.Welcome, Mary Flynn. Tell us something about where you live:
I grew up in Watertown, NY, but my aunts have an adorable cottage in Thousand Island Park on Wellesley Island, in the heart of the Thousand Islands. The 1,864 islands are shared almost equally between New York state and Ontario, Canada. It’s where Lake Ontario narrows and becomes the St. Lawrence River. Here the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River intersect to become the world’s largest inland navigation system. Huge freighters pass by tiny islands along the main channel and share the waterway with all kinds of boats including kayaks and canoes.
Is there anything special about your name?
I’m named after my great aunt Mary who came over from Ireland on an 1851 immigrant ship to the New World. She and her family settled on Wolfe Island, Canada, but she later moved to New York.
Who are the special people in your life?
Since my papa died, I came to live with my two aunts and am spending my summer of 1912 as a telephone switchboard operator and telegrapher for the Thousand Island Park on Wellesley Island. My assistant switchboard operator, Charlotte, has become a dear friend.
Fireman George Flannigan is a charming man and we’ve become good friends, too, but his son, Robbie, is the one who stole my heart. What a sweet boy! His father is a widow, and I’m not sure if he’s ready to move on with his life. I’m also a little worried about the danger of his job. Still, he’s the nicest man I’ve ever met.
Oh, and I can’t forget Gramps. He’s an eighty-year-old retired minister who is the local friend to anyone that crosses his path. He sits on the veranda of the Columbian Hotel ready to share wisdom, play chess, and love others. He’s a gift from God, that’s for sure.
What is your heart’s deepest desire?
That’s easy. To love and be loved. After losing both of my parents and being an only child, aloneness is a terrible place to be. And… I hope to be Robbie’s mom one day. Shhh…don’t tell George.
What are you most afraid of?
Fire! It’s always been fearful, especially since our barn burned down when I was a child and Papa had a heart attack and nearly died trying to rescue the animals. Now, after surviving the terrible fires in Thousand Island Park, I’m even more terrified. It was the scariest thing I’ve ever gone through. I was grateful to be able to call for help all three times. I nearly died in the third and worst fire, but thanks to Fireman Flannigan, I survived. But it almost destroyed the Park.
Do you have a cherished possession?
My papa’s Scofield Bible. It was his most treasured possession, so it’s now mine.
What do you expect the future will hold for you?
Good things. Hope for a better future. Hope for healing. Hope for love, family, and bright tomorrows.
What have you learned about yourself in the course of your story?
Fire is scary…for sure! But I’ve learned to trust in God and His plans for me. God can heal a broken heart and has helped me forgive those who hurt me.
About Mary’s Moment:
Mathis’s attention to detail and rich history is classic Mathis, and no one does it better.—Margaret Brownley, N.Y. Times bestselling author
Thousand Island Park’s switchboard operator Mary Flynn is christened the community heroine for her quick action that saves dozens of homes from a terrible fire. Less than a month later, when another disastrous fire rages through the Park, Mary loses her memory as she risks her life in a neighbor’s burning cottage. Will she remember the truth of who she is or be deceived by a treacherous scoundrel?
Widowed fireman George Flannigan is enamored by the brave raven-haired lass and takes every opportunity to connect with Mary. But he has hidden griefs of his own that cause him great heartache. When George can’t stop the destructive Columbian Hotel fire from eradicating more than a hundred businesses and homes, he is distraught. Yet George’s greater concern is Mary. Will she remember their budding relationship or be forever lost to him?
Readers of Christian historical romance will enjoy this exciting tale set in 1912 Thousand Island Park, NY.
Susan G Mathis is an international award-winning, multi-published author of stories set in the beautiful Thousand Islands, her childhood stomping ground in upstate NY. Susan has been published more than twenty-five times in full-length novels, novellas, and non-fiction books. She has ten in her fiction line including, The Fabric of Hope, Christmas Charity, Katelyn’s Choice, Devyn’s Dilemma, Peyton’s Promise, Sara’s Surprise, Reagan’s Reward, Colleen’s Confession, Rachel’s Reunion, and Mary’s Moment. Her book awards include two Illumination Book Awards, three American Fiction Awards, two Indie Excellence Book Awards, and four Literary Titan Book Awards. Reagan’s Reward is a Selah Awards finalist. Susan is also a published author of two premarital books, two children’s picture books, stories in a dozen compilations, and hundreds of published articles. Susan makes her home in Colorado Springs and enjoys traveling around the world but returns each summer to enjoy the Thousand Islands. Visit www.SusanGMathis.com/fiction for more.
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