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Historical Fiction

The Red Velvet Box
(A family story)

It is 1954 and Katherine Gale has just turned thirteen, though she likes it when people say she looks older. Being thirteen means friends are paramount, right up there with the latest fashion and distain of younger siblings. In addition, you don't particularly like visiting your elderly Grandmother. Katherine and her mother, Ruth, are about to do just that.

 

Grandma Blanch is eighty-four and getting forgetful, so the decision was made that Grandma has to move soon, and Ruth needs help sorting through Grandma’s things. Katherine only has younger brothers, so she is volunteered for the task. What Katherine and her mother don’t know is that Grandma Blanch needs more help then they realize, and Katherine, unwittingly, discovers how to do just that, gaining a new friend in the process.

Behind the Story

I was helping a friend clean an elderly neighbor's house and we came across some boxes with very old Christmas ornaments inside it. It wasn't the pretty red velvet box that Katherine found (and I created for my cover art) but it got me thinking about the stories that ornaments can hold, as she told us a few of these ornaments. 

This was were my idea for this story started. I placed Grandma Blanch in Galena because it is rich in history and a lovely town to visit. I was there with my own daughter and mother while I was researching from my first book, Rosebloom,

since Galena used to be a major river boat stop in the late 1800s.

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