My Travel Blog

My Journey to Israel – Creating When Stones Speak

Just before we purchased Rabelo Lisa and I took a trip to Israel. I had recently completed the manuscript for my next book, which takes place in this ancient part of the world, and had to go there to do some research.  The title of the book is “When Stones Speak.”

The story is about a brilliant physicist, Dr. Michael Hannigan that has been working on a very special camera for the past 60 years.  The camera is able to look back in time.  Unfortunately, at 83 years old Dr. Hannigan can no longer carry the 70 lbs. camera around Israel.  He asks his friend and personal trainer Chuck Palmer to help him.  Dr. Hannigan, or The Professor as Chuck likes to call him, is a devout Catholic.  His dream is to show the world pictures of Jesus performing the miracles described in the Bible.  When he explains the purpose of their trip, Chuck can’t believe what he is hearing.  He says that he may not be the right guy for the expedition because he is an atheist.  Dr. Hannigan thinks he will be perfect.  Chuck agrees to join the Professor, but he is convinced his friend will be devastated when he finds out that the stories in the New Testament are nothing more than folklore.

There adventures take them to many sites in Israel, but two of the most important are the et-Tell (pronounced tell) that some say is the ancient city of Bethsaida.  This is where the Bible tells us that Jesus fed the 5,000, and walked on water.  The other place is the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, in the old city of Jerusalem, where Jesus was crucified, buried and resurrected.

“Ruins at the et-Tell considered by some to be the ancient city of Bethsaida.”

“The fisherman’s house at Bethsaida.”

“I am entering the Edicule or tomb where Jesus was buried.”

“Jerusalem and the Cardo Maximus at the time of Jesus.”

“The Cardo Maximus now.”

I spent some time roaming the beautiful boardwalk in Tel Aviv that runs along the oceanfront for miles.  Ultimately it inspired me to write one of the more memorable scenes in my book.  I wasn’t sure the trip would be worth it, but you have to see Israel to really understand what happened there over so many millenniums.

“The boardwalk in Tel Aviv. You never know where inspiration will hit you.”

“Ancient paintings on the walls of a house at Masada.”

“The ruins at Petra in Jordan.”

“The first time Lisa and I saw Rabelo.”


-Tom Miller
Author of “The Wave” – 
a Chuck Palmer Adventure novel


About the Author:

Tom Miller graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Science in Geology. He is a consummate adventurer with over 1,000 dives as a recreational scuba diver, and an avid sailor who has traveled 65,000 miles throughout the Pacific including the Hawaiian Islands. Miller has also cruised the canals of Europe on his canal barge and given numerous lectures on cruising the canals of Europe, as well as sailing in the South Pacific. Piloting is also an interest of Miller's, and He has completed over 1,000 hours flying everything from small Cessnas to Lear jets.