Shannon here: Carole Brown shares romantic excerpts from her latest Romantic Suspense, A Flute in the Willows plus a recipe for Wild Rice Chicken Soup. Comment or answer the question at the end of the post to enter the drawing for a Kindle Copy. Deadline: June 23rd, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Carole:
Writing ROMANCE in the Middle of Suspense:
You wouldn’t think romance would play a part in being a spy, but sometimes it does. Wives, girlfriends, and new friends that tie into a spy’s life—any of these relationships allow romance to blossom…and increase the danger.
The Heart that Loves is Always Young —Greek Proverb
My genre of choice is suspense and/or mystery. BUT, I love including romance within my books. Why? Let’s list a few reasons:
- Readers love it! Romance is the best selling genre of today’s publishing world.
- It brings a warmth to a novel that lures readers to continue their reading.
- It’s a great escape. Readers have a real world. A world filled with problems and heartaches at times, and for them, for a little while, they can forget their own lives.
- Encouragement. We know not everything is or ends as a fairy tale story in real life, but it’s an encouragement to strive for that fairy tale—realistically—and hope to improve our own romantic lives.
- Romance brings out emotions. The world calls us to be strong, career driven and the “amazon” woman. But reading romance—included in whatever genre—touches the emotions that are sometimes hidden within ourselves.
Suspense is known as mysterious, dramatic, at times a little scary or intense. But when I create touches of romantic passages (clean!) in my books, I can lighten that heavier scene.
Let’s show you a few examples in my recent release:
Excerpt from A Flute in the Willows by Carole Brown :
Chapter 1: Jerry Patterson
Jerry is leaving for overseas service. This brief but touching scene reveals his tenderness toward is wife. Showing this is crucial in light of the physical and mental trials he endures later in the book.
Josie‟s face flashed in his mind, and Jerry felt his heart soften. How he loved his tomboy wife. She was a beautiful butterfly dancing on ice, but put her in a social setting, and she was like a wild creature let loose in a maiden aunt‟s prim parlor.
Three weeks of marital bliss. It‟d been heaven on earth for him. One rapturous day—and night—after another. She‟d cried the night before he‟d left, but had been strength personified when he‟d boarded the train the next morning.
If—no, when—he got home, he‟d wrap his arms around her and not let her out of his sight.
Josie can only cope with her husband’s absence by imagining him present, ice skating with her at one of her competitions.
Sulky eyes roved over her face. Lips tipped up in a crooked smile, defying her to deny her love for him. Muscular arms spun her away, then drew her back, close to his chest.
His sinewy arms lifted and tossed her like a light-weight, fuzzy dandelion seed, into the air, floating, floating, floating higher and higher until, as she began drifting back to the ice floor, he caught her, setting her on her skates, guiding her to yet another magical dance move…
Jerry and Josie, husband and wife, are high strung, stubborn and madly in love. But when the military called, and suddenly both are faced with danger, separation, and injuries, they are faced with choices. Both must learn hard lessons, including God’s will, before they can discover enduring love.
With a jerk, Jerry pulled her tight against his body, his arms wrapped around her. He could feel the tension leaving her body, felt the moment she leaned into him, and tears choked his throat. How he loved this woman.
Her wild mop of hair tickled his chin as she rubbed her head against his chest, and he almost picked her up to gallop home with her.
And once again, his acute memory sprang to life. He couldn’t. He couldn’t gallop anywhere. And he’d already made that unspoken promise to her to let her go. Give her, her freedom.
The agony and suspense in the these chapters are lightened and warmed by their imaginations and remembrances. Their love is strong and passionate but because of their trials and mistakes, because of the dangers they live through, and mostly—because they learn to love God, their romance grows solid, no longer blown by the winds of doubt and dissatisfactions of life.
To everything there is a season…a time to love. —Song of Solomon
And now the the recipe:
Wild Rice Chicken Soup by Carole Brown
(I always adjust the measurements to suit what I need)
5 2/3 cup chicken broth
1 pkg of long grain, wild rice (and the seasoning packet)
1 celery rib, chopped
1 medium carrot shredded or chopped
½ cup chopped onion
2 cans (10 ¾ oz each) condensed mushroom soup
1 cup cubed cooked chicken.
(Feel free to add whatever vegetables suit your taste)
Bring the broth and seasoning to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer. Stir in veggies for ten minutes. Stir in the cubed chicken and mushroom soup. Cook about 8 mins or until rice and veggies are done. Delicious for a summer appetizer or first course for a formal meal (anytime!)
About Carole: Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons? Learn more & connect:
About the book – A Flute in the Willows:
Both rebels in their own way, Josie and Jerry Patterson must figure out how to keep the other’s love…and keep the German enemy at bay.
She has two loves—her skating and Jerry, her husband. But when he returns home looking like a skeleton trying to return to life, she’s scared. What happened in Germany to change a man so much? Has another woman captured his heart?
Jerry has vowed to let Josie live her own glamourous life…especially after what happened in Germany. But when his wife’s life is threatened, Jerry realizes he can’t stand by and do nothing. Jerry has to risk all for the very soul and life of himself—Josie.
These two damaged, rebellious people learn the hard way that leaning on God instead of their own selves and abilities is the only true way to love and happiness.
Can’t wait for the drawing? Get your copy now! A Flute in the Willows – Amazon
Question for Readers: In one part of this book, Jerry needs nourishing food, and though Josie’s not much of a cook, her father’s boarding house cook is great! She prepares for Jerry soup. So…What is your go-to recipe for improving your mood or helping you feel better when sick or when a loved one is down?
Come back June 19th for Leeann Betts!