When I finally shift gears and start publishing the novels I’ve been working on for the past decade, I can only hope to strike the kind of balance that author Mary Doria Russell achieves in hers. Have you discovered her yet?

Anne and I have admired her for years. The Sparrow and Children of God are among the most enthralling spiritual dramas I’ve read, and they’re set in a dazzling, imaginative science fiction context. The backdrop is spectacular, and yet the characters live and breathe and affect us so intensely that we laugh with them, grieve with them, and share their yearning for peace.

Tonight, Russell is reading from her new book, A Thread of Grace, at Third Place Books in North Seattle. If you’re in the Seattle area, don’t miss it. If you’re not, watch for Russell to visit your town sometime soon.