Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Review of Water Walker by Ted Dekker

I’m a Dekker fan; I’d go so far as to say his writing has influenced my own. So I jumped at the chance to review, Water Walker, the second book in his Outlaw Chronicles series. For my review of the first book in the series (Eyes Wide Open), click here.

Like Ted’s other stories, the story concept is original. Ted does a good job of writing what I’d refer to as allegorical-type stories. I think this type of story might appeal to someone who is a seeker or is de-churched (that is, they’ve attended church before but no longer attend). I wished that at the end, there was some discussion to guide readers toward Ted’s intended point (maybe included at the end of the book). I think Christians can see the themes easily, but I think a guide would be nice for seekers.

The story starts out with a young girl named Alice who does not remember the past six months of her life and has been placed in a foster home. A man shows up claiming to be her biological father and wants to kidnap her; he tells the girl her name is Eve. Alive/Eve must decide who she can trust. A shadowy figure known as Outlaw appears and shows Alice/Eve she can become a water walker and that her body is just a costume. Like I mentioned previously, I think that many Christian readers will easily identify Christian themes in the story.

What I didn’t like was the way POV was handled. I think Ted is sort of a maverick when it comes to POV. For Immanuel’s Veins, I noted that he switched back and forth between chapters using first and third person. Ted also mixes things up a bit in this story as well. I felt like it worked in the other book, but for this one, I felt like POV could have been deeper. At least one shift could have been handled better with a scene break, at least in my opinion. Also, in my opinion, I felt it was odd that a character had lost their memory, but then a chapter or two later, recalls something from the past casually, but doesn’t find this odd that they suddenly remembered something. Maybe it was supposed to be written that way, but it felt like an “oops.” I’d also like to note that a curse word was used, and it really didn’t need to be. I understand going for realism, but realism is different than literalism (see post by Author Donn Taylor for more discussion on this subject). I get that the character would swear, but an author can show this without using the literal term that a character would use.

*Please note that I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my review. However, I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own. 

Friday, March 14, 2014

Interview and Book Giveaway with Julianna Deering

by Jeff Reynolds


Is there something not normal about a guy who enjoys cozy mysteries? Well, normal is not the normal adjective used to describe me, but I digress. While I like several genres, nothing beats a cozy, like Hercule Poirot or one of Donna Fletcher Crow's Monastary Murders or a Drew Farthering Mystery. To my delight, Julianna Deering has released Death By The Book, the follow-up to Rules Of Murder. So of course I had to bring her back for another interview.

After the interview, you can find out how to win a copy of Death By The Book.

Jeff Reynolds: Julianna, welcome back to Sleuths and Suspects. It's hard to believe it's just been six months since you've been here previously! Anything interesting happen in that time?

Julianna Deering:
Pretty much business as usual. I've been pretty busy trying to keep up with everything involved with this new release and I've been working on the edits for Murder at the Mikado, the third book in the series.

JR: Death by the Book, the second installment of the Drew Farthering Mysteries, has just hit the shelves. What inspired the series and the main character?

I've always loved the classic mysteries written in the 1920s and '30s, Agatha Christie, Margery Allingham and Dorothy L. Sayers especially. And I love the BBC adaptations of them, especially Poirot, Campion and Wimsey. And, being a writer, I couldn't help trying my hand at something in this genre. My main character, Drew Farthering, pretty much popped into my head and said, "Oh, I say, wouldn't it be smashing if you let me solve some cracking good mysteries?" I suppose he's the hero-sleuth I just wanted to read about. He's handsome and wealthy, stylish and very British. He's got just a touch of angst about his past, but not enough to keep him from being great fun.

JR: Please tell us about Death By The Book.

It begins about two months after the end of Rules of Murder. Drew has solved that case and just wants to spend the end of the summer with his sweetheart Madeline. If he has his way about it, he'd like to convince her to marry him, too. Instead, he ends up with a fresh string of murders, a confounding American rival and Madeline's formidable maiden aunt who wants to whisk Madeline back to the States. Poor Drew.

