Review: The Law of Moses by Amy Harmon

My Thoughts

Hauntingly beautiful and evocative. 
A stunning work of art that grips
you with its power, its truth, and its heart.

5stars

Synopsis

Nov-27

If I tell you right up front, right in the beginning that I lost him, it will be easier for you to bear. You will know it’s coming, and it will hurt. But you’ll be able to prepare.

Someone found him in a laundry basket at the Quick Wash, wrapped in a towel, a few hours old and close to death. They called him Baby Moses when they shared his story on the ten o’clock news – the little baby left in a basket at a dingy Laundromat, born to a crack addict and expected to have all sorts of problems. I imagined the crack baby, Moses, having a giant crack that ran down his body, like he’d been broken at birth. I knew that wasn’t what the term meant, but the image stuck in my mind. Maybe the fact that he was broken drew me to him from the start.

It all happened before I was born, and by the time I met Moses and my mom told me all about him, the story was old news and nobody wanted anything to do with him. People love babies, even sick babies. Even crack babies. But babies grow up to be kids, and kids grow up to be teenagers. Nobody wants a messed up teenager.

And Moses was messed up. Moses was a law unto himself. But he was also strange and exotic and beautiful. To be with him would change my life in ways I could never have imagined. Maybe I should have stayed away. Maybe I should have listened. My mother warned me. Even Moses warned me. But I didn’t stay away.

And so begins a story of pain and promise, of heartache and healing, of life and death. A story of before and after, of new beginnings and never-endings. But most of all…a love story.

My Review

“This is a story of love with no end… though it took me a while to get there.”

A work of art. That’s what Amy Harmon’s latest story is. A stunning, lyrical, poignant masterpiece whose tendrils of hope and love tangled with despair and heartbreak. Her words gripped me with a story of second chances… of cracked minds and broken hearts, of misunderstood brilliance and indomitable desire, of danger and comfort… and most of all, of love… before and after.

“She was a wild card. She was a small town girl with a simple way of speaking, and thinking, a frank way of being that turned me on and turned me off at the same time. I wanted to run from her. But at the same time, I spent all my time thinking about her.”

At seventeen, Georgia Shephard was a free spirit. A girl who loved her horses and lived her life in a small town, simply and with vigor. A girl who had known Moses Wright since was young. She’d known the broken boy, the “crack baby,” who had lived in infamy. She had watched him from afar. But one summer when that boy spent some time at their farm in Levan, Utah, her fascination for him grew.

They were as different as two people could be. Moses was a tortured soul who let no one in, who didn’t talk if it wasn’t critical, who found solace in solitude, torment in his thoughts, release through the swish and swirl of frenetic, but brilliant brush strokes. Georgia was a spitfire, a girl whose freedom thrived on the back of a horse, who spoke plainly and directly, who flirted with danger and skated along the ridges of recklessness. When she met Moses, she was hungry for something… someone… and Moses was an alluring unknown. He was an enigma that both scared her and fascinated her, and like a moth to a flame, she couldn’t stay away.

“No one had ever wanted me, starting from the day I was born. But Georgia had wanted me. And because she had wanted me when no one else did, I had immediately been suspicious. I had immediately distrusted her. And I had always held it against her.”

Slowly, but surely, the more time they spend together, the more Georgia fell for Moses. She wanted to understand him. She wanted him to let her in. But Moses pushed and pushed. He pushed her away. Warned her away. She couldn’t know the anguish that churned beneath his cracks. The visions that haunted him. But I love that Georgia continued to force the issue. That she saw past the dueling feelings that battled within Moses. He needed her with him as badly as he needed her to leave him alone. As teenagers, their relationship was complicated and charged. It was chaos at the brink of being unleashed.

“Thou shall paint. Thou shall leave and never look back. Thou shall not love.”

And one day the chaos was set free as the boy who was born unwanted and abandoned lost the one person who cared for him, and pushed away the other person who had wanted him. Loved him, even. Georgia’s heart was shattered and things were set in motion that would forever alter both of their lives. And that chaos Moses left in his wake was the very reason he had laws he did not break.

