Letters from the Fire, a novel I wrote with my now husband a century ago — well, in 1999 — has been available as an e-book on Kindle for some time. This morning it became available on Smashwords also.
When the paperback was first published in New Zealand, it not only sold out, it got some great reviews and gathered more than 100 enthusiastic comments on the book’s website. The e-book version hasn’t elicited anything like that, but it did recently get an excellent review on Yahoo from Davida Chazan.
Among other things, Davida said “this novel is a breakthrough of how to write stories for the Internet age. The fact that the bombing of [Yugoslavia] is long over, doesn’t mean that we can’t imagine something similar happening with other wars across the world. The Internet has made this globe a much smaller place and this book shows just how close we can become, despite the distances between us. I couldn’t give it less than a full five stars and highly recommend it.”
You can read her wholereview of Letters from the Fire here
Here is an excerpt from the novel’s foreword:
In the dying days of the last century – the country of my birth was attacked. The bombing campaign cost lives, and cost me pieces of my childhood, as the things I had known and grown up with vanished before my eyes. Close members of my own family were driven away into foreign lands as refugees. Places I had loved twisted in flames.
And yet somehow the Western world – ignorant and driven by propaganda – screamed that it was all deserved. The few voices that said the attack was unjust, unjustified, and undeserved were stifled, muffled, gagged, driven away, shouted down.
I was heartsick, angry, and appalled — but in this darkest hour, a man who had been courting me on the Internet made a suggestion that offered me salvation: “Use your strength, use your passion, and tell the other side of the story,” R.A. (Deck) Deckert said.
So was born ‘Letters from the Fire,’ a modern epistolary novel told in emails between two characters, Dave and Sasha, during the fury of the war.
I was living in New Zealand at this time and Deck was living in Florida, USA. We wrote the book together, literally around the clock, because his day was my night and vice versa. I would write a character-penned email as Sasha, and go to bed. At the same time he would be getting up, reading that particular day’s communication, and replying as Dave, and then he’d go to bed. I’d get up, find the reply and answer him… and so it went.
… The book was written at white heat, handed to the publisher and rushed into production. It was on the shelves in New Zealand less than six months after we had begun it.
The lives of Dave and Shasha took unexpected turns in the midst of the chaos of war. We, their creators, forged a shared existence that came out of the Letters from the Fire. In 2000, a year after the events events depicted in this book, we were married.
This is a tale of power and passion, and above all, a testament of how love came through the flames and was made stronger for the ordeal. And Deck and I – and through us Dave and Sasha – give the story to you as our gift.