Ginny Aiken has written more books than I can count. On top of that, she’s written all kinds of books: short and long, humorous and wrenchingly moving as well as filled with suspense. She amazes me because at any length or any depth of emotion, whatever she writes is terrific.
Her first book in the THE WOMEN OF HOPE series, For Such a Time as This, was released Tuesday. In her books in this series, Ginny takes a story from the Bible and set it in more modern times. For Such a Time as This takes place in Oregon in the year 1879. My favorite books by Ginny have always been the short, humorous ones. so I approached this novel with some misgiving which turned out to be misplaced. This longer and deeply touching novel fascinated me and it also had Ginny’s trademark humor sprinkled throughout.
The setting of the small town is beautifully described with historical details that made me feel as if I, too, were in Bountiful, experiencing the struggle of the farmers against drought and insects. The characters are artfully and clearly drawn. I loved Olivia’s rambunctious family and the children she cares for as well. Elijah and Olivia come across as strong but flawed, often stubborn but loving people. They grow, both as people and together as husband and wife although they can’t admit that–until the twist that tests them but not Olivia’s faith.
I look forward to the next novels in this series.
Visiting Butternut Creek today is Jessica Nelson whose first book, Love on the Range, will be available from Love Inspired on Tuesday, April 3, 2012. It’s great to have you here today, Jessica. Please answer that question for us. What is it about a man with a scar and a secret?
Scars and secrets. Sometimes they’re intertwined. For my character Gracelyn Riley, there’s more to her interest in rancher Trevor Cruz’s scar than mere curiosity. She’s on a search for a Bureau of Investigation agent who is rumored to be scarred. When she meets dark and mysterious Trevor Cruz on the way to her uncle’s, she’s certain he has secrets and determines to discover what he knows about Special Agent Striker. She needs to obtain an interview with the elusive agent and make a journalistic name for herself.
After all, if she gets this coveted interview and actually meets the man himself, The Woman’s Liberator has promised to hire her on as a journalist, enabling her to financially support herself rather than relying on her loving but restrictive parents.
Gracelyn isn’t shy and tends to speak first, think later. Overcome with curiosity and maybe a little bit of awkwardness, she asks the hero where he got his scar. He lies at first, but later the truth comes out. A secret unearthed, but not the one Gracie was looking for.
Scars are markers of a journey, almost like a tattoo. They tell a story of where a person has been, what they’ve done. Hero’s with scars and secrets can be very intriguing because there is the immediate knowledge that this person has faced something, done something, that tangibly marked them forever. Does it have anything to do with secrets? For me, characters who are scarred have already introduced a question mark and that makes me want to read on.
Do you have any interesting scars? How did you get them? Would you ask about someone else’s scar?
More about the author: Jessica Nelson, in keeping with her romantic inclinations, married two days after she graduated high school. She believes romance happens every day, and thinks the greatest, most intense romance comes from a God who woos people to himself with passionate tenderness. When Jessica is not chasing her three beautiful, wild little boys around the living room, she can be found staring into space as she plots her next story.
More about Love on the Range: Any other socialite would view being packed off to a remote Oregon ranch as a punishment. But Gracelyn Riley knows that this is her opportunity to become a real reporter. If she can make her name through an interview with the elusive hero known as Striker, then she’ll never have to depend on anyone ever again. Rancher Trevor Cruz can’t believe his secret identity is being endangered by an overly chatty city girl. But if there’s one thing he knows, it’s that Gracie’s pretty little snooping nose is bound to get her in trouble. So he’ll use her determination to find “Striker” to keep an eye on her…and stick close by her side.