America Regained

Spirit of the West gast-pgEphraim unpacked his crates of medical texts, literature and books of faith, and commissioned a signboard. What finer place to be than Leavenworth, Kansas, the gateway to the West! As promised, there was certainly need for physicians here. He soon met the very best people of the city. Attorneys, bankers, manufacturers and merchants were among these civic-minded citizens, aspiring, sincere, self-made men. He shared their belief in American as the land of opportunity, and caught their enthusiasm for America’s duty to civilize this great continent — its manifest destiny.

Freed by his dear mother’s death to return to America and Christianity, Ephraim leaves behind Europe and his daughter for the second time. Full of optimism, in Chapter 21, America Regained, 1867-69, he sets up medical practice in a booming western town. But before long he encounters the darker side of the great American dream.

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Book Giveaway Countdown1

COUNTDOWN DAY 1 to the 150th anniversary of the famous Battle of Lissa, and a chance to win a signed copy of the book about the ship’s surgeon who was there.

Ephraim M Epstein, 1829 - 1913

Ephraim M Epstein, 1829 – 1913

It was a magnificent battle, valiantly fought and won in two hours. Italian casualties ran to hundreds. Austria had only thirty-eight lost, 138 hurt. Like other naval Surgeons, Dr Ephraim Epstein combined all three branches of medicine. He was physician, diagnosing and prescribing; he was apothecary, preparing and dispensing medicine; and he was surgeon, performing operations. As he worked, Ephraim learned more about the triumph: how proud the men were of their Admiral, how he had drilled them in manoeuvers, in gunnery, how he planned the ramming. Most of all he showed he loved his men, he  believed in them. Late at night, exhausted and exhilarated by all he had witnessed, Ephraim began to compose  a description of the extraordinary day.

For a chance to win a copy of The Extraordinary Dr Epstein, answer the quiz question on Wednesday 20 July 2016.

Posts over the last week are excerpts from The Extraordinary Dr Epstein, Chapter 20, Battle. Ephraim’s epic poem about the battle won him an award from Emperor Franz Joseph. Author great granddaughter still seeks that poem! Go HERE for a non-fiction page on the famous Battle of Lissa, why it was fought, what else it is famous for and what happened next. As for Dr Epstein, his 600 florin award and many more adventures lie ahead, including true love and America’s wild West.

Book Giveaway Countdown2

COUNTDOWN DAY 2 to the 150th anniversary of the famous Battle of Lissa, and a chance to win a signed copy of the book about the ship’s surgeon who was there.

Nearby the enemy flagship Re d’Italia had stopped in the water. Tegetthoff charged full speed ahead, and with an almighty crunch the Ferdinand Max hit her amidships. Her iron sides

lissa10gave way, her tall masts toppled, she sank in a whirlpool of spars, ropes, canvas, metal, blood and men. Before the loss was fully registered a massive burst of flame and roar of explosion overwhelmed all other noise of battle — the Italian ironclad Palestro had blown up. Austria claimed its victory, sailing into the harbour of Lissa.

For a chance to win a copy of The Extraordinary Dr Epstein, answer the quiz question on Wednesday 20 July 2016.

Excerpt from Chapter 20, Battle. Ephraim’s epic poem about the battle won him an award from Emperor Franz Joseph. Author great granddaughter still seeks that poem! Go HERE for a non-fiction page on the famouse Battle of Lissa, why it was fought, what else it is famous for and what happened next.

Book Giveaway Countdown3

COUNTDOWN DAY 3 to the 150th anniversary of the famous Battle of Lissa, and a chance to win a signed copy of the book about the ship’s surgeon who was there.

httpcroatian-treasure.comritcol.jpgThe Ferdinand Max scored a glancing blow against the Portogallo, then went to defend the big wooden Kaiser. Freed by an Italian ironclad’s withdrawal, the Kaiser, despite its lack of metal cladding, followed up Tegetthoff and rammed the Portogallo again — wood against metal, sheer madness! But brilliant fighting spirit.

 

 

For a chance to win a copy of The Extraordinary Dr Epstein, answer the quiz question on Wednesday 20 July 2016.

Excerpt from Chapter 20, Battle. Ephraim’s epic poem about the battle won him an award from Emperor Franz Joseph. Author great granddaughter still seeks that poem! Go HERE for a non-fiction page on the famous Battle of Lissa, why it was fought, what else it is famous for and what happened next.

