Happy Sunday everyone! First of all, please join me in celebrating my anniversary month here on A Baker’s Perspective! Yep, I started this blog 4 years ago in August – my very first post was on the 1st to be exact. It has been such an amazing four years here. I’ve made tons of friends, met lots of wonderful authors, and read some remarkable books!! I can’t wait to see what the future holds for me here 🙂
Next, I am so excited to have Tamera Lynn Kraft here today. I am really enjoying her series Ladies of Oberlin. The first book in the series was such a good read. You can find my thoughts on book one, Red Sky Over America, here. Today I’m happy to share my thoughts on book two in the series, Lost in the Storm. Technically I think it could be read as a stand alone, but the first book is so good that you don’t want to miss it!
Will war bring them love or will they be Lost in the Storm!
Lavena, a journalist during the Civil War, wants to become a war correspondent. She finally gets her chance, but there’s a catch. She has to get an interview from a war hero who has refused to tell his story to every other journalist, and she has to accomplish this impossible task in a month or she’ll lose her job.
Captain Cage, the war hero, has a secret that will destroy his military career and reputation. Now, a new journalist is trying to get him to tell what he’s been hiding. He wants to ignore her, but from the moment she came into camp, he can’t get her out of his mind.
Leading up to the turbulent Battles for the city of Chattanooga, will Lavena and Cage find the courage to love and forgive, or will they be swept away by their past mistakes that don’t want to stay buried?
Meet the Ladies of Oberlin, the causes they’re willing to fight for, and the men who capture their hearts.
Lavena is one of those strong heroines that you cannot get enough of. First of all, she doesn’t let the fact that she’s a woman stop her from going after her dream of being a journalist. And when her friend needed her help, she didn’t even let something as scary as war stop her from helping her friend. Throughout the book you got to see times of vulnerability in Lavena too, and to me it just made her a well rounded character. She was charming, strong, courageous, determined and everything I wanted her to be. She is a character to remember for certain.
Captain Cage, well he was a tricky character to figure out. I knew he had a secret, but I just couldn’t figure it out. I guessed at a couple of things, but then Kraft surprised me at the truth, and shared it at just the right time in the story. Here’s the thing about Cage – he’s courageous in his own way. Yes he was hiding something, but he really looked out for his team, and I really enjoyed watching his interactions with Lavena. The way she got under his skin was amusing, and I loved the subtleness of their feelings and relationship.
Two things surprised me about this story – two secondary characters. Nate and Jed. Nate completely surprised me when I found out what he was really doing. I knew something was a little fishy, but was so happy with how his storyline was written. And Jed – what a nice guy. He had great advice at the perfect times I thought, and I just really enjoyed the scenes he was in. I hope he gets a story in the future….. I would love to see more of him!
I highly recommend this historical novel. Be swept away to the Civil War Era and enjoy the ride. I think you’ll find yourself unable to break away! I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Interview with Tamera Lynn Kraft!
Welcome to the blog today!! What would you say has been the most rewarding part of writing?
Every story I tell has a theme that shows God working throughout history. I love researching historical events and seeing how God has weaved Himself throughout our nation’s history. I love when someone reads one of my stories and gets that.
My faith permeates through everything I write because it’s a major part of who I am. Even when I don’t write something “Christian”, my faith still shines through the pages.
I can totally see how God has been presented in this series. I love it! What made you decide to become a writer?
I have always loved to write. I remember writing my first novel when I was ten years old. It was awful. I think what sparked my love for books was my grandmother. She only had an 8th grade education and was a coal miner’s wife, but she loved to read. I remember sitting on her lap in her rocker and her reading great novels like Black Beauty to me.
In high school, I took all the English and literature classes I could to prepare for my career in writing. I even major in English in college in preparation of being a writer.
At some point in my twenties, my writing career was put on hold for decades. Between raising children and becoming a children’s pastor on staff at my church, there just wasn’t time. I still couldn’t keep from writing. I would write children’s church curriculum and puppet skits for my lessons. Some of it even got published.
Finally about twelve years ago, I resigned as a children’s pastor and started a ministry called Revival Fire for Kids where I travel to other churches to do teacher training, kid’s crusades, and children’s ministry consultations. I also am launching Revival Fire for Kids children’s church curriculum in about a year. This keeps me very busy during the summer, but the rest of the time, I have time to write fiction.
My writing career is back on track and moving along. I feel like God has brought me full circle. I put Him first in raising my children and ministering to other children, and He is fulfilling the desires of my heart by opening up doors for me to write again.
Wow, thank you so much for sharing that! Where do you get your ideas for your books? How did you decide to write Lost in the Storm or the Ladies of Oberlin Series?
I get my ideas from historical events. I love studying history. When I read about an event in history, I wonder what it would have been like for the people living during that time.
The way the Ladies of Oberlin Series began was when I thought about writing about strong Christian women in the 19th century. The more I researched, the more I noticed almost every women I read about had a connection with Oberlin College. That intrigued me enough to research Oberlin. What I found astonished me.
Oberlin College was the first college to give degrees to men, women, and blacks before the Civil War. Almost every missionary who went overseas between 1860 and 1900 was a graduate of Oberlin College. Oberlin’s president was the fiery Second Great Awakening evangelist Charles Finney. Oberlin graduates were involved in abolition, women’s suffrage, prohibition, education, laws protecting children, and many other causes of the late 1800s.
I knew I wanted to write stories about women who graduated from Oberlin shortly before the Civil War. The first novel, Red Sky Over America, is about America Leighton the year before she graduated. She went home to Kentucky to try to convince her father to free his slaves. In the second novel, Lost in the Storm, Lavena Falcon is a woman’s rights activist and a journalist during the Civil War and wants to be a war correspondent. In the third novel, The Aftermath, which will be released in 2021, Betsy Teagan fights for prohibition after the war. Each lady has a love interest to keep things interesting.
OH I can’t wait to read more about Betsy. What advice/tips do you have for budding authors who are just starting out?
Don’t give up too early. It takes years to get to a point where your writing is good enough to be published. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. If you work hard, continue to improve, and don’t let discouragement stop you, you’ll make it. I’ve always believed that the published authors are not the ones who are the greatest or who have the most potential. They’re the ones who work hard and persevere.
Good lesson!! What are your future plans?
I am currently writing the first of a series of novels about women who came to Jamestown in 1619 to marry. The series is called Jamestown Brides, and the first novel is The Seasoning of Elizabella.
That sounds like another good series to add to my TBR pile! Thank you so much for stopping by and chatting with me 🙂
Award winning author Tamera Lynn Kraft has always loved adventures. She loves to write historical fiction set in the United States because there are so many stories in American history. There are strong elements of faith, romance, suspense and adventure in her stories. Some of the novels she has written are Red Sky Over America, Alice’s Notions, and Lost in the Storm. You can check Tamera out on her website at http://tameralynnkraft.net.
Tamera been married for 40 years to the love of her life, Rick, and has two married adult children and three grandchildren. She has been a children’s pastor for over 20 years. She is the leader of a ministry called Revival Fire for Kids where she mentors other children’s leaders, teaches workshops, and is a children’s ministry consultant and children’s evangelist and has written children’s church curriculum. She is a recipient of the 2007 National Children’s Leaders Association Shepherd’s Cup for lifetime achievement in children’s ministry.