Please welcome USA TODAY bestselling author Lynn Raye Harris to the virtual offices this morning. She’s here to chat about Hot Pursuit.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.
[Lynn Raye Harris ] I’m a Southern girl who loves romance novels, hot military guys, kitty cats, and shopping — especially when shoes are involved.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about Hot Pursuit?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] Evie Baker’s luck just ran out. Thanks to an ex-partner with organized crime ties, she’s lost her restaurant, her money, and nearly all her self-respect. Forced to return to her hometown and work as a shampoo girl in her mother’s salon, she doesn’t think her luck can get any worse.
But then someone starts shooting at her, her sullen baby sister is suddenly missing, and the high school heartthrob who stole her heart—and her virginity—is the only man big enough and bad enough to help.
Captain Matt “Richie Rich” Girard can’t afford to get involved. He’s already on the verge of a court-martial after a Top Secret op gone wrong, and he’s been ordered to stay out of trouble while he’s home for his sister’s wedding.
But when Evie’s ex-partner turns up dead, staying out of trouble is the last thing on Matt’s mind. He failed Evie once before; he can’t fail her again. If he’s going to protect her from a killer, and find her sister before time runs out, he’ll have to risk his entire future—and both their lives—to do it.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] Boy, that’s the million dollar question! Hot Pursuit took a lot of time and thought, because it was my first suspense and I actually began it around 2005. I wrote many versions of it over the years because I believed in this story and these characters! I think Evie came to me first. She was down on her luck, but not completely defeated. And then there was David, her ex-partner who stole everything. That came from a real life incident that happened to someone I knew. She’d started her own restaurant and had this suave boyfriend who went in on it with her. And then one day he took the money out of the safe, in front of her, and told her there was nothing she could do about it. Well, David is a bit more sneaky than that, but that’s where that idea came from! Matt had to be a military guy because in 2005 that was my life. My husband was in the Air Force and I was surrounded by military. I love a man in uniform! Mr. Harris hasn’t worn one since 2007, but they’re still in the closet. I’m thinking about asking him to put one on…
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Evie?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] Determined, loyal, and kind.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Matt had a theme song, what would it be?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] It’s cheesy but how could it not be Bonnie Tyler’s Holding Out For a Hero?
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name one thing Evie is never without.
[Lynn Raye Harris ] Her determination to land on her feet! She’s not always certain she will, but when she starts to feel sorry for herself, she gets mad and vows she will come out on top in the end.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things will you never find in Matt’s bathroom?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] A bottle of cologne (who has time for that?), Crest Whitestrips (really, he’s a badass, he doesn’t walk around with strips on his teeth), and male skin care products (he’s too manly for that, though I’ve implored Mr. Harris for years to moisturize — you can guess the answer).
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is Evie’s greatest regret?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] Not keeping in better contact with her baby sister as she grew up.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] Oh my, I’m not sure! I get inspired by many things. Reading, watching a movie, listening to a friend tell a story, people watching. Everything goes in the churn in my head and you never know what will come out!
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] I must have a computer. Not a longhand writer at all, though I can in a pinch. I also like to have quiet, though sometimes music is good. And knowing there are readers waiting for the result? That’s the best thing of all.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What was your biggest distraction while working on Hot Pursuit?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] Oh man, there are so many! Like I said before, this book was written and rewritten a few times, so there were many distractions. One of the most major distractions was me. I wasn’t sure it was good enough. I doubted myself and questioned and second-guessed and wondered if anyone besides me would ever want to read this story. The response thus far has been overwhelming and vindicating too. An agent added to my doubts when she told me the book wasn’t dark or gritty enough and wouldn’t sell to a big house. The book never went out on submission, so I won’t know if that’s true or not — but the readers seem to enjoy it just the way it is! I wrote it because I love stories just like this. Very romantic adventures with action and suspense but lots of romance too.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] A Week To Be Wicked by Tessa Dare. I *love* a bookish spinster heroine and the handsome rake. So so much. Oh, when Colin begins to see that Miranda is intriguing beneath those glasses? Melts my heart. I could not put that book down!
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] That’s kinda hard, because I’ve always been a reader, but when I was a kid my favorite books by far were the Black Stallion books by Walter Farley. I devoured them. And I wanted to write stories just like that!
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] Watch good things on TV with my husband, shop for shoes and clothes and the occasional antique, hang out with friends, and go for drives in the countryside. We live in the South and there is so much to see. Just last weekend we saw a gorgeous plantation home called Rattle and Snap.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?
[Lynn Raye Harris ] You can find me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorLynnRayeHarris
Come say hello! Also, I love my newsletter subscribers. Once a month, on the first, I give away a $50 gift card to Amazon, B&N, or Kobo to one lucky subscriber. All you have to do is subscribe! I only send emails when I have a new release, and I do not share your address with anyone. I don’t believe in spamming you when you’ve trusted me with your information! And hey, you might win a gift card!
[Manga Maniac Café] Thank you!
About the book:
About the author:Bio: USA Today bestselling author Lynn Raye Harris burst onto the scene when she won a writing contest held by Harlequin. The prize was an editor for a year — but only six months later, Lynn sold her first novel. A former finalist for the Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart Award, Lynn lives in Alabama with her handsome husband and two crazy cats. You can learn more at her website, www.LynnRayeHarris.com.
For more information about HOT PURSUIT, visit Lynn’s book page at http://www.lynnrayeharris.com/books/hot-pursuit/. Buy links will be posted there as soon as the book is live on all the retailers’ sites!