Category Archives: Heaven’s Prey

Christian Suspense Giveaways

Just a quick post to let you know about two opportunities to win a copy of my books:

At suspense author Patricia Bradley’s blog: one copy of Secrets and Lies (Canada and US only, ends Aug. 16)

At the Koala Mom’s blog: one set of Heaven’s Prey and Secrets and Lies (Canada and US only, ends Aug. 31) There are plenty of other giveaways at this site, too, since author Bonnie Way is celebrating a blogging anniversary.

After Heaven’s Prey

Did you ever have a question for a fictional character? I do, sometimes, and I enjoy reading character interviews. Paula Vince, of The Vince Review, sent me a question for Tony Warner of Heaven’s Prey. (Thank you, Paula!)

HeavensPrey_Prev webThis is an “after the novel’s ending” question, so if you haven’t read Heaven’s Prey and you’re thinking about it, you might want to skip this post. Spoilers…

Paula’s question:

Tony, I can hardly imagine what it must have been like, when a sporting hero of yours committed such a heinous crime against your family. I can understand how you must have felt when your wife, Ruth, began praying for Harry Silver. But since Ruth’s return from her own ordeal, have you been able to forgive Harry from your heart too?

Tony’s answer:

It’s been over a year and a half now, but there are days I have to forgive him all over again. Every time something reminds me of our niece, Susan, or see how much her parents — and Ruth and I — have aged. The worst times are when it comes back on Ruth in a nightmare.

The damage can’t be undone. I know God worked it all out for good, bringing Harry and me both into a saving relationship with Him. <Tony laughs> I can tell you it didn’t do anything good for my pride when I realized I was as distant from God as a serial rapist-murderer.

God kept Ruth safe from the horrible things Harry would have done to her, and the experience strengthened her faith. But she carries the emotional scars, and I hate that. The counselor she sees, and her pastor, help her keep holding onto Jesus, and He is enough.

Did you know Ruth’s started sharing her story in some local churches? The investigations have wrapped up now, so the circumstances of Harry’s return to custody don’t have to remain secret. Ruth doesn’t talk much about his conversion — she says that’s his story, not hers — but she speaks to women’s groups about how God kept her safe and sane. And about the importance of prayer.

Sometimes I go with her, especially if it’s a mixed event. People seem to want to hear my side, too. We’re trying to encourage Harry to write his story, not the crimes so much, but his journey. What made a successful, healthy man turn into a dangerous offender? And how did the God of the Universe break his heart to heal it?

Thanks for asking, Paula. All the best!

Janet says:

Did you know there are links to other character interviews and bonus features on my book pages? Just scroll down past the buy links: Heaven’s Prey and Secrets and Lies.

My Fiction: Update

I’ve been busy lately with final edits and formatting for Secrets and Lies, Redemption’s Edge book 2, which will release November 1. Soon I’ll be able to share the cover art with you… I can’t wait to see it. Christina Fuselli, who designed the cover of Heaven’s Prey, is on the job, so I know it’ll be great.

cover art: Heaven's Prey by Janet SketchleySpeaking of Heaven’s Prey, I’m giving away a copy over at Everyone’s Story (ends Oct. 3). Just pop over and leave a comment to be entered to win. I encourage you to stop by anyway and check out my guest post. It’s the story of my writing dream, and how God brought it back to life. Click to read: Making Daydreams Real.

If you’ve wanted to read Heaven’s Prey before the next novel comes out, time’s growing short. If you haven’t picked up a copy yet and don’t win one through Everyone’s Story, a few public libraries have copies. It’s also available in multiple ebook formats, and Amazon is processing the revised print version now. See my Heaven’s Prey book page for links.

Back to Secrets and Lies: Each Friday in October, I’ll introduce you to a character from the novel, with a special surprise for the final Friday in the month. This novel’s less intense than Heaven’s Prey, and it’s romantic suspense.

Interview: Heaven’s Prey

Heaven’s Prey has been out for nearly a year now. I’ve done interviews, character interviews, guest posts, and they’ve been fun. Here’s an idea I learned from Australian author Paula Vince, from the blog tour for her novel, Imogen’s Chance.

cover art: Heaven's Prey by Janet SketchleyIt’s the readers’ turn to ask the questions.

If you’ve read Heaven’s Prey, what would you ask the characters? Ruth, Harry, Tony? Ruth’s pastor? Susan? Or for me, although my imaginary friends may have more to talk about.

Ask your questions in the comments, and I’ll assemble them into an interview to post closer to the anniversary date (November 1… which is also the release date for Secrets and Lies… cover reveal coming soon)


To my subscribers: Sale & Giveaway

This is on my news page too, but blog subscribers don’t receive updates for that page and I don’t want you to miss out.

The Kindle price for Heaven’s Prey has dropped to $2.99 US (comparable in other countries) for a limited time. If you were wondering but not sure, now’s a better time to try it.

And the print version is listed in two giveaways at present:

  • The Koala Bear Writer (this links to the rules–then you need to click the link to Bonnie’s review of Heaven’s Prey) — drawing April 11
  • The Suspense Zone — drawing at the end of April

My newsletter subscribers have already received most of this information, but I didn’t find out about the draw at The Koala Bear Writer until just now. Bonnie’s celebrating on that site, and she’s offering a couple of other books too. Stop by and congratulate her achievement!

