Friday, August 22, 2014

52 Author Dates ~ Week 32


Go people watching. 

Watching people can be fun. If they’re interacting in meaningful ways. I tried this challenge in airports recently, thinking that would provide the perfect place for people watching.

Wrong. I came away with very little. 

People in airports don’t interact. Much. They hardly make eye contact and shuffle around each other in search of a spot to settle into their own gadget bubble

Coffee ~ My fuel of choice
But not so if you’re in a local cafe.

I gave this challenge another shot this week in a busy Melbourne eatery. Rel Mollet and I have been known to talk the afternoon away in this establishment, so I arrived early to write a few scenes for my wip and watch the people around me, because once Rel joined me for lunch, I knew the people watching would be over.

This time, I hit the jackpot. People slipped into their regular tables all morning, greeted by the owners with smiles and hugs and warm banter.

Mums with toddlers took up the rear outdoor garden area, where a gas heater kept big and little people warm on the chilly winter morning. 

A young mum came in on her way to work for a take-away coffee, desperate for fuel after a long night with a sick baby. 

A couple arrived for morning tea with their trainee guide dog ~ a handsome lab they introduced as Satin. (Not another name that sounds like it.)

A teacher gobbled coffee and cake and marked a wad of maths tests.

A trio came in, many weeks since their last visit, excited to share they’d been in the US on teen camps as part of their church’s ministry initiative. 

Another young mum came in with her toddler and new born, Lilly. The owner’s wife dropped her tea towel to grab the bub for a quick cuddle and we all melted to see love poured on someone so new to the world. 

Yet another mum came in with her beaming toddler, Sarah. Their cafe stop the tail-end of little Sarah’s weekly swimming lesson. Sarah wore a polka dot skirt and juggled a bundle of coins. Lots of 50c pieces. Her proud mama shared with the owners how Sarah had dunked her head ‘underwater’ for the very first time that morning and was now eager for her prize, a strawberry milkshake. The owner added his own praise and delivered the milkshake with suitable fanfare to ‘our super swimmer.’ He made that little girl's day. The celebration continued when Sarah and her Mummy left to visit Daddy at the fire-station where he works. 

Sarah had only just left when young Ada arrived with her mama. Another plate of chips was delivered to hungry bellies with, ‘Every time I see you, Ada, you’re taller and taller.’ And in that moment, I think I almost saw Ada gain another inch. 

Cozy Melbourne Cafe 
In the lull between breakfast and lunch, the owner sat at the front window for a plate of eggs and bacon and long read of the newspaper. His wife snuck around him to peek at a story which caught her eye before leaving him in peace with his coffee. 

But even in that moment of solitude, the connectedness of this cafe remained. The sense of intimacy and community so palpable it didn’t take much to realise why this stop delivered, and my airport challenge failed.

When someone cares to ask another what their day’s already delivered, when babies are celebrated and when achievements cheered, people return the courtesy with warmth. A smile. A story. 

And in all this, the blessing was mine to consider how sweet it is to watch people in a place where they know they’re accepted and valued for who they are. 

I hope you take the opportunity to ask someone how their day looks, today. 

Blessings,

Monday, August 18, 2014

Jody Hedlund ~ Captured By Love


It's my pleasure to welcome Jody Hedlund to Ink Dots this week and celebrate her newest release, Captured By Love.

Jody is an award-winning historical romance novelist and author of the best-selling books, The Preacher's Bride, Unending Devotion, and A Noble Groom. She received a bachelor’s degree from Taylor University and a master’s from the University of Wisconsin, both in Social Work. Currently she makes her home in Michigan with her husband and five busy children. 

Captured by Love ~ The British Army has taken control of Michilimackinac Island and its fort, forcing the Americans to swear an oath of loyalty to the crown in order to retain their land. Pierre Durant is a fur trader who returns after being away from the island for years, only to find the family farm a shambles and those he cares about starving and at the mercy of British invaders.

