Welcome to my stop on Laurie Larsen's Name Before the Masses Tour for Keeper by Surprise. Please be sure to leave a comment or question below to let Laurie know you stopped by. Leaving a comment will also enter you in Laurie's tour wide giveaway where she'll be awarding promo items to random commenters at every stop, and the choice of a basic Nook or Kindle to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour (US/CANADA ONLY). You can follow all of her tour stops here, the more often you comment, the better your odds of winning.
Guest Post: The Importance of Family Especially Around the Holidays by Laurie Larsen
Thank you so much for inviting me to come visit you and your readers today! I’m excited to be here to talk with you about my new release, Keeper by Surprise. And since fall is in full swing, it’s got me thinking about the holidays, how about you?
I’ve hosted Thanksgiving at my house at least a dozen times now, and it’s always a mixed bag for me. I love having my family members over for a big wonderful meal, especially those I haven’t seen in a while. It’s fun to have the house filled with laughter and conversation while I’m bustling efficiently around my kitchen, putting the last touches on a meal that will be remembered for many weeks to come. In fact, I think I’m wearing pearls and pumps and looking fresh as a daisy for my adoring guests.
Okay, wake up, Laurie. That’s obviously not reality. Reality is, I’m exhausted after working the three days leading up to this holiday, not to mention from the grocery shopping required to put this meal together, and from waking up early this morning to make sure the turkey isn’t still frozen, is all dressed and seasoned and in the oven at the proper time. I torture myself every year, making sure that everything comes OUT of the oven at the same time, like a synchronized swimming event, so that the meal is consistently hot when people eat. I pore over my spreadsheet of each menu item: when it goes in, where it goes (ie., Oven 1, Oven 2, microwave, stove top, etc.) and most importantly, when it comes out. I have a hand print of flour on my sweatpants, my tee shirt has a gravy stain and I’m probably barefoot.
Despite all the stress, though, I must say that Thanksgiving dinner usually goes pretty well for me. I won’t say I’m an expert, but my husband and I have done it enough times that we have it down to a science. Although, throw in the uncontrollable factor of family in the mix and I have a few not-so-pleasant memories. For example, the year my dad wanted to “help” but when he was pulling the turkey out of the oven, he dropped it and it fell on the floor. We screamed and recovered it, but when we hoisted the 22-pounder up onto the counter, a pool of grease spread all over my clean china, stacked up waiting to be used.
I’m sure you all have stories of holidays being complicated by family members, challenges to share that in retrospect, are funny, but probably weren’t funny at the time. Yet, we continue to share the important moments of our lives with family. I wouldn’t have it any other way. Would you?
In my book, Keeper by Surprise, Keith Hanson is a college student living the good life away from home. He’d come from such a demanding upbringing, that I can imagine him getting to college singing, “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, I’m free at last!” His priorities are grades and girls, not necessarily in that order. His whole life changes forever with one phone call. His parents are killed and their will names HIM as guardian. He’s got a difficult teenage sister and little twin siblings. How on earth will he provide for them? He isn’t up to this challenge!
And he struggles. One challenge after another makes him question his ability to raise them, along with his father’s judgment in naming him a guardian. Like the time Dana goes missing and he finds her in a foggy-windowed car in her deadbeat boyfriend’s driveway. When it becomes clear what the two of them were doing in there, he does the first thing that occurs to him: punches the guy in the jaw! Probably not his best parenting moment.
Eventually he meets Lisa Carle, the social worker assigned to help him learn to be a better guardian. And neither of them expects to fall in love.
I hope you’ll check out Keeper by Surprise! It’ll make you laugh, it’ll make you cry, it’ll make you cheer for Keith and Lisa as they navigate through a bunch of obstacles. It’s available in paperback, as well as all e-reading formats.
Because this is my first blog tour stop, I’m going to do a drawing to give away a proof copy of the paperback version of my last book, Inner Diva. To get in on the drawing, do this: leave a comment telling me one Thanksgiving family memory of your own. I’d like a minimum of 10 commenters.
Thanks to the Queen of All She Reads for hosting me today!!
Keeper by Surprise
by Laurie Larsen
Published by CreateSpace Independent Publishing
Release Date: September 7, 2012
Length: 352 Pages
Life changes forever for Keith Hanson when his parents’ will declares him guardian over his three younger siblings. His new responsibilities are challenging, but he’s even less prepared to fall in love with Lisa Carle, a social worker with a devastating secret.
The drone of a lawn mower floated on the hot summer evening. Lisa glanced towards the house and her breath caught in her throat. Oh. My. God.
The most gorgeous man in the world was over there, mowing the lawn.
Lisa paused in reaching for the door handle and slipped lower in her seat so she could spy on the hunk for a moment without being noticed. Was this the right house? She grabbed the paper and double-checked the address. Yes! It was.
Lisa took a deep breath to get her heart rate under control. Boy, it was beating up a storm! Like she had never seen a gorgeous guy before. Well, it had been a while.
His hair, a light chestnut brown, sported hints of blond highlights. But not intentional highlights. No way was this the type of male to sit in a salon seat, paying big bucks to get highlights chemically applied. He was clean-shaven and glistening from the heat of the evening. He wore only a pair of shorts, his chest bare as he pushed the mower back and forth across the lawn.
And wow, what a magnificent chest. Hair-free and muscular, he practically shone with physical fitness. Lisa squinted for a better view. This was a guy familiar with the inside of a gym. What kind of athlete was he? Not a body builder. He didn’t sport those obnoxious over-done muscles. His sport subtly sculpted his body. A swimmer, maybe? A gymnast? Who knew, but the guy had a perfect build. Not too scrawny, but without an ounce of fat on him; that was clear.
And his face. Straight out of GQ magazine, he had classic good looks. She imagined running her fingers along his chiseled jawline, then feathering across those luscious lips. They looked a tad bit full for a male – all the better to kiss you with, my dear!
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Laurie Larsen is the EPIC Award-winning author of Preacher Man, Best Spiritual Romance of 2010. To date, she has published seven books in the romance and women’s fiction genres, including one Young Adult romance. Keeper by Surprise is her latest release. She lives in the Midwest with a strenuous day job, a husband of more than two decades, two amazing sons and Gracie the Wonder Dog. To keep up with Laurie and her books, visit her at www.authorlaurielarsen.com , on Twitter or Facebook.
FREE READ on Smashwords
Inner Diva: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/214208
Author co-op: www.randommoonbooks.com
Please make sure to leave a comment or question below for Laurie in order to enter her giveaway. Laurie will be awarding promo items to random commenters at every stop, and the choice of a basic Nook or Kindle to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour (US/CANADA ONLY). You can follow all of her tour stops here, the more often you comment, the better your odds of winning.