The Thorn Bearer Bookiversary!

by | May 2, 2019 | Fiction Book Reviews | 26 comments

Four years!

It has been four years since my debut novel, The Thorn Bearer, was published by Vinspire Publishing and my life as a published author began.

Since then, I’ve expanded my “published’ library to include more traditional books as well as independently published ones. Some received broader recognition, others found favor with a quieter group of readers, but with each story, I hope I’ve continued to grow as a writer – and that I continue (overtly or covertly) to show the beauty of the Gospel.  

TTB 1Writing has been such a journey. Each story forces me to look inside my own heart and well as draw from my thoughts and energies to pour into fictional people and worlds. Each story challenges me to improve my writing skills and story creating. Each story inspires an opportunity for the joy of creativity and the frustration of stubborn mental fatigue. AND each story provides a blank canvas of another way to show hope to a world in need of hope.

But within all of that, each story also makes my writing community richer and larger and so full! With each not book I write, I gain new readers who join with me on this journey and I am SO thankful for them! For you!

The Thorn Bearer began the first page of a lifetime of stories to be written. Since April 2015, I’ve had six novels published and four novellas. I have other novels that haven’t met readers’ eyes yet and dozens of ideas for more. I’ve gotten to try my hand at nonfiction. It’s been SUCH an amazing journey.

TTB 2As I celebrate the bookiversary of The Thorn Bearer, I want to thank all of you who’ve joined me on this journey. Thank you for your encouragement, your notes, your reviews, and messages. Thanks for reading sneak peeks and hosting me on your blogs. Thanks for sharing my graphics and letting me know how much a quote meant to you.

Thank you!

This debut doesn’t get a lot of reviews anymore, but I was recently surprised by someone who found the key heart of the story worth a few words.

This is an amazingly powerful book! It’s a tough read in that it covers some difficult topics, but it is so well done. Every aspect and piece of the story is expertly and thoroughly woven together. It’s hard to even put into words just how well this author handles everything in this book from the difficult things to the romance to the healing and hope to the reminder that God is always there and we are never alone. It’s a tale full of redemption and hope and healing and the love story of a Savior for every single one of us no matter where we come from, what we’ve done, or what has been done to us. I highly recommend it!Julie Jobe

Giveaway! (1).png

To celebrate the bookiversary of The Thorn Bearer, I am giving away one of my books (winner’s choice) to two commenters! All you have to do is answer this question:

What is a theme you enjoy reading about in books?


We have THREE winners of audiobooks for Charming the Troublemaker!!

Susan Cornwell

Licha Haney

Alicia M. Laxton

Please email me at pepperdbasham (at) to let me know you’d like to claim your prize!! Congratulations!!!

Another announcement!

The third book in the Mitchell’s Crossroads series, A Match for Emma, is slated to come out in November 2019!! Woohoo!!!! I can’t wait to introduce you to a few new characters and celebrate familiar ones too!

A cover reveal is coming soon!!!!!!



  1. Michelle Lunsford

    A theme I enjoy reading in books is, quite simply, romance. It can be portrayed in a lot of ways, and there’s no doubt that part of what I enjoy is how it gets my own romantic heart to go all pitter-patter. Yet beyond that, romance has the ability to communicate truth about the relationship between people and Christ. I don’t think it’s any coincidence that God inspired scripture writers to describe his relationship to his people in terms of, among other things, marriage. Modern writers are managing to the same thing, albeit often in less direct ways, in the inspirational romantic fiction that is available today. Many times I read a good romance and am reminded of the way God loves me, or something reflected in a romantic character will remind me of the character of God. It inspires me to want to be faithful to the Lord I love so, when I can also cheer on the faithfulness displayed in a lovely romance story.

  2. joyofreadingweb

    I was hooked with The Thorn Bearer and have loved all of your books since! Wow, four years! Maybe its about time I go back and read The Thorn Bearer again! <3

  3. Kay Garrett

    A theme I really enjoy reading is overcoming hardships. We are all thrown curve balls from time to time in our lives. It’s how we handle them through the support we get – whether from our faith, being introduced to God, our friends or complete strangers, or even a whole community that makes up the chapters of our lives. When we read of other’s hardships we know and can take comfort from the fact that we aren’t alone and there is hope of that happily ever after we all strive for.
    Happy The Thorn Bearer Bookiversary!
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  4. Jennifer K

    I like to read about second chances probably because I often need them!

  5. Margaret Nelson

    I enjoy reading books about how a couple grows after marriage.

  6. Emilee Douglas

    I’m a romantic so a good love story is my favorite theme. I love coming of age and adventure. Although these may be more genre related than theme. I haven’t have the honor of reading The Thorn bearer yet. I hope to soon!

