her to always be there for me.

3) When Kenna first convinced Ryder to help her with the play, what did you think about the plan?

Audra: Actually, I was the one who suggested she get Ryder to do it for her, so naturally I thought it was a great idea. I reminded her how great he was in drama (although she didn’t really need reminding) and that his minor in college had been directing. I may or may not have had other, more personal, reasons for encouraging her to ask him.

4) If you could have one thing in the world, anything, what would you choose?

Audra: I want a man who loves me as much as Ryder loves Kenna.

5) Is there anything else you would like to share with readers of this story?

Audra: Yes. I just want to say that if you have a sibling (or siblings) as close to you as I am to Kenna, cherish them. They are one of God’s greatest gifts. I don’t know what I would do without Kenna, and I’m going to miss her now that she is married. But Ryder’s a great guy, so I’m okay with sharing. In fact, I’ve always thought those two were perfect for each other, and I did my best to help them get together. And I’ve gained a wonderful brother from the whole thing. All in all it worked out great, and I know Kenna and Ryder will have a beautiful life together.


About the Author

Leah Fornier has loved storytelling since childhood when she would recite her long, complicated, embellished dreams for her sisters. She began writing in high school with short stories that constantly tried to outgrow their word limit. When she doesn’t have her nose in a book, you might find her baking, sewing, playing the piano, or researching historical fashions. She lives in middle Tennessee with her parents and two noisy sisters.

The Heart of Christmas is available at Amazon.

If you like Christmas stories and don’t mind romance, I think you’ll enjoy this one. Why, our dad even read it and liked it. 🙂

And talking of Christmas stories, have you noticed that the Christmas season is upon us? I am so thrilled to be able to listen to Christmas music without certain parties complaining. I’m also enjoying some special Christmas ice cream flavors. 🙂 I hope your Christmas season is off to a very merry start!

-Miss Darcy

Advertisements

Quest for Leviathan | Blog Tour

Blog Tour banner

The first thing that drew me to this story was Leviathan. A story about the sea monster of Job 41 and a young man trying to destroy this menace? Oh, yes!

Leviathan-cover

About the Book

Leviathan took the life of his father.

Anath has spent three years preparing for the voyage that will end the threat of Leviathan. Yet as the Valor launches into the depths of the Mediterranean, an inward quest also begins, taking Anath to depths he is not willing to face.

May I start by saying I loved this story? It’s a short story, and I generally prefer longer works, but the adventure and the spiritual thread were handled beautifully. The historical detail was fascinating, the characters well-drawn. And, of course, we meet the awesome Leviathan. It would be great for kids to read, but I don’t think you could really box this story into applying to only one age group.

Oh, I almost forgot about the illustrations. A nice addition. I guess it’s no surprise that my favorite is the one with Leviathan. 😉

And now I’d like to introduce one of the secondary characters, Kanah, Anath’s best friend.


Kanah, thank you so much for visiting with us. We barely get to meet you in “Quest for Leviathan,” so I’m delighted you’ve agreed to answer a few extra questions for us today.

1) When the story begins, you and Anath seem to have a strong friendship. How long have you known Anath, and how did you become friends?

Kanah: Our friendship reached to before he lost his father to the sea. Our boyhood was lived together. So much so that I do not recall how we became friends. We have always been friends. For life.

2) In your estimation, what is Anath’s greatest weakness? What is his greatest strength?

Kanah: Anath’s greatest weakness would be his all-consuming vengeance toward Leviathan. At the same time, it proved to be a great strength, enabling him to become a great captain at an age younger than any of our sea captains before him.

3) There is some mention of Anath’s quest against Leviathan being impossible without your aid. Why did you invest in this venture? Did you entertain any hope of success?

Kanah: This was of high importance to my friend. It was an adventure, yes, but more importantly, it was the life-blood of Anath. I feared that if there was no one there to keep him in check, he would fight Leviathan until his death. And I knew that God had much more in store for him than that.

