believes life’s opportunities are gone forever and is resigned to
living out her last days uneventfully as a resident of Victorian
Manor. The fountain in the manor’s garden changes all of
that. Kathryn finds herself involved in a plan to rescue a
street child named Jasmine who is often left alone by a neglectful
Through what appears
to be a series of miraculous events that begin at the fountain, Kathryn
finds her life spanning three generations as she enters the world of
Jasmine and a young bachelor detective named Ben. A murder
and a newly developing romantic relationship forces Kathryn to make the
most difficult choice of her long life. Love and sacrifice
take on new meaning as she struggles to understand what she is called
to do. In bringing hope for a better life to those of other
generations, Kathryn discovers new meaning and purpose for her own life.
The Fountain takes
the reader on a journey which explores the distance and alienation
often separating people of different generations. The story
celebrates the gifts the generations can bring to each other.
The conclusion is a resounding affirmation that it is never too late to
make a difference!
If you would like me to speak at your function, please contact me via
my E-mail address.
I can speak on writing both
fiction and non-fiction. Subjects related to the theme of my novel Kathryn's
* the value of multi-generational relating
* how each of us is a piece of the puzzle that makes up the picture of
the grand scheme of things.
basic storyline of your novel
It’s about a woman, Kathryn, and an interesting collection of
characters with whom she lives in a majestic old house called Victorian
Manor, an extended care facility. Kathryn feels her age has
pushed her to the margins of society, that she is no longer of much use
in this world. Through a series of miraculous events Kathryn
discovers that she, indeed, still does have a purpose for being
Does the entire
story take place in
No. Kathryn finds herself in a coffee shop, at a park and
other places relating to a 7 year old girl named Jasmine who spends a
major part of each day on the street unsupervised by an
adult. Kathryn feels called to reach out to Jasmine and to
rescue her from her tragic situation. Kathryn also encounters
a young detective named Ben, who also gets involved in trying to find a
better life for Jasmine.
It sounds as if
Kathryn’s Fountain has a collection of characters of different ages.
Yes, one of the themes of the story is the tremendous value there is in
the different generations relating to each other. I’m
grateful to be a pastor of a church where we have pretty much a balance
of people from children through a significant number of people in their
80s, and even 90s. Years ago families lived together in a
multigenerational setting with grandpa or grandma living with the
parents and grandchildren. This tends not to be the case
today. We tend to isolate the generations, each generation
feeling most comfortable relating to itself. We miss the
gifts each generation can give to the other generations.
Kathryn’s Fountain contains a series of miraculous events.
What’s your take on miracles? Do they still happen today?
I’m sure they do. It’s interesting that when Jesus did
miracles He never did them with the intention of convincing
non-believers. He often did miracles as privately as
possible. I think God is still shy today when it comes to His
display of the miraculous. I believe He does the miraculous
in our lives all the time, but that they often go undetected.
You could say He does miracles by stealth. They often fly
under the radar of our daily observations.
“puzzle lady” in Kathryn’s Fountain and I understand you’re in the
habit of handing out puzzle pieces at book signings and speaking
engagements. What’s up with the emphasis on puzzle pieces?
Well, first of all, the “puzzle lady” character was inspired by one of
the shut-ins in my own church. She lives in an extended care
facility. Her mind is bright and she passes the day putting
together jigsaw puzzles. She’s done hundreds of
them. Several are glued and framed in her room and she gives
them away. A puzzle is never complete until that last piece
is put into place. Each of us is a piece of the puzzle that
makes up the big picture of God’s grand scheme of things. We
each have our part to fill in. Each of us is of strategic
importance to God, right where He has us in life. Each of our
lives has a purpose to Him. That’s the meaning behind the
puzzle pieces I hand out.
How did you
come up with the idea for
Believe it or not, one morning I woke up with the basic storyline on my
mind. There it was! Of course it took months of
writing and rewriting to get it down right on paper, but the initial
idea pretty much was there when I woke up that morning.
What do you see
as your purpose for writing Kathryn’s Fountain?
