Welcome author Chris Beakey……a giveaway

Would you break the law for someone you love?


How do you write a character who’s forced to make a legally and morally dangerous choice in a desperate effort to rescue his daughter? And what happens when readers find themselves rooting for him – seeing him as a good man shouldn’t be prosecuted for doing a very bad thing?

CB: That’s the question at the heart of Fatal Option, which compels readers to question how their own values hold up when bad decisions feel like the only decisions. Crafted by the Lambda Literary Award finalist behind the hit 2007 thriller Double Abduction, Fatal Option [Post Hill Press/Simon & Schuster, February 21, 2017] is heralded by bestseller

Peter Swanson (The Kind Worth Killing) as “a wintery tale of violence and redemption, artfully balanced by the portrayal of a family in crisis.” It has also earned praise from Washington Post staff writer Neely Tucker, author of Only the Hunted Run, Norb Vonnegut, author of Top Producer and The Trust, and other thriller writers at the top oftheir game.

In Fatal Option, it’s the coldest night of the year and Beakey’s protagonist – a suburban dad named Stephen Porter – has just capped off a night of lonely binge drinking by himself when he gets a desperate call from his teenage daughter, begging him to come rescue her in the blizzard. Stephen knows it’s dangerously irresponsible to get behind the wheel…but, unwilling to abandon his own child to the cold, heads out onto the winding, icy roads of Maryland’s Catoctin Mountains to bring his daughter home. Relentlessly suspenseful and intensely thought-provoking, Beakey’s captivating narrative has readers rooting for Stephen – whose condemnable actions aren’t at all easy to condemn – and questioning their own ethical boundaries, were they to find themselves in a similarly desperate situation.

“In real life, I would never drink and drive, and am glad society has evolved to consider drunk driving a morally terrible thing,” says Beakey. “But after hitting a patch of black ice on an empty road a few years ago, I couldn’t help but imagine, in an instant, something worse than my own death. That’s where this began, as a story about a man who does a very bad thing for very good reasons. It took many, many more drives down that dark and winding road to get the story right. Now that the journey’s over, I welcome conversation with readers who want to share their feelings, observations, and perhaps even a moral slap on the hand if the notion strikes them.”

Clever, engaging, and one to watch in the American thriller landscape, Chris Beakey has availability for interviews to promote the February 2017 release of Fatal Option. Among the topics he can discuss include:

▪ How stories about good people doing bad things in desperate situations opens up an important dialogue about morality and snap judgments

▪ Is it a bad thing when the people we love have secrets? How can grappling with this in fiction inform one’s own moral journey?

▪ What extreme lengths would you go to — what crimes would you commit — to save your children?

▪ How does a writer get into the mind of a character who surprises even his creator?

▪ What he’s learned from working alongside law enforcement professionals about criminal behavior and justice

▪ His experiences as a long-time mentor to at-risk youth, and the perspective and realism it’s brought to Fatal Option’s teenaged characters

Chris Beakey tells stories of good people caught in bad places. He writes fiction

from his homes in Washington, D.C. and Lewes, Delaware, as well as nonfiction as a ghostwriter for an organization that promotes bipartisan policies that strengthen the nation through smart investments in youth. His first, novel, Double Abduction, was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award.

Connect with Chris Beakey on Facebook, Goodreads and at www.chrisbeakey.com.

Fatal Option [Post Hill Press] will be released February 21, 2017, and is currently available for pre-order via Indiebound, Amazon and wherever fine books are sold.











Thank you for joining us! We are super excited to giveway 2 copies of Fatal Option, for anywhere in North America. To enter just comment and say Hi! If you’d like to ask the author a question please do so. Or better yet tell us would YOU break the law? We will pick the winners on March 3rd, 2017. So enter NOW. Books will be sent from the publicist. Giveaway is sponsored by the Publicist. So enter today and please share!!



Please welcome today’s guest…


[Christian Historical/Fiction/Religion]


Welcome, Lori!!


MBA&M: What made you decide to use Western North Carolina as a setting for your story?

