When Barbour asked me to anchor the Daughters of the Mayflower series and to write several books for the series, I was thrilled. And completely fascinated with the idea of following a family line through US history from the Mayflower all the way through WWII.
What I didn’t realize was what the research would do for me personally. I love history. Love the west. But what a thrill it was to learn so much more depth about our country’s great history.
For instance, in The Mayflower Bride, (1620) I had to use all the historical people who were actually on the ship and only fictionalized my hero, heroine, and her best friend. Research for this book, I must admit, was brutal. But oh, so worth it. One person in particular has caused hundreds of readers to write in: John Howland. His escapade of falling overboard that I used in the book, really did happen. How he managed to grab the topsail halyard is truly a miracle in and of itself. What’s the most interesting tidbit to me about his whole story is that he ended up having ten children, eighty-eight grandchildren and now? There’s almost two million descendants of his in the United States. Out of all the passengers aboard, he has the most descendants. By almost double. Imagine what would have happened if he had been lost to sea that day.
Then there was The Patriot Bride (1774-1776). Researching the American Revolution was extraordinary. But in my research, I became engrossed in biographies of George Washington and Benjamin Franklin. So, of course, I had to use them in the story. You’ll have to read the book to find out about how I incorporated Ben’s quirkiness and use of “air baths” – and let’s not forget his love of swimming.
In The Golden Bride, I learned about all the ships buried beneath San Francisco’s streets, and how they expanded the city’s shoreline by building on the landfill. The gold rush of 1849 was not a time and place I would have enjoyed living in!
Which brings me to The Express Bride, my latest release in the series which takes place in 1860 during the impressive and short era of the Pony Express. For this book, the tagline is: The wilderness is a great place to hide…
And it was. The picture from Karen Rochon is a good idea of what the area looks like today – and back then. Hasn’t changed a whole lot. Except for electricity. ? She posted this picture in an avid readers group when she read my book. Can you imagine being that far from “civilization” back then? But the Pony Express stations had to be every 10-20 miles so that the riders had places to stop and eat/sleep, and so there were fresh horses since they rode at breakneck speeds. It cost a small fortune to send something via the Pony Express (approximately $145 equivalent today – to mail a letter!) and yet it was highly used.
IMG 3346 credit – Karen Rochon (this picture is about 50 miles east of the Carson Sink Station area from The Express Bride and is what the terrain looks like.)
A strong theme of forgiveness is woven through the story with the heroine finding out hidden secrets of her past. And there’s a bit of suspense and espionage too.
Through this series, it’s fun to explore significant events in US history and to find the love of family and friends standing the test of time. Make sure you check out all the other great authors in the series as well. The Express Bride released on July 1, 2019 and it is the 9th in the series.
Thanks for journeying with me today!
God Bless you!
Giveaway: Leave a comment about your favorite event in US history or your favorite historical character and you’ll be entered in the drawing. I’ll be giving away three signed copies of THE EXPRESS BRIDE along with other goodies.