Characters in Depth:

First Trilogy
All Manor of Yarns

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  I. Prussian Yarns

 II. A Stitch in Time

III. Tinctures & Tantrums

Second Trilogy
The Snow Queen and
The Caterpillar

IV.There is a Season
V. Viennese Yarns
VI. Orchids

Third Trilogy
Taffeta Tales

VII. British Yarns
VIII. Polish Yarns
IX. Threads of Strife

Favourites Writers
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Lorraine Stanton
Vicki Wootton
Shalanna Collins

Eduard Otto Ludwig Hermann von Goff is the fourth son of Walther and Elisabeth von Goff, of Goffhausen.  Although Walther, as one of the landed gentry of Nineteenth Century Prussia, was the stereotypical jack-booted Junker, Otto was not, for Otto dealt with life with a humour, geniality, and a generosity of soul that was not understood by those around him.  As the youngest son, Otto was without prospects of land or title, destined instead to a military life, a life for which Otto was particularly unsuited.  Humour and impertinent wit have never been regarded as assets by the military.

Otto believed he has found the road to everlasting bliss when he and an heiress, Hildegard von Puttkamer, fell in love with one another.  However, the old maxim, “marry in haste, repent at leisure,” has rarely held more truth.  Not only were Otto and Hildegard incompatible, but they only ever manage to have one child, in a time and place that prided itself on large families.  Worse, their one child was a girl, in a society that placed a premium on sons.

There were those who believed Otto only married Hildegard to obtain an estate he had no right to.  Those opponents are relentless in their efforts to thwart Otto, and even to push him off the estate, Schönwald (“the beautiful forest”), altogether.  The opponents include Hildegard’s family, and the von Puttkamer faithful family retainers living under Otto’s own roof, so that after 14 years of marriage Otto was still not fully master of his own estate.  Even though Otto’s frustration led to bursts of temper now and then, he handled his struggles for the most part with geniality, tenacity, and keen intelligence, aided by those who were loyal to him.

Because Otto was basically a decent, kind hearted man, he engendered great loyalty in those who were close to him.  Those who were determined to be rid of him were unmindful of the consequences to Hildegard, or to Otto and Hildegard’s 10 year old daughter, Luise.

The relationship between Otto and Luise was gleeful and light-hearted, even though he did expect her to be responsible about her duties to family, friends, and her pets.  Luise became the companion Otto didn't have in his wife and the son he did not have, as well as being his daughter and his heir.  Through Luise Otto lived vicariously the life he wished he could have lived as a child, ignoring the consequences of teaching a child to break all of the rules of society.

To achieve security for his little family and for the people who depend on them, Otto did everything he could, even going against the conventions of the time when he thought “the way things are done” stood in the way of his family’s needs.  Otto believed Hildegard’s and Luise’s needs were more important than social niceties. Otto loved his daughter deeply, and felt guilty that he didn’t love his wife with the same intensity.  There were times when he could hardly bear the sight of Hildegard.  Even though the attraction Otto felt for Hildegard in the beginning turned out to have been a temporary infatuation, he did not end up hating her, nor did he mistreat her, but strove always to do the best he could for her.  Although Otto loved Schönwald and only felt truly happy and fulfilled when he was tending and caring for his estate, his fight to prevent Hildegard’s male relatives from taking over Schönwald was not only for himself, but also because Schönwald was Hildegard’s and Luise’s birthright.  Otto would do anything to protect his child’s future, and his wife’s rights, even if that meant going to court against his wife’s family.


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