Friday, July 31, 2015

Bonus Scene 8 - The Restorer's Son


The Restorer's Son Bonus Scene

In which Linette sees Kieran's encounter with the One

After Chapter 28


            The mist brushed my skin, soaked into my pores, breathed comfort and courage into my heart. I’d felt this tangible sign of the One’s presence before, but only during Feast Day gatherings, as I joined my voice with songkeeepers and musicians and thousands of people filling the floor of the tower.

           Today, one lone man knelt beneath the towering emptiness and carried on a silent conversation with the Maker of the world. As a timid onlooker, I was shocked that the One’s holy love touched me as well. The One was doing something I hadn’t known Him to do before. Instead of puzzling over the why, I savored Him. Every song I’d ever sung swirled in my mind in rich harmony, lifting my heart higher and higher. Tears poured down my face and I welcomed His touch. 

            When the mist lifted, Kieran still didn’t move. Had the encounter overwhelmed him? Was he all right? I eased closer and looked up at the windows far above us. The sky was a deep gray.

            “Kieran, it’s getting dark.” I touched his back, loathe to disturb his communion with the One.

            He looked up, wonder and purpose lighting his face. “Did you see Him, too?”

            I nodded. I would have loved to talk about the experience together, but night was too close and I needed to return to the songkeeper lodge. Once I was sure he was all right, I turned to leave.

            “Wait. One thing. If I can get the Council to approve it, do you think any of the songkeepers would be willing to go to Hazor to teach the Verses to the people there?”

            I frowned. This was the purpose the One had shared with Kieran? Of all the hopes I had for the One to protect our clans, sending our Restorer to our enemy would never have entered my mind. 

            “It’s not my idea,” he said, easing to his feet. 

            What could I say? The Council would never allow it. And what did his question truly mean? Was he asking my general opinion? Whether I knew of some bold songkeeper who would join him on that mission? Or did he specifically wonder if I would volunteer?

            I glanced up at the tower’s highest white stones, feeling smaller than usual. Holy One, is that why You allowed me this touch of Your strength? Is this something You might want of me? 

            “Yes, if it’s something the One is asking for and if the Council approves it, I’m sure at least one songkeeper would travel to Hazor.” I slipped away before I could take back the words. Would Kieran think I was willing to leave the clans? Did I want him to understand my answer that way?

            The streets were almost deserted so close to nightfall. Yet when I reached the songkeeper lodge, I hesitated outside the door. I couldn’t bring myself to go inside yet and enter the conversation around a warm meal, the chatter, the good-natured arguments about tempos for a song we had rehearsed that day. I needed time alone to absorb what I’d seen. 

            Since Dylan’s death, I’d spent as much time as possible in the Lyric tower. After Lukyan was injured, I was needed more in Braide Wood, yet whenever I could, I returned to the tower. If I could have rolled out a pallet in the corner of the tower, I would never have left.

            As Kieran talked to the One today, I’d felt the One as close as a father holding his toddler’s hands and guiding each wobbly step.

            The light that glowed in Kieran’s face made me marvel—perhaps even stirred jealously. I’d served the One all my life and yearned for the new fresh passion Kieran showed. He had the courage to answer, “Yes,” no matter what the One asked of him.

            When Dylan died, I thought the pain, the questions, the wrenching emptiness would destroy me. Still, I clung to my will to obey, to serve, to go through the motions no matter how much of my joy was stripped away. I didn’t reject the One. I continued to seek Him. But so much of my service felt lifeless and devoid of hope. 

I rested my forehead against the lodge door. Maybe that was precisely why the One had allowed me to witness His interaction with Kieran today. To restore my initial passion. To rebuild my faith. To coax me to live a life of, “Yes.”


You can find more of the story in The Restorer's Son


Sharon Hinck

Wednesday, July 29, 2015


Heavenly Father, my heart swells with awe at the beauty of what You have created, and beats with gratitude that You could love a child like me. Help my life bring You glory. Amen.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

A Sword of Lyric Party

Super-fan Nina Ruth hosted a party to celebrate the release of The Deliverer.

