Beverly Jenkins is a household name across America whose historical romance fiction graces the shelves of book lovers North and South, East and West.
Jenkins will be the featured author to speak at the Hernando Public Library on Feb. 22 during Black History Month.
Many of her protagonists are swashbuckling African-American pioneers and courageous, comely damsels who possess plenty of "daring-do."
But her tales of wild adventure and sizzling romance transcend race and class distinctions.
The occasion will mark Jenkins' first foray into the Magnolia State and Jenkins said she is excited about the opportunity. Her visit is underwritten by the Elizabeth Entrikin Cooke Foundation Library Series through First Regional Library.
"I dig deep when doing my research in order to get an accurate take on the subject matter," Jenkins said in a recent interview with the DeSoto Times-Tribune. "I also consult various sources to present that accuracy through multiple lenses."
While Jenkins doesn't employ historical fiction in the way in which Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alex Haley formerly did, using his own personal genealogy and family legends, she ups the ante by interweaving riveting romance within a historical storyline.
"My characters are not based on my family, but on composites of real life people and events," Jenkins said. "I choose the setting for my stories with the same idea in mind. I like to place them where African-Americans
actually walked. You will find a bibliography in the back of my books. It helps those who want to do more research into whatever subject matter the book may touch upon — be it the black lawmen and outlaws of Indian Territory or the black soldiers who fought in our nation's Revolutionary War."
Jenkins said she receives great feedback from her readers.
"I love my readers," Jenkins said. "They email me and interact with me on Facebook and on Twitter. Some have even named their children after my characters. I am nothing without them, so I make myself as accessible as I can via social media."
Jenkins' new book "Tempest" debuts globally today on Amazon.com and fine bookstores everywhere.
Robert Lee Long is Community Editor for the DeSoto Times-Tribune. He may be contacted at email@example.com or at 662-429-6397, Ext. 252.