Tuesday, June 16, 2020

MISSING - Mary Ellis - One Free Ebook

Welcome back, Mary. I know you speak at various conferences and meetings. What do you have coming up in 2021?
Right now I haven’t scheduled anything for 2021 since I’m at high risk for the virus. But I do hope to attend the ACFW conference in the fall, and smaller Ohio conferences and meetings until then. I truly don’t look forward to getting on a plane.

I so understand. I’m at high risk for the virus, too, so I’m careful. If you were planning a women’s retreat, what would be the theme for it?
I believe my theme would be “The role of Christian women in a rapidly changing world.” Between racial tensions across the country and this horrible virus, Christian women need to safely reach out to others with understanding and kindness. Many people are hurting—emotionally, financially and spiritually. We need to serve them while spreading the word that our only hope, our only lifeline, is Jesus.

I so agree with you. He is the only answer. Who would you want as speakers and why?
Well, the first speaker I’d invite would be you, Lena, because I know you and your husband have spent many years in Christian service. The second person I’d invite would be my pastor’s wife for her speaking ability, and finally I’d invite someone who has worked outside the US in missions.

Where would you hold the retreat and why?
I would hold the retreat at one of Ohio’s seven state parks. Each lodge has all the necessary amenities for the perfect getaway—pools, lakes, bike trails, water sports, restaurants, plus acres of forest trails for peaceful prayers and mediation. They have plenty of space to convene indoors, outdoors, even under the stars.

I would accept that invitation to speak there in a heartbeat. Do you read print books or ebooks? Or a combination of the two?
I’m an old-fashioned girl…I read only print books. I like the feel of paper and a solid binding. Also, since I spend so much time on my computer as an author, I like to get away from electronics during my free time.

Missing is an interesting title. How did you come up with it?
During rumschpringe, Amish parents allow their daughters quite a bit of freedom. This is the time for young men and women to experience the Englishers’ world before settling down, getting married, and committing to the Amish faith. When my Amish character disappears, her parents assume she went to an amusement park for a few days or took a trip to Cleveland. Only her English friend, Lily, suspects something has happened to Charlotte.

Interesting. So what is the book about?
Young women are disappearing in Plum Creek, Ohio, and Lily Sellers seems to be the only one concerned. Since her parents own a grocery store in Holmes Country, Lily grew up surrounded by Amish until she left for college. But her father’s sudden death brings her home until her mother can find a buyer for the store. FBI agent Marc Harris hasn’t been home since joining the profiler unit five years ago. His agenda for the next ten days includes fishing, visiting the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and falling asleep in the hammock. But an impulsive stop at the country store changes his plans. Marc enjoys getting to know Lily but doesn’t buy her theory. Marc joins Lily’s wild goose chase, if for no reason than to prove Plum Creek is still the same sweet town he remembers. Lily accompanies Charlotte to an Amish tent revival where Charlotte meets the handsome, charismatic preacher. When Charlotte also disappears, Lily fears a dangerous predator is preying on young women. Marc must rally the Bureau’s full resources to unravel a complicated scheme of deception.

Please give us the first page of the book.
Funny how life sometimes turns out…

If anyone would have asked Lily Sellers the day she graduated from Ohio University what she’d be doing in three months, she never would have said stocking shelves with jams, jellies, and pickled veggies in the heart of Amish country. Armed with degrees in both web design and graphic arts, Lily had been searching for a job in Columbus, Cincinnati, and Chicago. Her talents and abilities could be put to much better use in metropolitan-area corporations than in small towns surrounded by rolling farmland. Cities also had chic neighborhoods full of eligible bachelors and elegant apartments. Lily didn’t know what she wanted more: a furnished urban loft where she could display her fledgling collection of cityscape photographs, or an honest-to-goodness date that didn’t involve college sports or a fraternity house party.

Where did women meet men who enjoyed museums, art galleries, coffeehouses, and an occasional hike in the great outdoors? Certainly not in a grocery store that catered to tourists by the busload.

But for the foreseeable future, Plum Creek was where she needed to be.

Her father hadn’t asked for the heart attack which ended his life at fifty-eight. Nor had her mother wanted the auto-immune disease which robbed her of energy and motor coordination and now confined her to a wheelchair. Her parents had sacrificed summer vacations, home improvements, and creature comforts to put her through four years of college. So until they found a suitable buyer for Sellers’ Country Market, Lily would remain in Plum Creek to help Mom manage the store. Columbus, Cincinnati, and Chicago—along with Rome, Paris, and London—would still be there when the time was right.
“Lily?” said a weak voice over the store’s loudspeaker. “Could you come up front, please? And bring the broom,” her Mom added.
Lily pushed the case of apricot preserves out of the way of unobservant shoppers, grabbed the broom from the stockroom, and hurried to the front, smiling at tourists and local patrons along the way. At the cash register, Lily found a red-faced shopper and her mom in a ruffled smock with Connie, at your service embroidered over the left pocket.

“Sorry for the mess, Lily,” said the customer. “Your ma told me to leave the sunflower seeds in the cart, but I didn’t listen.” Between the checkout conveyor and the candy rack lay twenty-five pounds of scattered birdseed.

How can readers find you on the Interet?
I can be found at: http://www.maryellis.net/ 

Thank you, Mary, for sharing Missing with us. I’m eager to read it. I just love your writing.

Readers, here is a link to the book.

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Shelia64 said...

Sounds like a wonderful book! Shelia from Mississippi

Caryl Kane said...

I enjoy Mary Ellis's books! Looking forward to reading HIDDEN.

Caryl K in TEXAS

Linda Kish said...

This sounds like a story I would enjoy reading. Linda in SoCal

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Robin in NC said...

Isn't life funny? It can change in an instant. I would enjoy reading this book. Thanks for sharing.

Robin in NC

Pam K. said...

Missing sounds very interesting. I've read a few of Mary's books so know they are very good. Thanks for the giveaway.


Mary Ellis said...

Thanks everyone who left me a comment. but one clarification. The name of the novella is Missing, not Hidden.

Connie Porter Saunders said...

Missing sounds wonderful and I am looking forward to reading it!
Connie from Kentucky

Pam said...

I've read many of Mary Ellis' books and there isn't a bad one in the bunch (at least in those I've read anyway!) Since romantic suspense is my top favorite genre, I would love to read Missing.

Pam G in OH