Leaving Darkness--Joshua Franklin is returning to Crow Valley, the place he grew up. Haunted by dreams of his high school sweetheart, Kathryn, he hopes this trip down memory lane will give him peace. Instead, he finds a nightmare. Separated for years, Josh and his friends are drawn together by the tragic death of their friend, Jason. Soon they are all finding menacing letters and dodging bullets, making them wonder if Jason's death was really an accident. When a former teacher with a grudge shows up at the funeral, they all begin to understand that the secrets they buried long ago have been unearthed, threatening to destroy their lives. The only thing keeping Josh in town is a beautiful waitress who seems to have secrets of her own. But complicating things is his tumultuous relationship with Kathryn, who seems to simultaneously love and hate him. Leaving Darkness is the story of one man stepping out of his broken past and into the light of forgiveness.
What Heaven Heard--This collection of poetry from Ben Zajdel covers a variety of subjects. Love, baseball, war, and tragedy are just a few of the topics found in these pages. These poems invite the reader to reflect on some of life's most significant events while also pausing to appreciate the ordinary ones. Find out how an old woman holding a flower can lead to tears of conviction. Discover if true love is really worth the wreckage it leaves in its wake. Imbued with heart and the imagery of East Texas, these poems capture what it means to live and love in an era of change.
A Devil Without Fire--A soldier comes home from war and isn't sure how to adapt to civilian life. A mother does whatever it takes to help her son. A group of teenagers play a deadly game in a sleepy suburban town. A Texas Ranger comes back to his hometown to find a missing girl. These are just some of the tales Ben Zajdel tells in his first collection of short stories. They paint a portrait of life, death, love, and hate, all set in the towns and cities of Texas.