I'm fascinated by the many talented authors that the internet highway allows us to meet.
Here's another great writer whom I'm privileged to know from American Christian Fiction Writers. She also has a book coming out soon by Prism Book Group (my publisher) meet Deborah Piccurelli.
After years of reading books and watching movies with an element of romance, Deborah M. Piccurelli’s desire to write romance novels came naturally. She is active in her church and is an advocate for sanctity of life. Deborah is the author of two novels, a novella and several cause-related newspaper articles. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, and the New Jersey Society of Christian Writers. As one of the winners in a contest by The Christian Authors Show, details of Deborah’s writing journey can be found in the 2013-2014 edition of the book, 50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading. Deborah lives in New Jersey with her husband and their two sons.
"Deborah M. Piccurelli is passionate about the Lord, family, and creating powerful prose." From her website: www.deborahmpiccurelli.com
Investigative journalist, Amber Blake, is a little person bent on payback for the death of her average-sized twin sister. Enlisted by her former partner and estranged husband, Evan, she poses as a counselor in an abortion clinic to expose the doctor responsible for fetal harvesting. As a Christian, she struggles with concealing her beliefs to maintain her cover, while the doctor’s romantic overtures tumble her stomach. Amber agrees to date him for the sake of the story . . . but nothing prepares her for what’s behind a mysterious door in his office.
Amazon review- Hush Little Baby
A suspenseful book that gripped me from the start.
ByMareFlareon January 11, 2015
"She would be working for her sister's killer." (from "Hush Little Baby" by Deborah Piccurelli)
The first sentence in any story is so important. It either grabs the reader's attention, or loses the reader immediately. I couldn't help but be drawn in by this sentence. Why would she want to work for a murderer, especially one who killed her sister? Isn't that risky? Already, I had questions. I HAD to keep reading!
Amber Blake, a little person and investigative reporter, goes undercover to work as a counselor in an abortion clinic. Something fishy is going on and she's determined to stick it out and discover what's not right! Not only does she face danger, but ultimately, she faces having to make difficult choices each day because of her faith and beliefs in the sanctity of life.
Deborah Piccurelli weaves romance, intrigue, adventure, danger, and even humor in this exciting tale of suspense. She expertly changes point of view throughout the book, so that we learn how her estranged husband feels during all of this. Each time I turned a page, I wanted to shout at Amber, "Don't do that!" or "Why don't you tell him?!"
What's not evident by reading the back cover, is that there are other issues that Amber needs to deal with; issues that are clouding her judgment, and forcing her to make important life choices; there is a parallel between Amber's undercover job and Amber's real life.
The story flows effortlessly and quickly. There are surprises and twists along the way, but Deb always comes back to unraveling the main thread. I read this book in a weekend, and was completely enthralled!
Amazon buy link: http://tinyurl.com/qhgxd8h
My website also has other various links for purchasing preferences, and includes a special link to the publisher where you can get the book for a 25% discount. You have to scroll down the list where the title of the book is already marked for you. www.deborahmpiccurelli.com
Readers can connect with Deborah at:
I'm excited to highlight one of the talented authors from Prism Book Group. Linda Shew Wolf has out done herself with her newest release.
Linda, let me start with asking you to tell us a little about yourself.
I grew up in Ithaca, New York in the 1960s. I graduated from Cornell University and went on to play saxophone in an R&B band in Chicago, where I met my husband, Bobby, a fellow musician. After raising two children and many years of being a professional editor, we both returned to performing, and I finally had a chance to rekindle a lifelong passion for writing fiction. I work as a curriculum consultant for elementary and middle school students in Chicago, sharing my love of writing and music with young people of all ages, and especially with our two young granddaughters, Kathryn and Kailyn.
Many years ago, I had a chance to travel to Ithaca, NY. I remember it being a quaint town. I enjoyed my visit to the area. Will you tell the readers about A Firefly Life?
Melanie Bell is almost 13 and growing up in a small town in upstate NY in the late 60s. She still has a little-boy body even though she has the romantic dreams of an older teen. When Jonathan, a drop-dead gorgeous, charismatic boy, moves to her town and attends her school, she is instantly in love and can think about nothing else but getting close to him. Through some twists and turns, she becomes his little sister’s babysitter and works her way into his confidence and inner circle.
