Category Archives: historcial romance

The Story Behind Historical Romance Novel Red Bird’s Song


Award-winning historical romance novel

Award-winning historical romance novel

Red Bird’s Song is inspired by events that occurred to my ancestors in the Virginia colonial frontier. This award-winning adventure romance centers around their conflict with the Native Americans during the French and Indian and Pontiac’s War and has a The Last of the Mohican’s flavor.

Research into my English/Scots-Irish ancestors unearthed accounts that led to my writing Red Bird’s Song. My fascination with Colonial America, particularly stirring tales of the frontier and the Shawnee Indians, is an early and abiding one. My forebears had interactions with this tribe, including family members taken captive. I have ties to Wicomechee, the hero of Red Bird’s Song, an outstanding Shawnee warrior whose real-life story greatly impacted the novel. More on Wicomechee  is included at the end of the novel, as a bonus for those who read it.

I’ve written other Native American themed historical romances, some with paranormal elements, each carefully researched. I’m grateful for the help of historians, reenactors, anthropologists, archaeologists, and the Shawnee themselves. All the titles in my Native American Warrior series are available in kindle at Amazon.

Handsome Native American warrior

The initial encounter between Charity and Wicomechee at the beginning of Red Bird’s Song was born in a dream I had on New Year’s Eve–a propitious time for dreams–about a young warrior taking an equally young woman captive at a river and the unexpected attraction between them. That dream had such a profound impact on me that I took the leap from writing non-fiction pieces to historical/paranormal romance novels and embarked on the most amazing journey of my life. That was years ago and the saga continues.

At the start of Red Bird’s Song, I also met the prophetic warrior, Eyes of the Wolf, in another dream. When I describe him in the book I’m envisioning a character I know. Eyes of the Wolf became a spirit guide and spoke to me throughout the writing of this book, and others. He’s there still in various guises. My journey with him is not complete.

pipetomahawkThe attack at the opening of Red Bird’s Song in the Shenandoah Valley is based on one that occurred to my ancestors and is recorded by Historian Joseph A. Waddell in The Annals of Augusta CountyA renegade Englishman by the last name of Dickson led the war party that attacked them. I’d initially intended to make Colin Dickson in Red Bird’s Song the historical villain that he was, but as soon as he galloped onto the scene I knew differently.

Hawk EyeRegarding the setting for Red Bird’s Song: In the early mid 1700’s, the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia and surrounding mountains was the colonial frontier. Only hardy souls dared to settle here. The bulk of these were the tough Scots-Irish, among them my ancestors. If 18th century warriors only had to fight regular British troops, they might ultimately have prevailed. They scared the crap out of men trained for conventional warfare. But the long knives were born fighters, and not easily intimidated. They learned from their cunning enemy and adopted their methods, weapons, and clothing.

The ruggedly beautiful Alleghenies are also the setting for some of my other historical-paranormal romance novels, Through the FireKira, Daughter of the MoonThe Bearwalker’s Daughter, and my short historical romance, The Lady and the Warrior. I see these ridges from our farm in the Shenandoah Valley. The foothills are only a hop, skip and a jump away from us. The ever-changing panorama of the seasons never fails to inspire me. My Young Adult/Native American Wolf Shifter romance series entitled The Secret Warrior is also set in the mountains.

The Alleghenies, the Virginia colonial frontier

Red Bird’s Song is Book 3 in my Native American Warrior Series. The series loosely ties together based more on time and place and strong Native American characters than as a traditional series that follows the story line. However, Kira, Daughter of the Moon is the actual sequel to Through the Fire, and there will be other sequels. In addition to Native Americans, hardy Scots-Irish frontiersmen and women, colonial Englishmen and ladies, and even a few Frenchmen also play an important role in this series. So far, it spans the gamut from the dramatic era of the French and Indian War, through Pontiac’s War, The American Revolution, and shortly afterwards.

Story Blurb for Red Bird’s Song:

Taken captive by a Shawnee war party wasn’t how Charity Edmondson hoped to escape an unwanted marriage. Nor did Shawnee warrior Wicomechee expect to find the treasure promised by his grandfather’s vision in the unpredictable red-headed girl.

George III’s English Red-Coats, unprincipled colonial militia, prejudice and jealousy are not the only enemies Charity and Wicomechee will face before they can hope for a peaceful life. The greatest obstacle to happiness is in their own hearts. As they struggle through bleak mountains and cold weather, facing wild nature and wilder men, Wicomechee and Charity must learn to trust each other.

