Lot's of things going on but it is always my pleasure to bring a guest back to share treasures with us! Although it has been a while, Diane shared treasures and thoughts and been in our spotlight with her romantic suspense novels but today she shares treasures and a peek into her first YA novel!
Take it away Diane....
One of the things I treasure is my mother’s ceramic nativity set. Like many women of a certain age, my mom decided to sign up for a ceramics’ class. At first, she did little things, for example, Easter “eggs” and chicks. Then, she decided to make a nativity set for each of her children. She asked how I would like it decorated. I told her, and this is what she made.
The set is a reminder of the importance of Christmas, the true meaning. Each year, as I set it up, I’m reminded of all the work that went into the making of each piece. Mom died in November twelve years ago, close enough to Christmas that the first holiday without her was very difficult. The nativity set is a small part of her that’s with us each Christmas.
In my new release, Rescuing Mara’s Father, the main character never knew her mother who died at her birth. Mara would’ve given anything to have her mother with her.
RESCUING MARA’S FATHER
A Middle Grade Science Fiction Adventure
By D.M. Burton
Approx. 75,000 words
3 friends, a hidden starship, a quest
Her father is gone! Taken by the Queen of Compara’s agents. Mara has to rescue him before the Queen tortures and kills him.
Instead of the kind, loving father she’s always known, he’s become demanding, critical, with impossible expectations—not just as Father but also as the only teacher in their frontier outpost. Mara would rather scoop zircan poop than listen to another boring lecture about governments on Central Planets. Give her a starship engine to take apart or, better yet, fly, and she’s happy. Now, he’s gone.
Never mind, they’ve had a rocky road lately.
Never mind, Father promised she could go off planet to Tech Institute next month when she turns fifteen, where she’ll learn to fly starships.
Never mind, she ran away because she’s furious with him because he reneged on that promise. Father is her only parent. She has to save him.
Along with her best friend, eleven-year-old Jako, and his brother 15-year-old Lukus, Mara sets off to find her father. Her mentor, old spaceport mechanic, seems to know why the Queen captured Father. In fact, he seems to know her father well. But, does he tell her everything? Of course not. He dribbles out info like a mush-eating baby. Worse, he indicates he’ll be leaving them soon. And Lukus can’t wait to get off their planet. Mara’s afraid they will all leave, and she’ll be on her own. Despite her fears, Mara has to rescue her father.
[When three bullies tried to beat up her friend, Mara jumped into the fray. Together they trounce the bullies. Then, her father takes her home.]
Father makes me sit on a chair in the kitchen because the light’s better in there. He is gentle as he cleans my scrapes and bruises. He’s almost finished when I see his lips thin and his eyes harden. He tilts my chin and pulls aside the neck of the old shirt I’m wearing.
“You have bruises on your throat. That—” He calls the bully a filthy name. I’m surprised. He never swears or calls anyone bad names.
What he does next surprises me even more. He kneels next to me and pulls me into his arms. I can’t remember the last time he hugged me. He strokes my hair, and I think this is how it used to be . . . when he loved me. Tears prickle my eyes, and my throat thickens.
Abruptly, he pushes me away and stands. I want him to come back, to hold me again. To be the warm, loving Father he used to be. He doesn’t. “I concur with your little friend. You did well. However, you could have been killed. Those Dunpus boys are mean, the father meaner. Stay away from them.”
“But they were beating up Jako. It wasn’t fair.”
Father walks over to the stove and lifts the lid of the large pot. “You have a good heart.” He stirs the stew. “You are very much like your mother. She would have been proud of you.”
He rarely talks about my mother, who died giving me birth. When I used to ask about her, he would get such a pained look in his eyes I always backed off. This time, I can’t let the opportunity pass. “Please, Father, tell me about her.”
He continues to stir the stew. He doesn’t say anything, and disappointment settles over me. Just like before. Then, he turns around. “She was tall and slender with hair as dark as midnight and eyes as green as a mountain meadow. You look very much like her. Your skin is not as fair as hers, though. She would not go outdoors without covering up for fear of burning.” He smiles, warmth and love shining from his eyes. “She hated freckles.”
“I hate them, too.”
He chuckles. “Not enough to stay indoors. Your mother cared deeply for others, as you do. But she would not have risked her life in combat. Learning was important to her. She would not have been pleased with your attitude in the classroom.”
About the Author:
The first time D.M. Burton saw Star Wars IV: A New Hope, she was hooked on science fiction and space travel. The Star Trek movies made her want to travel to other planets. Alas, she is still Earth-bound. D.M. and her husband live in Michigan, close to their two children and five grandchildren.
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For more info and excerpts, visit D.M.’s website: http://www.dmburton.com
She writes adult fiction as Diane Burton, where she combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction and romance into writing romantic fiction. Besides writing science fiction romance, she writes romantic suspense, and cozy mysteries.
For more info and excerpts from her books, visit Diane’s website: http://www.dianeburton.com
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What a lovely treasure, Diane! I love nativity scenes too of all kinds! Thanks for sharing.
Good luck and God's blessings with your new book and good luck to everyone who enters the contest!
Hope you enjoyed Diane's treasures, friends and that you'll drop by each week to see who's doing what on our blog.
Until next time, take care and God bless.