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FLABBERGASTED Paperback – Feb 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Baker Publishing; Reprint edition (February 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800759095
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800759094
  • Product Dimensions: 21.4 x 15.1 x 2.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 181 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #768,916 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Back Cover

Stockbroker Jay Jarvis just moved East. His dating life's gone South. What else is a guy to do but go fishing? "Refreshingly honest . . . as charming as Bridget Jones' Diary from the male point of view. Highly recommended."--Library Journal "A fun, lighthearted, and thoroughly enjoyable 'relational gumbo' of a novel."--CCM magazine "This is one book you don't want to miss!"--Crossings Book Club "Blackston's light and breezy style makes ideal reading for a lazy summer night."--Bookpage "An amusing look at the Christian singles scene."--Romantic Times "Amazing. A novel with no illicit sex, bad words, racial slurs, or crime that is simultaneously serious, hilarious, and impossible to put down."--The Dallas Morning News Armed with the knowledge that his second grade teacher always liked his stories and poems, Ray Blackston walked away from the corporate cubicle, bought a laptop, said a prayer, and began typing the first words of Flabbergasted. He does not recommend this method for the faint of heart.

About the Author

Ray Blackston of Greenville, South Carolina, worked as a buyer and a broker for eleven years before cashing in his modest 401k and leaving his corporate cubicle to write full time. He serves on the missions committee of Grace Church, has traveled to rural Ecuador on a summer missions program, and coaches his six-year-old nephew Action Jackson in T-ball.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 15 2004
Format: Hardcover
This harmless piece of fluff is "Christian fiction" disguised as a comedy. It fooled me and I bought it. As a non-church goer, this book had way too much preaching and spiritual discussion. If that's your thing, give it a shot, otherwise steer clear.
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By Shirley Rempel TOP 500 REVIEWER on May 26 2010
Format: Paperback
This was such a fun book to read! The first thing that caught my attention was the vibrant cover! Just looking at the cover makes you want to read this book!

It is a romance of sorts, but from a man's view, which is very uncommon. I love that the main character Jay thought church would be a great place to meet girls (LOL,) and in the process God worked some major changes in him! Through reading this book one thing is evident (both to the characters, eventually, and to the reader) our ways are not His ways and His timing is not ours....we need to be open to whatever He brings us to!

Mr. Blackston did a remarkable job portraying all the wonderful characters and I felt that I was right in the scenes throughout reading this novel. If you are looking for some fun summer reading, with a strong Christian/Gospel message, then Flabbergasted is the book for you! I love that Blackston delves into the topic that Christianity is not about religion but about relationship! Awesome job at bringing that through the medium of a novel, Mr. Blackston! You will laugh and cry while reading this easy to read, well-written debut book! I look forward to seeing if a sequel will be in the future!

I highly recommend it and give it a huge thumbs up!
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By Valerie Comer on May 26 2010
Format: Paperback
Flabbergasted is a curious mix, a story that is at once light and humorous but also manages to speak on a deeper level. In fact, if the word chick-lit wasn't out of favor, and if the story's one-and-only main character wasn't male, I'd be willing to suggest it fit into that category as the tone is similar. However, the story is narrated by Jay Jarvis, a twenty-something ladder-climbing stock broker newly arrived in Greenville, South Carolina, and recently dumped by his girlfriend. Now that he's settling into his new digs, he's looking for love.

You know the song talks about looking for love in all the wrong places. Jay has no idea where singles hang out in his new town, so he asks the advice of his real estate agent. The realtor says the singles in town rotate between the churches. Thus, Jay finds himself in a Sunday school classroom with a young woman who says, "No ring? Then you're in the right place."

Ray Blackston's characters are not cookie-cutter. Where Jay Jarvis longs for a relationship while juggling eccentric clients, going to beach parties, and trying to fit into church life after an absence of four or five years, Allie Kyle is a missionary temporarily back in Greenville from Ecuador, and the relationship she longs for is one closer to God. This never comes across in a pious way. Instead, she's a veteran food-thrower and a poet who spontaneously carves words into sandbars and dirt roads.

Flabbergasted is not a novel of easy answers. Sandwiched between hilarious scenes are deep thoughts, presented with a light touch.
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Format: Hardcover
"Flabbergasted" is one of the most quirky, interesting stories I have ever read. I cannot recall having laughed so much or so hard while reading a book since the last time I read one of Erma Bombeck's books.
Jay Jarvis is a single, eligible, stock-broker bachelor who has just recently moved to Greenville, South Carolina. Not interested in church other than to meet eligible bachelorettes, Jay meets the girl of his dreams, Allie, on his first visit to North Hills Presbyterian Church.
Unfortunately for Jay, Allie is not easy to get to know. Jay will embark on a strange journey domniated by the color lime green, a row of numericals, a less-than-punctual preacher, a pirouette of the gospel, and a multi-hour ride into the Ecudorian jungle. As Jay learns more about Allie and who she is, he will learn about who He is.
"Flabbergasted" is a Christian, coming-to-the-Lord novel. However, this is not your normal salvation tale. Ray Blackston, in his first book, has created a wild and imaginative story that will have you laughing, keep you guessing, and make it difficult for you to put down.
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Format: Hardcover
How do you get from a sun-soaked South Carolina beach weekend to a missionary outpost in the wilds of Ecuador? The answer surprises Jay Jarvis again and again in this quirky male's-eye-view of the Christian singles scene.
Once a male friend said to me "I didn't know what I was here for until I had a child." One might debate his statement, but it does illuminate part of the challenge of being a modern man. In an era and society in which the role of men has changed drastically, young men like my friend are searching for meaning. Ray Blackston's protagonist, Jay Jarvis, is also searching for meaning in his life --- or, at least, a girlfriend. But when a move from Dallas to Greenville, South Carolina finds him trolling the local churches for female companionship, Jay gets much, much more than he bargained for.
Jay, like his creator is a stockbroker, who has just been unceremoniously dumped by his girlfriend, and on the advice of his realtor decides to try a church service instead of a dating service. Before he know what's hit him, Jay is meeting with the young men's group at the church and taking a Memorial Day beach trip with them (19 men, 34 women, a gross or two of Oreos). He's also met a churchmember named Ally who spends most of her time in the mission fields of Ecuador --- but enough time at home so that her verbal sparring and fast-food-throwing skills haven't been dulled. Before you can jump a pew, Jay is smitten. He and Ally become so engrossed in getting to know each other that they float off course in inner tubes and are forced to spend a night alone on a beach.
However, this is a Christian novel, and while that night on the beach causes some sheepish consternation for the pair, it doesn't involve anything else.
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