Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Blog Tour: Chasing Hope by Kathryn Cushman

Tour Schedule

Chasing Hope by Kathryn Cushman 
A Personal Drama of Shattered Dreams and Second Chances

A talented runner fully committed to Olympic dreams, Sabrina Rice’s future was shattered by a devastating diagnosis. One forfeited scholarship and several years later, she has new goals and dreams that have nothing to do with running–something that’s become far too painful to think on.

Until the day she sees Brandy Philip running across the community college campus, easily outpacing security. Sabrina immediately recognizes world-class speed, and it’s all the more painful that it belongs to a teenage graffiti artist. When a chance encounter brings the two young women together, Sabrina becomes Brandy’s best hope for staying out of juvenile hall. Soon, Sabrina begins to feel an uncomfortable nudge that her new life is just about to be toppled…that God may be calling her to minister to this talented but troubled girl.

Sabrina Rice was a runner training for the Olympics until the unthinkable happened--she was no longer able to run. Now she has to find a new direction in her life but is having a hard time finding the answer to her question of why God would allow this to happen to her. One day while talking to hunky Koen Conner, she first spots Brandy Philip who is running away from campus security and she is fast! Later, Sabrina meets Brandy and is asked to help her out but has a hard time coming to terms with the fact that someone like Brandy has so much wasted natural talent while she has desire but her body isn't cooperative. Will Sabrina be able to help Brandy? Does Brandy want Sabrina's help? Will they ever be friends?

I thought this book was fantastic!! I could vividly see this as a movie unfolding before me. Sabrina is dealing with her lost hopes and dreams and has moved on but is brought back to face what she's lost when she agrees to help Brandy. We meet Sabrina now so we get to know her life as a runner through flashbacks. Her relationship with Brandy is pretty rocky and very realistic. They are quite different from each other and have a lot to learn from each other if they'll just give each other a chance.

I also enjoyed Sabrina's relationship with Koen and it also seemed realistic to me. She was insecure with how he felt about her when there was someone else who she felt was prettier than her giving him lots of attention, but he always let her know he was interested in her.

To find answers to her questions about what to do with her life, she turns to the story of Eric Liddell in Chariots of Fire and a devotional she'd written when she was 17 about Moses and the children of Israel. She does some major soul searching and is able to figure out what she's meant to do in life.

I loved this book from beginning to end! It's a great story of redemption, forgiveness, second (and third, fourth, etc.) chances, friendship, love and finding a new purpose in life. I found it inspiring and I highly, highly recommend this book!!

My Rating=5+ stars

Here's an excerpt from Sabrina's conversation with Koen when she first catches sight of Brandy:

He seemed to find this amusing, because he grinned, then finally leaned back against his chair. “How’d you do on that psychology exam?” He had a dimple in his left cheek.

“I’m feeling pretty good about it.” She took a sip of her decaf Earl Grey. “How about you?”

“Well, let’s just say—” he unleashed another grin—“I think I could use a study buddy for the next one. You know anyone who might be willing to help me?”

“I . . . uh . . . think I might.”

He held her gaze and continued to smile. “I was hoping you’d say that, too. You’re just full of the answers I want to hear today.”

“Thanks,” she sort of squeaked, “I do my best to be helpful.” It was impossible not to smile when she looked at him.

“Well, if that’s the case, then what if I—” He turned his head slightly toward the window just over Sabrina’s shoulder. “Wow, what the . . . ?”

Sabrina turned to see what had caught his interest. A girl was racing through the middle of the campus, her legs pumping at an impressive rate. Her shoulder-length hair was bleached white in the front and dyed jet black in the back, and it whipped up and then back with each stride. She jumped down a set of four steps, landed cleanly, and picked the pace right back up, hardly missing a beat. In her left hand she held what looked to be an aerosol can.

A campus security guard rounded the building behind her. Behind her and losing ground fast. In spite of the fact that he was young and appeared to be in decent shape, by the time he reached the steps the girl had jumped over, it was more than obvious his chase was a lost cause. He stopped, doubled over with hands on knees, gasping for air and shaking his head.

“Did you see that? That girl was fast!” Koen’s voice grew louder with admiration. “I’m thinking she must have been part gazelle or something. Can you believe that?”

Sabrina looked down at the table. “No, I don’t think I can.” She started gathering her things. “I’ve got to go.”

Author Kathryn Cushman
Author Kathryn “Katie” Cushman is a graduate of Samford University with a degree in pharmacy.

She is the author of five novels, including Leaving Yesterday and A Promise to Remember, which were both finalists for the Carol Award in Women’s Fiction.

She is also the co-author of Angel Song with Sheila Walsh.

Kathryn and her family currently live in Santa Barbara, California.

Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 10/17/13

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the publisher. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Katie W said...

Great review!!

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