Thursday, August 2, 2012

Devotion


Welcome back, Marianne, I have got to ask...how can you go from the oh so sweet, Heart's Surrender series to this story of hearts torn asunder?

Well, there I was, innocently wrapping up my first-ever inspirational romance series for White Rose Publishing (part of the amazing publisher, Pelican Book Group!) I shed some bittersweet tears as I finished creating the story of Tyler Brock and Amy Maxwell.

But then, something most unexpected happened. I met a guy. Actually, I met a guy and his wife. And they stole my heart. Into my imagination charged Kellen Rossiter. What a guy. He fascinated me immediately upon his entrĂ©e into Tyler and Amy’s story. He’s seemingly got it all. A high-powered and successful career as an agent in the Christian music industry. A wife he adores completely. A faith-life he’s never questioned. Juliet, his bride, is his perfect compliment. She’s smart and sweet, Christ-centered, lives to serve and loves her husband above all others.

But as the couple came to life, I discovered their perfect life had a few cracks and fissures. The world, and the relationship they shared, was about to come crashing down around them…because of a surrender to temptation.

You may ask, rightfully so, ‘Come on, Marianne. How can a couple so committed, so devoted if you will, fall prey to a spiritual failure? Sadly, it’s an easier trap to fall in to than you may realize. As I journeyed with Kellen and Juliet through a turbulent season in their marriage, I discovered  something important. Temptation sneaks up on you. Seldom does it bang you over the head and cause you to fall. Rather, circumstances build. Circumstances left unchecked overwhelm. Goodness and light become tangled, swallowed into a shade of gray that leaves right and wrong, good and bad, in question.

Even for the most faithful person.

Another lesson I learned in writing Devotion is this: Christians fail. Christians aren’t perfect. Instead, we know enough to lean on God’s truth, his forgiveness and unfailing mercy to work past the sins we commit. When we approach Him with sincere regret and in authentic reform, God always welcomes us home.

I hope you enjoy the story of Devotion. I pray it blesses you the way writing it has blessed me!

I certainly did! Thank you so much! Now let me share it with our readers so they can see what I'm so excited about.

Blurb:

From This Day Forward

Christian Music agent Kellen Rossiter has everything he ever wanted: A-list clients from coast to coast, a loving wife who honors and respects him, and a faith life that’s never wavered—until now.

Juliet Rossiter has the perfect life: a rewarding schedule serving the underprivileged, a husband who loves her as Christ loved the church, and a blessed future as a mother—at least that's what she thinks.

For Better or Worse

But what happens when their rock-solid marriage begins to crumble under the weight of an unexpected and powerful temptation?  How does love survive when its foundation is shaken?

'Til Death Do Us Part

When human frailty and the allure of sin deal a harsh blow to their relationship, it will take more than love to mend the shattered trust and heartbreak. It will take a lifetime of devotion. 

Excerpt:

"I miss you when you’re not there." He refitted the shirt collar then double-checked the knot on his patterned silk tie. "I like hearing your thoughts and impressions, but mostly I just enjoy being with you."

Her shoulders sagged. Through the mirror, she tagged him with an apologetic glance. He had known the look was coming; she was ready for bed, after all. Plus, he knew the regret came from her heart. That’s why his statement about missing her, enjoying her, had lacked any form of condemnation. Just longing. He did miss her companionship and the feel of her at his side. 


With increasing frequency. 


"We used to have fun scouting talent at the local clubs, talking about anything and everything while we listened to music. Plus, this is supposedly a great new place, and we haven’t had a ‘date night’ in quite a while." He paused again, just long enough to look at her once more. Gentle refusal still lived in her eyes, so Kellen braced himself for her "no thanks."


"Sweetheart, you’ll be working. I get in the way when you’re shaking and moving.‛ She smiled at him, sincerely. Her eyes were so soft, a beautiful shade of deep green. "Next time, OK? I’m seriously tapped out, or I’d let you tempt me." She moved close and tucked in tight, resting her head on his chest. 



Kellen wrapped his arms around her, ignoring the bite of disappointment, the urge for recriminations, like: We have no children, Juliet, nothing that ties us down. I know you’re busy with a hundred different activities that help our church, our city, and I know that fills you up, but what about us? Where do we fit  together?


The thoughts launched, but with practiced ease, he shot each one down. He was being selfish. She was tired. The winter season was giving way to spring around Nashville, and she had spent the entire afternoon and evening volunteering at a soup kitchen and warming center sponsored by Trinity 
Christian Church, where he and Juliet were active parishioners. 


"Tell you what." Juliet leaned back in his arms. The curve of her lips, that promising sparkle in her eyes, almost cured his sadness. "I’ll wait up for you."


