The Lion’s Heart FREE on Kindle Today Through Friday!

Front Cover Final revisedsmFREE today through Friday is the Kindle edition of The Lion’s Heart by Dena Hunt! All you need do is click on this link and download!

Synopsis:
Is love ever wrong? Paul Meyer has never let anyone get too close. Until Max. The Lion’s Heart is a heart-rending story about love and sacrifice. The emotional struggle of Paul’s same-sex attraction, the guilt he feels, and his ambivalence toward his Catholic faith all come together in this look inside the heart of a tortured man.

Excerpt:
“No, it wasn’t the deception, unpleasant as it was, that troubled him. In fact, he simply couldn’t put his finger on it. All he knew that was truly different with Max was that he loved him. And it was that, that single stark truth, which made everything different. He never loved before …. He put the empty wine glass on the balcony floor beside him and tried to find again that mysterious, interior quiet that city noise always brought him. But he felt instead a kind of disquiet that seemed urgent …. Love was never wrong. He’d heard that so often from sincere people, good people … ‘Love is never wrong.’ More than a platitude, it became a mantra. No one could argue with it, not without being judgmental or bigoted. Paul himself always believed it, although he never thought much about it before—never had much reason to think about it. But then, he’d never really loved anyone before….”

A Sampling of the Reviews for The Lion’s Heart:
“Dena Hunt is a consummate storyteller who does not shirk or shy away from the difficult questions about life and love that her story raises. The Lion’s Heart contains not only the loves of lovers, spouses, parents, and children but also the demons and dragons that selfishness unleashes. The Lion’s Heart is not for the faint-hearted, nor is it for the hard-hearted. It pulsates with a passion that will bring true hearts to their knees.”
Joseph Pearce, author of The Unmasking of Oscar Wilde, co-editor of the St. Austin Review

“It may be fiction but The Lion’s Heart reflects a truth that is as real as the sunrise. The moral conflicts and dilemmas are treated with dignity and there are no easy answers, though, thank God, there are answers. The style, beauty, and flow of Dena’s writing speaks for itself. I could not give this book a higher rating, for it is at the top of the charts. I thank Ms. Hunt for having the courage and the beauty of heart to see, feel, and love as she did – for this book is, above all, a work of love. May it be accepted as such.”
A.K. Frailey, author The Deliverance Trilogy http://www.akfrailey.com

“Just as the movie Brokeback Mountain paved the road for widespread acceptance of homosexual love affairs, the novel The Lion’s Heart is poised to do the same for the Catholic view of homosexuality. Almost certainly the first of its kind, this gay Catholic romance novel is part of a growing effort of faithful Catholics to reach out to the gay community and share with them the deeply satisfying message of the Theology of the Body and the divine love that does not disappoint. Multi-dimensional and complex, The Lion’s Heart has something to attract and discomfit people at nearly every point along the spectrum of religiosity and sexuality – which is a good thing. At one juncture, I had to put the book down and walk away because it was too painful to watch the character of a good man slowly crumble. But I’m glad I returned to observe the romance’s bitter-sweet conclusion. The Lion’s Heart is well worth reading for its bold and audacious challenge to prevailing perceptions and misperceptions of homosexuality. With broad enough exposure, the book may succeed in changing more than a few hearts.” Katherine Santos, Can We Cana Blog

“The Lion’s Heart moved me to the core. Dena Hunt managed a rare feat: a delicately crafted novel that is at once a work of beauty and existential weight, and yet forces you to keep reading with all the urgency of a thriller.”
Bernardo Aparicio Garcia, Publisher, Dappled Things

“Whatever side of the controversy you call home, this book is a game-changer. With The Lion’s Heart, Dena Hunt gives us a compassionate story courageously told, depicting the truth in all its dimensions. Readers will never be the same, and with The Lion’s Heart, the landscape of faith-based fiction is changed forever.”
Erin McCole Cupp, author, Don’t You Forget About Me

“Dena Hunt conveys some of the very real struggles of those persons who have same-sex attractions (SSA), especially the shame, confusion, and misery that can accompany such feelings. She shows how that suffering can affect family and friends. The path to understanding homosexuality requires abundant patience, prudence, and good will because the topic is not primarily a controversial cultural issue, but rather a complex personal reality. It is one for which there is not one simple or general explanation – or response. This novel gives us a glimpse into the lives and hearts of those touched by SSA who are striving to understand themselves, and so to love genuinely after the example of Jesus Christ and the teachings of His Church.”
Rev. Paul Check, Executive Director, Courage International

“If I had not been familiar with Dena’s writing, I would have passed on this novel due to the subject matter. I read the book because I know Dena as a daily Mass communicant and fellow parishioner. I know I can trust her to have something meaningful to say and to say it in a beautiful way. “The Lion’s Heart” does not disappoint. The topic of same sex attraction might be troublesome at first but Dena goes for the heart of the human condition. She writes about the universal conditions of desire, betrayal, contrition, and forgiveness. As a devout Catholic she includes characters we will all recognize, showing us their shortcomings as well as their redeeming qualities. At the core of it all is a human heart made in God’s image to be redeemed only by our loving God.”
Deacon Paul Worth, Texas

If you would like a FREE Kindle copy, head on over to Amazon.com and download it for FREE!

