Friday, January 6, 2012

Dance of the Dandelion

I'm excited to get back to my promoting days! Please welcome a fellow writer and friend Dina Sleiman! That's a picture of her on the left. Isn't she fun? Makes me want to run out into the water with her!

Here's what she says about herself:

I am a debut novelist and a published poet, but I am also much more. Most of the time you will find me reading, biking, dancing, or hanging out with my family, preferably at the beach. I love anything related to creativity. More importantly, though, I am a passionate follower of Christ who longs to serve him in all I do.

I'm excited to introduce you to Dina's debut novel DANCE OF THE DANDELION. If you like medieval Christian fiction, this is the book for you! There aren't very many medieval's out there, so it's nice that WhiteFire Publishing opened up their doors! 

Here's a bit about DANCE OF THE DANDELION

Love's quest leads her the world over.
Dandelion Dering was born a peasant in the English village of Arun, but her soul yearned for another life, another world. One filled with color and music, with adventure and passion . . . with more.
Haunted by childhood memories, Dandelion determines to find a better existence than the life every peasant in the village contents themselves with. Even if her sweetheart William s predictions prove true, and her journey leads straight to heartache.
From her sleepy hamlet to the intrigue of castle life, from the heart of London to the adventurous seas, Dandelion flees from the mistakes of her past, always seeking that something, that someone who will satisfy her longings.
Will Dandelion ever find the rhythm to her life's dance . . . or did she leave her chance for true love at home in Arun village?

Because I haven't had the pleasure yet of reading Dina's lovely novel (been a bit distracted with fighting cancer), I'll include a review here below.

Review by Michelle Sutton, author of over a dozen inspirational novels

 Best Medieval fiction I have ever read, and a favorite this year!
I have finally found the perfect novel. Seriously! This is the best book I have read in a very long time and I've read over 200 books in the last two years. 

In the acknowledgements at the end of the book the author credits Donald Maas for teaching her how to develop at decent plot into a stellar one. She far exceeded stellar and I dare say this book for me was more of a mindblowing romance and spiritual love story similar to Redeeming Love, a best-selling novel by Francine Rivers. Over the years I have read a ton of books set during this time period and none of them came close to being as exhilarating for me as this one. It not only inspired me, but reading this novel was downright addicting. I had to have my fix daily until I finished the book. When I reached the end I felt and ovewhelming sense of satisfaction at having experience the highs and lows of Dandelion's journey as well as bonding so closely to the characters that I felt as if I had also experienced the same boundless joy by the end of the book. The resolution was stellar, and beyond satisfying. 

I can't say enough good things about this book. I feel like my words will be inadequate, but I'll try to explain why this book will forever remain in my heart as a favorite read right up there with Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. For one thing, the author had so many insights into not only the physical and emotional realm of Dandelion's existence, but she nailed her spiritual journey as well. We have all asked ourselves the same questions and have at times felt the same longing for more than we have. We have all sought that joy that can only come from knowing God. The Bible says if you seek God with your whole heart (like Dandelion did) you will find Him. Unfortunately many of us trip and fall many times along the way. Some of us make terrible choices with devastating consequences and others make better ones, but we all make choices every day. We are all capable of being led astray, and often childhood pain drives our desire for whatever it is we seek. This story showed that in a way that made sense, and it was so well-written. The prose was beautiful and sigh-worthy, for sure. 

For me the most emotional and touching part of the story had to do with Dandelion's fear of her own passion. God made her that way and she knew that deep inside. When she tried to squelch it, the effect never lasted. She longed for love and a better life, but her passion was misdirected so many times. She thought maybe choosing someone who was stable and secure was what she needed to control that passion that frightened her so many times, but that didn't work. Often women are drawn to men who have self-serving and selfish desires because they are so charming and passionate as well, but not in a way that shows love. That initial bond quickly shatters when the true colors of the person doing the abusing comes out and then the woman is trapped. Dandelion was strong in so many ways, but at the same time she was so very human. I loved her dearly as if she were a real person. Dance of the Dandelion inspired me in a place deep inside my heart that books rarely touch. I highly recommend this story for anyone who has looked for love and satisfaction in the wrong places and thus made poor choices in this life. The book illustrates through well-written characterization how you can experience the freedom to worship God with passion and fulfill that desire to know Him more. That's what Dandelion's story did for me.

Here's where you can find Dina's book!


  1. I LOVE medieval Christian fiction. thank you for sharing this.
    I have been praying for you during your fight of cancer.

  2. First I want to say to Sandi that you are in my prayers and I hope that you feel better soon.
    Love the blurb and review of "Dance of the Dandelion.

  3. Thank you, Wendy! If you scroll below, you'll see the latest news! :-)

  4. Hey Sandi! Great to see you back! And Dina nice to see you again. ;o) I just got Dina's book and will be digging into next week. Can't wait!

  5. That was a great book! Then again, yours was pretty amazing, too, Sandi!

  6. Wait until you all get your hands on Sandi's new book, Walks Alone. Awesome!!!!

    And, I want to let everyone know that Dandelion is only $3-$4 for ebooks. It's a great deal.

    Finally, thanks so much to Sandi for having me today and bringing such excitement. I'm excited for you too and have been praying for you often.

  7. Okay, I'm BUYING Dina's book! I'm so excited! I got a Kindle for Christmas this year. It's so much easier to read because I can make the text larger. Yay!

  8. I LOVE medieval stories. The review and the book sound right up my alley. Enjoyed the post completely, will look forward to reading the story.

    Wyndy C

  9. Sandi, I love how you said "a bit distracted fighting cancer." You're such a hero ;-)
    I'm totally buying this book. If Sandi liked it, I was eighty percent to ordering it but then I got to the part of that review that said "Redeeming Love" and I didn't even need to read the rest, LOL. I just have to decide if I want it an ebook (so I can have it now, lol) or order a print copy (which I always prefer.)
    And I am so dying to get my hands on Walks Alone, haha. Can't wait till I can pre-order!

  10. Well, Nancy, the ebook is a steal. In fact, Sandi's is available for kindle now. You could get both for about $7. You could grab two of our other wonderful WhiteFire books like "Shadowed in Silk" and "Jewel of Persia" too. Probably get them all for less than the print. LOL. Can you tell I'm all about a bargain?

  11. I've heard so many good things about this book that it is definitely on my list for this year. (My list is already growing rather large ...) So good to see you back blogging Sandi!

  12. Hi Tracy. I think we've made it onto at least one favorites list together. I need to check out your book too.

  13. Thank you everyone for stopping by. I hope you enjoy Dina's book. I'm looking forward to reading it myself! xxx