Friday, September 12, 2014

Book Report: Let Me Fall by Beth Pensinger

I'd love for you all to meet Beth Pensinger!
I had the pleasure of receiving this book as a gift for my birthday this year from my dear friend. It's Hannah Hernard meets Twilight,  meets Gen X and Jesus.

It's refreshing and real. And I couldn't put it down for 24 hrs.
It moved me and made me cry. And I haven't forgotten it.
It's up close and personal, and I loved it.
It's for Gen X, it's for your mid life crisis, it's universal.

So, I invited Beth the blog for some Q & A:
(and there's a give away too!)

Q: Let Me Fall is your debut release. What was the main impetus to write this story, or when was the first time you thought you might do it? and your reaction to the idea of writing it?

A: "It was a dark and stormy night ... I kid, I kid! It all started back in my Realtor days. I'd stayed up way too late one night reading one of the books in the Twilight series and I was exhausted. Upon getting ready for work, the scene at the end of Chapter 1 in Let Me Fall actually happened, minus the gore and medical equipment. When I cried out to God–asking what was wrong with me & why I was plagued by despair–I heard Him more clearly than I ever had. He implored me to fall in love with Him ... and to write about it.
My 'okay' dripped with sarcasm. I tried to roll my eyes and move on. But the directive had felt too real to shake, so I decided to at least document it. I opened my nearly-empty journal, but took a detour in order to read the last entry I'd made a few months prior. I’d written about finishing the first book in the Twilight series and having this horrible sense of despair. And then I’d written something along the lines of, 'Maybe one day I’ll write a book about how God brings me through this mess.' If I could’ve seen God in that moment, I think He would’ve arched an eyebrow and given me the most knowing grin I’d ever beheld."

Q: Did you always envision yourself as a writer?

A: "Negative. I ruin punch lines and barely know what a noun is. Being a writer was never on my radar."

Q: You mention other stories on the market, such as the Twilight series, when you talk about the influences on ideas of romance. Did you also read very many allegorical stories that influenced you or your spiritual walk?

A: "I just had to look up allegory to make sure I understood what it means. :) While Tolkien denied it being allegorical in nature, The Lord of the Rings impacted me and my spiritual walk profoundly. I’d also have to throw The Chronicles of Narnia into the mix."

Q: What is the single most surprising thing about your new book and the experience of releasing it?

A: "Quite frankly, the most surprising thing about the experience of releasing Let Me Fall was its lack of success (as defined by most of the world and the publishing industry). I mean, come on–I had a directive from God to write the thing! And it felt pretty important. In hindsight, I think my obedience is the pretty important part–at least as far as I was concerned. What God chooses to do with my obedience is not my concern."

Q: I found that reading your book was a spiritual experience and I couldn't put it down, as if God was busy with a download or something.....50%, now 75%--grabbing tissue box....99%--wow, didn't expect that! Was writing it like that or more like summing up the single most important things in your life and wondering how they all fit in a tiny little flat paperback?

A: "The writing of Let Me Fall has been the most spiritual experience of my life to date. I am a changed creature. I think the reason it took me three plus years to write it is because I was living what I was writing while I wrote it (if that makes sense)."

Q: What do you tell people your book is about in several short sentences?

A: "Let Me Fall is my story of falling in love with God brought about by my obsession with all-things-romance and the Twilight series. That’s only one sentence. I can break it into two if you really want, but I think it’s more fun to say it all in one breath."

Backcover Beth Flavor: "As in most tales of woe, I hit rock-bottom, which meant all my nails got chipped. Fearing the savage state of my cuticles as well as my heart, I finally called out to Father God for help. Spoiler Alert: He showed up with a spiritual defibrillator. Let Me Fall is where my literal world figuratively collides with God as He shows me more of who I am and who He is. My story isn’t a formula for falling in love with God. But I would be thrilled if it is a catalyst for others to do the same."

Find Beth on her website: http://bethpensinger.com

Dare to fall. Dare to hang on tight.

Questions for the give away: 
If you are joining us for the first time, please leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Beth's book. You may also gain a chance to win by becoming a blog follower on the right side column. We'd love to learn your name and have you at our "virtual coffee shop"!
Are you a secret Twilight Series lover?
Why do you suppose we love romance so much? (oh, you don't have to answer that) 
What is your most favorite allegorical book?

Winner of last week's drawing of "A Lady's Honor" by Laurie Alice Eakes is: Kym Thorpe!
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Blog post by Anne Love-
Writer of Historical Romance inspired by her family roots. 
Nurse Practitioner by day. 
Wife, mother, writer by night. 
Coffee drinker--any time.
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Find me on: Twitter

10 comments:

  1. This sounds like an amazing story. I love Beth's humor!

    It's no secret that I love Twilight, much to the chagrin of most of the church ladies I know. But I'm weird and like what I like and think God can use whatever He wants.

    Hands down Perelandra and Out of the Silent Planet are my favorites.

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    1. Thanks Linsey! I love it when church ladies are chagrined with me. For real. And I'm totally with you in the "I think God can use whatever He wants" department.

      I think I have Out of the Silent Planet somewhere but haven't read it yet. Will have to go on the hunt ... :)

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  2. Beth's book sounds spectacular, I very much want to read this book now. I've avoided the Twilight books like the plague, lol. Maybe I'm afraid I will like them? I think the only allegory I've read is The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe, which I enjoyed very much & plan to read to my children (the whole series) this school year.

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  3. Thank you Jolene! I think I've avoided many books for the very same reason. I hope your Chronicles of Narnia reading this year goes swimmingly!! Every time Aslan shows up in one of the books, the hair on the back of my neck prickles and I start to cry. I guess I'd call that powerful allegory. :)

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  4. Hi Anne!
    I've been wanting to read this book ever since seeing it on one of your book boards on Pinterest! But, like a lot of things, I forgot (sorry Beth).
    Answer to the first question: uh, no. Not even close. I don't do vampires, or any other creepy things like that.
    2. I love romance because I like to live vicariously through books. Kidding (mostly)! I think I love the happy endings inherent in them (well, unless you're reading Nicholas Sparks, which I don't). Especially Christian romance. There is always hope in them.
    3. The only allegorical book I've read is Hinds Feet in High Places, so I guess I'll have to go with that one. :)
    The book sounds great! Thanks for sharing a copy!
    ~Sarah
    bookluver1492[at]gmail[dot]com

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    1. Sarah! I'm so glad I could jog your memory and garner your interest. You won't be sorry! I loved, no LOVED, Hinds Feet in High Places. It impacted me spiritually in high school, and I'll never forget that. I was reminded of it once again in a fresh way with Beth's book.

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  5. I forgive you Sarah--I can barely remember my name most days. ;)
    I am in total agreement about only liking happy endings! And I've never read Hinds Feet in High Places but I'm thinking I might need to!

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  6. Thanks for the interesting interview, Beth and Anne!!

    I haven't read any of the Twilight books, although I have seen one of the movies, and can't recall any allegorical books I've read.

    "Let Me Fall" sounds like a very intriguing book that I would love to read. I agree that your obedience was the important part of writing the book, Beth. If you and Anne found the book to be a spiritual experience, I'm sure I will also!!

    bonnieroof60@yahoo.com
    I am a blog follower.

    Post shared!!

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    1. I think you'd love it Bonnie! It's not a long book in terms of pages, but it is a journey....at least it was for me. :)

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    2. Thanks for your kind words Bonnie!

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