So I have some exciting news guys. For the past few months, you may have noticed that Lena Hart, Kate McMurray, Stacey Agdern, and I have been mentioning a #SecretProject. We’ve been visiting historical places in Brooklyn and researching Revolutionary War history. Now, we can fully reveal our project:
In BE NOT AFRAID by Alyssa Cole, a black Patriot captured by the British falls in love with a headstrong runaway determined to leave the colonies…while a wounded British soldier discovers the healing power of love in the arms of a gentle native woman in A SWEET SURRENDER by Lena Hart…in REBELS AT HEART by Kate McMurray, two men must make hard choices if they are to stay together when war arrives on the shores of their home in New York City…at last, in HOME by Stacey Agdern, a young Jewish couple must decide what can hold them together before war and geography tear them apart.
Cool, huh? :) How did this anthology come to be? As you may know, I run a book club at Jefferson Market Library. Last year, while trying to find Revolutionary War romances for our July meeting, I noticed a dearth of them. At that point, I had already been thinking about writing American historicals, and ones that focused on the lives of black Americans and other minorities. I’ve been really into history these past few years, and discovered so many amazing stories that were never taught in the classroom.
Back to book club: we weren’t really pleased with the stories we read, or with the lack of historical romances from that time period. I knew Kate loved historicals as much as I did and was also interested in writing them at some point, and suddenly I got the OH-SNAP-I-HAVE-AN-IDEA sensation in my chest. (You know what I’m talking about, writers.) “Why don’t we do an anthology?!” I blurted out. And the rest is history.
We decided to focus on the romances that likely wouldn’t get much play, even if American Revoulutionary became the next big thing with romance readers. The stories of those minority groups that are often overlooked or considered niche, even though they are an integral part of the tapestry of this great nation. My story focuses on a black couple, Kate’s on a gay couple, Lena’s on a British soldier and a Native woman, and Stacey’s on a Jewish couple. All of the stories take place early in the war and in our current home state of New York.
My story, Be Not Afraid, is about an American-born slave who is fighting for freedom: not only his country’s, but his own. In the aftermath of the Battle of Brooklyn, he comes across Kate Foster, a runaway slave. He thinks he’s aiding a damsel in distress, but Kate is a woman whose heart has been hardened by time and circumstance. She has joined up with the British, who have promised slaves freedom if they enlist with the Loyalists, and thinks Elijah a fool for fighting for a country that doesn’t value him. Despite their difference of opinions, sparks fly. When Elijah is taken prisoner, he and Kate are thrown together on an inevitably forked path: which side will they entrust with their future?
We’ve done tons of research and are super excited to share the results of our work with you! The stories are exciting, tender, sexy…and we know you’re going to love them.
The book should be out in ebook format in mid-June. For now, you can check out our Goodreads page. We hope to have the book in print format soon, as well.
In addition, we’ll be talking about the book at the Romance Festival being held by the RWA-NYC at the Morris-Jumel Mansion!! The event is on Saturday, June 14th, and it’s totally FREE!
For more on the book, check out my co-authors’ blogs, and also this post by Lena at Yolanda Ashton’s blog!