Guest Author: Maggie Mooha and In the Eye of the Beholder

I love connecting with authors in writers groups on social media, but every now and then I’ll meet an author in an unexpected place. Historical romance author Maggie Mooha is a fellow musician and graduate of Illinois State University, and on our Facebook group she recently announced the release of her new novel. A mutual friend assured me that Maggie’s stories are wonderful, so I contacted her and asked her to share the story behind this book. Please welcome Maggie!

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I know this sounds hokey, but the idea for this book literally came to me in a dream. Just before I woke up, I saw two women in Victorian dress and a man behind them with the cap some of the troops wore in the Crimean War. Somehow, I knew that the women were sisters, so I got the idea that they were rivals for this man. From that germ of an idea came In the Eye of the Beholder, my third book.

All my novels incorporate historical figures and true events. So far, the events have been revolution or war. I joke with my sister that I never got over our dad’s PTSD. He was in WWII and Patton’s Airborne division, climbing the cliffs on Omaha Beach on D-Day and was wounded twice, finally ending up in a German POW camp where they had no anesthetic for wounded prisoners. Unlike a lot of men of that era, he could talk about his experiences. I suppose those war stories inspired my love of history and the triumph of the human spirit over adversity. Each of my books, in its own way, is the story of the growth and triumph.

My books are considered historical romance, and I know that many people look askance at romance novels. I believe they can be more than just a guilty pleasure. I like to think of my novels as love stories as well as romances. Romance fades quickly; love endures. Once one adds in the sweep of history, the story takes on depth and weight and hopefully becomes compelling and worth the reader’s time.

Blurb:

THE TRUE BEAUTY

Intellectual, frank, and outspoken, Eleanor Sherbrook is everything a Victorian lady should not be. Her sister Julia is a stunning beauty who can have anyone she sets her sights on – and she sets them on the man Eleanor loves: the gallant and handsome Lieutenant Joshua Griffiths Wentworth.

Brokenhearted, Eleanor leaves England to become a nurse at the infamous British Army hospital in Scutari, Turkey near where Joshua is mired in war. As a member of the ill-fated Light Brigade, he and his comrades make the charge into the Valley of Death.

Thrown together, and forced to face cruelty and loss in a war-torn land, Eleanor and Joshua’s bond grows deeper every day. The folly and glory of the Crimean War forever changes them as they struggle to find a love strong enough to emerge from the ashes of their shared ordeal.

Bio:
Maggie began her career by writing a series of brilliant screenplays and teleplays which remain, stubbornly, unproduced. After taking yet another university extension course in screenwriting, she learned the most valuable lesson of her writing career: No one wants a screenplay from a screenwriter over 40 (maybe it was over 50 – anyway, too old). Books, however, can be written by anyone. I mean, who knows how old you are?

It took four years to give birth to the first one (novel, that is), but how to know if it is really as dazzling or even marketable as one thinks it is. So, after finally finishing Elizabeth in the New World, to answer that question for herself at least, she set about finding “publishers who take unsolicited manuscripts.” (It’s a thing – really.) One year and one large spreadsheet filled with “no, no, no, no, thank you, but no” later, it happened. Two, count them, TWO publishers wanted it in the same week. The rest is history, or really, historical fiction, which is what she writes. (Did I mention the Star Trek novel she wrote in the 80’s? Oh, never mind, got an agent, but didn’t get published.)

She also climbed Kilimanjaro, stood on The Great Wall of China, walked under Eiffel Tower in Paris and stood with Solidarity as they called an end to a strike in Warsaw. She also has a grown son, a very old dog and likes to cook. But can she write? Well, read some of her stuff and you decide.

You can purchase In the Eye of the Beholder at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Apple, Boroughs Publishing, and Smashwords.

You can find Maggie at her website and on Facebook, Amazon, Goodreads, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, and the Boroughs Publishing Group website.

