Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I was raised in Middle Earth by a hobbit named Samwise Gamgee who told us lots of…oh all right. I never know what to answer when asked this because I’m just me and trying to make myself interesting is tough! I am Canadian. I have two grown sons, have been married to my college sweetheart for twice as long as I haven’t been married. I cook by smoke alarm, though I can make a pretty good chocolate macaroon or English trifle. I was raised in the country, surrounded by a horse farm on one side, a forest behind me, a cornfield to the other side, and cattle across from me, where everyone was related to everyone but me. And it was a half hour to forty five minute drive to civilization. Which may explain why I like writing cowboy stories, and small town stories where everyone knows everyone else’s business.
So how did you come up for this idea for the Grady Legacy?
After the success of my Tangled books at Carina Press, my editor came to me and asked if I’d consider writing another western for them. I’d been toying with the family drama idea for a while and started doodling with ideas. I know how much connection to the land most farmers have, and how precious it is to them and how it would hurt to face losing it, and that sometimes long term marriages can be strong but may have suffered rocking times to get there. So I came up with Ben’s story (Slow Ride Home) when he discovers, after his father’s death, that someone else is claiming to be a Grady and part owner of the land, and discovers his parents’ marriage wasn’t as strong as he’d always thought it was, and that there really is another Grady, though he’s not the one trying to steal part of the family ranch. As I was writing Ben’s story, I realized that his brother Jake had a few secrets of his own, and that people had been keeping secrets from Jake too that would destroy his world, and of course, their half-sibling had to deal with everything as they discovered their true identity. And The Grady Legacy was born.
Can you tell us a bit about this book?
No Accounting for Cowboys is Jake Grady’s story. In the first book, you discovered that, at his mother’s urging and in an effort to protect her, Jake had kept a secret from his brother, and that the ranch in financial trouble thanks to thieving bookkeeper and her ranch-hand husband. In Jake’s book, you get to see his side of the story, and why he did what he did, his connection to the land and how he’s struggled to come out from the shadows of his successful older brother. You also meet the new accountant Paige as she traces through the family finances and unravel the mess the previous accountant left. Paige was fun to write—instead of being the typical uptight bean counter, she has tattooes and piercings and rides a motorbike. She and Jake strike up an instant connection, especially since she’s seen his hidden persona. When he finally gets the notice he desires from his singing and is offered a music contract that would take him away from his beloved ranch, a contract he considers no signing because he has no desire to walk away from the ranch, and away from Paige, he is slapped with yet another secret, he realizes the only thing keeping on the ranch anymore is Paige herself, and he’s not sure at that point in their relationship if that’s enough.
What kind of research did you have to undergo for this great read?
Oh boy, there was so much. I have several sources for the ranching side of it. I had to make sure that the crops they grow and the issues they face are realistic. I had to research the music industry and the difference between an agent and a manager, and what it’s like to be on tour. And then there was the constant checking that my characters were talking like Texans, not Canadians. ;)
What’s next for You?
I’m writing book 3 of the Grady Legacy, Gabe’s story, which is called Wrangling The Past. Gabe’s story is quieter than Jake’s, because most of his issues come from his past and how he’s felt as an adopted child who is now discovering his real family and dealing with his changed circumstances. He’s also discovering that now people think he has money, they’re treating him differently and he doesn’t like it. After that I have to write a novella with a m/m/f romance involving firefighters. It’s hot stuff! :D
Lately I’ve been playing around with making polymer clay jewelry. It’s sort of like being back in kindergarten and playing with playdough but with prettier results. Mostly.
To wear – shades of blue, otherwise it often depends upon my mood – usually in a dark red tone or a dark green.
French vanilla coffee.
To watch – baseball. I love keeping a scoresheet at the games. To play, golf.
Cracker candy! Nom nom nom!
Oh wow, I have to choose only one? Okay, let’s go with Notting Hill. I love watching it and dreaming I live in England and can traipse the streets of London like Hugh does.
Fave TV Show?
The Big Bang Theory! I love the writing and how they can get the jokes by taking a joke that is funny on its own and adding one unexpected twist that makes it hilarious.
THANKS SO MUCH LEAH FOR PLAYING ALONG!!!
Jake Grady loves Bull's Hollow ranch and all the challenges and hard work it entails. But the past year hasn't been easy—his father's good name has been tarnished, and new financial problems are threatening to destroy everything the Gradys have built. Performing live under a stage name has become his escape, a way of blowing off some serious steam.
Accountant Paige Reynolds found Jake's guitar-playing alter ego intriguing, but her connection with the real Jake sends her attraction into overdrive. When she's summoned to make order out of the chaotic paper trail at Bull's Hollow, he sets her world a-rocking—both in bed and out. But Paige has a plan; she's determined to create her own path for the future, but is soon left scrambling for firmer ground.
Good news about Jake's potential singing career is followed by the revelation of another family secret, one that has him questioning whether he belongs at Bull's Hollow at all. But leaving the ranch would mean leaving his family…and Paige. How much is he willing to give up for a real shot at fame?
Buy links -- you can pick and choose which ones you want:
Order from Carina Press ~ Amazon ~ B&N ~ iBooks ~ Google Play
My website: bit.ly/1o6z7If
Facebook Page: on.fb.me/1iXjlgU
Jake's Playlist on YouTube: bit.ly/1qleQNE
Pinterest boards Leah created for inspiration: The Grady Legacy board: http://bit.ly/1m8f4Uh
No Accounting for Cowboys board: http://www.pinterest.com/leahbraemel/no-accounting-for-cowboys/