Fate or Coincidence?
I’ve heard or read a lot of debates about whether such a thing as “fate” exists, or whether everything that happens in our lives is just a serious of events and coincidences. Sometimes it’s hard to tell. If you’re thinking of a friend you haven’t heard from in years and all of a sudden they call or pop up on your Facebook feed, is that really just a coincidence? Or is something more behind it?
While that question isn’t central to my novel Dawn Over Dayfield, it does impact the plot to some extent. As I was writing the book, I kept asking myself whether the things that were happening were even believable, given how much “coincidence” seemed to exist. (Note that my writing process, while involving some brainstorming, also involves starting to type and seeing where things go, so sometimes I don’t actually know what’s going to happen until I type it.)
In the novel, Andy Forrest, a young man who was adopted at birth, visits the central Massachusetts town of Dayfield to find information about his birth parents. He’s never been interested in learning anything about them before, but after the death of Andy’s adopted mother from an undiagnosed genetic heart condition, his father encouraged him to at least try to learn his family’s medical history so nothing similar would happen to him.
In Dayfield, Andy meets Weston Thibeault, who runs the town’s Historical Society. The two men are physically attracted to each other, though each has a reason to avoid attempting a relationship. They begin working together to help Andy learn more about his birth father, who turns out to be Vardon Chaffee, last son of the most prominent family in town. The Chaffee family became a Dayfield fixture in the late 1800s when two brothers purchased a factory in town and began a furniture-making enterprise that spread internationally—until the place went out of business in the mid-1980s, after Vardon’s death. Which turned out to have occurred under suspicious circumstances, as did the death of Andy’s birth mother only days after his birth.
Since the beginning of the factory, Thibeaults have worked for Chaffees. In the late 1890s, one of the Chaffee brothers perished in a fire at the factory, along with a Thibeault. Why were the two men alone in the factor after hours? And Vardon’s death is tied to his friendship with Weston’s uncle Jason—but were they only friends?
Given the connections and entanglements between the two families, it’s hard to believe that coincidence brought Andy and Weston together. Neither of them knew about the history of the Chaffees and Thibeaults before Andy decided to start his research, so surely something more than coincidence led them to uncover the truth—and find each other.
Blurb: After the death of his adoptive mother, Andy Forrest decides to track down his biological family. The search leads him to the struggling central Massachusetts town of Dayfield—and local historian Weston Thibeault, the town’s only other openly gay man. With the help of Weston, Andy uncovers secrets about his birth father, the youngest son of the Chaffees, the family that once owned Dayfield’s largest employer, a furniture factory that closed thirty years earlier.
As Andy and Weston work together, they find a connection to a scandal that rocked the Chaffee family over 125 years ago. But small towns like to bury their secrets, and many of the older residents of Dayfield will do anything to stop Andy and Weston from discovering the truth about the town and its inhabitants.
About the Author: Karenna Colcroft is the alter ego of a shy, sedate wife and mother who began writing romance in 2006 after a friend challenged her. Her first book was published in 2009. Karenna lives in the northeastern United States with her real-life romance hero husband, her two offspring, and three cats. Find out more about her and her books on her website; like her on Facebook; or follow her on Twitter or Tumblr.