The wait is over!
I am a member of an amazing organization called Marketing for Romance Writers (MFRW) and am totally stoked to be a part of the first MFRW Blog Hop! And, I’m also terrified, because this is my first “official” preview of my novel, Anything You Ask of Me.
For reasons still unbeknownst to me, I don’t often blog about the content of my novel. I mean, in the past few months, together we’ve seen it evolve from Manuscript to an actual titled, finished first draft. We’ve laughed. We’ve cried. I’ve drunk too much wine.
But today, friends, today in honor of MFRW’s “Firsts” Blog Hop, I’m giving you a first look at Anything You Ask of Me, featuring an introduction to the 1860s in which I promise not to bore you—and if you hang on to the bitter end, I’ll give you chance to win a 5×7 photograph I took at Gettysburg! Exciting, right? Let’s go!
What are you willing to risk? If he asks you to do it for him, how far is too far?
In 1862, a society girl turned spy must decide which is more important: the married general who asks her to risk everything for him, or the man tasked to stop her at any cost.
The summer of 1862 marked the start of the second year of the Civil War. As a country divided, we’ve seen the worst of each other: senators beat with canes, a failed raid by abolitionists to incite slave uprisings, skirmishes, the First Battle of Manassas. There are the casualties: the scarred, the maimed, the dead.
Elizabeth Archer is a society girl. She’s educated. She comes from a well to do family. And, although she lives in Maryland—a border state that hasn’t sworn allegiance to either North or South—her life is affected very little by the war. Until one day, all that changes.
Victorian women are tough. They aren’t porcelain dolls; life is hard in the 1860s. Child mortality rate is staggering. Disease—cholera, typhoid—can be one sip of water away. A spark from the fireplace ignites your beautiful belled skirt: if you’re lucky, you’ll only be scarred, but chances are you’ll burn to death (as did Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s wife). Patent medicines can be concocted from kerosene, morphine, and alcohol: a “cure” often worse than the ailment. Women are not allowed to enlist in the Army. It doesn’t stop them.Women are not allowed to be nurses or doctors. It doesn’t stop them.
Elizabeth Archer isn’t delicate. She’s tenacious. She’s headstrong. She captivates and charms a married man: a Confederate cavalry commander who asks
her to risk everything and pass messages about Federal movement to him. It’s a request so simple, so innocent; but sets off a chain of events that threatens not only her freedom, but her life.
In September 1861, Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote:
War has taught us, as nothing else could, what we can be and are.
Who is Elizabeth Archer? Whether she’s a saint or a sinner, one decision—one choice made out of blind devotion—will determine exactly what she is. And what she’s capable of doing.
Ready for a contest?
All you have to do is leave a comment! Let me know your thoughts on the “first look” of Anything You Ask of Me. Tell me your favorite Civil War Battlefield and why. Whatever you want to say. One commenter will be picked at random and will win a 5×7 photograph of some awesome artillery in the Wheatfield at Gettysburg.
Ready for more Anything You Ask of Me? Stay tuned! I ramble on here on my blog, but am also active on Twitter and Facebook. Follow/Like for updates!