Shannon here: Historical Romance author, Tara Johnson shares her inspiration for her latest release, Where Dandelions bloom. Comment or answer the question to enter the drawing. The winner can choose between a paperback copy of Engraved on the Heart, Where Dandelions Bloom, or an ebook copy of Where Dandelions Bloom. Deadline: July 6th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Tara:
When Opposites Attract…The Gloves Come On
Opposites attract, or so the saying goes.
Many of us find it maddening that we find ourselves paired with our polar opposite. The risk-takers marry the security-seekers. Introverts date extroverts. Night owls versus morning people. Buyers versus savers. The impulsive versus planners. You get the idea.
The very thing we admire in someone else can also be what makes us want to pull our hair out with the next breath they dare breathe. Psychologists call it “complimentary relationships”. Laymen call it chemistry. When you’re in the middle of a conflict because of it, it feels more like the need to go Carrie Underwood on someone’s truck.
This is one of the many things I enjoyed exploring while writing my newest novel Where Dandelions Bloom. Cassie Kendrick has escaped her abusive father by enlisting as a man at the start of the Civil War. Gabriel Avery is a photographer, sent out to capture images from battle but finds he differs with his new friend Thomas (aka Cassie), on nearly every issue. When he discovers her true identity, his world is shaken. How could a woman possibly take on the role of a man? How can she live with such deception?
Cassie is equally perturbed by his black-and-white view of the world. What about the women who live in abuse, who never have a voice? His optimistic outlook of goodness and beauty wars with her more jaded experience with life.
I admit, writing the scenes where the two of them argue was pretty fun. My stomach clenched at times, but it was humorous and freeing to delve into both viewpoints and watch the push and pull of both frustration and complete attraction.
At one point, Cassie sees a dandelion and is reminded of a childhood memory. As a girl, she would make a crown of the buttery yellow flowers and set them atop her head until her father’s gruff voice would slice the air.
“Cassandra! Don’t you know you’re playing with weeds? Nothing but weeds. You’re no princess and you never will be.”
Gabe’s mother, however, had shown him a dandelion pushing up through concrete and taught him, “Whenever you see dandelions blooming in concrete, hope remains.”
The wounds and scars we carry become the filter by which we see the world.
Perhaps that’s why I’m so fascinated by photography. It always captures truth, but the photographer has a choice where he chooses to focus the lens.
Where Dandelions Bloom is all about forgiveness, truth, and perspective. And perhaps coming to the realization that we all think we’re the hero in our own story. The best way to mend a relationship is to listen and see things from another’s perspective…even if it’s opposite of our own.
Question for Readers: What quality do you find attractive in others? Is the opposite of your own personality type? Do you find it to compliment you, drive you crazy, or both?
About Tara: Tara Johnson is an author and speaker, and loves to write stories that help people break free from the lies they believe about themselves.
Tara’s debut novel Engraved on the Heart (Tyndale) earned a starred review from Publishers Weekly, as well as numerous other accolades. In addition to be published in a variety of digital and print magazines, she has been a featured guest on Voice of Truth radio, Enduring Word radio, television and podcasts. She is a history nerd, especially the Civil War, and adores making people laugh. She, her husband, and children live in Arkansas. Learn more and connect:
About the book – Where Dandelions Bloom:
Cassie Kendrick is on the run. Her abusive father arranged her marriage to a despicable man, but she’s discovered an escape. Disguised as a man, Cassie enlists in the Union army, taking the name Thomas Turner. On the battlefields of the Civil War, keeping her identity a secret is only the beginning of her problems, especially after she meets Gabriel Avery, a handsome young photographer.
Anxious to make his mark on the world and to erase the darkness and guilt lurking from his past, Gabriel works with renowned photographer Matthew Brady to capture images from the front lines of the war. As Gabriel forges friendships with many of the men he encounters, he wonders what the courageous, unpredictable Thomas Turner is hiding.
Battling betrayal, their own personal demons, and a country torn apart by war, can Cassie and Gabriel learn to forgive themselves and trust their futures to the God who births hope and healing in the darkest places?
Can’t wait for the drawing or worried you won’t win. Get your copy now!
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