Paper Angels: A Novel

Paper Angels: A Novel

4.2 35
by Jimmy Wayne
     
 

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From Billboard Top Ten charted country music artist Jimmy Wayne comes an inspirational holiday story about a child in the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program who encounters the disillusioned businessman who picked his name—soon to be a made-for-TV movie starring Josie Bissett!

Kevin Morrell is a forty-three-year-old husband and father who runs

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Overview

From Billboard Top Ten charted country music artist Jimmy Wayne comes an inspirational holiday story about a child in the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program who encounters the disillusioned businessman who picked his name—soon to be a made-for-TV movie starring Josie Bissett!

Kevin Morrell is a forty-three-year-old husband and father who runs a successful design and marketing firm now suffering in the current economy. Attempting to navigate the hectic Christmas mall traffic, Kevin stumbles across the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Project. His wife insists that he take a paper ornament.

The name on the ornament is Thomas Brandt, a fifteen-year-old still reeling from the implosion of his family—from years of verbal abuse from an alcoholic father to a struggling single mother who now finds herself and her children penniless. The only thing that has allowed Lynn to survive is her faith. Thomas shares that faith, but he also wonders why God has seemingly abandoned them.

Destined to become a holiday classic, Paper Angels shares “two intertwined stories about family life and hard times…the hope of the Christmas holiday and…the goodness and compassion of loving hearts” (RT Book Reviews).

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Editorial Reviews

Ron Hall
“. . . an inspired and beautifully written timeless story that will bless you and encourage you to make a difference.”
Amanda Grieves
Paper Angels reveals the inner beauty of the human soul and reminds us all that it’s what we give away not what we receive that is of value and creates impact…The individual characters within this novel are poignantly portrayed in such a way that you feel you are living each experience as they unfold…Our lives are busy with to-do lists, dreams to follow, hurdles to overcome, and expectations to live up to. This book tenderly encourages us to slow down and treasure the special moments and people around us regardless of our circumstances. It allows us to see life through the eyes of those who at one time were us or at any point could be…this is an amazing read that will bring tears to your eyes.”
lifeistory.com - Josh Olds
Paper Angels is a heartfelt Christmas tale about finding kindness amid consumerism, highlighting the historic Salvation Army Angel Tree Program. But it’s so much more than that too: it’s a story of brokenness and redemption, of forgiveness and second chances, of empathy and integrity and repaying evil with good. Travis Thrasher and Jimmy Wayne have crafted three-dimensional and true-to-life characters and woven their storylines together seamlessly. The result is an inspirational masterpiece set to challenge minds and move hearts.”
Lt. Col. Charles White
Paper Angels captures the true essence of The Salvation Army Angel Tree program and the true spirit of Christmas which is sharing and caring. I am pleased to recommend it to everyone as an inspirational story, for parents to not only share with their children but also to create a Christmas tradition for years to come.”
From the Publisher
Paper Angels captures the true essence of The Salvation Army Angel Tree program and the true spirit of Christmas which is sharing and caring. I am pleased to recommend it to everyone as an inspirational story, for parents to not only share with their children but also to create a Christmas tradition for years to come.”

“Jimmy Wayne has taken the pathos, poignancy, heart, and storytelling abilities that infuse his music and translated them into a novel that will inspire all those who read it to take the first step toward making a difference.”

“Jimmy Wayne has used his God-given talent for songwriting to craft Paper Angels, an inspired and beautifully written timeless story that will bless you and encourage you to make a difference. Like other classic tales of Christmas, this one should be read year after year as a reminder why we celebrate and give.”

“Two intertwined stories about family life and hard times add the hope of the Christmas holiday and make readers believe in the goodness and compassion of loving hearts. This book brings a holy moment to the reader and helps define the true meaning of ‘gift.’ This will make a great stocking stuffer.” (four stars)

Paper Angels reveals the inner beauty of the human soul and reminds us all that it’s what we give away not what we receive that is of value and creates impact…The individual characters within this novel are poignantly portrayed in such a way that you feel you are living each experience as they unfold…Our lives are busy with to-do lists, dreams to follow, hurdles to overcome, and expectations to live up to. This book tenderly encourages us to slow down and treasure the special moments and people around us regardless of our circumstances. It allows us to see life through the eyes of those who at one time were us or at any point could be…this is an amazing read that will bring tears to your eyes.”

