168 episodes

Reviews, author interviews, and discussion about the best in Christian historical fiction.

Christian Historical Fiction Talk Liz Tolsma

    • Arts
    • 4.8 • 15 Ratings

Reviews, author interviews, and discussion about the best in Christian historical fiction.

    Episode 167 - Abbey Downey Author Chat

    Episode 167 - Abbey Downey Author Chat

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    Abbey Downey, a first-time guest, joins us on the podcast this week to talk about her new book, An Uncertain Road. It's the fascinating story about a woman driving a race car in 1905. We chat about the research she had to do for the book, how she got her start in writing fiction, and the farmhouse built in 1900 that she and her husband are bringing back to life. Patrons get to hear what her pen name used to be and why she chose it.

    An Uncertain Road by Abbey Downey

    A female auto racer, a mechanic determined to walk away from the sport, and the race of a lifetime…

    When young widow Flora Montfort returns to America, she’s determined to use her training in auto racing to support herself and her French mother-in-law—even if female drivers are rare in 1905. So when the owner of a successful sporting goods store hires her to drive in the Glidden Tour, a ten-day race through New England, she jumps at the opportunity.
    Jensen Gable must be convinced that joining the team as the ride-along mechanic is worth the risk. After losing his best friend in a tragic racing accident, Jensen has vowed never to participate in the sport again. But his promise to protect that friend’s younger brother, also on the tour, is the only thing that outweighs his fear of the dangers.
    As they race through New England, Flora and Jensen find common ground that ignites their interest in each other, but doubts and old enemies come between them. Hazardous road conditions, meddling locals, and competitors who’ll stop at nothing to win—they all conspire to prevent Flora and Jensen from reaching the finish line. As the race of a lifetime heats up, one question rises above all others…can their love find the road that leads to forever?

    Get your copy of An Uncertain Road by Abbey Downey.
    Hi, I’m Abbey. I write sweet, uplifting romance. Usually historical, always including faith. I love creating stories with strong heroines, heroes who do the right thing in the end, and historical details that add a dash of fun.
    While writing has always been the best way I could make sense of the world, I never dreamed it would also one day be my career. It took many job changes and false starts before God led me to write stories.
    The first of three books in my Adventurous Hearts series from Wild Heart Books will be released in February 2024. I also have two books published with Love Inspired Historical (under the pen name Mollie Campbell).
    Please continue to check here, follow my social media, or sign up to receive my newsletter for information about upcoming books.

    Visit Abbey Downey's website.

    • 23 min
    Episode 166 - Jamie Ogle Author Chat

    Episode 166 - Jamie Ogle Author Chat

    Christian Historical Fiction Talk is listener supported. When you buy things through this site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

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    Jamie Ogle is our guest on the podcast this week, and she's here for the first time. Her new book, Of Love and Treason, is her fictionalized version of St. Valentine, so perfectly appropriate for this time of year. We chat about her research, her struggle with the end of the book, and her hobby of beekeeping, among other things. What a great book, endorsed by Francine Rivers! Patrons get to hear about the very first story she ever wrote. 

    Valentine defies the emperor and becomes a hero . . . and the most wanted man in the empire. Compelled by his faith, he has nothing to lose, until a chance encounter with the daughter of a Roman jailor changes everything.

    Rome, AD 270. In the wake of the emperor’s marriage ban, rumors swirl that there is one man brave enough to perform wedding ceremonies in secret. A public notarius and leader of an underground church, Valentine believes the emperor’s edict unjust and risks his own life for the sake of his convictions. But as his fame grows, so do fears for his safety.

    Iris, the daughter of a Roman jailor, believes regaining her sight will ease the mounting troubles at home. Her last hope rests in searching out Valentine and his church, but the danger of associating with people labeled a threat to the empire is great. Still, as Iris's new friends lead her to faith in God, Iris is drawn to Valentine and they both begin to hope for a future together beyond the treacherous empire.

    But when a past debt and a staggering betrayal collide, Valentine, Iris, and everyone they love must fight for their lives . . . and wrestle with trusting a God who can restore sight yet does not always keep His followers from peril.

