Heroine Interview from The Innocent by Ann H. Gabhart with a Giveaway

» Posted on Jul 29, 2015 in Blog | Comments Off on Heroine Interview from The Innocent by Ann H. Gabhart with a Giveaway

This week I’m hosting Ann H. Gabhart with The Innocent (worldwide), and Danica Favorite with The Lawman’s Redemption (worldwide). If you want to enter the drawings for the books, please leave a comment on your post with your email address. I will not enter you without an email address (my way to contact you if you win). If you don’t want to leave an email address, another way you can enter is to email me at margaretdaley@gmail.com. The drawings end Sunday (August 2nd) evening.


The Innocent


Interview with the heroine from The Innocent by Ann H. Gabhart


1. Carlyn Kearney, tell me the most interesting thing about you.

I’ve never had anyone ask me such a question. My father, who is a preacher, taught me it is prideful to talk about myself and thus he would say it is sinful for me to even consider an answer. But he’s far away in Texas and I don’t think the Lord will really mind me answering your question. The townspeople would probably say the most interesting thing about me is that I cling to being married even though I haven’t heard from my soldier husband for two years. He marched away with the Union Army, but he promised to return. My heart wants to continue to hope. However, I think the most interesting thing about me is my faithful dog, Asher. I don’t think I could have retained my sanity in these last years without him.

2. What do you do for fun?

There isn’t much time for fun in my life. Even before I went to the Shaker village, I spent most of my days working to survive. That is not easy when one has no money and must do her best to live off the land. But days come in every season when one simply has to surrender to the beauty of nature and walk in the woods. In winter, I marvel at the snow drifts. In spring, I seek out wildflowers along the creek in the woods, and come summer, I strip off my shoes and stockings to wade in that creek. Then when the trees turn in the fall, I enjoy shuffling through the fallen leaves searching for hickory nuts for the winter. Sometimes one has to combine work with fun.

3. What do you put off doing because you dread it?

I don’t put off doing laundry often, but it is an onerous chore I dread. I have to fill the big iron kettle out in the yard with water from the rain barrel or if it’s dry, haul water up from the spring. Then I have to build a fire under the kettle to heat the water. That takes a while, but I can slice up the lye soap in the water and add the clothes while it’s heating. I have to stir the clothes with a large wooden paddle, but some of them still need extra scrubbing that is hard on my hands. Washing clothes is an all day job and ironing them the next day is just as tiresome.

4. What are you afraid of most in life?

I fear I will never see my dear husband again in this life. That is my greatest fear. He was such a wonderful man and we thought we had a joyful future ahead. Our future was stolen from us by the War Between the States. That’s a sorrowful fear, but I also fear being homeless. What does a woman like me do when she loses everything and has no family nearby to take her in?

5. What do you want out of life?

I always wanted my own family. A husband who loved me and children around my supper table. My wants were simple, but things don’t always work out as one hopes. When I lost my home, I had to join the Shakers. Not because I believed as they did, but because I needed a roof over my head and a table to put my feet under when it was mealtime. I don’t mind working, so it seemed a fair trade. My labor for my keep. But nothing is ever as easy or simple as we think, even if the Shakers do claim to want nothing but a simple life. My mother was forever telling me to pray no matter what the situation. If life seemed hard or bad things happened, she would say to pray anyway. It took me a while to realize the wisdom of her advice and to realize the Lord is really there listening and helping in ways I cannot always understand.

6. What is the most important thing to you?

Hope. To have hope that life will get better for me. Hope is such an important part of life. Without it, a person can despair. I have often teetered on that despairing edge, but somehow the Lord always gifted me, at those moments, with reason for hope. What are some of those gifts, you might ask? My dog, Asher, for one. After Ambrose marched away with the Union Army, Asher came to my house and the loneliness that had threatened to overwhelm me was eased.

7. Do you read? If so, what is your favorite type of book to read?

I love to read, but books are hard to come by in my life. I do have my mother’s Bible and it has always been a great comfort to me, not only because of the Scripture lessons but because reading it makes me feel my mother’s presence. I also enjoy reading stories of love and courage when such a book happens my way. While with the Shakers, I am unable to read such frivolous books. They only allow me to read the Bible and their Shaker books about their Mother Ann and how to be a proper Shaker. Those last are definitely not my favorite books.

8. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I would change being penniless. While money is far from the most important thing in one’s life, it is very difficult having none. Desperation can shove one into some difficult corners.

9. Do you have a pet? If so, what is it and why that pet?

I don’t think of Asher as a pet. He is my friend. Asher is a large black and gray dog of undetermined breed that appeared at my house in the winter. He was very thin and had an injured foot. I guessed that he might have been caught in one of those awful traps men use to catch fur bearing animals. In search of warmth, he was curled up near the ash pile dumped from my stove the day before. When he raised his head to look at me, I knew at once that inside that dog body was a great heart. I led him into my kitchen where I nursed him back to health. I have been repaid time and again for my efforts. It was a great sorrow for me when the Shakers said I would not be able to keep Asher with me when I moved into their village. But even then, Asher proved to be a faithful companion and a great help.

10. If you could travel back in time, where would you go and why?

I would travel back in time to before the War Between the States when Ambrose and I were newlyweds with all good things before us. Oh, to be held in his arms once more. But life goes on and a person can’t change what has happened. Now I must look to the future, remember my mother’s advice to pray whatever the circumstance and give thanks for whatever good things the Lord has in store for me in the days to come.

Check out The Innocent on Amazon