Karen Evancic


Gold Winner of the 2015 Feathered Quill Literary Award for Best in Women's Fiction.

First Place Winner of the 2015-2016 Reader Views Award in both the Historical Fiction, Southeast Region, and Adult categories.

2015 Winner of The Garcia Memorial Prize for Best Fiction Book of the Year, The Conversations Award for the Best Regional Book of the Year, The Tyler Tichelaar Award for Best Historical Fiction, and the Richard Boes Award for Best Debut Veteran Book. See Events and Articles Tab for more information on the sponsors!

When A Red Bird Flies is Karen Evancic’s first novel and is now available for sale! It is largely a work of historical fiction that was inspired by her mother’s early childhood story and is based on tales that she has collected from numerous family members.

About the Book:

Cardinals, or red birds, are often seen as symbols of strength, feistiness, and faith and are also the state bird of Kentucky. In her debut novel, Karen Evancic weaves this symbolic bird into an endearing and inspiring tale about two women whose roots start out in the rich Kentucky soil but whose life paths quickly take very different turns. Unbeknownst to the other, each woman will find a way to understand what conviction, family, and perseverance are really all about.

It’s 1954 and Lillie Mae Garrett lay alone on an empty hospital ward in the small farming town of Franklin, Kentucky. Abandoned there by her husband and left to die, she begs for death, welcoming it with every haggard breath. Day after day, when death does not knock, she lay with mountains of regret and without any hope for redemption. But she soon discovers that fate sometimes has other plans. Lillie is befriended by a young nurse named Elizabeth who proves to her that though she may lay dying, she still has importance and purpose. While recounting her life stories to Elizabeth, Lillie is visited by a small red bird, who whispers a sweet song in her ear and reminds her, and in turn Elizabeth, that it’s never too late to change the course of your life.

Catherine’s journey from a sharecropper’s daughter in Kentucky, to a depression era wife in Detroit, to an up and coming entrepreneur in Los Angeles is riddled with adventure, heartache and disappointment. But the feisty Catherine takes each and every heartbreak as a challenge to be conquered and an experience to be relished. Save one. Desperate to become a mother, Catherine’s greatest struggle is one over which she has no control and requires something of her that she wrestles to embrace. Faith. As her exciting life unfolds and her belly aches for children, she journeys slowly towards deep abiding love and an understanding that sometimes life is just as it should be.

What these two vastly different women have common will delight you and the way in which their paths eventually cross will fill you with hope, faith, and a deep understanding of what love truly is.


When a Red Bird Flies

Published by

Front Porch History Publishing

Copyright 2015

Featured in the Local Author section at Browser’s Book Shop

in downtown Olympia, WA


Can also be found in

Orca Books


Last Word Books

in downtown Olympia, WA

Available in Kindle and Paperback Format for $9.99/$21.95

at Amazon:


Available NOW in Paperback for $21.95 at Lulu.com


Also available at Barnes&Noble.com