Home for the Summer by Mariah Stewart
Genre: Romance, Contemporary Romance
Pages: 384 (paperback)
Publication: May 2012
Goodreads Summary: Some of Lucy Sinclair’s best days were those spent growing up in small town St. Dennis—working at the family inn and enjoying summers filled with swimming, sailing, tennis, and the company of Clay Madison, her best friend. But Lucy’s darkest day, the one that shattered her innocence with violence and fear, also happened in St. Dennis. And the town she once loved became the place she gladly left behind—along with the terrible secret she’s kept for twenty years.
While Lucy headed off for college and a career, Clay remained—more than satisfied with the life St. Dennis had to offer. But now, even after inheriting his family’s thriving farm and starting up an organic brewery, he can’t help feeling that something’s missing. And when Lucy comes back to town to plan a celebrity wedding at the Sinclair family inn, she and Clay reconnect, and find themselves reevaluating their long-sleeping friendship that could blossom into something deeper. Like a bookend to those distant childhood days, this summer will be Lucy’s chance to finally confront her hidden pain, make peace with the past, and plan her own whole new future.
~ ~ ~ AUTHOR INTERVIEW ~ ~ ~
We're very excited to have New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Mariah Stewart on BtC today! *claps and whistles* Please take a moment to learn more about this amazing author as I grill her, asking her the tough questions you've always wanted to know the answers to. *cracks knuckles and rolls shoulders*
Where you can find Mariah:
Mariah on Facebook
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Basic bio information: name; any other books you have written / other books in this series; where were you born?
Mariah Stewart – born in Philadelphia, PA but moved to NJ, when I was one.
You can find a list of all books on my website – there are now 31!
...but the books in the Chesapeake Diaries series are:
Home for the Summer
Tell us a little about Home for the Summer.
Lucy Sinclair and Clay Madison met in Kindergarten and were best friends until the summer when they turned fourteen. Something happened to Lucy that changed her and made her withdraw from all of her friends, including Clay, who never really understood what happened to end their friendship. Lucy left St. Dennis for college and never really came back except for brief visits with her family. She moved to the West Coast after graduation, and stayed to start up an event planning business. Now a very successful party planner to the stars, Lucy’s services are in demand. When she’s hired to plan a very high profile wedding to take place at her family’s inn back in St. Dennis, Lucy can’t say no, even though spending a lot of time in her hometown is sure to bring kick-start some memories she’s tried hard to bury. Clay is delighted to learn that Lucy’s going to be around for more than just a weekend or two. He’s always had a special place in his heart for the girl he’d shared his childhood with, and is hoping to find out just what caused their friendship to end. But when he sees Lucy again, he knows he wants more than friendship from her, and is determined to use her time in St. Dennis to convince her that she really can go home again.
What motivated you to write Home for the Summer?
The characters! Clay’s been around since the first book in the series, and I knew he was waiting for the right woman. Once I realized how close he and Lucy used to be, I knew she was the only girl for him.
What kind of research went in to writing this novel?
Most of the research I’ve done has been for the series, more than for one book. But I did a lot of reading about brewing beer for this book and Almost Home – and a lot about organic farming, much more than appears in the book! I was lucky in that a friend of mine is a very successful event planner in Savannah, GA, and was able to tap into her wealth of knowledge when it came to writing credibly about Lucy’s career.
What was your favorite book / series as a child?
Easy one! Anne of Green Gables and Nancy Drew.
What is your definition of a “bad writing day,” and how do you deal with them?
A bad writing day is one when I just can’t get it together because there are too many distractions/interruptions. The phones are ringing, the dogs are barking, someone’s at the door every fifteen minutes and the neighbor’s landscapers are mowing, using the leaf blower, and teasing the dogs through the fence. I deal with it by leaving the house! There’s a restaurant near-by that we go to a lot, and when I need to leave home, either because of distractions or because the words just aren’t coming, I pack up and drive to Aurora and sit off by myself and write in long- hand. For some reason, things I can’t work out on the computer seem to come very easily to me if I’m writing with a pen or pencil.
What books / authors / series do you read when you have the chance?
The list is ridiculously long – I read a lot of thrillers. Last year I became totally addicted to the “Song of Fire and Ice” series after reading an excerpt from Game of Thrones. Generally I don’t read fantasy, so getting so sucked in to this series came as a big surprise to me!
What do you do for fun when you’re not writing?
Read. Garden. Relax by the pool. Play with my adorable grandson.
What songs are on your iPod / mp3 player?
Little bit of everything from The Who, Dire Straits and Pink Floyd to Adele, Carrie Underwood, Stevie Nicks.
What are your hopes for the future?
I’m hoping that the world DOESN’T go to hell in a handbasket so that my kids and grandkids can enjoy life as much as I have!
What is the motto you live by?
Do your best, do no harm and don’t lose focus.
If you were stranded on a deserted island, what three (3) things would you most want to have with you? (food, water, clothing and shelter are provided on BtC’s deserted island)
Definitely my computer - and my inhaler in case my asthma acts up! Can my family & our dogs count as one?
Do you have any hidden talents?
I’d like to say that I sing like Adele and dance like Karina what’s-her-name on Dancing with the Stars, but it would be a big fat lie.
The A-Team or McGyver? (i.e. team player, or lone wolf?)
Well, since I spend the better part of every day in my office, alone, in front of my computer, I gotta go with McGyver – it’s that “lone wolf” thing that I relate to!
What other projects are you working on that you would like to tell us about?
Right now, it’s the next book in the series – The Long Way Home. The heroine is new to town – she’s the daughter of a man who pled guilty to building an enormous Ponzi-type scheme that defrauded billions of dollars from thousands of people. She’s lost her job with her father’s company (she did all the PR for the company), and no one will hire her because of her association with him, and all of her friends but one have dropped her. When everything she owns is confiscated to sell to start a fund to repay her father’s victims, she has nothing left except for an old house in St. Dennis, MD, that was left to her by her late mother. Not wanting anyone to know who she really is because of her father’s notoriety, she arrives in town under an assumed name – no one other than her mother’s lawyer in St. Dennis knows who she really is. She has no money, so she has to make as much of the renovations as possible by herself in order to sell the place for as much as she can, in order to move on with her life. She gets help from Cameron O’Connor, a local contractor who’d like the house for himself because of the memory it holds for him. They’re clearly falling for each other, but it’s complicated: he doesn’t know who she really is and she’s afraid to tell him.
It’s a fun book to write!
~ ~ ~ BOOK TRAILER ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ GIVEAWAY ~ ~ ~
Random House Publishing Group has kindly provided two (2) copies of Home for the Summer for two (2) lucky followers. Please read the rules and enter the form below for your chance to win this fabulous book.
~ ~ ~ GIVEAWAY RULES ~ ~ ~
* You MUST be 13 or older to win.
* Open to US residents ONLY.
* You may leave a comment on this post for ONE (1) extra entry - Anonymous comments DO NOT count.
* You may tweet, post on Facebook or post on your blog about this giveaway... linking to this post... for ONE (1) extra entry for each VALID link - you MUST provide the link(s) to your tweet / post.
* You MUST fill out the FORM BELOW.
* Giveaway runs 06/08/12 - 06/14/12 at 11:59 pm EST.
* Winners will be announced 06/15/12.
Please be sure to check out Home for the Summer... and to leave us a comment letting us know what you think of the fantabulous interview with Mariah!