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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Meet Author Kay Strom--And Win Her Book!

Ask Author Kay Strom a question to enter the book giveaway

You can enter the contest by asking Kay a question and you'll get a second entry if you follow/subscribe to my blog (LET ME KNOW IF YOU DO!!). Be sure you leave your email address so I can contact you if you win.

The Triumph of Grace is the third book of the Grace in Africa trilogy, a sweeping historical saga of slavery and freedom that moves from Africa (book 1) to servitude in London (book 2) to slavery in the Southern plantations of America (book 3). Set at the end of the 18th century, it revolves around Grace Winslow, daughter of a mixed marriage between an English sea captain and an African princess. She grew up na├»ve, sheltered from the truth about her family business—the capture and trade of slaves. When her world goes up in the flames of rebellion, Grace has to decide who she is—African or English—and to choose sides—slave or slaver. Book 1, The Call of Zulina, carried Grace through the horrific slave rebellion and siege of her parents’ fortress, and left her far wiser, a survivor in Africa. Book 2, The Voyage of Promise, saw Grace’s new family torn apart and Grace thrust her into a whole new life of danger in London. It left her free but precariously alone.

In The Triumph of Grace. . .

Grace carries her fight for freedom to America’s Deep South. After learning that her African husband, Cabeto, is enslaved on a plantation in South Carolina, Grace dons a sailor’s disguise and boards a merchant ship headed for America. But her secret is discovered and she is locked away in the ship’s hold where she is prepared for the slave auction block. In South Carolina, Grace is immediately bought as a well-spoken house slave. But her quest to find her husband, and her fatal weakness of being able to read, almost end her life. Instead she is sold to a humble man who takes her far away from Cabeto. But Grace is not what John Hull expected of his new slave. And Grace never could have imagined the power of faith, hope, and love.

Kay Marshall Strom is the author of thirty-six published books. Five were chosen as book club selections, nine have been translated into foreign languages, and one was optioned for a movie. Already well established as a non-fiction writer, her Grace In Africa fiction series has met with high acclaim, receiving praise from Publishers Weekly and a starred “Highly recommended” review from the Library Journal and placement on ALA Booklist’s 2010 listing of “Top Ten Inspirational Fiction.” Book 3 of the series, The Triumph of Grace, was released February 1, 2011. The first of her Blessings in India series will release in September 2011. In addition to her writing, Kay is an in-demand speaker. Her work as a 21st century abolitionist takes her around the globe where she speaks out against social injustice, especially modern-day slavery.


5.0 out of 5 stars Exciting and inspiring, January 29, 2011

By James E. Kline (WILMETTE, IL, US) - See all my reviews

This review is from: The Triumph of Grace - Grace in Africa series #3

The Triumph of Grace is the third book in Kay Strom's trilogy, Grace in Africa. The books take place in the late eighteenth century, with slavery as the driving engine of the plot. They take Grace, the central character, from her childhood in Africa, the offspring of a white slave trader and an African princess, to her fall into slavery, and her transport to England and eventually to America.

Book two described in gruesome detail the horrors of the transatlantic slave trade, with the hopelessness and agony of its victims, crammed in the fetid, stinking holds of the slave ships. Book three shifts to the plight of the victims of plantation slavery, with its brutality, degradation and humiliation.

Grace herself is a wonderfully sympathetic and beautifully drawn character. She comes fully alive on the page. Her travails and eventual triumph make a powerful story. For a reader who enjoys history, the allusions to real people and events make it vivid and true to life. The author creatively presents the culture and history of the era. (The time between the American and French revolutions.)

By focusing on one indomitable young woman, the story tells us not only a great deal about the period, but also about human nature. The contrast between good and evil, kindness and cruelty, is sharply drawn. But the story shows that the line between them is not always crisp and clear, and that not every person is always one or the other.

The Triumph of Grace is at once a morality play, an adventure tale, and a love story. It will have a very broad appeal. Few people will read the ending without a catch in their throat and tears in their eyes.

Review From Booklist

Best known for her nonfiction work, Strom skillfully weaves historical fact into an historical romance to conjure the atmosphere of this time, and the horror of a family being ripped apart at the seams. As the story of Grace Winslow, a woman with an African royal for a mother, an Englishman for a father, and an African husband recently taken captive in the slave trade continues, she is determined not to be enslaved or to lose her beloved forever. Grace will speak to women of faith in this robust tale recommended for admirers of triumphant women and realistic depictions of the heart-wrenching past. --Elizabeth Ponder

Compelling Action, Unexpected Grace

Date: November 13, 2010

Linda Clare

5 out of 5

If you haven't discovered Strom's action-filled writing, you're missing out. She paints her characters with depth and generosity and brings history to life. The faith element is subtle, but just right. I highly recommend the book The Voyage of Promise as well as the series.

Kay Marshall Strom

Recent Releases:

In The Presence of the Poor: Changing the Face of India

The Call of Zulina- Grace in Africa trilogy Book 1

Second-Half Adventure

Forgotten Girls: Stories of Hope and Courage

The Voyage of Promise - Grace in Africa trilogy Book 2


The Triumph of Grace -Grace in Africa trilogy Book 3 (Feb 2011)

Faith: The Blessing of Ashish - Blessings in India trilogy Book 1 (Sept 2011)




Linda said...

Gotta win this to see what happens to Grace Winslow!

Is Grace the main character in all three books? When is the third one coming out?

