What to Read Wednesday & review

02 May

Happy Wednesday and thank you for taking the time to join me for another What To Read Wednesday.  I have a huge HUGE treat for you today.  I have a wonderful friend of mine joining us with her debut release…and she’s also doing a giveaway!  All you have to do to win a copy of Teresa Blue’s debut novella from THE WILD ROSE PRESS is comment and leave your email address.  Yep, that easy.

Before we get started I wanted to share my short review of Teresa’s novella NIGHT BIRD…then we’ll get on with the interview:

My review

I highly recommend this novella.  I don’t like to give away too much in any review I write, and I won’t make an exception here, but I can tell you that you will not be disappointed with this read!

From the very first paragraph I was invested in this story.  I was drawn into the mood and the characters.  Emma is the perfect heroine for this story and Travis is not only sexy and manly as the hero, but tender and vulnerable at the same time.

Teresa Blue has a wonderful way of weaving her words together to bring her characters to life and put the reader right into the scene.  Each word she used to describe what was happening was so well chosen, it made everything so crisp and easy to visualize.  Top it off with Emma’s emotion and caring attitude to her past, her present and her future and I was a goner.  I didn’t put this story down until I reached the end.

Beautifully written with twists and turns I didn’t expect, I loved following along with Emma and Travis as they revealed themselves to each other…and the story was revealed to the reader.  There were several times I was caught by surprise and that’s a real treat when reading a story.

I’m not a professional reviewer, but if I were, I’d give this 2 thumbs up, 5 stars and lots of satisfied sighs!

Now, on with our interview 🙂

Hi Teresa, thank you for joining us!  Please share a little bit about yourself and your writing journey.

I’m thrilled to be here, Christine and will start right off with telling you how I started writing early in the 90’s with mostly poems and children’s stories. Then in 1999 I joined RWA and by early 2000 had completed my first novel. I returned home from a writer’s conference to a yard full of people and several fire trucks. My house was a pile of ash and everything I had ever written along with it. That set me back a year or two while I put a home together.

Oh Teresa, that’s scary.  I’m glad nobody was hurt.  I’m one of those people that deals with stress (and that would be a stressful situation) by indulging in good eats.  Naughty me.  So, tell us what’s in your fridge right now. lol

Right now, homemade cocoanut cream pie, leftover rotisserie chicken and marinating venison steaks.

YUM…now that all sounds good.  But I know you are one awesome cook!  Tell us one thing you hate, one thing you fear and one thing you love.

One thing I hate is how quick the morning hours fly by. I’m barely settled into a scene then glance and the clock and realize I need to get dressed. What’s my biggest fear? To loose my sight or the use of my fingers. My totally passion is reading those wonderful old bodice rippers. I absolutely love anything by Kathleen Woodiwiss or Johanna Lindsey.

I have a secret addiction to those old bodice rippers too…can’t explain it, but I just love to read them.  What genre or genres do you write?

My first novel was a historical but the second one I started more a light hearted contemporary that I wrote in long hand while living in the camper. I was naïve in thinking contemp. wouldn’t require any research. At the moment I’m writing contemporary, but I like to write paranormal and romantic suspense, too.

Tantalize us with a blurb from NIGHT BIRD.

Travis Howland washes up on the shores of Lost Isle and into the arms of an angel. Known as the Night Bird, Emma Samson dedicates her afterlife to a solitary existence on Lost Isle, easing the passage of the dying. When she finds Travis weak and desperate, she gives him the only gift she has—a few more days to settle his affairs before his death. Sorely lacking in faith, Travis lives life with no thought for the future. When his lovely rescuer claims he has died, he can’t believe it. He must warn his father that their ship was plundered by a greedy business partner, but only a leap of faith can save him. Together, Emma and Travis use his last few hours to avenge the traitorous deeds that torment him, and along the way discover that love can be found in any stage of life…even after death.

I truly loved this story!  Share with us your favorite sentence from your book.

Hard to chose just one. 🙂  “Tell me, exactly what has transpired these past few days to change me from a man to a…monster?”

Very intriguing sentence!  Love it.  What’s the most exciting part of writing?

The most exciting thing to me about writing is the opportunity to be anywhere in the world with people I adore. After all, I give them the physical as well as characteristic traits that please me, even my villains. And when they begin talking to me, it’s a writer’s rush.