    Get your copy of Of Love and Treason.

    Learn more about Jamie

    I'm Jamie Ogle, award-winning author of historical fiction full of danger, (good) rebels, and deep faith.
    ​I grew up in northern Minnesota listening to my grandparents tell stories from their youth. Stories of fighting in WWII, of panning for gold in Alaska, of crossing the Nebraska prairies in a covered wagon during the Great Depression, of gypsies stealing chickens, of a city girl falling in love with a farmer.  Listening to them, I fell in love with stories, with history, with grit and perseverance. 
    I also grew up listening to my parents read missionary stories to me and my sisters before bed. Those stories of faith, sacrifice, and courage inspired me even more.  I read everything I could get my hands on and started writing stories of my own. My first story was self-published and self-illustrated on a piece of cardboard, and I've never stopped writing since. I studied English and writing craft at Iowa State University and am a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW). 
     My husband and I love to travel, and currently live in central Iowa where we can usually be found gardening, beekeeping, homeschooling, and tromping though the woods with our three young children. 
    ​Okay, that's enough about me. I'd love to connect with YOU! 
    Drop a note on the Contact page, join my email list, or connect with me on Instagram or Facebook! I'd love to hear from you!

    • 26 min
    Episode 165 - Jennifer Deibel Author Chat

    Episode 165 - Jennifer Deibel Author Chat

    Christian Historical Fiction Talk is listener supported. When you buy things through this site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

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    Jennifer Deibel returns to the podcast to talk about her latest release, The Irish Matchmaker. We chat about the true-to-life matchmaking festival that is the center of the novel, how she keeps the romance from becoming too predictable, and more. If you can find the Lord of the Rings reference in this story, contact Jennifer, and she'll send you a signed bookplate! Patrons of the show hear about her singing and dancing aspirations.

    The Irish Matchmaker by Jennifer Deibel
    As daughter of a well-known matchmaker, Catríona Daly is no stranger to the business of love--and sees it as her ticket away from the sleepy village that only comes alive during the annual matchmaking festival. Enter Lord Osborne's son, Andrew, who has returned to the festival after being disappointed by a rival matchmaker's failed setup. Catríona seizes the opportunity to make a better match for the handsome man--and for herself!

    Cattle farmer Donal Bunratty is in desperate need of a wife after loss left him to handle the farm and raise his daughter on his own. Shy and lacking the finer social graces, he agrees to attend the matchmaking festival to appease his daughter. But when he arrives, it's not any of the other merrymakers that catch his eye but rather his matchmaker--who clearly has eyes for someone else.

    Catríona will have to put all her expertise to work to make a match that could change her life forever. Will her plan succeed? Or will love have its own way?

    Get your copy of The Irish Matchmaker by Jennifer Deibel.

    More about Jennifer.
    "I’m Jennifer, but most people call me Jen. Just please don’t call me Jenny. As a wife, mom, full-time public-school teacher, and author, I’m right in the trenches alongside you as I work, serve the Lord, and love my family. I’ve just been blessed to get to do some of it in the west of Ireland and Vienna, Austria. However, after a decade of life overseas, we have settled back in America–in sunny Arizona!
    I currently teach middle school English, and when I’m not working on school things, I’m spending time with my incredible family–my husband Seth and our 3 awesome kids–and writing.
    There’s just something so intimate and uplifting about a good story, isn’t there? I write stories that explore home through the lens of faith, family, and culture–with the beauty and depth of Ireland coloring much of it. And all of my books aim to bring you all the charm of an Irish village, the beauty of the Emerald Isle, and the hope and encouragement of faith.
    Not only do I write books, but I’m also honored to have been a monthly contributor at The Better Mom and have posts shared at (in)courage, Djibouti Jones, Tricia Goyer, Unveiled Wife, Intentional by Grace, and more."

    Visit Jennifer Deibel's website.
    Use my special link LIZ to save 30% off your first month of any Zencastr paid plan.

