The fiction winner in Christianity Today’s 2020 Book Awards is Shawn Smucker’s Light from Distant Stars (Revell).

“It’s a dark story at times, but at the heart of it is a man trying to find his father,” Shawn said in our Q&A last June. “And in the end, he has realizations about himself and his dad that change the way he views the events of his life. I think we are all given this task—to try to bring hope to the things that have happened to us.”


When Cohen Marah steps over his father’s body in the basement embalming room of the family’s funeral home, he has no idea that he is stepping into a labyrinth of memory. Over the next week, Cohen’s childhood comes back in living color: a series of dramatic events. As the lines blur between what was real and what was imaginary, Cohen is faced with the question he’s been avoiding: Is he responsible for his father’s death? Master story weaver Shawn Smucker relays a tale both eerie and enchanting, one that will have you questioning reality and reaching out for what is true, good, and genuine.

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Nicole Baart, novelist and author of You Were Always Mine and Little Broken Things, says, “Light from Distant Stars is a singular experience, one infused with all the beauty and mystery of a broken creation that groans as in the pains of childbirth.”

The Christianity Today Book Awards honor the titles they consider “most likely to shape evangelical life, thought, and culture.” Find a complete list of winners here.

Visit Shawn Smucker’s author page here:

Light from Distant Stars
Shawn Smucker

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