Swords and cloaks were the dress code.

The menu included ground caradoc sauteed with wild Braide Wood vegetables; lehkan cream & fermented orberry; Rendor wild greens; Clavo; and Hazor Delight for dessert.

The table games were lit by a light trivet. Thanks to Nina Ruth, Jen, and Kristi for sharing their photos of a fun evening through the portal.

If you want to host a fun evening, download the free Sword of Lyric Party Planner at my website.

Monday, July 27, 2015


Today I turned to Nehemiah for encouragement. So much of his struggle
resonates with me. Especially chapter 4, verse 10. "The strength of the
laborers is giving out, and there is so much rubble that we cannot rebuild
the wall."

Do you ever feel like there's just too much rubble in the way?

Nehemiah started out strong. He rebuilt the wall to half its height, "for
the people worked with all their heart."

But Sanballat and his pals continued to jeer, to mock, and to plot against
Nehemiah and the other people in Jerusalem, making the job that much more

I hear Sanballat's echoes almost every day. "What are those feeble Jews
doing? . . . Will they finish in a day? Can they bring the stones back to
life from those heaps of rubble--burned as they are?"

Nehemiah spoke a response to the weary builders. "Don't be afraid of them.
Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers,
your sons and your daughters, your wives and your homes."

A friend once reminded me that if a theme in one of my books touches
someone's heart and encourages them, my work has value. She helped me
realize that in my writing work I am "fighting for my brothers, sons,
daughters..." I want to offer stories that draw eyes to God. Just as
Nehemiah issued a call to courage by saying "remember the Lord," I want my
stories to reflect and remember the Lord - His love, His grace, His

Nehemiah doesn't throw his words out flippantly. Sweat ran into his eyes,
blisters grated his hands as he lifted the next brick, and threats
continued to ring in the air. "Those who carried materials did their work
with one hand and held a weapon in the other." Not optimal working

Whatever building or repairing God has called us to, the key to getting
through the times of overwhelming discouragement are found in Nehemiah's
clarion words. "Remember the Lord."

Maybe I CAN write one more paragraph today, after all.

Sharon Hinck

Saturday, July 25, 2015

The Experience of a Book

"All good books are alike in that they are truer than if they had really happened and after you are finished reading one you will feel that all that happened to you and afterwards it all belongs to you; the good and the bad, the ecstasy, the remorse and sorrow, the people and the places and how the weather was." - Ernest Hemingway

Friday, July 24, 2015

Bonus Scene 7 - The Restorer's Son


The Restorer's Son - Bonus Scene
In which Zarek anticipates sparring with Kieran

After Chapter 25


            My sword danced, perfectly balanced in my grip. The young soldier across from me responded with such a timid thrust that I barely kept from decapitating him. “Attack me! Stop sniveling.”

            He swung with more vigor, but still kept too much distance to be a threat. How could I ever strengthen my skills when every sparring partner feared accidentally nicking the king?

            My mood darkened, and I advanced on the boy. One of my generals told me this lieutenant was the best swordsman he’d seen in years, but so far he’d acted like a skittish lehken colt. Before I could mount an attack that would force a stronger response, a messenger skidded to a stop in the doorway of the practice hall.

            “Excuse me. Sorry to interrupt, but you asked for a report . . . ” The skinny boy wrung his hands and shifted from foot to foot. More sniveling.

            I sheathed my sword and waved him into the room. “It’s all right. We hadn’t begun yet.”

            The lieutenant, already covered in a sheen of sweat, turned a shade paler and wiped his forehead. The messenger took a few cautious steps into the room.

            “The prison guard reports that Kieran interviewed the woman and she collapsed. The practitioner was summoned, and she recovered.”

            My brows rose. I’d sent Kieran to question the newest trespassers from Braide Wood, not kill them. 

            I sighed and sank onto a nearby bench. “You’re dismissed,” I told the young lieutenant. He gave a stiff bow and half ran from the room. I turned to the messenger. “Tell the prison chief I need a more detailed report. Keep me informed. Oh, and tell my aide I want some orberry wine.”

