Thursday, January 05, 2012

MAPLE NOTCH BRIDES - Darlene Franklin - Free Book

What are some of the spiritual themes you like to write about?
I put my characters through the ringer—and in those terrible times, they discover the rock bottom truth that God loves me, no matter what. Lately I have written a number of books looking at the question of prejudice—racial, cultural, class—from different directions. That’s an issue in Bridge to Love, in Maple Notch Bride, when a poor farmer is courting the banker’s daughter.

What other books of yours are coming out soon?
Ranger’s Trail, my second book (fourth overall) in the Texas Trails series, will be released in February. Sometime this spring Pride’s Fall, my last book with the Heartsong bookclub, will be released.

If you could spend an evening with one contemporary person (not a family member of yours), who would it be and why?
I could name some dear friends I haven’t seen for decades. Or I could go with celebrities. I’d love to talk with Philip Yancey. His book Disappointment with God revolutionized how I thought about God’s sovereign love in difficult times, and all his books since speak to me.

What historical person would you like to meet (besides Jesus) and why?
Historical. Hmm. I think of the hosts of ordinary women (and men too) who grew to greatness: Mother Teresa. Rosa Parks. Joan of Arc. Oscar Schindler. Corrie Ten Boom. Martin Luther. Martin Luther King. What transformed them from everyday people to makers and shakers?

How can you encourage authors who have been receiving only rejections from publishers?
I use my own example. I say I continued writing long past the point it made any sense, when any sensible person would have stopped this single-minded pursuit. For a ten year period, I might perhaps have made one sale a year. One sale of an article, several of them for free. My first book was published after I had been writing for fourteen years. Since then, things begin to snowball.

I wrote one nonfiction book and four novels before my first book was published (which was the second novel I had written).

Also, the last time I seriously questioned whether I should continue writing, God gave me a clear answer. I didn’t need to know whether He wanted me to write for the rest of my life; I knew He wanted me to write the book I was working on. And by the time I finished that, I had a contract for my first book. (The book I was writing at that time has never sold, by the way.)

Rejections are part of a writer’s life. Rather than trying to continuously improve on that one manuscript, move on to the next one after a reasonable length of time (“reasonable” for me was 1-2 years per manuscript).

I'm so glad you never gave up. I love your stories. Tell us about the featured book.
I’m originally from New England, so I had a lot of fun writing about my back yard. I wanted my stories to have a real Vermont feel. Pamela Griffin used the maple sugar industry as a backdrop for her contemporary set, Vermont Weddings. So I used a covered bridge that plays a role in each story. In the first book, it’s still a tree. . .the first covered bridge wasn’t built for another thirty years.

Climb into adventure in the Green Mountain State where party politics, parental pressure, and personal misperceptions challenge three couples. Sally Reid and her family of Patriots are in hiding. Can she trust Josiah Tuttle, a man whose father is loyal to King George? (Prodigal Patriot, a Revolutionary War story) Beatrice Bailey’s wealthy father wants his daughter to marry up—not down. Does farmer Calvin Tuttle have any chance of winning Beatrice’s heart and her father’s blessing? (Bridge to Love, a Year of No Summer story) Clara Farley has accepted the role of spinster. Can Daniel Tuttle get her to change her mind? (Love’s Raid, a Civil War story) Will God show these couples a way above the fray?

Please give us the first page of the book.

Maple Notch, Vermont
May 1777
Today was a glorious day to be outside, Sally Reid decided as she went about her morning chores. Cool air flowed down from the mountains, scented with pine, the evergreen trees that gave the “Verts Monts,” or the Green Mountains, their name. The sun overhead promised sunshine and warmth, and green shoots pushed up through the ground. She loved the rhythms of farm life, the cycles of sowing, growing, reaping, and resting. A song of praise burst from her lips.

“Good morning, Miss Reid! You sound cheerful this fine morning,” a deep voice called out.

Sally stopped in mid-verse. Her singing called for no audience beyond the chickens who clucked along with her. Pa teased that she had the voice of a crow. Of all people, who should catch her in her morning serenade but Josiah Tuttle.

“Morning to you, Mr. Tuttle.”

He smiled at her, the same grin that had infuriated her since childhood. It always put her in mind of the day he pulled the mobcap off her head after she’d had the measles. Clumps of her straight, oak-colored hair came off with the mobcap, and she had run home and refused to come out again. Remembering, she put a hand to the top of her head, making sure its covering was in place.

Josiah’s hair was as black now as it had been then, the same red highlights created by the sun. But the years had transformed him from a skinny lad to a stalwart man, tall and well built. Not that she would ever make mention of the fact.

“Is Nathaniel about yet?” His voice had changed as well, into a marvelous baritone. He could sing far better than she could.

“I haven’t seen him.” Sally wondered if they required a chaperone for this conversation. Anyone could see them in the open dooryard. In fact, she saw a flicker in the opening in the cabin wall—probably her little sister, Nellie. Next thing Sally knew, Nellie would start announcing that Josiah was calling on her to everyone who stopped by.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
I am on Facebook. They can also find me at .

Thank you, Darlene, for another interesting interview.

Readers, here’s a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.
Maple Notch Brides (Romancing America)

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Feedblitz, Facebook, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.


