Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Tropical Musings

Christine Johnson here today, and I’d like to offer everyone suffering through the spate of winter storms a glimpse of summer. Some of my non-LIH books are set in 1850s Key West. There’s nothing like the beauty of the tropics to give us a boost on those gloomy days.

Bahama house in Key West

This is one of the older homes in Key West. It was actually built in the Bahamas, disassembled and brought to Key West after the 1846 hurricane! Having suffered through Hurricane Irma, I can see why the owner resorted to this tactic. We have building supply stores and a road to the mainland. Key West had neither of those in 1846. They relied on ships to bring supplies. It could be a long wait. 

Fort Jefferson at the Dry Tortugas National Park

Speaking of ships and remote destinations, you can still visit one of the United State’s most remote National Parks, Dry Tortugas National Park, where Fort Jefferson is located. It’s a couple hour ferry ride or a seaplane ride from Key West to get there. The fort takes up nearly the entire island.

Fort Zachary Taylor

Key West has its own fort, named Fort Zachary Taylor, which was originally built offshore with a sand spit connecting it to the land. Now it’s completely landlocked. The storms and flow of the sea are constantly changing the shape of every key (island) in the chain. Hurricanes birth new islands and remove others.

Dry Tortugas islands

But I love the colors the best. The waters have a wide range of blues and turquoises, and then there are the flowers. Many have been brought to the island from other locations, but they are still beautiful.

Quailberry flower

My Keys of Promise series is set in this area in the 1850s, when Key West looked very different from today. In March, April and May, I will be hosting book club discussions on each of the three books at the free Women’s Bible Café Book Club online. 

Love's Rescue coverOur March discussion of Love’s Rescue has begun, but you are certainly welcome to join in. See

Thank you for sharing this walk through one of my favorite places.

Christine Johnson
Would-Be Mistletoe Wife (December 2017, LIH)
Freedom’s Price (Revell, June 2017)


  1. Our Florida ties are many. Oldest son was born in Kissimmee. Two of the others went to college in Florida. One got married in Key West and stayed on to practice law in the Palm Beach area. The Keys are to our Florida girl what Disney World is to everyone else. She says time simply stops and the world goes away in the Keys. The book series sounds lovely.

    1. Time may not stop in the Keys, LOL, but it sure does slow down to a crawl! Thanks for sharing, Arlene.

  2. Beautiful scenery...and lovely cover, too!

  3. Okay, I'm coming to visit you. And, love that you're doing bookclubs. How cool is that!

    1. LOL, Pamela! It is super cool to do book club discussions of my own books. I have led discussions of other's books but always steered clear of my own. It's really important to understand that every reader experiences a story in a unique way. I love hearing about each reader's journey through the story.

  4. Thanks for sharing the history and photos of Key West.

  5. Beautiful photos. I’ve always wanted to visit Key West.

    1. Thanks, Terri. I hope you get a chance to see it one day.