If your holiday shopping list is anything like mine, there are gaps in it. Figuring out just the right gift for some people is as tricky as catching Santa Claus doing his job on Christmas Eve night. I suggest you do what I plan to do: I’m going to fill in the gaps by giving books to the readers on my list.
Throughout this month, I will turn this blog over to authors of books that I recommend you consider as gifts to the readers on your list. The authors will tell you in their own words what they want you to know about their books. The first among the group is Paulette Mahurin, an award-winning and best-selling author of The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap, who on this page will feature her brilliant new novel His Name Was Ben, which is based on a true story. All proceeds from His Name Was Ben are donated to dog rescue efforts. Paulette is a great friend to me and I'm honored to have her as my guest. Welcome to my blog In Good Company, Paulette:
The Gift of Inspiration
The sun rises over the eastern horizon flooding my bedroom with light, and I awake with gratitude for the gift of my life; a life I do not take for granted. Many years ago, while in college I had the great fortune of meeting and working with a couple who inspired this way of thinking in me. Both of them were diagnosed with a terminal illness when they met and fell in love. It was this love, their expression of a deep intimate sharing that really opened me to what living is all about; right here and now. After meeting the real Ben and Sara, about whom my new book His Name Was Ben is written, my life changed. Into it entered gratitude, a thankfulness for the simplest yet most powerful of things: my vision, my hearing, and that the physiology of my body continues to function to keep me alive.
His Name Was Ben was initially written as a short story while in college and earlier this year published as a full-length novel. The synopsis from the back cover reads: Hearing the words “it’s cancer,” threw Sara Phillips’s life into chaos, until an unexpected turn of events and a chance encounter with a stranger changed everything—his name was Ben. Based on real events, Ben and Sara discover that when all else fails, healing can come in the most unexpected ways. Chilling and heart wrenching, His Name Was Ben is a triumph over the devastating circumstances and fear experienced when faced with a terminal illness. In this narrative, the power of love conquers shadows and transforms the very nature and meaning of what it is to be fully alive. From the award winning, best-selling author of The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap, comes a story filled with soul and passion that will leave the reader thinking about it for days after the last page is closed.
Some read this and are turned off when they see the word cancer and make the mistaken assumption that it’s a downer story of suffering and loss. Those who have read it and taken the time to review it have a common reaction; it’s a story about life, living it to the fullest, and the healing power of unconditional love and gratitude. On this Thanksgiving holiday, as I reflect on Ben and Sara, this beautiful couple I met so many years ago, I am reminded of the expression “from the ashes the phoenix will rise again.” I never understood the expression until meeting Ben and Sara, and then I saw that it is never too late for a miraculous comeback. And, it can all start with gratitude.