Monday, March 10, 2014

Lori Benton ~ Burning Sky

I'm thrilled to welcome Lori Benton to Ink Dots, this week. Lori was born and raised east of the Appalachian Mountains, surrounded by early American and family history going back to the 1600s. Her novels transport readers to the 18th century, where she brings to life the Colonial and early Federal periods of American history, creating a melting pot of characters drawn from both sides of a turbulent and shifting frontier, brought together in the bonds of God's transforming grace. When she isn’t writing, reading, or researching 18th century history, Lori enjoys exploring the beautiful Oregon mountains with her husband.

Burning Sky  New York frontier, 1784 ~ Abducted by Mohawk Indians at fourteen and renamed Burning Sky, Willa Obenchain is driven to return to her family’s New York frontier homestead after many years building a life with the People. At the boundary of her father’s property, Willa discovers a wounded Scotsman lying in her path and she feels obliged to nurse his injuries. The two quickly find much has changed during Willa’s twelve-year absence—her childhood home is in disrepair, her missing parents are rumored to be Tories, and the young Richard Waring she once admired is now grown into a man twisted by the horrors of war and claiming ownership of the Obenchain land.

When her Mohawk brother arrives and questions her place in the white world, the cultural divide blurs Willa’s vision. Can she follow Tames-His-Horse back to the People now that she is no longer Burning Sky? And what about Neil MacGregor, the kind and loyal botanist who does not fit into her plan for a solitary life, yet is now helping her revive her farm? In the aftermath of the Revolutionary War, strong feelings against “savages” abound in the nearby village of Shiloh, leaving Willa’s safety unsure.

Willa is a woman caught between two worlds. As tensions rise, challenging her shielded heart, the woman once called Burning Sky must find a new courage—the courage to again risk embracing the blessings the Almighty wants to bestow. Is she brave enough to love again?

Lori says... 

If I could explore anywhere in the world tomorrow, it would be... too many places in the state of New York to name, from the Mohawk Valley to the shores of Lake Champlain, settings that I wrote about in Burning Sky, and continue to write about in novels I hope soon to share with readers.  

The best thing I did today is... wrote another scene in my work in progress. A good day of writing is one of the most fulfilling and rewarding things I know. 

I wish I could relive the day when I... last saw my father, who passed away in December. It was the day I told him I had been offered a contract for Burning Sky and my soon to release title, The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn. I began the “serious” phase of my writing journey some twenty-two years ago during a time my husband and I lived at home with my parents. I’m so thankful my dad got to read Burning Sky.

When I was a child I dreamed I would... visit the state of Montana, and I did (many times; I married a man who has family there). Write a novel, and I did (many times, starting in the fourth grade). Be an artist, and I have been (professionally for a few years in the late 1980s and early 1990s, but writing has taken up all my work time and spare time, and every crack-in-between time, so while I design the occasional promotional graphic, I no longer paint).

I probably shouldn’t tell you this, but... I hope to have some exciting writing news to share soon. Visit my Facebook Author Page and Like it while you’re there, to keep up with my publishing news. 


Thanks for joining us, Lori. Burning Sky sounds like a wonderful read. I have it on my kindle ready for Book Club with Rel Mollet in a few months. I'm looking forward to sinking into it. 


If you'd like to win a copy of Burning Sky, please leave a comment below. Tell us what you think your new name might be, if you'd been kidnapped at fourteen by Mohawk Indians. I took an online quiz and my name would be Guiding Songbird. I like that. :) 

How about you? (This contest is only open to US citizens.)

I'll announce the winner on Friday. 
Good luck and happy reading,