  7. Rachael Merritt

    I love a good redemption story, and you did such a fantastic job of that in your first series! I’ll never forget reading The Thornbearer! What a tremendous book, and I was so excited to have found a new author to love. I also enjoy adoption in stories. It always piques my interest, and I really love stories that occur after “I do” because that’s just the beginning…not the end! Congrats! Doesn’t seem like four years, but time flies when you are having fun! God bless you, Pepper, and I’m looking forward to more great stories from you! 💗

  8. Beth Erin

    My little writer and I were just discussing which of your books I had read first (this one, of course!) last night and while I’m not giving her free-reign on this deliciously steamy story, I did purchase a paperback of Jane by the Book to share with her (aka it will be on mama’s shelf but she can borrow it at any time, lol)
    I love reading themes of sacrificial love, God’s abundant and redeeming grace, and connection/belonging/unity of family, community, and the Church.

  9. Megan L.

    Would love to win this book! A theme I enjoy reading is when a character starts out with real life struggles, but through the book learns how to better deal with them and rely on God through them. Life rarely ends tied up in a perfect bow, so I like it when people have happily ever afters even if their situation hasn’t changed but their perspectives have changed. So basically themes of growing in grace, having your perspectives or opinions challenged, and learning what real love is all about.

  10. susiesellnergmailcom

    I love reading about characters who need forgiveness and finally understand that God forgives them if they ask forgiveness, and the characters learn to forgive themselves.

  11. Mary Kay Moody

    I like to read stories of hope and healing, overcoming the “knocks” of life WITH God because He uses an infinite number of ways to guide and help us. Happy Bookiversary, Pepper. t thoroughly enjoyed reading The Thorn Bearer. Love how your library is expanding. Thanks for sharing the joy.

  12. Gail Hollingsworth

    I’ll be forever grateful to Jaime Jo Wright for connecting me to you four years ago. What a journey!
    Too many books are like “fairytales” everything working out perfectly with no real struggles. I like more realistic stories, real life issues. I also enjoy a good suspense or medical drama.
    Happy bookiversary!

  13. Marion

    I like historical themes,Amish and sweet,clean romances.

  14. Winnie Thomas

    I love a good story of redemption, but I also love second chances. Of course, they have to have a romantic element, too! Right now, I’m reading mostly historical fiction, but I also enjoy contemporary. I’m about ready for another Pepper story, so I’m glad you’ve got another one coming this fall.

  15. Marilyn

    I love Historical Romances,Family living, History,Amish and clean romances.

  16. Victoria

    I have been touched by a theme that weaves through a number of your books–beauty in diversity, acceptance and even embracing the different ways God has made us and others. I am eagerly awaiting A Match for Emma!

  17. Candi F

    I love that your book characters are authentic, accepted for who they are and their uniqueness, and the sense of adventure your characters have. I love reading your books! Thanks for sharing your gift with the world!

  18. carylkane

    Happy 4th Book Birthday for The Thorn Bearer! Your historical novels are exquisite masterpieces.

    Redemption is one of my favorite themes I enjoy reading about. Your stories have brightened my world! Thank you!

  19. Courtney LaShea

    I love the theme of facing fears and finding peace in God. Happy bookiversary!

  20. Lelia Reynolds

    Happy 4th Anniversary for The Thorn Bearer. The theme I like to read is redemption stories that give us hope. Thank you for sharing. Blessings

  21. Pam K.

    I enjoy reading books with the theme of hope through Christ. No matter what hardships the characters go through, it is possible to have hope if they have Christ in their lives. I haven’t read your first books but have read quite a few of your more recent ones and really enjoyed them. I’m looking forward to Emma’s story.

  22. Andrea Byers

    Happy 4th Bookversary! I love any Christian romance, but themes I really enjoy are forgiveness, learning to love oneself as God does and overcoming challenges that come up. Also enjoy marriage of convenience stories. I have this one, but haven’t read it yet as I need to snag the other 2.

  23. janicemoore0629

    Happy bookiversary! I am proud of you and your quality work to glorify God!
    I enjoy books with speech-language pathologists, people dealing with impairments, especially amnesia, females having to pose as males in order to survive, time slip and time travel. Thanks for asking!
    Janice, SLP

  24. joanarning

    I like second chance themes. I enjoy your books! jarning67(at)hotmail(dot)com

  25. jvancuren

    The theme I enjoy reading the most is forgiveness and unconditional love. Keep writing! I can’t put your books down. JIM >

  26. Cathy

    I guess it simply boils down to some version of romance, with stories unfolding in various fashions.


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