7 Quick Takes Friday – Miscellaneous Quick Takes

7_quick_takes_sm1Please join me and other Catholic bloggers at Conversion Diary for 7 Quick Takes Friday, where we share seven quick posts!

1. A World Such as Heaven Intended
Currently working on edits for the new FQP book, A World Such as Heaven Intended by Amanda Lauer. Tentative release date: October 28. Check out the novel website here. Synopsis: The Civil War tore the United States apart and many friendships and families as well. In A World Such as Heaven Intended Amara McKirnan and Nathan Simmons share a devotion to their Catholic faith but their loyalties lie on opposite sides of the conflict. Dedicated to the Confederate cause, Amara offers to help out at her uncle’s makeshift hospital in Atlanta. Fate brought Nathan to their doorstep and into Amara’s life. Little does Amara know that the wounded soldier she cares for harbors a secret that will not only jeopardize his life but hers as well. Follow Amara and Nathan’s story from the heart of war-torn Atlanta to the Northern Georgia battlefields to the plains of East Texas as their lives become intertwined in a way that shatters the separate worlds they once knew. AWSAHI Final Cover

2. Wildcard Wednesday, the “Get Discovered” Edition
Check out Erin’s “Fiction Improv” post at this link. Participate for a chance to be included in an upcoming FQP Anthology with stories that illustrate principles of St. John Paul II’s Theology of the Body.WildcardWed

3. The Angels of Abbey Creek by Sue Elvis
I recently wrote about my friend, Sue’s, new children’s book here at this post. Check it out!AAC Sue Elvis

4. Research, Research, Research
I’ve been doing a lot of research for my upcoming short novel, Julia’s Gifts. It’s a World War I romance between an American nurse and a Canadian soldier. Tentative release date is Fall of 2015. Research is one of my favorite parts of writing historical fiction. The National Film Board of Canada’s youtube channel has been tremendously helpful.

5. Free E-Books Coming
During September, I will be doing two free promotions of FQP books. One will be next week and the other will be the following week. Keep tuned here for more details.

6. Reading Shelf
Opal’s Jubilee by Leslie Lynch

7. ‘Another One’ Cartoon

Cartoon copyright James and Ellen Hrkach, Full Quiver Publishing Please do not use without permission

Cartoon copyright James and Ellen Hrkach, Full Quiver Publishing Please do not use without permission

Copyright 2014 Ellen Gable Hrkach

The Angels of Abbey Creek – New Book by Sue Elvis

AAC Sue ElvisMy friend, Sue Elvis, has a new children’s book out and it’s called “The Angels of Abbey Creek.”

Book description:
In Australia, where Christmas is in summer and dads like to play cricket, is a small town. Not far from this town, along a narrow, winding road, is the village of Abbey Creek. And on the edge of this village, nestled among the shady gum trees, is a sprawling brick house. This is the home of the Angel family: Mum, Dad, Edward, Kate, Joe, Celeste, Lizzie and Annie.

And this is the story of their very adventurous year!

It’s a year full of happy days and magic moments, of camping in the bush and perfect beach holidays, of feast days and birthdays and even a First Holy Communion. The year has exciting days and disastrous moments, with racing bushfires, naughty birds and scurrying mice. And it’s full of surprises. The biggest surprise of all happens on Christmas Day!

The Angels of Abbey Creek contains 22 individual adventurous stories which fit together to tell the tale of one exciting year!

This book is now available for purchase from Lulu and will soon be available from Amazon.

Author’s Bio:
Sue Elvis is a Catholic wife and mother of eight, who lives in the state of NSW, Australia. She is the author of Grief, Love and Hope, and has been involved with grief ministry. The Angels of Abbey Creek is her first children’s novel. Sue blogs at Sue Elvis Writes.

Sunday Snippets – August 24

Photo copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach

Photo copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach

Please join me and other Catholic bloggers at RAnn’s Place for Sunday Snippets where we share posts from the previous week and answer a weekly question. It’s been a while since I’ve participated and it’s good to be back! This week’s question: “Introduce yourself.” As my miniature bio says to the right, I am a freelance writer and author of five books, President of the Catholic Writers Guild, self-publishing book coach, editor, speaker, NFP teacher, book reviewer, Marriage Preparation Instructor. I’ve been married to my husband, James, for 32 years and we have five sons ages 15 to 27 and live in the country near Pakenham, Ontario Canada.

