The Clandestine Machines of War

In the last post I talked about the United Kingdom during the Blitz. In this post, I'll talk about other influences on the content of The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle. For example, a short-wave radio plays a major role: When Father brought a short-wave wireless home a couple of weeks before leaving, he'd shown it only to Kat. "Here, Kitty. Have a look. I knew you'd be interested. Just … [Read more...]

The Blitz: “Keep Calm And Carry On”

In the previous post on the backstory behind The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle, I introduced the opening of World War 2 in Great Britain. This week, we'll review the early days of the war. In The Charmed Children, Kat and her brother and sister are shipped out of London, as were many children, in an attempt to escape the Blitz in the fall of 1940: The cab splashed through deep puddles … [Read more...]

England’s Entry Into World War 2

This is the first in my series on the backstory and other fun stuff about The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle. In The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle, Kat Bateson faces change in the early days of World War 2: The pieces that made up Katherine Bateson’s world were scattered across the landscape and over the ocean, far and wide, blown about by the winds of war. Kat herself felt like … [Read more...]

The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle – Preview

My next novel, The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle (out from Viking 3/15/16), is a middle grade mystery that's part fantasy, part historical fiction. It's set in Scotland in 1940, although it also contains a parallel story in a much earlier timeline. I thought it would be fun to run a series of blog posts on both the historical context of the novel, and the setting itself, as well as some of … [Read more...]