07 December 2014
Author Interview & Book Giveaway: Betty Bolte on EMILY'S VOW
This week, we're pleased to again welcome author BETTY BOLTE with her latest release, EMILY'S VOW. One lucky visitor will get a free, signed paperback copy of Emily's Vow - offer available only to US residents. Be sure to leave your email address in the comments of today's author interview for a chance to win. Winner(s) are contacted privately by email. Here's the blurb.
In 1782, the fight for independence becomes personal...
Emily Sullivan’s greatest fear is dying in childbirth, as did her twin sister and their mother. Then she’s thrown in a loyalist prison for her privateering father’s raids on the British, and her accuser--a former beau--promises to recant if she will marry him.
Frank Thomson always loved Emily despite her refusal to return his affections. A patriot spy posing as a loyalist officer, when Frank learns of Emily’s plight, he challenges her accuser to a duel.
Freed from prison, Emily ponders returning the affections of her rescuer--the only man she's ever loved and who married her twin to save the Sullivan family's reputation. But Frank cannot afford to be discovered. For the sake of young America, he must deliver his secrets.
**Q&A with Betty Bolte**
Where and when does Emily’s Vow take place?
Emily’s Vow is set in Charleston, South Carolina, at the end of the British occupation of that port city. It’s October 1782, the American Revolution is winding down, and the town is anxiously awaiting the departure of the enemy troops from their harbor. Tension is rife as the Britons strip whatever they can from the town before they leave. As a result, it’s dangerous for young ladies to venture from home unescorted, a restriction Emily refuses to adhere to, which lands her in trouble.
Some romances are more about story than historical accuracy. Is it a simple romance or can we believe the historical facts?
It’s very important to me to make sure my history is correct to the best of my ability. To that end, I’ve visited Charleston twice to dig into details not readily available online or in books. Walking the cobblestone streets and knowing the distances between the American Revolution-era houses helps me put myself into the characters’ shoes, so to speak. I also visited Brattonsville, South Carolina, which is a plantation originating from the 1700s. Of course, I’ve also been researching this time period since 2008, and have read dozens of historical works related to the times. I’ve also scoured the Internet for details to specific questions and contacted historians related to other specific questions.
What inspired you to write this story?
While working on my Master’s in English I came across an essay written by Judith Sargent Murray in the late 1700s. The topic was a call for equal education for boys and girls, which started me thinking the genesis for what would eventually become women’s lib and equal rights actually kicked off with the start of America as an independent country. In fact, the ideal of independence became more about individual liberty for everyone (male, female, black, white, etc.) rather than for only the white wealthy landowners. I don’t think most people today realize or remember how deeply profound the impact would be of an independent America.
Is this a standalone story or part of a series or trilogy?
Emily’s Vow is the first of three closely linked stories about three women that kicks off the A More Perfect Union series. These three stories span three months, October through December 1782. Emily is a secret essayist who only wants to avoid death in childbirth by remaining unwed, despite her father’s urging of her to marry Frank. Her cousin Amy is a renowned storyteller who finds herself in deep trouble she can’t talk her way out of while Benjamin tries to rescue her. Their friend Samantha is a healer whose practice is threatened by young doctor Frank’s intention to open a new hospital. Emily’s Vow and Amy’s Choice are available now, while Samantha’s Secret won’t release until early 2015.
What makes this series unusual or unique?
Most informational and fictional publications related to the American Revolution focus on the northern colonies and states, though they often include Virginia too. It’s an interesting fact that the first and last shots fired during the tensions that would become a war were in South Carolina.
Do you only write romances? What’s your next project?
This year I’ve released four novels in two series, but I have been published in nonfiction as well as fiction, and a combination thereof that is an award winning book. Hometown Heroines: True Tales of Bravery, Daring, and Courage won the gold medal from the Children’s Literary Classics organization for gender specific young adult book. It is a collection of 18 short historical fiction stories based on 19 real American girls from the 1800s. Each girl has a landmark in recognition of the event I shared as fiction (to make it more interesting for a younger audience) and includes the biographical details the fiction is based upon as well as the location of the landmarks. I’ve also written books on horse sports and school clubs, as well as using computer software programs. Next I’m working on a series of historical women’s fiction stories. Of course, there will be other stories in the A More Perfect Union series, as well as in my Ghosts of Roseville series, Traces and Remnants.
Betty Bolté writes both historical and contemporary stories that feature strong, loving women and brave, compassionate men. No matter whether the stories are set in the past or the present, she loves to include a touch of the paranormal. Get to know her at www.bettybolte.com.
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