Today I’m happy to welcome author Catherine Brakefield for an author/book spotlight. Read through to the end to find out how you can enter to win the giveaway.
What genre(s) do you write in and why?
Currently, I write inspirational historical romance. I have completed my four-book saga with Waltz with Destiny.
In Waltz with Destiny, my readers will learn the reason why this World War II generation was named The Greatest Generation; and why America’s greatest generation is yet to be!
The following Dietrich Bonhoeffer quote is apropos and meaningful for our generation:
“The ultimate test of a moral society is the kind of world that it leaves to its children.”
My Destiny saga begins in 1857 with Swept into Destiny, continues in 1898 with Destiny’s Whirlwind and in 1918 with Destiny of Heart. After nearly one hundred years of faith, hope, and Christ’s sustaining…
The splendors of fall colors cannot compare to the brilliance yet to come!
Where has the time gone? It seemed only yesterday when spring was in the air and I wrote to you about my newest book Waltz with Destiny.
Since then, I have a new short story out in Callie Smith Grant’s The Horse of My Dreams, True Stories of the HORSES WE LOVE! My short story is titled: A Forever Friend. I have been invited to do a reading of my story on November 10th at Steve’s Ranch Family Restaurant in Jackson, MI. between 1-4 p.m. I shall also do a reading at Baker Book House in Grand Rapids in January. I will let you know as to the date and time.
I will be on Kathy Krafve’s Fireside Talk Radio (podcast). The tentative date for this prerecorded talk to air is December 20th. I will let you know further details when I receive them.
My book signings are shaping up wonderfully and I hope to see your there! As many of you already know, my novels and history books make great Christmas gifts.
Check out OCTV Our Community Access on the internet or Channel 99 on U-Verse this coming week starting November 4 and running through to November 8th. I will be talking about more exciting facts regarding my novels and upcoming book signings.
After all, what better gift to give your loved ones or friends this Christmas, but a voyage into yesteryear that they will treasure forever!
Here is a list of my book signings.
November 9th at 9 a.m. from 3 p.m. at Lakepoint Community Church Craft Show located on 1550 W. Drahner Rd. in Oxford, MI. This is the 4th annual mission trip and craft show hosted by Lakepoint so come on out and purchase some wonder Christmas gifts.
November 23rd from 8:30 to 4 p.m. at the Metamora Lioness Club HolidaDaze Craft Fair located on 3790 N. Oak St., Metamora, MI.
November 30th from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Almont Historical Society, 249 South Main St., Almont, MI. This is a benefit book sale and a percentage of proceeds will go to the Almont Historical Society. Enjoy a nostalgic stroll down memory lane in this the beautiful town of Almont.
People ask me where can they get my books? Usually they are found wherever books are sold: Amazon, Books-a-Million, Barnes and Noble, etc.
Family Christian Book Store in Flint, Mi. has autographed copies of Wilted Dandelions, Swept into Destiny, Destiny’s Whirlwind, and Waltz with Destiny on their shelves. It’s a wonderful place to shop for that special Christmas gift. Their address is 4463 Miller Rd. Flint, MI.
Baker Book House located in Grand Rapids is presently carrying Wilted Dandelions.
I have found a few printing errors in Swept into Destiny. On some of the pages, the print was distorted. I check each book before I autograph them. However, if I have missed any, my editor has contacted Amazon and they are aware of the problem. All you need do is contact Amazon and they will mail you a copy. You do not need to return the damaged book to me or Amazon.
Remember, keep those reviews coming! Writing can be related to preparing for a Christmas pageant. You pile on the hours in rehearsals for weeks and months and—wait for the applause. A writer’s applause comes in the way of reviews.
I love seeing the red, yellow, orange and rust leaves on the trees arrayed in their full glory, sparkling like lights on a Christmas tree as sunlight gently strokes there branches. However, the splendors of fall colors cannot compare to the brilliance yet to come.
All too soon, the leaves will fall. Then soft, white snow will pepper the bare limbs. Because Christmas is just a fall away.
