Sunday, January 24, 2010

Healthy Heart: Physical and Spiritual Blog Tour for the novel, Secrets and Lies

February is NATIONAL HEART AWARENESS MONTH. Join Rhonda McKnight, author of Secrets and Lies, on the five day Healthy Heart: Physical and Spiritual Blog Tour.

10% of proceeds from book purchases from the Online Book Store will go to the American Heart Association.

Faith Morgan is struggling with her faith. Years of poor communication and neglect leave her doubting that God will ever fix her marriage. When a coworker accuses her husband, Jonah, of the unthinkable, Faith begins to wonder if she really knows him at all, and if it’s truly in God’s will for them to stay married.
Pediatric cardiologist Jonah Morgan is obsessed with one thing: his work. A childhood incident cemented his desire to heal children at any cost, even his family, but now he finds himself at a crossroads in his life. Will he continue to allow the past to haunt him, or find healing and peace in a God he shut out long ago?

Click the links below to read blog tour content:


Where Have I Been Talking About Secrets and Lies

Here is a list of interviews and radio interviews that I have done for Secrets and Lies

Interviews and Features on Internet Sites
Christian Writer’s World -
Chocolate City
Inn The Basement
Written Voices
Tavares Carney - The Pleasing Spoon and Motown Writer’s Network
Patricia Woodside
BooksALatte – podcast
Books of the Soul
Sharon Ball – A Break from the Norm
Wanza Lefwich
Vanessa Richardson – Certainones
Joe Pinkney
Linda Leigh Hargrove – Cook Craft
Radio shows
The link below will take you to all the different shows I’ve had interviews on.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Secrets and Lies

...old memories and new enemies set on revenge.

Faith Morgan is struggling with her faith. Years of poor communication and neglect leave her doubting that God will ever fix her marriage. When a coworker accuses her husband, Jonah, of the unthinkable, Faith begins to wonder if she really knows him at all, and if it’s truly in God’s will for them to stay married.

Pediatric cardiologist Jonah Morgan is obsessed with one thing: his work. A childhood incident cemented his desire to heal children at any cost, even his family, but now he finds himself at a crossroads in his life. Will he continue to allow the past to haunt him, or find healing and peace in a God he shut out long ago?

Can Jonah and Faith Morgan keep their marriage together or will secrets and lies tear the family apart?

Secrets and Lies will make it's debut in November 24, 2009 and will be available at wherever books are sold.

Until then you may learn more about me at and African-American Christian Fiction at

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A Few Minutes With Rhonda - Repost from a interview about Secrets and Lies

Why did I write this story? I woke up one morning and these people were talking in my head, or rather arguing. (LOL). I was in a bad place in my marriage at the time and I think I was writing as therapy. Then when I decided this could be interesting, so I turned on the creativity, came up with the “issues” in their marriage and did a lot of research about heart disease. Jonah is a pediatric cardiologist and what he does for a living is central to the story.

Who is my ideal reader? I think most people will think my ideal reader is women who are married. While I think the book will definitely appeal to married women, I’d love for single woman who are thinking about marriage or waiting on Mr. Right to read the book. There is a valuable lesson for single women in the story. Faith chose to overlook a very important issue prior to her marriage to Jonah. This issue becomes a huge source of pain for her. Ten years later her ideal black man has her pulling her hair out.

Why will this book appeal to readers? I think readers will find it appealing, because more than half of it is written from Jonah’s point of view. My informal research on Yahoo groups and Nings has taught me that women readers love stories that are written from a man’s perspective. Like most men, Jonah is complex. He’s a love to hate kind of guy. People will love him because he’s dedicated his life to physically healing children, but he’s emotionally and spiritually sick himself. What a burden for Faith. Faith’s pain will have some folks shaking their heads at Jonah.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Secrets and Lies - The Characters

Faith Morgan – “There’s nothing more important to me than my family, but it seems the more I try to keep things together, the more they fall apart. Jonah is so distant, and he works all the time. I’m starting to wonder if he still loves me, and I know my son, Eric is thinking the same thing. I’ve been praying and asking God to help fix my marriage. But if it doesn’t get better soon, I’ll have to take things into my own hands. And I guess that’s the way God wants it. I mean, if he doesn’t do anything to change Jonah, maybe that’s my sign that we aren’t supposed to be together after-all.”

