Friday, September 28, 2012
Unending Devotion by Jody Hedlund & Jody's Secret #18.
You're in the middle of an awe-inspiring forest. You know the kind where you stare up at a mighty pine tree and it seems those evergreen branches spiral through the sky, touching heaven.
Here you feel and sense the hand of our maker, for no man could make a forest so green, lush, and beautiful.
You continue to walk down a path and all at once you leave the forest line and find you've come upon hill after hill where the forest has been chopped down and harvested for lumber.
How would that make you feel?
Remember, it's the 1880s. The forests aren't protected. Our nation has been through a lot having been through the Civil War only years ago. People are moving West. Homes need to be built. But still you feel it just doesn't seem right to waste a land by stripping its beauty.
This is exactly the situation the protagonist of Jody Hedlund's new novel, Unending Devotion, finds herself in. Lily Young is a woman on a quest to right the wrongs she comes upon.
The first one being, finding her sister, Daisy. Since they were young, the sisters have been orphaned and Lily has always felt responsible for her younger sister. She did the best she could, but when she finally couldn't see a way of surviving together, she placed her sister in foster care. However, at the time the novel starts many years have passed and Lily has learned that her sister ran away and is working in one of the many a bordellos located near lumber camps.
Connell McCormick is the manger of not one, not two, but three different lumber camps. He's determined to prove himself to his lumber-baron father and will move heaven and earth to do it . . . even turn a blind eye to bordellos where his men go to let off steam. However, when he meets Lily and learns her story, he takes a second look at his father's business and the dealings around the lumber camps.
This is a love story that has action, intrigue and unending devotion. (Yes, I know it's the title. I just couldn't resist.) :) If you want to curl up on the couch with a mug of hot chocolate and a good book, this is the novel for you.
I received a copy of this book to review from the publisher.
Now for some more fun . . . Jody is doing a blog tour for her new release, but it's something different. Instead of just having reviews of her book, she is also revealing fun secrets about herself. Check it out here. And she has a fun contest on Pinterest right now. Check it out here.
So as part of her tour, here is . . .
My greatest dreams and aspirations as a writer. Every writer has great aspirations and dreams. And I'd be completely lying if I didn't admit that I have my own special dreams.
Of course, I'd love to build a wider readership. I'd love to increase my sales so that I can eventually make a living with my writing career. And I'd love to win more awards. And of course, I'd absolutely love to see one of my books turned into a movie. What writer wouldn't?! In particular, I'd love to see either The Preacher's Bride or The Doctor's Lady on the big screen. Since both books are based on the lives of real people, I would love to be able to share their stories with the world and bring the characters to life for our modern generation.
I also have the dream of being able to travel and do more speaking and teaching. But I also know that at this busy stage in my life with my children all still at home, that I'm wise to limit how many commitments I make per year.
Yes, I have big dreams. In fact, I encourage all writers (and everyone!) to dream big, to even write out those top five dreams, to nurture a passion for them. Our heads will usually follow what's in our hearts. So we need to make definite plans. Then we have to roll up our sleeves and get to work.
As I often say: Believe in yourself. But expect much from yourself. Dream big. But work fiercely. However, as good as all of the above dreams are, I don't want them to be my greatest aspiration. I want to keep them in the proper priority in my life. Because they won't last.
When I die, I won't be able to take any of my books, awards, or money with me. Instead, I want my greatest aspiration to be that I use my talents to the best of my ability. I echo what Erma Bombeck said: When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say, 'I used everything you gave me'.
What about you? What's your biggest dream?
Publisher's Weekly calls Unending Devotion "A meaty tale of life amid the debauchery of the lumber camps of 1880s Michigan . . . exciting and unpredictable to the very end."
To celebrate the release of Unending Devotion, Jody is giving away a signed copy. Leave a comment (along with your email address) to enter the drawing. Valid only with US or Canadian addresses. Giveaway ends September 30th at midnight.
Posted by Kathi Oram Peterson at 7:23 AM