Friday, February 12, 2016

KEEPER OF THE STARS - Robin Lee Hatcher - One Free Book, Plus More

Dear Readers, I first met Robin at the American Christian Romance Writers (which later became American Christian Fiction Writers) second national conference in 2002. That’s when I started reading her books, and I love them. They all have living, breathing characters who tug on your heartstrings. The plotlines are always interesting which makes the book hard to put down. I believe you’ll love her writing, too.

BIO: A native Idahoan, award-winning and bestselling author Robin Lee Hatcher is known for her heartwarming and emotionally charged stories of faith, courage, and love (over 70 books). After fifteen years writing for the general fiction market and a change in her own heart, Robin began to write stories that included her Christian faith. Winner of the Christy, the RITA, the Carol, the Inspirational Reader’s Choice, and many other awards, she is also a recipient of the prestigious RWA Lifetime Achievement Award. Robin enjoys being with her family, spending time in the beautiful Idaho outdoors, reading books that make her cry, and watching romantic movies.
Learn more about Robin and her books on her web site.

Welcome back, Robin. How did this book come about?
Some books come to an author in a dramatic way. Keeper of the Stars was not one of those books. It began first with the desire to set a Kings Meadow story in a different season than summer, which I’d already done several times. Since Keeper of the Stars was set to release in the winter, I decided the story would take place in the winter as well. Which in the mountains of Idaho means lots of snow.

Then I envisioned a scene in a cemetery, and I began asking the what if questions. Who died? Who were the mourners? From there, the story began to reveal itself to me.

I’m a seat-of-the-pants writer. Once I have an opening scene and get to know my characters, I sit down and write, returning to the computer each day to see what happens next.

I’m a lot like that, but I usually have a timeline in mind after the first chapter. Tell us about the book’s cover and what makes it unique.
I found the photograph of this couple in the snow on a photo site I use. It became my inspiration for Penny and Trevor as I wrote Keeper of the Stars. When I turned in my book, I sent the photo to the publisher as an example of my hero and heroine. I was thrilled when they were able to license it to use for the cover art. It’s definitely one of my favorite covers. The scene. The colors. And the joy and love expressed by the couple.

Please explain and differentiate between what’s fact and fiction in the book.
Kings Meadow is a fictional town in the mountains of Idaho, but I know exactly where it is and it’s surrounded by reality. My characters always become “real” people to me, but Keeper of the Stars is definitely fiction.

How much research did you have to do for this book?
Every book involves on-going research of one kind or another. Sometimes it is intense, but that wasn’t the case for Keeper of the Stars. This book included research on libraries, cow-calf operations, public works, drums, etc.

What inspired and surprised you while you were writing the book?
I’m always surprised by the way a story unfolds, and Keeper of the Stars was no exception. I’m always surprised by the lessons God teaches me, sometimes in advance of a story, sometimes as I write. And that is my inspiration while I’m writing as well.

What do you hope the reader takes away from the story?
I always hope for two things: That the reader will close the book with a sigh of satisfaction, and that they will wish they could spend more time with those characters, even though the story has reached its conclusion.

What is the next project you’re working on?
I am hard at work on a story set in the wine/fruit orchard country of southwestern Idaho in a small town near the Snake River, not far from the Oregon border. My hero is an organic farmer and part-time sheriff's deputy. My heroine is a former bad girl with a tragic family background who is trying to make a better life for herself and her daughter. Sparks are going to fly.

They always do. I’ll be looking forward to that book, too. What do you do when you have to get away from the story for a while?
I love to read, to watch movies, to knit, and to draw or color.

When I was in rehab for my knee-replacement surgery last August, I first started the new coloring for adults coloring books. I love it. Please give us the first page of the book.
An unusually cold wind cut through the Kings Meadow Cemetery on the day they laid Penny’s brother, Bradley Evan Cartwright, to rest. It felt as if it cut through her heart as well, slicing her in two. She would never again see her little brother’s sweet smile. She would never again hear him laugh. She would never again have to be on the alert for one of his practical jokes.

And I’ll never get to tell him I’m sorry for the things I said in anger.

Seated beside her in the front row of mourners, her dad put his arm around her shoulders and drew her close to his side. It was meant to be a comforting gesture, but it was point- less for him to try. She couldn’t be comforted. Not for this.

