Anne Norris moved to Savannah, Georgia, for a fresh start. Now her pirate-tour business is flagging, and paying the rent requires more than wishful thinking. When she discovers evidence of a shipwreck off the coast of Tybee Island, she knows it could be just the boon she needs to stay afloat. She takes her findings to local museum director Carter Hale for confirmation, but she runs after a disastrous first meeting.
Carter has been searching for the location of the wreck detailed in the worn pages of an 18th-century diary, the discovery of which could open the door to his dream job at a prestigious museum. But convincing Anne to help him fill in the missing pieces of the puzzle is no easy task. And working with Carter means that Anne will have to do the one thing she swore she’d never do again: trust a man.
Finding a monetary backer and sticking with a search that’s turning up nothing will take all their dedication–and every secret they’ve tried to hide. If they can find the lost ship, they may discover a treasure worth more than all the pirate gold in the world–love.
I was blessed to receive an ARC copy of this amazing novel, but believe me, I would NOT be posting about it on my blog if I didn’t absolutely love the story! That being said, this book is wonderful! I love the setting, off the Coast of Georgia in Tybee Island, I live right down the road in Jacksonville, FL, so feels like home. The descriptions are so enticing, and you feel like you are right there on the beach! I always enjoy a contemporary romance novel….but, I also love a good historical, so this book is right up my alley!
There is also some great suspense….both from the historical side and the current day side! The story has rich characters that both have their own issues to deal with, and Liz Johnson does an amazing job in writing their story. Oh, and did I mention pirates? No? Well there are pirates in this story too, yes! What adventures the journal tells of the life of a young girl searching for her brother by boarding a ship for parts unknown! You can’t help but become anxious to have Anne finish reading the journal to see what ever happened to Rebecca and Samuel!
I felt so connected with Anne, I was so taken by how she dealt with her guilt and shame for her past mistakes. It’s so hard when you feel guilty for things that you don’t always have control over – believe me – I know. Carter has his own problems dealing with his family, and unfortunately, I know a thing or two about that as well. The entire story was pulled together so beautifully, from the past to the present, I loved every moment of it!
Reluctantly, Chef Isaac finds himself working in the kitchen of his nemesis, Chef Piper Peyton. Why would he want to cook his way into her heart?
To save a landmark family restaurant in Savannah, two chefs must put aside their twenty-year-old feud and cook together. Can they at least try to be kind toward each other without digging up old hurts? At the end of the day, is he simply too hot for her kitchen?
Right before a long and busy Thanksgiving weekend, Piper Peyton is confronted with a series of impossible problems…
Chef-owner Piper Peyton can handle one disaster at a time in her restaurant, but not two unexpected catastrophes within hours of each other that threaten to shut down Piper’s Place for good and possibly end her career as a restaurateur.
Sometimes bad things happen. But hopefully not all at once, right?
Yet, no matter what, she has to keep Piper’s Place open for business. Her customers expect it. This is their favorite twenty-four-seven restaurant where Riverside Chapel members frequent after church on Sundays and throughout the week. This is where people, young and old, gather to talk about life, solve their problems, meet new friends, and critique her new test dishes.
Oh, this place absolutely needs to stay open.
What to do, Lord? What to do?
How long can a person bear a grudge? For cruise ship chef de cuisine Isaac Untermeyer, he can hold it for twenty years and then some.
How can he forget that high school sophomore with the topknot bun on her head and a big smile on her face, who robbed him of the high school cooking competition trophy, and ran off with the prize of full tuition paid to any college of her choice? Not that Isaac needed the money. It was a matter of pride.
Even if he tries to forget how he lost the trophy to a supposedly better cook, his family won’t let him forget it. As soon as he arrives in Savannah for a vacation, his mother takes him to none other than Piper’s Place.
However, something is wrong in their kitchen that night when meals don’t arrive and the customers start to leave without eating.
The chef in Isaac senses a crisis.
He wants to do something, but his pride says don’t bother. Yet, somehow Isaac finds himself responding to the call for help and going to her rescue…
And he doesn’t know why.
