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This week only you can get two award-winning true stories about love gone wrong from James Rada, Jr. The Kindle version of A Love Returned is free this week!
True love can take tragic turns
Here are two award-winning true stories from James Rada, Jr. This short work shows that history can be just as interesting, and sometimes, stranger than fiction.
A Love Returned (Associated Press 2003 Best Feature Story)
Steve Shaw finds a 30-year-old girl’s class ring at a Boy Scout Camp in 2003. He sets out to discover the owner and return the ring. He hunts down clues and slowly uncovers a decades-old love story that takes some surprising turns before its surprising conclusion. Steve also finds out that some loves never die.
The Death of Young Lovers (Maryland-Delaware-DC Press Association 2015 Best Local Column)
Charles Twigg and Mary Grace Elosser were to be married on January 1, 1911. However, while sitting alone in a closed room on New Year’s Eve with Grace’s mother just in the next room, the couple was somehow killed. Just how they were killed and by whom remained a mystery for weeks as investigators sought information and witnesses. The case generated national headlines until the answers finally came from a cat and a rabbit.
Both of these stories were among the most popular articles I have written. I got dozens of calls about both of them.
“The Death of Young Lovers”, in particular, had a lot of excited readers. It ran in two parts, but apparently a lot of people missed the note at the end of the first part telling readers that the second part would tell what actually happened to the dead lovers. I got calls and e-mails from people asking me to tell them what had happened, or chastising me for leaving them hanging.
I hope you enjoy the stories as much as I did. They both hold a special place in my heart. If you do download a copy, please leave a review on Amazon. It will help me with my future marketing efforts.
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Curious how to pronounce the title of my historical novel Canawlers?
It’s CAN-all-ers. It’s what boatmen on the C&O Canal sounded like when they used to say “canaller”.
They also had a challenging and dangerous job during the Civil War. Canawlers brought coal and other goods 185 miles from Cumberland, Maryland, to Georgetown. All the while, they traveled along the Potomac River within site of the Virginia shore and the Confederate States of America. The C&O Canal ran along the border of two warring nations, the canawlers were caught in the crossfire.
Hugh Fitzgerald is a proud canawler. For nine months a year, he and his family live on their canal boat, working hard to get them through the lean winter months.
The year 1862 was a hard year to live on the canal, though. To this point, the Confederacy has stayed south of the canal, but now the Confederate Army intends to go on the offensive and take the war into the north.
Not only are the Fitzgeralds’ lives endangered by the increased activity of warring armies and raiders on the canal, but the Fitzgeralds’ secret activity as a stop along the Underground Railroad only endangers their lives all the more.
Then fate takes Hugh away from his family, leaving his wife, Alice, to hold the family together. With the help of her children; Thomas, George and Elizabeth; Tony, an orphan from Cumberland; and David Windover, a disillusioned Confederate soldier, they will face the dangers presented by the war, nature, and the railroad together.
From the reviewers:
- “A powerful, thoughtful and fascinating historical novel, Canawlers documents author James Rada, Jr. as a writer of considerable and deftly expressed storytelling talent.” – Midwest Book Review
- “James Rada, of Cumberland, has written a historical novel for high-schoolers and adults, which relates the adventures, hardships and ultimate tragedy of a family of boaters on the C&O Canal. … The tale moves quickly and should hold the attention of readers looking for an imaginative adventure set on the canal at a critical time in history.” – Along the Towpath
- “Mr. Rada presents an interesting slice of the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal boatman’s life set against the backdrop of the turbulence and uncertainty of the American Civil War. The use of the canal as a route on the Underground Railroad is also woven into the plot which reveals how hard work, a strong family and difficult times could come together along the canal.” – Rita L. Knox, Park Ranger, C&O Canal NHP
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A Love Returned is based on an award-winning article that I wrote for the Cumberland Times-News. It’s also a story that I enjoyed researching and writing. Some people consider it romantic, but most people who have mentioned it to me, call it a heart-warming story.
When Steve Shaw found a 30-year-old girl’s class ring at a Boy Scout Camp in 2003, he set out to find who it belonged to. He began hunting down clues and slowly uncovered a love story that takes some surprising turns before its surprising conclusion. Steve also finds out that some loves never die.
So why not add A Love Returned to your wish list and then download a copy to your Kindle next week? If you read it and enjoy the story, I would appreciate you reviewing the book.