Thursday, October 15, 2015

FEATURED AUTHOR: TAMMY L. GRACE


ABOUT THE BOOK


Pieces of Home

A story of long ago secrets revealed and the strength of one woman’s journey to overcome the pain of her past.

Ellie hasn’t seen or spoken to her parents in twenty years — since she came to live on the island with her aunt and uncle. Ellie’s all grown up now and runs the popular family bakery, Sweet Treats. 

An unforeseen plea for help forces Ellie to reveal a secret she’s kept hidden from even her closest friends. Her innate kindness and desire to help propel her on a turbulent journey. The pieces of her past she’s worked so hard to escape resurface and bring her face to face with heartache. In the midst of unearthing her long buried pain, she faces challenges that threaten her livelihood and those she holds most dear.

When newcomer Blake Griffin arrives, he frequents the bakery in the early morning hours and over fresh cinnamon rolls they develop a friendship. He renews a sense of hope and joy in Ellie, but she’s hesitant to trust him with her heart. Instead of letting her past define her future, Ellie must summon the courage to recognize an unexpected path may be a welcome gift.


GUEST POST

The Hometown Harbor Series and the Creation of Characters and Setting


by Tammy L. Grace


I love to write for the same reasons I read — enjoyment and escape. I’ve been an avid reader all my life and find myself most attracted to characters in novels. Not to say I don’t pay attention to plot, but if push comes to shove, I’ll stick with a character I like over a well-developed plot with mediocre personas. I’m embarrassed to admit, but many times I remember the main character’s name in a book, rather than the author’s name.

I need to relate to the character and more importantly, I need to care about what happens to her. I read a bestselling novel not long ago and despite the rave reviews, hated it because I didn’t care about any of the characters. I thought they were all horrible and frankly didn’t care what happened to any of them . . . live or die. 

When I’m creating my main characters I work hard to make them believable and relatable.  The female protagonists in my Hometown Harbor series are all women with whom I’d enjoy spending my free time. I strive to create individuals readers love or sometimes love to hate. I believe central characters should be memorable.

Speaking of villains, they’re rather fun to construct. I take a lot of time with my characters and keep a notebook full of traits and characteristics for each of them. I pay attention when I’m out and about and take note of peculiarities or mannerisms I observe. When it comes to the bad apples, I tend to extract the most detestable traits I’ve seen and concoct an amalgamation to form the perfect evil character. It’s a fun exercise, and as an author I enjoy embellishing a minor irritating quality I’ve noticed and turning it into a revolting character. 

The Hometown Harbor series is my women’s fiction series, and each book focuses on a different female protagonist. All of the women are connected through friendship and their lives are intertwined in the small island community of Friday Harbor. Each woman faces struggles that take her on an emotional journey of self-discovery. Complex family relationships and enduring friendships are key elements for the group of women. The choices they often have to make are difficult and risky.

Readers find my Hometown Harbor series to be relaxing and often describe them as books that transport them to another place. In this case, the gorgeous San Juan Islands. I do loads of research and draw on my own trips to the area to create what I hope is an authentic experience for my readers. For me the quaint island community that is the setting almost becomes another character. They are an ideal read for vacations, relaxing breaks, or just an escape from everyday life. I tend to indulge in books as a reward to myself and they are the perfect calorie-free treat.

The female leads are more mature women in their 40’s and 50’s. I made this choice for a few reasons — I don’t relate to the twenty-something crowd and I think women of a certain age are underrepresented in mainstream novels, but have the most to offer readers. In my latest release, Pieces of Home (Book 4), I focused on my youngest lead in the character of Ellie, who is thirty-five. Ellie appears in the first book, Finding Home, but the reader learns about her life, including her tragic past, in the latest book. Although she’s younger than some of the other women, she’s confronted with challenges beyond her years. 

I recommend you start with the first book and read them in order, so as to have the most enjoyable experience. I love to hear from readers and invite you to follow me on Facebook or Amazon or visit my website to contact me. It’s fun to discuss the books and characters and listen to the thoughts of readers, especially when it comes to the leading ladies and their challenges. Please let me know your favorites from the series and who you would most like to see featured in a future book.


OTHER BOOKS BY TAMMY L. GRACE

Finding Home (Book 1)  
A coming to life journey for a middle-aged woman, who flees to a small island expecting a change of scenery and discovers much more.