4) If you could have one thing in the world, anything, what would you choose?

Kanah: I already have my love in my beautiful wife, Rahel. Above that, I yearn for a godly heritage—a legacy of children who serve my great King, Almighty God.

5) Is there anything else you would like to share with readers of this story?

Kanah: Learn from Anath’s journey. Each of us faces a different dragon that we must gain victory over—and Anath found the true way to acquire that victory.


About the Author

Amanda Tero began her love for words at a young age—reading anything she could get her hands on and penning short stories as young as age eight. Since graduation, she has honed her writing skills by dedicated practice and study of the writing craft. She began her journey of publication with a few short stories that she had written for her sisters and continued to add to her collection with other short stories, novellas, and novels. It is her utmost desire to write that which not only pleases her Lord and Savior, but also draws the reader into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ.

You can connect with Amanda on her Web site, at her blog, and on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Goodreads, and Amazon.

Giveaway!

Amanda is giving away TWO print copies of “Quest for Leviathan” to one winner — one for you, and one for your friend!

Visit the Rafflecopter form to enter the giveaway.

You can purchase “Quest for Leviathan” on Amazon in e-book or print. You can also add it to your Goodreads shelf.

If you’d like to see the other places “Quest for Leviathan” has toured, click on the links below my signature. (All links open in new tabs.)

I hope you’ve enjoyed this! Seriously, pick up a copy of this story. At ninety-nine cents, I think you’ll enjoy it.

-Miss Darcy

June 8 – With a Joyful Noise (Release Day Post)
Resting Life (Spotlight, Review)
The World of the Writer (Review)
Authoring Arrowheads (Review)
Purely by Faith Review (Review, Interview)

June 9 – Victoria’s Book Nook (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)
Bekah’s Books (Spotlight, Review, Interview)

June 11 – Clothed with Scarlet (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)
Reveries Reviews (Review)

June 12 – Chosen Vessels (Spotlight, Review)
My Purple Pen (Review)
Read Another Page (Review)

June 13 – Once Upon an Ordinary (Review)
Maidens for Modesty (Review)

June 14 – Honey Rock Hills (Review)
Life of Heritage Corner (Spotlight, Review, Interview, Giveaway)
Kaylee’s Kind of Writes (Review, Interview)

June 15 – The Red-Hooded Writer (Review)
Blossoms and Blessings (Spotlight, Review, Interview, Giveaway)
Lit Aflame (Review, Interview)

June 16 – The Left-Handed Typist (Review)
Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen (Review, Interview, Giveaway)

June 18 – Great Books for God’s Girls (Review, Interview)
Peculiar Miss Darcy (Character Interview)

June 19 – Creating Romance (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)

June 20 – Keturah’s Korner (Review, Interview)
Rock and Minerals 4 Him (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)

June 21 – A Baker’s Perspective (Review, Giveaway, Character Spotlight)
Christian Author: A.M. Heath (Review, Interview)

June 22 – Writings, Ramblings, and Reflections (Review)
Views from the Window Friend (Review)
Hunting for Truth (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)

June 23 – Reading on the Edge (Spotlight)
Summer Snowflakes (Review, Giveaway)

June 25 – With a Joyful Noise (Giveaway Winner Announced)

The Secret Slipper | Blog Tour

tour-banner

I’m excited to be doing something new today. I’m participating in a blog tour for the release of a new book by Christian author Amanda Tero.

Several weeks ago, I had the opportunity to beta-read The Secret Slipper, helping it on the journey to publication. I loved it! It’s exactly the sort of “princess” book I want to read with my children if the Lord should so bless me one day. But don’t get the idea this is only a children’s story. Teens and even adults will discover worthwhile gems in this novella. I know I did.

I loved the medieval setting, although it’s not a strict historical. I loved getting to know the characters. I loved the eternal Truth woven so beautifully into the story. It’s rare I find a book I can unreservedly recommend.

