Thursday, June 05, 2014

A PLACE IN HIS HEART - Rebecca DeMarino - One Free Book on This Blog, Plus More

Dear readers, I’m happy to introduce this debut novelist to you today.

BIO: Rebecca DeMarino lives in the Pacific N.W. with her husband Tom. She enjoys travel, hiking, baking, genealogy and gardening. Her debut novel, A Place in His Heart, is a historical romance inspired by her ninth great-grandparents, Barnabas and Mary Horton, and is book one of The Southold Chronicles. 

Welcome, Rebecca. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
I think there are little pieces of my heart in all my characters, really. I think writers cannot help but do that. But I have two sisters, and I think there is a lot of all three of us in Mary and Lizzie.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
My husband and I went to New York to pick up an airplane he bought on Ebay. We flew it from New York to Oregon in the middle of January! It took us over ten days, many of which were spent sipping cocoa while watching snowflakes fall in the little terminals across the country. He thinks this is completely normal. I think it’s a little quirky. But I have to admit it was fun!

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I had an inkling my senior year in high school when I took a creative writing course. But I didn’t give it another thought until I took my mother on a trip to find our past, and I found a story I couldn’t help but write.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I love the classics, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Anna Karenina, Wuthering Heights to name a few. I love a good suspense and historicals, especially with romance. I’ve read almost all of John Grisham, Nicholas Sparks and Jane Kirkpatrick books. Other keepers on my bookshelf right now are: Julie Lessman, Lori Benton, Carrie Turansky, Margaret Brownley, Anita Higman and I could go on because there are more on my shelves, but they wouldn’t all fit in this answer! But I love the novels being published today for the CBA, and I think Christian fiction is filling a need in a way it never has before.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
Getting out in nature to walk, jog or hike. I live in the beautiful Columbia Gorge, with mountains, rivers, forest and lakes. So inspiring! But even a walk in the garden relieves stress, clears my mind and that’s when some of my best writing ideas start playing in my brain!

How do you choose your characters’ names?
I write about my real-life ancestors, and I use their real names. Sometimes that is tricky because in the 17th century the English names were pretty much Mary and Elizabeth, Joseph and Thomas. So I had to improvise with a couple, giving them middle names. Mary likes to call people by nicknames, so that helped give variety. I made up the name for Wauwineta, my fictional Native American woman, but Mary likes to call her Winnie and I liked that, too.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Helping my dad finish his own novel, The Stagecoach Murders, after he suffered a stroke. I typed, he dictated the last four chapters. It was a slow process because his speech was affected. He knew exactly what he wanted to say, but it didn’t always come out that way. That gave us a few laughs along the way! 

Yes, I loved featuring your father and his novel on this blog. And I enjoyed reading his story. If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
A horse – they are poetry in motion, which I am not!

What is your favorite food?
Mom’s apple pie, still warm from the oven. It’s a tradition in our family.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
Dealing with the day-to-day interruptions of life. Some were major interruptions, like when my father became ill. Others just small inconveniences. I think it’s about setting priorities. For me, it’s making a list the night before of the things I need to do the next day. Seeking God in the morning. Knowing my faith and family come first. And then being diligent in sitting at the desk and writing.

Tell us about the featured book.
A Place in His Heart is a historical romance based on the lives of my ninth great-grandparents. Set in the 1600’s, the story begins in England, before they cross the pond. This is the first of a three book series, The Southold Chronicles, which find the Hortons on Long Island. Barnabas is a Puritan, a baker and a widower of two young sons. He grieves deeply for the loss of his wife, but knows he must find a mother for his two little boys. Mary is a young Anglican maiden, on the verge of being forced into an arranged marriage with Robert. She longs for love and a family, but she knows she will not find it with him. They are two tender hearts, who take a leap of faith and wed, cross an ocean and work together to establish a new home—and a legacy—but will she ever find the secret places of her husband’s broken heart?

Please give us the first page of the book.
October 21, 1630
London, England
Wooden ships languished in the Thames, lolling to and fro, like oxen taking a mud bath. The murky water lapped at the blackened oak as Papa’s words washed over her once more.

Mary Langton leaned over the crumbled stone wall and buried her face in her arms. How long she wept she could only guess. Someone moved beside her, but she could not bear to look—could not bear to face anyone. She turned her tearstained face eastward to the great port.

After an eternity, she pressed a handkerchief to her reddened nose and cast a sideward glance. “Papa.” She straightened and turned from him. What use would a discussion be?

Her sister approached and hope rose in her heart. An ally, perhaps? No, Lizzie stepped aside, apology evident in her eyes.

Papa’s voice was strained, with a sadness she’d not heard since her mother had died. “You shall come to know that I am right, my girl. You might not agree with me today, but you shall see.”

