Please give a very warm welcome to Tammy Lowe, author of The Acadian Secret, a tween paranormal action adventure novel!
What is your book about?
Thank you so much for having me on your blog today, Kim. I am really excited to be here.
The Acadian Secret is about a time travelling young girl who finds adventure in the 17th century Scottish Highlands.
What inspired you to write this particular story?
As a kid, I loved to read books (and watch shows) like Little House on the Prairie and Anne of Green Gables. Those types of novels inspired me in every way possible.
I loved anything set in the “olden days”. When I was about ten years old, I began to wonder about time travel. My biggest wish was that I’d end up back in the pioneer era. I wanted to go and hang out with spoiled Nellie Olsen. I don’t remember why I wished for Nellie over Laura Ingalls, but I think it had something to do with the fact that her parents owned the candy shop.
I had it all figured out. I didn’t want to live in the 18th or 19th century; I’d miss my family too much. And I can’t live without modern comforts. I wanted the freedom to travel back and forth through time.
My wish to time travel was so strong; I even dressed the part, as much as I could, without raising anyone’s suspicions. I wore dresses to school every day, when all my friends wore jeans and t-shirts. I had to be prepared just in case it worked and I was whisked through time. That summer, I even begged my mom to buy me a bonnet. She did. I wore that white bonnet everywhere. If I ended up in Walnut Grove or Avonlea, I was prepared.
By the sixth grade I was old enough to realize that time travel probably wasn’t going to be a reality for me, so I decided when I grew up, I’d write a story about a girl who could travel back and forth through time.
Describe your writing in three words.
-Witty. I mean…I hope!
-Suitable for all ages.
Do you have specific techniques you use to develop the plot and stay on track?
I am very detailed with my drafts and spend quite a while plotting the timelines. I keep notebooks and spreadsheets and have post it notes scattered everywhere.
Are your characters in the book based on anyone you know?
My characters are not based on anyone I know personally, but many of the characters are based on real people in history. The Oak Island Money Pit is a huge part of my novel and I wanted it to be as historically accurate as possible. I am fascinated with the way James Cameron did Titanic. Jack and Rose were fictional characters bouncing off of real-life people and events. That was in the back of my mind as I wrote The Acadian Secret.
I laughed when my son told me I should come up with a more exciting name for John Smith. John and his friends were real people. They discovered the pit and sparked one of the greatest treasure hunts in history.
If your book was made into a TV series or movie, which actors would you choose to play your main characters?
Did you ever watch Ugly Betty?
Ashley Jensen played Christine, Betty’s Scottish co-worker and friend.
She would make the perfect Bessie Ferguson.
What’s the weirdest thing you’ve Googled?
Oh gosh, I don’t even know where to begin.
I’m heard there are medic alert bracelets that say, “If I die, delete my browsing history”.
I need one.
What projects are you working on now?
I am writing Elisabeth London’s next adventure.
Where can readers find you and your books online?
You can find me at www.tammylowe.com.
Elisabeth London is keeping her new friends a secret from her parents. Not only do they live on the other side of the world in the Scottish Highlands, they lived more than three hundred and fifty years ago. Her mom and dad would never allow her to go gallivanting about seventeenth century Scotland. They won’t even let her go to the mall by herself yet.
Twelve-year-old Elisabeth is old enough to know there is no such thing as magic, but when her quartz crystal necklace has the power to transport her back and forth in time, she no longer knows what to think. The only thing she is certain of is that she loves spending carefree days with Quinton, the mischievous nephew of a highland warrior, and sassy little Fiona, a farmer’s daughter.
However, Elisabeth’s adventures take a deadly turn when she is charged with witchcraft. At a time and place in history when witch-hunts were common, those found guilty were executed, children included. Elisabeth must race to find her way back home, while trying to stay one step ahead of the witch-hunter determined to see her burned at the stake.
As the afternoon sun began to travel behind the mountains, it cast an emerald glow across the glen. The valley was littered with boulders, while a small river twisted its way toward a distant forest.
Malcolm Craig was stalking his prey. He was a tall, strong man with piercing blue-green eyes, a short beard, and wild black hair that gave him a crazed look. He smelled the boar before he saw it. Talbot, his hunting dog, lunged into the brambles after the wild pig which began to grunt in anger. That was when something to the right caught his eye. A young girl lay motionless in the heather.
“What the devil?” Malcolm said as he jumped down from his horse. While still keeping his hearing attuned to Talbot and the boar, he walked over and bent to peer at her. He breathed a sigh of relief to find she was fast asleep. Malcolm scooped the sleeping girl into his arms. “You’re lucky I found you, lassie, before that beast did.”
With a sigh, she rested her head against his chest and put her arms around his neck. “Daddy…” she said in her sleep.
Malcolm laughed. “Daddy? I’m nae your daddy. No daughter of mine would be dressed like this, wandering around barefoot in the middle of…”
Elisabeth’s eyes popped open and she let out an ear-piercing scream. She bit Malcolm’s shoulder and he dropped her.
“Och, child! You bit me!”
The silence in the valley broke as Talbot howled, the boar squealed and Elisabeth jumped to her feet and wailed in horror.
“Dinnae move, lass!” Malcolm yelled to be heard over the pandemonium. He reached for his dagger. It was almost time for the kill.
The enraged boar deserted his hiding spot in the brambles and charged toward the dog, its lethal tusks ready to kill. Talbot was well-trained so, instead of turning tail and running, he danced backward, facing the pig, luring it away from his master. With the boar now in pursuit of the dog, Malcolm did what was natural to any man born and bred in the Highlands: he ran at the beast as if he were a wild animal himself. Jumping on the boar from behind, he grabbed its ear, yanked its head up and slashed its throat.
Elisabeth continued to scream. Malcolm jumped off the boar as it fell limp at his feet and cleaned the blade on the carcass before putting it away. He walked toward Elisabeth, his bloody hands held in front of him.
“Enough, lass. It’s all right now.”
Her wide eyes fixed on the enormous man dressed in a skirt. “You’ve got a knife!”
“Aye. And a sword.” He smirked as he pointed to it.
“I’m nae going to harm you, though. I was hunting.”
“Hunting what? Little girls? Where am I?”
Not waiting for an answer, she ran from Malcolm and toward the forest, her bare feet slowing her great escape.
“That lass is completely mad,” Malcolm grumbled while rubbing the shoulder she had bitten.
Malcolm mounted his horse; he couldn’t leave the terrified girl alone out here. It wasn’t safe and would soon be dark. She would be easy enough for a blind man to find again because she hadn’t stopped screaming. For some reason, he hadn’t stopped smiling.
His black warhorse was as large and intimidating as Malcolm was, and the animal’s powerful legs kicked up tall grass and thistles as it barreled along. The sound of its hooves seemed amplified as it raced toward Elisabeth. Malcolm caught up to her. Without needing to slow his horse, he reached down, scooped her up into his arms, and placed her in the saddle in front of him.
“There. Now be a good lass. I promise, I’m nae going to hurt you.”
And with that, Elisabeth fainted.
“Well now, that certainly makes things easier,” Malcolm muttered under his breath as he wrapped her in his plaid and nudged his horse on.
When she isn’t writing, you will either find Tammy Lowe surrounded by little children and covered in glitter and glue, or on some grand adventure: inside an Egyptian pyramid, twirling on an Alp or climbing the Great Wall of China. She’s part Mary Poppins, part Indiana Jones.
Tammy lives in Cambridge, Ontario with her husband and their teenage son.
Thanks for stopping by, Tammy. I wish you great success with the release of The Arcadian Secret!