Inspiring Novels: We’ve been talking for the past few weeks about novels that inspire readers (Visit the Novels of Hope Contest Link here to see the comments. Last day to enter is Feb. 20th). There have been some really interesting novel ideas left. Several of you mentioned The Shack, which I also liked. Others mentioned Eat, Pray, Love, which I have not read and still others have mentioned novelists, such as Tosca Lee and Francine Rivers. I have Tosca Lee’s book, Demon: A Memoir, on my shelf and I keep giving my copies of Rivers’ Redeeming Love and Young’s The Shack away, so I need to get more copies. Thanks also to those of you who included my novel Ruby Among Us in your comments. I do hope the book inspires you. It’s sometimes difficult for me to believe, but Ruby Among Us has been out for about eight months now. Since many of you who visit here are also my readers (I love you all by the way!), I wanted to let you know about another author I think you will like. She writes southern fiction, and Ruby Among Us is not southern, but I am drawn to her fiction because of her lyrical style and her willingness to deal with certain issues in her fiction.
Meeting Mary DeMuth through her Fiction: I actually have met Mary a few times and she is a precious person, but I first met her as a reader of her fiction. Not Long before Ruby Among Us came out, I was very encouraged to discover author Mary E. DeMuth’s southern novel, Watching the Tree Limbs and later, Wishing on Dandelions. Of course I would never put myself on the same writing level as Mary, but as a writer I was encouraged to think that if people liked Mary’s style of fiction about faith and life, then they might also like Ruby Among Us, which had just been acquired by Waterbrook. At a time when I felt worried about my book’s release and my style of writing in general, her books inspired me to stay true to my own voice and to dig even deeper into my characters’ lives. Like any debut novelist, my goal is to improve with every book, so I am still striving and am grateful for novelists like Mary who pave the road ahead.
The Book Readers Have Been Waiting For: You will really love Mary’s new book. True to her groundbreaking style, Mary’s latest novel, Daisy Chain, another southern novel, is a haunting and stirring masterpiece that releases any day now (It’s also part of my contest’s Grand Book Prize if you would like a chance to win). Like you saw in Ruby Among Us (For those of you who read it and enjoyed the “secrets” aspect of the book), secrets in Daisy Chain shape and inform the lives of the characters, but in Daisy Chain, be prepared to go deep. I don’t mean deep as in doom and gloom, but I mean the story will take you into the inner lives of the characters in such a way that you’ll be profoundly moved and inspired.
Finding Freedom From Secrets: To go along with her book, Mary has created a site called My Family Secrets where readers, or anybody, can choose to be free of their secrets. We all know that secrets can weigh you down and very often that heaviness makes life itself even more difficult. Be sure to stop by and read the anonymous secrets that have been left by people who long to be free. They are sure to inspire you, and if you would like to share your own secret anonymously, there are instructions at the site: http://blog.myfamilysecrets.org/
I’ll be offering a review of Mary’s book next week, so please come back. I don’t review books on my blog very often, but Daisy Chain is too good not to let my readers know about it. I really believe you will love this book and I hope you’ll come back and tell us about it.
About Daisy Chain (From the back cover): The abrupt disappearance of young Daisy Chance from a small Texas town in 1973 spins three lives out of control—Jed, whose guilt over not protecting his friend Daisy strangles him; Emory Chance, who blames her own choices for her daughter’s demise; and Ouisie Pepper, who is plagued by headaches while pierced by the shattered pieces of a family in crisis. In this first book in the Defiance, Texas Trilogy, fourteen-year-old Jed Pepper has a sickening secret: He’s convinced it’s his fault his best friend Daisy went missing. Jed’s pain sends him on a quest for answers to mysteries woven through the fabric of his own life and the lives of the families of Defiance, Texas. When he finally confronts the terrible truths he’s been denying all his life, Jed must choose between rebellion and love, anger and freedom.
Daisy Chain is an achingly beautiful southern coming-of-age story crafted by a bright new literary talent. It offers a haunting yet hopeful backdrop for human depravity and beauty, for terrible secrets and God’s surprising redemption.
Purchase Daisy Chain here and share it with your friends. This is a book that is going to change lives, so buy extra copies!
Purchase Ruby Among Us and Rose House here.