Tracie Peterson is the award-winning author of over eighty novels, both historical and contemporary.
Her avid research resonates in her stories, as seen in her bestselling Heirs of Montana, and Alaskan Quest series. Tracie and her family make their home in Montana. Visit Tracie's website at www.traciepeterson.com
and her blog at www.writespassage.blogspot.com.
Touching the Sky ~ Book Summary:
Her heart is caught between the man she loves and the sister she's desperate to protect.
Though their first encounter is hardly auspicious, Laura Marquardt soon discovers herself drawn to the dashing Captain Brandon Reid. As an officer over the colored troops, he eagerly supports her desire to educate blacks and seek harmony in a town where the defeat of the South is a bitter reality.
When Laura's sister marries her Confederate beau, Laura finds herself in a difficult situation after overhearing a discussion with frightening consequences. In her heart, she feels she should confide in Brandon, but Laura fears to do so may endanger her sister's life. Yet as the stakes continue to rise and Brandon's motives for pursuing her come into doubt, Laura questions where to turn... and wonders if her own dreams of love may be forsaken.
Joy In Our Journey's Review:
This novel takes place in Corpus Christi, Texas, shortly after the end of the Civil War (1865). Texas, at that time in our history, was a state of many conflicts: between Union and Confederate supporters, the different cultures, races, and religions—and those who would prefer it to go back to being a Republic without the support of the American states. In the minds of some ex-Confederate soldiers, the war was NOT over and they intended to take back their state and get rid of all the Unionists.
This is a historical time in our history and one that merits study and understanding of what was going on in this defeated state; there was much resentment and agony over what had happened and for a proud people, and it was extremely difficult at times.
Amidst the conflicts resulting from the war and the former way of life, arises mystery and romance (of course). The stories of the various characters weave an interesting tale of people from various stations of life and meshes them together in an exciting story. The focus is on the Marquardt family, father, mother, and two grown daughters; a family which is staunchly Union in belief that unity between the states is the most practical and desired way of life. They have lived in Corpus Christi for many years and have no desire to leave. It is a struggle to mend the relationships which were severed during the war and to rebuild trust with former friends and associates.
The younger daughter, Carissa, is flighty and eager to be married and finally does so to a very unsavory character. Laura, the elder daughter, has much insight into what is going on all around her and does her best to dissuade her sister from marrying this man. Laura, on the other hand, meets a nearly “perfect” Union soldier who is stationed in the city, and in spite of her determination not to “fall” for him, things begin to come together for them. Many conflicts arise with Carissa, and Laura does her best to help her sister cope with her new life.
The intrigue and danger arising from a group of rebels greatly affects this family. Laura also desires to help those less fortunate around her, specifically the former slaves, and decides that God is leading her to teach them to read and write. Despite her father’s misgivings about this, she begins covertly to teach first a household maid, then the maid’s two young sons, then others who begin asking for help with this learning. Eventually, both Carissa and Laura face a danger greater than either of them could ever imagine. “Touching the sky” is an expression used by the maid in the household, meaning to reach for something that is quite impossible. It is a fitting title for the many endeavors facing this family. Touching the Sky is an exciting story with a surprising conclusion.