The Rising Shore - Roanoke: a novel by Deborah Homsher
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Author interview with George Olsen, Public Radio East
Public Radio for Eastern NC

The first chapter of The Rising Shore - Roanoke is featured in Rosebud Magazine, April 2008

Book Club Kits are available for The Rising Shore. Download!

Interviews and Readings

WLTE-FM, CBS Radio, Minneapolis, MN, "Northern Lights," with Beth Kidd
Public Radio East, NC, NPR Morning Edition, with George Olsen
Mars Hill Radio Network, Syracuse, NY, with Dan Dunn
READING at Creekside Books and Coffee, Skaneateles, NY
WMYN-AM, Greensboro - Winston Salem, NC, "Let's Talk," with Mike Moore
WSTM-TV NBC, Syracuse, NY, "Weekend Today in Central NY"
Internet Voices Radio, "What a Woman Can Do," with Holly Campbell
WMOV-AM, Charleston - Huntington, WV, "1360 Live," with Greg Back
WQDK-FM, Ahoskie, NC (Norfolk, VA), with Don Upchurch
WJRI-AM, Charlotte, NC, "Caldwell This Morning," with Rocky Brooks
WQNA-FM, Springfield, IL, "Springfield Tonight," with Ed Davis
WGOS-AM, Greensboro - Winston Salem, NC, "Dusty Dunn Show," with Dusty Dunn
WHCU-AM, Ithaca, NY, "Saturday Morning Newswatch," with Greg Fry
WSJS-AM, Greensboro - Winston Salem, NC, "The Triad Live & Local," with J. R. Snider
KMA-AM, Omaha, NE, "Chuck and Dean Show," with Dean Atkins

Author interview with Tish Pearlman, Out of Bounds
      Thursday, April 26, WEOS Public Radio, Geneva, NY
       Real Audio

Author interview with Bill Jaker, Off the Page
      LIVE Tuesday, April 17, WSKG Public Radio, Binghamton, NY
       MP3 audio Windows Media audio Real Audio

Author interview with Norm Goldberg from
      Read the transcript


Homsher has succeeded in satisfying the sweet hunger of those enthralled with the [Lost Colony] mystery. She's crafted a solid yet poetic saga that will hold readers captive.

There are so many points in which Homsher succeeds. It is likely this book would stand as a classic, would its underpinnings be solely hers [not historical]. Anyone familiar with North Carolina and and English history will applaud her ability to use facts to weave a believable tale.

Her words build atmospheres where the two main characters - Elenor White Dare and Margaret Lawrence - evolve. ...

The author's characters - men and women, English and Native American alike - are so well cast that the reader becomes invested in their outcome. She molds the troupe with the finesse of a Renaissance artist. Each is real, detailed and individual. ...

What truly sings in Homsher's work is her amazing ability to understand life. On every page, she analyzes it with a powerful voice.

"I have been trying very hard not to look for signs or coincidences. The world is not made to test me, but to be itself. It's not a theatre for me or any of us. It has its own method and law," says Elenor, whose father has not returned nearly a year after his departure.

Homsher writes about women like Elenor who have been involved in American adventure and faced violence.

In the end, she crafts a solution to the Lost Colony. It flowered in the mind of a gifted writer.

      - The Virginian-Pilot

Elenor's determination to follow her father to the colonies makes her his greatest supporter and replacement when he leaves the colonies again for England. Her desire only for her father's notice and love is compelling but fruitless, and her strength throughout all of their trials is impressive. Homsher paints a harsh yet believable picture of life in Roanoke, and she skillfully intertwines the narratives of the women, revealing the difference in perceptions based on class, situation, and personality, yet painting a clearer and clearer picture of their lives with every stroke. Homsher's novel gives life to the few scraps of historical documentation of the Roanoke colony and creates strong characters that grab your attention and make you dream of an altered history.

      - Historical Novels Review Online.
For the full review, see Historical Novels Review Online

Owing to perpetual interest in the subject matter, the 2007 release of the English film Roanoke: The Lost Colony, and the 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown, this first novel about one of American history's most enduring mysteries may appeal to the literary and book club set. The author's two nonfiction books - Women & Guns and From Blood to Verdict - revealed her interest in feminism and crime. Here, too, she is careful with her facts, using as narrators the famous Eleanor Dare (born White), daughter of Colony leader John White and the mother of the first English child born in the New World, and Margaret, a documented Colony member. The invented portions are believable, including the ending - you can debate the details, but it seems quite logical. The events of 1587 are viewed from the perspective of the women, both of whom are all but powerless as they are carried across the Atlantic and into the New World ... most public libraries will want to purchase for readers who enjoyed Jane Smiley's The All-True Travels and Adventures of Lidie Newton.

       - Library Journal

Some of the best historical fiction takes place in the space between known fact and the novelist's imagination. Deborah Homsher tells a powerful story of the men and, especially, the women who crossed the Atlantic in 1587 to become the settlers of the ill-fated "lost colony." We can feel the creak of the wooden ships, share the perilous lives of the colonists at sea and on land, and observe the origins of an enduring mystery.

      - Bill Jaker, producer and host, "Off the Page," WSKG Public Radio

This is Homsher's first foray into the world of fiction and make no mistake, The Rising Shore-Roanoke is the work of a powerful talent whose elegant and lyrical words as well as her characters' speech patterns and dialogue give the book much of its considerable strength. Moreover, she shows great authorial control as she vividly captures the diverse feelings and musings of Elenor and Margaret, shifting fluidly between them as she devotes a chapter at a time to each.
   There is no question of Homsher's commitment to her subject matter and even though the novel is historical fiction, she nonetheless has succeeded in making her readers feel a part of a world that existed over four hundred years ago.


The Rising Shore-Roanoke is a novel of the famous lost American colony, [told] from the perspectives of two women who sailed from London to the shore of Virginia's wilderness in 1587. The adventurous daughter of the expedition's leader chafes at the societal restraints placed upon her gender, while her female servant dares to walk an independent path among the struggling colony. Their journey will take them through the Caribbean and climax in the Outer Banks region of North America. An enthralling saga of a colony presumed doomed, due to the historical record of its founder's return from a three-year supply trip to find nothing left of the settlement except the word "Croatoan" carved on a post.

      - Small Press Bookwatch [The Midwest Book Review]

THE RISING SHORE - ROANOKE is a novel by Deborah Homsher.