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Paper Angels

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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 a successful design and marketing firm now suffering in the current economy. Attempting to navigate the hectic Christmas mall traffic, ...

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Paper Angels: A Novel

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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

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
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.”
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.”
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.”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781451606195
  • Publisher: Howard Books
  • Publication date: 11/1/2011
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

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.

Critically acclaimed author Travis Thrasher has written over thirty books that have crossed the spectrum, from love stories and supernatural thrillers. His inspirational stories have included collaborations with filmmakers, musicians, and pastors. He’s also helped write memoirs and self-help books. He lives with his wife and three daughters in a suburb of Chicago.

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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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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 33 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(22)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 17, 2012

    I loved this book--I highly recommend it to anyone that hasn't r

    I loved this book--I highly recommend it to anyone that hasn't read it yet! It was powerful and touching to the soul--I will cherish it at the very top of my book collection--thanks for sharing the inspiring story! It reminds us not to lose faith and hope, and that the toughest times will pass to a path that leads to God's light in our life. It also reminds us of the true meaning of Christmas...besides the celebration of Christ of course, we must focus on giving instead of receiving just as he did for us. We see how putting others first can reward our lives and the lives of others in unknown, soul-changing ways. Bright spots in someone's life can save their life! There are so many good people in the world that can make it better for others. Make your mark in someone's life, and they'll make one in yours. To all--be an angel for the angels--sponsor children at Christmas:) KC

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 14, 2012

    I love this book!!!

    I love this book!!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 13, 2012

    Paper Angels by Jimmy Wayne Travis Thrasher is amazin story of

    Paper Angels by Jimmy Wayne Travis Thrasher is amazin story of Love Faith Hope that kindness exist this story leaves you feelin a movie should be Made show somtimes what you give to others brings you the Most Joy to see those who have done you wrong the power of forgivness . Buy read it I prayin it becomes a Movie

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 13, 2012

    I couldn't wait until I received this book in the mail. I’

    I couldn't wait until I received this book in the mail. I’m very picky with who borrows it. I give them instructions on how to take care of it. No turning the pages down and make sure you use a book marker. Don’t lay it down flat with the book opened and things like that. I cherish it. I wasn't disappointed in the slightest with while reading it. I was captured from the beginning to the end. Jimmy Wayne has lived through trials and tribulations in his lifetime and shows in his writing. He also has a very wonderful sense of humor which shows in his writing. This is a down to earth book. It faces problems that good normal people can have and have had in this world; from being poor to being bullied. I have lived both of these things.
    I am also a single mother that has had to endure the trials of living day to day at a dead end job. He describes how Thomas mother felt of not having a sense of self-worth. I have been there and lived it. This is an amazing read.
    I know most everyone will buy this book for around Christmas time only. I suggest…. don’t wait. This is a book that exceeds far beyond just Christmas.
    It also tells a tale of relationship between a grown man and God, and how God has a hand in everything! God can change anyone and anything. Just hold fast to him and gifts will come your way!
    Thank you Jimmy Wayne and, Travis Thrasher for this wonderful read; both of you deserve more than pat on the back for this one!
    Ann Bates!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 8, 2011

    Best Christmas Story Ever!

    I heard about this book from an interview with Jimmy Wayne on the Country Music TV station. It was so appealing that I immediately reached for my Kindle and ordered it! What a blessing! I finished in 2 days and have been giving it praises to all who will listen! Wonderful story and written to touch the heart.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 19, 2011

    Paper Angels - More than a Christmas story, It's an EVERYDAY story

    As a fan of both authors of this book, I had looked forward to reading PAPER ANGELS for well over a year before it was released, AND I had very high expectations. I can honestly say my expectations were met and exceeded!

    The Salvation Army Angel Tree program provides Christmas to disadvantaged children who would otherwise not receive gifts. Each child's name is written on a "Paper Angel" and placed on the Angel Tree to await being "adopted" by a kind-hearted person. Jimmy Wayne, co-author of PAPER ANGELS, was a Paper Angel child. It is from this experience, and with gratitude to those who gave, that PAPER ANGELS the book came to be.

