Leigh Goff

Author


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The Original Cakewalk

from Sharon Ledwith

Y’all ready to set the flo’? Say what? Not sure what I’m talking about? You’re not alone. I had no idea what “set the flo’” meant until digging into the research I needed to bring readers into my point-of-view character Drake Bailey’s world in the third book of The Last Timekeepers time travel adventure series. Set in 1855, during the antebellum period in Georgia, Drake discovers that it’s not the best place for an African American time traveler, but he endures and lives to tell his tale.

Plantation slaves in the deep south of America weren’t given many pleasures in their hard lives. Author Julius Lester sums it up beautifully when he wrote in his book, To Be A Slave, “The prayer meetings, the parties, and the holidays did not make being a slave pleasurable. Nothing could do that, but whatever pleasure the slave was able to provide for himself was a remarkable testimony to the ability to retain humanity under the most inhuman conditions.” One of those small pleasures was to set the flo’ or set de flo’—a dance style competition—where the best couple or single dancer won a cake through their creative jig.

In The Last Timekeeper and the Noble Slave, I wrote a cakewalk scene during the slaves’ Good Friday E28 22 Apr cakewalk+postcard+detailcelebration. My interpretation of a set the flo’ dancing contest involves an elder slave drawing a circle on the dirt floor with a charred corn cob. The rules require the dancers not to step outside the circle or they’ll be disqualified. Next, the fiddler would call out to begin the competition. Since I had slave couples compete, the man and woman would bow to one another, then the woman placed her foot on her partner’s knee, so he could tie her shoelace. Traditional cakewalk dance contests had the woman put her hands on her hips while the man rolls his eyes and grins before they started dancing. I combined both techniques to break the tension and create the necessary humor in the scene.

Strutting was an element always present in set the flo’ dancing, and there were different styles, such as water dances. As you may have guessed, this jig demanded the dancer keep a glass or pail of water on his or her head and see how many kinds of steps they could make without spilling the water. Um, no thanks. Already dressed in their best clothes, why tempt fate? The fluid and graceful steps of the dance may have given rise to the colloquialism that something accomplished with ease is a ‘cakewalk’, but the life of a slave was far from that.

However, there is an interesting element with the history of this dance. A firsthand account from ex-slaves interviewed during the 1930’s shares that the cakewalk was meant to covertly mock their owners without getting punished, through the signals and expression of dance. Now that’s what I call getting their just desserts!

Speaking of desserts…

Unknown-1What’s better than a 12-slice cheesecake to serve at your next family gathering or function? Getting to choose a mini version of your favorite cheesecake and indulge without the guilt of having a large piece. Enter Cheesecake Shots…

Cheesecake Shots

1 cup Graham Crumbs

¼ cup butter, melted

2 packages (250 g/8.82 ounces each) Brick Cream Cheese, softened

¾ cup granulated sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

2 eggs

½ cup sour cream

Suggested Toppings

⅓ cup caramel ice cream topping and 1 bar (100 g/3.52 ounces) Toblerone Swiss Milk Chocolate, coarsely chopped

1 can of cherry or blueberry pie filling

⅓ cup caramel ice cream topping and pecan halves

Preheat oven to 300° F.

Mix crumbs and butter; press into bottom of 12-count muffin pan (1 tablespoon in each cup).

Beat cream cheese, sugar, sour cream, and vanilla in large bowl with mixer until well blended.

Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing on low speed after each just until blended. Pour a ¼ cup of mixture over crust in each cup.

Bake 18 – 22 minutes or until center is almost set. Refrigerate 4 hours.

Depending on what you choose for a topping: spread caramel topping over cheesecake just before serving and garnish with chopped chocolate or pecan halves, or add a dollop of your favorite pie filling, and enjoy!

While you’re waiting for the cheesecake shots to set in the fridge, here’s a taste of The Last Timekeepers and the Noble Slave available for purchase on all your online bookstores.


