Donna Everhart

First Sentence Friday – Chapter 3 and COVER REVEAL!

This week, along with the Chapter 3 post, I have revealed the cover for THE FORGIVING KIND.  I was going to wait a little longer until I discovered that it was already out on the web in a few spots.

Many of you know, an author seeing a book cover for the first time ranks right on up there with opening the box filled with Advance Reader Copies, (ARCs) or, the actual finished copies. These are truly special moments and the culmination of long months of work for the author, and the publishing team.

Book covers are intended to convey an atmosphere, a rendering of the story from someone else’s point of view, and it’s always fascinating to see that interpretation.

Cotton plays a pivotal part in the story, while the Ideal Ball jar with its rusted hinge, a commonly used object with many practical purposes, is reminiscent of the time. The blueish green color in the background reminded me of water, a key theme, just like in THE ROAD TO BITTERSWEET. The title is encased in a manner similar to my other two books, a branding concept I love, making my work apparent and visible to readers who enjoy it. As well, I’ve always loved the single lines used to capture the essence of each of my books, and in this case, it’s “The heart is fertile ground. . .”  (swoon)

I hope you love it as much as I do!

By the way, this also means the book is now available for pre-orders, and you can add it to your Goodreads “want to read” shelf.

Two sites with the book available for ordering online are here:

Barnes and Noble


Indiebound doesn’t have the book up yet, but check back often – it’s important to support the independent book stores!

Now, on to this week’s First Sentence. 

How many of us still take that old fashioned Sunday drive?  Something tells me not many. I recall doing it with my family when I was growing up. It would be a Sunday afternoon, and out of the blue, Dad or Mom would say, “Let’s go for a little ride.” A lot of times we ended up on some rural country road with vegetable and fruit stands, tobacco barns, and pastures with horses or cows.  I always loved those slow, meandering drives.  I’d have my back window rolled down, arm propped on the armrest, my head as far out as I could get it without having to eat gnats. I was always on the lookout for the unusual.

One afternoon I saw some headstones in the middle of a plowed field. There were trees near them, as if to offer shade to the dead. This was fascinating from my viewpoint because I’d only seen graveyards with neat rows of headstones, all proper and cared for by some unknown person.

It wasn’t uncommon back in the old days for families to want to bury their dead on family owned land, and it still happens today.

This week’s sentence deals with such a burial. As you know, I don’t like spoilers, and I know you don’t either, however, what you already know from the first few sentences in the flap copy is a tragedy will befall Sonny’s Daddy.

The flap copy said: “For twelve-year-old Martha “Sonny” Creech, there is no place more beautiful than her family’s cotton farm. She, her two brothers, and her parents work hard on their land—hoeing, planting, picking—but only Sonny loves the rich, dark earth the way her father does. When a tragic accident claims his life . . . 



Chapter 3



We buried Daddy on the land he tended with such steadfast devotion, on a small rise beneath a cluster of pines.




10 thoughts on “First Sentence Friday – Chapter 3 and COVER REVEAL!”

  1. The cover took my breath away!! It’s interesting about the cemetery….my friend’s mother passed away a month ago, and was buried on ranch land that has been in their family for over 100 years, when her family first settled in Texas. It’s a very peaceful place. The cemetery is so far back into the ranch, that her husband had to stand guard at the gate to keep the cows from getting out, and we had to maneuver around them to get to the cemetery.

    1. Gosh, it did mine too, Susan, when I first laid eyes on it. And the thing is, the picture doesn’t do it justice – as photos often don’t. The texture of the cover will be like my others, sort of rough feeling, and it will have french flaps. What I love as well is how the publisher hones in on little additions – like in DIXIE, it was a monarch butterfly. In BITTERSWEET it was wild flowers. With this book, it’s the cotton boll – meaning they’ve placed these in other little spots on the cover.

      That’s amazing about your mother’s friend, and her resting place. It’s ideal to be able to do this, and I wish I had family land like that. My father in law has about 500 acres in Mississippi and has told all of us repeatedly he wants to be buried there. There is a place on the land we call The Bottom. It’s actually his runway (for when he used to fly) and just like I describe in my first sentence for this week – it’s on a small rise with pine trees. Wonder where I got that vision. 🙂

  2. Donna…Your post brought to mind memories that hadn’t resurfaced for a long time. I can remember Sunday drives when I was a kid, too. And they always happened just the way you said. My mother or daddy would say ‘let’s take a drive’. We lived in the country but could always find roads ‘not traveled’ for us to explore. And I loved just looking at other peoples homes, yards, farms, imagining what the people were like, what the homes were like on the inside. And there are many small family cemeteries here in Kentucky.

    Love the cover of your new book. Am headed to Amazon to pre-order it. Will give me something to look forward to during the old cold winter.

    1. This writing tends to jog my memory too – and I find myself suddenly landing on things I’d forgotten from way back when. I was trying to remember when I’d first seen a cemetery like what I describe (I see them all the time here where I live now) and realized it was back when I was a kid during one of those Sunday afternoon drives. As you can tell, I did just like you, loved seeing other houses, farms, etc., and wondering how different their lives were – if at all.

      Thank you for reading my books! The release date will be here faster than we can ever imagine.

  3. Love the cover, I can not wait to read this one! You are one author that I just get the book without even thinking about it!

    1. Those that have read it (including the copy editor!) have said good things about it – so I can’t wait for readers to get the opportunity. That’s a wonderful compliment too – thank you!

  4. GORGEOUS cover, Donna! Very evocative of rural, southern anywhere. Your designers have done a fantastic job of creating a cover brand for you.

    I don’t remember ever going for Sunday Drives because church, church and more church (with Sunday dinner and naps thrown in) but every time my dad drove past a cemetery he’d say, “People are dying to get in there.” We was the king of Dad Jokes and he had a dark sense of humor, probably as balm to soften the pain of all the dead he buried as a rural preacher.

    I can’t wait to read this. Goodreads says it’s #72 on my WTR list but it’s actually at the top.

    1. They did a great job on this one – hit it just right for the atmosphere of the book. We would usually go after church, late afternoon. Not every Sunday (and we didn’t go to church every Sunday either!), they were totally spontaneous.

      Your dad sounds like he was a hoot! I love that – people are dying to get in here. LOL! My husband calls graveyards “skull orchards.”

      Of course your book will mosey its way right on up to the top of my list too, Eldonna!

Comments are closed.

Scroll to Top