Hello Lovelies! Please excuse our dust while we do a bit of construction on the blog. We will still be posting exciting reviews, brilliant guest posts, and exciting giveaways but we are in the process of transforming the blog and adding new content and features for you to enjoy.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Christine Blevins Guest Post & Giveaway

I would like to thank Christine Blevins for stopping by Royal Reviews today!

turning_anne

Christine Blevins’ latest novel The Turning of Anne Merrick is the second in a 3-book series set during the American Revolution and War of Independence.

Women at War

The history we learn in school and what is most often portrayed in popular media is almost always focused on the courage and dedication of men. Women’s stories are often lost or overlooked, and in this regard, the history of the American Revolution is no exception.

Some will say, “Aw come on, Christine… what about Betsy Ross, or Martha Washington… or Abigail Adams…” and then the argument usually peters off right there. Most of us can name too few examples of women who played any role in the event considered to be one of the biggest turning points in world history.

Betsy_Ross

Because women’s roles very often occur backstage to the political arena or battleground, they are seldom recorded, and hence become lost to us. Researching and writing a continuing story set during the American Revolution has offered me the opportunity to explore the many and diverse ways women were involved in the conflict.

Apathetic, Patriotic or Loyalist, women could not help but be touched by the events that occurred once “the shot heard round the world” was fired in 1775. Though 18th century society might dictate that a women’s role and viewpoint be either unimportant, or based on that of her husband or father, the events leading up to revolution and the resultant war inspired many women to act upon their own political choices.

hearth&home

Revolutionary America could be a very unsafe place for women. American women became eyewitnesses to war when their towns, cities and farms were engulfed in battle. With men gone off to fight, the women left behind were often called upon to manage the family and farm or business on their own. Many of these women were responsible for defending hearth and home from military foragers (both Continental and British), British Indian allies, and desperate deserters. Those unlucky enough to find themselves in either army’s path were often forced out onto the road as refugees. On her way to marry a Redcoat officer, Jane MacCrae was brutally murdered and scalped by Indian raiders employed by the British. News of her death helped to turn sentiment away from the Loyalist cause.

Jane_Mccrea

Out of loyalty, or sometimes due to economic constraints, many women followed their men from garrison, to camp, to battlefield, carrying children (and often bearing children) along the way. Officer wives, like the Baroness Frederika Von Riedesel, crossed oceans and braved the wilds to support their husband’s career. Other women followed their common soldier-husbands and served as cooks or laundresses for the army. No matter their social strata, these camp following women suffered victory and defeat with their armies, and bore witness to the brutality of army life and the horror of battle by nursing the sick and wounded. Though it is debated whether the story of Molly Pitcher – the wife of a Continental gunner who took his place at the cannon when he was killed in action – is fact or fiction, I would be willing to wager the act of a camp follower taking up arms against the enemy was not an uncommon one.

molly_pitcher

Some women tried to engage in a more active role than those permitted. Deborah Samson was exposed – and is thus remembered in the record – as a woman who disguised herself as a man in order to enlist and fight as a soldier in the Continental Army.

Both Loyalist and Patriot women risked having their necks stretched for treason by gathering intelligence on the enemy. The mysterious agent known only as “355” was a female member of Washington’s Culpur Ring of spies who goes down in history with her name and fate never revealed. Anne Bates was one of the Britain’s most successful she-spies, infiltrating the Continental Army as a peddler woman she gave accurate report on rebel troop numbers, movements, and munitions. Lydia Darragh was a Quaker housewife who eavesdropped on the British Command quartered in her home and smuggled the information thus gathered to General Washington at Valley Forge.

These are but a few examples. Patriot or Loyalist, free or slave, black, white, or Native American, women were there. As a writer of historical fiction, I am always compelled to try and ferret out their lost stories. In my digging, I can’t help but wonder about all the unnamed women whose world was turned upside down by Revolution and War – whose stories we can only imagine.

Christine’s website.

Giveaways:

I have two giveaways.

The first place winner will receive a copy of The Turning of Anne Merrick as well as a Bayberry Candle Bundle – the perfect light to read your secret messages by. A bayberry candle burned to the socket bring Lucks in the home, food in the larder, and Gold to the pocket.

The second place winner will receive a copy of The Turning of Anne Merrick.

Rules:

Leave a comment with a valid email.

