Spotlight on Author Joan Deneve, Port of Call: Limon, Costa Rica with Renee Kessler

2015 February 16

Joannie FinalToday’s special guest is Joan Deneve, who authored our Port of Call: Limon, Costa Rica chapter and introduced us to heroine, Renee Kessler. Joan teaches English in a Christian school and has a passion to help young people fall in love with Jesus and equip them to become all God wants them to be. Joan began her walk as a Christian when she accepted Christ as her savior two weeks before her sixteenth birthday. She graduated from Tennessee Temple Bible College in 1975.

Joan and Rene’, her husband of forty-plus years, reside in Prattville, Alabama, a charming city in the Heart of Dixie. They count their son, daughter, son-in-law, and seven phenomenal grandchildren to be their greatest blessings on earth.

Joan is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Through her debut novel Saving Eric, Joan is a finalist in the 2012 Christian Writers of the West Phoenix Rattler Contest, semi-finalist in the 2013 ACFW Genesis Contest, 2nd place winner in the 2013 Texas Writers on the Storm Contest, finalist in the 2014 Fool for Love Contest, and finalist in the 2014 Frasier Contest.

Joan enjoys time well-spent with family and friends, but finds equal joy in quiet moments of solitude on her back porch. There, surrounded by bluebirds and yellow butterflies, she began writing Saving Eric. She is currently working on the second book in the Redeemed Side of Broken Series. She enjoys chatting with fellow writers and readers. Check out her web page:

Joan tells us how she discovered her heroine, Renee:

There is a lovely couple in my home church. They’ve only been married a little over a year. Danielle is half Hispanic with lovely brown curly hair and a sparkle in her smile. Her husband is an African-American with wonderful compassionate eyes and a winning smile. They look so happy, and they are a dynamic duo for Christ. They were my inspiration (her maiden name was Kessler).

And there was also a college student who attended our church about ten years ago. She was engaged to a wonderful Christian young man from her college. Right before Christmas about ten years ago, he drove her home from college (we live in Alabama) and then he drove over to Georgia to visit his family. On the way, he went through some torrential rain, hydroplaned and skidded off a bridge. The car went into a swollen river and he drowned. She was devastated. All of us were. He was such a great guy. She didn’t think she would ever love again. But about four years later, God brought a new man into her life. Another great guy. They are now married and have two children.
God does give beauty for ashes.

Because Brent went through his own heartache and rejection, I wanted him to find someone who also was struggling with her own loss but slowly working through it. (just like he was) I think Renee is a good fit for Brent because they both have a heart that wants to serve God, and they both love children. Renee and Brent, though suffering from their own kind of broken hearts, have much love to give. To each other and also to children.  They too would make a dynamic duo to spread God’s love to those that need it most.

You can enjoy the first two author spotlights and the interviews with the heroines: Jerusha Agen, the author who started all the fun by putting Brent Teague on the ship, Julie Arduini and her heroine, Nora LaingBetty Thomason Owens and her heroine Eliana Grayson.


More About The Love Boat Bachelor:

Romance is a joke.

After the love of Brent Teague’s life came back into his world only to marry someone else, Brent is through with women. He might be through with being a pastor, too.

Brent was so sure that God brought Mara Adkins home to him so they could marry and live happily ever after. Six months after her wedding to another man, that theory is obviously a dud. If Brent could be so wrong about that, who’s to say he’s not mistaken about God calling him to pastoral ministry?

Tired of watching Brent flounder for direction, Brent’s feisty older sister boots him out of Spartanburg and onto a cruise ship. Brent’s old college buddy manages the ship’s staff, and he’s thrilled to finagle Brent into the role of chaplain for the two-week cruise.

As the ship sets sail, Brent starts to relax. Maybe a cruise wasn’t such a bad idea after all. But there’s just one little thing no one told him. He’s not on any ordinary cruise. He’s on The Love Boat.

What’s a sworn bachelor to do on a Caribbean cruise full of romance and love? He’ll either have to jump ship or embrace the unforgettable romantic comedy headed his way.


Betty was also one of the authors of A Dozen Apologies:

Mara Adkins, a promising fashion designer, has fallen off the ladder of success, and she can’t seem to get up. In college, Mara and her sorority sisters played an ugly game, and Mara was usually the winner. She’d date men she considered geeks, win their confidence, and then she’d dump them publicly. When Mara begins work for a prestigious clothing designer in New York, she gets her comeuppance. Her boyfriend steals her designs and wins a coveted position. He fires her, and she returns in shame to her home in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where life for others has changed for the better. Mara’s parents, always seemingly one step from a divorce, have rediscovered their love for each other, but more importantly they have placed Christ in the center of that love. The changes Mara sees in their lives cause her to seek Christ. Mara’s heart is pierced by her actions toward the twelve men she’d wronged in college, and she sets out to apologize to each of them. A girl with that many amends to make, though, needs money for travel, and Mara finds more ways to lose a job that she ever thought possible. Mara stumbles, bumbles, and humbles her way toward employment and toward possible reconciliation with the twelve men she humiliated to find that God truly does look upon the heart, and that He has chosen the heart of one of the men for her to have and to hold.

Saving Eric front cover (1)Joan is not only a collaborator for The Love Boat Bachelor. Her debut novel is Saving Eric. 

Templetons don’t break down. Even when their worlds are falling apart.
Eric Templeton’s well-ordered life as a top CIA agent is shattered when a traitor within the agency plots to have him eliminated. Sent on a bogus mission to Africa, Eric is ambushed and critically wounded. A helicopter pilot flies him to a remote mission hospital where Dr. Brock Whitfield and his daughter, Ellie, work to save his life.
If Eric survives, his life may never be the same, and he still has to deal with the traitor who wants him dead. Eric wants justice, but Brock and Ellie know that Eric’s survival is the least of his worries. What he needs is mercy and truth.





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