The Methuselah Project by Rick Barry

Methuselah

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Since I’ve been overbooked, I asked a friend of mine, Joe Fausnight, to read and review this book for me. Here’s his take:

Captain Greene was an American Pilot from Indiana who was flying missions over Germany in 1943 when he was shot down.  As his plane fell he cried out to God.  He landed in a woods between to giant oak trees destroying his plane but leaving him and the cabin of the plane intact.

He was picked up by the Nazis and a civilian car was following the truck he was in.  Taken to a secret underground lab he was number 7 guinea pig for a Nazi science project for long life and quick wound repair.

Rick Barry

Author Rick Barry

After they had gassed and worked on the men the place was bombed by the Allies. The scientist who had come up with the project was killed as well as number 1 through 6 men.  He survived as did the assistant scientist and he was kept in a cage for many years after the war was over as they experimented on him and tried to duplicate his success.  He looked and acted like a 30 year old even as decades passed.  He knew nothing of the outside world except what he was told that the war was still going on decades later.

They gave him lots of books to read to pass his time and after reading many classics he asked for a Bible.  He got a lot of comfort from it over the years.  He exercised daily as well as taking flying trips in his mind including all the safety checks so he didn’t forget how to fly.

Did he ever get free?  Did he ever find anyone who cared about him other than as a lab rat?  Did he ever discover the changes in the world since his capture?  You will find out and enjoy this book when you read it.  A very good read and worth the time to read.

I give this books five stars.

Star Review!

Kindly tweet this: Methuselah Project by Rick Barry gets a 5-star review!

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Beautiful voice, 5-star book–you gotta read this one!

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I’m extremely excited today because one of my favorite author’s debut novel, Like There’s No Tomorrow, comes out today! I discovered this beautiful writing voice some years ago and I’m thrilled it’s finally hitting bookstore shelves!

Camille Eide writes heart-tugging tales of love, faith, and family. She lives in Oregon with her husband and is a mom, grammy, church office manager, bass guitarist, and a fan of muscle cars, tender romance, and Peanut M&Ms.

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Award-winning author, Camille Eide

I have always loved this story. Eide’s soothing voice is like a soft cashmere sweater. You’ll want to wrap yourself up in this story and get lost in it.

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Like There’s No Tomorrow is about a Scottish widower named Ian MacLean. He lives with a mischievous grannie, bitter regrets, and an ache for something he’ll never have again. To ease the burden of caring for his ornery grandmother, he decides to bring his grannie’s sister home from America. But he soon learns he’ll have to convince her sister’s lovely neice, Emily, to let her go.

Emily Chapman devotes herself to foster youth and her beloved Aunt Grace. Caring for others quiets a secret fear she holds close to her heart. When Ian walks into her life, asking to whisk Grace off to Scotland, everything Emily needs to protect—including her heart—is at risk.

Like There’s No Tomorrow is an amusing yet tender love story about two kind, single caretakers, two quirky, old Scottish sisters,  and too many agendas. It’s a tale of family, fiery furnaces, falling in love, faith, and the gift of each new day.

I give this book a glowing 5/5 stars.

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The Blessings of Friendship by Mary Engelbreit — 5 /5 stars

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I had little doubt when I ordered The Blessing of Friendship to review for BookLook that I would fall in love with it. I’ve been an Engelbreit fan for at least twenty years. I especially love her “Queen of Everything” theme and own several products from that line.

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The Blessings of Friendship, is a  cheerful and touching treasury of poetry, Bible verses, and quotes that celebrate the delightful charms of friendship. Coupled with Engelbreit’s enchanting illustrations, they teach children what it means to be a friend: helpful, encouraging, listening, sharing and loving one another.

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My copy of the book. Click to order yours!

This book made me smile the minute I set my eyes on it. It’s absolutely beautiful, cover to cover. I want to frame every page! There’s nothing I don’t like about this book. It would make a great gift from a friend to a friend, and to children of all ages.

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engle2I don’t have a gift for art and I envy anyone who does. This is just another reason why I love her work and especially enjoyed watching her at work in this video:

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars. I have no doubt that anyone who loves beautifully illustrated children’s books, will love it, too.

