August 11, 2014 by Dayo Benson
It’s been a while since I posted on my blog. Things have been so busy, but I will update you properly in a subsequent post in a few days. In the meantime, I have an awesome author to present to you. To date, my author spotlight feature has been an interview with the author, but this time, the author will be guest posting. She is truly inspirational, and her blog is a must-read. For those of you who read my blog all the way from Nigeria and other parts of West Africa, I think you’ll like her upcoming book 🙂
Ladies and Gents, without further ado, I present to you…Ava Bleu.
Why I Like Edgy Inspirational Romance – Ava Bleu
Some time ago I was exploring my own faith and wondering how far on the spectrum I would travel. I am plenty flawed but imagined that someday I would become so wise and strong in my faith I would barely resemble the person I am today.
But then I asked myself, do I really dislike the person I am today? If a part of me cringes every time I think of becoming more immersed in faith, does that mean I’m going to hell or does it just mean the authentic me doesn’t want to be a hypocrite?
So the question became, do I want to travel further on the spectrum to become more Godly or am I just Godly enough for me?
I happen to pray quite a bit (yes, God knows all about me, thank you very much). I ask lots of questions and analyze a whole lot of things. I explain a lot (yes, I know it’s kind of pointless to explain yourself to God) and I ask forgiveness a lot. And when all is said and done, the more I think about changing me the less I want to. Yes, I will always try to be a better person, and I will pray for grace. But I will still be myself.
When people meet me they automatically assume I’m a church girl (I have a deceptively sweet face), but I didn’t grow up in the church. I learned my faith mostly through hard knocks and hard times. I don’t like to represent myself as something I’m not. Truth is, I am skirting the edge of faith: I am hopeful and aspirational, but I also dip my toe in the wild side from time to time. My characters are just the same.
There is something to be said for admitting what you are and what you are not. Because I know what it is to feel awkward, misunderstood, self-conscious and to want the world to love you, I create characters who feel the same. You may not like my heroines, but you will darn sure identify with them. And there’s no telling, maybe the introduction to faith by my flawed characters will spur someone else to explore more of their own.
I like where I am right now and whether it’s contemporary romance or edgy inspirational romance (with or without fantasy), I am telling the stories that make me smile and bring a little light into my flawed life. I sincerely hope in my own way I am bringing just a little faith to the faithless and doing it in my own unique way.
Ava’s upcoming book is called Glorious Sunset and will be released August 26, 2014 (Urban Christian/Kensington. ISBN: 978-1601626707)
African King Taka Olufemi has traveled over four hundred years to find the woman who holds the soul of his murdered queen and he’s a little cranky. With a ruby brooch as his vessel, the former king is forced to grant wishes to ungrateful mortals hoping to one day find, and win, the heart of his lost love.
But it will take more than good looks, superior intelligence and an impressive pedigree to earn the love of Violet Jackson. The ambitious interior designer doesn’t remember Taka or their history. Love—with its inevitable heartbreak chaser—has no place in Violet’s immediate life plan. All the handsome “genie” can do for her is pony up on the three wishes he’s promised and try not to be a pain while he’s at it.
While the arrogant king is praying for his submissive queen and the faithless object of his affection isn’t praying at all, guardian angel, Aniweto, is praying for them both. With Ani’s help, Taka and Violet’s epic love will be rekindled and this royal couple-behaving-badly will finally earn their happily-ever-after through the grace of the Almighty.
1600 A.D., Jaha, West Africa
The acrid smell of a burning village brought King Taka Olufemi awake, sputtering, coughing and wincing in pain as he did so. Slowly memory returned and with it the horror. He cracked his eyelids open, his eyes immediately burning with the pebbly smoke that floated in a low hanging cloud. Pushing himself upright from where he lay causing sharp pain to streak through his torso and the agony brought his gaze down as he sucked in his breath and jerked his hands to the source. Seeing the jagged, torn flesh of the wound in his side, the rest of his memory came and with the memory…
“Oh no … no, no, no….”
He forgot his pain. He fought off the sway of the world as he stood, struggling to focus and see through eyes watering with smoke and something else he didn’t dare identify. He didn’t need to see when he could smell. He was a king and warrior; battle was in his bones and death always a close companion. He smelled both here.
He looked around. Men, women, children; the massacre was complete. Beyond the hall huts and houses of his village were blackened ash. The air still burned with the stench of fire. He couldn’t understand this. In all his life he’d never seen such brutality; never known such dishonor. Still, he firmed his jaw and kept looking, turning in a wide circle until his feet staggered to a stop before his brain could even register.
His body knew how to find its heart…
About the Author…
Ava Bleu lives and loves in the Midwest, countering bitter winters with smooth jazz and tasty edibles. Ava Bleu is the author of the contemporary romantic comedy, The Diva of Peddler’s Creek, and Glorious Sunset, an edgy inspirational romance with a time-traveling king, an angel and a love for the ages.
Ava can be found in bookstores and the public library camped next to the cookbooks and/or on the town keeping an eye out for hero-material. She can also be found at her website.