Shattered by her husband's infidelities after twenty-five years of marriage, Sam Collins is plagued by constant fear and loneliness, reliving the tragic death of her parents and the betrayal by the man she loved. She leaves Seattle seeking relief from the relentless darkness that has swallowed her. With only her dog for companionship, she sets out to live in her vacation home on San Juan Island. 



In her search for a carpenter, she meets the handsome and very available, Jeff Cooper. Sam's not looking for romance, but can't deny the attraction to the retired firefighter, turned handyman. While working together and eating her pies, Jeff finds himself falling for her.



The past she wrestles to let go of comes hurtling back when she least expects it. In an effort to help a struggling young man, she is forced to confront the anguish she is desperate to escape. While torn between love and friendship, she must face her fears and choose between the life she's known and a chance for a family and home she's been longing for all her life.


Home Blooms (Book 2)
 
Return to the picturesque island community where you’ll check in with your old friends and
meet a few new ones along the way.


Linda is knee deep in bouquets and boutonnieres, designing a beautiful ceremony for Sam and Jeff. The bride’s matchmaking plot takes shape as she volunteers her best friend, Max, to help Linda create the perfect wedding. 



Linda and Max are thrown together when a tragedy threatens to destroy the honeymooners’ newfound happiness before they have the possibility of a life together. Compelled to make some changes in life, Linda uncovers a family secret that causes her to question her existence and leads her on a search for the truth. 



As Max begins to penetrate the protective walls around Linda’s heart, a visit from her youth causes her to risk it all. While struggling between the past and the future, Linda has a chance to let more than her flowers bloom.


A Promise of Home (Book 3) 
Spend Christmas in Friday Harbor this year surrounded by the friends you know and a couple of special deliveries from the Hometown Harbor Series.


In between holiday activities, friends of Linda and Max are helping plan their Valentine’s Day wedding. Regi is anxiously awaiting the arrival of her fortieth birthday and the fulfillment of the promise she and Cam made over twenty years ago.



As she anticipates the reunion with Cam, she’s oblivious to the signals the local delivery man, Nate, is giving her. She and Nate work together helping a newcomer open an art and antiques shop. While spending time together, she discovers she has feelings for Nate and bonds with the new shopkeeper over their past losses. 



As Regi’s contemplating her choices, she’s dealt a blow that brings her to her knees and reconnects her with the past. In the pursuit of her youthful fairytale promise, she’ll risk the only chance she’s encountered for true happiness and a home.



Killer Music (Book 1), A Cooper Harrington Detective Novel:
When private detective Cooper “Coop” Harrington meets record label mogul Grayson Taylor at a swank gathering of country music artists and politicians he never imagines he’ll be investigating his brutal murder less than twenty-four hours later.



The suspects are plentiful. More than a handful of people could have wanted him dead. Retained by Taylor’s widow, Coop works alongside his best friend and Chief of Detectives, Ben Mason. The investigation leads Coop and Ben to visit the luxurious mansions of recording industry magnates, navigate the murky undercurrents of the political world, and probe complicated family matters. Scandalous indiscretions, secrets, and hints of corruption swirl in the midst of their pursuit of the killer.



Coop’s faithful friend and assistant, Annabelle and his loyal golden retriever, Gus, both lend a hand during the investigation. Even his Aunt Camille mines the local gossip mill to unearth potential killers with motive. Yet the case seems hopeless until a crucial piece of evidence emerges that sends Coop and Ben on a race to catch the killer before someone else dies.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Author of The Hometown Harbor Series of women’s fiction set in the picturesque San Jan Islands in Washington and a new mystery series set in Nashville, Tennessee, featuring Cooper Harrington, Private Detective.

Born and raised in Nevada, Tammy L. Grace loved reading at a young age. With the help of her middle school teacher, she discovered the joy of writing. After spending a career in local and state government service, she retired and finally has the time to dedicate to writing. 

When Tammy isn't working on ideas for a novel, she's spending time with family and friends or supporting her addiction to books and chocolate. She and her husband have one grown son and a spoiled golden retriever.



Connect with Tammy:
Website  |  Blog  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads  |  Amazon

Buy the books:

2 comments:

  1. Always a pleasure to connect with you, Amy. Thanks for featuring my new release!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Happy to have you back! You're welcome anytime.

      Delete