Hello all and welcome to my spotlight on one of my very favorite authors, Cathy Maxwell. Most of you who know me also know that I only started reading romance in 2009 and since then I have been making up for lost time. In 2010 I reviewed my first Cathy Maxwell book, His Christmas Pleasure and from then on I was hooked. I had the extreme pleasure of meeting Cathy in October of 2013 at the NJRW Conference and the fan girl in me was so happy. Cathy has a new book out now. The Bride Says No (The Brides of Wishmore #1) which is now a favorite of mine.
I was able to ask Cathy some questions about herself and share them with you. So please welcome Cathy Maxwell to the blog.
KIM: Thanks so much for stopping by Book Obsessed Chicks. I am such a fan girl of yours, which I have demonstrated when I so happily got to meet you at the NJRW in October. Since anyone can just go right over to your website and find out a lot about you on your bio page, I thought I’d go off the beaten track.
CATHY: Sounds good. This will be fun. You and I are just getting to know each other. We will be two divas on a tear in Connecticut next month.
1. What made you go from Kansas to Virginia?
I left Kansas to join the Navy. Now, for the record, I love Kansas. I adore Virginia as well and it is where I choose to live but there is something about Kansas that feeds my soul. Big skies, wonderful people, and a sense that anything is possible. I return to Kansas at least once a year.
2. What began your love of horses?
My uncle had horses when I was growing up but I didn’t feel a particularly strong connection. Then again, I must have felt something because I encouraged my two oldest children toward them. They weren’t interested (although my very oldest claims that she has always wanted a pony and would have been interested if she could have had a pony but that really is hooey. You know how kids can be.)
However, my youngest really latched on to riding. She had a talent for it. I also learned that everything people say about the benefits of encouraging girls toward horses is true. When Sam came home from middle school in one of those yippy moods, I’d say, let’s head to the barn. Whatever was bothering her would be in perspective after a few hours of riding.
And of course, with her out at the barn all the time, well, I drifted into loving horses as well. When my husband died, the horses were a life line for Sam and I.
By the way, I have to confess I am not a good rider. I won’t go near a show ring. A good day of riding is when I stay on. I happen to be blessed with a marvelous horse that tolerates my silliness when he isn’t being silly himself. Somehow it works.
3. Favorite dessert?
Something gooey, chocolate, and warm with vanilla ice cream and coffee.
4. Favorite drink?
If it you are asking about alcohol, it is wine. If you are asking in general, water.
5. What kind of car do you drive and why?
I drive a Camry Hybrid and a Ford 250. They balance each other out. The Camry is easy to drive. It is just fun and reliable. The Ford can pull a horse trailer.
6. What made you go into the military?
I wanted to see the world. The Navy looked like a good way to go about it. It was. I traveled a good bit and met some marvelous people.
7. Guilty pleasure?
I am a news junkie. I read two papers a day. One is a liberal paper and the other conservative. I feel I can get the whole picture that way. I enjoy thoughtful commentary and I give everyone the benefit of the doubt that they are coming from a good place. I like new ideas that challenge my thinking. I do not watch television news.
The most important influence in my life was my late husband. Kevin knew how to live fully and completely every single minute of the day. I’m working hard to keep his spirit inside me alive. He taught me to do work I love and don’t get too wrapped around the axle over things that are not in my control or anything else for that matter. Worry is a waste of energy. Plus, who knows if we will come this way again? Most of the stuff that consumes us is petty and disappears on its own. I can’t sweat it.
9. Do you have a favorite book from your childhood?
SCARFACE: “Being the Story of one Justin Blade, late of the Pirate Isle of Tortuga, and how Fate did justly deal with him, to his great Profit” by Andre Norton
10. Favorite place in the world and why?
Home. I love to travel and meet new people but I really enjoy my home. It is peaceful here. Creative. My place.
