The Planter's Daughter
the first book in The Women of Rose Hill series, is available HERE on Amazon!

Williamson County, Texas
May 1859

When her father's cotton plantation faces bankruptcy, Adella Rose Ellis must choose between the man who can save her family's land and the man who can save her!


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Q: What is THE PLANTER'S DAUGHTER about?

A: At the heart of the story, THE PLANTER'S DAUGHTER is a romance. Adella Rose Ellis, the planter's daughter, wants nothing more than to marry for love. Her father, however, has other plans for her. 

Q: Does the book have a theme other than romance?

A: Yes. Freedom. Each of the main characters longs for freedom. For Adella, it's the freedom to choose her own destiny. Seth, our hero, needs the freedom forgiveness brings. And Jeptha, the slave I chose to represent all the other slaves, obviously longs for freedom from the bondage of slavery. Ultimately, all of us search for freedom at some point in our lives. Freedom from that thing that prevents us from living the abundant life God planned. I believe it all begins with the freedom from sin that is found only in Jesus Christ. 

Q: Why did you write THE PLANTER'S DAUGHTER?

A: Several years ago, while researching the possibility of writing a book that involved slavery, I read UNCLE TOM'S CABIN by Harriet Beecher Stowe for the first time. It deeply moved me, in the same manner it moved people back when it was first published in 1852. I still remember how heartbroken I felt reading about the treatment of Tom and the other slaves. Although I don't claim the talent of Ms. Stowe, her book defintely set me on the final path to writing THE PLANTER'S DAUGHTER. Following Stowe's example, I did my best to stay true to history and to what slaves truly endured. The treatment they received, the language they spoke, and all the little details of their daily life. While I didn't include graphic details or the vilest of labels forced upon slaves, I did not whitewash reality either. 

Q: Why did you set your book in Texas and not in a southern state like Virginia or Georgia that is more commonly known for slavery?

A: Shortly after reading UNCLE TOM'S CABIN, my husband and I took a day-trip for our anniversary to a town south of where we lived in Texas. While there, we learned there had once been cotton plantations in the area. That sparked my interest. Since I did not grow up in Texas, I knew very little about the state's history beyond the Alamo. I began reading about antebellum Texas and was surprised to learn of the many plantations that existed as well as the vast number of slaves who lived in the state. By the end of the Civil War, there were over 250,000 slaves in bondage in Texas.

Q: What sources did you use for your research?

A: I used many sources while researching THE PLANTER'S DAUGHTER, but the one I relied upon most heavily is a book called I WAS BORN IN SLAVERY, PERSONAL ACCOUNTS OF SLAVERY IN TEXAS. This little treasure of a book is filled with word-for-word testimonies of former slaves who lived in Texas. In 1936, with the Great Depression ongoing, our goverment sent out-of-work writers throughout the South to interview former slaves so we would have record of their stories before they were gone. Most of the former slaves were well into their 80s, 90s, and some in their 100s by this time. More than 2,000 of their stories were collected and are archived in Washington DC. I WAS BORN IN SLAVERY shares with us the personal stories of 29 former slaves who lived in Texas. To read in their own words what life was like for them was invaluable. Many of the scenes, experiences, and names of slaves you read in THE PLANTER'S DAUGHTER are based on true facts. Click here to read about the dialect the slaves use in my book. 

Q: Did Williamson County, Texas really have plantations and slaves?

A: Yes! One of the stories in I WAS BORN IN SLAVERY tells about the life of Andy J. Anderson. In his own words: "My name am Andy J. Anderson, and I's born on Marster Jack Haley's plantation in Williamson County, Texas." Another slave by the name of Rosina Howard also states she was born in Williamson County. Because my family lived in Williamson County for twenty years, I wanted it to be the setting for the book. 

Q: What can we look forward to in the other books in the series?

A: All three books in The Women of Rose Hill series are set on the same Texas plantation. Book Two takes place in June 1865, right after the Civil War has ended. It will release sometime in early 2018. Book Three begins in May 1880. 

 


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