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The Butterfly and the Violin by Kristy Cambron: 4.5/5 stars

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If you enjoy WWII fiction, you’ll want to read Cambron’s book, The Butterfly and the Violin. This love story is about an art gallery owner’s search for a haunting painting found at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

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I normally don’t like to read about the Holocaust because it’s too painful for me. I internalize much of the pain and it takes me days to shake loose from the horrors I read about. But this was about a violinist, and as a violinist myself, I wanted to see what it was about. The beautiful cover of this book, I admit, also influenced me to choose it as a book to review for BookLook.

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The author seamlessly ties the story of the violinist’s experiences of Auschwitz with the modern telling of the art gallery owner, Sera. In each story line there is a compelling romance. Adele and Vladimir are in love in the 1940s and both end up in concentration camps after they’re caught helping a Jewish family escape Austria. In modern times, Sera falls in love with Michael who is searching for the same haunting painting of Adele that she is.

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The intertwining of art and music was what I enjoyed most about this book (besides the romance). I did find a couple of glitches in the story (which is why I gave it a 4.5 instead of a 5). However, they are extremely minor and those who aren’t violinists won’t even know they are there.

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Me and my school violin, age 10 or 11

This book is definitely worth the read and would be a safe first book for someone who doesn’t know much about the holocaust. It’s not terribly graphic yet paints a clear picture of what women in concentration camps suffered. But it’s still a lovely escape into the past and into the world of art and music. I highly recommend this compelling book.

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Tweet this: Butterfly and the Violin by Kristy Cambron: 4.5/5 stars–compelling read

Introducing Steampunk author Michael Vetter and a giveaway!

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Michael Vetter, Author

I am very pleased to introduce you to Steampunk/Sci-fi author, Michael Vetter. I became intrigued with Michael’s work after meeting him on a Steampunk forum.

I’m fascinated with this genre and have been researching it for a book I’m formulating for the YA market. I’m also leaving next Tuesday to attend the Realm Makers conference in Pennsylvania! I’m looking forward to rubbing shoulders with fantasy genre authors as I have much to learn. I have a burden to write YA books that point young people to Christ. It’s much needed.

Print Which is what drew me to Michael’s work. Michael very graciously agreed to be interviewed for my blog. I think you’ll find him and his work fascinating!

(By the way, dear reader, if you leave a comment or question and tweet about this post (I’ve provided a handy dandy link below as well) you’ll be entered to win a free digital (.pdf) copy of one of his books — your choice!  If you use any of the other buttons, you’ll be entered each time you promote this post on social media. What a deal!)

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Thanks so much, Michael, for agreeing to this interview. Please tell us a little about yourself:

My father worked for Pan America Airways so I grew up around airplanes and airports in Latin America all my life.  When I went to college in the U.S. I studied engineering, met my wife, Mary, and joined the Air Force. While stationed in Florida, we heard the Gospel for the first time and, after months of questions and resistance, accepted Jesus Christ as Savior. We grew spiritually through the years, served in many capacities at Salem Bible Church (www.salembible.org) while I worked in the defense industry, and recently retired. My wife and I have a grown son, two grandsons, and are involved in several ministries. Besides teaching adult Bible Sunday School and writing novels, I edit a newsletter for Grace Dental and Medical Missions (www.gdmmissions.org) and am a translator on medical missions trips to Spanish-speaking countries. We live in Salem,  NH, where the one month of brilliant fall foliage makes up for long winters of snow and cold. We enjoy long road and rail trips together and kayaking in the summer.

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What a fascinating journey to this point in your life you’ve had! I long to take a rail trip sometime, too. How can we find you online?

Web page:  http://www.michaelvetter.net

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/ChristianAdventuresBibleThemes?ref=hl

Where do you write? (What’s your office like?)

My best creative writing is done where I’m free from distractions so that means not in my cluttered office! My home office is where I have access to my reference books for research and Bible studies. Libraries with quiet rooms or cubbyholes hidden in remote stacks are where I can get lost for hours in a complicated plot. While my most imaginative writing is best done in quiet isolation, draft editing seems to be fueled in coffee shops where I draw energy from the hum of background conversations. I don’t know if this is an odd way to write/edit or not, but it works for me!

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I’m the same way about my home office. How funny. What is your process? (Spreadsheets, Snowflake, Lists/Outlines, Seat of the pants?)

