Another one of my favourite reads of 2013 was a heartwarming and funny romance by Brighton Walsh, Plus One, which I devoured in no time. I liked everything about it (as you can see in my review) and couldn't wait to read more from her. Well good news: not only is Brighton here to celebrate the release of her brand new novel, Season of Second Chances, but it is a Christmas story and she is giving away a copy! So please give her a warm welcome! :-)
Stella: Is there anything special you usually do for the holidays?
Stella: Could you share with us your favorite holiday meal/dessert/candy?
Brighton: I’m a sucker for decorated sugar cookies. But they have to have red hots on them or I’m not interested.
Stella: What’s your favorite thing about the holidays?
Brighton: I love seeing the wonder on my kids’ faces. It’s amazing reliving Christmas through their eyes.
Stella: Do you have any favorite holiday themed stories (movies or books)?
Brighton: I love, love, love Christmas movies. My favorite is Elf. I could watch it a hundred times and not get sick of it. Next favorite is Home Alone, followed closely by The Polar Express.
Stella: What’s one of the best gifts you ever received/gave for Christmas?
Brighton: Last year, my husband gave me a handmade necklace with the quote, ”Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.”
Stella: Aww... *sighs* What makes you feel that Christmas time is finally here?
Brighton: I used to get in the spirit right after Thanksgiving, but it seems to be later and later. I usually start to get that feeling either when it’s snowed a whole crapton (which it’s actually doing as I type up these answers) or when I get the presents all wrapped and under the tree.
Stella: Christmas/the holidays wouldn't be the real deal without...
Stella: What would be your (bookish or not) New Year’s resolutions?
Brighton: I try not to do resolutions, because they inevitably fall by the wayside, and I don’t like to fail. Haha!
Stella: Let’s say you have the chance to spend the holidays with a fictional character, who would that be and what would you be doing?
Brighton: I would totally hang out with Buddy the Elf. He’d take me around New York and show me all the awesome stuff there.
Stella: You have a holiday release: Season of Second Chances, congratulations! Could you please tell us a bit more about it?
Brighton: Thank you! This is a story about Claire and Logan, who were once engaged. Logan was a bit of a workaholic and Claire finally got fed up with being shoved farther and farther down his priority list. Claire is back in Chicago, Logan’s hometown, on business, and a snowstorm grounds all flights and strands her there. Being Christmas Eve on top of the blizzard, the hotels are booked, but fortunately Logan comes to her rescue. Throw in some old memories, a few too many glasses of wine, and combustable chemistry, and you have the start of their second chance.
Stella: What inspired you to write a Christmas story?
Brighton: I love Christmastime, and when I saw that Angela James was doing an open call for Carina’s Christmas Anthologies, I knew I wanted to submit to it.
Stella: How was it different penning a story set around Christmas-time than any other time of the year?
Brighton: In some ways it was easier, because with Christmas certain events are sort of a given—decorating the Christmas tree, going ice-skating (if you live up north, anyway!), etc. So it was nice to have a built in set of scenes, if you will, to be able to pull from if I got stuck on a certain part.
When a storm strands Claire Hanlin in Chicago on Christmas Eve, the last person she expects to come to her rescue is Logan Dawes, the man she almost married two years ago. The chemistry between them is dangerously potent, but with nowhere else to go, Claire accepts Logan's offer to stay with him for the night.
Back in the home they shared, surrounded by reminders of Logan and his young daughter, Claire begins to realize how much she misses the family she almost had. After a few cups of Christmas cheer, she falls right back into her ex's arms-even though she knows it means setting herself up for heartbreak all over again.
The magic of the season has thrown him together with the woman he's never stopped loving, and Logan's not about to pass up this gift. He's not the workaholic he was two years ago-his family comes first. Now all he has to do is prove it to Claire, before the snow stops and she flies out of his life for good.
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