Her debut novel, Mistaken, is also set along the Washington shoreline. In 1926 Port Angeles, Laurie Burke needs help to put an end to her brother’s rumrunning schemes. Is his best friend, pharmacist Daniel Shepherd, also involved? When Laurie becomes interested in the visiting federal agent, Samuel Brown, she must decide which man--if any--is worthy of her trust.
Karen graciously agreed to share her favorite summer tradition with us today. Welcome, Karen!!
When I was growing up, my family didn’t take expensive vacations. But we did look forward to occasional visits to a friend’s beach house on Hartstene Island. About 1 ½ hours from our home in Tacoma, this island in the Puget Sound was the perfect retreat for beachcombing, barbecuing, bicycling, and nature walks. We swam in the little community pool and fished from the dock. We always arrived home exhausted, covered with sunburns and bug-bites, and lugging treasured collections of shells, pretty rocks, and priceless memories.
For my kids, vacations have been a little different. We pinched pennies and managed a couple big trips—cruises to Mexico and the Caribbean, and a few days at Disneyworld. They were fantastic, but I worried my children would grow up believing vacations should include gourmet meals, snorkeling, formal nights, and cruise staff waiting to serve their every need.
I longed to share my childhood retreat with them, but had they been spoiled for this sort of trip? No white-sand tropical beaches? No broadway-style shows? No costumed character breakfasts?
A couple of years ago we decided to try it. We packed the car and drove north to Washington. The island seemed frozen in time—nothing had changed. We collected sand dollars, broken shells, and smelly dead crab claws. We played on the rope swing and skipped rocks over the waves. We roasted marshmallows and feasted on hot dogs. The kids each caught their first fish. We walked the trails under the giant trees and marveled over spotted fawns nestled in the ferns.
A few years have passed now and we’re long overdue for another family outing. The other night, I chatted with my 11-year-old daughter about it. “So what do you think? Where would you like to travel?” She grinned big. “What about that Hartstene place Mom? Could we go there?”
And my heart smiled.
Mistaken ~Since booze and prohibition have made criminals out of every man in her world, Laurie Burke resolves to find at least one honorable man to fill her life. Convinced that handsome newcomer Daniel Shepherd is connected with her brother’s rum-running gang, Laurie quickly scratches his name off her list.
Daniel has mixed feelings about returning to the dirty mill town of his youth, but grudgingly agrees to manage his grandfather’s drug store until a replacement can be found. The moment he meets Laurie on the windswept bluff overlooking the beach, he knows that if he can earn her love, he might have a reason to stay. But when Laurie pushes him away--for none other than Federal Agent Samuel Brown--Daniel wonders if Laurie really is the upstanding woman he thought her to be.
The Strait of Juan de Fuca, just off the beaches of Port Angeles, Washington, was treacherous water for reckless rumrunners—and the agents who tried to catch them. So when she realizes her brother is in danger, romance is the last thing on Laurie's mind. Yet the people she believes she can trust, may not be so honorable after all.
Karen Barnett lives in Albany, Oregon, with her husband, two kids, three cats, and an attention-starved dachshund (who believes lap-top computers were invented by someone who hated lapdogs).
Thank you SO much, Karen, for being my guest today!
Karen has graciously offered to give away a copy of Mistaken to one lucky blog commenter! Just leave your e-mail addy (ex: jill(at)jillkemerer(dot)com) in a comment below to be entered. **Must be 18 years or older and only open to residents of USA.** I'll toss all the entries in a hat and pull the winner out. Winner will be notified by e-mail. Contest open until midnight, Wednesday, July 10.
Have a terrific Monday!