Present Moments with some of your favorite historical authors
The Authors of Writes of Passage
Wednesday, May 9, 2012
The Ride of Her Life
Lorna Seilstad, who has occasionally blogged for me when I’ve been away, has a new release that I wanted to tell you about. This is her third book in the Lake Manawa series and is titled The Ride ofHer Life. And although you wouldn’t expect to find a lake resort in Iowa, that’s where the finest resort west of Chicago could be found during the turn of the century. Located near Council Bluffs, Lake Manawa boasted a Midway, grand pavilions with ballroom dancing, boardwalks, and a woman diver who set herself afire every night. I’m thinking this woman had some unresolved issues in her life. I mean—who does something like that!
As authors, we’re frequently asked what or who inspired us to write a particular book or where our ideas come from. When Lorna began this series, I was interested in how she’d come up with the idea. Here’s what she told me. “My father grew up at Lake Manawa after its heyday. When the park closed in 1927, my grandfather purchased one of the bath houses for $300 and moved it to a lot where the Midway had been. They made the bath house into a home and that’s where my dad lived when he was a boy. He told me about what the place had been and I decided to research it.” Isn’t it neat to have such a personal connection to the place you’re writing about? I was gobsmacked, as Rosie would say.
In this particular book, a roller coaster is constructed for the enjoyment of visitors to the lake. Of course, writing about the construction of the roller coaster required a great deal of research. So here’s a word of warning: Unless you have unlimited time, don’t ask Lorna about constructing a wooden roller coaster—she knows far too much and is far too willing to share her vast knowledge on the topic.
Lorna’s books are humorous and light, but they carry a strong spiritual message. In The Ride of HerLife, the protagonist, Lilly, is having a faith crisis but she doesn’t want to admit it. Her faith that God is watching over her has been shaken. Over time she comes to the understanding that despite the storms in her life, God has not abandoned her or her young son.
Below is the back cover copy:
The only man pragmatic Lilly Hart needs in her life is a six year old. Widowed two years ago, Lilly leaves the shelter of her intrusive in-laws' home to stand on her own and provide for her young son by working for the summer as a cook at Lake Manawa. However, her in-laws find that life utterly unsuitable for their grandson, and when a row ensues, a handsome stranger--who designs roller coasters, of all things--intercedes on her behalf. Still, Lilly is not about to get involved with any man, especially this cocky (though charismatic) gentleman. Little does she know she is about to begin the rideof her life.
Filled with delightful characters and the romance of summer, The Ride of Her Life is another supremely entertaining story from the witty Lorna Seilstad. Readers will laugh out loud and sigh contentedly as they spend the summer of 1906 in Lake Manawa.
If you leave a comment and your email address, I’ll enter you in a drawing for a copy of this delightful book that will make you laugh, cry, and touch your heart.
May you find joy as you share a good read with others. ~Judy
P.S. Prayers for Rosie as she goes for her eye surgery (probably already over by the time this is out, but she'd still appreciate our prayers for a good recovery).