Meet Madison Andrews from Entertaining Angels. She’s a sixteen year old girl from, as she puts it, “Nowheresville, MS.” Just like most teenage girls, Madison feels unlovable and unwanted. In her eyes, she’s fat, ugly, and undesirable.
To be honest, I don’t know many teens who don’t suffer from some feeling similar to my Mads. Mads is me from high school, so she’s really special to me. Of course, there are things about her that are different, but I drew on real life emotions and experiences for inspiration. (It was extremely difficult writing that.) Madison feels like no one will ever want her, so she’s accepted that she’ll probably only live with a few cats when she gets older.
She has no idea what she wants to do with her life, but just like with us all, we have a higher calling. She just can’t see it yet. Madison struggles, yes, but God will use her before it’s over with.
When Madison first meets Zach, she sees a guy who is totally hot and unattainable, yet she’s the first girl he shows interest in. It isn’t Ashley, the popular head cheerleader, nor is it her skinny, sexy friends. It’s her, and Mads doesn’t know why, but she doesn’t complain. She accepts his attention eventually, much to her best friend’s dismay.
Chase Sanders, Madison’s nerdy best friend. He likes superhero films and video games, but he’s always been there for her. He’s her rock. And when she gets it in her head that she has to starve herself to be beautiful, he works his hardest to prove otherwise. Mads cherishes Chase. She can’t live without him. So when she thinks she’s going to lose him, she has to make a hard decision. Does she take a leap of faith or deal with the consequences of losing him?
Madison is just like any other normal teenage girl. She has to learn to accept herself for who she is and understand that she’s beautiful. God has a message for her, and she has no choice but to listen.
How does Madison face the torment of her peers and her own thoughts? Find out when Entertaining Angels is released, hopefully in May 2014.
Emerald Barnes graduated with a B.A. in English with an emphasis on Creative Writing at Mississippi University for Women. She resides in a small town in Mississippi and has the accent to prove it.
She mainly writes suspense/thrillers in the YA genre, but she dabbles in other genres and her books are enjoyed by all ages! She’s constantly working on new novels and has more ideas than she knows what to do with. She blogs which takes up more of her time than she anticipates but loves it so very much! She’s also a volunteer at the World Literary Cafe which is amazing, and she is a crazy grammar nazi who proofreads novels!
She’s an auntie to three beautiful nieces and two handsome nephews who take up the other half of her time, but she couldn’t imagine spending her time in any other way!
She’s a Whovian, a little bit of a nerd, a reader, a writer, and a family-oriented person. God is number One in her life, and she thanks Him continuously for His love and favor.
Connect with Emerald:
Where is Emerald touring?
Searching for Sara | Heart of the Blessed, #1
Today is another Teaser Tuesday from my first inspirational romance, Searching for Sara, as it travels around the ‘net on a Book Launch Blog Tour.
About the Book
Sara Little has ached to live in America. But being born of a single mother in London’s working class, she could only dream. Then, scrawled in hasty intensity, Sara receives an invitation to America. Drawn to the possibility of a new beginning, she follows God’s whisper and steps forward into the unknown. But more awaits than the realization of her dreams.
Sara’s benefactor is handsome widower Christopher Lake, a philanthropist dedicated to helping the less fortunate redefine their future. Though devastated by the loss of his wife, he dedicates himself to her last request: To provide Sara the means for a brighter future.
Sara’s first public display of her charcoal and pencil sketches is a success. Now, in answer to her request, Christopher is about to give Sara her first lesson in the watercolor medium.
“Dix, why don’t you warm your attitude with a cup of Emily’s special roast while I introduce Sara to her work-station. Take your time. I’m sure my student won’t miss you.”
Something different shined in his expression, something Sara didn’t remember seeing before. “I canno’ thank you enough for offering.” Each word tumbled over itself, her insides fluttering with nervous exhilaration. “I do no’ care how difficult, I will do my best, and do all my studies, and read whatever you want for me to read. I just want to paint as well as you do.”
A smile teased his lips. “I see.”
“Your sister had herself a miniature you painted of yourself for one of your classes at the college. And Mr. Paul? He had a watercolor of Monument Avenue you done and did no’ care for. They showed them to me yesterday when I balked whether or not I wanted to come.”
Christopher’s hazel eyes twinkled down at her, arms crossed as he nodded along with her statements.
“Not that I did no’ think you wonderfully talented. I know you are – I have a feeling on things like that – but will I be a very good student? I have no’ been a student before, and I did no’ want to annoy you with silly mistakes that even Gwyn would no’ do. But then your sister and Mr. Paul said that it’s fine for students to make mistakes.”
He laughed. “Your enthusiasm is appreciated. Let us put it to good use.”
