Book Recommendation - With This Pledge


With This Pledge is the first full-length novel in Tamera Alexander's Carnton series. The series began with a novella, Christmas in Carnton. That one does not need to be read to enjoy With This Pledge, but it does set up some of the background of the area (and the main characters from that book make a cameo in this one). Unlike most of Ms. Alexander's novels (and most other historical fiction), the 2 main characters in this book were actual historical people and they did have a love story. Ms. Alexander therefore did a great deal of research, including dissecting the love letters written 150+ years ago. Going in, knowing this was not JUST a historic event, but that these were actual historic people, really brought the story-line alive.

This book takes place in the heart of the Civil War around the battle of Franklin. At that time, Carnton (the nearest plantation home) was used as a military hospital. Those who have recently toured the old plantation home (now a museum of sorts) say that you can still see the blood stains on the floor. Because this is a true story and because of the rich history of the plantation, this book is a bit more gritty than most I've read. It wasn't overly gory, but I did wince a time or two at some of the descriptiveness of surgeries and injuries. However, mingled in with the grit was a sweet love story, personal dilemmas, and a good dose of humor. I really loved the nuns who came to help out! Additionally, there were some intensely emotional scenes. Don't read chapter 37 without a tissue box nearby! That's all I'll say about that.

From a press statement by the author:
This novel—my 16th—is unlike any I’ve written before. Because both of the two main characters are based on real people who truly lived. Talk about intimidating to write. 

But God, who is always faithful, was with me very step of the way and directed me to the people I needed to connect with in order to write this true love story. Namely, the great-great-great grandson of the real Civil soldier who is the hero in this novel. I'm so grateful for David Doty's assistance.

Captain Roland Ward Jones, a Mississippi sharpshooter, and Miss Lizzie Clouston, the governess at the Carnton home, met on November 30, 1864 following the Battle of Franklin—the night that brought the Confederacy to its knees.

This is a true story. 

The depictions of the aftermath from battle that unfolded within the walls of Carnton are real. And to honor the memories of the thousands of men who died or were wounded that night, I wrote this novel as authentically as I could. Please remember that as you read. We must never forget what our freedom cost so many.

With This Pledge releases on January 8, 2019. To find out more, you can check out the author's website:
https://tameraalexander.com/books/carnton_novels

Additionally, after release date, there will be information on her website on what was truth and what was fiction. There will be spoilers, so be sure to read the book first!
https://tameraalexander.com/books/truth_or_fiction

And of course, my own personal review of the book:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2609062438?book_show_action=false&from_review_page=1&fbclid=IwAR1hM_xE7GZYKTAsI9D_uKYjTZh6RDd78I2GS-GMAjBhLLwtS9A7M4If1Q0


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