Pages Navigation Menu

Historical Romance Author

When Your World is Shaken…

I’ve been thinking about earthquakes a lot lately. It’s a hot topic in Oklahoma where we’ve had an outbreak of them. Sometimes we have several a day, which is unusual, but for the most part they don’t do any damage. Still, it’s unsettling to know that we could be working up to the big one. 

So instead of sitting around imaging how bad that could be, I thought I’d read a book on it – specifically Karen Barnett’s Out of the Ruins. Thank goodness we’re not in San Francisco and this isn’t 1906, because not only did the residents have to deal with the collapsed buildings, they also were faced with massive fires thanks to the broken gas lines across the city.

Out of the Ruins is a wonderfully researched story that involves turn-of-the-century medical research, a bustling coastal city and one of the largest natural disasters in our history.  Fast-paced action and unforgettable characters make this book shine.

And I have a copy to give away! If you’d like to be entered for the random drawing, please comment below. Tell me what’s the scariest natural disaster/weather event you’ve lived through. I hope to hear from some of my tornado neighbors on this one.

(If you’d like to read my Earthquake Post from a few years ago, click here.)

The winner will be announced Friday, July 25th. US addresses only, please.

And here’s more about Out of the Ruins:

While her sister lies on her deathbed, Abby Fischer prays for a miracle. What Abby doesn’t expect, however, is for God’s answer to come in the form of the handsome Dr. Robert King, whose experimental treatment is risky at best.

As they work together toward a cure, Abby’s feelings for Robert become hopelessly entangled. Separated by the tragedy of the mighty San Francisco earthquake, their relationship suddenly takes a back seat to survival. With fires raging throughout the city, Abby fears for her life as she flees alone through burning streets. Where is God now? Will Robert find Abby, even as the world burns around them? Or has their love fallen with the ruins of the city?

 CITM Buy Box


  1. Love stories about the earthquake.

  2. Thanks for the opportunity! Sounds like a goood book.

  3. I have been wanting to read this book! Thank you for giving me a chance to win it! I guess the scariest for me was this past winter during the Polar Vortex. It as 42 degrees below zero air temperature and halfway to school the fuel gelled up. We were stuck on the rural highway for 20 minutes until another bus came and picked us up. Fortunately the day before I had purchased 10 mylar emergency blankets and had them in my purse. They work! I will always carry them in the winter now!

    • I can’t even imagine anything so cold. Glad you were prepared!

  4. I’ve heard such great things about this book. I’m from Oklahoma…one of my dear friends lives in Guthrie and is trying to get use yo the earthquakes. We felt one when we lived in Kingfisher, Oklahoma. My poor daughter was terrified. Scariest for me…yes, our house got hit by a tornado in Bethany. We were in the hall with pillows,etc. The floor boards were moving, crashing and smashing all around, ears popping, and your body can feel the pull and pressure. Our bedroom was a disaster as shingles from our roof were thrown in through the window. Lots of glass everywhere….but as soon as I knew my hubby, brother, and parents were fine, I didn’t care about anything else! I NEVER want to go through a tornado above ground again!

    • That’s awful, Rachael. Glad you all were OK. Yeah, it stinks that we’re having earthquakes now because I don’t know if I should get below ground or not in a tornado. 🙂 Really we don’t feel them often. I’m west of OKC.

  5. This book sounds very interesting! Thank you for the opportunity to possibly win! I have never been in an earthquake and actually have a huge fear of them, but would love to read this book.

  6. We have been blessed! The house we lived in was hit by a tornado the year after we moved. Have been through some snowstorms where we have been snowed in for awhile. Nothing to bad.

  7. I would love to read this book! I was a missionary in Guatemala during a minor earthquake. It was a small one, but enough to scare me! Thank God we don’t have those here in Indiana, just tornadoes and blizzards. 🙂

    • I would think of hurricanes in Guatemala, but not earthquakes. Thanks for teaching me something!

  8. Thanks for the chance to win. I can’t wait to read it but boy did they go through a horrible experience. . . . like the fire in Chicago.