How did you come up with the title NIGHT BIRD?

The title actually came from the song, Night Bird, by Eva Cassidy. A haunting melody, filled with beautiful lyrics about a woman who found a man down on his luck in New Orleans and she took him in and taught him how to fly.

Love that Teresa!  Share an excerpt with us please 🙂

A crashing wave knocked Emma off her feet and plunged her beneath the water, grains of sand biting her skin as the gushing tide tossed her upon the shore. She struggled to break the ocean’s grip, her sodden skirt throttling her ankles as she tried to stand. Another rushing wave pushed her to her knees. A heavy object slammed against her side and drove them both aground.

     A man.

     Foamy bubbles gathered in a small pool of water where his body lay indented in the sand. Her heart roared in her ears, drowning out the pounding surf. In the past, she’d witnessed countless felons jump ship rather than face the adversity of chains, starvation, and brutal prison beatings. Many saw the island’s wide cove as a passage to freedom and often died trying to swim across.

The dark shape lay unmoving beside her. After only a brief glance she knew he was different. He had strong, classic feature and a think robust body. She couldn’t squelch her curiosity. Who was this man? A ship’s captain, perhaps? Or a meager fisherman with a run of bad luck? Maybe he’d ignored the dangerous winds and threatening clouds, driven by the greed she’d seen in eyes of other men. Fishing boats of all sizes had been destroyed upon the deceptive coral reefs, led on by the tempestuous sea witch that lured them beyond the next horizon.

      Emma pushed aside the drenched charcoal locks covering the man’s eyes and revealed thick brows and a strong forehead. His cheeks bore stubbles of whiskers.

The white tailored shirt, although frayed and worn, was that of a whaleman sailor, its hem floating up to expose heavy, coarse trousers. Suddenly, his fingers caught the fabric of her bodice and gave the slightest tug to draw her near.

      “Help me,” he pleaded, his voice barely more than a whisper as his arm dropped to his side.

       Moisture blurred her vision at the helplessness she’d heard, the desperation that filled his eyes. She blinked back tears. How much longer must she witness death? Emma was unable to actually save life, but could offer a brief reprieve for the tormented lost one. Usually the men she encountered were the blackest of the lot: convicts, murderers, and thieves were among those needing her most.

         But this man’s appearance didn’t seem to be that of a weak or starved convict. Instead, his body looked firm, reasonably fit. Perhaps the made his living on the water. Lately, she’d witnessed many Yankee whalers drawn to the Pacific, all eager to fill their casks with valuable sperm oil.

     His breath came out weak and unsure as his chest labored and fell. A strong will to survive etched deep across his face and the vulnerable expression played on her heart. He was someone’s son, perhaps a father, but clearly a man unable to let go. With each painful gasp, his eyes pleaded, asking the impossible.

    But she knew…death was inescapable. It was the after life she hoped to change.  Already the icy water had stiffened his body, his breathing faltered. Emma measure each one his last. Even if she did manage to warm him, he would die of fever, the life-taking chill never leaving his body.

      He’d asked for her help…but was his need to survive strong enough to carry the burden to eternity?

    Precious seconds passed. The uneven rise and fall of his chest warned her it was nearly too late. Is she didn’t decide soon, he’d be left to face the judgment he’d earned in life without having the chance to reconcile whatever desperate burdens were holding him back.

     Emma lowered her head. No breath came from his lips, his eyes faded as death stole over him. Swiftly, she pressed her lips against his neck; a metallic taste filled her mouth when she pierced his skin. It took only seconds to exchange his blood with the substance flowing in her veins. The wind howled in protest and sprayed them with a mist of salt-drenched water while the waves crashed around them.

     It seemed forever and then…he moved.

     “My crewman. Where is my crew?” he whispered.

    Although his eyes shone with gratitude, would he still be grateful after learning the conditions of his survival?

Your excerpt was awesome…puts the reader right there!  Using only 5 words, describe Travis, your hero.

Travis is handsome, strong, loyal, courageous and persistent.

Now your heroine Emma.

Emma is a nurturer, tender-hearted, faithful, sincere and obstinate.

What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

The hardest part is getting into a new story. It takes me awhile to convince myself I’m not wasting my time and ignore that pesky gremlin whispering in my ear. My first drafts tend to be kind of skimpy.

