Missing Isaac Cover

Missing Isaac

MISSING ISAAC
by
VALERIE FRASER LUESSE
  Genre: Southern Fiction / Christian / Coming of Age
Publisher: Revell
Date of Publication: January 2, 2018
Number of Pages: 352

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Isaac believed in luck. But from Pete’s point of view, Isaac’s luck had all run out.When Pete McLean loses his father in the summer of 1962, his friend Isaac is one of the few people he can lean on. Though their worlds are as different as black and white, friendship knows no color. So when Isaac suddenly goes missing, Pete is determined to find out what happened—no matter what it costs him. His quest will lead him into parts of town that he knows only through rumors and introduce him to a girl who will change his life. What they discover together will change the small Southern town of Glory, Alabama—forever.

With vivid descriptions, palpable atmosphere, and unforgettable characters, debut novelist Valerie Fraser Luesse breathes life into the rural South of the 1960s—a place where ordinary people struggle to find their footing in a social landscape that is shifting beneath their feet.

PRAISE FOR MISSING ISAAC: 
“Valerie Fraser Luesse’s beautiful story reveals the human heart that always beats beneath the headlines. In the process, she movingly illuminates not only the spirit of a special region but the soul of every human being who ever dared to care. Missing Isaac will break—and then heal—your heart.” 
J. I. Baker, journalist and author of The Empty Glass 
“Welcome debut novelist Valerie Fraser Luesse to the legions of gifted Southern writers before her. Missing Isaac is the first of what we hope will be many more tales from this talented writer.”—Nancy Dorman-Hickson, coauthor of Diplomacy and Diamonds and a former editor for Progressive Farmer and Southern Living magazines
“Valerie Luesse has an ear for dialogue, an eye for detail, and a profound gift for storytelling. She breathes life into these colorful Southern characters and this quirky Alabama town from the first page.” 
Sid Evans, editor-in-chief of Southern Living magazine
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Missing Isaac swallowed me whole!  I was so taken with the story that it was hard to put down.  The last two nights, I was up until 4:00 a.m. turning pages because I didn’t want to stop.  That’s how much I enjoyed it!

What Makes Missing Isaac So Good?

I’ve struggled with putting my finger on what made this book so enjoyable to me.

Think of reading a story like driving a car.  Most times, when I get behind the wheel, I’m only interested in getting from point A to point B.  With Missing Isaac, I find myself driving down a country road, with so much contrasting beauty and disaster around me that I want to slow down, open the windows, and just savor the ride!

This story takes you back to a time before video games, before cell phones, before the “expectancy” that is so prevalent in today’s attitudes.  Set in the rural south of 1960s America, it demonstrates how people of very different castes can live together.  Missing Isaac speaks of profound friendships, innocent love – both found and lost, and romance that is not confined to a single generation, nor comprised of sex and heavy breathing.  It resonates with the power of values and family.

The storyline behind Missing Isaac is very good, yet the story itself would not be so fabulously engaging without the craft behind it.  I think even a mediocre author could make this story work, but the finesse of Valerie Fraser Luesse breathed life into these characters, and painted vivid colors over the settings.

There are stories out there that readers never forget.  This is one of them.

Technically Speaking

If I had to be critical of one thing in Missing Isaac, I wouldn’t have anything to write.

I don’t recall any SPAG errors.  Further, I consider the character arcs to be the epitome of character arcs!

I do wish a sequel was available, or at least in the works.  It seems to me that at least two sequels could come from this.  I would gladly buy them!

I received a free copy of this book from Lone Star Book Blog Tours in exchange for my honest review.
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Valerie Fraser Luesse is an award-winning writer and a senior travel editor for Southern Living. Specializing in stories about unique pockets of Southern culture, Luesse has published major pieces on the Gulf Coast, the Mississippi Delta, Louisiana’s Acadian Prairie, and the Outer Banks of North Carolina. She lives in Alabama.
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GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
Grand Prize: Print Copy of Missing Isaac, Print Copy of Southern Living Annual Recipes 2017, Handmade Leather Journal (9“x5”); 2ND PRIZE: Copy of Missing Isaac + $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card; 3RD PRIZE: Copy of Missing Isaac + $10 Starbucks Gift Card
January 2-January 11, 2018
(U.S. Only)

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Author Interview
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1/5/18
Excerpt
1/6/18
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Guest Post
1/8/18
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Scrapbook Page
1/10/18
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1/11/18
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