Pre- Order Today!
Pre-order Unfolding by Jonathan Friesen from your favorite retailer, and we’ll give you the following digital downloads for free!
· Bonus chapter
· Signed bookplate

Just follow these simple steps:
· Pre-order the hardcover or eBook of Unfolding from your favorite retailer between now and January 30, 2017. Be sure to save your receipt/proof of purchase or email confirmation.
· Scan or take a picture of your receipt/proof of purchase and email it to Or, simply forward your email order confirmation to
· You will receive an email with download links to all your freebies!


It’s here, finally here! Both of Me is officially released.

Enjoy the new trailer, and then find out how you can join in the fun!


BOTH OF ME is available today! I’m really excited about my latest novel and can’t wait to hear what you think of it.

You’ve been so supportive of me through every book and I want to truly say thank you.

Now that it’s available in hardcover and on Kindle, I hope you will support me by buying a copy for yourself, or to give as a gift to a friend or family member, or to donate to a local library.

I would greatly appreciate it if you could assist in spreading the news about the release too. Here’s a few easy ways you can help me get the word out about BOTH OF ME now that it’s officially here:

  1. BUY THE BOOK: Please consider purchasing the book today or in the first few days it is on sale. The initial couple weeks of sales are VERY important for a new book launch like this. Buy it now.
  1. REVIEW: After you’ve read the book, post a review/rating of the book on Amazon. Reviews like yours will help potential readers decide whether or not to buy the book, and the more reviews, the better. Review it now.
  1. SOCIAL MEDIA: LIKE my author page on Facebook, follow me on Twitter (@FriesenJonathan) and share news about the book via social media (tag me when you do, so I can thank you!).

4.      GOODREADS: Add BOTH OF ME to your shelf and review or rate the book. Review it here.

Whatever you decide to do, however big or small, it helps and it means so much. Thank you for your continued support and encouragement, and please let me know how I can pay it forward.



Pre-order “BOTH OF ME” now, and get my latest release free! See below!


“Friesen’s writing is … stunning.” Kirkus Reviews

“Friesen’s storytelling is laser-beam sharp.” Booklist, starred review


No gimmicks. No fine print. Just Free!

“Friesen’s storytelling is laser-beam sharp, making the characters (and the readers) teeter as if on a warped balance beam.” Booklist, starred review.

My Big Toe

The most marvelous thing happened today, and I alone saw it.
That was because it occurred on my right, big toe. I’ll explain.
Lately, I have felt old. Not Methuselah old, but old nonetheless. My gray-tinged beard reminds me that fifty is not too far away, my back shouts to be noticed when I bend incorrectly, arthritic hands no longer move nimbly on the guitar strings.
And then there’s the news. I read it and feel old. Wars and rumors of wars. Diseases and hatred. Somehow all that news seeks to shrivel me. I wake a grape, and after five minutes of this world I feel quite like a raisin.
I feel old.
But then a miracle happened, and it began with a noticing.
I was about to jam my right foot in a sock when I realized my dead toenail needed a clipping, so I wandered to the bathroom, found the tool, and returned to my bed to do the deed.
Now, you read correctly, I wrote dead. My right big toe is a sight. Due to injuries, I have lost its nail three times, the most recent occurrence happening two years ago. After the toe was crushed by a freezer, the nail began to die a slow death. I’d heard that often they don’t grow back, and so for two years, I watched this nail slowly perish from the top.
And then, today. I glanced at the bottom of the nail, and there it was. A little strip of pink visible below the sickly white.
I clipped the top, and the entire dead nail shifted, revealing more life underneath. Not just a strip, but half, no, three-fourths, no, almost the entire nail—pink and perfect.
For years, my toenail has been pulling a fast one, and beneath the appearance of death, there was new life. Silent. Secret. Unexpected.
And all this on me, the old guy, the past his prime guy. You might think this whole thing silly; you might think that a miracle is too strong a word for the discovery, but I tell you the resurrection of my big toenail quickened my heart. There was life left here. New life. Stuff I never imagined. All I had to do was clip the old stuff, the stuff that’s been hanging on, and life was waiting to reveal itself.
I don’t know where you are or how you’re feeling today. Maybe you’re like my kids, filled with glorious creativity and boundless energy. But I’m willing to bet that there’s a piece that feels old, old and hopeless and dead. Well, I have some good news for you; I don’t have a monopoly on silly miracles. Maybe all you need is a good clipping, a good pruning. No promises, but I’m coming to believe that life hides where you least expect it.
Take it from my right, big toe.

Pasty Knees

If you are offended at the sight of pasty knees, then Sweet Martha, do not watch this video clip. If, however, you enjoy watching the efforts of a terrified author, who snuck his smartphone onto a roller coaster, this is for you.
Was I chastised severely for my smartphone usage? Yep, I was. Enjoy.

A Dangerous Prayer

I don't think I ever prayed as much as I did the year before my oldest was born. Simple prayers, really. Father, give us a healthy child. Just a healthy child. Not much else seemed to register as important. My pleas were much the same for the kids that followed. Health, Lord, I'll bother you with little else.

Well, my heart's been broken, and if you have a child with a health condition you know the sting. There is a bubble around your child that so few seem willing to push through. It doesn't matter that your kid is beautiful or kind or loving, others see the struggle and don't know what to say, how to say it. 

