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Category: 1. Temperance’s Trial

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SONG OF SUSPENSE SERIES


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Melody and James lead separate lives of discord until an unexpected meeting brings them to a sinister realization. Unbeknownst to them, dark forces have directed their lives from the shadows, orchestrating movements that keep them in disharmony. Fire, loss, and bloodshed can’t shake their faith in God to see them through as they face a percussive climax that will leave lives forever changed. (read more…)


THE JEWEL SERIES


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Written and published as a Christmas gift to Hallee’s readers and fans, this book is a novella that picks up where the Jewels ends. Christmas is a time of miracles. Faith Green and TJ Viscolli share the common bond of a love of history and romance blossoms. But an accident during the Christmas Eve air show threatens their hope of a life spent together. Will God provide a Christmas miracle, or will the future look cold and dark like a winter night? (Read more…)


VIRTUES AND VALOR SERIES


temperancePart 1 TEMPERANCE’S TRIAL:

MARIE GILBERT, code-named is recruited into an experimental all female cohort dubbed the Virtues, a collection of seven extraordinary women with highly specialized skills. Back in her home country of France, Marie clandestinely communicates vital intelligence directly back to Headquarters with a wireless radio, playing a deadly game of cat-and-mouse with the Nazis. (Read more…)

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The Amazing Stories That Inspired Temperance’s Trial, Book 1 of the Virtues and Valor Serialized Story

temperanceWHILE the story of the special team of operators I named The Virtues is entirely fictional, set in a fictional town, and comprised of fictional characters who form a fictional military division, every single one of my fictional heavenly heroines was inspired by a real World War II heroine and the story was inspired by real events.

Today, Temperance’s Trial IS FREE. Yes! FREE. You can get it in ebook form at this link.

Here are the amazing stories that inspired the writing of Temperance’s Trial, Part 1 of the Virtues and Valor Serialized Story.

01TitleTemperance

Pastor André Trocmé and his wife Magda
Pastor André Trocmé and his wife Magda

The hometown of fictional Marie Gilbert and her brother Edward, Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, is an actual place and the great and honored reverend Pastor André Trocmé as well as Pastor Edouard Theis were actual people. These men of God inspired the entire town to smuggle uncounted Jewish children and their parents, possibly as many as five thousand or more, out of the country and to safety. Those children who could not be safely evacuated were taken in and “adopted” by families who informed the Nazis that the children were visiting relatives or war orphans.

When the Gestapo or the corrupt and collaborates Vichy police would raid the town, the citizens would routinely risk their lives by hiding children and parents anywhere they could and using elaborate schemes to signal when the coast was clear. Many residents were eventually arrested by the Gestapo. Sadly, the Reverand Trocmé’s own cousin, Daniel Trocmé, was sent to Maidanek concentration camp and tortured to death.

It may be significant to note that the townspeople received contributions from the Quakers, the Salvation Army, the American Congregational Church, as well as other Jewish and Christian ecumenical groups, the French Protestant student organization Cimade, and the Swiss Help to Children. All of these organizations helped to ensure that the Jewish refugees were housed and fed and could travel in relative safety to Switzerland or other safe havens.

In 1990, the entire town became the only French town and one of only two towns on earth to be recognized as “Righteous Among the Nations” for their humanitarianism and bravery under extreme danger during the Second World War.

Didi NearneMarie Gilbert, code named Temperance, was inspired by the incredible Eileen Mary “Didi” Nearne who served as a wireless operator in the Spiritualist Network in Occupied France under the code named “Rose.”

Like Temperance, Didi Nearne, her brother Francis, and her sister Jacqueline fled the Nazis as the German war machine rolled into France. They eventually made their way to Great Britain via Spain.

All three of the Nearnes entered service with the British Special Operations Executive, or SOE, which was called “Churchill’s secret army.” A group within the SOE was called the F Section Networks. These networks were established in France to transmit and receive coded messages just like Temperance does in Temperance’s Trial. Due to the ease of detection and the German’s determination to track down these operators, it was one of the most dangerous duties assigned to agents within the SOE.

While Didi’s sister, Jacqueline, was sent to France to act as a courier (much like Temperance’s friend, Prudence), Didi stayed in England as a signals operator and received the encoded messages coming from France. After some time, she volunteered to go to France and act as a wireless operator for the F Section.

On March 2, 1944, Didi became one of only 39 women to parachute into Occupied France. She used the aliases Mademoiselle du Tort, Jacqueline Duterte, and Alice Wood – and went by the code name “Rose”. She worked as part of Operation Mitchel, which organized finances for the resistance. During her first five months in France, she transmitted an astonishing 105 messages.

After many, many narrow escapes, including a time on a train when a Nazi soldier offered to carry the suitcase containing her wireless radio, Didi was finally arrested. While in Paris, she had sent a coded transmission from her room, much like my character Temperance. Within minutes, the Gestapo arrived and found her in possession of her wireless rig.

