Tuesday, January 16, 2018

ISAIAH'S DAUGHTER - Mesu Andrews - One Free Book

Welcome back, Mesu. What are some of the spiritual themes you like to write about?
God’s sovereignty always seems to pop up in my stories, which means His perfect goodness also comes out. Lots of folks struggle with “the wrathful God of the Old Testament,” so I try to show His perfect goodness and overwhelming love that helps explain some of the human condition seen in Old Testament stories. Our finite human wrestling with an infinite God is another theme I can’t seem to escape. Maybe because I’ve wrestled my whole life with how to know and understand Him more.

What other books of yours are coming out soon?
My first novella will release in Summer 2018 as part of a series in which each author chooses a favorite Psalm and fictionalizes the story behind it. I’ve chosen Psalm 137, the captives’ Psalm, and titled the book By the Waters of Babylon. It will be a great warm-up for Daniel’s life story, tentatively titled Of Fire and Lions, that’s scheduled to release Spring 2019. In Spring 2020, we’re hoping to release the sequel to Isaiah’s Daughter and tell the rest of Hephzibah’s story.

If you could spend an evening with one contemporary person (not a family member of yours), who would it be and why?
Celebrities, athletes, and politicians have never fascinated me. I’ve never been a star-gazer or fan girl, never cared about autographs or T-shirts. I want to spend an evening with someone who oozes Jesus, someone who has remained authentic and humble in spite of earthly blessing, and someone who wants to talk about the eternal—not the trivial or temporary. Liz Curtis Higgs would probably be my first choice.

I love Liz. She’s fun to be around. What historical person would you like to meet (besides Jesus) and why?
Eve. I have sooooooo many questions for her! What was it like to wake as an adult in God’s perfect world? How does perfection feel? Why in the world did she talk to that serpent? How many years did she live? How many kids did she have—300-400? How did she handle the guilt? I loved Tosca Lee’s book, Havah, because she explores some of these questions through fiction. But I hope to discover the truth someday in eternity!

How can you encourage authors who have been receiving only rejections from publishers?
Read those rejections carefully. Are they a rubber-stamped No, or do they give you helpful feedback? Editors don’t love sending out rejections, and many editors actually take the time to offer insightful critique if they believe a writer has potential to eventually publish. When I received three years of “no” on my non-fiction projects (even with the help of a top-notch agent), a friend suggested I try teaching my Bible studies through fiction. I took a few months off (an extended break can be a good idea) and then began studying the craft of fiction. I’m still learning, but God opened the door for publication when I was willing to try a different direction. The most important lesson I’ve learned in publishing is to always be flexible and teachable. Learn from rejections and let God lead you through them.

Tell us about the featured book.
I love the quiet women in the Bible. Scripture mentions Hephzibah only twice, once as King Manasseh’s mother (2 Kings 21:1), which also makes her King Hezekiah’s wife. And again in Isaiah 62:4, when the prophet labels the restored Jerusalem by her name. Why did Isaiah (and Yahweh) choose to call Jerusalem, Hephzibah?

Jewish tradition teaches that Hephzibah was Isaiah’s daughter. Almost thirty years ago, my husband’s seminary professor asked, “When Isaiah gave Hephzibah as a bride to King Hezekiah, did the prophet think he was giving her to the ‘Root of Jesse’ (Messiah) of his prophecies?” Wouldn’t that be great—having the Messiah as your son-in-law?

Hezekiah’s reign began with a bang, and many of Isaiah’s prophecies seemed fulfilled by this go-gettum young king. Unfortunately, Isaiah’s later prophecies reveal his recognition that Hezekiah was NOT the Messiah. (Talk about in-law troubles!) My mind began to spin with those two fabulous words that make every author’s heart race: What if…

Hephzibah was married to Hezekiah, the most righteous king of Judah, and was mother of Manasseh, the most wicked king. Her story spans two books. The first, recalling her childhood and marriage to Hezekiah, is Isaiah’s Daughter. The second (as yet untitled) will explore the ruin and redemption of Manasseh’s reign.