The easiest?

I find the easiest part of writing to be dialogue, once my characters come together they never stop talking. Which is pure joy.

I like dialogue too!  I think it flows smooth when you really know your characters.  When is your favorite time to write, morning, afternoon, or nights?

In the morning, sitting down at the computer with my coffee and still in my pajamas. Once I get dressed it’s official I’ve got ‘other’ things to do and usually can’t switch back to the creative mode as easily.

I feel the same way.  What’s your current WIP?

I’m working on a contemporary romance, the second in a series that’s kind of been put on the back burner while I promote Night Bird. It’s proving to be a fun story and I’m anxious to get back to it.

Please share some writerly wisdom with any new authors out there or anyone just beginning their writing journey.

Take all the so-called rules you hear with a grain of salt. For everyone who says not to do it this way, they’ll be another who proves them wrong. Don’t be afraid to blaze your own trail; originality sells. And don’t sweat the small stuff. Cliché’ for a reason.

Great advice and so true.  When you first start out it’s so hard to know what to believe and what to go against the grain with.  Teresa, where can we find you and your debut release?  

Teresa Blue: author The Wild Rose Press  here’s the link to NIGHT BIRD on The Wild Rose Press Site & AMAZON

Visit me at my blog:

Friend me on Facebook: Tereasa Bellew, twitter: @teab123Blue, Goodreads

I’m so glad you took the time to visit!  And everyone, please remember, one lucky commenter is going to receive a copy of Teresa’s novella NIGHT BIRD!

Thank you so much for having me Christine! I love What To Read Wednesdays and it’s so exciting to be a guest.


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67 responses to “What to Read Wednesday & review

  1. Callie Hutton

    May 2, 2012 at 8:07 am

    Good interview, ladies. Christine, every time I come to your website, it looks different, lol. Have a great day.

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 8:31 am

      Thanks for coming by Callie!

      Don’t know what is different, I haven’t changed anything in a few months. LOL

  2. Tereasa Bellew

    May 2, 2012 at 8:25 am

    Thanks Callie! The dark chocolate here reminds me of soft, worn leather. So comfortable.

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 8:32 am

      LOL…just reminds me of chocolate!

      So glad to have you here Tereasa! Loved your novella!!!

      • Tereasa Bellew

        May 2, 2012 at 9:07 am

        Heeheee, you’re right, Christine. Give chocolate any day! And thanks so much for an awesome review!

  3. Nettle

    May 2, 2012 at 8:27 am

    Great interview ladies. I love reading the hardest parts too because that way when the same gremlim whispers in my ear I can think ‘oh all just part of the process’. Night Birds sounds wonderful, I’m looking forward to reading it. Good luck with it all!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 8:32 am

      Thanks for coming by….her novella sounds wonderful because it is. I couldn’t put it down!

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 9:08 am

      I spend most of my time looking for the ‘mute’ button so I can turn that little voice off! Glad you liked the excerpt, Nettie! Thanks!

  4. Kristina Knight

    May 2, 2012 at 9:19 am

    Great excerpt, Nettie…good luck with the book!

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 9:48 am

      Thanks Kristina! I hear you’ve got a new one coming up too! Wonderful!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 12:11 pm

      Thanks for coming by Kristi!

  5. Neecy Kelly

    May 2, 2012 at 9:23 am

    Hi Tereasa,
    Sorry about the house fire… I couldn’t imagine. As Christine said, thank goodness everyone was okay.
    I like your idea about the rules. I think that is half my problem… I think about breaking them so much that it hinders my writing (at least that’s my excuse today)
    Christine has told me about Night Bird and I’m looking forward to reading it!
    Great getting to know you,

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 9:47 am

      Awww, thanks Neecy! I know, for a long time I tried not to get trapped or stuck, just to have fun in the process. But the more we learn, the more we doubt ourselves. I’m promising myself that I won’t look back, but forge ahead!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 12:11 pm

      Glad you added NIGHT BIRD to your list Denice…it’s a great read 🙂

  6. sarahballance

    May 2, 2012 at 9:34 am

    Great review, great interview … great getting to know you, Tereasa. My goodness, the story about your house took the breath from my lungs. (So glad no one was hurt!) I, too, have trouble when I start a new story because that little voice nags me. Good to know I’m not alone (but I wish that voice was, LOL! In a dungeon somewhere. Hmph.)

