Tag Archives: Nike Chillemi

Messages that Encourage Me

Messages that have resonated with me lately:

“God has given you praise as a weapon to defeat despair. ” Victory Over Despair, by Nike Chillemi

The Weapon of Praise, posted by Grace Fox.

“How do we most glorify God? By being completely satisfied in Him, realizing that the neediness we have is designed by our Creator in order to be fulfilled by Jesus. ” Satisfaction for a Thirsty Soul, by Jake Riddle

“Wait on God and He will work, but don’t wait in spiritual sulks because you cannot see an inch in front of you! Are we detached enough from our spiritual hysterics to wait on God? To wait is not to sit with folded hands, but to learn to do what we are told.” (Oswald Chambers, quoted at ochristian.com)

“Inadequacy can be one of the best blessings in your life if you respond properly.” The Good Side of Inadequacy, audio message by Dr. Charles Stanley (Do take 25 minutes and listen to this…)

Offline, what is God using most to speak to my spirit? Matt Maher‘s newest album, Saints and Sinners, and Eugene H. Peterson’s classic, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction.

Review: Harmful Intent, by Nike Chillemi

Harmful Intent, by Nike ChillemiHarmful Intent, by Nike Chillemi (Crime Fictionista Press, 2014)

Brooklyn PI Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels is self-confident, determined, and she knows how to stand up for herself – at least when she’s on her home turf. When she discovers her husband’s infidelity, she flees to Texas to process the hurt before she has to face him, only to become a person of interest in his murder.

Local Deputy Dawson Hughes doesn’t think Ronnie had anything to do with her husband’s death, and they develop an uneasy working relationship to find the killer. Hughes is picking up the pieces after a messy divorce, and Ronnie’s reeling from the double blow of betrayal and widowhood, but there are definitely sparks between these two.

Harmful Intent is the start of a new, contemporary series from Nike Chillemi, a departure from her 1940s-era Sanctuary Point romantic suspense series. I’m intrigued by her vision for this new series, featuring couples who will sometimes appear as minor characters in other couples’ stories. The plots are suspense with romantic threads, but weaving across these threads are others from the characters’ past hurts. Each of the main characters carries, like many readers, wounds from their childhood which keep them from being all they could be.

Ronnie’s father cheated on her mother, and realizing she married the same type of creep herself helps Ronnie to understand her mother differently. This type of character growth is organic to the story, never overshadowing the suspense plot.

Harmful Intent is not an overtly Christian book, although there are faith overtones. Ronnie and Hughes each find themselves in places in life where faith doesn’t come easy. The character of Bertha is a Christian, and I love this exchange between the two women when Ronnie finds Bertha reading a Bible before bed:

[Bertha] patted my cheek. “What puzzles me is why folks who deny the Lord get mad thinkin’ His promises might not include them. That don’t make a lick of sense to me.”

I stood. “I don’t deny the Lord.”

She gazed up at me with a mother’s kindness. “Then there’s more for you than you know in this book.” [Kindle location 942]

Harmful Intent is a novel with a strong sense of place. The Texas locale feels authentic (to this Canadian) and the details of scenes set in the spa, shooting range and various eating establishments bring those scenes to life. Here’s an interesting post by the author on how she researched the setting’s dialect: Dialect ~ Lend Me Thine Ear.

Ronnie and Hughes are well-matched sparring partners, and I think if they can work through the issues keeping them apart, they’ll make a truly happy couple. We’ll have to wait for the next installment to find out, since Harmful Intent takes place over a short period of weeks after Ronnie’s cheating ex’s death.

For more about author Nike Chillemi and her books, visit her website: nikechillemi.wordpress.com

[Review copy from my personal library.]

Letting Christ Shine In You At Christmas (Guest Post)

Letting Christ Shine In You At Christmas
by Nike Chillemi

Nike Chillemi

Nike Chillemi

The Christmas season can get kinda funny when I start thinking about God’s will and plan for me. That’s true even though I dearly desire for God’s priorities to be my priorities.

