Historical Author Elaine Cougler Talks about the Inspiration of Her Ancestors in Her Novel

This afternoon, I have an excerpt and a guest article by author Elaine Cougler. She just released The Loyalist’s Luck, the second book in her trilogy, which I reviewed and highly recommend, and also don’t miss an interview with her that I had previously to discuss the book and her writing. I encourage you to check out both, as well as her feature below, then dive into the book yourself and get lost in American (and Canadian) history for awhile. If you’re curious about the first book in the series, The Loyalist’s Wife, then you can check out that past review as well.

02_The Loyalist's Luck

The Loyalist’s Luck, Excerpt~

“And who are you?” the booming voice called out as Governor Simcoe turned back.
  “I am John Garner, late of this township but now of Bertie Township.” The governor took a couple of steps toward John. “And what do you need of me at this awkward and extremely inconvenient time, my good man?”
  “It’s the land grants, sir. In Bertie Township.”
  “Yes, what about them? You have one already, don’t you? He almost shouted, his face so close to John’s that his sharp woodsy scent combined with the sweaty smell of a man of action rendered John speechless. He stood a moment, felt his head nodding, and then continued.
  “I, I need proof, sir. A proper deed. Of ownership.” He stopped and waited. In less time than a heartbeat the Governor turned on his heel and headed for the door. Over his shoulder he hollered, “Come with us tomorrow. We’ll talk on the trail.”

Land Grants, Governor Simcoe and the Peace Bridge
by Elaine Cougler, Author

Research is such fun for me when I’m working on a novel because I absolutely love to find new nuggets, especially when they relate to my novels. The Loyalist trilogy focuses on the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, and the forging of my province and country after those events.

Did you know that paper was so scarce in the Niagara area when Loyalists flooded across the border at present-day Niagara-on-the-Lake that no proper land deeds could be written? Instead new owners got a simple playing card with their lot numbers on them. Some of these survive today but I’ve never actually seen one.

I lived a mile north of the Governor’s Road for all my growing up years so that Governor Simcoe’s name was very familiar to me. His wife’s was not. I bought her diary (Mrs. Simcoe’s Diary) and used it for research, all the while loving the abundance of information on just what my part of the country was like two hundred years ago.

But the treasure I found which most stunned me was learning that my ancestor actually owned Lot 1, Concession 1 of Bertie Township right where the Peace Bridge at Fort Erie crosses to Buffalo. This fact and a few others have found their way into The Loyalist’s Luck. You won’t recognize them in the story, probably, but knowing some of my history is in the book is a secret source of delight for me.

02_The Loyalist's LuckThe Loyalist’s Luck, Synopsis~

Publication Date: October 2014
Peache House Press
Formats: eBook, Paperback

Series: The Loyalist Trilogy
Genre: Historical Fiction

When the Revolutionary War turns in favor of the Americans, John and Lucy flee across the Niagara River with almost nothing. They begin again in Butlersburg, a badly supplied British outpost surrounded by endless trees and rivers, and the mighty roar of the giant falls nearby. He is off on a secret mission for Colonel Butler and she is left behind with her young son and pregnant once again. In the camp full of distrust, hunger, and poverty, word has seeped out that John has gone over to the American side and only two people will associate with Lucy—her friend, Nellie, who delights in telling her all the current gossip, and Sergeant Crawford, who refuses to set the record straight and clear John’s name. To make matters worse, the sergeant has made improper advances toward Lucy.

With vivid scenes of heartbreak and betrayal, heroism and shattered hopes, Elaine Cougler takes us into the hearts and homes of Loyalists still fighting for their beliefs, and draws poignant scenes of families split by political borders. The Loyalist’s Luck shows us the courage of ordinary people who, in perilous times, become extraordinary.

Author Elaine Cougler, Biography~

03_Elaine CouglerA lifelong reader and high school teacher, Elaine found her passion for writing once her family was grown. She loves to read history for the stories of real people reacting to their world.

Bringing to life the tales of Loyalists in the American Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 is very natural as Elaine’s personal roots are in those struggles, out of which arose both Canada and the United States.

For more information please visit Elaine Cougler’s website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Goodreads.

Tour Schedule: http://hfvirtualbooktours.com/theloyalistsluckblogtour/

Hashtags: #LoyalistsLuckBlogTour #HistoricalFiction

Twitter Tags: @hfvbt @ElaineCougler

04_The Loyalist's Luck_Blog Tour Banner_FINAL

 

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2 Comments

Filed under Guest Posts

2 responses to “Historical Author Elaine Cougler Talks about the Inspiration of Her Ancestors in Her Novel

  1. Thanks so much for hosting Lucy, John and me on your unique blog, Erin. We all love it. Well, I do. I’m not so sure about John and Lucy from the Loyalist trilogy. They don’t really have an extra moment to see what I might have written here, so busy with war and dying babies are they. Not to worry, the rest of us in this century have fewer worries than they had.
    All best
    Elaine

    Like

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