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Then young Father Joseph meets Tessa Conley, a devout Irish immigrant who shares his passions for music and botany. Joseph must conceal his true feelings as Tessa marries another man—a plantation owner who treats her like property. Acting on their love for each other will ruin Joseph and Tessa in this world and damn them in the next.
Or will it?
At once intimate drama and multigenerational epic, Necessary Sins is the first book in the Lazare Family Saga that transports readers from the West Indies to the Wild West, from Charleston, Paris, and Rome into the depths of the human heart.
However, this scene is evidence of a big change I made: I renamed my heroine. In early drafts, Tessa was named Aisling (pronounced ASH-ling). I loved the Irish legend behind the name, and I thought it tied in well with my story. Joseph thinks he knows what he wants from life—to be a good priest—but then he meets this woman who’s his soulmate, and she changes everything. However, when I did more research, I realized Aisling would not have been used as a given name at this time. Because the British Crown controlled Ireland, Irish people had Anglicized names. Furthermore, this woman from a good Catholic family would have been given a saint’s name. So I had to choose an appropriate saint. This conversation is the only remaining vestige of my heroine’s previous name, and now it explains why I named her after Saint Teresa of Ávila (Above Left) instead.