Lori: North Carolina has a fascinating history. I set an earlier, unpublished novel there because I wanted to explore the experience of Scottish Highland immigrants, many of whom settled in North Carolina during the 18th century. While researching for this story, I stumbled upon mention of the Lost State of Franklin, a nearly five year span of post-Revolutionary War history I’d never in my life known existed. It was too intriguing not to use as a backdrop for a frontier story.

MBA&M: : Why do you write in Historical Fiction genre?

Lori: I write what I love to read, and I love to read historical fiction. I was never much interested in history as a child in school. It wasn’t until I rediscovered historical fiction as a teenager (I’d enjoyed the Little House books as a young child) that my interest in history developed. Now I’m not ashamed to call myself a history geek. The more I learn, the more I want to know.

MBA&M: What is the first book you remember reading as a child?

Lori: The first book I remember that had an impact upon me (it inspired me to write a similar type of story) is The Wolf by Dr. Michael Fox, a fictionalized version of a year in the life of a wolf pack, as the parents and other pack members raise a litter of pups. I found it in my school library when I was in the third or fourth grade. I have a copy of it now on my shelves. It appealed to me in part, and still does, for the gorgeous illustrations of the wolves. I’ve always has as strong a passion for art as I have writing, more so during my early years.

MBA&M: How do you get your creative juices flowing?

Lori: The number one method: I sit down and force myself to get to work at the same time each day, whether I feel like it or not. It may take a few minutes to overcome the initial feeling of “I’d rather be doing something else,” and begin to lose myself in the storytelling. But I always get there in the end if I stick it out.
But lest you think it’s all drudgery, this writing thing, I get inspired all the time by reading other writers’ novels. That’s how I was first inspired to write as a little girl in the 1970s. That’s how I’m still inspired to write. It’s one of the best creative well-filling methods I know, reading.

MBA&M: If you could have dinner with one single person, real or fictional, who would it be, where would you go, and what would you wish to talk about? Now and what would you order to eat?

Lori: I’d love to sit down with one of my favorite writers, or perhaps an intriguing person from history, but narrowing that down to one person is impossible.

If a writer, I’d love to talk shop and research, because I’d choose a writer like Diana Gabaldon or James Alexander Thom, who both write stories similar to mine, and both of whom inspire me.

If a person from history, I would choose someone from the 18th century. Possibly an Oneida person. Possibly even an Oneida man called Peter Agwelentongwas, also known as Good Peter. He was an Oneida man who helped lead his people during the Revolutionary War era. Unlike most members of the Iroquois (Six Nations), the Oneidas fought for the patriots. Many Oneidas were by this time Christians. Good Peter accepted Christ as his Savior in the 1750s. He was a warrior known for his fervent faith—he taught himself to read the Bible, translated into Mohawk—and for his loving nature. In spite of the poverty and suffering the Oneidas experienced after the war, he maintained a hopeful optimism about his nation. He traveled from village to village, offering kind words and prayers, singing hymns, and preaching sermons to encourage his brothers and sisters, until his death in 1794.

Whoever I chose, I’d be happy to share trail food (a granola bar and bottled water) with this person as we hiked along some ancient warpath over the Appalachians, or visited a historic site where something of note happened during in the 18th century.

Thank you, Lori, for spending time with us and our readers today. Congratulations of releasing this amazing title. I love historicals! What an intriguing interview!



About The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn…(from the publisher)

The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn (WaterBrook Press, April 15, 2014) by Lori Benton, tells the gripping story of Tamsen, who is willing to do anything to escape a brutal stepfather and an unwanted marriage. She enlists the help of backwoodsman Jesse Bird to lead her over the mountains to western North Carolina. Her stepfather and suitor in swift pursuit, Tamsen must face wild animals, violent weather, and volatile groups of Native Americans. In her bid for freedom, Tamsen bargained for none of this, especially not for her growing attraction to her unlikely rescuer. When pursuit finally catches up with them, having fallen in love with Jesse Bird could prove the greatest risk of all.


