Friday, March 27, 2009

Are You Walking Through a Valley

I just opened the mail box and received a copy of Jerry Beaver's debut book, Walking Through the Valleys of Life, based on Psalm 23. I had the pleasure of editing this book so it's special to me. But I would enjoy it even if I hadn't had a part in watching it take shape. Here is a little summery from the author:

"This book is based on the well-known Twenty-third Psalm, written about the life of the Shepherd and His sheep. Walking Through the Valleys of Life is geared for the Christian struggling in a trial and long valley. There are practical and scriptural insights throughout the book, leading readers to keep looking to the Lord and His perfect will in their dark times. Supplemental study guides are included, so that readers can study further in depth and journal their personal application. These study supplements are also outlines that a pastor can teach from during Wednesday night prayer meetings or can use for Sunday school lessons. Once a book is purchased, a link will be provided to download the study guides so that one can customize them to their own preaching style. The book has been professionally edited and designed. All Scriptures are taken out of the King James Bible. Walking Through the Valleys of Life is now available for purchase. I invite you to go to the website, and take a look inside the book, and consider making this book a part of your resources."

Walking Through the Valleys of Life is for anyone who needs a reminder that we don't face trials alone.

Monday, March 09, 2009

I’m Finally Back . . . and with a Great New Book to Announce

Family stuff has kept me from posting for quite awhile but what a jumpstart I got today! I just finished Mary DeMuth’s new novel, Daisy Chain, Book 1 in the Defiance Texas Trilogy, and it’s my turn to spread the word.

I met Mary a few years ago at the Mount Hermon Christian Writer’s Conference. A year later I became an official fan, when I read her beautiful debut novel, Watching the Tree Limbs. Since then she has become a precious sister in Christ who I admire for her honesty, love for Jesus, and courageous writing. If you have read any of Mary’s books you know that she has a gift for crafting stories and characters that personify her passion for “turning trials into triumph.”

Her new novel, Daisy Chain, is described as “like an Oprah book with hope.” I knew I was in trouble as soon as I read page one. All responsibilities and need for sleep went out the window as I got sucked into Defiance Texas 1977 and the sudden disappearance of thirteen-year-old Daisy Chance. My heart broke for her best friend Jed as he took on the blame for her disappearance, listened to town gossip about Daisy’s mother, tried to find clues to Daisy’s whereabouts in her diary, and endured the daily pain of his own family secret. I quickly fell in love with Jed’s sensitive sister Sissy, Hixon, and “Bald Muriel.” Other characters I struggled to understand or even like. But all became so real to me that I often felt like I was watching a movie instead of reading a book. Daisy Chain stirred every emotion. I laughed, got angry and choked back tears, sometimes all in one chapter, but I couldn’t get off the roller coaster until I saw God’s healing work in Jed’s life.

This story reminded me that redemptions has more to do with what God does inside of a person, and how He draws hearts to Himself, than everything turning out as we think it should. Daisy Chain isn't always easy to read but it reflects reality—that we live in a fallen world where tragedy hits unexpectedly, people are cruel, and God’s ways don’t always make sense, but we can still have hope. The fact that this is Book 1 in a triology left me with the sense that we never know what the future holds. The end of the book doesn't mean the end of the story, just like in life. Most importantly, Jesus’ love, goodness, and salvation radiates in Jed’s life-changing journey.

To read more about Mary and her books, visit her website and blog.
Mary DeMuth’s Website
Mary DeMuth’s Blog

To purchase Daisy Chain on Amazon: Daisy Chain

To read other review on the Daisy Chain blog tour, participants are listed here:

If you are on Facebook and see references to Mary’s “Two Truths and One Lie” game, be sure to participate.