Please join me in giving a warm welcome to Toni Shiloh. I recently finished reading her latest book ‘Returning Home’. I just loved this story! The characters are so vivid and real and I felt like I was in the story with them.
Toni Shiloh is a wife, mom, and Christian fiction writer. Once she understood the powerful saving grace of the love of Christ, she was moved to honor her Savior. She writes soulfully romantic novels to bring Him glory and to learn more about His goodness. Before pursuing her dream as a writer, Toni served in the United States Air Force. It was there she met her husband. After countless moves, they ended up in Virginia, where they are raising their two boys. When she’s not typing in imagination land, Toni enjoys reading, playing video games, making jewelry, and spending time with her family. Toni is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) as well as the president of the ACFW Virginia Chapter.
Jo Ellen Baker is shocked to find out that the boy who teased her mercilessly throughout high school, has returned to their hometown of Freedom Lake, and he’s missing a leg. When his mother asks her to renovate their carriage house to give him a place to gain his independence back, she wants to say no. But one look at him brings a rush of forgotten feelings.
Evan Carter can’t believe he has to return home and live with his parents. Every hope and dream he ever had dissipated in a car crash that cost him his leg. Stuck in a wheelchair, he’s forced to reexamine his relationship with God and the local carpenter, Jo Ellen Baker.
Will renovating his home open the door for a mended relationship, or are some wounds too deep to heal from?
Welcome, Toni! I’m so happy to visit with you today and get to know you a little better. Let’s get started with a few getting to know you questions, and then we’ll talk about the book.
Q: What is your favorite season, and why?
Toni: Growing up it was summer because I hate to be cold. But now that I live in a place that has all four seasons, I love spring. It’s absolutely stunning to see the flowers bloom and see the sun shine but not bake you. 😊
Trisha: My favorite is Spring also! There is something about the rebirth of the trees and flowers, and just life bursting forth.
Q: What is the best part of your day?
Toni: Oh wow. I’m not sure if I can pick just one. I love waking and reading God’s word. I love seeing my kiddos come home from school. But I also love their bedtime and the quietness that descends afterward. 😉
Trisha: Yes, starting the day with God is the best. The quiet of the evening after children’s bedtime is pretty nice too. Peaceful times!
Q: What are some of your favorite Christian Fiction reads from 10 years ago, or further?
Toni: Ten years ago I didn’t know Christian fiction existed. The only book I was aware of was the Left Behind series. I believe I had read all of them by 2007 but I wasn’t reading anything else.
Trisha: You know, I’ve never read even one of the Left Behind series. I have read plenty of other CF books.
Q: If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?
Toni: Kari Jobe, Jesus Culture, and Elevation Worship. You might also find some Adele, Maren Morris, and Thompson Square.
Trisha: Great selection of music you have! Kari Jobe has such a beautiful voice and her songs are so moving. I too enjoy Thompson Square, but I’ve not listened to their music in a while.
Q: Did the plotline or the characters come first?
Toni: The characters. They usually always come first, strolling by in my mind or some are bold enough to tap me on my shoulder and ask for a turn on the laptop.
Trisha: I love that you have some bold characters!
Q: Which character in Returning Home, took you by surprise?
Toni: Jo’s mother. I was pretty sure nothing she could say or do would shock me but I was wrong.
Trisha: Yes! She did surprise me as well. She is quite a unique character.
Q: What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?
Toni: Not that late at all. I’m not a morning person or a night owl. I’m pretty much a middle of the day person. I love sleep too much.
Trisha: I’m with you there, sleep is a beautiful thing!
Q: What is something that didn’t make it into the story?
Toni: I had scenes from Guy’s point of view (POV), Evan’s father, Evan’s mother, and one from Michelle’s. I got some advice that said too many POV’s would be confusing. Instead, I rewrote the scenes from Jo or Evan’s POV.
Trisha: I can see how that could be overwhelming with so many voices.
Q: What was your most memorable vacation?
Toni: The first time I went to Disney World with my husband. It was our first vacation together and utterly magical. We’ve been a total of 6 times since, all sans kids. 😊
Trisha: That does sound like it would be fun!
Thank you, Toni for visiting today and sharing with us about you and your wonderful book ‘Returning Home’. Please, do come and chat again some time soon!
Friends, do come back later this week, as I will be on tour with Singing Librarian for a review and giveaway of ‘Returning Home’.
I would love to hear from you:
What was your most memorable vacation?