Jo said...

Love the cover and the name of the book has really grabbed my attention. Would love to get entered.

Jo from Southern Arizona

Wendy Newcomb said...

Thank you for the great interview, sounds like great stories.

I live in FL.


Anonymous said...

Maple Notch Brides sounds so engaging. Looking forward to reading it!

from Michigan

Darlene said...

This sounds like a great book! Thanks for the opportunity to win one!
Darlene W
North Carolina

Unknown said...

i am so glad you are featuring so many of the 4-in-1 novellas. They are my moms favorites, and since she has read so many of them, this is an awesome way to keep up with the new ones. Now, just to remember to make a list and take it along to the library! Would love to win this one for her.

Marianne from El Mirage, Arizona


Patty said...

Sounds charmin... how times have changed in the area of male/female relationships!

Would love to read the whole story.

Patty in SC

Anonymous said...

Please sign me up! I would love to win. I just finished one of Darlene's books over Christmas. :)


Anonymous said...


Merry said...

I always enjoy a book that encourages me in the love of God, Maple Notch Brides sounds terrific.
Merry in TX

Judy said...

The cover of this book is beautiful!

By reading your interview Darlene, it sounds like you are a very God centered writer and I like that.

I would love to win a copy of "Maple Notch Brides".

Judy B from Indiana

scottsgal said...

Is Maple Notch a real town? Love the name - seems to fit so well with the story
msboatgal at'
cheryl in IL

Darlene Franklin said...

Maple Notch is not a real town - I grabbed "Notch" from "Smugglers Notch" (and smuggling plays a very small role in the second book). "Maple" because Vermont makes me think of maple syrup. It's located near the Canadian border.

Darlene Franklin said...

Always great to meet another Darlene - are you a fellow baby boomer?

Darlene Franklin said...

Salena, would love to know which book you read. . . Glad to see you again!

Darlene Franklin said...

God-centered writer? I strive. . .but don't reach it.

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read this wonderful story :)

karenk...from PA
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

rubynreba said...

Great title and cover! Makes me really anxious to read this.
Beth from Iowa

Aizess said...

Sounds like a sweet romance! I really like that opening page- it grabs me from the beginning.

I live in New York

Rebecca said...

Oh this looks like a great book. I would love to read this. Thanks for the chance to win this.

I am from Oklahoma.

Mary Preston said...

MAPLE NOTCH BRIDES has such a sweet cover. I enjoyed the first page thank you & look forward to reading more.

Mary P


apple blossom said...

love to win thanks for the chance

live in ND

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Coolestmommy said...

Darlene--I found you here through Lena's blog. Glad to see you've got another book out. I enjoy your writing.
Thanks for sharing!
coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Unknown said...

Darlene (and Lena) thank you for another look into who you are. :)

Thanks for the encouragement as well (from an as yet unpublished author).

I would love to read "Maple Notch Brides."

Ginger in AL

Joanna Richmond said...

sounds very interesting I would Love to read the book enter me in the drawing Thanks for the chance
Joanna Richmond
Blanch NC

Rebecca said...

I love that time period and would love to read this book. Thanks for the opportunity!
Rebecca from NC

Sarah Rebekah Richmond said...

Looks interesting!!
Please enter me in the drawing.
God Bless,
Sarah Richmond

Abigail Mitchell said...

Enter me!
Blanch, N.C.

Faith said...

Thank you for the lovely interview.
Ms. Franklin your book sounds like a wonderful collection. Thanks for the excerpt :)

Darlene Franklin said...

Several of you have commented on the cover for Maple Notch Brides. I don't know if my heroine Sally Reid had a dress quite that fancy, but I also love, love, love the cover! The Barbour artists do a great job in cover design.

Carrie Fancett Pagels said...

I have a copy of this book but thanks for the post! I always love to see more colonial books coming out through CBA! Blessings!

Darlene Franklin said...

Hi Carrie! Prodigal Patriot was fun to right, a bit of a stretch for me.

Patricia said...

I don't think I have ever read a book about Vermont. Never to late to learn some history. I can image the problems this could create for a farmer to court a bankers daughter.

I am from Texas, country girl at heart.


Judy Cooper said...

Looking forward to reading the new book and also the remainder of her books. Darlene Franklin is a new author to me, but I like the kind of book that the two of you discussed. Please include my name in the drawing. Than k you. Judy C. in Louisiana.

Sharon Richmond said...

Enter me I would love to win a copy of this book it sounds like a great story! Thanks and God bless.
Sharon Richmond
Blanch, NC.

Unknown said...

Sounds like a very good book. Please enter me.

Krista from Gresham, OR

Darlene Franklin said...

I'm from New England, but I also had fun learning more about Vermont's specific history. Glad to make your acquaintance, Judy!

Cindy W. said...

Such a beautiful cover. I would love to win a copy of Maple Notch Brides. Thank you so much for the great giveaway.

Smiles & Blessings from Indiana.
Cindy W.


Kristie said...

I have never been to Vermont before. I want to go to see the leaves in the fall. This book seems like it would give me a good idea what it's like. I'm from Ohio. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you. Happy January!

Bakersdozen said...

I would love to read this. I read two colonial books last year and now it is time to read another! I live in S. CA.