Heaven’s Prey Giveaway

Cake with candle and caption: celebrate!Some of you know that in order to keep my spirits up on the long road to publication, I celebrate my characters’ “birthdays” each March.

My earliest notes for Heaven’s Prey are dated March 1994, which makes this the big 2-0.

And this time, I’m celebrating not just the fun I’ve had with my imaginary friends, not just what I’ve learned about writing and about life, but the fact that I’m actually a published novelist. Complete with silly, dream-come-true grin.

So I’m giving away a print copy of Heaven’s Prey.

About the book:

A grieving woman is abducted by a serial killer—and it may be the answer to her prayers.

Despite her husband’s objections, 40-something Ruth Warner finds healing through prayer for Harry Silver, the serial killer who brutally raped and murdered her niece. When a kidnapping-gone-wrong pegs her as his next victim, Harry claims that by destroying the one person who’d pray for him, he proves God can’t—or won’t—look after His own. Can Ruth’s faith sustain her to the end—whatever the cost?

Heaven’s Prey is about a villain’s last chance at redemption and a vulnerable woman’s obedience to pray for her enemy—not the gentle inspirational read many associate with the Christian genre.

If that catches your interest, join in the draw! I’m using Rafflecopter, because it’ll let you have more than one entry… if you take the extra steps:

  • sign up for my author newsletter (monthly, with occasional second issues mid-month if something super special is happening)
  • sign up to follow my blog
  • like my author facebook page
  • leave a comment here

If you’ve already subscribed to my newsletter and/or blog, just tick “subscribed” — I don’t want to leave you out. But if you haven’t subscribed, don’t cheat… keep your conscience clean and request a copy of Heaven’s Prey through your local library.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

[Added April 2014: thank you to everyone who entered the draw, and I hope our winner enjoys the novel! Until the end of the month, there’s another chance to win a copy of Heaven’s Prey at The Suspense Zone. Just click the link to go there.)

Heaven’s Prey at Clash of the Titles

Clash of the Titles Champion

Five novels, one winner, as chosen by readers. I’m excited to announce that Heaven’s Prey is December 2013’s champion at Clash of the Titles (for November releases).

Check out the other titles (in the link above) — they all look like good reads. I’ll be reviewing one of them here soon.

Heaven’s Prey Facebook Party Tonight

Heaven's Prey Facebook PartyCome and join the conversation … and maybe win a prize! Click the image to go to the event on my Facebook page for more information, or to sign up. When the party starts, there’ll be clear directions on how to join in. I just wish we could serve some real food!

Also… today’s the final day for the Heaven’s Prey blog chase. The chase posts will still be available tomorrow, but we draw for the free book tonight 🙂 Haven’t taken the chase yet? Click here to start running:

Heaven's Prey Blog Chase graphic

News About Heaven’s Prey

Today is release day for Heaven’s Prey! I’m now a published novelist, and some of my imaginary friends are venturing out into the world. This is a long-held dream for me, and I still can’t quite believe it’s coming true. (Yes, even after all those edits!)

I’m doing a lot of online interviews and guest posts to promote Heaven’s Prey, and they’ll all be listed on the blog tour page. (Links will be added as the events go live.) I’d love to have you pop by some of the sites and say hello.

Some other things I wanted to share with you:

We have some special incentives for those who buy the paperback version. click the banner below to find out more about these limited-time options (and where to order online):Heaven's Prey Book Blast

The Heaven’s Prey blog chase is on until Nov. 7, with a chance to win a copy of the novel. Click the banner below to jump to the first stop on the chase.Heaven's Prey Blog Chase graphic

Goodreads members can enter to win one of two print copies of Heaven’s Prey.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Heaven's Prey by Janet Sketchley

Heaven’s Prey

by Janet Sketchley

Giveaway ends November 11, 2013.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Heaven’s Prey: the supporting cast

The past few Fridays you’ve met the key characters from Heaven’s Prey: Ruth Warner (the woman in peril), Tony Warner (the frantic husband), and Harry Silver (the villain). Today I thought it would be interesting to get the reactions of some of the other people affected by this story:

Carol Silver Daniels: (Harry’s sister and only living relative)

We shared the same parents, but after what he did, I have no brother. <gulping sigh> He killed one of those young women here in Calgary, while he was visiting us. We had no clue. My sons were so proud to have a famous uncle. <snort> I tried to shield them from the news reports, but they knew. Kids in school can be so cruel. Adults, too.

The shame of being connected to him is bad enough, but some people are too angry to think straight and they want to take it out on us. Things were settling down, and then he had to escape from prison and stir it up again. Thanks to a two-faced reporter, I’ve had my photo splashed across the news again—in front of my apartment building, so the crazies know where I live. I’m only talking to you now because it doesn’t matter anymore. Last night we got a death threat. We’re moving. Hiding.

As for Harry, I hope they find him. I hope he resists arrest and they kill him. Excuse me, I have to pack.

