Monday, October 21, 2013

BLOG TOUR: Mile 21 by Sarah Dunster


“You have to be here. I can’t be on the premises without an owner or tenant present. Wouldn’t want to be accused of walking off with anything.” He looks around the kitchen. “Not that there’s anything here to tempt me.”

“You’re a jerk.”

Bob glances down at the photo again. “Will your husband be back soon?”

“He died a year ago. So, no.”

I gain immense satisfaction in seeing his cheeks darken a bit.

Abish Miller is a mess. But you might be too if you were a twenty-one-year-old widow with a dysfunctional family, an overpowering boss, and a torturous return to the singles’ scene. Training for the marathon she and her husband never got to run is about the only time she can forget about her problems.

But life won’t leave her alone. It throws Bob Hartley, a recently divorced young father, into her living room and then her ward. And when her irritation turns into attraction, she’s sure that it must be some sort of cosmic joke, especially when it seems he loathes her! Feeling like she just keeps hitting the wall, Abish must learn to push past her fears or she’ll never achieve her personal best.

Defined by sharp wit and an authentic voice, Mile 21 shows the despair of giving up on hope—and the joy of choosing it again.


Sarah Dunster is an award-winning poet and fiction writer. Her poems have appeared in Dialogue: Journal of Mormon Thought, Sunstone Magazine, andSegullah Magazine. She is a contributor to LDS arts blog A Motley Vision. Her first novel, “Lightning Tree,” was released in April of 2012. Her fiction has been described as fresh, character-driven, and outside the box of LDS literature. Sarah Dunster enjoys writing almost as much as she enjoys spending time with her seven children, age eleven and younger.


Mile 21 provides a heart-wrenching look at the challenges of being widowed or divorced.  After losing her husband and her baby, Abish finds herself adrift. Sure, she's attending school and going to church but where is it leading, and what's the point of it all? The author dives into some interesting issues here and the heartache that life can bring.  LDS doctrines involving eternal marriage and death and divorce are explored.  But above all the story is about finding hope and love in dark times and struggling through the challenges of life, especially the problems we often create for ourselves.  I have to admit that this book made me cry at a couple of points because of the emotion the author creates through her words.  To me that is the sign of a well-written, characterized, and plotted book, when I feel such a connection to the characters that I cry when they do. So I can definitely recommend this one if your ready for a heart-felt look at life and love.

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