Right after Thanksgiving, if not before, I’m in the Christmas spirit. Things seem a little lighter, a little brighter. You don’t have to be a believer to feel this. Lots of individuals who do not classify themselves as Christians have moments during the Christmas season when they get all warm and fuzzy inside and they can’t put their finger on why. I think the light of Jesus coming into the world as a tiny baby in a manger simply has that effect on people. As a writer, I love a good story and this story warms us inside.

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. [Gospel of Luke: 7-11 ~ KJV]

On the other hand, my schedule is so full during this time of year that even though I’m all wrapped up in holiday goings on, I can forget the reason for the season, as they say. Then I have to remind myself to slow down and let Christ shine through me. To do this, I’ve got to push aside the decorating, the cooking, the menu planning, the Christmas card sending, and make sure I’m connected to God, listening to Him, letting him direct the show.

But God will have His way and very often at Christmas He presents to me somebody with a great need, somebody who’s lonely… and I will welcome that person as a friend, include them at my Christmas dinner table, and/or get them a gift.

In my 1940s Christmas novel GOODBYE NOEL, pediatric nurse Katrina Lenart has been asked by the local police chief to care for an infant whose mother has been found murdered in front of a decorated Christmas tree. Katrina soon falls in love with the baby and we see Christ’s love shine through her as she sets her mind and will to protect this child from a heinous killer. At one point, Katrina risks her own life to save the infant from a kidnapping. I loved writing this Christmas story and particularly enjoyed crafting Katrina, whose faith grows and deepens as the novel goes forward through all the twists and turns of a murder mystery novel.

Goodbye Noel, by Nike Chillemi

Purchase Links:


Author Bio:

Like so many writers, Nike Chillemi started writing at a very young age. She still has the Crayola, fully illustrated book she penned (penciled might be more accurate) as a little girl about her then off-the-chart love of horses. Today, you might call her a crime fictionista. Her passion is crime fiction. She likes her bad guys really bad and her good guys smarter and better.

She is the founding board member of the Grace Awards and is its Chairman, a reader’s choice awards for excellence in Christian fiction. She writes book reviews for The Christian Pulse online magazine. She was an Inspy Awards 2010 judge in the Suspense/Thriller/Mystery category and a judge in the 2011 and 2012 Carol Awards in the suspense, mystery, and romantic suspense categories. BURNING HEARTS, the first book in the crime wave that is sweeping the south shore of Long Island in The Sanctuary Point series, finaled in the Grace Awards 2011 in the Romance/Historical Romance category. GOODBYE NOEL, the second book in the series released in December, 2011 won the Grace Award 2011 in the Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller category. PERILOUS SHADOWS, third in the series released July, 2012, and DARKEST HOUR, the fourth in the series released in February, 2013.  She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers (Ning).

Review: Goodbye Noel, by Nike Chillemi

Goodbye Noel, by Nike ChillemiGoodbye Noel, by Nike Chillemi (Desert Breeze Publishing, 2011)

The year is 1946. In the fictional town of Sanctuary Point, on the south shore of Long Island, New York, life is getting back on track after the war. It’s Christmas time, and spirits are high – until Katrina Lenart finds one of her neighbours dead.

Who would murder this young woman while her baby slept in the next room? With the father nowhere to be found, Katrina gets permission to care for the infant. She is, after all, a pediatric nurse. And she lives with her parents, who will babysit while she’s at work.

Katrina and the detective assigned to the case, Ian Daltry, get off to a bad start but quickly fall for one another. Ian can’t forget losing his wife in a drive-by shooting, and he’ll do anything to keep Katrina, his daughter Amy, and baby Leslie safe.

But can he do enough? Why is the baby a target? And for whom?

Katrina is equally determined to protect the baby, and she quickly becomes Ian’s unofficial helper to solve the mystery.

Goodbye Noel is a fun mystery with plenty of clues and red herrings. It gives an interesting picture of this era, where children of immigrant parents still face discrimination (Katrina’s parents are Czech) and where there aren’t enough eligible bachelors to go around. It’s an elegant time, even for middle-class people like Katrina and her family, and we get to observe a high-society soiree as well.

Nike Chillemi has written four mysteries so far in the Sanctuary Point series. Goodbye Noel is the second. For more about the author and her books, visit her Crime Fictionista website.

[Review copy from my personal library.]