Tuesday, December 6, 2016

A Heart Set Free

Today I’m featuring a post by my good friend Janet Grunst about how she got the idea for her debut novel, A Heart Set Free. I highly recommend this heart-tugging story, and I’m looking forward to many more wonderful historical novels from Janet in the future! A Heart Set Free just released from Smitten Historical Romance December 2nd, and today we’re having a drawing for a free copy, in either print or ebook edition. To be entered in the drawing, please leave a comment on this post by midnight today. Don't forget to include your email address and also whether you prefer print or ebook, either mobi (Kindle) or epub (Nook). I’ll post the winner first thing in the morning. You’ll find a blurb about A Heart Set Free at the end of the post.

Welcome, Janet!
~~~

Janet S. Grunst
Thank you, Joan for featuring me on your blog today. You asked how I got the idea for A Heart Set Free. There were a number of factors that gave birth to this story.

Decades ago I was a stay-at-home mom with regular columns in two regional newspapers. While I served in leadership in our church and Community Bible Study, I believed the Lord was leading me to share my faith in additional ways. Could I communicate truths of the Christian faith through writing fiction?

I am an avid reader and a student of history so there was no question the genre would be historical. For this acknowledged anglophile and a long time resident of Virginia, with its rich history, the setting was obvious. Since watching a movie about an indentured servant as a young teen, a story about this kind of immigrant had been germinating in my mind for some time. The mandate to extend forgiveness was the spiritual theme I wanted to communicate.

A great deal of time was devoted to honing my fiction writing skills and researching every detail to create a story in pre-Revolutionary War Virginia. The tale came together in six months time, but it took years of continually editing and improving the story. What followed was learning all that is involved in submitting work for publication including finding an agent and developing a platform.

An author can grow very fond of their characters so it was no surprise that I followed their lives in another story, hopefully one that will also be published.

by Janet S. Grunst

In 1770, Heather Douglas is desperate to escape a brewing scandal in her native Scotland. Penniless and hoping for a fresh start far away, she signs a seven-year indenture and boards a British merchant vessel headed to Virginia.

Widowed planter Matthew Stewart needs someone to help raise his two young children. The tall blond standing on the Alexandria quay doesn’t look like much after her harrowing sea voyage, but there’s a refinement about her that her filthy clothing cannot hide. Could God be leading him to take this unknown indentured servant as his wife?

When Matthew purchases Heather’s indenture, marries her, and takes her to his farm, she faces new and constant challenges. And Matthew wonders if they can ever bridge their differences and make a life together.

It is in the Virginia countryside that Heather begins her greatest journey, one of self-discovery and of maturing faith. Here, she discovers that her emotional and spiritual scars bind her far more than her indenture . . . and love will finally set her heart free.

~~~
Janet Grunst is a wife, mother of two sons, and grandmother of eight. She lives in the historic triangle of Virginia (Williamsburg, Jamestown, Yorktown) with her husband and West Highland White Terrier. A lifelong student of history, her love of writing fiction grew out of a desire to share stories that can communicate the truths of the Christian faith, as well as entertain, and bring inspiration, healing, and hope to the reader. She is represented by Linda S. Glaz of Hartline Literary Agency.

You can find Janet at:
http://JanetGrunst.com
http://colonialquills.blogspot.com/
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19 comments:

  1. i love historical novels, this one intrigues me :)

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    1. A Heart Set Free is a very moving story, Debi. I highly recommend it, and I know you'll love it!

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  2. Janet, I hope to be reading this book real soon! I once lived in Virginia. We were near Fort Lee. My father was an artist and worked at the museum on base. I love books of fiction, with history woven into them. Hope everything goes great with your book!

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    1. Thank you so much, Karen. One of my sons is in the National Guard and meets at Ft. Lee occasionally.

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    2. Hi, Karen! I'm glad you stopped by. You'll love this story. :-)

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  3. I love Janet's stuff! Hope I win a copy! She rocks. Nice post!

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    1. Adding you to the drawing list, Karla. Thanks for stopping by!

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  4. Would love to have a chance to read your story in book form..it looks to be a very interesting historical about endentured slaves and how the succeed in life...I love stories where I can learn more history..thanks again for the chance

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    1. Thank you for stopping by, rorylynn, and good luck in the drawing!

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    2. If you like history, I think you'll enjoy the book, rorylynn.

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  5. Beverly Duell-Moore was unable to post, and I'm adding her to the drawing list.

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  6. I would love to read this! I live Virginia now. And love anything that is set in historical Virginia. :)
    campbellamyd at gmail dot com

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    1. Virginia is a treasure-trove of fascinating historical places. So glad you stopped by, Amy.

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    2. Then you're going to love this story, Amy, because you're our winner!!!

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  7. Hope I'm not too late to enter. I'd love to win a paperback copy.
    debsbunch777(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. You were in time, Chappydebbie, but Amy turned out to be our winner. Good luck for the next drawing!

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  8. Congrats Janet on your debut novel! So happy for you!!!

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