The Novelist: If a Son No Longer Listens, Can a Story Reach His Heart?

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Overview

From the author who taught you to expect the unexpected...an intriguing tale about families, fiction, and what to do when life veers wildly off script.

It begins...when a smug college student challenges a best-selling novelist to write something "more personal." It begins...when a mother finds her troubled son slumped unconscious outside her house. It begins...when fiction and reality blur, and the novelist finds herself caught somewhere in the middle of it all. Where does it ...

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2007-02 Hardcover New Brand new! Thorndike Press large print edition. Unabridged.

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The Novelist

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Overview

From the author who taught you to expect the unexpected...an intriguing tale about families, fiction, and what to do when life veers wildly off script.

It begins...when a smug college student challenges a best-selling novelist to write something "more personal." It begins...when a mother finds her troubled son slumped unconscious outside her house. It begins...when fiction and reality blur, and the novelist finds herself caught somewhere in the middle of it all. Where does it end? That all depends on who is telling the story...

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In a novel her publisher is touting as "a glimpse into her own life," Hunt, a grandmother and prolific writer (more than 70 books), pens a novel about a prolific writer and grandmother. Jordan Casey is the pen name for Jordan Casey Kerrigan, grandmother and author of a bestselling adventure series. She agrees to teach a college night class on writing fiction and is challenged by an irksome student to ditch her formulaic approach and try writing something from the heart. Stung by the criticism, Kerrigan turns down a lucrative contract for another adventure novel and writes an allegory of paradise, sin, the fall and redemption as played out in an otherworldly casino. As she writes, her desire to change her 21-year-old son Zachary's chaotic life as a suicidal addict becomes an impetus for a story she wants to communicate about life, loss and second chances (told alongside mother and son's actual plight). God, she believes, is the ultimate writer, complete with an outline for one's life story-yet even the characters in the hands of a novelist have choices. Jordan's reality and fiction alternate and finally converge as Hunt spins her tale, with flashbacks to Zachary's innocent childhood that are guaranteed to wring tears from even the hardest-hearted reader. Although Hunt is known for her competency, this novel also shows poignancy and imagination. (Jan.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786293131
  • Publisher: Gale Group
  • Publication date: 2/1/2007
  • Series: Thorndike Christian Fiction Ser.
  • Edition description: Large Print Edition
  • Pages: 545
  • Product dimensions: 5.77 (w) x 8.53 (h) x 1.14 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

I must be crazy, I tell myself, to stick my neck in a noose on my birthday. My husband, Carl, thinks my gesture is gracious and long overdue, so he kisses my cheek and bows gallantly before opening the door of my '85 Mercedes roadster. "Knock 'em dead, dear. I can't wait to hear all about it."

My twenty-one-year-old son, Zachary, is in one of his joking moods-in fact, he's been extra-friendly and charming all day, a much-appreciated birthday gift. "I'm glad my name isn't on that class roster," he says, slipping his hands into his jeans pockets. Barefoot, he does a side-stepping little dance that tells me he's anxious to finish this family farewell so he can go out with his friends. "I'd hate to have you as a professor."

"Your mother is a wonderful teacher." Carl smiles into my eyes. "Those people at the community college are lucky to have her."

I slide into the low seat of the car and punch the garage door opener. "You guys can go ahead and eat some cake if you get hungry. Don't wait on me."

Carl shakes his head. "Nonsense. We're going to sing and blow out candles when you get back."

"It's not really a big deal."

"It's a huge deal. How often does my best girl turn fifty-four?"

I roll my eyes and slip my key into the ignition.

"Hey, Mom?"

I look at Zack, enormously grateful for another opportunity to linger at home. "Yes?"

"You're teaching under your pen name, right?"

The question puzzles me until I consider its source. I've agreed to teach a course at the local college . . . which means some of my son's friends might be in my class. Though I know Zack's proud of me, he's not exactlythrilled with the kind of books I write.

I give him a reassuring smile. "Don't worry, Son. I'll be Jordan Casey 'til the clock strikes nine."

He blows out his cheeks in exaggerated relief. "Dodged a bullet."

"You should be proud of your mother," Carl says.

"I am, but-"

I turn the key, allowing the rumble of the roadster's engine to drown out the father-son discussion. It's a debate I've heard before.

"Hey." I hang my elbow over the door. "If Patty or Shannon calls-"

"I'll tell them to call again after nine."

"Better make that nine thirty. I'm not sure how soon I'll be able to get away."

Carl nods as another flock of doubts swoops down to shadow my good intentions. Why on earth did I agree to teach this class? Patty and Shannon, my daughters, both live on the East Coast, which means they aren't likely to stay up if I miss their calls. Neither will forget my birthday, but Patricia is a busy lawyer, and Shannon's two little ones wear her out . . .

"Tell the girls I'll call them tomorrow."

I blow Carl a kiss, then slip the car into reverse and edge into the night.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 29, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Fabulous allegory and story within a story!

    This is the first book authored by Angela Hunt that I've read, though I own many. Now I'm wondering why I waited so long to discover this talented author's work. I've read many stories with parallel times or situations, usually with the present reverting to a historical setting, and often I prefer one story over the author. I want to flip past the present story to read the good stuff...the story within the story. But The Novelist isn't like that. It's the only book I've ever read where I can stay that both stories equally stimulated me. They both held my attention. Both stories contained 'the good stuff' I crave in a book. I love emotion, believable conflict, and a story that sucks me in so much that I can't stop reading it. And the allegory was so incredibly well done and ingenious that it literally blew my mind. I now see Christ's redemption even more powerfully because of the allegorical tale in this book. (BTW, I also love romance, but there wasn't much in this baby--and I still loved it! That's how you can be certain it was fabulous.) The Novelist is one of the best books I've read in regards to tying things together in a convincing and satisfying conclusion. I loved how Angela Hunt showed the author in the story growing more than the person she hoped to influence with her story, and after fighting the Lord, she ended up being okay with that. Aren't most of us like this? We elbow the person next to us when the pastor is preaching a convicting message, but we should be looking at our own hearts first. The Novelist had me looking at my own heart and I'm better for the experience. Few stories impact me so much that I want to grab people off the street to tell them they MUST read this book, but The Novelist is one of them. It's got a powerful message that is seamlessly woven in, dynamic characters who will grip your heart, and it deals with sensitive subjects in an incredibly sensitive and well-informed manner. I loved this story because it has impacted my life--and not just because I am also a novelist--but because it's so rich and satisfying. I highly recommend it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 24, 2014

    THIS BOOK IS BEYOND CREATIVE! Great Read! You won't put it down

    THIS BOOK IS BEYOND CREATIVE! Great Read! You won't put it down :) Second book I've read by Angela and definitely won't be the last!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2012

    Would recommened for a change of pace in style of writing

    Most interesting concept of presenting a story. Not something I usually read, but did like it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2006

    I recommend it!

    Angela Hunt is such a talented and imaginative author, but The Novelist is my favorite of her books...so far. I was captivated from the first sentence by her unique characters and multi-level plot that had me hooked in until the final satisfying page.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2006

    A Must Read for Aspiring Novelists and Everyone Else!

    This book so completely gripped me that I called a friend when I was through reading and praised it to the skies. She was so excited about it that she came over right then to borrow it. I highly recommend Angela's book. Casey will intrigue you with her story within the story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 30, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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