Shannon here: Historical Fiction author, Lynne Gentry shares an excerpt from her latest release, plus insight into her real life romance. Comment or answer the question at the end of this post to enter the drawing for a copy of Return to Exile. U.S. only. Deadline: April 11th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Lynne:
The Measure of a Man by Lynne Gentry
Excerpt from Return to Exile:
Gooseflesh raised on Lisbeth’s arm as Cyprian spoke to the church. His passion reminded her of Papa’s antiquities lectures. Her father didn’t have Cyprian’s gift of oratory, his intense stare, or his ability to speak without notes, but like Papa, tonight Cyprian’s words came from someplace deep and tender.
He had always been the first to take up a civic cause, especially if he thought the underdog was being mistreated. His noble desire to right the wrongs Rome inflicted on the poor was the very thing Aspasius hated about the solicitor of Carthage. … His unwillingness to back down from a fight was a character trait she admired and one she was grateful their daughter had inherited.
But Lisbeth had never seen this side of her husband. Vulnerable, transparent, and willing to become one of those he considered far below his social standing. His humbling admissions of fear and prejudice drew her in and stirred a fire in her belly. She could spend a lifetime exploring the raw lawyer he’d just exposed, and it would not be enough. Until this very moment, she hadn’t thought it possible to love this man more than she already did.
Lynne here: I’ve been married to a pastor for 35 years. Some of those years have been wonderful. Some of them rough. All of them have tied our relationship commitment into a tighter knot.
What makes for a love that lasts a lifetime? If love is based on physical appearance alone, my husband and I would be in trouble. His hair has turned silver and my waist has expanded. If love is based on romantic dates, few would name the 2 for $20 at Chili’s as their number one romantic destination. So why am I more content than ever?
True love. What is true love?
I believe love is based on character… the true measure of a man.
Every time I read this passage from my new book, RETURN TO EXILE, I can’t help but smile. Dr. Lisbeth Hastings is listening to her husband preach and what strikes her during his sermon is the depth of his character. As I watch the tears form in Lisbeth’s eyes, I realize Dr. Lisbeth Hastings is me.
My husband has been a pastor for years. I’ve been the one sitting at his feet. As I watch and listen to my husband bless the congregation with a deeper understanding of the Word of God, I realize he also blesses me. His knowledge and commitment to expanding the Kingdom is admirable. Attractive. I’m emboldened by his courage and conviction.
But it is in the revelation of my husband’s character that I fall deeper and deeper in love. Every week the insights and illustrations he shares offer me a peek into his way of thinking. Sometimes he’ll tell a story of an event in our lives, one I’ve usually forgotten, and it will move him to tears. It is in these moments that I understand what affects my husband. I understand how he thinks. I understand how he looks at me. With love. With patience. With grace.
Peeling back the layers is how you get to the core of a person. How do you get to the core of your husband if he doesn’t preach? You learn to sit back, observe, and listen. Watch him interact with his friends, his colleagues, his family. If that doesn’t work … I recommend the $2 for $20 at Chili’s. Nothing gets a man talking better than a good plate of food.
About Lynne: Lynne Gentry has written for numerous publications and is a professional acting coach, theater director and playwright with several full-length musicals and a Chicago children’s theater curriculum to her credit.
Her love for writing stories was born while growing up on a Kansas dairy farm as she longed for adventure and dreamt of traveling to exotic places. She likes to write stories that launch modern women into ancient adventures, such as Healer of Carthage (2014), which was the first in The Carthage Chronicles series. Return to Exile is the second, and Valley of Decision is expected September 22, 2015.
Gentry is also an inspirational speaker and dramatic performer who loves spending time with her family and medical therapy dog.
To keep up with Lynne Gentry, visit www.lynnegentry.com, become a fan on https://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Lynne-Gentry/215337565176144 or follow her on Twitter @Lynne_Gentry and https://www.pinterest.com/lynnegentry7/.
About the book – Return to Exile: How far would you go to save the ones you love?
Six years ago, impossible circumstances forced Dr. Lisbeth Hastings to leave behind the love of her life, not just in another country, but in another time. Her work as a top-notch epidemiologist and parenting her little girl helps alleviate the pain, but at night when her exhausted head hits the pillow, images of her beloved Cyprian haunt her sleep.
Cyprian Thascius returns from political exile a broken man. He’s lost his faith, the love of his life, and his purpose. He attempts to move on, to face the danger that is looming over Carthage, but when Cyprian’s true love suddenly reappears, his heart becomes as imperiled as the fledgling church he seeks to save.
Have the years that kept Lisbeth and Cyprian apart created too wide a chasm to bridge? In the midst of a new epidemic and rising oppression, will their love be the most costly fatality? Filled with gripping action and raw emotion, this spellbinding adventure of star-crossed lovers captivates with every turn of the page in this electric continuation of The Carthage Chronicles.
Question: Are there any pastors in your family?
Come back April 6th for Laura V. Hilton!