“But there are laws. There are rules. Laws of nature and laws of life. Laws of love and laws of death. And when you break them, there are consequences. And Moses and I, like a stream of fateful lovers who had gone before us and who would come after us, were subject to those laws, whether we kept them or not.”

Distance and time and unexpected pain separate these two people, these two opposites, two lovers who loved and lost so much. This is a story with tremendous richness and depth, with beauty and truth lacing every word that graces the page. As with all of Amy’s books, there’s a deeper message woven in, making the reading experience all the more special and personal. This story is one of acceptance of those whom are different, of seeing the beauty of those differences and of never giving up when you heart feels something true and real. It’s a story of love and loss, of forgiveness and new beginnings. Amy Harmon’s storytelling brilliance knows no bounds, as evidenced by each novel she shares with us. I love her tormented male characters, who seem strong and fragile at the same time, who feel so real and flawed, that they are uniquely beautiful and unforgettable. This is a story that moved me to tears, that struck me with its emotional gravity, and that is undeniably one of my favorites this year. It’s simply a book that should not be missed.

“It was a great story, after all.

A story of before and after, of new beginning and never-endings. A story flawed and fractured, crazy and cracked, and most of all, a love story.”

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About The Author

amy harmonAmy Harmon knew at an early age that writing was something she wanted to do, and she divided her time between writing songs and stories as she grew. Having grown up in the middle of wheat fields without a television, with only her books and her siblings to entertain her, she developed a strong sense of what made a good story.

Amy Harmon has been a motivational speaker, a grade school teacher, a junior high teacher, a home school mom, and a member of the Grammy Award winning Saints Unified Voices Choir, directed by Gladys Knight. She released a Christian Blues CD in 2007 called “What I Know” – also available on Amazon and wherever digital music is sold. She has written six novels, Running Barefoot, Slow Dance in Purgatory, Prom Night in Purgatory, the New York Times Bestseller, A Different Blue, Making Faces and now, Infinity + One.

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Exclusive Excerpt: The Law of Moses by Amy Harmon

LAW OF MOSES

All of you know I am a huge fan of Amy Harmon, have been a big supporter of her stirring, emotional, unforgettable stories. Every book I’ve read of hers lingers long after I’m done and The Law of Moses is the next novel that promises to grip us with its beauty and power. It’s coming November 27th and you can pre-order it now for $2.99, a special limited-time price that will go up to $4.95 after release. I’m also honored to share with you an exclusive, never-before-seen excerpt from this poignant story.

Pre-order The Law of Moses ★

Synopsis

Nov-27

If I tell you right up front, right in the beginning that I lost him, it will be easier for you to bear. You will know it’s coming, and it will hurt. But you’ll be able to prepare.

Someone found him in a laundry basket at the Quick Wash, wrapped in a towel, a few hours old and close to death. They called him Baby Moses when they shared his story on the ten o’clock news – the little baby left in a basket at a dingy Laundromat, born to a crack addict and expected to have all sorts of problems. I imagined the crack baby, Moses, having a giant crack that ran down his body, like he’d been broken at birth. I knew that wasn’t what the term meant, but the image stuck in my mind. Maybe the fact that he was broken drew me to him from the start.

It all happened before I was born, and by the time I met Moses and my mom told me all about him, the story was old news and nobody wanted anything to do with him. People love babies, even sick babies. Even crack babies. But babies grow up to be kids, and kids grow up to be teenagers. Nobody wants a messed up teenager.

And Moses was messed up. Moses was a law unto himself. But he was also strange and exotic and beautiful. To be with him would change my life in ways I could never have imagined. Maybe I should have stayed away. Maybe I should have listened. My mother warned me. Even Moses warned me. But I didn’t stay away.

And so begins a story of pain and promise, of heartache and healing, of life and death. A story of before and after, of new beginnings and never-endings. But most of all . . . a love story.

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Excerpt

“When I was younger I was scared a lot. When I would visit Gi, she would try to tell me stories to calm me down. Bible stories. She even told me about a baby named Moses. A baby found in a basket just like me. That’s how I got my name, you know.”

Georgia nodded. She knew. Everybody did.