  9. Just last month we had tornadoes spotted near our town in SE Nebraska. The wind roared & the electricity went out with the tree limbs crashing in the street. Very high winds hit my town but the tornadoes did hit a town north of us. Sirens off and on for an hour. So thankful only lost tree limbs.
    Would enjoy reading your book! 🙂

    • Some of my favorite nights with the family were those with no electricity. As long as the limb clean up isn’t too bad…

  10. Would love to win this book!

  11. I live in FL and safely made it through the 4 hurricanes that came through in 2004. It was scary for me because my husband wasn’t home for one and had to relocate our family during another. After the second hurricane that year, we boarded windows and glass doors up for a month or so not knowing if we were safe to take them down.

    • Ugh! I bet that’s a difficult choice one whether to leave or not. Very inconvenient.

  12. Wow, what a compelling storyline! Excited to read this book!

  13. I live in Indiana & have been in 2 earthquakes & too many t-storm & tornado warnings to count. I didn’t know I was in an earthquake either time since you don’t think about earthquakes in Indiana & all I noticed was shaking shelves. We usually head for the basement during tornado warnings but I’m also one of those people who is on the porch looking for the tornado if it’s daytime.

    • I hear ya, Becky. Why go underground until you have to? 🙂

  14. A tornado is the scariest event I’ve been through. And it didn’t touch down just passed over. We had a small earthquake once, too, but it was t really scary.

    • We have a lot of tornadoes here obviously but in the last few years they have been huge and three of the biggest have been within 15 miles of us. That changes things.

  15. love a good recommendation- sounds great!

    the scariest weather event i’ve lived through was driving through a tornado. we were headed south from PA for my great grandmother’s funeral and it was like a flash flood/tornado. Luckily the worst we encountered was hydroplaning off the road, but we didn’t hit anything and no one was hurt. but we had our two little girls in the car, we weren’t going fast at all and it came out of nowhere!

    • Scary. I think one of my greatest fears is driving into water with my kids. It’s better now that they can swim but when they used to be strapped into carseats… ((shiver!!)) Glad y’all are OK.

  16. This book sounds really good. Thank you for the giveaway.

  17. I want to read this book, I have Mistaken and love it

  18. Would love to read it!

  19. Thanks for recommending Out of the Ruins, Regina! It’s so exciting to have an author I admire say encouraging things about my book!

    Growing up in the northwest, I experienced a few small earthquakes, but nothing major. The scariest nature moment I’ve had happened just last year. I was picking up my daughter from school during a thunderstorm and had ducked in a covered entryway to wait for the school bell to ring. A couple other moms were waiting and we got to chatting about the storm. A few moments later a lightning bolt struck an electrical pole just adjacent to where we were standing. I actually felt the concussion in my chest. I think it scared a few years off my life. Thankfully the students were all still inside. My daughter said her teacher was closing in prayer (Christian school) and had just said something about God’s power shown in the storm–and WHAM! They heard the blast and the lights all went out. After all the girls shrieked, the teacher said “AMEN!” 🙂

    • Ha! From reading Out of the Ruins I find it hard to believe you haven’t been in a major earthquake/fire. Thanks for writing a great book.

      • I kept joking that I needed to arrange one for “research purposes,” but I couldn’t seem to make it happen. Actually, it’s one of my worst fears because both my daughter’s school and my husband’s workplace have been deemed unfit to survive a major quake, and Oregon is overdue for a major one. Supposedly our fault (just off the coast) is capable of super-quakes that would make 1906 SF look like a little shiver. Gulp.

        I was able to read dozens and dozens of personal accounts of the SF earthquake and combine it with my own limited personal experience. The rest was just my imagination.

  20. Thankfully I haven’t been in/through any natural disasters. Lightening struck right beside us as we were driving on time, but that is the closest thing I have had.

    I look forward to reading this book. Especially since she is a new author to me. I love finding new authors to read? 🙂

    Thank you for this opportunity!
    Stephanie C.

  21. Thank you for sharing and the opportunity to win a copy of Out of the Ruins. The “scariest weather event” was probably visiting friends and a tornado passed through the woods. We had no power for a few days in a house with fourteen people and two dogs. It was a blessing to be less than a mile from the lake!

    • Hearing 14 people with no power and I think “sometimes the disaster happens afterward”.

  22. I have heard good things about this book! I remember small earthquake here in Kentucky a few years ago. It was very odd and unlike anything I had ever experienced.
    The worst is a tornado being close. The wind was horrendous. I was 12 at the time and in school. So we were in the hallway. I was on the end and could see outside and the trees were bent,it was scary!

