Man in the Blue Moon  -     By: Michael Morris
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Man in the Blue Moon

Tyndale House / 2012 / Paperback

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Product Description

"He's a gambler at best. A con artist at worst," her aunt had said of the handlebar-mustached man who snatched Ella Wallace away from her dreams of studying art in France. Eighteen years later, that man has disappeared, leaving Ella alone and struggling to support her three sons. While the world is embroiled in World War I, Ella fights her own personal battle to keep the mystical Florida land that has been in her family for generations from the hands of an unscrupulous banker.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 400
Vendor: Tyndale House
Publication Date: 2012
Dimensions: 9.00 X 6.00 (inches)
ISBN: 1414368429
ISBN-13: 9781414368429
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

“He’s a gambler at best. A con artist at worst,” her aunt had said of the handlebar-mustached man who snatched Ella Wallace away from her dreams of studying art in France. Eighteen years later, that man has disappeared, leaving Ella alone and struggling to support her three sons. While the world is embroiled in World War I, Ella fights her own personal battle to keep the mystical Florida land that has been in her family for generations from the hands of an unscrupulous banker. When a mysterious man arrives at Ella’s door in an unconventional way, he convinces her he can help her avoid foreclosure, and a tenuous trust begins. But as the fight for Ella’s land intensifies, it becomes evident that things are not as they appear. Hypocrisy and murder soon shake the coastal town of Apalachicola and jeopardize Ella’s family.

ChristianBookPreviews.com

Man in the Blue Moon by Michael Morris is a story of the perseverance of a young woman to save her family's farm in the 1940's. The main character, Ella, is a struggling, newly-abandoned mother of three. Her husband was a drunk who left her feeling betrayed and lonely. One day she is sent a crate inside of which is Lanier. He is a fugitive being sought for the murder of his wife, but he promises he was sent to help Ella. With no other man available to help her, Ella agrees to let him stay and a friendship develops. As the novel goes on, it is found out that Lanier can perform miracles, including saving the life of Ella's son, who is sick with sores in his throat. Ella goes through hardships trying to save her father's land, a land she promised never to sell trying to keep it out of the hands of the banker, Clive.


In the story, Lanier says a prayer before healing the wounded or sick. God uses His power to work through Lanier to heal a wounded livestock's bleeding leg and also various people who are infirmed or wounded. As when the people found out that Jesus could perform miracles, the community flocks to Lanier to be healed even though he makes great efforts to keep his gift secret and private.

Morris does a good job of sustaining suspense, but he overlaps too many coexisting plots, making the main story hard to stay focused upon. Lanier is a mysterious character whose internal motivations stay secret and suppressed as the story unfolds. With the biblical references related to gifts that often lie dormant in all Christians, plus the determination that Ella provides as an inspiration to all women who wish not to be treated as second class citizens, this book does have merit. However, its lack of specific direction and its complicated structuring made it too challenging for this reviewer to find enjoyable. - Amelia DeSteno, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com

Publisher's Weekly

Morris (Slow Way Home) has crafted a magical and mesmerizing page-turner rooted in hardscrabble Florida during WWI, based in part on a true family story. Ella Wallace is scrambling to keep her three sons and herself from the poorhouse after her opium-addicted husband vanishes. She owns a piece of land that reptilian banker Clive Gillespie, a spurned former suitor, would love to have, and he has leverage in the form of a mortgage on the property. But Ella finds an unexpected ally in her husband’s cousin Lanier Stillis, who arrives in unorthodox fashion and has some unusual talents, and the two collaborate until Lanier’s past catches up with him in a Shakespearean blaze of climactic action. Morris’s narrative is subtle and supple, with overtones of the wry Southernisms of Flannery O’Connor, the rural Florida backdrop of Their Eyes Were Watching God, and a good helping of powerful and mysterious faith. Book clubs should devour this rich, carefully observed mix of characters, time, and place; Morris deserves to break out of the regional-writer box. Agent: Laurie Liss, Sterling Lord Literistic. (Sept.) 2012 Reed Business Information

Editorial Reviews

Morris (Slow Way Home) has crafted a magical and mesmerizing page-turner rooted in hardscrabble Florida during WWI, based in part on a true family story. Ella Wallace is scrambling to keep her three sons and herself from the poorhouse after her opium-addicted husband vanishes. She owns a piece of land that reptilian banker Clive Gillespie, a spurned former suitor, would love to have, and he has leverage in the form of a mortgage on the property. But Ella finds an unexpected ally in her husband’s cousin Lanier Stillis, who arrives in unorthodox fashion and has some unusual talents, and the two collaborate until Lanier’s past catches up with him in a Shakespearean blaze of climactic action. Morris’s narrative is subtle and supple, with overtones of the wry Southernisms of Flannery O’Connor, the rural Florida backdrop of Their Eyes Were Watching God, and a good helping of powerful and mysterious faith. Book clubs should devour this rich, carefully observed mix of characters, time, and place; Morris deserves to break out of the regional-writer box.
The reader may hear echoes of Harper Lee . . . or of Flannery O’Connor’s Southern grotesques . . . or even of Huck Finn. . . . But Morris has his own voice and his own story, and he tells it with uncommon skill and compassion.

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