I took an extended break from blogging while completing the manuscript of my fourth novel, Rising Above It. It’s finally finished and in the hands of a copy editor. Though feeling a bit rusty, I’m back and ready to post again on a regular basis.

My new novel is a continuation of the Barton Family Series. Chronologically, it fits between book two and three. It’s actually a prequel to Over the Mountain, set in Birmingham in the early 1960’s, and a sequel to In the Fullness of Time, set in South Carolina during the woman suffrage era, 1913-1920.

Rising Above It continues the story of Hattie Barton, as she grows from a novice teacher in Hattie’s Place; to a wife, mother, and suffragist in In the Fullness of Time; and finally, as she struggles to recover from personal and financial loss in this new chapter of her life.

Description of Rising Above It

Hattie Barton’s life changes forever on October 24, 1929, the historic day of the Stock Market crash, when she is suddenly forced to leave her palatial home in Calhoun, relocate to an apartment in her hometown in Greenville, and find work to support herself, her two young daughters Pauline and Alice, and her trusted housekeeper, Georgia.

Overcome with anger and grief, Hattie vows never again to depend on anyone else but herself. Her stubborn pride prevents her from taking Mama up on her offer to help with expenses until she can find a job, and she is forced to hock her engagement ring to make ends meet.

Her effort to shield the girls from the upheaval backfires after she sends them to Columbia with their favorite aunt during the move. Alice becomes irate that she was not allowed to say her goodbyes, and Pauline becomes clingy and refuses to let Hattie out of her sight.

Hattie’s anger that her deceased husband, Charles, had not warned her of their financial straits prevents her from supporting her stepson Richard in his grief over his father. Their relationship suffers as Hattie distances herself from him and refuses to speak Charles’s name.

When she takes a job as secretary in a small insurance firm, a potential romance develops between Hattie and her boss, Seth Snoddy. Seth convinces her to accompany him to a weeklong insurance convention in Charleston, and she thinks she could have a future with him. However, the trip takes an unexpected turn, and Hattie realizes she can never settle for a marriage of convenience.

Hattie learns that the only way she will rise above her misfortune is to remain true to herself, while being willing to rely on family for help. It is this insight that empowers her to regain her hope in the future and move on.  As she does, new possibilities arrive in the form of a letter from her first love, Will Kendrick.

The fourth book in the Barton Family Series, Rising Above It, continues the theme of love and reconciliation running through the previous novels.

More To Come

As the publication date for Rising Above It grows nearer, I’ll be sharing more information about the novel–the cover, sample chapters, historical background, opportunities to purchase.

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