“I heard the bells, on Christmas Day, their old familiar carols play…”
You’ve probably heard this traditional carol–and maybe sung it–all your life.
But–did you know the story behind this carol, “Christmas Bells”? And that one of America’s most beloved poets became inspired with these verses at a time of great personal turmoil?
Bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini tells that story, in her 2015 novel Christmas Bells. And while this is a work of historic fiction, based on documented facts, she also tells a parallel Christmas story–set in modern times.
And here’s some great news–and some more great news, along with some dates you may want to keep in mind. As of October, 2016, Christmas Bells is available in paperback! (Can we say “fantastic stocking stuffer or Christmas-trip read” here?)
Also–Jennifer is planning some upcoming author appearances, and has a brand-new novel! Her central character, this time, may surprise you. She’ll be doing a reading at the Wisconsin Book Festival on Saturday, October 22nd, with a Q and A session and book signing afterwards. Additional dates will be forthcoming on her website.
You may very well already be familiar with Jennifer Chiaverini’s gift for bringing history to life through storytelling. Some of her previous twenty-four novels include Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker, Mrs. Grant and Madam Julie, and Mrs. Lincoln’s Rival. Needleworkers among us have also been delighted by her Elm Creek Quilts series, which includes The Christmas Quilt, The New Year’s Quilt, and The Quilter’s Apprentice.
In Christmas Bells, she gives us the best of both worlds, as she takes us back in time to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s Craigie House in the mid-nineteenth century–then to the present day, as his beautiful carol resonates with an engaging and believable cast of characters.
Additional good news? Her brand-new novel, Fates and Traitors, is now available for Christmas giving–and any history buffs on your gift list will be captivated!
In a departure from her previous historical fiction, Fates and Traitors explores the life of one of history’s most notorious villains: John Wilkes Booth. Without excusing or glossing over the facts, the book presents Booth as a flawed individual whose misguided beliefs ultimately lead him, inexorably, to the tragic events of April 14, 1865. The story is told from the perspectives of four women in Booth’s life: his mother, Mary Ann Holmes Booth; his sister, Asia Booth Clarke; his fiancee, Lucy Hale; and his landlady and co-conspirator, Mary Surratt.
Jennifer talked about Christmas Bells, some of the historical facts behind her new novel Fates and Traitors, and her advice to aspiring writers.