JR: One thing I like is how light hearted this series is. How do you manage to keep it fun when dealing with heavy subjects like murder, infidelity, etc.?

I think a lot of that has to do with the time period of the book. The 1930s saw a lot of social and financial upheaval, worldwide depression, and the events that would eventually lead up to WW II. But the entertainment of the time, movies and music especially, tended to be fast and funny and lighthearted, something people really needed at the time. One of the things that attracts Drew and Madeline to each other is their sense of humor and ability to deal with problems without falling apart.

JR: I'm curious. Are you familiar with an author named DeAnna Julie Dodson? The two of you look like you could be sisters, maybe even twins. Should you know her, how would you contrast your styles?

Actually, yes, she is my evil twin. How would I contrast our styles? I write mysteries with lots of suspects and lots of victims and lots of red herrings. She prefers angsty historical romances with moody heroes, lots of pageantry and tragic family rifts. But she has written some contemporary mysteries that have no murders at all. Where's the fun in that?

JR: What do you have coming up? Anything due out under either of your names?

Yes, Murder at the Mikado, the third Drew Farthering mystery, is due out on July 1st. I just turned in the galleys on it, so it's fairly much done besides final page proofs. It's so exciting to see a manuscript finally become a real book, and Bethany House is just fabulous to work with. In case you haven't noticed, the book covers for this series are fabulous, so perfect for the stories and for the period. The cover for Mikado is my absolute favorite. Drew in white tie? Be still my heart!

JR: It sounds like you're pretty busy. How do you handle the other priorities in your life, like hockey? More importantly, how does your spiritual life survive all the deadlines?

Well, one must always make time for hockey. And, because I like to try to multi-task as much as possible, I always sew while I watch. That way I don't feel I've just frittered away three hours at a stretch, and I end up actually getting some projects finished. The deadlines for any working author can be pretty tough, especially for the things you don't usually consider when scheduling your time. Yes, you can usually count on X-amount of time to finish the book and turn it in, but then there's editing and other questions related to the book itself. Beyond that there are interviews and book signings and blog tours and all those little things that I enjoy doing, but which can add up to a big time investment. The only way I can survive those deadlines is with God. In fact, my favorite verse is Isaiah 41:13 which says: "For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, 'Do not fear. I will help you.'" And He has.

JR: Thank you for your time. How can we keep in touch with you?

I'm on Facebook at Author Julianna Deering, Twitter @deannajuldodson, and my websites:, and I love to chat with my readers. And Bethany House has printed up some wonderful bookmarks for each of the books and some great bookplates with Drew's hat logo on them, which I autograph for readers to put in their books. So if they would like bookmarks and/or bookplates, they just need to send a self-addressed, stamped envelope (at least 7" long for bookmarks) to me at P. O. Box 375, Aubrey, Texas 76223. I'd love to hear from you, readers! And thank you, Jeff, for letting me visit again. It's always a pleasure.

Jeff to reader: It's time to give away a copy of Death By The Book. All you have to do is follow three simple steps:
  1. Leave a comment on this blog.
  2. Leave your e-mail address. You can spell it out, like AuntDotKahm(at)Ant(dot)com.
  3. Finally, a challenge for you: create your own mini-mystery. In a room, there's a sci-fi writer, a TV journalist, a women's basketball coach, a clergyman, a soccer-mom, a used car salesman, and a classical pianist. The lights go out for one minute, and when they come on someone has been murdered. Who died? Who's the killer and why? And who solves the crime?

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Interview And Book Giveaway With Janalyn Voigt

 by Jeff Reynolds

How many of you are fans of Tolkien or the Chronicles of Narnia? Yes, I know this page focuses on Suspense and Mysteries, but Ihave a hunch that several of you enjoy the above mentioned stories as well. If you find yourself in that category, you might be interested in learning more about the Tales of Faeraven by Janalyn Voigt. Better yet, you might like to enter the giveaway for one of the three digital giveaways for your choice of her two novels, whichever format you prefer.

