The Author's previous series, Sunny of the Old Southwest has received almost exclusively 5 star reviews.
Quality Fiction is Imagined Reality.
Quality Fiction is Imagined Reality.
Sailing to Windward
In 1897, sheltered, entitled, provincial, twenty-three year old Rosario Lopez flees home and family on the island of Cebu to avoid her selfish stepfather's demands: marry his friend, an older man who is a sexual pervert, or be sent to a convent. Now, as she tries to secure passage on a trading schooner that roams from mainland Southeast Asia to scattered Polynesia, her sister, Teresa, a year older and equally charming, has disappeared months earlier, perhaps for fear of being forced to take Rosario's place in the marriage. No one really knows why she's gone or where she is.
Book 1 of "Magandang Pilipinas"
Those Who Trespass
In 1900, as Panay became more volatile, the father of Angelina Pilar Perez sent her to Cebu, which was ever more quiet, though it had its part in a war that was scattered across the whole archipelago as well. The Americans burned Iloilo City in ninety-nine when they landed, because of the rebel fire directed at them, and Peck had burned Dumangas in June of nineteen hundred for the same reason. Intrigue, confused loyalties, and such were the problem, and Miguel Alejandro Perez knew not whether he and his sons would survive it, being pulled by both sides as they were. He must make sure his daughter did.
Those Who Trespass is in some ways the backbone of, Magandang Pilipinas. This novel addresses the painful struggle between Americans and Filipinos, as the former come, not to save the people from their Spanish overlords but to take the Philippines for America. After all it had been won in battle with the Spanish in Manila Bay and in Cuba and further purchased at the peace talks after the Spanish American War . . . but to the Filipinos, who had just driven the Spanish from the countryside and into hiding in "Intramuros", the fortress inner city of Manila, . . . they, the Filipino patriots, were the victors, and now they wanted their country that they had fought and died for!
To the End of the World
The year is 1902, and America has ventured into overseas imperialism during the War with Spain in 1898 and the Philippine American War that followed. Now, as the latter conflict winds to an end, the forces of history, an adventurous son, and noble deeds draw two ordinary yet unique Westerners into danger once again. Having long ago bravely ventured into a deeply loving marriage that was daring for their times and having been heroes to each other and to those around them, Sunny and Aaron Jefferson bring their unique abilities and courage to a different, beautifully exotic, and sometimes dangerous land. Through the mission of two American adventurers, this novel introduces the reader to the early moments of the complicated relationship between the people of the picturesque and sometimes troubled Philippine Islands and both official America and her people. It is a relationship that remains an enigma even now, 117 years later. Like the experience of the American conquest, endured in her small part of it by the Navajo woman, Jóhonaá (Sunny), it is a story of missed opportunities. But what of Aaron and Sunny Jefferson's voyage to America's new tropical colony? Their goal is always to do the right thing, and they do not miss opportunities.
In 1907, when her parents, brother, and Filipino sister-in-law return to the latter's homeland Philippines to take care of land and inheritance issues, 31 year old Sunny Kathleen Jefferson Rodriguez, a half Navajo widow of a Spanish American War veteran tags along. Lacking an anchor except for the family ranch her husband, who died in the fight for San Juan Heights in Cuba, would have been a part of had he lived, she follows them to the far Pacific islands. The marriage had been brief, the friendship since childhood, and he was the man she could not forget, not even in the ensuing eight years. Her only interests are the study of native peoples, her mother's Navajo culture, and her parents' frontier history. Saved from emotional oblivion perhaps only by family bonds and her deep Catholic faith, stunningly pretty, financially stable, but emotionally lost, she figures, "Why not the Philippines? I've nothing else to do and nowhere else to go."
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the Origins Story . . .
. . of "The Jaguarundi"
The first "Jaguarundi Book" KATHLEEN tells of the trials of the young Sunny, namesake of her Navajo mother, Johonaa' (of the sun) from a deadly dangerous moment in youth, during which she bonded ever more closely with her parents, to her early widowhood, and beyond.
Sunny Kathleen Jefferson . .
. . is a petite half Navajo Texas ranch girl, now as a grown woman and war widow, who uses her inherited wealth and parent driven home school education to learn all she possibly can about her Native American people, her parents' frontier knowledge and skills, her Christian belief, and the world's history . . and then applies it all in life to help those in danger.
Click the drawings to enlarge them,
A Great Prequel, almost a suitable prerequisite for the "Magandang Pilipinas" Series
Reading the fourth novel in the series, "Sunny of the Old Southwest" will be great preparation for the "Magandang Pilipinas" series. East & West from Texas is particularly enlightening with respect to: To the End of the World and Kathleen.
The fourth novel opens as Aaron Jefferson and his Navajo wife, Sunny, who have settled in North Central Texas along the Brazos River, must deal with the risks faced by their friends on the frontier during the Red River War, the last violent gasp of the Comanche nation. It was a time that created widows, orphans, widowers, slaves, and other victims.
In the second part of the novel, Aaron returns home to the Shenandoah Valley for a visit and to introduce his Native American wife to his family. As always perhaps, going home is melancholic at best and emotionally traumatic at worst. It can be cathartic, therapeutic, and sometimes devastating.
In the third part of the book, one of the three Navajo women returns to Dinétah, the Navajo homeland, bringing her husband and children along. It is, of course, a somewhat traumatic visit because her Diné ('The People') who had been incarcerated unfairly for four years are still (nineteen years after returning home) rebuilding the homeland that had been scourged by the forces of the U.S. Government. The journey involves a secret mission, and they realize it may have been a mistake to have traveled with their children.
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