Cover image for Seasons under heaven
Seasons under heaven
LaHaye, Beverly.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Grand Rapids, Mich. : Zondervan Pub. House, [1999]

Physical Description:
333 pages ; 23 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
X Adult Fiction Christian

On Order



Four families living on a Southern cul-de-sac struggle to arrange for a heart transplant for a terminally ill nine-year-old.

Author Notes

Terri Blackstock was born in Belleville, Illinois on December 7, 1957. She received a bachelor's degree from Northeast Louisiana University in 1981. She began writing in 1983 and wrote 32 romance novels for publishers such as HarperCollins, Harlequin, and Silhouette under the names Terri Harrington, Tracy Hughes, and Terri Blackstock. In 1994, she started writing only Christian novels. She has written over 30 Christian novels including the Sun Coast Chronicles series, Second Chances series, Newpointe 911 series, Cape Refuge series, and Restoration series. She has won numerous awards including the Romance Writers of America's Golden Medallion for Best Short Contemporary Novel in 1988 for Stolen Moments and Retailer's Choice Award for General Fiction in 2007 for Night Light.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

t's going on three years since Carrie Bender ended Miriam's Journal, a semiautobiographical series about a charming, godly, opinionated Amish woman named Miriam; her husband, Nate; and the tribulations and joys of their life on the farm. Thus, Bender's many fans will be happy to discover Birch Hollow Schoolmarm, the first of a series called Dora's Diary about Miriam and Nate's adopted daughter, Dora Kauffman. After kicking up her heels a bit in the sheer joy of youth, Dora leaves Pennsylvania to teach in a Minnesota Amish community, then works as a hired girl, and begins to date. Bender writes simply but wins you over with authenticity and guilelessness. Joseph Bentz's Song of Fire [BKL S 1 95] is one of the best Christian fantasies ever. His A Son Comes Home, however, is a realistic tale of a son's estrangement from his father and their halting attempts to reconcile when it becomes clear the father is dying. Young Chris LaRue, a college English instructor, leaves Indiana for Los Angeles when his older brother is killed in a car crash; and it becomes painfully clear that his father feels the wrong son died. In the mix also is Chris' old girlfriend, Beth, and his younger sister, Robin, who relates part of the story and has a crisis both in faith and in her romantic life. A subtle and beautifully written story about the inevitability of family ties and the reconciling power of God's love. With Glimpses of Truth, about the origins of the fourteenth-century Wycliffe translation of the Bible, Cavanaugh, a Baptist minister, embarks on a project to fictionalize the histories of various classic editions of the Bible in a series called the Book of Books. Sounds dry, but this first installment is lively, featuring a peasant, Thomas Torr, who has scholarly ambitions and becomes an aide to John Wycliffe. In good faith, as an emissary of Wycliffe's, he journeys to Rome, where there is an ingrained opposition to editions of the Bible in any language but Latin and where he encounters treachery. Thomas survives, but many do not, making Cavanaugh's point that the Bible handed down to contemporary readers came at great cost. Entertaining enough, but one wonders why Cavanaugh chose to focus upon a fictional character rather than Wycliffe, who is only a minor presence here. Higgs' Mixed Signals is a silly romance about a 32-year-old disc jockey, Belle O'Brien, lured from Chicago to a small-town Virginia station by an old friend and, she hopes, her true love. The romance fizzles, and she falls for her engineer, David Cahill, whose dark past stems from his teenage affair with the local banker's daughter. This woman moved to California rather than marry David, who comes from the wrong side of the tracks and has a reprobate father, but David hasn't missed a month of child support in the nine years of his ex-lover's absence. There's another love story between the station manager and Belle's landlady. Higgs has a winning, cheeky style, but events pile upon each other unconvincingly as David reconciles with his alcoholic father, meets his young son, and rescues Belle from a runaway balloon, veering Higgs' tale perilously near to self-parody. Though The Chairman trades on the tired device of amnesia, Kraus more than makes up for it in his portrait of Nathan McAllister, a quadriplegic ex-cop whose spine was severed in a drug raid. Slowly, Nathan tries to remember the details of what happened, at the center of which seems to be his wife, Abby. She was having an affair with Nathan's best friend when Nathan was shot, which gives agonizing dimension to both her guilt and Nathan's plight. Meanwhile, the title character, neurosurgery department chairman Ryan Hannah, is working on an experimental nerve regeneration therapy that may restore Nathan's use of his limbs. Dimensions of faith are nicely worked out in Nathan's questioning of why God could allow him to be crippled and whether other lessons await him, either in Dr. Hannah's therapy or in the ministrations of a faith healer. Kraus, a surgeon and one of the few writers anywhere doing credible medical thrillers, gets better and better. The popular Blackstock and LaHaye, founders of Concerned Christian Women for America, join in the quintessentially suburban Seasons Under Heaven. Four families who live around an upper-middle-class cul-de-sac come together when one boy, eight-year-old Joseph Dodd, needs a heart transplant. A tearjerker with strong female characterizations and believable mother-child relationships that is likely to be very popular. Lane weighs in yet again on evolution versus creationism in Tonopah. Tonopah is a desert north of Las Vegas, and a Christian high-school teacher, Melissa Lewis, stumbles into a restricted section of it called Quad 217. One of her geology students discovers a T. rex and what appears to be a human bone. Someone is awfully angry about this, and marines, generals, and freelance thugs descend upon the area and attempt to steal Melissa's prehistoric trophies. A snappy and sometimes amusing thriller if you can abide the creationism propaganda, which seems to be Lane's obsession. In 1929, four young girls write down their profoundest dreams and ambitions, put them in a blue bottle, and hide it in the attic of a fine old house in Stokes' The Blue Bottle Club. In 1994, Brendan Delaney, a TV reporter, covers the razing of the house, and a bulldozer operator brings her the bottle as a curiosity. Brendan finds one survivor of the Blue Bottle Club and from her memories assembles the stories of all four girls: an actress, a loyal wife, a social worker, and an artist. Stokes escapes a mechanical exercise here by making the tales of the four women a fine and ennobling instruction in faith for the jaded Brendan, and the result is a cut above most Christian fare. John Mort.