ReviewerTopPick-NOR

“A beautifully written story filled with adventure and suspense…This book touched my soul even as it provided a thrilling fictional escape into a period of history I have always found fascinating.” —Night Owl Book Review by Laurie-J

Eppie

“I loved the descriptions…I felt I was there…Many mystical episodes are intermingled with the events…The ending is a real surprise, but I will let you have the pleasure of reading it for yourself.”  —Seriously Reviewed

***For more on Red Bird’s Song and my other titles, visit my: Amazon Author Page.

Native American Man Headshot

#NewRelease! Love, Betrayal, and The American Revolution–The Traitor’s Legacy Box Set!


The Traitor's Legacy Series Box Set.jpg1

To say the American Revolution captivates me is almost an understatement. I’ve been intrigued by colonial America, both the frontier (think The Last of the Mohicans) and, especially, the revolution, ever since I can remember. Not only because of research into family genealogy, although that pointed me there. I’ve long been engrossed. Such a dramatic time period, so much happening on many fronts. Not dry-as-old-bones stuff, but enthralling, vivid, and vital. OK, so they wore funny looking wigs. Not all did. Thomas Jefferson wore his own hair, among others. Even so, that doesn’t negate this amazing era.

Never before, or since, has there been such a gathering of brilliant minds intent on creating a new country, unlike any in the history of civilization. The exalted list includes: George Washington, John Adams, Thomas JeffersonJames Madison, Alexander Hamilton, James Monroe and Benjamin Franklin. (This is where I casually mention my kinship to James Madison.) These men didn’t always agree, but they came together to pull off the unimaginable, with help from some courageous wives, like Abigail Adams, and countless others who played their part.

Spies, intrigue, cunning, and betrayals are all going on behind the battles. The most infamous traitor of all, Benedict Arnold, inspired book two in my Revolutionary War series and the title–Traitor’s Legacy. When I wrote award-winning historical romance novel, Enemy of the King, I didn’t realize two more novels would follow. Yes, people also fell in love back then. I have that straight from the lips of one of the historians who assisted me in my research. A little paranormal crept into the stories, as it tends to with me, but the history is there!

New Release! The Traitor’s Legacy Series Box Set with all three novels. Available from all online booksellers. The novels are also in print at Amazon and The Wild Rose Press.

In Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Traitors-Legacy-Beth-Trissel-ebook/dp/B01L5PSE1K

Historical Romance and the American Revolution!


Mystery, adventure, spies, traitors, Patriots, Tories, and above all, romance, are interwoven in The Traitor’s Legacy Series. Book 1, award-winning historical romance novel, Enemy of the King, is my version of The Patriot with ghostly flavors of Daphne Dumaurier’s Rebecca. Pleasant Grove, the home featured in Enemy of the King, was drawn from Drayton Hall, the oldest preserved plantation in America that’s open to the public, located outside Charleston, SC. I also depicted parts of the old family homeplace in Virginia.

Enemyoftheking resizedPart of the inspiration behind Enemy of the King came from research into my early American Scots-Irish and British ancestors who fought on both sides of the American Revolution. One direct forebear five generations removed from me, Sam Houston, uncle of the famous Sam, fought in the Battle of Guilford Courthouse, NC and kept a diary used by historians today. I was also inspired by the Battle of Kings Mountain, in North Carolina, that helped turn the tide of the revolution in favor of the Patriots, and is featured in Enemy of the King. These accounts turned my focus to the Southern face of the war.

GeorgeEliot[1]Another tie to the past is my grandfather, seven greats back, Sir George Augustus Elliott, a British general and Governor of Gibraltar during the American Revolution. He was awarded the title Lord Heathfield, Baron of Gibraltar, in honor of his bravery in its defense during the attack by the Spanish and French. While Sir George was giving his all for king and country, his grandson was fighting under George Washington as a commissary officer. There must have been quite a rift in that family. While I’m on the subject of ancestors and the past, I should add that the research for this series is staggering, and seemingly endless. 