Torn between the adventurous life of fur trading and guilt over neglecting his defenseless mother, Pierre is drawn deeper into the fight against the British--and into a relationship with Angelique MacKenzie, a childhood friend who's grown into a beautiful woman. She now finds herself trapped by the circumstances of war and poverty, and the cruelty of her guardian, Ebenezer Whiley.

As tensions mount and the violence rages on, Pierre and Angelique must decide where their loyalties rest and how much they'll risk for love.

Jody Says...
If I could explore anywhere in the world tomorrow, it would be... castles around England and Germany. I'm fascinated by old castles, knights, and daring damsels which is the setting of my young adult medieval series that is releasing with Harper-Collins Christian Publishing in March of 2015. How exciting! A medieval series! Congratulations. Lots of my author visitors are wishing for a trip to Europe. I don't blame them. My hand is up, too. ;)
The best thing I did today is... laugh with my kids over silly things and sit down altogether as a family and share fellowship during a meal. 
A secret pleasure of mine is... eating ABC (apple, blueberry, cherry) pie for breakfast. I love sitting down with a cup of coffee and piece of pie when the house is quiet! Pie for breakfast! That not only sounds delicious, but should probably be a daily requirement.  
I wish I could relive the day when I... ate my last dinner with my dad. He visited my home and had dinner with me three days before he died of a massive heart attack. In hindsight, I'm glad I had that last time with him.
When I was a child I dreamed I would... become a best-selling author. (It pays to never give up on your dreams!)
I probably shouldn’t tell you this, but... I'm the crazy cat lady. I have four cats that rule my house, walk on counters and tables, and basically do anything they want. I even baby-talk to them! Ha ha, we have a cat who rules his kingdom, too, Jody. :) From one cat-mama to another, I thank you for visiting with us this week and wish you every success with Captured By Love. 


*****

Jody has a copy of Captured By Love for one lucky Ink Dots visitor. If you'd like to enter, tell us one thing you know about medieval times. Many authors claim they're known as the dark ages for good reason. It's a difficult era to research. But medieval settings are becoming more and more appealing to readers. 

So what do YOU know? Share in the comment thread below and I'll pick one winner on Friday. 

Good luck and happy reading, 

Friday, August 15, 2014

52 Author Dates ~ Week 31


Natural Bridge Caverns

Visit A Forest Or Other Wild Place

For months I’ve pondered ‘Visit A Forest Or Other Wild Place’ on my 52 Author Dates challenge list. And there was never a place wild enough to call me through the busyness of long writing days. I never imagined my Immersion Retreat with Margie Lawson in San Antonio, Texas, would deliver this Aussie writer into the perfect wild depths.

After a week of learning and networking at the RWAmerica conference, my head held just enough active brain cells for a deep editing week. I wrote about my first Immersion with Margie here, last year. I knew what to expect (sort of) for this second experience, and it DID NOT fail to deliver. (Thanks, Margie. You're the best!) 

But when we packed away the coloured pens, Texas beckoned. With a Wild Place so off the map, God hid it. Underground. 

With fellow 'cavewomen' Margie Lawson and Marjorie Brody 

Natural Bridge Caverns is one of the world’s premiere show caverns, and one of the most popular attractions in Texas. Margie and my Immersion hostess, Marjorie, took me on an adventure to this natural playground.

I’d never roamed caves before. I know we have them in Victoria, but like many tourists, I explored the cavernous depths of another country to find stalactites and stalagmites for the first time.

Natural Bridge Caverns
The author in me was charged to write a scene with one of my protagonists IN the wild place of my choosing. Trapped perhaps. Fighting to escape. Lost. Or deliberately missing.

Perhaps someday I will write that scene. 

For now, it’s enough my jet-lagged body experienced the most intense, bone-melting humidity I've ever known... In. Those. Caves. (And I've lived in Bangkok, people!) 

It's enough we blinked away a thin stream of cave water, dripping from the roof into our hair and faces, tapping us on the shoulder in a dim lit other world.

And it's more than enough I fretted over how late I might arrive at the airport and if I'd miss my flight home... because I'd been too busy playing Tom Sawyer. 

One day, I will return to the memory of this author date. Not just to remember the buried treasure of a thousand plus year’s of slow growing mineral formations.