Please give us the first page of the book.
Songs are written of sons, but daughters are left to whispers. So, gather near, friend, to hear of a daughter beyond imagining. She had the heart of a lion. Braver than a soldier. Wiser than a king. She was queen in Judah long after King David’s bones had turned to dust. Long after the arrogance of Solomon’s son split Israel into two nations.

When the northern tribes seized the name Israel, the southern tribes called their new nation Judah and placed David’s descendants on their throne. Judah’s capital city was the city of Jerusalem and its God was named Yahweh. But Israel bowed to pagan gods and even led some of Judah’s kings astray.

Yahweh’s prophets spewed out warnings, and Judah’s brave daughter, the lion-hearted queen, dared ask the prophets why? When? And how will Yahweh’s judgment fall?

One incomparable prophet answered, foretelling Assyria’s cruelty as Yahweh’s weapon of wrath. Isaiah, a man born to royalty, shouted at kings and comforted beggars. The records proclaim him husband to a prophetess and father of two sons. This is recorded, detailed, written.
But what of his daughter?

Her story begins when the northern kingdom of Israel joins forces with Aram, a neighboring nation. They attack Judah in retribution for refusing to join their coalition against Assyria. Isaiah delivers God’s Words to Judah’s King Ahaz—a promise and a warning. Ahaz ignores both. His decision forever changes the life of Isaiah’s Daughter.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
Connect Info
Please visit http://www.mesuandrews.com/ to order free bookmarks, download Bible studies or group discussion questions.
Facebook: Mesu Andrews
Twitter: MesuAndrews
Pinterest: MesuAndrews
Goodreads: Mesu Andrews
Instagram: Mesu Andrews
Purchase Link:

Thank you so much, Lena, for taking part in the blog tour. You are a gracious host, and I so appreciate the ministry of your blog to authors and readers. May the Lord bless you abundantly for your faithfulness!
In His Arms With You,
Mesu

It’s my great pleasure to feature you and your new book on my blog.

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16 comments:

Elly said...

YAY! I've been looking forward to Isaiah's Daughter! I can't wait to get ahold of a copy!
Elly -Indiana-

Rebecca Van Daniker said...

This is a super fun interview! Thanks so much for sharing.

Rebecca Van Daniker said...

By the way, I already have a copy, so no worries about entering me into the giveaway. I just wanted to show some excitement for your interview. :)

Dianna said...

I've heard so many good things about this book! Mesu Andrews is a gift historical fiction author.
Dianna (TN)

Vivian Furbay said...

What an unusual first name, Mesu. Unique! This sounds like on real fascination book and would enjoy reading it. Vivian Furbay of CO

Sandy Quandt said...

What a fascinating story. I love how you take less-known women from the Bible and tell their story. Would love to win a copy of Isaiah's Daughter. Thanks for the opportunity.
Sandy Q in TX

Abigail Mitchell said...

Can't wait to read this! Thanks for the chance to win a copy!
Abigail in VA

Connie Leonard said...

The first page captivated me. I would love to read this. Winning it would be wonderful.
Connie L. in Texas

Melanie Backus said...

Thank you for a great interview! I would love to read this book.

Melanie Backus, TX

VanG said...

I have yet to read anything by Mesu and would love to win a copy of her book. It sounds like a wonderful story. Thanks for the giveaway. 😊
VanG in NC

KayM said...

I love Biblical fiction. Thank you for the opportunity to win Isaiah's Daughter.
Tennessee

Danielle H. said...

This historical subject is not one I've encountered in books before. I have seen this book around and really want to read it. Thanks for the post and chance to win a copy. Danielle from Michigan

Trixi said...

I've heard SO much about Mesu's biblical fiction books! Thanks for the fun interview and giveaway chance!

Trixi in OR

Natalya Lakhno said...

I've heard so much about this book and read several reviews! I'd love to win it :)
Blessings, Natalya Lakhno - Citrus Heights, CA

Sharon Richmond Bryant said...

Enter me in your awesome giveaway!!
Conway SC.

Connie said...

Biblical fiction is one of my favorite genres! Thank you for sharing.
Blessings!
Connie from KY
cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com