  23. I would love to win this book. Being from Oklahoma, these earthquakes take a bit to adjust to. The scariest natural disaster I have been in was when we were hit with blizzard conditions a couple of years ago on Christmas. We were going to my in-laws for Christmas and didn’t realize how bad the weather was going to get. Our vehicle got stuck on the road in the snow. By the time it got stranded, it was dark. We had to walk in snow drifts up to my knees with three small children. The drifts were as high as my son’s legs were long. It was a moment when I knew beyond a shadow of doubt only God could give us the strength to get where we needed to, and He did!

    • So glad you had peace during that time. Whatever the circumstance, it’s always scarier if you’re responsible for kids at the same time.

  24. Looks awesome! Love the heroine’s name! 🙂

    • Of course! (And I have an Abigail story coming out in December… A Most Inconvenient Marriage!)

  25. This has been on my want list. I would love to read your book. Thanks for the chance.

  26. This book sounds wonderful. I love reading historical novels. When I was a senior in high school, two tornados came through our neighborhood. We were inside during the first one, and there was minimal damage to our house but we lost a lot of trees. The second one came a couple of months later and my mom picked me up early from my after school job and told me there was another tornado coming. I told her that it wouldn’t hit us again, but I was proven wrong. We were in our neighborhood, one block from our house and the winds were so bad and mom looked out her window and there it was…dust, derbis and boy were we scared. She stoped the car and we laid down in the front seat holding each other and praying like crazy while the car was shaking and bouncing. We felt rain and stuff all over us. Finally it was gone and we got up and the windows were blown out, but otherwise we were ok. There was a car in the driveway where we stopped and it was now upside down in the next yard. Amazing!!! That’s my natural disaster story and I hope to never repeat it!

    • That is amazing, Debbie! So glad God had your car pinned to the ground. It could’ve been so much worse. Thanks for sharing.

  27. Several years ago, we lived in Mobile, AL. A hurricane was coming so we boarded up and ‘rode it out’. We had an infant at the time and decided that the next time it would maybe be a good idea to leave. 😉 More recently, I live now in Tuscaloosa, AL and on April 27, 2011, we had a large tornado come through that destroyed a very large portion of the city. We weren’t in its direct path but at one time they said it was headed right for us.

    I’ve heard great things about this book! Thanks for the giveaway! And by the way, I recently read Caught In the Middle and really enjoyed it! Now I’m working my ways backwards in the series. LOL

    • Oops… should’ve said ‘working my WAY backwards’. 🙂

      • Cyndi, we were praying for y’all after that big tornado. That thing was massive. So glad you enjoyed Caught in the Middle. Thanks for reading!

  28. The scariest natural disaster I lived through was a tornado when we lived in Texas. My neighbor risked his life to knock on my door and tell me to get in my tornado closet. Several hours later after huddling there with my 3 boys, we found out our town venter had over a million dollars in damage, our friends from church lost their house too. But God was with us all and protected us.

  29. I haven’t personally lived through a natural event/disaster. I hope that I never do, but I’ve never experienced any natural disasters. I hope I can win this book, though! 🙂

  30. This novel sounds captivating and wonderful. I have never experienced any type of disaster.

  31. I feel like I know you, Glenda keeps me upto date on the family. I have enjoyed your books very much, keep sharing what God leads you to write.

    • Glenda is great about keeping people updated. 🙂 Thank you for reading!

  32. That book sounds excellent. But, I live in Arizona, and we do not get too much crazy weather. The only thing that really sticks out is when I lived in Northern AZ and we would get crazy monsoon rains and had to deal with a lot of flooding. Now I live in the desert and we get extreme constant heat in the summer and huge dust storms during the monsoon season :/

    • I’ve seen pictures of those dust storms. They are intense!

  33. This scariest event I experienced is when we thought lightening struck our house. It blew out the tv and ceiling fan. We also smelled smoke but couldn’t find anything outside where lightening would have struck the house. We didn’t sleep well that night because we weren’t sure if a fire could have started. The storms are getting more violent each year. We are getting a lot of possible tornadoes that we rarely get in upstate NY. Thank you for the chance to win a copy of this book. Sounds really great.

