Hands Across the Moon
Young adult novel; ages 12+
Published by Tyndale House Publishers, 2003
197 pages

Life apart isn’t what best friends Gretchen and Mia have in mind. They’d looked forward to their junior year together—in California. Then Gretchen had to move to Ecuador… a world away. Now nothing’s going right for either of them.

Gretchen doesn’t know Spanish, and she’s more than an “outsider” at school. Mia’s future seemed all planned out as an Olympic-hopeful gymnast. Workouts have been her life. But is that all there is?

Sometimes it seems that their “across the moon” letters are their best lifeline.

the story behind the story

I wrote Hands Across the Moon to commemorate a long-lasting friendship. When I was a teenager one of my closest friends moved overseas with her family to France. We started to write to each other, to pour out our worries (mostly about boys!); we shared our triumphs too, and those letters became an avenue for me to learn about myself and about being a friend. We pushed each other hard, like mini-counselors, to be better people, better Christians. I didn't write Hands Across the Moon to be published, I wrote it for myself and for my friend. I also wrote it as a fun experiment in fiction, and so I could better understand that time in my life.

Just in case you want to know… Much of the story is true, but just as much of it is fiction. I spent years competing as a gymnast, but eventually ended my career in a cast. (Actually, I had ten casts altogether!) But I won’t divulge any more—it’s too fun leaving the details in a veil of mystery… I hope you laugh and cry when you read it, and that you enjoy the words themselves. And I pray that Gretchen and Mia become as real to you as they are to me, and that you might gain a few new insights on living life and loving each other.

Lastly, it really is true that I used to be able to do back flips on a beam, but now I can't even manage doing the splits. But you know what? Getting old is a beautiful thing, and it’s my fault that I can’t do splits any more—all that gym time is now spent at the computer…and storytelling is so very fun…

Hands is available on Amazon.com, Christianbook.com and other web-booksellers’ sites. You can also see more about Hands on areuthirsty.com.

The sequel is entirely written and patiently waiting for the proper time to be discovered. Send me an email and let me know if you’d like to see it in print!