With the Vera B's captain dead in Melbourne, Australia, Alice Packard thinks the worst has happened, until she learns the crew has deserted her husband's ship in favor of the goldfields. Only one old man, Gypsy Deak, sticks by her, but Gypsy alone can't raise a crew from the depleted population. In desperation, Alice turns to the only source of plentiful workers: the women of Melbourne. In a bold move, she and Gypsy empty a brothel, promising the escaped women a new life. Her all-woman (save one) crew put their backs and hearts into the voyage, but Alice finds training her sailors much harder than she expected. Her faith is tested to the limit. With a cargo to sell, angry brothel and tavern owners in pursuit, pirates to evade, and a mysterious stowaway, will the seafaring women of the Vera B. survive to tell the tale of this daring adventure?
James Samuel Davis grew up as the oldest of six children in the rugged forestland of central Maine. His parents are a novelist and a retired newspaper editor. Homeschooled from first grade through high school graduation, he has always been an avid student of history and geography. Writing and researching have been a lifelong passion. Add a vivid imagination and an aversion to thinking inside the box (what box?), and you have the beginnings of a new paradigm for fiction writing. James completed an agricultural degree at Bob Jones University, then undertook an agricultural exchange through the University of Minnesota. This included a 4-month internship on a dairy farm in Australia, where he broke his leg in a dirt bike accident while trying to intercept an escaped herd of cattle. His writing credits include articles for Green Magazine and special sections of a daily newspaper. In addition to Australia, he has traveled to China and Alaska, and he made a mission trip to Micronesia in 2012. He resides in rural Travelers Rest, S.C., with his wife and seven children. Susan Page Davis, James's mom, is the author of more than sixty Christian novels and novellas, which have sold more than 1.5 million copies. Her historical novels have won numerous awards, including the Carol Award, the Will Rogers Medallion for Western Fiction, and the Inspirational Readers' Choice Contest. She has also been a finalist in the More than Magic Contest and Willa Literary Awards. Her books have been featured in the Literary Guild, Crossings Book Club, and Faithpoint Book Club, and have been named Top Picks in Romantic Times Book Reviews. Susan lives in western Kentucky with her husband, another Jim. She's the mother of six and grandmother of ten. Visit her website at: www.susanpagedavis.com and follow her on Twitter at: @SusanPageDavis.