11. Book boyfriend… Is there a hero in either your books or someone else’s that you would love to be real and know more?
Interesting question . . . no. Well, wait. One of the reasons I loved SCARFACE is because I was caught up in the character of “Justin Blade.” There is a bit of the independent rebel in all of my heroes and they may stem from him. Well, that is something to chew on.
12. Do you have a pet peeve?
Intolerance in all forms—liberal, conservative, racial, nationalism, sexism . . . I don’t have time for it. My friends have learned I am not the one you send a joke about a sitting POTUS to. I am not a fan of disrespect and I try to stay away from judgmental people. I’ve discovered their lack of a sense of humor or tolerance for ideas other than their own is infectious. I don’t want to catch it.
13. Are you superstitious, if so what is that superstition?
I am not superstitious.
14. What would you like readers to know about you?
That I appreciate and value their support. We’ve had a good run together. Some of my readers have been with me from the beginning. I hope I never disappoint them, and I also hope I continue to entertain them.
I’m excited about “The Brides of Wishmore” series that starts with THE BRIDE SAYS NO. THE BRIDE SAYS MAYBE will be out this March (yes, they are back to back) and then THE GROOM SAYS YES will be out in October of this year. I hope to spin off the couple in GROOM for a small mystery series. Of course, I’ll keep writing romance. I have some ideas for a series around duelists. There it is! A Justin Blade reference. Kim, I didn’t realize how deeply that book from my childhood had inspired me until now!
15. Famous last words?
MY REVIEW OF CATHY MAXWELL'S ~ THE BRIDE SAYS NO ~ (THE BRIDES OF WISHMORE)
Meet Aileen and Tara Davidson. Well-to-do sisters from the beautiful Scottish countryside. Unfortunately for these ladies, their father is a reckless gambler who is always looking for a way to get out of debt only to jump right back into it. When Aileen leaves for her season in London in hopes of finding love and then marriage, Tara is devastated. She didn't want things to change, but life is continual change.
Years later, a divorced and disgraced Aileen is back on the childhood estate after doing the unthinkable and the most scandalous things a lady of the ton could do, she has divorced her abusive husband and has been accused of having an affair with his friend. So Aileen is relegated to a lonely existence while the now engaged Tara is days away from her wedding to the recognized bastard of a duke, Mr. Blake Stephens. Once again change comes to Annefield when Tara appears on the estate's doorstep dressed as a boy, running away from her wedding to Stephens. The selfish Tara has left London days before her wedding to seek out her true love, but all is not as it seems in her idea of paradise.
When Blake appears on the manor's doorstep with Tara and Aileen's father, things do not bode well for the sisters, for Stephens will not be slighted and the Earl needs his daughter married off. Tara is in love with Ruary, an expert with horses, but a commoner, and she only realized how much when being faced with a marriage to a man she does not love. Mr. Stephens is no man to be trifled with and Aileen realizes that from the first meeting with her sister's would be husband. What Aileen does not count on is her attraction to the broodingly handsome man.
Once faces with the guilt her determined father riddles her with, Tara back peddles and begrudgingly agrees to marry Mr. Stephens, leaving Aileen aghast with her foot in her mouth from defending the weakened Tara. Blake Stephens quietly admires the steel of Aileen's manner, and so begins the debacle of if Tara will marry or not marry Blake.
The Bride Says No, the first book the the Brides of Wishmore series by the indomitable Cathy Maxwell, is a brilliant and exciting start to her latest series. Aileen Davidson is now one of my all time favorite heroines of romance with her spine of steel and her understanding of the world she lives in. No longer jaded by the illusion of a happily married life, Aileen's abuse by her former husband transform her into a force to be reckoned with. At first I disliked Blake Stephens for his aloof manner and his slightly facetious personality, but that is a facade that Aileen gradually and unknowingly chips away. Cathy Maxwell's books are always so engaging, so full of humor, so very hard to put down. The Bride Says No is perfection from cover to the final words. I so thoroughly enjoyed Cathy Maxwell's, The Bride Says No and I highly recommend it to all.
~ KIMBERLY ~