Free Fortitude

 Couldn’t we all use a little extra grit and determination right about now? I know I could.

As a timely gift, my first published novel (now in its second edition), FORTIUDE, is available as a FREE download on Kindle this week. This coming-of-age novel features Claire O’Farrell and her Dauphin Island family, as well as her Creole best friend and Buffalo Soldiers amid the backdrop of the Spanish-American War in 1898. Sadly, those themes are relevant to current events, with hurricanes on the Gulf Coast and acts of war all over the news in recent weeks.

Fortitude is often claimed as a reader favorite from all my novels. It’s geared for ages twelve and older, so it can be shared with younger relatives and friends. I’ve spoken to several schools and at writing events for upper elementary grades through high schoolers about it. It’s even on the small but mighty “Best History Books” list for Grateful American Kids for its historical accuracy and reader engagement–a true honor. (Out of only about fifty books listed, Fortitude is up there with the likes of Newbery winners, To Kill a Mockingbird, and Maya Angelou!)

And, of course, I’ll remind you that Fortitude does tie into The Possession Chronicles. If you’re reading the series, you’ll want to dive into Fortitude because a relation to Claire (and Joe) plays a sizeable roll in the forthcoming final novel of the series.

So grab your free download of Fortitude this week and tell a friend! It’s a great read to discuss in book clubs or one-on-one. And, as always, I’m happy to answer any questions about it–just reach out.

We All Need Fortitude

Today–Saturday, June 6, 2020–marks the 122 anniversary of the Tampa area race riots that happened during the mobilization of the troops to Cuba for the Spanish-American War. For my novel, Fortitude, I researched the event from multiple sources and did my best to portray the situation accurately, though it was heartbreaking to dive into such vileness as the triggering event. More lives were lost in Florida (due to disease and bigotry) than in the Cuba campaign of the Spanish-American War.

If you’re not familiar with Fortitude, it’s a coming-of-age Southern Gothic listed with Grateful American Foundation as a “Best History Book” for kids (targeted for 5-10th grades), one of only three dozen books currently on the list. It’s about standing up when you see injustices and helping your fellow man, no matter the cost. The settings are mostly familiar ones to my readers: Mobile, Dauphin Island, Mon Louis Island, and Tampa in 1898. It was my first published novel in 2015 and is now in its second edition with Bienvenue Press, home of The Possession Chronicles–and several of the characters if Fortitude make an appearance in the series.

We must learn from the past and move forward with compassion–and fortitude.

Five Fortitude Facts

I’ve been a little obsessive about The Possession Chronicles lately, but here are five facts about Fortitude:

  • My first book baby—though not my first manuscript written. (It’s the sixth book-length manuscript for me.)
  • It’s the result of five years of research and writing.
  • The novel has the most reviews out of all my books.
  • It has the distinction of being listed as a “Best Book for Kids” (grades 5-10th) from Grateful American Foundation for its historical accuracy and reader engagement.
  • It’s a standalone novel, but there are other writings that tie into it—“Courtship and Courage: A Fortitude Short” in the Hometown Heroes Christmas Anthology by Bienvenue Press and you can find Fortitude characters in The Possession Chronicles from book two on.

Have you read Fortitude? Do you have a favorite character? You’ll be able to see a couple of the main characters—and the next generation—in The Possession Chronicles. Happy reading!

FORTITUDE Sale

I hope everyone’s summer is going well. There’s been a few shakeups and adventures in my end of the world, but I’m doing good.

Today is a quick post to let you know the Kindle edition of Fortitude is on sale through the weekend for $0.99.

In the vein of Southern Gothic coming-of-age novels like To Kill a Mockingbird and The Secret Life of Bees, Fortitude gives the reader an experience rich in the climate and culture of 1898 Alabama and the Spanish-American War camps in Florida. It’s a great summer read for ages twelve through adults, so tell a friend.

What’s on your summer reading list?

Fortitude, Take Two

Today is the fateful day.

Fortitude, my first published novel, is relaunched into the world with a stunning new design.Did you know Fortitude is listed as a “Best History Books for Kids” choice by Grateful American Foundation for its historical accuracy and reader engagement?  

Ever think about what would happen if a feisty Irish-American teen volunteered to serve the Buffalo Soldiers in the Jim Crow South?

Travel to the Tampa Bay area in 1898 with Claire O’Farrell of Dauphin Island, Alabama, and find out.

Kindle/Kindle Unlimited

Paperback

More ordering options to support local bookstores can be found here.