Monday, August 23, 2010

A HOPE UNDAUNTED - Julie Lessman - Free Book

I'm thrilled to have Julie back on the blog. What are some of the spiritual themes you like to write about?

Oh, wow, I absolutely LOVE to write about spiritual themes that relate to marriage, because I have learned SO much the hard way in my 32 years with the love of my life! I long to pass all I’ve gleaned onto young women today and maybe save them some agony in the process.

Application of God’s Word in our relationship with our mate is CRUCIAL for a happy marriage, so I like to explore themes like respect for one’s husband (i.e. the dreaded submission Scripture!) or the importance of saying no to your flesh and yes to God when your husband gets in a snarky mood and takes it out on you. NOT that that ever happens to me, mind you, because it’s more the other way around in our house between my even-keel husband and the caffeinated drama queen he married! :-)

What other books of yours are coming out soon?

Well … in exactly ONE WEEK, the first book in my “Winds of Change” series A Hope Undaunted officially releases, although it is available on as of three days ago and is probably available in stores now as well too. The next book in the series, A Heart Revealed is written but won’t be released until September 2011, followed by the final book in the series (and the final book about the O’Connors!) A Trust Restored (working title), September 2012.

If you could spend an evening with one contemporary person (not a family member of yours), who would it be and why?

Probably Francine Rivers because she is not only one of the best authors in the Christian market, but she is one of the most humble and godly women I have ever had the pleasure to meet. I would LOVE to pick her brain on spiritual matters that relate to writing.

I was able to visit with her several times when she was the speaker at the first national ACFW conference in Denver. What a blessing! What historical person would you like to meet (besides Jesus) and why?

Oh, no contest — Margaret Mitchell, of course! I would like to personally thank that woman for writing Gone With the Wind, the novel that inspired me to be a romance writer at the age of twelve, even though I shirked the calling for many years because I was too blind to see what God had called me to do. You see, I was a professional woman who was a bit of literary snob and wouldn’t be caught dead reading a romance novel. Grin … now I wouldn’t be caught dead without one in my purse or powder room at ALL times! :-)

How can you encourage authors who have been receiving only rejections from publishers?

Well, anyone who attended the 2005 American Christian Fiction Writers Conference will remember me as the poor slob who waved her hands wildly in the back of the room when Brandilyn Collins asked who had the most rejections in a year. I won hands-down with 19 (at that time) and went on to garner 45 (both agent and publisher rejections, including three received AFTER I signed a 3-book contract with Revell Publishing!). Even my agent, Natasha Kern, blanched a bit when she first signed me, realizing after the ink was dry just how many times I’d been rejected. I believe the word she used was “daunting.” But apparently not too daunting for her amazing skills as an agent because she landed a contract for me within six months.

Despite 45 rejections, A Passion Most Pure went on to win ACFW’s 2009 Debut Book of the Year and the Holt Medallion Award of Merit, which STILL blows me away! So to all the aspiring authors out there—don’t let those rejections have the final say! For me the trick was to praise God in the face of every single rejection, eyes fixed on HIM instead of myself while I continued to press on. Also, because of the struggles I encountered on the road to publication, I compiled a whole lot of Scripture prayers that I wrote specifically for writers, so I encourage any writers out there to print off a copy from my website at .

Tell us about the featured book?

Although the “Winds of Change” is a brand-new series, it does continue the saga of the close-knit O’Connor family, picking up with the youngest daughter’s story at the tail end of the Roaring 20s into The Great Depression. Anyone who has read “The Daughters of Boston” series knows that Katie O’Connor is a spunky, sassy little girl with a sharp wit and dry humor, but never more so than when she butts heads with her childhood nemesis, Cluny McGee. Here’s the jacket blurb:

What happens when the boy she loved to hate ...
becomes the man she hates to love?

The 1920s are drawing to a close, and feisty Katie O'Connor is the epitome of the new woman—smart and sassy with goals for her future that include the perfect husband and a challenging career in law. Her boyfriend Jack fits all of her criteria for a husband—smart, good-looking, well-connected, wealthy … and eating out of her hand. But when she is forced to spend the summer of 1929 with Cluny McGee, the bane of her childhood existence, Katie comes face to face with a choice. Will she follow her well-laid plans to marry Jack? Or will she fall for the man she swore to despise forever?

Sounds like anothre winner, Julie. Please give us the first page of the book.

Gladly! Now keep in mind that this is the first page of my galleys, which always have more copy than the final printed page.

Boston, Massachusetts, May 1929

Now this is how love should be—nice and neat. Katie O’Connor sucked the last of her Coca-Cola through a straw in Robinson’s Diner and studied her steady beau Jack Worthington with a secret smile. No, siree, no dime-novel notions of love for her. Love requires a focused plan, she thought to herself with certainty. Cool, calm, rational thinking, not a moment in time where one lovesick glance seals your fate. With a loud, hollow noise, she drained her soda and pushed the glass away, assessing Jack through approving eyes. Her lips slanted. Love at first sight, my foot.

