“I’m twenty-six and I’ve never been kissed.” Staring into the bathroom mirror while making this brilliant comment is supposed to make it feel real. It doesn’t.
Finding true love these days feels impossible to Kianna Ravencamp, only dysfunction surrounds her. Her sister’s married to an abusive husband and marriages she’s admired for years are falling apart. Maybe relationships like her parent’s don’t exist anymore. She dreams of true love and a family, but she’s never even been kissed.
For her birthday, her best friend gives her a journal and dares her to follow her dream of songwriting and vocal lessons quickly follow. Kianna’s finally dared to dream big… if the three men in her life don’t get in her way.
Nick Steele, her new vocal partner is flirtatious and charming. Derek Simpson, the new vocal coach is asking her out for coffee. Even Jason Payne, a childhood friend is acting odd. For the first time in her life, she will have to navigate dating and flirtation. Will her inexperience be her downfall? How will these relationships affect her songwriting career?
Letting go and trusting God is the only answer that brings the path to real love and success.
Read a Sample of Dysfunction Junction by clicking HERE.
Author: April Erwin
Series: Dream Big, book 1
Publisher: Erwin Publishing
Publication Year: 2nd release, October 2015
Extended Acknowledgements for Dysfunction Junction:
Writing a novel is never simple and it’s never truly done alone. There are so many who helped by reading, offering advice, insight, wisdom, and showing support in every way. In fact, there are so many I could acknowledge I’m afraid I will miss someone deserving. There wasn't as much room as I'd hoped to truly share my thanks in the front of the book, so I'm sharing it here. Please know that if your name hasn’t been listed, it’s not due to ingratitude.
Much love and thanks goes to:
Mom and Dad for having been such a great example in your marriage and life choices, I’m truly blessed to be counted as yours. After nearly 50 years of marriage, you still glowed when you looked into each other’s eyes.
My sister, Angel, my best friend and the best cheerleader, editor and listener I could ever ask for. No matter what I say, don’t ever get out of my head. I need you there!
My The Path We Follow critique partners, fellow writers and friends: KC Sprayberry, Suzanne Demontigny, Donna Patton, Ceil DeYoung, Melanie Dickerson, and Sariah Frye. As well as the other friends who looked at the many early drafts and helped me find my way. You all were a tremendous help and inspiration. I’m proud to be included in your ranks.
Lee’s Summit Police Sergeant Josh Patterson for reading parts of the draft and answering my questions about how the police would handle a hostage situation. If there are any errors, they’re all mine. You’re a fine police officer.
Lesa Monet, Andy Oxman and the many other musicians and vocalists we have met, worked, and sung with over the years. The experience has been life changing. I’ll always love spending time in a recording studio, but especially SoundWorks Recording Studio in Blue Springs, MO.
My publisher, Melissa Miller, and everyone at Solstice Publishing. Thank you for seeing the possibilities in Kianna’s story. You rock!
My other siblings Judy, Tim and Levi, as well as my many nieces and nephews, Ben, Adam, Emily, Aaron, Chloe, Alexis, Willie, Nathan, Dominic, MaKaylah, Zack, Brock and Harmony. And to all of you who have become family over the years, I’m so very blessed to have all of you in my life. You’re amazing, I love you guys.
The best group of girlfriends I could ever ask for, Kianna would be so lucky to count you as her own.
Most importantly, Jesus, the giver of life, love, gifts and all good things. Thank you for inspiring me when the words wouldn’t come, for placing this story on my heart, and for teaching me so many things throughout the process. I pray it touches other hearts for You. I love you.
In great hope I borrow the words of Nephi as my prayer.
“And the words which I have written in weakness, will he make strong unto them; for it persuadeth them to do good... and it speaketh of Jesus, and persuadeth them to believe in him, and to endure to the end, which is life eternal.” - 2 Nephi 15:5 Book of Mormon
"Kianna Ravencamp is 26 and has never
been kissed. Even though she has held out for "the One", she is
beginning to give up hope that God has someone out there for her. Especially as
she notices marriages around her falling apart or struggling.
But, when her friends challenge her to reach for her dreams by taking vocal lessons and recording her original songs, Kianna suddenly has three men interested in her. Trying to figure out how to navigate the world of relationships and dating takes Kianna on an incredible journey to finding true love.
I loved this book! The characters are solid, the story flows well, there is plenty going on, and the Spiritual side is firmly grounded in Scriptures. I fell in love with Kianna and her story! I think that there is a little bit of her in all of us." - Manda Jane: 5 Stars
"Kianna Ravencamp is twenty-six and never been kissed. She despairs of ever finding a man who she feels she can spend the rest of her life with, due to what she refers to the Dysfunction Junction of her town – the inability of couples to hold their relationships together. Most of the relationships around her are crumbling, or were never strong to begin with. One other thing holds Kianna back from a relationship, her weight. She's big, and believes that turns guys off. What chance does she have to find true love.
