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The Edge of Over There: Guest Post and Giveaway


The Day the Angels Fell, Book 2
  Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Publisher: Revell
Date of Publication: July 3, 2018
Number of Pages: 384

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The captivating sequel to the award-winning The Day the Angels Fell
Abra Miller carries a secret and a responsibility she never expected. 
Before the Tree of Life, everything in Abra Miller’s life had been predictable. Safe. Normal. But after the Tree, everything has felt fragile . . . like holding a soap bubble in the palm of her hand. After years of fruitless searching for the next Tree, she begins to wonder if it was nothing more than a vivid dream.
Now sixteen, Abra finds a clue to the whereabouts of the next Tree of Life when an ominous woman—who looks exactly like a ghost from her past—compels her to travel to New Orleans where she’ll find one of seven gateways between this world and Over There. But she’s not the only one interested in finding the gateway. There’s also a young man searching for his father and sister, who escaped through it years before. As Abra enters the Edge of Over There and begins her pursuit of the Tree once more, she doesn’t know whom to fear or whom to trust.
She’s also starting to think that some doorways should never be opened.

Praise for The Edge of Over There:
“Blending Biblical elements and urban myths, Smucker creates an enthralling story of supernatural battles between the forces of good and evil.” — Publishers Weekly

“The Edge of Over There is a mesmerizing, menacing fantasy. Shawn Smucker fuses New Orleans lore, Christian themes, and dystopian landscapes in a thorough exploration of love and its unintended results.” — Foreword Reviews (Starred Review)

For the Underestimated Among Us

Guest Post by Shawn Smucker

The weekend was long and tiring, filled with wonderful things and busy things and fewer spare moments than I would have liked. This is life. We are still learning.

Our 8-year-old is probably the most passionate and insistent one among us. When the weekend brought not enough sleep and too many “we’ll see” answers, he started falling apart. Personality clashes. Frustration. An early bed time on Sunday night.

After getting the 3-year-old in bed, I curled up on the floor beside the 8-year-old (he insists on sleeping on the floor). A simmering sense of having been terribly wronged emanated from him. His pillow was wet with tears. I lay down beside him in the dark, only the night light on, and I pushed the hair back from his eyes. I pushed it back again. It became this methodical movement, a tenderness. His pillow was wet with tears.

“I don’t think this is about bed time or having a snack or being bored,” I said quietly, and he softened. He sniffled, a sob-tremor shuddering through his body. “This is about not getting much playing time at the football game today, isn’t it?”

He hesitated. His defenses crumbled. He nodded. When he spoke, his voice came out in stop-start, haltering fashion.


I sighed. My heart broke, for the thousandth time. As each of my children gets older, I am struck fresh by the realization that this world will hurt them and many times there’s not a thing I can do about it. Raising six children, raising one child, raising any number of children, caring for anyone outside of yourself, will render your heart a shattered mess. Of course, this is not always a terrible thing, because as Leonard Cohen said,

There is a crack in everything

That’s how the light gets in.

* * * * *

It’s probably the question that lies at the foundation of our subconscious. It explains why so many of us have responded to life the way we have. This question can drive us up a mountain or plant us face first in the dust.

Why does everyone underestimate me?

It’s the question I asked myself when I didn’t make the starting team in college, when I didn’t get accepted to any of the MFA programs I applied to in my early 20s, when I didn’t get that job or this promotion, that agent or this book deal.

Why does everyone underestimate me?

Feeling underestimated is one of the worst feelings out there because it usually means we weren’t even given a shot. Failing is one thing, but kept entirely out of the game is another. Missing the shot is one thing, but never getting to take it is another.

Why does everyone underestimate me?

* * * * *

He fell asleep in minutes. I spoke to his coach on the phone later that night. There were some misunderstandings, some chaos on the sideline. He will get his chance to prove himself.

If you’re feeling underestimated today, I see you. I hear you. I can only encourage you in two ways – keep going, and whenever it is in your power to give someone else a chance to prove themselves, do it. Give them that shot.

We all deserve it.


Shawn Smucker is the author of The Day the Angels Fell and The Edge of Over There. He lives with his wife and six children in the city of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. You can find him on his website, where you can also sign up for his newsletter in order to find out when and where the Tree of Life will turn up next.

GRAND PRIZE: Both Books in the The Day the Angels Fell series + Color Changing Tree Mug + $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card
2ND PRIZE: Both Books + Tree of Life Journal
3RD PRIZE: Both Books + $10 Starbucks Gift Card
  July 17-26, 2018
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