She noted the dimple that deepened on his chiseled face as he delivered a punch line with a boyish grin, and a satisfied smile tilted the corners of her mouth. Falling in love was for fools—blind fools, she reflected with all the mature assurance of her eighteen years. Let other girls “fall” in love with their eyes closed, but not her. No, she preferred to be in control and walk—not fall, thank you very much—into true love. And if she had her way—which she fully intended to have—it would be with a man who was everything on her carefully crafted list.

Laughter disrupted her thoughts, and she found herself grinning along with the two couples sharing their booth as they roared at the finish of Jack’s joke. As usual, Jack’s buddies made a ruckus whooping and pounding their fists on the table in glee, and Katie couldn’t help but sigh with contentment. Good sense of humor. She mentally checked a box on her list and quickly scanned the cozy shop with its black-and-white-checked décor, grateful they had it to themselves at this late hour. Jack and his friends tended to get a bit rowdy, but they certainly knew how to have a good time. She settled back against the red-leather, high-backed booth and shot a glance at the marble counter where a lone soda jerk polished chrome mixers to a gleam.

“For crying out loud, Katydid, you inhaled that soda! And I bet I’ll have to buy you another, won’t I? I’m not made of money, you know.” Jack draped a sturdy arm across her shoulder and pulled her close to his handsome face. The glimmer in his dark eyes matched that of his deep brown hair, stylishly slicked back with Brilliantine. “Or maybe I am,” he teased.

Wealthy and attractive. Check, check. She drew in a deep breath and gave him a patient smile. “Nobody likes a braggart, Jack, but if you’re willing to put your money where your mouth is, I believe I’d like a hamburger. I’m starved.”

“No, you can’t be!” Genevieve Townsend said with a moan. “How can you possibly be hungry? We just had dinner before the picture show.”

Katie shrugged her shoulders. “That was over two hours ago, Gen.” She wrinkled her nose and teased with a ghost of a smile. “Besides, Valentino makes me hungry.”

Jack leaned in to plant a kiss at the nape of her neck. “Mmm … not only for food, I hope.”

I can hardly wait for my copy to arrive. How can readers find you on the Internet?

At my website at , where I talk to my readers every day via a new feature I call “Journal Jots,” or at my group blog, The Seekers at .

Thank you, Lena, for hosting me on your blog, and I can’t wait to give you a big, ol’ hug at ACFW, my friend!


And thank you, Julie, for giving us a peek into your life and your new book. See you at the chocolate party!
Readers, here's a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 6 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Feedblitz, Facebook, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment. Here’s a link.


Annette W. said...

Funny about how she was a bit of a literary snob for a bit. I enjoyed the interview and would like to read this!

Nise' said...

What!!! APMP rejected 45 times, were they nuts. I am so glad you perservered as that book is on my all time favorite list. Looking forward to A Hope Undaunted.

Patsy said...

This book sounds great. Looking forward to reading it. Thanks for giving away a copy.

Ann Lee Miller said...

I can't wait to read A Hope Undaunted!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a good book... I would love to win a free copy.

Holly said...

Great interview. I love reading all the behind the scenes stuff. It helps to make the wait a little more bearable. I SO can't wait for A Hope Undaunted.


Unknown said...

you are invited to follow my blog

Michelle said...

I cannot believe APMP was rejected once, much less over 40 times! I'm so glad you continued to try, Julie. Collin is one of my all time favorite heroes!

I CANNOT wait to read A Hope Undaunted.

mchapman (at) windstream (dot) net

Bluerose said...

The fact that you were rejected 45 times should be encouragement to any writer out there!! That just blows my mind away! APMP is simply too amazing to have went through that. :)

Bakersdozen said...

I want to read this. It sounds like a good read. Thanks for the great interview. vidomich(at)yahoo(dot)com

Michelle said...

Thank you for entering me!

scraphappy71 at sbcglobal dot net

cynthia said...

Thanks for the interview. I can't believe you were rejected so many times. I love the books you've written--each one keeps getting better and better. Please enter me in the drawing. Looking forward to your latest book.

Erin Lowmaster said...

I would be blessed to win a copy of this book! :)

erinlowmaster at gmail dot com

Pain SUX said...

Oh, I've been wanting to read this one since I first heard about it. Please enter me.


fredamans said...

Lovely cover and premise! I love series too! Please count me in! Thank you.

Julie Lessman said...

LENA ... Thank you SO much for hosting me on your blog, my friend -- so fun to be here! Unfortunately, I'm teaching at a writer's conference where there is limited Internet, so I won't be able to drop in as much as I like, but I WILL be here!

