Shannon here: Gail Kittleson shares the inspiration behind her latest Historical Romance, With Each New Dawn. Comment or answer the question at the end of the post to enter the drawing for an e-book copy. Deadline: March 11th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Gail:
Change and Growth by Gail Kittleson:
Circumstances change all of our lives, but war accelerates the process. When we met Addie and Kate in the first book of the Women of The Heartland series, British women had already survived the Battle of Britain and suffered through Dunkirk.
They served as air wardens, donning metal helmets as bombs and incendiaries rained down on London. Some of them worked fulltime day jobs left by men who deployed into battle, and doubled as drivers or guards at night.
After Pearl Harbor plunged the U.S. into the war, our citizens faced the grim reality of sending their sons and husbands into peril. They also sent daughters to work in far-away munitions factories or to join women’s military groups. As Congress passed new laws that increased opportunities to serve—the WACS, WAVES, and WAAF—young women left their homes in what must have seemed staggering numbers.
In 1940, no one imagined American women shuttling airplanes across the country, fashioning bombs, or packing parachutes. But they rose to whatever tasks evolved. They also served at home, through rationing, knitting for the soldiers, and agonized waiting for word of loved ones.
By spring of 1943, when Addie boarded a Red Cross ship for England to support her friend Kate during her bereavement and pregnancy, she’d come into her own. Her road hadn’t been easy, but she grew through her struggles, and her experiences in London would transform her even further.
Now a grieving war widow and expectant mother, Kate still faces incredible surprises. This resilient, risk-taking heroine adapts to fresh losses with courage. Unexpected new insights into her past and dangerous challenges bring out her plucky nature—she’s not one to back down from a trial.
Onward goes the story of two young mid-western women thrust into the throes of a vast world war. I hope readers garner enjoyment and strength from With Each New Dawn, and here at my laptop, I’m hard at work on a sequel.
Through this writing experience, I’ve come to appreciate even more the brave men and women who saw our nation through the throes of this great world war. My parents were among them, and I also appreciate more deeply how their experience colored the childhoods of baby boomers like me.
As an adult, I’ve experienced four deployments—two for my husband, and two for our son. Interesting how one simply does what’s necessary during times like these. But in retrospect, some themes shine through—sometimes I think I did the best I could, other times, I wonder.
Maybe that’s how it was for our WWII forebears. I don’t know, but reading their stories never fails to motivate me. And thinking about them leads to my question for you below.
About Gail: Gail Kittleson taught college expository writing and English as a Second Language. Now she writes memoir and women’s fiction, and facilitates writing workshops and women’s retreats. She makes her home in northern Iowa, where she and her husband enjoy their grandchildren and gardening. In winter, the Arizona mountains provide fresh novel fodder.
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About the book – With Each New Dawn:
Kate Isaac grieves her husband, awaits their child’s birth, and welcomes her best friend Addie to London. But another loss and a meeting with mysterious Monsieur le Blanc launches her into Britain’s Secret Operations Executive(SOE). In late 1943, Kate parachutes into Southern France to aid the Resistance.
Domingo, a grieving Basque mountain guide-turned-saboteur, meets her parachute drop, tends her injured ankle, and carries her to safety. Reunited a few months later, they discover the injured Monsieur le Blanc who with his dying breath, reveals his familial connection to Kate.
In the shadow of the Waffen SS, Domingo and Kate subject their mutual attraction to the whims of war. But can mere human will and moral courage change the tide and forge a future for them?
Can’t wait for the drawing? Get your copy now: With Each New Dawn – Amazon
Question for Readers: How do you think a long deployment would affect one of your relationships?
Come back March 3rd for Angela Ruth Strong!