Our Lord and Savior came to earth as a wee babe to gift a fallen mankind an nonperishable gift; white and pure, of His Truth and unconditional love.
For every book purchased, I include a pocket Bible and a stylist/flashlight pen engraved with Matthew 17:20 “If you have faith as a grain of mustard seed…nothing is impossible”. What I write can never change a person’s life—only the Word of God can. Share with your special person this year, these special gifts with each book purchased. God Bless!
As Hitler and his Nazis march across Europe… The final book of my Destiny series is here! Waltz with Destiny picks up where Destiny of Heart left off, and follows the Ben McConnell legacy.
Waltz with Destiny begins in August of 1941. Esther Meir and her mother are back in Detroit. They are struggling to make ends meet. As Hitler wages war with Europe, the Big Band Era and the affluence of the age have Esther’s head in a whirl.
Eric Erhardt works as a junior engineer and attends college in the evenings. His life would change for the worst if America enters Europe’s war. He meets Esther Meir, this gorgeous brunette, one evening at the Vanity. But is he ready to abandon his playboy ways for her?
Here is a list of my June appearances:
Tune in to the Voice of Lapeer, Michigan, WMPC Gospel Radio at 9 a.m. on May 30th for an inside look about how Waltz with Destiny, the final book of the Destiny saga, evolved to fruition. Greg’s interviews are always energized and educational and packed with fun!
The Write Stuff with Parker J. Cole will host me on her Blog Talk Radio Show on June 4that 7 p.m. You won’t want to miss this experience with the queen of Blog Talk Radio! Parker brings her enthusiasm in triple proportion that is totally contagious!
I will be signing books on D-Day! June 6, 6:30-8 p.m. at Addison Township Public Library located at 1400 Rochester Rd., Leonard, MI. Desserts and beverages provided. A short, twenty-minute presentation of photos and memorabilia of my dad’s war years as a rifleman in the 34th Red Bull Division will be provided. Come herald in the new birth of Waltz with Destiny with me and find out why Dad’s company’s logo “To the Last Man” became such an instrumental part of this final chapter of this epic series!
June 8th I will be at Faith Christian Stores located on 4463 Miller Rd., Flint, MI. Noon to 3 p.m. This is a destination location and a wonderful place to visit, browse, and buy! Don’t miss seeing what this wonderful store can give to discreet and devoted shoppers.
June 12th I will be at Marguerite deAngeli Branch (Lapeer District Library) located at 921 West Nepessing St. Lapeer, MI, 6 to 8 p.m. I will provide a 40-minute presentation that includes pictures and memorabilia of my dad’s war years as a rifleman in the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division traveling up the boot of Italy during World War 2. Time for questions and answers will follow.
June 23, 12-3 p.m., at Lakepoint Community Church, 1550 W. Drahner Rd., Oxford, MI. I will have my table set up outdoors by the lake. The outdoor service begins at 10:30 a.m. so bring your family along to drink up God’s Word and some fun in the sun!
If you are an avid Facebook fan, come to my Celebration Christian Sweet-n-Clean Book Launch on June 26. Plenty of give-a-ways will be provided to the lucky winners!
Here is what readers are saying about Waltz into Destiny:
Waltz with Destiny, the fourth book in Catherine Ulrich Brakefield’s Destiny series, grabbed me by the heart and wouldn’t let go. Every word captured my attention as the relationship between Esther Meir and Eric Erhardt unfolded on the brink of World War II. And I loved the suspenseful and well-crafted twists, turns, and vivid war scenes. They left me reading nonstop while biting my nails. Catherine’s lovely prose, sense of humor, and historical accuracy deliver an unmistakable wow factor. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys romance and/or history.— Deb Gardner Allard AKA Taylor Jaxon, author of Before the Apocalypse.