    • 30 min
    Episode 164 - Liz Tolsma Author Chat

    Episode 164 - Liz Tolsma Author Chat

    Christian Historical Fiction Talk is listener supported. When you buy things through this site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

    Become a patron and enjoy special perks and bonus content.

    Liz Tolsma (that's me!) is featured on the podcast this week with a special guest host. Along with my niece, we chat about my latest release, What I Promise You, about the challenge of writing three different timelines, how I managed to get a photo on the book's cover, and what research was like. Patrons get to hear what my writing space is like and will even get to see some pictures of it.

    What I Promise You by Liz Tolsma

    A Family’s History Is Lost to the Ravages of WWII in Southwest France

    Noémie Treves, a young, pregnant Jewish woman, had her entire world shattered when she is arrested and taken to the Camp de Rivesaltes transit camp in Southwest France. No sooner does she arrive, though, than she assists in helping two young girls scheduled for transport escape to a nearby maternity hospital. The matron there befriends her and changes her name to help hide her. But nothing goes according to plan, and Hannah finds herself doing the unimaginable to save one precious life.

    Caitlyn Laurant is haunted by recent events in her life and hopes becoming a nurse on the mission field will help her forget. While in training, she and her friends travel to France where her grandfather was born. What should have been an easy search for his birthplace turns into anything but and reveals secrets that no one alive has ever heard.

    Get your copy of What I Promise You by Liz Tolsma.

    Don't miss out on book of "Echoes of the Past", What I Would Tell You.

    More about Liz
    Passionate might best describe me. I’m passionate about my writing, about my family, and about God. I started on this publication journey in 2011 and am so blessed that I get to work at my dream job every day. I love nothing better than settling into my comfy office chair at the big desk my husband built for me and letting my imagination go crazy.
    I also love editing, especially helping new authors hone their skills and start on their own publication journeys. I have a passion for seeing others succeed in this business. There is always room for more well-written books.

    At heart, I'm a story-teller and teacher, and so I enjoy speaking and presenting. If you're ever looking for a speaker at your event or a teacher at your writing conference or writers' group, I'd be happy to talk to you.

    My other passions, besides writing, include camping, kayaking, working in my perennial garden, and walking. There is nothing more important to me than faith and family. My husband and I live in semi-rural Wisconsin, and we've been married more than 35 years now. The Lord blessed us with three children through adoption. Our son is a U.S. Marine, our daughter is a college graduate training to be an officer in the U.S. Marines, and our youngest daughter has both physical and intellectual disabilities, but she's a joy, and she loves going to daycare.

    While there are many Bible verses that really speak to me, Romans 8:38-39: For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Visit Liz Tolsma's homepage.

    • 37 min
    Episdoe 163 - Mark Zimmerman Author Chat

    Episdoe 163 - Mark Zimmerman Author Chat

    Christian Historical Fiction Talk is listener supported. When you buy things through this site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

    Become a patron and enjoy special perks and bonus content.

    Eli: The Phenom's Story by Mark Zimmerman

    Mark Zimmerman, a broadcaster by day and an author by night, joins us on the podcast this week to talk about his book, Eli: The Phenom's Story. Combining Amish with baseball, he sits down to chat about how and why he has illustrations on the book, what he knew about the Amish when he started writing it and what he learned along the way, and so much more. Patrons will get to hear what other hobbies he has.

    Get your copy of Eli: The Phenom's Story  by Mark Zimmerman

    A native of the Cleveland area, Mark Zimmerman graduated from West Geauga High School in Chesterland. At Bowling Green State University, he majored in Broadcasting, and minored in American Literature.

    He entered the working world at WUAB-TV in Cleveland, working behind the scenes for 6 years. His 12-year advertising career followed. Starting as a copywriter, he became a producer, and a creative director – winning local, regional, national and international recognition.

    In 1993, concurrent with his advertising career, he re-entered the radio world, working mainly as the morning drive host at WCRF – 103.3fm in Cleveland. Currently, Mark is the morning drive host for Heartfelt Radio at 91.9fm, with studios in Barberton.