Well, first of all, I want it to be a fun read, to be
entertaining. I want people to really get into the story, to
be able to clearly picture the events unfolding in their own
minds. As a writer who is also a Christian I want to write
with a purpose. I’d like a person to come away from reading Kathryn’s
Fountain with a profound sense that they are a piece of the
puzzle that makes up God’s big picture of what He’s doing.
I’d like the reader to have a deepened appreciation for God’s
miraculous working in our ordinary lives. And I believe we
are meant to enrich the lives of people of the generations other than
our own. Having said this, I was intentional about not
wanting to come off “preachy” because my desire is to have people enjoy
Kathryn’s Fountain as just a good story.
a bookstore in Toledo, OH
My wife Diann and I participated in the
"Writers on the
River Book Fair"
in Monroe, MI where I autographed
copies of Kathryn's Fountain
I'm being interviewed on a radio program
about the publication of the novel.
following reveiws for Kathryn's
Fountain were posted by bloggers who belong to the CHRISTIAN
FICTION BLOG ALLIANCE.
The blog tour for my novel was launched
on August 18, 2009.
Here's some of their comments...
Fountain was a wonderful example of how you are never too old
to make a difference in someone life. Sometimes you may be the only
person that can help someone. God may have hand picked you to help and
if you choose not to help then that person will be hurting.
definitely never thought she would be making an impact. She was living
in a retirement home. People go there to die gracefully. Not live
abundantly. However, when a little girl shows up hungry and hurting, a
spark is lit in both of their lives. Deanna's Corner.
_____________________ Reading along in this book I was
thinking to myself that it was a very
delightful read and loved the author's style. Then the 'twist' in the
book happened and I found myself drawn in more. As a person ages and
starts questioning their worth to society, well one never knows what
magic might happen. And it also proves that you're never too old to
make a difference rather than just living out your days.Count It All Joy __________________ .I was
intrigued by the concept
behind this book and really enjoyed seeing how it all played out. We
meet Kathryn who is living out her days in a nice retirement home,
watching life from her wheelchair. One day something almost magical
happens, a miracle, and then it happens again, and again. The struggle
is Kathryn trying to decide why the miracle is happening... it's
happening TO her, but is it happening FOR her? I loved the way
everything worked out - not a beautiful red bow at the end, but with a
bittersweet ending that loops back to the beginning. I enjoyed this
book a lot and found it to be a welcome break from the same old, same
old - and the fact that it made me think and question why miracles
happen along with Kathryn was a big bonus. Wonderful story.Cornhusker
Academy ______________________ With
plenty of unforgettable characters and some interesting plot
twists, this endearing book of how God can use anyone, at any age, for
His divine purpose will be one you won't want to put down. I enjoyed
this lovely book from beginning to end. My Buckling
was an interesting book. One of the lines is do you believe in
miricles and then we hear about Kathryns miricle. To be honest I really
didn't know what would happen but I loved this story. Kathryn is living
in an assisted living place and it showed how she still wanted to be
worth something. One comment in the book was ageism divides people way
more than race and colour. After reading the comment it made me think
and realize it is quite true. Having a parent in a nursing home I
notice most of the residents get very few visitors in the average week.
After a time even family visit less (which is the case with my mum cos
of time restaints etc). The adventure Kathryn goes on to tell us her
miricle and I found it a very good book. It was different but
wonderful. 5 out of 5. Come
Meet Aus Jenny
What appears to be just a
simple little story is really so much more!
Kathryn's Fountain was a captivating read that stayed me with for a
long time after I turned the last page. What a great reminder of the
little ways we can impact another person's life!A
Fountain was a pretty fast read and it's not a long book, but
it definitely is one of those books that stays with you. At first it
requires a bit of suspension of belief, but by then end of the book I
was having a hard time wondering if it wasn't actually true or not! The
mark of a good story teller!