Natural Bridge Caverns
I will return to remember it’s a writer’s obligation to step into the beauty of an unwelcoming place, if I am to find the words to write about beauty... even in the unwelcoming.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Sarah Sundin ~ In Perfect Time


I love welcoming the amazing Sarah Sundin to Ink Dots. She visits each year so we can celebrate her newest release. Sarah's the author of six historical novels, including In Perfect Time (Revell, August 2014). Her novel On Distant Shores was a double finalist for the 2014 Golden Scroll Awards. Sarah lives in northern California with her husband and three children, works on-call as a hospital pharmacist, and teaches Sunday school and women’s Bible studies. You can find her at http://www.sarahsundin.com
In Perfect Time Bold, sophisticated, and coy, World War II flight nurse Lt. Kay Jobson collects hearts wherever she flies, leaving men pining in airfields all across Europe. So how can ruggedly handsome C-47 pilot Lt. Roger Cooper be all but immune to her considerable charms? In fact, he seems to do everything he can to avoid her. Still, as they cross the skies between Italy and southern France, evacuating the wounded and delivering paratroopers and supplies, every beat of their hearts draws them closer. Can they confront the fears and misunderstandings of the past in order to take hold of the future?

Sarah Says...

If I could explore anywhere in the world tomorrow, it would be...Ooh! What fun! A month ago I would have said Boston to research my next book series—but I was able to spend a week in Boston in July and explore to my heart’s content. Instead I’ll choose the Scottish highlands. Last time we were in Britain, we were so close (Stirling Castle!) but didn’t have time to get up to the highlands. Oh... I'd love to follow you around if we're headed to Scotland! Great choice. 

The best thing I did today is...Checked off a whole lot of items on my to-do list. A whole lot. This was a really boring day for me to answer that question.

A secret pleasure of mine is... Gumdrops. Love that fake fruity chewiness!

I wish I could relive the day when I... My wedding day—twenty-five years ago this August 26! First of all, like most brides, I was so dazed by preparations that the whole day was a blur. Second, my grandparents and my husband’s grandparents were there—they’re all gone now. How I’d love to sit down with them and ask them all the questions I should have asked when I was younger—and just to enjoy their company again. Congratulations! We're celebrating our 25th next year, too. I bet your wedding dress had pouffy sleeves like mine! 

When I was a child I dreamed I would...Be a prima ballerina, a mommy, and a protozoologist (a scientist who studies protozoa, the one-celled organisms that live in the sea). All at the same time.

I probably shouldn’t tell you this, but...I still want to be a prima ballerina. Not happening. Lol, Sarah. Why not? I bet you've still got all the moves. :) Thanks so much for visiting with us again, Sarah. Wishing you all the best with In Perfect Time. 

*****

Sarah's offering a copy of In Perfect Time to one lucky Ink Dots visitor. Tell us who you'd like to chat to from 25 years ago ... who is no longer with us. I'd love to chat with my grandmother. She lived long enough to celebrate my wedding, but left us a month before my first wedding anniversary. I still miss her. A lot. 

How about you? Leave your answer in the comment thread below and I'll announce the winner on Friday. 

Good luck and happy reading, 

Monday, July 28, 2014

Shelley Shephard Gray ~ Secrets Of Sloane House


It's a pleasure to welcome Shelley Shephard Gray to Ink Dots, this week. Shelley writes Amish romances for Harper Collins’ inspirational line, Avon Inspire and historical romances for Zondervan. Her novellas have been Holt Medallion winers and Inspirational Readers Choice and Carol finalists. Shelley’s novels have appeared on both the New York Times and USA bestseller lists. Shelley lived in Texas and Colorado, where she taught school and earned both her bachelor’s degree in English literature and elementary education and later obtained her master’s degrees in educational administration. She now live in southern Ohio and writes full time. Shelley is married, the mother of two college students, and is an active member of her church. Shelley is active on Facebook and also has a website, www.shelleyshephardgray.com 

