About the Author
Sharon Hart-Green's debut novel COME BACK FOR ME is a gripping story of trauma, loss, and the redemptive power of love set in the aftermath of World War II. It was chosen as the inaugural fiction offering of The New Jewish Press and was released on June 1, 2017.
Sharon received her PhD in Judaic Studies from Brandeis University and has taught Hebrew and Yiddish literature at the University of Toronto. Her first book NOT A SIMPLE STORY (Lexington Books) was a study of the work of Hebrew novelist S. Y. Agnon. Her second book, BRIDGING THE DIVIDE (Syracuse University Press), is a compilation of her translations of the Hebrew poems of Hava Pinhas-Cohen.
1. What is your favorite dessert? Anything chocolate.
2. What is your favorite beverage? My morning coffee
3. What is your favorite movie and/or TV show?
I love the classics. One of my favorites is “It Happened One Night”
4. Where is your favorite place to go on holiday?
Any place that has long sandy beaches
1. What did you want to be when you grew up? Did becoming an author ever cross your mind?
As a child, I was always drawing and painting, and I assumed that I would become an artist one day. But as I grew older, I was increasingly drawn to reading serious literature and ended up pursuing an academic career. It was only after teaching literature at the University of Toronto for many years that I realized that I wanted to write my own works of fiction, rather than merely teach the works of others. I guess I did pursue a career in art after all—just not visual art, but the art of crafting words on paper!
2. What authors do you enjoy? Do these authors inspire your own writing?
I like to read a wide variety of authors—from 19th century writers such as Jane Austen and Charles Dickens to modern writers such as Isaac Bashevis Singer and S. Y. Agnon. I don’t think any one particular writer has inspired me, although there is one thing that all my favourite writers have in common: great storytelling.
3. When you are not writing, what other 'hats" to you wear?
I’ve taught Hebrew and Yiddish literature at the University of Toronto for approximately 20 years, and have published two non-fiction books: Not a Simple Story about the Hebrew writer S.Y. Agnon; and Bridging the Divide which is a collection of my translations of the Hebrew poems of Hava Pinhas-Cohen.
Book Related Questions
1. What inspired the idea for the Come Back for Me?
The inspiration behind writing Come Back for Me is partly based on my childhood experiences. Despite growing up in a serene Toronto neighbourhood, I was haunted by the stories of war and loss that seemed to hover over the Jewish inhabitants of my leafy enclave. My best friend’s father had lost most of his family in Nazi concentration camps; my neighbour down the road had been hidden for four years in an Amsterdam closet; my father’s cousin had her arm brutally amputated while imprisoned during the war. Yet I was also perplexed by the fact that most of these people were somehow able to embrace life again, despite their losses. I wondered: how could they marry, raise children, build families and homes? How did they rediscover the ability to laugh? I wanted to find the answer to those questions.
2. What do you want readers to take away from reading Come Back for Me?
Unlike most novels about this dark period in Jewish history, Come Back for Me is ultimately a story of hope. Perhaps that is why the novel is also suitable for mature young readers, despite the fact that it was written for adults. My hope is that Come Back for Me will speak to readers of diverse backgrounds and religions since it is ultimately about the universal problem of human suffering and the possibility of healing.
3. What is your current WIP? What can you tell us about this project?
I am working on a new novel about a young man with mystical inclinations who is searching for love.
About the Author
Amanda Tero is a homeschool graduate who desires to provide God-honoring, family-friendly reading material. She has enjoyed writing since before ten years old, but it has only been since 2013 that she began seriously pursuing writing again – starting with some short stories that she wrote for her sisters as a gift. Her mom encouraged her to try selling the stories she published, and since then, she has begun actively writing short stories, novellas, and novels.
If something she has written draws an individual into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ, it is worth it!
1. What does your writing process look like?
It is more pantster with a slight lean toward planning. Usually I get an idea, write it down (typically on my phone notes app), pray about it for a little while (or a long time for some ideas!), do some research to make sure my idea could actually work, and then go from there! Being more pantster, I usually write a rough draft, send it to a couple of friends who are good with plot ideas, and then do a rewrite or two before it looks more like the final draft.
2. Do you enjoy book signings?
I haven’t done very many, but what I have done, yes I do enjoy. I personally like connecting with my readers, not just selling books.
3. When you are not writing, what other "hats" do you wear?
Well, writing is actually more of my hobby. ;) My other “hats” are big sister (I’m #5, but that’s of 12 kids, so I still have a lot of younger siblings that I tend to be second-mom to), piano teacher, violin teacher, book formatter, church pianist, and, Lord willing, in the fall, college music student.
4. What inspired the idea for Quest for Leviathan?
I was actually reading through the book of Job, not even searching for a story, when the thought crossed my mind, “A boy whose father was killed by Leviathan. He is angry at L, and he is angry at God—yet just like Job needed to realize the power of God, so does he.”
5. What did you as an author take away from writing Quest for Leviathan?
Once again, I was reminded that God’s timing is perfect. I wanted the story to be finished fall 2017 (I got the idea in June 2017). Lo and behold, it took a full year to get from conception to publication. But in so very many ways, I can see how the delay was just a gift from God. One of those blessings was the idea to get it illustrated. Had I published in the fall, I probably wouldn’t have considered getting it illustrated, as the idea didn’t come until January 2018.
6. What is your current WIP? What can you tell us about it?
My current WIP is “Finding Christmas Joy”—another short story which is nearing publication! This was one that I wrote the rough-draft for in December after watching a ton of Hallmark Christmas movies yet being sad because they just missed the meaning of Christmas. It’s about a girl who has been dumped by her fiancé and is finding a Christmas escape at Starlight Lodge. But, she finds much more than she was looking for. Look for it on Amazon.
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