Friday, October 21, 2011

A Christmas Journey Home by Kathi Macias

 Unfortunately, we are doing a spotlight on this book today.  Somehow in the hustle and bustle of summer when this book was posted for review my name didn't get on the list for this tour.  I was so disappointed a few weeks ago when the tour coordinator explained it to me after I inquired as to when the book would arrive.  I graciously said that was ok and I understood and I would still do a spotlight on the book because Kathi is one of my favorite authors.  There aren't too many books that I endorse without reading, but I've been reading Kathi's books since 2008 and so I feel comfortable with endorsing this book without reading it first.  I have never met Kathi, expect through email, but I love her books.  Through my inquiry of trying to find out where the review book was, I found out I will get a copy but just not in time for posting my review with the tour.  So you have something to look forward to in the future.  My review on the book.  Now with on further ado here is the book tour....
During Isabella Alcantara’s seventh month of pregnancy, her parents and siblings are murdered in gang- and drug-related violence, simply because their home was targeted by mistake. Isabella knows she was spared only because she now lives in a different location, but she knows too that the same thing could easily happen to her and her husband, Francisco. When her grandfather offers to hire a “coyote” to bring them across the border to America, she agrees. But Francisco and Isabella are abandoned by the coyote and left to die. Francisco then valiantly sacrifices himself to get Isabella to safety. Homeless, nearly penniless, pregnant, and alone, Isabella determines to find a way to honor her promise to her beloved husband.

Living on one of the smaller spreads along the Arizona border, Miriam Nelson becomes furious with God and turns from her faith when her border patrol agent husband, David, is killed in a skirmish with drug smugglers. Though her mother and young son do their best to woo her back from the anger and bitterness that have overtaken her, they make little headway.

Two widows—one driven by fear and a promise, the other by bitterness and revenge—must make their journeys along different pathways, but with the same destination: a barn fullA Christmas Journey Home coverof animals that stands waiting for them on Christmas Eve. Forced to face their personal demons, Isabella and Miriam soon discover a common yearning that will bind them together in a most miraculous way.

Isabella shivered, her teeth chattering as she huddled against the frigid night air, doing her best to burrow her backside into Francisco’s embrace. How could her esposo sleep in such harsh conditions? She and her husband had not eaten in nearly three days, they were almost out of water, and now she felt as if they would surely freeze to death before morning. And yet his even breathing, blowing warm against the back of her neck, assured her that her beloved had indeed escaped their dilemma for at least a few hours.
Isabella wished she could do the same. During the daylight hours, when her feet burned with each tortuous step, she imagined that she could fall asleep in an instant if given half the chance. But when the desert sun, still hot in mid-autumn, finally sank below the flat, dismal horizon and the night winds blew mercilessly upon them, sleep eluded her. True, Francisco did everything he could to protect her from the elements, even using his body to shield her as they sought meager shelter under a small rock overhang or behind a sand dune, but it was never enough. They were going to die; she was sure of it. She and her husband of eleven months would perish in the middle of the Arizona desert, with only the scavengers to dispose of their remains.
A slight flutter in her stomach reminded her that death would come to three of them, not just two. The baby that had been growing in her stomach for seven months and that less than a week earlier had kicked with strength and determination now grew weaker by the day.
Perhaps it is best, she told herself. It was a foolish dream to think we could escape the violence and poverty of our home country and find a new life here, north of the border. My abuelo meant well, but we should never have listened to him…should never have taken his money and given it to the coyote….
The ominous glare of the coyote, the man who had promised to take them safely to the United States but who instead had stolen their money and left them to die in the desert, danced through her memory, but she pushed it aside. Instead she focused on the beloved face of her grandfather, her abuelo, and fought the hot tears that stung her eyes as she wished yet again that she and Francisco were back in Don Alfredo’s casita, sharing a simple meal of tortillas and frijoles with the leathery-skinned old man Isabella had adored since she was a tiny girl.
Despite her discomfort, the memory of her abuelo’s face brought a smile to her lips, as she snuggled closer into her esposo’s embrace. But then another memory, the horror of what had driven Don Alfredo to the point of pleading with them to flee across the border, wiped away her smile and once again brought tears to Isabella’s weary eyes.

Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored more than 30 books and ghostwritten several others. A former newspaper columnist and string reporter, Kathi has taught creative and business writing in various venues and has been a guest on many radio and television programs. Kathi is a popular speaker at churches, women’s clubs and retreats, and writers’ conferences, and won the 2008 Member of the Year award from AWSA (Advanced Writers and Speakers Association). Kathi “Easy Writer” Macias lives in Homeland, CA, with her husband, Al, where the two of them spend their free time buzzing around in their new ride: Al’s 2005 sunburst orange Corvette. Here latest releases are Deliver Me From Evil and A Christmas Journey Home.

You can find out more about Kathi’s writing and speaking at

A copy of this book was provided for  this review by Pump up your Book tours


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