Tuesday, May 13, 2014


Welcome Jennifer Slattery
Jennifer Slattery writes Missional Romance for New Hope Publishers, a publishing house passionate about bringing God’s healing grace and truth to the hopeless. Her debut novel, Beyond I Do, is currently available for preorder at a 26% off discount. You can find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Beyond-I-Do-Jennifer-Slattery/dp/1596694173/
Visit with Jennifer online at JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.
I love a great story, but I loathe a bad one even more. Luckily, I’ve stumbled upon more greats than duds, but every once in a while…
A few years ago someone mailed me a historical fiction about... Um… I'm not sure what it was about because I never made it that far. I tried. Oh, my, did I try, but after page upon page of stirring pots, ironing clothes, and other life-activities, I put the book aside. I learned the heroine wore her hair in ribbons in painstaking detail, what she ate for breakfast—each and every day, and numerous other details of her daily life. Sadly, her over-abundance of minute details, void of conflict, dulled my brain.
Perhaps you can relate. 

As I think back on the varied novels I’ve enjoyed this past year,  I realized one of the things I long for in a story is the ability to visit a place other than my own. That doesn't mean I always gravitate toward time-traveling speculative fiction, but I don't want to relive the monotony of life either.

I love books that raise the stakes while introducing me to unique settings and heroic characters. One of my favorite authors is Charles Dickens. Upon first glance, I might conclude this is due to his "other-than" settings, but I believe it's more than that. His use of language creates images so vivid and emotive; I’m captivated by a routine walk through the city. He does this without losing the human element--the universal emotions we all share. So basically, he creates a world that is unique enough to grab my attention and propel me into the story, but he does it in such a way that I deeply connect with the characters.

One of my all-time favorite novels, A River Rising by Athol Dickson produced the same effect. The inner and outer drama woven throughout the novel was intense, but it was his writing that made everything come together. Every word, every verb, was carefully selected to enhance the overall mood of the novel, resulting in a total-mind take-over. As I read, I became the main character. I tasted the sweat dripping down my face, felt the muscles in my shoulders and back scream for relief.
What about you? What are some things you look for in a story? Think back to a story you've particularly enjoyed. What was it about that novel that grabbed you? Is it a slightly quirky character or a castle shrouded by clouds and hidden behind a patch of trees? Have other novels appeared to drag on? Maybe forcing you to put it down after a mere twenty pages? If so, why do you think that was?  
Beyond I Do
Marriage . . . it’s more than a happily ever after. Eternally more. Ainsley Meadow’s encounter with a woman, her child, and their abuser sparks a passion that threatens her engagement. Will seeing beyond the present unite her and her fiancé or tear them apart? Raised by a hedonist mother, who cycles through jobs and relationships like wrapping paper on Christmas morning, falls into a predictable and safe relationship with Richard, a self-absorbed socialite psychiatrist. But as her wedding nears, a battered woman and her child spark a long-forgotten dream and ignites a hidden passion. One that threatens to change everything, including her fiancé. To embrace God’s best and find true love, this security-seeking bride must follow God with reckless abandon and realize that marriage goes Beyond I Do.


Jennifer said...

I like a novel that has deeper meanings hidden throughout that need to be mined...

Kym McNabney said...

Jennifer, I agree.

Jennifer Slattery said...

Me, too, Jen!