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Kay Strom said...

Glad you asked, Linda! Book 3, The Triumph of Grace, was just released Feb. 1! And, yes, Grace is the main character in all three books.

barbjan10 said...

Hi Kay, I'm curious as to how you came upon Grace's historical story. Did you have some knowledge of her before you began to write her story; or was it hard work researching? I would like to win your fact I'd like to read the trilogy of Grace. If I'm fortunate enough to win this book, I'll definitely buy the other two and start at the beginning.

Sharing His Faith,
Barb Shelton
barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

Kay Strom said...

Thank you, Barbara. Actually, I was in Africa researching a book on the life of John Newton, slave ship captain turned preacher, author of "Amazing Grace." For about a year John Newton was held captive by a couple in Africa - an English slaver and his African wife. I couldn't help wondering: If they'd had a daughter, who would she be, African or English? Slave or slaver? That couple became the prototype for Grace's parents, and Grace the answer to my story question. (Oh, John Newton makes a cameo appearance in book 2!)

Martha A. said...

Is the giveaway for the third book? I have the second one! That is interesting as to why you wrote the book! Did you have personal reasons why you chose this for your story topic? martha(at)lclink(dot)com

WordyKaren said...

Kay, how was the transition from nonfiction writing to fiction? I admire your range of writing abilities.

Karen O'Connor

Kay Strom said...

Martha, I call myself a 21-century abolitionist. Much of my later writing, both fiction and non-fiction, has been on this subject. My husband cringes when I tell him I have another book in mind. He says, "Oh, no! You're not going back to Sudan, are you? You aren't going to another brothel in India?" Slavery is a huge topic. Sometimes the best way to tell the story is non-fiction and sometimes it's fiction.

Kay Strom said...

Hello, Karen! Hey, I am loving fiction. Of course, I love non-fiction too, so long as I get to tell stories. Sort of like you, eh? See you soon at the Mount Hermon Writers Conference!

Sherry said...

Hi Kay and Miralee!

How have you used your extensive travels to help you with your research for your trilogy? I'd LOVE to win a copy! :)


LOVE the name Grace! (My grandmother and my daughter's name.)

Kay Strom said...

Hi Sherry! I know there are those who would disagree, but I think it would be extremely difficult to capture the heart and soul of a distant place without ever having been there. So many details become real. Also, with the contacts, I have people there who read the ms and help me keep it accurate. (Lots of names in the acknowledgements, and every one a treasure!)

Debbie Clark said...

Kay, I have not read any of your books yet and The Triumph of Grace sounds wonderful.
I want to ask you if you saw the movie Amazing Grace when the moving came out about William Wilberforce. I found it a very moving story. I am so thankful that God used our forfathers to bring about the end of slavery.
Debbie Clark

Ann Lee Miller said...

Was the transition from writing non-fiction to fiction difficult?

misskallie2000 said...

Hi Kay, Have all 3 on my wish list and can't wait to start reading.. Is this the last in the series? or will there be more?
Thanks for this opportunity to enter giveaway.

misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

splashesofjoy said...

Hi Kay,
How long did it take you to write this book...after you had the idea? This is something I always wonder...since I am only a reader...not a writer.
Thanks much!
and I did subscribe!

Julia M. Reffner said...

I'm a follower. Would love to read this. I already have book 1 and hope to read it soon.


Wendy said...

I am a follower.
My question is - have you spent time in Africa? Also how did you get involved in speaking out against social justice? It is such a good cause but I was wondering how you got started in it.

Kay Strom said...

Debbie, interesting that you should ask about the movie "Amazing Grace." I actually ended up traveling all around Ireland with the production group previewing that movie. I had the opportunity because of my books on John Newton and the tie in to Lough Swilly, Ireland. Cool, huh?

Kay Strom said...

Ann Lee, there are definately a lot of differences between writing fiction and writing non-fiction. But the transition really wasn't that hard. I think it's because I do so much storytelling in my non-fiction, and because I had written other types of fiction before (TV, movies, even a couple of short stories.)

Kay Strom said...

Hi, Miss Kallie. Just three in this series. Now I'm deep into the next series, Blessings in India, also three books but set in India. Stay tuned! (Book 1, The Faith of Ashish, comes out in September)

Kay Strom said...

Good question, Joy. My contract calls for me to have a book written every 6 months. It's hard, because of all the research involved. This book did take 6 months, but the first book of the series took a year. That included a trip to Africa.

Kay Strom said...

Thanks Julia and Wendy. Read on!
Yes, Wendy, I have been to Africa several times. It was my writing that pulled me into social justice. I was in Africa researching a book on John Newton, and I toured a restored slave holding fortress off the coast of Senegal. On one wall I saw a tiny pair of baby manacles bolted to the wall. I stood there in tears and asked, "How could civilized humans--Christians--come to a place where this is acceptable?" From there, I started to look at today. It is so painful, Wendy. But William Wilberforce's words ring in my ears: "You may choose to look the other way, but you can never again say, 'I did not know.'"

Miralee Ferrell said...

Julia Reffner, you won Kay's book!!! Thank you all for taking the time to stop by and chat with Kay. It's been so lovely to have her here, and learn more about her new book. Be sure to pick up a copy if you can, and watch for many more to come.

Blessings and hugs, Miralee

Carla Gade said...

This sounds like a fantastic series! I love that it concludes in the American colonies!

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