Congratulations to Dana, DeAnna, and Elizabeth!

I became familiar with Janalyn via her web-site, Novel Books. I won two novels on her site, both by authors I have interviewed here on Sleuths and Suspects (Donna Fletcher Crow and Suzanne Hartmann).

Jeff Reynolds: Welcome to Sleuths and Suspects, Janalyn. Would you like to start off telling us a little bit about yourself? Your education and vocational background? Your family? (Your husband's name sounds familiar.) Your church background and involvement?

Janalyn Voigt:
I grew up in California and landed in Washington by way of Australia and Hawaii. My husband was in the military, and we traveled a lot. One of my interests happens to be travel, so that worked out well. I have my AS and meant to go into music performance, but the need to make a living eventually me trapped in an office job, proving you can become successful in something you were never meant to do. I eventually escaped into the life of my dreams. My husband is the other John Voigt. I participate in worship team and in a ministry to Moms in my local church.

JR:  Tell us about your series, Tales of Faeraven, and about your current installment, Wayfarer. What inspired the series?

  I started a story about a half-cast princess trying to unite a divided kingdom against a common foe on the spur of the moment to entertain my bored daughter on a road trip. I twisted the name of her doll, Cinda, into Syl Marinda to name the heroine. The story took hold of me and wouldn't let go, even through the years when I gave up on my writing dream. I eventually returned to the story I'd abandoned but kept moving into the back story. It occurred to me that the back story needed to be told and that I had a trilogy to write rather than a single book. Syl Marinda shows up near the end of Wayfarer, book two, and becomes the heroine of DawnKing, the last book in the Tales of Faeraven epic fantasy trilogy.

I like to think of the books as forming a composition similar to a three-movement symphony. The series started on a fast-paced adventure, but then the music slows and grows reflective before buidling on a crescendo that culminates in the final climactic scene. The stories are like a play told by an ensemble cast, with each character important and their individual tales told as the fabric of one overarching storyline.

Wayfarer just released this January. Since it is that slower, deeper passage in the symphony, it shows us the world of Elderland and its people from a more intimate angle. There are dangers here, but many of the monsters found in Wayfarer dwell within the characters. Attaining peace with self is the story’s main theme, the hero’s greatest need and desire, and the thing he can’t capture without change. If he fails, his people will be destroyed. The story problem asks whether the high king of Faeraven can unite a nation divided by his own mistakes. DawnSinger was an epic quest adventure. Wayfarer is more of a love story, both on a romantic level and in relationship to God. I have received feedback from readers that Wayfarer’s thought-provoking themes have challenged them and in one case even changed a life. I wondered if I would be able to retain male readers due to the emphasis on romance within Wayfarer, but male reviewers so far have told me that the romantic element was acceptable.  

JR:  Writing contemporary and historical fiction involves a lot of research so it comes across as authentic. How does writing fantasy differ? [One example I'm thinking of is the language and glossary guide in your books.] What are the benefits and pitfalls of that genre?

  I actually researched 13th-century Europe and medieval siege warfare to write Tales of Faeraven. I had heard that the best fantasy worlds are those most like earth itself. That made sense, when I thought about it, so I did my research. However, there is less pressure for everything to be historically accurate. It does have to adhere to common sense, though, and to be believable. Sometimes what you make up aligns to reality, which can be surprising. I am not a linguist, but I like fantasy names, so I invented the languages in Tales of Faeraven. I then started to notice that they bore similarities to early Anglo Saxon and Celtic patterns, so I took the names those directions.

Some writers shrink from the thought of creating a fantasy world, but really all fiction involves made-up worlds. Writing fantasy allows more freedom of creative expression, and of course that very freedom can be challenging to manage. When I had to draw a rough map of Elderland, it was difficult for me. Until then I'd carried the map only in my head. It was the same when my publisher asked me to put together a glossary of the creatures, features, and foreign words within my series. Next time I invent a world, I'm going to write it all down as I go. :o)   

JR:  Dawnsinger describes a harrowing journey, almost as difficult as its journey to publication. Could you tell us about what it was like, and the equally fun part of marketing the book?

