Monday, August 15, 2011

SHADOWED IN SILK - Christine Lindsay - Free Book

I'm thrilled to feature this author and this book on my blog. I was blessed to be able to read it for an endorsement. Welcome, Christine. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
Life is tough. As a kid, mine certainly was, so I write a great deal of myself or of others close to me in my stories, changing the circumstances of course. But much of my character’s emotional and spiritual journey’s are taken from what I’ve observed up close or experienced.

I grew up in an unstable home. My father was an alcoholic who physically abused my mother. Right there—tons of fodder for stories. I understand how a woman can feel unseen and unloved. Like my mother, my character Abby Fraser grew up feeling invisible. But also like my mother, Abby refuses to submit to abuse.

When I was a young woman I became pregnant outside of marriage and relinquished my first child to adoption. There again, tons of emotional experiences to draw from—moral failure, but also courage. Because of closed adoptions back then, as the years passed I felt invisible to this child I had named Sarah. Though I continued to love and pray for her every day along with my other children that came later after I met my wonderful husband.

None of us have to look far for authentic sadness or trauma in our lives. What’s wonderful is seeing the redemptive hand of God bringing us through those hard times.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I thought I’d like to learn how to fly a small plane, but after the first free lesson I decided I really wasn’t that brave. Chicken is more like it.  J

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
As a child I used to sit on the kitchen floor and draw pictures on my blackboard, and tell myself stories. In college I recognized my ‘knack’ for writing, but I never paid any attention to it . . . that is until the reunion with my birthdaughter, Sarah.

God was very good to me. When Sarah was 20 she and are were reunited as birthmother and birthdaughter. But at our reunion I began to relive the loss of relinquishing her in the first place.

Months later my husband found me sitting on the couch, crying. He went out and bought me a brand new pen and journal, and said, “Write it.”

My words flowed, and that was the beginning of a 12 year apprenticeship in writing. Not long afterward I felt the Lord urge me to put the emotional healing I had received into fictional stories to help others.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
Big, fat historicals with plenty of adventure and romance, and always a happy ending. Life is too harsh to read sad endings. So MM Kaye with her Far Pavilions is a top favorite. Tricia Goyer, Bodie Thoene, Jack Cavanagh’s Songs in the Night series . . .

But I also love gritty murder mysteries—the British kind by authors like PD James. And I also read a lot of non-fiction, especially history.

And contemporary Christian women’s or romantic fiction—I adore Linda Nichol’s At the Scent of Water and Not a Sparrow Falls. I’m a huge fan of Debra Raney’s and also of Lena Nelson Dooley. A good debut novel I just read was by Cathy West, Yesterday’s Tomorrow, set during the Vietnam War.

Thank you for including me in your list. How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
To be honest, I’m not sure I am all that sane with the pace I’ve been keeping lately.

Seriously though, I start each day quietly with the Lord. Read a chapter from the Old and New Testament, and in His presence relinquish all of who I am, and all my ambitions. I love to write, but whatever I love, I hold out to Him to either take away or leave in my open hands. If God wants me to stop pursuing a writing ministry and teach Sunday School, or clean toilets, or go wherever—I will. It’s obeying Him that matters.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
Sometimes in non-fiction from the era I’m studying. That’s where I found Geoff’s name, short for Geoffrey.

I watch the credits that go by at the end of every movie and TV show. I found 2 minor character’s names on Midsummer Murders. I think the producer’s name was True-May—so I used that for one of Geoff’s acquaintances.

And I’ll let you in on a secret I haven’t told anyone yet. Geoff’s last name, Richards, is for Cliff Richards. Cliff—if you don’t already know—is a wonderful Christian personality in Britain. As a little kid—a hundred years ago—I thought he was dishy.

I found the name for Eshana, my little Hindu widow, on the web. It means “one having eyes like a deer.”