Call You Home is the last novel in USA Today bestselling author Jan Thompson’s Savannah Sweethearts series of clean and wholesome contemporary Christian beach romances celebrating faith, hope, and love in Jesus Christ. The series is set in the historic southern coastal city of Savannah, Georgia, and on the nearby idyllic beach town of Tybee Island by the Atlantic Ocean. If you enjoy Call You Home, you might also enjoy the other books in the series.
my point of view:
It seems I cannot get enough of Jan Thompson’s amazing story telling! I was so sad that this is the last of the Savannah Sweethearts series, but, alas, all good things must come to a close/ Jan assures me we will still get glimpses of these amazing characters and families in her future books! This was a fantastic way to close out the series, I will say that! Piper and Piper’s Place has always been a mainstay in all the stories, so it was about time she had her tale written!
One of the amazing things this author manages to do is develop a character that is completely deaf and can only communicate via American Sign Language or texting. While this issue complicated matters for Isaac, who does not know ASL at all, the writing of this story is so spot on and seamless that it is not the main focus of the main hero’s issues. While sometimes I read a book where a character”s “handicap” becomes the entire story, that is not the case here!
Piper and Isaac’s story is definitely one for the ages! I loved how the character’s have a history together and come back face to face after twenty years apart. That is one of my favorite tropes, and this does not disappoint. All of the characters are so well developed that you feel like you could drop in to the Riverside Church and great them all as friends. I look forward to reading more of Jan Thompson’s amazing other series of books!
Jan Thompson has a special way of weaving the most important Bible verses into all of her stories, and they are so fitting to the characters lives, but also to our own everyday life. I have saved many a verse in my own bible from reading her fiction.
About Jan Thompson
Holy Roman Empire, 1527
In the wake of Martin Luther’s religious reforms, Princess Christyne von Heidelbraum is compelled by her sense of duty to help ease the burden of her people. When she stumbles upon a dying man in the woods, she vows to aid him—even when she discovers the arrow shot in his back was put there by a heretic hunter. With both her physical and spiritual well-being in danger, she must choose between conscience or adhering to the laws of the Empire.
Doubting her calling to become a hospital chaplain, Amber Carrington takes time off from her theology studies to volunteer with refugees in Germany. Working with children, making a difference, reconnecting with the conviction that once drove her—these were her expectations. An instant attraction to a professional soccer player wasn’t a part of the plan…and she can’t let him distract her from her purpose.
As a new Christian, Seth Marshall is determined to put his popularity as a world-renowned footballer to good use. Unfortunately, old habits and public opinions are hard to overcome. When he falls hard and fast for Amber Carrington, his former life—and her no-dating policy—may block his perfect shot for the woman he loves.
I have a serious love for this author’s stories! I love historical novels…….and I love contemporary novels….so when I found Sarah Monzon and her abilty to blend both worlds into one book , I was SOLD! I am so lucky to have been able to read an ARC for it, and I seriously recommend you get it pre ordered (will be released 09/23/19) so you don’t forget!! Just click on the photo below!
She’s trying to save her company. He’s trying to salvage his reputation. Only one of them can be right.
Vice president of operations Melissa Ellis might have met the first challenge she couldn’t overcome. Her company is hemorrhaging money, and her boss blames her. The deeper she digs, the more trouble she finds. She turns to the one person who can help: the confident and dangerously charming Scott Blake.
Naval aviator Scott “Superman” Blake is recovering from the accident that left him with a traumatic brain injury. Driven to salvage his reputation and regain his career, he must prove it wasn’t pilot error. When Melissa asks for his help, he jumps at the chance to spend more time with her and salvage his name. But if he’s right, he’ll take her company down.
When their investigation turns up a bigger problem than software glitches, Melissa is caught in the crosshairs of their unknown enemy. As they work together, their casual flirtation turns to something much deeper. Can they make a relationship work, or will it crash and burn?
As the stakes rise and the clock ticks, can they figure out who’s behind the danger before someone else dies. Or will they lose everything, including each other?
Special Assignment is book 3 in the Hometown Heroes series, but it can be read as a stand alone. If you like Christian romantic suspense and nail-biting page turners, you’ll love this journey of risk and trust. Buy Special Assignment and jump into the adventure today.
my point of view:
Wow, another new to me author, I can’t believe I have never read anything by this author until now! What an amazing story this was. It is book three in the series, but honestly, this novel can totally stand on it’s own. While I was aware that the other characters most likely had their own story already written, it took nothing away from the intensity and enjoyment of this book.
