I hope this finds you and yours well, and enjoying the holidays.
My year has been a full one, with the release of six new American Girl books, plus a new Chloe Ellefson mystery, and over seventy appearances and programs in ten states. (I traveled so much that my cat pretended not to remember me.)
I wrote novels for twenty years before getting my first book contract, so I don't take anything for granted! I appreciate everyone who's attended an event, joined me on Facebook, or sent me an email. If you've purchased my books, borrowed them from a library, or suggested them to a friend or book club--thank you.
Looking back, I'm in awe of the wonderful opportunities that came my way. There are way too many to mention, but here are some special examples.
I was invited to introduce my new Caroline Abbott American Girl books at the Library of Congress National Book Festival in Washington, DC. You can read more about my Washington visit by clicking on the photo below.
Educators at the USS Constitution Museum in Boston asked me to do a Caroline Abbott event to help them interest girls in the War of 1812. The ship participated in that war, and the museum is top-notch, so the invite meant a lot! To learn more, click on the photo below.
Antietam National Battlefield historians invited me to speak at ceremonies honoring the 150th anniversary of the single bloodiest day in American history. My presentation was based on Too Afraid to Cry, my non-fiction book about the Maryland civilians who got caught up in that terrible Civil War battle. For more about the events there, as well as at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, click on the photo below. You can watch my talk on C-SPAN by clicking HERE.
Thanks to an invitation from the Washington Island Women's Club, I was able to hold the first program about my newest Chloe Ellefson Historic Sites mystery, The Light Keeper's Legacy, on one of the two islands where the story takes place. Washington and Rock Islands are my favorite places in all of Wisconsin's popular Door County vacationland. I appreciated the club members' warm welcome, and their enthusiasm about the book. For more about it, click on the photo below.
I was again delighted with an invitation be interviewed on Wisconsin Public Radio's The Larry Meiller Show, this time to discuss The Light Keeper's Legacy. You can listen to the interview by clicking on the photo below and then selecting the Click to Listen option midway down in the right hand column.
Two Old World Wisconsin "History/Mystery" tours that Old World's Marty Perkins and I organized for Chloe Ellefson fans were incredibly special. We guided visitors through the historic buildings where key scenes in Old World Murder and The Heirloom Murders take place. I talked about their roles in my mystery books, while Marty (below right) told stories about their real history. The tours were fundraisers for the museum, and I loved being able to support it. My memories of the tours are bittersweet because Marty, a friend and colleague of thirty years, unexpectedly passed away in November. How lucky I was to have known and worked with him.