Thursday, March 16, 2017

Coming Soon! Beside Still Waters, Book 3 in Alaskan Waters Trilogy

Wow! It's been a month since I wrote a blog post. I've been working through the editing process with my publisher on Beside Still Waters, the third book in my Alaskan Waters Trilogy. I thought you might like to see a quick overview of the entire series.

The Alaskan Waters Trilogy is the saga of the loves, tragedies, and second chances in a fictitious Norwegian immigrant family, the Pedersens, who must battle the beautiful but often dangerous waters of early twentieth century Southeast Alaska (where I grew up in the fifties and sixties) to find love and happiness in the midst of suffering.

Cover photo: Pelican

"Mommy! Wake up!" a little girl screams. 

But the woman on the beach lies cold and wet and still.

In Book One, Till the Storm Passes By, Evie Parker, a timid Rhode Island schoolteacher, is plagued by a recurring nightmare from her childhood. What does it mean? Who is the woman? She must travel to Alaska in 1953 to unravel the mystery of her nightmares and her mother's deathbed confession.

"Oh, Kristina, what have I done? 

No matter what you hear about me, you're the one I love."

In Book Two, A Star to Steer By, tales of easy wealth entice 19-year-old Norman Pedersen, a poor Norwegian fisherman, to immigrate to Alaska in 1920, asking his sweetheart, Kristina, to wait for him, but Norman becomes entrapped in a "prison" of his own making. Achieving his goal is harder than he expects.

Coming in May! Beside Still Waters, Book Three

Is she jumping from a city firetrap factory into a wilderness icebox? 

Lake Laberge, Yukon Territory,
Featured in Beside Still Waters
In the third and final book in the series, Beside Still Waters, Violet Channing, orphaned at a young age, is tossed about by life's turbulent waters when the aunt who raised her dies. Living in a Boston tenement in 1915, barely able to survive, she wants nothing more than to escape the firetrap garment factory where she is employed and become a teacher.

She accepts a job as a live-in teacher for a sick, motherless child in the harsh Yukon Territory. Just when her life feels as beautiful as her new surroundings, tragedy strikes again. Can she find a new reason to live?

Can Violet allow her losses to make her better not bitter and learn to love again?

Beside Still Waters is another story of love, family, and second chances in the Pedersen family saga.

Where I Get My Ideas

Cover photo: the church at
built by the Personeuses
The novels in my Alaskan Waters Trilogy are entirely fiction but are based on true incidents I uncovered while researching my nonfiction book, Frontiers of Faith, which tells the adventure-filled story of my maternal grandparents, Charles C. and Florence L. Personeus, who went to Alaska, "The Last Frontier," as missionaries in 1917 and spent 65 years there.

My grandparents knew the real people behind my characters in my Alaskan Waters Trilogy--Evie, Norman, Kristina, and Violet. These stories tickled my imagination. They would not leave me alone until I fleshed them out and wove them together into the life-and-death saga of a fictitious Norwegian immigrant family representative of the many Scandinavians living in Alaska's Panhandle.

Other characters are composites of people I knew. Some of the events are based on real occurrences and historical events. Others are entirely the invention of my own imagination, but the setting is the Alaska I knew and loved while growing up there.

Me at Beavertail
enjoying the waves
Now that I live in New York State, Beavertail Lighthouse in Rhode Island, featured in Till the Storm Passes By, is still a favorite one-day getaway for my husband and me. We discovered it while we were stationed in Rhode Island in the U.S. Army when my husband came back from Vietnam. Our son was born at nearby Quonset Point Naval Station.

My Uncle Byron Personeus operated a mission boat in Southeast Alaska from 1945 to 1957. As a two-year-old, I traveled with my parents on the last leg of our move from Philadelphia (featured in A Star to Steer By) to Alaska on his boat. I had a face-to-face encounter with a bear in Juneau when I was four.  When I was 13, I spent a week on a troller fishing for salmon near Pelican, one of the places featured in Till the Storm Passes By. These experiences and more inform my writing.

My uncle's first mission boat,the Fairtide II, in Pelican, 1948

Where to Get My Books

If you haven't read my books yet and want to read them before Book Three comes out, you can purchase them through my website book page at,, at Ambassador International,, Barnes & Noble (, iTunes, Kobo, Vyrso,, or they can be ordered through bookstores. All of the books in the Alaskan Waters Trilogy are available in paperback and ebook (all readers). Frontiers of Faith is only available in paperback.

To receive email notification of my weekly blog posts as well as the release of Beside Still Waters, please complete the coupon at the right.


  1. Looking forward to reading your book, AnnaLee. I enjoyed the first two books very much, since I've been to many of the places where your stories take place and am mutual friends with your uncle through Coastal Missions in BC, Canada.

  2. Thank you, Deb. I always enjoy the things you share about Coastal Washington and the San Juan Islands too. I'm really excited about my upcoming trip to Juneau.