Sunday, December 28, 2008

The 7th Most Life Changing Book of 2008 is...

The 7th
Most Life Changing Book of 2008 is
"Havah, the story of Eve"
by Tosca Lee

I thought that "Havah" would be this nice little historical fiction book about Eve and I was looking forward to it. I had no idea what I was getting into...WOW! The scope of this project was huge - we are talking covering about 900 years where we have a little fact in Genesis and a lot of speculation. Tosca manages to take all of that and make Eve a real woman who engineered the downfall of man, birthed the world of man, helped form civilization, went from paradise to life as we have never known it and yet dealt with many of the issues we still deal with today. Tosca makes Eve real in a way that I have never thought of her. The hard thing is that like most Biblical fiction books - it can become hard to separate truth from fiction in our heads, but most importantly this book will make you want to go back and reread Genesis and figure it out. It is beautifully written and will make you think about your real roots.

Now let's meet Tosca..

1) "Havah" is an amazing book. I can't even imagine how many hours of research it took. Did you have any idea of the scope this project would take when you started it?

No! Not at all. Or I’d probably have chickened out. I just had no idea of the scope of research alone—let alone the writing--at the time I proposed the book with my single page prologue.

2) What led you to undertake Eve as your leading lady?

Several years ago, I was contemplating Eve’s experience and what her voice might sound like—Eve, as an old woman, retelling her story. I put it away for a few years until I sold my first book and my publisher (NavPress) asked me what else I had, and then frantically dug it out. It was really the only other idea I had to offer them at the time.

3) Reading Havah made me want to go back and read the book of Genesis again to try and determine fact vs. fiction. Does it feel weird to know that a lot of people will start taking things you wrote as fact like we readers often do when we read a fictional account of a Bible story?

That’s definitely weird, and I hope that people won’t accept my version as fact, but examine the scriptures for themselves. The good thing that happened to me in writing it is that I had to ponder a bunch of tough, tough questions.* And I wish that for everyone, even if it’s not for a project like a novel, but only for their own contemplation. Unfortunately, the Adam and Eve story is one most of us know so well that it’s become a clich├ęd part of our culture. So if people revisit Genesis after reading Havah, I’m glad for that.

* A sample of many of them is on my blog at:

4) The beginning of the book really through me for a loop, it took me a little while to wrap my head around those opening chapters because it seemed so abstract - the more I thought about it the more I realized that was perfect though - how else would you write the realization that someone has of coming into existence when they don't know language? How crazy was it to write the beginning of Havah?

That was one of those first points (of many) where I thought, “What have I done? What have I taken on?” I was overwhelmed at the thought of describing waking to life, perfection, the absence of language, communion with God, the first human error and its ramifications. The scope of the story horrified me. In the end, I could only close my eyes and imagine, and write, and study, and imagine some more—and pray. I prayed on my knees many mornings before starting. I had to.

5) Where did you get the idea for what the mark of Cain actually was, because that was mind blowing in and of itself - what else would keep people from killing Cain - it is kind of like Jesus saying, "Any of you who are without sin can cast the first stone..."

Yes! Thank you for picking up on that. The mark of Cain was one of many questions that plagued me through the telling of this story. We just aren’t told what it is. Some believe it might have been a brand, but that didn’t seem like it, in and of itself, would keep away relatives bent on blood vengeance. Some said it was something like a dog, or that Cain’s skin color changed. That was intriguing to me, but I wasn’t sure it seemed like enough to do more than set him apart, or even frighten others—which might incite violence against him. But the idea of seeing your own guilt in a mark that is like a mirror… no one wants to look at that. We stop persecuting others when we realize our own guilt. So that was the thing that made sense to me.

6) What is your next project that you are working on and when can we as your readers look forward to seeing it in stores (I know, I know, this one has just come out... but still...)?

I’m taking a break right now, but will probably have something in the works by spring. I spent much of this last year exhausted between my consulting job, writing deadlines, publicity, and some changing life circumstances. Also, you face a lot of spiritual opposition in undertaking endeavors like this. So I have really needed this rest.

I haven’t been one of those authors who can knock books out every six months, but I’ve had the fortune of being received by the most loyal and patient readers. It is a privilege to write for them. As soon as I begin the next book, (whatever it is—I’m still contemplating), I will do my best to write a story that is hopefully worth the wait.

7) How can readers find you online?

I can be reached at My websites are:,, and I’m also on Facebook, Shoutlife, and MySpace.

