Sunday, January 26, 2014

The Last Detail by Lisa Lickel

Hope, love, and loss meld two polar opposite personalities. How long can they keep passion for their ministry and each other after the wedding?
Medical missionary and avowed bachelor Merit Campbell is wounded during a skirmish at his Mideast clinic and sent home to recover. Restlessness propels him to explore the happier moments of his childhood in Illinois where he meets Amalia Kennedy, owner of The Last Detail, who enjoys helping people prepare for their final years. Merit ushers in new life; Amalia ushers it out. Love? Obviously. Marriage? Check. Dealing with the family closet? Step back…

Amalia enjoys her predictable life in a quiet little Illinois town—until long-time intended, Hudson, finally proposes in a way that shows her boring and old are coming way too fast. When a mutual friend introduces Merit and Amalia, the spark of attraction makes Merit reconsider his bachelorhood. When he can’t return to the mission, he accepts a call as pastor to Amalia’s church. As the two grow closer they weather constant interruptions from ministry, business, and family, even at their wedding and beyond. When tragedy strikes, they must learn to rely on each other in ways they couldn’t have prepared for.

Book Excerpt

Copyright 2013 © Lisa J Lickel
Seven seconds. Merit counted silently from the time the last missile whined past his ear. Senna’s goon needed seven seconds to reload. Merit ignored the flash on his right and kept his eyes on the child who sat in the dirt about a dozen long steps in front of him, waving her tiny fists.
After the next barrage of fire went silent, Merit took off in a crouching run, grabbed Tangra’s youngest granddaughter, Mardra, and rushed toward the nearest pile of rocks. The punch and stabbing sensation in his left shoulder, followed by a thud, let him know he had almost made it. As he was lifted off his feet, he thrust the child he’d delivered last spring into her father’s outstretched arms. As gravity reclaimed him his left foot plunged between stones. His ankle twisted viciously as strong hands pulled him to relative safety amongst the band of defenders.
The child began to scream when her uncle fired his weapon close to her little ears. Merit felt like doing the same as his ankle thrummed and ground with his every movement. Broken, at least. No competition for the shoulder wound. He took Mardra back into his arms so her father could aim his US-made hunting rifle, meant for small game—not humans—back toward Senna’s position.
Merit hunched over the little girl as a brilliant flame arced overhead. A ground-shaking explosion followed, then smoke and men’s shouts and the acrid scent of the rocket’s accelerant. He hoped he wouldn’t have to run, because he couldn’t. Nothing he could do but pray between the throbs of searing pain and deep anger at Senna.
The baby wiggled, tugging Merit’s heartstrings away from his fury. It wasn’t her fault her grandfather’s rival destroyed Merit’s life work. Both factions were going to miss the little missionary medical clinic Merit ran in the mountains of Nehrangestan, a tiny spot on National Geographic’s map of Asia.
Something tickled. Wha—oh, right—blood from the shoulder wound. He touched the front of his blue shirt then looked at the growing red stain flowing like a waterfall. Tentatively, he reached behind his collarbone and hissed at the gouge. Not serious. He’d probably get a nice scar out of it. Senna’s pound of flesh. Merit shifted the baby and tried to flex his ankle. He bit back a scream and panted while sparkles pulsed in the fringe of his vision. Yeah, broken.

Well, that answered that question. If he got out of here alive, the mission board would make him go home for treatment. Question was, how soon could he get back to rebuild the clinic? 

About Lisa
Lisa Lickel is a Wisconsin historian and writer who lives with her husband in a hundred and sixty-year-old house built by a Great Lakes ship captain. Her novels include the Buried Treasure mystery series (The Last Bequest, The Map Quilt and The Newspaper Code), Meow Mayhem, the award-winning romance, Meander Scar, A Summer in Oakville co-authored with best-selling author Shellie Neumeier, Healing Grace, The Last Detail, a radio play “Gangster’s Ghostcapade” in the Wisconsin Writers Association Press A Wisconsin Harvest Vol. II, and a novella “Three Rings for Alice” in the historical anthology Brave New Century. She has written dozens of feature newspaper stories, short stories, a series of early reader historicals, First Children of Farmington, and magazine articles. She is the editor in chief of Creative Wisconsin magazine and loves to encourage new authors. Lickel, who holds a BS in history from the University of Wisconsin, is also an avid book reviewer and blogger, a freelance editor, a writing mentor, and writing workshop leader. She is married to a high school biology teacher, and they have two sons and daughters-in-law, grandchildren and a grand-kitty. Find more at

To buy Lisa's book:
All Romance ebooks

Lisa Lickel is giving away a copy of The Last Detail. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses. To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment along with your email address. You may enter the book giveaway twice -- once on each spotlight post. (It's not too late to go back and leave a comment on yesterday's post.)

Off to read another great book!
Sandra M. Hart


Rick Estep said...

This looks like a great book. Thanks for the review and the chance to win a copy.

Librarybooks at religious dot com

cjajsmommy said...

Thanks for sharing a bit of the book with us. I look forward to reading it. cjajsmommy (at) gmail (dot) com

PriviesAndPrims said...

I really like the business name "last detail". Such a perfect fit for what it is, but not depressing.

priviesandprims [at] yahoo [dot] com

Jackie McNutt said...

This book looks like an interesting story line. Thank you for excerpt , Would like to read this. Thank you

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read lisa's book :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Linda Kish said...

The book sounds terrific. I'd love to be the lucky recipient.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Lisa Lickel said...

I appreciate you all. Thank you for coming back. I hope you enjoyed a taste of the book.

Boos Mum said...

It's nice to read a book and see how the couple try to achieve their happily ever after. Sounds like a great book. Please enter me. Thanks.

sweetdarknectar at gmail dot com

Patricia Bradley said...

Sounds good! Hope I win. pat at ptbradley dot com

squiresj said...

Would love to win, read and share
jrs362 at Hotmail dot com

Lisa Lickel said...

Lovely to hear your comments, all of you. Thank you!

Patty said...

Sounds like a very interesting book, thanks for the giveaway!


Anonymous said...

looks great!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for another chance to win Lisa's book. Know it will be good. Would love to read it, then share it.
Maxie mac262(at)me(dot)com

Library Lady said...

I love the cover of your book and the book excerpt has me hooked!
Thanks for entering me in the giveaway.
Janet E.

sam said...

I was an MK and my mom a nurse at a bush clinic. I am interested in your book. wileygreen1(at)yahoo(dot)com

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