Thank you for being with us today, Bruce!!
Thanks so much for hosting me. This is going to be fun!
How long have you known you wanted to be an author?
Ever since my wife, Jeannie, told me I should become one. Okay, maybe a little more detail than that. J I was teaching a course through the Old Testament Minor Prophets, and when I researched and developed the study on Jonah, I was struck by how unique both he and the book were compared to the other prophets. I made the comment during the introduction to the study, “You know, if I were ever to write a novel, it would be about Jonah.” Jeannie, have sat in the class, gave me a gentle elbow-in-the-ribs afterward and said, “Well…?” So, on the airplane returning from a business trip to DC in 2002, I typed the first lines of what would become “A Prophet’s Tale.” Four novels later, I’m still typing.
Can you tell me a little bit about your book?
With your permission, I’d like to tie my most recent two books together—not intending a thinly veiled marketing ploy, but because they are so closely tied together in subject and in genre. Katia is the prequel to For Maria, and they both have contemporary and historical storylines.
Katia tells the story of Madeline “Maddy” McAllister, a young American journalism exchange student in Berlin, Germany, who is retained to write the memoirs of Katia Mahler, a 60-year-old invalid who grew up in post-WWII East Berlin. In short, Maddy matures from a self-absorbed, cell phone-addicted, sorority girl to a young woman with a broader appreciation for her freedom and her faith gained through Katia’s story. There is, I believe, a good balance of poignancy, romance, action, and humor throughout the tale. The climactic event was the fall of the Berlin Wall in November, 1989, which I was privileged to witness firsthand.
For Maria continues Maddy’s (now Madeline) story as a young mother and wife, as she obsesses with finding two women—twin infants when briefly introduced in Katia—lost during WWII. Her reasons are very personal as well as professional. The historical storyline focuses on the “Kindertransport,” in which, from 1934-1945, thousands of displaced Jewish (and other) children were rescued from the hands of the Nazis and placed in foster care overseas awaiting reuniting with their parents at the conclusion of the war. Needless to say, most of those reunions never took place. Although it sounds heavy—and in places it is—it offers a satisfying conclusion. For Maria been described as Sarah’s Key, but with hope.
When a reader gets done with your book, what do you want them to come away with?
With Katia, the tagline pretty much says it all: “Seek the truth, embrace the pain, cherish the freedom.” I’ll leave that to our readers’ imaginations.
With For Maria, the message is one of faith and perseverance in overcoming loss. It also addresses the importance of communication and priorities in relationships.
Is there a place you have always wanted to visit? A vacation spot, historical monument, overseas, etc?
Being retired military, my family had the joy of living in Alaska, England, Crete, and Germany. Last year Jeannie and I were fortunate enough to celebrate our 40th anniversary in Sydney, Australia. So, although our overseas bucket list still has a couple of unlined-through entries, what we’d love to do is experience sights in the U.S. that we’ve not yet had a chance to see, or would love to revisit: New England in the autumn, the incredible national parks of the West, the mystery and beauty of the Southern plantations. Gee, how much time do you have? J
If you could have dinner with 2 people, who would they be?
#1 Jeannie. I can’t recall a completely fulfilling dining experience without her at the table. And if the meal were only with choice #2, I’d spend the whole time wishing she was there to share it.
#2 At the risk of sound melodramatic, my mother. She passed away unexpectedly when I was 12 years old. There’s so much I’d like to share with her—and so much she could tell Jeannie.
What one event would you love to be at? Historical or future?
I don’t want to see too far down the road, so it would have to be a past event. I think I’d like to be in the School Book Depository building at Dealey Plaza at 12:29 pm, November 22, 1963, so I could push Lee Harvey Oswald out the window. I know … but still …
Do you have a favorite hobby?
Assuming you mean aside from writing, I love to camp—but only when I can have an open campfire (safely, of course). Without one of those, you’re wasting your time.
Is there something about you most people wouldn't know?
How I feel about open campfires. Well, I guess the “most people wouldn’t know” part doesn’t apply anymore, does it? J
Do you have any suggestions for the aspiring writer?
Take your time. Set your goals. Learn the craft. Research the industry. Do it right. I didn’t. I paid the price so you don’t have to.
Any last thoughts for your readers?
Sure! … … Oh! You want me to write them down … hold on a sec … okay:
Readers: Expect a lot from your authors. You shell out hard-earned money, invest hours of your life that you’ll never get back, and entrust tender emotions and lasting impressions to us. We seriously owe you for the honor.
Authors: Read the above. Deliver, or die trying.
And how can they connect with you?
I’m at www.brucejudisch.com. You can get autographed copies of my books way cheaper than the cover price by contacting me via my website. Actually, I’d love to hear from you, book order or not! J
Thanks so much for being a guest here today!Thanks again for having me, Charity. I was right: it’s been fun.
THE GIVEAWAY-I have to tell you, these books sound really interesting. I love my favorite styles and genres but every once in a while you find one that sticks out. And that is what happened when Bruce wrote me about his novels. They sound full of life and soo very neat. I am hoping to get my hands on a copy soon. Maybe when Barbour releases them as a collection in May of 2014? The front cover of this looks lovely as well.
So, anyone interested in a copy of Katia and For Maria? One winner will receive a copy of each book! The giveaway is going to be different and not done through Rafflecopter. It is going to be a basic comment to enter:) Sometimes I just love going back to the basics. LOL! This giveaway will end 12/21. Trying to get this finished before Christmas as I know everyone will be busy around then. Okay, okay. I know we are all busy now:) US ONLY!!
TO ENTER-LEAVE A COMMENT ANSWERING THE FOLLOWING QUESTION:
What do you expect most from reading fiction?
Entertainment? Inspiration? Education? Or something
**DISCLOSURE: No compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**