When author Darryl Nyznyk decided to recite a short story for his then eight-year old daughter as a way of imparting to her the true message of Christmas, he never realized that it would one day be a much-anticipated inspirational novel. There was no reason for him to think otherwise. As a successful attorney, law professor and real estate developer, he had his future pretty-much set. It wasn’t until a downturn in the housing industry a few years ago, that Darryl finally found the ‘opportunity’ he had been looking for to devote his efforts full-time to his life-long passion of being an author.

Darryl, who, with his wife, Loretta, raised four now-grown daughters in a close-knit Christian home, also began to take a hard look at the world around him…one of extreme political and social divisiveness, apathy and hopelessness. It seemed like a pretty good time to share the message with the world that he had been telling in his own home all these years…. a message of hope, love and faith. A message found in the birth of Jesus Christ so long ago.

In the new book, Mary’s Son: A Tale of Christmas (Cross Dove Publishing, LLC, 2010, $15.95), author Darryl Nyznyk reminds us that in spite of the temptations and fears of twenty-first century life, the spirit of Christmas can be alive in the hearts of our children.

Eleven-year-old Sarah Stone is lonely in a mansion, where she lives amid butlers, nannies, housekeepers, and a father who is too busy for her. She is bright, beautiful, and angry at the world. On the other side of town, in a slum called the “Sink,” teen street-tough, Jared Roberts and his gang barely survive broken families and a hardscrabble existence. Jared, too, is angry at an unfair world, and he intends to do something about it. Into this mix comes a mysterious little man named Nicholas, who intrigues Sarah and Jared but scares those responsible for them. Against incredible doubt and cynicism, Nicholas tries to guide Sarah and Jared away from their anger and the destruction that will follow—only to realize he cannot move them by desire alone.  Finally, fed up, he whisks the two young people to another time and place where a Christmas long ago teaches them the true meaning of life in a way they never imagined.

While the message of ‘Mary’s Son’, has grown over the years, but always the lessons were clear about keeping Christ in Christmas and learning to “love your neighbor as yourself.” Mary’s Son is a heartrending story of youthful fears, passion, and tears that will give readers of all ages hope for a better world. Like the iconic Christmas image of Santa Claus kneeling before the manger, this story will move readers of multiple generations, as it allows parents to demonstrate the true meaning of Christmas, while still allowing the young people to identify with the more secularized traditions of the Season.


Employed to Serve

Forward Under a Dying Sun

Most of these days, the sun rises and sets on a world that feels like it's dying. Across the pond, where Employed to Serve calls home, they're learning how to support their latest record a year into its release. HM contributor Andrew Voigt recently sat down with Justine Jones to learn more about the band, marrying your bandmates, and their outside shot at touring with Rammstein.


Full Feature
Comrades 2020

Becoming Comrades

The trio of Comrades – husband and wife Joe and Laura McElroy alongside drummer John Gaskil – is used to living in a van and touring the country. Now, their new normal has provided them with a moment to "be adults" for once. We recently sat down with the McElroys to talk more about the spiritual reality within life, how soon they'll be able to release new music, and how koalas are their new normal.


Photo by Quinsey Sablan

Full Feature
HM covers from over the years

HM Magazine Turns 35

In 1985, Doug Van Pelt photocopied a letter-sized sheets of paper, bound them together, and handed them out in person on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin. It's all digital now, but, along the way, Van Pelt stirred up quite a few waves, played some seriously heavy music, and made a few friends along the way. Here: A quick look back at the magazine's 35-year history with Van Pelt and new owner, David Stagg.


Full Feature
All Features