About the Book
Book: Maeve’s Pledge
Author: Linda Shenton Matchett
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Release Date: March 21, 2023
Pledges can’t be broken, can they?
Finally, out from under her father’s tyrannical thumb, Maeve Wycliffe can live life on her terms. So what if everyone sees her as a spinster to be pitied. She’ll funnel her energies into what matters most: helping the less fortunate and getting women the right to vote. When she’s forced to team up with the local newspaper editor to further the cause, will her pledge to remain single get cropped?
Widower Gus Deighton sees no reason to tempt fate that he can find happiness a second time around. Well past his prime, who would want him anyway? He’ll continue to run his newspaper and cover Philadelphia’s upcoming centennial celebration. But when the local women’s suffrage group agrees that the wealthy, attractive, and very single Maeve Wycliffe acts as their liaison, he finds it difficult to remain objective.
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About the Author
Linda Shenton Matchett writes about ordinary people who did extraordinary things in days gone by. A native of Baltimore, Maryland, she was born a stone’s throw from Fort McHenry (of Star-Spangled Banner fame) and has lived in historical places all her life. She is a volunteer docent and archivist at the Wright Museum of WWII and a former trustee for her local public library. She now lives in central New Hampshire where she explores the history of this great state and immerses herself in the imaginary worlds created by other authors.
More from Linda
When asked to contribute a story to the Suffrage Spinsters series, I immediately sat down and researched the suffrage movement. I was surprised to discover that the crusade to get women the right to vote began the 1830s. Nearly twenty years later, a women’s rights convention was held in Seneca Falls, New York, an event considered the actual “birthplace” of women’s suffrage.
The history of suffragism in America is fascinating because of the large percentage of women who were against getting the right to vote. As I continued to delve into the history of the movement, I unearthed many references to an incident that occurred at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton decided to write a document similar to the US “Declaration of Independence,” call it the “Declaration of the Rights of Women,” and present it at the Exposition’s July 4th celebration.
Their request to speak was summarily dismissed, and in fact, few women were able to obtain tickets to the event.
Undeterred, Anthony came up with an alternate plan. On July 4th, in the midst of Richard Henry Lee’s speech (grandson and namesake of one of the Declaration of Independence signers), she marched down the aisle inside Independence Hall and handed a scroll tied in a festive navy-blue ribbon to the host, then turned and made her way out of the building, distributing copies to the clamoring crowd as she went. Outside, she read the document aloud as the remaining copies were distributed. Newspapers covered her presentation and printed portions of the document. Word spread, and countless newspapers outside of Philadelphia picked up the article.
I knew I had my story, and I hope in some small way Maeve’s Pledge honors those tenacious men and women who fought to gain women the right to vote.
Linda Shenton Matchett
Interview with Linda
- What inspired this book?
Many of my books incorporate real historical events, and I wanted to do the same thing with Maeve’s Pledge. I poured over newspapers and biographies of the men and women involved in the Suffrage Movement to find an interesting or pivotal moment in the cause. I stumbled on an article about the 1876 Centennial Exposition (world’s fair) that took place in Philadelphia. At the July 4th celebration during the fair, Susan B. Anthony presented her “Declaration of Women’s Rights,” a document which equated women’s “oppression by men with that of the American colonies during King George III’s reign. I attended the 1982 World’s Fair in Knoxville so I could visualize the setting, and I remember many events and celebrations from the bi-centennial, all of which informed my writing of the story.
- Which author influenced the you most?
That is a great question, and it’s hard to select just one, but if you insist! I would have to say Elizabeth Camden has influenced me tremendously for a couple of reasons. Her research is impeccable and I know her books are stories are going to be completely accurate, and her plots center around real events such as the Chicago Fire or the cure for tuberculosis.
- What is your favorite Bible verse or life verse?
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for prosperity and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
- Describe your view as you’re sitting in your writing chair.
Believe it or not, the view from my writing room was the deciding factor for purchasing our current home. Fortunately, my husband fell in love with the basement, so I didn’t have to work too hard to convince. Him! My office looks into our back yard which is very wooded and rustic. There is a stone wall that divides our property from the 15-acre horse farm we abut. The view is gorgeous no matter what season: in the spring and summer it is lush and green. Plus, I always hang a basket of flowers, so I am visited by a variety of birds. During Autumn it is alive with gold, red, and orange. In winter, the snow lays on the walls and skeletal trees providing a totally different view.
- If you could have one book or piece of art or music on a deserted island, what would it be and why?
I would take Vincent Van Gogh’s “The Yellow House.” He called it “The Street.” I use it as my computer wallpaper. I enjoy all of Van Gogh’s work, but this is my favorite piece. He lived there in 1888 and was quite happy. Not had he found a place that inspired him to paint, but it was big enough that friends and fellow painters could come and stay. I can always make up stories in my head, or sing songs I know, but I would want to have the painting on the deserted island so I could look at it.
Thank you for letting us get to know you better!
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Bizwings Book Blog, August 18
Tell Tale Book Reviews, August 19 (Author Interview)
Locks, Hooks and Books, August 20
Artistic Nobody, August 21 (Author Interview)
Texas Book-aholic, August 22
Stories By Gina, August 23 (Author Interview)
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 23
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, August 24
Sylvan Musings, August 25 (Author Interview)
Connie’s History Classroom, August 26
The Book Club Network, August 27
Bliss, Books & Jewels, August 28 (Author Interview)
To celebrate her tour, Linda is giving awaythe grand prize package of a $50 Visa Gift Card and signed copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.