How Camp Hope Came to Be by Sara L. Foust

Sara is a multi-published, award-winning author who writes Inspirational Romantic Suspense from a mini-farm in East Tennessee, where she lives with her husband and their five homeschooled children. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Animal Science from the University of Tennessee and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Her debut novel Callum’s Compass won second place in Deep River Books’ 2017 Writer’s Contest. She also has a story, “Leap of Faith,” in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Step Outside Your Comfort Zone. Sara finds inspiration in her faith, her family, and the beauty of nature. When she isn’t writing, you can find her reading, camping, and spending time outdoors with her family. To learn more about her and her work or to become a part of her email friend’s group, please visit


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How Camp Hope Came to Be

We became foster parents for the state of Tennessee in 2013. With three young children of our own, we answered God’s calling to become a family that could help a child in need. For nearly six months, we waited and held our breath wondering what God had in store for our first placement. When she finally came, she only stayed for one day. I was heartbroken because I’d so longed to help. But, we mustered our courage and waited for the next placement. A sweet little, dark-haired girl came to us shortly thereafter and stayed for six months before going home with family.

Finally in September 2014, a seven-month-old, bald-headed, adorable baby girl came to our home. I took one look in her eyes and knew she was different. God had big plans for all of us, I just felt it.

It was sometime during these early days of getting to know our newest placement when I had a nightmare. Someone came and kidnapped her. I awoke, like any mom would, worried and trying to shake the awful thoughts. As my writing brain kicked in, though, I realized I had the foundation for a good suspense novel. What would happen if a foster child was kidnapped from her resource family? I tucked the idea into my mental filing cabinet.

I finished writing my first novel during this time, and we also learned that our beautiful little one’s biological mother was pregnant. We requested to be his or her placement family if we were needed and began making preparations to make room for a fifth child. It wasn’t exactly easy, not moving some furniture around and repainting a spare room. No, we sold our home and purchased a bigger one, all on nothing more than a hope that the new baby would be ours if he or she needed a safe place to go.

We put all of our items in storage, moved out of our home, and camped in my parents’ driveway while we waited for our new home to be ready. On August 31, 2015 (I remember because it is our second-eldest daughter’s birthday), while traveling to Cades Cove for a birthday celebration, my phone rang. Baby Brother had been born, had been in the NICU for four weeks, and was ready for us to take him home. They needed me to come to the hospital, spend the night, and bring him home the next day. Long story short, we celebrated my daughter’s birthday, dropped me off on the way home at the hospital, and brought him home to the camper in the driveway, where we lived for four more weeks! It was crazy, and I still don’t remember big chunks of the time we spent with a newborn, painting our new home, and moving in. I’m still tired just thinking about it all. But God blessed us in a might way!

Nearly three years later, we have adopted both of our foster placements, are enjoying our new home, and now I have a second book coming out with very special ties to my life. I am beyond thankful that the nightmare never happened in real life and that it sparked an idea for this Inspirational Romantic Suspense novel, Camp Hope.

More about Camp Hope:

AMY DAWSON directs a summer camp for foster children near Briceville, Tennessee. A foster mom for the first time, her responsibilities as mother to a traumatized child bring a whole new set of challenges and joys.

But when Amy’s four-year-old foster daughter is dragged into the mountains of Royal Blue by a former employee, parenting challenges are overshadowed by a new nightmare. The Sheriff’s department fails to procure viable leads, and Amy can’t sit idle. Her childhood friend and first love, JACK EVANS, returns to lend his skills as tracker. Problem is, he also stirs up romantic memories Amy would rather leave buried.

Jack struggles to let go of his past failures and prove his reliability by bringing Mattie home, but fears when he left camp nineteen years ago and failed to keep a promise to Amy he permanently lost her confidence.

As Amy plunges into the wilderness on horseback to search for Mattie, she must decide who she trusts, let go of her childhood traumas, and learn to rely on hope in God. Facing dehydration, starvation, and a convoluted kidnapper, will she succeed in recovering her precious foster daughter or get lost in the vast wilderness forever?

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Happy reading,


14 thoughts on “How Camp Hope Came to Be by Sara L. Foust

  1. I love this storyline and really admire the parents that choose to foster. That definitely takes guts! I’m glad I read this interview because the cover doesn’t really clue me in on what the story is about. I enjoyed the interview and would love to read Sara’s book.

    1. Thank you, Perrianne! Being a foster parent was the hardest job we’ve ever done, but it was also extremely rewarding! I hope you’ll be able to come to the FB Launch party for Camp Hope on July 24th. I’ll go ahead and jot you down with bonus entries for commenting here and look for you at the party 🙂 Thanks so much for stopping by!

  2. I have always been interested in fostering. I would definitely like to do it as a married women. Even though I don’t have children I know I would hunt down anyone who hurts me nephews and nieces.

    1. It’s amazing the level of need for foster parents in this country. And yes! Wouldn’t we all like to be vigilantes when it comes to the children we love?

  3. Thank you so much for this awesome read and Congratulations on The FB Launch Party!

  4. What beautiful hearts you and your husband have! My grandmother and grandfather did fostering and adopted three children, my mom included. I love people who have hearts like yours to love these children.

    1. Aww thank you, Phyllis. It was a hard thing to do but wonderful too, and I’m so grateful God gave us that opportunity. There is such a need for people to open their homes to these poor babies.

  5. I admire you! Fostering children is how my daughter got her beautiful little boy. The story line is awesome!

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