So, without further ado, I present:

The-Secret-Slipper-cover

About the Book
Being a cripple is only the beginning of Lia’s troubles. It seems as if Bioti’s goal in life is to make Lia as miserable as possible. If Lia’s purpose is to be a slave, then why did God make her a cripple? How can He make something beautiful out of her deformity?

Raoul never questioned the death of his daughter until someone reports her whereabouts. If Ellia is still alive, how has she survived these ten years with her deformity? When Raoul doesn’t know who to trust, can he trust God to keep Ellia safe when evidence reveals Bioti’s dangerous character?

As time brings more hindrances, will Raoul find Ellia, or will she forever be lost to the father she doesn’t even know is searching for her?

Let me insert the purchase links real quick. Both books in the Tales of Faith series are available on Amazon: Befriending the Beast (Book 1) and The Secret Slipper (Book 2). Or if you’d like to order a signed paperback copy of The Secret Slipper (U.S. residents only), you can complete this form.

Although I loved the main characters, my favorite character was Jolin, the closest friend of Raoul (also known as Lord Kiralyn). I’m delighted to be able to interview him here today. I hope you enjoy his answers as much as I did.


Jolin, thank you so much for visiting with us. You earned my respect as I read The Secret Slipper, and I’m delighted you’ve agreed to answer a few questions about the story.

My pleasure! Methinks my author had a little too much enjoyment shaping my character.

1) You’ve served Lord Kiralyn a long time when the story begins. What is your position, and what are the duties entailed?

I began as just a companion of Lord Kiralyn. Throughout the years, this has changed until he is one of my closest friends and companions. It feels as if my duty is to just be there for Raoul, to serve him however is needed—whether it is counseling his decisions or joining him in escapades which may not be the wisest for a lord to go upon.

2) In your estimation, what is Lord Kiralyn’s greatest weakness? What is his greatest strength?

His greatest weakness would be his rashness. When he gets something in his mind, he goes for it. At the same time, it can be his greatest strength. I am more of the overly cautious fellow. Another strength of his is his genuine care for others.

3) When you first heard that Ellia could be alive, did you entertain hope of finding her? Or did you think it impossible?

I couldn’t entertain hopes that Nes’s report was true. I tried reasoning it out, though, and I couldn’t deny the evidence piling up. Yet, for Raoul’s sake, I held back. If she was alive, what were the likelihoods of finding someone who had been missing for a decade?

4) If you could have one thing in the world, anything, what would you choose?

I would choose for wise people to be in control.

5) Is there anything else you would like to share with readers of this story?

It’s a journey, and a long and wild one at that, but it’s a great journey and I’d not exchange anything for being beside Raoul as he made his choices and grew through it all.


About the Author

Amanda-bio-pic

Amanda Tero is a homeschool graduate who desires to provide God-honoring, family-friendly reading material. She has enjoyed writing since before ten years old, but it has only been since 2013 that she began seriously pursuing writing again – starting with some short stories that she wrote for her sisters as a gift. Her mom encouraged her to try selling the stories she published, and since then, she has begun actively writing short stories, novellas, and novels. If something she has written draws an individual into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ, it is worth it!
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5)

You can connect with Amanda through her website, her blog, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Goodreads, and Amazon.

Amanda is hosting a giveaway for both The Secret Slipper and the first book in the series, Befriending the Beast (which I also loved). Click on the links to be taken to the Rafflecopter forms.

giveaway-secret-slipper

U.S. Giveaway: Enter to win the set of “Befriending the Beast” and “The Secret Slipper”

International Giveaway: Enter to win the eBook set of “Befriending the Beast” and “The Secret Slipper”

If you’d like to see the other places The Secret Slipper has toured, you can click on the links below my signature. (All the links open in new tabs.)

I sincerely hope you’ve enjoyed this!

