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About Connie Lounsbury
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Award-winning author Connie Lounsbury expertly weaves nonfiction and fiction together in a story that will have the reader weeping in both sorrow and joy. When Irene’s husband abandons her and their children in the early 1920s she tries, in various ways, to earn an income to support her children. When circumstances make that impossible, her vulnerability is exposed for the world to see and the vultures descend upon her. The neighbor wants her baby; the banker wants her loan repaid; the doctor wants her farm; the judge wants her two little boys; and the town telegrapher just wants her.
Each of the vultures, pillars of their community, have secrets they don’t want others to know, that impact Irene’s life. Long ago, the orphan train had brought to town hate for authority that festered into more hate. Long ago, illnesses carried over into longings and heartbreak that later in life threatened marriages, both present and future. Infidelity and greed abound among fierce longings for love.
Irene, who didn’t want to have children until after she had them, fiercely loves each of her children and tries valiantly to keep them from starving while the community brands her as disreputable. Her love for a childhood sweetheart and a horrible truth that she didn’t want to believe reveal secrets of child abuse and murder. What happened to make the man she loved willing to watch his children starve to death? How can Irene escape the abuse of power against her? What sacrifice must Irene make to keep her family together?
After a tragic mistake during The Great Depression, Dr. Pete Walters becomes penniless, forced to ride the rails along with thousands of other unemployed men and women, surviving by trading labor for food, or asking for handouts. Will he find the trust and the love he doesn’t believe he deserves when he hops off the train at Kathleen Creek, Minnesota, or must he leave again when someone exposes his past?
Author Connie Lounsbury admits that, at times, she has been slow to listen to how God wants her to live. Now immersed in the third act of her life, she shares her blessings, mistakes, and the secret she carried during her childhood as she learned to hear Gods voiceeven in the most difficult times.
Lounsbury begins her story in 1950 on a frigid morning in rural Minnesota when, at just nine years old, she was terrified to hear her father shout, "The house is on fire!" Her father was able to save just a few items before their house burned down. He had no insurance or job, and so life was not easy for the family. As Lounsbury details her journey through childhood and the years beyond, she illustrates the importance of Gods presence during challenging times, of teaching children about God, and of living a faith-filled life. From remaking cast-off clothing to buying shoes in thrift stores, Lounsbury shares how her family somehow survivedand even thrivedby relying on love, faith, and a fierce determination to persevere despite many obstacles.
Thrift Store Shoes shares a poignant glimpse into one womans inspirational journey from when she first accepted Christ into her heart to today, as her life continues in Gods graceand demonstrates that, no matter what, God is always with us.
With startling detail, Lt. Col. Germain offers a clear-eyed account of life as a nursing supervisor behind the fortified gates of Abu Ghraib. Her duty: To treat Iraqi prisoners, U.S. soldiers, and Marines in need of medical attention. Shortly after she arrived, the notorious prison made headlines around the world for abuses that had stopped months before. Despite unbearable heat, frequent mortar attacks, medical supply shortages, substandard facilities, the relentless stench of war, and sleepless nights quartered in a tiny prison cell, Germain served the medical needs of each of her patients with remarkable humanity.
In this crucible of wartime stress, workplace turmoil, and cultural uncertainty, Germain found herself forging powerful connections with colleagues and translators. She learned from translators about normal Iraqi families struggling to survive impossible conditions. And after vowing to avoid personal relationships with prisoners, she became a comfort to many. Duty and compassion, camaraderie and hope all helped to pull her through.