Secrets Of Sloane House ~ One woman’s search for the truth of her sister’s disappearance leads her to deceit and danger in 1893 Chicago. Rosalind Perry has left her family’s rural farm in Wisconsin to work as a housemaid at Sloane House, one of the most elegant mansions in Gilded Age Chicago. However, Rosalind is not there just to earn a living and support her family---she’s at Sloane House determined to discover the truth about her sister’s mysterious disappearance. Reid Armstrong is the handsome heir to a silver fortune. However, his family is on the periphery of Chicago’s elite because their wealth comes from “new money” obtained from successful mining. Marriage to Veronica Sloane would secure his family’s position in society---the lifelong dream of his ailing father. When Reid begins to realize that Rosalind’s life may be in danger, he stops thinking of marriage prospects and concentrates on helping Rosalind. Dark things are afoot in Chicago and, he fears, in Sloane House. If he’s not vigilant, Rosalind could pay the price. Set against the backdrop of Chicago’s Gilded Age and the 1893 World’s Fair, Secrets of Sloane House takes us on a whirlwind journey of romance and mystery.

Shelley says...

If I could explore anywhere in the world tomorrow, it would be... I love to travel, so this is a hard question for me! Since I get to choose anywhere in the world, I’ll choose Cape Horn. Years ago, when I taught 5th grade, I would read aloud a book by Sid Fleischman called By the Great Horn Spoon. Making that journey would be exciting, for sure! Wow, that's some travel wish, Shelley. I hope you get to the Cape Horn someday. :)

The best thing I did today is... My son recently started his first ‘real’ job and money is kind of tight. So I made him a little care package and mailed it off first thing this morning. My kids are in their twenties now, but I still love doing ‘mom’ things. 

A secret pleasure of mine is... I love watching cooking shows and cooking competitions. We're the same in this house. Australian Masterchef is a real favourite. 

I wish I could relive the day when I... I would have to pick a lazy Sunday. I love going to church on Saturday night, then waking up late on Sundays and doing nothing but reading and napping. A few years ago I decided to make Sundays a true day of rest. That doesn’t always happen, but when it does, it feels great. Really great. 

When I was a child I dreamed I would... I didn’t grow up in a very stable environment, so I used to always wish for a home, a husband, kids, stability. I feel very blessed that those things happened. I'm so glad to know your childhood dream came true, Shelley. 

I probably shouldn’t tell you this, but... I’m a pretty poor housekeeper. I don’t like to clean and will usually try to do anything to not do it. (even write!) Even my daughter makes less mess in the kitchen than I do. It drives my husband crazy. Isn't the messy chef the most creative? (wink)

*****
Shelley's offering one of her western books to one lucky Ink Dots friend. If you'd like to win a copy, tell us what kind of home help would best suit your household. I bet Shelley would order a housekeeper, but not a cook. I'd love a cleaner, but not a gardener. I enjoy my garden too much. How about you? If you could have home help for a year, what would you chose? 

Leave a comment in the thread below and I'll announce the winner on Friday. 

Good luck and happy reading, 

Friday, July 25, 2014

52 Author Dates ~ Week 30


Transform Your Writing Space

Howdy folks. Do you hear me speaking American like a local? I'm rolling my Rs like I'm supposed to. :) 

That's because earlier this week I packed my ruby slippers and headed off to the Romance Writers of America conference in San Antonio, Texas. This is my first RWA conference and I’m so thrilled to be here.

(Offering quiet, ferverent prayers on my behalf about now would bless me beyond measure. Thank you, dear friends.)

Before I left home, I took on the 52 Author Dates challenge to Transform Your Writing Space. If you’re like me, you like returning from a trip to a clean house. Writing room included.

So I tidied my book piles as best I could. Overflowing bookshelves are my biggest problem these days, but I hope to soon remedy that with more shelves ~ never less books.

52 Dates for Writers encourages the author to incorporate symbols of their writing in their environment. I had plenty of these already. So I dusted off …

A beach rock from a collection in the rockpools at Ventnor, Phillip Island. It symbolizes the smoothing of ragged edges in the life of my heroine, as seen by the hero who gives her a rock almost identical to this one.


