We’ve all heard of the Wright Brothers and their amazing first flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina in 1903, but they were not the only aviation pioneers trying to achieve powered flight. Several men in Europe and the US were working on their own designs, conducting experiments, and attempting test flights. They had some wild ideas and creative designs as you can see when you click on the video below.
When I was writing Across the Blue, I wanted to feature a hero who combined the creativity, dedication, and bravery of these early aviation pioneers. So I created James Drake, a young Englishman with a shadowed past, who was raised by Professor Thaddeus Steed. Their goal is to design a powered flying machine, but it only seems like a dream until they watch Wilbur Wright’s flight demonstration at LeMans, France, in 1908. They take what they observed back to their workshop to modify their design and improve their flying machine. Soon James is taking off and flying across Kent.
Bella Grayson, heroine of Across the Blue, has her heart set on becoming a journalist who reports on the exciting events of the day, including the advancement of aviation. But her parents have a different plan for her future. They want her to marry well and help them move up in society. Bella goes to great lengths to pursue her dream, and she learns some very important lessons along the way as her faith and relationship with James grow.
Bella’s father is a wealthy newspaper owner and aviation enthusiast. He offers a prize of one thousand pounds to the first pilot who will make a successful flight across the English Channel. James and Professor Steed are determined to win that prize and establish themselves as respected airplane designers. But the twenty-two mile flight path between England and France requires James to fly over choppy sea with turbulent wind currents. He’ll need every ounce of skill and courage to make a successful flight.
I loved stepping back in time to Edwardian England and the first days of aviation. It was inspiring to read about the dedication of these early pilots and airplane designers. Even if you don’t know much about aviation, I think you’ll enjoy James and Bella’s story and the romance and inspiration they find as they pursue their dreams!
Across the Blue will hit the bookshelves very soon! I hope you’ll pre-order your copy and enter the pre-order giveaway at this link. I also hope you’ll plan to join me for the Facebook Live Launch Party on February 22, 8:00pm EST on my Facebook author page. I’ll give you a behind the scene look at the characters, events, and setting. We’ll play some fun games, and there will be some great giveaways! Visit the Facebook event page and click going, and you’ll receive a reminder that day.
Until Next Time – Happy Reading!