Please welcome our guest today, Ann Montclair. Ann is the author of Good Things Come in Tall Packages. I started things off with Ann Montclair as I do with many of our guest authors by asking some questions. Since I’d read a lot about ethnic diversity and diversity of sexual orientation on blogs around the time I was booking Ann it was a hot topic on my mind so I asked Ann to share her thoughts on racial diversity. Here’s what she had to say…
Romance is about finding love, and in the real world, love comes in all shapes, sizes, and colors, and often when and where one least expects to find it.
I didn’t set out to write an interracial romance or to tout diversity. I believe in it, but it wasn’t my aim. Just like in real life, love happens. Joe and Lucy appeared, met, and became interested in one another in my last book One Wet Summer.
Dr. Joe Connors, a tall, sexy, compassionate healer is Maura Field’s best friend. She’s my heroine in One Wet Summer. Joe is black, and Maura is white, but their skin color has nothing to do with their friendship. Joe is a wonderful man, and Maura and he have loads in common—they love family, food, and sports. Lucy Alcott is Ben Driscoll’s lawyer. He’s the hero in One Wet Summer. Lucy’s a shark in the courtroom and a dazzling southern belle with a proclivity for men, lots of men.
One night she leaves Ben at his hotel’s bar and goes to trawl for eligibles at the Savannah Hyatt. Lucy knows there’s a medical convention in town, and she wants some action. Joe had just returned from taking Maura to dinner, and while I’m writing a great chapter for Maura and Ben, Joe and Lucy are in the background meeting and falling for one another. Writers know how this happens. Even when a novelist has a tightly plotted story, characters do things, demand things, and writers follow along. That’s when magic happens.
When I end One Wet Summer, I’m as surprised as my reader that Maura and Ben’s friends have found one another. Joe and Lucy met off the pages of One Wet Summer, and then by the conclusion of Ben and Maura’s story, asked for their own story. I complied and wrote Good Things Come in Tall Packages.
In Good Things Come in Tall Packages, race is only one of the differences between Joe and Lucy. The idea of racism provides a plot point, but it isn’t the main device. Good Things is about how opposites can fall in love, and how love is not always an ideal. Compromise, middle ground, is where true love lives. Anyone who’s had a long term relationship knows how important give and take is to any successful union. Joe and Lucy have to learn that secret in their novel.
Oh, and readers might want to know Lucy’s brother Thomas is gay and is planning to marry his partner, Liam; so I’ve got two homosexual minor characters, too. I’m toying with the idea of writing Thomas and Liam’s romance next.
If readers want a story with unique characterizations reflecting a twenty-first century world, I think they’ll enjoy Good Things Come in Tall Packages. I loved writing the story, and I believe a writer’s passion is the most essential element for a great read.
Thanks for hosting me.
Good Things Come In Tall Packages
by Ann Montclair
Dr. Joe Connors and socialite lawyer Lucy Alcott come from two different worlds, two very different cultures. But will those differences keep them apart when their attraction is too strong to be denied?
When socialite Savannah attorney Lucy Alcott entered the Hyatt looking for fun, martinis, and hot sex, the last thing she expected to find was Dr. Joe Connors. Joe is Lucy’s opposite in every way: he’s dark, she’s pale; he’s tall and reserved, she’s tiny and vivacious; he wears his compassion and deep spirituality on his sleeve, she wears designer bags and clothes. That night at the Hyatt Lucy found herself not in the arms of a casual encounter but reaching out to a man who challenged the walls she had built around her heart—and when he gave her his number, Lucy knew Joe deserved a woman as warm and tender as he was. So she threw his number away. When an unexpected meeting six months later brings them together again, will Joe overcome Lucy’s fear of losing her heart, or are their two very different worlds destined to keep them apart forever?
An Excerpt From Good Things Come In Tall Packages
The doors whooshed open, and Joe swept his arm out in front of him, indicating Lucy should precede him into the elevator. She inclined her head to acknowledge his chivalry. Inside the elevator, the quiet assaulted her senses. She leaned against the shiny walnut wall, and a sigh of relief escaped her lungs.
“And the world is still,” Joe murmured. “Let me remove your shoes.”
Lucy lifted her left foot, and Joe knelt before her and took off the pump. She shrunk five inches before raising her other foot, so Joe could squeeze it from the rich, red leather.
“Ah,” she whispered in relief, “that feels a lot better.”
He stayed bent on his knee as if he were about to propose and rubbed the ball of first one tired foot and then the other. Lucy wasn’t wearing stockings, and the firm massaging motion he applied to her foot felt like a little bit of heaven. If she believed in such a place.
Struck by the juxtaposition of her white foot in his black hands, enamored by the lightness of his palms as they stroked the pink soles of her feet, she noted together they created a rainbow—a cascade of color, vibrant and beautiful to her eye.
“Thank you, Joe. You’re hired.”
He laughed in his low, bass voice, and the combination of his masterful administrations on her feet and the melody of his jazzy chuckle, proved to be a potent formula. A quiver ran through her body.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
I grew up sneak-reading all my mom’s steamy romance novels. She kept them high on a shelf in her closet and warned, “You better not read those…” Of course, I read them. And now I write them! I strive to take readers on a fun, emotionally charged, and highly sensual ride to happily ever after. Available now: THE BILLIONAIRE’S BAUBLE (Soul Mate Publishing 2011), ONE WET SUMMER (Musa Publishing 2012), and GOOD THINGS COME IN TALL PACKAGES (Musa Publishing 2012). Next up: LADY IN DEED, my debut novel in historical romance set in Tudor England (Musa Publishing Winter 2012).
I am a member of the Romance Writers of America (RWA) and a community college English professor. I live in the Finger Lakes region of New York with my sexy hero and our teenage son. Our grown daughter lives in Los Angeles, California–my hometown.
Thanks for learning a little about me. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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