“Ah ah. I might be your instructor, but rules remain the same.” He motioned to the easel and paper, directing her focus with a hand on her shoulder. “This is an experimental area for right now. I only need you to do simple brush strokes with the different styles of brushes so that you can get your fingers, hands, and wrists familiar with their feel. Then we’ll add some paints so you can get accustomed to the friction of paint, brush, and paper.”
Sara nodded, eyes wide.
“Now.” He retrieved one of the small brushes from the easel’s tray. “These are made of horse hair, so they’re a bit firm, but not so much as to give you much of a fight. The larger ones are of the more coarse hair, for texture and backgrounds and the like. Here. Try this.”
Sara took it from him, hesitant, her eyes focused on the dark brown of the bristles.
Christopher chuckled. “No need to be fearful, my dear. Tickle the paper a few times.”
Her uncertain expression melted to a smile as she focused to the blank piece of paper. Once she felt and heard the first cautious swish, she retreated.
“No fear, Sara.” He covered her hand with his and guided a few more certain strokes across the paper. When his hand enveloped hers yet again, Sara blinked at the touch. “Note how the grain of the paper effects the bristles? Let us try another brush. One more firm.” He released her long enough to gather one of the larger brushes.
“Do you feel the added resistance?”
Sara nodded, wide eyes unable to look away from their shared touch. She tilted her head.
“Question?” Christopher released his hold, leaving a lingering warmth and impression of a gentle grip.
“Not just yet.” Her eyebrows furrowed as she thought back—
“Then let’s give something a try.”
Sara blinked and turned to look at him. His handsome face seemed brighter as he gathered a watercolor palette. Then he adjusted a small cup of water in the tray of the easel and met her gaze, his hazel eyes clear of any shadow. He helped position the palette within her hands, directing fingers and holds alike, and turned her again to face the easel.
Christopher directed her brush to the cup of water. “The trick with watercolors, in my opinion, is to use the water itself to manipulate the clarity or vagueness of the paint. It all depends upon the mood you wish to convey.” He guided Sara’s hand and the brush along the paper with gentle strokes, the sound much like a whisper for attention.
“Oh. I like that.” Sara continued with the gentle strokes until very little color transferred from brush to paper.
“You like which? The feel or the sound?”
Sara beamed over her left shoulder at him. “Yes.”
He chuckled. “That’s fine then. Now, take stock of what you have there. Only a bit of blue. Is that enough for what you want? Or do you think it needs more?”
Sara looked to the soft and dreamy strokes of blue against white. “I… I do no’ know.”
“Well, let’s continue on.” His warm hold surrounded her hand to direct it to water and then paint. “Then we’ll see what comes about.”
But the picture didn’t become much more than blues and greens, an experiment with a new media and the different types of strokes it offered. Sara allowed herself to be taught, enjoying it more than anything in her life.
Christopher’s patience reminded her of her mother, encouraging her with new things and allowing a retreat to the familiar to make a habit. Neither took notice that Dix never arrived from her retrieval of coffee.
Where Can I Buy Searching for Sara?
Searching for Sara
Heart of the Blessed | Book One
Inspirational, Historical Romance
I have been in love with Searching for Sara from the moment I saw the chilling scene of Carla’s death in my mind. Yes, the exchange between Christopher and Carla didn’t make it to the final, but the grief and agony was enough to keep me enthralled with the characters. Even through the heart breaking duty of chopping out 60,000 words! Now I look forward to finishing Sara’s tale in Releasing Yesterday.
About the Book
Sara Little has an intimate knowledge of fear, with faith her only source of comfort. Then God calls her to put aside her past to pursue a life beyond servitude for the English aristocracy. A life in America.
Christopher Lake exists in a void of agony and grief, stripped of his wife, their unborn son, and his passion for art. All that remains to tempt him to life is that of his five-year-old daughter. But after almost two years of wallowing in sorrow and rage, even that is spent.
Searching for Sara is the story of two people who face their daily tortures of fear and grief to find the love and joy of family and a renewal of faith.
What Others Are Saying
“King paints a full-bodied story, rich in imagery, emotion, and spiritual healing. Her prose spills out effortlessly as she introduces us to characters who are multifaceted and easy to love. Historical readers will embrace her fresh voice. I particularly appreciated the realistic relationships between friends and siblings.”
~Ann Lee Miller, author of Kicking Eternity, The Art of My Life, and Avra’s God
“This book is its own little piece of heaven. I didn’t know when I started reading it that I would look forward to my “time away” each night as I ventured into the pages. Sarah Little was a servant in England and has been taken under the wing of a benefactor in America. She learns who she is and finds her place in the world in this wonderful book. Being “little” has nothing to do with the heart of this girl….and with her meek spirit, she shines the light of the Lord to help heal broken hearts and mend families. I highly recommend it.”