About Patricia Kiyono

During her first career, Patricia Kiyono taught elementary music, computer classes, elementary classrooms, and junior high social studies. She now teaches music education at the university level. She lives in southwest Michigan with her husband, not far from her five children, nine grandchildren (so far), and great-granddaughters. Current interests, aside from writing, include sewing, crocheting, scrapbooking, and music. A love of travel and an interest in faraway people inspires her to create stories about different cultures. Check out her sweet historical contemporary romances at her Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Patricia-Kiyono/e/B0067PSM5C/
This entry was posted in author interview, authors, Guest author, Guest author post, historical, inspiration, Patricia Kiyono, romance and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to Guest Author: Maggie Mooha and In the Eye of the Beholder

  1. Jeff Salter says:

    First of all, I thank your dad for his military service. I think it’s great that (A) he could speak about some of his service experiences, and (B) was able to share them with family, and (C) that y’all were willing to listen.
    Next, wow… you sure have traveled a lot! In an earlier time — with less international friction — I would have enjoyed visiting Paris. Now? Maybe not (for me, anyway).
    Interesting concept for your novel — this takes sibling rivalry to a new level.

    Liked by 1 person

    • mmooha says:

      Thanks for your comment. My dad is never far from my mind. As for sibling rivalry, it can be pretty intense. I have traveled a lot and wish I could do so again. We’ll see how things shake out. Thanks again for your comments.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Welcome, Maggie! I love the inspired-by-a-dream idea and how war changes everyone is a wonderful theme, one often overlooked in novels where romance is the main theme.
    It is incredibly hard to get a screenplay or a stageplay read at all, at least, an unagented one. (They have no idea what they are missing from us, huh?)
    I admire your worldwide experiences and wish you all the best in your writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • mmooha says:

      Hi, Tonette. Yes, it’s uphill all the way when it comes to anything to do with the arts whether it is writing, music, visual arts, dance, whatever. Still, we keep at it because it is so satisfying on so many levels. Thanks for your kind words.

      Like

  3. Alicia Dean says:

    Fascinating! I love that your story was inspired by a dream. I hear about that happening to authors, but it has never happened to me. So far. Congrats on the release. Sounds like a fabulous book!

    Liked by 1 person

    • mmooha says:

      Thanks, Alicia. This is the only time a dream has had anything to do with anything, so I’m not counting on it happening again. LOL!

      Like

  4. Laurie Ryan says:

    First, many thanks to your father for his service. It sounds like he endured a lot. The story sounds interesting and well-thought out, historically. What a great idea! Best of luck. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • mmooha says:

      Thank you, Laurie. My dad was in combat during WWII, and my mom was in the Navy! They used to sing rival songs in the car with us on trips when we were kids. Yes, I do love being as historically accurate as possible to honor the people whose stories I incorporate. I also, frankly, love learning new things. I appreciate you taking the time to comment.

      Like

  5. Kara O'Neal says:

    I thank your father very much for his service. He must be an AMAZING person. Also, your book sounds like it’s filled with good tension. I admire authors who can set stories during war time. That must take a lot of research.

    Liked by 1 person

    • mmooha says:

      Thank you, Kara, for your kind words. My dad was an amazing person. It’s interesting how working on historical novels really does expand one’s point of view. I hated doing research as a kid, and now I love it. It’s really fun to learn new things.

      Like

  6. pamelasthibodeaux says:

    What a beautiful cover! I agree, love endures forever 🙂 I’ve had books come in dreams too so this didn’t sound quirky to me at all.
    Good luck and God’s blessings
    PamT

    Liked by 1 person

    • mmooha says:

      Thank you, Pamela. I am not counting on any more dream inspired stories, but you never know! I appreciate you checking in. Glad you liked the cover.

      Like

  7. Elaine Cantrell says:

    Romance fades quickly; love endures. I love that, and it’s so true. Thanks so much for being here today.

    Like

  8. “Eye of the Beholder” sounds like a winner. And getting ideas from a dream is exciting. Best of luck with sales and promotion.

    Like

  9. I’m also the daughter of a WWII Vet, though my dad was more of a back stage actor taking care of loading and cleaning the aircraft for combat missions. He did share some bad memories of the cleaning up operations. Amazing what those men went through. (The same is true for my hubby, a Vietnam Vet.)
    I write historical romance as well, and I’m impressed that you’ve taken on this period in history. The research must have been daunting (and fun). Congratulations on the book!

    Like

    • mmooha says:

      I find history really fascinating and I’m sure I owe that to my dad (and my mom, who was in the Navy during WWII). Good luck with your books. We all have to stick together, right?

      Like

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