Hope and Honor
by Marilee Brothers
GENRE: Romantic suspense with a touch of fantasy
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Life is becoming more complicated for soul reader Honor Melanie “Mel” Sullivan. Her boss needs help with his rebellious teen daughter who believes rules are made to be broken and Mel’s current boyfriend, Homeland Security agent Mick Petrov, is becoming an absentee lover, dropping hints about a major decision he faces. To make it worse, Mel’s ex, 3 Peaks detective “Billy the Kid” McCarty wants her back. And those aren’t the only challenges. When a paramilitary group called New Dawn wants her soul-reading skills, Mel meets five-year-old twins who steal her heart. Unwilling to abandon the motherless children, she strikes a deal with the compound’s charismatic leader. Drawn deeper and deeper into New Dawn’s twisted agenda, Mel must figure out a way to save the twins and herself before it’s too late.
Q & A with Marilee Brothers
What was the hardest part of writing this book?
I knew this was the last book in the series and wanted Mel to end up with the right guy. Since two men were vying for her affection, I thought long and hard about which one would suit her best. There was also the issue of trust. Mel’s heart was broken in the second book, Allegiance, and at the beginning of Hope and Honor, she was in protective mode. Finally, it was her unique ability to read souls that convinced her she was truly loved. Wouldn’t it be nice if we all had that ability?
What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
While I was in the planning stages for Hope and Honor, I decided it would have a my twin theme. Mel’s real name is Honor Melanie Sullivan. Her twin sister, Hope, died at age five. I opted to include a set of twins, a boy and girl, who would steal Mel’s heart and was very satisfied with the ending. I believe it tied the theme together.
What inspires you?
I’m inspired every day by people who love to read and write books. I’m especially grateful to my loyal readers who let me know what I do matters to them. Although I’m far from wealthy, I feel richly blessed to have these people in my life.
What do your plans for future projects include?
I’ve just begun work on a golf course mystery where a man is found dead on a hole called A Woman Scorned. Why the name? Each and every hole on the Fairway to Heaven golf course has a name. A Woman scorned (also the title of the book) is thusly named because it has no ladies’ tee box. It’s also possible there may be another meaning. Stay tuned.
Do you ever get writer’s Block? Any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?
It is my belief that the term writers’ block is fear based. As writers, we ask ourselves, “What if I can’t come up with a plot? Maybe my writing is crap. Should I believe that bad review and give it up?” Yes, writers are basically insecure creatures. This probably sounds egotistical, but when I think I don’t know how to write, I pick up one of my previous books and read a couple of chapters. Usually, I end up thinking, “Hey, maybe I can write after all.” If this doesn’t work, I set the timer for 30 minutes and make myself write something, anything. That usually gets me going.
My peripheral vision catches sight of a sudden movement. I walk down the steps and turn right until I reach the edge of the building. I peek around the corner and see a little girl pressed againstthe rough siding. Her dark hair is braided. Her jeans and jacket are too big and look like boy clothes. Her gaze is fixed on the ground. Her thumb is in her mouth. She’s clutching a stuffed rabbit.
I take a step toward her and smile. “Hi. Are you waiting for your dad?”
I take a step closer, trying not to spook her. “I’m Mel. What’s your name?”
Without removing her thumb, she mumbles something unintelligible. I take a step close and squat down until we’re eye level.
“I didn’t quite get your name. Maybe if you take your thumb out of your mouth it will work better.”
She lifts her head and I’m looking into eyes identical to those of the little blond boy. Bright and blue. My heart breaks when I look into her soul. Streaked with pale blue accents, it’s a soft shade of pink and bisected with a jagged black line. This little girl has experienced severe trauma.
“I think I saw your dad and brother go into the hall. Am I right?”
She nods. The thumb comes out of her mouth. “Papa and Gunner.”
“Can you tell me your name again, sweetie?”
“Do people call you Kim?”
She shakes her head. “Nope. People call me Kimber, ‘cause that’s my name.”
“Got it,” I say. “How about you keep me company until the meeting is over. I’ve got nobody to talk to and I’m lonesome. We could go sit on the stairs and wait together.”
“Not there. No females. We can sit on the bench, though.”
She takes my hand and leads me to a rickety bench a few yards in front of the porch railing. We sit in companionable silence for a few minutes. I’m dying to know more about Kimber, but don’t want to bombard her with questions.
“This is Blossom Bunny,” she offers, thrusting the stuffed rabbit in front of my face.
Blossom Bunny is not attractive. Her fur is dull gray and splotchy. Her long, floppy ears droop down to her skinny legs. Black, beady eyes peer straight ahead atop a little pink nose.
“Very nice,” I lie.
“I love Blossom Bunny. She has zippers in her ears. I keep important stuff there.”
She lays the bunny across her lap, lifts one of the floppy ears and points out the zipper.
“Very cool. It’s good to have a place to keep important stuff.”
She nods solemnly, unzips one of the ears and pulls out stubby pencil, a little rubber ball and a hair ribbon. Seeing her sparse array of treasures makes me sad.
Long book, lots to read to understand what is going on. You will have to read the story to weave in and out of her adventure, well writen and a pleasure to read it.
Honor Melanie is a soul reader and her life is becoming a tad harder then she wanted. Her boss needs help with his daughter who believes rules are made to be broken , her current boy friend Mick is becoming an absentee lover, and to make things more interesting her ex wants her back, and that is not all of it by far.
A paramilitary group called New Dawn wants her soul-reading skills, Mel meets five-year-old twins who steal her heart. Unwilling to abandon the motherless children, she strikes a deal with the compound’s charismatic leader. Drawn deeper and deeper into New Dawn’s twisted agenda, Mel must figure out a way to save the twins and herself before it's too late.
I received a free copy for my honest review!
Review by Jara
Marilee Brothers is a former teacher, coach, counselor and the author of ten books. Marilee and her husband are the parents of three grown sons and live in central Washington State. After writing six young adult books, Marilee is once again writing romantic suspense for the adult market. She loves hearing from people who have read her books. Feel free to contact her at http://www.marileebrothers.com and sign up for her newsletter The Obsessive Page Turner.
Her author page on Facebook is: www.facebook.com/marilee.author and she occasionally tweets @MarileeB. Check out Marilee’s Amazon page here: http://www.amazon.com/Marilee-Brothers/e/B003RL7EWQ/
Marilee’s blog is Book Blather, http://bookblatherblog.blogspot.com where she features aspiring and published authors as well as some tidbits of her own.
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