Saturday, August 13, 2011

Christian Fiction Book Club: Digitalis by Ronie Kendig


I'm so excited that you are able to join me today to discuss this fantastic book by Ronie Kendig! Digitalis is the second book in the Discarded Heroes series. I read this book back in Feb. 2011 and would love it if you would take a minute while you're here to read my review! Many thanks to Ronie for writing a superior novel for us to read and enjoy! Thank you also to Joy for creating this book club for us to fellowship with each other. Please be sure to show these lovely ladies some blog love!

I am going to take a minute to answer a couple of the discussion questions about this book. Feel free to sign Mr. Linky at the bottom of this page so that anyone stopping by here can read your responses on your blog. I'll make it around to each person's blog as I am able to! I am pretty sure Ronie will be checking this out too!

Discussion Question
Have you or a loved one ever endured something painful (an illness, injury, broken relationship) and you wondered why God didn’t supernaturally intervene? Why do you think He does not eradicate our problems or pains?

As a nurse, I've seen more than my fair share of people in pain in some form or fashion. However, on a very personal level, I grew up knowing I would never see my mom run. I was fortunate enough to see her walk (although most of the time it required assistance such as holding onto a wall that progressed to using a walker to now being completely wheelchair dependent). Many, many nights I have prayed that one day my mom could walk again, that he would rid her body of the muscular dystrophy that was robbing her of her physical abilities. I have been through all facets of grief with God, everything from denial and bargaining to outright anger and finally, acceptance. I believe that God gives us all problems (physical or not, visible or not) to remind us that we are human. God intended to have the perfect race of humans when he placed Adam and Eve in the Garden. However, we all know of the fall of man and since then, have had many issues. These issues arose because God gave us free will to make our own decisions as humans. Otherwise, we'd be a bunch of robots! I also strongly believe that if there were no trials in life, we would not appreciate the sacrifice that Christ made for us, because it wouldn't necessarily be required of us to live Godly lives since we would already be perfect. God is a just God and He's a God of peace. While I'm not excited knowing that my mom will never walk again (or be able to care for herself), I appreciate the beauty of my mother, her spirit, and the lessons that I have learned (PATIENCE, love, determination, perseverance, meekness, etc) by being a part of her life. 

Discussion Question:
It’s a fact that many soldiers returning from a war theater will experience combat-related PTSD or traumatic brain injury (TBI). Many will never seek treatment, instead trying to push through and “get over it.” Do you know anyone who has experienced PTSD or TBI, combat-related or otherwise? How can you show this person your support?

I have been around many suffering from PTSD and TBI through my nursing career. I also have family members with documented cases. It's a sad reality in this day and time that so many people are affected by these horrible conditions. A person does not have to go to war to experience these either. I myself, have suffered a mild form of PTSD about 8 years ago while working at the hospital. It is not a condition to "blow off" or ignore. IT IS REAL! It saddens me that so many are ashamed to receive help in dealing with the traumatic life experiences that they have had. There are some fantastic professionals out there who will do anything and everything to help that person recover and that's with or without medication! The best thing, in my opinion, that a person could do to show support is to LISTEN. Many times we think we are listening to someone else when we are really just hearing them. There is a pretty significant difference in the two techniques. Listening requires some action and it's not always appropriate to give advice. A listening ear, lots of love, and supporting and encouraging the progress of a victim of these conditions is truly the best gift you could give someone. 

Discussion Question:
The end of Digitalis introduces two new Nightshade team members. Which of these two men intrigues you the most and would you like to see a story about? Why?

I love this question!!!!! The one that intrigues me the most is Aladdin. He is such an enigma to me and I would love to know more about him (you will learn a *little* more about him by reading Wolfsbane, which is the next book in this series!) I would love to see him featured in his own story to hear more about his time before joining Nightshade. MOST of the guys seem to like him...we'll have to work on those others!

I hope you have enjoyed your time here today! For more about Ronie and these fabulous men, you can follow them on Twitter (@roniekendig, @discardedheroes) or check them out on their websites! 

I have read Wolfsbane and I HIGHLY recommend it!! I'm looking forward to the release of Firethorn, due out in Jan. 2012! 

Please leave comments concerning the discussion questions and then post answers to the ones of your choosing on your blog. Let us know how to find you by filling in the McLinky below! I look forward to your thoughts and discussion! 


