Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Motiv8: Fantasy Fiction Tour West Coast!

MOTIV8 Fantasy Fiction Tour 2008 - 8 Christian Fantasy Authors, 8 West Coast Cities, 8 Days

“West coast or bust!” is the rallying cry of eight Christian fantasy fiction authors—representing eight separate publishing houses— on a fun-filled, grass roots mission to spread the good news about their fast-growing genre, now blazing hot once again with the ongoing releases of the Narnia movies. This fall, the “Motiv8 Fantasy Fiction Tour” has set its course due west to visit thousands of fans at scheduled book-signings, school and church programs, humanitarian outreaches, and a book fair, October 4-11. For information, visit www.fantasyfictiontour.com.

More Authors, More Heart in 2008

The popular adage “the more, the merrier” best explains the fantasy fiction tour’s decision to double its membership to eight authors in 2008. Two women and six men wearing medieval cloaks and armed with swords of steel—and truth—comprise the eclectic band of faith-based storytellers. Though from different publishers and parts of the U.S, the authors are bound by their love for God and the fictional worlds, characters, and themes they have created in 37 ground-breaking novels.

Also new is the sojourners’ partnership with Character 4 Kids, a charitable outreach to place books with moral character and values into the hands of needy kids in hospitals and after-school programs.

The History

On a shoe-string budget and a prayer, in 2007 the first-ever Christian fantasy fiction tour, known as the Fantasy 4 Fiction Tour, successfully launched with four authors caravanning to events in 15 cities throughout the eastern U.S. The unprecedented initiative drew the attention of fans, industry peers, and mainstream media who conjectured, “Could the next Harry Potter be a devout Christian?”

While interest in other literary genres has declined over the last several years, Christian book sales have steadily grown at a rate of about 30 percent with annual revenues reaching $2.4 billion.

Meet the Authors

The “Motiv8 Fantasy Fiction Tour” will feature the following authors:

Founders:

· Sharon Hinck is a wife and mother of four from Minnesota. Sharon was named 2007 “Writer of the Year” at Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference. In March, she released The Restorer’s Journey, the third book in her popular Sword of Lyric (NavPress) fantasy series for women. She is also author of the non-fantasy, award-winning The Secret Life of Becky Miller and the upcoming release of Stepping into Sunlight.


· Bryan Davis, a former computer professional living in Western Tennessee, is the author of two best-selling series for youth, titled Dragons in our Midst and Oracles of Fire. In May, Bryan debuted Beyond the Reflection’s Edge (Zondervan) , the first book in his new fantasy series Echoes from the Edge, and the second book of the series Eternity’s Edge will release in October.
· Christopher Hopper is an international speaker, recording artist and ordained minister who lives with his wife and two children in northern New York. Christopher’s first book was the popular Rise of The Dibor, The White Lion Chronicles, and his latest book The Lion Vrie (Tsaba House) released last June.

· Christopher Hopper is an international speaker, recording artist and ordained minister who lives with his wife and two children in northern New York. Christopher’s first book was the popular Rise of The Dibor, The White Lion Chronicles, and his latest book The Lion Vrie (Tsaba House) released last June.




· Wayne Thomas Batson is a public middle school teacher from Eldersburg, MD and author of two best-selling young adult fantasy series The Door Within trilogy and Isle of Swords (Thomas Nelson). His latest The Isle of Fire, the second in the Isle of Sword series, will release in September.



Reinforcements:

· Donita K. Paul is a retired school teacher from Colorado, whose passion for literacy compels her to speak in schools and libraries about the importance of story. Dragon Keeper Chronicles (Waterbrook Press), her five-book series, has won acclaim.

· LB Graham is a teacher at Westminster Christian Academy in St. Louis, MO. LB is the author of The Binding of the Blade (P&R Publishing), an epic five-volume series for fantasy readers of all ages. The much anticipated final installment in the series All My Holy Mountain will release in June.

· Jonathan Rogers grew up in Georgia near the swamps and riverbottoms where his The Wilderking (B&H Publishing) fantasy series is based. He holds a PH.D. in seventeenth-century English literature from Vanderbilt University and currently lives in Nashville, TN.

· Eric Reinhold is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, who lives with his wife and three children in Longwood, Florida. Eric writes for numerous financial magazines as a certified financial planner and serves as President of Academy Wealth Management. Ryann Watters and the King’s Sword (Creation House), the first book in his The Annals of Aeliana series, was released in May.

The 2007 Fantasy 4Fiction Tour was covered in the Washington Post, Fox News, Christian Retailing magazine, Beliefnet.com, Publisher’s Weekly magazine, and The Associated Press’ Everything Sacred broadcast, among other media outlets. For the second consecutive year, RealArmorofGod.com has signed on as a sponsor to outfit the authors with medieval props including swords and clothing.