ANNETTE ... Glad you enjoyed the interview! From a literary snob to romance freak, I can tell you RIGHT now that I have a heck of a lot more fun (and passion) in my life than when I had my nose in the air! :) Good luck in the contest.

WOW, NISE' -- what a compliment, my friend -- thank you MUCH for those kind words. I just finished reading my personal author copy of A Hope Undaunted last night, and immediately I got depressed. I told my husband that I wasn't sure if I was blue because the book was over or if because I didn't think it was good and he laughed. "You're blue because it's over, Julie, admit it." And he's right -- this is my FAVORITE of all the books I've written, so I hope my readers think so too. Time will tell ... :)

PATSY ... thanks for dropping by and entering the contest. Here's to a win!


Julie Lessman said...

OOOOoooo ... something freaky just happened!! My "word verification" was "chasing1," which was my password for a long time (not anymore, though, so don't try it! :)

ANN!!! I have to admit, I am particularly excited to hear what a passionate author like you thinks of AHU. I know you like heated passion as much as I do, so if you like it, I know I will be golden. Thanks for your support, my friend, and good luck in the contest. :)

ANGELA ... you know what? I would LOVE for you to win a copy, too, so thanks for throwing your hat in the ring. If you don't win this contest, however, check out my website calendar as because between now and October, I am having TONS of signed giveaways, so the odds are really good you could win a free signed book (your choice of my books, including AHU!). Good luck!

HOLLY!!! Well, I certainly love telling you all the behind-the-scenes stuff because it's fun to share with my reader friends about the journey I've taken, you know? Like it brings me closer to you guys somehow, which as you know, I absolutely love! Thanks, sweetie, for your ongoing support and I would love to hear what you think of AHU when you get your hands on it, okay?


Julie Lessman said...

STEVE!!! Tell you what? I'll check out your blog, and you check out my books! Deal? :)

Thanks, MICHELLE, for your kind words. And, honey, if you like Collin, I gotta feeling you are going to LOVE Cluny McGee! He's a bad boy with a heart turned good boy, then bad for a bit, then good again! Sigh. The boy will keep you on your toes! :)

TAMMY!! I feel EXACTLY the same way!! In fact, last year when I won the 2009 American Christian Fiction Writer's Debut Book of the Year for A Passion Most Pure, I didn't even write a speech because I NEVER expected to win. So when I went up to the stage to accept the award, I pointed out to the crowd of over 500 that the last time I was on that stage, it was to receive a booby price for the most rejections in a year. If that doesn't encourage aspiring authors out there, I don't know what will! :)

BAKERSDOZEN ... honey, you and I are in SOUND agreement on one thing -- I want you to read this too!! :) So here's to a win in this contest, and if not this one, check out my website calendar for more signed giveaways, okay? Good luck!


Merry said...

I am really looking forward to A Hope Undaunted to catch a glimpse of the world my mother knew as a young lady in the Roaring 20's. Plus I just love Julie's books!

Julie Lessman said...

MICHELLE!!! Sooo good to see you here, girl, and I was told by Revell that AHU was supposed to have been shipped last week, but there was a glitch, so it's shipping this week. In very short order, it should be in your hot, little hands, and then I will need to know what you think when you're done, capiche? :)

CYNTHIA ... Yeah, I had a bit of trouble believing it, too, every time I saw that nasty #10 return-address envelope in my mail box, especially when only one agent out of 25 I queried responded with a positive reply. Ironically, the submission guidelines for the other 24 agents were three chapters and a synopsis, while my agent Natasha Kern's guidelines were only FIVE PAGES and a synopsis and yet she is the ONLY agent that contacted me and then signed me practically on the spot. When APMP went to the pub board, I found out that the vote was unanimous and that several of the editors had been up half the night reading it. So not only does that show you what a fabulous and insightful agent Natasha Kern is, BUT if God is far you, who can be against you (i.e. certainly not 45 agents/editors, because God WILL have His way!! :)).

ELLY BEAN ... and I would be doubly blessed to be able to send it to you, my friend, so God's blessings on you in this contest and if not this one, one of the many additional ones coming up on my website caledar, okay?


Julie Lessman said...

STEPH ... Soooo glad you've been wanting to read this one because as I said before, it is my FAVORITE!! But then I am SO stuck on Cluny McGee -- my idea of a true hero! Good luck in the contest.