Writing and finding a publisher for DawnSinger took many years and lots of tears. I had to grow as a writer and as a person first. It's interesting that the harrowing journey in the book parallels my own as its author. The tagline of the book says it all: sometimes victory comes only through surrender.

Marketing my books has taken me to some interesting places and stretched me in ways I would never have expected.  I'm introverted and a little shy, so my first inclination at a party is to make like a wallflower. Having books to market forces me into the center of the room. That's good for me, I remind myself. The hardest part was when I went on live international radio for an Alive in Christ interview that was broadcast to 80 countries. (No pressure there, right?) I won't say I did a perfect job of it, but they did offer to invite me back, so I couldn't have been completely horrible.

JR:  Two years ago, you had a reading challenge on your web-site Novel Books, which has encouraged my reading -- I read over twenty books that year, and matched that last year without that motivation. I'm currently on my sixth novel in '14, not counting non-fiction I'm plowing through. On a previous interview I did on with you on another site, you commented "reading another author's novel is like sitting down to a dinner you didn't have to cook." What are your favorite authors/books, both fiction and non-fiction?

It just thrills me to know that, Jeff. I started Novel Books with the idea of sharing my passion for reading. I'm so glad to have inspired you. I don't send it out by feed anymore, but I still post book reviews at that site.

My favorite authors are in fiction Charles Dickens for his larger-than-life characters, Mark Twain for his turn of a phrase and vivid characterizations, Mary Stewart for gorgeous prose, and J R R Tokien for his detailed world and deep sense of story. I don't read much non-fiction, but when I do I tend to pick up autobiographies like Act One, Moss Hart's autobiography, and Mark Twain's Roughing It. I’m currently reading The Time Traveler’s Guide to Elizabethan England by Ian Mortimer. This is no dry history tome. The author takes the reader, quite vividly, into the time period.    

JR:  What's next? Is there another tale of Faeraven on the horizon? Or something completely different?

  I’m not sure which of the two fantasy series brewing in my mind that I'll pick up first. It may be the story of Daeven, Kai and Shae's missing older brother, or something in an entirely new world. I'm currently finishing DawnKing, and then for a change of pace I'll write Deceptive Tide, a romantic suspense novel as part of the Islands of Intrigue series I'm writing with authors Lynnette Bonner and Lesley Ann McDaniel.

JR:  Thank you for your time. Could you let us know about what you do on your blog page, and any other websites to keep up with your writing journeys? Or where we should go if we'd like to invest in a Wingabeast (flying horse) or tips on keeping Waevens (a spider-like creature with a very nasty bite) out of your house?

I've enjoyed visiting with you, Jeff. Thanks for the opportunity.

Those who want to learn more about wingabeasts, waevens, and the other creatures and aspects of Faeraven can visit the Fantasy Worlds area of my website. I created it as a book extras site to give just a little more to readers who told me they didn't want DawnSinger to end.

Readers can escape into the Creative Worlds of Janalyn Voigt or into creative worlds of travel at my new Literary Wayfarer site, a different kind of travel blog. And I teach other writers to live with passion, write well, and remember to breathe at Live Write Breathe.

Jeff to readers: It's time for the giveaways. As stated, we're giving away three copies of your choice of her two books on your favorite digital format. The rules are simple:
  1. Leave a comment.
  2. Share your e-mail. (You can spell it out like AuntDotKahm(at)ant(dot)com.)
  3. What is your favorite mythological creature? (Mine is an unbiased news reporter.)

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Grace Awards

Announching Grace Awards 2013 Judges

We've introduced you to many books this year. Have you read one you'd like to nominate for a Grace Award? Here's a little more information.

