- Forever Soul Ties
- by Vanessa Davis
- Kensington Books/Dafina
When one woman is caught in the act of her greatest
it's the beginning of her greatest transformation...
It started innocently: a coincidental
meeting between old high school friends--first loves--at Butterfly's
business, The Painted Lady Flower Shop. Then came lunch, the
confessions of unhappy marriages, loneliness. It went on that
way for years between Butterfly and Ethan. That's how they built
the soul tie--the bond that, despite their devotion to God, has
now led to adultery. And as with all things done in secret, they've
been found out. Well, Butterfly has.
As a leader in her church,
Butterfly is suddenly cast into the spotlight. But she soon realizes
she's being used as a pawn to bring down a new pastor--a young
man who is upsetting tradition by preaching about real-life issues
real people deal with. People like Butterfly. And as she faces
a challenging search for truth, forgiveness, and the real meaning
of love, she may finally break out of her cocoon...
- # # #
- "I absolutely
love Vanessa's unique writing style. She is one of a kind."
- --Mary Monroe, New
York Times bestselling author
- "There are enough
tears, hugs, and lessons learned before summer's over to appease
readers, young and adult, who like a good dose of faith with
- --Publishers Weekly on Ray of Hope
- "Griggs address[es]
the challenges of living by Biblical rules with homespun humor.
Fans will be pleased."
- --Publishers Weekly on The Truth Is the Light
- "A smart novel
that adresses an issue that many in the church shy away from--divorce--with
- --Library Journal
on Practicing What You Preach
FOREVER SOUL TIES by Vanessa Davis Griggs
How much less man, that is a worm? and the son
of man, which is a worm? -Job 25:6
I am a sinner.
That's the first thing you need to know about me. Some might
say a worm, although when it comes to worms, there are so many
various types. The second thing you need to know is that those
who brought me up and exposed the fact that I'd been caught in
the act, "the very act" of adultery, weren't really
after me. By this I mean: they were out to expose, to trick really,
the thirty-three-year-old pastor who'd already effectively turned
many of their lives and traditional beliefs upside down and on
their sanctimonious heads.
So this wasn't really about me and the man I've loved
since the very first day I laid eyes upon him, two months and
fifteen days shy of me being fourteen years old. The afro-sporting,
caramel-hued man of sixteen and a half who wore a grown-up hat
(a fedora, I believe it was, although I didn't know the name
of it at the time), cocked (as was also his head) ever so slightly
to the side. He smiled at me. And his eyes
His eyes lassoed
my heart before his bass voice ever even uttered the first sound
that would completely rein me in to tie our hearts and forever
knit our souls together.
Oh, I know you think that this is all an exaggeration. But
the fact that I'm a little over fifty now proves my point. That
tiny spark lit all those years ago was burning strong inside
of a roaring fire some forty years later. What else would you
So if this is the case, you might ask, then why were he and
I caught in adultery? Why is this not a celebration account of
our blissful years of holy matrimony together?
Simple. I'm married and so is he. But we're not married to
each other. In the past forty years our paths have crossed (on
occasion) here and there. At one church program and, early on,
one funeral of someone we both knew. And then there was the one
surprise time at a department store (which I confess was weird
and quite awkward for me). Especially since he had two
of his (what would eventually become) three daughters with him,
and I had my three daughters and a niece with me. He teasingly
introduced me as "This would have been your mother."
I believe he said would and not should. I'm pretty
sure that's what he said: would, although I confess maybe I wasn't
listening as closely as I could or should have. How was I to
know he'd be saying something weighty like that? I mean, I was
still in shock at running into him in the women's department
at Rich's in the mall.
Then came the time, ten years ago, that changed everything. The
time he called my business, The Painted Lady Flower Shop, not
knowing he'd be reaching me.
When I saw his name and number on the caller ID, I confess
I could barely breathe. I tried to decide whether I should answer
it or just let it go to voice mail, knowing full well I would
not return the call if it did and that there was no one else
in my one-woman shop to do it. And if I did answer it, should
I let him know it was me, or just be as I am with everyone and
anyone else who calls?
Cool, calm, and in my most polished professional voice, I
answered on the third ring. And as soon as he learned he was
speaking to me, he veered away from what he'd originally called
for. We did, however, eventually come back to it: he needed flowers
of twenty years now. The woman he'd married and
was still married to. The girlfriend, actually, he was dating
when he and I first met. The one he'd continued dating after
he'd stepped up and asked me to slow dance to a song that, to
this very day, still takes me back to that night of him gazing
into my eyes as I stood on the next to the last step in the basement
at a house party.
"Flowers for your wife?" I said with as much excitement
as I could muster. "Oh, that is wonderful!" I was happy
for him; really I was. His ordering flowers had to mean things
were going well for the two of them. After all, he was calling
to order my most expensive arrangement of flowers for his wife-although
I suppose it could just as well have meant they were having major
problems and he was trying to find a way to fix things. That's
the thing about flowers: giving them works in either case.
I explained I could have them delivered wherever he wanted.
He wanted, instead, to come by the shop and pick them up. I told
him I'd have them ready on the day and time he desired.
When he walked into my shop, older (in his mid forties then),
but still just as handsome (if not more so) and as debonair as
I'd remembered him the last time our paths crossed almost ten
years earlier, I wasn't ready. No, no, the flowers were ready
and waiting. The best job I'd ever done (if I may say so myself).
I wasn't ready.
Not after my knees discovered it was him and cowardly buckled-completely
betraying me by refusing to do their part in holding the rest
of me up.
Copyright 2012. All rights reserved. Excerpt from FOREVER
SOUL TIES used by permission of the author. Release date: 12/27/2011,
published by Kensington/Dafina