What fun to introduce you to my friend, author and speaker, Lisa Carter! Lisa and I met years ago–I think at the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference–and I can tell you she’s been on an amazing journey ever since. Get this–Lisa’s very first contract was a 3-book deal with Abingdon Press! Can you believe it? (And no, I’m not the least bit jealous. No, not at all.)
You can read Lisa’s full bio below, but let me just say I loved her first book, Carolina Reckoning and am looking forward to reading her new release that we’ll be talking about today, Aloha Rose. Be sure to leave a comment for Lisa and you’ll be in the drawing for an autographed copy of her new book! But you have to return next week to see if you’re the winner.
Welcome to the Christian Writer’s Den, Lisa. First of all, please tell us about Aloha Rose and its main characters.
Wrapped as a baby in a Hawaiian quilt, Laney begins a painstaking journey to find her birth family. Her search reveals something unexpected amidst the allure of the Big Island. Will she also find more than she ever dreamed possible?
Laney Carrigan is a 20-something travel reporter whoâ€™s made it her life mission to always travel light, to never get too attached. She was found wrapped in a Hawaiian quilt as a baby and adopted. But sheâ€™s always felt like an outsider looking in and sheâ€™s tired of being someoneâ€™s mistake. She’s made a career of chasing rainbows and more than anything she wants a place to belong, a family. She longs for a forever home. But what was the first life lesson she ever learned, courtesy of a mother who abandoned her? Never depend on anyone besides yourself.
Hawaiian cowboy/pilot Kai Barnes is a 30-something, army vet suffering from PTSD. As a boy he was adopted by Laney’s extended birth family, but he’s always felt like a stray in life and identifies with Laney’s feelings of alienation. He’s already got a lot on his plate in trying to save the debt-ridden Franklin family ranch, deal with his guilt over his army buddy’s suicide, and flying helicopters for tourists over the volcanoes. He’s wrapped a protective shell around his heart. Can he move beyond the tragedies of his past and embrace all God has for him?
What was your inspiration behind the writing of Aloha Rose?
After twenty years, I reunited with a friend who, during college, had shared with me her struggles regarding her adoption. At our reunion, she caught me up on the rest of her storyâ€”how she’d located her birth father in Hawaii and how a wonderful, new chapter in her life had opened. Through a difficult personal journey, she and her family had come full circle. As we laughed and cried, rejoiced and remembered the pain along the way, that very day, the seed of Aloha Rose, was born.
Three days later, my agent asked me, a writer/quilter, if I had a story idea for the Quilts of Love series. With my friendâ€™s story fresh in my mind, I also reflected upon how Hawaiian quilts are visibly different from more traditional American quilt patterns. And the inevitable writer questions beganâ€”What if a baby was found abandoned in such a quilt and this quilt became her only clue to finding her biological family?
Wow, what an example of God’s timing! What research went into the creation of Aloha Rose?
Because the issue is adoption, I interviewed many people on both sides of the adoption issueâ€”birth families, adoptive families, and adoptees. Despite loving, supportive homes, many adoptees, I discovered, wrestle most of their lives with a gaping hole inside themselves. A longing to know the who and why behind their past. Laney struggles with feeling unwanted, a sense of unworthiness.
Like many adopted children, she is a truth-seeker. The Hawaiians would say she is an imiloa. Aloha Rose is for all of us, for all whoâ€™ve longed for restoration and reconciliation. Finding hope in how God can bring good out of our past, failures, baggage and all. My hope is that Aloha Rose will cause readers to laugh out loud; make them cry; and warm their hearts with the greatest of lifeâ€™s loves, God.
As I mentioned, Aloha Rose is your second novel. Tell our friends more about your debut, Carolina Reckoning, which released in August.
Carolina Reckoning is a romantic suspense novel set in Raleigh, NC. A little bit of sweet tea and a whole lot of magnolia. Or as I like to call my romantic suspense novels, Sweet Tea with a Slice of Murder. Hereâ€™s the storylineâ€”
Alison wasnâ€™t surprised by what she found in her husbandâ€™s coat pocket, until she becomes the chief suspect in his murder. Homicide Detective Mike Barefoot, a Cherokee native from the Blue Ridge Mountains of NC, immediately puts the 30-something Raleigh housewife and mother at the top of his suspect list. But against his better judgment, he finds himself drawn to Alison and to her children. Alison must launch her own investigation to bring a murderer to justice before she and her children become the killerâ€™s next victims.
As I said, I read that book and loved it! So whatâ€™s next for you as an author, Lisa?
Another romantic suspense novel, Beneath a Navajo Moon, releases in March 2014. Iâ€™m so excited about this cross-cultural examination of faith and what true obedience looks like.
Where can readers find you, Lisa?
Please look me up at www.lisacarterauthor.com and find my blog. Iâ€™m also on Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13613147-aloha-rose. And all of my novels have boards on Pinterest for more behind-the-scenes info, http://www.pinterest.com/quiltsoflove/aloha-rose-by-lisa-carter/
Mahalo, Vonda. Thanks for the opportunity to connect with the Christian Writerâ€™s Den.
Thank YOU for joining us today, Lisa. And thank you for offering a free autographed copy to one of our readers. So friends, be sure to leave a comment and then check back next week to see if you’re the winner!
BIO: As a frequent speaker and vocalist at womenâ€™s ministry events, Lisa Carter shares her own journey of faith regarding the sufficiency of the Cross and His grace in her life. Aloha Rose, a contemporary romance in the Quilts of Love series, released in November 2013. Her debut romantic suspense novel, Carolina Reckoning released in August. She and her husband have two daughters and make their home in North Carolina. When she isn’t writing, Lisa enjoys traveling to romantic locales, quilting and researching her next exotic adventure.
Who Won Jane Herlong’s Book, Bury Me With My Pearls?
The book goes to…Alycia Morales! Congratulations, Alycia! All you need to do is Contact Me with your snail mail address and your book will be on it’s way from Lisa!
And since I know there are many disappointed readers out there, here’s a direct link to Jane’s book, Bury Me With My Pearls, where you can order your own copy! As I’m writing this, the paperback is only $7.95 and the Kindle version is only 99 cents! So what are you waiting for?
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