The heroine from Ms. Parker’s historical romance is visiting today for a quick chat. Let’s get started…
What is your name, and who are you in your world?
My name is Louisa Mueller and I am a young woman suddenly dependent only on myself.
It’s strange how life turns so abruptly. Give us a visual. What do you look like?
I stand an even five feet tall and have blue eyes. I wear my honey-blonde hair parted in the center and confined in a practical bun.
What time period and location does your story take place?
My story opens in early 1851 when I board the ship in Bremerhaven, The German States, and begin a journey to Elm Ridge, Illinois in America.
That’s certainly a long journey! What’s your goal in this story?
My goal changes early in the story. By the time the ship docks in America, I have two large goals: to learn English, and to eventually own my own business.
Good goals to have. What skill do you have that you’re proud of? Why?
I am a baker’s daughter. I was raised in the rooms above the business, surrounded by all the delicious smells. My father and uncle taught me the trade, and my plum cake is the best my family has ever made.
Sounds delicious. What did you think the first time you saw Hans?
The very first time I saw Hans, on the ship, he was with other young men, one of whom looked enough alike to be a brother, or a twin. Weeks later, when we first had a brief conversation, I was impressed by his mixture of politeness, sincerity, and determination.
What do you normally wear when you leave home?
A lady never leaves the house without wearing a bonnet—even to work in the garden or do the laundry. When I go shopping or do errands, I add leather shoes, either a shawl or my cloak, and gloves to my dress and bonnet.
Neat! I adore bonnets, especially those trimmed with lace. What other character from your book do you think your author should write a book about. Care to tell us why?
My American friend, Polly. She is a talented seamstress, but has a difficult life. I want to see her find happiness.
Thank you so much, Louisa. It’s been a pleasure talking with you.
Blurb for New Dreams:
America beckons with opportunity during the 1850’s.
Louisa Mueller, a baker’s daughter, arrives in Elm Ridge, Illinois with determination to learn English and work as a baker. Since the death of her sweetheart a year ago, she pushes aside thoughts of marriage. However, she’s intrigued by a fellow passenger who tells the most interesting stories.
Desperate for a fresh start, a young thief takes the name Hans Hoffmann when a look-alike passenger dies during the trans-Atlantic passage. Vowing to be an honest man in America, Hans discovers temptation wears many disguises. Will the pair be rewarded as they attempt their new dreams in a strange land?
Hans shook his head. He ignored the stifling air and stepped toward Louisa. “Welcome, Fraulein Mueller. Did you enjoy the lecture?”
“Ja. Danke.” She hid her hands in the folds of her skirt.
“May I be bold and ask you a question?” He waited for her slight nod. “Where are you going after we leave the ship in New Orleans?”
“I travel to join my cousin.” She moistened her lips and shifted her gaze to the floor.
Polite conversation is difficult. He searched for proper phrases among the crude remarks common in the cheap taverns he frequented. “I…I would like to become acquainted. May I speak with you again?”
Raised in a household filled with books, it was only natural that Ellen Parker grew into an avid reader. She turned to writing as a second career and enjoys spinning the type of story which appeals to multiple generations. She encourages her readers to share her work with mother or daughter – or both.
Ellen currently lives in St. Louis. When not guiding characters to “happily ever after” she’s apt to be reading, walking in the neighborhood, or tending her tiny garden. You can find her on the web at www.ellen-parker-writes.com and www.facebook.com/ellenparkerwrites.