Story Description for Enemy of the King:

1780, South Carolina: While Loyalist Meriwether Steele recovers from illness in the stately home of her beloved guardian, Jeremiah Jordan, she senses the haunting presence of his late wife. When she learns that Jeremiah is a Patriot spy and shoots Captain Vaughan, the British officer sent to arrest him, she is caught up on a wild ride into Carolina back country, pursued both by the impassioned captain and the vindictive ghost. Will she remain loyal to her king and Tory twin brother or risk a traitor’s death fighting for Jeremiah? If Captain Vaughan snatches her away, he won’t give her a choice.

TraitorsLegacy_w8945_med.jpg (official cover) (2)The sequel To Enemy of the King, entitled Traitor’s Curse, features the fascinating antagonist, British dragoon Captain Jacob Vaughan.

Inspiration behind Traitor’s Legacy:

I’d pondered the sequel, but couldn’t decide on the site. Then in spring, 2012, North Carolinian, Ann See, a big fan of Enemy of the King and colonial American enthusiast, contacted me about setting a sequel in the historically significant town of Halifax, NC. As Enemy of the King takes place in North and South Carolina, and I have strong ties to both states, this suggestion was appealing.

 the Owens House

the Owens House

At Ann’s invitation, hubby Dennis and I made a trip to Halifax, and were given a royal tour of this carefully preserved glimpse into our nation’s dynamic past. The quaint town is like a mini colonial Williamsburg. Most impressive among Halifax’s claims to fame, in the spring of 1776, North Carolina’s Fourth Provincial Congress met there, and on April 12, unanimously adopted a document later called the ‘Halifax Resolves,’ the first official action by a colony proclaiming their independence from England. This made Halifax a nest of rebels and thorn in the side of the British––what I needed for my plot.

Photo of Person's Ordinary #2JPGMuch of Traitor’s Legacy takes place in and around Historic Halifax. Person’s Ordinary, featured in the novel, was an important stage-coach stop and is the oldest landmark in Halifax County. Located in Littleton, Person’s Ordinary is the oldest preserved structure of its kind in the East, and once served as a tavern owned by Thomas Person. The British occupied the Ordinary in May 1781 when they made their way through Halifax en route to Virginia.

The British Legion, also known as Tarleton’s Legion, headed by the infamous Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton, were on horseback and out in front of the rest of the army under command of General Lord Cornwallis. Tarleton underestimated the harassment inflicted by the local militia, whose stubborn resistance resulted in an extended stay by the British and reprisals against the town. In fact, there was so much looting that when Lord Cornwallis arrived, he had to court-martial and execute one sergeant and a dragoon. Apparently, his lordship didn’t want to leave a trail of animosity everywhere his army went. .

174389418Thornton Hall, the plantation home featured in Traitor’s Legacy, is inspired by a run down but once outstanding old house known as Little Manor. Located a mile or two from Person’s Ordinary, the original home was built by Thomas Person. He wouldn’t recognize it now. Dusk was falling when we drove to the overgrown site to see the derelict house. I knew at once I’d found the perfect home for the novel, and resurrected its glory days. The gardens are also lovely.

Mystery, intrigue, spies, a coded letter, and stirring romance fill the pages of Traitor’s Legacy, while bringing history to life. The story concludes in Williamsburg and Yorktown.

Bay Stallion

Story Description: 1781. On opposite sides of the War of Independence, British Captain Jacob Vaughan and Claire Monroe find themselves thrust together by chance and expediency.

Captain Vaughan comes to a stately North Carolina manor to catch a spy. Instead, he finds himself in bedlam: the head of the household is an old man ravaged by madness, the one sane male of the family is the very man he is hunting, and the household is overseen by his beguiling sister Claire.

Torn between duty, love, and allegiances, yearning desperately for peace, will Captain Vaughan and Claire Monroe forge a peace of their own against the vagaries of war and the betrayal of false friends?~

colonial militia preparing to fireBack to the novel that started it all, Enemy of the King made the top ten Publisher’s Weekly BHB Reader’s Choice Best Books of 2009  and is on the 2010 Best Romance Novel List at Buzzle. The story received a five cup review from Coffee Time Romance & More and was voted book of the week at Long and Short Reviews.

The third novel in the Traitor’s Legacy Series, entitled Traitor’s Curse, takes place soon after the American Revolution. While also carefully researched historically, the novel has a ghostly element and a mysterious Gothic flavor. Traitor’s Curse came out out November, 2015.

Enemy of the King, Traitor’s Legacy, and Traitor’s Curse are available in print and kindle at Amazon, and in eBook from all major online booksellers.

My Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Beth-Trissel/e/B002BLLAJ6