This is another interview I've really been looking forward to. Lisa is one of the authors I mentored before she was published, and when she sold this series to Zondervan, I could hardly wait to read it. I have read it and reviewed it. You can find the review by clicking on the Book Review link at the top of this blog. In addition to the review, I'll share this book trailer to whet your appetite for the book:
Welcome, Lisa. As an author, I know it takes a lot of people to birth each book. Who were the people involved in the birthing of this book, and what were their contributions?
For a long time, I had a vague idea of an adventure/suspense novel set in Africa that I dreamed of writing, but none of the editors I spoke to, over a period of several years, were interested in stories set in an exotic locale. Then on New Years’ Eve, four years ago, we were having a time of worship and a good friend of ours spoke to me about moving forward and writing the story of my heart. I felt that his words were God releasing me to write the book. This was confirmed a few months later when I met Sue Brower for the first time. She loved the concept behind the book and told me that the timing was finally right. It took another two years before I received that long awaited contract and the process continued with rewrites, edits, and the input of experts who helped me with medical and pilot questions. So, as you can see, the birthing process of this particular book was literally years in the making, which makes it all the more special to me.
Actually, this question sounds pretty close to reality in my life. :-) Almost three years ago, we put our house on the market in South Africa where we’d lived for several years and moved to Brazil for language school to learn Portuguese. Then, after six months of school, we packed up and moved to Mozambique where we are involved in church planting and discipleship. If I had to choose to move again—something I don’t want to do for a very long time—I’d probably be happy as long as it was somewhere where the sun shone year round and the sea was close by. I don’t like hot, hot summers, but I need the blue skies and sunshine!
Yes, I remember those times, and I loved receiving reports from each of those places. If you could only tell aspiring novelists one thing, what would it be?
Don’t give up on your dream! The writing journey is not for the faint of heart. It’s a lot of work, a lot of rejection, and a lot of late nights battling with your characters. But if it is what you really want, stick with it. Learn, study, and write!
You’ve been asked to be in charge of a celebrity cruise. Who would you ask to take part, and why? (AS in what program, singers, etc. [it doesn’t have to be writing related])
Hmmm… I’ve never been on a cruise so I’ll have to stretch my imagination on this one. :-) I think I’d love to be a part of a cruise where there were Christian artists of all types--singing, art, authors, dance, etc—heading up a Creativity Cruise where the rest of us could listen to the awesome music and dance, glean from their experience, and be inspired to use our own artistic talents for Him!
Tell us about the featured book?
Deep in the heart of Africa, two American lives are about to change forever.
Natalie Sinclair is working to eradicate the diseases decimating whole villages in the Republic of Dhambizao, when she meets Dr. Chad Talcott, a surgeon on sabbatical from a lucrative medical practice now volunteering at a small clinic.
Meanwhile, things are unraveling in Dhambizao. Joseph Komboli returns to his village to discover rebel soldiers abducting his family and friends. Those that were too old or weak to work lay motionless in the African soil. When Chad and Natalie decide to help Joseph expose this modern-day slave trade—and a high-ranking political figure involved in it—disaster nips at their heels.
Where is God in the chaos? Will Chad, Natalie and Joseph win their race against time?
Romance and adventure drive this powerful thriller about the modern-day slave trade and those who dare challenge it
Please give us the first page of the book.
A narrow shaft of sunlight broke through the thick canopy of leaves above Joseph Komboli’s short frame and pierced through to the layers of vines that crawled along the forest floor. He trudged past a spiny
tree trunk — one of hundreds whose flat crowns reached toward the heavens before disappearing into the cloudless African sky — and smiled as the familiar hum of the forest welcomed him home.
A trickle of moisture dripped down the back of his neck, and he reached up to brush it away, then flicked at a mosquito. The musty smell of rotting leaves and sweet flowers encircled him, a sharp contrast to the stale exhaust fumes of the capital’s countless taxis or the stench of hundreds of humans pressed together on the dilapidated cargo boat he’d left at the edge of the river this morning.
Another flying insect buzzed in his ears, its insistent drone drowned out only by the birds chattering in the treetops. He slapped the insect away and dug into the pocket of his worn trousers for a handful of fire-roasted peanuts, still managing to balance the bag that rested atop his head. His mother’s sister had packed it for him, ensuring that the journey — by taxi, boat, and now foot — wouldn’t leave his belly empty. Once, not too long ago, he had believed no one living in the mountain forests surrounding his village, or perhaps even in all of Africa, could cook goza and fish sauce like his mother. But now, having ventured from the dense and sheltering rainforest, he knew she was only one of thousands of women who tirelessly pounded cassava and prepared the thick stew for their families day after day.
Where can we find you on the Internet?
Stop by and see me at http://myblogintheheartofafrica.blogspot.com/ or my blog at http://www.lisaharriswrites.com/ .
And thank you, Lisa, for spending this time with us.
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