Anyway, I'd been away from teh Interwebz for so long that when I learned fellow blogger and writer Melissa Maygrove had released her debut novel Come Back, I emitted a very unGothlike "SQUEE!" and made haste to purchase/devour it. Just the idea of it made me reminisce about the halcyon days of my youth, when I watched shows like Little House on the Prairie and believed that Good always beats out Evil and True Love comes to all. So if, like me, you're experiencing any bitterness or cynicism about life and/or love, Come Back is the perfect antidote.
Right, so; rather than cutting/pasting the book blurb, I thought I'd let Maygrove's truly gorgeous book trailer (Dudes, it gave me goosebumps, and I'm totally not exaggerating) tell you what you need to know (I recommend popping the viewer out for your visual pleasure).
::Sighs of romance-novel-digging-happiness::
I'd been so overwhelmed by my day job, and the depression that got a chokehold on me, that my book-reading had been really slow. Then I picked up Come Back and inhaled it. It engaged me straightaway and I really just adored it. I wrote a little review for it on Goodreads and when Melissa e-mailed to thank me, I offered to interview her and feature the book on my blog this week. That's how much I liked the book, folks; I freakin' volunteered to do work I didn't have to do which, as anyone who knows me will attest, is about as likely an event as the proverbial pigs becoming airborne. Anyway, I winged some questions at the gal, to which she lobbed back the following answers:
“Come Back” is set in the old American West—how do you think you’d fare in that era? What modern convenience would you most hate to lose? Which do you think you’d do just fine without?
In some ways, I'd fare well. I've always felt I was born a century too late. But, due to some heart defects I was born with, I wouldn't have survived if I'd been born even one year before I was. So, in that respect, I wouldn't have fared well at all.
I'd hate to lose air conditioning. (Blogger's note: Gawd, so would I!)
I'd be perfectly peachy without TV. :)
In the book, heroine Becca and her family are part of a wagon train of people seeking better fortunes in California. It’s noted that folks making their way out west often had to dump things along the way. In your research, did you uncover any unusual items being found along those wagon trails? If it were you who had to part with something, what would be the first thing you’d toss?
I didn't really come across anything unusual, but that was where the inspiration for the book came from. My daughter and I once read a story together about a teen traveling west on the Oregon Trail (Becca and Seth travel the Gila Trail). When I read about westward travelers dumping belongings, I thought about how a young woman who'd been abandoned might use those things to survive, and off my imagination went.
Hm... I suppose I'd dump heavy items, such as furniture that wouldn't be needed until I reached my destination and could be replaced. Of course, if I'd done as the wagon captain instructed and hadn't overloaded my wagon, I wouldn't find myself in that unfortunate situation. ;)
What do you think was the greatest challenge facing a woman of Becca’s age, back in the mid-1800s?
The hardships of life (large families, the manual labor of growing and preparing food, chores, etc.) combined with the fact that women had few rights. We romanticize things in novels. Many men were honorable gentlemen, but many weren't, and it was a patriarchal society.
What bit of advice might you offer a man courting a gal in the old West? Would you offer that same advice to a 21st Century man as well?
Treat your lady with respect and don't ever strike her or betray her. That's important no matter what century you live in.
Below's an excerpt and all the pertinent buy/author links. I hope y'all will give Come Back a closer look; I recommend it to anyone in need of a bit of heart-warming and blood-bubbling lovin'.
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A humorless chuckle echoed in the musty space. “And after years of living with a man who has no means to support you, will you still love me then?”
Becca wrapped her arms around him and pressed her cheek to his back. “I’ll love you no matter what.”
He straightened and his hands left the table, but he made no move to touch her. “Thanks for trying, but like I’ve told you, you’re not a very good liar.”
“I’m not lying.” She clung to him tightly and fought back a sob.
He didn’t react. Just stood there like a tower of stone.
A surge of anger pushed back her tears. If he didn’t want her, he was going to have to face her and say it. She wasn’t giving up this time.
Becca let go of him and stepped back. “If you regret marrying me, then turn around and tell me so.”
She gave him plenty of time to respond, but he didn’t move. Didn’t speak.
Embracing him again, she splayed her hands across his chest. She stood on her toes and grazed her lips across the back of his neck.
A shudder rippled through him and raised little bumps on his skin. Her tower of stone was beginning to crack.
“You can push me away and act like you don’t care,” she whispered, her breath skimming his ear, “but I’m not giving up. Do you want to know why? Because I’m not the one pretending.” Becca slid her hand lower and molded her fingers around the evidence of his arousal. “You are.”
Seth ripped her hands from his body and spun around with a growl. His lips were on hers before she could suck in a breath. He banded his arms around her, crushing her to him, and ravaged her mouth like a man possessed.
“You picked the wrong man to love,” he rasped when he came up for air.
“No I didn’t!” she shot back as his mouth came down on hers.
Seth’s hands roamed her body, matching the desperation of his kiss. And she gave it right back, groping and clawing as if she couldn’t get enough. She never would.
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Where to find Come Back:
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