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What happens when the past collides with the present? I am excited to have Johnnie Alexander back with us today to share about her new release, What Hope Remembers, the third book in the Misty Willow Series. (If you missed When Love Arrives or Where She Belongs, you’ll want to check those out, too!) Before we visit with Johnnie, let’s take a look at What Hope Remembers.
When Amy Somers loses her job as a lobbyist, she moves to Misty Willow, well aware that she’s crossing bridges she’d burned years before. With all the mistakes she’s made and the uncaring things she’s done–even to her own family–she can hardly believe that happiness will find her, especially when Gabe Kendall, her first crush and her first kiss, rides back into her life atop a buckskin mare.
A former Marine, Gabe is at loose ends after serving a prison sentence for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. He sees beyond Amy’s hard exterior to the girl he once knew and loved, and he longs to see her open her heart. Yet with his vision clouded by shame for his past and fears about the future, he finds it difficult to see the path ahead.
But the memory of that long-ago kiss just may have the power to reignite a romance that brings out the best in both of them.
Welcome back, Johnnie! Tell us a little about What Hope Remembers. Who is your favorite secondary character in this latest novel, and do you think you’ll include that character in a future story?
I hadn’t thought about this before, but yes, it’d be fun to write a story for Tess, the hero’s widowed aunt. But I’d want to write about her as a younger woman in the 1980s or 90s. Unfortunately that’s a difficult time span to write about because it’s no longer contemporary and it’s not yet historical.
The better choice would be Meghan Jensen. She’s barely mentioned in What Hope Remembers but played an important role as a past love interest and the mother of Brett’s child in the first two books of the Misty Willow Series. (Brett is the hero of When Love Arrives.)
Ooh, yes, she would be a good one for a story of her own! Would you share five fast favorites? What is your:
Favorite color? Green
Favorite season? Spring
Favorite beverage? Coke
Favorite animal? My dogs Rugby and Griff
Favorite vacation destination? Arizona because that’s where my granddaughters live now.
I know it’s a bit of a hot topic, but… Paper or e-reader? There are certainly pros and cons to each. Which is your favorite?
Depends on the book! I tend to prefer my Kindle for fiction because it’s easy to hold and I have an entire library of books with me wherever I go.
But for nonfiction, especially books on spiritual growth and writing, I prefer paper editions. I like making notes, highlighting, and adding tabs to specific pages.
While I generally prefer paper, I do agree with you on the nonfiction part. I remember things better from an actual paper book than I do from the Kindle. (I actually read an article that talked about the mind mapping that we do as we read, and explained why electronic versions make it harder to remember!)
Do you have a favorite or “life” verse? Why is that one important to you?
Choosing just one is so hard, but my “life” verses are Colossians 3:1-3 which basically urges us to set our hearts and minds on things above where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. This reminds me to purposely focus my emotions and my thoughts on eternal values.
That eternal focus makes such a difference! Can you give any hints about what you’re working on now?
I’m writing my second cozy mystery for the Victorian Mansion Flower Shop Mysteries (Annie’s Fiction). My first one, Bloomed to Die, releases in February 2018.
I’m also revising a WWII historical I wrote several years ago. The story intersects with the events in Where Treasure Hides, my first WWII novel. Finally, I’m doing research for a potential sequel to Where Treasure Hides. My plan is to indie-publish these two novels.
How fun! I can’t wait to read them. 🙂 If you could offer a word of encouragement to an aspiring author, what would you say?
Practical steps include attending writers conferences, participating in a writers or critique group, and entering contests. Be teachable, grow in the craft, and never give up.
That sounds like great advice, Johnnie. Thanks so much for taking the time to visit with us today!
Your turn! When you read (fiction or nonfiction), do you like to highlight and/or take notes in the book?
More about Johnnie:
Johnnie Alexander is a wannabe vagabond with a heart for making memories. While relaxing on her Sunshine State patio with her dogs Rugby and Griff, she writes stories that tug at your heartstrings.In addition to winning the prestigious American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) Genesis Contest (Historical), Johnnie has received several conference awards. Her popular debut novel, Where Treasure Hides, is a CBA bestseller and has been translated into Dutch and Norwegian.She is marketing director for the Mid-South Christian Writers Conference and past president of both the ACFW Memphis and ACFW Central Florida chapters.
You can connect with Johnnie online:
Also by Johnnie:
Shelby Kincaid is ready to move forward after the death of her husband left her devastated. With high hopes for the future, she longs to purchase her family’s homestead, Misty Willow, so she can raise her young daughters in the only place she ever truly belonged. She plans to transform the abandoned house into the perfect home of her memories. But she has her work cut out for her.
AJ Sullivan never wanted Shelby’s family homestead in the first place. His grandfather left it to him as punishment for not following his wishes, and he’s let it fall into ruin. AJ’s more than happy to unload it to this spitfire of a woman. But even after angry exchanges over the state of the house, he can’t get her off his mind.
With writing that evokes a strong sense of place and family history, Johnnie Alexander deftly explores the ties that bind us to home–and the irresistible forces that draw us to each other.
Dani Prescott came to the children’s hospital to spy on Brett Somers–so how did she end up on a date with him? Weeks earlier she’d seen an interview in which he blamed her mother for the plane crash that had killed his parents. But the crash had killed her mother as well, so Dani can’t believe the story Brett’s trying to sell to the media.
Vowing to find a way to discredit the privileged–and maddeningly handsome–Brett, Dani has been following him and taking photos, hoping to find something she can use against him. But when she catches his eye instead, she quickly finds herself offering up a fake name and agreeing to a date. Brett knows this mystery girl is hiding something–but he’s got his own secrets to keep. What will happen when he discovers who she really is? Will Dani and Brett look beyond their own heartaches to discover a love that could heal their deepest pain?
Fresh, flirty, and fast-paced, When Love Arrives is an engaging story that will have readers falling in love with the characters as they navigate the tricky waters between romance and revenge.
Artist Alison Schuyler spends her time working in her family’s renowned art gallery, determined to avoid the curse that has followed the Schuyler clan from the Netherlands to America and back again. She’s certain that true love will only lead to tragedy – that is, until a chance meeting at Waterloo station brings Ian Devlin into her life.
Drawn to the bold and compassionate British Army captain, Alison begins to question her fear of love as World War II breaks out, separating the two and drawing each into their own battles. While Ian fights for freedom on the battlefield, Alison works with the Dutch Underground to find a safe haven for Jewish children and priceless pieces of art alike. But safety is a luxury war does not allow. As time, war, and human will struggle to keep them apart, will Alison and Ian have the faith to fight for their love, or is it their fate to be separated forever?
‘What Hope Remembers’ Giveaway:
Johnnie has generously offered to give away a copy (winner can choose ebook copy or autographed print copy) of What Hope Remembers. Giveaways are subject to the Giveaway Policy.