Giveaway is worldwide.

Giveaway ends: February 20

26 comments:

Linda said...

What a wonderful giveaway! I read the first book of this trilogy and know I will love this novel. Thank you.
lcbrower40(at)gmail(dot)com

petite said...

Thanks for this fascinating and memorable giveaway. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

traveler said...

A historical novel which sounds compelling and special. Many thanks. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

Pricilla said...

This book looks so interesting. It's a lucky day for me - the 20th is my 30th anniversary so maybe I'll win :)
kaiminanin at gmail dot com

Terri C. said...

Thanks so much for the giveaway. I'd love to read this. Please enter me to win the book only.

Thanks,
niteofblu at gmail dot com

micia said...

love and espionage very beautiful.
blogmicia(at)yahoo(dot)it

Carol L. said...

I really enjoyed the post. Amazing women. Thank you for this giveaway and opportunity. A new series for me.
Carol L
Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

Carol N Wong said...

I am very interested in this book. I love American historical fiction and I had an ancestor who was a double agent in the Revoluntary War. I am really hoping to win this book.


CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

marybelle said...

What a fascinating post. I have my fingers crossed.

marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Natasha said...

Great post!These books sound great. Count me in:)

natashajennex(at)gmail.com

Margaret said...

This is a time period that I have not read a lot about so I'd love to read this. Thanks for the giveaway!

Margaret
singitm(at)hotmail(dot)com

Mystica said...

Thanks for a wonderful giveaway!

mystica123athotmaildotcom

buddyt said...

Thanks for the great giveaway and for opening it to worldwide entries.

Much appreciated.

Please enter me.

Carol T

buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

Emma said...

Thank you for the giveaway, would love to read it - and candles are amazing :D
Also, cheers for opening to international too!
sapphireruby AT rocketmail DOT com

Maureen said...

Your post was so true and reminds me of how long it took for one half the population in the country to have the right to vote.
mce1011 AT aol DOT com

Jeanne M said...

Christine -

I was thrilled to see you were appearing on Royal Reviews. My husband is a history lover and he recommended I find out more about your stories and I must admit I'm fascinated.

Even though I took American history in both High School and college I found we both have learned more in visiting historic sites from Maine to Florida during the 42years of our marriage.

We were fascinated to learn about woman who deguised themselves and served during different conflicts and battles.

My husband was in the Navy during Vietnam and it was interesting to learn how so many women who came before us fought not only for their own families but also spoke out in protest of the wrongs being commited or worked to stop the persecution of those who could not protect themselves.

Thanks for the opportunity to win one of your books. I'm looking forward to reading all three books in your trilogy.

Jeanne M said...

Kim - Sorry I forgot to leave my email!

jeannemiro(@)yahoo(dot)com

Christine Blevins said...

I'm happy everyone enjoyed the post. Thanks to all for the nice comments, and good luck to all!

Cheers!

Christine Blevins

http://christineblevins.com/

Na said...

I find women already had a difficult times in history but especiallu during wartime. It's not just the men who have to fight but the women left behind to manage the farm and household. Hardship and endurance indeed. Thanks for a great post.

Cambonified{at}yahoo{dot}com

Heather R said...

Even if women were not involved in the actual battles they had to do so much at home while their husbands were out fighting. And what happens if the war shows up on your doorstep? They were quite brave!

No need to enter me.

Carol M said...

Thank you for such a great giveaway! I know this is a book I would really enjoy!
mittens0831 at aol dot com

bn100 said...

This was a very interesting post. The book sounds compelling. Thanks for the giveaway.

bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

catslady said...

It's a time period that I would like to read more about and your books sounds intriguing. Thanks for the chance! Great cover too.

catslady5(at)aol.com

Gisele Alv said...

One of the best post I ever read! I love this part "women whose world was turned upside down by Revolution and War – whose stories we can only imagine" And is really true, what kind of life this womans lived in order to protect the family and herself while the man were fighting at war!? I would love to have the chance to read this book! Thanks for the giveaway!

ilepachequin(at)hotmail(dot)com

Anita Yancey said...

Sounds like a very interesting book. I would really enjoy reading it. Please enter me. Thanks!

ayancey(at)dishmail(dot)net

Eli Yanti said...

i love reading historical book

thanks for the giveaway

eli_y83@yahoo.com