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Listen as Hope reads selections from her books!

Against the Tide
My Little Book of Manatees
Isaac Johnson















Against the Tide:
The Valor of Margaret Wilson

Obligated to the Crown,
Devoted to her family,
Drawn to her sweetheart,
She must prove where
her greatest loyalty lies.

17th century Scotland is a place of cruel intolerance for the Covenanters, a people bound together by their loyal faith.  A young, earnest Covenanter, Margaret Wilson finds her pledged loyalty to Christ and his Covenant in opposition to King Charles II’s demand for her absolute obedience.  Will Margaret choose to defy the authorities?  Or will devotion to her family, love for her sweetheart, and hopes for future happiness rule her heart?

Against the Tide: The Valor of Margaret Wilson was released by P&R Publishing July 2, 2007.

A complete annotated bibliography of the research materials used in writing Against the Tide is available as a PDF file download.  Click here to download it.

A 9-page study guide for Against the Tide is also available as a PDF file download.  Click here to download it.

Having trouble with PDF format?  Get the free Adobe Acrobat Reader by clicking here.


Read more about
Against the Tide: The Valor of Margaret Wilson


Hope's book is reviewed by
Wayne S. Walker
on February 7, 2012


What reviewers are saying about this book:

"Against the Tide: The Valor of Margaret Wilson is part of the Chosen Daughters Series for young adult readers.  I feel this is a great crossover book for adults as well.  The story is based on the "Real" Margaret Wilson, who died for her beliefs and rebellion against King Charles II.  If you’re into historical fiction, then you’ll love this book.  If you’ve never read a historical fiction, then I highly recommend this book as your first..."  (More)

Read the complete review

VS Grenier, editor of Stories for Children Magazine

"Set in 17th-century, the 'Killing Times' when Covenanters were harassed and even killed for refusing to accept King Charles II’s insistence that he was the head of the church, the story focuses on young Margaret Wilson.  She defies her parents and the government to keep her pledge of loyalty to Christ alone.

This fictionalized version of true events is a stirring account of a heroic girl who dies for her faith, an account that raises difficult questions about when—or if—to fight rulers who go against God.  At times it’s slow moving; but the historical background is beautifully detailed, and the characters are well rendered.  Bold, passionate, yet all too human, she’s a girl to appeal to modern readers; and her passionate defense of her beliefs rings true.  Included are a glossary, who’s who list, timeline, and bibliography."

  Rosemarie DiCristo In Church Libraries (Spring 2008)

What readers are saying about this book:


"Once I started reading Against the Tide, I hated to put it down.  Margaret was truly an inspiration.  How I pray I could have the kind of faith she had.  Thomas and Agnes kept the story moving.   I loved reading about Galloway, Newtown and Drumjargon.

My grandmother was born in Scotland.  Later she came to America, but she died before I was born.  Reading about Margaret Wilson has stirred my interest to talk with my mother about Grandmother.  I know Grandmother loved the Lord, but I would like to know more about her.

After I finished the book (and reading about bannocks), I got up on a Sunday morning and made scones.

Keep writing."

Mabel B. (New York)
LPN, grandmother, and avid reader


"Thank you for the wonderful box of books!  I have given out several to friends who love the Covenanters or whom I thought could become lovers of the Covenanters.  My sister who is a believer said to me after reading your book, 'I don't know what I would die for regarding my faith.'  It has caused her to think more deeply about that.  I let Hayley, a 15-year old girl in our church, read MY copy.  She was so appreciative that I lent it to her.  It really has made an impact on her thinking.  Her mother spent last Saturday in bed all day until she finished it!  She said she had planned on a 'short lye-in', but couldn't put the book down until she turned the last page at 3 P.M.  She was glad she'd read it at home because she cried so hard in several places.  She told me about different happenings in the book that touched her heart and made her think about her life.

I have given a copy to a young woman who leads the teens.  She will evaluate it to see how we can use it with the youth in our church, i.e. discussion groups, to challenge their faith, etc.  I have my precious copy; the minister's wife has one (they have 6 kids-3 of whom I hope will read it) and another young woman from U.S. who works at the church and the youth has a copy.

I had not thought of your book as a witnessing tool, but Hope, it REALLY is.  Thank you so much for your generosity to me and to the people of Scotland.  The Lord will do wonderful things with the book, and they have already begun."

