Friday, February 27, 2015

"Faith Seekers" by Sherry Rossman

Faith Seekers
by Sherry Rossman

Faith Seekers is currently on tour with Reading Addiction Book Tours. The tour stops here today for an excerpt and my review. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.

She raised her head when she felt the warmth. A violet cloud poured into her hands and over her head. He spoke like water falling into a deep pool. "The sapling belongs to me."
When Hannah’s family loses their home, she drops out of college and joins them as they take their RV on a journey through fractured America. Struggling with her loss of identity, she attempts to embrace her new life as a nomad until a California campground unveils a nightmare that only she can see. She questions her sanity as her family continues on their journey, and her unearthly visions increase.
Miguel, a young photographer traveling with his uncle, helps Hannah discover her true identity and the roles they will all play in unveiling the truth about the ever-present good and evil surrounding them. Join Hannah and Miguel as they try to piece together their broken hopes and dreams amidst looming darkness. Will Hannah find her faith, embrace the light, and trust in the God that she thought had abandoned her?

Book Video

The Trailer smelled like last night’s onions and morning breath. Hannah cracked the window and coiled her dark hair away from her face. Her dad’s snores from behind the sliding door were getting softer - he and Mom would be awake soon. she glanced at her brother, still asleep in the bed above hers. she needed to leave before he woke. Ian didn’t need to come this time.
The rolled-up mat sat between the door and kitchen cupboard, waiting to resume its post in the ever- revolving landscapes of America. she grabbed it and slid outside into fresh air. Welcome, it said, in large black letters. Only two months old, it looked like it had seen a lifetime - a lifetime of sun and the treading of unsettled feet. Hannah placed a heavy rock on either side to keep the edges from curling.
Her mother was convinced no home was complete without that offer, even for the simplest of visitors.
Hannah stepped onto a tree-lined trail. The textbook under her arm was the last one she had left. American history. Although her dad considered it the keystone of the future, Hannah found no solutions within the pages. As the trail faded into wilderness, she found a tree scorched to death. At its blackened base, Hannah dug a hole and laid the book to rest. Damp soil invaded her nails as she scattered the last of it on top of her old college book.
The ground cradled her sorrow when she stretched out beside the new grave and searched the heavens above the arms of the forest. The ache in her chest rose to meet her tears as they slid into the earth. How do I find answers from a silent God?
A sudden whisper danced from branch to branch and flowed around her for a moment.
Perhaps the forest still remembered the earliest inhabitants that took less and lived more freely. Or maybe it was God’s voice, indecipherable, like always.
Noises of a waking camp interrupted her peace. she hungered for solitude like a woman craves chocolate. she searched the ground until she found the path that led to the shore. Hannah quickened her pace when salty air joined the trees. Starfish accented the rocks like God had decorated, but Hannah didn’t want to sketch this time - she wanted to run until her legs shook.
The wind loosened her hair, whipping it into tangles. she pumped her legs until the sand began to dissolve beneath her feet and then faced the waves, returning their roar. When she ran out of breath, she collapsed into the sand.
Hannah hugged her knees and caught sight of her hands. These aren’t nails, these are claws. The jagged edges on her fingers framed the dirt from the burial of books and dreams that had been her life over the past few months. Up until her family had lost everything, Hannah had kept her nails in perfect condition - a French manicure one month, custom airbrushing the next. If my friends could see me now, they wouldn’t recognize the hobo I’ve become.

Praise for the Book
"For a debut novel, this is beautiful! I was struck by the lyrical nature of the writing - so full of figurative language and artistic imagery as to be almost poetic. [...] Soak it in and hang on, because the ride gets pretty exciting. Ultimately, this is a marvelous testament to the things that really matter in life: faith in God and the blessing of family and friends. I most definitely recommend Faith Seekers." ~ Laurin Boyle
"As I eagerly read Faith Seekers my mind kept remarking inwardly that Sherry Rossman is an outstanding word artist. Sherry has a unique way of turning a great story into a compelling visual image through her rhythmical, almost musical, expression." ~ Kathy Goodhew, author
"Author Sherry Rossman is a gifted storyteller. Faith Seekers is filled with great lines that will stick in the reader's head long after the book is finished. [...] Her characters are the best combination of spirit and doubt. The beautiful scenes and excellent pacing make this story of faith and trust a keeper." ~ MyTeddyLady
"I was in awe of this authors ability to keep me on edge and wonder about what would happen on each page of her book. Her descriptive flow of words had me involved in each moment. The inspirational message achieved in the end had me rooting for more books from this talented author!" ~ Alice Klies
"Amazing writing skills. Very detailed and inspiring. Great read especially for anyone who is struggling to find their meaning and purpose. Going to order a few more to give as gifts to friends and family." ~ Cool game

My Review

By Lynda Dickson
Hannah leaves college after her scholarship runs out and her dad loses his job. Now her family (father Alex, mother Rose, and brother Ian) is homeless, apart from the RV they live in while travelling around the country selling their wares at craft shows. They have become "Faith seekers, a family searching for the great America that had failed them and so many others - the land that had failed them into nomads." Along the way, the meet Dan and his pregnant girlfriend Nia, and young photographer Miguel and his uncle Mac. As Hannah struggles with her strange visions and unwanted attention from Dan, she doesn't realize that it will all culminate in a battle between the forces of good and evil.
The book is very slow to start; not much happens, but the atmosphere is dense with foreboding. The writing is beautiful and lyrical, full of the recurring themes and imagery of tree roots, elk, Harriet Tubman, prophets, stars and stripes, and wind chimes. While there is no doubt that the author is an extremely talented writer, the story is at times confusing, there is too much repetition, and the central conflict is resolved too easily. I also had a problem with the similarity in names - Michael and Miguel (Spanish for Michael), Hannah and Harriet, Nia and Ian, Dan and Mac and Ian - especially during the climactic scene towards the end the book.
This book is classified as young adult, but is actually clean new adult.

About the Author
Sherry Rossman wrote children’s books before digging into genres for older audiences. She has published short stories for The Relevant Christian Magazine and Wordsmith Journal Magazine, as well as guest blogging for Life Upside Down and Christian eBooks Today. She lives in Northern Arizona with her husband and children.