Coming in Sept/Oct 2017 from Tyndale House

septOct 2017

I love the team at Tyndale House. They are committed to quality authors, captivating stories, and great cover art which you can see with their September/October 2017 releases.

I really like the simplicity of Randy’s cover with only splashes of read against the grey backdrop. The cover and title communicate a lot about the story and the synopsis is tantalising! Can’t wait for this story.

Allison Pittman is a real talent and it will be interesting to see where she takes this story based on the life of Martin Luther’s wife. As for the cover…well, I have mixed feelings. I love the painted effect, in keeping with the historicity of the story, but when a story is based on a real person, it feels strange when the cover doesn’t reflect the real appearance of the actual person. This Katharina is much more attractive to modern eyes than the portraits of the real woman, which sits oddly with me.

Janice’s cover works well for her police procedural themes but continues to reflect a more traditional romantic suspense cover, with the main characters front and centre. No decapitations though, Aaron!!

How Sweet the Sound and Madman are republications with new covers and both appeal to me, reflecting the genre and tenor of each of the stories. Amy and Tracy are exceptional novelists and I recommend both stories, given I own the first editions!

Thoughts, my friends? Would love to hear them.

Rule of Law

Rule of Law by Randy Singer

What did the president know?

And when did she know it?

For the members of SEAL Team Six, it was a rare mission ordered by the president, monitored in real time from the Situation Room. The Houthi rebels in Yemen had captured an American journalist and a member of the Saudi royal family. Their executions were scheduled for Easter Sunday. The SEAL team would break them out.

But when the mission results in spectacular failure, the finger-pointing goes all the way to the top.

Did the president play political games with the lives of U.S. service members?

Paige Chambers, a determined young lawyer, has a very personal reason for wanting to know the answer. The case she files will polarize the nation and test the resiliency of the Constitution. The stakes are huge, the alliances shaky, and she will be left to wonder if the saying on the Supreme Court building still holds true.

Equal justice under law.

It makes a nice motto. But will it work when one of the most powerful people on the planet is also a defendant?

September 2017


Loving Luther

Loving Luther by Allison Pittman

Germany, 1505

In the dark of night, Katharina von Bora says the bravest good-bye a six-year-old can muster and walks away as the heavy convent gate closes behind her.

Though the cold walls offer no comfort, Katharina soon finds herself calling the convent her home. God, her father. This, her life. She takes her vows—a choice more practical than pious—but in time, a seed of discontent is planted by the smuggled writings of a rebellious excommunicated priest named Martin Luther. Their message? That Katharina is subject to God, and no one else. Could the Lord truly desire more for her than this life of servitude?

In her first true step of faith, Katharina leaves the only life she has ever known. But the freedom she has craved comes with a price, and she finds she has traded one life of isolation for another. Without the security of the convent walls or a family of her own, Katharina must trust in both the God who saved her and the man who paved a way for rescue. Luther’s friends are quick to offer shelter, but Katharina longs for all Luther has promised: a home, a husband, perhaps even the chance to fall in love.

September 2017


Crisis Shot

Crisis Shot by Janice Cantore

Rule #12: “Keep work professional, and personal life, personal.”

Tess O’Rourke dreams of becoming the first female chief of police in Long Beach, California. As commander of the East Division, she is well on her way . . . until the night she responds to an officer needs assistace call and fatally shoots an unarmed teenager. Despite being cleared of wrongdoing by a grand jury, Tess is so hounded by the public that she takes a job in Oregon to escape the bad press.

Winning over the residents of Rogue’s Hollow might be more difficult than adjusting to her new role as police chief in the small, backwater town. Especially when her closest friend, the pastor’s wife, goes missing and the woman’s cousin is found shot. Tess finds an ally in sheriff’s deputy Steve Logan, but as they track down Rogue’s Hollow’s first murderer, she worries that she’s breaking one of her rules and getting too close to him.

September 2017


How Sweet the Sound

How Sweet the Sound by Amy K. Sorrells

A Southern Novel of Second Chances

From a distance, the Harlans appear to be the perfect Southern family. Wealth and local fame mask the drama and dysfunction swirling through their family line. But as the summer heats up, a flood tide of long-hidden secrets surface.

Devastation from a rape followed by the murders of two family members brings three generations of the Harlans together on their pecan plantation in Bay Spring, Alabama. Chief among them is Anniston, who by the time she turned thirteen thought she’d seen it all. But as her heart awakens to the possibility of love, she begins to deal with her own loneliness and grief.

This tender coming-of-age tale, inspired by the story of Tamar in 2 Samuel 13, shows how true healing and hope comes only from God. Though our earthly family can wound and disappoint, our heavenly Father brings freedom, through his mercy and grace, to those long held captive.

Releases September 2017


Madman (1)

Madman by Tracy Groot

If there is a way into madness, logic says there is a way out. Logic says. Tallis, a philosopher’s servant, is sent to a Greek academy in Palestine only to discover that it has silently, ominously, disappeared. No one will tell him what happened, but he learns what has become of four of its scholars. One was murdered. One committed suicide. One worships in the temple of Dionysus. And one . . . one is a madman.

From the Christy Award–winning author Tracy Groot comes a tale of mystery, horror, and hope in the midst of unimaginable darkness: the story behind the Gerasene demoniac of the Gospels of Mark and Luke.