“Gigi would tell me the stories to fill my head with better things. But it wasn’t until she started showing me artwork that things started to change. She had a book with religious art in it. Someone had donated it to the church and Gi brought it home so that nobody at church would see all those paintings of naked white people and get offended. She colored all the naked parts in with a black Sharpie.”

Georgia laughed and I felt the air lodge in my throat. Her laugh was throaty and soft, and it made my heart swell like a balloon in my chest, fuller and fuller until I had to sneak breaths around its increased size.

“So you liked the pictures?” Georgia prodded after I stayed frozen and silent too long.

“Yes.”

Georgia laughed again.

“Not the naked people.” I felt ridiculous and actually felt my face get hot. “I liked the beauty. The color. The anguish.”

“The anguish?” Georgie’s voice rose in question.

“It was an anguish that had nothing to do with me. An anguish everyone could see. Not just me. And I wasn’t expected to make it all go away.”

Georgie’s gaze touched on my face like a whisper and drifted away almost immediately, drawn to my tracing fingers.

“Have you ever seen the face of the Pieta?” I wanted her eyes on me again and I got what I wanted.

“What’s the Pieta?” she asked.

“It’s a sculpture by Michelangelo. A sculpture of Mary holding Jesus. Her son. After he died,” I paused, wondering why I was telling her this. I seriously doubted she cared. But I found myself continuing anyway.

“Her face, Mary’s face…it’s so beautiful. So peaceful. I don’t like the rest of the sculpture as much. But Mary’s face is exquisite. When I can’t take the stuff in my head I think about her face. And I fill my mind with other things too. I think about the color and light of a Manet, the details of a Vermeer—Vermeer includes the tiniest things in his paintings, little cracks in the walls, a stain on a collar, a single nail, and there is such beauty in those little things, in the perfect ordinariness of them. I think about those things and I push out the images I can’t control, the things I don’t want to see, but am forced to see…all the time.” I stopped talking. I was almost panting. My mouth felt strange, numb, like I’d surpassed my daily word limit and my lips and tongue were weak from overuse. I didn’t remember the last time I’d talked so much all at once.

“The perfect ordinariness…” Georgia breathed, and she lifted her hand and followed the wet path my finger made, as if she too could paint. Then she looked at me solemnly.

“I’m a very ordinary girl, Moses. I know that I am. And I always will be. I can’t paint. I don’t know who Vermeer is, or Manet for that matter. But if you think ordinary can be beautiful, that gives me hope. And maybe sometime you’ll think about me when you need an escape from the hurt in your head.”

Her brown eyes looked black in the shadowed light, the same color as the water we were immersed in, and I reached blindly for something to hold onto, something to keep me from falling into them. Georgia’s right hand was still pressed to the wall beside mine, and I found myself tracing her fingers, like a child traces their hand with a crayon, up and down and around until I paused at the base of her thumb. And then I continued on, letting my fingers dance up her arm, feather light, until I reached her shoulder. I traced the fine bones at her collar as my fingers glided to the opposite side and back down her other arm. When I found her fingers, I slid mine in-between, interlocking them tightly. I waited for her to lean in, to press her mouth to mine, to lead, as she was prone to do. But she stayed still, holding my hand beneath the surface of the water, watching me. And I gave in. Anxiously.

Her lips were wet and cool against mine, and I imagine mine felt the same. But the heat inside her mouth welcomed me like a warm embrace, and I sank into the softness with a sigh that would have embarrassed me had she not matched it with one of her own.

About The Author

amy harmonAmy Harmon knew at an early age that writing was something she wanted to do, and she divided her time between writing songs and stories as she grew. Having grown up in the middle of wheat fields without a television, with only her books and her siblings to entertain her, she developed a strong sense of what made a good story.

Amy Harmon has been a motivational speaker, a grade school teacher, a junior high teacher, a home school mom, and a member of the Grammy Award winning Saints Unified Voices Choir, directed by Gladys Knight. She released a Christian Blues CD in 2007 called “What I Know” – also available on Amazon and wherever digital music is sold. She has written six novels, Running Barefoot, Slow Dance in Purgatory, Prom Night in Purgatory, the New York Times Bestseller, A Different Blue, Making Faces and now, Infinity + One.

