Happy Tuesday! From Monday through Wednesday, I’m spotlighting The Christy Award 2019 finalist books in each category – let’s start today with historical fiction! Some of the authors were gracious enough to answer a couple of questions for me so I’ve included their answers below as well.
The Christy Award® Gala 2019 is coming up on November 6th at Lipscomb University in Nashville, following The Art of Writing Conference. The Christy Award Dinner Gala will celebrate the art of Christian fiction, announce the 2019 winners of The Christy Award, and feature bestselling authors Patti Callahan, James Rubart and Becky Wade. In addition, they’ll honor the legacy of bestselling author and pioneer of inspirational fiction, Janette Oke, in the 40th anniversary year of Love Comes Softly. (You can still register to attend both events until the day of the conference/gala!)
If you can’t attend this year, watch the live stream HERE
And the (four!) finalists for Historical Fiction are….
A RUMORED FORTUNE
GENRE: Historical Fiction
RELEASE DATE: July 13, 2018
Tressa Harlowe’s father did not trust banks, but neither did he trust his greedy extended family. He kept his vast fortune hidden somewhere on his estate in the south of England and died suddenly, without telling anyone where he had concealed it. Tressa and her ailing mother are left with a mansion and an immense vineyard and no money to run it. It doesn’t take long for a bevy of opportunists to flock to the estate under the guise of offering condolences. Tressa knows what they’re really up to. She’ll have to work with the rough and rusticated vineyard manager to keep the laborers content without pay and discover the key to finding her father’s fortune–before someone else finds it first.
Award-winning author Joanna Davidson Politano welcomes readers to Trevelyan Castle, home of the poorest heiress in Victorian England, for a treasure hunt they’ll not soon forget.
Joanna Davidson Politano is the award-winning author of Lady Jayne Disappears and A Rumored Fortune. She freelances for a small nonfiction publisher but spends much of her time spinning tales that capture the colorful, exquisite details in ordinary lives. She is always on the hunt for random acts of kindness, people willing to share their deepest secrets with a stranger, and hidden stashes of sweets. She lives with her husband and their two babies in a house in the woods near Lake Michigan and shares stories that move her at www.jdpstories.com.
OF FIRE AND LIONS
SERIES: Prophets and Kings #2
GENRE: Historical/Biblical Fiction
RELEASE DATE: March 5, 2019
The Old Testament book of Daniel comes to life in this novel for readers of Lynn Austin’s Chronicles of the Kings series or Francine Rivers’ Mark of the Lion series.
Survival. A Hebrew girl first tasted it when she escaped death nearly seventy years ago as the Babylonians ransacked Jerusalem and took their finest as captives. She thought she’d perfected in the many years amongst the Magoi and the idol worshippers, pretending with all the others in King Nebuchadnezzar’s court. Now, as Daniel’s wife and a septuagenarian matriarch, Belili thinks she’s safe and she can live out her days in Babylon without fear–until the night Daniel is escorted to Belshazzar’s palace to interpret mysterious handwriting on a wall. The Persian Army invades, and Bellili’s tightly-wound secrets unfurl with the arrival of the conquering army. What will the reign of Darius mean for Daniel, a man who prays to Yahweh alone?
Ultimately, Yahweh’s sovereign hand guides Jerusalem’s captives, and the frightened Hebrew girl is transformed into a confident woman, who realizes her need of the God who conquers both fire and lions.
Mesu Andrews is the best-selling author of Isaiah’s Daughter, and her deep understanding of and love for God’s Word brings the biblical world alive for readers. Andrews lives with her husband Roy in the Appalachian Mountains and enjoys spending time with her tribe of grandchildren. Visit her at her website.
why do you write Christian Fiction?
how have christy by catherine marshall & love comes softly by janette oke impacted you and/or your writing?
I’ve only seen Christy on TV, and I’ve never read Love Comes Softly. Eeeek! I was impacted most (negatively) by general market biblical fiction in the early 2000’s. It was so repugnant that I became incredibly passionate about seeing more well-researched and well-crafted truly BIBLICAL fiction in the Christian market. Francine Rivers, Lynn Austin, and Angela Hunt were our pioneers during that time, and then Jill Eileen Smith broke open the flood gates in 2009 with her Wives of King David series. What a joy to have such great biblical novels in the CBA now!