    • Hey! I live in Oklahoma too and yes all the earthquakes are unsettling! While there has never been a tornado where i live, there has been several close to me that have devestated so many lives and towns, but the good thing about Okies is that we are strong and always recover. I have to say though the only major weather incident i can remember being apart of is when we had a major ice storm a few years back. It was so unexpected and so many people were unprepared. We ended up moving in with my aunt and uncle for two weeks. We had a generator(which was a blessing) and they had a gas stove. So we decided to come togeter during this storm. As bad as the storm was, it was actually refreshing to spend that much time with family. I know it is an ice storm that will not be forgotten by te people who were in it.

      • Brentlee, I remember that storm. Usually the roads clear off after a day or so, but that one kept us snowed in forever…or at least it seemed to those of us who aren’t used to real blizzards. Glad you made use of the time to spend with family. Happy ending.

    • That’s a scary thought, going to sleep after lightning strikes. Weird that you couldn’t find where.

  34. I have been blessed to never have had to be directly affected by any natural disasters. I have spent some time in our storm shelter with 3 small kids though…such fun. 😉

  35. Ice storm. Trees all bent down and snapping sounds ~ cracking under the weight. Kathleen ~ Lane Hill House

  36. The scarriest natural disaster…..Hmmm… Where I live we haven’t gotten tornadoes, hurricanes, or earthquakes. Some random windstorms, but nothing too serious. It makes me thankful!!!!!

    • No storms or earthquakes? What do they talk about on the news? 😉

  37. This book looks fantastic. It is on my to be read shelf. Would love to win.

  38. I once read a book that centered around a the earthquake in Haiti that left the country in ruins. It was a remarkable book. Shaken. The main characters were there to serve in a short term missions project. I think they got more than they bargained for. The book was so stirring. I would love to read this book.

  39. It sounds like a good one. Thanks

  40. I’ve heard good things about this story. Thanks for the opportunity to enter. Blessings!

  41. A native of North Carolina born and bred.I have old home movies od the hard winters here. I can imagine how hard it was for those who settled our country before us. We are really blessed. My Great Grandmother was a famous Midwife who delivered thousands of babies in this area since she was the only one in the Western Noth Carolina your books.

    • How cool about your great-grandmother. That sounds like a good character for a story.

  42. Sounds great! Thanks for the chance. I really like the cover!

  43. In 1979, I lived in Wichita Falls, TX. I was 8 years old and my brother and I had just arrived home from seeing a movie. A big storm was moving in and the tornado sirens went off. We didn’t have a cellar so we ran across the street along with many others to our wonderfully hospitable neighbor. There were many of us in that cellar were standing in ankle deep water. My dad and 4 other men were holding on to the chain that held the wood cellar door closed. One of the men said, “Here it comes!” It was so terrifying! A freight train is a very accurate description of a tornado’s sound. When it was over, we all walked out of the cellar and were completely speechless. Our homes were gone and debri was everywhere making it very difficult to walk. By today’s measurements of tornadoes, I believe they said ours was an F4. I am now 44 years old and as you can see those memories are still very vivid. Thank you for allowing me to share my experience. Melissa Huston

    • Wow. What a story. So glad you made it to the cellar. Last year I got to speak to a woman who rode out the Moore, OK, tornado with her family in the bathtub. They were covered in debris, but survived. The house was a total loss. As you said, those kids will remember that for the rest of their lives. Thank you for sharing your story.

  44. I’ve never read any of her books, but if she’s half as good an author as you are, I’ll be quite delighted. Out sounds like an incredible premise. I wanna win. Pretty please!

    • Thank you, Elizabeth. I appreciate the encouragement. Blessings!

  45. I have family living in San Francisco and the concern about earthquakes is real. Can’t imaging actually being there for the big one they had. I’d love to read this book.

    • And a ‘nuther thing….. here in North Carolina we have a lot of devastating hurricanes and ice storms. But then we have a lot of hot, sunny, humid summer days, too.

      • Vera, I’d rather have tornadoes than big earthquakes. They are really good at predicting tornadoes, but with earthquakes you just don’t know when they are going to stop. Thanks for commenting.

  46. While in Nicaragua last summer I felt and saw our floor move and everything in our humble abode. My husband was at the airport picking up a team and they felt it too . It was a 5.8 earthquake.

