Very exciting news!

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With gratitude to Hashem, my long-delayed second volume about young couple Jakob DeJonghe and Rachel Roggenfelder is scheduled for release on 4 June, Saturday. It should’ve released at least a year ago, but what’s done is done. I let myself get stuck in an unhealthy holding pattern because I was so humiliated and upset over my complete lack of sales.

I like to have release dates which are important to my characters (birthdays, anniversaries, historical events, etc.), and luckily, I found a really good one for this. 4 June 1946 is the date Jakob and Rachel reunite after 13 months apart. That day was Erev Shavuot in 1946, though Shavuot is 11–13 June this year. We’re still in the thick of counting the Omer, which is my favoritest mitzvah. Counting the Omer is so, so special to me, particularly since I let myself fall away from it in 2005 and didn’t come back for several years. I was so depressed over being a family of one and feeling so ignored by the local Jewish community. I felt like Dante waking up in the Wood of Error, no idea how he got there or lost the way so badly.

I’m extremely superstitious about auspicious and inauspicious dates (by my personal reference of what constitutes a lucky vs. unlucky date). For example, in hindsight, I think I had so many problems healing my third lobe piercings because I got them done on the anniversary of the Nazi invasion of Hungary. And while my navel seems to be healing pretty nicely at the 6-month mark, I never would’ve gotten it done on 24 November had I known that was Freddie Mercury’s Jahrzeit (death anniversary). As I’ve said, I’m a lowercase skeptic, not a rigid uppercase Skeptic.

Synopsis:

Jakob thinks coming to America and reuniting with his beautiful Rachel is a dream come true, but he soon realizes America’s streets aren’t lined with gold and that people who don’t quite fit in aren’t always treated very nicely. As he’s struggling to adjust to life in America, Rachel struggles with insecurities over how her husband is little more than a stranger. And just when it seems her heart is no longer in turmoil, a new struggle arises—finding a midwife in a country where hospital birth has become the norm. Her search for a midwife isn’t helped by the conformist young wives’ social club she’s been roped into joining, full of women who already look down on her for keeping her surname, wanting to go to college, and enjoying sex.

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By my standards, it’s really short (all of 104K), and a much quieter, more intimate storyline than my usual wont. There’s no huge ensemble cast or grand, epic, sweeping story arc. Several of my Atlantic City characters briefly appear or are mentioned, but this isn’t their story. Even the Brandts are secondary characters, not leading characters in their own right. This is a story about one young couple, not all of their friends and acquaintances.

There are a number of sex scenes, many of which I featured here when the Horny Hump Day bloghop was still running. There’s also a strong promotion of natural childbirth and evidence-based prenatal care (which naturally flows from Jakob and Rachel’s Dutch values), so this isn’t the book for you if you cheerlead for hospital birth and only hospital birth, lots of drugs, and never questioning the doctor about anything. I always promote natural childbirth and midwifery in my books, in a way which naturally flows with the pre-existing storylines and characters. It’s just how things are done in most of my characters’ native cultures.

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I do have plans for further volumes about Jakob and Rachel in the Fifties and Sixties, with storylines about their going to college, their quest to give their daughter a real bat mitzvah before that was the norm, and the rubella epidemic of 1964. In the concluding volume in 1981, they’ll finally discover what happened to Jaap’s baby sister Emilia when she disappeared in 1940.

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11 comments on “Very exciting news!

  1. shanjeniah says:

    I’m excited to read it! Love the cover.

    Although all of my children ended up being born in hospitals, with one catastrophic and two amazing if frightening results, I am a firm believer in midwifery – to the point where we drove 80 miles each way to visit Jeremiah’s midwife, when we lived in Montana. I also labored for over 27 hours with no pain medication before it became clear that my 10 pound plus son was not going to make his arrival naturally.

    My babies all had big heads, right from the start!

    Like

    • Carrie-Anne says:

      I’m definitely all about choices in childbirth! I’d never have a character birthing at home if there are legit risk factors involved, and some of my characters just prefer the hospital experience (with or without drugs).

      Liked by 1 person

      • shanjeniah says:

        Healthy babies are the goal. There are lots of ways to get there. I still support homebirths and midwives. and the availability of medical support, too.

        For myself, I feel no failure for my two Cesarean births. They were the beginnings of my relationships with two of my favoritest humans! =)

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Congratulations! This is the right time for this book. I wish you much success.

    Like

  3. Ed Hoornaert says:

    Congratulations on the release!

    Like

  4. Chrys Fey says:

    Congratulations!!!! I am so happy for you. That cover is great. I love the blues and the silhouette of the couple with the city in the background, So much fun. It sounds really good, too. Is the the sequel to “And Jakob Flew the Fiend Away”? I really want to read this one coming out soon, but I suppose i have to read book one first, huh?

    Like

    • Carrie-Anne says:

      Thanks! Yes, it’s the sequel, and it does help to have read the first book. Though it’s set in America instead of The Netherlands, there are still references to characters and events from the last book.

      Like

  5. Arlee Bird says:

    Sounds great! I wish you well.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

    Like

  6. The cover is amazing. I also consider numbers and dates.

    Like

  7. […] those of you who missed Monday’s post, my long-delayed second volume about Jakob DeJonghe and Rachel Roggenfelder is scheduled to release […]

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