"Christy Award-winning Moser excels at vivid historical settings (here including pictorial examples of nineteenth century fashion) and compelling stories featuring resilient, uncompromising heroines." -- Elizabeth Ponder
4.5 stars from "Romantic Times Magazine": "Moser knows how to mix love and friendship across class lines. Fans of fashion and romance will want this for their keeper shelves."
An Unlikely Suitor was named to Booklist's "Top 10 Romance Novels of 2011"
From the Author
That background explains my interest in dressmakers of the Gilded Age (the last few decades of the 19th century.) Yet sewing a dress nowadays is nothing compared to creating one of the intricate dresses of that era. It's the difference between making a cake from a boxed mix and adding a canister of ready-made frosting, or creating a four-tier wedding cake from scratch, with fondant frosting, lacework, Marzipan flowers, and edible pearls and beads.
Yet the seamstresses of 1895 were not that different from seamstresses today. Both learned from experience and were taught-by-doing--my preferred way to learn anything. I admire the Scarpelli women in my novel for their work ethic, and I reveled in being able to move them from a dingy sweatshop, to a fancy dress emporium, to the halls of Newport's finest homes, where they were set free to fully use their talents.
I love stories about immigrants who came to America. Their pluck, courage, and determination inspire me. Where did your ancestors come from? What made them leave their homeland behind, to take a chance, to start over? What are their stories of failure and success? Of dreams abandoned and achieved?
Fortunes were made in America; lost, and made again. Some were huge and boggled the mind. Consider the "cottages" of the rich in Newport. The Breakers, which is the location of the climax of An Unlikely Suitor, has 65,000 square feet of living space. The average size of an American home today is 2,300 square feet, which means twenty-eight houses could fit into this single-family "cottage."
What an exciting place for two poor seamstresses and a crippled heiress to find love. And friendship. And purpose. And yet, the grand mansions in Newport weren't the real setting for Lucy, Sofia, and Rowena to experience their revelations and growth. Newport's Cliff Walk, that path edging the mansions and the ocean, inspired like no creation of man could ever do. Go ask the sunrise . . .
Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
Psalm 139: 7-10
Today I urge you to take a few minutes from your busy life and go outside. Seek a place of the Creator's design where His hand will hold you fast and guide you toward love, friendship, and your unique purpose.