“You are wrong about that . . .”

How can readers find you on the Internet?
Also look for me at Pinterest, Google+ and Goodreads!

Thank you so much, Lena, for inviting me for this interview! It’s been fun!

Rebecca is hosting a Giveaway worth over $300.00 in prizes. There will be 8 winners. The giveaway is hosted by Rafflecopter.

Read a chapter excerpt: Visit here
Like Rebecca on Facebook
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Add Rebecca to your circles on Google+
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Subscribe to Rebecca’s Blog and/or Newsletter

It is my pleasure and great blessing to host you, Rebecca. Please contact me to schedule the other books in your series on this blog.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
A Place in His Heart - Christianbook,com
Place in His Heart, A: A Novel (The Southold Chronicles) - Amazon
Place in His Heart, A (The Southold Chronicles Book #1): A Novel - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:


Anonymous said...

Great interview and heartwarming how you helped your dad finish his book as well! I live in MS! Shelia Hall

Diana Gardner said...

Portsmouth, VA

Connie said...

I am so excited to read this book!
Hillsboro, KY

Sylvia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rachel said...

i sure enjoyed this interview I'm in Toronto, Canada :)

I am half-way through the book and feel like I am being given a special glimpse into the author's family history

Melanie Backus said...

I love the title of this book and I think it would be a great read. Thank you Lena for a wonderful interview and giveaway.

Melanie Backus, TX

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Thank you Shelia - it was such a privilege to help him!! Sylvia - I thought my publisher did a great job on the cover, too! and love that you like the time period! I loved researching it and I think it is a fascinating time! Thanks Rachel, Melanie and Connie! I appreciate your interest and comments so much!

Britney Adams said...

I can't wait to read this special story! Thank you for sharing this lovely interview.

Britney Adams, TX

Caryl McAdoo said...

I'm so excited for Rebecca's debut novel! I can't wait to get my hands on it :) Thank you, Lena for the great interview :) BLESSINGS to you both!

Caryl McAdoo said...

And I really love your title, too, Rebecca :) I forgot to say that.

Mary Preston said...

I love that you are writing from your family's history.

Mary P


Vera Godley said...

I would love to read your book, Rebecca. The title is sweet and speaks of a lovely read. BTW, my youngest daughter is also a Rebecca. Lovely name. :)

I'm in the middle of North Carolina which is also a beautiful place to live.

Amy C said...

Lovely interview! This book sounds fascinating to me!
Amy C

Patty said...

So neat that Rebecca is writing about her own ancestors!

Patty in SC

A Cooking Bookworm said...

I love when authors use their own family history to write a story! I can't wait to read this one!

Binghamton, NY

mybabyblessings AT gmail DOT com

Cyndi said...

Great interview! You've definitely peaked my interest! :-) I love historical fiction and the fact that she used her own family adds to the appeal! Thanks for the giveaway!

Cyndi in AL

Debbie Rhoades said...

Rebecca sent me! This sounds like a wonderful book!, I live in Oklahoma.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great book!
thanks for the giveaway
Sydney Harries GA

Sharon wiseman said...

Hi, my name is Sharon, I live in Macomb, Illinois and I love to read books in the genre of Christian fiction/nonfiction, historical fiction, and some contemporary romance/fiction

sm said...

I would love to win and read, A PLACE IN HIS HEART! I enjoyed reading your interview and very impressed that you dictated your father's last book for him. How amazing is that?! sharon, CA wileygreen1(at)yahoo(dot)com

kam110476 said...

Oooh I have got to find out what's going on here! I'm excited to read this- thanks for the chance to win a cop!
Kristen in OK
kam110476 at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed about rebecca and would love a chance to win her book. Thanks. Maxie
I am from Texas. mac262(at)me(dot)com

Karen G. said...

Sounds like a great book! Would love a chance to win a copy.

Karen G., NY

Jorie said...

Hallo, Hallo Ms. Dooley!

I always love reading a lovely spun historical fiction, especially one that is set inside of an era that I do not oft get to visit! I love the fact this dips into the 17th Century, and is based on the writer's actual ancestral past! This is interesting to me because the more I learn about my own family's history, the more I am finding story ideas alight inside my own writer's heart! :)

Thus, I am tossing my hat into the mix for the bookaway! Which I am always thankful you offer on your blog! (FL)

Sharon Richmond Bryant said...

Enter me!!
Sharon Richmond Bryant

candidkerry said...

What a fun interview! I've heard great things about A Place in His Heart and would love the chance to win a copy. Thank you!

Oh - I'm from Tampa, FL! :)


rubynreba said...

Looks like a great debut novel. Congratulations to you!
Beth from Iowa