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The Temporary Typist By Timothy Merrill
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Carlton “Coop” Cooper, agrees to become the typist at his church when Violet Crenshaw announces that she plans to move to L.A. soon. In doing so, he sets in motion a chain of events that... More > completely discombobulates his life and that of the small northeastern Iowa town in which he lives.Set in Bathington, Iowa (1952), The Temporary Typist features Carlton “Coop” Cooper (a widower recently retired from the railroad and facing a life of grinding boredom), as well as colorful cast of characters including the preacher, the limerick-spouting town drunk, and the formidable Mrs. Clarice Broughton, in charge of just about everything, including the upcoming centennial. When a socialite from Chicago appears in Bathington with a team of three young adults in tow (including “Alice,” a Chinese martial arts expert), offering to set up a “Publications Ministry,” Coop gladly steps down from his typist duties. But not all is as it seems.< Less
The Count of Chartres: The Reluctant Crusader By Timothy Merrill
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This is a story of courage, bravery and devotion to an ideal. Count Stefan is one of the wealthiest men in France. When Pope Urban II organizes a “crusade” to the Holy Land in 1095 A.D.,... More > Stefan is reluctant to go. Prodded by his wife, Adela, he goes anyway. En route he meets the Emperor Alexius and his daughter Anna. Meanwhile, Peter the Monk organizes a crusade of the people or peasants. Among them are Adelaide and her sister, Lettie, and daughter, Clare. They meet two relic sellers who are from Provence, like themselves. The nobles and the peasants meet near Antioch, and from that point the stories intermingle. Stefan’s marriage is compromised by both the behavior of his wife and Philip, the king of France, and Stefan’s own troubled heart. Adelaide’s biggest concern is the welfare of her daughter. A spell-binding story built on actual historical primary sources, The Count of Chartres: The Reluctant Crusader is a page-turning saga that will hold in thrall both history and fiction lovers.< Less
The Temporary Typist By Timothy Merrill
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Set in Bathington, a small town in Iowa (1952), The Temporary Typist is the story of Carlton “Coop” Cooper, a widower recently retired from the railroad. After his church loses its... More > secretary, Coop volunteers on a temporary basis. When a Chinese girl and two young men show up offering to set up a Publications Ministry, his problems seem to be over. But not all is as it seems. Who is this girl? Why is she in Bathington? What exactly are they printing in the back room? After the former typist is found dead, the town is rocked by a several revelations that threaten to publicly humiliate Cooper, a descendant of the original Bathingtons who founded the town and whose centennial he is helping to organize. Meanwhile, Coop’s granddaughter, Frankie, is writing an essay for the centennial. When her research paper reveals a shocking new detail about the town’s ancestors, Coop is uncertain what will happen. With many twists and turns, the story comes to its exciting conclusion, not in Bathington, but a Chicago cemetery.< Less
LEARNING TO FALL By Timothy Merrill
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In life, as in skiing, falling is inevitable. We have those disagreements with our spouses. We get stopped for moving violations. We’re challenged by raising children. We make decisions we wish... More > we could recall. But a fall — one of those moral and spiritual blunders we all make from time to time — doesn’t constitute a failure unless we let it. Getting back up is a part of every falling experience. In this thoughtful, helpful book, Merrill makes the ski slopes his metaphor, and includes a charming collection of personal anecdotes to illustrate just how uplifting falling can be.< Less

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