Character Spotlight ~ Laura Frantz’s Silas & Eden

A marked blacksmith and a temperate red head meet

in Laura Frantz’s

Love’s Reckoning


The Story

On a bitter December day in 1785, Silas Ballantyne arrives at the door of master blacksmith Liege Lee in York, Pennsylvania. Just months from becoming a master blacksmith himself, Silas is determined to finish his apprenticeship and move west. But Liege soon discovers that Silas is a prodigious worker and craftsman and endeavors to keep him in York.

Silas becomes interested in both of Liege’s daughters, the gentle and faith-filled Eden and the clever and high-spirited Elspeth. When he chooses one, will the other’s jealousy destroy their love?

In this sweeping family saga set in western Pennsylvania, one man’s choices in love and work, in friends and enemies, set the stage for generations to come. Love’s Reckoning is the first entry in The Ballantyne Legacy, a rich, multi-layered historical quartet from talented writer Laura Frantz, beginning in the late 1700s and following the Ballantyne family through the end of the Civil War.

Introducing Eden & Silas

Brief physical description

Eden’s most startling feature is her fiery hair which is not always worn up as is propriety warrants. She has blue eyes and is lush of figure but gives little thought to her person and prefers Quaker dress.

Silas is tall and lean and his thumbs are branded, a common punishment for criminals in the 18th-century. His hair is dark and his eyes are green. He’s considered handsome enough to be noticed by the York County ladies, including Eden and her sister, Elspeth.


See pictures!

Strengths and weaknesses

Eden’s simplicity and gentle spirit, her greatest strengths, sometimes make her situation more complicated. But in the end she is able to escape the turmoil and anguish she grew up with and forge a new life for herself with God’s leading – and the devotion of a godly man.

Silas’s work ethic often gets in the way of his relationships, even his love affair. Early on in the novel Eden realizes the real rival for her affection might be his work. But this very weakness has a flip side as he has tremendous stamina and ingenuity and is able to rise from being a humble but gifted blacksmith to a wealthy industrialist over time.

Your inspiration for the character

I stumbled across a bit of research about apprentices marrying into the master’s family 200 years ago. This was interesting enough with one eligible daughter so I upped the angst and added two :) Historical fireworks!


Relz Reviewz Extras
Review of Love’s Reckoning
Character spotlight on Cassius & Roxanna
Reviews of The Colonel’s LadyCourting Morrow Little and The Frontiersman’s Daughter
Character spotlight on Lael Click
Character spotlight on Morrow Little
Visit Laura’s website and blog
Buy Love’s Reckoning at Amazon and Koorong

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25 Responses to Character Spotlight ~ Laura Frantz’s Silas & Eden

  1. Hmmm. There’s something about this picture of Silas that makes me feel a little like Eden:) Thanks so much for all you do here, Rel.

  2. Ummmm…yeah. Silas is great don’t get me wrong but he just got so much better after seeing the above pic!!! 😉 Me like!

  3. Silas is fast becoming my favorite hero out of your books Laura. I don’t know if it’s because of the Scottish accent the violin playing. However the fact that he is a man of God is the big thing in a hero.

    • Carissa, OH, MUSIC TO MY EARS:) So happy Silas ranks as your fav hero of mine so far. He’d like that;) I sure do. A godly man sure makes a huge difference in a hero – thank you for saying so.

    • Carissa » I’m impressed that you can choose between Laura’s heroes, Carissa!! They are all so layered and complex characters, usually loaded with genuine charm, it’s a toss up for me – LOL!

      • Rel

        With her first three heroes it was a toss up because they each had great qualites. With Silas though to me he stood out as a hero I would want to meet in real life, he was a godly man from the start. I also feel that I could relate to Eden as the heroine because like Eden I didn’t grew up in a Christian home, so a godly man and hero speaks more to me than her other heroes did.

  4. Love all of Laura’s books – “historical fireworks,” indeed, Laura!! 😉 You sure know how to mix in romantic tension in an almost painful, but ultimately wonderful way!

    And that excerpt from the second book in this series at the end of Love’s Reckoning…? After reading that, how are we supposed to wait another year?? *sigh* It will be worth it, though, as the wait for each of your books always is. :)

    God bless, and keep on writing these amazing stories!


    • Amber:) You have such a way with words! Love the ‘almost painful, but ultimately wonderful way.’ And it’s fun to hear that you liked the excerpt. I wasn’t sure about including that at the end but it gave the book a little lift and introduced the coming characters. Whom I hope you like just as much:) Thanks so much for being here!

    • Amber S. » “You sure know how to mix in romantic tension in an almost painful, but ultimately wonderful way!” SO true, Amber :) Laura has done that exactly in all her stories – LOL! Blissful torture, right?!

  5. Okay, now I have two books to read — the first book in the series & this one!

  6. Must confess, I’m a sucker for historical fireworks 😉 I’m so drawn into Eden and Silas’ story (and must add that the branding on Silas’ thumbs has my curiosity completely piqued.). I turned in my edits today, so now that I can actually sit and enjoy a good book again…I have a date with Love’s Reckoning!

    • Oh, love those branded thumbs, dear Joanne:) It’s that little historical treasure that takes a character deeper – and is so out of character for godly Silas! Huge congrats on edits done! Mine are going to arrive any minute…
      Thanks so much for being here!

      • Laura Frantz » And I don’t think it was every really explained, was it, Laura? Or was I so enamoured with Silas and Eden’s growing friendship and Elspeth’s antics that I missed it?!

        • Love that you were enamoured and missed it:) It was barely mentioned when Silas was shoeing Eden’s horse (a common punishment the British meted out to Scots criminals especially). Book 2 is in to editor and she gives a thumbs up. Hallelujah!

          • Laura Frantz » Yay for your editor’s happiness, though I’m not surprised!! As for Silas’ thumbs, I knew that was mentioned but didn’t think his crime was explained – the reason he particularly ended up with those brands. What could our man of integrity and heart have done?!?

    • Joanne Bischof » I’m envious you are only starting your Love’s Reckoning journey, Joanne! LOL! The only bad thing about the book is that it ends :( I’m going to so enjoy the sequel and see how Silas and Eden have grown over the years, along with the new story Laura with unfold. Have a wonderful time reading xo

  7. Hi Laura, Relz!
    Great character spotlight! Okay, this book is becoming more and more intriguing to me because of the hero! Godliness is a beautiful virtue =)

    (Renee never fails to make me chuckle).

    Thank you, Laura! Great to see you, again!

    • Ganise, It can be no other but you:) I think you’d like Silas. So well said – Godliness is a beautiful virtue. Thanks for that treasure. Wonderful to catch up with you here at Rel’s!

    • Ganise » Oh, you will totally fall in love with Silas, Ganise – he is a great character but not perfect, either :) I’m loving that you are commenting more!

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