Jennifer Hudson Taylor is the author of historical and contemporary Christian fiction set in Europe and the Carolinas. Her fiction has won awards in the American Christian Fiction Writers' Genesis Contest. Her debut novel, Highland Blessings, was released in May 2010. Other works have appeared in national publications, such as Guideposts, Heritage Quest Magazine, Everton’s Genealogical Publishers, and The Military Trader. Jennifer graduated from Elon University with a B.A. in Journalism. When she isn't writing, Jennifer enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, genealogy, and reading. She resides with her husband and daughter in the Charlotte area of NC. Jennifer's fiction is represented by Literary Agent, Terry Burns with Hartline Literary Agency.
released May 2010
Highland warrior Bryce MacPhearson kidnaps Akira MacKenzie on her wedding day to honor a promise he made to his dying father. When he forces Akira to wed him, hoping to end a half-century feud between their clans, she struggles to overcome her anger and resentment. . .Yet her strength in the Lord becomes a witness to Bryce. But there is a traitor in their midst . . . and murder is the ultimate weapon.
Narelle: In Highland Blessings, Bryce and Akira are from different Scottish clans who have been at war for half a century. What unique struggles and challenges did Bryce and Akira face as newlyweds in Highland Blessings?
Jennifer: His clan didn’t want to accept her and neither Bryce nor Akira felt they could trust each other. Some clan members remembered family who had been killed by the other clan in times of war and it was hard for them to let those actions go without trying to avenge them.
Narelle: What do you find most fascinating about 15th Century Scotland?
Jennifer: How they could build these elaborate castles with so little technology and tools like we have today.
Narelle: Please share with us a few of your research tips. Have you visited the Scottish Highlands?
Jennifer: Actually, I have not visited the Scottish Highlands, but that is one of my goals. It’s also a lifetime dream. I enjoyed taking lots of virtual tours of Scotland and medieval castles. I’ve read lots of Scottish history books, and I belong to several Scottish clans for mine and my husband’s ancestral surnames.
Narelle: Do many real life historical figures play a role in Highland Blessings?
Jennifer: None on purpose, but I’ve had several people who know me well, say that Akira reminds them of me. She does have my Scots-Irish temper. We have lots of red hair in my family, but I only have reddish highlights.
Narelle: Did the church influence the faith and lives of your characters in Highland Blessings?
Jennifer: Yes, in 1473 very few people owned a Bible. Only a few monks had handwritten copies of texts that had been passed down from generation to generation. As a result, the first Bibles were written in Latin, even though the original texts were in Greek and Arabic. In Highland Blessings, the MacKenzies’ vicar had a copy, but the MacPhearsons’ vicar did not. Therefore, Akira was more familiar with what the Bible said than was Bryce. They went to chapel inside the castle or the village kirk, which is another word for church.
Narelle: Highland Blessings is the first book in your Blessings Series. Please tell us about your upcoming releases.
Jennifer: My next release in the Blessings Series is Highland Sanctuary.
Releases October 2011
Gavin MacKenzie is hired to restore the ancient Castle of Braigh. He discovers a hidden village of outcasts that have created their own private sanctuary from the world. Among them is Serena Boyd, a mysterious and comely lass who captures Gavin’s heart. The villagers have an intriguing secret, while Serena harbors a deadly past that could destroy her future. When a fierce enemy launches an attack against them, greed leads to bitter betrayal. As Gavin prepares a defense, the villagers unite in a bold act of faith, showing how God’s love is more powerful than any human force on earth.
Jennifer, thanks for joining us today. I’m looking forward to reading Highland Blessings. Christine Lindsay posted a review of Highland Blessings on June 14. You can read Christine’s review here.
To learn more about Jennifer Hudson Taylor and her books, please visit her website.
Narelle Atkins writes contemporary inspirational romance. She resides in Canberra, Australia with her husband and children. To learn more about Narelle, please visit her website.