Book Review by Bonnie Way
One Smooth Stone
by Marcia Lee Laycock
One Smooth Stone (Castle Quay Books, 2007) is the story of Alex Donnelly, a young man who has spent the last five years hiding out the Yukon Territory in northern Canada, trying to escape his past, the police, and God. But with the passing of his twenty-first birthday comes an inheritance from his parents… money they left in trust for him before they died when he was a child… money that came from the lawyer’s settlement in a court case against a doctor for failing to abort Alex.
When the lawyer shows up at Alex's cabin in the Yukon, he isn't happy at being found. But his questions about his past cause him to return to Seattle to find out more. He isn't prepared to meet the lawyer's daughter, Kenni, who both intrigues and confuses him. Just as they start getting to know each other, Alex discovers that his mother wanted to abort him and runs back to the Yukon.
Marcia Laycock writes a grimly realistic tale of one man’s struggle with his past and with God. Alex was raised in foster homes, abused and mistreated, and the memories of those days still haunt him. He is angry at God for letting those things happen, angry at those who abused him, and just wants to forget about them. But God is after him, and uses even a blizzard and a grizzly bear to get Alex’s attention.
About the Author
Marcia Lee Laycock grew up on an island in Lake Huron. She attended Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, before "running away" to Alaska and the Yukon. She became a Christian in 1982 and with her husband went to Briercrest Bible College in Saskatchewan in 1985. Since 1988, she has lived in central Alberta. She and her husband have three daughters.
Marcia began writing as a child. Her devotional column was published for over a decade in various Alberta newspapers. She is the author of three devotional books, The Spur of the Moment, Focused Reflections (devotions for specific occasions), and Abundant Rain (a writer's devotional book). Her short stories have appeared in various anthologies, including A Second Cup of Hot Apple Cider, and several are available for free at Smashwords. She is a member of Inscribe Christian Writer's Fellowship, The Word Guild, and American Christian Fiction Writers.
About the Novel
One Smooth Stone (ISBN 978-1-894860-34-5) won the 2006 Best New Canadian Christian Author Award from Castle Quay Books. It was also nominated by the Ontario Association of Christian Librarians for their "One Read" Award in 2009 (the award went to the Hot Apple Cider anthology, which included two pieces by Marcia Laycock).
Best-selling Alberta author Sigmund Brouwer says of One Smooth Stone, "Laycock delivers an engaging and imaginative story so effectively that it's difficult to believe the novel is her debut. I'm looking forward to more!" Most of Laycock's readers are also looking for the sequel; A Tumbled Stone tells the story of Alex's hunt for his sister and was published in 2012.
To read the first chapter of One Smooth Stone and more reviews, and to view the book trailer and discussion questions on the novel, visit Marcia's website at http://marcialeelaycock.com/.