Monday, June 3, 2024

Book Tour + #Giveaway: Hatfield 1677 by Laura C. Rader @LauraWriter2B @RABTBookTours

Historical Fiction

Date Published: May 21, 2024

Publisher: Acorn Publishing


Colonist Benjamin Waite, a devoted husband, father, and skilled military scout in King Philip’s War, reluctantly obeys orders to guide an attack against a camp of Algonquian Natives.

After the catastrophic event, Benjamin is burdened with guilt and longs for peace. But the Algonquians, led by the revered sachem Ashpelon, retaliate with vengeance upon Ben’s Massachusetts town of Hatfield, capturing over a dozen colonists, including his pregnant wife Martha and their three young daughters.

Hatfield 1677 is a tale of three interwoven yet diverging journeys of strength and survival: Benjamin, driven by love and remorse to rescue his family; Martha, forced into captivity and desperately striving to protect her children; and Ashpelon, willing to risk everything to ensure the safety and freedom of his people.

Based on the lives of the author’s ancestors, this riveting and unforgettable novel gives voice to three vastly different experiences in North America during a time before the creation of the Declaration of Independence. Then, the land was but a wilderness and a battleground; equality was not yet perceived as self-evident; and liberty and happiness were nothing more than dangerous pursuits.

Interview with Laura C. Rader, author of Hatfield 1677

    Have you read anything that made you think differently about fiction?

    The more widely I read across genres, the more I appreciate the differences and the more my own writing develops and improves.

    How do you select the names of your characters?

    For my historical fiction, I keep the real names of the real people, but I will use a nickname or an invented name to avoid confusing the reader. For example, Martha had a daughter named Martha, but I changed the daughter’s name in my novel to the nickname, Mattie.

    Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find?

    Yes! Sometimes I’ll write a scene and a family anecdote will come to me, or something a friend has said or done. So my family and friends may see themselves in a few scenes.

    What was your hardest scene to write?

    The final confrontation between Benjamin and Ashpelon. I knew it was a pivotal scene and I struggled to get it right.

    Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?

    So far, Hatfield 1677 and my current work, Echoes, were written as stand alones. But that could always change.

    What were your goals and intentions in this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them?

    My intent was to remain true to the historical facts without imposing the bias of those who recorded it or a present-day bias, and portray Native Americans honestly and respectfully, and so I hired a sensitivity reader and also took an online course from Sarah Elizabeth Sawyer— Fiction Writing: American Indians. I wanted the battles and wilderness survival to be realistic and gripping. Finally, I wanted my characters to have depth and for the reader to care about them.

    What inspired you to write Hatfield 1677?

    I am an amateur genealogist, and discovered the story of the attack on Hatfield in town records on microfiche in a California library about thirty years ago. I also discovered that Benjamin and Martha Waite were my 9th great grandparents. The story stuck with me until I finally wrote it down.

    Can you tell us a little bit about any books you have planned for the future?

    I am hoping to publish Echoes, historical fiction based on the life of Paul Tietjens, the composer of the score for the 1903 Broadway Musical of The Wizard of Oz.

    Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in Hatfield 1677?

    Almost all of them were based on real people. Benjamin and Martha Waite were my 9th great grandparents. They were Puritans, Ben was a trapper and military scout, and Martha came from a well-to-do Springfield family. Their friends Stephen and Hannah were likely their friends in real life. Quinten Stockwell wrote a diary of his captivity, which I relied on in my research.

    What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

    Bringing to life a time, place and people who no longer exist, but who now seem very real on the page.   

About the Author

Laura C. Rader earned a BA in psychology from San Diego State University, where she minored in history and took creative writing and literature classes. She drew on those passions in her thirty-year career as a history and English teacher of elementary and middle school students. Now, a full-time historical fiction writer, Laura also enjoys studying genealogy, attending neighborhood book club meetings, taking forest walks with her Rough Collie, and visiting her adult daughter in Brooklyn. Originally from California, Laura lives twenty miles north of  Raleigh, North Carolina.  Hatfield 1677 is a work of historical fiction inspired by a story Laura discovered about her ninth great-grandparents while researching her family’s genealogy.


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Sherry said...

Looks like a interesting book.

bn100 said...