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Cover Reveal + Excerpt + Giveaway: The Law of Moses by Amy Harmon

law of moses cover

All of you know how much I adore anything from Amy Harmon. Her stories always grip me emotionally, the poignant messages she weaves into the story always linger long after I’m done. The Law of Moses is the next novel I eagerly anticipate and it’s coming November 27th! The cover is stunning, striking and the story behind it, equally as beautiful I’m sure. Read the excerpt below and make sure to add to your TBR! You’ll be able to pre-order mid month.

Synopsis

If I tell you right up front, right in the beginning that I lost him, it will be easier for you to bear. You will know its coming, and it will hurt. But youll be able to prepare.

Someone found him in a laundry basket at the Quick Wash, wrapped in a towel, a few hours old and close to death. They called him Baby Moses when they shared his story on the ten o’clock news – the little baby left in a basket at a dingy Laundromat, born to a crack addict and expected to have all sorts of problems. I imagined the crack baby, Moses, having a giant crack that ran down his body, like he’d been broken at birth. I knew that wasn’t what the term meant, but the image stuck in my mind. Maybe the fact that he was broken drew me to him from the start.

It all happened before I was born, and by the time I met Moses and my mom told me all about him, the story was old news and nobody wanted anything to do with him. People love babies, even sick babies. Even crack babies. But babies grow up to be kids, and kids grow up to be teenagers. Nobody wants a messed up teenager.

And Moses was messed up. Moses was a law unto himself. But he was also strange and exotic and beautiful. To be with him would change my life in ways I could never have imagined. Maybe I should have stayed away. Maybe I should have listened. My mother warned me. Even Moses warned me. But I didn’t stay away.

And so begins a story of pain and promise, of heartache and healing, of life and death. A story of before and after, of new beginnings and never-endings. But most of all…a love story.

law of moses full wrap

Excerpt

“You still talk to your horses.”

I jerked and Sackett shifted, not liking the spike of energy that shot through me or the fact that my fingers had yanked at his mane.

Moses stood silhouetted in the barn door, holding what looked to be a large canvas in his hand.

I hadn’t realized I was still talking to Sackett, and I did a quick examination of what I’d just said. I believe I had just uttered an embarrassing rant on people named Moses not being allowed in Georgia. “Oh, Lord,” I prayed silently but fervently, “you can make the blind man see and the deaf man hear so it shouldn’t be too much to ask to make this man forget everything he’s just seen and heard.”

“What does Sackett think about those new, stricter laws in Georgia?”

I looked up at the rafters, “Hey, thanks for comin’ through for me, Lord.”

I loosened the cinch that secured the saddle around Sackett’s middle and pulled the saddle from his back, hoisting it onto the saddle horse and removing the blanket beneath without looking at Moses. I was kind of surprised that he remembered Sackett’s name.

Moses took a few steps inside the barn and I could see a small smile playing around his lips. I gave Sackett a firm pat on his rump signaling I was done, and he trotted off, clearly eager to go.

“You’re back.” I said, refusing to embarrass myself further by getting angry.

“I took Tag home. He had big plans to train for his next fight old school, like Rocky, but discovered that it’s a little more appealing in the movies. Plus, I don’t do a very good Apollo Creed.”

“Tag’s a fighter?”

“Yeah. Mixed martial arts stuff. He’s pretty good.”

“Huh.” I didn’t know what else to say. I didn’t know anything about the sport. “Didn’t Apollo Creed die in one of the movies?”

“Yeah. The black guy always dies at the hands of the white man.”

I rolled my eyes, and he grinned, making me grin with him before I remembered that I was embarrassed and ticked off that he had kissed me and left town. It felt a little too much like the past. The grin slipped from my face and I turned away, busying myself shaking out the saddle blankets.

“So why did you come back?” I kept my eyes averted. He was quiet for a minute, and I bit my lips so I wouldn’t start to babble into the awkward silence.

“The house needs more work,” he replied at last. “And I’m thinking of changing my name.”

My head shot up, and I met his smirk with confusion.

“Huh?”

“I heard there was this new law in Georgia. Nobody named Moses can even visit. So I’m thinking a name change is in order.”