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Two-part accomplishment—relinquishing Sarah to another couple who loved her and raised her to be a happy committed Christian . . . and for raising the 3 children God gave my husband and I, to also be happy, committed Christians.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
Definitely a pussycat. They’re charming, soft, they love to sleep, and purr. They take life simple and fulfill the purpose for which God created them. That’s all I want—to take life simply by being obedient to God, and let Him take care of whatever is supposed to happen, and let me cuddle up and purr on His lap.

What is your favorite food?
I’m Irish—born there—so I love my spuds. Pototoes. So a nice dinner with mashed potatoes and gravy is my comfort food. That, and a good strong cup of tea. 

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
Finding the time to write because I must contribute to our household income by working outside the home. This takes much time and energy away from my creativity, but I commit to writing for an hour each day, no matter what. On days off, I write all day.

Tell us about the featured book.

Ah, the labor of my heart. Shadowed in Silk deals with—and I think delicately—a tough subject, spousal abuse. Women are often mistreated in eastern cultures as well as western, and neglect or abuse, done in secret, makes the victim feel invisible.

After the 4 long years of The Great War, Abby Fraser returns to India with her small son, where her husband is stationed with the British army. But when she finally catches up with Nick in the north of India, she discovers he’s a cruel stranger. And Nick has secrets, one of them is the woman, Tikah, who isn’t quite a servant in the house. As Abby tries to sort out her marriage difficulties, a Russian spy enters her social circle. Unbeknownst to everyone, this spy is stirring up rebellion in India.

The strong, silent hero is Major Geoff Richards who suffers from shellshock and is broken over the loss of so many of his men in the war. Abby’s little boy, Cam, tugs on Geoff’s heart, but Geoff is afraid to believe there is any joy left in this life. While Geoff is a devoted Christian, he’s angry at how his British peers mistreat the Indian people. And as Geoff befriends Cam he can’t help but notice that Nick Fraser is mistreating Abby.

As an honorable Christian man Geoff can’t do much, but he tries to advise Abby to protect herself and Cam. He also encourages Abby to make friendships with some Indian Christian women he knows, who are former Hindu widows, and who know all about being abused and neglected. Meanwhile Geoff is ordered to search out the Russian spy, throwing him often into Abby’s social circle.

As things get worse for Abby, it becomes clear that she can’t solve all of her problems by herself. She starts to wonder if her little Christian ayah, Eshana, really does have the answers. Maybe there is a way for God to really see her.

This human drama is set against a true historical event that shook the British Empire, setting in motion the Indian independence, and skyrocketing Gandhi to fame.

Please give us the first page of the book.

December, 1918

Abby Fraser gripped the railing of the New Delhi and lifted her chin to defy the solitary expanse of sea. She refused to believe a wife needed an invitation to join her husband. The war was over at last. Nick and she were married, and it was about time he remembered that.

One of the Queen Alexandra nurses escorting the Indian troops home stood beside Abby. With a rustle of starched cotton, Laine Harkness leaned over and whispered in her ear. “Why do you look like you’re headed for the Black Hole of Calcutta and not about to have a passionate reunion with the love of your life?”

Abby ran a hand down her linen skirt and watched the blue line of shore draw closer. What could she possibly say? Instead of replying she cuddled her little son, Cam, nearer to her side. In less than an hour he’d meet his father for the first time. Had she been foolish not to wait for an answer from Nick? So few letters from him in four years.

“I know you’re American,” Laine went on, “but I assure you, the only thing to be afraid of in this part of the British Empire is the wife of your husband’s commanding officer.” She shuddered with drama and grinned maliciously. “Once you’re settled in your shady little army cantonment, the old battle-axe will whip you into shape in no time. Then you’ll be quite the proper memsahib. It’s them that run the colony for us Brits. Don’t you think for a minute it’s the Viceroy or our army—it’s the average colonel’s wife.”

Abby crinkled her nose as she smiled. “You win. Is this better?”

“Much better. You were altogether too peaked for meeting your handsome lieutenant.”

The New Delhi sliced her way through the narrows of Kolaba Point, and the familiar scent of Bombay reached out to Abby. Laine was right. No sense worrying. Tucking a strand of hair into her chignon, she savored a tantalizing whiff of overripe fruit, roses, marigolds and cloves, mingled with the acrid smell of dust . . .

