One of my Favorite Characters

14782053_mI get some flack from varied people who mistakenly think my work is mainstream, for having LOTS of sympathetic characters that are, well, women, people of color, or queer. In fact, most of my main characters are women, people of color and queer. (Chuckle.)

But one of my favorite sympathetic characters is Gareth Holbright, who is a Southern Baptist pastor, from my books “The Right Asteroid” and the sequel, “The Saturn Moon.” Yeah, really. White, straight, Christian man. I love Gareth, really I do. One of the reasons I love Gareth is that I love his faith. And unlike a lot of Southern Baptists, sadly, his faith brings him to ask interesting questions when it turns out that some aliens are headed inward toward Mars (where he is currently located.)

I don’t want to completely spoil the story for you, but Gareth takes on the theological challenge that is facing him head on. He ends up embracing the aliens, but still keeping his faith in God (and, more interestingly, as you’ll see if you read the book, in Jesus.)

Although I don’t work as one, I am, at heart a theologian. I love thinking about the ramifications for all sorts of people’s ideas about the divine, and the universe, etc. in the face of new information, like, for instance, the existence of aliens. Theology, and different approaches to it, is a pretty common thread in all of my books. I don’t have a faith like Gareth’s (which is a good thing, for me) but it is fun to explore what happens when someone like him deals with something like aliens (and his brother, who has the opposite reaction than he does.)

 

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