For more information about the Motiv8 Fantasy Fiction Tour authors, scheduled events, book titles and blogs, please visit www.fantasyfictiontour.com.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

2008 Christy Award Winners!

Last night the winners of the 2008 Christy Awards were announced! Every year publishers are invited to submit novels written from a Christian worldview and copyrighted in the year preceding the awards. Each novel is entered in one of several genre categories and/or the first novel category. Each category of novels is then read and evaluated against a ten-point criteria by a panel of seven judges composed of librarians, reviewers, academicians, literary critics, and other qualified readers, none of whom have a direct affiliation with a publishing company.

Without any further ado, here are the winners:

CONTEMPORARY STAND-ALONE:
Chasing Fireflies
by Charles Martin
Thomas Nelson

Read our review of the novel here.


CONTEMPORARY SERIES:

Home to Holly Springs
by Jan Karon
Viking/Penguin



HISTORICAL
A Proper Pursuit
by Lynn Austin
Bethany House

Read our review of the novel here.


ROMANCE
Remembered
by Tamara Alexander
Bethany House




LITS:
Hallie's Heart
by Shelly Beach
Kregel

Read our review of the novel here.


SUSPENSE:

The Cure
by Athol Dickson
Bethany House

Read our review of the novel here.

VISIONARY:
Scarlet
by Stephen R. Lawhead
Thomas Nelson

Read our review of the novel here.


YOUNG ADULT:
Hollywood Nobody
by Lisa Samson
Navpress

Read our review of the novel here.


FIRST NOVEL:
The Stones Cry Out
by Sibella Giorello
Revell

Read our review of the novel here.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

David C. Cook acquires new trilogies by Lisa Bergren & Kathy Herman

According to Christian Retailing:

... Herman's The Real Enemy, about female police chief Brill Jessup who tries to solve a missing persons case shrouded in Cherokee legend, will be released in March 2009 as the first book in the "Sophie Trace Trilogy." Bergren's Breathe, the first installment in "The Homeward Trilogy," will be released in July 2009.

Read the full article here.

Marcher Lord Press Preview #2, The Personifid Invasion

Jeff Gerke has unveiled the second book in his three-book launch list over at Marcher Lord Press. It's called The Personifid Invasion by R.E. Bartlett, who previously penned The Personifid Project (Realms).

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Summary of novel according to the author:

The Personifid Invasion is set in a possible future Earth. We [humans] are in the process of discarding the natural body and shifting to artificial versions of ourselves—“personifids.”

The story follows adult siblings Aphra and Antha as they look for their long-lost sister. There’s just one problem—the sister resides in San Edhem, a city renowned for being overrun by “interterrestrials.” This means the personifids there may or may not be inhabited by humans.

It’s all a little dicey, and requires perception to know what’s what.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR according to Jeff Gerke:

R.E. (Ruth) Bartlett is a Kiwi novelist I’ve known for a few years now. I was able to get her first published novel, The Personifid Project, included in the launch list at Realms, back in 2005.


Ruth’s novel for Marcher Lord Press, The Personifid Invasion, is a sequel to that first one, but stands well on its own.


Ruth’s humor and her vision for the future are among the things that draw me to her future. As are the spiritual and philosophical questions that inevitably come up when you’re talking about technology that allows people to cheat death indefinitely.


With The Personifid Invasion she adds a new spiritual dimension to her futuristic vision, but I’ll let her explain that herself.

Read an interview with R.E. Bartlett here.
Read a sample chapter from The Personifid Invasion here.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Deceived by James Scott Bell coming Spring 2009

An exciting looking release coming from James Scott Bell in 2009.

Summary:

Two bodies in an isolated canyon. A fortune in diamonds missing. The love of money is the root of many kinds of evil, and for Liz Towne those roots grow deep. Deep enough to lead to murder. But is Liz too clever for her own good? A suspense thriller from James Scott Bell, bestselling author of Presumed Guilty.

More detailed description:

Two bodies in an isolated canyon on the edge of L.A.

One with saddlebags filled with diamonds. That's how it begins for Liz Towne, a stunning blonde with a devout husband who has given up a prime job for reasons Liz cannot understand—for "Mac" MacDonald, a Gulf War vet who's done time in prison and is just now finding his way back to normal life—and for Roxanne "Rocky" Towne, Liz's sister-in-law, who suspects things she cannot prove. All three are thrown together after a tragedy in Pack Canyon. After stumbling upon the stolen diamonds, Liz is faced with an escalating set of choices: Truth or lies? Love or money? Saint or sinner? Liz thinks she knows who she is and what she wants, but when the web gets terribly tangled, is her game of deception a clever lie or a deadly trap? A new suspense thriller from James Scott Bell, bestselling author of Presumed Guilty.

Read our review of The Whole Truth here.