            The messenger scampered off, and after murmured words outside the door, I enjoyed a few moments of blissful isolation to think. Had I been wrong to trust Kieran with this small job? Did he plan to silence the prisoners because they had information he wanted to keep from me?

            Trust was never a wise plan. My grandfather had been murdered by his most trusted general, who was then killed by my father when he took the throne. I’d fended off several failed coups since becoming king. Kept me alert.

            Maybe I was slipping.

            Though I wouldn’t admit it to anyone, protecting my position every moment of every day created a deep loneliness that even a few convenient temple girls couldn’t chase away. My recent conversations with Kieran were a welcome distraction, and the strange Verses he recited stirred interest in me that I hadn’t felt in years. He’d had a chance to kill me and hadn’t taken it. Still, I knew better than to trust him.

            Kieran had been a welcome diversion and a good Perish opponent, but the things he spoke of had added new complications to my life. Time to get my focus back on protecting my throne. Perhaps I would need to interview the new prisoners myself—as if I didn’t have enough to do with Bezreth pressuring me to reopen the temples, the generals scheming, and enemies threatening every border. 

I drew my sword and indulged in a few patterns, then reluctantly sheathed it. I really needed a good session of sparring. A smile stretched my lips. Perhaps Kieran would be an interesting opponent and far less overcautious than any of my soldiers. My mood lightened as I left the hall and headed toward my quarters.

You can find more of the story in The Restorer's Son.


Thursday, July 23, 2015

The Bridge

"For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus," I Timothy 2:5 (ESV)

Lord Jesus, thank you for being our bridge, for restoring our communion with the Father. Help us walk with You today. Guide our steps and let Your light shine in our hearts. Amen.

Sharon Hinck

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

New Release Today!

Today is the day! The Deliverer is out - the newest book in the award-winning Sword of Lyric series. Please use the buttons below this post to share the news. Thanks for helping me spread the word. 

A lost songkeeper must lead her people to a long awaited Deliverer

Eager to serve the One, a young songkeeper travels to the dark and foreign nation of Hazor, but her confusing, rough-edged companion has lost his Restorer gifts. As danger rises against them both, she loses her freedom, her memories, and her hope. Now even the very music of her soul is threatened. 

In our world, Susan Mitchell no longer feels at home in the carpool lane. Burdened by the unhealed scars from her trips through the portal, she fights to suppress her worry about her son, who remains out of contact in Lyric. But when a mysterious message hints Jake is in danger, she and her husband are swept away—to the place they least expect.

Clan rebellions. Lost Restorers. Has the One turned away, or will the face of the Deliverer bring light to the darkness?"

Ask for the book at your local bookstore, or order it online today.


Monday, July 20, 2015

Summer News Tomorrow

My free summer e-zine goes out tomorrow to my Book Buddy subscribers. If you'd like to receive it in your email, just sign up


It's easy, and I won't share your email with anyone.
And you'll never miss out on special updates, contests, or giveaways.

Sharon Hinck

Saturday, July 18, 2015


I have sought your face with all my heart;
    be gracious to me according to your promise. Psalm 119:58 (NIV)

Lord, thank you for promising that when we seek, we will find. Thank you for wanting to be found by us. Reveal new things about Your nature today. Help us see more of Your grace. Amen.

(Feel free to share this using any of the buttons below the post)

Friday, July 17, 2015

Bonus Scene 6 - The Restorer's Son

The Restorer's Son Bonus Scene

In which Nolan faces a desperate choice.

After Chapter 19


            I tugged my mother’s arm, half supporting her and half dragging her away from the king’s judgment room.

            “Wait,” she said breathlessly. “We should help him.”

            “Who? What are you talking about?” We needed to get out of the palace before another whim changed Zarek’s mind.

            “Kieran. Maybe there is something we could do to—”

            “Mother. Weren’t you listening? The king ordered our deaths. It would be suicide to interrupt again.” I pulled her along and she didn’t have the physical strength to resist.

            She looked back over her shoulder. “But he saved us. We have to try to help him.”