Because I’m an engineer, I like to have the overall plot and flow of my book mapped out from beginning to end before I start to write. I use a “storyboard” technique learned from defense systems analysis that depicts various “threads” of a message to be sure that everything supports a final conclusion or objective. Many ideas come together on a wall-size graphic using colored-coded post-it notes, pictures, sketches, and connecting lines showing the progression of a story.

Storyboard

Karla: Oh my goodness. I have to interrupt here. You have no idea how giddy this photo makes me. I do the same thing and trust me, I do not have the mind of an engineer. I feel so much smarter now!

Genius babyOkay, then what do you do?

I then write an outline for each chapter in sequence and match chapters to the storyline. In parallel, I write profiles of the various main characters. Then I begin writing at Chapter 1 and expand on settings, dialog, and other details. Sure, things take unpredicted turns when I get more involved with my characters. As long as the main story line stays generally on track, I keep going. About every twenty chapters or so, (which can take me two or three months to write) I’ll then perform rough editing/surgery on the text. This is where I cut down the prose—I’m not stingy with words in my first draft—and try to come close to my page/word count target. This is also where I do a mid-course correction if the story line needs to change drastically. After about 8-9  months, I have a manuscript that I then spend 2-3 months editing. I have to admit that the creative part of developing and telling a story is my favorite part of writing. Everything after that is a chore before I can start on my next book.

What are you working on now?

I’m working on my third book in a fiction series for young boys with the working title, Flight from Egypt—Adventures Along The Nile. My books occupy a genre that I still haven’t fully characterized, but some call it retro-futuristic or steampunk.

The book takes place in Egypt in the reign of Pharaoh Thutmose III during the 6-9 months before Moses leads the Israelites out of Egypt to the Promised Land. The Biblical account of the plagues, Passover, and miraculous parting of the Red Sea are told through the eyes of Malik (a young Egyptian), Nathan (his Hebrew slave and best friend), and Malik’s sixteen-year-old sister Sarina. The two nineteen-year-old boys grew up together and are more like brothers. The speculative nature of the story weaves advanced, though plausible, technologies created by an inventor named Imhotep: a flying machine called the Eye of Horus, a box that lights the inside of underground tombs, encrypted signals using focused solar energy, and the Breath of Osiris that flashes across the night sky. These and other technologies, in the midst of devastating plagues, propel the three young characters as they pursue the identity of the Black Falcon who plundered tons of gold from the tomb of Hatshepsut in the Valley of the Kings. Linking their adventures ranging from Karnak/Thebes in the south to Giza/Memphis in the north is the nationwide heliographic (solar powered) signaling network used by Pharaoh and his military. As the plagues reach their climax with the Passover, some Egyptians believe in the God of Abraham and join Moses and millions of Hebrews on the beginning of their exodus journey. How many lives will the Black Falcon ruin in his relentless pursuit for more gold? Who will follow Moses through the Red Sea to safety and who will die in Egypt?

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This sounds sooo intriguing, and this may be a silly question because I, for one, can’t wait to read it. But are there any other reasons readers should pick it up?

Young readers should read this and other books in the series because the characters, although living in Old Testament times, have a God-centered Biblical worldview that guides their lives through adventures in a complex, dangerous world. New and often strange technologies, not unlike those in our own fast-paced world, add twists and turns as the plot heads toward a foregone conclusion that fits the Biblical record. The fate of individual characters hangs in doubt up to the last second.

How did this book come to life for you?

I’d always wondered how all the Israelites knew what was happening when Moses and Aaron repeatedly confronted Pharaoh and unleashed plagues in response to his stubborn refusals. How could slaves working hundreds of miles away in granite quarries of Aswan, brick pits of Giza, or  flooded fields of Goshen know what was going on in the palace? The usual answer, “God somehow told them,” did not satisfy me. My conclusion was that the everyday Egyptian or Hebrew had no idea what was happening until much later in the series of plagues, maybe not until the last plague, when they had fourteen days to prepare, did people understand that it was God who brought the plagues on Egypt. Even then, it’s a puzzle to me how millions of people could organize such a massive effort in so short a time. So, I came up with a hypothetical Egyptian heliographic network based on actual equipment and codes used by the U.S. Army in Arizona and New Mexico in the late 1800’s to signal long distances using solar rays. (The highly effective network was used for only a few years before it was replaced by the telegraph.) My story revolves around a nationwide “solar Internet,” the “blinkers” who run it, and the royal codes used by blinkers to inform Egyptians and Hebrews about the plagues, Pharaoh’s rejection of Moses, and God’s ultimate purpose to lead His people to the Promised Land.

