Above painting: Louis Jean Francois - Mars and Venus an Allegory of Peace


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Friday, July 4, 2014

Fourth of July Read: For Love & Liberty by Alyssa Cole

Please welcome to History Undressed, guest author Alyssa Cole! She's here to celebrate July 4th with us! Enjoy!

I’ve spent the majority of my life living on what was the major staging ground for perhaps the most important war in America’s history: the American Revolution. The names in our Social Studies books were familiar from local maps and road signage: Paulus Hook, Trenton, Brooklyn, Saratoga. In junior high, our class trip was a visit to Philadelphia, where we took pictures of the cracked Liberty Bell on 35-mm film (Zack Morris was the only student with a cellular phone back then, much less a digital camera) and learned about Benjamin Franklin. My class was made up of a truly diverse group of students, but all of the historical figures we learned about had one thing in common: they were white. The only people who looked like us were the slaves and Native Americans used as decoration in the backgrounds of portraits.

Not seeing any reflection of myself in this aspect of history led to a kind of disconnectwhile I still enjoyed learning about the war, Independence Day was more about hamburgers and hot dogs than historical reflection. I mean, people like me weren’t a part of that America…or were we? As an adult, freed from a curriculum that tries to squeeze hundreds of years into digestible tidbits and isn’t overly concerned with diversity, I discovered a newfound love of history and realized how wrong I was. Because I’m a romance writer, I was fascinated by what else could have been happening for the many different types of people who lived during the Revolutionary War, but whose stories were never told. The men and women who chose to partake in the war must have been fighting for something; they must have had hope for something better, just as our Founding Fathers did.

A few other writers felt the same way, and we joined together to write For Love & Liberty: Untold Love stories of the American Revolution. The stories are set in New York during the Revolution and follow the paths of four very different couple who all seek love, as well as freedom, during the uncertain time before America finally gained its independence.

This July 4th will certainly be more than fireworks and fun for me. It will be a remembrance of the people, all of the people, who worked to make sure that America was indeed the land of the free.
About For Love & Liberty

FOR LOVE & LIBERTY: Untold Love Stories of the American Revolution is an anthology that looks at historical romance through a more colorful lens. Four romance authors have come together to present tales of passion and patriotism that reveal the truly diverse threads that run through the tapestry of American history.

In BE NOT AFRAID by Alyssa Cole, a black Patriot captured by the British falls in love with a headstrong runaway determined to leave the colonies...while a wounded British soldier discovers the healing power of love in the arms of a gentle native woman in A SWEET SURRENDER by Lena Hart...in REBELS AT HEART by Kate McMurray, two men must make hard choices if they are to stay together when war arrives on the shores of their home in New York City...at last, in HOME by Stacey Agdern, a young Jewish couple must decide what can hold them together before war and geography tear them apart.

About Alyssa Cole

Alyssa Cole is a Brooklyn-based science editor, pop culture nerd, and romance junkie. She is the author of the romantic suspense novel, Eagle's Heart, and the erotic short Sweet to the Taste. She has recently begun to dabble in historical romance; her first short, a Revolutionary War romance, can be found in the anthology For Love & Liberty. In addition to writing, she hosts a romance book club and teaches romance writing at the Jefferson Market Library in NYC. When she's not busy traveling and learning French, she can be found watching cat videos on the Internet with her real life romance hero.

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