            Rage burned from the core of my being and filled my chest. “Saved us? He’s the reason I was charged with treason. And Zarek nearly had you killed, too. Kieran deserves whatever he gets. Now let’s go!”

            She sagged and I wrapped an arm around her waist. I barely felt the weight of her arm across my shoulders as we raced along crooked hallways and out the main entrance. “Almost home,” I whispered. After a few more streets and a turn down a littered alley, our broken doorway promised refuge. Her legs barely supported her long enough to get inside. I settled her on her pallet and brought water and a new drug patch. She gave me a weak smile and closed her eyes.

            Watching her surrender to sleep stirred my greatest fear: one day I’d see her close her eyes for the last time. No one recovered from Rammelite fever. Her effort to get to the palace and confront the king had probably stolen even more of her limited time. I knew I should feel grateful. She’d saved my life. But for some reason I also felt angry that she’d risked herself.

            I collapsed into our one chair and stretched my feet out, rubbing my wrists which still remembered the manacles. No, I wasn’t angry at her.

            My hand traveled across my forearm. Yesterday, raw broken skin seared with pain at the slightest touch. Now the skin was whole. Even bruises had disappeared. What evil arts did Kieran know that gave him that sort of power? I shivered and jumped out of the chair, pacing our small common room.

            Most of the Braide Wood barbarians had been predictable—clumsy, brutal enemies acting just as I expected. But Kieran had touched a deeper terror in me. I’d been desperate to escape him and thrilled when I succeeded. I’d even indulged some pride as I raced back to Hazor, thinking of the stories I’d tell the other messengers. I’d survived being a prisoner of our enemies, escaped, and brought valuable information for our army . . . or so I’d thought.

            Seeing him in chains in the Hazor cell did little to ease my fear of Kieran. He was a dangerous enemy full of trickery and deceit.

            Why had he used his skill at manipulation to convince the king to free me? Did he really feel remorse? He’d told the king he regretted what he’d done to me. Not likely. He was plotting some other scheme. 

            My mother stirred. She fought hard to hide her pain, but in her sleep, quiet groans escaped. I wanted nothing more than to get us both out of the city and far from all the danger, but she couldn’t travel. For now, I could only keep her comfortable.

I knelt beside her pallet, blotting away the sheen of feverish sweat from my mother’s face. The hollows of her cheeks were deeper than when I’d left for Morsal Plains with the army. I stood and shook out my arms, the weight of chains still lingering. If I ventured out to the markets, perhaps I could beg, borrow, or steal a bit of dried caradoc and make a broth. I wanted to make her better. Every part of me screamed in frustration because I couldn’t. But at least I could get some food into her. With one more worried glance at my mother, I slipped out the door.

You can find more of the story in The Restorer's Son.


Thursday, July 16, 2015

Sneak Peek - The Deliverer Morning Prayer

“As my eyes first open, may I open my heart to the One who painted first light across the darkness and allows me to see.”  
-- Kendra's childhood morning prayer in The Deliverer by Sharon Hinck

Feel free to share this using any of the buttons below the post.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

How Are You?

Recent phone conversation with my granddaughter.

"Hi, grandma."

"Hi, sweetie! How are you?"

Long pause

I try again. "How are you?"

"Um.... I'm tall!"

Guess she told me.

Sharon Hinck

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Finding Words

Today I'm guest-blogging at Seriously Write, about why it took me seven years to write my new book. Stop by for a visit!

Sharon Hinck
author of The Deliverer

Friday, July 10, 2015

Bonus Scene 5 - The Restorer's Son


The Restorer's Son - Bonus Scene

In which Tristan mulls the consequences of sending Kieran away.

After Chapter 15


            I stormed down the path, even angrier than I’d been climbing up to the clearing a short time before. I’d devoted my life to protecting my family and my clan. Now my family was in more danger than ever. Tag had been a pest as a kid sister, but even though I never admitted it to her, her bright chatter had a way of lifting my heart. She trusted everyone, was game to take any dare, and forgave easily. The picture of her being banished--cast from the clans, separated from her children--twisted a hollow pain in my chest. All because of Kieran.