Kathryn is an old woman and the
story is told from her perspective. It made an interesting read for me
also to consider life from the end of life time. Our society doesn't
focus on family as much anymore and it made me realize how fragmented
we can be, only hanging out with people our own age. I really liked
this book! Welcome to
wonder about miracles after reading this story!! In the
beginning I thought it was going to turn into a scenario you and I are
all too familiar with…where someone goes back in time…but alas, this
was really different. The author takes the reader down a path I’ve
never been on before - it fascinated me. David Claassen creates
loveable, quirky characters you can’t help but instantly care about....
love how the author weaves these very intriguing, powerful gems that
make you go ‘Hummm,”! in the middle of Kathryn’s adventures. These gems
turn up throughout the story when you least expect it. I loved that!...
was taken on a great unexpected journey filled with adventure, wonder,
love and self-sacrifice. I found myself rooting for Kathryn’s
determination to do God’s will in her life, when it seemed impossible
for her to do it. This is a story that fairy tales are made of—I can’t
wait for others to share in the great adventure I’ve just been on
reading Kathryn’s Fountain. Treat yourself to drink from Kathryn’s
Fountain – You’ll be glad you did. Finding Hope
A sweet story dealing with several
issues--including neglect, the aging
process, and what we could learn from others. Kathryn's self-sacrifice
is evident through out the books. If you have ever enjoyed a Nicholas
Sparks novel, pick up a copy of this book. I don't think you will be
Pam's Private Reflections ____________________________
Fountain by David
J. Claassen is a story of miracles and self-sacrifice. The
characters span the generations, as well as the pages of this touching
story, with grace and compassion, and the author has done a commendable
job of touching on the seedier elements of life without losing the
beauty or possibilities of a garden setting." Kathi Macias, popular speaker and
award-winning author of 22 books (including her most recent release, Beyond
Me: Living a You-First Life in a Me-First World (New Hope
Publishers, July 2008), chosen "top pick" in the Christian Living
category by Christian Retailing)
the moment I started reading Kathryn's Fountain I
couldn't put the book down. David Claassen has managed to
cast an inescapable spotlight on the ageless longings of the human
heart, while encouraging the reader to believe in
a miracle-working God that cares for the orphaned child and
the orphaned senior.
"What a wonderful testimony it
is that life is to be celebrated at all ages. Reading this book will
change the way you view life." Stan
the world I entered
in Kathryn’s Fountain, a world where
miracles happen and selflessness reigns. I delighted in the fun,
laughing out loud while reading, and blinked the tears away as I lived
Kathryn’s selfless sacrifices.
was compelling, the
characters endearing and the life lessons poignant. I know
all good books come to their end, but I was sad to leave this world, I
wanted it to go on and on."Charisse
of Proverbs for Parenting, a weekly e-devotion
“Claassen’s excellent plot and
characterizations are an ageless story of miracles with elements of
adventure, suspense and intrigue that keeps the reader guessing until
the last page is turned. We need more from this author.” Gail
Welborn—Book Review columnist
"A poignant story
with surprising twists and turns that will keep you reading and touch
your heart. You won't view life in quite the same way after
reading Kathryn's Fountain."
Colorado and Greater Philadelphia Christian Writers Conferences________________________
insightful story that gave me a renewed understanding of the importance
of really living more consciously in the moment and season that I am
now experiencing." Mary Ann
Morton, author of Seasons
of Life's Journey
"David J. Claassen's easy writing style and interwoven story lines
keeps us interested and involved in Kathryn's life . . . Kathryn gave
herself away that others could enjoy what she had been
denied. Isn't that what Christ did for us?" Charli Pickett,
author and speaker
"Kathryn's Fountain is a metaphor for how the
individual that lives within each of us never grows old. It's
the same message we convey to our caregivers -- always look on the
inside of the people you care for. Readers will enjoy the
story, as it will stay with them long after the novel has
ended. I heartedly recommend it" David
Companion Connection Senior Care
Fountain by David J. Claassen is a delightful story
of the miraculous adventures of wheel-chair bound Kathryn whose belief
and transformation allow miracles in the lives of others!"
Bobbie Lewis, educator
fusion of fantasy and drama, Mr. Claassen's intergenerational
tale reminds me us that the institutionalized elderly need
us. More importantly, we need them. There area
ordinary 'miracles' available to those who seek them."
David B. Shellhamer, licensed nursing home administrator
this modern-day parable, Kathryn's transformation so she could enter
the world of young Jasmine reminds me of Jesus Christ, who took upon
Himself the nature of a human being in order to offer redemption to all
Caryl Therese Thomas, speaker and author