Our Latest Winner!

drum rollDrum roll, please! Our winner is Ginger Solomon. She won a choice of one of Carole Brown’s books. Congratulations Ginger!

For a chance to win Rachel Muller’s WWII novel, comment here.

And don’t miss our January posts on a healthy new year. Everyone who comments on a Monday or Friday post will be entered in our first $25 gift card drawing held at the end of February…

3 Questions Wednesday with Rachel Muller

Rachel Muller_Headshot (1)
Today we welcome author Rachel Muller to 3 Questions Wednesday. Glad you could join us Rachel.

First question, Rachel.  Which author would you never get tired of, and why?

Rachel: Oooh, playing favorites…what a question to start off with! I have very much enjoyed reading Lori Wick books. I always seem to receive some level of blessing or spiritual encouragement when reading her beautiful works, whether it be a matter of the heart, in the home, or on the mission field. She has hit the mark with any of those scenarios.

I love books that encourage! But there needs to be a bad guy or gal, doesn’t there? Who is your favorite fictional villain?

Rachel: This is a fun question, because I love reading about an amazingly crooked villain! When talking books, I love reading stories with exceptional spies that add an unexpected twist to the book’s plot.
In my most recent read, I think Kate Breslin created a lovable villain/hero in her novel, For Such a Time.
However, if the word“fictional” remains opens, by far, Loki, from the Marvel movies, Thor and The Avengers remains my all-time favorite bad guy.

You can find lots of “good” villains in comic books. 🙂  Last question. What project are you currently working on?

Rachel: I just wrapped up the loose ends on my 2nd novel in the Love & War Series, Maggie’s Mission. This follow-up story to my debut novel, Letters from Grace, focuses primarily on Maggie Johnson, an Army nurse and lieutenant who has been ordered to the front lines on German territory…

While trying to prevent a war from breaking out within her own tent in Germany, Army nurse, Lieutenant Maggie Johnson, is just trying to do her job—save lives. But when the field hospital is directly bombed, it’s Maggie’s life who needs saving instead. In the midst of her struggle, a ruggedly handsome soldier comes to her aid and resembles the face of a man she once loved—a man who is dead.
Is war playing mind games with her, or is she facing the ghosts of her past?

Readers can find Maggie’s Mission and Letters from Grace on Amazon.com in paperback or Kindle format.

Thanks so much for dropping by, Rachel! If you’d like a chance to win a Kindle version of Maggie’s Mission, please leave a comment.

Letters from GraceLetters from Grace
Is loving a man in uniform worth the risk? Scarred from the death of her fiancé in World War II, Grace Campbell must learn to love again. Lieutenant Luke Brady could make falling in love easy…except he’s going to war. There’s one thing that can keep a thread tied between them—letters. But the suave Dr. William Keller enchants Grace with his charm and proposes marriage. She must choose between them. Will she settle for comfort and safety or risk losing everything on the Normandy beaches?

Rachel writes beneath the belly of B-29 Superfortress, one of the many inspirations radiating from her World War II-themed office. Her debut novel, Letters from Grace, released September, 2014, and became an Amazon Top 100 Best Seller. She resides in Central Maryland with her husband and four children. Readers can learn more about Rachel at http://www.racheldmuller.com or find her on Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, and Goodreads.

 

The Flying Pioneers by Rachel Muller

WWI Air WarIt was said to be the “war to end all wars,” however, World War I only provided the fuel to ignite the world into hostile circumstances. 100 years later, we look back on the world’s history and the horrific slaughter on mankind through trench warfare, tank battalions, and the brand new contraption just taking the world by storm—the aeroplane.

In just 100 years the world has quickly developed and improved in aerodynamics. From the Wright Brothers’ first flight in 1903 to today’s manless flying machines, architects and mechanics have greatly influenced the air and space market. But how did flying evolve into what is has become today? Well, believe it or not, it all started with World War I…

Just prior to the war, England’s air fleet consisted of only 33 planes. Most of these early flying machines were made of paper, bamboo or poplar wood, and bicycle tires. Canvas skins were later used because of its durability over paper. However, Germany advanced in the field of aerodynamics and quickly developed their own effective planes that were more durable, could carry metal bodies instead of paper or canvas, and were faster than the Royal Flying Corps’ own planes.

When reconnaissance flights began, pilots were also instructed to take down Germany’s 170 balloon observation crafts. The pilots found while performing their duties they were also able to drop small bombs from the cockpit onto the enemy’s line with little threat to the pilot and the aircraft. It caused significant damage to the enemy in which they had little to no time to react. In no time at all, guns were mounted to the fuselage and synchronized with the front propeller, thus thrusting the opposing sides into a new kind of war—an air war.Bomb Dropping

Fresh and young pilots entering the RFC (some only 16 or 17 years of age) were thrown into pilot training almost immediately. Most WWI veteran pilots recorded that upon entering their quarters they were handed a pilot’s handbook and the joystick. Before the invention of simulators, a young pilot’s training was on-the-job. Sadly, over 15,000 planes and some 7,000 pilots lost their lives in training alone. By 1917, the life expectancy of a pilot was only 11 days.

The pioneers of flying endured harsh flying conditions. Due to little experiment on altitudes and air pressure, pilots made the half hour climb to 20,000 feet to find the altitude a frigid tormentor. Oxygen was sparse to none at all and the oxygen mask had not yet come into existence. Many suffered frostbite from the extreme temperatures, and air sickness due to the lack of oxygen in the blood. It was an excruciating experience for many.

If a pilot was lucky enough to live two weeks and shot down a total of 5 enemy planes, he was deemed a Flying Ace and decorated for his bravery in the skies. But most pilots never received the recognition they deserved. England’s laws prevented an Ace’s name and photo from being published in the newspapers, but when the law was lifted, a pilot, whose name did appear in the papers, became one not so popular with his peers. The English pilots believed they were a team and did not look for self-glory as the German’s had.

After the end of the first world war, people around the globe were ready to dismiss everything associated with war. The price had been too high for many. Soon pilots and their aircraft were demobilized. Many pilots were out of work and rejected from entering the army. But then something promising happened, and it was something that was catching around the globe. In 1918, the first successful airmail trip was made and inaugurated, introducing the world to the possibilities of air travel.

Since then, man’s dream of flying has become a reality and our technology continues to grow at an amazing pace, expanding our world to the limits of our imagination.

Thanks so much, Rachel, for finishing out our month of World War I…

Rachel Muller_HeadshotObsessed with World War II since the tender age of 17, Rachel Muller has been studying The Greatest Generation for 13 years and composing stories of love and war for nearly three years. After taking time to start and raise a family she has now turned her to passion—writing WWII fiction.

Her first book in her Love and War Series, Letters From Grace, won a Top 28 spot in the Harlequin/Mills & Boon So You Think You Can Write Contest (2012) where it finaled as the only historical romance in their Love Inspired line. Since then she has concentrated on re-writes and is now under review by literary agents. You can learn more about Rachel at www.racheldmuller.com or find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.