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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

#TuesdayTreasures Guest post by Tyndale Author, Heidi Chiavaroli

Good Morning!

Last year I introduced to you a new-to-me and our blog author, Heidi, Chiavaroli with her new (at the time) book, Freedom's Ring. Today Heidi returns with her latest release, The Hidden Side so please welcome her back!

An Unexpected Treasure in The Hidden Side
Heidi Chiavaroli

One of my favorite lines in literature is said by Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird. He explains to Scout that “you never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view . . . until you climb in his skin and walk around in it.”
This is what the power of story gives us, and as my latest novel, The Hidden Side, is released into the world, I can’t help but dwell on the unexpected treasure it brought me.
Truth be told, I did not at first want to go to the places this story would take me. After my editors gave me the green light to write about a family torn apart by the unspeakable actions of one of its members—a teenage son who would not only bring a gun to school but use it—I was in a bit of shock. I didn’t know how I’d get through it emotionally. How would I write from the point of view of a mother whose son faced the possibility of life in prison because of his horrific actions? If I were honest, when I viewed these stories in the news, I wrote off the parents as unfit, the children as unloved. But reading the memoirs of mothers who had gone through similar situations proved that my presumptions were not always valid.
Both the research and the writing of this story stretched my humanity, my empathy, and my faith. So often I look at a situation, or a person’s actions, and judge it. And while some things are, quite simply, plain wrong, I think it’s worth peeling back the layers of things unseen . . . things we may not even want to see . . . the hidden side, the gray area of those difficult trials and the people who are enduring them.
There lies the treasure I found in The Hidden Side. This story grew my empathy and my compassion. It expanded my view of Atticus Finch’s admonition to climb in someone else’s skin. It was hard to go here, but finding this treasure was absolutely worth it.

The Hidden Side by Heidi Chiavaroli

New York, 2016
Natalie Abbott offers answers for hurting listeners on her popular radio program. But she struggles to connect with her teenagers, with her daughter in an unhealthy relationship and her son uncommunicative and isolated. When one member of the family commits an unspeakable act, Natalie is forced to uncover who she truly is under the façade of her radio persona.

New York, 1776
Mercy Howard is shocked when her fiancé, Nathan Hale, is arrested and hanged as a spy. When she’s asked to join the revolutionary spy ring in Manhattan, she sees an opportunity to avenge Nathan’s death. But keeping her true loyalties hidden grows increasingly harder as the charming Major John Andre of the King’s Army becomes more to her than a target for intelligence.

Mercy’s journals comfort Natalie from across the centuries as both women struggle with their own secrets and shame, wondering how deep God’s mercy extends. Available at Tyndale & Amazon.

What a lovely testimony, Heidi. It always amazes me how God uses tough situations to grow US up spiritually. Thanks for sharing. Good luck and God's blessings to you.

Heidi Chiavaroli began writing eleven years ago, just after Jesus grabbed hold of her heart. She used her two small boys’ nap times to pursue what she thought at the time was a foolish dream. Despite a long road to publication, she hasn’t stopped writing since! Heidi won the 2014 ACFW Genesis contest in the historical category. Her debut novel, Freedom’s Ring, was a 4½-star Romantic Times Top Pick and a Booklist Top Ten Romance Debut, and her latest novel, The Hidden Side, is scheduled to release in May 2018. Heidi loves exploring places that whisper of historical secrets, especially with her family. She loves running, hiking, baking, and dates with her high-school sweetheart and husband of fourteen years. Heidi makes her home in Massachusetts with her husband, two sons, and Howie, her standard poodle.

Hope you enjoyed today's guest and that you'll drop by each week for Tuesday Treasures, Thursday Thoughts and Saturday Spotlight.

Until next time, take care and God Bless.


Heidi Chiavaroli said...

Thank you so much for having me here today, Pam!

Barbara M. Britton said...

Hi Heidi,

What a thought provoking post! We really don't know how others got into difficult situations until we try to understand the scope of their lives and history. Your books sound amazing.

Heidi Chiavaroli said...

Barbara, thank you for your kind words. You are so right. I know I don't think often enough about the entire story of someone's life, rather than the small scene I am currently reading. Thanks so much for stopping by!

Susan Coryell said...

I feel you are, indeed, brave to write a novel about a school-shooter. Certainly a current topic, but for mothers in particular, a difficult theme. Best wishes for success.

kaybee said...

Heidi, I talked to you last week on Seekerville. You DO get around! Good points on dealing with difficult topics. The heroine in my contemporary Christian romance WIP has a background of child sexual abuse and I don't think I've delved into it deeply enough. Obviously I'm not going into detail, even if it wasn't a Christian book, but I could do a lot more with its effect on her. Thank you Heidi and Pamela.
Kathy Bailey

Heidi Chiavaroli said...

Thank you for your kind words, Susan!

Hello again new friend Kathy! Wow, child abuse is another tough topic, but definitely worth exploring! I think we have to walk a fine line in going to these difficult places. I don't show everything, but I usually don't hold back on the emotions, either. I love that fiction gives us an opportunity to explore life--both the pleasant times, and the difficult places. Thanks for stopping in, Kathy!

Emily Conrad said...

Wow, sounds like such a powerful story! So grateful for writers who are willing to explore difficult topics beyond the initial assumptions to help us all see the world differently.

Heidi Chiavaroli said...

Thank you so much for your sweet words, Emily and for stopping in! :)

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Sounds like a thought-provoking work. Wishing you the best and much success.

Jody said...

Sounds like a unique approach to a current, difficult subject. Thanks for the post, and all the best to you!

Heidi Chiavaroli said...

Thank you so much, Jacqueline and Jody!

Alicia Dean said...

Oh wow, what a powerful topic to write about. Your book sounds amazing and I'm going to check it out now. Have you seen the movie "Beautiful Boy"? - it was gut-wrenching. I'm like you, I used to think the parents went wrong somewhere, but now I realize that's not always the case. Best wishes!

Heidi Chiavaroli said...

Thanks so much for stopping in, Alicia. I haven't seen that movie, but now I'm curious! Thank you!