I have known April Erwin for many years, close to ten, and have worked with her on this story for a lot of that time. Dysfunction Junction's Kianna Ravencamp exhibits all the same fears anyone in the dating scene feels – but she also has the fears of a young woman who doesn't have the slim, svelte body that is immortalized as perfect, and that, she feels, will keep a good man from noticing her good heart, deep faith, and fabulous sense of humor.
Erwin has crafted a story on a level that anyone can identify with Kianna. Who among us hasn't struggled with relationships, whether we are dating or hitting a rough patch in our marriage. Ms. Erwin's characters are imperfect, like most people. They have their ups and downs. Nothing in their world goes exactly according to plan.
The plot moves seamlessly throughout this tale. Sentence to sentence, paragraph to paragraph, chapter to chapter, the reader will find themselves falling more and more into Kianna's story. There is no bed hopping desperation, no bar nights where Mr. Right might be the worst Mr. Wrong, and definitely nothing more than what some scoff as old-fashioned morals as the main character struggles with her faith, her lack of a man, and how she has never had her first kiss.
I highly recommend Dysfunction Junction for all lovers of romance, not just Christian romance or chick lit. Even those with a bent for other genres will love this simple yet complicated relationship novel." - KC Sprayberry: 5 Stars
"Once again April Erwin has done it again with a thoroughly engaging read with characters so enjoyable and realistic that they draw you in,making you sad when you are finished and making you greatly anticipate her next book!
Kianna Ravencamp is 26 and has never been kissed.Although she yearns to find someone to love and be loved by, she is surrounded by dysfunctional and failed marriages, making her wonder if the marriage her parent's have is something that is obsolete. When Kianna is given a journal for her birthday and is encouraged by her friend to dream big and fulfill her lifelong dream of taking voice lessons and make a recording she does not imagine it will change her life so drastically. Now Kianna goes from being 26 and never kissed to have 3 guys interested in her.What is she to make of her handsome singing partner Nick's flirtatious attitude, her vocal coach interest in her or her dear friend childhood friend Jason acting odd around her? Whatever is going on in Kianna life she quickly finds that God is taking her in paths she did not imagine and He has a plan for her life.
I really enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good Christian book with wonderful characters who you can relate to and a great content that really causes you to reflect on God's workings in your own life." - Bethany De Selms: 5 stars
"A young woman is determined to change the fact that she's 26 and never been kissed. Discouraged by the marriages falling apart around her, she wonders if she'll ever find Mr. Right, especially as she watches the slow demise of her sister's marriage to an abusive man. When she pursues her dream of becoming a singer/songwriter, she meets the man of her dreams, or so she thinks until...
This is a powerful story written from the heart. It's inspirational, witty, and delightful. It's a story for all young, Christian women." - Suzanne DeMontigny: 5 Stars
"This is a thoroughly charming book. Main character Kianna sets a very good example for young Christian women, while still being a relatable character. Exploring the themes of self-confidence, faith, and relationships, this book gives you a lot to think about." - HF Brainerd: 4 Stars
"Kianna Ravencamp loves her job-manager of a book store. For a time it allows her to don her Fairy Princess Hat and dive into reading tales of magic and love to her youngest customers.
This is a story rich with the kind of romance we don't always see, but its always been there. To find it requires reaching beyond the comforts we all must extend our hands, minds, and sometimes, bodies past in order to find the precipice to make the free-fall dive from.
It's also a story resplendent with the soul's affirmation of love and trust in one's God.
DYSFUNCTION JUNCTION is a recent P&E 2013 Readers Poll Award winner, and rightly so.
Therefore I can do nothing less than also award this book MY highest accolades...and that's FIVE STARS.
Well Done Ms. Erwin." - Lady Bug Lin: 5 stars
"Reading Kianna's story was like watching a TV show about my home town. April has perfectly captured what life can be like in Independence, MO. From the problems her characters face to the details about every day life, I was amazed at how real the story felt. I could see her characters so vividly and felt what they were feeling so strongly that I caught myself laughing at loud at times and at others crying for their pain. Kianna's struggles include dealing with well meaning church people who don't know how to mind their own business to personal insecurities about her size, talents and self worth to domestic violence in her own family. Her journey is full of stumbling blocks and obstacles, some that she overcomes and some that set her back, but she never quits and in the end, her faith in God helps her remain strong and see the path she should take.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading about the every day struggle of living your life to honor God's glory. I look forward to the next installment of the Dream Big series." - Sariah Frye: 5 Stars