Cinnamon bread. Coffee. MiMi biscuits. All part of my childhood. My grandparents were immigrants from Sweden and although I never met my grandfather, my grandmother filled her home with Swedish traditions.
When I began to write this young adult series, my Swedish roots took hold and called out to be written into Waiting for Dusk. I grew up hearing stories about my grandmother and grandfather coming to America, separately, and meeting here. My grandmother found a job working as a maid in a mansion where the lady of the house helped her learn English. My grandfather eventually opened a grocery store.
The character of Carl Johansson is based on this brave man who came to the U.S. at the age of sixteen. Carl travels farther than my grandfather ever did, ending up at the Grand Canyon back in 1927. He meets his wife in an unusual way—through time travel. She continues his Swedish traditions by filling the kitchen with wonderful scents. Katie, my main character, ends up back in time and that kitchen is one she grows to love.
The kids in our family had a running joke that our mothers swore they didn’t know the language until it was Christmas or they wanted to talk without us knowing what they said. We learned a few words along the way but like all children, we didn’t want lessons. Now we wished we paid attention! So, of course, I had to include a few words in my novel and have Katie learn their meanings.
Waiting for Dusk is more than a Swedish lesson. The story revolves around a teenage girl living in the modern world who learns what’s important in life. She has some growing up to do and by the end of the series becomes her own woman. Along the way she learns to cherish friends and family, knowing they are the ones who will always be there for her. She meets her true love and they face more problems than the typical teen couple. Time being one of them.
I never had the privilege of knowing my grandfather but I hope my tribute to him bodes well. In honor of both grandparents, I hold my Swedish coffee high in the air, as a toast. Waiting for Dusk is for you both.
Waiting for Dusk is the first of the series. Call of the Canyon continues the story and ends with Stealing Time. Broken Dreams is a prequel to the series, following the lives of two girls Katie meets at the canyon. Taking Chances is a free short story from Drew’s perspective.
Here are links to books –
Amazon – http://bit.ly/waitingfordusk
Amazon – FREE short story – Taking Chances http://amzn.to/1KxA0QL
Amazon – Broken Dreams – http://amzn.to/1J7qwLP
Amazon – Call of the Canyon http://amzn.to/1frzv1Q
Amazon – Stealing Time http://amzn.to/1J6CHuC