Tracey: (the woman Harry loved and lost)

<Skyping in from her work at an orphanage in Latvia>

It’s funny you’d ask about Harry now. These past few days I’ve had a strong urge to pray for him. <smile> He wouldn’t like that very much. But I’m praying anyway.

My husband and I were already working here at the mission when Harry was arrested. My grandfather wouldn’t tell me much, just to pray, but one of my friends sent me the details. <looks away, looks back> We were engaged once, Harry and I. When I became a Christian, he broke it off. He was so angry! A few years later I met Bob, and here we are, with a fulfilling ministry and two beautiful children.

But it’s affected me. <she touches her hair> You may notice Harry’s victims all had long, blond hair and blue eyes like me. They were close to the age I was when we broke up. Was he really killing me?

Sometimes if I wake in the night I still struggle with this weird survivor guilt. Or worse, I wonder if their deaths are my fault. If I’d renounced my faith and he’d taken me back, would those women still be alive and their families unbroken? <sad smile> But I couldn’t have really walked away from God. And I loved Harry too much to lie to him. I can only hope and pray that he’ll open his heart to Jesus. There’s room at the cross for people who’ve done even worse.

Mr. Delaney: (Harry’s mentor)

You’ll have to speak up, please. My hearing’s going as fast as the rest of me. Harry Silver … <suspicion of tears> I loved that boy like a son. Talent! He had the gift—and the passion to use it. He started his stock car career with Team Delaney, and I was so proud. It hurt when he moved on to the IndyCar circuit, but I’d never have tried to hold him back. <humph> Maybe I should have. Should have kept a better eye on him. For a boy who loved to race, his crimes were suicide.

George Sinclare: (the drug lord)

<incoming cell call, untraceable> I hear you’re asking questions about that escaped killer, Harry Silver. My representatives took the risk of getting him out of prison, and this is how he repays us—by blowing his cover. And he didn’t even grab the victim he wanted. <coarse laugh> I saw a photo of the one he got, and it serves him right.

We had a decoy heading for the other side of the country to lead the cops away. I’d tip them off on where to find him, but it would reflect badly on one of my business associates. Once the boat picks Silver up and they get to international waters, he’ll tell the captain where the money’s hidden. <noncommittal sound> If the cops find and shoot him, they’ll be doing me a favour. I’d lose his escape fee, but money isn’t everything to a successful businessman. Security matters more, and Silver is a loose end.

Too bad about the woman. I hear she was on her way home from a prayer meeting, of all things. Didn’t do her much good.

Prison spokesman (anonymous):

Three Corrections Canada employees were injured trying to stop Harry Silver’s escape, and I resent media implications about our attention to our duties. With the latest funding cuts we’re stretched thinner than ever, but I assure you that each warden, guard and support worker does his or her best to uphold our responsibilities and to keep the citizens of Canada safe.

Pastor John Linton:

The odds of this happening are incredible, and I don’t know what God is up to. Whatever happens—or has already happened—I believe that God is enough for Ruth. Since He didn’t prevent this, He’ll somehow sustain her through it.

Remember, Harry Silver can do a lot of hurt, but only short-term. He can’t touch Ruth’s soul. If he sticks to his pattern of killing his victims <clears his throat> then my friend and sister in faith will suffer terribly–but then she’ll enter into eternity with her Lord and Saviour. It’s we who remain who’ll have the hardest time in the days ahead.

I challenge you with this: what if this “coincidental” abduction of a woman who’s been praying for Harry Silver is God’s way of turning up the heat in a battle for a lost soul? We write off people like Harry as too far gone to save, but God says the only ones He’ll reject are those who reject His outstretched hand.

Harry Silver could be forgiven and his life made new. It’s happened before. Let’s just hope and pray it will happen this time.

Ruth’s sister, Lorna:

Ruth and my daughter, Susan, were very close. When Susan was murdered, it shattered us all. Ruth took it really hard, and I was afraid she’d lose her faith. So I was glad when she started praying for the killer. It helped her forgive and find healing. But now—I forgave Harry Silver once. I don’t know if I can do it again. How could God let him take my daughter and my sister? <sound of sobs, Lorna hangs up the phone>

The girl who got away:

<Her parents say she can’t be contacted … still crying, and under psychological care>

Constable TJ Weber: (blond police officer, female)

All officers are fully briefed on the existing situation and the criminal record of the accused. Based on security videos at and near the abduction site, we’ve increased our patrols here in the Chester area. He may have kept driving, or doubled back, but we’re serious about keeping our citizens safe and about apprehending Harry Silver. If at all possible, before Ms. Warner comes to any harm.

As you can see, I’m an older version of Silver’s target victim. That may give me some extra motivation to see this case solved, but my personal feelings will not affect performance of my duty. I’m neither afraid of the accused nor out for vengeance. If I were the one to locate him, and if he were to make a threatening move, I would shoot to incapacitate. Lethal force would only be a last resort.

Janet Sketchley‘s novel, Heaven’s Prey, releases November 1, 2013 from Choose NOW Publishing. Feel free to tell your friends! For more information and a free sample chapter, see the Heaven’s Prey page.