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 9:52 am

      For my current WIP I’ve started writing it in long hand away from my desk. I’ll probably hate having to type it into a document, but at least I will have it written. It seems like once I’m at the pc, I’m drawn to the net and can’t focus on the story.I think it’d be great to have a sound proof dungeon and would use mine alot! LOL!

      • Tereasa Bellew

        May 2, 2012 at 9:53 am

        Hit the button too soon because I wanted to thank you Sara for commenting. ; )

      • ChristineWarner

        May 2, 2012 at 12:13 pm

        I think a lot of us have that problem Tere…I know I do…it’s a battle of wills at time.

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 12:12 pm

      Love that you came by Sarah…thank you 🙂

  7. stevenloweryauthor

    May 2, 2012 at 9:40 am

    Tereasa-I’m so excited for you! After your house fire 12 years ago, losing your 1st novel and all. You’ve made an Amazing recovery! Love your new book’s cover, beautiful Blue. Enjoyed the excerpt and story principals you presented about the after life… That’s one of my major interests. Good luck with this project and I want to give it a read. Oh-please save me a piece of that homemade pie (just freeze it!) and what time are you cooking those marinated venison steaks? Just kidding-of course…but I am a little hungry! steven

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 9:58 am

      I’m amazed too, because after the setback, I have completed four novels! And I’m trying to get into the habit of submitting them. I agree, the topic in Night Bird is very interesting and the best part of being a writer is that you get to decide. As for the pie…it’s great with milk while interviewing! Steaks should be ready at six, unless I get tied up on the pc. I hope you enjoy Night Bird!

      • ChristineWarner

        May 2, 2012 at 12:14 pm

        LOL…Tere, I hope you have enough steaks for all of us!

        And Steven, I can attest to how wonderful this story is….a short read, but that’s good because you won’t want to put it down! Thanks for coming by!

  8. Ally Broadfield

    May 2, 2012 at 10:35 am

    Night Bird sounds fabulous! I’m so sorry about the fire. Our house burned down when I was in high school, so I understand how devastating it can be. I’m glad you went back to your writing and look forward to reading your work.

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 12:15 pm

      Thanks for coming by Ally! How sad about your house fire too…my sister in law went through a house fire before she married my brother and it was hard to see all she went through. I can’t even imagine.

  9. Nikki Barret

    May 2, 2012 at 10:56 am

    I love your What To Read Wednesday, and this week is no different! I enjoyed the interview and excerpt. Christine, your review is wonderful!

    Tereasa, congratulations on your release!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 12:16 pm

      Thanks Nikki…I love your site too…so we’re even 🙂 lol Always glad when you have the chance to come by 🙂

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 12:58 pm

      Thanks NIkki! I always look forward to Christine’s Wed. and am tickled to be on board!

  10. Tereasa Bellew

    May 2, 2012 at 10:59 am

    Hi Ally,
    I agree, it sure knocks on off their feet. Writing saved me and gave me something else to think about. Later, the biggest thing was looking for something we no longer had. Like a roasting pan …right in the middle of cooking I’d realize, oops, I hadn’t replaced it. : ) I hope you like Night Bird and thanks for commenting.

  11. Nancy Jardine

    May 2, 2012 at 11:08 am

    Life throws some wobblies, but it’s good to know you got right back into the writing even though so much was lost and gone for ever. Enjoy your release day!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 12:16 pm

      Thanks for visiting Nancy!

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 12:50 pm

      Thanks Nancy. I’m a bit dazed now that the day is actually here! : )

  12. Sheri Fredricks

    May 2, 2012 at 11:11 am

    Fantastic post today! Wow, what an excerpt. Between that and the interview, I’m on my way to buy a new book!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 12:16 pm

      Awesome Sheri…you’ll love it!

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 12:52 pm

      I hope you like it, Sheri! Course I’m nevous! Thanks so much!

  13. Sandra Dailey

    May 2, 2012 at 12:31 pm

    What a truly unique story. I can’t wait to read it!

    Sandra Dailey

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 12:35 pm

      Glad you found us Sandra…you’ll love the uniqueness of the story!

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 12:54 pm

      It is, and was quite a surprise to me when Travis died! LOL. Thank goodness Emma was there.
      Hope you like it!