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I love ancient and 1800s technology! This is such a fascinating book. Who is your favorite character in the book and why?

I think that is like asking which of your children is your favorite because I invest so much into my characters. But Malik’s father, Hatep, might be my favorite because his struggle over whether to believe in the God of Abraham or the gods of his Egyptian forefathers parallels my spiritual struggle when I first heard the Gospel of God’s grace and realized that the Good News was opposite to what I had been taught by religion all my life. Hatep has to face repeated evidence in the plagues that the LORD God of the Israelites is more powerful than all the gods of Egypt and he’s frustrated, disappointed, and scared by what he experiences. As a Royal Architect of Tombs, Hatep tries to reason everything logically but finally concludes that salvation is by faith alone in the One True God.

How did you name your characters?

This is a difficult task for me since I invest most of my energies in the storytelling. Fictional Egyptian characters take their names, or slight variations of them, from historical persons although not necessarily from the same time period. Most archeological evidence points to Thutmose III as the Pharaoh during the approximate time of Moses, although none of the historical records can prove this. Names for Israelite characters are either common Biblical names or modern Hebrew names. The principal Hebrew character is Nathan because I like that name.

Are the characters based on people you know?

The Inventor Imhotep, Royal Architect Hatep, and General Herihor have some parts of their personalities and experiences based on my own. The sixteen-year-old Sarina is a mathematician and crypto-solver very much like my wife, who spends hours and sometime days working on a cryptogram that I would never dream of tackling. When I hear “I did it!” shouted from another room I know she’s cracked another one.

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Oh, I love cryptology! I’m not good at it but I’m fascinated with it. I must meet your wife and pick her brain sometime.

Why will readers enjoy your book?

It’s the type of exciting, wholesome adventure that I loved to read as a pre-teen and teen myself when I grew up with characters like Tom Swift and the Hardy Boys. I loved the mysteries and action stories that planted seeds in the mind of a future engineer who wanted to build airplanes, submarines, space ships, and complicated gadgets. Today, young Christian boys should read my books for the enjoyment of adventure fiction with technologies that they can relate to within a Biblical worldview.

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I think I read every Nancy Drew book growing up. What is your favorite scene in the book?

Nathan and Malik enter a large chamber in the Great Pyramid of Khafre with a gold cylinder in its center and directly under the pyramid’s golden apex . As they inspect the inscriptions on the cylinder and the tubes that rise from it into the ceiling, they hear a whine that gradually increases in pitch and intensity. This is Imhotep’s Breath of Osiris. They don’t know what it does, but the reader senses that something terrible is about to happen as the noise becomes deafening. We want to scream, “Get out now!” but they approach the gleaming object and reach out to touch it. There is paralyzing tension as the two boys can’t decide whether to investigate with captivating curiosity or flee in deadly terror.

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Oh, that’s edge-of-your-seat stuff there!  Can you tell us why you chose to write Christian fiction?

My principal motivation in writing Christian fiction for young boys is because there are so few wholesome books available that appeal to their interest in stories with physical action, adventure, suspense, mystery, and complex gadgets. Classical science fiction from the 1800’s (Jules Verne, H.G. Wells) fills some of this interest. But good (moral, safe?) Christian fiction for boys is meager; good Christian fiction written by godly women for young girls is abundant. Today’s young adult (YA) fiction is not suitable, in my opinion, for Christian young people, although I realize that many read it. My desire is to write speculative fiction to honor God and I hope that comes across in my books.

We’ve all heard that fiction writers should write about what they know. That has motivated me to write stories that blend engineering and technology with my understanding of the Bible and history. I’m fully committed to the inerrant, inspired Word of God. I believe we are free to speculate about what the Bible does not say, providing we do not contradict what it does say. I was encouraged by Dr. John Whitcomb (co-author of The Genesis Flood and other creationist books) to speculate in my first book about technology in an advanced pre-Flood civilization. We had several conversations in which we agreed that civilizations before and after the Great Flood were much more sophisticated than the backward cave-dwellers depicted today. I place my fictional plots in Bible times but use seemingly modern, although primitive, instruments, engines, vehicles, and devices in adventure plots.