I was able to relate to the heroine, Melissa, in a very personal way, I am all about my company, my co-workers are like family, and I truly look up to the president of my company as a father figure. I could easily imagine how much it would hurt to be in her position! My specialty is also solving problems, just not usually with numbers, lol!
As for the background, well, I also have a bit of a soft spot for the military, Navy especially, as I live in a city that had three naval bases at one time, and my hubs is a veteran! I always wonder at how difficult it must be to be injured in such a way that you may never be able to return to the work you love. Both Scott and Melissa make a great team while trying to solve a mystery and find justice as well.
The suspense was as every bit as good as the romance, and I enjoyed every moment of the story! I cannot wait to read more form this ‘new to me” author!
About JL Crosswhite
Sarah Sharpe has grown up as a carpenter’s daughter, knowing only the rough and work-heavy world of her father’s blue-collar profession. Abandoned by her mother as a baby, she’s lived 21 years content to drive nails at her dad’s side. Following her father into the world of construction was a natural path, and she took it without a second thought, but a harsh comment about her “butch” appearance sends her on a search for identity.
Enter handsome and easy-going Jesse Chapman, the roofer she meets on her first foray into volunteer work for Homes For Hope. In every way, the quirky man is her opposite—confident, a people kind of guy, and most importantly, happy. His likable qualities continue to draw her in—and for some reason he keeps coming back to her. But they can’t be more than friends; he’s made that crystal clear. Except for a handful of times… and the confusion is driving her crazy.
Sarah’s quest for self-definition becomes more tangled than she ever imagined, and she discovers that the journey will take her deeper than clothes and makeup. Filling the void in her heart becomes an obsession she cannot escape. How far is she willing to go to discover who she really is?
my point of view:
This story really grabbed a hold of me, I enjoyed it very much – only wish there was more, lol! I really cannot breakdown what I loved most about this story, as there were so many things. Sarah is a very mature – yet sheltered – young woman who has been raised solely by her father. She is in more ways then one – The Carpenter’s Daughter.
I was quite drawn to her story. Sarah’s total lack of any thing relating to “acting like a normal woman”, ie: makeup, hairstyle, clothing, had me relating to her a great deal. Not so much that I grew up not knowing about these things, but I never really cared about them, lol! But what really captured my heart for Sarah was how lost she was from the beginning of this story. Everything she always believed was true suddenly gets mixed up and turned around and she doesn’t know where to turn.
Lucky for Sarah she has an amazing aunt who helps her to “think outside herself” which gets her volunteering for Homes for Hope, helping to build houses for others in need where she meets Jesse for the first time. This friendship turns into so much more than a simple romance, as he shows her by example that not all Christians are “religious freaks” and that we are never alone when we walk with Jesus. While Sarah works on finding her place in Jesus, she also has to face her father and the demons of his past. I recommend this book highly, it was a joy to read and had me reflecting on how to reach out by example the wonderous way Jesus works in our life!
Jennifer Rodewald is a Christian author of fiction who is passionate about the Word of God and the power of story. Four kids and her own personal superman make her home in southwestern Nebraska delightfully chaotic.
Born in Colorado, she experienced both the seclusion of rugged mountain living and the busy streets of a Denver suburb during her growing up years. Somewhere in the middle of college, she married a Husker and found her way back to the quiet lifestyle of a rural area, which suits just fine.
Blessed with a robust curiosity, Jen loves to research. Whether she’s investigating the history of a given area, the biography of a Christian icon, or how nature declares the glory of God, her daily goal is to learn something new. Aiming to live with boundless enthusiasm, her creed is vision, pursuit, and excellence, and she incorporates that pursuit as a Christian writer.
Jen lives and writes in a lovely speck of a town where she watches with amazement while her children grow up way too fast, gardens, and marvels at God’s mighty hand in everyday life.
Jennifer Rodewald has generously offered an ebook version of The Carpenter’s Daughter to one of readers! Simply comment on this blog and tell us what your parent may have done for a living! For example I call myself a butcher’s daughter all the time, lol! The contest will run for one week from today and winner will be notified via email!
PM: I am so pleased to say I have Autumn Macarthur back in this morning for a coffee break with me! Autumn is a wonderful author and has become a great friend as well, so let’s welcome her here and get to know her even better a year later!
