Surprisingly, I put a lot of what I think into the main male character of Hawaiian Crosswind, Rafe Easton. I enjoyed writing the bantering that went on between Rafe and his Hawaiian pal, Keno. There was also some of me in Candace Derrington, and even in the vinegary Great-aunt Nora.
What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
What! Just one? J
When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I always enjoyed books from childhood and onward. I wrote my first full manuscript when I was fifteen. I didn’t get it published of course until a few years ago. I changed some of it, but the basic story is the same. It’s called Wednesday’s Child.
Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I enjoy the older British mysteries. I enjoy trying to guess “who done it.” I also like Church history, and World War II. The time was so suspenseful, and full of heroic men and women.
How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I can’t, unless I deliberately spend time in the Scriptures each morning. Isaiah, (6:1) was discouraged because the King of Israel was dead. Then he went into the temple and saw the Lord high, and holy, and lifted up. When he did, he saw that the earthly King of Israel might be dead, but it was God who was the true Sovereign King of all. Isaiah was so strengthened that he could say, “Lord send me.” He would go and tell about God. If I can get that truth in my heart each morning, then I can echo Isaiah in 40: 30,31, some of my favorite verses: “Yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength. They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk, and not become weary.”
How do you choose your characters’ names?
I have four or five books with thousands of names. I try and figure out a name I think would reflect the character’s personalities, or the times in which they lived. With Eden Derrington in Hawaiian Crosswinds there was a deliberate play on the Garden of Eden.
What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
The trilogy on the French Huguenots: (the protestants) Daughter of Silk, Written on Silk, and Threads of Silk. The Christian history, I believe, is important for Christians living today to think about. The Heart of India was another trilogy I believed in. It included the missionary work of William Carey in the story, and the heroine was a girl to emulate. Then of course the Dawn of Hawaii trilogy with the missionary background and the leper detention center on
Molokai. Most of that will be in book three that will be released next year.
I would love to feature it on my blog, too. If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
An eagle, with wings spread, soaring at great heights. After God brought the children of
Israel out of the said to them, “You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings, and brought you to myself.” The eagle, at times in Scripture, speaks of grace. land of Egypt He
What is your favorite food?
Crispy hash browns. How about creamy rocky road ice cream?
Discouragement. However, if you truly want to be a writer you can’t quit and give up. You must keep trying. And then, of course, above all, we need to be assured that writing is the purpose God has for one’s life. What is our purpose in wanting to write? That is a question each of us must ask and answer to God alone.
Tell us about the featured book?
(See the write up at the website)
Please give us the first page of the book.
Hawaii, October 1892
Honolulu’s in for a storm, Rafe Easton decided. The ocean murmured restlessly. Silhouettes of fringed coconut trees bent into the rising wind, their tall, slim trunks standing stark against the deepening skyline. Clouds tumbled along as if in a race for time. The usual mild trade wind besieged the island, a sure sign of a tropical windbreaker.
Rafe left Aliiolani Hale, the government building housing the Legislature to which he now belonged, filling the seat of Parker Judson who was in San Francisco. He headed down narrow King Street toward the Royal Hawaiian Hotel where he kept a suite of rooms.
The long day in the Legislature had ended with a personal victory that allowed for the legal adoption of Kip. “Thank You, Lord, for Your grace and that victory,” Rafe said, finding comfort in the certain answer to his prayer.
The political battle for Kip was waged behind closed doors. Despite legal setbacks, by means of influence and power waged by Parker Judson, Ainsworth Derrington, and a handful of other Hawaiian titans, Rafe signed the agreement with the legislative authorities, and was now free to adopt Kip. Soon, the newborn he’d rescued well over a year ago would become Daniel Easton—named after Rafe’s great-grandfather, one of the first missionaries in the
The wind buffeted the trees and maliciously tugged at his hat and his jacket. With relief he entered the Royal Hawaiian lobby with its handsome carpets, chandeliers, and lush foliage, and took the stairs to his suite.
Rafe decided to leave the baby in San Francisco with his mother, Celestine, rather than immediately return him to Hawaii. Since his marriage to Eden would not occur for another year, and Celestine wrote to him of her intention to remain at Parker Judson’s Nob Hill mansion, he saw no reason to rush Kip back to Hanalei. In his decision, Rafe also considered his upcoming trip to Washington D.C. Celestine would keep Kip safe and well cared for until he got his green-eyed beauty, Eden, to the altar.
