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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Spotlight on Sarah Sundin and A Memory Between Us

Don't forget the rules of the spotlights here. Answer the random question associated with this spotlight in the comments in order to be entered in the drawing.


SARAH SUNDIN lives in northern California with her husband and three children. When she isn’t ferrying kids to soccer and tennis, she works on-call as a hospital pharmacist and teaches Sunday school. She belongs to American Christian Fiction Writers and Christian Authors Network. She is the author of the Wings of Glory series—A Distant Melody (Revell, March 2010), A Memory Between Us (September 2010), and Blue Skies Tomorrow (August 2011).

by Sarah Sundin
Published by Baker/Revell


Major Jack Novak has never failed to meet a challenge—until he meets army nurse Lieutenant Ruth Doherty. When Jack lands in the army hospital after a plane crash, he makes winning Ruth's heart a top-priority mission. But he has his work cut out for him. Not only is Ruth focused on her work in order to support her orphaned siblings back home, she also is determined not to give her heart to any man. As the danger and tension of World War II rise to a fever pitch, Jack and Ruth will need each other more than ever. Can Jack break down her defenses? Or are they destined to go their separate ways? From the English countryside to the perilous skies over France, A Memory Between Us takes you on a journey through love, forgiveness, and sacrifice.

A Memory Between Us is the second book in the Wings of Glory series, which follows the three Novak brothers, B-17 bomber pilots with the US Eighth Air Force stationed in England during World War II. Each book stands alone.

Readers, buy your copy of A MEMORY BETWEEN US today!


1. What gave you the inspiration for this story?

My first novel, A Distant Melody, was originally meant to be a standalone, but while doing research, I became enamored with the Eighth Air Force during World War II and wanted to tell the full story to V-E Day. Since my hero had two pilot brothers, I decided to write a trilogy, with each book focusing on one brother. About this time, the character of Lt. Ruth Doherty came to me—what if a poor girl made a bad decision in order to feed her family? What kind of girl would make such a decision? What would she be like when she grew up? I mentally put Ruth in the same room with Jack—and sparks flew!

2. How much of your own experiences influenced your characters? What aspects became traits that were theirs and theirs alone?

That’s hard to tease out. Like my heroine, Ruth, I’ve also dealt with shame (although for different reasons), so I was able to follow her on that journey. In general, I try to think like my characters do, so a bit of me goes into each one. I may never have experienced what my characters go through, but I know what it’s like to feel rejected, joyful, angry, terrified, ashamed, or content. However, I’m careful not to make my characters just like me. How boring would that be?

3. If your hero/heroine were an ice cream flavor, what would he/she be and why?

Maj. Jack Novak would be coffee ice cream—he’s energizing and dynamic. Lt Ruth Doherty would be deep-fried ice cream—a hard shell on the outside, soft and melty on the inside.

4. Are there any themes in A Memory Between Us that you hope the reader sees? Are there any themes that weren't overt but developed as the story progressed?

I didn’t write with a theme in mind, but the themes developed from the characters and story. I had named my heroine Ruth because it’s a great period name and one I’ve always loved. Then I re-read the book of Ruth in the Bible and was struck by some inadvertent parallels between the women—which I then chose to develop (isn’t God fun?). I also discovered my theme verse when Boaz praises Ruth for coming to trust under the Lord’s wings. I think I jumped up and down and screeched. I realized both Jack and Ruth needed to learn to trust—and the “wings” reference was perfect for a book about a pilot.

5. What were your most difficult parts to write? Your favorite?

The most difficult scene to write was near the end when Ruth had to face her great ordeal. The poor thing had been through so much in the story, and I found myself wanting to back off and resolve the scene early. But I couldn’t. I had to keep pushing the scene and pushing Ruth to the brink, because I knew only when she faced her darkest moment would she see the truth she needed. Argh. I think the Lord must have similar feelings when we go through trials. He knows the lessons we’ll learn, which is why He lets us stay there, but it must grieve Him.

I had many favorite parts. So much of this story wrote itself. Any time I put Jack and Ruth in the same room, the banter flew. I just transcribed their dialogue. It was a lot fun.

6. When is your next book coming out and what is the story?

The third book in the Wings of Glory series, Blue Skies Tomorrow, comes out August 2011.

Lt. Raymond Novak prefers the pulpit to the cockpit, but at least his stateside job training B-17 pilots allows him the luxury of a personal life. As he courts Helen Carlisle, a young war widow and mother who conceals her pain under a frenzy of volunteer work, the sparks of their romance set a fire that flings them both into peril. After Ray leaves to fly a combat mission at the peak of the air war over Europe, Helen takes a job in a dangerous munitions yard and confronts an even graver menace in her own home. Will they find the courage to face their challenges? And can their young love survive until blue skies return?

* * * * *

Thank you, Sarah, for being in the spotlight with us.

ENTRY RULES Readers, answer the question associated with the spotlight in the comments, then leave your email address for your chance to win a FREE autographed copy of A Memory Between Us. If you do not answer the question, you will not be entered.

Question: Your turn—what flavor ice cream would you be? Or a chicken-out question—what’s your favorite flavor?

Make sure you also leave your email address (name at domainname You won't be entered in the drawing without it. If you wish to comment but don't want to be entered, say so when you post.

This week, the contest is open to US/Canada residents only.


Unknown said...

I think I would be vanilla with sprinkles! :)

RivkaBelle said...

I would be ... Mint Chocolate Chip. The white kind, not the green kind, so the minty flavor surprises you -- with really good, rich dark chocolate chips :o)


Sarah Sundin said...

Kim - sprinkles make everything better :)
RivkaBelle - I've always been opposed to white mint - love that green! But I LOVE your perspective - that snap of surprise.

Lydia M. said...

Not sure what kind of icecream I would be, but I sure do love plain vanilla!


karenk said...

i enjoy peach ice cream...

kmkuka at yahoo dot

Back2Basics said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Back2Basics said...

Funny, when I thought of Jack Novak, I also thought of coffee ice cream...though I think he needs some nuts thrown in. Sometimes he's a bit nutty! ;)

For me, I think I'd be All-Natural Chocolate. None of that artificial junk they throw into most ice cream, just basic, simple ingredients, with the comfort of chocolate. :)

Sarah Sundin said...

These comments are making me hungry :)
Lydia - there's something simply classic about vanilla.
Karen - peach sounds good too!
Back2Basics - how funny that we thought alike on that one. And I'm salivating.

Cherie J said...

I would be chocolate peanut butter because I tend to be sweet but with a little nuttiness thrown in. :-) Enjoyed the interview! Please enter me in the drawing. Thank you!


Martha A. said...

i would hope to be Maple nut or Butter Pecan....I am not a big ice cream eater...but I do love those! Root beer ice cream is really good too....homemade...

Back2Basics said...

Oops, I forgot to leave my email.