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I raised four boys and I can’t tell you how excited I am about your vision and mission. It was always difficult finding good, wholesome, engaging reading material for them. Thank you for answering the call and writing these books! Is there anything else you’d like us to know?

I inherited my love for reading and writing from my mother, Peggy Vetter. She wrote the society page of a newspaper (The Niles Daily Star in Niles, Michigan) in the 1940’s while still in college. After WW II she married my Dad in 1947 and wrote long letters to family and friends describing her “adventures” in exotic places like Guatemala, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Mexico, and Jamaica. Growing up in those countries (with no television!) we read books for entertainment. She founded, published, and edited the weekly Herndon Observer (Herndon, Virginia) for almost thirty years until a few months before her death in 2000. My second book, One World Tower-A Babylonian Adventure, is dedicated to her.

Michael, thanks again for joining us today. I am so excited to know you and to get to follow your career. I know God has an amazing plan for your work! God bless you!

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Today is my birthday!

fun_53rd_birthday_gift_idea_pinback_button-r7f5d86e72c194c42b3269a25a2b23070_x7j3i_8byvr_324Today is my 53rd birthday!

In some ways it freaks me out that I’m heading toward old lady status, but in some ways I’m happy because I know a lot of people don’t get to live this long on earth! I’m thankful today that I’m still alive and healthy.

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In honor of my birthday I’m giving away a free copy of my book, The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots. I know some of my readers already have a copy, so maybe you’d like to win a copy to give to someone else? I am giving away the format of your choice — autographed print or digital.

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Here’s how you can win. You get an entry for each item you complete:

1. Sign up for my newsletter. You can do that on my homepage in the upper right-hand corner.

2. Sign up for my blog posts. You can do that on this page in the upper right-hand corner.

3. Tweet about this giveaway by clicking the tweet below.

4. Post this post on Facebook using the Facebook link below.

5. Pinterest this post on Pinterest by using the Pinterest button below.

6. Google+ this post using the Google+ button below.

7. Post this on on LinkedIn using the LinkedIn button below.

7. Blog about this on your blog and post the link in your comments below. If your link isn’t allowed in the comments, email them to me at kkakins@gmail.com

8. In the comments below, let me know how many of the above items you participated in. I’ll trust you!

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Please allow three to four weeks for delivery of your prize as I will be out of town until mid-June.

Have fun! And thanks for helping me celebrate my 53rd birthday!

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Book Review: Take this Cup by Bodie & Brock Thoene

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I have been reading Bodie Thoene since her release of The Gates of Zion in 1986. She is truly the reason why I fell  deeply in love with Christian Historical fiction.

She didn’t disappoint me in this book, either. Take this Cup is book 2 of the Jerusalem Chronicles Series. I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy it as much as I did. I got excited about many new insights I’d never thought of before regarding the history of the Israelites and the prelude to Jesus Christ as Messiah.

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That Thoene is an artist there’s no doubt. But what makes her books, including this one, so special, are the Spiritual Truths and revelations that knowing details of history bring out in the story. For example, I’d never put together that the people of Nineveh worshiped Dagon, a god that’s half fish and half man, and that God used a large fish to swallow Jonah and spit him out preach to these fish-idol worshipers about the One True God. Pretty cool insight.

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There are many others in the book.

I think this book would be a great read-aloud to middle grades and an excellent book to give to a high school student as a Resurrection Day gift. There are several scenes regarding a white hart that kids and teens will especially enjoy. However, it’s definitely an adult book, too. But I can see a classroom of kids really enjoying reading this book together or listening to their teacher read it aloud.

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http://www.markduffin.net/

From the blogger review website:

Though there have been many stories about the Cup of Christ, the Holy Grail, after the Last Supper, this is the first imaginative account of the Cup’s previous history and significance. Nehemiah, the young son of a Jewish woman, a weaver from Jerusalem, is born and raised among the Jews who didn’t return to Jerusalem from the Exile. Educated by Rabbi Kagba, one of the magi present at Jesus’ birth thirty years earlier, Nehemiah grows up with the expectation of a soon-coming Messiah. Could the Yeshua of Nazareth, who is walking the earth, reportedly doing miracles, be that Messiah?