AM: Thanks, Paula, I’m so glad to be back, and I’ve loved getting to know you better over the past year.
PM: You have created so many loveable and remember-able characters in your stories, I wonder if you could tell us which of them you can relate to the most?
AM: I’m glad you think that about my characters. 🙂 I relate to ALL my characters, and there’s secretly a little bit of me in all of them.
The secret part is that I’m not telling which bit! But the faith and personal growth lessons the characters gain are the same ones God is teaching me as I write.
This is a tough question! I probably relate most to Claire in Midnight Clear, having spent my own wilderness years angry with God. That book was sooooooo healing to write. God snuck it up on me – I didn’t know Claire had a big issue let alone what it was till I was drafting Chapter 7.
The character I’d most like to be like is Anita in Teapots & Tiaras. Love her attitude! That girl rocks plus-size. No body shame or diets for her!
PM: What is one thing about you that your readers would be shocked to know?
AM: LOL, now how to answer this one? The serious answer: you know that saying “every saint was once a sinner, and every sinner is a potential saint”? Let’s just say – I have a past. Thanks to God, it’s now well in the past and forgiven.
The fun answer: I’ve tandem skydived twice. First time I was so terrified I screamed all the way down. Next time a skydiving team was back in town, I knew I had to jump again to overcome that fear. Second time was great! But twice is enough. Never again!
PM: In your humble opinion, what do you think is missing in Christian Fiction today, or at least what would you like to see more of in Christian Fiction?
AM: Christ! It breaks my heart to see how little Christian fiction really shows Jesus making a difference in the characters’ lives. I don’t want preachy stories with sermons and salvation scenes in every book, but if God isn’t right in there with the characters, if they don’t somehow change and grow even a little in their relationship with Him, I’m not sure it should be labelled Christian.
PM: If there was a news story about your life, what would the headline say?
AM: LOL, easy. Queen of Procrastination Finally Meets a Deadline!
PM: What’s your favorite color? Any reason why?
AM: I love most colors, especially browns, purples, greens, blues.
Lately I’ve been drawn to teal green a lot. It’s a beautiful, restful color. Reminds me of the colour of the sea, when you look down into it from a boat.
PM: What was the most unique inspiration you have had for one of your stories?
AM: I’m not sure of that one. I find inspiration everywhere. Story ideas just keep coming. Sometimes nothing seems to inspire them, the idea is just there. Something I see on the internet. A news item. Something a friend says. People-watching when I’m out (not so much now as I’ve become very stay-at-home. A minor character in a previous book wants his or her own story. I have such a long list of story ideas. I need to keep writing a long time (till I’m 150 should do it) to write them all, and new ones arrive regularly!
PM: I know you have a deep love for the animal kingdom, and have written them into your stories, but tell us do you have any family pets that currently own you?
AM: LOL, “own you” is right! We share our small house with three cats, plus a neighbor’s cat we frequently mind as she travels a lot. Jeremy Boxer Bear is my special boy, a cute little tabby. He just decided to move in one day, though it took me six months to tame him enough to just stay in the room when a human was in it, let alone touch him! We also live with two guinea pigs, funny little characters. We’ve set our little garden up to be a little wild, so we also have many birds and hedgehog visitors. There’s even a rare variety of newt in our tiny pond!
PM: What is it you hope most to get across to your readers in your books?
AM: That there’s nothing too bad for God to forgive. He loves us so much, and He wants us sharing all our life with Him. He wants us to surrender all our guilt, worries and fears to Him, so He can give us peace and joy instead. LOL, sermon over! I hope my books aren’t preachy, but I do want there to be a faith message in every one.
PM: Why don’t you tell us a little about your current / upcoming projects – The Billionaires and Chapel Cove?
AM: I’m so excited about both of these, though they’re very different! Chapel Cove Romances started from several readers asking for more stories with older couples. Marion Ueckermann, Alexa Verde and I came up with the idea of three friends all coming back to their small home town around their fortieth birthdays. That’s only the start! We hope to do 12 books, but with new characters and story ideas popping up all the time, I have a feeling that will grow!
