Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Karen Barnett stops by on the Mystery Blog tour. Enter to win a free book!

Hey everyone, welcome to the next step along the blog tour. 

My guest today is Karen Barnett and she's giving away a copy of her newest release, Mistaken. We'll get to more about that in a moment, but for now, Karen, why don't you tell everyone about yourself? 

I live in Oregon with my husband and kids. Other than reading and writing, I love movies and television—watching everything from period dramas to science fiction. Creative activities energize me, so I dabble in photography, cake decorating, music, and crafts. I play guitar and Irish tin whistle and occasionally lead worship for my church’s women’s ministry and children’s programs.

Your tagline is Cannot Be Shaken. Tell us why you chose this?

[Actually, it’s my blog title, not my tagline.] I was drawn to that phrase when I was reading through Philippians 12. Paul writes of how God’s voice can shake the earth, knocking loose all things that are of no consequence, so only what cannot be shaken remains (paraphrase of Phil 12;26-27). The verses resonated in my heart, reminding me that all the trials we go through in this life point us back to the only thing that really matters—Christ. I deeply desire my writing to reflect that concept.

Tell us a little about Mistaken, your new novel set to release in July? 

In the prohibition era rumrunning business, first impressions aren't always to be trusted...

Since booze and prohibition have made criminals out of every man in her world, Laurie Burke resolves to find at least one honorable man to fill her life. Convinced that handsome newcomer Daniel Shepherd is connected with her brother’s rumrunning gang, Laurie quickly scratches his name off her list. 

Daniel has mixed feelings about returning to the dirty mill town of his youth, but grudgingly agrees to manage his grandfather’s drug store until a replacement can be found. The moment he meets Laurie on the windswept bluff overlooking the beach, he knows that if he can earn her love, he might have a reason to stay. But when Laurie pushes him away--for none other than Federal Agent Samuel Brown--Daniel wonders if Laurie really is the upstanding woman he thought her to be. 

The Strait of Juan de Fuca, just off the beaches of Port Angeles, Washington, was treacherous water for reckless rum-runners—and the agents who tried to catch them. So when she realizes her brother is in danger, romance is the last thing on Laurie's mind. Yet the people she believes she can trust, may not be so honorable after all.

Can you share with us your favorite line from this novel and tell us why?

There are some lines at the climax of the novel that are the closest to my heart, but I don’t want to give away too much of the ending. One of my all-time favorite sections is the first paragraph. I wanted to give readers the sensation of “a dark and stormy night” without using those words. Plus, the scene features a vintage Model T—a car that stole my heart during the writing of this book.

“Laurie Burke clutched the steering wheel of her father’s Model T as the car lurched down the deserted road toward the beach, the headlights barely denting the dark night. Rain spilled over the edges of the canvas top and soaked her coat, wetting her to the skin. The automobile plowed through a low bog, tires casting up a spray of muddy water.”

Which celebrity would you choose to play the heroine in your novel and why?

It’s funny, but I’ve never been able to identify a celebrity I felt perfectly matched Laurie in Mistaken. I used photographs of Keira Knightly, Cameron Diaz, Angelina Jolie, and Evan Rachel Wood to help me describe aspects of her look, but I can’t picture any of these actresses actually playing the part of Laurie. I know whom I would want to play the hero. Patrick Dempsey. No question about it—his wavy hair and smirk? He’s definitely Daniel.

Okay, now a couple of fun questions before you have to go! If you could be a character in any book you’ve written, who would you choose and why?

I’ve written several novels, though Mistaken will be the first to be published. I would probably choose to be Laurie. Even though she’s had a difficult life, it’s shaped her into someone who is fiercely loyal and self-sacrificing. I respect her dedication to her family and those she loves, even though in this story it’s almost her undoing.

Do you have a favorite writing spot?
I have a desk, but I rarely write there. I sometimes work from coffee shops or the public library because, oddly enough—I concentrate better in public. I’m less apt to be distracted by chores, television, and Facebook. Two years ago, we adopted a sweet dachshund that gives me sad-puppy eyes when I’m away for long hours, so since then I’ve been writing from home more often.  I usually curl up on the sofa or sprawl across my bed with the dog glued to my side.