True freedom happens only when you choose to be free.B Sharon Ledwith NobleSlave cover

Eleven-year-old Drake Bailey is an analytical thinker and the genius of the Timekeeper crew. However, no logic or mathematical acumen can change the color of his skin, or prepare him for this third Timekeeper mission in antebellum Georgia. To survive, Drake must learn to play the role of a plantation slave and when confronted with the brutality, hatred, and racism of the deep south, he’ll have to strategically keep one move ahead of his sadistic captors to ensure his lineage continues.

In a dark world of Voodoo, zombies, and ritualistic sacrifice, the Timekeepers must ensure a royal bloodline survives. Can Drake remove both literal and figurative chains to save both himself and a devout slave girl from a terrible fate? If he can’t summon the necessary courage, humanity could stand to lose one of its greatest leaders.

Amazon Buy Link

Sharon Ledwith Author ShotSharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/YA time travel series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and the teen psychic mystery series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her hubby, one spoiled yellow Labrador and a moody calico cat.

Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her websiteand blog. Stay connected on Facebook and Twitter, Goodreads, and Smashwords. Look up her Amazon Author page for a list of current books. Be sure to check out THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS TIME TRAVEL SERIES Facebook page.


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NEW RELEASE! The Last Timekeepers and the Noble Slave

 

Welcome to the 1-week virtual book tour for 
The Last Timekeepers and the Noble Slave
The Last Timekeepers, Book 3
by Sharon Ledwith


About the Book:

Eleven-year-old Drake Bailey is an analytical thinker and the genius of the Timekeeper crew. However, no logic or mathematical acumen can change the color of his skin, or prepare him for this third Timekeeper mission in antebellum Georgia. To survive, Drake must learn to play the role of a plantation slave and when confronted with the brutality, hatred, and racism of the deep south, he’ll have to strategically keep one move ahead of his sadistic captors to ensure his lineage continues.

In a dark world of Voodoo, zombies, and ritualistic sacrifice, the Timekeepers must ensure a royal bloodline survives. Can Drake remove both literal and figurative chains to save both himself and a devout slave girl from a terrible fate? If he can’t summon the necessary courage, humanity could stand to lose one of its greatest leaders.

Book Details:

Genres: Young Adult, Time Travel, Fantasy  

Page Count: 244 Pages

Publisher: Mirror World Publishing

Release Date: September 17, 2021

Follow the Tour to Read Exclusive Excerpts, Guest Posts, Reviews, and Spotlight Posts:


Read an Excerpt:

The rattling chains chilled Drake’s blood. Leaning back, he trembled as O’Hara threaded the chain through a metal loop screwed into the wagon’s floor, and fastened the shackles to Drake’s wrists. He stared numbly. These chains were not the same as the ones slapped on him in Nottingham Castle. Those shackles fell off easily because his hands were too small. Not this time. These shackles fit him perfectly, as if made for a child. His heart raced, wishing this was a nightmare so he could wake up.

O’Hara clapped his hands, making Creecy, and the other girl and boy across from Drake flinch. “I’m going to get rid of this morning’s whiskey.” He belched and undid his belt. “If I hear any noise coming from this wagon, you’ll get ten lashes each. Understood?”

They all nodded vehemently. Drake cringed. His face and lips throbbed. O’Hara jumped down, and grunted as he side-stepped rocks and saplings to get into the woods as quickly as possible. When Drake was sure O’Hara was out of earshot, he let out a deep, sour breath.

“Are you all right?”

Startled, Drake looked up to find the girl across from him reaching over to wipe a trickle of blood from his chin. She seemed to possess an air of maturity, and he thought she might be older than Creecy. Her warm touch soothed Drake, and he forced a half-smile. “T-thanks. I-I’m okay, I guess.”

“Eilish, what are you doing?” the boy next to her whispered. “Keep quiet.”

As soon as the girl called Eilish shifted to the side, Drake realized she was pregnant under her red and white skirt. Her long braided black hair was decorated with tiny seashells, and her head was covered with a red and white bandana that matched her skirt. A loose-fitting white blouse was a stark contrast to Eilish’s smooth, brown skin. But it was her rich, mocha-colored eyes that mesmerized Drake and reminded him of his mother. His throat tightened.

