2021 The Christy Award Finalists (and a Giveaway!): Amanda Dykes & Set the Stars Alight

Posted October 17, 2021 by meezcarrie in 2021 The Christy Award, Amanda Dykes, Author Interview, Christian, contemporary, giveaway, historical / 25 Comments

Happy Sunday once again! Continuing until October 28th (culminating with a list of winners), I have the privilege of featuring all of the 2021 The Christy Award Finalists! Today I’m featuring Amanda Wen and her general fiction Christy Award finalist book Set the Stars Alight! You can check out a list of all the finalists HERE.

GENRE: Inspirational Dual Timeline Fiction
PUBLISHER: Bethany House
RELEASE DATE: June 30, 2020
PAGES: 367

Lucy Clairmont’s family treasured the magic of the past, and her childhood fascination with stories of the high seas led her to become a marine archaeologist. But when tragedy strikes, it’s Dashel, an American forensic astronomer, and his knowledge of the stars that may help her unearth the truth behind the puzzle she’s discovered in her family home.

Two hundred years earlier, the seeds of love are sown between a boy and a girl who spend their days playing in a secret sea cave, while the privileged young son of the estate looks on, wishing to join. As the children grow and war leads to unthinkable heartbreak, a story of love, betrayal, sacrifice, and redemption unfolds, held secret by the passage of time.

As Lucy and Dash journey to a mysterious old estate on the East Sussex coast, their search leads them to a community of souls and a long-hidden tale that may hold the answers–and the healing–they so desperately seek.


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Also available to read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited

I asked the author…

What do you most want your readers to take away from Set the Stars Alight?

Thank you, Carrie, for having me! It’s a true joy and delight to get to share a little about Set the Stars Alight. When you asked, “What do you most want readers to take away from your nominated book?” — one thing immediately came to mind:


I’m not talking about the plot, or the words used to write it, but rather, a theme that threads through it all. This idea that wonder–something we often associate with fairy tales and childhood– is actually real, strong enough to survive (and astound) in our adult lives, in a world that can be gritty and dark– and is knocking on our hearts and spirits, asking to be let in.

As we see in the story (and in our real world), it lives in underground dwelling places and mining operations where light is born. It lives in an entire forgotten house that was tucked (it’s true!) beneath a grand staircase in a Boston theater. It lives in a city who faced the freezing of their river– and therefore their commerce and potentially their very livelihoods and hope– and turned it into a winter carnival the likes of which had never been seen before. It lives in an underground chamber clad in mosaics, in a moon that reaches down and pulls the tides, and in stars so afire that they sing.

These are the real world wonders (you can’t make this stuff up!) referenced in Set the Stars Alight— a book that also explores the more shadowed sides of life, where grit and hurt can live, and how places of wonder provide a steady heartbeat of a reminder that we have a Savior pursuing us with all the tenderness, compassion, strength, and love that we could fathom. As the book says, “He is coming. . . and coming. . . and coming after you.”

When we feel disillusioned by this world, it begs the question: if we are DIS-illusioned, what was the illusion to begin with? OR…could it be that when we turn our eyes and hearts upon the wonders, and the wonder-Maker, that there never was an illusion? That right here, in the very midst of our troubles, we can fix our souls to that truth: that He has done great things, and continues to do great things, and will meet us right where we are? That He is inviting us, beckoning us, waiting for us to see Him and remember these strongholds and delights. . . and that the same God who can do all of these things. . . can see us through what we are facing.

If someone came away from reading Set the Stars Alight with their hope and outlook even a little bit bolstered and refreshed…I would be so thankful.

The LORD has done great things for us; we are filled with joy” Psalm 126:3

Amanda Dykes is currently dwelling (on page) in a mysterious French forest of World War I through her most recent release, Yours is the Night, a journey tale of brotherhood, redemption, and hearts bound together forever. Her debut novel, Whose Waves These Are, is the winner of the 2020 Christy Award Book of the Year, a Booklist 2019 Top Ten Romance debut, and the winner of an INSPY award. She’s also the author of Set the Stars Alight, which received a Booklist starred review and was a Historical Novels Review Editors’ Choice. Amanda believes G.K. Chesterton said it best when he said, “I had always felt life first as a story: and if there is a story there is a story-teller.” She is grateful to be living this life’s redemption story.

Amanda Dykes is offering a print copy of Set the Stars Alight to one of my readers! (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.

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What about you? What makes you want to read the general fiction Christy Award finalist Set the Stars Alight by Amanda Dykes? Or, if you’ve read it already, what did you love about it?

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25 responses to “2021 The Christy Award Finalists (and a Giveaway!): Amanda Dykes & Set the Stars Alight

  1. Winnie Thomas

    Thanks for the spotlight and giveaway. Amanda is one of my favorite authors–such a talented lady! Her writing is perfection!

  2. Jayna B.

    I loved Whose Waves These Are and have heard great things about this book, so it’s been on my list for a while. I love the beauty and light of Amanda Dykes’ style.

  3. I love the odds of FOUR Amandas’ books being Christy Award Finalists! Also, I am super happy for the ladies and the remarkable stories they produce! Best wishes to all! Oh, and thank you for the chance at winning copies of those books! WooHoo!

  4. Alana Morgan

    Amanda’s books are so wonderfully relatable! I feel as if I know all characters by the end of each book! Beautifully written!!!

  5. Jennifer Lynn

    This sounds like such a wonderful book! It’s been on my TBR list but, after reading this, I think I need to read it very soon!

  6. Shirley Ashley

    I’ve already read it. But would still love a sign copy for my collection of favorite authors! I enjoyed the about face in time. This old soul not a fan of modern day, but this book changed my mind half the time! Blessings to you.

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