Catherine paints a vivid picture of American in wartime in Waltz with Destiny… The love story of Eric and Esther is full of faith and old fashion values. The battle scenes are realistic, and the home front scenes are believable. The characters make mistakes we can all relate too. A wonderful history-comes-alive story.— Cindy Ervin Huff, multi-award-winning author
Fans of historical romance will want Brakefield’s Waltz with Destiny. This final book of her Destiny series once again delivers romance, but not romance neatly tied up with a bow, for Brakefield’s characters must live through the gritty realities of World War 2 and other challenges of those years before they can find their destiny.— Rick Barry, author of The Methuselah Project
I hope to see you at one of these many events for this exciting climax to our three-year Destiny saga journey together!
Please spread the news. Feel free to print off this flyer. Write in the name of the book signing closest to you, time, and date. Don’t see a book signing near you? Please contact me at Cathy@CatherineUlrichBrakefield.com and we will set one up. Thank you for helping me spread the Good News of God’s unbelievable blessings! And please forward this e-mail to friends and family that might be interested, too!
Along with 250+ Christian leaders, I am asking followers of Christ across our nation to set aside next Sunday, June 2, as a special day of prayer for the President, Donald J. Trump.
President Trump’s enemies continue to try everything to destroy him, his family, and the presidency. In the history of our country, no president has been attacked as he has. I believe the only hope for him, and this nation, is God.
This is a critical time for America. We’re on the edge of a precipice. Time is short. We need to pray for God to intervene. We need to ask God to protect, strengthen, encourage, and guide the President.
We know that God hears and answers prayer. He can soften hearts and change minds. He is all-powerful, and He rules over the affairs of nations. The Bible instructs us to pray for those in authority, “that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior” (1 Timothy 2:2–3, NKJV).
On June 2, we ask that pastors would lead their congregations in praying for the President, that Sunday schools and other groups would join together and pray, and that individuals and families across the country would have a special focus on praying for the President that day.
Would you please join us in prayer and tell others so that we can have as many people as possible praying?
Billy Graham Evangelistic Association
& Samaritan’s Purse
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
—Ephesians 6:12, NKJV
Today I’m happy to welcome author Catherine Brakefield for an author spotlight. Read through to the end to find out how to enter her giveaway.
What is your “go to” routine that helps you get in the mood to write?
I like to awake before anyone else, sip my coffee and reflect. I reflect on memories of special days. For instance, Mother’s Day.
As a young girl, I experienced some interesting May 10th holidays which, at the time, I never dreamt would make it into the pages of Destiny of Heart (Book 3 of the series).
During a monumental time in my life, I had the thrill of having three uniquely different mothers celebrating Mother’s Day beneath one roof. My mother who lived in Warren, Michigan; Gran, my mother’s mother; and Grandma, my father’s mother. My inspiration for my characters who portray my mothers in Destiny of Heart
I have such a treat for you today! Author Catherine Brakefield is back on the blog sharing about her Destiny Series. And there is some fabulous bits of history in these books. I am soooo in love! But I won’t bore you with my thoughts…I’ll get you to Catherine as fast as possible!
CATHERINE BRAKEFIELD’S DESTINY SERIES
Sara, it is a true pleasure to be back on your blog with you and talking about the third book in the Destiny series, Destiny of Heart. I was on last year talking about Destiny’s Whirlwind and really enjoyed myself!
Before I begin, I’d like to refresh you and your reader’s memory about the series:
Swept into Destiny, book 1, begins in 1857. Maggie Gatlan may be a Southern belle on the outside, but inside she’s a rebel. She meets the handsome, strong Irish immigrant Ben McConnell. Ben is enchanted by Maggie’s beauty and fiery spirit, but for him the South she dearly loves represents the injustice and deprivation he left behind in Ireland. As the country divides and Ben joins the Union, Maggie and Ben are forced to call each other enemies.
Destiny’s Whirlwind, book two, begins in 1898. Smallpox and the townspeople’s fears capture the McConnell family into its evil clutches. Collina promises her dying father that his legacy for Shushan will continue. Dashing Rough Rider Franklin Long offers his help and suddenly Collina’s heart has a will of its own. War calls him to the shores of Cuba. Collina is flung into a tangled web of deception and greed when a vindictive lawyer places the family in peril. Will Franklin return in time?