~Laura J. Marshall, author of Persistent Love
“King weaves art in many forms throughout this story, from charcoal and watercolors to tatting and crocheting to old pictures from childhood. The resulting kaleidoscope is largely pleasing to the reader’s eye.”
~Kim Ford, reviewer for The Wordsmith Journal Magazine.
Where You Can Buy the Book
Special Limited Time Offer!
Buy MY FAIR PRINCESS from Smashwords, Amazon, or Barnes & Noble and receive free gifts from the author and other generous supporters!
STEP 1: Go to the launch page for the links to buy your copy of MY FAIR PRINCESS between Friday, April 13th, and Friday, April 20th.
STEP 2: Return to the Launch Page [http://www.nonaking.com/my-fair-princess-launch/] and enter your 1) Name, 2) Email, 3) and your choice of free gifts from the list into the email form. Don’t forget your order number!
STEP 3: After submission, you will receive an email from me with a link to your choice of FREE GIFTS!
About the Book:
Nia Alaera is the only daughter of the Alaerian King Thaedis. As such, she stands as heir to the throne. To benefit the realm she is betrothed to the mayor of a neighboring district, sight unseen.
After all her childhood fantasies the betrothal is a bitter pill to swallow, but her dedication to her people and her family offers her silent courage… until the day she meets her mysterious husband-to-be.
With his unruly shock of auburn curls and eager smile, Shamus O’Neill reminds her more of a boy than a mayor. And those rich emerald eyes cause a flutter different than she has ever experienced before. Will her role be forever his fair princess?
Or will her heart finally burn with the passion she has longed for?
“I’m afraid if you don’t accept you are liable to miss another opportunity.” Nia’s gaze dropped to her depleted stash of plums. “I have made a glutton of myself.”
“I didn’t notice, princess.” Keep soft talking her like that and she’ll guess your big secret, Sammy. Would that be bad? He was afraid to think about the answer.
“Shamus, do stop calling me ‘princess’. You’re my husband. You shouldn’t address me by my title.”
“Sorry.” The scold felt like a bucket of ice water in the face.
To his surprise and pleasure, she clasped his hand. “It will take time, and I will be more patient.”
Sammy boy, you better confess. He cleared his throat. “Nia, I… uh….”
“Why, heavens, what’s wrong?”
“N-Nothing. I just… I like calling you… that.” What am I, twelve?
Nia blinked up at him, those honey lips slightly parted. “But why?”
“I just do.” Would it be bad to up and kiss her when she looked up at him like that?
“Oh.” Nia lowered her focus to her stash of plums, releasing his breath from where it caught in his chest. “Now I feel ridiculous for making a fuss.”
Hundreds of words crashed in his brain, but he couldn’t grab a complete sentence that would wipe the troubled darkness from her features. “I shouldn’t have said anything,” was all he could come up with.
“Of course you should! Friends talk to each other about things of this sort.” She gave his hand a gentle pressure. “No secrets between us Shamus, please? A relationship is based on trust, and if I felt you could not confide in me….”
His stomach twisted, his mouth as dry as the dragon bones in Haazen Field. What if he confessed… that? Shamus gulped, including the words he wanted to say.
About the Author:
Nona King has been writing young adult fiction and inspirational romances since 1988. Raised on a 30-acre homestead outside Aurora, Oregon, Nona’s passion for story-telling blossomed from imaginary adventures with her siblings to feature-length plays and novels. A prolific writer and blogger, her stories focus on faith, honor, and the importance of communication in relationships.
- When her cousin finds a corpse in the kudzu, her sister joins a cult, and a handsome new deputy shows an interest in her, Chantal must find a way to expose hidden truths, rescue her sister, and let her broken heart love again.
- Zain. A soul manipulated to dark deeds, forever separated from the honor he one time cherished. But though evil has an uncanny instinct about weaknesses, love becomes his foundation of strength.
- The Inductive Bible Study, by Carol Peterson. FREE download.
- How can we begin to understand the Bible? This booklet breaks down the “inductive” study method to make the process less daunting.
- The Praying Names booklet, by Carol Peterson. FREE download.
- We can pray for the people we love by praying they will live the meaning of their names. Includes 88 names and prayers.
- Witness, the first book in E.G. Lewis’s Seeds of Christianity series, FREE.
- “As a young girl, Rivkah held the newborn Christ child in Bethlehem; as an adult she watched him die on a cross in Jerusalem.” — WITNESS, An Old Tale told in a New Way.
- Sample chapters from Tracy Krauss’s novel Play it Again, FREE.
- Sparks fly when an ex-rock and roll junkie and a stuffy accountant rendezvous at a local resort, but neither are prepared for the emotional entanglements, family complications, and threat from the past that unexpectedly resurfaces.
AND MORE! Go to the Launch Page to choose YOUR free gifts!
