Tracie Peterson is the award-winning author of over 100 novels, both historical and contemporary. Her avid research resonates in her many bestselling series. Tracie and her family make their home in Montana.
In this interview, Tracie shares some of her thoughts behind her latest novel, Remember Me.
FF: Remember Me is the first book in your Pictures of the Heart Series. What inspired the idea for this series?
In reading histories of the Pacific Northwest, I came across the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition that was held in Seattle in 1909. I also kept seeing information that talked about cameras becoming affordable for the average person thanks to the Kodak Brownie camera. I thought it would be great fun to set a series at the Expo and the idea of creating Camera Girls came to mind.
FF: What is the connecting element for all the books in the Pictures of the Heart Series and what do readers have to look forward to in the rest of this series?
This is a series that builds on book one, however, a person can read them out of order and not really suffer the individual story. The common thread is the Exposition. This fair was the event of the year and people came from all over the world to see it. The series will cover the months that the Expo was active, June through October, and each story will cover a Camera Girl’s characters and their romances.
FF: How were your protagonists, Addie Bryant and Isaac Hanson, acquainted and what led to their separation?
Addie and Isaac met during the Yukon goldrush. They fell in love and pledged to marry. However, Isaac needed to leave to attend college. He promised to return for Addie.
FF: Your female protagonist, Addie Bryant, faces some very difficult circumstances in her early life. Can you provide some background information on Addie?
Addie’s mother dies and Addie is raised by her thieving father and battling brothers. They are very abusive and when their father dies, her brothers sell Addie to a brothel owner. At first just to cook for the place, but then she becomes the owner’s mistress and eventually wife and widow. Even though she’s free to remarry, Addie feels she will never ever be good enough for Isaac.
FF: One of the underlying themes within Remember Me is forgiveness. Can you expound upon how this theme plays out in your novel?
Forgiveness is always a key theme in my stories because it’s so vital in the life of a Christian. God tells us in the Bible that if we won’t forgive, we won’t be forgiven. With my characters they have to learn to let the past go and realize they are forgiven in God’s love and that He will give them a future of love.
FF: Are there any other lessons that you hope readers can gain from reading Remember Me?
That holding on to the past and letting it dictate who you are is never a beneficial thing. God is all about looking forward.
FF: Remember Me begins in Northwestern Canada in the Yukon territory and eventually ends up in Seattle, Washington. Why did you choose these locations for the setting of your book?
I chose the Seattle setting because of its tie to the Yukon goldrush in 1898 and to the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition in 1909.
FF: Both Addie Bryant and Isaac Hanson reunite at the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Expo in Seattle. Can you tell us more about this event and how Addie was involved in this Expo?
The Expo was a World Fair that focused on the areas of the Pacific Northwest as well as Pacific islands and the Yukon. Addie is working for a photography company and when they decide to get involved with the expo as a vendor, Addie comes up with the idea of Camera Girls. These girls will walk around the Expo and offer to take souvenir photos for the attendees. The new Kodak Brownie camera is all the rage and so they promote this as well. Addie trains the Camera Girls and acts as one herself. She also gets involved in lecturing on the Yukon goldrush since she actually participated and knew a lot about it.
FF: What are you working on next?
I’m currently writing book three in the Pictures of the Heart Series. There will be three books in the series and the stories will cover the entire time that the Expo was running. There were a lot of interesting tidbits about the Expo that I wanted to include in the series. After this series is complete, I plan to start a series on Cheyenne, Wyoming.
Pictures of the Heart Series #1
Genres: Historical Romance
Release Date: March 7, 2023
From the Yukon to Seattle, the hope of a new beginning waits just around the corner.
Addie Bryant is haunted by her past of heartbreak and betrayal. After her beau, Isaac Hanson, left the Yukon, she made a vow to wait for him. When she’s sold to a brothel owner after the death of her father, Addie manages to escape with the hope that she can forever hide her past and the belief that she will never have the future she’s always dreamed of.
Years later, Addie has found peace in her new life as a photographer, training Camera Girls to operate and sell the Brownie camera. During the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Expo in Seattle, Addie is reunited with Isaac, but after the path her life has taken, she’s afraid to expose the ugliness of her former life and to move toward the future they had pledged to each other.
When her past catches up with her, Addie must decide whether to run or to stay and face her wounds in order to embrace her life, her future, and her hope in God.
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