Bordertown Gypsy is the first novel I wrote for The River Series and I have a confession to make about it: In writing this story, I broke some of the rules.
They (that is, people who know a thing or two about publishing fictional novels) told me there are two things that should absolutely never be included in a book- rape and the abuse of a child. They warned me that people won’t read a book that contains either of these things because these things are despicable, vile, shameful, wicked.
But, unfortunately, we live in a world where these horrific things happen. We know they do, but I think most of us would never seek to instigate or condone such actions. But we don’t really want to talk about them either. So, it’s easy to say that we shouldn’t write about these things, because it’s more comfortable for us all if we pretend they don’t happen.
Only, in my small sub-world, there lives a group of amazing people. They are foster and adoptive parents, social workers, attorneys ad litem, therapists, court appointed special advocates (or CASAs, for short), judges, and others. This brave group of ordinary individuals does an extraordinary thing- they put orphans in families, they believe a child’s future can be different than their past, they fight to protect and nurture children who have experienced trauma. The extent of the miracles they perform is too exhaustive to write about here in this short preface but, to put it bluntly, they stand between abusers and those they abuse, between neglecters and those they neglect so that the status quo changes for the betterment of the next generation.
You simply cannot write a story about these amazing people without including some of the details about the children for which they sacrifice their own lives every day. But it’s not necessary to make the details highly graphic.
And that’s what brings me to Bordertown Gypsy.
Within the pages of this book, is a tale of family, love, loss, grief, depression, bravery, shame, and so much more. I’ve done my best to portray any events which may be shocking to my audience in as mildly-shocking a way as possible. That is, I did not include certain details in order to shock but, rather, to convey what is happening in the characters’ lives. Certain words which may be shocking have been omitted or limited in frequency or replaced with euphemisms. Some events are implied, but with as few details as possible. Although I consider this to be a novel written from a Christian perspective, I will warn that it should be read by any child under the age of 13 only after their parent has given their approval.
God put this story on my heart in March 2016. While I slept in my bed one night, He took me to a river. There, a scene unfolded before me, not something of my own imagination, but something that God placed there like a seed, planted in my mind. From there, God grew the roots and watered the sprout until it blossomed into something I love, a work of merit, a flower of beauty and intricacy. I wrote what I know and researched further so I could write what I didn’t. In so many ways, however, it wasn’t me writing it at all. God authored it; He only allowed me to type each word. I feel honored that He would give me something so precious.
And let me say it once more. This story came from God. Every part of it, He wrote on my mind, so I could translate it onto the pages. From the start of that process, I fell in love with this story of redemption, forgiveness, power through the Holy Spirit, love, family, history, beauty. I hope you, too, will enjoy this tale.
Two more side notes as you read Bordertown Gypsy.
The asterisk (*) denotes nonfiction characters. These people really lived during this time period and were engaged in activities similar to those in which they are portrayed in this book. However, their specific involvement in this book is totally fictionalized.
At various points throughout the eBook, I have included links to YouTube videos. These are there simply to enhance your experience with this fictional story and to provide entertainment. The copyrights to the videos and music belong solely to their owners, and they are not owned in any way by myself, nor are those owners in any way endorsing me or my book.
Check out the next novel in The River Series, Lynchtown Wolf, scheduled to release March 2018.