NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR STEPHANIE DRAY
STEPHANIE DRAY is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal & USA Today bestselling author of historical women’s fiction. Her award-winning work has been translated into many languages and tops lists for the most anticipated reads of the year. Now she lives in Maryland with her husband, cats, and history books.
I’ve been a storyteller since I was a kid, and I find that every book I write somehow has its roots in my family’s immigrant history. They were survivors who built a new life in America while escaping poverty and persecution in Europe. They found opportunity here, but struggled, too. They told stories of foraging mushrooms and hunting frogs during the Great Depression and the frugality my grandparents developed during those dark days stuck around.
When I was a kid, my grandmother was always on the hunt for a bargain at garage sales. As the oldest grandchild, I found myself in the backseat of her lime green Ford Fairlane, with the mission of entertaining my younger cousins during these expeditions. It was there that I honed my storytelling skills, weaving tales like Scheherazade to keep the backseat peace.
I wasn’t just a teller of tales; I was an eager listener, too. I was always asking my grandfathers–both of whom enlisted right after Pearl Harbor–to tell me their stories. They always talked about how grateful they were for the opportunities that even a flawed America afforded them. They taught me about the values that this country was built on and, still shaken by WWII, they instilled in me a respect for how fragile any democracy is.
They kindled my fascination with revolutions and republics, with ordinary people rising to extraordinary circumstances. They’re themes that I return to, again and again, whether the tale is set in the ancient world, the Revolutionary Era or the 20th century.
But my focus isn’t only on grand narratives. I aim to highlight untold stories, particularly those of women, because I believe that writing and reading historical fiction is essentially an act of empathy – something we need more of in today’s world.
So I’m passionate about bringing these stories to life and I invite you to embark on this journey with me, as we traverse the rich tapestry of history together. It’s a joy to share these narratives with you, and I can’t wait to see where our exploration takes us. Thank you for being a part of the adventure.