Kellen nodded. He dotted her nose with a kiss; his hands slid against the glossy fabric of her nightgown. The color highlighted her ivory skin, and turned spectacular eyes to absolutely dazzling. 


He made a vow to himself, then and there, that he’d get home early.

Review:

This story is phenomenal! I couldn't put it down - and when I did have to, I couldn't wait to pick it back up. All of it felt so real - the unwanted chemistry, the fears, the loss of trust. This story had me crying, hoping, and begging for them to make it.

This is so realistic to the dangers every marriage faces - even the most devoted of couples can let things slide, put things off, make excuses for the distance that can creep in. And ultimately, only God can make any marriage work. What a wonderful, heartbreaking testament to true faith this story is. I can't imagine how many tears Ms. Evans shed as she penned this work of art. Wonderful job!

Pelican Books Buy link: http://www.pelicanbookgroup.com/ec/devotion-softcover
Amazon Buy Link:   http://www.amazon.com/Devotion-Marianne-Evans/dp/1611161649/ref=la_B001KHZN0Y_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1342476532&sr=1-1  


Author Bio:
Marianne Evans is an award-winning author of Christian romance and fiction. Her hope is to spread the faith-affirming message of God's love through the stories He prompts her to create.

Evans's novel, Hearts Communion, earned Christian Small Publisher Book of the Year honors in the Romance category and readers have lauded her work as: 'Riveting.' 'Realistic and true to heart.' 'Compelling.' Evans has also won acclaim in such RWA contests as The Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence where she has been a finalist twice, and the Colorado Romance Writers Award of Excellence.

A lifelong resident of Michigan, Evans is active in a number of a number of Romance Writers of Aneruca chapters, most notably the Greater Detroit Chapter where she served two terms as President. She's also active in American Christian Fiction Writers and the Michigan Literary Network.

her website at: http://www.marianneevans.com 

15 comments:

  1. Welcome Marianne! As you can tell, I loved this story! My heart was breaking right along with theirs. Praise God their faith lead them home!

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    1. Hi Patty! I chose you as the winner of a copy of Devotion. You'll be hearing from BTS soon. Enjoy! God bless!

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  3. Donna - WOW - did you actually use the words 'work of art'? I poured my heart into this story, and, yes, I shed more than a few tears (and offered more than a few prayers) as Devotion came to be. I often asked God: 'God, really? This is the story you need me to tell?' It's risky subject matter, to be sure, but it's also such a story of faith affirmation and God's goodness in love. :-)To read your reaction to Devotion in your review today takes my breath. I'm delighted to be your guest - I'm such a fan of your blog to begin with...there are so many wonderful authors and stories you bring to light - thank you for everything my friend!! <3 God bless!

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    1. I did say "work of art" and meant it. This book is beautiful and wonderfully real right down to the soul!

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  4. Thanks for the visit, Patty! I hope you get a chance to read Devotion. I'm honored that it's part of the Pelican Book Group fall preview special! God bless, and can't wait for your release!!

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  5. Great interview. I'm a guy, but I'm also a romantic.

    Blessings,

    Tom Blubaugh, Author
    Night of the Cossack
    http://tomblubaugh.com

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    1. LOL Tom, the two are not mutually exclusive for the whole race.

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  6. I can hardly wait, I pre-ordered Devotion and hope it draws every reader closer to the Lord.

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  7. Tom, I'm so glad you stopped by! Thanks!! I'm married to a romantic, who also happens to love it when I read sections of my work to him aloud as I'm working through the editing process. He also reads each book before I submit to my editor - I consider him both my greatest supporter, and biggest fan! :-) God bless!!

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  8. LoRee, you're a treasure. Thank you for the pre-order of Devotion and I hope you enjoy the story!! Your words about the story bringing people closer to God have been my prayer ever since I started writing Devotion. I'm so grateful for your friendship and encouragement! Your books are AMAZING!!!

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  9. Marianne,

    This sounds like another winner. Best wishes!

    ~JoAnn

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  10. Thanks so much, JoAnn - I want you to know, the book is dedicated in part to you. A long-ago e-mail about Hearts Surrender, and the sanctity of marriage is what inspired me to write this story about covenant marriage, commitment, and Christians versus temptation. You are a blessing in my life. God keep you always, my friend!

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    Replies
    1. There are so many wonderful souls in this group, I can't begin to tell you how you all bless my life.

      Marianne, thanks so much for sharing this story and for stopping by.

      JoAnn, as always it's a pleasure to hear from you.

      I know we're all busy with our real lives and I appreciate every comment that's left here.

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