Today at EIR we are pleased to welcome author Cathy West, whose latest novel Bridge of Faith released in April. Here's a little about the latest book to make my summer must-read list:
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BRIDGE OF FAITH by Catherine West at Amazon
Two lives taken down different roads
one enduring love
one shot at starting over.
If only they believed in second chances.
Julia Connelly is finally free from twelve long years in an abusive relationship. Now able to live the life she’s longed for, Julia takes her two children back home to Vermont, hoping for peace and healing. The last person she expects to see is the man she eloped with at eighteen—who then abandoned her two months into their marriage, with little explanation.
When an assignment in the Middle East ends in tragedy, popular news correspondent, Reid Wallace, returns to his hometown seeking answers and peace of mind.
Confronting his past was not in the plan.
Now he’s asking different questions. Like why the only woman he’s ever really loved still mesmerizes him. Why the haunted expression she wears reaches right into his soul.
And why her twelve year-old son looks just like him.
They say you can’t go home again. Sometimes you don’t have a choice.
What Makes a Hero?
by Catherine West, special for EIR
I Need A Hero …
I must have been about 3 maybe 4 years old at the time. Mom had recently returned to work, and my parents were struggling to find me suitable daycare. Of course I’m speculating. I don’t recall the exact circumstances surrounding the event, but I do remember, quite vividly, even after so many years, being in a strange room with lots of kids, and adults I didn’t like. I remember crying, wanting to go home. And being called a baby for doing so. By the kids and the caregivers. And then I was put in a high chair, which I was definitely too old for, which only made me cry harder.
At some point that miserable morning, the doors to the daycare flew open, he strode across the room, tie flapping, anger flashing in the blue eyes I loved so well. I don’t recall what words he spoke to the lady in charge, but I can imagine. Then he swept me out of that chair and into his arms, and took me home.
He set the bar high that day, my dad.
To this day, when I think about a hero, I think about my dad. He’s always been there for me, always been someone I can count on for anything, anytime.
Don’t we all long for someone like that? Someone to come along and sweep us out of trouble and off to safety? I do. Always have.
A hero has certain expected or necessary qualities, and they may be different for each of us. I recently polled some of my readers, asking for their definition of a hero:
Someone who puts the needs of others above his own.
Steadfast, might be flawed, loves unconditionally.
Willing to make sacrifices.
Protects, provides, pursues justice.
Honest, courageous, kind.
Lives out his faith.
I think we’re getting the picture. Of course in movies and many romance novels, the hero is always dashing or devastatingly handsome. That doesn’t hurt. ☺
Often though, when I think of heroes, I think of real men and women. Those who put their lives on the line for us⎯law enforcement, military, fire-fighters⎯those are the big heroes, the true heroes; they play on the front lines and they play to win. And sometimes they lose.
A hero is not perfect or infallible.
Part of the fun for me as a writer is figuring out just how flawed my characters are going to be. People expect perfection, and when perceived heroes fail, we feel let down. Sometimes even betrayed. But this is life. These are the hard moments that test our faith and our courage and force us to examine our own hearts. And when someone we’ve depended on lets us down? Maybe we need to offer a little grace. Because those heroes? They’re human, just like us. And yeah, they might fall. But they’ll get back up. They’ll keep on going. They’ll hold out to the end, because that’s the only way they know how.
A hero doesn’t quit.
Doesn’t stop loving.
In my latest novel, Bridge of Faith, Reid Wallace is a broken hero. He’s the hometown boy who’s made it big, and in the eyes of his adoring public, he can do no wrong. But Julia Connelly knows his story and isn’t about to let him forget it. Reid has ghosts that chase him and keep him up at night. When it comes to what matters, he’s failed. Failed so badly that he wonders whether grace, forgiveness and redemption are even possible. But one thing Reid does well? He loves. He acknowledges the mistakes he’s made and pushes through. He loves those who can’t love him back. And he doesn’t quit.
He’s my kind of hero, because I think we all know somebody like that. Imperfect, yet vulnerable, willing to risk it all for what they believe in, willing to sacrifice, and be there to pick up the pieces when it all comes down.
So let’s talk. What’s your definition of a hero?
CATHERINE WEST is an award-winning author who writes stories of hope and healing from her island home in Bermuda. Her first novel, Yesterday’s Tomorrow, released in 2011 and won the INSPY for Romance, a Silver Medal in the Reader’s Favorite Awards, and was a finalist in the Grace Awards. Catherine’s second novel, Hidden in the Heart, released in September 2012, was long listed in the 2012 INSPY’s and was a finalist in the 2013 Grace Awards. Catherine’s latest novel, Bridge of Faith, is now available on Amazon.
When she’s not at the computer working on her next story, you can find her taking her Border Collie for long walks or tending to her roses and orchids. She and her husband have two grown children. Catherine is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America, and is represented by Rachelle Gardner of Books & Such Literary. Catherine loves to connect with her readers and can be reached at Catherine@catherinejwest.com
Connect with the Author
Website – http://www.catherinejwest.com
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/CatherineJWest
Twitter - https://twitter.com/cathwest
Pinterest - http://www.pinterest.com/cathwest/