This week’s posts:

7 Quick Takes Friday

Parenting Children Who Have Abandoned Their Faith

More Highlights from the 2014 Catholic Writers Conference Live

The Blood Cries Out Blog Tour

Copyright 2014 Ellen Gable Hrkach

7 Quick Takes Friday – Articles, New FQP Book Etc.

7_quick_takes_sm1Lots going on. I’m connecting with other Catholic bloggers at Conversion Diary for 7 Quick Takes Friday.

1. Parenting Adult Children Who Have Abandoned Their Faith
My latest column over at Catholic Mom is entitled “Parenting Adult Children Who Have Abandoned Their Faith.” PACphoto

2. Five Little Souls in Heaven
I’ve posted this before, but this nearly 20 year old article started off my writing career and it also served as the basis for my first novel, Emily’s Hope.hrkach

3. A World Such as Heaven Intended
FQP’s new book (coming out in October) is entitled “A World Such as Heaven Intended” by Amanda Lauer. The Kindle edition will likely be released a few weeks before the print edition. Keep posted here, on Facebook and on the FQP website for more details.AWSAHI Final Cover

4. Lits
I love the architecture of Lits Department Store in Philly. Lits is mentioned in my first book, Emily’s Hope.

Lits Department Store, Philadelphia copyright 2014 Ellen Gable Hrkach

Lits Department Store, Philadelphia copyright 2014 Ellen Gable Hrkach

5. James Foley and Prayer
Wonderful, inspiring article: James Foley and the importance of praying the rosary in captivity. The evil coming from the Middle East has been cause for people of all faiths to increase their prayers for peace and conversion. Slain journalist Jim Foley is truly a modern day martyr.

6. Reading Shelf
To the Heights: A Novel Based on the Life of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati by Brian Kennelly

7. Game Over Cartoon

image copyright James and Ellen Hrkach Please do not use without permission

image copyright James and Ellen Hrkach Please do not use without permission

Copyright 2014 Ellen Gable Hrkach

Parenting Adult Children Who Have Abandoned Their Faith

PACphotoMy latest post over at CatholicMom.com:

Recently, I spoke with several older couples about the challenges (and joys) of parenting adult children. One mother shared her sorrow that her son not only has fallen away from his faith, but is actively antagonistic towards the Catholic faith and to her. A father of four adult sons talked to me about the frustration of finding out that his older son (who spent years serving as an altar boy and who had once considered a vocation to the priesthood) has stopped attending Mass. Yet another woman shared the sad situation of her daughter’s same sex relationship. All three of these parents, faithfully practicing Catholics, asked “What do we do now?” And “Where did we go wrong?”

I’m not an expert, but I do have some experience with parenting an adult child who has abandoned his faith. Here are some reflections that my husband and I have come up in dealing with adult children who have abandoned their faith.

1. Unconditional Love (Love the sinner, hate the sin)
This might seem like an obvious one, but I know some parents who’ve shunned adult children because they’ve stopped going to Mass or are engaging in immoral lifestyle choices.
My gut reaction to that is, “How are they ever going to learn to change if they don’t have your example to follow?” Also, how are they going to experience God’s unconditional love without a parent’s unconditional love? You can love without encouraging immoral lifestyles. If a son or daughter is cohabiting, when they visit your home, separate sleeping arrangements should be in order. If you have younger children, this shows them that you don’t agree with their lifestyle choices, but still love them and welcome them into your home… a home that does not condone cohabitation.

2. Pray for Your Children Every Day
This is also obvious, but a parent’s prayer for his or her child is a powerful one. Our Lady is a powerful intercessor. St. Monica (whose son, St. Augustine, made immoral choices) prayed for her son’s conversion (and it eventually happened!)

3. Look for Opportunities to Dialogue
This can often be awkward. Most adult children of faithful Catholics know what their parents are going to say, but sometimes it still needs to be said. Take the opportunity whenever you can to reiterate your love for them and your disagreement with their choices to live a life contrary to the Catholic faith. However, avoid engaging in conversation if you know they might be antagonistic, especially in front of other family members.

4. Be a Virtuous Example
You can teach your kids all about the faith, especially in the areas of marital sexuality, but if you are not living that faith, these truths may be lost or ignored. This also goes for even more basic virtues like patience, fortitude and hope.

5. Hope, Indeed!
I’ve seen adult children convert very late in life; I’ve witnessed imperceptibly slow conversion resulting from a child’s experience of steadfast parents. Don’t lose hope. Don’t underestimate the value of your prayers for or your personal effect on them.

Parenting adult children who have fallen away from their faith can be challenging. Love them unconditionally, pray for them every day, look for opportunities to dialogue, be a good example and remain hopeful that they will return to the faith.

Copyright 2014 Ellen Gable Hrkach