    Mark Zimmerman and his wife Wendy have been married for over 35 years, have three grown daughters, two great sons-in-law, and two grandchildren.

    A lifetime Cleveland baseball fan, Mark wants – with the rest of us – “just one before I die.”

    Visit Mark Zimmerman's website.

    • 34 min
    Episode 162 - Darlene Bocek Author Chat

    Episode 162 - Darlene Bocek Author Chat

    Christian Historical Fiction Talk is listener supported. When you buy things through this site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

    Become a patron and enjoy special perks and bonus content.

    Darlene Bocek is my guest this week on the show, and she comes to us all the way from Turkey to discuss her book, Trunk of Scrolls. This novel is set during the Byzantine period, so she tells us what time period that was and what was going on then, what life is like for her in Turkey, and the unique way you can contribute to getting this book distributed to the Turkish people because they have no Christian fiction market there. Patrons get to hear about her children who are flung all over the globe. 

    Trunk of Scrolls by Darlene Bocek

    "Trunk of Scrolls fell open and I fell in..."Dr. Michael S. Horton.

    A.D. 526 The earth shakes like a beast awakening. Now Antioch, once the glory of Rome, lies in ruins--a broken-backed man that cannot stand. Marcellus, a sixteen year old Byzantine nobleman, takes up sword and wits to protect his young neighbors against wild animals, wild men, and a wild God they do not understand. Bearing a cursed betrothal ring, a lucky tooth of an infant saint, and a neglected trunkful of Scripture scrolls, can they survive a seven hundred mile journey to Constantinople to find their missing father and restore their lost fortune? Or will Marcellus stop this fated journey before it is too late? Kyrie Eleison. God have mercy. Trunk of Scrolls is a "on the edge of your seat" survival story. If you like fast-paced adventures, spontaneous young heroes, suspense-filled plots, and a dash of romance, then you'll love Trunk of Scrolls! Good for the whole family! Great for a curl-up-on-the-bed read.BUY it today! Take and Read!

    Get your copy of Trunk of Scrolls by Darlene Bocek.

    Contribute to Darlene Bocek's Kickstarter campaign and help get the book into the hands of the Turkish people.

    Darlene Böcek and her family live in Izmir, Turkey. She and her family are  Marvel MCU, early Star Wars, and Twilight Zone fans. 
    Besides being a pastor’s wife, Darlene is mom to four wonderful young adults: one skilled dentist, two hard-working dental students, and one high school student/Turkish TikTok influencer. 
    The family lives on an  olive farm overlooking the Aegean Sea. To date, they have  twenty-four cats, three giant dogs, FOUR cute Havanese doggos and one African Grey parrot.
    A native of  San Diego, California, she received a Bachelors Degree in Social Science with an Ancient Middle Eastern emphasis from Westmont College, and elementary and secondary teaching credentials from Southern California College.  She is connected to Westminster Theological Seminary of California  through her husband, Fikret.
    She spends “most” of her time in front of the washing machine and her spare time writing (or vice-versa).

    Visit Darlene Bocek's website.

    • 36 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
15 Ratings

15 Ratings

StyLgrL1 ,

My Go To

I always look forward to this podcast to learn about my favorite authors & their books. I've even tried some new authors & genres as well. Thank you Liz for keeping us in the know.

2 creepy ,

Christian Historical Fiction Talk

I have found each of the episodes that I have listened to very interesting and informative. I have tried new author’s (to me) that I have heard on the Christian Historical Fiction Talk podcast and I have enjoyed their books very much. This podcast has given me a wonderful variety of literature that I am enjoying and I would have never had known if it wasn’t for Christian Historical Fiction Talk. Thank You for your efforts.

Runstronglift ,

I’ve looked for a podcast like this for years!

For years, I have put Christian historical fiction in my search engine on my podcast app. Surprisingly, I recently found this one. I’ve been slowly catching up, but very much enjoy all the book talk! Thank you Liz for talking with us about books. A great place to get good recommendations!

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