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When an author writes stories set in your home state, you take notice. When that state is one of the lesser known states, you notice even more. And when the stories set there are wonderful… Well, you have to read every one, right? 😉 I’m excited to have Valerie Comer visiting again today to share her latest novel, Rooted in Love. Before we visit, let’s take a quick peek at the story.
Alaina Silva gets enough time with other people’s kids in her new job administrating the Grace Greenhouse programs. If she were looking to date — and she’s not — it wouldn’t be with a man offering her an insta-family. So why is it a struggle to keep the intriguing father of a pair of rambunctious twins out of her mind?
Divorcé Cameron Kraus has a busy life with a career and two six-year-olds. Now he’s finally scored full-time daycare at Grace Greenhouse, but his overbearing parents are in town for the summer offering to watch the boys. No thanks. Not when Cameron is hoping to build something with the gorgeous program director he sees at least twice a day.
Faced with disapproval from both families, Alaina and Cameron must dig roots deep into their faith if they hope to nurture their budding love.
Welcome back, Valerie! What inspired you to write this series, or this novel in particular?
Rooted in Love is part of the multi-author Arcadia Valley Romance series. My goal in proposing this series was to pull together several authors of Christian contemporary romance who have a particular interest in gardening, farming, and cooking. Each of us is in the process of writing our own three-book series set in our joint world of Arcadia Valley, Idaho. We will be releasing the final round starting in February, 2018!
I don’t plot my stories in advance, but start writing when I have a good mental picture of the main characters, the setting, and some of the conflicts that might arise. Rooted in Love took some unexpected turns as a result!
I’m looking forward to the adventure. 😉 Do you have a favorite character from this story? Why is this character your favorite?
Cameron Kraus, the hero of Rooted in Love, is a divorced dad with twin boys who celebrate their seventh birthday during the story. Oliver and Evan have been favorites of mine since the first story in this series (Sow in Love, part of the multi-author novella collection Romance Grows in Arcadia Valley, which is free on all retailers), when Oliver put his foot through a rotted plank and Evan was disappointed his twin’s leg wouldn’t have to be amputated. This pair of boys have kept my writing life challenging and fun ever since, and they played a large role in this story featuring their father.
They sound like a handful, but an entertaining one! What do you hope your readers take away from Rooted in Love?
I’m thankful not to be experienced in the area of divorce, but it does affect many in the church. I see believers divided on the issue of remarriage. This was a topic I set out to explore in this novel, and it led my characters and me down some interesting rabbit trails. I’d like Christian readers to consider how we look at sin, in general, and whether we are responding in a Christ-like manner.
Please don’t think the story is weighted down with theology and/or opinion, though! One reviewer said, “The characters were believable, the sequencing and timing of conflicts and resolutions were well placed. Timely topics addressed with finesse.”
That is a controversial topic, but it sounds like you’ve woven in a great challenge to each of us. Would you tell us about something crazy that you’ve done or would love to do?
Evan and Oliver beg to go ziplining for their birthday. Personally, I’m not a fan of heights, and I have never zipped. My husband and I visited Twin Falls, Idaho, in October of 2016, and I fully intended to ride the zipline there that my Arcadia Valley characters have ridden. I left several messages with the operators, but no one replied before we left the area. So, I had to rely on YouTube videos of the zipline to ensure the accuracy of my descriptions!
Good for you, though, for being willing to try! Can you share (briefly) about something you feel the Lord has been teaching you recently?
The last month or so has been very challenging for me, since I suffered a heart attack in late October. I’d been pushing myself pretty hard earlier in the fall, trying to keep to a tight writing and publishing schedule as well as managing the fall yard and garden cleanup.
So, now I’ve had a month where I’ve done very nearly nothing to advance my career. Interestingly enough, the sun has still risen every morning and set every evening while I’ve learned to give myself (and those around me) ample servings of patience and grace. Jesus has been reminding me that He is enough. That what I do, I do for Him and not anyone else, and my relationship with Him is vastly more important than any little schedule I create for myself.
I’m sorry to hear about your heart attack, but what sweet encouragement that is! It’s so easy to get overly busy. Not that Martha was sinning, but sometimes we need to be Mary… Take care of yourself! Thanks for taking the time, though, to visit with us, Valerie!
Your turn! Is there a book you’ve enjoyed that was set in either the state you live now or one you consider “home”?
More about Valerie:
Valerie Comer’s life on a small farm in western Canada provides the seed for stories of contemporary Christian romance. Like many of her characters, Valerie grows much of her own food and is active in the local foods movement as well as her church. She only hopes her imaginary friends enjoy their happily-ever-afters as much as she does hers, shared with her husband, adult kids, and adorable granddaughters.
Valerie is a USA Today bestselling author and a two-time Word Award winner. She writes engaging characters, strong communities, and deep faith laced with humor into her green clean romances.
You can connect with Valerie online:
Also by Valerie:
Join us in the fictional town of Arcadia Valley, Idaho, where a foodie culture and romance grow hand-in-hand.
Six popular and bestselling authors of contemporary Christian romance have teamed up to create an entire world exploring food, friends, and family.
This is not your usual collection of novellas! Each one is set in Arcadia Valley. Each kicks off a three-book series, intertwined with the works of the other authors. This permanent collection is only the beginning of your adventure with us.
Single mom Evelyn Felton takes on another part-time job managing a greenhouse and garden project for Grace Fellowship. Formerly homeless, she’s thrilled to offer truckloads of fresh produce to the Arcadia Valley food bank.
If only Ben Kujak weren’t running Corinna’s Cupboard singlehandedly, he’d be delighted to be on the receiving end. But Evelyn and her dynamo daughter, Maisie, won’t take no for an answer, even if it means restructuring Ben’s charity.
Soon Ben finds himself wishing they’d transform his personal life, too, but can true love sprout when their pasts collide with the present?
Rooted in Love Giveaway:
Valerie has graciously offered to give away an e-copy of Rooted in Love (available internationally; winner’s choice of digital format). Giveaways are subject to the Giveaway Policy.
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