Victor’s Blessing by Barbara Sontheimer
Victor Gant, a 6’5” half-Osage blacksmith is an unusual hero for a Civil War love story. But Victor, well liked and respected, is anything but usual. Born into poverty and burdened by his father’s past abuses, he betters himself with his intellect and inventions. Despite no formal education he boasts a close friendship with the wealthy banker Ethan. When the town’s shy beauty agrees to marry him, Victor’s life is truly blessed. But blessings like life itself can be fleeting, and when the Civil war erupts Victor will have to make choices, until finally he is forced to bestow an agonizing blessing of his own.
Meticulously researched for everyday life (rather than battles), Victor’s Blessing takes the reader on a journey from quaint Ste. Genevieve Missouri, the patent halls of Washington D.C., the battle of Wilderness, till finally the infamous Andersonville prison. With a bevy of rich male and female characters, that experience the turbulent decade before and after the Civil War, Victor’s Blessing is a haunting love story, that seems to whisper the eternal question, is death really the end?
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Barbara Sontheimer has a B.A. from a little college in the bootheel of Missouri and spent 15 years researching and writing Victor’s Blessing while raising 3 children. A fascination with the everyday life of the people not battles was the driving force. One of her greatest hopes for her novel is that someone turns out the light a bit too late on a work night, or (like she did) occasionally hid from her kids in the laundry room to finish a chapter. Barbara is married and lives in Lake Ozark, Missouri.