Library Journal Review

Life in a quiet cul-de-sac called Cedar Circle is pleasant, if uneventful, for four diverse neighbors. Brenda Dodd is a happy career mom, homeschooling her children. Tory Sullivan, more overwhelmed by her role as mother, finds her children to be a challenge. Sylvia Bryan, meanwhile, suffers from empty nest syndrome, and Cathy Flaherty is raising her three children alone after a divorce. When Brenda's son Joseph is diagnosed with an enlarged heart, the women of Cedar Circle come together to cope with life's challenges and find strength through God. What could have been a melodramatic tale becomes instead a life-affirming look at personal struggle and commitment to a religious life. Though better known for her nonfiction works (e.g, The Act of Marriage, Zondervan, 1998), LaHaye teams with the reliable Blackstock (Shadow of Doubt, LJ 9/1/98) to deliver a fine novel of love, redemption, and Christian charity. Highly recommended. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Joseph Dodd was not one of those kids who feigned illness to get attention. His ten-year-old sister Rachel might have, since she was the one among the four children who leaned toward hypochondria. Leah, her twin, had been known to fake an occasional stomachache in the interest of competition. And Daniel, their twelve-year-old brother, often used a headache excuse to escape pre-algebra.But not Joseph. Brenda, their mother, knew that the eight-going-on-nine-year-old was the kind of kid who harbored no deceit at all. His feelings and thoughts passed across his face like the Dow prices at the stock exchange, and Brenda could read them clearly.That's why she knew something was wrong on the day before his ninth birthday. He'd gotten up with dark circles under his eyes, and his skin was as pale as the recycled paper on which they did their schoolwork. His red hair, which he took great pains to keep combed because he had three cowlicks, was disheveled, as if he hadn't given it a thought. On the way into the kitchen, he reached for the counter to steady himself and hung his head while he tried to catch his breath.Brenda quickly abandoned the eggs she was scrambling and bent down to look into his eyes. 'Joseph, what's the matter, honey?''I dunno,' he said.'Are you sick?' she asked, feeling his forehead.'Sorta dizzy.''It's his blood sugar,' Daniel commented, before slurping his cereal. He wiped a drip from his chin. 'Remember, I studied about the pancreas last week? The book said you could get dizzy if your pancreas didn't work right.''What's a pancreas?' Joseph asked, frowning.'Daniel, don't slurp,' David, their father, said. 'Brenda, what are you teaching him? Endocrinology?'Brenda grinned. 'More like he's teaching me. We're touching on anatomy in science. I got him some extra books.''What's a pancreas?' Joseph asked again. He was still breathing hard and beginning to sweat.David pushed aside his coffee, leaned across the table, and felt Joseph's forehead. 'You okay, sport?'Joseph didn't answer. He was still waiting for an answer to his question.'The pancreas is a gland,' Daniel mumbled around a mouthful of cereal. 'It's near your kidney.''Mom, Daniel's talking with his mouth full,' Leah spouted.'It is not near the kidney,' Rachel said. 'It's near the heart.''How would you know? You aren't studying the human body.''No, but I have one,' Rachel said, tossing her nose up in the air as if that won the argument.'I'm going to get my book,' Daniel said. 