The upcoming launch of my “sweet & spicy” romance, My Fair Princess, has encouraged me to post another bit of a teaser. Dana Pratola, author of the fantastic edgy romance THE COVERING, made a comment on Facebook about my unique spin on an arranged marriage in MFP, encouraging a bit of a teaser yesterday as well. So, here is another….
Shamus tucked her hand around his arm and led her to the dining hall.
“Shamus, wait.” Nia met his gaze, her blonde lashes enhancing the clarity of her eyes. Those eyes always made the breath get lost somewhere on the way to his lungs. “Can we talk first?”
“Sure. I haven’t given Rufus his morning run yet. You mind?” Nia shook her head. “I usually throw a stick and wrestle with him first thing. I slept in this morning. Just couldn’t get up.” Shamus felt his ears burn, mostly because he spent most of the morning reliving their time at his fishing hole while trying to figure out how to kiss her again. Sammy, you’re never going to ask, so you might as well stop trying.
“Neither could I. Same as yesterday.”
He ushered her past to the dog-run beyond. Rufus barked a greeting and bounded toward them, tongue lolling out of his mouth as his tail and ears wagged a furious and ecstatic welcome.
“Hey, Rufus. Did you miss me?” Shamus scrubbed behind the dog’s ears. “Good morning, big fella. Hope you don’t mind me spending so much time with princess. Been helping her get settled in.”
Rufus grumbled and groaned, not caring about anything other than the spot behind his ears. Nia giggled. “I believe as long as you keep scratching that spot, Rufus won’t care a bit.”
“Yeah, you like that dontcha. Right there.” Shamus laughed and pushed Rufus back. “Where’s your toy, Ruf? Huh? Go get your toy. Go on.”
Rufus bounded back to the border of his dog-run, sniffing out the requested item. Shamus gave a shake of his head and sat upon the grass. Nia did the same, wrapping her arms around her legs as she drew them close. He grinned at her. Sammy boy, I do believe you’ve lost your mind. He leaned back, stretching his legs out in front of him. Never before had he felt so… at ease and… content. No, not like this.
“Great morning, huh? I love it when it’s like this. Kind of chilly but still shining and pretty. Kind of makes you believe everything’s perfect in the world.”
Nia watched his expression, smiling the same as he. Though he felt certain his smile looked a lot less… refined. He just couldn’t stop, even with all the negative possibilities that tried to steal his blissful ignorance. So bring up the subject. Might as well, since you’re smiling like a loony. “So… what did you need to talk about—?”
A bark preluded a thud, Rufus sending him and the toy end over end.
Nia laughed. “Shamus! Are you all right?”
“Rufus, gosh darn it!” The great black beast licked and slobbered all over his face. “Rufus, I was trying to have a deep conversation with my wife. Get off!” Shamus tossed away the dog’s toy, Rufus giving chase with a thunder of paws.
Nia smiled down at him, his head very pleasantly positioned in her lap. Shamus grinned. “You were saying…?”
“I will need your help with a few things.” Nia brushed some curls from his forehead, sending thoughts scattering every direction.
“Sure. Like what.”
“Such as moving my things into your room.”
Shamus bolted upright. “What?”
“Be careful,” she laughed. “You’re going to give yourself a headache.”
“Nia, think about this a second—”
“I have. All night and most of this morning. I understand it is a large step, especially in trust, but I want to keep moving forward. Sharing our bedroom is the next logical one.”
Shamus gulped. “Of course I know that, and we can if you want, I just….” He just didn’t know if he trusted himself as much as she did.
“I know, and I appreciate that, but—”
Rufus interjected with a nudge and a lick, fussing and grumbling and yipping for the toy until Shamus tossed it far away. He had to force himself to shift his gaze back to Nia, afraid she would see equal parts fear and eagerness to be so intimately close to her. Sammy boy, you are in deep trouble.
“I do not wish to make things difficult for you, so I do understand if you would rather not.”
He scrubbed at the back of his neck, the pain helping keep his mind from wandering to the bedroom. “It’s not that, Nia… well, not really. I mean— Sure you can move your stuff, princess. I just….” He cleared his throat and looked away again. Yeah. How do I say that?
Nia covered his hand with hers. “I know. Truly, I do. That was the one hesitation I had all night.”
Shamus’ ears burned. “I don’t want to hurt you, or scare you, or….” or anything else a big lummox like me could do! “Nia, are you sure?”
“Shay, I know what may happen. If I did not want the sharing of an intimate moment as a future, I would not be making this suggestion. I do not dread the possibility, so neither should you.”
Shamus blinked down at her, the clunk and crash of his heart making it difficult to hear his own thoughts. Or breathe, for that matter. “I don’t. I….” He looked forward to it more than he should, in all honesty. Shamus tried not to gulp.