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Diana Lee Johnson
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The War Between the States changed a young Southern gentleman’s life forever. He lost his love, he gave up his home, and he changed his name. Though his family searched for him with little success, the unknown family past of Andrew Hamilton caught up with Hamilton Anderson just when he’d started to live and love again.
Can family secrets rip wounds in the sons as they did in the fathers? Can a second generation make peace with the twisted sins of the first, or did the sins of the father perpetuate and even escalate in the son? If the Hamiltons thought it was already Too Late for Tomorrow, what would they do if Tomorrow Came Early?
On March twenty-third, Andrew returned to the Saunders’ home, extremely weary from the long day. People were leaving Richmond in droves, and horses, mules, carriages and carts were scarce. He had hidden his own horse in the small servants quarters at the rear of the house. The stable was the first place anyone would look for him.
The brougham was still left, and seemed relatively safe for now. It didn’t provide as much protection from weather or storage space as the carriage, which disappeared mysteriously, but it was lighter, and would be easier for one horse to pull with four people.
"Andy, Pa seems much better today." Tracy greeted him hopefully at the front door.
"I’m glad." Andrew replied half-heartedly as he sighed.
"But, Andy, don’t you see? We can go home soon!"
"Tracy, soon may not be good enough. Our army can’t hold Richmond much longer."
"Tracy, please, I’m tired. Just let me rest here a few minutes." He headed toward the sofa.
"But, Andy, Pa’s been waitin’ all day for you to bring him the latest news. Won’t you go up for a moment first? I’ll fix you somethin’ t’ eat."
"Oh, Tracy…all right. You’d be totally exasperatin’ if I didn’t love you so much." He laid his palm against her cheek and forced a smile. He could hardly put one foot in front of the other as he climbed the stairs.
"Andrew, my dear boy. What is the latest news?" Saunders asked chipperly.
"It isn’t good, sir. We only have, well, probably a few days left before the Union Army takes Richmond.
Saunders’ already pale face took on an ashen hue. "Then you must take Tracy and go."
"Sir, you know she won’t go without you, and I won’t leave without her. I love her, sir. When this is all over, I plan on asking her to marry me."
"And you will have my blessin’s, son."
"Do you think you can travel now, sir?"
"I think I’d best be findin’ out, my boy." Saunders tried to get out of bed, but he was still too weak, even with Andrew’s assistance.
Andrew helped him settle back into the big canopy bed.
"Just take it easy, Mr. Saunders. Maybe if Adam and I carry you to the brougham and we move slowly…"
"The Yankees aren’t gonna move slowly. I’m afraid it’s no good, son. I think my time on this earth is just about up. I’ll just have to convince Tracy to go on ahead with you. The Yankees won’t do anything to an old man like me."
"I hope you have more luck with her than I do. She’s a stubborn woman."
"I know," he laughed, "just like her Ma. Sick the whole time she was carryin’ that child, her Ma just wasn’t gonna give up ‘til she brought her into this world. Died that same night, she did, but not without holdin’ her baby and givin’ her a name, Tracy, that was her family name, and Louise for my grandmother," his face saddened for a moment, then he snapped back. "Yup, stubborn clean through, them Tracys."
Andrew smiled at the old man.
"Now, you go on and rest, son. I’ll be just fine. And you send Tracy up to me for a talk later on. I’ll convince her to go."
Andrew shook his head in disbelief as he left the room.
Seconds after he sank into the sofa, he was fast asleep. Tracy covered him gently and returned to her father’s bedside.
"Pa, you shouldn’t be sittin’ up. Doctor says you gotta rest, so’s we can go home."
"Tracy, dear, I won’t be goin’ home. I just don’t have the strength, but you and Andrew need to leave Richmond now." His voice was tremulous as he insisted.
"Now, Pa," Tracy cajoled, "we been all through that before. I’m not goin’ home or anywhere else without you. Think I’d leave you to those nasty Yankees?" She tucked him back into bed. "You rest. I’ll be back with your supper, soon as I feed Andy."
"Tracy-Lou, I’m tellin’ you I expect you to go with young Hamilton. Marry him, too, soon as you get home, if not sooner."
