Summer is over, and I owe you some news—good news, happy news!
First of all, we’re settled into our new home in our old home—our new condo in Chicago (complete with chalkboard wall!). Last we talked, I shared with you the reasons why we decided to move back home, after trying Virginia for a while. We moved in late April, and we’ve spent the summer unpacking and painting and hanging out with friends and family, and it’s been wonderful. Here are a few pics of our new place; we have a view of the lake, and I love to take my morning coffee in one of the chairs by the window.
As difficult as it was to decide to move back, it was the right decision for more reasons than I can say.
I’m also thrilled to announce my next book!!!
California Gold will be out in just about a year—late summer of 2023. Here’s the quick description:
California—glittering neon nights at Whisky A-Go-Go and endless summer days surfing at Malibu—is the golden backdrop for this stirring saga of two sisters navigating their way through the turbulent 1960s. One sister finds herself swept up in celebrity complete with Beach Boys, parties at The Playboy Club and USO tours to Vietnam; the other, tugged down into the counterculture of drugs and cults. Both of them still grappling with their unorthodox childhood spent trying to keep up with their mother, a legendary female surfer in an era when housewives were expected to be Donna Reed, not Gidget. This gripping tale of ambition, sacrifice and finally, forgiveness, is ultimately an exploration of motherhood, sisterhood and womanhood in a time when society was shifting as tempestuously as the breaking waves.
You might notice—some people have already questioned me about this—that this novel is not based on a real historical person, although it is very loosely inspired by some. As I did in The Children's Blizzard, I’m taking a historical cultural moment—in this case, Southern California in the 1960s—and inventing characters whose journeys shed fascinating light on many of the issues and upheavals of that time period, specifically women’s issues and struggles. As much as we love to please our audiences, authors have to keep challenging themselves, and I needed to change things up a bit. But I’m certain this book, and the one after (which I’ve already begun!!) will still speak to the readers who have loved my previous books.
Speaking of previous books—I’m thrilled to announce that The Children's Blizzard is the winner of the Best Historical Fiction category of the Willa Literary Award! The Willa is named after Willa Cather and is awarded by an organization called Women Writing the West. I couldn’t be more grateful. Now I can add “prize-winning” to my bio!
Please stay tuned over the next few months for many more announcements—a cover reveal, further details about California Gold, giveaways, etc. And consider following me on Facebook and Instagram if you don’t already.
Every other week, my dearest friend & brilliant author Edward Kelsey Moore and I will continue to do our podcast, Who the Hell Are We?
Isn’t it nice to share happy news? It’s been a long, long time. We’ve all had a rough couple of years, I know. Please stay safe and well and hug your loved ones.