Tell us a little about your novel, Destiny of Heart?
Book three opens in 1917 and Ruby McConnell (Collina’s sister) is married to Stephen Meir. The story unfolds as they travel to the prairies of Colorado for Stephen’s health. Ruby’s sister Collina and Franklin Long are also in this story. Destiny of Heart covers a large span of history and three states: Colorado, Kentucky, and Michigan. The reader will experience the patriotic fan-waving that plunged America into World War I, as well as the extravagant lifestyles of the Roaring Twenties, and the grand old sport of fox hunting.
Readers will experience those affluent lifestyles evaporating in a blink of an eye and Maggie, Ruby, Collina, and Franklin’s spirals into the Great Depression. Destiny of Heartconcludes in 1933 after Theodore Roosevelt’s inauguration into the presidency and a life-altering decision must be made.
Thank you for that wonderful synopsis! I am all the more eager to hear more! First, can youshare the more historically significant events behind your story?
I’d love to! I could not rely solely on the internet for my research, nor modern-day history books or Hollywood movies. When I tried, I felt out of step with the story. I had one foot in modern pop culture and one foot in a watered-down version of the past. I sought out people who had lived the era and interviewed them.
I learned that the typical American did not cherish the modern conveniences of their day. Their family, however, was a vital part of their existence. Wow! I realized that people of this century were polar opposites of their ancestors who did not carry a phone in their pockets or check the latest news, weather, and style.
Our children are brought up to believe they are ‘the enlightened generation,’ but I want my readers to experience a feeling of entering a time capsule. I decided not to watch any show or read any books dated from the 1960s forward.
History books published before 1959 gave me insight, as did old newspaper clippings and interviews. From the 1800s up through the 1940s scripture verses were a common part of everyday language. Some of you might recall seeing a Bible where your ancestors recorded their marriages, births, baptisms, and deaths within the reverend folds of their Holy Bible.
Wow! I so appreciate your dedication to your research!
What was the inspiration for your Destiny series?
My grandmother’s stories and my father’s memoirs are a major part of the Destiny series. My siblings and I would ask Dad, “What was it like back then?” So he wrote about the good ol’ days. We sure learned those days weren’t always so good. You will learn more about that in book 4, Waltz into Destiny, which releases on D Day, June 6.
I think what Harry S. Truman one said sort of sums this up: “There is nothing new in the world except the history you do not know.”
Much that our young people are learning today about our America is a watered-down version of the truth. Much of our classic literature that I grew up reading are now being banned or edited. I feel this is wrong. I have heard the age-old jargon that history can repeat itself. So how can our young people know what not to do if they don’t know the truth about our American history? Hence, my reason for writing the Destiny series.
ENJOY AN EXCERPT
President Wilson’s words blared out. “The right is more precious than peace, and we shall fight for the things which we have carried nearest our hearts.
“Come on.” Stephen took her hand and they rushed down the stairway. Bus boys arrayed in flashing red and gold braided suits greeted her. Crystal chandeliers twinkled gaily about the lavishly decorated lobby of the hotel, accenting the deep red and gold drapes and rich mahogany furniture in the lobby.
The doorman opened the outside doors of the Grand Hotel; a gust of cold air greeted them. Snow lined the newly shoveled walkways. The horses’ neighs and the tinkling of sabers clashing against the soldiers’ stirrup irons mingled with the cheers of the crowd.
A regiment of the cavalrymen rode before them, the insignia of the crossed swords displayed on their sleeves and cavalry blankets. “How dashing.” Ruby squealed with delight. “I can envision that gallant Rough Rider Franklin Long there among them.”
“Far better it is to dare mighty things…even though checkered by failure,” Stephen said, quoting Theodore Roosevelt. “The United States became a world power because of the Rough Riders when America defeated Spain in 1898.”
The horses nodded their fine heads, and their flowing manes caught the sunlight and glistening snow, as they pranced forward as proudly as the foot soldiers in the snow that last evening and this morning.