    • That’s scary. My husband was in the big earthquake in Guerrero this spring. Pieces of the hotel roof were falling off and crushing cars. I was mad at him when I found out he slept in his room on the 8th floor that last night, even though there were cracks in the walls. Oh well, he survived.

  47. earthquake

  48. Any natural disaster would be scary. When we aren’t able to control what happens to us or around us, we feel frightened. We live in tornado territory, but one has never threatened our home directly, and I am thankful. I would like to read this book. Thank you for this drawing.

  49. Would love to win this book. Glad you liked it here in Saskatchewan!

    • I did, Pauline. Everyone was charming and the weather was magnificent. If only the mosquitoes could go away… 🙂

  50. We have tornadoes here but thank heaven none have touched
    down in my area. And we also have hurricanes and have
    had them in my area Isabel was the last to do any real
    damage. And praying this season leaves us safe too. This book sounds
    like one I for sure would like to read. Thank you for the chance

  51. Tornados/severe thunderstoms are what we have to look out where I live. Fortunately I have just had some tree damage and not much more. Looks like a great book.

    • And those thunderstorms do a lot of damage. Thanks for commenting.

  52. I live in Tuscaloosa, Alabama and we’ve had several tornadoes in my lifetime. The last one, April 27, 2011, devastated many homes and major businesses. Lives were lost and some areas are still in the process of recovery. We had one a few years before that went parallel to our neighborhood. Very scary and frightening. This last one made a believer of my husband regarding safety. He had us all in our center bathroom, wearing bicycle helmets and covered with pillows!

    • I remember that tornado, Gail. We don’t have a cellar, either, and always plan to use the bathtub or closet, but now we’ve had these monster storms that pull the tile off the floors. Occasionally they are so bad the weatherman will tell us you can’t survive unless you’re underground. We’re thinking maybe we need a cellar soon.

  53. The worst weather I have gone through would probably be a tornado that touched down literally a few yards from our house. However, we were praying against it the whole time and told it not to pass our fence, and it didn’t! The only damage was when it hit the fence and knocked it down… time we should be more specific! I have been looking forward to reading this book since I first heard about it! Cannot wait to read it!

  54. The scariest tornado I have been in is one when I was a child. When we came out of the cellar after the storm, our front and back porches were taken by the storm, but the washing machine was still standing where it had been on the back porch. There was debris everywhere (including chicken feathers) in the air. The parents of a classmate of mine were killed on their farm not too far from us, and the boy was finally found blown head-first into a shrub. He lived through the ordeal with many scars externally and internally.

    • I’d never heard about that, Ruby. What a tragedy. You’ll have to tell me that story some time.

  55. There have been many tornado warnings over the years but we have been blessed and never had one touch down.The scariest incident was over 30 years ago when we had an earthquake. This is very rare in Kentucky but there was substantial structural damage. Thank you for this giveaway!

    • Those earthquakes do seem to be hitting randomly, don’t they? Thanks for entering.

  56. I haven’t read this author yet, but if you recommend her, I’m sure I’ll like her!

  57. We’ve moved from Michigan to Florida, I’m not looking forward to the named hurricanes or tropical storms. I haven’t yet been in any horrible catastrophes and really hope I never have to be

    • The snows you got in Michigan would be a catastrophe to me. 😉 Praying for a peaceful hurricane season this year.

  58. Regina, I realized as I ponder on your question I have been very blessed! However far back I think (and this after living on three continents!) I cannot think of any weather scenario that was truly catastrophic. I admit though that our latest home is situated in a part of the world where rain is a daily happening…often deluges in fact…non stop or at least something on the line of 40 days and going… It takes a little getting used to live near the rain forest! We battle fungus daily here!
    P.S. Thank you so much for the luggage tags: very handy to recognize on the luggage carousel!
    God bless,

    • You are welcome, Noelle. They came in handy last week on our trip to Canada, too. My husband isn’t sure about having Molly’s picture on his luggage, but it sure is convenient. 🙂

  59. I’ve lived through quite a few floods. I grew up on a creek bank and we would get the worse floods in late winter when the ice would get backed up and everything started melting. We may not have any baby pictures, and we lost toys and things countless times, but we’re all still here.

    brookeb811 at gmail dot com

    • That’s scary, Brooke. How frustrating for it to happen again and again. I can’t imagine how overwhelming clean-up must feel. Thanks for sharing.