Jonah Morgan – “I can’t believe its 9 p.m. and I’m just getting out of this hospital. Faith’s going to have a fit. I think Eric had a baseball game tonight. I’ve got to make the next one, or I’ll be sleeping in the spare bedroom. Might as well be in there though, for all the action I’m getting in my own. Is that my cell phone or my pager? – My mom again. The women in my life are driving me crazy. I’ll call back tomorrow. I hope Faith made something good for dinner.”

Samaria Jacobs – “I have got to get me a man. One that’s successful and attractive. I can’t believe out of 12 male doctors at the center that none of them are single. Talk about bad luck. But, a girl’s gotta work with what she’s got. One of those married doctor’s has got my name on his wallet; one of the unhappy ones.”

April Thomas – “I’m so tired. I can’t keep going like this. No sleep. I probably need to call Dr. Moray, but shouldn’t I be able to take care of this problem by praying. The Bible says I just need a mustard seed of faith to move mountains.” Christians shouldn't need a pyschiatrist.

Monday, September 21, 2009

In the beginning....

Click here to listen to Rhonda read the story:

When the novel Secrets and Lies opens Jonah and Faith Morgan have been married for ten years. I thought it would be fun to share some of their courtship with readers and generate interest about what went wrong? What happened to the marriage? It's a good question, because even Faith and Jonah are wondering. So here's short story #1:

A prequel to the novel, Secrets and Lies
Rhonda McKnight

“Forget it. I’m not calling.” Jonah Morgan pushed the end button on the phone and dropped onto the sofa. Faith Andrews was the woman he’d been looking for his entire adult life. All he had to do was ask her out, but he was trippin’.

“You need to go on and call her,” Les Abrams, his best friend channel surfed with the remote control. “Ya’ old behind is almost thirty. It’s time to get married.”

Jonah craned his neck in Les’s direction. They had been friends since their freshman year at Morehouse. “How you advocating marriage when all you do is complain about your wife?”

Les settled on the Knicks game and picked up the bowl of popcorn in front of him. “Look, negro, all I’m saying is you practically a monk. Why not give this one a try, especially since it seems like she’s not feeling you anyway. You need the challenge.”

Jonah reached for a pillow to his right and threw it at Les’ head. “Very funny.”

Les caught the object mid-flight and laughed. “You been sending flowers and trying to be all suave with this sister. She has your number and I know you ain’t seen those digits on the Caller I.D.,” Les said. “That’s a first for you. Usually your woman have to be taken away by the police and served with a restraining order.”

“Like you haven’t had a stalker or two in your past.”

“Yeah, but marriage ends all that. I mean you still got women trying to throw behind your way, but they can’t blow up your phone and wait outside your house no more.”

Jonah considered what Les was saying. Especially the monk part. He needed some female companionship, but he wanted someone who had a little something going on. Someone like Faith.

“Unless you holding out because of the kid?” Les added, with raised eyebrows.

Jonah thought about Faith’s seven month old. Yeah, she came as a package. “Nah, dude. I don’t have a problem with kids as long as there’s no baby daddy drama.” No chance of that, the baby’s father was dead.

The image of Faith floated into his mind. Not that it ever seemed to float out. He’d met her two months ago when she’d bought her son into the emergency room. He’d admitted the child into the hospital and spent time getting to know Faith while they were there. He liked her a lot. Heck, who was he kidding, a brother was sprung. “I’m going to my room to make this call,” Jonah said, standing. “I don’t need background noise.”

“Make it quick. They finna hoop,” Les said. “And I need you to see yaself lose this twenty we got on the game.”

Jonah laughed. Les was dreaming. Even the struggling Hawks would beat the Knicks this year. He entered his bedroom and dialed the number he’d committed to memory. He had to do this quick, or he’d punk out again.

“Hello.” Faith’s sultry voice greeted him after the third ring and caressed him like a familiar lover.

Jonah cleared his throat. “Faith, this is Jonah. Dr. Morgan from the hospital.”

She laughed, a deep, throaty, sexy sound that told him he’d said something funny, but he couldn’t imagine what. He didn’t want to be a joke. “I remember you Jonah. How could I forget? The flowers you sent have this entire apartment smelling like a garden.”

