Wednesday, September 4, 2013

“The Plum Tree,” by Ellen Marie Wiseman

Ellen Marie Wiseman discovered her love of reading and writing while attending first grade in one of the last one-room schoolhouses in NYS. Her debut novel The Plum Tree - a WWII story about a young German woman trying to save the love of her life, a Jewish man - was released by Kensington in January 2013. Ellen lives peacefully on the shores of Lake Ontario with her husband and three dogs, where she loves to cook, watch movies, garden, and spend time with her granddaughters. She would love to have you join her on Facebook,, Twitter, @EllenMarieWise and on her web site:

Book Description:

A deeply moving and masterfully written story of human resilience and enduring love, The Plum Tree follows a young German woman through the chaos of World War II and its aftermath.
"Bloom where you're planted," is the advice Christine Bolz receives from her beloved Oma. But seventeen-year-old domestic Christine knows there is a whole world waiting beyond her small German village. It's a world she's begun to glimpse through music, books--and through Isaac Bauerman, the cultured son of the wealthy Jewish family she works for. 
Yet the future she and Isaac dream of sharing faces greater challenges than their difference in stations. In the fall of 1938, Germany is changing rapidly under Hitler's regime. Anti-Jewish posters are everywhere, dissenting talk is silenced, and a new law forbids Christine from returning to her job--and from having any relationship with Isaac. In the months and years that follow, Christine will confront the Gestapo's wrath and the horrors of Dachau, desperate to be with the man she loves, to survive--and finally, to speak out. 
Set against the backdrop of the German homefront, this is an unforgettable novel of courage and resolve, of the inhumanity of war, and the heartbreak and hope left in its wake. 

My Thoughts:
From the moment I heard of this book, I was determined to read it. Rarely do I buy books anymore; usually I wait for them to show up at the library. For whatever reason, my library did not buy a copy so I went out and bought “The Plum Tree.” Anymore, it is a rare thing for a novel and its author to be so accurate in her research during that dark period in history. I’ve read my share of fiction set in the Holocaust and WWII and it is generally the lack of understanding of that period that drives me crazy and makes me throw the book down in disgust. Well, WWII enthusiasts and Holocaust experts, you need not fear “The Plum Tree.” Not only is this book entertaining, the author knows what she is writing about. Aside from all of that, I found it refreshing that it was the heroine, Christine, who was the strong one in the relationship. I don’t mean to imply that Isaac was weak, but he was placed in a difficult position and was stripped of his power. Without giving away the plot, be rest assured that Christine is not one to give up in the face of adversity. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The One Without a Title

August has slipped by me and this blog has been neglected. Even now I can’t think of much to write about.

WIP #2 has been revised and revamped, with no avail. It is a little sad because I love it and the characters. Have only had one request for the full manuscript and another request for the first five pages. Both ended in rejections. None of the agents want to touch it. In hindsight, I had much better luck with WIP #1. But I’m not devastated. My latest project has me distracted and is my consolation. I actually sent off a query for it, just as a test to see what response it would receive. It was a rejection, of course, but the agent encouraged me to send it to her associate at that agency. It needs quite a bit of polishing, but at least she didn’t say it had “potential.” I’ve heard that phrase so many times that I loathe it now. May that word be forever banished from my vocabulary. (Just kidding.)

Newest developments around here? My family and I have upgraded to mobile phones and we have become addicted to them. Between the phones, DVR and our own computers, we have entered into the 21st century.

All for now!