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The Heartbeat of History

Instead of taking me to Disney, my parents took me to graveyards and ancient burial grounds. It tends to leave a profound impression. OK, so perhaps there was a trip to Disney in there, but that was only once! (grin) As a consequence, I hear history’s heartbeat. I’ve always found certain periods or incidents interesting. I used them as a springboard for the Jamie Poole series.

The closest Jamie Poole comes to hearing history’s heartbeat is her ability to hear the Voices of the Dead, a primary plot in the first books in the series. She states in the upcoming book Destiny of the Departed that she is a clairaudient. This is the medical term for someone who hears disembodied voices.

There are other terms for hearing voices, specifically those of the dead: necromancer, da-shealladh, second sight, and soul midwife to name a few. Most cultures have their own folklore and term for this ability. Is there something to it? It’s up to you to decide.

Two all new books are slated to come out in 2018. The backdrops for these books merge closely with both history and with family ancestry.

The first book, set to come out in early 2018 is The Courtship of Brett Poole. For a few years this book has existed as a title and a thin plot outline. In 2017 I lost someone significant to me in a tragic accident. I felt compelled to write a book and dedicate it to him and his family. The Courtship of Brett Poole came to mind. As the title indicates, the story tells the courtship of Brett Poole and Julia Anderson, Jamie’s parents. It’s a romance…of sorts. Anyone who reads the series knows that Brett Poole has a hard time dealing with people on an intimate level. This has caused more than one strained issue between Jamie and him. Any romance including Brett Poole would by no means have steamy, clothes-ripping romance. (Sorry) I didn’t pick a bare-chested Fabio to grace the cover. So what would a romance look like with someone like this? You might be surprised. True to the Jamie Poole lore their relationship turns out to be more complex than what the story has so far revealed. Reflecting life, the romance is not smooth sailing. Would you expect it to be with Brett at the helm? Suddenly, a younger Brett Poole and Julia Anderson had a lot to say.

I considered the history around where this “significant person” lived which was not so far from Alexandria, Indiana. Naturally, where he once lived became the setting for this book. He descended from the line of Chief William Anderson (1740 – 1831) after whom Anderson, Indiana, is named. Jamie referenced Chief William Anderson, even telling Eliyana the tale of his death in Resurrection of the Druidess. Her mother’s family is also descended from Chief Anderson. History came to life, and so did the story. Indiana has a lot more about it than cornfields. Jamie Poole is all about showing the more unique aspects of Indiana’s lesser known history.

2018’s second book, Destiny of the Departed, will come out later in the year. It is the sequel to The Tome of Tubal-Cain. Again history and ancestry overlapped and modeled the plot. This story will tell the final outcome of Eliyana’s people’s fate on the Isle of Larupus, north of Scotland. The “Eliyana” plotline is written around the real life timeline of St. Columba (521 – 597). He was a warrior-monk and missionary in Scotland.

Some of the historical details here deserve their own blog because the subject is fairly complex, spanning hundreds years. Columba descends from a dynasty of Irish kings called the Uí Néill Dynasty which lasted until 1603 and the conclusion of the Nine Years War. His great-grandfather Niall Noigiallach or Niall of the Nine Hostages (c. 368 – 395) was the first of the line. The founders of this dynasty claim to be the seven sons of Niall. Is it ironic that my husband descends from this dynasty? His surname would indicate he does.

There are two interesting details about County Meath:

One detail is the Uí Néill Dynasty was based in County Meath in Ireland. The town of Kells is located 40 miles from Dublin in this county. Kells Abbey was founded here in 804 after Columban monks fled Iona which St. Columba had founded during Eliyana’s time. Remembering who Columba’s great-grandfather was, it’s a logical place for them to seek safety. They fled to escape Viking raids. St. Columba’s body was removed from Iona and now resides in Kells in order to protect it from the raids.

The second detail is the Marquess of Headfort, created in 1800 by a Thomas Taylour resides here. He had come from Sussex, England, to oversee Parliament for Oliver Cromwell, representing the town of Kells. And while that detail seems insignificant—likely boring—my grandmother’s ancestors who resided in County Meath were the Taylors using both spellings of the name. We can’t as yet connect the family tree with Thomas Taylour, but who knows! Regardless, Jamie’s roommate Lenore Taylor assumed that name in the book for this reason. History doesn’t have to be dry or boring. Not if you listen to it right.

I’m very excited by both of these books and hope that you will keep an eye out for their release. Happy reading!

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