Stephen laughed. “I seriously doubt we have seen the last of Franklin Long.” He drew her hand to his lips and kissed it. “Shall we purchase our tickets for tomorrow’s train to Colorado?”
“No, you mustn’t,” the woman’s voice vibrated with emotion. She dotted her eyes. Her embroidered handkerchief was moist. “The porter said the railroad crew just tunneled through a large drift.”
Stephen nodded. “He told me that Amarillo’s never seen a storm of this magnitude.”
The woman dabbed at her eyes again. “True. This morning I overheard one of the workers on the railroad crew tell the engineer that they hadn’t been able to clear all the track… He said the passenger car could become a steel death trap for those foolish enough to ride the iron horse tomorrow.”
MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
I am an award-winning author of the inspirational historical romance Wilted Dandelions. My faith-based Destiny series includes Swept into Destiny, Destiny’s Whirlwind, Destiny of Heart, and Waltz into Destiny,which releases June 6.
I have written two pictorial history books. Images of America: The Lapeer Area, and Images of America: Eastern Lapeer County.
My short stories have been published in Guidepost Books True Stories of Extraordinary Answers to Prayer, Unexpected Answers and Desires of Your Heart; Baker Books, Revell, The Dog Next Door, Horse of my Heart, Second-Chance Dogs, The Horse of my Dreams(releases on September 17);CrossRiver Media Publishers, The Benefit Package and Abba’s Promise; Bethany House Publishers, Jesus Talked to Me Today.
I am a longtime Michigan resident and live with my husband of 45 years and our Arabian horses in the picturesque hills of Addison Township. I love traveling the byroads across America and spoiling my two handsome grandsons and two beautiful granddaughters!
Destiny of Heart is the third book of Catherine Ulrich Brakefield’s saga of the McConnell family, the Destiny series. This novel sweeps around the country, covering events in Colorado, Michigan, and Kentucky.
While Collina battles fever and illness at Shushan, Ruby and Stephen must head to the prairies in hopes of bringing him back to health from his battle with a strange lung disease. Collina’s husband has left her and all that remains to fight for is what is left of a dwindling Shushan and her mustard seed of faith. Eventually, Ruby faces her own tragedy and returns to her family in Kentucky. Then Franklin Long, former rough-rider and Collina’s lost sweetheart, unexpectedly runs into their sister, Myra, in Detroit. This sets into effect a chain of events that will test the McConnell family even farther, into the days of the Great Depression.
Brakefield has done her research and goes to great lengths to interweave historic events into the novels she writes and this one is no different. Her characters battle not only the difficulties around them but also wrestle with relatable spiritual issues within that can be understood in today’s culture as much as in the past. Destiny of Heart is also sprinkled with bright spots, past love fulfilled, and hope in God for the future.
For readers left wondering at the end of Destiny’s Whirlwind they will find some satisfaction in this third installment of the McConnell family saga. An enjoyable and hopeful Christian fiction read!
Catherine Ulrich Brakefield is an ardent receiver of Christ’s rejuvenating love, as well as a hopeless romantic and patriot. She skillfully intertwines these elements into her writing as the author of Wilted Dandelions, published by CrossRiver Publishing, an inspirational historical romance, along with her first Christian Romance novel, “The Wind of Destiny“, and her other history books, Images of America,The Lapeer Area and The Images of America, Eastern Lapeer County. published by Arcadia Publishing.
Her short stories have been published in Guidepost Books; Extraordinary Answers to Prayers, Unexpected Answers and Desires of Your Heart; Baker Books, Revell, The Dog Next Door, and The Horse of my Heart; CrossRiver Publishing, The Benefit Package, and Abba’s Promise; and Bethany House, Jesus talked to me Today.
Catherine lives in Addison Township, MI., with her husband Edward of forty-four years, and her beautiful Arabian horses. She enjoys horseback riding, swimming, camping, and traveling the byroads across America. Her children are now grown and married with families of their own. Catherine and Edward are now the blessed recipients of two handsome grandsons and one preciously adorable granddaughter.