According to wartime records, Nearne “survived, in silence, the full revolting treatment of the baignoire” in the torture chamber of the Paris headquarters of the Gestapo on the banks of the Rue des Saussaies.

She nearly died from the torture. They beat her, stripped her, and repeatedly submerged her in a bath of ice cold water until she started to black out. Yet, she did not break. She stuck to her story of being an innocent French girl who had been duped into helping someone by sending messages she didn’t understand in return for money to buy eggs and bread.

She never once revealed her true identity. She never told of the other agents with whom she worked. Despite days of endless torture, she never gave up any information of planned operations.

At the time, Eileen Mary “Didi” Nearne was only 23 years old.

On August 15, 1944, she was sent to the infamous Ravensbrück concentration camp near Berlin, and from there was sent through several forced labor camps. She refused to work in any of the camps, even under threat of being shot. Instead, she defied her captors to shoot her, and ended up being transferred each time instead.

Eventually, she ended up in a camp in Silesia. There Didi finally realized that the only way she would survive this experience would be to give in and work otherwise she would starve. During the bitter cold winter in December of 1944, the Nazis moved Didi to the Markleberg camp, near Leipzig, where she worked on a road-repair gang for 12 hours a day.

On April 13, 1945, while being transferred to yet another camp, along with two French girls from a work gang, Didi escaped. The trio evaded their pursuers by hiding in the forest. Astonishingly, they were apprehended by the SS in Markkleeberg, but she used her French language skills to fool her captors into letting them go. In Leipzig, a Catholic priest hid her until the arrival of the United States troops.

Jacqueline and Eileen "Didi" Nearne
Jacqueline and Eileen “Didi” Nearne — Photo Source the Guardian

Sadly, American intelligence officers initially identified her as a Nazi collaborator and held her at a detention center alongside captured SS personnel. Once London verified her identity as a secret agent, the Americans finally released her.

After the war, Eileen Mary “Didi” Nearne was awarded the Croix de Guerre by the French government, that nation’s highest award given to foreigners, and was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) by King George VI for services rendered in France during the enemy occupation.

Given what she underwent at the hands of her captors for years and years, her very survival is remarkable. When asked how she kept going, she replied, “The will to live. Willpower. That’s the most important. You should not let yourself go. It seemed that the end would never come, but I always believed in destiny, and I had a hope.”

Didi lived with her sister Jacqueline until her sister’s death in 1982. Afterward, she lived alone, a total recluse, haunted by her experiences as a captive of the Gestapo.

When Eileen Mary “Didi” Nearne died alone on September 2, 2010, it was several days before her death was discovered. It wasn’t until officials looking through her belongings hoping to find a relative whom they could contact that they discovered her true identity. Once they realized her incredible bravery and service, the entire community of Torbay, France, came together and gave her a funeral worthy of such an amazing war heroine with full military honors.

temperanceUnsurprisingly, there are very few actual photographs of Didi from the war and none of her operating a wireless rig. For the cover of this book, another suitable individual was selected. Pictured on the cover in place of “Temperance” and operating a wireless radio is none other than Mrs. Mac.

Mrs. Florence Violet McKenzie OBE (nee Wallace), aka “Mrs Mac” (1890-1982) was Australia’s first female electrical engineer, first female amateur radio operator, and the founder of the now international organization, the Electrical Association for Women. Mrs Mac is best known, however, for her work during the Second World War.

Having founded the Women’s Emergency Signalling Corps in 1939, she then successfully campaigned to have some of her female trainees accepted into the Royal Australian Navy, thereby originating the Women’s Royal Australian Naval Service. As the head instructor for the military, it is estimated that during the war some 12,000 servicemen from nearly every Allied nation passed through her Morse code training school in Australia.

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Temperance’s Trial is NOW Available!!

The Third Reich Seeks to Extract the Information She Alone Knows

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v01-tempeMARIE GILBERT and her elder brother flee from Vichy France after the Gestapo arrest her father for suspicion of aiding Jewish children to escape the oncoming fascist front. Once in London, Marie is recruited into an experimental all female cohort dubbed the Virtues, a collection of seven extraordinary women with highly specialized skills.

Known only by her code name, TEMPERANCE, she is trained to operate a wireless radio and returns to her beloved France. With a new identity, Marie clandestinely communicates vital intelligence directly back to Headquarters but unwillingly attracts the attention and apparent adoration of a handsome but ruthless Nazi officer, Oberleutnant LEOPOLD SCHÄFER.

As the H-hour to execute their daring mission draws ever closer, Marie plays a deadly game of cat-and-mouse with the unrelenting and merciless young Lieutenant Schäfer and the Nazi soldiers under his command.