Melanie is the only white kid at her school who is best friends with a black girl. Her best friend, Jo, is a powerful, smart young lady who sees right through Jonathan’s manipulative nature, but her warnings go unheeded as Melanie contemplates discarding their friendship in favor of pursuing Jonathan. As she is drawn deeper and deeper into lying for him, Melanie’s bonds with her family are also endangered. Jonathan’s little sister, Tracy, is autistic and a real handful. Melanie’s ability to understand and care for her is another avenue of growth that weaves through the story and is an integral part of the story’s climax and conclusion.
The music and culture of the late 60s create the backdrop for a tumultuous time of change and awakening in the mind and heart of this sensitive young girl.
What inspired you to write A Firefly Life?
Our daughter, Julie, was about 12 when I started the book, and she was navigating her first big crushes on boys. I was a romantic young lady myself back in the day, and I wanted to write something for her about how powerful these attractions can be—so powerful that you can lose yourself in them, as well as lose track of people, ideas, and beliefs that are important to you. This power needs to be respected and understood, as it can be a real game-changer.
This novel started out as a simple exercise in a small writing group I belonged to: “Write a paragraph or two about a person who reminds you of an animal.” My original paragraph is still the opening paragraph of the book:
“The lion boy stood waist-deep in the pool. There was no other way to describe him.
“Melanie’s magazine dropped to her lap and the watery racket of children’s voices around her faded to a soft hum. The boy held his back and neck with regal straightness, surveying his surroundings with fierce disdain. His eyes flickered at various points around the pool. He was an exotic, caged animal looking for a way out.”
What is the main thing you hope readers remember from this story?
I think the thoughts and emotions of young teens should be valued more than they are. Granted, this age group may seem like overgrown children, but they have very strong emotions and opinions that are helping to shape their habits and choices for years to come. The key adult characters in this book model both successful and unsuccessful ways to connect with and guide a young person going through transitions and tough times. I hope some of what was helpful for my heroine will stick with readers, and teens will make the effort to connect with a wise and loving older person in their lives.
I honor the validity of doubt in anyone’s approach to the difficult questions of spiritual life. I think God can handle it, and what’s more, I think he welcomes it. Tough topics deserve a thorough look, and none are better equipped for this arena than young people, who may or may not have had a religious upbringing, but who are beginning to face the challenges of their own journey. I hope we can all honor that process in each other, and especially in the young people we know.
What is the hardest part of writing for you?
After many years as a professional editor, it’s SOOO hard for me to write the first draft stage and allow things to just flow without editing. The more I can let go of that editor head, the more my mind frees up to allow me into that luscious zone of deep creativity where anything goes (and there is no pesky editor voice nagging about things that don’t line up or aren’t phrased at the peak of effectiveness yet).
Do you have a blog?
I do, and I try to add to it weekly, but well, you know how it goes. It’s a great outlet for my reflections and musings on the wealth of inspiration I find in the Torah cycle each week and its partner readings in the Haftarah. It’s downright uncanny how often my other readings in Psalms, the New Testament, and poetry by George MacDonald weave seamlessly into the Torah and Haftarah portions nearly every week. Making those connections helps me with my ongoing study of what it means to be a believer in the One True God as I sort through the Jewish and Christian influences in my life. The blog is at belonging2all.wordpress.com.
Where can readers find you and your novels?
I’m on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100007781806053, on Twitter at @LindaShewWolf, and my blog is at belonging2all.wordpress.com (doesn’t hurt to be repetitive sometimes, right?). My novel is on Amazon at:
and Barnes & Noble at:
Barnes & Noble at:
Linda, I look forward to reading your book and know other readers will enjoy it too.
Beginning Thursday, August 20th through August 31st. There will be a daily drawing for gifts. Send a comment about Roped to firstname.lastname@example.org, http://dianegates.wordpress.com/, or to my Face Book Page-DiAne Gates, to be part of the drawing. Pictures of prizes will be posted each day and the prize of the day awarded the same evening.