The Grace Awards is now going into its fourth year, having been extremely well received during the last three years. This year we have a line up of stellar judges for our six fiction categories.

GENERAL FICTION/WOMEN’S FICTION: serious women’s issues, can have humor and suspense elements

Naomi Musch, 2Naomi Musch is a Grace Awards Vice-Chair and Lead Judge in this category. She writes from the pristine north woods of Wisconsin where she and her husband Jeff live as epically as God allows on a ramshackle farm near their five adult children and three grandchildren. Amidst it, she writes about imperfect people who are finding hope and faith to overcome their struggles, whether the story venue is rich in American history or along more contemporary lines.

Carol McClainCarol McClain is a multi-published author in the non-fiction market. Her work has appeared in God Still Answers Prayers, Significant Living, Evangel and others. As a long-time member of ACFW, she coordinates the courses offered throughout the year. She taught English for over thirty years and designed the AP English Language curriculum for her school. She created a local writers’ group, Foothills Ink and is a member of ACFW and the Adirondack Center for Writing. She writes a popular blog: Character Counts which can be found at the link below, and will soon launch an editing service. She lives in northern New York with her husband and over-active Springer spaniel. You can reach her at.

Christine LindsayChristine Lindsay was born in Ireland an is proud of the fact that she was once patted on the head by Prince Phillip when she was a baby. Her great-grandfather and her grandfather — yes, father and son — were both riveters on the building of the Titanic. Tongue in cheek, Christine states that as a family they bear no responsibility for the sinking of the great ship. Aside from being a busy author and speaker, Christine is also VP of the Christian Author’s Network. She makes her home in British Columbia, on the west coast of Canada, with her husband and grown up family.

ROMANCE/HISTORICAL ROMANCE: primary element is love/courtship/marriage, be it set now or then

Deb KinnardDeborah Kinnard, Grace Awards Vice-Chair and Lead Judge in this category has enjoyed a career that has encompassed Spanish translation, volunteer work at a crisis line, years in assorted ERs that don’t resemble the ones on TV, and a day job at a big Chicago teaching hospital. She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), serving as Midwest Zone Director. In 2002 and 2003 she sold her first and second novels, POWERLINE and OAKWOOD to Treble Heart Books. ANGEL WITH A RAY GUN, ANGEL WITH A BACK HOE and DAMAGES are available from Desert Breeze. ALOHA, MY LOVE, and POWERLINE, a reissue are available through Desert Breeze. SEASONS IN THE MIST was released by Sheaf House in April 2010 and was a Grace Awards 2011 Winner in Speculative Fiction.

Joy in OctoberJoy Ross Davis lives in Bessemer, Alabama. She has a Ph.D. in Creative Writing and for many years, she taught English at a local community college. She retired to become a caregiver for her mother who suffered from dementia. She documented her experiences with her mother in a series of articles for a local newspaper. The articles have also been featured in Muscadine Lines, a Southern literary magazine. For several months in 2007, she lived in Ireland and worked as a travel writer and photographer for Tourism Ireland. Currently, she is working on the sequel to her first published novel, COUNTENANCE, is celebrating the release of her second book, and teaching English online for the University of Phoenix. She lives with her son and three rescue dogs.

Bette Thomason OwensBetty Thomason Owens was born in the Pacific Northwest and grew up in such exotic places as West Tennessee and San Diego, California. A retired office manager/bookkeeper, she now lives in Kentucky with her husband of forty years. They have three grown and married sons and six grandchildren. Besides her American Christian Fiction Writers (AFCW) membership, where she leads a critique group, she’s active with Bluegrass Christian Writers , and contributes to a writer’s blog. Betty contributed to the collaborative romantic comedy novella A DOZEN APOLOGIES. She recently contracted with Write Integrity Press for her three-book Legacy series (historical).


