Saturday, November 13, 2010
Author Cheri Laser Reminds Us That Knowing Who We Are Is Prelude to Uncovering Our Destiny
In the summer of 1945, as World War II is ending, Abby Ryan is studying to become a nun. On the serene grounds of the convent in Kettle Falls, Washington, she is assaulted by trespassers and rescued by Sinclair Mellington, a handsome army captain attending a retreat at the institution.
The war that had gripped her nation for four years, taking tens of thousands of soldiers to their graves, had finally, thankfully, ended, filling the summer of 1945 with jubilation across the country and the world. But that joy was somehow escaping Abigail Ryan, and she didn’t know why. Worse, she felt guilty because her problems were so small by comparison. What in God’s name is wrong with me? Breathing deeply, she was pulled into a sleep that temporarily released her from the questions and the struggle.
Decades later, in the fall of 2008, Isaiah Mellington, a middle-aged unemployed attorney, receives a letter written years earlier by his now deceased father, asking him to wrap up loose ends in the wake of Sister Abby’s passing. He travels to Kettle Falls, expecting to only be there for a weekend. Instead, Isaiah discovers that Sister Abby’s loose ends are connected to a life she lived outside the convent. Eight days after his arrival, he is still in Kettle Falls with four women—an aging former nun who is the keeper of Abby’s secrets, a romantic interest of his own, and two others whose lives are being hijacked by Sister Abby’s past.
As betrayal encroaches upon Isaiah as well, a half century of lies slowly unravels, shredding the fabric of everything he has ever known and everyone he has ever loved.
For a review copy of Separation of Faith or to interview Ms. Laser,
please contact Melissa Maritsch, Executive Assistant, 201-274-3758.
“Cheri Laser continues to flex her muscles as a novelist, giving us characters we come to care about and root for.” --Bill Ervolino Columnist with The Record Author of Some Kind of Wise Guy
Separation of Faith has already earned the Editor’s Choice designation from her publisher for editorial excellence. Here's a short excerpt...
“Dear God,” she said plaintively once she’d listened to Isaiah’s voice explaining his revised itinerary. “Oh, no—not now,” she whispered as the color began to fade from her fresh facial. “Not yet.”
Brushing a surge of exasperating tears from her eyes, she rose, walked over to her desk, and opened the center drawer. After sifting through her collection of notebooks and newspaper clippings, she removed a small leather address book, closed the drawer, and returned to the loveseat. There she dialed Isaiah’s cell phone, but she wasn’t surprised when he failed to answer. After all, she thought, looking at her watch, it’s not even two o’clock yet. Still, she had hoped.
Fingering the address book, she hesitated before turning the pages to the last part of the A’s, where her eyes came to rest on her husband’s handwriting. “Abby—Sister Mary Abigail, Lady of the Valley Convent, Kettle Falls.” Just below that notation was another listing that read “Sister Veronica,” which had a single red line drawn through those printed letters. Written next to that was “Tess now—1971,” followed by a phone number and the words “house, not convent.”
Sarah picked up the telephone but then lowered the handset just as quickly into her lap and took another sip of coffee. When she raised the phone again, nearly an hour had evaporated before she’d summoned enough courage to make the call.
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