Novelist Explores Themes of Faith & Lies; Betrayal & Redemption; and the Unfathomable Value of Friendship When Everything Falls Apart

Author Hallie Lee is celebrating the release of her debut novel, Paint Me Fearless, which impacted retail today, January 6, 2021, in hardback, trade paperback, and all major ebook formats from WordCrafts Press.

The novel, which is already generating positive feedback from readers and critics alike, claimed the Number 1 spot on’s Hot New Releases chart in the Contemporary Christian Fiction category, in addition to climbing to Number 4 on the online retailer’s Bestsellers chart in the same category, nestled snuggly between novels by bestselling authors Charles Martin and Donna VanLiere.

It’s the spring before high school and Desiree and Robin have little in common.

Desi, having moved to Shady Gully, Louisiana, from Albuquerque, is miserable as she tries to adjust to small town life, while Robin, forever doomed at the “bottom of the popularity pyramid” is terrified she’ll never measure up.

When Desi is introduced in class, Robin hates her on sight, but fate draws these two alienated girls to one another, and together they overcome mean girls, weight hang-ups, and disturbing family dynamics.

Their bond stands the test of time, even as their paths diverge and they raise families of their own, but when a shocking betrayal ignites old insecurities, the layers of their friendship begin to unravel.

When they confront the lies that ravaged their lives, the truth brings them full circle … to Desi’s long buried trauma, and to Robin’s doomed and obsessive quest for perfection.

Paint Me Fearless a standout novel for contemporary women from all walks of life,” declares reviewer Tammy Ruggles, writing for the respected book review website, “This is the kind of book that takes you on a journey. The character development by Lee is exceptional. The pacing of this novel is pitch-perfect. You glide through the scenes and events effortlessly, even though the characters face some daunting obstacles on the way. This author is as fearless as her characters, taking you into territories that some writers shy away from.”

Lee points to film producer Ronnie Clemmer (A League of Their Own) as a mentor who helped her find her voice as a novelist. “He managed to give me notes and suggestions, without destroying my confidence,” she says. “That isn’t as easy as it sounds. Criticism can make or break an artist. Delivering it gently and constructively is the rarest of gifts, and for this I’m grateful to everyone who encouraged me.

“The theme of Paint Me Fearless is as old as time, but always relevant,” she continues. “The need for acceptance. The yearning for approval. Why do we fall short? Why aren’t we enough? As humans, we struggle for understanding, but the answer, as Desiree and Robin discover, is always the same.”

Paint Me Fearless is alternately and appropriately categorized as Women’s Friendship Fiction, Coming of Age Fiction, and Contemporary Christian Fiction,” muses WordCrafts Press publisher Mike Parker. “But this is a novel that easily breaks out of categories of age, gender, or faith tradition, and can be enjoyed by readers from all walks of life. Hallie is an amazing wordsmith with the gift of putting her readers in the middle of the story, allowing them to become friends with the characters rather than casual observers.”

About the Author

Born and raised in Louisiana, Hallie Lee‘s screenplays and books are inspired by the southern landscape, which she says is “rich with cantankerous, salt of the earth folks destined to be on the page.”

She and her family, furry kids included, now live in the hills of Kentucky, near Lexington. At the moment, she’s gathering research as she prepares for her daughter’s wedding. Yes, readers will be invited to a Big Shady Gully wedding in the very near futurel

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