Readers, here is another debut author with a book that sounds really interesting.
Bio: When Angie Brashear isn’t working or taking care of her family, she writes. Usually at night after her kids fall asleep. She’s a fan of speculative fiction and an avid runner, both of which perplex her nonfiction-reading, football-loving husband. Saved in her early twenties, Angie is grateful for the Lord’s presence in all aspects of her life. She is originally from
Maine, and currently resides in ,
with her husband and three children. Cameron, Texas
Welcome, Angie. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
Both my hero and heroine each possess one of my main characteristics. In Lars, it is his reluctance to lead. In Laila, it is her insecurity. Beyond that, my characters are mainly just themselves.
What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I long to be quirky, but I’m actually quite ordinary. Hm … oh, when I ran the Boston Marathon, I wore my then shorter hair in what felt like a million ponytails with lots of colorful ribbons. Hey, a news reporter liked the style so much, she interviewed my friends and me on the local news station. Sadly, that may be the quirkiest thing I’ve ever done. LOL!
When did you first discover that you were a writer?
Just two short years ago. But looking back, the dream to write began long ago. When I was in the fifth grade, my teacher read The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis aloud to my class. In doing so, she opened my eyes to adventure and possibilities, all the while helping me escape a world of darkness for a short time. At its conclusion, I wondered, Is God real? He couldn’t be, right? For if He existed, innocent young girls wouldn’t suffer the wrath of drunken addicts or the torment of abandonment. I continued to speculate. Each time God placed believers in my path—a high school teacher, a college friend, and a college coach—my fascination with the possibility grew stronger until the truth stunned me like a slap to the face. God indeed lives in the form of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. He rescues. He saves. And He waited for me. Then He embraced me. It all started with a little seed, planted in the empty heart of the girl I once was. A love for reading expanded to a love for writing. A desire to know God became a desire to serve Him, to reach nonbelievers. So I write, in hopes of reaching at least one lost girl.
Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
My range is narrow, for I prefer to read speculative fiction. Within speculative fiction, I especially enjoy fantasies with a thread of romance.
How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I’m not sure that I truly do. LOL! Seriously, though, I rely on prayer and fellowship with Christians. Without both, I’d be an utter mess.
How do you choose your characters’ names?
A few, such as Lars, are names I chose for my children, but my husband rejected. And Lars’s last name (Landre, land not laund and pronounced with a long e at the end) is actually my maiden name. I realize some people frown on taking such an approach, but it is my way of honoring a father who died too young, and who I never truly knew. As to other names, such as villages, etc., I simply take familiar words and morph them into names I like, names that make sense to the world I created.
What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
My three children. As much love as I feel for each of them, it is sometimes difficult to believe that the Lord loves us so much more.
If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I’m a long distance runner, so a cheetah. I’d love to run up to 75 mph!
What is your favorite food?
Pizza. Definitely pizza, especially the family-owned pizzeria kind.
What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
While I encountered many roadblocks, the biggest was deviating from God’s will. Though I did not recognize my deviation at the time, it was as a slap to the face when I realized I’d been praying selfishly and relying on people to fulfill my lifetime dream. Only God is at the center of my story’s success. Not contracts, not editors, not reviewers, and certainly not me. Of course, He can use many to His glory, but I’m ashamed to admit my focus abandoned His path temporarily.
I’m sure that’s true of all of us at some time or other. Tell us about the featured book.
Of the Persecuted is a fantasy with a strong thread of romance geared toward young adult females. The story surrounds an insecure girl who believes she is no more than a burden to the people she loves. But in the midst of physical and spiritual war, and through the loss of loved ones, as well as the turmoil of unrequited love, she discovers her true worth lies in her faith.
Ultimately, my goal is to reach young adult females much like the lost, lonely girl I once was. As a nonbeliever for the majority of my life, I enjoyed reading speculative fiction, and it was the The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis which ultimately opened my eyes to Christ. My prayer is that my stories will do the same for others. I also hope believers will enjoy the Christian undertones of my work.
Back Cover Blurb:
Laila Pennedy awaits death by hanging. For the Rendow Clan rules the Woodlands Region, aiming to slaughter the Faithful. And she deserves to die. But Lars Landre, the man destined to lead the Faithful out of persecution, has other plans hidden behind his rare and mysterious blue eyes. Rescue.
Following the daring escape, Laila seeks the path of a warrior and vows revenge against the Rendow Clan. She embarks on a dangerous journey with Lars, one in which they endeavor to reach the promised safety of a magical village, to train for battle, and to ultimately assure freedom for those with faith in the Maker.
Clashes of weapons and souls. Brutal loss of lives. Unrequited love. How in all the Woodlands will Laila survive?
Please give us the first page of the book.
Laila Pennedy’s heart pounded.
The noose pinched her neck. She struggled for breath. Muffled voices drifted from the crowd up to the gallows. To her left, a long line of captives trembled. And right, past her brother, more than fifty Faithfuls hung limp, swaying above the platform. She stood on a large wooden barrel in the middle of the line. Too many would die today.
Beyond the mass of enemies, archers congregated amidst scattered stone cottages and log homes in the quaint village. Dilapidated, individual gallows dotted the hillside. Farther in the distance, the morning sun shone on the peaks of the
, her refuge
since Faithfuls lost the War of Submission. Oh, what she wouldn’t give to be in
the coolness of the upper forest, in exile with other Faithfuls. Safe from the
If only … Instead, rivulets of sweat trickled down her thighs inside wool leggings, into knee-high leather boots. Her sleeveless, broadcloth dress clung to her torso and hung above her knees, the once beautiful cloth ragged and cinched at her waist by a dingy belt. Her long, matted blonde hair stuck to her face and neck. So much for the gorgeous locks her mother once adored.
“Laila,” her older brother said, his raspy voice tugging at her heart as he too awaited death.
She forced herself to look into
Niles’s tear-filled, deep green eyes and
shuddered at the noose around his neck. If only she could reach out to him one
last time, but her arms were bound behind her back. Soreness strained her
shoulders. Her raw wrists stung under the taut rope, which had ripped open her
“I’m sorry, Sissy,”
Sorry? She shook her head. No, this was her fault.
How can readers find you on the Internet?
Readers can connect with me on my website (http://angiebrashear.com), on Facebook (http://facebook.com/AngieBrashearAuthor), and on Twitter (https://twitter.com/AngieBrashear). Thus far, I’ve received the most support on Facebook, so it’s easier for readers to connect with me there. Readers can buy my book on Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/dp/0692214712).
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