Monday, September 8, 2014

Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tour Presents - The Thief by Stephanie Landsem




Publication Date: February 25, 2014

Publisher: Howard Books
Formats: eBook, Paperback

Series: The Living Water (Book Two)
Genre: Historical Fiction


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Back Cover Blurb

Longinus is a Roman centurion haunted by death and failure. Desperate to escape the accursed Judean province, he accepts a wager. If he can catch the thieves harassing the marketplace before Passover, he’ll earn a transfer away from the troublemaking Jews.

Nissa is a Jewish woman with a sharp tongue and no hope of marriage. Only with the help of Mouse, the best thief in Jerusalem, can she keep her blind brother, Cedron, fed and a roof over their heads.

When a controversial teacher miraculously heals Cedron, Longinus longs to learn more about the mysterious healer. Instead, his journey leads him to Nissa, whose secret will determine the course of both their futures.

Unexpectedly caught up in the arrest, trial, and crucifixion of Jesus, they wonder who this teacher is who heals others but does nothing to save himself. Is the mercy he offers in his teachings real, or just another false promise? Can Nissa and Longinus overcome their pasts to find a future free of their shackles?


Praise for The Thief

“Nissa’s tough demeanor as a cover for her fear and and Longinus’ desire to live a life of peace in his mother’s homeland of Gaul are achingly believable. Both characters are truly lost souls brought together by Jesus’ act of mercy. Their discover, through Him, that mercy is the true power that leads to peace is a reassurance Christian readers can appreciate.” —Romantic Times, 4 1/2 stars

“To read The Thief is to be completely transported to another time and place. Landsem’s impeccably researched novel moves at breakneck speed toward a climax that doesn’t disappoint.” —Rebecca Kanner, author of Sinners and the Sea (Rebecca Kanner, author of Sinners and the Sea)

“Powerful and moving, Landsem grabs hold of the soul and never lets go. As compelling a portrait of mercy as I have ever read. Don’t miss this one!” —Siri Mitchell, author of The Messenger (Siri Mitchell, author of The Messenger)

“Filled with memorable characters, The Thief is a tale of hopelessness turned to hope, of high stakes made higher, and ultimate love. What happens when a character at the lowest rung of society crosses paths with the most well-known figure in history? The story of The Thief. I couldn’t stop reading.” —Tosca Lee, New York Times bestselling author of Iscariot (Tosca Lee, New York Times bestselling author of Iscariot)

“WOW! LOVE IT!!! I started reading on my way home from a conference and was so engrossed in the book I almost missed the flight! The Thief stole my heart and lifted my spirit. Masterfully told, this story of a Roman centurion and a Jewish girl explores familiar New Testament passages but plumbs new spiritual depths. A powerful message of faith and hope intersecting at the foot of the cross.” —Mesu Andrews, author of In a Broken Vessel (Mesu Andrews, author of In a Broken Vessel)

“You know the feeling you get looking at a mountain sunset, listening to sacred music while James Earl Jones reads the Sermon on the Mount? The Thief captures that emotion in an unforgettable story of desperation and beauty.” —Regina Jennings, author of Caught in the Middle and Sixty Acres and a Bride (Regina Jennings, author of Caught in the Middle and Sixty Acres and a Bride)

“A compelling story and vivid characters immediately come off the page and into your heart as Stephanie Landsem brings ancient Jerusalem to life in her enthralling second novel, The Thief. As you run through the streets with the little thief, Mouse, or dip in the Pool of Siloam with the secretive Nissa, a masterful tale full of adventure, heartbreak, and hope unfolds. A must-read for anyone who loves a good book they simply can’t put down.” —Laura Sobiech, author of Fly a Little Higher (Laura Sobiech, author of Fly a Little Higher)


Review
by

This powerful new novel by Stephanie Landsem is a wonderfully detailed journey into the time of Jesus's crucifixion. With immense creativity, she tells this well known tale through the eyes of Longinus, the Roman centurian who stabbed with his spear Jesus while he hung on the cross, and Nissa a young Jewish woman who lived in extreme poverty. To say these characters and the turmoil in their lives were vividly portrayed, would be an understatement. They come to life, big and vibrant, with all their faults and qualities in a most realistic, compelling way.

The storyline is gripping, written in wonderful prose that highlights the main characters and the roles they played in Jesus's death. Jesus is a secondary character, the anchor to which the story revolves. Rather, the focus of the story is Longinus and Nissa and how their lives are impacted by the crucifixion of Christ. 

This story has a vast appeal. I could not put the book down - the story is one of the best stories I have ever read. The author wrote it without any religious preaching - the simple story from start to finish with life's lessons cleverly disguised in its prose. An easy read that moves at a rocking pace with oodles of twists and turns that make this one fabulously unforgettable story! I can't praise it enough. 

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About the Author

Stephanie writes historical fiction because she loves adventure in far-off times and places. In real life, she’s backpacked through Germany and Eastern Europe, studied in Salzburg, enjoyed gelato in Italy, rode a camel in Morocco, and floated in the salty Corinthian Sea. Her favorite cities are Rome, Berlin and Budapest. Her travels kindle her imagination, fuel her love of history and foreign culture, and introduce her to one-of-a-kind characters.

Stephanie is equally happy at home in Minnesota with her husband of 22 years, four children, three fat cats, and a tortoise named Moe. When she’s not writing, she’s feeding the ravenous horde, volunteering at church and school, battling dandelions, and dreaming about her next adventure – whether it be in person or on the page.

The Thief is an evocative story of two people trapped in their circumstances and the life-changing power of forgiveness and love.

Author Links


The Thief Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, September 1
Review at Closed the Cover


Tuesday, September 2
Guest Post at Just One More Chapter


Thursday, September 4


Monday, September 8


Tuesday, September 9
Guest Post & Giveaway at Passages to the Past


Wednesday, September 10
Interview & Giveaway at The Overweight Bookshelf


Thursday, September 11
Spotlight at Layered Pages


Friday, September 12
Spotlight at Princess of Eboli