Author: Sheila Hollinghead
Published: December 17th, 2013
Publisher: AltWit Press
Word Count: 65,000
Genre: Inspirational Romantic Suspense
A widow, a doctor, an unborn child. Three lives are at risk in this high stakes suspense. Die Auserwahlten, the Chosen Ones, have impregnated Gisa with an embryonic clone. Is it evil or just a child? It's up to Dr. Rayden Brooks to untangle the web that keeps them captive and save their lives. But will Gisa trust him?
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As far as the characters:
I took an instant liking to Dr. Rayden Brooks- or Rayden- when he was introduced. As the male lead, he was the type of man who would do whatever he could to protect Gisa, even when the situation seemed hopeless. What I liked most about both of them is that when they needed to be, they were tough, and I found myself saying “wow” a few times when I read the situations that they found themselves in on a number of occasions throughout the book.
Overall, I loved the suspense aspects of this book, and I thought it was very well written. There are a few questions that are left unanswered, and I think there could be room for a sequel if one was written. If there is, I'm interested enough that I'd definitely read it. I recommend Moonbow to anyone who likes Christian fiction with a little edge to it. I'd also recommend it to those who enjoy suspense and thrillers. My rating is 5/5 platypires.
The man pulled the brim of his cap lower. He knew this woman—she had been his third and there was also a fourth. The other three he had forgotten as soon as he had finished the assignment. But not Adalgisa, or Gisa as she called herself. The other three had made no more an impression on him than a fly buzzing around his head. They had all been annoyances, really. All but Adalgisa.
He had reached his objective with her long ago and moved on. Yet, now he had returned to her, like a hound-pursued deer searching for water. And Oberste had learned of his obsession.
The man was not cognizant of the ways Oberste received information. Regardless, Oberste knew and had warned him away from the woman. The dangers of disobedience were great, but here he was, to understand why something within him would not, could not, allow this.
The man made a plan. First, he would approach Dr. Cochran, discuss the behavior of Brooks. If Cochran refused to put a stop to it, he would be eliminated—regardless of Oberste's orders.
Oberste need not know. The threat of defection among those recruited was always a concern. Oberste would accept his story—that Cochran threatened the integrity of the program. And, of course, Dr. Rayden Brooks would simply be collateral damage. Oberste would be none the wiser.
He had to wrench his eyes away from Adalgisa's laughing face to glance at his cell phone. The meeting was in an hour. Tardiness would not be tolerated. Reluctantly, he left the hospital cafeteria.
He convinced himself he had time for a quick stop before the meeting. He drove to the store. He paused before he entered and smoothed back his blond hair. Placing a practiced smile on his lips, he approached the counter. "Pack of cigarettes," he said to the woman.
She tilted her head at him, and one eyebrow rose. "Brand?"
"Lucky Strikes, unfiltered." Nasty habit, but if he was to continue his surveillance of Adalgisa and Brooks, he needed something to keep his hands busy. It had nothing to do with quelling his fear of Oberste.
He mimicked the woman's tilt of the head. "Sorry, make that a carton."
"Sure. My pleasure."
Yes, Oberste had his methods, but so did he. He would carry out his plan, seek out Cochran, and sever the bond between Adalgisa and Brooks. He fervently wished he could take care of Brooks directly, but the rules forbade contact with those outside of the organization. If a violation occurred, Oberste always perceived the infraction, within hours, if not minutes. No deception was allowed; all worked for the cause.
Still, if the car of Dr. Rayden Brooks was parked in front of Adalgisa's house when he returned from the meeting, he would tear him apart with his bare hands, no matter what Oberste might do to him.
Sheila Hollinghead, an army brat, was born in Nuremberg, Germany. When she was ten, her father was stationed in Toul, France where she discovered a treasure trove of books hiding in the furnace room. The house was rumored to be the former headquarters of the Nazi Party with bullet holes decorating the foyer as evidence. The books, sci-fi, mysteries, fantasy, and the classics, opened her mind to the power of story. Today, she is married and lives on a farm in south Alabama with dogs, cats, and chickens. She agrees with Emily Dickinson who said, "I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word. Sometimes I write one, and I look at it until it begins to shine."
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The writing of Moonbow was difficult because it deals with controversial subjects, abortion and cloning, told from a Christian perspective. It was difficult to strike the right balance. Also, writing in the thriller/suspense genre is difficult because readers expect twists and turns and so much of that has been done in movies and books. Today's readers have high expectations, and I worked hard to meet those.
As far as publishing Moonbow, I attended a Christian writing conference a few years ago and was told that no mainstream Christian publisher would touch the book because of the subject matter. I had written another book by that time, in a different genre, that a few agents and publishers were interested in. But since Moonbow was rejected, I decided to pull my other book from the publishers who had shown interest and decided to find an alternative route.
I joined a group of writers to learn more about the publishing process. That's when I met Pauline Creeden of Alt Wit Press. The home page says, "At AltWit Press, we do not publish your average devotional or Christian fiction. Instead, we push the envelope of what is acceptable. These books are designed to make you think about the unseen world around us and draw closer to God in the process." It seemed a perfect fit for Moonbow.
Pauline Creeden became my editor and gave me many pointers along the way. Moonbow was published on December 17, 2013.
I am so thankful our paths crossed.