Four Years n the Making

I was in the middle of my third novel, “A Moment in Time”, a Scottish, time travel romance, when all of a sudden, a line of dialog popped in my head that had nothing to do with the story. I opened a blank document and wrote the conversation down, and to my surprise, a new story was born. Here’s what I wrote.

“Rob, where is Jesus?”

Sudden tears filled Rob’s sunken eyes. “Oh, He’s right here, Cam. Right here. He’s in the compassion Dr. Gibson shows us. He’s in the heart of Miss Ida when she cooks for us. And, He’s in the cool touch of Rachel’s hand on your brow. Jesus is here, Cam. Don’t you doubt it.”

Reaching out, Cam closed his eyes and asked, “Will you pray for me?”

Rob’s grip was weak and fevered but steady as he held Cam’s hand in his. “Jesus, Oh, Jesus, I know you’re here. Right here between me and Cam. We ask for mercy and for grace. One moment in thy presence, Lord is better than a lifetime without you. Blessed be your name.”

Wow! Right? How powerful is that?

As I read those words over and over, I pictured two, wounded men, one a Yankee and the other a Rebel. It was the question, “How could two men fighting on opposite sides of the battle lines be together in a hospital?” That sent me on a four-year journey, ending with the book, “His Yankee Wife”.

After publishing, “A Moment in Time”, I got to work in earnest. I researched the American Civil War, listened to music from that era, went to a reenactment near my home, watched walking tours of Shiloh on Youtube and read everything I could get my hands on. 🙂 I couldn’t get enough of “Ashokan Farewell”, and whenever I listened to it, I saw in my mind a woman standing in an old house, looking up at a portrait of a man in nineteenth century garb. The “vision”, if you want to call it that, haunted me. I could smell the old wood, hear the whisper of the wind as it moaned down the chimney, feel the woman’s longing for things to be made right again. And, now, I’m just a few short weeks from publishing.

Here’s the back cover info.

Battle scarred in body and soul, Rae Wilkins comes home to keep a promise to her best friend, despite her hometown’s long memory concerning her past mistakes. Discovering a book written about her ancestors who fought in the Civil War Rae reads about Rachel, a Yankee left behind in the South when her husband enlists in the Union Army. Struggling to understand her place in God’s kingdom, Rachel’s faith and loyalty are put to the test when she follows her husband to the battlefield. Caught between the sins of the past and the hope of the future, Rae and Rachel must draw their own battle lines and learn the true meaning of forgiveness.

Now, here’s where you come in, faithful readers. I need help choosing a cover. There is a contest on Facebook, where you can vote for your favorite pic. I would love for you to come join the fun, so hop on over to


I’m so excited to share this book with you. While writing it, I laughed, I cried, I struggled, I thought I’d never get finished, I moaned that it wouldn’t be any good, I talked about it way too much around my family, and lots of times I just couldn’t get those old songs out of my head. I’m praying that not only will Rae and Rachel’s stories bring you closer to God, but that you will finish it, close it, sigh and say, “Wow! That was a great book.” 🙂


S.J. Wells

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