Book Title: Weed and Water
Author: Ian Palmer
Genre: Teenage Redemption story; Christian faith
Paperback: 266 pages
About The Author
Originally from Australia, Ian lives in the high desert in his beloved Southwest USA. As a petroleum engineer, recently retired, he consulted all over the world. When he hikes with them or watches them play sports, Ian’s grandchildren are a particular source of happiness. His main interests are hiking, dancing, writing, and stimulating conversation. Ian regularly writes a new blog on various topics relating to Christian faith, and has also written a book called Hiking Toward Heaven. More info is available in the website www.IanDexterPalmer.com.
Interview with the Author
Where are you from? I’m from Australia but have lived in the USA for many years. I came to take a job in Los Alamos National Labs, where they made the atom bomb. I then lived in Tulsa for many years followed by Houston, before I moved to Albuquerque eight years ago.
For those who aren't familiar with your work, can you tell us a little about yourself? I have a Ph.D. in physics, and worked subsequently on cosmic rays from the sun. Later I was hired by Big-Oil and studied fracking for many years. Since retirement I have been writing blogs and books that have a Christian basis. I am always fascinated by the mystery of how God deals with mankind, and vice versa. My interests are hiking, dancing and playing pickleball.
How many books have you written? Three books. The first was called Unleash your Creative Mind (how to be more creative in work and life after work). The second called Hiking Toward Heaven (where my granddaughter was kidnapped and later rescued by a mysterious stranger). And the third called Weed and Water (see below).
What is your newest book about? Weed and Water is about a teen athlete called Ethan who goes down because of shame which leads to sex and drugs. The boy hurts himself, and brings heartbreak to his single mom who is doing her best. A mysterious stranger called Jackson, who is more than he appears to be, challenges Ethan about his choices, and offers a way out. But Ethan continues to yo-yo, unsure of who or what he can trust. The story, set in the desert Southwest and in the rivers and lakes of the Midwest, rocks and rolls with tension as well as geographical adventure.
Is there a message in your book that you want your readers to grasp? Teenagers have to make choices as they set their moral compass. They can end up in the garden or the swamp. In Weed and Water, Ethan is mired in the swamp when his family and Jackson offer him practical wisdom about his failure, and about the need to forgive ex-girlfriend Rachel. This pathway requires a new understanding of love and grace, and leads to hope. But can Ethan trust the adults? Does he have the energy to get out? Or is he trapped in the swamp forever?
What are your current projects? I write a new blog every two weeks…. on various topics, but all with a Christian basis. www.IanDexterPalmer.com. I am creating a new book called Nerd in a Blue Leather Jacket. This is about receiving insights and wisdom from God. I pull up examples from my own private life as well as my career, and also incidents told me by other people. It’s very cool to look back on tipping points in life, to see the hand of God.
What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done? I took my brother to see the Grand Canyon, the first time for him. So I blindfolded him and walked him out to the viewing point right on the edge of the canyon. He was a bit unsteady about all this! When I took the blindfold off, he saw immediately the vast extent of the canyon, and it was a treat to see the astonishment on his face at that instant.
What is your favourite Scripture verse and why? “Lord stretch out your hand to heal, and let wonders and miracles be performed in the name of your holy servant Jesus”. From Acts. When the apostles prayed this it says the house was shaken! I can’t tell you how many times I have prayed this over and over and over, for myself and for others who are in pain.
About The Book
A mysterious stranger helps a teenage boy called Ethan rescue his mentor, an elderly father-figure, from drowning when their canoe capsizes in a flooding river. A star athlete, Ethan later gets involved in unsafe sex, which leads to drugs, and gets him blackballed by jealous and gossiping team-mates. The boy is going down, and at times hates himself for it and for hurting his mom who is a caring, loving, and beautiful woman.
After another disastrous episode, where Ethan might have died, the river-stranger turns up again to confront him about his life choices. However, even after rehab, the boy’s condition is marked by a yo-yo attitude which causes massive emotional heartache for his mom.
The river-stranger, after sharing his own amazing history, suggests taking the fight to another level which draws on the resources of God. This begins a new and fascinating sequence of events, including a tornado, which get Ethan’s attention.
The book is a captivating story, packed with adventure in the desert Southwest and in the rivers and lakes of the Midwest USA. But it is also a goldmine of spiritual wisdom for teenagers. The mystery that permeates the story is compelling, and the thrilling ending may call for a tissue or two.
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