Eilish entwined her fingers around her beaded necklace. The contrasting shades of red and white beads glistened as if a spirit resided in them. “Do you have a problem with me comforting the boy, Adam?”

Adam pushed his creamed-colored straw hat off his forehead and frowned. “No, but as your brother, I have a problem with you getting beaten by that quashie. Your baby needs protection, even from you.”

Eilish cupped Adam’s chin. “You forget I am the oldest, and know what is best.”

Drake raised an eyebrow. Why do they sound so familiar?

Adam slapped his sister’s hand away. “What is best is that we get back to Jamaica before the baby is born.”

“You’re both from Jamaica?” Drake asked. “I thought I detected a subtle island accent, though you’re lacking the informal dialect I’m used to hearing.” Hmm…maybe our Babels can’t translate cultural idioms? He inclined his head. “What are you doing here?”

The siblings glanced first at each other, and then at Drake. Adam was definitely younger than Eilish, but older than Drake. Maybe twelve or thirteen, but no more. He also seemed on the mature side, but given the time period they were in, Drake figured kids grew up way too fast here. Adam wore a white cotton shirt like Eilish’s, but his sleeves were rolled up past his elbows. Heavy denim pants held up with a rope didn’t seem a wise pick for the humid climate of Georgia, but Drake knew slaves had no choice when it came to their wardrobe.

Adam drew his knees to his chest and shuffled his leather sandals that appeared too small for his growing feet. He checked over his shoulder toward the woods, and then turned to whisper, “Why do you think we’re here? We’re slaves like you.”

“Look, my name’s Drake, and by the way—I’m not a slave, and neither are you. I know for a fact that slavery is abolished in Jamaica. Why would you leave Jamaica to come to America when you were already free?”

“We didn’t,” Eilish replied. “We were kidnapped.”


Purchase Links:

Mirror World Publishing:








Meet the Author:

Escape to the past and have a blast.

Sharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/young adult time travel adventure series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and the award-winning teen psychic mystery series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her spoiled hubby, and a moody calico cat.

Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her WEBSITE and BLOGLook up her AMAZON AUTHOR page for a list of current books. Stay connected on FACEBOOKTWITTERPINTERESTLINKEDININSTAGRAM, and GOODREADS

Publisher Website:

Mirror World Publishing 

Giveaway Information and Entry Forms:

2 winners!

1 winner will received a signed paperback of The Last Timekeepers and the Noble Slave (International).a Rafflecopter giveaway https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

1 winner will receive a Kindle copy of The Last Timekeepers and the Noble Slave (US only).a Rafflecopter giveaway https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js



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Cover Reveal for The Last Timekeepers and the Noble Slave!!!

The Last Timekeepers, Book 3

by Sharon Ledwith



Welcome to the Cover Reveal for The Last Timekeepers and the Noble Slave
The Last Timekeepers, Book 3
by Sharon Ledwith



About the Book:

Eleven-year-old Drake Bailey is an analytical thinker and the genius of the Timekeeper crew. However, no logic or mathematical acumen can change the color of his skin, or prepare him for this third Timekeeper mission in antebellum Georgia. To survive, Drake must learn to play the role of a plantation slave and when confronted with the brutality, hatred, and racism of the deep south, he’ll have to strategically keep one move ahead of his sadistic captors to ensure his lineage continues.

In a dark world of Voodoo, zombies, and ritualistic sacrifice, the Timekeepers must ensure a royal bloodline survives. Can Drake remove both literal and figurative chains to save both himself and a devout slave girl from a terrible fate? If he can’t summon the necessary courage, humanity could stand to lose one of its greatest leaders.

Book Details:

Genres: Young Adult, Time Travel, Fantasy  

Release Date is September 17, 2021

Author Tagline:

Escape to the past and have a blast.

Meet the Author:

Sharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/young adult time travel adventure series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and the award-winning teen psychic mystery series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her spoiled hubby, and a moody calico cat.

Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her WEBSITE and BLOG. Look up her AMAZON AUTHOR page for a list of current books. Stay connected on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, PINTEREST, LINKEDIN, INSTAGRAM, and GOODREADS

Publisher Website:

Mirror World Publishing