Friday, April 8, 2016

The Carpenter's Daughter - Pre-Order & Release Extravaganza

Be sure to check out the GIVEAWAY below!

Genre: Christian, Contemporary, Fiction
Publisher: Rooted Publishing
Publication Date: April 15, 2016
Number of pages: 349
One word can change a life…

Sarah Sharpe has grown up as a carpenter’s daughter, knowing only the rough and work-heavy world of her father’s blue-collar profession. Abandoned by her mother as a baby, she’s lived twenty-one years content to drive nails at her dad’s side. Following her father into the world of construction was a natural path, and she took it without a second thought. But a harsh comment about her “butch” appearance sends her on a search for identity.
​Enter handsome and easygoing Jesse Chapman, the roofer she meets on her first foray into volunteer work for Homes For Hope. In every way, the quirky man is her opposite—confident, a people kind of guy, and most importantly, happy.  His likable qualities continue to draw her in, and for some reason he keeps coming back to her. But they can’t be more than friends—he’s made that crystal clear. Except for a handful of times…and the confusion is driving her crazy.

Sarah’s quest for self-definition becomes more tangled than she ever imagined, and she discovers that the journey will take her deeper than clothes and makeup. Filling the void in her heart becomes an obsession she cannot escape. How far is she willing to go to discover who she really is?
Jennifer Rodewald is passionate about the Word of God and the powerful vehicle of story. The draw to fiction has tugged hard on her heart since childhood, and when she began pursuing writing she set on stories that pointed to the grace of God. Jen lives and writes in a lovely speck of a town where she watches with amazement while her children grow up way too fast, gardens, and marvels at God’s mighty hand in everyday life. Four kids and her own personal superman make her home in southwestern Nebraska delightfully chaotic. She would love to hear from you! Please connect with Jennifer on:


After hearing an insult directed at her, Sarah Sharpe begins a quest for identity. Hers, like our often will, begins with a makeover.  Let me give you a peek at how that went…

(Excerpt from The Carpenter’s Daughter)

PictureSleep crept over me, and I dreamed of mirrors. All around me—they surrounded me, mocking me as I stood like a rabbit trapped in a circle of coyotes. My reflection bounced a million times—me in every direction for all eternity. A pink frilly dress hung over my awkward body, the skirt reminding me of the kind you’d see on a ballerina. The top was satiny and cut close to my small, not-very-womanly curves. Black dirt smudged the shiny material covering my body, and there were brown sweat stains under my arms. I wore my ball cap and steel-toed boots. The mirrors laughed as they closed in on me. Closer. Louder. Their chorus of ridicule crashed over me.

I woke up with sinister laughter sickening my stomach. It sounded like the Joker from the old Batman movies.

While I showered, I tried to think of something to hum. Anything to drown out the awful chuckles. The alphabet song was all I could summon. I hoped Jeff and Adam couldn’t hear through the closed door.

What kind of simple-minded woman was creeped out by a stupid dream? The kind who couldn’t figure out who she was in life.

We went shopping, Darcy and I. I never liked the activity. Always made me feel like a dirty pig at a tea party. I tried harder this time though. It didn’t start off so well, because I asked to get my hair cut first.

