Inspirational author Ann H. Gabhart chats about the tales that she wove together to create Angel Sister, an RT Top Pick! Learn how this new novel evolved from stories passed down through her family and what special message the author tried to send with her latest work.
People like to talk about the “good old days.” We often say we wish things were like they used to be, but most of us have selective memories when we think about our younger days. And that’s good. It’s a gift to dwell on the positive events of our pasts rather than things that weren’t so happy.
That’s the way it was for my mother. Mom was born in 1920 and remembers well the years of the Great Depression. Her family was poor but never went hungry at a time when many Americans did. My mother’s family avoided that by having a garden, a milk cow, and honeybees. And credit at the neighborhood grocery store. My mom and aunts loved to talk about when they were kids. Most of the time, they would end up laughing about their “good old days.” They felt loved and they were happy.
The background of Angel Sister came from those stories my mother and her sisters told about growing up in a small rural community where neighbors were neighborly. Odd characters were simply part of the fabric of community life and accepted without fear or rejection. Only a privileged few had much money so it seemed normal to be poor. The church was the center of the community and the pews were full on Sundays. The people in my mother’s world believed in God, loved their families, and were ready to stand and fight for their country.
Mom and her sisters went to school barefoot and played hide and seek with the neighborhood kids at night. Hobos, who came to their door, were given plates of food. They set their extra milk in metal cans out by the mailbox – summer or winter – for the milk truck to pick up. The iceman delivered blocks of ice for their icebox once a week. Their blacksmith father shod horses and shaped hoes and made wagon wheels. Even with money almost nonexistent, he found a way to buy a newspaper every day. The first thing they plugged in when electricity finally made it to their neighborhood was a radio to listen to the news, baseball games, and boxing matches. My mother’s parents didn’t have an automobile or even a horse and buggy. They walked or hitched rides to town to catch a bus or train to wherever they needed to go. They took life one day at a time and believed the Lord would carry them through the hard times while showering them with everyday blessings. And He did.
In some ways Angel Sister is my mother’s story, but in more ways it is every family’s story. Each era has its challenges and so do most families. We look back and admire endurance. We celebrate faithfulness and love. My mother’s family, like many others, knew hard times in the thirties, but a family that sticks together and trusts in the Lord can come through whatever happens with love and laughter. That family is rich with blessings and knows the victory of a life well lived.
- Ann H. Gabhart
You can pick up your own copy of Ann H. Gabhart's new novel in stores now!