Relief washed over him. “Well, a brother never knows who else might be sending flowers.”

“How are you this evening?” she asked. So she wasn’t going to volunteer that no one else sent Valentine’s Day flowers.

“I’m good.” Great now that I’m hearing your incredible voice.

“I thought you’d be watching the game. I know you’re a diehard Hawks fan.”

And a brother was feeling like he could get some play because she remembered. “Tip off is in five minutes,” he replied. “I just wanted to call. See how you’re doing. Check on Eric.”

She was silent for a moment. A moment too long and he thought he’d lost her. “I’m good. Eric is fine.”

He’d observed that she was an excellent mother. Just the kind of woman he wanted to raise his kids. No I didn’t. He shook his head. “I’m glad to hear that, but how are you, Faith. I mean really?” Her husband had been dead almost a year and she was young; had to be hard.

“I’m okay.” But he noted she didn’t really sound like it. He heard something in her voice that resonated in his own. Loneliness, an ache, a feeling like you’re only half of a set of two. He was sick of it.

“Look, Faith. I think it’s kind of obvious that I’m attracted to you.” Halfway there. “ I’d like you to have dinner with me.” Bam, there it was. He wasn’t a punk. She’d have to be crazy to say no. I’m a black doctor. Every woman wants me. Right?

“Jonah, I’m flattered, but I don’t know. I,” she hesitated. “I just don’t know if I’m ready to start dating again.”

Jonah took a deep breath. Okay, so every woman doesn’t want him. He was going to have to push harder. She was just scared. Scared to stick her foot in the pool, scared the water would be cold. There was nothing about him that would shock her nerve endings. He just had to get her to stick her toe out. “Don’t think of it as a date. Think of it as dinner between friends.”

She laughed again, “I haven’t known you long enough to call you a friend.”

“Funny, I feel like I’ve known you all my life.” Did he think that or say it? He said it. Faith wasn’t responding. Cool points were way down. He took a deep breath. “Friday night, seven. I promise I won’t bite. We’ll have dinner, and I can get tickets to that Jazzy Sleeping Beauty Show.”

She’d told him she loved ethnic ballet, and tickets were hard to get. He had a hook-up. Les’s wife was on the Atlanta Arts Council.

“Very tempting.”

Jonah could hear a smile in her voice. He could see it in his memory. Cool points had to come up with Ballethnic tickets. “I’m trying my very best,” he said. He liked this woman. Liked that she wasn’t dying to go out with him. Liked that he had to work for it.

A long pause and then a promising murmur. “It would be nice to get out.”

Yes. Jonah’s fist went up victoriously. “Okay, then I’ll see you at let’s say seven on Friday.”

“Seven is good.”

Jonah reentered the living room, poked out his chest and flashed a wide grin. Les scanned him from head to toe and took another sip of his drink. “Sucker. You’ll be married by this time next year.”

Jonah guffawed as his backside hit the sofa. He couldn’t help thinking that didn’t sound half bad.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Taking A Second Chance On Love

When the novel opens Jonah and Faith Morgan have been married for ten years. 
I posted Jonah's story above. If you haven't read it yet, you may want to pop up and read it first, then come back to second chances. 
Taking A Second Chance
a prequel to the novel, Secrets and Lies

