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Five things about me that are…
I love all things pink: Post-it’s, flowers, nail and lip colors, clothes, phone case. So much so, it was an inside joke in graduate school in our microbiology & immunology laboratory. Our lab consisted of three gals with our male PI (primary investigator). We used to tease him a bit about our lab being all girls (I was his official first grad student, so since then the lab dynamic has greatly changed). Who knows? Us students (and one lab tech) were all in our early twenties and it’s what we did to make the long lab/classes days go by as we worked on midnight timepoints and grabbed free food at seminars. For one April Fool’s day, we snuck in early and decorated the entire lab with pink: flamingos, flowers, and Nalgene test tubes (yes, pink ones) capped together and strung up like streamers, and we all wore pink shirts.
I love to hike and travel (this one is a given if you read any of my social media posts or my blog). And wow, I have stories – the good, the bad, the ugly! One little adventure through Glencoe was quite the whopper of a hike. First, it was the rainiest autumn ever in Scotland. Our trail was washed out by a stream. We attempted fording it, but with no other shoes, icy water, and slippery rocks, we just couldn’t. Then we attempted to scramble up a scree covered slope instead, our only other option to continue on the loop trail, but to no avail. We had to turn back. Oh, also the last fun thing on this wee hike? Midges galore. I’m an insect aphrodisiac, so I kept spraying my hair. Lo and behold, my husband did not tell me I had hundreds of midges plastered to my upswept hair. Ick! But, it made for a fun hike and memory.
I sang in a school play in elementary school and we needed to sing the USA states in alphabetical order and I played Betsy Ross (though I had laryngitis). I still have that song memorized. And my son, who loves maps, used to ask me to sing it to him to sleep.
I wrote three full-length novels before my first book (Lucky #4) was published in 2017. Over 19 years of schooling, jobbing, parenting, and life-ing, I wrote here and there. I met with agents, attended conferences and workshops, honed my craft, and learned the biz. Where are those 3 manuscripts? Saved on CDs and floppy disks and tucked away in my closet (hey, it was the decade before “the cloud”). What did I learn? Much. Perseverance, persistence, and patience. Oh, and I even extracted a plot element from one of these practice books for A Hundred Breaths, my second historical novel that released in February. I tried the agent-big publisher route, but after a few years of querying (and more learning), I submitted to a small/medium press (The Wild Rose Press)…and the rest is history. Two books out, and two more this spring, Soul of the Storm being one of them.
Hmm, I am not sure what to put in this one. I have 3-4 lip balms scattered throughout the house, purse, and car, and I constantly apply it (a nervous habit?). I still love Snoopy even though I’m 41 (shhh!). I talk to my perennial flower gardens (hey, they need love, too!). I do not like scary movies, but I am an avid fan of The Walking Dead.
Matiu Christiansen is an outdoors buff. He works multiple jobs to save for his dream of owning an outfitter in New Zealand. He's never quite felt at home in the United States and he yearns for his Maori roots, but his attraction to Charlotte puts a kink in his plans to move home later this year.
Thrown together by coincidence, Charlotte and Matiu form a kindred bond through their shared love of the outdoors. Can Charlotte surmount her demons to assist Matiu on a rescue when a late-season snowstorm hits? And can Matiu help Charlotte heal from the pain of the past?
Read an Excerpt:
Charlotte sat on the top porch step instead of in a rocker. Her breath puffed in a misty cloud before her as she waited. Again, the scent of a fire from the back pit infused the air. She traced the knots in the planks of the porch with the toe of her shoe, ignoring her thudding pulse. Matiu shuffled through the side door. She rose to help him with the cups.
“Kia ora,” he said, smile deep and teeth bright beneath the lamps. “It’s colder tonight.”
“You need a jacket,” she said with a nod to his thinner long-sleeved top that clung nicely to his muscles.
“I’ll sit closer to you. Nice quilt.”
“I’m always cold. I won’t have much heat to share.”
“Logging in my assessment file.” He tapped his temple.
She shivered from nerves as he settled beside her on the top step.
“Ya know, we could have tea inside,” he suggested.
“What about consorting? Besides, I like the clear sky and fresh air. Night is my time.”
He nodded. “Ah, clear skies are amazing. I prefer morning. Not sure about tomorrow. Neil’s sick with the flu, and so is Kelly. They work on the search and rescue team, and Kelly also does mucking with us for the US Forest Service. Seems like the germs haven’t left for the season.”
“Nor the cold temps. Both tend to bite us in the ass in April.”
“I was serious. You going to share that quilt with me?” He inched closer.
“Nope. Get your own.”
He pressed a hand to his heart. “Shot down!” Tea splashed as his laugh vibrated.
Her pulse quickened with the idea of sharing warmth with him.
He said, “I’m knackered. That paddle got me sore. Bit more wind today than I’d expected.”
“You’re not the only one.”
He was so close. She subtly inhaled his natural scent. She couldn’t place it. Probably his shampoo… combined with sweat and cooking oils. They sat quietly, unsure what to say next. His nearness upset her equilibrium. She drank the tea.
About the Author:
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Jean-M.-Grant/e/B0728KFXP9/
Buy Link: https://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/6571-soul-of-the-storm.html
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