And a dotted quinea fowl feather from my father-in-law’s farm. One I’d love to fashion into a writer’s quill, someday.

A women’s magazine with an article written by me. The first paid writing job I secured at age 15.




And a photograph of my Beloved in N.Y. (without me) arms outstretched, calling my name and wishing I were with him for a carriage ride through Central Park. He's the one who keeps me believing in the beauty of romance.
My desk at Crabapple House
The sentimental desk-bound writer in me is more than happy to be surrounded by these tokens because they all mark turning points in my writing life and I love to remember how far I’ve come.

52 Dates For Writers tells me changing your writing space is also a good way to mark the beginning of work on a new manuscript or distinction between different projects.

I know from the other writing conferences I’ve attended, I never return the same. So I’ve cleared my desk in anticipation and prepared it with a small token for my return.

A velvety pansy. 

A tiny welcome~home pot to symbolize the growth I look for in myself, the hope I hold for my stories, and the inspiration and opportunities I know I’ll carry home with me next week. 

Until then, 
Blessings for a wonderful weekend. 

And don't forget to pray for me. 
Thanks, lovely friends...

Monday, July 21, 2014

Kristy Cambron ~ The Butterfly And The Violin


It's a great pleasure to welcome debut author, Kristy Cambron, to Ink Dots today. Kristy's been fascinated with the WWII Era since hearing her grandfather's stories of his experiences as a B-17 co-pilot in the war. She writes WWII and Regency Era Christian fiction titles.

Kristy's a proud Hoosier, living in Indiana with her husband and three football-loving sons, where she can probably be bribed with a coconut mocha latte and a good Christian fiction read.

The Butterfly And The Violin ~ A mysterious painting breathes hope and beauty into the darkest corners of Auschwitz—and the loneliest hearts of Manhattan. Manhattan art dealer Sera James watched her world crumble at the altar two years ago, and her heart is still fragile. Her desire for distraction reignites a passion for a mysterious portrait she first saw as a young girl—a painting of a young violinist with piercing blue eyes.
In her search for the painting, Sera crosses paths with William Hanover, the grandson of a wealthy California real estate mogul, who may be the key to uncovering the hidden masterpiece. Together, Sera and William slowly unravel the story behind the painting's subject: Austrian violinist Adele Von Bron.
A darling of the Austrian aristocracy, talented violinist, and daughter to a high-ranking member of the Third Reich, Adele risks everything when she begins smuggling Jews out of Vienna. In a heartbeat, her life of prosperity and privilege dissolves into a world of starvation and barbed wire.
As Sera untangles the secrets behind the painting, she finds beauty in the most unlikely of places: in the grim camps of Auschwitz and in the inner recesses of her own troubled heart.
"In her historical series debut, Cambron expertly weaves together multiple plotlines, time lines, and perspectives to produce a poignant tale of the power of love and faith in difficult circumstances. Those interested in stories of survival and the Holocaust, such as Eli Weisel’sNight, will want to read." —Library Journal, starred review
". . . debut novelist Cambron vividly recounts interwoven sagas of heartache and recovery through courage, love, art, and faith." —Publishers Weekly. 

Kristy Says...

If I could explore anywhere in the world tomorrow, it would be... Two places: London and Paris - la ville de mon coeur! I confess that I’m one of those dreamers who writes about places she longs to go. And after years of studying art history, I just may be a little Paris obsessed… My friends and family know this; every Christmas and birthday that rolls around, I open vintage-inspired gifts with an Eiffel Tower theme. So of course, my first book just had to include Paris. And book two in The Hidden Masterpiece series? You guessed it. Readers will take a journey to London. 

The best thing I did today is...Wake up in a loving home. My husband and I have three young sons and for the life of me, I can’t think of anything better than waking up to the sound of children’s laughter. It reminds me of what’s really important in this life. Despite the trying year we've had I still feel blessings through it. Joshua 1:9 talks about having strength and courage, for the Lord will be with us wherever we go. I feel His strength through the smiles of my children. 