“You look fabulous!”
Faith Morgan's eyes popped open. She took in her reflection in the full length mirror. Black halter dress, diamond and gray pearl earrings, upswept hair, and nearly an hour of paint on her face. She titled her head as she made her own assessment. She was glad for her best friend’s enthusiasm, but she wasn’t sure about wearing something so snug. She pulled at the fabric around her hips. It wasn’t giving. Who was she kidding? The issue wasn’t with it being snug. The issue was she hadn’t looked this sexy in a very long, time and that was a crime.
“Girl, you better work that body.” Yvette did a little shimmy, moving her arms back and forth in front of her chest. “Do you know how many women pray they get their bodies back after having a baby?”
Faith let out a sigh and turned away from the mirror. She looked good. The best she was going to look anyway, but somehow she didn’t feel right about leaving her son. He’d been teething for two weeks. Finally last night his skin broke through the surface of his gums. “Vette, I should stay home with Eric. What if he’s still fussy?”
“Once the tooth pops out they’re fine until the next one,” Yvette said. “If you’re going to go out, this weekend would be the time. By next week he’ll have a cold or something and you’ll keep putting off the good doctor.”
Jonah Morgan’s handsome, chocolate face entered Faith’s memory, and butterflies her stomach. The velvety tenor of his voice set her heart to racing. That was something else she hadn’t had in a long, long time; excitement over a man.
She turned back to the mirror to assess her outfit yet again. Ran her fingers over the beaded mesh at her waist. It was a diva divine dress, which was right on point, because she had to look perfect. That man was fine. He would look good changing his oil.
Faith caught the bouquet of roses he’d sent earlier this week in the mirror’s reflection. The note on the card was sweet. He was sweet and that went further than looks in her book. Yvette was right. He wouldn’t be begging her for a date for much longer. Men eventually gave up and she didn’t really want him to do that.
Faith looked at her wedding band. “You don’t think it’s too soon?”
Yvette’s eyes followed, and she let out a sigh. “It’s been a year.”
Faith turned back to the mirror and lost herself for a moment in the memory. Her husband, Nathaniel was late getting home after his shift at the hospital. Then at three a.m. the police were at the door. It couldn’t be good, but she never anticipated that they would say, “We’re sorry to inform you that your husband was killed in a car accident.” She’d nearly fainted. The weight of her pregnant belly atop weak knees would have taken her down had not one of the officers grabbed her.
Faith blinked back tears.
“Don’t ruin that eye make-up.” Yvette came up behind her and rested her chin on her shoulder. The two of them stood there for a long moment, and then Yvette broke the silence. “It’s okay, girl. You deserve happiness.”
Faith nodded. Of course she did, but she was afraid it would elude her. She’d lost her father in college, and now her husband as a newlywed. The men in her life were dying. She wasn’t sure if she could handle any more loss, any more pain associated with a man. Even rejection might be too much at this point. But she was dressed now. Jonah was on the way. He had been good to her. Too good for her to stand up. I have to do this, she thought. Even if it was only this one time. Then she could retreat, back to the safety and surety of single motherhood.
“You go on downstairs.” Faith squeezed Yvette’s hand. “I need a minute.”
Yvette cocked her head to the side. “No tears. He’ll be here in five minutes, and I can’t get rid of a raccoon in five minutes.”
Faith smiled, pulled her friend into a tight embrace. “I love you, girl.”
“I love you, too.” Yvette stepped back, let her eyes sweep Faith once more time. “You look good.” She winked and left the bedroom, closing the door behind her.
Faith walked to the bureau and pulled the top drawer open. The only item inside was a long, rectangular jeweled box, which she removed. She opened the lid and a music box version of “Somewhere Out There” began to play in the stillness of the room. She placed the box on the dresser and reached in for a small collection of photographs. Nathaniel in his hospital scrubs, Nathaniel and she on the beach in Key West on their wedding night, Nathaniel’s obituary.
I need to place these in a fireproof box, she thought. They’ll be all I have to share with Eric one day. All I’ll have of his father. The father he never got to meet.
Faith looked at her ring finger. Stared at the band Nathaniel had place on it not more than eighteen months ago. Her college sweetheart. He’d promised to love and cherish her. He’d done that until he’d slid across black ice and hit the median on the interstate. Faith shuddered. Sorrow was about to engulf her, but then she heard the sound of the doorbell in the distance. Remembered Yvette’s warning about raccoon eyes.
She reached for the ring on her finger and slowly pulled it off. She’d had years of happiness with a good man. She wasn’t sure she could dare hope for more, but Jonah was here and it was time to try. She raised the ring to her lips, kissed it and placed it the box.
“Goodbye, Nate.” She fought back the tears that wanted to come, returned the box to the drawer and pushed it shut. She made one last stop in front of the mirror and smiled at her reflection.
“Go get him girl.” Faith chuckled, smoothed her hair, and left the bedroom. It was time to take a second chance on love.

Great news...I just found out Secrets and Lies will be sold through Black Expressions Book Club. I'm so excited. Not only is this a great opportunity for Secrets and Lies to been seen an purchased by more readers, but it'll be available in hardcover through the club. So cool.

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