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What do lizards have to do with Agnes Sparrow?

Boy, am I bad about blogging. I admit it. I get so wrapped up in novel-writing that I forget my blog for days or weeks. Or months. Not that the world waits with bated breath for my posts, but it’s a good way to stay connected with people. If you stay connected, that is.

I just finished reading, or at least skimming, a ridiculous number of novels for the “comparable fiction” section of the book proposal that I’m putting together for my agent. It’s work, not fun, to pick up one book after another, read a few pages, and decide this one is too chick-litty to be a good comparison, and that one is too high-falutin’ literary, and the one with the cool cover art turns out to be boring, so why would I want to compare my illustrious writing (cough cough) to that? But I found enough good comparisons, I think. Now I’ll let that part of the proposal cool while I tweak the rest of it.

I just finished reading The Prayers of Agnes Sparrow by Joyce Magnin, not as part of the book-comparison deal but just for fun. And it was fun. Joyce lured me in with an interesting fat woman who serves her town by praying because there’s nothing else she can do, and then unexpected things happened, drawing me into deep theological waters in a most entertaining way. Without preachiness. It would be a great pick for a book group to argue about. Er, I mean, discuss.

Unrelated: We’re experiencing a lizard invasion. They’re the cute little anole lizards, bright green with a peachy dewlap that they puff up for intimidation or courtship purposes. Somehow, they’re sneaking into the sunroom, and yesterday I found one waiting expectantly at the back door in the garage. I think he would have knocked on the door if he could have. I shooed him away, for his own good. Our indoor cats would have seen him as a delightful taste of the great outdoors.

Okay, that’s not totally unrelated to Agnes Sparrow, because one of the characters in the story has a cat that’s always murdering smaller creatures, and that’s related to the behavior of some of the human characters and those big theological questions about sin and free will. See, it’s all related. Lizards, cats, fiction, theology.

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