-Miss Darcy

May 25, 2017
With a Joyful Noise | Release Day, Giveaway
Leila Tualla’s Bookshelf | Spotlight
Writings, Ramblings, and Reflections | Review, Giveaway
Great Books for God’s Girls | Review, Author Interview

May 26
Zerina Blossom’s Books | Interview
Knitted By God’s Plan | Spotlight and O’Scarlett Reviews | Review
A Brighter Destiny | Review, Giveaway

May 27
This Journey Called Life | Spotlight, Review, Giveaway
His Princess Warrior | Review, Giveaway
The Destiny of One | Spotlight
Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen | Spotlight, Interview, Giveaway

May 29
Once Upon an Ordinary | Review, Interview
Penumbra Reviews | Review
Peculiar Miss Darcy | Character Interview
My Joyful Journey with Jesus | Interview

May 30
Honey Rock Hills | Review, Giveaway
Christian Author: A.M. Heath  | Review
JudithWNicholson  | Interview

May 31
Whimsical Writings for His glory  | Spotlight, Review
God’s Peculiar Treasure Rae  | Spotlight, Review
Purposeful Learning | Review, Interview, Giveaway

June 1
Reveries Reviews  | Review
Victoria Minks Blog  | Spotlight, Video Review
Kelsey’s Notebook | Spotlight

June 2
RockandMinerals4Him | Spotlight, Review, Giveaway
Roxbury Books Blog | Spotlight
Views from the Window Friend  | Review
Crystal’s Adventures for Christ  | Spotlight, Review, Interview

June 3
Verbosity Reviews  | Spotlight
Chosen Vessels  | Review
Clothed with Scarlet | Review, Interview, Giveaway

When the Bad Guy Dies

Confession: Every once in a while, I like to read a western. You know, an old Louis L’Amour story with a good guy, a bad guy, and all their friends and enemies scheming and fighting over–something.

I’m not perfectly certain why I like them. I like that the good guy always wins over ominous odds. I like the excitement, I suppose. I like the characters’ capability to handle whatever situation confronts them. I like the beautiful, dangerous, wild land where the story unfolds. I like the code of honor, so to speak, that all the decent characters adhere to.

Anyway, I enjoy them. But, honestly, it’s a purely superficial enjoyment. Because, when I stop to analyze the story, there isn’t much that’s worth holding on to. Let me explain.

Many of the fights start over land. Or cattle. Or power.

And even the good guy is prepared to kill people–people with immortal souls–over land, or cattle, or power. None of which will be worth the powder in a cartridge when he meets his Maker. All the land he deeply loves, all the power he wields will mean nothing when he stands before God to give account of his deeds done in the flesh.

Now, generally, the good guy will eventually shift his goal. Instead of fighting for the land, he starts fighting because the bad guy is just plain wicked, often stealing something from someone who can’t defend himself–or herself. (Throw a bit of romance in; it helps the story immensely.)

So the good guy takes the side of justice, and law, and human kindness. Admirable. In fact, the Bible advocates it.

‘Thus says the LORD: “Execute judgment and righteousness, and deliver the plundered out of the hand of the oppressor. Do no wrong and do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, or the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place.

-Jeremiah 22:3 (NKJV)

But. (You knew there was a ‘but’ coming, right?)

But the bad guy still has an immortal soul. A soul Jesus died to save. A soul the Lord loves.

In the end, he dies. (Once in a while, they let him depart in disgrace.) And, yes, the bad guy deserves to die. The good guy is decidedly in the right. By all human law, all human morality and decency, the bad guy deserves what’s coming to him.

But, in the eyes of the Lord, the good guy is just as sinful as the bad guy.

God doesn’t place degrees of wickedness on sin. The bad guy kills; the good guy cusses. Sin is sin compared to the holiness of God.

Now I’m not saying the bad guy shouldn’t pay for his crimes. I’m not even saying he shouldn’t die.

I’m saying that a Christian should never be casual about a person’s death.

Even if the person needs to die–even if it’s not a pointless death as regularly happens in westerns–his soul still plunges into eternity, unready to face the Lord. That should never be a nonchalant event. But in the western, it always is.

So what am I trying to say through this rambling?

I’m reminding myself that, with God, it’s all about souls.

