Gilbert Speaks to L.C. Bennett Stern On Her Book, Mae’s Revenge

21 Jul

Linda on the porch

As a writer, I get to meet the most amazing and talented people when attending book signing events. A few years ago I had the pleasure of meeting L.C. Bennett Stern at the Collingswood Book Fair and, we’ve been friends ever since. I did an interview on Linda about her novel, Bosses and Blackjacks, and you can read about it here. This year, Linda published another book, and like the first one, this story takes place in Philadelphia. Join me now as I learn more about Mae’s Revenge.

Gilbert: Hi Linda, I want to congratulate you on your new book, Mae’s Revenge. Tell me a little bit about the book?

L.C. Bennett Stern: Mae’s Revenge is a historical novella that spans the years 1888-1900. We follow Annie Mae Steinberg, (known to her friends as Mae) a young Jewish woman from Philadelphia, as she travels west to become an actress on the stage. She is a dreamer and quite naïve.

Mae is determined to make her own way, in a world she couldn’t possibly have imagined while working in her father’s tailor shop in the city.


A handsome stranger takes her under his wing on the trip west to Deadwood, South Dakota, where he delivers her to Al Swearengen, the owner of the Gem Theater. When she walks through the swinging doors of the Gem, her life takes a dark, frightening, and unexpected romantic turn.

I don’t want to give away too much here, so I will ask your readers to purchase Mae’s Revenge, to follow her adventures all the way to the California coast.  It’s a perfect beach/poolside read for the summer, or a trip for your imagination any time of year.

Gilbert: Where did the inspiration come from?

L.C. Bennett Stern: Annie Mae Steinberg is one of my paternal great-aunts. I discovered Mae on while researching my grandfather, David (Steinberg) Bennett, a Philadelphia Police Lieutenant in 1917, for my first book —Bosses and Blackjacks: A Tale of the “Bloody Fifth” in Philadelphia (Award-winning Finalist in the International Book Awards’ Non-fiction/True Crime Category.)

Gilbert: How did you learn about this story?

L.C. Bennett Stern: Mae’s Revenge is a fictional tale, loosely based on what I learned of her marriage and travels. Through my research on, I learned Mae met her husband in South Dakota. He worked at the Gem Saloon in Deadwood.

I also came upon a photo of her, posted by a relative of her husband’s. The photographer’s imprint on the paperboard frame indicated she lived in Council Bluffs, Iowa at some point.

I began corresponding with this relative (by marriage), and she was kind enough to provide some tidbits that inspired a few of the situations and references in the book. She also gave me permission to use her family’s photo of Mae on the cover of my book.

Mae’s brother-in-law wrote a family history of sorts, and another relative of his posted the record on That history confirmed the marriage for me.

I reviewed the U.S. Census records and learned Mae and her husband lived in Los Angeles, California in 1900. The rest, as they say…is history.

I wove Mae’s story from coast to coast and hope readers will enjoy the trip.

Gilbert: Where can people find your books?

L.C. Bennett Stern: Kindle and paperback versions are available on   (Bosses and Blackjacks is also available at the Pipe & Thimble Bookstore in Lomita, California, for your West Coast fans!)

Book Cover - front - final

Gilbert: What are you working on now?

L.C. Bennett Stern: The writing critique group I work with urged me to continue the saga — they wanted to know what happened next to Mae and her friends. With their encouragement, I began book two in the Mari Mort Theater Trilogy — Standing Ovation. I’m attempting to have that installment finished and available by October, 2017.

Gilbert: Thank you so very much for doing this interview with me, Linda. I loved your first book and am looking forward to reading the new book. For all of my followers who are interested in contacting L.C. Bennett Stern, here are the links.

How to get in touch: (press ctrl and click the links below)


Website: (Stern Words)



3 Responses to “Gilbert Speaks to L.C. Bennett Stern On Her Book, Mae’s Revenge”

  1. lcbennettstern July 23, 2017 at 7:58 pm #

    Marie — Thank you once again for your kindness and energetic spirit in everything you do! One of these days, I’m going to come up with a list of unique interview questions for you!

  2. lcbennettstern August 25, 2017 at 12:39 am #

    Reblogged this on Stern Words.

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