I hope you’re all well and, if at all possible, that you’re socially isolating. This is a good time to read a good book or twelve and right now the ebook version of my award-winning Paranormal Fantasy novel Cleaning House is free on Smashwords and only $.99 on Amazon. You can find them at the links below.
Welcome to my 139th #Rainbowsnippets*. This one, as always, is uniquely mine, but there are lots of other great snippets to read so after you finish here click the FB link at the bottom of the post to discover other great LGBTQIA authors and their works.
Striking Balance: The Peculiar Making of Beatrice Benjamin Sophia Scott Schnell Gow is a queer Historical Paranormal Fantasy set in, you guessed it, Appalachia. This Appalachia, however, is the frontier, and the story takes place during the Revolutionary War era and the time after, meaning the late 18th century. This explains the narrator’s voice. If you’ve read the letters and journals of the period, you’ll recognize it as reflective of those.
This week I’m picking up where I left off in Chapter Two. Remember that we’re in Ben’s POV, and his thoughts are focused on Charity who is being anything but charitable at present.
Hateful creature, I’ll have you know… I bite my tongue until it aches, but Charity is somewhat correct. I am indeed ill fit but only because I lack the patience to deal with flippant fickle beings such as her.
I peer at Conall with begging eyes, but he shakes his head. So much for an out. I am mired here whether I like it or not.
“Ben’s young, Miss Charity, and still learnin’ so he should stay.” Conall sips from his mug, ignoring me when I narrow my eyes at him. Widow Alcott makes fine brew, I shall grant her this, but mine is just as good. Conall has told me more than once and believes my ginger beer, when we have the means to make it, is far superior.
Tiny History Lesson: Benjamin Franklin has been quoted as saying, “In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is strength, in water there is bacteria.” There’s one problem with this. Bacteria weren’t called bacteria during Franklin’s life. Germ theory wasn’t a thing then and… sigh. My point here is that most everyone during the 18th century refrained from drinking water unless they were certain that the water was good, often called sweet, which it often still is in Appalachia because the limestone rock acts as a natural filtration system. So Widow Alcott certainly doesn’t need to be serving brew (beer), a common safe drink of the time period, at dinner, but she is. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it? Is she softening Conall up? Ben too for that matter? But Ben’s not having it, that’s for certain. And ginger beer is exactly what you think, ginger ale or at least its elder, at one time alcohol-containing sibling. Homebrew was more than a hobby in the 18th century, especially on the frontier, many women and men were skilled at it, and it was a necessity if the water supply wasn’t trustworthy.
Curious as to how ginger beer was made? Here’s a link to a video from Townsend’s on how it’s made. I might try it too when things have calmed.
*RainbowSnippets is a safe and welcoming space for LGBTQIA+ authors, readers, and bloggers to share 6 sentences each week from a work of fiction—published or in-progress—or a book recommendation. Feel free to join in.