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1778 – New Jersey/France
With Americas’ fierce fight for independence hanging in the balance, Elizabeth Howard and Jonathan Carleton are driven thousands of miles and a vast ocean apart. While the Continental Army endures a desperate winter at Valley Forge, French Admiral le comte de Caledonne secretly sweeps Elizabeth away to France out of reach of British assassins. Meanwhile General Jonathan Carleton, the Shawnee war chief White Eagle, returns to his people as General George Washington’s emissary, doubting that he will ever return to the white world. But as the war between America and Britain shifts into the fragile republic’s heartland at Monmouth Court House, sinister schemes draw Jonathan and Elizabeth into their own separate maelstroms. Will the Refiner’s Fire tear them from each other’s arms forever?
From the flames of war exploding across land and sea to the dangerous intrigues of the French court and the Shawnee’s bitter resistance to the Long Knives, Refiner’s Fire continues the breathtaking saga of America’s founding in a gripping story of heartbreak, redemption, and the unyielding constancy of love.
1757 – Pennsylvania
Jakob Hochstetler’s refusal to take up arms against the Indians who attacked his Amish family’s home on the Pennsylvania frontier during the brutal raids of the French and Indian War cost the lives of his wife and two of his children. Carried away with his younger sons, Jakob is enslaved by the Seneca, while Joseph and Christian are adopted into different divisions of the Lenape tribe and struggle to adapt to new lives.
Jakob plots a perilous escape in spite of overwhelming odds against succeeding. But even if he can get away, could he survive a harrowing journey over the hundreds of miles of rugged terrain that lie between him and his Northkill community? Does home still exist? Are his older son and daughter, Johannes and Barbara, still alive? Will he ever find his boys and bring them home?
Valley of the Shadow
1777 – Many American States
Can he save them both from the Valley of the Shadow? Following a humiliating defeat at Philadelphia and a rival’s stunning victory at Saratoga, Washington’s army faces yet another bitter winter, this time at Valley Forge. Meanwhile, General Jonathan Carleton races to save Elizabeth Howard from the horrors of the prison ships in the British stronghold at New York, while British General William Howe plots to execute them both.
From heart-pounding battles on the high seas, to the rigors of Valley Forge and the Shawnee’s savagely fought wars to preserve their ancestral lands, Valley of the Shadow continues the thrilling saga of America’s founding in an inspiring story of despair, courage, and triumph.
1752-1757 – Pennsylvania
In 1738 Jakob Hochstetler and his family arrive in America, seeking sanctuary from religious persecution in Europe and the freedom to live and worship according to their Anabaptist beliefs, which include the doctrine of nonresistance. Along with other members of their church, they settle in the Northkill Amish Mennonite community on the Pennsylvania frontier between civilization and wilderness. They build a home near Northkill Creek, for which their community is named. For eighteen years, the community lives at peace. Then, while the French and Indian War rages, the Hochstetlers’ way of life is brutally shattered. Early on the morning of September 20, 1757, their home is attacked by a party of Delaware and Shawnee warriors allied with the French. Facing certain death with his wife and children, Jakob makes a wrenching choice that will tear apart his family and change all of their lives forever. Northkill is closely based on an inspiring true story well-known among the Amish and Mennonites. It has been documented in many publications and in contemporary accounts preserved in the Pennsylvania State Archives and in private collections.
Crucible of War
1776 – New York, Pennsylvania
Returning from the Shawnee, Brigadier General Jonathan Carleton rejoins General George Washington’s army to find the patriot cause on the verge of extinction. In a daring gamble the American force crosses the Delaware on Christmas night 1776, to defeat outposts at Trenton and Princeton before vanishing into the mountain bastions around Morristown. When she returns to New York, Elizabeth Howard is drawn ever deeper into the intrigues that swirl around British General William Howe. She and her Aunt Tess, move to Philadelphia in summer 1777 to gather intelligence while waiting for a rumored British attack. Ambushed and almost captured as the Americans dig in at Brandywine Creek, Carleton is transferred to General Horatio Gates’s army in the upper Hudson Valley where his old nemesis, British General John Burgoyne, closes in on Saratoga. With decisive battles looming on both fronts, Elizabeth and Carleton face a crucible of war that tests their mettle, faith, and love to the very limits—and beyond.
1775-6 – Massachusetts, New York, Ohio Territory
Brigadier General Jonathan Carleton has pledged his allegiance to newly elected commander of the rebel army, General George Washington. But his heart belongs to fiery Elizabeth Howard, who charms British officers by day and by night delivers their secrets to the Sons of Liberty. Their plans to marry are put on hold, however, when Washington orders Carleton to undertake a perilous journey deep into Indian territory, while Elizabeth continues spying on the British. Within weeks she learns that Carleton has been captured by the Seneca. Despite all attempts to find him, his fate remains shrouded in mystery. Enslaved by the Seneca, Carleton is finally rescued by a band of Shawnee and taken into Ohio Territory, where he is adopted as the warrior White Eagle and rises to become war chief. Drawn into a bitter war against white settlers who threaten to overrun Shawnee lands, he must walk a treacherous tightrope between a rival who will stop at nothing to destroy him, the seductions of a beautiful widow . . . and the longing for Elizabeth that will not give him peace. Abandoning Boston, British General William Howe prepares to unleash an overwhelming invasion force against the badly outmatched American army at New York City. With battle looming, reports filter in that a new Shawnee war chief named White Eagle is leading devastating raids against British and American outposts in Ohio Territory.
Daughter of Liberty
1775 – Massachusetts
In the blockaded port of Boston, Elizabeth Howard plays a dangerous game. As the infamous courier Oriole, she is hunted by the British for smuggling intelligence and munitions to the Sons of Liberty by night, while by day she flirts with British officers to gain access to information the rebels so desperately need. But she hasn’t counted on the arrival of Jonathan Carleton, an officer in the Seventeenth Light Dragoons. To her dismay, the attraction between them is immediate, powerful—and fought on both sides in a war of wits and words. When Carleton wins the assignment to ferret out Oriole, Elizabeth can no longer deny that he is not only her most dangerous foe, but also the possessor of her heart. As the first blood is spilled at Lexington and Concord, Carleton fights his own private battle of faith. And headstrong Elizabeth learns the bitter consequences of following her impulsive heart when her dangerous role thrusts her into the carnage of Bunker Hill.
Wind of the Spirit (The American Patriot Series, Book 3)
1776 – New York
Set in 1776 during the American Revolution, Wind of the Spirit begins just before the Battle of Brooklyn and ends just before the Battle of Trenton. The heroine, Elizabeth Howard, is a high-level spy working for General Washington in New York City, where she socializes with British General Howe and local Loyalists by day and transmits their secrets to the American forces by night.