A secret pleasure of mine is... Classic films! Comedies, dramas, film noir, mysteries, even old westerns… I love films from the 1930s and 40s. I recently watched The Best Years of our Lives (1946) for the first time and - wow! I was so moved by the portrait of GIs coming home to a different life after fighting in WWII. These classic films are packed with history, emotion and some of the best stars to ever grace the screen. 

I wish I could relive the day when...Years ago, my family visited an orchard in the rolling hills outside our hometown. It was shortly before I was married, so it felt like a last outing as our little family. My parents took my sister and I out to a local orchard and we had a glorious autumn day together – mums were in bloom, we picked apples, walked in the sunshine, ate good food…laughed and smiled. I have several photographs from that day and now that my Dad is gone, I cherish those memories. I revisit them in my heart daily. It was a good day. 

When I was a child I dreamed I would... become a Disney animator! Isn’t that wild? My Mom used to take my sister and me to the library each week. Instead of going for the fiction section (as my sister was the real reader in the family), I went straight to the art section and sat in the aisles, falling in love with the Disney animation books. I remember being captured with the visual aspect of story at a very young age. And since I can only draw exceptionally poor stick figures, I don’t expect the Disney Company to track me down for a job. : ) I’ll keep on writing Christian fiction– happily.

I probably shouldn’t tell you this, but... I’ve worked in the city for nearly fifteen years, but I’m a true country girl at heart. (I’ll take a rocker on the front porch and glass of iced tea over a night on the town anytime.) We live in rural Indiana– quite literally. There is a horse farm behind our house and on occasion, I’ll even get stuck behind a tractor on my drive to work. When we take our boys for a drive out to visit my husband’s family in the country, my heart truly sings! Someday we’ll move further out there, where the stars glow in God’s great big night sky, and fireflies light up the fields as far as the eye can see.  Like you, Kristy, I'm more of a country girl at heart. Thanks for visiting with us, this week. I'm SO excited to read The Butterfly And The Violin. :) 

*****

If you'd like the chance to win a signed copy of The Butterfly And The Violin, please leave a message below. Tell us if your heart sings for the country or if it's the buzz of the city that draws you. I'll announce the winner on Friday. 

Good luck and happy reading, 

Friday, July 18, 2014

52 Author Dates ~ Week 29


Go To The Beach

“Sometimes in the waves of change, we find our new direction.”

Oh, how I love that quote. It’s the reason why I write. 

To see God’s purpose in new directions.

Kerferd Rd Pier, Melbourne

Change comes in waves and alters life for all of us. Some can even say for them, this change came on the crest of real waves.

My parents arrived in Australia on a tide which not only delivered them into each other’s lives, but washed new life into their souls when they discovered the tender mercies of God.

Kerferd Rd Pier, Melbourne
As the daughter of post war immigrants, I'm wrapped in a deep longing for the stories of those displaced and replanted in a new homeland. Australia has welcomed new settlers for centuries. Some came by choice, others ... not so willing. All fashioned identities to match the upside-down landing place they came to call home. 

In doing so, many left a piece of themselves behind. 

But nothing is ever lost. We thread our history through life by the things we hold onto. The memories, the tokens and values. And the new discoveries which transform our destiny. 

Two weeks ago, my Beloved and I visited the beach down the cove from the landing docks where my parents arrived in Melbourne. Hobson’s Bay has been welcoming immigrants since the days when convict ships swayed onto our shores. It’s the stage for reinventions, a letting go of the past and the place where first footfalls declare chapter one in newly written lives.

It’s also the landing place for many of my heroes and heroines.

Kerferd Rd Pier, Melbourne
Displaced and washed up on a shore they know little about, they set foot on boards which will lead them into waters deeper than the ones they’ve just travelled. Waves of trouble will knock them over and just when they think they’re sunk… they’ll find the treasures they longed for… right under their feet. 

My 'go to the beach' challenge allowed me a glimpse at the horizon. The one which separates my characters from their old world and their new one. I normally ponder the beaches of Phillip Island where many of my stories are set.

This time, I watched the waves roll in as a reminder of why I'm writing these stories in the first place. To explore God's direction on the waves of change. 

