Giver of Wonders
A miracle once saved her life ~ will another give her a future?
Cyprus was little more than a child when a fall left her paralyzed…and when the boy known as the wonder-worker healed her. Ever since, she has wondered why the Lord spared her, what he has in store for her. But her pagan father thinks she was spared solely so she could be introduced to the wealthy wonder-worker, Nikolaos.
Nikolaos has never questioned that his call in life is to dedicate himself to the church and to God. Never, that is, until he and his cousin Petros meet the compelling Cyprus Visibullis. For years he struggles with the feelings she inspires…and with the sure knowledge that Petros loves her too.
Petros knows he will never be good enough for Cyprus’s father to consider him as a match for his favorite daughter not as long as Nikolaos is there. But when tragedy strikes the Visibullis family, he will do anything to save his beloved. Unfortunately, his beloved is determined to do anything to save her sisters ~ even at the cost of herself.
As the festival of lights bathes their Greek city in beauty, Cyprus, Petros, and Nikolaos celebrate the miracle of their Savior s birth together one last time. And in remembrance of their Lord’s greatest gift, one of them will make the ultimate sacrifice for the others…and a centuries-long tradition will be born.
Guest Post from Roseanna White
I was fed up with Christmas.
Or, no. I was fed up with the Christmas the world kept shoving at me. The one that was all about presents. I’d always enjoyed gift giving and receiving, but I began to wonder: What was it I really valued—my Savior . . . or the stuff? We all say the right thing when this question is brought up. But we also all talk about “giving people Christmas” who can’t afford it. About how disappointed our kids might be if they wake to few packages under the tree. And you know, that belies our claims that it’s all about Jesus, doesn’t it?
And of course, when one thinks of gifts at Christmas, a jolly old elf springs to mind. So I started thinking that if I wanted my kids to understand the meaning of Christmas, it might be time to pull the plug on the embodiment of the commercialism: Santa Claus.
But I’m a historical novelist, and I believe in looking at the real history before making decisions. So one morning before our home school day began, I sat down and did some online research about Saint Nicholas. About the traditions he began that persist to this day. Who was he, before the Victorians turned him into the figure we know today as Santa?
I read. And I was awed.
Within fifteen minutes, I realized that St. Nick wasn’t the problem with Christmas. This was a man who was committed, above all, to honoring Jesus. Who believed in giving anonymously, so that all the glory went to God. Who performed miracles. Who healed and shepherded a flock under persecution.
St. Nicholas was a man who deserves my honor and respect. Who should be my inspiration for what Christmas is really about, not my scapegoat.
Nicholas gave generously—and in secret. It wasn’t until after his death that the stories started making their rounds about the many times he quietly gave of his wealth. But for centuries afterward, whenever someone wanted to give a gift anonymously, they would sign it from St. Nicholas—it was like saying, “This is because God loves you.”
Why are we giving? Is it to give God glory . . . or to please ourselves and our families? Would you still give if you got no credit for it? If no one even knew it was from you?
That day I read about St. Nicholas, I also decided I’d write a book with him as one of the main characters. A novel that brings one of our traditions—gifts coming down chimneys, stockings stuffed with goodies—to life. And so, we have Giver of Wonders.
Is it a Christmas story? It is. But not like the others out there. Is it about Santa Claus? It is, but not the version you see all over your TV. Is it about giving? It is. But not about presents wrapped and put under the tree. It’s about sacrifice. And it’s about Jesus. And it’s about what He really asks of us, and what He really did for us. And what we’re willing to give for love of Him.
Because that, my friends, is Christmas.
Roseanna M. White grew up in the mountains of West Virginia, the beauty of which inspired her to begin writing as soon as she learned to pair subjects with verbs. She spent her middle and high school days penning novels in class, and her love of books took her to a school renowned for them.
After graduating from St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland, she and her husband moved back to the same mountains they equate with home.
Roseanna is the author of two biblical novels, A Stray Drop of Blood and Jewel of Persia, the historical romance, Love Finds You in Annapolis, Maryland, and the historical, romantic suspense Culper Ring Series (Ring of Secrets, Whispers from the Shadows, and Circle of Spies). She is also the senior reviewer at the Christian Review of Books, which she and her husband founded, the senior editor at WhiteFire Publishing, and a member of ACFW, HisWriters, and Colonial Christian Fiction Writers.
Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna has a slew of historical novels available, ranging from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her new British series. She lives with her family in West Virginia. Learn more at RoseannaMWhite.com
Book Review by Bree Herron
As a believer in all things and people good, I was eager to read this historical fiction novel from Roseanna. St. Nicholas or Santa Claus has he has morphed into, is a unique character to transform in a book for the masses. He is that jolly man that we all loved as a child, and yet we didn’t know his story. We also used our modernization of the holiday to forget what little we did know about the Saint that came to give and expecting nothing in return. I’m here to tell you that this book will certainly lead you to his story and to the meaning of Christmas.
Giver of Wonders, begins in a fast chase of life and faith. Cyprus (our female character) is constantly at odds with what is expected of her and what her desires are. Her family is also torn; her father is still a Greek business man that has dark secrets of his own, her mother and sisters are of Christian faith and focused on finding the perfect Christian marriages. Cyprus meets Petros, and Nikolaos in a moment of sure death, where our favorite Saint heals her. If that isn’t a sign of the true miracle of the season, then you must share such stories that are. As I feel that this is the best book to remind us of the origins. It is spectacular and joyous.
The meaning and history behind Nikolaos is a wonderful book for the season. Though fictionally based, Roseanna has done her work in research. It is well done in all aspects. i personally felt a new connection to the spirit of the season, and a warmth in my heart that hasn’t been there since a child.
Please join the conversation and comment below. Have you read… If so what did you think/like?
**DISCLAIMER: I was provided an opportunity to read this book as an Advanced Reader Copy in return for a fair and honest review.
To celebrate her tour, Roseanna is giving away a stocking full of wonder! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this blog post to claim nine extra entries in the giveaway! Find out all the details and enter to WIN at Giver of Wonders Celebrate Lit Tour.