It’s Takeover Tuesday!
Please welcome Gail Kittleson as she writes about Romance and World War II.
Even though I’m technically a Women’s Historical Fiction writer, my recent novel, A Purpose True, definitely includes a love story. In the prequel, Kate Isaacs had no thought of romance when she parachuted into southern France to aid the Resistance as a secret agent, for she was grieving the loss of her first baby and her husband.
Neither did Domingo Ibarra, the hero. Mourning the loss of the love of his life to the cruel Gestapo, he had determined to do whatever he could to bring this insane war to an end. He certainly respected this American girl who risked her life to fall from the heavens into his country and was happy to take her to safety, but had no desire for another romantic relationship.
But after their brief encounter, the wiles of war turned things around. In real life, isn’t that what often occurs? People may not attracted when they first meet, and may even be at odds. Many of us have experienced this—when I first met my husband, my opinion was mixed, and he probably felt the same way. We had no idea we’d be celebrating our fortieth anniversary in May, 2018!
But obviously, love had other plans. And so it was with Kate and Domingo. Gradually, their mutual respect develops into commitment.
A few months after the release of this novel, I find myself wondering what other literature puts war in the role of matchmaker. One classic comes to mind: Doctor Zhivago, set during the end of World War I and the Bolshevik Revolution. The war-torn setting, the backdrop for the romance, certainly drives the events.
While the movie version of Doctor Zhivago emphasizes the hero’s illicit romance with a stranger he meets, A Purpose True focuses on Nazi Waffen S.S. atrocities committed as they travel north to fight the Allies in Normandy. Kate and Domingo remain separated for much of this story, but their love increases even in absentia.
In fact, the uncertainties created by the war nearly keep Domingo from professing his love to Kate until his sensitive, unconventional priest helps him think outside the box. As the back cover copy asks, “How can love survive in the midst of war’s cruelties?
Kate and Domingo’s story stands as testimony to the human spirit’s strength and to the presence of divine guidance even in the very worst of times. On the romantic side, this tale testifies to the power of the heart’s longings to draw men and women together no matter what the circumstances.
About the Author
When Gail’s not steeped in World War II research, drafting scenes, or deep in an edit, she does a limited amount of editing for other authors. She also facilitates writing and creativity workshops, both in Iowa and Arizona, where she and her husband spend part of the winter in the amazing Ponderosa pine forest under the Mogollon Rim. Favorites: walking, reading, meeting new people, hearing from readers who fall in love with her characters.
About the Book
The Blurb: “Southern France – Spring, 1944
German panzer units crisscross the region, dealing ruthless reprisals against the French Resistance, and anyone suspected of supporting its efforts. Secret Operations Executive (SOE) agent Kate Isaacs is tasked with providing essential radio communications with the Allies, while her guide, Domingo Ibarra, a Basque shepherd-turned-Resistance fighter, dedicates himself to avenging the destruction of his home and family.
Thrown together by the vagaries of war, their shared mission, and common devotion to liberty, the last thing Kate and Domingo anticipate is the stirring of affection that threatens to blossom into love. But how can love survive in the midst of the enemy’s relentless cruelty toward innocent citizens?
Everything hinges on the success of the Allied Invasion – L’Invasion”