Thursday, January 05, 2017

Mark of the King - Post 1 of 2

Mark of the King
Jocelyn Green

Jocelyn Green makes history come alive in ways that cause the reader to rethink what was learned in history class. When I read her books, my eyes are opened to aspects of life that are almost incomprehensible -- the smell of death on a battlefield, the gut-wrenching hunger of a famine, the reality of people who will stop at nothing to get ahead, the cries of those who have gone insane from captivity. But she doesn't stop with the dire realities, her characters demonstrate the American spirit that allows us to overcome even the worst atrocities to live meaningful lives.

The Mark of the King follows the life of Julianne Chevalier, a midwife who is wrongfully imprisoned and is given the 'opportunity' to travel from France to begin populating the new territory of Louisiana, specifically New Orleans. Long before there was a town, she arrives and works to build a life in this new world.

Green creates a story based on historical facts, many not told in our generic history books. She's searched records and journals to find out what really went on in those early days and she's created characters who robustly recreate those humble beginnings.

This book was really hard to put down -- I wasn't interested in taking a break to eat or sleep! It is a fascinating story that left me wanting to find out more about the lives and times of the development of New Orleans. Each of Green's books has had this effect on me -- awakening a renewed love for the early history of our country.

In the next few days I'll post more information about the background of the book and some Q and A's with the author!

Life in This New World Requires More Strength Than She Ever Imagined.
After the death of her client, midwife Julianne Chevalier is imprisoned and branded, marking her as a criminal beyond redemption. Hoping to reunite with her brother, a soldier, she trades her life sentence for exile to the fledgling French colony of Louisiana. The price of her transport, however, is a forced marriage to a fellow convict. New Orleans is nothing like Julianne expects. The settlement is steeped in mud and mosquitoes, and there is no news of her brother, Benjamin. When tragedy strikes, she turns to military officer Marc-Paul Girard for help, but does he know more about her brother than he will admit? With her dreams shattered, Julianne must find her way in this dangerous land, where only grace--and love--can overcome the stigma of the king's mark upon her shoulder.


"The Mark of the King grabbed me from the first scene and wouldn't let me go! The setting is vibrant, unique, and full of fascinating true details about the early French settlement in New Orleans. With arranged marriages, forced immigration, and struggles against starvation, the elements, and warring natives, the story is riveting. A must-read!" Jody Hedlund, Christy Award-winning author

"A page-turner of a tale set against France's early struggles to colonize Louisiana, The Mark of the King bears all the marks of the best historical fiction--rich attention to detail, settings historically accurate and lushly depicted, a complex and layered plot, diverse cultures vividly portrayed, and the ever-present sense of the larger forces of time and place shaping the lives and destinies of characters I came to care about. The unjustly exiled Julianne is a woman to admire and cheer, the soldier Marc-Paul a man of strength and devotion. Lovers of historical fiction will be transported by this beautifully written novel of the early 18th-century frontier." Lori Benton, award-winning author of The Wood's Edge and A Flight of Arrows

Review: "Exquisitely penned, this look at colonial Louisiana is enhanced by Green's attention to detail, creating memorable characters and vivid scenes. . . . Rich with history and redemption, Green's latest is ideal for fans of Lynn Austin or Laura Frantz." RT Book ReviewsVideo:

 Jocelyn Green is the award-winning author of a dozen books, including fiction and nonfiction. A former military wife herself, she offers encouragement and hope to military wives worldwide through her Faith Deployed books and The 5 Love Languages Military Edition, which she co-authored with best-selling author Dr. Gary Chapman. Her Heroines Behind the Lines Civil War novels, inspired by real heroines on America’s home front, are marked by their historical integrity and gritty inspiration. Jocelyn graduated from Taylor University in Upland, Indiana, with a B.A. in English, concentration in writing. She loves Mexican food, Broadway musicals, Toblerone chocolate bars, the color red, and reading on her patio. Jocelyn lives with her husband Rob, two children, and two cats in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Visit her at Connect with her also on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Goodreads.

Thanks to the publisher for offering me a chance to read a pre-publication copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.