  60. We have been very blessed here where I live in Ohio as I have never had to go through a natural disaster.
    Thank you

    • All these commenters need to take note. Ohio is the place to be.

  61. The scariest weather I have been in was back in I believe 1974. We had tornadoes all night long . We did not have one to touch down on us , but not far from us. They would call the warning off and a few minutes it was back on. Very bad night. We was also without power for several days. I would love to win this book . Thanks for the chance.

  62. I think the worse weather I ever went through was Katrina !! It was So scary !! I pray I never go through that again !!!

    • I pray so, too. My husband is an insurance adjuster and he was gone from home for a very long time after Katrina.

  63. None – really – just bad storms – but would love to win and read it

  64. I Love to read and so do my children. My daughters and granddaughters love to read. We enjoy all kinds of books. Thank You for the chance to discover a new book.

  65. Love reading historical fiction books!

  66. Lived in Florida growing up so lived through many hurricanes. Now live in the Seattle area so it’s earthquakes and volcanos!

    • Volcanoes are the one natural disaster we haven’t had here in Oklahoma. (Yes we even had a hurricane re-form over us a few years ago.) There’s evidence of volcanoes at one time, though. Hopefully they don’t return with the earthquakes.

  67. I’ve never been through an earthquake… Lived in FL for 7 years, went through a few smaller hurricanes. Grew up in KS & now live in OK…I’d rather go through a tornado than a hurricane or earthquake. Thankfully, we have a storm shelter! You can’t hide from an earthquake & hurricanes usually have tornadoes in them too plus lots of other damage too! Thanks for the giveaway!

  68. Thanks for sharing about the earthquake. I have only eerienced a few here I’m South Carolina. Looking forward to reading Out Of The Ruins by Karen Barnett. Thanks for another contest opportunity!

  69. The scariest was hurricane Sandy dumping feet of snow on WV and losing power for 5 days. No heat, stranded with no way out due to trees snapped across the highways. Coldest I have ever been.

    • Yikes! Heat is a must, especially in a snow storm. I never thought of that consequence from a hurricane. Thanks for sharing.

  70. I live in west Texas and we have threats of tornadoes quite often. The closest I have been was when I was in 1st grade (too many years ago to figure it out). A tornado was sighted just west of town. We lived not too far from where it lifted.

  71. The scariest weather situation I have lived through was the winter of 1997 (a late April blizzard). I lived at my folks’ place at the time, near Almont, North Dakota. We were hit with extremely cold temperatures in addition to a huge amount of snow and wind. The fences were covered in snow and the wind hardened the snow. The cattle ended up walking right over the fences and wandering lost. Many, many calves and cows died during that blizzard. It was just my mom, younger brother, and me taking care of the ranch because my dad had gotten stuck about 40 miles away. For weeks after the blizzard, neighbors would find dead calves or cows and would cut out their eartags and leave them in our mailbox. It was horrible.

    • What a waste. Poor animals. That’s quite a dramatic story. Thanks for sharing.

  72. The scariest weather event for me was when a hurricane came inland and through our area. The scary part was that it was expected to spawn tornadoes, and that it would be at night. We all slept downstairs that night.

  73. Would love to win and read your book,thank

  74. Sounds like a really good read. Thanks for the giveaway.

  75. Probably a blizzard…

  76. Hello, Thanks for having a book give away. I am always looking forward to a new book to read.
    The scariest weather that I every had to live thru is an ice storm. It was scary listening to the trees and power lines break. And then worrying about friends and family without power for a few days. Hope to never see another one.

  77. Would love to read this book. Thanks for the chance to win one.

  78. Flash floods. Especially when you’re driving through them.

  79. When I was a kid, my brother caught our house on fire playing with matches. We lived in a duplex, both sides with the door between the two upstairs. This is where my brother decided to throw the matches.
    We all got out and my Mom even got all the puppies and Mama.

  80. Eastern Oregon doesn’t get much besides, blizzards, thunderstorms and wind storms. Thank you for the opportunity.

  81. I can remember being at my grandmother’s house in Orlando when Hurricane Charlie went through several years ago. It tore her patio roof off and I can remember building a new one for her during our vacation with my dad and siblings. 🙂

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *