Karen’s Killer Book Bench: SHAW POINT COLLECTION #WWI #Inspirational #Historical by Karen Lopez

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WWI Inspirational Historical Fiction


The Shaw Point Collection harkens to the early 1900s with fictional characters who call the town of Chatham, VA home.

In Daisy’s Secret, you’ll meet a young mother whose husband leaves home one day never to return. The household funds dwindle to nothing, and she’s forced to risk a move to Chatham with her young daughter. When the townspeople discover her secret, will they accept the truth or shun her for it?

After the Great War leaves Martha widowed and homeless, an inheritance from her uncle offers a chance to start over. Armed with her faith and the support of Josephine, her best friend, the grief-stricken widow moves to Shaw Point, a farm just outside of Chatham. Will Martha and Josephine receive support from their new community, or will they be forced to make it on their own?

Annie is a shy spinster who lives alone with her ailing mother in Chatham. After a joint kitten rescue between herself and the neighborhood hermit, a cautious courtship begins. Can these two lonely hearts confess their mutual attraction before autumn’s end? Or will winter divide them forever?



WWI Inspirational Historical Fiction

Excerpt from Daisy’s Secret

Chapter One

Hickory Creek, Virginia 1905

Two hours of sleeplessness had passed, consumed by a whirlwind of fretting, tears, and half-hearted prayers for answers. The relentless anguish had now transformed into a potent blend of anger and determination.

He wasn’t coming back. Whether he had abandoned them for good, leaving her and their two-year-old daughter Alice behind, or if he had met a more tragic fate didn’t matter anymore. Daisy had to confront the uncertain future that lay ahead.

Blinking away tears from her red swollen eyes, Daisy focused on the tiny, sparsely furnished room. As dawn broke, a rosy light spilled from the window onto the bare floor.

How many cramped rooms, some without the benefit of a window, have I called home?

She’d insisted on having a window in the newest ‘home’ her husband rented. One he promised would be temporary. Until he found a new job. Another one. As the years of their marriage passed, and especially since Alice’s birth two years ago, his ‘luck’ with employment had dwindled.

Now that it was spring, the paper-thin walls mattered less. The sun would help to heat the room. Perched on a shelf attached to one wall, she used a field stove for cooking. A bed occupied the bulk of the ten by twelve-foot room and down the hall was the one bath the boarding house residents shared.

Daisy gazed at her child, peacefully sleeping, curled up on a twice-folded quilt. She had two days. Two days before the rent was due and even if she paid that, how would she feed them? Tears couldn’t solve the problems.

“Alice deserves better,” she whispered to herself.

Despite the gnawing hunger and sleepless night, today she was determined to take control of her life. If Silas returned next week, he would not find his wife and daughter waiting on the streets, half-starved.

Her trust in her husband had eroded significantly since their first year of marriage. So much so that she had taken to sleeping with her purse inside her nightdress, an insurance against Silas having a change of heart in the dead of night and reclaiming some of the allowance he doled out. A year ago, she had pinned a dollar to the inside of her dress, and she still had that.

I can’t sell dust or cobwebs, but… Her eyes fell on a pair of brass candlesticks. She hadn’t had any candles for them in weeks. Pull yourself together. All you need is your personal effects, clothes, and shoes.

She dragged her travel satchel to the middle of the room and began adding freshly laundered items to those already packed, pressing them in firmly. She placed the candlesticks near the door.

Hesitating, she reached for a tiny silver cup and spoon. These belonged to Alice. A pang of sadness gripped her heart as she turned the gift from her mother over in her hands to see the monogram.

Despite Daisy’s determined efforts to save enough money for a trip to visit, Alice and her maternal grandmother had never met. Her mother had passed away, and the opportunity was lost. These she carefully placed in her suitcase.

Ten minutes later a stack of household goods surrounded the two tall candlesticks. What value were pretty linens or dishes when they had no food to eat or a roof overhead? The real question was, what could she realistically expect to earn?

She glanced at the plain ring on her finger. Did she need it to maintain her respectability in the eyes of a future employer? She twisted it thoughtfully and left it on her finger. With a clearer head she offered another prayer, a calm request for guidance combined with trust in God’s loving kindness.

Finding employment where she could have her two-year-old in tow would be challenging.

But not impossible.

As the sun broke the horizon, Daisy knew the day would soon become busy, especially the washroom at the end of the hall. She knelt beside her still-sleeping daughter and softly called her name as she gently rolled her over. Alice’s tousled hair framed her face like gilded wisps as she smiled up at her mother. “Breffus?”

Daisy had coaxed her hungry child to sleep the night before with a promise of breakfast. Pity for her child’s suffering tinged her answer “Yes, sweet girl. But first, we need to go to the washroom. Then Mommy will get your breakfast all ready for you.”

A pucker formed on Alice’s brow, and her bottom lip pushed into a pout. Before she could protest, Daisy scooped her up and grabbed the towel and clothing she had set on the bed.

“It will only be a minute. Don’t fret. We’ll be back lickety-split.” Daisy rocked the toddler playfully and soothed her with silly sounds, grateful that she had put the oats in the pot of water to soak.

When the mother and daughter left the hall bathroom, a few bleary-eyed tenants were already waiting for their turns. Alice buried her face in her mother’s skirt and refused to walk on her own. “Oh, Alice.” Daisy sighed, picking her up. There was no point in risking a tantrum on the way back to their room.

It didn’t take long for the tantrum to begin once they’d returned to their room. At first, it was just repeated demands for “breffus,” which Daisy tried to pacify by lighting the fire on the field stove.

But the action meant nothing to Alice; she wanted a bowl and a spoon. The child’s pleas escalated into full-blown cries. Poor Daisy couldn’t console the hungry girl or make the porridge cook any faster.

If only I had a cup of milk to quiet her tears.

The ten minutes it took for the breakfast cereal to cook felt like an eternity to Daisy. She was sleep-deprived and worried about their future. Her anger at Silas for leaving them and putting her in this predicament boiled over once again.

At last, she scooped out a spoonful of porridge and added a generous amount of sugar on top. She couldn’t take the sugar with them, so they might as well enjoy it now. To cool it down faster, she splashed a bit of cold water on top and stirred before offering a bite to Alice.

The distressed child struggled to calm down enough to eat. The first spoonful was just a taste, but it did the trick. Alice sat up, her small chest heaving as she caught her breath, and opened her mouth for more. Daisy smiled through the tears that welled in her own eyes.

Alice didn’t need to see her mother’s distress. When the first portion was eaten, Alice looked up with a hint of another impending bout of tears. “More breffus?”

“Yes!” her mother responded promptly as she turned to refill the bowl. By now, the oats had cooled somewhat in the pot, so Daisy only added a spoonful of sugar before sliding next to Alice on the bed and feeding her again. Fortunately, Alice was sated before the pot was empty and Daisy had a bowl too.

The toddler curled into a fetal position on her side and napped while her mother ate.

About Author Karen Lopez

Karen resides in Louisiana. She loves to travel but the Bayou State has always been ‘home’.

Besides travel, her other passions include cooking, reading, and of course writing.

Before becoming a novelist, Karen wrote articles, blogs, and short stories for local periodicals. Now readers around the world enjoy her inspirational fiction.


Links to Karen’s websites, blogs, books, #ad etc.:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3W4gqLf



Special Giveaway: Karen will give away a free month to her mid-tier ($5) monthly Ream Readers subscription. This is where she offer first drafts of her WIP’s and a new short story each month.

Ream is free to join. It is free to follow Karen but subscribers get additional benefits. Use her Linktree link (also below) to go to the Ream page and follow her, then post in the comment, “I’m following.” When she sees your comment, she’ll share the code for a free month on the Gratitude Tier. https://reamstories.com/page/lhf3b2yptr/public

Happy Reading!


Thanks, Karen, for sharing your book with us!

Don’t miss the chance to read this book!

7 thoughts on “Karen’s Killer Book Bench: SHAW POINT COLLECTION #WWI #Inspirational #Historical by Karen Lopez”

  1. Good morning, Karen, and welcome to Karen’s Killer Book Bench. I don’t get the opportunity to read many books that take place during this era, so this will be a treat. So many women were left without their husbands and had to strike out on their own with their children, making their anguish that much harder to deal with. This promises to be a emotional story. Thanks for sharing it with us today.

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