“Who has butchered you, girl?” asked a woman with painted eyes and a pair of scissors in her hand.
Maybe the stylist meant to give me an opportunity to gain her sympathy. Certainly she expected me to say that some yahoo at a podunk beauty school had taken a dull knife to my locks of black hair.
I met her eyes for the tiniest breath. “I cut my own hair.”Picture
​Seemed like that kind of moment a person ought to feel a bit sorry for smacking your face with her tongue. The girl stared at me in the mirror’s reflection, then raised her eyebrow with all of the condescension of an unsympathetic teacher looking at a kid who’d wet his pants.
I squirmed in the purple-cushioned twirly chair.
“Don’t ever do that again.” She sighed and shook her fashionable but nonfunctional bangs out of her eyes.
Why did people wear their hair draped over their line of sight like that?
“Okay,” I mumbled.
“Huh.” The girl’s frowned deepened. “Let’s see what I can make out of this.” She ran her fingers through my hacked-up hair, tugging it this way and that. Parting it to one side and then the other. She sectioned off some in the front and lifted her scissors.
I sat up straighter. “No bangs.”
She lowered her scissors but kept them in her fingers. “You need some kind of style. Since I don’t have much to work with, bangs make sense.”
“No.” I met her eyes again. “I’m in construction. I wear a hat almost all the time. Bangs won’t work.”
“Oh!” She grinned, taking on the persona of a friendly adviser. “Bangs look so cute with a hat! And we have such adorable options over by the front counter. You simply must take a look. Buy a couple. You’ll be the fashionista of construction.”
Fashionista. Yep, that was exactly what I was going for. I glanced over to the “hat” section of the feminine boutique. Plaid prints, twisted rosettes, and bows embellished the useless headgear.
“I wear real hats. The kind with a useful bill to keep the sun off my face.”
Her eyebrows pulled together.
“Skip the bangs,” Darcy intervened. “They’re really not going to work. What about an asymmetrical bob?”
“The Kate-do?” The snippy snipper looked horrified. “That’s so tired. Gone. Nobody does their hair like that anymore.”
The Kate-do? What the heck were they talking about?
“Look.” Darcy sighed and came to my side. “We need something that’s functional. Don’t make it as drastic as Kate Gosselin’s was. Try something more like, umm…Kelly Ripa.”
If only I knew who these people were.
The scissor snob propped her hands on her hips. “Kelly Ripa’s hair is longer.”
Darcy’s mouth drew a tight line. Oh, I knew that look. She gave it to Jeff when he argued about doing something he didn’t want to do. She gave it to Dad when he was being stubborn about eating raw vegetables or going to the doctor. Snippity-Sue was about to be put in her place.
“So do a shorter version. Every minute we’ve stood here in debate has cut your tip.” Darcy gave her a stern eyebrow raise. “Do keep in mind that Charlotte is a friend of mine. I’m sure there’s a waiting list for your chair, so let’s not continue with this any further.”
Charlotte? The boutique owner, I presumed. Huh. The moments when Darcy showed her Sharpe side always left me a bit in wonder. She was as pleasant as a monarch on a late summer day unless you set her crisscross. Then she left no doubt—she and my dad were definitely related.
My hair turned out…uh, wow. She cut it so it didn’t lay like a clump of soggy weeds against the back of my head. The back puffed up a bit, and the front framed my face. I liked it. Seemed our outing was taking a turn for the better.
And then came the clothing.

Can you relate?
Oh, I so can. This post came to mind as I remember Sarah’s experience in the beauty salon…

A New That Lasts

(originally posted on
Jesus answered and said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.” John 4:13-14, NASB

I have a friend who calls me the girl with many looks, because I’m always changing my hair. Different cuts, different shades of blondes and reds . . . my style is ever-changing. Partly because I get bored. But, here’s a secret I don’t often admit—I mix up the style largely because I love the feeling I have when I leave the salon with a new look. Love. It.
Here’s the problem, though. That feeling never lasts. I run on it for a week, maybe two, and then . . . back to the same old boring me. Tired and uninteresting.
It occurs to me that maybe I’m not the only one. The hair-coloring frenzy of my generation and beyond, not to mention Botox, elective surgeries, and our obsession with clothing trends, would seem to indicate that I’m not alone in the quest to feel fresh—to feel new and pretty.
So, I’m pausing right now. Thinking. There’s nothing wrong with a cute new cut. A fun new style. But what am I really after? I wondered today as I was driving through town, talking to Jesus about all the stuff inside me, what do people do when they don’t know the privilege of pouring themselves out to God? Now I’m wondering, what do people do when they haven’t been made new on the inside?
They’re trapped inside themselves. Oh, what an unhappy place to be! Stuck, unchanged, inside a heart that doesn’t know the spring of new life from Jesus. Caught in an unending quest for change, and finding that no matter what they do, the bliss of newness never lasts.
Destruction can have a pretty face.
This isn’t the life Jesus offers. His is an ever-flowing fountain. Always fresh, always clean. His is a new life that bubbles from within—from Him. A new life that lasts.

Picture Picture


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