    Jimmy and co-author Travis Thrasher have created a touching and memorable Christmas story, yet PAPER ANGELS is so much more than just a Christmas story. It's an everyday story with realistic characters living lives familiar to many who might read this book. All the characters, minor to major, are people you know or see everyday...neighbors, friends, co-workers, the guy selling papers on the corner, the woman waiting tables at the local diner, the mean kid at school, the new kid no one knows much about, the businessman with a desperate look, a mom who dearly loves her children, a father worried about providing for his family, someone at risk of losing everything dear to them...they could be you.

    The two main characters, 15 year old Thomas and 43 year old Kevin, come from different worlds and are at different points in their lives, yet something as simple as a Paper Angel randomly chosen from a Salvation Army Angel Tree links the characters together and begins a chain of events that changes both of their lives and those around them. As the reader takes this journey with them they experience every emotion possible...fear, hope, sadness, joy, humor, pain, questioning God, trusting God, anger, love, faith, forgiveness. There is a beautiful lesson for everyone in this story...adults, parents, teenagers, children. It's a story to be shared together as a family and passed along to friends. It opens one's eyes to seeking a better understanding of people you don't really know. It reminds us to appreciate what we have and the loved ones in our lives. It gives hope that a bad situation can be turned into good. It shows how a act of kindness can lead to something so much more and that forgiveness is one of the greatest gifts you can give to yourself.

    While PAPER ANGELS is fictional, those familiar with Jimmy Wayne and/or Travis Thrasher will find the authors put much of their personal selves into this story which makes it even more honest and real and a pleasure to read.

    Yes, PAPER ANGELS is a beautiful Christmas story...and so much more. It is a story that should be remembered and lived the whole year through. Buy this book, read it and be inspired to see the good in the world and to make a difference in someone's life. The first step could be this Christmas when you adopt a Paper Angel.

    And as you read this book, should you question whether an act of kindness can change a life, give someone hope...stop and remember that the book you are holding is a dream come true for a man that once was a Paper Angel.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2014

    Highly recommend for a delightful and refreshing look at what life could be...

    Keep reading past the first few chapters and you'll soon be hooked. You'll want to know how Jimmy Wayne intends to bring this tale of two households to an intersecting conclusion and wish for more when it does. Doing the most good should be the motto of all of us, not just the Salvation Army's

    Any reader wishing to be uplifted should read this book. Book clubs will find multiple topics to discuss.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 31, 2014

    Wonderful

    It's a great story that gives hope.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2014

    Loved this book!

    I was a little hesitant to buy but once I got into it I couldn't put it down! A quick heartwarming story~

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2014

    Page count please as last one of this combo was only 31 pages

    Pages

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 9, 2014

    was not impressed - writing wasn't all that good but interesting

    was not impressed - writing wasn't all that good but interesting story line. little predictable. some parts weren't believable.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2014

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 25, 2012

    Amazing story that I think any Cristian can relate to. No matte

    Amazing story that I think any Cristian can relate to. No matter how hard we all think we have it, someone else out there has it worse and our lives are all entertwined in one way or another.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2012

    Awesome!!!

    If this book does not touch your heart nothing will! Jimmy Wayne and Travis Thrasher hit it out of the park with this book.

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  • Posted March 3, 2012

    Not just for the Christmas Season

    Paper Angels is a wonderfully written story that shows we can all make a difference, no matter what our circumstances are. It is a touching story that I highly recommend reading any time of the year.

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  • Posted December 30, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Beautiful story

    I absolutely loved this book. Beautiful holiday story. Will pull out and read again every holiday season. Great reminder to be thankful for what you have and help others any chance you get.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2011

    Good Christmas Story

    I thought the book was good

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  • Posted December 23, 2011

    Beautiful and Touching. This is a must read for the holidays.

    This was a wonderful book. Jimmy Wayne sends a powerful message about what Christmas is really about. I feel that the powerful yet simple language in this novel was a reflection of the unspoken words that have long resided in my heart. I'm putting this novel on the reading list for all my children. Merry Christmas and may God bless his Paper Angels everywhere.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2011

    Didn't care for it

    It was picked for our reading club. It didn't draw me in to 'like' any of the characters. It was just a light 'fluff' book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Check it out

    Very touching! Reminds us that Christmas isn't about what we can get for ourselves.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews

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