Friday, December 23, 2011

REDEEMED BY BLOOD

Several of my books were published in 2011, and the last novel written this year goes on Kindle today. Redeemed by Blood becomes my thirtieth book, but it isn’t my final one as I have in the writing mill another book of poetry, Breakthrough, now competing in a contest, which will eventually be published, and a non-fiction book about Rip Van Winkle Gardens that I was commissioned to do. 2012 promises to yield more writing activity – and more reading!

Redeemed by Blood isn’t in print version yet because most of my books have graduated to Kindle by this time (except for the poetry) and are enjoying wider readership. Redeemed is a multigenerational epic novel that begins when the idyllic life of young Dade Green changes with his parents’ deaths. He enrolls in Virginia Military Institute and joins the Confederate Army to fight a war against slavery even though his slave, Ebenezer, is his best friend. He’s forced to sell his slave and later meets up with him, only to witness his horrible death by hanging. Dade loses a leg during the war, endures life in an abusive Union Camp called Fort Delaware but survives, marries Sarah, a Mississippi journalist, and bears several children.

As if in recapitulation about wartime horrors and Dade’s ambivalence toward slavery, his son, Ellis Paul, becomes involved with the Ku Klux Klan. Dade witnesses another innocent black man‘s death, and his killers go unpunished. Dade dies feeling guilt so terrible that his ghost haunts the family and his old home for several generations. Attempts at exorcism fail, until his “sins” are redeemed and his soul is released by a transforming event involving his great-great-great grandson.

This novel is a fictional memoir set in Virginia, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Louisiana. It contains glimmers of truth about a dysfunctional family through five generations, vivids scenes of Civil War battles, brief excerpts from Civil War memorabilia, and the fictitious diary of a rebellious teenager. It’s the longest novel that I’ve written, and readers of Civil War books, memoirs, and novels about racial relations might enjoy it, especially during these sesquicentennial commemorative years of the Civil War.

Merry Christmas and happy reading in the New Year!

P.S. For non-Kindle readers, the print version of Redeemed by Blood is forthcoming.
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