October 2017


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20 Responses to Coming in Sept/Oct 2017 from Tyndale House

  1. I agree that the cover for Loving Luther definitely depicts an idealized Katharina, but I also think that her precise features are hard to discern in the existing portraits. There’s a certain spiciness to this telling that I think the cover captures. I’m thrilled with it!

  2. Hey Rel!
    I really like Allison’s cover! The effect is very different. The only thing I would change is the smile. In old portraits people rarely smiled at all, except for Mona Lisa. :) I really like Janice Cantore’s cover, too. (Yeah, no decapitations!) But it does look like a cover for romantic suspense. Maybe Patricia Bradley (from her latest series) and Janice Cantore should swap cover styles. I totally agree with you about Randy Singer’s cover. I especially like the touch with the flag being at half mast. I love the picture on Amy K. Sorrells’ cover. It reminds me of many summer nights when I was a kid spent catching lightning bugs, as we called them, and putting them in Mason jars. And the decapitation works here as the emphasis of the picture is on the jar, not just done to hide her face. It is definitely an improvement on the first cover, which was not a favorite of mine. However, and this is a bit picky I confess, the title is about sound and the cover depicts light that makes no sound. That just seems a bit odd to me. I like Tracy Groot’s ok, but I think I like the original a bit more. Thanks for sharing these with us, Rel!

    • Aaron, I completely agree about the original cover for Madman. Beyond excellent. Problem is that rights to that image are no longer available to us… so the repackage was necessary. Needed to try to find an image that was as arresting and provocative as possible. Appreciated Amy’s assessment: eye-snagging in an extremely creepy way”.

    • Aaron McCarver » Tracy’s original cover was excellent, I agree, Aaron. Glad to have a copy on my shelves!

  3. I’m excited How Sweet The Sound is being re-released. Such a brilliant story and I think this new cover does it greater justice than the original :)

  4. I like the minimalism of Randy’s, but I’m on the fence on how I feel about Allison’s. The model is beautiful (maybe a wee too much?) and the medium seems a disconnect, but it keeps me going back to look again and again, so maybe that’s not a bad thing, no? I always like Janice’s because she usually has both male and female on her covers. Amy’s would have to be my favorite as I’m a southern gal myself and the lightning bugs (yep, that’s what I call ’em too, Aaron) are a nice touch. Madman is an eye-snagging cover, in an extremely creepy way.

    • Amy » Tamara’s son caught a lightning bug for me when I was in Nashville! We don’t have them here, so it was fun to see them. Pretty amazing little things! Like you, I like how Madman depicts exactly that! Thanks for sharing your thoughts xo

  5. The discussion about how beautiful/realistic a character model on a cover should be is legendary in publishing. What is interesting to me is that some readers have said a model is “too good looking” to be in one field or another for a contemporary storyline and then other readers say that a model isn’t attractive enough for a cover. Let’s face it, folks in the time of Martin Luther probably didn’t smile a lot because they had missing teeth! So, we only want accuracy to a point, right? We particularly chose this direction because of the surprising tone and light that Allison brings to this character. We wanted readers to be able to broaden their expectations beyond a somber academic treatment of all things LUTHER and for just a moment imagine what Katharina might have looked like through the eyes of love.

    • Karen Watson » Thanks for dropping in and sharing your insight, Karen – so appreciate it. Yes, I agree with you on the beauty/realistic discussion! I also think there’s a bit of cultural influence there, too, and makes me think of the recent online discussions over the different advertising pictures for America and Canada of the young actress playing the new Anne of Green Gables. Intriguing. This is a big generalisation but Australians seem to look for more authentic renderings of a story rather than a beautified one. Like all visual depictions, it’s subjective. A quality cover is the essential ingredient and you have that here will all of yours :)

      • Your blog does such a great service to publishers, Rel. Your reactions are informed, but they’re also coming out of an immediate reaction to the visual — just like all consumers. As publishers, we have to always take into account the fact that consumers don’t (and never will) have all the background of the WHY we land where we land. Sometimes, your folks put your finger on a nagging concern that we’ve had all along. And we have been known to make a change because of it. One the other hand, I’m guessing that it is interesting for your readers to know that there is almost more to the cover story. Keep up the great work!

        • Karen Watson » Appreciate your kind words, Karen. I love hearing the stories behind the cover art designs, as do so many of my readers. It’s an impossible task to create the “perfect” cover as what appeals to one person won’t appeal to another. I think for me, as long as the cover reflects the story or an element of it, I will appreciate the cover even if it isn’t exactly to my personal taste. It’s all so subjective! One thing I do know is that publishers spend a lot of time (and often money!) settling on a cover they think is best and the majority of readers do understand that. Thank you for taking the time to share your insight from a publisher’s perspective, Karen.

  6. My hands down favorite is Amy’s “How Sweet the Sound” – and I do agree with Aaron – “but” – you’re right in that lightening bugs (yep, I had my mason jar full too) don’t emit a “sound” but when I look at that picture I can hear the crickets chirping, the frogs ribbeting, and the soft lull of the flowing creek. “Grace” doesn’t have a sound either except for the still, small voice of God that speaks inside each of us. I do love your insight Aaron as always, it’s just my interpretation.

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