I’m happy to have author Delores Topliff with us today sharing insights from her historical novel, Wilderness Wife. Stick around until the end for a chance to win an e-book copy of her novel!

Set in frontier Canada in 1810. Wilderness Wife is based on the early life of Marguerite Wadin MacKay. She believes her 17-year marriage to explorer Alex MacKay is strong—until sudden fame destroys it. When he returns from a cross-Canada expedition, he announces their frontier marriage is void in Montréal where he will now go to make his fortune and choose a society wife—not one with native blood. Taking only their son, MacKay sends Marguerite and their three daughters to a trading post where she’d lived as a child.

She believes her life is over and wrestles with emotional and spiritual anguish:


“Tears prickle my eyes. I choke back sobs our girls must not hear. My jaws clench as heat blisters my heart. My hands fist until my fingernails cut my palms.

Lord, never leave us—like Alex, like Father…

My murdered father had no choice. I will not let Alex’s decision destroy us. Although my married life has ended, our daughters born of this failed marriage must not feel abandoned. My mind recalls this morning’s vivid dream that seems more real than this gray day. I repeat my prayer, proclaiming my trust in God.

When at last I rise, a stronger woman gazes back from my mirror. She resembles my mother, but greater resolve shines from her eyes. I think she is a woman who will not easily give up.”

Deeply shamed, she arrives at the trading post in time to assist young Dr. John  McLoughlin with a medical emergency. He is impressed with the courage and wisdom in this uneducated woman. He asks the man in charge, “Why have I not heard of this remarkable woman before?”

“Because much is made of her husband. Not enough of her.”

As an abandoned mother living only for her girls to find a better life than hers, Marguerite depends solely on the Lord. Her hardships forge her into such a woman of strength that Dr. John McLoughlin will marry no one but her although he is nine years younger.


           I grew up in the shadow of Fort Vancouver established later by Dr. John and Marguerite McLoughlin. Residents there know of his life accomplishments but far less of hers. I felt challenged to look into her life and found solid gold. I loved discovering and telling the story of this courageous single mom who survived abandonment and prejudice to triumph and become an amazing role model who still inspires us today.
From Washington State but also spending years in Canada and now dividing her time between Minnesota and Mississippi, Delores writes in several genres. In 2021, two of her historical novels were published by Scrivenings Press. Follow her blogs and view more titles under the Books tab on her website. Also follow her on Facebook at Delores Topliff Books, Amazon, Goodreads, and BookBub.


Stories of faith and resilience on the Midwest prairie & the Civil War Era

Inspirational Historical Romance

~Available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble
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