When young Nehemiah must travel the long caravan road to Jerusalem, he is charged with an unusual mission—to carry a mysterious object back to the holy city of Jerusalem . . . an object whose reappearance heralds the Messiah’s arrival.

Nehemiah arrives in Jerusalem just as the final events of Jesus’ earthly ministry are coming to a climax: the Feast of Dedication, the Triumphal Entry, the last cleansing of the Temple, and culminating at the Last Supper in the Upper Room. Only Nehemiah understands the true sacrifice that is to come as he makes the cup worthy of his Savior.

I give this book 5 stars. It’s a flawless, beautifully written story with a unique point of view. I hope parents will share it with their children and teachers with their students. It’s an excellent book for any home or church library. I highly recommend.

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The Devil Walks in Mattingly by Billy Coffey–4.5 stars

Billy Coffey is the author of four novels:  Snow Day (2010) Paper Angels (2011), When Mockingbirds Sing (2013) and The Devil Walks in Mattingly (2014).

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From his website:

“When you’re raised in small-town Virginia by a redneck father and a Mennonite mother, certain things become ingrained. And when you marry a small-town girl and have two small-town kids, all you want to do is pass those ingrained things along.

Like believing the best life is one lived in the country enjoying the pleasures it provides—summer nights beneath the stars, rocking chairs on the front porch, deer grazing in the fields. And believing that no matter how iffy life can get sometimes, there are some things that are eternal and unchanging.

But above all else, believing that in everything there is story waiting to be told.”

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BillyCoffey.com

If there’s one thing Billy Coffey knows how to do it’s write a story. His syntax is as compelling as the story itself.

How did I like this book? Not as much as I liked When Mockingbirds Sing.  And that’s not because it was poorly written. I think it’s because it was a heavy, emotionally-wrenching story. Which is probably what Coffey was going for. You definitely feel invested in the characters because he makes the weightiness of their guilt very real to the reader.

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BillyCoffey.com

Basically, the story is about a sheriff and his wife going through life carrying a load of guilt for something that they did in high school that resulted in a death. There’s another character that feels this weight as well. They do all sorts of things to appease the weight of their sin. They go through life unaware of available grace.

What I do like about Coffey books are the ghosts. Not in the Casper-sense. But metaphorically and perceptually. The mountains and hollows of Virginia are known for such things, and the setting for this book was perfect for the “ghosts” that haunt the characters of this book.

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BillyCoffey.com

I read all 385 pages in one sitting. It didn’t bore me and that says a lot about how well this book was written. I’m easily distracted when reading fiction and I like a story that keeps me engaged. This one did.

In some ways, Coffey’s writing in this book reminded me of Ted Dekker’s. I’ve not read all of Dekker’s books, but the ones I have read deal with supernatural issues similarly. If you like Dekker, I have no doubt you’ll like Coffey.

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BillyCoffey.com

I’m no expert, but I think if Coffey could have incorporated a few breaks of levity in the book, I might have enjoyed it more. Again, it was a heavy read emotionally. But if you like a book that grabs you by the collar and won’t let you go, a book you can’t stop thinking about after you put it down, you’ll like this one.

I give it 4.5 stars.

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Tweet This: The Devil Walks in Mattingly–4.5 stars!

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Introducing inspirational author, Paula Mowery

Paula Mowery, Author

Paula Mowery, Author

From the time I met Paula online, I’ve felt a kinship with her as a pastor’s wife and homeschool Mama. I’m very pleased to have the opportunity to introduce my readers to her wonderful writing!

Paula is a pastor’s wife and a former homeschool mom to a daughter who just started Liberty University Online. She works part-time as an assistant in a Pre-K and is a published author, speaker, and acquisitions editor for Prism Book Group.

And now for the interview!

And now for the interview!

Paula, I’m so happy to have you here today on my blog. Please tell my readers about your writing space! (I don’t know why I’m intrigued by people’s writing caves but I am!) Where do you write?

