By Joseph Ellsworth
A desire to share life experiences with others has inspired a BYU graduate to write a first novel about the challenge young people face of making critical decisions about career and family.
Twenty-five-year-old Chris Sorensen, Virginia native and BYU graduate in Marriage, Family, and Human Development, wrote “The Greatest Discovery” for general audiences who cherish Christian values and love inspirational stories.
The book follows the post-undergraduate life of a young man, also named Chris, who moves back to Virginia after graduating from college in Colorado. Chris jumps headlong into a career path that seems to suit him perfectly, and the future with his young expecting wife seems secure. But soul-searching conversations with a new mentor and an unexpected tragedy change Chris”s life forever.
“The book is based on my personal struggle of trying to find out what I wanted to do with my life, and what I want my career to be,” Sorensen said.
Sorensen, who is pursuing a career in public speaking, sees writing as a way to introduce himself to a broad nationwide audience and inspire people to make meaningful choices in life.
“The writing for me is the means to and end,” Sorensen said. “It”s unlikely that people are going to come listen to me just because I want to speak to them. People can read what I want to say and then come hear me speak.”
“The Greatest Discovery” is only 144 pages long, but Sorensen said he wanted to keep the book fairly short in order to give readers time to ponder the book”s message. He also said that the message of the story might have gotten lost if the reader had been consigned to come back and forth to it.
“It”s an easy read, but one that will stick in your mind and heart,” said Tamara Gilliland, director of The Family Life Education Institute. “It brings out an important truth about living that could help anyone find greater happiness and peace in life.”
Sorensen, who is publishing the novel through his own company, Pond Publishing, said he hopes the book will turn into a series that readers can enjoy for years. Readers will discover at the end of “The Greatest Discovery” that there is a forthcoming sequel to the book, Sorensen said.
In the meantime, Sorenson plans to release the first copies of “The Greatest Discovery” in September 2002. The book has already received positive reviews from some very influential writers.
“[The book] was exciting and thought provoking,” said Ed J. Pinegar, renowned LDS author and speaker. “It has a universal message characteristic of good literature.”