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Minutes before two jumbo jets changed U.S. history, New York police officer Austin Finley ignored the call from his brother, who'd been bugging him for days. Trying to live with his one regret causes hatred and bitterness to consume Austin, and when counselor Mercy Samara recommends desk duty, Austin resigns. Haunted by her own memories of 9/11, Mercy takes a job as a school counselor in Baltimore. When Austin, now an EMT, responds to an emergency at Mercy's school, both are stunned and wary.
Finally their common-and painful-memories turn suspicion into friendship, then romance. But hard questions linger: Can they truly move beyond their past harsh judgments and harsh words? Will their past finally bring them closer or-as the tenth anniversary of 9/11 draws near-drive them farther apart?
|Format: DRM Protected ePub|
Vendor: Abingdon Press
Publication Date: 2011
Series: First Responders
Finally their commonand painfulmemories turn suspicion into friendship, then romance.
But hard questions linger: Can they truly move beyond their past harsh judgments and harsh words? Will their past finally bring them closer oras the tenth anniversary of 9/11 draws neardrive them farther apart?
"Loree Lough proves once again her superb storytelling skills in From Ashes to Honor, peopled by characters so lifelike they seem to jump from the pages."
Cathy Bryant, author of the award-winning Texas Roads and A Path Less Traveled"Loree Loughs characters allow us to re-explore what happened ten years ago and examine our feelings, perhaps like never before."
Rev. Robert A. Crutchfield, Founder, Christ 4responders and Chaplain, Katy, Texas Fire & EMS
Loree's articles have appeared in dozens of international & national newspapers & magazines. In addition to nearly 2,500 feature stories (writing as L.A. Lough), she "ghosted" hundreds more that appeared in trade & technical publications.
A firm believer in the "what goes around, comes around" theory, Loree developed & taught numerous fiction & nonfiction writing courses for area colleges, writers' organizations, & the prestigious Writer's Digest Writing School. Through these efforts, she has mentored hundreds of students, & the list of those now published has passed 100. She also believes in dedicating a generous portion of her annual income to favorite charities & organizations. See the "Giving Back" page at her web site www.loreelough.com for a complete list.
Loree & her husband split their time between a humble home in the Baltimore suburbs & a cabin in the Allegheny Mountains, where she takes great pride in her "identify the critter tracks" skills.
Austin's story is one of redemption. Guilt and fear ran his life until he became a Christian, and then his faith formed a strong foundation. Mercy lost her faith in God when her father died, and now struggles to reconcile that God would allow so many bad things to happen to good people. Austin loves Mercy, but worries that his faith is not strong enough to survive marriage to a non-believer.
Mercy's character is comparable to many people, as her suffering causes her to doubt God's love. Austins faith is a model for others, remaining strong throughout the various trials of life. Austin waits for Mercy to come back to God, the same way God waits for us to come back to Him. The story reminds readers that God provides comfort and relief from the guilt and turmoil of life, and good things can come from the worst tragedies. Lough gives readers a poignant look at the aftermath of 9/11 in a personal way, showing the effects on survivors' everyday lives.
Whereas Austin and Mercy's relationship is deep and meaningful, the story seems to lack drive at times, as its characters develop. However, the love between them is so real and complex, readers will be touched by their experiences.
Romance lovers will truly enjoy From Ashes to Honor. Its deep characters give it a strong emotional connection that will hopefully be present throughout the rest of Loughs coming First Responders series. Susan Vandagriff, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com