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Monday, June 04, 2007

The Restorer

Have you ever read a book and instantly cared about the characters and knew for sure that God had something big to show you? I did. This morning. The book was The Restorer by Sharon Hinck.

Here's the back cover blurb...

IN A FIERCE STRUGGLE FOR SURVIVAL, DON'T MESS WITH A MOM.

Susan Mitchell needed a change- any kind of change. Nearly twenty years of marriage to her college sweetheart, Mark, had given her two teenagers and two grade schoolers, along with miles of unmatched socks, sticky countertops, and the ever-growing hum of sheer bedlam. When had she become so...insignificant? Hadn't God once had a plan for her?

Well, at least Mark had a plan for an attic hideaway free of iPods and science projects and cookie crumbs. But before Susan can finish her first journal entry, she finds herself pulled through a portal into a world grappling for its soul and waiting for a promised Restorer. Someone does have a plan for her- one she never would have imagined. While she struggles to adapt to a foreign culture full of unfamiliar technologies and taboos, she faces unexpected battles, mind-poisoning enemies, and a profound spiritual journey. Her adventure will forever change her family, her faith, and how she experiences love- from the One.

Amy here: Can you relate? I can. You gotta love the "Don't mess with a mom" line. ;-) This book is stretching my genre choices because I don't typically read fantasy. But Susan is a mom I can relate to and the story is engaging. An awesome summer read!

Here's a little more about Sharon...

Author Bio:

Sharon is a wife and mom who has had many adventures, though none have involved an alternate universe (thus far). She has an M.A. in communication and has spent her life working in the arts (music, theatre, dance, and writing). Her other novels include The Secret Life of Becky Miller (Bethany House, 2006) and Renovating Becky Miller (Bethany House, 2007)

What was the inspiration for The Restorer?

I’ve always been fascinated by the story of Deborah in the book of Judges, and wondered what a modern woman would look like in that role. The fantasy genre provides a powerful way to look at a familiar story in a new way. I loved the challenge of creating a completely relatable character, and then inviting the reader to follow her into an imaginative journey.

What kind of reader did you have in mind as you wrote the book?

I wrote this story for my friends – ordinary women who are sometimes called on to fill extraordinary roles that they don’t feel prepared for. We may not be literally yanked into an alternate universe, but the idea of being pulled into an unexpected challenge is very real to most of the people I know. I wrote this book for my friends who receive a diagnosis of cancer, or the news that their child has a learning disability, or their parent is battling Alzheimers, or their spouse has lost their job. They suddenly find themselves in a foreign world, facing new rules, and being asked to fill a role they don’t feel ready for. My prayer is that as well as being entertaining, this novel can inspire courage and determination for those facing daily battles.

How closely is The Restorer based on your life?

Susan’s spiritual journey – her desire to follow God and her confusion when the road is much harder than she expected—is very parallel to my own. I’ve never carried a sword into battle, but I’ve faced the challenge of surrendering more deeply to God’ s purposes when they didn’t make sense to me.

What’s next?

The Restorer’s Son (the next book in the Sword of Lyric series) releases in September (NavPress), followed a few months later by The Restorer’s Journey.

Then in 2008 I have two new books coming out with Bethany House (back in the more contemporary fiction genre). Symphony of Secrets (2/08) and Penny’s Project (9/08).

My current books are available at all major bookstores as well as through my website at www.sharonhinck.com For a free monthly e-zine and updates on my projects and schedule, sign up to be a Book Buddy at my website!

If you aren't yet fully convinced this is a must read summer book, here are some great endorsements, a small sample of the great things people are saying about The Restorer:

"Sharon Hinck has done a remarkable job in writing a fantasy for people who don't normally read fantasies. A soccer mom finds herself in an alternate universe where she has to save her adopted people from vastly more powerful enemies. Loved the swordplay. Loved the spiritual insights. Most of all, loved the main character, Susan Mitchell, a compelling mix of Everymom and Wonder Woman."
~ Randy Ingermanson, award-winning author of Retribution

The Restorer is a great book for the hero – or heroine – in all of us. Sharon Hinck gives us a beautifully-realized world that demands the best that an everyday, run-of-the-mill Mom doesn’t even know she has. Hinck’s prose engages us in every moment of the struggle as the strength of the One drives the battle of the faithful against unimaginable odds. Excellent characters and an intriguing plot provide readers with great entertainment along with spiritual inspiration and enlightenment. I simply loved this book, hated for it to end, and am grateful that there’s another in the Sword of Lyric series coming soon.
~ Kathryn Mackel, author of Outriders and Trackers

“A compelling adventure, an engaging heroine, a unique and fascinating other world The Restorer satisfies on many levels. Skillfully incorporating themes of faith, sacrifice and the power of words to deceive or deliver, Sharon Hinck has crafted a tale that resonates in both soul and spirit. A welcome addition to the expanding genre of Christian fantasy. Don’t miss it!”
~ Karen Hancock, author of the Christy Award-winning LEGENDS OF THE GUARDIAN-KING series.
Leave me a note in the comments for your chance to win this awesome novel!!!

7 comments:

Cherie J said...

Sounds wonderful! Would love to be entered in the drawing. Thank you!

Danielle said...

Oh, count me in! :-)

Danielle Versluys

Dona Watson said...

Oooo...I've had my eye on this book ever since I heard about it a few months ago. I'd LOVE to have the chance to read it! Thanks!

Heather said...

I'm not a big fantasy person either...but with such a great reccomendation, how could I resist a chance to win!?

Becca said...

I actually caught sight of this book at Borders last weekend. I'd love a chance to win a copy.

Thanks, Amy!

Blessings,
Becca aka deepbluecitrus

Amy Wallace said...

Heather,

I'm not a fantasy reader at all, but Sharon's book is a cool cross between a mom book and an action adventure fantasy. I hope you'll read and enjoy it! I totally did! In fact, it's on my top five favorite fiction books of all-time.

Amy Wallace said...

Thanks to everyone who entered the drawing for Sharon's awesome new book The Restorer!

The winner is....

Dona!

If you'll email me your address, I'll get a book out to you. Thanks!

 
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