FREDAMANS ... So you love series, do you??? Well, do I have a series for you, girl!! This book, A Hope Undaunted, is actually a continuation of the Daughters of Boston series because it continues the story of the very passionate O'Connor family. If you have not read the series, I STRONGLY recommend you at least read the first book, A Passion Most Pure, because it sets the groundwork for this amazing family and has a number of big surprises that would be ruined if read out of order. You can read A Hope Undaunted first, of course, but I guarantee you will like it MUCH better if you start at the beginning. And as mentioned, A Passion Most Pure was the 2009 ACFW Debut Book of the Year, so it's got some clout behind it, at least. :)

MERRY!!! You will LOVE the Roaring 20s because it is such a rich era in American history with women's rights just kicking off and the youth throwing off what they saw as the shackles of Victorianism. LOTS of rich history in this book, so I hope you enjoy it.


Melissa said...

I love your books, Julie!!!

Joetta said...

Julie has been such an encouragement to me to be a better wife and mother... my daughter got me started on her books and now we are both obsessed and counting the days until "A Hope Undaunted" is in the stores...would love to win a copy!!

Unknown said...

Whoo...I love that Julie Lessman, She gives such a fun interview and I admire what she writes about. I'm so proud of Julie for not allowing 45 rejections to daunt her style and compassion. She's a "never give up" kind of gal. I've tried to win her book previously, but was disappointed, so I'm trying again. I'm glad you are having this giveaway and another chance to win Julie's book. I want to read all the books she has published so far; and if I need to buy them...I promise I will! She is so inspirational. I'm so happy to see her here today.

Sharing God's Love,
Barb Shelton
barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

Ausjenny said...

I have loved all Julies books and cant wait to read Katies story. I cant wait to see what Julie does with her.
Enjoyed the interview

Diane said...

Sounds like a great read. I've never read any of her books, but hear great things. :O)

karenk said...

looking forward to reading katie's story...thanks for the chance to read julie's fabulous novel :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Julie Lessman said...

MELISSA!!! And I love YOU, sweetie!! Thanks for stopping by and good luck in the contest. :)

JOETTA!!! It tickles me to no end when I see you drop by, my friend -- ALWAYS a treat! And, honey, we BOTH know what an encouragement you have been to me, so I guess it's a mutual admiration society, right? :)

Hey, BARB, it's good to see YOU here, too, girl!! And don't buy it yet, my friend, because I am having LOTS of signed giveaways where the odds are pretty good to win. Also, I am going to start having a giveaway once a month on my "Journal Jots" on my website where I journal to my reader friends on almost a daily basis. It will be an "open comment" giveaway where I will turn the comments on for one day on Journal Jots so my readers can ask me questions, make comments or just talk about whatever they want to talk about. I hope it sounds fun to you because it sounds like a blast to me!


Claire Koenig said...

Would love to have my interest in romance novels rekindled. I've been a bit of a snob myself for quite some time. Perhaps this book could save me!

Julie Lessman said...

JENNY!!! And I'm looking forward to guest blogging on your blog, too, my friend -- have we set a date yet?? My mind is fried right now from long hours at this writing workshop I'm teaching this week, so refresh my memory via e-mail, okay?

Well, DIANE, at the risk of being pushy ... I think it's about time we rectify that, don't you???? Beg, borrow or steal ... OR win a signed book on one of my blog giveaways -- WHATEVER!! But get my first book in your hands, PLEASE!!

Hey, KAREN, good to see you here, too, girl! And AHU is out in EIGHT DAYS ... and I think started shipping orders out last Friday!!! :) SOOO hard to believe!! Anyway, good luck in the contest and I hope you like it (AHU) as much as I do!!


wmmahaney said...

This sounds like a wonderful book that is just the type of book that I love to read.

Cindy W. said...

I have heard wonderful things about A Hope Undaunted and can't wait to read it. I was looking at the model on the cover and realized my hair is styled just like hers. Course I have a few grey strands flowing through it! :) Would love to win a copy of AHU. Thank you for the opportunity.

Cindy W.


Sue said...

I would love to read Julie's new book, thank you!!

Jan Cline said...

I really love this title. Enter me.
jancline (at) ymail (dot) come

Coolestmommy said...

I'd really like to read this book. Thanks for the opportunity.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Julie Lessman said...

CLAIRE ... grin, well I don't know if this book can "save" you, but I sure would like to give it a try! But since you have not read any of my books yet, I STRONGLY suggest you start with book 1 of The Daughters of Boston series as both series about a very passionate family in pre-WWI Boston, so book 1 sets the series up AND had several big surprises that would be ruined in the books are read out of order. Soooo ... if you win Lena's contest, I will be happy to send you the first book. Thanks for your interest!

WMMAHANEY ... all I know is if you love romance and romantic tension with God smack dab in the middle, girl, then you WILL love this book ... uh, or at least I hope you will!! :)

CINDY ... I am thrilled you have heard good things about Undaunted -- thank you! And I have one word for those gray hairs, girl ... Loreal!! :)

SUE ... thank you for your interest and I wish you the best in this contest. But if you don't win here, check out my website calendar for more opportunities, okay?


