Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Laurie Alice Eakes' CHOICES OF THE HEART

Laurie Alice Eakes & Her book Choices of the Heart



Laurie Alice Eakes brings forth three charming tales with her Midwives series. Historically accurate, lovingly crafted, and beautifully told, each book immerses the reader into a lesser known community of Colonial times. Her books Lady in the Mist, Heart's Safe Passage, and Choices of the Heart deal with healing, love, heartache, strength, but above all faith. Laurie Alice is skilled in bringing the characters to life, even the secondary characters, and never shying from the harsh ways of life during those early times in America. The romance is beautifully written, not only the romance between characters, but the romance between a character and God. Her books will strike a chord within every heart, plunging the reader into a melody of history and time. Highly recommended, Laurie Alice Eakes' Midwives series is a definite read, a book to keep forever on the shelves and to read over and over again.

Read below for more on Laurie Alice Eakes, why she wrote her series, and what other books are next:


 "                                                          My Fascination with Midwives

As a lifelong history geek, I have always been fascinated with the work women have carried out through the existence of mankind. For example, Lydia, a seller of Purple, stirred my imagination as a child reading Acts for the first time. A lady merchant in biblical times?

So when I ran across a copy of Laurel Ulrich’s A Midwife’s Tale, I bought it, read it, and plunged into a whole world of not just a work, but the women who became midwives themselves.

So when I went to grad school for history in the late ‘90s and had to focus on a research project, I chose to delve into the lives of midwives more deeply. With a university library and Interlibrary Loan at my fingertips, I read newspaper accounts from the eighteenth century, books written by and for midwives from the seventeenth century, and laws governing midwives from the sixteenth century. The more I read, the more I realized these were women of power, unique power in  Early Modern history.

Midwives didn’t just deliver babies. They were healers and confidantes, teachers and, sometimes, witnesses for the prosecution. They enjoyed freedoms other women did not, and they were highly respected. They were even feared. After all, they knew a lot of secrets.

About halfway through my project, I fell ill and spent three days in bed. Bored with lying around, but too achy to concentrate on schoolwork, I began to write some notes on ideas flowing through my feverish brain. These weren’t more than images, but I wrote them down longhand and stuffed them in a drawer. One day, I declared, I would write a novel about a midwife.

I wrote three. It took me another ten years of a lot of changes and chaos in my life. Those early notes disappeared along the way, but I never forgot those images. And finally the time was right. I reviewed my notes from my paper, “Women of Power, Midwives in Early Modern Europe and North America” and wrote a proposal. On April 1, 2009, I sent that proposal to my agent. On April 21, an editor said she was taking it to committee. On May 12, I sold what became Lady in the Mist.

These are not books about midwifery; they are books about the midwives themselves, how their profession, their calling, effects their lives takes them into danger, and shapes them as women of God. And, because it’s me, they are romances with a bit of suspense thrown in.

I am an author who says, “I write Christian historical romances,” when asked what I do. It’s my calling, and I wouldn’t deny that any more than I would deny working in any other profession.

“Besides writing, I like going for long walks with my husband, whether on city streets or a quiet beach, and I like exploring new places. We recently moved to Houston, TX, but still miss living in Washington, DC, but not for the politics. It’s closer to family and mountains. I would really like to live in the country and rescue homeless cats, but I can’t drive, so that isn’t very practical. Here in the city, I settle for the quadrupeds I have.

At present, I am just finishing up my First Regency historical romance for Zondervan, out next year, and am about to plunge into writing the third book in a series with three other authors coming out from Harlequin Heartsong later this year. Also later this year, I have my third Regency releasing from Baker/Revell, and a novella from Revell coming out in early spring in a collection with three authors who positively dwarf me.  after all that, I have two more books under contract with Zondervan, and a lot of plans up my sleeve."

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