 How can readers find you on the Internet?
Drop by my website for a visit. There you can also read my entire relinquishment to adoption and reunion story. Within that story are chapters written by my birthdaughter’s adoptive mom as well. It’s honest, and it shows the tenderness of God toward the both of us women who hungered for the same little baby.

Thank you for the interesting discussion, Christine.

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. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (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 4 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 if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.


Anonymous said...


Rebecca said...

I would love to win this book. It looks amazing. Thanks for the chance.

I am from Oklahoma.


Unknown said...

Thanks for the interview, Lena and Christine. i would love to win Shadowed in Silk. i am glad you found your birthdaughter, Christine. i love happy endings, too. mitzi_wanham[at]yahoo[dot]com from Peace River Country, Alberta

Kristie said...

Unfortunately spousal abuse isn't talked about enough in America. So tragic and devastating. Also, there are many kinds of abuses, not just physical. Women can be the abusers too. Your book sounds great and it seems like Abby has a good support system. I'm from Ohio. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

Lorna Faith said...

Christine, your book sounds like a book I would love to read! I can relate a little to your father was physically abusive, so this book touches my heart strings.
Please enter my name for a chance to win:)

Lorna from Alberta
lornafaith at gmail dot com

Christine Lindsay said...

Wow, it's so nice to hear from Lena's readers from all over the place. Nice to see people from the US as well as Canada where I live.

I hope you all win a copy of the book. I guess that's not possible. :o) All the same, I would love it if you do get a chance to read it.

India holds a special place in my heart, and so do people who feel unloved and invisible. I wrote Shadowed in Silk to encourage people that God is so 'there' willing to comfort us in the desert of our pain. Hugs to all.

Jo said...

I would love to get entered in this giveaway. It sounds great.


Christine Lindsay said...

Kristie, I so agree that spousal abuse is not often talked about, especially in Christian fiction these days. I tried really hard to tackle the issue in Shadowed in Silk, but at the same time didn't want to drag the story down with too much darkness. So I made my heroine, Abby, stand up for herself. In no way is she going to act like a victim.

I also agree with you that women can be as much of an abuser as men can. And that's a whole other topic that needs to be written about.

Anonymous said...

Congrats on the book Christine! It looks great! It is very in depth. I bet you enjoyed all the research that must have gone into this book!


Unknown said...

This seems like the kind of story I could get wrapped up in. I relish books based on women's issues, and it seems to have always been a misfortune in this world for women to be abused. Thank you for this giveaway and the chance to win it. If I win, I'll send you my address in Arlington, TX and I'll wait for the mail each day until I receive it. Congratulations Christine.

Barb Shelton
barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

Christine Lindsay said...

You are so right, Salena, tons of research went into Shadowed in Silk. More than I needed, but then I've got what I need for the sequel to SIS which is called Captured by Moonlight, also a book with adventure, romance, but tackling women's issues.

I so enjoyed the research into a typical British cavalry officer, from his uniform to the types of horses he rode. The Englishwomen in the British Raj were a brave bunch of souls and tough too. Most of them could handle a rifle or hand-gun with ease.

It was fun too reading cookbooks from the British Raj so that I learned what a typical Englishwomen would feed her family in India. A favorite of British Raj children was a chappati spread with marmalade.

Christine Lindsay said...

Same here, Barb, I love a book that tackles women's issues. Aside from wanting to write an adventure and love story, I wanted to be truthful to the pain that many women experience. It's not just Abby in this story that is being abused. SiS touches on the plight of Hindu widows who are cast out to live a life of drugery when their husbands die.

And there is another woman in the book who suffers greatly, but I can't give too much away about her, as it would ruin the story. Let's just say that this poor abused Muslim woman gets back at the man who hurt her.

Carrie Fancett Pagels said...

Christine thanks for sharing from your heart! I have a copy on my Kindle and look forward to reading this.

Christine Lindsay said...

