Focus on the Family has announced that it will publish fiction for the first time under the Focus Fiction brand in partnership with Tyndale House Publishing. A limited series of three inaugural novels by bestselling, Christy Award-winning authors Angela Hunt, Chris Fabry, and Tamera Alexander will be published in the fall, edited by Jerry B. Jenkins.
Larry Weeden, Focus on the Family editorial director, said, “We know many in our audience read only fiction. Fiction provides a unique way of looking at life and its challenges. These stories entertain readers and give them new avenues of thought about their own experience.”
Focus Fiction is in line with recent trends in Christian fiction toward grittier topics, but with differences. While other recent novels address issues such as sexual harassment and abuse, trafficking, racial inequity, domestic abuse and more, clear Christian messages related to salvation and theological issues remain largely below the surface. Titles published by the new imprint will deal with difficult issues and bring an unambiguous spiritual slant to the storytelling. This is in keeping with the publisher's commitment to deliver a gospel message in its books, according to the announcement.
Alexander’s A Million Little Choices, which chronicles an affair in the present timeline and an abusive relationship in an historical timeline, will reveal how small choices can impact relationships forever. Hunt’s What a Wave Must Be includes the topic of suicide as it tells the story of a family finding hope amid their grief. Fabry’s Saving Grayson is one man’s journey to right a decades-old wrong from his difficult past even as his mind is succumbing to Alzheimer’s.
Jenkins, the author of the bestselling Left Behind series with Tim LaHaye and scores more fiction and nonfiction titles, chose the three novelists. He told PW, "Focus on the Family came to me to consult with them on their idea to get into topic-oriented fiction. I said the choice of authors would make all the difference. Each one settled on an idea that resonated with Focus’s mission and delivered masterfully.” He describes the books as “page-turners that also pack a wallop. Readers will love that they’re getting stories that will make them really think and perhaps even reconsider preconceived notions.”
Focus Fiction will be published by Focus on the Family and distributed/marketed by Tyndale, as are all Focus on the Family titles. Future authors and the number of titles are yet to be determined. "There are currently no fixed plans for additional books, but Focus intends to continue publishing fiction, predicated upon the success of the first three novels," said Jessica Adams, marketing manager at Tyndale House.