Susan Knodel, Airdrie
Pastor’s wife


"I read Against the Tide while we had a week of rest and I couldn’t put it down.  It is very inspiring to remember those who have suffered before us and who even gave their lives for God.  I will have our girls read it when they are a bit older.  I love reading them stories about people of faith from history.  It inspires them and gives them focus and courage to face our sinful world with hope and faith!  Keep on loving and serving God and making Him known!"

Liz Z. (New York)
(Mother of two girls ages 5 and 6)


"I just finished your book Against the Tide.  The ending was probably the best.  Let me rephrase that.  It was the best ending I have ever read.  I loved how you made Margaret stand right up to that soldier and tell him to let her go.  It really showed her courage."

Alyssa K. (New York)
6th grade


"What an enjoyable read!  The book is spellbinding.  Once I started reading, I couldn't put it down.  My sister Betti read it and loved it.  Then I loaned it to a friend who loaned it to another friend.  The book is still being passed around.  When I get it back, I want to read it again.  Be sure to let me know when you next novel comes out."

Doris M. (New York & Florida)
Retired Supervisor in Sheriff's Office


"Last fall I bought a copy of Against the Tide at Wildroot Bookstore.  Intending to give it to my sister for Christmas, I read it first.  I was so impressed by the reading that I did a book review for my church during our sharing time.  I bought a second copy for the church library.  You are now part of Rhema Fellowship's library in Lowville.

The book intrigued me since I grew up in the Presbyterian church and have some Scottish roots.  I would not relegate it to the young adult section.  It's got much inspiration for people of any age wanting to see Christian faith lived out to the end!"

Heidi H. (New York)
At Home Childcare Provider


"I just finished reading (in tears, I might add) Against the Tide.  Greatly inspired by this young woman's faith and determination, I am compelled to pray for my own country, upcoming elections, and a mighty revival in our churches.  May we be found faithful to the end."

Connie S. (New York)
Christian Day School Teacher (Middle Grades)


"Your wonderful book is a glorious story, written as if you were truly there at the period of the "Killing Times."  We will be giving copies to our grand-daughters and recommending it to our many friends as well as presenting it to our church (Reformed Presbyterian Church - RPCNA).  Our denomination is directly descended from the Brethren of whom you wrote.  Thank you so much for the compassionate, and, historically accurate account of those times which have faded from most peoples minds in this age."

Don P. (New York)
Ruling Elder
Reformed Presbyterian Church in North America


"As I completed the book, I felt I was in the presence of greatnessthe author, Margaret and Widow M'Lauchlan.  My applause!"

Dudley D. (New York)
Retired pastor / photographer / writer


"I have read your book and enjoyed every part of it.  I will treasure it."

Etta MacKay (Broxburn)
Retired fishmonger


"Let me congratulate you from Wigtown on your book. You have been careful and sensitive in the way you have presented the person of Margaret Wilson and her tragic death. It is delicately done, and for our Margaret’s sake I am grateful to you.  The lives of other people are not to be 'used' for our purposes and you have been wonderfully guided in that sense.  May the story capture the interest of many and speak to them in a real way.

It is always risky for someone of another land to tell such a tale.  It was VERY necessary that you do it in a way that the youth for whom you intended to be your main readership could relate to, not being so Scottish that they couldn’t have understood what on earth you were talking about.  Your glossary will help them with 'haud yer wheest!' and other such 'bits' you laced in 'for the Scottish feel,' but your story wasn't weighed down under the sense of 'the foreign' for them.  Very nicely done.

Nobody from here could have written the tale for an American readership successfully, for there would be too much said that would have been taken for granted as understood.  You, having studied in earnest but come from 'the other land', had to make a bridge between two cultures and two differing uses of the same language very consciously, and you worked on it painstakingly.  Bits that any Scots might consider are more American than Scottish in feel, or Americans find 'peculiarly Scots' are merely necessary victims within your carefully worked out balance between understandings, speech and styles of the two countries.  It was heroic of you to do that!

May God’s blessing be on your work as it now finds its readers, and on you for your commitment to a worthy task."