  1. Thanks for sharing your testimony concerning your mother, Julie. You brought tears to my eyes. Your mom sounds like a great lady.

    I waited for today to share my review so I could link up here. I haven't read Ronie's other books yet but look forward to catching up on them all. Blessings!

  2. Hmmm, I don't see the linky. Is it just my computer?

    Yay! I can finally say I've read a Ronie Kendig book! I can see what all the fuss was about. I'm not in love with war stories, but she writes a fantastic romance.

    My mom has mobility issues too Jules. I feel bad because she's so young but she can't walk much at all. Her arthritis is sooo bad. She's not wheelchair bound (yet) but that day is quickly coming.

    I answered the PTSD question too. What do you do when the soldier won't talk? When he cuts everyone out? That's the problem we've had with my friend.

  3. Thanks for the review Julie! I love it when we all have different takes on the same story! I loved the action, but didn't really connect with the characters romance. Interesting that Joy loved the romance but not the action!

    I was sorry to read about your mom's struggles with MD. And then to read about Joy's mom with arthritis. I can relate a bit as my mom struggles with Osteoporosis. She is in constant pain, but thankfully still able to move on her own. I like the fact that you brought up "the fall of man". Even though we question things that happen on this earth we know what started it and we know WHO is going to fix it all. I'm sure our mothers will one day be walking the streets of gold no longer struggling with the pains of this earth. That is God's promise to us! EXCELLENT!

  4. Hey Julie! I had planned to post earlier, but it didn't work out. Anywho! I just posted it and added it to the linky. What fun!

    We both picked question 13 to answer, and we both had similar thoughts. Azzan (a.k.a. Aladdin) intrigued me SO much! I loved the scenes in Digitalis that were from his POV. It'd be awesome if Ronie did write a book about his life before joining Nightshade. Kinda like a prequel, or something, to The Discarded Hero series!!

    That whole series is awesome! I'm with you - I can't wait till Firethorn comes out!! :-D

  5. @Renee You MUST read the other books!! You won't be disappointed!!! READ THEM TODAY!!! :)

    @Joy It seems the more we chat, the more we have in common! My family member STILL won't talk and at times, it's rough. His marriage fell apart and he moved far away from his family (actually to another country). It's so hard to not be able to talk to him like we used to be able to. I just pray that with time, love, and patience, he may one day come around.

    @Julie: I can't wait for that day to happen for my mom that she can walk again. It thrills my soul to know that God's promises are true!

    @Katie: Yeah! We both picked Aladdin! I've really hoping Ronie will write more about him. She might have to if I keep bugging her! LOL

  6. @Jules-It's so sad isn't it? I can't think of my friend without feeling such a profound sense of loss.

    I wanted to mention to everyone our next book club discussion is The Preacher's Bride on September 24, and if you are interested in hosting, you should leave Julie a comment here (she can pick our next host).

  7. Wow, what a great discussion. Julie--wowzers about your mom and your loved one. THANK YOU for opening up and sharing about them.

    Loved hearing what worked for some and didn't work for others. That's really fascinating to me as an author. I know that we all come to stories with different experiences and expectations, so it's neat to see how that resonates (or doesn't) with readers.

    I love the idea of writing a prequel for Aladdin. I'd really LOVE to do a book on him. I think he's quite complex.

  8. @Ronie: Thanks so much for stopping by! So, does this mean I won't have to beg you for a book on Aladdin??? You know you'd have a happy book blogger friend then! :)

  9. Yes! Complex! That's the word I think of when I was reading a scene with Azzan. :-) He seems so complex and deep. I would love to dive into his story sometime in the future. *wink*

  10. It sounds like the potential is there that we might get to read it Katie! :) Encouraging authors like Ronie will help us readers to get what we want.

  11. LOL If it were up to me, there would be several more books. It's really my publisher who has to be convinced--as in, convinced my sales are good enough to support more. Book clubs like this and spreading the word are two huge helps in supporting that. THANK YOU so much!!

    And ya know...even if I can't get them to do a whole book, maybe I can do shorts on them (why does that feel like it just wouldn't do Azzan justice?!?!?). But it's a thought. :-D

  12. Hey, I posted a comment on my phone but now it isn't here :( So, I'll repeat myself!

    Love Aladdin but have to put in a plug for Dighton and if you read Wolfsbane (why wouldn't you?!?!) you will be able to work out my reasons why!

    And let's not forget The Kid! Would love him to have a story all of his own :)