TEMPERANCE’S TRIAL is part one of seven serialized novellas entitled the Virtues and Valor series and is now available!

Seven valorous women — different nationalities, ethnicities, and social backgrounds — come together as a team called the Virtues.

In 1941 Great Britain a special war department assembles an experimental and exclusively female cohort of combat operatives. Four willing spies, a wireless radio operator, an ingenious code breaker, and a fearless pilot are each hand-picked, recruited, and trained to initiate a daring mission in Occupied France. As plans are laid to engineer the largest prison break of Allied POWs in history, the Nazis capture the Virtues’ radio operator. It will take the cohesive teamwork of the rest of the women to save her life before Berlin breaks her and brings the force of the Third Reich to bear.

Some find love, some find vengeance, and some discover the kind of strength that lives in the human heart when all they can do is rely on each other and their shared belief. Courage, faith, and valor intersect but, in the end, one pays the ultimate price.

Introducing the Virtues and Valor series by Hallee Bridgeman. Seven serialized novellas, each inspired by real people and actual events, reveal the incredible story of amazing heroines facing the ultimate test of bravery. Temperance’s Trial is now available at the following locations:

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Massive Thunderclap Giveaway Sponsored by APH Radio!

My friends at APH Radio are helping me promote my Thunderclap campaign for the release of Temperance’s Trial, book 1 in the Virtues and Valor series.

5 supporters will win an autographed copy of A Carol for Kent and one supporter will win an autographed copy of the entire Jewel Series!

What is a Thunderclap campaign and how can you support it?

You go to this link.  Click that you’ll support it with Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr (you can do all three!)

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That’s it.

On my release day, at 12:00PM EST, this will be released by Thunderclap onto our social media:

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How does this help me? It tells your friends about my new book. It also creates a social media “trend” – which allows the book to gain traction on release day.

Please sign up for the campaign. Then come back here and be entered to win!
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Temperance’s Trial Now Available for Pre-Order

v01-tempePart 1 of the Virtues and Valor series will release on September 15th! Pre-order it on Amazon by clicking this link today!

The Third Reich Seeks to Extract the Information She Alone Knows

MARIE GILBERT and her elder brother flee from Vichy France after the Gestapo arrest her father for suspicion of aiding Jewish children to escape the oncoming fascist front. Once in London, Marie is recruited into an experimental all female cohort dubbed the Virtues, a collection of seven extraordinary women with highly specialized skills.

Known only by her code name, TEMPERANCE, she is trained to operate a wireless radio and returns to her beloved France. With a new identity, Marie clandestinely communicates vital intelligence directly back to Headquarters but unwillingly attracts the attention and apparent adoration of a handsome but ruthless Nazi officer, Oberleutnant LEOPOLD SCHÄFER.

As the H-hour to execute their daring mission draws ever closer, Marie plays a deadly game of cat-and-mouse with the unrelenting and merciless young Lieutenant Schäfer and the Nazi soldiers under his command.

TEMPERANCE’S TRIAL is part one of seven serialized novellas entitled the Virtues and Valor series.

Seven valorous women — different nationalities, ethnicities, and social backgrounds — come together as a team called the Virtues.

In 1941 Great Britain a special war department assembles an experimental and exclusively female cohort of combat operatives. Four willing spies, a wireless radio operator, an ingenious code breaker, and a fearless pilot are each hand-picked, recruited, and trained to initiate a daring mission in Occupied France. As plans are laid to engineer the largest prison break of Allied POWs in history, the Nazis capture the Virtues’ radio operator. It will take the cohesive teamwork of the rest of the women to save her life before Berlin breaks her and brings the force of the Third Reich to bear.

Some find love, some find vengeance, and some discover the kind of strength that lives in the human heart when all they can do is rely on each other and their shared belief. Courage, faith, and valor intersect but, in the end, one pays the ultimate price.

Introducing the Virtues and Valor series by Hallee Bridgeman. Seven serialized novellas, each inspired by real people and actual events, reveal the incredible story of amazing heroines facing the ultimate test of bravery.

Part 1 of the Virtues and Valor series will release on September 15th! Pre-order it on Amazon by clicking this link today!
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You would bless me if you added me to your Subscribe via any Reader feed reader or subscribed Subscribe via Email via email.
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Preview of the upcoming Virtues and Valor series

00HeavenlyHeroinesHere is the prologue from the Virtues and Valor book 1, Temperance’s Trial, due out in September. This will be a serialized set of novellas that take place during WWII.  Each book will follow a different female heroine throughout the planning and execution of a mission in occupied France.  Every character will be based on a real life heroine from that war.  In the back of each novella, I will tell you about the heroine who inspired that book’s character.

Temperance’s Trial follows Marie Gilbert, codenamed Temperance.