  14. D'Ann Lindun

    May 2, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    Great interview! Drew me right in.

  15. Tereasa Bellew

    May 2, 2012 at 1:00 pm

    Hi D’Ann! So nice to ‘see’ you. Thanks. I appreciate your support!

  16. Loralee Lillibridge

    May 2, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Wonderful review, ladies! Teresa, I’m so darn proud of you! You’re a true and talented writer. I wish you much success as your writing career takes off.

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 2:18 pm

      ((blush)) Thanks so much, Loralee! I had the very best in my corner with lovely ladies like you and Christine! I appreciate your support and just being you!

      • ChristineWarner

        May 2, 2012 at 2:47 pm

        Loralee…so glad you came by! You’re both talented ladies with a flair for writing wonderful description & emotion in your stories! Love it 🙂

  17. Annette Briggs

    May 2, 2012 at 2:55 pm

    I am so proud of you, Tereasa! And you have helped me so much by sharing your brave discoveries and being such wonderful support. I’m going after your new novella now. Absolutely all the best. Annette

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 3:07 pm

      Cheers Annette! Although I’ve read it a million times, there’s something about publisher’s edition…well, you’ll find out soon enough because you’re next! Thank you so much being here!

  18. dmburton72

    May 2, 2012 at 4:20 pm

    Congratulations, Teresa! Great interview on a great day. All the best.

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 4:51 pm

      I can hardly believe the day has arrived! Yep, a great day for sure! Thank you so much for sharing it with me!

  19. Jennifer Lowery

    May 2, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    Fantastic interview and excerpt! Love the cover! Can’t wait to read it 🙂

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 4:53 pm

      Hi Jennifer~
      I was in awe when I first saw the cover! Hope you enjoy the book and thanks for commenting. : )

  20. Mari Collier

    May 2, 2012 at 4:49 pm

    Good interview. Terrific cover. Good luck.

  21. Mirriam Smyth

    May 2, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    Wow! What an amazing taste you’ve given of your book. It’s definitely different than anything I’ve ever read. Congrats on your new book.

    Great interview, Christine! I love finding new books to read! Thank you for another book to add to my TBR list!

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 7:03 pm

      I’m glad you enjoyed the excerpt, Mirriam! And thank you!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 7:45 pm

      I think you’ll really enjoy this one Mirriam….it is something very different and totally hooks you 🙂 Glad you came by!

  22. Cindy Dwyer

    May 2, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    Ooh. Sexy and tender? I’m sold! 🙂

  23. Katherine Grey

    May 2, 2012 at 7:26 pm

    Hi Tereasa, I’m a little late this evening. Loved the blurb and excerpt. Have added your book to my TBR list. Love that you have coconut cream pie in your fridge. I’m dieting so I only have toasted coconut vanilla yogurt in my refrigerator. LOL. Hope you have great sales.

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 7:46 pm

      Thanks for coming by Katherine! I love that Tere has coconut cream pie in her fridge too…I only have pies in my fridge around the holidays!

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 8:41 pm

      Hubby always asks for something sweet to have while watching tv. And since I like to sneak off into my office, if I keep him eating he has less time to notice when I go MIA. Thanks Katherine!

  24. Brenda

    May 2, 2012 at 7:36 pm

    Sorry I’m so late, but I’m glad I made it. The excerpt blew me away! Loved it!

    • ChristineWarner

      May 2, 2012 at 7:47 pm

      Glad you got a chance to sample some of Tere’s writing talent!

    • Tereasa Bellew

      May 2, 2012 at 8:43 pm

      Glad you made it, Brenda, and so nice you enjoyed the excerpt. Thank you!

  25. ChristineWarner

    May 2, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    THANK YOU AGAIN TERE for chatting with us today on What to Read Wednesday! Loved your novella and I know this is ony the beginning for you 🙂

    Everyone who stopped by…thank you so much. We’ll announce the winner of NIGHT BIRD in the comment section here tomorrow! GOOD LUCK ALL 🙂

  26. Cera duBois

    May 2, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    Loved the excerpt!!! Great interview, ladies!!!

  27. ChristineWarner

    May 3, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    AND THE WINNER IS……..Nikki Barret! Congrats Nikki…Tere will be emailing you soon with your ebook NIGHT BIRD!


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