Your family helps shape who you are and what kind of person you might want to spend the rest of your life with.
For us to trust in our couple's happy ending, we need to believe that they can make a life beyond the time frame of the story. And that means that they must share their lives outside their relationship. Somehow they must integrate their work, their friends, and their families.
This is the stuff I love to write. My first books (now available for Kindle and Nook) featured the MacNeill brothers. And now I'm writing about the Fletchers, three generations with this wonderful, messy mix of family ties and conflicts.
My new release, Carolina Girl is a reunion story, about first times – first crush, first sex, first big, big mistake – and second chances.
It's about Harvard-educated, New York PR executive Meg Fletcher, who thinks she has everything she’s ever wanted until she loses it all. She comes home to Dare Island to help out at her parents' bed-and-breakfast and runs smack into sexy builder, Sam Grady, her big brother's best friend in high school, who wants...Meg.
I hope you'll enjoy meeting them!
The Fletchers had lived on Dare Island for four generations. Tom Fletcher had served twenty years in the Marines, but Sam remembered the summer Meg’s father had moved his family back into the old house falling down above the bay. Sam’s home life that year had sucked. Stepmom number two—pretty blond Julie, with her magazines and manicures—had moved out at Christmas, and before the school year was even over, Angela, broody, moody, and already pregnant, had been installed in her place. Once Sam might have been excited over the idea of a half sibling, but not then. He was fifteen, for Christ’s sake. It was embarrassing, having a father who couldn’t keep it in his pants sticking it to a woman twenty years younger.
The old man, of course, had swollen up like a bullfrog over this evidence of his mojo. “You better watch yourself, boy,” he said to Sam. “Got yourself a little brother or sister now coming up behind you. That’s half your inheritance.”
It made Sam sick.
That afternoon he’d escaped on his bicycle, taking his time going home after killing a couple of hours on the beach. It wasn’t like anybody would miss him. It was lame, not having a car. The old man had promised Sam a new Jeep Wrangler when he turned sixteen, but with all the fuss over the baby coming, who knew what would happen? So Sam straddled his bike at the bottom of the drive near the rental truck, watching the new family move in: a quiet boy about his own age, with big hands and shoulders; a skinny girl maybe a couple years younger; and a happy little kid who barreled in everybody’s way.
The front screen slammed. The girl came out of the house and down the walk. Sam was making a study of breasts that summer, as many as he could see up close or get his hands on. This girl was too young and too thin to have much of his new favorite thing, but he liked the way she moved, quick and determined. Her hair was dark and short and shiny.
She caught him watching and looked straight at him instead of down and away like most girls. Her head cocked at a challenging angle. “What are you looking at?”
You. He flushed. “Nothing.”
--from Carolina GirlSo how do you feel about families and friends in romance? Do you think they add to the romance? Or distract from the main couple? Do you have a favorite fictional "family" (Julia Quinn's Bridgertons, Suz Brockmann's Navy SEALS, Susan Elizabeth Phillips' Chicago Stars)? I love to hear from readers. Leave a comment for a chance to win the first book in the Dare Island series, Carolina Home.
Connect with me through my website on Facebook on Twitter @VirginiaKantra or join my mailing list!
***Virginia's winner is Patsy T! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your full name and mailing address. Thanks!***