I’m so excited to be a part of the tour for Sanctuary!
It’s October, the season for tricks or treats.
This was a treat for sure!
There’s so much to show you.
Read the early praise for Sanctuary. Watch the book trailers.
Check out the peek inside Sanctuary and enjoy the note from the author.
And enjoy my review.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!
Did I mention I had a lot to show you?!!!
ISBN-13 – 9781491072066
Title – Sanctuary
Author – Pauline Creeden
Pub Date – October 10, 2013 (Paperback)
September 30, 2013 (eBook pre-release)
Price – $9.99
“Left Behind for the Hunger Games Generation”
In a heart-racing thriller described as Falling Skies meets The Walking Dead, Jennie struggles to find a safe place for what’s left of her family. But it seems as though there is no place sacred, no place secure. First the aliens attacked the sun, making it dimmer, weaker, and half what it used to be. Then they attacked the water supply, killing one-third of Earth’s population with a bitter contaminate. And when they unleash a new terror on humankind, the victims will wish for death, but will not find it…When the world shatters to pieces around her, will Jennie find the strength she needs to keep going?
“Pauline Creeden managed to mix more genres into one book than I could possibly imagine. The overall concept, aliens attacking the earth, is straight out of Science Fiction, but then you throw in a few zombies and post-apocalyptic fiction with how the dead/sick humans are acting. Overall, the entire story was charged with the adrenaline and thrills of a suspense/thriller novel, but the mood was terrifyingly eerie like a Horror story. There was almost too much sensory information for my primitive human brain to handle. Still, all of these genres combined made for one unique and fascinating story. This kind of book is of the same flavor as The Hunger Games with its originality, which I really appreciated.” – Katelyn Hensel for Readers’ Favorite
“Sanctuary is a fast-paced Christian fantasy thriller that is original and quite entertaining. The story revolves around Jennie and her family, Pastor Billy and his wife, and two brothers who are polar opposites of each other. Each chapter is presented in the point of view of Jennie, Brad or Hugh (the brothers), which gives Pauline Creeden’s Sanctuary, a multidimensional feel. The three different story-lines merge into a full-fledged fantasy/horror novel that never sags or lets up on the action. While there are Christian themes present in Sanctuary, and Jennie’s faith is an important part of who she is, I, a non-Christian, did not feel I was being preached to or proselytized. I recommend Pauline Creeden’s Sanctuary — it’s well-written and a lot of fun to read.” – Jack Magnus for Readers Favorite
As the story begins, the aliens have already damaged the sun, causing perpetual twilight during the day, making it difficult to grow crops. And they’ve contaminated the water supply, which has killed off one-third of Earth’s population.
As the aliens don’t do anything further for quite some time, just hover in the skies, people try to go about their daily lives.
But the aliens unleash something horrific, something beyond imagination, and it has serious repercussions, killing off another third of the population.
This is where things really get dicey.
What comes next? Are they planning on wiping us out completely? Or do they have something else in store?
Once I started reading Sanctuary I happened to glance at the cover and realized how perfectly it represented the story. The church is in the background and Jenny is prominent, just as she is in the book.
Jenny never did get to return for her second year of college. The aliens attacked again and life as she knew it crumbled.
Now, she’s separated from her parents and has to protect her five-year old brother.
I admire Jenny. She’s a young woman, alone, facing something we couldn’t even imagine. What she focuses on is getting her and her little brother to safety.
She’s scared to death as she navigates the streets. But she has keen instincts and stays sharp when things get really bad. She’s a natural nurturer and has a heart of gold.
You’ll get to know Hugh and Brad, the brothers.
Hugh was a teacher at Jenny’s old highschool. He was trapped in his apartment building. When people were being attacked in the street, his first instinct was to go outside and help, but the apartment manager wouldn’t risk unlocking the doors.
When he finally does leave his apartment, he ends up at the church. There he runs into his younger brother Brad.
There is no love lost between these two.
Brad is lucky when he stumbles upon the church. But he didn’t much like the fact his brother was there.
I liked Hugh. He was a quiet, introspective man. Willing to help in any way he could.
Brad was another story all together. Every story needs a villain and he seemed to wear the title proudly. He was arrogant and self-serving. Quite the spoiled brat. And he never missed a chance to get under Hugh’s skin. One thing he did had me thinking he might be redeemable but I can’t spoil it for you.
Each chapter is told from the points of view of Jenny, Hugh, and Brad, but they flow easily and you quickly recognize their individual voices.
This is listed as a christian thriller, but it’s not like any you’ve read before. There are aliens, dog/lion creatures that bite you and turn you into zombies, and the disturbing situations you have to deal with when in a group, struggling to survive.
I was kind of reminded of Stephen King’s The Mist, when they are all confined in the grocery store. Not everybody likes each other or gets along. Life and death situations make people do weird things.
While Jenny draws on her religious beliefs to get her through this, I never felt like I was being preached at. If anything, she had me asking myself how I would hold up, what would I turn to. And with so much going on, I was kept busy following the action, trying to stay one step ahead of the horror.
The religious tones in this story are a natural progression and make it more real. Look at all of the disaster movies and books out there. So many of them have people gathering at a church, either for spiritual strength or just solace in the company of others.
If you like a mix of genres, some science fiction and fantasy with your horror, I recommend you read Sanctuary. It keeps you connected, never bogs down, and there’s plenty of action and danger.
YouTube book Trailers:
A NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR:
Why on earth did I write a Christian novel that has both aliens and zombies in it?
When I was a teen/young adult and my faith was wavering at best, there were several movies out with the likely design to shake faith even more. End of the world movies were in their hay day. Alien invasion was another big one. And I couldn’t help but wonder. If something like this actually happened, would anyone be able to maintain their faith?
And now today, Zombies are on the rise.