So they say nothing. And you watch with sadness, and not a little guilt, as this precious person walks quite alone on the earth.

I want to scream, "See my kid … I know there are things you don't understand, but don't walk away, or around; don't turn you heart, or your back. My kid won't push like your other friends. My kid will stand, never too far off, waiting, waving, hoping that you'll say hello. Hoping for a bit of your smile …"

But I don't, scream that is. Instead I watch, from inside my own bubble, and tell myself friends will one day come. Yet, my child doesn't seem concerned. My child trusts and hopes and trusts some more, with a smile that lights up the room. Friends will come. Someone will see me. God won't leave me alone.

I prayed for my child's health. I didn't get it. I got a kid who finds joy in the middle of the pain.

Maybe I got what I prayed for after all.


A Barnes and Noble Hello!

Live in Minnesota? Have nothing to do tomorrow morning? (Saturday the 21st) Goodness knows it's too COLD to go outside. I'll be speaking–yes, and signing–INSIDE at the Edina Barnes & Noble Store (in the Galleria) at about 10:30 am. I would love to see all 1,126 of my FB friends there! 

So come on out! (There's food!)

My Republican Cat

I've had a few animals in my lifetime, but none have endeared themselves to me like Streak, the farm cat. Now, I had planned on entitling this post "My Democat." (cute, huh?) But as I think about it, that feline is a Republican.

How do I know?

1. My cat is pro-life. I understand the attention given families with 10 plus children. That's a lot of kids. Streak's offspring now number near ninety, and if the three males hiding in my barn have anything to do with it, Streak will top 100 by September. And those males are scoundrels–disappearing quickly when Streak starts to show. Does Streak give a thought to ending the pregnancy? Nope.

2. My cat would approve of increased military spending. She spends countless hours roaming the landscape capturing pests and rodents. You could argue that she is merely hunting for food, and you'd be right. But her mice-battles across the acres prevent us from having mice in our house. (Okay, so maybe she's not a Ron Paul Republican.)

3. My cat is anti-entitlement. She does not wait for Big Government (I am over six feet) to care for her needs. She doesn't even seem to recognize my authority.

4. She cares much more about liberty than she does about equality. My dog is an indoor dog. He is fed well, kept warm, pampered, stroked, in other words, that dog is rich. My cat receives none of those creature comforts. It is completely unfair.  Yet in summer, when my dog comes out to play, she holds no grudges and they are the best of friends. Imagine that. A poor cat not getting upset at a rich CEO dog.

5. My cat is clueless about border security. A quick listen to any Republican debate reveals this must be a Republican universal. Streak shows no respect for our farmer neighbor's property lines. She has even given birth over there and smuggled the kitties over here, leaving us confused about proper citizenship.

6. My cat displays exceptionalism. She may roam all over the countryside, but she always returns. Yes, we are unique and special, to her, the best place on earth. France and Sweden and Switzerland may be wonderful places to visit, but Europe's got nothing on us. She likes American soil. Friesen land.

Undoubtedly, my cat also has many fine Democratic qualities, but with the Iowa caucuses fresh in my mind, and sleep calling me, I find myself thinking conservative thoughts. Good-night! 

Aldo’s Fantastical Movie Palace

I've done it–written a book with a ridiculously long name. Aldo's Fantastical Movie Palace is about twenty characters too long, so I will abbreviate: AL-FA-MO-PA! ALFAMOPA is a wonderful book name … it also turned out to be a rather wonderful book. My first fantasy. ALFAMOPA comes out in May, but like all books of distinction, it is best enjoyed if pre-ordered and anticipated. So to allow you the full ALFAMOPA experience–the clicking, the ordering, the waiting, the dreaming–I now include this link for your convenience.

Enjoy! Aldo


My New Year’s Resolution Workout

Found it on Yahoo News. I don't care if it works, it sounds so perfect I'm going for it. I am going to workout every day of 2012. And I'm doing it the Yahoo way.

Here's the idea.

Four minutes of all-out sprint-like exercise is better for the heart and the waistline than an hour of moderate biking. Is that a big lie? Do not tell me. Let me live in my four minute delusion.

I can't bike for an hour without hurting something.

I CAN go all out for four minutes. This changes everything. Four minutes! I can eat four minutes worth of sour grapefruit. I can take a four minute freezing cold shower. I can endure the stomach flu for four minutes.

I can go all out for four minutes.

So here's how it went today, day one. 20 seconds of sprinting in place. Fall, half dead, to the floor and do 20 seconds of the mountain climber (a ridiculously easy LOOKING exercise that is ridiculously hard). Stagger to the feet and repeat those two all-outs three more times. About four minutes. Then roll on the carpet and groan and pray that your heart actually is meant to beat that fast and the searing in your stomach is not appendicitis.

Call for your wife. Call for the kids. Make sure the will is in order. This four minutes was, quite possibly, the most exhausting four minutes of my life. 

Tomorrow, I will attempt another four minute workout. I will capture this on film, perhaps post it on YouTube to encourage my sedentary friends. If, after four minutes of agony, I can haul my lifeless frame from the floor (a feat that resembles a resurrection), so can you.