As yet, he’d said little to
about the success he’d been anticipating in the Legislature, and what it would mean, not only for Kip, but for her. They would enter marriage with a child two years old. Of course, it would come as no surprise since she’d been fully aware of his plans about Kip from the beginning. Eden
Rafe drew his dark brows together thoughtfully as he removed his fashionable jacket and unbuttoned the crisp white shirt from around his neck.
He had hardly loosened his shirt when a rap sounded on the door. He opened it to find Ainsworth Derrington, white hat and black walking stick in hand. He was clothed as fashion prescribed in Honolulu: in a dazzling white duck-suit. He stood there, nearly as tall as Rafe, but as slim and straight as a lamp pole. His sometimes mysterious expression was in place and his deep-set blue eyes under tufted white brows were keenly focused on Rafe.
“I won’t keep you long,” he said, striding into the front room as limber as a cat. Rafe shut the door.
“Don’t bother with refreshments, my boy. I’m on my way to dinner.” Ainsworth turned and faced him, lowering his voice. “Truth is, I came to give you the secret location for the Annexation Club meeting tonight. Six o’clock at Hunnewell’s beachfront house on
Waikiki. You’re expected.”
At Hunnewell’s? Rafe wasn’t pleased.
“If I may say so, sir, a more secure location could be arranged here at the hotel, or Hawaiiana.”
“Oh yes indeed, quite so. However, Thaddeus is busy writing the manifesto we’re bringing to
and doesn’t feel inclined to leave the beach house. You know writers my boy, a strange lot. Once they get onto something it’s not likely a hurricane could make them leave their typewriters.” Washington
Rafe clamped down on his impatience. “That’s my exact point, sir,” he said too calmly. “Since Mr. Hunnewell’s writing the manifesto, he’s likely to have his office desk cluttered with important papers and names best kept concealed. He’s not one to give attention to risk.” Rafe was being very polite with words. “A house full of guests moving about freely is the perfect place for a spy.”
“Oh no, no. It’s perfectly safe, Rafe. Perfectly. No need to worry there.”
“If he leaves his writing lying about his desk the way he leaves legislation stacked on his desk at Aliiolani Hale, an opponent could find a gold mine of information. Again, sir, we’re fortunate to have Hunnewell on our side, and I’m grateful for his influence on Kip, but you’re well aware of his laxness.”
“Yes, I’ll grant you that one. One’s discretionary habits do not always coincide with his intelligence.”
“Perhaps if you advised that he at least lock his office door, he’d take the suggestion,” Rafe said, keeping the bite out of his tone.
“Yes, I shall do so. No need to worry, Rafe, though your conscientiousness is commendable. Be assured there’s no Benedict Arnold in the lot who will show up tonight; trusty men all.”
It was no use. In some matters, Rafe found the rigid and experienced Ainsworth Derrington oozing with excess confidence.
“By the way, Rafe, I’ve been thinking of that lad, Keno. A good friend of yours, I know.”
Ainsworth’s mention of Keno was so far from the ordinary that surprise silenced Rafe. He stood looking at the patriarch, who stroked his silver goatee and watched him in return.
“I suppose he’s taking the loss of my granddaughter Candace with painful heart.”
“Assuredly,” Rafe added with less bluntness than he felt. “He’s in love with her. He has been for years.” He added with a note of self-derision, “He and I share in common the fact that neither of us can bring the one woman we want to the marriage altar.”
Ainsworth cracked a smile. “Yes, my sympathy about Eden. If I had my way she’d marry you now. I could still force it—” he looked at him evenly, “but as you’ve said, Eden must have her moment with Jerome and Rebecca on Molokai. Therefore, out of deference to your wishes, I’ve left matters with Eden alone, though I think Jerome’s in error to want her working at his side.”
“I do think it’s necessary she participate, sir. It’s for her good, not mine. If
’s robbed of her moment with her father, as you put it, I know it will affect our future together. This is something she’s got to learn for herself. I’ve known her since she was fifteen. She’s been obsessed with Rebecca from that time on. You’ll remember back, sir, when she believed her mother had been murdered.” Eden
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Thank you for the interview.Linda Lee Chaikin
And thank you, Linda, for the interesting interview.
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