One of the things that spoke to me as I wrote my novel Essie’s Roses was the tender love story that unfolded among all of the women of Westland: Miss Katie, Delly, and especially between Evie and Essie. I had no idea where their journey would take me, but I treasured how Evie and Essie persevere in the face of tremendous political and social pressure, even danger, to remain by each other’s side. Their friendship is that of committed and sometimes tough love.
True love’s gift goes beyond feelings. True love stands the test of time when built on a foundation of truth, commitment, and respect. I love writing about strong women, and one of the themes close to my heart is the conversation about respect toward each other regardless of race, religion, gender, or social status, and respect toward ourselves.
In Essie’s Roses, respect moves from the blaring issues of slavery, injustice, and discrimination, to the painful silence of secrets and abusive relationships. These four brave women not only go on a journey of self-realization, but true freedom lies in their ability to offer themselves forgiveness, self-esteem, and respect. True love becomes the weapon of choice against bigotry and abuse. True love brings hearts together; it never tears them apart.
Something equally beautiful inspired me: my many readers turned friends. I’m so grateful many of you continue to reach out to encourage me about Essie’s Roses and my writing. I know Valentine’s Day is a special day for sweethearts but today and every day I thank you for continuing to share your kindness, encouragement, and love for Essie’s Roses. You have made the journey of sharing my first novel such a joy.
I’m sharing the love with some great book giveaways coming soon on my Facebook page. I’m pairing a copy of my novel Essie’s Roses with a favorite read from this year. Follow me on Facebook and Goodreads to watch for your chance to enter. Sign up for my newsletter via my website for news on my upcoming books, giveaways, sales, and more. I love hearing from you.
Let your love shine, inspire someone in need, and if you don’t have someone special to spend Valentine’s Day with— it’s okay! Your loving heart is appreciated, and it will always come full circle. You are never less for loving more.