Julie Lessman said...

Gosh, thanks, JAN!! I like the title, too, and I am hoping you will like the book even better. Good luck in the contest!

ROBIN ... COOLEST MOMMY 2000!!! What a great e-mail addy! And thank you for your interest in my book -- here's to a win!


Linda Kish said...

Please include me.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Ashley (Ibreath2read) said...

It's great to see you here Mrs.Lessman!! And I LOVED the interview. I just wanted to stop by and let you know that I'm still praying for you, especially while you're away at this conference. I hope it will be a blessing to you and those you'll be talking too. And I hope you have a fun time, as well.
Love Ya,

Carrie Fancett Pagels said...

Just want to say I clicked the link to your scripture verses and have bookmarked that page. Thank you so much for that and God bless you for it. Thanks for sharing about how God used those rejections to reveal His glory. I don't wish to be enterred in the contest, thanks.

holdenj said...

Waht a wonderful interview, I'd love to read Julie's new book! Thanks!

Simply Stacie said...

Please count me in.

Theresa N. said...

Sounds like a great read.
Theresa N

Julia M. Reffner said...

I'm not here to win this one...but I'm sure excited about the tour. I really enjoy reading Julie's interviews. I was a "romance snob" like you, Julie, but books like yours and Laura Frantz's have changed my mind on that one. Thanks so much for sharing your Scripture prayers. I pray through a page of the Scriptures in Praying God's Word by Beth Moore every day and it is life-changing especially fighting the battles of the mind like fear and depression.

Julie Lessman said...

LINDA ... thank you SO much for dropping by to enter the contest! I wish that everyone could win, but then my husband would shoot me!! :) Good luck!

Oh, ASHLEY, I knew I could count on you, my friend, for your faithful prayers!! THANK YOU, and yes, I can feel them soooo much!!

CARRIE ... you are MORE than welcome because as someone who has been rejected a lot -- by publishers and agents, my family AND in school (i.e. Katie's story in kindergartern at the beginning of A Hope Undaunted is actually my story!), I know ALL about the need to be encouraged and lifted up. We are all made in God's image, which means we have HIS DNA in our souls, which is reason enough to love and revere each other, not put each other down, so anything I can do to do that, I do my level best. Thanks for noticing!

HOLDENJ ... thank you for your interest in my books and I wish you the very best in this contest.

SIMPLY STACIE ... consider yourself "in," my friend, and good luck in the contest!

THERESAN ... oooohhh, I am SO glad it "sounds" like a good book ... now if I can just deliver a good book, we're good to go! :)

JULIA!!! You? A romance snob??? I find that pretty hard to believe, but I'm sure glad you're not anymore, my friend, just like I'm sure glad I'm not either! And I am SO glad the Scripture prayers are a blessing to you, because coming from a VERY emotional family of 13 kids, I know all about fear and depression and have battled it on more than one occasion in my own life, so thank you, GOD, for your amazing Word of life!!

Off to the conference!!


Carole said...

Wow, 45 rejections! I would imagine a lot of people are kicking themselves right now. All in God's timing, though!

I am a fan of Julie's writing and look forward to this new series. Thank you for the interview and chance to win a copy.

cjarvis [at] bellsouth [dot] net

Anna Weaver Hurtt said...

I've really been looking forward to reading this next one in the series! Please drop my name in the hat! :)

misskallie2000 said...

Well you definitely have staying power. After 45 rejections and you kept on going like the energizer bunny. lol
I love this story line and would love to win your book Julie. I also enjoyed your interview. Thanks for stopping to chat with us.
Lena, thanks for hosting this giveaway and the opportunity to enter.

misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

Julia M. Reffner said...

LOL, Julie, maybe if I tell you I was an English major, you'll understand ;)

Anonymous said...

I love Julie's books so please enter me! Thanks!!!

Paige said...

I LOVE Julie's other three books, and I am really excited for A Hope Undaunted.

Cherie J said...

Wonderful interview! I am looking forward to reading Katie's story. I always thought from reading the previous books that she was rather spunky. Please enter me in the drawing. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Please enter me.

ebeandebe at gmail dot com

Julie Lessman said...

CAROLE!!! Grin ... thanks for your sweet comment, but I'm not sure how many publishers are "kicking themselves" right about now, but hopefully one or two realize they may have overlooked something with my books! :)

ANNA ... consider your name "dropped in the hat," my friend, and thank you for enthusiasm for my books!!

MISS KALLIE -- "the energizer bunny"??? Well, thanks, sweetie, but I sure don't feel like that now at this conference where I am meeting myself coming and going. But as far as rejections, yes, perseverance is key ... uh, or stubbornness, which is something I have in spades in case you haven't noticed in my characters ... :)

JULIA!!! Oh, honey, you MADE my day -- an English major and you like my books??? I am on cloud nine, girl, because that blesses the socks off of me -- THANK YOU, you literary snob, you!! :)


Julie Lessman said...

