Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Julia Justiss | History ReFreshed: Larger-Than-Life
Author Guest , Author Spotlight / December 16, 2020

What a year 2020 has been!  Most of us can’t wait to see the last of it, along with fervent prayers that 2021 will be a much better 365 days.  While we’re waiting to move on, what better to distract us than novels about famous, larger-than-life heroines? Elise Hooper’s FAST GIRLS: A NOVEL OF THE 1936 WOMEN’S OLYMPIC TEAM deals with women who aren’t as famous as the others we will feature—but ought to be.  Veteran of the first women’s delegation to compete in the 1928 Olympics, Betty Robinson overcomes a horrific accident to join two newcomers as part of the 1936 Women’s Olympic Track Team. Farm girl Helen Stephens wants to escape the hardships of rural life, while Louise Stokes sees excelling in competition as a way to overcome the restrictions placed on Black Americans. All three must fight against the prevailing view that women are too “delicate” for competitive sports and should confine their activities to the home.  Hooper sets the struggle for an increased role for women against the vivid backdrop of political intrigue that was the Olympics held in Hitler’s Germany. From talented but lesser-known to the center of international scandal, we have THE WOMAN BEFORE…

Elise Hooper | Exclusive Interview: FAST GIRLS
Author Guest / July 8, 2020

Hi, Elise! Welcome to Fresh Fiction. Please tell us about yourself and your new book, FAST GIRLS. Fast Girls is historical fiction about three trailblazing American women track stars of the 1930s who come together to compete in the 1936 Olympics in Nazi Berlin, and it’s inspired by a true story. The summer Olympics, which so many people look forward to, have been postponed this year for the safety of athletes and spectators during the global pandemic. I know I will miss watching them! Do you have a favorite Olympic sport to watch? I love both the winter and summer Games and pretty much watch everything! From swimming to synchronized swimming to track and field, I want it all! FAST GIRLS tells the story of three women athletes at the tumultuous 1936 Olympics in Germany. What drew you to this time in history? What was something you learned that completely surprised you? The 1930s are such an interesting time from a political, social, and economic standpoint, and I hadn’t realized how close the U.S. came to boycotting the 1936 Games. It’s fascinating to contemplate how history could have played out differently if Hitler hadn’t been given the world stage to…

SUMMER BBQ RECIPE ROUNDUP | Fast Girls by Elise Hooper
Author Guest / June 17, 2020

Today, we are pleased to share a delectable side dish in today’s BBQ Recipe Roundup from historical fiction novelist Elise Hooper. Her fascinating new novel, FAST GIRLS, is based on the true story of three women who competed during the 1936 Olympics. Remember: the recipe roundup is all week, so come back tomorrow and catch up on the earlier posts, too: Day 1, an appetizer with Lynn Austin: Day 2, a main course with Dylann Crush: Fast Girls is historical fiction inspired by three pioneering real-life women track champions of the 1930s. In the 1928 Olympics in Amsterdam, Chicago’s Betty Robinson competes as a member of the first-ever women’s delegation in track and field. Destined for further glory, she returns home feted as America’s Golden Girl until a nearly-fatal airplane crash threatens to end everything. Outside of Boston, Louise Stokes, one of the few black girls in her town, sees competing as an opportunity to overcome the limitations placed on her. Eager to prove that she has what it takes to be a champion, she risks everything to join the Olympic team. From Missouri, Helen Stephens, awkward, tomboyish, and poor, is considered an outcast by her schoolmates, but…