New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
I have been writing both fiction and non-fiction professionally since 1990, with business articles in over a hundred issues of various national, regional and local business publications. Magdalenes, my first published novel, is an historical mainstream novel with strong romantic and medical elements set in New Orleans .
Can a beautiful young woman’s native wit and uncommon intelligence conquer an overpowering and deep-seated guilt that is destroying her life? That is the central question of Magdalenes, which one reviewer described as “the heart-breaking and courageous story of Sarah Beth LaBranche.”
When Sarah Beth rents a room from Annedette Cheramie and meets the regal Creole lady’s grandson, Frank, her life is forever changed. Sarah Beth becomes Frank’s nurse, accountant and research assistant. Collecting his bills, helping him with patients using the latest in Victorian medical treatments and seeking a cure for a blinding eye disease, she falls in love with him. Now her terrible secret must be kept from the two people she holds most dear – her mother and Frank. Ever fearful that Frank will discover the awful truth about her, Sarah Beth helps him battle the 1905 Yellow Fever Epidemic, fighting ignorance, corruption and bigotry in a heroic struggle to help Frank banish his own demons. But each victory brings Sarah Beth’s secret closer to being discovered.
Magdalenes is not a typical romance, nor the usual medical thriller. Scrupulously researched, it blends the best elements of these genres into a compelling historical novel of tragedy, betrayal and redemption.
Magdalenes has been well received by the critics. The well-respected Midwest Book Review says “Magdalenes, a truly heart warming and entertaining novel, could well qualify as mainstream fiction.”
Victoria Taylor Murray, author of Thief of Hearts and Forbidden gives Magdalenes five stars, saying, “Wonderful! Just the right blend of drama and romance.”
“Extraordinary!” claims Cindy Penn, Senior Editor of WordWeaving, giving the book a five-star rating. “Very highly recommended.”
Another five-star rating comes from Danna Friborg-Lewis of Huntress Book Review, who says Magdalenes is “a highly recommended read.”
Mary Devlin with Conundrum Magazine says Magdalenes is “an absolute page turner! Impossible to put down.”
Magdalenes was a finalist in an America’s Best novel competition sponsored by the Writers Foundation, as was another of the my novels, Soul Searching. My short story, Seventeen Minutes Toward the End of Winter, was a finalist in an America’s Best short fiction competition and earned honorable mention in a Writer’s Digest short story contest.
I have three other unpublished novels and two in progress. As with any writer, several more are rolling around in my head.
My business column, Minding Your Business, ran in Varity and General Merchandise Trade News from 1994 through the magazine’s last issue, December/January 2002. During that time, the editor said that in every survey taken, Minding Your Business was always the readers’ favorite column. Minding Your Business is still available for publication, either syndicated or on a topic basis. Please contact me for more information.
By day, I’m a mild mannered business executive. I taught management at Tulane’s University College for over twenty-five years and lived in New Orleans all my life. I graduated from De La Salle high school and attended Tulane University where I received both a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Business Administration.
Interests: History, Writing, Depression Glass
Published writer: Yes