Billionaire Protectors is a totally new direction for me – Christian romance with suspense, co-authored with Alexa Verde. This is a full-co-authoring, so the books aren’t quite like either of our solo books, but have a blend of both our voices. I don’t normally do suspense, and yet I’m enjoying it and finding my brain CAN do suspense, after all. Makes sense. Alexa and I actually met, over five years ago, in a Harlequin writing group for aspiring Love Inspired Suspense authors! Much as I love those books, I’m glad to be indie. We get better covers!
PM: How can readers keep in touch with you and your new releases?
AM: Lots of ways! I have a weekly reader newsletter with book news from me and my author friends. Readers can sign-up here and get a free romance novella: https://dl.bookfunnel.com/xgzyx4s1fh
Or just get the free ebook – you don’t need to tick the box to join my newsletter unless you really want to!
I’m in a fab shared Facebook group with my closest author friends, Marion and Alexa, as well as this awesome book blogger, Paula Marie!
If you use Facebook, you’re welcome to join in the fun there: https://facebook.com/groups/247218999320897
Or anyone who doesn’t do Facebook or want weekly emails can follow me on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Autumn-Macarthur/e/B00N9KRHKY/ or BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/autumn-macarthur and only get emails when I have a new release.
It’s been fun having coffee with you today, Paula! Thank you!
Autumn is going a HUGE giveaway – for THREE winners, an ecopy of both Brett AND Colt for each of you!! Just comment on this post and tell us what you think of co-authored stories! Winners will be selected after one week and notified via email!
1777: The Battle of Saratoga, a turning point of the Revolutionary War, gives the American Continental Army its first great victory. But there seems little to celebrate for Abigail, a woman forced to tend to a wounded British soldier. While nursing William back to health, Abigail finds herself pursued by others in the enemy camp who have less than gallant intentions toward her. Fearful of who she can trust and who might betray her, she leans on her faith and God’s Providence for survival.
1977: On the anniversary of the Battle of Saratoga, thousands arrive from Europe and the United States to celebrate the event. Among the re-enactors are descendants of the original participants from both sides of the battle. One young American, Abby, meets the offspring of a British soldier. But when she finds herself almost assaulted by some men at the event, Abby turns to the only person she knows—her British ally. Can she trust him with her life? Or will he betray her in the same way loyalist spies betrayed her ancestors? Perhaps her answer lies in the letters from her ancestor and namesake, Abigail.
Can regrets from the past stir love’s resolve in the present?
2017 Selah Awards Finalist
my point of view:
Anyone that knows me, knows I love a good historical, and romance, suspense, and a history lesson all too well! This amazing book combines all of that into one beautiful novel. Reading all about an intense time in the Revolutionary War, getting a glimpse into the British vs the Patriots, the hard life suffered by all involved, well, it is told so fittingly in this story. Elaine Cooper does her research and applies that knowledge here.
The suspense carries us through 1777 and all the way in 1977, when the ancestors of the first half of the story come together at a re-enactment of this great time. What great fun it is when Abby and Ian meet and learn they are on “opposite” sides of the war, lol, but have a grand time taking part in the re-enactment anyway. Along the way they face a mystery of it’s own, and delve into the past to learn about their ancestors, never realizing that the history from 200 years ago will play a major part in their life and future today!
I am a sentimental mess, and I love anything ancestral, so this story touched my heart and I will treasure it always! Amazingly, it is free on Kindle Unlimited, or just $0.99 on Amazon, but Elaine is giving away a free one, see below to learn how you can win your own copy!
Elaine is being so generous, she is offering one of our readers a free ebook version of Saratoga Letters! I know you will love this story as much as I did! To enter, please comment on this post and tell us what your favorite part of reading historicals is. Contest will be open for one week from today and winner will be notified via email!
When Lisa Marsh is roped into serving Thanksgiving dinner at the local community center, she encounters hundreds of children, lively teenagers, stubbornly independent veterans, eccentric elderly people, and a particularly rude and scruffy homeless man named Pete. The evening ends in disaster, but when her best friend challenges her to reach out and help other people, Lisa decides to take on the project of reforming Pete – whether he likes it or not.
Her plan is simple: Help him find a job and become respectable. All he needs is a helping hand and some guidance. And a shave. Definitely, a shave.
Pete is willing to work, especially if it means spending time with the pretty volunteer, but her tactless determination to “reform” him makes him dig in his heels. Her creative ideas for employment become increasingly outrageous, but every time he tries to put an end to her meddling, she charms him with her good intentions and willingness to serve others.
