Archive for category Historical Fiction
A gripping tale of love, murder, and betrayal in antebellum North Carolina. Based on a true crime.
In 1853, Reverend George Carawan was arrested for murdering the timid schoolteacher Clarence Lassiter in the small town of Rose Bay, North Carolina, for supposedly seducing his wife. The subsequent trial was a media sensation at the time, with the story being reported in newspapers as far as London, England. The idea of a well-respected preacher shooting an unarmed schoolteacher would have been enough to gain an audience’s attention, but Reverend Carawan was thought to have done many more sinister things in his lifetime, all of which he found necessary in order to maintain his position of power and wealth in the community where he had made a name for himself.
Beneath the Splendor tells the story of what might have happened to propel these tragic events just as the corroded foundation of the South began to crack in the years before the Civil War.
A frightening and well-written story!
When I read the synopsis, I became an instant fan! I have heard a version of this story, as I am a southerner, and I was excited to receive this book.
Taylor has brought an old tale to life with a few twists, a wonderful cast of characters, and a writing style that captured every ounce of my attention. This haunting tale invoked my deepest emotions and I felt a connection with the heroine, though it took a while-she earned my love slowly due to her naivete. Written by a true Carolinian, there were several aspects of life that were relatable, and the setting was almost like a memory. This is something I take to heart, as each southern state has its own idiosyncrasies and not all natives can depict them so eloquently.
The paranormal was flawlessly introduced and continued to remain a pivotal part of the story. There are a few points of view, which enhance the story, instead of hindering the flow, and the ending wraps up very nicely.
I must add that the Reverend was a great character, and as a horror fan, I feel he belongs on screen.
All around, it was brilliant! I will read it again, a couple of times.
I highly recommend to fans of historical thriller, historical paranormal, historical fiction, historical horror and everything along those lines!
Thanks go out to Reedsy Discovery for an advance copy of this fabulous book! My review, as always, was an unscripted and honest opinion.
ABOUT THIS LITERARY CHEF
Having grown up in the South, there was rarely a story told in my family that didn’t involve the paranormal or supernatural, and this is reflected in my work. I prefer writing Historical Fiction with Gothic elements but also enjoy Fantasy and Science Fiction in historical settings.
Author’s Reedsy Page:
1st July 1916. Battle of the Somme. After seven days of preliminary bombardment 140,000 British soldiers assault the German front line on a fourteen-mile front from Serre in the north to Maricourt in the south. At 0730 hours Sergeant Fortunatus Berriman of the Somerset Light Infantry clambers out of the trenches near The Nab to race across no-mans-land amidst the machine-gun, rifle and shell fire at the head of his platoon of men. He is broiling with hatred, hellbent and headlong into violence, motivated not by patriotism or loyalty to his men but single-minded vengeance directed at 2nd Lieutenant Richardson, his commanding officer and nemesis. Somewhere up ahead, through the smoke, bullets, bombs and trenches his officer is fighting with the first wave of infantry. Nothing is going to stand in his way, not even the German army. He will get his revenge before a sniper’s bullet finds its mark, the perfect cover for a well-deserved execution.
My Personal Layman’s Review-Me being me
The author’s writing style is superb. He could probably write school-worthy history books that would actually capture the attention of the usually bored-out-of-their-mind teens/college students. My great-great uncle suffered from severe PTSD and I thought of him, frequently, while reading this novel. The horrors, the hate, the death, the desperation, the spirituality, and the paranormal; all of it hit home for me. I felt this book. He writes like he was there and he pulled me in with him.
I was raised on the wars of 20th century, as most of my elders were veterans, so this novel immediately caught my eye. I highly recommend this novel for lovers of Historical Fiction, Military Historical Fiction, and WWI Fiction. There are triggers, for those in need of warning.
I was moved by the writing. The vivid detail put me in the story, as if I was a bystander witnessing the events, personally. Being one whose heard first-person accounts of WWI, this was on the mark; the author is brilliant and his research is evident.
Some scenes are utterly gut-wrenching, and I couldn’t help but feel completely heartbroken for our characters. At other times, I was absolutely furious, as I was reminded of society’s checkered past and how it dealt wrongly with the effects of the war. It was dark in a way that most war novels need to be, but it has uplifting moments that even out the flow. The spiritual aspect was introduced beautifully, and the battle scenes were literary adrenaline.
As a whole, it’s a written spectrum of events that when brought together, make a beautiful read
I received a complimentary copy via Reedsy Discovery-a fabulous way to discover extraordinary authors. This is my honest opinion and unscripted review.
About This Literary Chef
Writer, historian, family history researcher, battlefield tour guide, wargamer, husband, father and home office hermit, D G Baulch lives in North Somerset surrounded by books, paintings, artefacts, uniforms and weapons from the First World War period. He spent his childhood years in Street, Somerset, attending Millfield School where a passion for writing was cultivated. Dusty boxes in the attic still contain half-finished short stories, printed on a dot matrix printer, using fledgling word processing software in the days of the ZX Spectrum and BBC Model B computers.
