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by J. Patrick Thomas
May I pray for you? Five words that would forever change my life. No, I am neither a priest nor rabbi, but I was the recipient of those words from a doctor several years ago when being told that I was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer and had a small chance of survival, and included the phrase as the opening passage in my book, A Call to Faith. Although surviving cancer is a recurrent theme, it is weaved throughout the text in the genre of inspirational and religious bodies of work, similar in vein to The Shack or 90 Minutes in Heaven. The struggles are real and give expression to both grief and hope. The events encountered in the story are true. The story is my story and expressed from a third person point of view.
The story is set in Charleston and finds its characters meandering throughout the Lowcountry. Young and handsome, beautiful wife and children, and a small fortune before the age of thirty. He had it all – or did he? Skip Sibley (main character) never knew his marine aviator father who died in a plane crash when he was young. Struck with the tragedy of a younger sister who committed suicide in college and who continued to pay apparitional visits to Skip in times of need. Encounters with God at just the appropriate time when giving up on life was more than a thought. But his toughest battles may still lie ahead of him; finding his faith in God through cancer and divorce.
This faith-based work takes its readers on a tour of the South from churches to hospitals. Southern flavor is established as the Sibley family seeks help from Gullah native Ms. Janie, who cares for Skip and the children during their time of need. The story attempts to show resilience in the face of adversity that comes into each of our lives, and that only through finding a relationship with God can we ensure that life will continue beyond death. It can touch the hearts of those who have lived or visited the Lowcountry, or who have lost loved ones to cancer, suicide or accidental death.
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by Kate Mathis
“Mathis keeps things going with a nice flair for dialogue. In what appears to be the first volume in a series, Melanie is off to a good start.”– J.C. Martin,
Arizona Daily StarIn a world of espionage and deceit, Melanie Ward lives her life as a Secret Agent. She has tenaciously proved to be one of the top operatives for a clandestine division of the United States government. Recruited ten years ago after graduating from San Diego State University, Melanie distanced herself from family and friends, choosing instead to immerse herself into a new life. When a justly earned promotion is snatched away by her nemesis, the arrogant and smug Finn Parker, Melanie recklessly walks away from the Agency and everything she has become. Lost with nowhere else to go, Melanie crashes and burns on her parents’ old plaid couch. This is not your typical spy story. James Bond never had to suffer through a barrage of blind dates instigated by his “loving” mother with the help of his college roommates. As Melanie struggles to repair broken relationships and heal old wounds, she realizes she belongs in her secret world of lies. But then there’s Adam…Second Chance (Book2 of the Agent Melanie Ward Novels