PROLOGUE

Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, France, 1941

Marie Gilbert woke with a start. She could hear the pounding on the front door from up in her room. With urgency, she threw off her nightgown and quickly slipped her dress over her head. As she buttoned the top button, her bedroom door flew open and her brother, Edward, dashed inside and went straight to the window. He peered out into the back garden.

“Go!” their father ordered from the doorway. “Don’t look back.”

“Papa!” Marie cried as Edward put an arm over her shoulders and guided her to the window. “Come with us, papa.”

Her father adjusted his coat and buttoned it at the waist. His eyes caught those of his son long enough to order, “Take her to Switzerland. Don’t look back.” He straightened her bed and flipped her pillow over. He retrieved her nightgown from the floor and shoved it into the top drawer of her bureau before he left the room, shutting the door behind him.

Edward looked out the window again, peering into the twilight darkness, searching the backyard and surrounding area. Marie felt her stomach knot in fear. “Edward, how can we leave him?”

“Because he said to.” He pushed the window open, stuck his head out and looked all around including up onto their roof. When he pulled his torso back inside, his voice never rose above a whisper. “Can you make it to the tree limb?”

Marie looked at the stout limb that nearly brushed her window. “I haven’t in years. I’m a grown woman now. I don’t know …”

Edward held out his hand. “We’ll make our way through the trees until we’re in the Philipe’s yard. Ready? No time to waste.”

Marie took a deep breath, and slipped a leg over the window sill. She looked down into the yard, two stories below. Without hesitation — well, maybe a little hesitation — she reached her hands out and leapt forward.

The trees on the estates were older than the buildings, and their branches entwined like the arms of an old married couple. Marie and Edward made their way carefully and just as quietly as possible through the trees. In the dark, branches scratched at her face and snagged in her hair, but she kept silent. Hearing a ruckus below, she paused just at the fence line and looked down below and behind them, seeing the uniformed Vichy police officers and members of the German Security Force haul her father from their home.

Biting back a cry, she met Edward’s eyes. His face looked grim, but he didn’t say a word. He just pressed his lips together and gave a harsh shake of his head.

They didn’t climb down out of the trees until they were on the far side of Philipe’s yard. Silently, they rushed across the grass and over the fence into the garden of Edward’s friend, Andre. In the far back corner, next to the stone fence, Edward knelt to the ground and removed a stone from the pillar. He reached inside and pulled out a sachet. He quickly opened it and studied the contents.

“Here, take this,” he said, handing her identification papers and a small cloth bag. She was now Andre’s sister, Muriel, despite Muriel’s age being closer to 30 than Marie’s own 20. Inside the bag, she found a blonde wig, which would cover her brown curls. With the wig on, the picture matched well enough, and at a glance the papers looked good.

“Do I call you Andre now?” She asked as he quickly pasted a pencil thin mustache onto his clean shaven upper lip.

“For now.” He counted the stack of francs and tucked them into his inner jacket pocket. “I have a car waiting in Tence. We’ll drive to Firminy and take the train to Geneva from there. Hopefully, it will be far enough away that they won’t look for us at the station.”

Over fences, under cattle gates, and through the wilderness, they ran and hid until they reached Tence. In a barn on a farm on the outskirts of town, they recovered the car Edward had secured, a 1925 Ariès flatbed in need of new tires, paint, and upholstery but with absolutely nothing wrong with the motor. The keys were hidden in the chicken coup. They pushed the car out of the barn and down the lane before starting the engine.

As they drove along the dark roads, Marie thought of her father. Tears burned in her eyes while she considered what might happen to him. But, she knew it was all in God’s hands.

Their family had worked with many families in their town to shelter Jewish children from the Germans. It wasn’t something she wished she regretted having done. Rather it was something she wished she hadn’t had to do. The evil treatment of the Jews ate at her soul and she was glad she was able to play some small part in saving a few lives.

But, they all knew the risks. That was why Edward had spent months planning escape routes, hiding identification papers, storing money, securing a vehicle. He knew one day the Germans would come for them.

“He should have gone with us,” she said, leaning her head against the window.

“You know we only escaped because he didn’t.”

“I’m just glad we didn’t have any children in the house last night,” she said, weary. She blinked against her burning eyes.

“God is good. Maybe they won’t be able to detain him since no children were there.” He gestured with his chin. “There should be a canteen in the back if you’re thirsty.”

“I just worry about who else might have been arrested,” Marie said. She rolled her eyes on her neck. “Do I have any terrible scratches on my face? I don’t want to stand out at the train station.”

Edward looked away from the road long enough to glance at her face. “Nothing terrible,” he said.

“Thanks.” Reaching behind her, she grabbed the canteen. “Where will we go?”

“London.” Edward reached over and squeezed her shoulder. “With Papa being English, maybe we can stay there.”

“I’d rather be where he is.”

“Of course you would. But, we have to put that aside right now.” Putting both hands back on the wheel, he said, “We both do.”

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