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Thursday, December 11, 2014


Linda Andrews is a scientist who writes horror, science fiction, contemporary romance, fantasy romance, and historical romance. Today she joins us to discuss one of her historical romances, set during World War I. Learn more about her and her books at her website. 

Linda is offering an e-copy of The Christmas Ship to one of our readers. To enter simply post a comment about a handmade gift you've received. Don't forget to include your email so we can contact you if you've won.

Unless you've live under a rock, you've probably heard the saying, "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade." Belgians and many citizens in northern France would have loved to have lemons, instead they received help from Spain, the Netherlands, and the United States in the form of the largest international aid organization the world had ever seen, The Commission for Relief in Belgium, established in 1914.

Although headed by Herbert Hoover and neutral diplomats, the men and women working on the ground and overseeing the handoff of foodstuffs to the Comité National de Secours et d'Alimentation for disbursement to the people were mostly young American college graduates. These were the faces the Belgian and French people saw who could act with some degree of freedom while they suffered under the German occupation.

And it was to these American delegates that many handed their words of thanks for the food they received, the clothes and blankets they had, and the knowledge that the world had not forgotten them. With so much being requisitioned by the Kaiser's Army, the Belgians and French had little to give, but the children wrote notes of thanks, the citizens doffed their hats when they saw the American flag, and the women offered handicrafts with the American flag as decorations, many stitched on the very flour sacks that fed them. 

While not many examples of these gifts remain, I think they are an amazing snapshot of an extraordinary time with a message for the ages.

In my book, The Christmas Ship, the heroine receives just such a gift from a woman receiving meals in a soup kitchen and uses it to cover her earlier receipt of a forbidden letter to a Belgian soldier.

The Christmas Ship
American businessman Jacob Kerrigan works behind enemy lines to help feed seven million starving Belgians and bring Christmas to the children. The Commission for Relief in Belgium asks only one thing of its delegates: remain neutral in a war-torn country.

Roselle Perrine works in soup kitchens and her family farm by day, and spies for the Belgian resistance at night. She uses her position in society to convince Jacob to stay in her chateau, hoping the relief delegates presence will cover her nocturnal activities.

But the Kaisers Army is watching. When Roselles spying is discovered, will Jacob remain neutral or fight for love?


Linda Andrews said...

Thanks for hosting me today, Lois. I hope everyone enjoyed the post and will check back today and tomorrow if anyone has any questions.

Vamp Writer said...

Love stories set in perilous wartimes is, for me, one of the things that make life worth living! I wish you well with your poignant drama!

Linda Andrews said...

Thanks Vamp Writer,
There's something intense about war-time settings. As if people know what really matters.

Unknown said...

Hello Linda, a very informative article. Good luck with your writings.

Angela Adams said...

Few romances are set in WWI which makes your story pretty much unique, Linda. Best wishes!

Linda Andrews said...

Hi Angela,

Given that it is the 100th anniversary of the war, I was surprised so little attention was paid to it. Thanks for the best wishes.

Linda Andrews said...

Hi JoAnne,
I love finding those interesting nuggets of history that few people talk about.

Alexis Walker said...

Fascinating information I did not know. I can see why you wrote a story using it. That would set my creative juices flowing too! :-)

Linda Andrews said...

Thanks Alexis. I remember my mother telling me she had dresses made of flour sacks but this was something new.

Linda Andrews said...

Hi everyone and thanks for commenting. In the spirit of Christmas, I made A Gift from St. Nick free until 12/22. Please download a copy today.
US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00P76LL3C
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00P76LL3C/ CA: http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00P76LL3C/ and AU: http://www.amazon.com.au/gp/product/B00P76LL3C/