JACKIE!!! You sure get around, girl, so thanks for dropping by and good luck in the contest. And guess what??? My word identification was "embers"!! Isn't that a great word for a passion author???

PAIGE ... well I "love" that you "love" my other three books, and I am hoping and praying you will "love" AHU too! Thank you for your encouragement and support, and good luck in the contest.

CHERIE ... girl, you have NO idea just how "spunky" our Katie is, but Mr. Cluny McGee is about to find out in spades! :)

WENDY ... you are officially entered, you lady, so good luck in the contest.

Julie said...

Please enter me! The book sounds great.

dancealert at aol dot com

Nancye said...

This sounds like a book I would enjoy! Thanks for the chance.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Heather said...

Okay, it is official. After entering multiple contests in hopes of winning her new book, I am pretty sure that I am now a Julie Lessman groupie. haha ;) Can't wait to get my hands on it!

Carolynn said...

This is the book that I have been waiting all year to read! The cover is classy, the excerpts sound wonderful, and I can't wait to get my hands on it!
I'm sooo glad someone finally said 'Yes' to your books, Julie, cause I love them!

kristen said...

Julie's comments about rejection are really encourage me to keep going.

Jennifer said...

I'm looking forward to reading this book. From the beginning it sounds like a really good book. I'll enjoy getting to know some of the way of life in the 20's as well. Thanks for a chance to win a copy.

Julie Lessman said...

BRENDA ... I am SO glad this sounds like a good book, and I hope you will THINK it is a good book if and when you read it. Bless you in the contest, and if you don't win here ... check my website calendar out at, okay? Because I am having a ton of giveaways between now and October, some posted now and others to come.

NANCYE ... same goes for you, girl! Thank you for your interest and stopping by to leave a comment, but if you don't win, check my website calendar for lots more chances, okay? Good luck in the contest.

HEATHER!!! A "Julie Lessman groupie"??? You are too cute, but how about a dear "reader friend" who has almost as much enthusiasm as me??? God bless you, my friend, and good luck in the contest!

CAROLANN!!! Oh, girl, I've MISSED you and that sweet picture of your niece (is that correct??)!! And I'm glad somebody finally said "yes" to me, too, because the BEST part of this job is meeting incredible people like you and ALL my reader friends who communicate with me. I LOVE it, so THANK YOU for your amazing support and encouragement.

KRISTEN ... I am SOOO glad I can encourage you, girl, because I know how frustrating the publication journey can be and how many tears one can cry en route. BUT ... God has a wonderful Scripture that says, "do not let our hopes be dashed," and whatever direction He takes us, I believe His will is the path to our ultimate peace and joy. God bless you in your writing and good luck in the contest.

JEN M MCCLURE ... Thank you for your interest in my books, and trust me, you will LOVE the rich history of the Roaring 20s and Great Depression. NEVER was there a better time to turn to God than then, unless maybe it was the Wild 60s and 70s!! Good luck in the contest.


Unknown said...

Look at all these wonderful comments! I think we all agree unanimously that Julie is a supberb writer and a fantastic person! One lucky person will win Julie's book and everyone else will also want to read it...we could start a round robin amongst us to read the book; but let's all help this lady win another award and buy her book asap. Hope the book companies don't wun out!!! Congratulations, Julie!

Barb Shelton
barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

Unknown said...

Well, excuse the misspelled words in my comment above.....looks like I was using an Elmer Fudd vocabulary. Like "supberb" is supposed to superb; and "wun" should be run. I had the right idea. Thanks Julie, for bearing with me...just blame it on another "senior moment."

Bless You,
Barb Shelton
barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

apple blossom said...

I have three of julie's books. I'd love to win this one. thanks

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Julie Lessman said...

BARB!!! Grin ... you ALWAYS make me smile, girl!! I'll tell you, my friend, for someone who has not yet read my books, you are a HOOT and a GREAT promoter! Now, the only thing I'm biting my nails for is what happens if you read my books and DON'T like them???

And don't EVER apologize for your "senior" moments because if those are the rules, I'd be apologizing for my whole life!! :)

Thanks for support, Barb -- I look forward to actually earning it, my friend. :)

ABI!!! How are you, my friend?? I would LOVE for you to have the fourth book, so if you don't win it here, girl, check out the website calendar in the weeks ahead, okay?? TONS of giveaways are coming ...


A J Hawke said...

Excellent interview. Now to read the book.

Please enter me.

A J Hawke

Julie Lessman said...

Hi AJ -- thanks for stopping by!! I am looking forward to my interview on your blog as well in the upcoming weeks. Good luck in the contest. :)


Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Julie, What a fun post. I always love to hear about your amazing faith and perseverance in your writing journey.