Lisa finds herself unaccountably attracted to her vagabond protégé and irresistibly entangled in the lives of the other people she meets at the community center. Before she knows how to stop it, her one small service project snowballs into an extraordinary Christmas ministry that just may change her life forever.
my point of view:
How about a little “Christmas in July”?? need to beat the heat where you are at? I think you will enjoy this refreshing story that takes place during the holiday season in a nice snow filled romance!
This story truly touched my heart. I have had a lot of experience in ‘serving’ Thanksgiving meals at homeless shelters, so I could totally relate to Lisa’s first time doing that! I was so taken with her huge heart and desire to help, even though she felt so reserved and nearly frightened by the prospect. The true depth of this story is honestly much greater than the description above.
Lisa is a heroine with a lot of past heart ache she is still learning to deal with. Kids today may refer to it as “baggage” but I am not a fan of that term. To me the trials of our past makes us the people we are today, whether they were good trials or hard, we are forged in the fire so to speak, of God’s love. Lisa is no exception to this, the circumstances surrounding her husband’s passing certainly makes her anxiety issues understandable! But her big heart and her sister in laws prodding get her back out into the world of the living and humor lightens this story up a great deal with a classic mistaken identity theme that had me literally laughing out loud at times!
Luckily my hubs has gotten used to this from me over the years, lol! Enter…Pete…our delightful, somewhat goofy, hero in need of rescuing, or so Lisa believes. Thank goodness Pete sees the potential of Lisa’s plans for the homeless, and he reluctantly ‘plays’ along for a good cause! I could talk for many more paragraphs on this delightful story, but I don’t want to give away the whole story, lol, so please forgive me!
About Cathe Swanson
Cathe Swanson has generously offered a free ebook version of Snow ANgels to one of our commenters on this blog post! Please comment below and tell us why you enjoy reading a Christmas story in july! Contest will run for one week from publication and winner will be notified via email.
All she wants is a home, but there is no safe haven when mobsters are after you.
Realtor Ginny Lamont’s family has abandoned her, leaving her with nothing but a warning that she’s in danger. But Ginny’s built a home in New Hampshire. After a childhood of nomadic living, she’s not running again, certainly not because of some nameless, baseless threat.
Real estate developer Kade Powers is thrilled to go out with Nutfield’s beautiful new real estate agent. But the prowler they surprise after their first date offers a glimpse into Ginny’s past and the legacy of lies her parents left her with. She brings a mystery, one he’s determined to help her solve.
With Kade’s help, Ginny searches for the truth of her parents’ criminal activity while her enemies close in. When the mobsters show up in her quaint New England town, will she find a way to bring them down, or will she lose the life—and the man—she’s come to love?
Legacy Rejected is the first book in a new Christian romantic suspense series. If you like romance coupled with page-turning suspense that’ll keep you reading late into the night, you’ll love Legacy Rejected. Buy it now.
If you like the Legacy series, you might also like Robin Patchen’s other books. Check out the Hidden Truth series, the first books that take place in Nutfield. Then, be sure to read the Beauty in Flight 3-book serial story, which has roots in the same town. And don’t miss the Amanda books, two romantic suspense novels, and Robin’s standalone romance novellas.
This AMAZING story is set to release as an ebook on 07/23/19 – I highly recommend it! I was able to read an ARC and thoroughly enjoyed every moment, even when I was holding my breath for the suspense of it all!!
Click on the photo to get it ordered today!
Jen: Nebraska is a “fly-over state.” So, politically, that means we are basically irrelevant. We are also a great plains state, so not a whole lot of tourism happening either. However, with feet on the ground, I can tell you that it is a place of strong people where family is important, agriculture means livelihood and not something that is just theoretical/intellectual debate, and both success and crisis is a community affair. The broad plains are big and can seem empty. But the sunsets are vivid and unhindered. The wheat fields are inspiring. And the clean air minus light pollution allows for some breath-taking star-gazing. Moving to rural Nebraska from Denver was quite a culture-shock, but I promise you, God-willing, I’d never go back. I like not being afraid to make eye-contact, feeling good about letting my girls go out on a run on their own, knowing who my neighbors are, and going to hometown football games.