Is there a significant beach or landmark in your family's history?

Blessings for a wonderful weekend, 
I'll be posting next week from beyond the Pacific Ocean. I'll be in San Antonio, Texas for the 2014 RWA conference. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Laurie Alice Eakes ~ A Lady's Honor


It's my pleasure to welcome Laurie Alice Eackes back to Ink Dots. 

“Eakes has a charming way of making her novels come to life without being over the top,” writes Romantic times of  bestselling, award-winning author Laurie Alice Eakes. Since she lay in bed as a child telling herself stories, she has fulfilled her dream of becoming a published author, with a degree in English and French from Asbury University and a master’s degree in writing fiction from Seton Hill University contributing to her career path. Now she has nearly two dozen books in print and more under contract.

After enough moves in the past five years to make U-Haul’s stock rise, she now lives in Houston, Texas with her husband, Himalayan and Exotic felines, and golden retriever and black lab canines. If the carpet is relatively free of animal fur, then she is either frustrated with the current manuscript, or brainstorming another, the only two times she genuinely enjoys housekeeping.

She loves to interact on social media, so do, please follow her at https://facebook.com/authorlauriealiceeakes or on Twitter @LaurieAaEkes

A  Lady’s Honor ~ On the cliffs of 19th-century Cornwall, a spirited, impetuous young woman is torn between the honor of her family and the longing of her heart.
England, 1811
A tarnished reputation. A distant home. A forced engagement to a dangerous man. When Elizabeth Trelawny flees London, she has more than one reason to run. And when her carriage, pursued by her would-be fiancé, is caught in a storm, she quickly accepts the help of a dark stranger. Anything to get back to Cornwall.
But Rowan Curnow is not exactly a stranger. He’s not quite a gentleman either. Class disparity once kept him from courting Elizabeth . . . even if it didn’t keep him from kissing her.
The couple elude their pursuers and reach Bastion Point, Elizabeth’s future inheritance and the one place she calls home. But in the very act of spiriting her to safety, Rowan has jeopardized Elizabeth’s inheritance—if her grandfather ever learns she spent the night, however innocently, in the company of a man.
When smugglers unite the pair in a reckless, flirtatious alliance—an alliance that both challenges the social norms Elizabeth has been raised to revere and rattles Rowan’s fledgling faith in God, Elizabeth must choose between the obedience of a child and the desires of a woman: cling to the safety of her home or follow the man she loves.

Laurie Alice Says...

If I could explore anywhere in the world tomorrow, it would be... the Scottish Highlands. I feel this urge to walk those ancient hills. The call of my ancestors? Or maybe the Welsh hills, the other side of my ancestry. No place too remote or uncivilized for me. 

The best thing I did today is... Hmm. Make dinner from scratch (I don’t know if you all use this term for something not made from a package, but the raw ingredients) for my long-suffering husband. Oh yes, we use the term from scratch. I've just popped an apple crumble in the oven for afternoon tea. I hope my kids enjoy it. :)

A secret pleasure of mine is... If I told, it wouldn’t be a secret, now is it?  In truth, I don’t know if I have secrets like that.

I wish I could relive the day when I... Met my husband. I had flown across the country--the direction that makes days longer--and had taken some medication, so I was pretty loopy and exhausted... Ah, well, he married me anyway.

When I was a child I dreamed I would... Be an author. Seriously. That was my ambition from at least fifth grade—around age 10.

I probably shouldn’t tell you this, but... I am terribly shy. I can be in a crowded room and, if no one talks to me first, go all evening without speaking to anyone. I’m not unfriendly; I just find starting conversations difficult.

Thanks for joining us this week, Laurie Alice. I'm looking forward to chatting with you some more at the RWA conference in San Antonio, next week. 
I'll come find you if you're too shy to find me. :)

*****

To celebrate the release of Laurie Alice's A Lady's Honor, we have a fun giveaway this week. Your choice of one book from her list of e-books. To be in the running tell us what you like to make from scratch for your table. Something sweet like I've done today, or something savoury? 

Good luck in the draw and happy reading,