Happy Thursday my friends! I am so excited to share today’s book with you. Liz Tolsma is an amazing author. I am always swept away by her knowledge, her heart, her characters, and her stories. This one is no exception. It is fantastic!!! And Liz is here to talk more about the book. Are you ready to fangirl with me?
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About the BookA Picture of Hope
Author Liz Tolsma
Published by Barbour Publishing
on October 1, 2021
Genres: Fiction / Christian / Historical, Fiction / Christian / Romance / General, Fiction / Historical / General
Amazon | ChristianBook.com
A Photojournalist Risks Her Life to Save a Very Special Child
Full of intrigue, adventure, and romance, this series celebrates the unsung heroes—the heroines of WWII.
Journalist Nellie Wilkerson has spent the bulk of the war in London, photographing mothers standing in milk lines—and she’s bored. She jumps at the chance to go to France, where the Allied forces recently landed. There she enlists Jean-Paul Breslau of the French underground to take her to the frontlines. On the journey, they stumble upon a great tragedy, leaving a girl with special needs being orphaned.
Can Nellie and Jean-Paul see the child to a safe haven while being pursued by the Nazis, who are pressed by the advancing Allies and determined to destroy all they can before they flee?
A Picture of Hope is another homerun from author Liz Tolsma. She weaves such a beautiful story of God’s love for everyone – even the people “we” (society) deem unworthy. The truth is we are all unworthy of God’s love, and yet He provides it. And why can’t we learn from that and do the same? Or take a lesson from Nellie. But more on that in a moment. Tolsma always has the most wonderful faith threads in her stories and this is no different. Yes, there were some woeful moments, that make you sad, and ponder how such things could happen. But then there’s this moment of light. Clarity. Hope. And Tolsma puts them at the perfect times.
Then there’s the research. Tolsma has such attention to detail in her books, from the setting, the historical aspects to the plot, the way the characters talk, and the types of characters there are. And confession – I visited Tolsma’s blog to see if she added any historical tidbits from her research and she has. I highly recommend you checking it out. I can honestly say that I felt like I was in France during this time period. Everything she wrote payed tribute to that.
Liz Tolsma also has a way with character writing. Nellie is such a good heroine. She has a huge heart, she’s determined, and she values life simply put. She’s not afraid of getting her hands dirty, or taking chances. I love the way she is with the children in this story, especially Claire. Her character had such depth, such love. She truly was inspiring to me. And by far my favorite character.
A Picture of Hope is a book to run to the store and buy. Or ask your library to purchase so lots of people can read it. It provides hope, courage, love, the gospel, and a plot line that will leave a mark on your heart. I highly recommend reading this beautifully written story. I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
About the Author
Liz Tolsma is the author of several WWII novels, romantic suspense novels, prairie romance novellas, and an Amish romance. She is a popular speaker and an editor and resides next to a Wisconsin farm field with her husband and their youngest daughter. Her son is a US Marine, and her oldest daughter is a college student. Liz enjoys reading, walking, working in her large perennial garden, kayaking, and camping. Please visit her website at www.liztolsma.com and follow her on Facebook, Twitter (@LizTolsma), Instagram, YouTube, and Pinterest. She is also the host of the Christian Historical Fiction Talk podcast.
Guest Post by Liz Tolsma
Why Another WWII Novel Set in France
You may well read the back cover of my latest release, A Picture of Hope, and wonder why on earth we need another WWII novel set in France. After all, Kristy Cambron just had one. Melanie Dobson and Sarah Sundin will be coming out with theirs in 2022. So why did I feel the need to write my novel with the same setting?
First of all, I’m a Francophile. I love all things French. It started when I took French in high school. Everyone else was learning Spanish, but I wasn’t into being part of the crowd. There were only a few of us in the class, and it was great fun. We had a wonderful teacher. Being able to pull out some of that French, refine it a bit, and use it in the book was a blast. But I also love French food (who doesn’t?) and everything else.
Secondly, I hadn’t written about France before. When I wrote this proposal at least five or six years ago, I didn’t know France would be so hot. God did, and the book came about in His perfect timing. I’d explored the Netherlands, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and the Philippines. Such a shame that I was leaving out France, so I set about to write a novel located in that country.
Thirdly, there was so much good material to pull from. The French resistance, while small, did good work and sacrificed a great deal to get Jews out of the country and into Switzerland or Spain. The books that Kristy, Melanie, Sarah, and I write are all so different. Only the setting is the same. And when I found out that the famous mime Marcel Marceau was part of the resistance, I couldn’t help but giving him a cameo. Be on the lookout!
Along the way, I discovered some truly heartrending incidents that took place in France. They also compelled me to write this book. I long for the world to remember what happened so that we will never forget. And so that the atrocities committed there will never be repeated.
Fourthly, this was originally the third book in a series. Don’t worry – it’s a stand-alone. Maybe someday I’ll get to publish the other two. The women in the series are all American journalists in Europe. One is a reporter, the other is a broadcaster, and so I decided to make Nellie, the heroine in A Picture of Hope, a photojournalist. And where better to take pictures than on Omaha Beach soon after D-day. How she gets there is based on a very interesting true story, so be sure to read to the end for that one.
There are so many stories about WWII to be told and so many countries that participated in the conflict in one way or the other. The ground is so rich that we aren’t plowing the same parcel. You’ll find all of these books to be very different from each other, each with its own message, its own voice, and its own plot.
The focus in my book is on children with Down syndrome. I have a background in special education, and my husband and I adopted a child from the Philippines with an intellectual disability, so I’ve always had a heart for people with special needs. My daughter brings us so much joy that I wanted to share a glimpse into what these remarkable people are truly capable of.
So that is why I wrote a WWII novel set in France. Make yourself a cup of café au lait, butter up a croissant, and enjoy A Picture of Hope!
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To celebrate her tour, Liz is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and copy of A Picture of Hope!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.