Donna Brewster (Wigtown)
Author, Second Daughter


"Sheena and I were extremely impressed with your book. Your writing is excellent and will prove a first class read for the age range which you sought to reach.  There were numerous historical facts which we gleaned that we had never heard before.  My earlier knowledge of the Covenanters was patchy.  Now I feel better informed.  You did a massive amount of research to achieve the quality of story told in this book, and where you have used your imagination you have been superb.  Heartiest congratulations are due you and I know the book will be a great success as it deserves to be.  Your use of the old Scotch tongue was first class."

Phil Leadbetter (Perth)
Retired bank manager


"I finished the book at 1:45 in the morning.  I couldn't put it down!

I appreciated the list of characters and the glossary.  I referred to them often."

Judy S. (Pennsylvania)
Retired band director


"Your marvelous book is an easy read and filled with enough action that I was left with anticipation as to what the next chapter would bring.  And what a surprise ending!  I wasn't expecting that."

Harris G. (Indiana)
Retired banker


"Thank you so much for keeping this story alive.  What a testimony and example Margaret was.  Very much like some of the 'Voices of the Martyrs' stories.  Margaret will stay in my mind forever, not only because of the 'Margaret' lamp we have but also because of your fleshing out the reality."

Carol E. (Pennsylvania)
Widow of retired pastor


"Everything about the book is fabulously assembled.  I especially liked the 'Who’s Who in the Story' in the beginning.  It makes it so much easier to follow along with the characters right from the start!  The Author’s Note, Glossary, Time Line and end matter supply additional material of interest and possibilities for extended research.  And the cover art is beautifully executed!  I appreciated the shorter chapters and their titles were well chosen. Each chapter had an enticing ending leading me on to the next one.  The book was stuck to my fingers until I had completed it.  Knowing ahead of time how it ended made the middle no less interesting."

Nancy M. (Massachusetts)
Art teacher


"I love a story brimming with genuine conflict, and Against the Tide more than delivers.  Margaret Wilson is a heroine for the ages, holding true to her convictions during one of the darkest seasons in Scottish history.  Set in Galloway, the corner of the Lowlands nearest to my heart, Hope Marston's tale of courage rings vibrantly true to time and place.  Oh, that we might all have the faith of this young woman, who was determined to let God choose her future, whether for service or for sacrifice."

Liz Curtis Higgs (Kentucky)
Author, Thorn in My Heart


"Against the Tide is an excellent novel based on the real experiences of Margaret Wilson, a young woman who was willing to suffer death for her faith in seventeenth century Scotland.  It was a time when Covenanters faced death, torture or banishment for disagreeing with King Charles II, and thousands of Scots suffered martyrdom at this time for their adherence to Jesus Christ as head of the church.  Set in south-west Scotland against such a backdrop, this book is true to the times.  The story builds up to a dramatic conclusion, one that grasps the reader’s attention at the same time as the dragoons close in on the heroine."

Dane Love (Ayrshire)
Author, Scottish Covenanter Stories and Honorary Secretary of the Scottish Covenanter Memorials Association


"Set in its true historical context, Hope Marston's book deals masterfully with the anguish and heart searching of a devout young woman, torn first by loyalty to parents, family, friends and a lawful king; love for her sweetheart, then the very personal question – who was King of her conscience?  She found her truth in King Jesus, for whom she freely gave her life in the waters of the Solway Firth."

Brian Orr (Merseyside)
Author, A Layman's Guide to the Scottish Reformation and member of the Scottish Covenanter Memorials Association


"In our materialistic world, it is startling and humbling to read about people who were willing to sacrifice everything for their faith.  Hope Marston has brought the Scottish Covenanters to life: what they stood for and fought for – and made them seem not-so-distant.  As a descendant of Scottish Covenanters myself, I could almost hear my ancestors' voices in her story.  I have stood in the room at Dunnottar Castle where Covenanters were imprisoned, trying to imagine what they went through, and I thank Hope for helping me better understand their conviction, faith and endurance."

Natalie Kinsey-Warnock (Vermont)
Author, The Canada Geese Quilt and other children's books


"The difficult age of the Scottish Covenanters comes startlingly to life in Against the Tide.  Hope Marston has captured all the drama and adventure, tension and intrigue, courage and romance, faith and endurance of those Killing Times when both the integrity of the Gospel and the prospects of freedom were very much at stake.  She has spun for us a noble and memorable yarn."

George Grant, Ph.D. (Franklin, Tennessee)
Pastor, Parish Presbyterian Church



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