Monday, January 1, 2018

Under a Cloudless Sky By Chris Fabry Win it before you can buy it!

A charming and engrossing novel for fans of Southern fiction and the recent hit memoir Hillbilly Elegy about a lush and storied coal-mining town―and the good people who live there―in danger of being destroyed for the sake of profit. Will the truth about the town’s past be its final undoing or its saving grace?

1933. In the mining town of Beulah Mountain, West Virginia, two young girls form an unbreakable bond against the lush Appalachian landscape, coal dust and old hymns filling their lungs and hearts. Despite the polarizing forces of their fathers―one a mine owner, one a disgruntled miner ―Ruby and Bean thrive under the tender care of Bean’s mama, blissfully unaware of the rising conflict in town and the coming tragedy that will tear them apart forever.

2004. Hollis Beasley is taking his last stand. Neighbors up and down the hollow have sold their land to Coleman Coal and Energy, but Hollis is determined to hold on to his family legacy on Beulah Mountain. Standing in his way is Buddy Coleman, an upstart mining executive who hopes to revitalize the dying town by increasing coal production and opening the Company Store Museum. He’ll pay homage to the past―even the massacre of 1933―while positioning the company for growth at all costs.

What surprises them all is how their stories will intersect with a feisty octogenarian living hundreds of miles away. When Ruby Handley Freeman’s grown children threaten her independence, she takes a stand of her own and disappears, propelling her on a journey to face a decades-old secret that will change everything for her and those she meets.

You must pick up a copy here...

I was born in West Virginia in 1961. I read a lot, but not very fast, and wrote poems and songs, and transcribed Marx Brothers movies and memorized dialogue.

In 1984 I met Jerry Jenkins at Moody Bible Institute. He offered to help me learn to write and I took him up on the offer. In 1998, Jerry and Dr. Tim LaHaye hired me to help write the Left Behind: The Kids series. After that I worked on several other series for children and then published my first adult novel in 2008. It took more than six years to write Dogwood and find a publisher. It received a 2009 Christy Award.

My next novel, June Bug, drew its themes from the classic Victor Hugo tale, Les Miserables. Then, Almost Heaven released and also won a Christy Award, as well as the 2011 Christian Book Award for Fiction.

Not in the Heart is another riveting, suspenseful, and yet relational story. A mystery within a mystery within an addiction. I dedicate it to all who have someone in their life who is addicted. This story also received a Christy award.

Borders of the Heart is my nod toward some of the great western writers—Cormac McCarthy and Larry McMurtry. It's a love story, a painful story of loss, a mystery, and an edge-of-your-seat thriller. I hope you enjoy the ride through Tucson and the surrounding area as much as I did.

Every Waking Moment is my effort to take some of the pain and loss of life and sift it through the life of a young woman who's been marginalized in society, working among people who are marginalized (the elderly). Treha has an extraordinary gift that few observe because she's "different." Like most of my tales, it's a love story, a mystery, part thriller—but mostly a character sketch of lonely people looking for hope.

The Promise of Jesse Woods is a coming-of-age novel that will wring your heart. Part of the allure of the story is baseball, as Matt suffers twin disasters in 1972 and 1984. I'm pleased the novel was given an Award of Merit in the 2017 Christianity Today Book Awards. It's particularly poignant given the fact that the Chicago Cubs won the World Series in 2016!

I've also had the opportunity to craft novels based on film screenplays. The motion picture The Song released in September 2014, with my novel developed from Richard L. Ramsey's screenplay following later that year. I was also privileged to work on the novelization of War Room, the latest film produced by the Kendrick brothers (Courageous, Fireproof). Both film and novel were released in August 2015.

I graduated from the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism at Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. I have been married to Andrea since 1982. We have nine children. In October of 2008 our family evacuated our house in Colorado, leaving behind all our belongings because of a toxic mold situation. Since then we have been living near Tucson, Arizona, working on recovering our health after the mold exposure.

Stop by my website at to learn more about my writing and radio endeavors, and be sure to sign up for my online newsletter, the FABRYGRAM. I can also be found on Facebook and Twitter, or you can email me at

My Thoughts...

You're in for a treat with this book. Fabulous, fantastic, you won't put it down. 
You have to read Bean and Ruby's story. Their  stories intersect very well.
Some of you will not see the end coming. You will be blown away with the ending!
Not only does this need to be a movie, so much of it rings true to the coal mining area I lived in for many years. This has to be one of the very best researched books. The details are so vivid and it reads like no fiction book I have read in the past.
If you read Hillbilly  Elegy and enjoyed it, you are going to LOVE Under a Cloudless Sky it's so much better.
This is a 5 star two times book. I HIGHLY recommend this book!
The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher for review. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are our own.


  1. Chris is awesome. I love his books.

  2. I saw your post on facebook and I really want to read this one bad.

  3. oh Mary, is this about your hometown? I have to read this one for sure. I loved War Room so much.

  4. Not one I want from the library, since you told me about Chris' books years a go I have been buying and reading everyone of his books. I will buy this one and add to his shelf.

  5. We will be reading this at our house I just ordered us a copy.

  6. This is the one on your facebook page under the article that talks about your hometown, I ordered Emma and I copies I hope they come this week.

  7. This sounds like an interesting read!

  8. Mary, I want to read this one just because all you talk about is this author being one of your favorite author.

    1. Denise, you are the WINNER! Your book will go out tomorrow! Congrats! You are going to LOVE this book!

  9. Love the sound of this book. I need to win it. add my name.

  10. Sounds like a good read. I want to enter :)

  11. I was waiting for a new book by Chris. I would like to enter.

  12. I would like to be entered for this please.

  13. I can't wait to get my hands on this one.

  14. I love Chris because he is from my state.

  15. I saw this one on the Christian Book website and was intrigued by it. Thanks for the review, seems it's as good as it sounds!

  16. Chris became one of my most favorite authors when I read the Promise of Jesse Woods! I have read more of his books and have not been disappointed in any of them. As a matter of fact, each one I read, makes me hunger for more of his books. And.....I can't wait to read this one!

  17. This is about where I was born. I hope that I win a copy.

  18. Lovely review! I haven’t read Farby yet.

  19. Five star two times? Count me in! :)

  20. I so love his books. Love to read this one. Loved the blog.

  21. I would certainly love to read this one. Thank you for the great review, Mary!

  22. Yes Please !!! Love to read this book .Blessings ,DanaGirl

  23. Absolutely want to read this book so bad! FABULOUS review!