What Kaye Is Working On...
On Deadly Grounds
For four generations, the working-class family of MATTIE MAGUIRE has served the wealthy SINCLAIR family, founders of Sinclair Station, North Carolina, and owners of the beautiful hundred-year-old mansion, Clairmont, on the Sinclair Estate. Town leaders are thrilled when, through Mattie’s efforts, as Event Coordinator for the North Carolina Visitors and Conventions Bureau, Sinclair Station is chosen to host the next International G7 Summit when it cycles back to the United States.
But fraudulent heirs and Russian infiltrators thwart Mattie’s efforts to complete the preliminary Summit preparations. And when a member of Mattie’s family is kidnapped and threatened with death, she realizes that finding the missing Sinclair heir—hidden away for decades—is the key to giving the Russians what they want and saving her family. But even then…she must still fight to save her own life.
The Road Remembered
SAM RYAN, veteran of General George Patton’s Third Army during World War II, returns to Europe for a 70th year reunion with his 89th Infantry Division, where he will reprise his trek across Europe, from Le Havre, France, to Zwickau, Germany. Traveling with his daughter, SUZANNE HART, he tells her the story of his time in the service as a “citizen soldier,” one of the millions of Americans drafted close to the end of the war trained to defeat the professional Axis armies.
As a “citizen soldier,” Sam is in uniform for the duration of the war only and much of his training is completed on the job. Sam looks and acts like a soldier on the outside, but after losing one brother to D-Day and another to suicide because of his 4-F status, his heart remains with his mother and siblings on the family farm in rural Pennsylvania.
Sam’s arrival in Europe heralds the beginning of months of misery—knee-deep mud and freezing temperatures, bone-deep fatigue from endless marches and constant hunger from having only C-Rations as sustenance. He and his fellow “citizen soldiers” simply want to get the war over with as quickly as possible and go home.
But gradually, he understands that he is a part of a unit, a well-trained team, the other members of which have his back, just as he has theirs. And while he struggles with the head versus heart tasks he has to perform as a soldier—the worst being to actually kill another human being—when General Patton comes to his camp and delivers one of his “blood and guts” speeches, he recognizes that all of those tasks are simply necessities of war. And his head wins the battle because his heart knows that containing the atrocities he experiences to Europe is better for his family than letting the horrors jump across the ocean and touch those he loves.
When his unit reaches Zwickau, he meets GERDA ZIEGLER, daughter of the town’s baker, who has waged her own battle against her fellow Germans to save the lives of countless Jewish children. Sam’s Lieutenant throws Gerda, her two-week old baby and the rest of her family out of their home so the Americans can rest there. He has just found out that his wife is pregnant, so his heart goes out to the small German woman who isn’t even allowed time to get a coat or formula for the baby. That action grates on him and when the war ends, he revisits her and takes her items to help her with her family.
But that encounter results in consequences that affect his life—and hers—both at the time and decades later when he returns.
The Covington Family Chronicles
The Covington family mansion dominates the only significant rise in the small Maryland town, despite its name of Covington Cove Hills. For nearly a century, the mansion has watched over the sleepy little town and has provided the bulk of jobs for the town’s residents through its harness racing franchise and supporting businesses. Forty Standardbreds—horses with shorter legs and longer bodies specially bred for harness racing—fill the barns and require caretakers, trainers, harness drivers, and race crews, while the house and grounds run smoothly with a staff of fifteen to thirty workers, depending on the season. Gretchen Covington, family matriarch, maintains the peaceful existence.
But that serene way of life is shattered in the very early hours of a Saturday morning in 1988 with the discovery of Gretchen’s gold Mercedes wedged in a deep drainage ditch on the way to the family home—with Gretchen still trapped inside. Gretchen’s son, Steven Covington, is the first to arrive on the scene. The driver’s door is open, but there is no sign of his wife, Judith Covington, even though he knows she was driving. When Sheriff Donnie Webster arrives at the scene, their concern to keep Gretchen from drowning takes priority and it isn’t until Gretchen is in the hospital that Steven’s concern for his wife’s whereabouts deepens. Steven and Sheriff Webster, friends since high school, return to the scene of the accident and are shocked to see that there is no trace of Judith at the scene—no belongings, no footprints, no article of clothing.
As the search for Judith intensifies, Steven must tell their four daughters—Margaret (Maggie), fifteen; Victoria (Tori), twelve; Samantha (Sam), eight, and Miranda (Randi), five—about their mothers’ disappearance.
Follow the family and witness how that fateful night affected the Covington daughters' lives as they grow up.