CAUSE AND CONSCIENCE

A Mitford-Haven Novel (Book 4)

Mara Purl

 Artist Miranda Jones wants to cause both success and love in her life, and takes a summer job at the University of Alaska to gain perspective on her life. Meanwhile, in the picturesque coastal town of Milford-Haven, the unfinished Clarke mansion draws Deputy Delmar Johnson, battered wife Stacey Chernak and rebellious environmentalist Susan Winslow, even as its builder Jack Sawyer sidesteps both building codes and a guilty conscience. Zack Calvin tries to recover from his brush with death but sinks deeper into a tangled romance with Cynthia Radcliffe. Sally O’Mally’s conscience tells her to confess an ancient sin to her old love,

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 Artist Miranda Jones wants to cause both success and love in her life, and takes a summer job at the University of Alaska to gain perspective on her life. Meanwhile, in the picturesque coastal town of Milford-Haven, the unfinished Clarke mansion draws Deputy Delmar Johnson, battered wife Stacey Chernak and rebellious environmentalist Susan Winslow, even as its builder Jack Sawyer sidesteps both building codes and a guilty conscience. Zack Calvin tries to recover from his brush with death but sinks deeper into a tangled romance with Cynthia Radcliffe. Sally O’Mally’s conscience tells her to confess an ancient sin to her old love, disabled veteran Tony Fiorentino, and the deep issues of higher purpose are tackled in the private journal of Samantha Hugo.

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  • Haven Books
  • Paperback
  • September 2008
  • 572 Pages
  • 9781584360049

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$17.95

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About Mara Purl

 Mara Purl writes the Milford-Haven novels, based on her ground-breaking Milford-Haven U.S.A., the first American radio drama broadcast by the BBC where it reached an audience of 4.5 million listeners throughout the U.K. Child Secrets won the Gold Indie Excellence Award, was a Finalist for the Book Of the Year Award, and was named “hottest read for summer” as Gold winner of the Beach Book Award. What the Heart Knows won the Silver Benjamin Franklin Award and Closer Than You Think won the Gold Evvy Award, and both novels were awarded as Finalists for the USA Book News Best Books in fiction/romance. Mara was named Woman of the Year by the Los Angeles County Commission for Women.

Praise

Cause and Conscience . . . creates a savory stew: part romance, part remorse, with a dollop of suspense and sprinklings of spicy intimacy.” —Ambassador Magazine

Discussion Questions

What is the function of conscience? Is it primarily a deterrent to wrong action, a reminder of guilt? Or does conscience have a higher purpose? Discuss Samantha’s reflections on this theme in her journal, the final chapter of Cause and Conscience.

What is the nature of creativity? When a person creates, is he or she discovering something that already exists, or making up something which has never existed? Aside from Miranda, who are the creative individuals in the story?

What is the artist’s process? Is it vital to be eccentric and anti-social to be a true artist? Which is artistic integrity? Does Miranda have a more pristine sense of ethics, or does her new mentor Blake?

How does being the child of an alcoholic parent affect a person’s self esteem? Is Susan justified in her rejection of her father? Does this issue have added complexities for Native Americans?

Does being handicapped affect a person’s ability to have a relationship? Or is physical disability irrelevant to how we relate to others? Is Tony and Sally’s relationship stronger now than it was when they were young?

How has Zack’s accident affected him mentally? Was he guilt-ridden before the off-shore oil rig disaster? Or did his brush with death reawaken his conscience? How has a near-death experience affected you or someone close to you?

Who would you say is one character in the story who has no conscience? Can someone be a good person without a conscience? Does everyone, in fact, have a conscience – some just bury it better than others?

Mara Purl has been described as a “hyphenate” – a writer-producer-actor-musician. How does her multi-disciplinary background in the arts appear in her novels?

Why is this book called Cause and Conscience? Is this a reference to Samantha’s guilt about her lost child? Does it also apply to Zack’s turmoil regarding his two relationships? When in your own life did you grow as a result of wrestling with your conscience? What did you learn about yourself?