Friday, 28 August 2020

New Book Release Spotlight & Author Q&A: Blooms of War by Suzanne Tierney

Blooms of War by Suzanne Tierney

As part of today's spotlight on the newly published novel, Blooms of War, I asked the author, Suzanne Tierney, five questions. Here they are along with her answers.

Q. We're currently in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. What five things are helping to improve your quality of life at this difficult time?
  1. I have the luxury of living near the beach. So I walk as much as I can. Sometimes it’s just a half-hour. Sometimes it’s hours. The fresh air, the drama of the sea and sky, the motion of the water, the striking of sunlight on sand, all of it is healing and inspiring and grounding.
  1. Since I can’t see most of my friends, we make an effort to Zoom or do text chats. Sometimes, there are things you are willing to admit or share on a text chat that you’d be embarrassed to say aloud to a group. And on text chat, your friends come together and buoy you up with encouragement and no judgment. It’s rather lovely. That said, I still look forward to seeing them in person and sharing a bottle of wine.
  1. Reading poetry. The world is very noisy right now. We’re constantly interrupted by news and the news is never positive. Everything is in flux. It’s hard to make decisions – do I send the children to school? Do I let my in-laws visit or make them quarantine for two weeks? Do I take my dog to the park? Do I have enough paper towels? Am I prepared for the worst case scenario? Is this the worst case scenario? Is it going to get worse?
But in all that noise, there are words and poetry is sharply written, short, digestible, utterly gorgeous. It hits all the emotions and inspires me.

  1. Cooking. Who isn’t cooking right now? The Covid Fifteen is a real phenomenon and I am certainly living proof of the extra weight. But cooking is an act of nurturing and in preparing food, we nurture ourselves and those we are close to. I am lucky to have an active household of children, husband, and pets. And everyone (even the dog—he’s an excellent food tester and thief) has gotten into trying new recipes, working together in the kitchen, debating whether something needs more salt or if we should make strawberry ice cream or lemon sorbet (the answer is always lemon sorbet).
  1. Write. All of that anxiety and emotion has to go somewhere, right? Why not on the page?

Q. Do you have pets, if so, what?

We have a gorgeous, lazy, vain, loving goldendoodle. His name is Total. He was named after a polar bear detective in the children’s series Timmy Failure. I sometimes dress him in hats and put him on Instagram. I worship this dog.

Q. Who in the writing world is your greatest influence?

Gosh, that is an incredibly hard question! Just one???? I think I will go with Jane Austen. You cant’ go wrong with Austen can you? She was keenly observant. She noticed and wrote about the tiny details that reflected so much about a person. She was a romantic. Who doesn’t melt at Captain Wentworth’s “You pierce my soul. I am half agony…” Doesn’t the line just make your heart hurt? And while there are scoundrels aplenty in her books, no one is truly evil. People are flawed. But they are also often kind.

Q. Describe your perfect day.

A perfect day would start with 8 hours of solid sleep. This, however, is rarely possible, so I will amend to say, a perfect day would start with a cup of coffee.

The day would continue to be perfect if there was time to walk in brisk air that smelled of autumn (can someone please make an air freshener that smells like golden leaves and foggy days?).

From there, a chat with a friend, some laughs with my family, the discovery of a good song, a few hours writing, a small moment that makes me pause and remember something beautiful from childhood, an act or ten of kindness towards others (even if it’s reaching on my tiptoes to grab that roll of paper towels the elderly woman next to me cant’t quite get to). Ending the day feeling like there is good in the world, feeling connected, feeling that I have made the place a tiny bit better, that I have lived up to my potential, that I have given love and made others feel happy and connected…

Rinse. Repeat. Pretty please.

Q. What project are you working on currently?

I am writing the second book in Blooms of War, which will tell the story of EyePatch (the hero’s brother) and Charles (Dorothy Charles) as they try to capture the leader of the espionage ring while trying not to fall in love.

After that, I’m planning a three book series about three English sisters who are exiled to Taiwan after WW2. I hope that it requires some travel research. I hope the world has opened up so that we may again travel without fear.

Thank you so much for hosting me on Ellesea Loves Reading! I enjoyed sharing the oddities of my life and I hope that you and your blog followers stay healthy, happy, and connected during Covid-19. We will get through this. 

In war, she fell in love.
Vera Betts shouldn’t be falling in love with the enigmatic doctor she suspects of espionage. Reeling from her family’s betrayal, she’s faked her nursing credentials, invented a new name, and run away to the frontlines of the French battlefield. Four years into the Great War and she knows who she is and what she’s meant for—to save the living and sit vigil by the dying. When the cagey-yet-earnest Dr. Nicholas Wallace arrives, so do mysterious explosions destroying hospitals. Even as Nick raises her suspicions, he lowers her defenses. He wants the war to end. Are his acts of sabotage politically motivated or a desperate attempt at peace?

In peace, she fell apart.
A year later, Vera is back with her oppressive family, living under her real name, and Nick is on trial for murder. Trapped in grief and guilt, she cannot speak about the past and does not believe in the future. With Nick refusing to defend himself, she ventures to London to understand why he is so willing to embrace the hangman’s noose. Who is he trying to protect? What secrets does he plan to carry to his grave? And why does Nick insist upon hiding her true identity? To save the man she loves, Vera must tear open the past and confront the tragic price for peace.

Amazon UK           Amazon US 

Writer of lush, historical happily-ever-after tales, Suzanne Tierney believes in true love. But she takes delicious pleasure in making her characters fight, flutter, and find their way to each other. Her books have won numerous awards and she has twice been a Golden Heart Finalist® with the Romance Writers of America.
Suzanne grew up in Oregon, adulted in the San Francisco Bay Area, and somehow ended up in Florida, where she is very much a cold-water fish learning to navigate humid, salty seas. She loves chatting with readers.

Instagram: @notajaxgirl
Twitter: @notajaxgirl

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