I just shook my head and laughed, both and embarrassed and pleased at his underlying meaning. “Shut up, Apollo,” I said, and it was his turn to laugh.

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About The Author

amy harmonAmy Harmon knew at an early age that writing was something she wanted to do, and she divided her time between writing songs and stories as she grew. Having grown up in the middle of wheat fields without a television, with only her books and her siblings to entertain her, she developed a strong sense of what made a good story.

Amy Harmon has been a motivational speaker, a grade school teacher, a junior high teacher, a home school mom, and a member of the Grammy Award winning Saints Unified Voices Choir, directed by Gladys Knight. She released a Christian Blues CD in 2007 called “What I Know” – also available on Amazon and wherever digital music is sold. She has written six novels, Running Barefoot, Slow Dance in Purgatory, Prom Night in Purgatory, the New York Times Bestseller, A Different Blue, Making Faces and now, Infinity + One.

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Review: Infinity + One by Amy Harmon

My Thoughts

A stirring romance. A life-changing adventure.
This beautifully woven story is entirely unforgettable,
profoundly touching and uniquely Amy Harmon. It’s absolute
perfection and an immediate all-time favorite.

6stars

Synopsis

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000039_00002]When two unlikely allies become two unwitting outlaws, will two unforgettable lovers defy unbeatable odds?

Bonnie Rae Shelby is a superstar. She’s rich. She’s beautiful. She’s impossibly famous. And Bonnie Rae Shelby wants to die. 

Finn Clyde is a nobody. He’s broken. He’s brilliant. He’s impossibly cynical. And all he wants is a chance at life.

One girl. One boy. An act of compassion. A bizarre set of circumstances. And a choice – turn your head and walk away, or reach out your hand and risk it all? 

With that choice, the clock starts ticking on a man with a past and a girl who can’t face the future, counting down the seconds in an adventure riddled with heartbreak and humor, misunderstanding and revelation. With the world against them, two very different people take a journey that will not only change their lives, but may cost them their lives as well.

Infinity + One is a tale of shooting stars and fame and fortune, of gilded cages and iron bars, of finding a friend behind a stranger’s face, and discovering love in the oddest of places.

*Infinity + One is a standalone novel*

My Review

Reading an Amy Harmon book is an experience. I get lost in the story. Consumed by the characters. My thoughts adrift in introspection. The beauty of the writing is always so striking. The story is always so affectingly real. Even in this case, where one of the characters is a music superstar, her sentiments are raw and relatable. Somehow, Amy’s stories feel stripped and unencumbered, and as a reader, I experience the heart and emotion at the core of the story. I love the pearls of wisdom she embeds and how they incite me to reflect on my own life and actions. Infinity + One is arguably her best work to date and that’s saying something since I have loved everything I’ve read from her. It has heart and soul, suspense and sexiness, intelligence and wit. It’s two seemingly opposite people adding together perfectly. Two souls who have been broken by tragedy and are looking to find their way in life.  It’s one adventure that promises to change everything and it all starts with a star that’s begun to dim…

“I don’t really want to die… I just don’t want to live very bad… But maybe that will change if I can just get away for a while… figure out who I am and what I want.”

To the world, Bonnie Rae Shelby was a bright, shining star. A young girl blazing to the pinnacle of fame. But in reality, Bonnie was broken and empty, lost and impossibly sad. Although she loved music, everything around her was nothing but a mirage. Empty of anything real. And she’d had enough. Running from the lights and towards the dark hopelessness she felt inside, she was ready to make it all go away. Until fate intervened, thrusting together a boy with a plan and a girl without hope. Bonnie and Clyde met at the heights of desperation, at a time where they needed something to rouse the insipidity of their lives.

“Finn saw something he’s seen on a thousand faces in the last six and a half years. Beat-down, hopeless, finished, blank. It was a look he had battled in his own reflection. It was defeat.”

When Finn Clyde came along, Bonnie was forced to make a choice and something about Finn felt right, fated even. Throwing caution to the wind, she takes an uncertain leap into the future with a boy she just met. All she knew is that she had to get away from everything and everyone that caged her in, because the sadness she felt inside had been consuming her for too long.

