The Prayer Box: A Novel (Library Edition)

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9781482951653: The Prayer Box: A Novel (Library Edition)
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[Library Edition Audiobook CD in sturdy Vinyl case.]

[Read by Xe Sands]

A young woman, an old woman, and the story of a lifetime... When Iola Anne Poole, an old-timer on Hatteras Island, passes away in her bed at ninety-one, the struggling young mother in her rental cottage, Tandi Jo Reese, finds herself charged with the task of cleaning out Iola's rambling Victorian house.

Running from a messy, dangerous past, Tandi never expects to find more than a temporary hiding place within Iola's walls, but everything changes with the discovery of eighty-one carefully decorated prayer boxes, one for each year, dating from Iola's youth to her last days. Hidden in the boxes is the story of a lifetime, written on random bits of paper -- the hopes and wishes, fears and thoughts of an unassuming but complex woman passing through the seasons of an extraordinary, unsung life filled with journeys of faith, observations on love, and one final lesson that could change everything.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

From the Author:

1.  Where did you get the idea for The Prayer Box?  

 The idea for The Prayer Box came as I was sketching out some short novel summaries at a publisher's request. I literally looked across the room, and saw a prayer box that had been given to me at a speaking event, and thought, What if the prayers of a woman's entire lifetime were recorded in prayer boxes? What would you learn about her if you opened those boxes, and how might it change you?
 
2. From idea to final revision, how long did it take to write?

The writing and revision of The Prayer Box took roughly a year. I knew that the book needed a coastal setting, that it would be the story of a life in ruins being slowly resurrected through the discovery of prayer boxes left behind by the owner of a house. I saw a small seaside community, struggling to recover from a hurricane, and a main character who was an outsider, seeking refuge. I knew that there would be connections between the life of the woman who created the prayer boxes and filled them with letters, and the life of the woman who finds the boxes. Setting The Prayer Box in the Outer Banks added some research time to the writing, but it also added a deep new dimension to the novel. The Outer Banks became a character in itself. It's an area rife with history and legend and that played an important part in the story.
 
 
3. Is there more to the story?
 
The follow- up to The Prayer Box releases in September 2014. The Story Keeper is set in North Carolina as well, but in the Appalachians.  The two novels share a special historical mystery that I hope readers will enjoy discovering, but each book stands alone. A novella, The Tidewater Sisters, bridges the gap between the novels and brings resolution to the complicated relationship of Tandi and her sister.


4. What would you like to say to readers of The Prayer Box?

To watch, to listen, to value the God-given gifts of time, and joy, and people. We live in a culture of acquisition. We're bombarded by the idea that we are what we own... but we are so much  more. Like Iola Anne Poole in the novel, we are the keepers of the grace river. We drink in and pour out, but most of all we must see. So many things compete for our attention. The world is blindingly busy, and all too often, we fall into patterns of fundamental discontentment. We don't have to live that way. It's a choice. Happiness is an inside job. Gratitude creates gifts. Faith creates peace. These are the lessons I learned from Iola Poole. And yes, I know that sounds strange. How can you learn from the people in your head? How can they know anything more than you know? I think the answer is that God put them there in the first place.

From the Back Cover:


"THE PRAYER BOX is a masterpiece of story and skill."-- Debbie Macomber, NYT #1 Bestselling Author
"A masterful exploration of the road to redemption." -- Publisher's Weekly"
A good option for fans of Nicholas Sparks and Mary Alice Monroe" - Library Journal 
FROM THE BACK COVER:These things I do, this melody of an ordinary day, keep the hours in order. . . . Strange to think of that. The song of an ordinary life. Mine would be in these letters to you.

When Iola Anne Poole, an old-timer on Hatteras Island, passes away in her bed at ninety-one, the struggling young mother in Iola's rental cottage, Tandi Jo Reese, finds herself charged with the task of cleaning out Iola's rambling Victorian house.

Running from a messy, dangerous past, Tandi never expects to find more than a temporary hiding place within Iola's walls, but everything changes with the discovery of eighty-one carefully decorated prayer boxes, one for each year, spanning from Iola's youth to her last days. Hidden in the boxes is the story of a lifetime, written on random bits of paper--the hopes and wishes, fears and thoughts of an unassuming but complex woman passing through the seasons of an extraordinary, unsung life filled with lessons in faith, observations on love, and one final lesson that could change everything.

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