As a blogger, I may be compensated in some way (either pay, product, or experience) for sharing the post below All opinions are my own. ~Heidi
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
Audrey Eaton awakes at three in the morning and gets up to retrieve her husband, Tom, from the recliner where he has fallen asleep watching a ball game. But when she enters the living room and looks at his gentle face in the soft lamp light, she knows their time together is over. Grief attacks her until all she can think about is how much she wants her old life back. Determined to find healing, she embarks on a journey to the one place Tom and she always intended to visit but never did. Along the way, she discovers, through shared experiences with friends old and new, the meaning of the “tender graces” God provides each and every day.
I’ve quit reading–even bestsellers, even the newspaper, even my Bible. I’ve also quit listening to music. This lack of appreciation for things I once loved is beginning to define me. More mornings than I can count, I say to myself before I open my eyes, “I don’t want to do this.” In the days shortly following Tom’s death, that made sense, but what does it mean now? That I’m in trouble? One of the best qualities of the former me was thankfulness. As I was trying to sleep last night, needing Tom to be curled up behind me, his left arm slung across me, I realized to my horror that I couldn’t remember the last time I was truly thankful. I think of a line from an old hymn: “Awake, my soul, and sing.” I miss Tom. I also miss me. Determined to find healing, Audrey Eaton embarks on a trip to the one place she and her husband always intended to visit but never did. When things don’t go as planned, will she embrace the unexpected graces that guide her journey?
Author, Jackina Stark, says, “I have also spoken nationally and internationally at many retreats and seminars and enjoy running into many readers and former students. I have written frequently for both Christian Standard and Lookout, periodicals of Standard Publishing. Years ago I wrote two non-fiction books, published by College Press, but currently out of print. These days, I’m exploring fiction. My first novel, Tender Grace, will be released by Bethany House January 30, 2009, and a second, Things Worth Remembering, will be released in October, 2009. I’m working on new projects, including a third novel, as time permits. Whether speaking or writing, I love the opportunity to tell about Him whom Jesus called “Holy Father” and “the only true God.”
She lives in Joplin, Missouri with her husband, and she spends most of her free time doing is reading and writing. That is what she usually do when she’s not teaching, enjoying the children and grandchildren, or sitting on the back porch drinking a Diet Coke and watching her husband till the garden!
I loved it! This book is written in the style of a journal and, since I am a bit nosey, I really enjoyed it – it was like picking up someone’s private diary and sneaking a peek! I felt so bad for Audrey at the beginning – she is reeling from the sudden death of her husband; and though it happened over a year ago, she’s still not able to get her life back. She decides to set out on a road trip that eventually brings about healing. Jackina Stark has written this book so well that I literally felt like I was along with Audrey for the ride. I enjoyed all the little details – the “tender graces” that worked together – bringing healing to both her heart and her spirit. There were a few surprises along the way too – ones that leave you with just that perfect amount of “wonder” at the end of the book. I will be passing this one along to my mom to read, and will definitely pick up more books by this author.