And folks, Julie's books are TERRIFIC. She's a wonderful writer and her stories are gripping.

Waving to Lena also. Another great writer.

Julie Lessman said...

SANDRA!!! Thanks SO much stopping by, my friend -- ALWAYS love to see my Seeker buds drop in.


Anonymous said...

I loved the questions and answers in this interview---Thanks Lena and Julie!

I have to admit, I've been known to be a bit of a literary snob in the past, too! God's been working on changing my mind and my heart for a long time.

I would love to win a copy of this book!


MaureenT said...

I loved your Daughter's of Boston series. Now Katie all grown up and it being the Roaring '20's...and the depression. Can't wait to read it!

Unknown said...

Well, I just can't stop trying!! Julie, there isn't a chance in the entire universe that I wouldn't like one of your novels. I just have a sense that knows when the Spirit has put two of us together in friendship, He has a good reason. I won't argue with that.

Love in Christ,

Julie Lessman said...

Hey, MARY, thanks for coming by, you sweet "literary snob," you!! :) I don't know if I ever told you this or not, but every time I see the picture of Donna Reed (aka Mary Bailey) in your comments on Seekerville (or here), I smile. I just LOVED that movie, and all that affection seems to transfer over to you when I see that name. Good luck in the contest, my friend!

MAUREEN, thank you SO very much, girl, for your kind words and I sure hope you like Undaunted as much as the DOB series. You know, it just occurred to me this week that with all my crowing about how Undaunted is my favorite of all my books, that I may be setting myself up for a fall if you guys don't agree. Hopefully Cluny McGee will save the day ... :)

BARB, I agree that the Holy Spirit orchestrates friendships and connections with people that we don't always experience with everyone, and I'd say that has definitely happened between we two Baby Boomers (don't argue with me about you being a Boomer because you sound too young to be otherwise!). Good luck in the contest, my friend.


Judylynn said...

I'd love to win this book. Please enter me! Thank you.


Kathy said...

Hello Julie. Would love to receive AHU, I'm sure it will be as wonderful as your other three are. I can't wait to read it and intend for it to be my reward when I finish this class in four weeks. Blessings for your continued writings. So looking forward to reading Sean's & Steven's stories as well.

peachykath said...

I love Julie Lessman and can't wait for her new series. Please enter me in the drawing for this book.


Julie Lessman said...

JUDYLYNN ... LOVE your blog name -- seize the blog!! Checked it out and it's very cool. Thank you for your interest in my books and good luck in the contest.

KATHY ... thank you SO much for your kind words and for your blessings -- I'll gladly take both, my friend. And good luck in your class and in the contest.

PEACHYKATH!!! Good to see you here and let's hope you can win Undaunted like you won one of my other books, last year, wasn't it??? So glad you liked them enough to enter again! :)


Unknown said...

I cannot wait to read this one, goodness, it sounds like it will be my favorite one too!!! i have bought all the Passion books and am in the middle of A Passion Redeemed so when I get A Hope Undaunted, i will have to put one of my stretchable headbands around it to keep me from reading ahead into it.......Great job, Julie!

VT--LessmanFan said...

I haven't even finished "A Passion Denied" yet, but I can't wait for the newest book about the O'Conner family! I hope it will be available on Kindle like the others! :)

Julie Lessman said...

RJOYC123 ... "stretchable headbands around it to keep me from reading ahead," eh? Grin ... well, you better, girl, because as a few of my reader friends will tell you, I go crazy when they read the last page ahead of time!! :) Thank you for your kind words, and I hope you like Redeemed ... it is my favorite of the DOB series, but I realize I'm in the minority since most of my reader friends like APMP and Denied best. Good luck in the contest!!

VT--LESSMANFAN ... gosh, VT, that's so weird to type "Lessman fan" because I still can't believe that there are people out there who call themselves my "fans"!! Thank you SO much for your kind words! I actually see you more as a "reader friend" than fan because bottom line, we are all just women who love a good romance, right? Some write, some read, but all of us crave passion in our reading and our relationship with God, which binds us together in a unique friendship! But thank you for the incredible compliment, sweetie, and I wish you well in the contest.


HandyFamily said...

Oh my word, Brenda Lott mentioned she had read this book on her facebook page, and now I am having serious book envy. I can't think, I am so excited! (Which isn't good, we home-school and my brain doesn't want to concentrate) It would be so GREAT to win a copy!!!

Unknown said...

I hope there's room for one more comment! Lena, you might have to start a new blog if this pace keeps up for Julie's book. My determination is undaunted to win a copy of "A Hope Undaunted!" Just trying.

Barb Shelton
barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

Julie Lessman said...