Purchase your copy!




And other fine retailers!


About Lori Benton…

LORI BENTON maintains an active online presence through social networking and her blog, Past Perfect, where she blogs about writing, faith, good books, and 18th-century history. A promising historical novelist, Benton plunges readers into the tumultuous Colonial South with an epic novel of adventure, romance, and faith.


Website: http://loribenton.com/

Drop by her Facebook page
and LIKE her!



(Sponsored by the author and/or publisher)

*Mailed directly to the winner from the author/publisher*

**We are NOT responsible for lost or stolen prizes**

We are offering lucky commenter a print signed copy of THE PURSUIT OF TAMSEN LITTLEJOHN by Lori Benton. Sorry, open to U.S. residents only! No P.O. Boxes, please.

Giveaway will run from July 21 until July 25, 2014. *Please remember to re-visit the site for the winner*

Don’t forget to leave a comment in order to win!!


Please stop by our sister site, for “My Thoughts”


We hope you have enjoyed your time with us and our guest, Lori Benton today! Please, help us spread the word on this talented author!!





[Women’s Fiction/Mystery]


The Secrets She Carried

MBA&M: Good morning, Barbara! Please tell our readers a little about yourself?

Good morning, and thanks so much for giving me a chance to talk about The Secrets She Carried. It really has been the most amazing and rewarding journey that I almost have to pinch myself. Fourteen years ago, my fiancé, Tom, and I moved to North Carolina. At the time I was a V.P. with a national jewelry chain, but about four years ago I was laid off from my job. At the time, it felt like the end of the world, particularly since it was the second time in five years. Then I realized I hadn’t been paying attention to the messages the Universe was sending me. Finally, with tons of encouragement from my fiancé, I saw that it was time to pursue my lifelong dream. I’d been simmering on the idea for SECRETS for several years, and suddenly I had no excuse not to follow it through. It took a good six months to find my voice again, after so many years in the corporate world, but I finally did, and I’ve never looked back. I’ve been so very blessed. I found the love of my life, and am living the life of my dreams. Like I said… pinch me.      

 MBA&M: What was your inspiration behind writing “The Secrets She Carried”?

One day I was waiting in the car for Tom when I noticed a single gravestone on the side of the road. Now, in North Carolina, this isn’t really unusual. They’re everywhere, along the sides of the road, in the middle of cornfields, even in a mall parking lot in Greenville, because back in the day that’s what people did. Loved ones were buried on family farms. But now those farms are gone, roads have been built—the landscape has changed, and yet these graves, these lost loved-ones, remain. And as I sat there I found myself wondering who was buried in that particular grave, and how long they’d been there. It all felt very sad to me, very lonely. I wondered if there were family members looking for that person, and what story that departed loved one might have to tell so many years later. And just like that Adele Laveau was born. In what felt like minutes, her story came to life in my head and refused to go away.

MBA&M: What made you decide to write a story about a Southern Plantation and its secrets?

Peak Plantation, the setting for Secrets, evolved fairly naturally from Adele’s story. Living in Carolina, where tobacco was once such a huge part of the heritage and history of the state, it was hard to imagine that tobacco in some form wouldn’t be part of Adele’s story. I also liked the fish-out-of-water contrast a plantation setting would offer to Adele’s more humble beginnings. Plus, I’d be lying if I said Gone With the Wind wasn’t one of my favorite books of all time, so there’s that “romantic south” image that’s always been with me. 

MBA&M: What were some of the challenges you found while writing “The Secrets She Carried”?

I think finding and maintaining Adele’s voice was one of the largest challenges, but I also have to say it was also one of my favorites. When I started the novel, Adele Laveau played a much smaller role in the writing. She was more a memory around which the story revolved than an active participant in the story. Gradually, though, that changed, as she began to come to life refused to be quiet. Eventually, my editor encouraged me to expand her role and make her more the focal point of the story. This required some pretty major re-writes, which, as a new writer, I found pretty terrifying. You worry that if you start plucking at the treads of your story it will all unravel and you’ll never be able to put it back together again. Luckily, in this case I did put it back together, and the book is much stronger for those rewrites.  