            I’d done the right thing. Sending him away was the only option. He wouldn’t listen to reason, wouldn’t take responsibility for the trouble he caused.

            The ache under my ribs sank lower, a wrenching, bitter, empty throb. All I could do now was limit the harm. Kieran should appreciate that. It was one of his pragmatic theories he liked to spout: when you can’t salvage a situation, at least forestall more damage. If he stayed in the clans with his status as an outcast, he put more innocent people—more of my family—in danger.

            I batted at a low-hanging branch, hitting it so hard it snapped. Holy One, he’s supposed to help us. Why make him a Restorer when he doesn’t acknowledge You and won’t accept his role? 

            Slowing my steps, I gathered my breath. Was I really as angry at the One as I was at Kieran? The thought frightened me. The songkeepers said we could speak honestly to the One, that He knew our hearts anyway. But even when Kendra was lost to Rhusican poison, I’d focused my anger on the enemy, never against the One. 

            My feet had automatically carried me toward home, but as I drew close, I spotted Kendra. Her slim figure had begun to show a subtle roundness. Even her face seemed softer with the hints of motherhood. Her long dark hair fell free behind her as she relaxed in a chair on the porch, her eyes closed. I wanted to run to her, bury my fingers in her rich hair, feel her breath against my face, taste her lips that could erase every painful thought from my mind. 

            Instead I backed into the woods and headed toward the lehken plateau. I couldn’t face her. Once I told her that I’d send Kieran away, could she forgive me? Would things ever be the same between us again?
You can read more of the story in The Restorer's Son.

Sharon Hinck

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Sneak Peek - Facing Big Problems

"Let’s walk outside. When we face a big problem, it helps to look at the big world the One has formed, to remind ourselves of His capability." Lukyan in The Deliverer by Sharon Hinck

(Feel free to share this post using the buttons below)

Monday, July 06, 2015

Sunlight and Storms

Years ago, I took this photo of a storm blowing past in Manasota Key, Florida. A beautiful sunset had begun to color the world. Then clouds banked in like a dark hand wiping across the sky. Soon after, the storm traveled onward and the threat disappeared down the coast.

Sometimes my life holds the contrast of breath-taking sunsets and frightening storm clouds. The wind whips my hair and if I stare into the dark, it seems to absorb the entire known world. Yet if I wait, it blows over and vibrant colors return, and I wonder what had me so frightened.

Our lives take courage. Courage to see both beauty and darkness. Courage to stand on the shore and wait for the clouds to pass.

Lord, help us all today. Give us courage to serve you in our roles as parents, waiters, managers, receptionists, salespeople, artists, singers, ministers, construction workers. Everywhere we walk on this planet we see reminders of the amazing beauty of your creation, as well as the devastating clouds of our fall and rebellion. Thank you that the storms are temporary and your grace and love are eternal. Amen.

(Feel free to share this post using any of the buttons below)

Sunday, July 05, 2015

So Great a Love

"For as high as the heavens are above the earth,    so great is his love for those who fear him." Psalm 103:11 (NIV)

Lord, You beckon us to look up, to look beyond, to embrace the knowledge of how complete and boundless is Your love. May that awareness strengthen us for the less-than-ethereal challenges of our pilgrimage on this earth. Amen.

(Feel free to share this verse and prayer by using any of the buttons below the post)

Saturday, July 04, 2015

Remarkable Breakfast

"Jesus said to them, 'Come and have breakfast.' None of the disciples dared ask him, 'Who are you?' They knew it was the Lord." John 21:12

The Gospel of John recounts a beautiful reprise of previous fishing experiences with His disciples. After His resurrection, Jesus directs their catch and then serves them breakfast. 

Lord, when You provide my nourishment today, let my heart rejoice in knowing it is You who grants every blessing. Amen.

