Sunday, May 29, 2011

the girl who stopped swimming - A Review, of sorts

I tripped across Joshilyn Jackson's website through links on other blogs.  There was a contest for her newest release, which I entered, but it was her dialogue in her blog post that had me out that afternoon getting an older story (2008) to see what she was about. 

I like to review books I read in the context of the current christian publication market versus a standard type review.  So no one goes away wondering, I enjoyed the book enough to get another of Joshilyn Jackson's books with the intent of catching up to her newest release; Backseat Saints.

Reviews: The Priest's Graveyard, The Last Templar and Angel Sister

the girl who stopped swimming is not Christian fiction but there is a point I would like to make. The main character, Laurel Hawthorne, is dealing with many issues, not the least being she sees the ghost of murdered people she knows.  The crux of her problems stem from troubled relationships which Ms. Jackson writes well and resovles in a believeable manner.  There was no faith theme running through this story.  There could have been.  There were many places I thought, 'If Laurel had a basis of faith I would appreciate her struggle in a personal way.'  From a Christian perspective I would have enjoyed this story with the ghosts, Ouji board, sexual deviation and all, more, with a faith theme running through it. 

Would this story sell, as is, wrapped within a faith theme?  Herein lies the conundrum.

An interesting connection, this book was published by a division of Hatchett Book Group, the publishing company that recently announced they were launching a new imprint, Jericho Books, to "seek new, innovative authors who reflect a growing change in the church. These non-traditional voices will appeal to the fresh perspectives in today’s culture and provide an avenue for those exploring political and social issues as they relate to faith." 

I'll be watching for the first book under the new Jericho Books imprint to see what Hatchett Book Group considers innovative, non-traditional and fresh issues of faith.  I'm hoping to see courage to publish stories with issues that Christian markets have traditionally been afraid to explore and innovation in their marketing  to connect the Group 2 segment of the reading market to the books they've been looking for.

hatchett book group

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