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First-Time Novelist Says She Was Inspired by John Jakes '53

August 14, 2004

August 14, 2004, Greencastle, Ind. - "Kimberly Largent was a young woman when she picked up John Jakes' landmark Civil War novel, North and South, begins a story in the Sentinel of Carlisle, Pennsylvania. "By the time she put it down, the book had ignited a lifelong passion for the Civil War." John Jakes, a 1953 graduate of DePauw University, has been called "the godfather of the historical novel," and the New York Times noted, "He is quite simply, a master of the ancient art of storytelling." Kimberly Largent's first novel, Gettysburg, Forever Home, arrives in bookstores next month.

Of Jakes' North and South, Largent tells the newspaper, "I was just floored by that book. I decided I wanted to create my own characters and place them within the Civil War." She began writing in 1985, but work on the project intensified in 2001 when she was downsized from her job.

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With more than 50 million books in print, John Jakes has authored sixteen consecutive bestselling novels, including On Secret Service, American Dreams, and the recently released Charleston. Learn more about him here and here.

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