Book Giveaway Countdown4

COUNTDOWN DAY 4 to the 150th anniversary of the famous Battle of Lissa, and a chance to win a signed copy of the book about the ship’s surgeon who was there.

Through the blaze of gunfire and smoke, Ephraim and the Seehund crew made out the Ferdinand Max rushing full speed ahead at the ironclad Italian Palestro, heard the blow, the crunch and creaks as Tegetthoff smashed her stern and set her on fire. The admiral pulled away and hunted another — his tactic, outnumbered by ships, men and guns was, against the odds, to ram the superior Italian fleet into defeat. Could Austria possibly succeed?lissa9

For a chance to win a copy of The Extraordinary Dr Epstein, answer the quiz question on Wednesday 20 July 2016.

Excerpt from Chapter 20, Battle. Ephraim’s epic poem about the battle won him an award from Emperor Franz Joseph. Author great granddaughter still seeks that poem! Go HERE for a non-fiction page on the famous Battle of Lissa, why it was fought, what else it is famous for and what happened next.

 

Book Giveaway Countdown7

One week til the 150th anniversary of the famous Battle of Lissa, and a chance to win a signed copy of the book about the ship’s surgeon who was there. Countdown Day 7.

lissa28After a whirl of uniform fittings, goodbyes and letters home, Dr Ephraim M Epstein was commissioned ship’s surgeon on board the Feuerspeier Battery, off Venice. No sooner had he gained his sea legs than he was transferred to the corvette Seehund. What different circumstances to his voyage across the Atlantic in the bowels of a leaky merchant ship; Ephraim savoured the taut sails, the wind, summer’s clear Mediterranean skies and the grand sight of the ships of the line as they patrolled the coast off Venice. But suddenly now they were sailing and steaming southeast to join the fleet directly under the command of Admiral Tegetthoff himself. The Italian navy had commenced besieging the island of Lissa, defence outpost of Austria’s key naval base on the Dalmatian coast.

For a chance to win a copy of The Extraordinary Dr Epstein, answer the quiz question on Wednesday 20 July 2016.

Excerpt from Chapter 20, Battle. Ephraim’s epic poem about the battle won him an award from Emperor Franz Joseph. Author great granddaughter still seeks that poem! Go HERE for a non-fiction page on the famous Battle of Lissa, why it was fought what else it is famous for and what happened next.

 

As rumors built,

httpsupload.wikimedia.orgwikipediacommons00fDie_Seeschlacht_bei_Lissa.jpg… and news broke of Bismarck’s outrageous actions Ephraim’s personal interest grew. Talk among the medics turned from the massive losses of the American Civil War to the horrible death count in the Crimean War only a decade ago. ‘The only good thing that comes of war is medical progress,’ his chief surgeon harrumphed. ‘And opportunities, especially for doctors.’

Ephraim saw younger physicians seeking military commissions. Here was his chance — a test of courage in battle conditions, a gain of medical experience, an escape from claustrophobic Vienna, and threats on two fronts, by land and by sea, with no other nation coming to Austria’s aid. This was the answer for Ephraim, a call and determination he’d not felt since his decision to go to America.

Vienna, 1866:  Dr Epstein dares to take up a new challenge which will see him shine in one of naval history’s most famous events, the Battle of Lissa. Its 150th anniversary is next month. In Chapter 19, Fierce as a Leopard, Light as an Eagle, Ephraim overcomes his own impatience and pride to pass official exams and be commissioned ship’s surgeon in the Austrian Imperial Navy. His epic poem about the battle won him an award from Emperor Franz Joseph. Author great granddaughter still seeks that poem. Contact via this site if you can help!

Dinners and parties,

httpss-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com736x253ea2253ea2c0592e598c769c441ccf73ba90.jpg

… concerts, lectures and dances. Ephraim had looks, intelligence, bright liveliness, he was a linguist, a scholar, physician, he told fascinating tales of America and Turkey… and he was unmarried. Through friends and medical colleagues he was introduced to sisters and daughters whenever he socialized. He met pretty women, and intelligent women, and pretty, intelligent women. But though he laughed, waltzed and conversed, he was not drawn to anyone. He realized he had lived so long as a married man with and without Rachel that he did not know how to fall in love.

Divorced from his cousin-wife, in Chapter 19, Fierce as a Leopard, Light as an Eagle, Ephraim is in Vienna, 1863-66. He’s a physician in the prestigious Vienna General Hospital and stuck back in Europe and Judaism because of the promise to his mother. But this restless man will soon drive himself to yet another drastic life change.