'I'll prove it to you.''Sit back down, young man.' Brenda turned back to the scrambled eggs and took the pan off the stove. She turned to the table --- only a step from the stove in the small kitchen --- and began scooping eggs onto their plates. Her blonde hair waved across her forehead, but she blew it back with her bottom lip. It was already getting hot in the house, and the sun hadn't even come all the way up. Despite the cost of electricity, she was going to have to lower the thermostat today or she'd never get the kids through their lessons.She reached Joseph's plate and scooped out some eggs.'I don't want any,' Joseph said.'Joseph, son, you've gotta eat,' David said.'I will later.'Brenda set the pan back on the stove and put her hands on her hips, gazing down at her son. 'Rachel, will you go turn the thermostat down? Maybe if it gets cooler in here Joseph will feel better.' As Rachel popped up to do as she was told, Brenda said, 'I hope you're not getting sick again, Joseph.''You can't be sick on your birthday,' Leah said. 'Mom, if he's sick, can we still have the party tomorrow?''Of course not. We'd just postpone it.''But I don't want to postpone it,' Joseph said, sitting straighter. 'I'm fine. I changed my mind. I'll eat some eggs.'Brenda grinned and spooned some eggs onto his plate as she heard the air conditioner cut on. 'He'll be fine. Probably just needs to eat something. Sometimes I wake up like that, Joseph. If I didn't eat much the night before, I get up and feel downright shaky until I eat.''Blood sugar,' Daniel observed.'Of course, mostly I eat too much.' She patted her slightly overweight hips. 'Somehow my body can always convince me I'm starving.' She ran her fingers through her hair and studied her youngest. 'Joseph doesn't need to be worried about his pancreas, though. I'm sure it's working just fine. But I have to say, Daniel, that I'm bursting with pride over your interest in the pancreas. David, don't you think he's doctor material? I mean, he's practically ready for medical school.'David smiled and patted his oldest son on the back. 'I think you're right. I've always said that Daniel had a sharp mind.''Me, too, Daddy,' Rachel said, coming back to the table.'All of you. There's just no telling what you'll be,' Brenda said. 'I'm going to be one of those mothers who can't open her mouth without bragging about her important children. People will run when they see me.' She fixed herself a plate and pulled out a chair. 'Okay, now, before Daddy goes out to the shop, let's talk about this party. Nine years ago tomorrow, the doctor put that precious little bundle into my arms. Nine years, Joseph! Think of it! Bet it seems like a lifetime to you, huh?'Joseph didn't answer. He propped his chin on his hand and moved the eggs around on his plate.'It seems like nine long years to me,' Daniel said.David snickered under his breath, and Brenda shot him an amused look.'I've already called all of our homeschooled friends,' she told Joseph. 'I told them to be here at two tomorrow. We'll have it outside. We need to start making the cake this afternoon. Joseph, do you want white cake, yellow, or chocolate? You need to consider this very carefully, since you'll be licking the bowl.'He didn't answer.Brenda's eyes met David's across the table again. 'Joseph?' David asked, taking the boy's hand.He looked up. 'Sir?''Your mother asked you something. What kind of cake do you want?''Um . . . rectangle, I guess.''What flavor?' Daniel prompted. 'Mom, he really is sick.'Brenda frowned. 'Baby, do you want to go back to bed?'He nodded and pushed his plate away, got up, and headed back to his bedroom.'I'm taking him to the doctor,' Brenda told David, getting up and heading for the phone. 'Something's not right.''Yeah, you better.''Tell 'em about his pancreas,' Daniel said. 'They might not think of it.'David laughed and messed up his son's hair as Brenda dialed the number. Excerpted from Seasons under Heaven by Beverly LaHaye, Terri Blackstock All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.