GENRE: Historical Fiction
PUBLISHER: Tyndale House
RELEASE DATE: February 5, 2019
A beautifully crafted story breathes life into the cameo character from the classic novel A Tale of Two Cities.
It is the best of times . . .
On a tranquil farm nestled in the French countryside, two orphaned cousins—Renée and Laurette—have been raised under the caring guardianship of young Émile Gagnon, the last of a once-prosperous family. No longer starving girls, Laurette and Renée now spend days tending Gagnon’s sheep, and nights in their cozy loft, whispering secrets and dreams in this time of waning innocence and peace.
It is the worst of times . . .
Paris groans with a restlessness that can no longer be contained within its city streets. Hunger and hatred fuel her people. Violence seeps into the ornate halls of Versailles. Even Gagnon’s table in the quiet village of Mouton Blanc bears witness to the rumbles of rebellion, where Marcel Moreau embodies its voice and heart.
It is the story that has never been told.
In one night, the best and worst of fate collide. A chance encounter with a fashionable woman will bring Renée’s sewing skills to light and secure a place in the court of Queen Marie Antoinette. An act of reckless passion will throw Laurette into the arms of the increasingly militant Marcel. And Gagnon, steadfast in his faith in God and country, can only watch as those he loves march straight into the heart of the revolution.
Allison Pittman is the author of more than a dozen critically acclaimed novels and a four-time Christy finalist—twice for her Sister Wife series, once for All for a Story, and most recently for The Seamstress. She lives in San Antonio, Texas, blissfully sharing an empty nest with her husband, Mike. Connect with her on her website.
SHELTER OF THE MOST HIGH
SERIES: Cities of Refuge #2
GENRE: Historical/Biblical Fiction
PUBLISHER: Bethany House
RELEASE DATE: October 2, 2018
The daughter of a pagan high priest, Sofea finds solace from her troubles in the freedom of the ocean. But when marauders attack her village on the island of Sicily, she and her cousin are taken across the sea to the shores of Canaan.
Eitan has lived in Kedesh, a City of Refuge, for the last eleven years, haunted by a tragedy in his childhood and chafing at the boundaries placed on him. He is immediately captivated by Sofea, but revealing his most guarded secret could mean drawing her into the danger of his past.
As threats from outside the walls loom and traitors are uncovered within, Sofea and Eitan are plunged into the midst of a murder plot. Will they break free from the shackles of the past in time to uncover the betrayal and save their lives and the lives of those they love?
Connilyn Cossette is the Carol Award Winning and ECPA Bestselling author of the Out from Egypt Series and the Cities of Refuge Series from Bethany House Publishers. When she’s not engulfed in the happy chaos of homeschooling two teenagers, devouring books whole, or avoiding housework, she can be found digging into the rich ancient world of the Bible. She delights in discovering new gems of grace that point to Jesus and weaving them into an immersive fiction experience. Connect with her at www.ConnilynCossette.com
why do you write Christian Fiction?
how has christy by catherine marshall impacted you and/or your writing?
I’ve read Christy twice in my life, once when I was a voracious teen reader and once during the time I was writing my first manuscript for Counted with the Stars when I was in my mid-thirties. Both times I adored the story, finding the rich descriptions of Appalachia and the people Christy encounters during her time there fascinating. But in my second reading of the book, and looking at it through the filter of many more years of experience, I realized what a treasure of grace this seemingly simple story of a young out-of-her-element teacher truly was. Watching Christy struggle with her faith as she wrestled with issues of life and death and come to the realization that she was deeply loved by the Creator, in spite of her doubts and fears, was such an inspiration to me, especially as a new writer. There is nothing heavy-handed about the way Catherine Marshall presents Jesus in Christy, but it is done intentionally and masterfully. If I can manage to weave the Truth as seamlessly throughout my own stories as Catherine Marshall did, leading readers on a journey of faith exploration with as much depth and gentleness, then I will have done my job as a Christian author well. It will always be among my favorite books and I am delighted that both of my teenagers have recently read it and enjoyed it as well. I pray future generations will find as much inspiration within its pages as I have.
The Christy Award/ECPA is offering one of my readers ALL the finalist books in one category of your choice. (US only) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.
What about you? Which of these The Christy Award historical fiction finalists are on your TBR list? Which have you already read?