Goshen News, Goshen, IN

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October 19, 2013

Elkhart County native centers new book in Middlebury

(Continued)

In speaking of her characters, Posthuma said, “They feel so real to me now. It’s hard to believe I made them up.”

Unlike many books where girl meets boy and they go through a lot of angst to get to the relationship at the end, Posthuma wanted to start “Songs Eight Six” on a decidedly different note.

Cosette and Westley are a longtime couple at the beginning of the book.

“Because I was a high school teacher I read a lot of books for that age group … The pattern was so much, the goal is the boyfriend. So I wanted to explore what if that were at the beginning of the story. She already has that, so what else is there? Is there a bigger love than the one the young people are chasing, the romantic love?”

She explained that as people get older they realize that romantic love is just for a season. That’s the type of love that Hollywood and books depict because it’s fun and exciting.

“But even from my own faith perspective, I know that’s not all there is,” she said. “I wanted to explore that. The entire goal was to do the book in a way that was not cheesy or preachy.”

Cosette’s discomfort and kind of ignorance to faith while being raised in the Bible belt, Posthuma said she could entirely relate to. She did not have any kind of structured faith upbringing. “Though I was surrounded by it, I didn’t have any understanding of it,” she said. “… I guess I didn’t have any guidance or any strong person to influence that. And I kind of felt like that every new part of faith that is introduced to her. She reacts very much the way — where it was a very natural way for me to write.”

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