Thanks Carrie, you are such an encouraging sweetheart.

BW said...

Hello, very interested in what will happen with Abby, so please enter me in the contest.

Anonymous said...

I like how you start each morning, Mrs. Lindsay...leaving to God to either take away or give whatever it is you are currently holding. Thank you for such a precious reminder for me this morning! Just what I needed! I would enjoy reading this book, and if I don't win, will be searching it out to purchase!

Blessings to you!
Kelly Y. in Virginia

Janet Sketchley said...

Lena, don't enter me in the draw, but thanks for posting such an interesting interview. I just finished reading Shadowed in Silk and really enjoyed it. Human drama indeed, with a vibrant setting and happy ending.

Christine, I'm a Cliff Richard fan from way back too. Thank you for writing what you know and giving us a heart-warming story.

Coolestmommy said...

I once learned that 1 in 3 spouses are abused TODAY!!! It was sobering to think there is so much pain being inflicted. Thank you for bringing it to light.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Wendy said...

I would love to read this book. Sounds really good.
Buffalo, mn

Christine Lindsay said...

Dear Kelly in Virginia, your email is an answer to prayer. Each day I pray that whatever I write, whether that be in a novel, or on the web, or in an email, that it will encourage at least one soul in Christ.

Isn't it wonderful how we can encourage one another in the faith in such a simple way. Blessings on you.

Christine Lindsay said...

Dear Kelly in Virginia, your email is an answer to prayer. Each day I pray that whatever I write, whether that be in a novel, or on the web, or in an email, that it will encourage at least one soul in Christ.

Isn't it wonderful how we can encourage one another in the faith in such a simple way. Blessings on you.

Christine Lindsay said...

Janet, how wonderful to meet another Cliff Richard fan.

And Robyn, how shocking to hear the statistics are so high for spousal abuse---1 in 3---that's terrible. We sure live in a sinful world.

And so glad that Christ can redeem even the worse situations, and bring healing.

Patricia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Beth Reinke said...

Oh my, I would be "chicken" about flying a plane, too!

Enjoyed your interview, thank you.

Blessings to you.


Abigail Mitchell said...

Looks interesting, Please enter me in the drawing.
Abigail Richmond
Blanch, N.C.

Anonymous said...

I would love to win a copy of this book! I'm a follower by gfc and a subscriber by email.

dancealert at aol dot com

Hutt-Write Voice said...

having trouble leaving a comment, but would love to win the book...hope this works now.

Ms. Mona said...

This sounds like a great book, would love to win when the authors put part of things tht has happened to them in their lives into their writing.....thanks for a chance to win...Ms. Mona/Oh

Christine Lindsay said...

Yes, Patricia, I hope you remember to check back to find out if you won the free copy.

It's been so wonderful to be a guest on Lena's blog---So many wonderful people from all over.

I'm truly blessed to chat with you in this way.

It's because God has been so good to me, bringing me through some dark times---but it's the same for all of us. I just have to share that, and pray that whatever I write encourages readers to believe Christ and trust in Him.

Krista said...

Sounds wonderful. Please enter me.

Krista from Gresham, OR

Sarah said...

Would love to win!

Sarah H

Sharon Richmond said...

Sounds very interesting. Please enter me in the drawing.
Sharon Richmond
Blanch, NC.

Cyndi said...

Sounds like a great book!

Cyndi in AL

Patricia said...

Christine - your personal story is very inspiring and personally touching. I pray life continues to give you blessings.

Yes, I would appreciate winning a copy of Christine's book, (I hope it is a real book, vs an ebook!).

I live in Burlington, Ontario Canada.

My email is:

madley (AT) cogeco (DOT) ca

Now.... iif I can only remember to check back on the correct day......

Thank you, Christine, for this prize.
Thank you, Lena, for this hosting this Giveaway.

Choose Joy!

apple blossom said...

love to win thanks
live in ND

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Melissa M. said...

Sounds interesting, and I like a lot of the same authors this author does.


Melissa from TX

sarahw said...

looks like a really great book. would love to win it. thanks,