Dear readers, do not miss out on this book. For a chance to win a copy from Tosca do this:
leave me a comment (with your email address or way to reach you) telling me what your favorite Bible story is and you will have 1 entry in the drawing! If you tell someone else about this interview with Tosca and they enter and put your name in the comment then you will have 3 extra entries, if you link to this interview from your own blog then you will get 2 extra entries - Good luck!


Christianna said...

Sounds like a very interesting book. I'm intrigued!

Susan Stitch said...

My favorite Bible story is the one of the four men who actually tore through the roof to get their friend in front of Jesus. I want to be a friend like that!

hippmom said...

I think it is hard to pick a favorite bible story - usually my favorite is whatever I have most recently read/studied. Since it is Christmas time the birth of Jesus i strong on my mind espescially thinking about what Mary went through.

I am so intrigued by this book. Hope I win!

Anonymous said...

I love the story of Ruth and Boaz, its a picture of what christ does for us :)
please enter me!

Anna W. said...

One of my favorite Bible stories is the story of Esther.

I would love to read this! Please enter me!

writer_weaver at

Anonymous said...

A most intriguing story to me is the Samaritan woman at the well. I wonder what her life went on to be after she encountered the Messiah.
Please enter me in the drawing.

Grateful Gramma said...

Hard to pick a favorite, although I also like the story of the Samaritan woman.

I've wanted to read this book for a while. Please enter my name. Thanks!

Lora Lease said...

I have many favorite Bible stories, one of which is the story of Esther.

Gin said...

One of my favorite Bible stories is the beautiful story of Ruth.

Abi said...

Esther is my favorite.

Sounds so intriguing.

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Abi said...

I posted about your book contest. and put a button in the side bar also.

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Valorie said...

My favorite? Cain and Abel, for sure.

I blogged about your contest here:


Stacie said...

My favourite bible story is Noah's Ark.

Lindsey said...

Favorite bible story: Esther's story. I've read it so many times!

I so want to read this! So many people say it is a favorite of 2008 books. Thanks for the opportunity to win!

ladyufshalott at

Anonymous said...

I have lots of favorite Bible stories but sometimes I need the reminder from Jesus walking on water and Peter going out to meet him. We all need to remember to keep our eyes on Jesus.

kalea_kane said...

One of my favorite Bible stories involves the prophet Nathan. I admire the courage he showed when rebuking David for his actions with Bathsheba. The story he told to David of the poor man and the rich man opened up David's eyes and heart. That is what a good story can do. :) Thank you for the chance.




kalea_kane said...

Great giveaway! I blogged about it here!


Anonymous said...

I met Tosca at the ACFW Conference in Sept. What a charming, lovely lady.
Her book, Demon is almost to the top of my reading stack! I look forward to reading this book too.

Tammy said...

My favorite Bible story is Ruth. I just cannot imagine leaving all you have known and following my mother-in-law to a strange place! That is faith.

Tisa said...

My favorite is Ether's story. ~ :) Thanks!

jmagloro [at]

lisa said...

My favorite Bible story is the story of Joseph. It's just so filled with promise and virtue and God's watchful care for His own. It's like a fairy tale and yet it's true. Isn't it awesome that we can belong to such a limitless God?

ldneuhof at hotmail dot com

darbyscloset said...

My favorite Bible story is the Song of Solomon (sp?), it's a love story....a racey love story!
Thanks for the opportunity to win this book!!! I must read it!
darbyscloset at yahoo dot com

valerie2350 said...

the good samaritan

stampedwithgrace said...

this book sounds so good! one of my favorite Bible stories is Ruth.

Sarah said...

Ruth. I love Ruth!
Please enter me in the draw

Sue said...

My favorite Bible Story would be the Story of Esther. Everytime I read it, I feel empowered and cannot help but think of being "superwoman." Please count me in!

The Giveaway Diva said...

I love noah's ark!


MJ said...

Gotta be Esther!

Carolynn W. said...

My favorite bible story is the story of Daniel and his 3 friends. I'm always inspired by it. Nothing could make them forsake God.
Thanks for the chance to win!
carolynnwald at hotmail dot com

Becky C. said...

I have so many favorite Bible stories, but I think my favorite, is about the woman at the well.

Please enter me in the contest.

Thank you,

Becky C.


Donna said...

I like how Joseph overcame adversity.

JamericanSpice said...

I love the story of Jesus using the three loaves and two fishes to feed thousands. It reminds me that God can do anything and everything with little or nothing at all.

ReadingRobin said...

The story of Esther.
Looks like a popluar book, several others have suggested I read this.

cmrobin at bellsouth net

Janna said...

And the winner is...