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Amy Hill Hearth at Beach Haven, New Jersey. Photo by Blair Hearth. Copyright 2023.

Welcome!

I'm a New York Times, Washington Post, and USA Today bestselling author of eleven published books starting in 1993 with the oral history Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years, a New York Times bestseller for 117 weeks that was adapted to the Broadway stage and for film. I was an advisor and consultant for historical accuracy and authenticity on both the Broadway and film productions (1994-1999). My books focus on forgotten or overlooked voices and extraordinary stories from the past. I am a versatile writer. I've published fiction as well as nonfiction, books for adults as well as young readers. During the pandemic lockdown, I wrote my first historical thriller, Silent Came the Monster, published in May 2023. I love to challenge myself by trying new genres.

The Delany Sisters: Honored to be the Keeper of Their Stories

If you're looking for information about the centenarian Delany Sisters of Having Our Say fame, you've found the right person. The sisters are both gone now, and have been for some years, but they left me, their co-author and personal friend, in charge of their legacy. Thus, I'm the go-to person when it comes to rights, or if you have a question about Having Our Say, photographs, their story, or their place in history. I can, also, answer questions about the play (1995) and telefilm (1999), both of which are adaptations of the book. I was an advisor and consultant on both productions. If you can't find my original 1991 New York Times story about the Delany Sisters, which started the whole ball rolling, let me know and I will send it to you. You may reach me by sending a direct email using the contact form on this site. 

 

The daughters of a man born into slavery in the American South and a mother of mixed-race ancestry who could have passed for white but chose not to, the Delany Sisters - Sadie, born in 1889 and Bessie, born in 1891 - shared firsthand accounts of a broad swath of American history as they experienced it as children in Raleigh, North Carolina and, as adults, after relocating to New York during the Harlem Renaissance. By sharing their stories as centenarians, the Delany sisters helped shatter stereotypes of women, Black Americans, and the aged. 

 

Additional information about the Delany Sisters can be found by clicking "Books" in the main menu, then "Having Our Say."

 

Silent Came the Monster, Wins AudioFile Earphones Award; Is Chosen for Summer Reading Lists

 

Silent Came the Monster: A Novel of the 1916 Jersey Shore Shark Attacks is a high society historical novel merged with a pulse-pounding thriller of a larger-than-life threat. The book won an AudioFile Earphones Award, and is an Amazon #1 Best Seller in Historical Thrillers.

 

Written during the pandemic lockdown, the novel is an artistic examination of the flawed ways in which humans assess risk, react to a deadly and unforeseen threat, and grapple with the unexplainable. I was inspired to write the novel when I recognized parallels (panic, confusion, denial, and conspiracy theories) between the way people responded to the 1916 rogue shark and, a century later, the reaction to the Covid pandemic.

 

Available in hardcover, paperback, large-print, ebook, and audiobook formats, Silent Came the Monster was published by Blackstone Publishing in a deal made by my longtime literary agency, William Morris Endeavor Entertainment in New York. 

 

The book was an Audible and Goodreads Summer 2023 pick. It was, also, selected as an Audio.com and Crimereads fan favorite.

 

In July 2023, the book was an International Pulpwood Queens and Timber Guys Book Club Selection, earning "Five Diamonds," the club's highest mark. Founded by Kathy L. Murphy and headquartered in Texas, the book club is the largest "meeting and discussing" book club in the world, with 800 chapters, including 20 chapters outside the USA.