Diana Lee Johnson is a native of Northern Virginia. By day she’s the Purchasing Agent for a municipal government. By night (and weekends) she’s a writer.
Stories flow through her mind like movies projecting in her head, waiting for her to find time to write them down. Diana must switch them off so she can work at her day job. “I weave a little of myself into everything I write. My characters take on their own personalities and I wait like the reader to hear what they say next.”
Writing poetry since the age of 6, Diana dabbled in short stories at 13, but took prose more seriously as an outlet after she turned 30. She enjoys writing fiction in several genres hoping to entertain a variety of readers with drama, suspense, humor, and romance. Her characters could be someone you know or someone so outrageous you can only imagine meeting them.
She would love to hear from you. Please visit her website:, or write her at P. O. Box 3003, Falls Church, VA 22043.
Dramatically written, this poignant tale will touch your heart. Diana Lee Johnson has penned another winner. I can't wait to read her next book.-- Judith Rippelmeyer, Editor in Chief, The Word On Romance, www.thewordonromance.com
Wrong Side of Love is a remarkable story with a clever twist that will surprise and amaze the reader. It is a meticulously compiled and authentic historical novel that takes place during the Civil War era and has an enduring theme of family love and devotion...Tina Dean, Associate Editor, Virginia Writing
Castle of Sorrows: “How skillfully Diana Johnson has revealed yet another dimension of her craft with this exciting and enchanting novel. The colorful narrative in which Castle of Sorrows is clothed, and the skeleton of events on which it hangs, all show the marks of a storyteller who writes with sensitivity and is gifted with exceptional human understanding. This suspenseful novel is a thrill from beginning to end.”--Tina Dean, Associate Editor, Virginia Writing
“Very different from Diana Lee Johnson’s previous books, CASTLE OF SORROWS is nevertheless an excellent read. Let Donald, Douglas, Dierdre, Grandee, and the ghosts of the past enchant you. Drift away to the beautiful Scottish countryside, filled with castles and tradition and enjoy CASTLE OF SORROWS.” --Judith Rippelmeyer, Editor in Chief, The Word on Romance
Tomorrow Came Early, the much-anticipated sequel to Too Late for Tomorrow, is a fabulous read! The saga of the spirited Hamiltons continues in this moving and powerfully written historical novel set at the end of the Civil War. The love, devotion, and courage of this dynamic family, especially young Andrew Hamilton, will touch your heart and soul as you read this compelling story; family secrets and intrigue will keep you on the edge of your seat. Prepare to be carried away on the wings of this highly recommended book!-- Tina Dean, Associate Editor, Virginia Writing
…Steeped in the rich history of the turbulent pre-Civil War and Civil War years, TOO LATE FOR TOMORROW sets readers deep into the heart of the issue of slavery and its consequences on this nation. Deftly intertwined with the issue of slavery, Ms Johnson adds Jeremy and Gabby's personal tale of love, deception, and obsession.
I wouldn't consider this a light read, or mere entertainment, but an attention involving novel. TOO LATE FOR TOMORROW is nevertheless a marvelously written story from the pen of a wonderfully erudite author. Readers who love Civil War period romances will adore TOO LATE FOR TOMORROW. I highly recommend it. --Judith Rippelmeyer, The Word on Romance
An exciting and heartwarming story of family love! This is a must-read book for anyone who loves historical romances, particularly those of the Civil War era. The characters are rich and full, with family ties and love being the strings that bind them all in one way or another. This is a novel of a family forced to deal with strong beliefs and opinions, frequently at odds with each other, but always with love enough to fill even the reader's heart. You will want to read every word on every page of this Civil War saga. I have just three more words to say: sequel, sequel, sequel! --Tina Dean, Assoc. Editor, Virginia Writing
Just Deserts is a sweet read. Warm and witty characters, a fabulous story, and a dollop of humor makes this recipe another winner for Diana Lee Johnson. Make room on your keeper shelf for Just Deserts. -- Judith Rippelmeyer
Pretty as she is, Carolyn isn't looking for love when she enrolls in a college course. However, in the weeks that follow she finds herself being courted by two men who are determined to win her affections while having much more in mind than just their amorous feelings.
Book Publisher: Wings ePress
No. of Pages: 436
Paper Weight (lb): 16.6
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