“Everybody has the blues. Maybe that’s all they are. But they feel more like grays than blues, and more black than gray sometimes.”

When Bonnie met Clyde, he had a plan.  Clyde had seen some of the worst life had to offer, always falling on the wrong side of things. Attracting trouble and taking the consequences. And Bonnie Rae Shelby was trouble. He knew that immediately. But he also recognized the desperation in her… he had felt it so many times. He still felt it. Still searched for an answer that would change the outcome of his life. Clyde saw the world through a different lens. A fabric of fast-moving numbers and equations. He found solace in the mathematics all around him. He could predict conclusions, control the chaos. Having this girl next to him factored an unpredictability that he found difficult to process.

“I believe in numbers. The ones you can see and the ones you can’t. The real and the imaginary, the rational and the irrational, and every point on lines that go on forever. Number have never let me down. They don’t waffle. They don’t lie. They don’t pretend to be what they’re not. They’re timeless.”

The more miles they traversed,  the more time they spent together, the more they realized just how much they shared in common. They both felt like halves to a whole. They both felt alone. They both needed each other in a way they didn’t realize yet. Seeing how their differences began to converge and fit together was wonderful to observe. Every moment seemed significant as they gradually fell for each other. Depended on each other. Needed each other. Bonnie’s fog began to lift and Finn suddenly saw a girl full of feistiness and courage, life and song. She was courageous and beautiful and she did something unsettling to him inside. Finn felt as if he was permanently marked in a way that was never going to be good… or good enough. He couldn’t figure out why Bonnie didn’t run from him, and perhaps more significantly, why he suddenly couldn’t fathom being away from her.

“He was usually good at figuring things out, good at unraveling complicated equations and ferreting out solutions to problems most people wouldn’t even attempt. But that was math and Bonnie was a woman, and the functions and formulas that ruled one had no obvious bearing on the other. Here he was, surrounded by a complex, puzzling, and illusive problem, and he wasn’t talking about math. Bonnie should be running from him as far and fast as she could, and for the life of him he couldn’t figure her out.”

Bonnie wasn’t good at being alone. She kept searching for something real and Finn Clyde was real, beautiful and brilliant. He was caring and good, but he too, was broken. Bonnie began to believe that they were destined to meet, a duo on the run, like the famous Bonnie and Clyde, but with the possibility of a different ending. A happy one. She needed Finn to believe in her, in them, in himself… but he feared they couldn’t escape the same ill-fated ending, and he feared he would lose her and it would all be on him.

“We’re Bonnie and Clyde! Wanted and unwanted. Caged and cornered. We’re lost and we’re alone. We’re a big tangled mess. We’re a shot in the dark. We’re two people who have nowhere else, no one else, and yet, suddenly that feels like enough for me!”

This beautiful, powerful, unforgettable story is one about breaking the cycle of hopelessness. It’s about taking control of your own life and risking it all to find the things that are most worth it in life. It’s love and adventure, risk and reward, courage and freedom. It’s a spellbinding tale that touched my heart profoundly, yet quietly, in the way that Amy Harmon often has through her storytelling. I find that I care deeply for the characters she creates, feeling their emotions as if they were my own, internalizing the stories to a point where they mean so much to me. Infinity + One is breathtaking… undeniably one of my favorite all-times reads. You’ll fall in love with Bonnie and Clyde, rooting for their love as they race towards their happy ever after.

“Infinity plus one does equal two… Me and you.”

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About The Author

amy harmonAmy Harmon knew at an early age that writing was something she wanted to do, and she divided her time between writing songs and stories as she grew. Having grown up in the middle of wheat fields without a television, with only her books and her siblings to entertain her, she developed a strong sense of what made a good story.

Amy Harmon has been a motivational speaker, a grade school teacher, a junior high teacher, a home school mom, and a member of the Grammy Award winning Saints Unified Voices Choir, directed by Gladys Knight. She released a Christian Blues CD in 2007 called “What I Know” – also available on Amazon and wherever digital music is sold. She has written six novels, Running Barefoot, Slow Dance in Purgatory, Prom Night in Purgatory, the New York Times Bestseller, A Different Blue, Making Faces and now, Infinity + One.

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