My husband calls it my writing hole. I have a wonderful L-shaped desk in a back extra bedroom. It is somewhat like being in a hole since it is at the end of the house away from everyone and most distractions. On one side of the L is my laptop. On the other side is stacked notes and lists of my present projects for writing and editing.

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Sounds fantastic. What is your process? (Spreadsheets, Snowflake, Lists/Outlines, Seat of the pants?)

I’m what you might call a combo writer, meaning that I’m not totally seat of the pants but also not a big outliner. I normally get an idea and scratch it out on a piece of paper, putting it into a file. As I have other ideas for that story, I will add notes to that file. I usually make a short list about what the story is about, who it is about, and where it is headed. When I’m ready to start writing, I skim my lists and notes and then take off. I’m categorized as old-school because I write out my stories first in spiral notebooks. The only things I can compose directly on the computer are articles and blogs. I just can’t write a novel that way.

I love notebooks!

I love notebooks!

I use notebooks, too, but usually when I’m on the run. Tell us about your book, Be The Blessing.

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My novella, Be The Blessing, released on September 13th. The main character in this book is a pastor’s wife named Addy. She wants to follow what God would have her to do but struggles when God asks her to be a blessing to others even when she is suffering through trials of her own.

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Another title, Brave New Century, released November 14th. This is an anthology of four stories set in cities in the 1900’s. My story is called “Forgiven” and is particularly special to me because of a scene that I included that really happened to my paternal grandfather.

Why will readers want to read these?

I would encourage readers to pick up Be The Blessing for encouragement and even challenge for your Christian walk. The novella includes a short Bible study for further personal application.

Readers will enjoy Brave New Century for the sweet romance and historical aspects.

Ah, romance!

Ah, romance!

How did your book come to life?

Be The Blessing is actually the second in Addy’s story. When the first, The Blessing Seer, was completed, my editor asked if there would be a sequel. I hadn’t considered it until she asked. That evening the ideas starting coming, and Addy’s story continued.

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Brave New Century was the brainchild of co-author, Lisa Lickel. She put out a call on a writer email loop for those interested in writing a story set in 1900 in a city with romance. Lisa, Teena Stewart, Kathy Rouser, and I corresponded. The result is the anthology, Brave New Century.

Who is your favorite character in the book and why?

In Be The Blessing I have to say that Conrad is my favorite character. I don’t want to give away anything about him. Let’s just say he is a little different and mysterious.

In my story, “Forgiven,” I really like Henry. Henry Smith was my grandfather. I never had the opportunity to meet him, because he died before I was born. I do have this newspaper article about him which is where the whole story was born.

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How did you name your characters?

For The Blessing Seer and Be The Blessing I used a Christian baby name book. I wanted the names of the characters to have a significance as to their personality or importance in the book.

“Forgiven” utilizes my grandparent’s real names as well as the names of people in the newspaper article.

Why will readers enjoy your book?

As with anything and everything I write, I pray readers will enjoy my books because of the impression that is left on them. I hope and pray that they can be encouraged in their Christian walk or maybe encounter a need for a Savoir for the first time.

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Anyone who says they have only one life to live must not know how to read a book. ~Author Unknown

Is anything in the book based on your own life?

Be The Blessing does include some real occurrences from my experience as a pastor’s wife. Some of the events that Addy must endure and go through with church members has happened in my life.

What is your favorite scene in the book?

My favorite scene in Be The Blessing is the moment that Conrad tells Addy that she looks more like Jesus. I crave that!

Oh to be like Jesus!

Oh, to be like Jesus!

Why Christian fiction?

I only read Christian fiction and some nonfiction. I only write Christian literature. First, I feel God has called me to a writing ministry. Second, I desire to communicate Christ through what I write so that others may encounter Him, too. I want to encourage Christians to fulfill what God has planned for their lives.

Is there anything else you’d like us to know?

All I can add is that God has so blessed me as well as humbled me by allowing me to write for Him. I promised Him long ago that if a book I write only touches one for Christ, that is enough reason to write it.

Find Paula Online:

Blog: www.paulamowery.blogspot.com.

Book reviews and articles: www.christianonlinemagazine.com.

Find her editor bio under “submissions” at www.prismbookgroup.com.

Paula, thanks so much for sharing your books with us today! Have a question for Paula? Please send them to us below!

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