Tammy DohertyTammy Doherty, Grace Awards Vice-Chair and lead judge in this category, is the author of three inspirational Western romances, CELTIC CROSS, CLADDAUGH, and CELTIC KNOT. All three were rereleased last fall as eBooks and are also available in print. Her current projects are contemporary romantic suspense, set in a small town in central Massachusetts eerily similar to her hometown. Tammy lives on a small farm with her husband of 25+ years and their two children. Besides writing, she also manages the family perennial farm and works in customer service for a veterinary supply distributor. She is a reviewer for The Christian Pulse online magazine and has been a first-round judge in numerous contests for unpublished romance novelists.

Debra MarvinDebra Marvin tries not to run too far from real life but the imagination born out of being an only child has a powerful draw. Besides, the voices in her head tend to agree with all the sensible things she says. Debra likes to write, weed and wander and is blessed to have the best family and friends in the world. She’s thankful each day that God is in control, that He chooses to bless us despite ourselves and that He has a sense of humor. Her work has finaled in the TARA, Great Expectations, Heart of the Rockies, Maggie; twice in the Daphne du Maurier, and recently the category and Overall Winner of the Phoenix Rattler. Not too bad considering she’s trying a mashup of gospel and . . . gothic.

Peggy Blann PhiferPeggy Blann Phifer is a author and columnist, book reviewer and author interviewer, whose work has appeared on various web sites and writer periodicals in print and online. A retired executive assistant, Peg now makes her home in northern Wisconsin. TO SEE THE SUN is her debut novel, and Book 1 of the Desert Faith series. Visit her blog, “Whispers in Purple” at:

SPECULATIVE FICTION: science fiction, fantasy, horror, etc..

Tracy KraussTracy Krauss, Grace Awards Vice-Chair and Lead Judge in category is a multi-published author, artist, and playwright. She has a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Saskatchewan and teaches secondary school Art, Drama, and English — all things she is passionate about. She and her husband have lived in five provinces and territories including many remote and unique places in Canada’s far north. They have four grown children and now reside in beautiful Tumbler Ridge, BC where she continues to pursue all of her creative interests. She has several romantic suspense novels and stage plays in print.

Tim AkersT.J. Akers has a BA in Creative Writing and a Master’s degree in English Studies. He is cofounder of the Scriblerians critique group, a group of YA authors with a growing following on WordPress. CHOCOLATE EYES, his middle-grade novel was a 2012 First Impressions Finalist and a 2013 Genesis Awards Finalist in the YA category. He has judged for the Genesis Awards, First Impressions, and is returning again this year for the Grace Awards. His short story, Necessary Evil, is a part of Mike Lynch’s No Revolution is Too Big anthology.\

DeEtte BecksteadDeEtte Anderton (writing as DeEtte Beckstead) started writing in 2007 after her son challenged her to try NaNoWriMo. The manuscript sat untouched with several others until January 2012 when her good friend encouraged her to seek publication. The Christmas Visitors was her first short story, and VICTORY, her first novel. DeEtte spent much of her childhood playing piano, reading, or making up stories. She was active in Girl Scouting, which gave her a wide variety of experiences. While in college, she was on the University of Utah Synchronized Swim team, and taught winter camping and survival for Girl Scouts. DeEtte lives in New England where she writes full-time and works on the editing team of Master Koda Select Publishing. DeEtte’s other interests include swimming, crocheting, reading, dog rescue, and her man grandchildren.

ACTION-ADVENTURE/WESTERN/ EPIC FICTION: exploits, quest, daring, expansive

NikePixNike Chillemi, Founder and Chair of the Grace Awards and Lead Judge in this category, still has the Crayola, fully illustrated book she penned (colored might be more accurate) as a little girl about her then off-the-chart love of horses. Today, you might call her a crime fictionista. Her passion is crime fiction. She writes book reviews for The Christian Pulse online magazine. She was an Inspy Awards 2010 judge in the Suspense/Thriller/Mystery category and a judge in the 2011 and 2012 Carol Awards in the suspense, mystery, and romantic suspense categories. Nike has a critically acclaimed and award winning four novel, historical whodunit series, set in the 1940s. Her first contemporary detective novel is set to release in April 2014: HARMFUL INTENT.