Reverend Tom Butler ended his graveside prayer with a soft, “Amen.” Then he walked over to Penny and her dad, his face schooled into a sympathetic expression, his eyes filled with kindness. “I am so very sorry, Rodney,” he said as he took hold of her dad’s right hand between both of his own.

Her dad nodded in silence.

Tom repeated his words of condolence to Penny. Like her father, she nodded, her throat too tight to squeeze out a reply.

Chet Leonard, his wife, and sons were next. Leaning down, Chet said, “If I can do anything . . . If you ever need to talk or just be with someone who understands what it means to lose a son . . .” He let his voice trail into silence.

Charlie Regal, Brad’s best friend since first grade, came close, looked about to speak, and then shook his head as he turned to walk away.

More people came forward. A few shed tears as they whispered words that Penny no longer heard.

We have to know what comes next. How can readers find you on the Internet?

From my website, they can connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and YouTube.

Robin has a special giveaway besides the book we usually give away on this blog:

Here's the link to the giveaway:

Thank you, Robin, for sharing this new book with us.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Keeper of the Stars  -
Keeper of the Stars (A King's Meadow Romance) - Amazon
Keeper of the Stars (A King's Meadow Romance Book 3) - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. 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:


Linda Kish said...

I would love to know what comes next. I lost my sister when she was 32; 36 years ago next month. It was so hard. I still miss her. It would have been such fun to raise our families together and grow old together.

Linda in CA

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Connie Porter Saunders said...

This first page is very powerful and I look forward to learning more. Thank you for sharing.
Connie from KY

Alison said...

Thanks for sharing the interview. I love hearing behind the scenes!

Love, Alison in PA

alison (dot) louise (at) gmail (dot) com

Mary Preston said...

This does sound wonderful thank you.

Mary P


Terrill R. said...

I live in the Pacific Northwest and find that Idaho is such an amazing setting for hometown romance books. I'm looking forward to this conclusion to the King's Meadow series.

Terrill - WA

Anonymous said...

angela in ky would love to win

Melody said...

Oh, how sad. Hope to get my hands on this story!

From Donna, TX

EJ said...

Love Robin's books & looking forward to reading "Keeper of the Stars". Elaine from Wisconsin

Deanna Stevens said...

I would enjoy reading this! I do like Robin's books :)
Dee from NEBR

Beth Gillihan said...

Love the cover! I enjoy reading Robin's books. Thanks for the chance to win!

Beth in Montana

BJM said...

That's a dramatic opening. I'd love to know the back story and what happens next.


Loraine Nunley said...

I really like the depth of character that Robin writes in her books. I am looking forward to reading her latest. Thanks for the interview and giveaway!

Loraine in TX

kim hansen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kim hansen said...

Love the cover and enjoy her books. North Platte Nebraska

sm said...

Definitely a beautiful cover! I don't like living in snow but it sure is pretty to look at!
Sounds like a great book and enjoyed reading how you came up with the story. sm CA wileygreen1(at)yahoo(dot)com

Anonymous said...

I love this cover and the book sounds wonderful. I'd love to win a copy. Thanks for the fun interview and the chance to win.
Winnie T from Utah

Patty said...

I've not read any of Robin's Kings Meadow books, but have loved her other books that I have read in the past.

Patty in SC

Melissa Henderson said...

I love how Robin says she is a "seat of the pants" writer and once she starts writing, she goes back everyday to see what the characters are doing. That is so awesome! This books looks great!

apple blossom said...

I too love this book cover. thanks for the chance to win a copy of this book
live in ND

Abigail Mitchell said...

Love Robin's books! Please enter me.
Blanch NC

Sharon Richmond Bryant said...

Enter me Love your books!!!
Conway, SC.

Melanie Backus said...

Robin Lee of the best! Great cover for a great book!

Melanie Backus, Texas

Pam said...

I have loved Robin Lee Hatcher's books since I picked up my first one "way back when." I'm looking forward to reading this third King's Meadow book. Would love to win!

Pam in OH

rubynreba said...

I love the song and I know I will love this book too!
Beth from IA

Jackie Tessnair said...

I would love to win and read this book.I love all Robin's books.Thanks for the chance.Jackie from.N.C.

Nancy M said...

What a heartbreaking beginning. Definitely would like to read what happens. From KY.

Merry said...

I've been loving moments to color also! Keeper of the Stars sounds wonderful.
Merry in MN