|The always-gorgeous Oregon Coast: photo courtesy of Pixbay|
Thrilled to be here talking about my latest book Christmas in the Cove on this frosty Saturday morning. This one is special to me for a couple reasons. One, because it’s my first to be set outside of Alaska. Which leads to the second, it’s set very close to my home. I only live about an hour from the Pacific Ocean. My family spent tons of time at the coast while I was growing up: camping, fishing, crabbing, clam digging, and just hanging out on the beach. So many of my best memories were made in places just like the fictional town of Pacific Cove.
In looking at the cover, if you could add a caption, what would it say?
Life is always just a little bit better at the beach.
How long did it take you to write?
This book took me about four months to write. This time-frame is a little deceiving, though, because I spent so many hours doing research. I lived and breathed the Coast Guard for a few months last summer; reading books, internet searching, watching documentaries and movies, and taking tons of notes. I gained so much respect and admiration for this branch of our military. I'm incredibly grateful for the service these men and women provide.
What is your favorite scene?
Eli and Aubrey were childhood sweethearts and when the story begins they haven’t seen each other for 12 years. Eli broke up with Aubrey and is now back in her life and trying to win her over. My favorite scene is the one where he invites Aubrey over for dinner and fixes one of her favorite meals from their past.
Here’s a snippet:
Eli had just flipped the steaming pancakes and was removing the last pieces of bacon from the frying pan when a knock sounded on the front door. His palms were sweating and he couldn’t remember the last time he had felt this kind of nervous buzz. He opened the door and the smile on her face propelled him back in time, dissolving much of the tension he'd been battling.
“Your feast awaits, milady.” He gestured toward the kitchen.
She walked in and let out a happy gasp. “Eli?! Buttermilk pancakes? Your dad’s recipe? I’m so excited.”
“Yep.” He met her joyous smile with his own, relishing in the fact that he'd already managed to cheer her up.
Wielding a spatula, he removed the perfectly-browned pancakes from the griddle. He handed her a plate with a fluffy steaming stack. He dipped out a scoop of whipped butter and plopped it on the top.
Scooting two dishes toward her, he added, “I warmed up some peanut butter and sliced your bananas.”
“I can’t believe you remembered.”
“Really?” he asked dryly. He turned to face her with one quirked brow. “You honestly can’t believe that I remember how you like your pancakes?”
She swallowed nervously as she set her plate down and Eli couldn’t help but enjoy that, too, because she was so cute when she was flustered. “Um, well… It’s been a long time.”
He leaned a hip against the counter, so close to her now that they were almost touching. “Aside from swimming, baseball is your favorite sport to play, football is your favorite sport to watch, although I would say speed skating is a close second, it’s just not on television that much. You drink your coffee black, but you like your tea with cream. Broccoli is your vegetable of choice, and the only ones you won’t eat are Brussels sprouts and water chestnuts. Your foot is a size nine. Your favorite color is pink and you’re afraid of frogs. The last two I always thought were slightly odd because you’re such a tomboy, and frogs are amphibious. Like you.” He lifted one shoulder. “But, hey, when I got to go swimming with you in that pink bikini, it was my favorite color, too.”
|The beach equals romance any time of the year.|
Who was your favorite character and why?
My favorite character is hero Eli. He tries so hard to always do the right thing, even at the expense of his own happiness. He’ll go to any length necessary to keep others safe. Especially Aubrey. Even when she might not want or need his help. Yikes, I think we can all see where this is headed...
Tell us one thing you learned during research.
Becoming a Coast Guard rescue swimmer is crazy difficult. Roughly 50% of trainees don't make it. It’s a dangerous and demanding job, both physically and mentally. There are only about 350 active U.S. Coast Guard rescue swimmers. Of these, there have been three women. (Three awesome, fierce, talented, amazing women.)
|The U.S. Coast Guard in action. Heroes every single one.|
What do you plan to work on next?
I’m currently finishing the next Pacific Cove book, titled Summer at the Shore. I have a proposal in for another Seasons of Alaska book (or two) that I’ve been busy brainstorming. And I just found out that I’m going to be part of another special project that I can’t talk about yet. (I usually don’t mention stuff that I can’t mention, but this one is so exciting I couldn’t help myself!)
And now for this exciting announcement:
It’s tour time! Free admittance! No ticket required!
I’m going on tour with Christmas in the Cove via Prism Book Tours from December 13 – 20th. I’d love it if you’d drop by at one of the stops along the way. There’s a giveaway! Click here to view: Christmas in the Cove Tour Schedule
About the book:
Nobody is going to hurt her—not on his watch
A DEA stealth mission has brought coast guard Lt. Commander Eli Pelletier home. But when he ends up aiding rescue swimmer Aubrey Wynn during her own harrowing mission, powerful emotions reignite between them. Except Aubrey doesn't want Eli's protection. She wants answers.
Twelve years ago, Eli broke up with Aubrey without telling her the real reason he was leaving Pacific Cove. How can he try for a second chance if he's forced to deceive her again? Amid suspected drug trafficking and a sabotaged Christmas contest, Eli must find a way to regain Aubrey's trust without compromising his career or endangering the woman he loves.
Thanks for spending a few moments of your precious Saturday with me! Hope your Holiday Season is off to a wondrous start.