Friday, July 03, 2015

Bonus Scene 4 - The Restorer's Son


The Restorer's Son - Bonus Scene

In which Payton and Skyler work to save Morsal Plain

After Chapter 12


            The residue of poison tinged the dead crops a sickly yellow. The burning smoke was long gone, but the reek clung to my clothes and seeped into my skin as I worked my way along the rows of what had once been fertile farmland. Anger drove my hoe deep into the ground, and I turned over a strip of damaged plants from the edge of a section that had been spared. Protecting the remaining plants was our first priority. Susan and the guardians had saved perhaps a third of the crop. Even with careful rationing, the months ahead would be brutal.

Across the wide expanse of Morsal Plain, other Braide Wood farmers—men, women, and children—worked to remove the ruined grain. Shock and dismay had given way to determination, fueled by the improbable victory our guardians had won over Hazor. We were alive. We still held our clan. So while there was strength in our bodies, we could work the land and survive.

A few rows away, Skyler straightened and rubbed his back. Strange transtechs tools weighted down his belt, and he held up several plasteen tubes with various liquids. “I suspected an organic toxin. You know there’s good reason to believe the Kahlarean venblades use the venom from a living creature. My guess is rizzid, but of course no one knows. Anyway, we can only guess at what the Hazorites might have extracted. The chemical profile isn’t making sense. If I could figure out what it was made from, I might find a way to neutralize the effects more quickly.” He rubbed his forehead, pushing dirt into the creases of his frown lines. 

I hadn’t heard so many words from Skyler in the past six seasons combined, and I wasn’t sure if they were addressed to me. Should I answer? Offer encouragement or thanks for this rare participation in the problems of the clan? Or would that distract him and send him stomping off?

He poured some red liquid into one of the tubes and it turned yellow. He touched it with a small buzzing tool that looked like a narrow signaler and it turned green. “No, no, no.” He squatted down and scooped up another bit of earth, muttering to himself. 

Best to leave him alone. He was clearly talking to himself. At Tara’s urging, I’d stopped by his solitary cabin each season over the years, only to suffer the sting of his bitter words. Years of solitude had only solidified his resentment for everyone else in the clan. Still, he was here now. That was something. 

I used the hem of my tunic to blot sweat from my face and rubbed my callused hands together before resuming my grip on the hoe. 

Hours later, Skyler was still collecting samples, mumbling to himself, and generally ignoring everyone else. We’d protected a small section of young grain from the poisoned earth nearby. How long would it take for the damaged ground to be safe for new plantings? Would there be years of hunger ahead?

My eyes traveled to the forested hill leading to our clan homes. The soft collar of light above the tree line had deepened. “Time to head home,” I called to the families working nearby. We gathered our tools and hiked toward the woods. The cool scent of resin soothed me, as did turning my back on the ugly, scarred fields. The One had saved our clan. He certainly wouldn’t leave us to starve. If our crops were small for a while, we’d forage and hunt. My shoulders lightened and I picked up my pace. Tara would have a spicy soup waiting tonight. Warmth filled my belly . . . more from the thought of her than the soup. 

She’d spiced my life in countless ways during our years together, and I kept discovering new sides to her. She was a nurturing mother and grandmother, yet she’d taken all the recent dangers in stride. She’d also torn a strip out of Kieran and Tristan when she learned they’d tricked Nolan into escaping back to Hazor. I grinned at the memory of her fury over that incident. 

Now that all the guests had left, our home had been unusually quiet. Talia and Gareth were off visiting friends, and Tristan and Kendra were as preoccupied as newlyweds. My grin deepened. Perhaps Tara and I could take advantage of the extra quiet tonight. 

You can find more of the story in The Restorer's Son.


Thursday, July 02, 2015

Sneak Peek - The Deliverer

"Loss and joy, forgetting and remembering, doubt and certainty. Through it all, the rich music of the One’s love had carried me." -- Linette in The Deliverer by Sharon Hinck


Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Utter the Unutterable

"As Christians, we constantly struggle to utter the unutterable. We long to share concepts beyond our human ability to understand--the transcendence of God's holiness, the potency of forgiveness, the depth of God's love for us. Fiction helps us find ways to express those truths of magnitude because it is relatable, symbolic, and engages the emotion--qualities that make it a vital art form." -- Sharon Hinck in A Novel Idea

(Feel free to share this post using any of the buttons below)