MBA&M: Inquiring minds want to know, or me anyway: Is the Peak Plantation real or fiction? If real, where did you find the research to begin your project?
Some of my ancestors come from Georgia, they owned a Plantation there, can’t remember the name of it, sad really, but do remember how it looked. I was only a child where they tore it down for farmland. So this is a fascinating and intriguing story to me….

Peak Plantation, as well as the town of Gavin, is purely fictional, although I think all writers tend to create composites of a lot of the places they’ve seen and researched over the years. Over time, those places wind up blending together into a kind of ideal and have a way of finding their way onto the page. Peak is that for me, a place I’d love to visit, timeless and grand and romantic; the kind of place you can’t imagine not standing forever. It’s my own version of Tara, I suppose.

MBA&M: Which character in “The Secrets She Carried” was the most difficult or most challenging to write and why?

Aside from Adele, I think Jimmy Nichols, Leslie’s hard-drinking, con-man of a father, presented the largest challenge, because at the start of the book he needed to be intimidating enough to present a credible threat, but also needed to be redeemable by the end. So, there’s a line you have to walk there, one you can’t cross if you hope to salvage him later on. You have to keep that in mind as you write, and find ways to leave that door open. Funny story: at one time early in the writing, I was considering killing him off, but wasn’t sure how to do it. Tom and I were sitting at a bar one day, discussing my options… gun shot, stabbing, pushed off a cliff… and we noticed the bartenders whispering and giving us the eye. I had to explain that I wasn’t plotting a real murder, just one on paper. To this day, I’m not sure they believed me.  

MBA&M: Which scene was the most difficult to write and why?

Well, I don’t want to give anything away here, but I’d have to say the scene with Adele in the woodshed was by far the toughest to write for me. There are things that happen in life, terrible things that are hard to stomach, but when they happen to someone you care about, and you’re the one actually making those things happen, you can find yourself getting emotional, and even second guessing yourself.   

MBA&M: What you do your for enjoyment in your daily activity?

Would you believe, write? I really do love what I do, and I spend the vast majority of everyday on my laptop, making stuff up for a living. But when I’m not writing, I love to read, cook, travel, and am an avid college football fan. I also run a Facebook Page called The Sunshine Page, which is near and dear to my heart. The page has a about 35,000 followers and embraces a positive living philosophy of love and gratitude, which is something I feel very strongly about. 

MBA&M: We live in Eastern North Carolina, I see you live in North Carolina also, so do you enjoy the Mountains or the Beach?

Seriously, you’re going to make me pick? Wow, that’s really hard. North Carolina has so much to offer that I can’t truly say one way or the other. What I will admit is that we tend to get to the beach side of the state more often than the mountains, simply because it’s a little closer. Tom and I have no qualms about deciding at four o’clock in the afternoon that we’d like to have dinner at the beach, and off we go. Two hours later, we’re sharing a glass of wine and looking out over the Atlantic from our favorite Wrightsville Beach restaurant. In the fall and winter, though, I absolutely want the mountains. Luckily, in Carolina, you have the best of both worlds.     

MBA&M: Please tell our readers where to find you and where they may purchase “The Secrets She Carried”?

My Facebook author page is: https://www.facebook.com/barbaradavisauthor?ref=hl

My author website is: https://www.facebook.com/barbaradavisauthor?ref=hl

The Secrets She Carried is available where ever books are sold, including:



Thank you so much for taking time to spend with us and our readers today! As I have read “The Secrets She Carried” I would highly recommend this amazing story!




*from the publisher*

THE SECRETS SHE CARRIED (NAL Accent Trade Paperback Original; October 1, 2013; 978-0-451-41877-7; $15.00), a stunning story about a woman journey of discovery into her family‘s journey of discovery into her family’s long-buried past.

