Stephen Hanselman, publisher of Harper San Francisco, the religion arm ofmainstream house Harper Collins, agrees. "The sentiment in the marketplaceis that Christian books aren't 'independent bookstore' kind of books." Theseproblems can kill a book that seems to fall between two stools. Romanowski's"Eyes Wide Shut" was turned down by another Christian publisher, who haddoubts about marketing it, before being taken on by Brazos.

Still, Hanselman thinks there are "millions of Christians that would neverbe caught dead in an evangelical bookstore who need to be recognized at theretail level and by publishers.

" Brazos hopes to woo these "ambivalentpilgrims," not just with academic books but with trade titles like "Day ofReckoning: Columbine and the Search for America's Soul," in which WendyMurray Zoba, a senior writer at Christianity Today, ponders the spiritualsignificance of America's gristliest schoolground massacre. "He Was Here" byCatholic writer Ivan Kauffman reimagines the experience of Gospelcharacterrs in "gritty, earthy language," according to Hyboer.

Brazos hopes that such titles will go beyond preaching to the choir inChristian bookstores, and pique the interests of the ambivalent pilgrimsbrowsing the aisles of B. Dalton and Borders.