Would You Rather with Karen Witemeyer!

One of my all-time favorite authors is with us today! Karen Witemeyer! If you enjoy historical romance, Karen should be one of your must-read authors! I had the pleasure of meeting Karen at ACFW last year and she’s as kind as you might imagine. She didn’t even run from me when I gushed on and on about her books. 🙂 I also had the pleasure of reading Karen’s newest book, Full Steam Ahead! You can read my review on GOODREADS! 
Here’s a peek at the book and then we’re going to play a game with Karen, her heroine Nicole, and her hero Darius!
When Nicole Renard returns home to Galveston from an eastern finishing school, she’s stunned to find her father in ill health. Though she loves him, he’s only ever focused on what she’s not. Not male. Not married. Not able to run their family business, Renard Shipping.

Vowing to secure a suitable marriage partner, Nicole sets out with the Renard family’s greatest treasure: a dagger personally gifted to Nicole’s father by the pirate Jean Lafitte. Many believe the legend that the dagger is the source of all Renard Shipping’s good fortune, though Nicole is sure her father’s work ethic and honorable business practices are the keys to their success. Before she can board the steamer to New Orleans, Nicole finds her father’s rivals–the Jenkins brothers–on either side of the gangplank, ready to grab her and steal the dagger. Quickly, she decides to instead travel north, to Liberty, Texas, where she can decide what to do next.

Darius Thornton needs a secretary–someone to help him get his notes in order. Ever since the boiler explosion aboard the Louisiana, Darius has been a man obsessed. He will do anything to stop even one more steamship disaster. The pretty young socialite who applies for the job baffles him with her knowledge of mathematics and steamships. He decides to take a risk and hire her, but he’s determined her attractive face and fancy clothes won’t distract him from his important research.

The job offer comes at exactly the right time for Nicole. With what Darius is paying her, she’ll be able to afford passage to New Orleans in mere weeks. But Mr. Thornton is so reclusive, so distant, so unusual. He can create complex scientific equations but can’t remember to comb his hair. And his experiments are growing more and more dangerous. Still, there are undeniable sparks of attraction between them. But Nicole is leaving soon, and if she marries, it must be to a man who can manage a shipping empire. Darius certainly doesn’t fit that description. And the Jenkins brothers have not given up on kidnapping Nicole and seizing the Lafitte dagger for themselves.


Would You Rather…
…go way back in time and meet your ancestors or
go way into the future and meet your great grandchildren?
Karen: As much as I
love imagining life in the past, I would actually pick meeting my great
grandchildren. I would love to see how the legacy of faith we’ve worked to
instill in our children has trickled down through the generations. And it would
be fun to see what kind of grandparents my kids turned out to be. Wonder if any
of my books would still be around?
Nicole: Back in
time. I’d love to be in the pirate colony Campeche
when my grandfather, Henri Renard, took the bullet meant for Jean Lafitte. That
pivotal moment shaped my family’s history for generations.
Darius: Future. I’d
love to see all the mechanical advancements that take place in the shipping
industry. Maybe we’ll finally find a way to power our ships without those
blasted boilers.
…have a rewind button in your life or a pause
button in your life?
Karen: Pause – I’m
in constant need of more time. More time to write, more time to spend with my
family, more time to just relax. A pause button sounds heavenly.
Nicole: Pause – With
my father’s illness, I want to savor each moment I have left with him.
Darius: Rewind – I’d
give anything to go back to November 15, 1849 and warn the captain of the Louisiana to get his passengers and crew
to safety. I’ll always regret that I couldn’t do more to save those who lost
their lives that day.
…be a thief or a beggar?
Karen: Hmm – that’s
a hard one. I guess I would have to choose beggar. Swallowing my pride would be
excruciating, but it would be better than forfeiting my moral code.
Nicole: With all the
years I played pirate on the beaches of Galveston with Tommy Ackerman, I’d have
to say thief, but only if the situation were dire enough to justify such
action. For instance . . . if one needed to protect her family from certain
harm. Hypothetically speaking, of course.
Darius: Thief – when
it comes to providing for my family, I’ll do whatever it takes, go to any
length to see that they are safe. Thankfully, with my family owning King Star
Shipping, the likelihood of facing this dilemma is slim.
…reduce hours of sleep needed to 5 or need 10
hours of sleep, but you get to control your dreams every night?
Karen: If I could be
as fully rested after 5 hours as I am after 10, I would definitely choose the
5. Just think what I could accomplish with those extra hours!
Nicole: Between keeping
the accounts for Renard Shipping, watching over Jacob, and helping my mother
tend my father, I could use all the extra hours I could get. I’ll take the 5.

