River Sisters, the Giver
The peace and prosperity of Nancy Hilderbrand’s existence on the banks of the Tennessee, the ancients’ Giver of life, is disrupted by the Removal of 1838, when native peoples are stripped of their lands by Federal powers greedy for gold and fertile soil. “The finest seamstress outside New Echota,” Nancy, widowed, with child, and awaiting deportation from the miserable internment of the stockade near Ross Landing, joins forces with Kaquoli Hicks, a devoted teacher left without students, and Sara Colaquee, a young girl left without parents. Their talents and strengths make them a formidable assemblage.
Nancy had determined: “The men in blue might strip them of their heritage and steal from them their home, but they could not taint the color of their blood, the nobility of their character. Their big knives were no match for the long, gleaming, razor-edged blade of hatred sheathed in her soul. Their big knives could only pierce the body—at worst, setting the spirit free. Hatred could do so much more.”
River Sisters, the Giver is the account of these courageous women, as they escape captivity, make their way back to the river valley, and, ultimately, gain entrance and acceptance into “white” society. Nancy declares: “The future is in our own hands. We must make a way for ourselves. Whether it be white, Cherokee, or something in between—it must be a way that is right and good for us. And I must make a way for the children.” Like the Giver itself, the lives of the “sisters” take unexpected turns, sometimes churning and with hidden dangers. Motivated by the past, accepting the challenges of the present, and unable to anticipate the future that lies ahead, the “river sisters” preserve the mark of their noble character on generations to follow.
Jan Dearman's life-long avocation has been writing fiction, especially that having roots in the history, heritage, and beauty of the Tennessee River Gorge near Chattanooga, ancestral home of her family for seven generations.
About Jan Dearman (Chattanooga, Tennessee Author)
Writer, Jan Dearman is a native of southeast Tennessee, born into a family that has called the land of the Tennessee River Gorge at the foot of Suck Creek Mountain home for seven generations. Hardy Scottish forefathers and the native women they married produced a people who, still today, cling to the land as their heritage and to the now-tamed Tennessee as not only a giver of life, but a receiver of lives.
"My goal is to produce high-quality writing--that is, writing that is interesting, well-written, at times touching, and always moral. My characters sometimes may have conflicted values and troubled consciences, and they may deal with challenging situations, in which they wrongly choose 'evil' over 'good.' But, it is my strong belief that entertaining, worthwhile fiction does not have to include profanity, graphic sexuality or cruelty. I want my work to be considered 'wholesome.' I want a reader to conclude a book feeling uplifted, encouraged, or, at least, glad he or she took the time to read it--and, hopefully, ready to read another!"