Not land. Not money. Not power. Not even personal rights. It’s about souls surrendering to their Creator.

Is it really worth killing someone to stay on land I legitimately own? Well, many factors influence that question, but I dare to say: “Not always.” If I’m fighting for others, like my family, perhaps. If I’m fighting to stop someone who will only do worse if allowed to succeed at small crimes, perhaps. But if I’m fighting for only myself, maybe I need to give up.

Because what really matters is not what I want, or what I think is right. What matters is what is important to God–saving souls.

Of course, none of this is even relevant to our times. (I hope.) So why write a weblog post about it?

Good question.

Because, as innocent as entertainment may be, it will subtly influence my thinking. Whether I like it or not. Whether I realize it or not. I can’t keep putting this stuff in and expect to have no alteration in my thoughts. The brain doesn’t work that way.

I have only so much time for entertainment in life. I want the best entertainment–stuff I don’t have to filter too closely to make sure it’s not influencing me the wrong way.

That’s why at the top, I said, “Every once in a while.” Maybe it doesn’t hurt to breeze through an old western on a rainy afternoon.

But it pays to be aware.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.

-1 Peter 5:8 (NKJV)

-Miss Darcy

 

A Book Called ‘The Giver’

A year or two ago our family read aloud a book for school:  The Giver by Lois Lowry.  The story is set in a futuristic Community where pain, suffering, and sorrow have been eliminated through rules, science, and a mystic power known as ‘receiving memory.’  I’m not much for sci-fi or fantasy, but The Giver made me think, and I appreciate that in a book.

In order to eliminate discomfort, the Community does not remember all the bad things that have happened in the past.  One person, the Receiver of Memory, holds all the memories of Before, all the pain and pleasure of freedom.  When he gets old, he must pass on these memories to a successor, else they will be released to come back and haunt members of the Community.  (It’s as weird as it gets, I know, but stick with me.)  The protagonist of the story, Jonas, is chosen to be the next Receiver of Memory and his predecessor becomes known as the Giver.

Jonas is amazed to discover color, the ocean, and other delights through the memories.  The thrill of sledding down a snowy hill is like nothing he has ever known, and he cannot understand why it was outlawed in the Community.  Until the Giver shares the memory of a wrecking sled, in which Jonas experiences the pain of a broken leg.

Jonas discovers that all good gifts bring risk.  Take, for example, romantic love.  If you fall in love with someone, the joy and pleasure are difficult to equal.  But supposing that person betrays your love, in a small way or in a deep way.  The pain can be heart-rending.  That is why in the Community, romantic love is forbidden.  The stirrings, as they term attraction for the opposite sex, are quelled with drugs taken daily.  Marriage partners are assigned, and children, delivered by professional “birth-mothers,” are assigned to family units, no more than two children per couple.  But when Jonas has experienced the memories of natural family, united in love, he wants everyone to be able to experience it for real.

Of course, real families are not perfect.  If you give them the freedom to choose love and kindness, the individuals might choose selfishness and hurt one another.  In order to avoid that hurt, the Community has eliminated the real family.  Throughout the story, the Community is focused on analyzing emotions and working through them so that no one is unhappy.  But all their so-called feelings, with their carefully chosen words to identify them, are plastic, sterile, and fake.

In truth, all good things come with risk.  In the world where we live, where mankind’s sin has corrupted God’s perfect creation, we have to choose whether the good we want is worth the pain we might experience.  Whether it is worthwhile to go sledding when we might wreck.  Whether it is worthwhile to love others who may not love us back.  Whether it is worthwhile to follow Jesus even when He will ask us to do something uncomfortable.

I would rather know pain in its fearful reality if it means I may also know joy in its abundance.  We don’t have to enter a restrictive Community to dull our feelings.  We can teach ourselves indifference and make our hearts calloused to protect ourselves from pain.  But we will also dilute our joy.

This year, I want to learn from the Lord how to live fully engaged, as He created me to live.

-Miss Darcy