In 2013 he led his first tour of the battlefields of Belgium and France, uniting relatives with the stories and graves of great uncles and great-grandfathers. As interest surged during 2014-2018, he conducted battlefield tours throughout 2015 then changed focus from singular research to concentrate on the Battle of the Sambre, 1918, organising and hosting a large commemorative event, gathering relatives of the dead in the village of Locquignol, France on 4th November 2018.
Having absorbed so much from the stories of the fallen, a work of fiction on the subject became a reality in 2016 when the “sergeant in a shell hole” concept was born.
Find out more:
While growing up in Germany in the 1930s, Rudolf falls in love with the girl next door, Gertrude. He doesn’t care what religion Gertrude practices but the Nazis do. When the first antisemitic laws are enacted by the Nazi government, Gertrude’s father loses his job at the local university. Unable to find employment in Germany, he accepts a position at Istanbul University and moves the family to Turkey.
Rudolf, desperate to follow Gertrude, takes a position working at the consulate in Istanbul with the very government which caused her exile. With Rudolf finally living in the same city as Gertrude, their reunion should be inevitable, but he can’t find her. During his search for Gertrude, he stumbles upon Rosalyn, an American Jew working as a nanny in the city. Upon hearing his heartbreaking story, she immediately agrees to help him search for his lost love.
Willing to do anything in their search for Gertrude, they agree to work for a British intelligence officer who promises his assistance, but his demands endanger Rudolf and Rosalyn. As the danger increases and the search for Gertrude stretches on, Rudolf and Rosalyn grow close, but Rudolf gave his heart away long ago.
How far would you go to find the woman you love?
This was my first time experiencing a novel written by this author, and it was a memorable one.
I’m a geek when it comes to the greatest generation, and I tend to over-analyze books set in the era. However, I’m also a true fan of romance. Haggerty blends the two beautifully, making this a mesmerizing novel that can’t be put down.
The entire story is entrancing, the setting is perfect, and the trials and tribulations our characters endure are believable. Historical events are a pivotal part of the story, instead of being thrown in as background noise, and they’re intelligently written. There’s never a lull, and the author puts you in that time and place. I was hooked from the beginning and just hated to put it down!
Perfect book for fans of Historical Romance, and lovers of the era.
*I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest and unscripted review.
About This Literary Chef
She had to leave him to save her father.
He had to follow her to save his heart.
Jenny Sutton leaves Williamsburg, Virginia and Andrew Wentworth, the man she loves, and sets sail for British occupied Manhattan to tend to her dying father. Aboard the Destiny, Jonathon Brentwood makes a request of Jenny that will entangle her in the network of spies serving the Patriot cause. With her father already under suspicion, Jenny’s activities must be hidden from the watchful eyes of British troops. But she has caught the eye of British officer Lieutenant Nigel Ashby, who is aware of her sympathies, yet offers her protection through marriage. Only by accepting his proposal will Jenny avoid the hangman’s noose … and lose Andrew forever.
Desperate to join—and protect—Jenny, Andrew Wentworth agrees to deliver messages to Patriot troops on his journey to New York. His route brings him face to face with those suffering under British rule. The fight for independence and his desire to reach Jenny become intertwined.
Arriving in Manhattan, Andrew is arrested as a spy by the British officer coercing Jenny into marriage. She may be saved from the gallows, but will Andrew?
As war rages around them, Jenny and Andrew must find the courage to fight for their new country’s freedom and their own eternal love.
What an exciting novel!
While I’m a fan, this author never ceases to amaze me. Time after time, she produces a solid story line, with the perfect setting, background, beginning, middle and end. Intrigue, love, death, and even espionage are perfectly written. The anticipation kills me, but doesn’t torture me-that’s when you know you’re in the hands of expert. Sensual situations are pleasant, very tasteful, and very satisfying. Villains are appropriately placed and perfectly evil.
Everything was spot-on, here. From the apothecary to the weather, Meyette’s historical knowledge shines beautifully. The characters are lovely, and I felt their heartbreak, as well as their triumphs. Growing up a few miles behind the Cornwallis House, and raised in an historic town, made me quite familiar with this era. Reading this novel brought it all back to life again. I couldn’t put it down!
Such a brilliantly written novel, with a plethora of redeeming qualities! Definitely recommend!
I received this novel in exchange for an honest and unscripted review.
**As usual, I must warn of triggers-violence, death, murder, sexual situations, and war are present**
About This Literary Chef
Author, blogger and believer in dreams-come-true, Elizabeth Meyette fell in love with books as a child when her sister read her Goldilocks and the Three Bears. “She had me at ‘Once upon a time…’,” Elizabeth admits. A native of upstate New York, Elizabeth now lives in West Michigan with her husband Richard. She retired early from teaching to pursue her passion: writing. “Yes, I hear voices in my head and I give them names and call them characters.”
Check out her other FABULOUS novels-You’ll love them!
Amazon Author Page