Paper Angels is a heartfelt Christmas tale about finding kindness amid consumerism, highlighting the historic Salvation Army Angel Tree Program. But it’s so much more than that too: it’s a story of brokenness and redemption, of forgiveness and second chances, of empathy and integrity and repaying evil with good. Travis Thrasher and Jimmy Wayne have crafted three-dimensional and true-to-life characters and woven their storylines together seamlessly. The result is an inspirational masterpiece set to challenge minds and move hearts.”

Charles White
“Paper Angels captures the true essence of The Salvation Army Angel Tree program and the true spirit of Christmas which is sharing and caring. I am pleased to recommend it to everyone as an inspirational story, for parents to not only share with their children but also to create a Christmas tradition for years to come.”
Jennifer Perry
“Jimmy Wayne has taken the pathos, poignancy, heart, and storytelling abilities that infuse his music and translated them into a novel that will inspire all those who read it to take the first step toward making a difference.”
Romantic Times
“Two intertwined stories about family life and hard times add the hope of the Christmas holiday and make readers believe in the goodness and compassion of loving hearts. This book brings a holy moment to the reader and helps define the true meaning of ‘gift.’ This will make a great stocking stuffer.” (four stars)
lifeistory.com

Paper Angels is a heartfelt Christmas tale about finding kindness amid consumerism, highlighting the historic Salvation Army Angel Tree Program. But it’s so much more than that too: it’s a story of brokenness and redemption, of forgiveness and second chances, of empathy and integrity and repaying evil with good. Travis Thrasher and Jimmy Wayne have crafted three-dimensional and true-to-life characters and woven their storylines together seamlessly. The result is an inspirational masterpiece set to challenge minds and move hearts.”
— Josh Olds

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781501103889
Publisher:
Howard Books
Publication date:
11/04/2014
Edition description:
Media Tie-In
Pages:
304
Sales rank:
614,642
Product dimensions:
4.90(w) x 6.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Read an Excerpt

Preface

When his mom decided it was time for them to leave and leave for good, Thomas knew they better get far away or he’d come and find them. The good thing or the bad thing, depending on how one looked at it, was that it was Christmas day and food was still cooking in the kitchen. Just another Christmas, with Mom sweating in a tiny room over a tiny stove, Thomas and Sara dreaming of the iPods or gaming equipment they could be enjoying, and Dad watching college basketball on his flat-screen television and drinking with a vengeance. This was the worst time they could possibly ever leave, and that was what made it the best.

“Thomas, I need your help,” Mom called.

He didn’t go right away, watching the game with almost as much interest as Dad. It was only when his father barked out his name that Thomas went. Dad wasn’t concerned about Mom’s needing help—he didn’t want any interruptions to his game. It would sure help them all out if the UNC Tarheels would score a little more often. Thomas got up, figuring he needed to take out the garbage or Benny, his dad’s dog.

“I want you to do something and not ask any questions, do you understand?” Mom’s voice was barely audible over the sound of the stove’s fan.

“What do you mean?”

“I want you to get your sister and go out to the car, okay?”

Right there and then he knew. Something was wrong. The way his mother looked and sounded today seemed different. The bruise above her lips was still swollen, but that wasn’t anything new. It was the look in her eyes, a look he’d never seen before.

“Where are we going?”

“Get Sara and take her to the car right now.”

He nodded. The smell of the sweet potatoes and the ham and the fresh biscuits and the macaroni pie all made his mouth water. But fear made his hunger go quiver in a corner.

Thomas wanted to ask his mother but he knew. The knowing part of him whispered for his mouth to stay shut and for his legs to start moving.

Getting Sara would be easy. In fact, doing anything now would be easy except taking Dad’s can of Coors Light away from him or turning off his game.

He was able to get his sister’s attention without a problem. She looked up when he came into the living room. She was eleven but she tried to act older. For a moment he mouthed that she needed to come, signaling for her to follow him. The game no longer interested him. All he could think about was his mother’s request.

“What do you think you’re doing?” his father asked.

Thomas hadn’t seen his father looking at him. Usually by now, about three-fourths of the way into the basketball game, he was in a semicoma that would only to be broken by another trip to the fridge.

“Every time you wave your arms Benny thinks you’re playing with him. So knock it off. Unless you’re going to take him outside for a walk.”

“Yes, sir.”

Sara didn’t need an explanation to follow into the other room. Dad’s tone was enough. Once inside the kitchen, Thomas guided her toward the back door.

“We need to go,” he said outside.

“Go where?”

“Away.”

“Where’s that? I’m hungry.” They walked quickly out the door and to the car.

The first thing Thomas thought of as he climbed into the musty-smelling Nissan was his bike.

