17 April 2013

Just Like Heaven Tour: Guest Blog

Just Like Heaven by Barbara Bretton 
Synopsis: Because love can happen anywhere . . .
Even in New Jersey!

A beautiful morning in early spring. What could possibly go wrong?

Just returned from a buying trip in England, Kate French was jet-lagged and exhausted and running on fumes. She was already running late for an appointment but a wave of dizziness forced her to pull into the shopping mall parking lot in search of a quick fix of caffeine and protein.

When the pain first hit, she ignored it and continued racing across the parking lot toward the food court. But within moments she realized something was terribly wrong as her wobbly legs gave out and she dropped to the ground. The last thing she remembered as she started to fade away was the guy in the Grateful Dead T-shirt who held her in his arms and promised he'd never let her go.

Mark Kerry didn't think of himself as a hero but the story of a Good Samaritan who had saved a woman's life in the parking lot of the Princeton Promenade was attaining the status of suburban legend. Determined to return a stack of documents that had been left behind when the ambulance swept her away, he called in some favors and tracked her down at home one week later.

The moment Kate saw him, the world and everyone in it disappeared. She knew his voice, the smell of his skin, the way his hands felt against her skin, the taste of his mouth, everything that mattered. All the things she would ever need to know about him.

And then she took another look . . . 

About The Author: 
Barbara Bretton is the USA Today bestselling, award-winning author of more than 40 books. She currently has over ten million copies in print around the world. Her works have been translated into twelve languages in over twenty countries.

Barbara has been featured in articles in The New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, Romantic Times, Cleveland Plain Dealer, Herald News, Home News, Somerset Gazette,among others, and has been interviewed by Independent Network News Television, appeared on the Susan Stamberg Show on NPR, and been featured in an interview with Charles Osgood of WCBS, among others.

Her awards include both Reviewer's Choice and Career Achievement Awards from Romantic Times; Gold and Silver certificates from Affaire de Coeur; the RWA Region 1 Golden Leaf; and several sales awards from Bookrak. Ms. Bretton was included in a recent edition of Contemporary Authors.

Barbara loves to spend as much time as possible in Maine with her husband, walking the rocky beaches and dreaming up plots for upcoming books.

Guest Post: 
Comfort. Even the word makes me feel better. Who doesn't want more comfort in her life? Just Google the word and you'll find cookbooks, furniture, clothing, music, movies, books, and  much more designed for the specific purpose of bringing more comfort into our lives.
Here are some of my favorites.

Food - where would we be without the comfort of a plate of gooey, delicious mac and cheese? Cholesterol, be damned. I know I don't want to live in a world without mac and cheese. That and Spanish rice were the comfort foods of my childhood and I make them today when I want to bring my mother's memory a little closer.
BTW, how do you make your mac and cheese? I've discovered there are as many variations as there are families who love it. We always added Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard, and a bottle of chili sauce (the seafood cocktail kind) to the cheese sauce. What's your secret?

TV - During stressful times, we indulge in what I call Laugh Therapy. Block out the worries and the sorrows, and dive headlong into TV Land and all of the classic sitcoms that never fail to make us laugh. The old Mary Tyler Moore Show. Bob Newhart, either with Suzanne Pleshette or the brothers Darryl. Taxi. Cheers. Seinfeld. M*A*S*H*. And if you're old enough, you've probably spent a few late, late nights watching scratchy black and white reruns of The Honeymooners. It doesn't matter which show makes you forget your troubles. Sometimes TV is the best invention of the 20th century.

Movies and Soundtracks - Writers can get a little strange about movies and music. We tend to use them as almost inspirational background noise when we write and certain movies and soundtracks become wedded in our minds to the book we were writing at the time.
My husband asked me the other day why I keep watching YOU'VE GOT MAIL when I've said a thousand times that I don't like it. To be honest, I don't have a good reason for him except that it makes me feel comforted . . . and makes me want to write. Same goes for FAR AND AWAY and its soundtrack. The second I hear the first note, my imagination kicks into gear and I dive into my work-in-progress as the rest of the world vanishes in a comforting blur.
And I won't tell you how many times I've lost myself in the comfort of NOTTING HILL, BRIDGET JONES'S DIARY, and LOVE ACTUALLY. I have watched them so many times that I can recite the dialogue along with the actors.
Which, I guess, is part of the comfort zone they create.

Books - My husband doesn't reread books. Once he's done with them, he's done with them and on to something new and fresh.
Not me. When I love a book, I want to live inside it. I want to wrap it around me like a cashmere blanket and disappear.
Which, as you've probably guessed, means I reread.
A lot.
At least once every two years, I reread Larry McMurtry's MOVING ON and all of the late Laurie Colwin's novels and short story collections.
When I'm feeling sad, I turn to the deep comfort of Jan Karon's Mitford series. I'm neither a Southerner or an Episcopalian, but her stories about good people living good lives always make me feel better about humankind.
After 9/11, I turned away from our modern world of terrorism and deceit, and vanished into Bertrice Small's Skye O'Malley series of books. The world of Elizabeth I was filled with violence and deceit, too, but what a difference a few centuries can make.
And I'm not ashamed to admit that I am unabashedly in writerly love with the late Robert B. Parker and the here-and-now Lawrence Block. Every year or two, I read my way through the Spenser books, the Sunny Randalls, the Jesse Stones. I immerse myself in the lives of Matthew Scudder and Bernie Rhodenbarr and Keller. Reading Block and Parker is like a crash course in great writing but that's not why I do it. I read them over and over again because each time I discover something different in the stories. As my perspective changes with time, I bring more to the reading table and am able to appreciate their work in ways I couldn't have when I was younger.

What are your comfort touchstones? What books or movies or TV shows make you forget the world outside your door and make you smile?

Thanks for stopping by everybody! Be sure to check out Bewitching Book Tours which is where this whole tour started! :)

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