Fill in the blank: A perfect day for me would be __________________

“…spent hiking along a mountain ridge.” I absolutely love travelling and getting out into nature. I even worked as a park ranger for a few years, at Mount Rainier National Park and Oregon’s Silver Falls State Park. My perfect day would be spent somewhere breathtaking, either in the mountains or out on the water, soaking in the majesty of God’s creation. I’d probably have a book tucked in my backpack, so when I found the perfect spot, I could spend the afternoon reading.

Do you have a question you would like to ask readers?
I’m fascinated by different time periods and had a blast writing about 1920s rumrunners for Mistaken. I’d love to know, if your readers could spend a day in another era, which one would they choose?

How can readers get in touch with you?

Thank you so much for stopping by, Karen! It was so cool getting to know you.

Thank you, Lynette! It was fun! I hope we get to meet in person someday. 

Same here, Karen! Thanks bunches!

****************************FREE BOOK GIVEAWAY*****************************
If you would like to be entered to win a copy of Karen's new book, Mistaken, just answer the question she asked, "If you could spend a day in another era, which one would they choose?"

I'm curious about this, too! Can't wait to hear your answers. Winner will be drawn May 16th at noon and announced shortly thereafter here on the blog and on my facebook page.

Thanks for stopping by!


Katy Lee said...

I don't know if I would want to actually live in another era, but I would sure love to travel back to the turn of the century. So many inventions and excitement going on.

Tjanks for the chance to win you book! And I'm the same way with my desk...don't use it. :) Much rather be outside or sitting in a comfy place.

Katylee (at) cox (dot) net

Katy Lee said...

oops, sorry for all those errors. :) I can't type on my phone.

Faith F. said...

Ooh... I am so glad God gave us books because that way I can experience all the eras and times I want to visit.
I always wanted to experience the 1800's, and the early 1900's, and just about everything else! And then I would think "I am so glad we have books, because I couldn't get into those years any other way."
I guess the era I want to explore right now will be found in the next book I read.... I hope that book will be Mistaken soon! :-)

Jessica R. Patch said...

Loved the interview! I like the time I'm living in now, but if I could go back to visit, I might choose the 20's because I love their clothing or I might pop in in the 50's. I love movies set during that time. :)

Library Lady said...

I love the 20's, 30's, and 40's but if I had to pick one it would have to be the "Roaring Twenties".
Thanks for entering me in the giveaway.
Janet E.

KayM said...

If I could spend a day in another era, I would choose to spend it with my grandmother in the early 1920's. I've seen some neat pictures of her in that era and I've always wondered what life was like then. Thank you for offering a copy of Mistaken. I would love to read it.
may_dayzee (at) yahoo (dot) com

Connie R. said...

Hm...another era....I don't know about that. Maybe the 1800's, when wagon trains were traipsing across the country. Going where no one had gone before...seeing new country, building a home from scratch off the land it sits on. Sounds very romantic to me, but I know that it's way more work than I want to think about.


Amy C said...

Oh my! What a question! I would to say about 1900 and meet hhthose aunts, uncles and grandparents my grandpa used to tell me about.
Campbellamyd at Gmail dot com

Lynette Eason said...

Thanks for stopping by everyone!

Cassandra Sines said...

I am not sure which era I would like to live through, but definitely would love this book!

Kerrie D said...

I think I would love to live back in the mid 1800's!! All that adventure and having less distractions from God's word. You had to truly depend on Him back then, for your harvest, your clothing, your family's health and safety. And no phones ringing, no Facebook, no Internet, no nothing of the life we have now to distract you! I often think about how hard but yet simple life must have been back then compared to what we have now.

Charity U said...

The 1920s were a fascinating era, and I would love to go back and see the fashions and feel the general feel...but most of all? I'd go back to the time in which Jane Austen's books are set. :)


Lynette Eason said...

Connie R is the winner! Thanks for stopping by and entering. :)

Karen Barnett said...

Thanks for entering, everyone! So many fun time periods to visit. :) Congratulations Connie!