For Leslie Nichols, Peak Plantation doesn’t have a happy place in her memory.  She is plagued by the death of her mother, her father’s disgrace, and an unhappy childhood.  When Leslie’s grandmother Maggie dies, Leslie isn’t the only one who was left with the property.  Jay Davenport also has claim to Peak Plantation as the caretaker. 
Before Maggie died, she told Jay about a terrible secret that haunted him about a mysterious lady named Adele who came to the plantation in the 1930’s and died there.  When Leslie finds a cryptically marked grave on the property, both she and Jay are about to discover shocking secrets that have the power to change Leslie’s life forever.
Buy Links: 
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(Sponsored by the publisher)
Thanks to Kayleigh, we are offering 1 lucky commenter a print copy of “The Secrets She Carried”. Sorry, open to U.S. residents only! Giveaway will run from December 5 until December 12, 2013.
Thank you everyone for stopping by today and spending a few moments with our guest, Literary Debut author, Barbara Davis.
If you feel so inclined, please help us spread the word on this talented new author!
We at MBA&M wish each and everyone a safe and happy Holiday Season!








MBA&M: What is your inspiration for writing both suspense,and children’s titles?

LINDA: My inspiration for all of my books is God.  Beaufort Betrayal, my first novel, was a vision which I experienced nightly for a few years.  It reached the point where I could not go to sleep without thinking about it.  In my thoughts, I saw a young woman walking down the street.  It was not me.  She was troubled but not harmed.  I recognized the place as Beaufort, N.C. where I have sailed often.  As she walked down the street, she feverishly hunted for signs that she might recognize for she was suffering from amnesia.  Then, she saw one of the beautiful old homes across the street.  As she searched for familiarity, she saw a young man on the balcony, waving to her.  Her heart was singing because she realized that someone recognized her.  As he ran to greet her, he ushered her inside the home.  What was about to happen to her?  So the story began.  One night, I finally prayed.  Asking God for guidance, I knew that I was suppose to write a book.  My first Mystery/Thriller began and I suddenly found myself in a new role as author.

MBA&M: How hard is it  to write both genres?

 MBA&M: It is not difficult at all.  My problem is that the thoughts occur so rapidly that I find it difficult to keep up.
MBA&M: Who do you credit your love of writing to?

 LINDA: Again, I must say God.  I never even entertained the idea of writing.  Without the vision which launched Beaufort Betrayal, I would never have written.
MBA&M:  What do you think the most  important quality of an author?
LINDA: I think the most important quality of an author is honesty.  To desire to tell a story that will actually benefit someone instead of junk is an honest approach to writing.  That is my desire.  If just one of my books helps someone, then the process was worth any fatigue or discomfort which I may have experienced.
MBA&M:  You seem to enjoy a variety of stories,which is by far your favorite to write?Why?
 LINDA: Beaufort Betrayal was my favorite because it was my first experience of displaying my soul, so to speak. Writing reminds me of an artist with a painting.  So much time goes into creating something that you think is beautiful.  Then the criticism begins.  It can be daunting.
MBA&M:  What is the most exciting part of writing in your opinion?
LINDA: The most exciting part is the final product.  So often, when I go back to read it, it is unfamiliar to me; almost as if I never wrote it.  It is amazing.  Writing produces such happiness for me.  Each book: Beaufort Betrayal,Rosemary Beach, Will He?, and Dusty the Island Dog is a great source of pride and disbelief that with God’s help. I was able to create something that I find beautiful.  I am indeed blessed.

Thanks, Linda, for visiting with us and our readers today! We wish you the best with your future endeavors!




  • Hardcover: 154 pages
  • Publisher: PublishAmerica (April 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1462675247
  • ISBN-13: 978-1462675241

Book Description(Amazon)

April 3, 2012
The mental abuse, which Tory suffers from Jack, is so skillfully carried out that she remains in denial until it escalates to violence. Lies and deceit become so common in her life that she finds it impossible to distinguish the truth. Each day presents challenges to her ability to triumph over the evil web of lies which surround her. At that point, she is able to protect herself by imploring the strength that had always been there to guide her. Her love for sailing surprises her by being the very act that saves her life. The setting of Beaufort, NC is the perfect coastal town for this drama of a woman who is faced with hardships which would break most. To endure betrayal at the hands of the very person whom she should have been able to trust creates a woman of strength and real beauty.
Available on Amazon Kindle for $1.99,Hardcover $22.46, Paperback $17.87:
For more information,please visit her GoodReads page at:


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Thanks for stopping by today! We hope you will check out this author’s amazing work and please spread the word!