Kenneth WintersKenneth G. Winters grew up on Long Island, NY. He received his BA from Houghton College, where he met his wife Connie. They live in Norwich, CT and have two grown daughters. After seminary, Kenneth served at the Trinitarian Congregational Church in Troy, NH. In 1976, he became the youth pastor at First Congregational Church of North Brookfield, MA. In 1984, he received a commission from the US Navy Chaplain Corps. In the following 20 years, he served with Seabees, Marines, Surface and Submarine fleets. After his retirement from the Navy, he returned to his home church in Massassachusetts as Associate Pastor. Over the span of his career, he founded a teen Christian music group and and two other groups which toured and recorded. He now keeps busy with his denomination, CCCC, the Military Officers Association, and the American Legion. Ken Winters Blog Page

Cathy WestCatherine West is an award-winning author writing inspirational stories of hope and healing from her island home in Bermuda. Educated in Bermuda, England, and Canada, Catherine holds a degree in English from the University of Toronto. Her first novel released in 2011, YESTERDAY’S TOMORROW, won the INSPY for Romance, a Silver Medal in the Reader’s Favorite Awards, and was a finalist in the Grace Awards. Her second, HIDDEN IN THE HEART, released in September 2012. When she’s not at computer working on her next story, you can find her taking her Boder Collie for long walks or tending to her roses and orchids. She and her husband have two college-aged children. Catherine is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America. Http://

YOUNG ADULT (YA): appeals to ages 14 – 21ish

Marcy DyerMarcy G. Dyer is Lead Judge in this category. She is a Registered Nurse and suspense author. Like so many other writers, she began writing at a very young age. Her debut novel, Down & Out – Desert Winds Series Book One, is available now. The second book in the series, Out For Blood, will be released on 08/11/2013. In addition to writing, Marcy is a freelance editor. She does editing for individuals, Desert Breeze Publishing, and Prism Book Group. Marcy is an alumni of the Christian Writer’s Guild and long-time member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She hosts a small critique group for ACFW and is involved in two other critique groups. As followers of Jesus Christ, Marcy and her family are active members of Crossroads Fellowship in Odessa, Texas. She can be found at

Deborah AndersonAs a young girl, Deborah K. Anderson loved to read Nancy Drew mysteries, books like Old Yeller (which still make her cry), and humorous novels. As a teenager, she became a closet poet, until she showed one of her works to a high school teacher. He suggested that she pursue writing. After high school, she devoted much of her time to her ailing father. Soon after his death, she continued her studies in interpersonal communications, nursing, and medical technology at a local college. But, something was missing. She left her job to care for her elderly mother. Remembering her teacher’s words, she took the plunge and began writing. Since then, she has written for Focus on the Family, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and as a monthly columnist for Christian Fiction Online Magazine. Her supernatural suspense entry, TALE OF A MAN, was a finalist in the Christian Writers of the West (CWOW) writing contest in the YA category. Deborah recently completed Rapha’s Remnant, a supernatural suspense novel for young adults. She is a member of SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators), ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers), and Married for 31 years, Deborah and her husband enjoy country living in the Midwest. When she’s not writing, she spends her time rescuing cats (and feeding lots of other stray critters), reading novels, and taking nature walks. You can reach Deborah at:

AileenAileen Stewart is the author of the children’s book, FERN VALLEY, and its sequel RETURN TO FERN VALLEY, which she releases summer 2014. She is a public speaker, children’s writing workshop host for children K-6, has appeared in the 2011 book, 50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading, and is returning for the second year as a YA judge in the Grace Awards. In additions, she has created a Celebridot for Terry Shay’s Celebridot site. She lives in Ohio with her husband, daughter, and three crazy cats: Max, Daisy, and Fluffy, and hopes that children everywhere will come to love reading.