Please welcome Karen Erickson, who is celebrating the sweet holiday romance Jane’s Gift. Please check back tomorrow for my review, too!
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.
[Karen Erickson] Romance author/mom extraordinaire/lover of books. I write for Samhain, Entangled Bliss/Brazen & Avon Impulse. I’m a lover not a fighter.
(I stole most of this from my Twitter profile LOL)
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about Jane’s Gift?
[Karen Erickson] Jane Clark is a widow who survived a house fire. Now that she’s mostly recovered, she’s moved back to her hometown to be close to her family and start anew. She immediately meets the handsome fire captain Chris Nelson, who’s her younger brother’s friend and there’s instant chemistry. Despite the both of them not looking for anything serious, they somehow end up together…
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?
[Karen Erickson] I read an article a few years ago about a woman who suffered terrible burns and survived a plane crash. She should’ve died but from pure determination and surrounded by the love of her family, she survived.
I wanted to create a strong heroine like that woman. A heroine who had an amazing spirit and family, a woman who suffered much but came out on the other side a winner. And I wanted to give that woman a second chance at love.
That’s how Jane came to be. And then I gave her a fear of fire (of course) and that her hero should be a fire captain. Instant conflict!
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Jane?
[Karen Erickson] Determined, thoughtful and passionate.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Chris had a theme song, what would it be?
[Karen Erickson] Oh my gosh, this is a HARD question! What’s that song Donna Summer sang? Hot Stuff? Ha! He’s pretty hot and he’s a firefighter so…yeah. That works.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name one thing Jane won’t leave the house without.
[Karen Erickson] Her purse! When you’re a woman with three children, you need your purse to stash everything they need in. Trust me. I know (says the mother of three children).
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things will you never find in Chris’s bedroom?
[Karen Erickson] Whips, chains and a flogger? LOL This is a sweet romance so none of those naughty bedroom accessories would appear in his bedside drawer or be stashed deep in his closet.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?
[Karen Erickson] I read a lot when I was young. I was an only child until I was eleven and I needed something to occupy my mind. Plus, I had an active imagination. I wouldn’t say there’s anything that’s my one greatest creative influence but I do try to always look for a story idea. They’re everywhere. On the news, in a magazine, a person I see walking down the street…
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?
[Karen Erickson] Diet Coke, an open mind and at the moment, my desk heater (it’s cold!).
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?
[Karen Erickson] It was a YA—Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry. Oh, it was SO FREAKING GOOD. I couldn’t stop reading it. I had to know what was going to happen next. Can’t wait for the next one!
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?
[Karen Erickson] That is a TOUGH question. How about the one book that turned me on to reading romance? That would be Judith McNaught’s Paradise. I found an excerpt in the back of a Cosmo magazine when I was a teen. Went right out to the local bookstore (B. Dalton’s in the mall baby!) and bought it. Oh. It was so good. That was the start of my Judith McNaught consumption.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
[Karen Erickson] Hang out with my family, reading, catching up with the TV shows on my DVR, traveling (wish I did that more).
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!
Karen is giving away a Kindle Paperwhite, so be sure to click the link below and fill out the widget to enter for your chance to win!
You can order Jane’s Gift, as well as Karen’s other titles, from your favorite bookseller or by clicking the widget below:
Blurb for Jane’s Gift:
A fire captain afraid of commitment. A widow afraid of fire. Can the holidays bring them together?
A devastating house fire cost Jane Clark nearly everything: her husband, her confidence, and her looks, with the physical scars marbling her body. Now, two years later, she’s living and healing back in her childhood hometown of Lone Pine Lake. The upcoming holidays are the perfect opportunity to bring some Christmas cheer into her young children’s lives, starting with a visit to the firehouse, where her brother’s best friend has offered to help quell their residual fears.
Lone Pine’s resident playboy, fire captain Christian Nelson is happy with his single-guy lifestyle. He’s an everyday local hero, so he’s never wanting for attention around the holidays. But when Jane Clark shows up, Chris is immediately drawn to the beautiful widow–even though kids and commitment have never been his style.
Despite her brother’s warnings about his friend’s playboy status and dangerous occupation, Jane can’t help but fall for the gorgeous fire captain. The holidays are a time of new beginnings, but can two scarred people find the strength to let go of their pasts to live in the present, when a lifetime together might be the sweetest gift of all?
Keep up with the Jane’s Gift blog tour here