Enter as many times as you wish. Roped will be released Friday, August 21st.
Texas writer, DiAne Gates, illustrates and writes fiction for children, YA, and serious non-fiction for the folks. Her passion is calling the Church’s attention to how far we’ve catapulted from God’s order as evidenced by her blog Moving the Ancient Boundaries, http://dianegates.wordpress.com DiAne worked as a photographer and writer for the East Texas Youth Rodeo Association. She had the opportunity to be in the rodeo arena, feel the sting of Texas turf in her face and across her camera lens, which gave birth to this western rodeo adventure series. The first in this series is Roped. The sequel Twisted is almost finished, and the third story spins in her head. DiAne leads two edit groups for North Texas Christian Writers—LifeSavers for adults, and the award winning teen group, The PageMasters. She facilitates GriefShare, an international support ministry for those who’ve lost loved ones. Wife, mother, and grandmother, whose passion is to share those hard life lessons God taught her. Lessons that will leap from the page into your heart and play out in family relationships.
Julie Arduini is a one of the many wonderful authors I have met through ACFW. I hope you'll enjoy Julie's insight on how fictional and real characters can merge.
A city girl moves to the mountains and produces a lot of change for the local grocer.
What It’s Like to Meet “Real Characters”
Last week I finished a first, hosting a book club featuring my own book, Entrusted. When the women’s ministry at church presented the idea I wasn’t sure about it, but I can tell you on the other side, I loved every moment.
Each week we not only read and discussed the chapters, I gave “behind the scenes” information to the book club members. I shared what I was thinking in certain scenes, or who I based certain characters off from. I even disclosed that one Entrusted character is actually my play on words and a mini sermon for people to leave the past where it belongs.
What seemed most interesting for them was when I talked about my last visit to the real Speculator where Entrusted is based. I called the village Speculator Falls but Speculator is my favorite place to be. I was able to speak at the library in June and share what it took to get Entrusted published. When I was done speaking, people stayed and we got to chat.
While there, I met a man who was once mayor. As he talked about his life it was hard not to think about the town council in Entrusted and the men and women who were part of the council. Suddenly they had faces. The very people in the library, the library I had written about in the book.
When I met the pastor I remember shaking his hand and listening, but there was also a part of me certain I was shaking the pastor’s hand in Entrusted, Pastor Craig Reynolds. In fact, I didn’t want to say the pastor’s name for fear I’d get it wrong and call him by the character’s name. I had never met the real pastor, but when I did, he seemed a perfect fit for Pastor Reynolds. Talk about surreal!
The biggest giggle from the book club was explaining that Entrusted was inspired by a store and my “what if” questions. Charlie Johns is the grocery store in Speculator and in a crazy twist, as I prepared the manuscript for publisher query, the real store had an expansion just like my story did. When I went to visit, the expansion was exactly what I pictured for Entrusted. It was so weird! And during that visit I was able to meet the owner of the store.
In Entrusted, that position of store owner was the hero of the book. I wasn’t thinking of any real person, I was thinking about a conflict and my “what if” questions. What if a man who had experienced loss and change met a woman who embraced change? That’s where Entrusted started. But when the book club asked if Entrusted was on the shelves at Charlie Johns, I admitted they were not and I was too afraid to ask why. I explained, “When I met the owner I told him I was writing a romance based on the store. But when the book was published, I sent him a copy and thanked him for having a store worth writing about. I never heard from him and I’m afraid perhaps he thought I was writing about him and not the store.” I’m scared that he thinks I’m some stalker lady, although the idea for Entrusted goes back to the early 1990’s.
The book club also enjoyed hearing about meeting people at the Speculator library who were afraid I’d put them in Entangled, book 2 in the Adirondack Surrender Romance series. They admitted as they talked that they were afraid I was going to use what they said against them. Or, write a character based on what they just said, or on a gesture they used. I don’t have enough words to share how much I enjoyed meeting these “real characters.”
How about you? Have you visited a place that you read about? Did the characters come alive as you met the people around town?
- See more at: http://juliearduini.com/books/entrusted-adirondack-surrender-1/
Barnes and Noble
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