The bike that he and Mom had finally saved up enough to buy, a used and recycled mountain bike that they’d spent a hundred and fifty bucks on. A bike that when new would have cost over a thousand. A bike that had seen better days but still had some life in it.

Maybe not much of a life after all.

Thomas thought about what to do about the bike. It was getting rusty and the paint was chipped but he still loved it. Maybe he could ride it and follow behind the car. Or maybe they could fit it in the fifteen-year-old Maxima.

They waited in the car for ten minutes. Ten whole minutes. He sat in the front seat looking at the small house with the wild shrubs growing unevenly around it and the rusted-out white truck that couldn’t fit all of them in the front seat.

“What are we doing?” Sara kept asking.

“We’re waiting for Mom.”

“Where are we going?”

“Far away.”

Mom had told them—no, she’d promised them—that they would be getting a special Christmas present today. Just the two kids. She had said she would give it to them during the day, that it was going to be a surprise, that they couldn’t mention it to Dad. This is her present, Thomas thought as he waited and worried that the next one out of the house would be the man with the glassy eyes and the tightened jaw. His hands felt sweaty as he rubbed them and tried to act like he wasn’t nervous in front of his sister.

Maybe she planned on leaving later. Maybe the fight they had when she started cooking dinner convinced her to go now.

The door opened and Thomas stopped breathing.

It was Mom.

All she carried was her purse. Maybe she had already packed a few things, but he didn’t see anything in the backseat.

How do I ask her about my bike?

As she climbed into the car, Thomas could see the fear on her face and in the way she moved. Before starting up the car, she turned to face both of them.

“You two, listen to me. We’re leaving and we’re not coming back, and I’ll explain why. But for now we have to go. Do you understand me?”

Sara began asking questions, but it was Thomas who told her to be quiet, not Mom.

He didn’t need to be told why.

He didn’t need to ask about his bike either.

The car left without hesitation.

Thomas and Sara had received the best gift ever: freedom.

The question was whether it would still be there tomorrow and the next day and the day after that.

And whether the man inside the house they were leaving would find them and reclaim them as his own.

© 2011 Jimmy Wayne Barber

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What People are saying about this

Amanda Grieves
Paper Angels reveals the inner beauty of the human soul and reminds us all that it’s what we give away not what we receive that is of value and creates impact…The individual characters within this novel are poignantly portrayed in such a way that you feel you are living each experience as they unfold…Our lives are busy with to-do lists, dreams to follow, hurdles to overcome, and expectations to live up to. This book tenderly encourages us to slow down and treasure the special moments and people around us regardless of our circumstances. It allows us to see life through the eyes of those who at one time were us or at any point could be…this is an amazing read that will bring tears to your eyes.”
Ron Hall
“Jimmy Wayne has used his God-given talent for songwriting to craft Paper Angels, an inspired and beautifully written timeless story that will bless you and encourage you to make a difference. Like other classic tales of Christmas, this one should be read year after year as a reminder why we celebrate and give.”
lifeistory.com - Josh Olds
Paper Angels is a heartfelt Christmas tale about finding kindness amid consumerism, highlighting the historic Salvation Army Angel Tree Program. But it’s so much more than that too: it’s a story of brokenness and redemption, of forgiveness and second chances, of empathy and integrity and repaying evil with good. Travis Thrasher and Jimmy Wayne have crafted three-dimensional and true-to-life characters and woven their storylines together seamlessly. The result is an inspirational masterpiece set to challenge minds and move hearts.”
Jennifer Perry
“Jimmy Wayne has taken the pathos, poignancy, heart, and storytelling abilities that infuse his music and translated them into a novel that will inspire all those who read it to take the first step toward making a difference.”
Charles White
Paper Angels captures the true essence of The Salvation Army Angel Tree program and the true spirit of Christmas which is sharing and caring. I am pleased to recommend it to everyone as an inspirational story, for parents to not only share with their children but also to create a Christmas tradition for years to come.”

Read More

Meet the Author

Jimmy Wayne is an American country music singer and songwriter. He released his self-titled debut album in 2003 on the DreamWorks Records label. A second album, Do You Believe Me Now, was released in August 2008 via Big Machine Records subsidiary Valory Music Group, and its title track became his first Number One hit in late 2008.

Travis Thrasher is the author of more than twenty works of fiction, including Paper Angels and Letters From War. He has been called “the Nicholas Sparks of Christian fiction” by Christian Retailing magazine. Travis lives with his wife and daughters in a suburb of Chicago.

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