Blindsided Prophet by Sonja Lewis
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Author of ‘The Barrenness’ unveils a fascinating tale of prophecy in her eagerly-anticipated second novel; a dark, psychological fiction story.
“Daughter, you have given birth to a child who will see many things beyond what the rest of us see.’’
1980 was the year of an unforgettable tragedy in Coffee, a small town in Georgia, when a mass killing at a church claimed the lives of twelve innocent people. Fourteen-year-old prophet Isaiah Brown, failed to predict the massacre that took the lives of his beloved mother and grandfather. Traumatized and inconsolable, young Isaiah fled the scene, disappearing into a woods close by, where he went blind. Fifteen years later, at God’s bidding, Isaiah must return to Coffee, to repent and free himself from the years of guilt he has endured. God has entrusted him with the knowledge that will save the people of Coffee from an even worse trauma than they encountered in 1980.
Days before he is due back in the town where he was an outcast for so many years, he experiences a vision from the past; he sees his mother and father’s forbidden love-story and his miraculous birth. He goes ahead with his trip back to Coffee, where he is faced with a town that has been unable to move on from the nightmare of the 1980 devastation. Visions continue to haunt him; not only from his family’s past, but also from the town’s past. Soon he learns the shocking and inconceivable secret that has been hidden from him. Isaiah knows what he has been sent to do but he starts to defy his own nature, whilst falling for the reckless Lucky Lee, and he ultimately begins to question whether he can remain a prophet.
Will he be blindsided by the discovery about his past and his love for Lucky Lee? Or will he be able to prevent the impending tragedy?
The Blindsided Prophet explores thinking at the deepest level and whether we have a say in shaping our thoughts, ideas and beliefs, or whether we are at God’s mercy. The idea that we must take responsibility for our thoughts and actions is a powerful theme. The Blindsided Prophet employs science and religion, while not mutually exclusive, to unravel themes of prophecy, incest, pain and love. Sonja Lewis conducted extensive biblical and scientific research while writing the book, and drew inspiration from a number of non-fiction authors including Joseph Murphy and Robert Waggoner as well as the fiction works of Tony Morrison and Gloria Naylor.
About the Author: Sonja Lewis is a former newspaper journalist for The Albany Herald, in Georgia USA. Now living in Battersea, London, Sonja is a full time writer. She blogs at www.sonjalewis.com and also for the Huffington Post www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/ sonja-lewis When Lewis moved to London fifteen years ago she set up and managed a successful communications consultancy, where she worked with high profile clients including The Royal National Institute for the Blind. She also freelanced for The Guardian and studied for an MA degree in journalism.
Lewis was later accepted on to a range of writing courses with the Arvon Foundation where she met her mentor Jacob Ross, who later became heavily involved in the proofreading and editing process of her novels. Lewis’ first novel The Barrenness was incredibly well received, appearing in The Voice, and WM Magazine in the UK, US national media including CNN, Black Enterprise and The Tom Joyner Morning Show along with a host of regional media across Canada and the US.
The Blindsided Prophet by Sonja Lewis is available now as an eBook . It is also available in paperback here. (published by Prymus Publications). View the book trailer here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Srbhe-OKYZ8
Intimate Conversation with Sonja Lewis
Author of The Barrenness, Sonja Lewis has appeared on CNN and The Tom Joyner Morning Show. She has also been featured in Black Enterprise, and in the media in Canada and the United Kingdom. A former reporter for The Albany Herald (Georgia), Sonja has also written for British newspaper The Guardian. Currently, she writes a blog for the Huffington Post, UK. A member of the Society of Authors, Sonja lives in London with her husband, Paul.
BPM: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
Yes, when I was a girl I loved nothing more than to make up stories for my youngest sister, though I didn’t write them down. I named the characters, described them and acted them out. When I think back, I absolutely loved the free thinking, no rules just creativity. My first real writing assignment came with a state-wide contest when I was a tween. What a tree means to me? I won and have been hooked since.
BPM: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of your family.
My church, the Spring Creek Missionary Baptist Church, a small church in Leary, GA. There I gained confidence by writing the church history, speeches, the weekly announcements and very theatrically delivering these pieces. And wonderfully, the people embraced me, encouraged me, said I had something special even when I read in Sunday School.
BPM: What does growth mean to you?
I feel I’ve grown when I learn from a mistake or a challenge and move on, when I am able to take from the past, let it go; and abide in the present and imagine the future positively. That to me is exponential growth.
BPM: Introduce us to your book, The Blindsided Prophet, and the main characters. What makes each one special? Do you have any favorites?
The Blindsided Prophet is the story of a modern day prophet who is caught unawares by a tragic event when he is a teenager. This alters his life forever. Fifteen years later, at God’s bidding Isaiah Brown returns to Coffee, GA, to unravel the tragedy, make reparation and prevent an even worse tragedy.
The main character, Isaiah Brown, is probably my favorite because he is original. I don’t know anyone like him. Naturally, he had to come from somewhere so I must have drawn on characteristics of some of the world’s great people, some perhaps renown. In any case, he is unique. He is a modern-day prophet.
Also, I favor Mae Cook as she is so very much like many people I know—well meaning, good to the core, but gets it wrong a lot of times. At middle age, she learns valuable life lessons. Through Mae, we see that it is never too late to grow-up.
BPM: What drew you to tackle the questions or topics in The Blindsided Prophet?
My faith, I suppose is the short answer. I remember being called arrogant once by a young preacher when I talked of my own personal relationship with God. I wanted to show that faith is not just about religion, it is about dwelling/residing within yourself if you will. Deep within you meet God as and when you please. You just have to focus. There, you find the answers.
BPM: Does your faith or education inspire your writing?
Yes, my faith does. I think Christianity is misunderstood often but not just in non-Christian countries but right here at home. People are turned off by these people who profess to know this Christ but He doesn’t always show up in our attitudes, in the way we live etc…
With my first book a Christian radio announcer cancelled the interview at the last minute because she found profanity in the book. Sorry but there is profanity in life and I try to create a real picture, if you will. I totally respect that it was not the book for her and her audience, but I didn’t have a lot of time for her assumption that she had inside information with God that I didn’t have, and that she was living more purely than I, if you will. I somehow doubt it. But if she is, good for her but don’t judge.
BPM: Ultimately, what do you want readers to gain from your book?
A spell bounding read that stays with them for a very long time.
BPM: How do you feel about e-books vs print books?
I prefer print books to touch them, to smell them, to read them and I always will but e-book readers, particularly the Kindle, have a place in our world. I love being able to access endless books and take countless reads on holiday, the train, etc… But if I had to choose, I’d choose print books every time. Now my business sense says that might be the wrong choice, but it is what I think.
BPM: Do you think book sales are the only indicator of your success as a writer?
No, I don’t. I do think sales are a huge indicator, but for example, with my first novel, The Barrenness, I had a campaign that took the lid off a very important social issue—a woman being fulfilled without becoming a mother. One of my goals was to start a worldwide conversation about the topic. I’d like to think that I played a role in all the attention that subsequently came to the subject.
BPM: My writing offers the following legacy to future readers...
The legacy of taking responsibility for one’s own thoughts and learning how to find peace within through changes one’s thinking
Connect with Sonja at: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her website: www.sonjalewis.com
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