Could aliens be reconciled with the Bible? Zombies? This is the purpose of Sanctuary.
Because of its poetic nature, the book of Revelation lends itself to a plethora of interpretation. I am not saying that my book is the only true possibility, but it could be one. Could not demons be misinterpreted as alien life forms? Might not Satan use this mirage to his advantage to explain the bitter water or the blotting out of the sun, moon, and stars? And then there’s Revelation 9:6 – “And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them.”
If anyone reading this book at least opens themselves up to the fact that yes, a biblical interpretation could resolve the problems between faith and an apocalyptic reality, then Sanctuary has completed its purpose.
When Jennie reached the back door, she saw them. Four large dog-like creatures with pinched faces like bulldogs and lion-like manes. They snarled, and one of them leapt at the window on the top half of the door when it saw her. Jennie jumped back and fell hard on the cold tile floor. The bottle of painkiller bounced across the kitchen tiles. The creature slammed against the window a second time, cracking it. She blinked hard. Her heart sunk, and the hairs on her arms stood on end. A horrendous gargling howl rent the air, causing a shiver down her spine. She held her breath and waited for the creature to slam into the door again.
“What on earth?” she whispered to herself.
When the third attempt never came, she scrambled toward the door. Blinking hard, she used the door knob to help herself stand. Out the cracked window, her mother was still out of sight, but the last of the dogs headed across the field behind her backyard.
“MOM?” Jennie called out.
The rumbling faded, and the vibrations in her chest receded with the dogs. She pulled open the door and rushed onto their back deck. “Mom, where are you?”
When she reached the banister, she looked over the side. Her mom lay sprawled with one hand on the lattice. Blood gushed from Mom’s leg and her opposite arm. Jennie’s ears rang and flooded with every beat of her heart.
Jennie didn’t know how she got to the second floor of her house, but she found herself shaking her sleeping father. How had he slept through the rumbling? “Outside, it’s Mom…”
Her father leapt from the bed. Mickey, her little brother, lay asleep and undisturbed. Dad ran down the stairs and outside in his flannel pajama bottoms and white t-shirt. He scooped Mom up to his chest and carried her inside. Blood stained his shirt in crimson.
“Jennie, call 911!” Her father had said it at least three times before it finally registered in her brain.
She pulled the cell phone from her pocket, but it refused to connect. With a groan, she grabbed the cordless from the wall receiver, glad her heart stopped pounding in her head so she could hear.
“All operators are busy at this time,” a mechanical voice deadpanned, “Please stay on the line, and the next available operator will take your call.”
“They have me on hold, Dad. Should I hang up and try again?” She held the phone in both hands away from her face.
“No, just stay on the line.” Her father lifted the shredded jeans from Mom’s leg. “It looks like a shark bite. What on earth happened?”
Jennie took in the damage through tear-filled eyes. A huge chunk was taken from her mother’s calf, exposing the fibrous tendons that covered the bone in her leg. A bloodstain grew on the beige couch. Was she going to die? Panic rose up.
“What happened, Jennie?”
“I…I…They looked like lions, or dogs, or something. The rumbling shook the whole house…I tried to go outside to get Mom, but—” A sob blocked her throat.
Her father grabbed a throw pillow and held it against the leg. Mom’s exposed forearm laid across her chest in much the same condition as her calf.
“Grab me the duct tape.”
Jennie suddenly remembered the phone, put it back to her ear, and headed to the hall closet. She reached for the shelf above the jackets and grabbed the junk basket next to the toolbox.
“Please stay on the line. An operator will be with you shortly.”
She shoved the phone in the crook of her neck and fished through the box. Half the contents dropped around her feet. Who cares? When her fingers wrapped around the silver duct tape, a short-lived relief sent prickles down her arms. But the urgency gripped her chest in less than a heart beat, and she threw the junk basket on the ground with the rest of the items.
“Hurry, Jennie!” her father called from the living room. “And turn on the TV. Maybe they’ll have something about what’s going on.”
She handed her father the tape and turned toward the TV. The mechanical voice on the phone came through again, followed by more easy listening.
When she clicked on the TV, the shouting and wailing began before the picture warmed up on the screen. A sideways picture of New York City broke through, with the shaky voice of the newscaster voicing over.
“What we are watching now – I can’t believe it – is live footage of Times Square,” the newscaster’s voice paused for a deep breath. “We’ve lost our man on the scene and his camera man to what appears to be some kind of new alien creature. Just a short half-hour ago, the doors to the ship that hovered above Central Park opened and these dog-like creatures flooded out.”
Jennie couldn’t pull her eyes from the screen. She straightened and dropped the phone on the hardwood. The battery popped out and skidded across the floor.
In simple language, Pauline Creeden breaks down Biblical stories and applies them to real life in new ways. Her methods of teaching have brought new light to old scriptures. In her fiction, she creates worlds that are both familiar and strange, often pulling the veil between dimensions. She becomes the main character in each of her stories, and because she has ADD, she will get bored if she pretends to be one person for too long.
Pauline is a horse trainer from Virginia, but writing is her therapy.
She is the Admin for Spirit Filled Kindle and an administrator for Readers’ Realm. Her articles, reviews, and devotionals have been featured in RUBY FOR WOMEN Magazine, Devotionals for Bloggers, Faith Filled Family Magazine, and Christian Fiction Book Reviews.
One of Pauline’s short stories has won the CCW Short Story contest. Other short stories have been published in Fear & Trembling Magazine, Obsidian River and Avenir Eclectia. An urban fantasy short will appear in The Book of Sylvari: An Anthology of Elves from Port Yonder Press, and a vampire short will appear in Monsters! from Diminished Media Group. She is currently editing and drafting several novels at various stages.
Signed Paperback of Sanctuary
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