Autumn 1962 in a picture-perfect small New England college town. Mabel Gorne arrives with a single suitcase and an unsettling secret. Unlike the pampered daughters of the affluent who compose the student body, the penniless, Midwestern Mabel is an anomaly who must make her own way while outrunning a past she fervently hopes to bury.
But she's not the only person in North Chesterfield harboring secrets. As she starts graduate classes and a liaison with a local cop, she boards with a seemingly sedate couple. Little can she imagine, all possess unexpressed desires.
Will Mabel reckon with her history in time to find the loving and compassionate future she yearns for, or will the emotions her presence unwittingly sparks engulf her and those she assumed she could trust?
They Believed They Were Safe shines a light on the dark places of the human heart where sexual obsession, revenge and murder lurk.
Cordelia Frances Biddle finds inspiration in the connections and correlations within history. Her prior career as a stage and television actress helps her inhabit other lives from earlier eras. Cordelia teaches at Drexel University's Pennoni Honors College. She received the 2021 Adjunct Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence. Visit: cordeliafrancesbiddle.net