Even as I was typing up the news about the Isles of Secrets Series, I knew I’d be getting to announce some other exciting news soon too. ๐Ÿ˜ I’ll also be having a book come out from Bethany House between the end of the Codebreakers and the beginning of the next series! This one is a stand-alone, set in Savannah during the Civil War.

Dreams of Savannah (tentative title–it could very well change, LOL) is pretty fun. I actually wrote it years ago upon the request of an editor, but the contract fell through for various reasons. It’s just been sitting there in my digital drawer since 2011, so when my editor at Bethany House asked if I wanted them to take a look at some of my finished-but-unpublished books, I all but shoved it at them. ๐Ÿ˜‰ And I was so incredibly pleased when they said they liked it and wanted to release it in just over a year! That’s right, this one will be coming out sometime around December 2020/January 2021 (exact date TBD)!!

The story, in a nutshell:

Cordelia Owens can weave a dream around
anything, and is well used to winning the hearts of everyone in Savannah with
her whimsy. Even when she receives word that her sweetheart has been lost
during a raid on a Yankee vessel, she clings to hope and comes up with many a
romantic tale of his eventual homecoming to reassure his mother and sister. 

But
Phineas Dunn finds nothing redemptive in the first horrors of war. Struggling
for months to make it home alive, he returns to Savannah injured and cynical,
and all too sure that he is not the hero Cordelia seems determined to make him.
Matters of black and white donโ€™t seem so simple anymore to Phin, and despite
her best efforts, Deliaโ€™s smiles canโ€™t erase all the complications in his life. 

War, however, doesn’t wait for the clarity of anyone’s heart. When the fort falls and the future wavers before her, Delia has to decide
whether a disillusioned hero is worth the sacrifice of all the dreams she so
long cherished.

For those of you who read my Culper Ring Series, you know I’ve already written one Civil War-era book. The funny thing is that Savannah was already finished when I was working on Circle of Spies, so in my mind, I kept thinking, “Well I already did this, so I…oh wait! No one else knows I’ve already done that!” (“”That” being things like certain treatments of issues like slavery from a Southern perspective–it was mostly the Union perspective represented in Circle of Spies.)

I’m so excited to finally be bringing this story into the world! I’m sure there will be many edits and changes from that 2011 version, but I love these characters so much–I actually reread it a couple years ago as I wrote A Lady Unrivaled, to make sure that Ella, who has some similarities to Delia, isn’t too close to my romantic-adventure-writing Southern belle. And leading Phin through some huge challenges and mental changes was an adventure in itself! One that involves the help of the most unlikely of friends–an Englishman of African descent, who has a very different view of the world than anyone Phin has ever known. I used him–Luther–to bring in some of England’s abolition history, which was fun. =)


Hilariously, the same story of mine from college from which I stole Phillip Camden (who is introduced in The Number of Love and is the hero in On Wings of Devotion) also gave me Luther. Originally he and Camden were first mate and captain on their pirate vessel. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Luther was stolen first for Dreams of Savannah, and I’m glad I didn’t re-steal him for On Wings of Devotion, LOL. But just so you know that if ever the two met, despite now being of different generations, they would have been the best of friends. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I’m looking forward to digging back into this one and polishing it up for you guys!