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Exile Anthology: Anna Belfrage

meet the authors and read snippets from Historical Stories of Exile


A collection of short stories by thirteen award-winning authors

Annie Whitehead, J.G. Harlond, Helen Hollick, Anna Belfrage, Elizabeth Chadwick, Loretta Livingstone, Elizabeth St.John, Alison Morton, Charlene Newcomb, Marian L Thorpe, Amy Maroney, Cathie Dunn, Cryssa Bazos. With an introduction by Deborah Swift.

Exile: a risky defiance, a perilous journey, a family’s tragic choice – or an individual’s final gamble to live. Exile: voluntary or enforced, a falling-out between friends, a lost first love, a prejudiced betrayal – or the only way to survive persecution?

In this historical fiction anthology thirteen authors (they are not superstitious!) have written exclusive short stories on the theme of exile. Some are based on true history, others are speculative fiction. All mine the depths of human emotions – fear, hope, love, and the fortitude to survive.



A Story of a 16th Century Exile

by Anna Belfrage

Gustav is only a little boy, but why is his widowed mother so sad?

Buttons were hard. Gustav squinted down his front and concentrated on pushing the little silver disk through the corresponding hole.

“Let me help, clumsy-fingers.” Sigrid batted away his hands.

“I can do it.” After all, he was all of seven, and Madame Jeanne had told him all boys his age could dress themselves. The shirt, the hose and the puff breeches—all of that was easy. But the doublet was stiff and heavy, and there were thousands upon thousands of buttons.

“Silly. Twenty-two buttons, not thousands,” Sigrid said, deftly buttoning up the last one. She frowned at him. “I think you have the hose on backwards.”

Only on one leg. Gustav shrugged and hastily stomped his feet into his boots. Old and well-worn, they were beginning to pinch round his toes, but he hadn’t said anything to Mamma, because lately whenever she saw him, her eyes filled with tears, and he didn’t know what it was he was doing that made her so sad.

read the full story in HISTORICAL STORIES of  EXILE


Had Anna been allowed to choose, she’d have become a time-traveller. As this was impossible, she became a financial professional with three absorbing interests: history, romance and writing. Anna always writes about love and has authored the acclaimed time travelling series The Graham Saga, set in 17th century Scotland and Maryland, as well as the equally acclaimed medieval series The King’s Greatest Enemy which is set in 14th century England. Anna is presently hard at work with her other medieval series, The Castilian Saga, which is set against the conquest of Wales. The third instalment, Her Castilian Heart, was published in 2022, and the fourth and final one will be out in 2024. She has recently released Times of Turmoil, a sequel to her time travel romance, The Whirlpools of Time.

“A master storyteller. This is what all historical fiction should be like. Superb.”


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It is 1718 and Duncan Melville and his time traveller wife, Erin, are concentrating on building a peaceful existence for themselves and their twin daughters. Difficult to do, when they are beleaguered by enemies.

Erin Melville is not about to stand to the side and watch as a child is abused—which is how she makes deadly enemies of Hyland Nelson and his family.

Then there’s that ghost from their past, Armand Joseph Chardon, a person they were certain was dead. Apparently not. Monsieur Chardon wants revenge and his sons are tasked with making Duncan—and his wife—pay.

Things aren’t helped by the arrival of Duncan’s cousin, fleeing her abusive husband. Or the reappearance of Nicholas Farrell in their lives, as much of a warped bully now as he was when he almost beat Duncan to death years ago. Plus, their safety is constantly threatened as Erin is a woman of colour in a time and place where that could mean ostracism, enslavement or even death.

Will Duncan and Erin ever achieve their simple wish – to live and love free from fear of those who wish to destroy them?

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