PM: Wow, you should be on the promotion board for Nebraska….makes me want to move there! I mean that in a wonderful way….I find Florida too hot for my liking! Do you write stories more from your own experiences, or do you spend a lot time doing research on the type of characters your creating?
Jen: A whole lot of both. Some stories have snippets of my life and experience in them. Others demand some intense and time-consuming research. It just depends on the project.
PM: When do you find the time to write? Where is your favorite place to write?
Jen: The most successful writers, I’m told, are consistent with time/place/quantity of writing. Unfortunately, every time I think I find my stride with that consistency, my life shifts (I have four teenage kids), and I must figure it all out all over again. I do best if I can write in the mornings, and my favorite spot is on a big, overstuffed chair in my living room. But as I said, that isn’t always what happens. I’ve written in coffee shops, McDonalds, in the car using Notes on my phone, in the stands for track or swim meets, and in my car waiting out start times for cross country meets. So. Someday I might make it to that successful consistency I keep hearing about. For now, though, I’m gonna roll with the life I have now.
PM: I see you write Young Adult Dystopian fiction as well as Contemporary Romance, do you have a preference for which you prefer to write?
Jen: I loved writing those dystopians. They were extremely challenging, and I loved having my kids interact with me on those stories. I also wrote a portal fantasy (Emerald Illusion), which was super fun. It’s definitely a different kind of writing, and switching is a challenge, but I very much enjoyed it.
As far as preference… no, I’m not sure I’d say I prefer one over the other. Story is story to me; I’m not real picky about what kind as long as it’s gripping.
PM: Do you have any family pets that currently own you?
Jen: Haha! Yes. They own us. And we kind of have a zoo. Four horses, I-don’t-know-how-many chickens, five ducks, two bunnies, two dogs, two cats, and a parakete (I was tempted to put a partridge in a pear tree, but that would not be true).
PM: If you could be any character in fiction, whom would you be?
Hmmm… I don’t know on that one. I kind of like my life in reality… Who would you be?
PM: Nice, way to throw it back to me, lol! Okay….I would want to be Claire from Valerie Comer’s Farm Fresh Romance series. Claire is all the books, but her starring role is Wild Mint Tea, and I just adore her, their lifestyle and her love of cooking! If we were to open you your refrigerator right now, what would we find in it?
Jen: Somehow I knew you were going to ask me that! You would find a total mess, that’s what (scary/shocked face). There’s about four or five dozen eggs in there (my daughter needs to sell some), several containers of yogurt, though I can’t tell you how many or what kind because I’m not sure who has had what in the last 24 hours; cheddar cheese sticks, because I love those things; milk, orange juice (my daughter is convinced that life cannot be happily-ever-after without orange juice); chocolate milk (I have a house full of runners/swimmers); some spinach from my mom’s garden, some blueberries for my cereal… and whole lot of other odds and ins that are all mashed in there to make me look like a disaster. Welcome to the real Rodewald house. Marie Kondo would die.
PM: That sounds pretty typical for a household with four teens – no shame, lol!! I found you by reading The Carpenter’s Daughter, and truly adored that book (look for my point of view post on it in the future)! But let’s say I have never read any of your books, what would you recommend as a first time reader of yours?
Jen: Thank you—and I’m glad you enjoyed Sarah’s story! <3 Actually, I’d probably recommend The Carpenter’s Daughter—it’s one of my faves and still deeply resonates with me. Or, maybe Emerald Illusion, because though it is my least popular book (it’s a little crazy how people sort of freak out when you put the words Christian and Fantasy together), I loved the journey I was required to take to write it, and the shift in view that I’ve had because of that story. But really, I loved every journey—even the hard ones that required way more of me than I’d signed up for, so I’m honored when readers take a chance on me with whichever of my works.
PM: How can readers keep up with you and your new releases?
Jen: Ah. So good of you to ask. I have a newsletter I send out at least once a month (often twice). You can find the sign up at https://authorjenrodewald.com/ and click the join now. You’ll also get my newsletter exclusive book It Will Be Forever, which is not currently available on any retail sites. Or, you can follow me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/authorjenrodewald
PM: Ah, I am reading that as we are chatting – such a wonderful story! I highly recommend! Finally, coffee or tea? Cream, sugar?
Jen: Coffee. Every single morning. With Creamer, no sugar.
Thanks so much for having me, Paula—it’s a pleasure to chat with you!