*image from the publisher’s website*
MBA&M:  What inspired you to write romantic novels?
MBW: I’ve always loved a good love story so it made sense to write one when the time came. While I want to cover women’s friendships and family dynamics and motherhood and other subjects, I’ll always have a romantic element in what I write. I just think it adds to any story.  
MBA&M:  Give our readers some background on your title “The Guest Book”,how it originated,the characters and such?
MBW: The idea for The Guest Book came out of a reader letter. She wrote me after reading my first novel, The Mailbox, to tell me how the novel had reminded her of the trips she used to take to her grandmother’s beach house and how the one thing her grandmother asked of the family members who used the house was to write in the guest book. She told me that when she was really little and couldn’t write yet, her father encouraged her to draw a picture, explaining that pictures tell stories just like words. All I can say is that even as I read that letter I knew that image– of a little girl furtively drawing in a guest book as her proud father looked on– would be the impetus for my next novel. I had no idea how the story would go from there, but I had that first glimpse I needed to go on.
MBA&M:  What is the allure of “beach” town stories to readers?
MBW: Many of us grew up going on family vacations in little coastal towns and have fond memories and feelings attached to those places. Setting a story in a place like Sunset Beach, NC evokes that “step out of time” feeling in a reader– that escape I think many of us are looking for when we open a book.
MBA&M:  I see you multi-task, can you share your special brand of expertise with our readers?
MBW: My best advice would be to find a system that works for you. For me, simple is key. Too complicated and I’m going to give up. Once you find a system, you can learn to fit your writing into that system. I spent a long time getting my family into smooth working order before I started writing– in hindsight, that was time well spent. (Not that things don’t go haywire regularly, because they do.)
MBA&M:  If “The Guest Book” was to be made into a movie,who would you cast as the characters?
MBW: Macy: Though she’s older than Macy is in the book, I pictured someone like Elizabeth Banks as I was writing
Wyatt: Chris Pine
Nate: Ryan Reynolds
Dockery: Chris Evans
Visit Mary Beth Whalen at:  www.marybethwhalen.com
Thank you Mary Beth for taking time to visit with us and our readers!
  • Reading level: Ages 18 and up
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan (July 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310334748
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310334743

Book Description

Publication Date: July 3, 2012
When Macy Dillon was five years old her father encouraged her to draw a picture in the guestbook of a Carolina beach house. The next year, Macy returned to discover a drawing by an unidentified little boy on the facing page. Over the next eleven years the children continue to exchange drawings … until tragedy ends visits to the beach house altogether. During her final trip to Sunset, Macy asks her anonymous friend to draw her one last picture and tells him where to hide the guest book in hopes that one day she will return to find it—and him. Twenty-five years after that first picture, Macy is back at Sunset Beach—this time toting a broken family and a hurting heart. One night, alone by the ocean, Macy asks God to help her find the boy she never forgot, the one whose beautiful pictures touched something deep inside of her. Will she ever find him? And if she does, will the guestbook unite them or merely be the relic of a lost childhood?
Available at:
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*Sponsored by the publisher*
(to be mailed directly from the publisher)
We are offering  5 print copies of “The Guest Book” by Mary Beth Whalen to 5 lucky commenters. Yes, readers, that is 5 lucky winners. Please remember to leave a valid email address! Please spread the word on your social networks! Giveaway will run from today August 3 until August 10,2012.
Check back for our “Thoughts” on “The Guest Book” by Mary Beth Whalen!
We hope you have enjoyed your time with our guest and will please spread the word about “The Guest Book”!