Darius: After being
tormented by nightmares for months, the thought of controlling my dreams is an
enticement that is hard to resist. Yet after meeting Nicole, my dreams are much
less troubling, and I really can’t afford to waste 10 hours of every 24 in
sleep. People are dying due to malfunctioning boilers. Sacrificing my comfort
to continue my research is a small price to pay.
Choose one or all and answer in the comments below! 

Thank you, Karen, for hanging out today!

Must Read Monday: Sunburn, Cupcakes, and Good Reads

Well, I hope you all had a great weekend. We spent most of it at the pool. I can’t seem to get my sunblock on correctly and have odd shaped burns in random places on my body.

I told my husband I was going to have to go to the tanning bed to even out the pasty white places to the golden areas (and the cherry red burns of course). He joked I’d probably be the only one in a tanning bed wearing sunscreen.
He might be right.
I ate a German Chocolate Cupcake from one of those fancy cupcake bakeries. Edible glitter, German chocolate filling and a mound of chocolate icing. About 5,000 calories later, I thought I might be sick. Oh but that one moment! And it was a moment indeed.

Okay, so here’s a couple of books I’ve read lately.

Too Close to Home by Lynette Eason

“Samantha Cash is the FBI’s secret weapon. Her methods are invisible, and she never stops til the case is closed. When missing teens begin turning up dead in a small Southern town, Samantha is assigned to help local Detective Connor Wolfe find the killer. And he has two problems with that. There’s her faith—in God and herself. And then there’s the fact that she looks exactly like his late wife. As they get close to an answer, the case becomes personal. The killer seems to be taking an interest in Connor’s sixteen-year-old daughter, who thinks her dad is getting way too protective. Can’t a girl just have some fun?”

My Opinion

I liked this book. It’s the first book I’ve read by Lynette Eason. I figured out early on why the killer was doing it, but wasn’t sure who it was until about 75% in. Then I didn’t guess the “boss” until it was almost over. I liked the characters and the romance that blossomed.

Both characters struggled with their faith. I think the author made their spiritual joureneys realistic and touching.

I took a keen interest in the sister and want to read the next book that’s about her. I think it will be even better!

3 out of 5 stars

A Tailor-Made Bride by Karen Witemeyer
2011 RITA® Finalist for Best First Book

“When a dressmaker who values beauty tangles with a liveryman who condemns vanity, the sparks begin to fly!

Jericho “J.T.” Tucker wants nothing to do with the new dressmaker in Coventry, Texas. He’s all too familiar with her kind–shallow women more devoted to fashion than true beauty. Yet, except for her well-tailored clothes, this seamstress is not at all what he expected.

Hannah Richards is confounded by the man who runs the livery. The unsmiling fellow riles her with his arrogant assumptions and gruff manner, while at the same time stirring her heart with unexpected acts of kindness. Which side of Jericho Tucker reflects the real man?
When Hannah decides to help Jericho’s sister catch a beau–leading to consequences neither could have foreseen–will Jericho and Hannah find a way to bridge the gap between them?”

My Opinion

I didn’t know what to expect when I started this book. I don’t often read historicals, but lately I’ve read several and I’m coming to realize, I enjoy most of them. I happen to like a lot of romantic tension and some spice, not all inspirational historicals meet my expectations.

This one did.

I fell in love with J.T. and Hannah immediately. I loved their banter, internal conflicts, and wit.  I felt like I was living in this time period and it was rather fun to spend a few hours, since I read it in two sittings, with these characters.

I predicted the villain, but I’m not sure that she was trying to conceal it. That didn’t matter to me, though, because I just loved everything else. Especially the romance. No wonder she won a RITA for first book.

I also think it’s a great parallel of the Proverbs 31 woman and a healthy look at beauty and nice things.

4 out of 5 stars

So have you read a book lately that you were unsure of, then turned out to be a pleasant surprise?


Okay then…what’d you do this weekend?