Please welcome Vickie Hall as she gives us a behind the scenes look at JOURNEY OF PROMISE.
Vickie Hall: Journey of Promise
On reasons to read the book:
Journey of Promise will uplift and inspire readers with an understanding that even our own trials can be overcome through faith.
Readers will also come to appreciate the many sacrifices many of our ancestors made in leaving country and family to come to America.
This book is based on the journals of my great-great grandparents and I wanted to give their story a voice.
On favorite character traits or quirks:
My favorite character from Journey of Promise is Leah Kenyon. She is a woman of strength, but also finds her faith wavering from time to time. She can show her temper when provoked, which often gets her into trouble. She has a sharp wit as well.
On things she learned writing or researching the book:
I studied the historical time period – what sorts of medicines were available, the type of foods that were eaten, the inventions of the day, the history of Wales and of Cardiff. I also researched the Welsh dialect when the people spoke English, as well as studying the Welsh language itself. (And let me tell you, Welsh is one tough language to learn!) I did a bit of research on the folk lore and costumes of the country so that I could incorporate some of that for authenticity.
Journey of Promise covers emigration to America, so I had to research the historical accounts of crossing the Atlantic, what types of ships were used, the food that was eaten aboard ship, and the challenges ofmaking such a crossing. Once the family arrives in New Orleans, I had to learn all about steamboats and how they work, what sort of employment was available in the city and the culture as well. My research also included the city of St. Louis. I learned a great deal about steamboats by reading a book written by Mark Twain. He gave very detailed accounts about how they work, the variations in their designs, and all of the jargon used to pilot them.
But apart from all of that, I gained a great appreciation for the hardships my ancestors faced and overcame so that I could enjoy the blessings of living in the United States!
Her heart thudded in her chest as she turned and walked up the gangway. Richard paused and looked back to say something to the Saints, but she didn’t stop to listen, making her way onto the ship. She stood on the deck of the steamer as the autumn breezes blew cool and damp off Cardiff Bay. Her heart knotted as she looked out over the pier, hoping against hope that her mother might come to say good-bye. I don’t want to leave . . . I can’t . . . this is home . . .
She pressed her lips together and choked back tears as her eyes scanned the fringes of her native village. Her gaze rose to the hills, still green, to the sky awash in clouds, then down to the surging bay. The smell of briny water filled her nostrils and the call of seabirds cried overhead. Leah closed her eyes, attempting to etch the pictures in her mind, and called upon her memory to remember Wales and never forget.
Richard slid his arm around Leah’s shoulders. “ ’Tis hard, I know,” he said as if he could read her mind.
His touch gave her a sense of reassurance. She could feel his strength lending itself to her, lifting and carrying her beyond doubt. Richard kissed her temple and held her as the ropes were loosed from the moorings. She turned to him, her eyes burning into his. “Let me look at you, Richard.Let me look to you and our future. I cannot bear to watch us leave . . .”
She buried her face against his chest. Richard encircled his wife and held her as the steamer pulled away.
Journey of Promise
When converts Richard and Leah Kenyon leave Wales and heed the call to Zion, they are unprepared for the toll exacted by the journey. To face the incredible odds mounted against them they call upon the Lord’s tender mercies to see them through and strengthen their love for one another. Their story will remind you where to turn during your trials.
All That Was Promised
In 1847 Wales Methodist Minister Richard Kenyon converts to Mormonism. Richard’s newfound faith is put to the test when he faces the anger of his former congregation, his wife’s indecisiveness, his brother’s betrayal, and the murderous intentions of misinformed villagers.
Author Vickie Hall
Vickie is a native of Utah, but growing up, lived in the states of Colorado, Idaho, Montana, and Nebraska. When she’s not writing, she’s composing music, or shopping with her sister. She loves animals of all kinds and camping with her family. Her favorite pastime is watching old movies on TCM, and unashamedly has a crush on Cary Grant.
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