HANDYFAMILY ... WHOO-HOO for Mags (Brenda Lott, aka Maggie Brendan) for getting the word out for me. I LOVE Maggie AND her books, which is why I was THRILLED that she agreed to endorse A Hope Undaunted. Thank you for coming by to try and win a copy and please check out my website calendar at from now through October for TONS of signed giveaway opportunities coming up and critique opportunities for aspiring writers too!!

BARB -- you little pitt bull, you!! You deserve to win a book on sheer tenacity, my friend, and you mark my words -- the odds are with you!! :)


tammya said...

Loved the interview. Very encouraging to not give up! Can't wait to read this next chapter in this families life.
Tammy A

Edwina said...

Would love to win one of Julie's books!


Julie Lessman said...

TAMMYE ... And trust me, I can't wait for you to "read the next chapter in this family's life" either, girl, so let's get that book in your hot, little hands, okay??? Good luck in the contest and if you don't win here, check out my website calendar for more giveaways!!

EDWINA ... NOT as much as I would LOVE you to win one of my books, my friend, so keep posting comments on my giveaways listed on my website calendar, okay??? Here's to a win!!


Adria Shea said...

I can not wait to read this book, this is the BEST series of ALL times!
Julie Lessman is an amazing author!
I'm so glad it's finally out.
To Do List: Read A Hope Undaunted!!

LoRee Peery said...

I hope I'm not too late to chime in for a chance to win this marvelous sounding book! Just checked out your Web site, Julie and I love it all around. Way to stick it out after so many rejections. Our Lord is so good, He gives us passion and knows the desires of our hearts.

Lourdes said...

Oh sounds great would love to win.


ladyliz said...

Love these books!! Keep them coming!

Julie Lessman said...

WHOA, ADRIA ... "BEST series of all time"?????? Honey, I wish I could send you a free book right now!! :) Thank you SO much and I am hoping you LOVE Katie and Cluny (hubba hubba!!) as much as I do!! Good luck in the contest and if you don't win here, check out my website for more giveaways going on RIGHT NOW!!

WOW, thank you, LOREE, for your kind words AND for checking out my website!! And NO, you are NOT too late for a win and if you don't win here, girl, be sure to head over to my website calendar for LOTS more giveaways, okay??? And yes, ma'am, God IS good!!!

LOURDES ... LOVE the name, girl -- so appeals to my Catholic roots!!:) Appreciate you stopping by and good luck in the contest.

LADY LIZ ... thank you SOOO much and trust me, sweetie, I am doing everything in my power to "keep them coming," but future contracts always depend on sales, which means WORD OF MOUTH is everything in this business so talk it up, okay??? THANK YOU and good luck in the contest!


Unknown said...

Thanks for the chance to win....what a great interview!

Christine said...

Julie!!! I'm so excited about this book! I really shouldn't be if I value my sleep at all, but I just can't put you down!! I start one of your books and just keep on reading until the sun comes up. My husband will be less than thrilled when I get my hands on your latest. :) Thanks for blessing me with such quality writing!

Christine said...

Julie!!! I'm so excited about this book! I really shouldn't be if I value my sleep at all, but I just can't put you down!! I start one of your books and just keep on reading until the sun comes up. My husband will be less than thrilled when I get my hands on your latest. :) Thanks for blessing me with such quality writing!

Julie Lessman said...

LULU ... you're back!!! Good girl ... you'll win a book yet, mark my words! :)

CHRISTINE!!! I am SO excited that you enjoy my books but I hope hubby won't hate me!! I actually got an e-mail from one little girl who was about 15 or so who said her family threatened to burn my books because she read one of them (APMP, I think) about 17 times!!! That's a little over the top, I guess, but then so is a sleepless night, so TAKE YOUR TIME with Undaunted, okay? Savor it slowly because, girl, there won't be another one out till September 2011 ... :( Thank you for coming by and for your incredible support, Christine. Good luck in the contest.


ericka miller said...

I cannot wait to read this book!!! i read all three books of the first series this summer and fell in love with it!!! and definitely because i most related to lizzie o'connor

Emily C. said...

I am so excited to get a copy of A Hope Undaunted!! I get paid next week so a trip to the bookstore will be in order! You must have amazing patience to deal with 45 rejections! God bless you!

Julie Lessman said...

ERICKA!! Thanks SO much for reading the DOB series, and I hope you will like the WOC series as well. Of course, I am SOOO partial to Cluny McGee, but then I have a sneaky feeling he's going to steal a lot of hearts away from Collin, so once you read the book, you will understand why! :)

EMILY C ... "amazing patience"??? Oh, honey, you sure wouldn't think so if you could have seen me today. Spent all day and part of the night in the ER with my aunt, and trust me, there was very little "patience" involved and way more "patients." :/ But thank you for your kind words AND for buying Undaunted. I hope you love it as much as I do! :)