Today I have the extreme pleasure of welcoming Kathleen Bittner Roth back to my blog with her new release, Josette.
Thanks so much for being a guest on my blog.
Thanks so much for having me, Ashley!
Tell us how your writing journey began.
When I was a little girl, my younger sister would climb in bed with me at night and have me tell her stories until she fell asleep. It was only a matter of transferring my words to paper before I began writing them. I’ve been published since June of 2014. I write Historical romance set in the Victorian era. My fifth book, JOSETTE, was just released on September 29th.
And what is the best part of being an author?
Ah, I get to disappear from today’s oftentimes raw world into a faraway place where my mind wanders around as it pleases and the story unfolds on its own. I get to choose the people who will participate in my little “Movie of the Mind” (although secondary characters often pop in of their own accord). I love sharing my stories with readers.
How are you like your characters?
I’ve heard it said that authors unknowingly put something of themselves into everything they write. Someone once likened me to a weed in a crack on a sidewalk: “No matter how many times someone steps on you, you always spring back, stronger than before.” I like to think that if I am inserting a bit of myself into my stories, then the women I write about inherit that same resiliency.
What is your writing schedule like?
Writing is my job so I treat it like one. I am at my desk the same number of hours as any other workaholic (oh, did I say that)! I love writing and doing research so I spend a great deal of time at both. I take one full day off a week.
I live in Budapest, Hungary by choice because it’s a beautiful, lively, safe city with an incredible history. I love sitting at sidewalk cafes situated in front of architecturally stunning buildings, and meeting my Hungarian and expat friends at great restaurants that have thrived for years. Lunch along the Danube is awesome. I never tire of it. I also love to visit the thermal baths which abound here. I live only a block from City Park where there is a castle and the famous Szechenyi Baths. I spend time at both places as my writing reward.
What are you working on now?
I just finished page proofs for JOSETTE, book three in my When Hearts Dare series. I am actually working on three books at once. One of them is a WWII novel that needs a bit of hands on research so I will hie off to Northern France in September to get the setting clear in my mind. That’s another thing I love about living in Europe—I can be almost anywhere in no time!
Tell us something we’d be surprised to find out about you?
I taught myself to sew when I was ten-years-old. I would save up babysitting money (25 cents an hour) but I didn’t want to waste my hard-earned coin on patterns so I also taught myself to create my own out of newspaper. My father was duly impressed. Finally, after many years of sewing, sewing, sewing, I burned out. I am lucky if I manage to make the occasional pillow cover in a year’s time.
That is very impressive! Now for the quick pick this or that portion. coffee or tea
Tea – Earl Grey
dark chocolate or milk chocolate
Having to choose would be utter cruelty. I purchase delicious Hungarian truffles by the box. Dark chocolate on the outside, creamy milk chocolate on the inside. Yum.
A girl after my own heart driver or shotgun
Shotgun. I like to watch the views.
white or red wine
White but very little of it. I’m not much of a drinker.
cake or ice cream
Depends if I’m in Europe or the U.S. I don’t care for European ice cream unless it’s Italian Gelato (do I sound like a snob? Gosh, I hope not). Blue Bell Ice Cream out of Texas is my favorite (OK, I’m a snob about this particular ice cream). Cakes here are awesome and so are the pastry shops. My favorite cake is the Eszterhazy Torta, a pastry that has alternating thin layers of cake with frosting and lots of minced nuts.
the beach or the mountains
Both! I once lived in Opatija, Croatia where the emerald green mountains meet the turquoise-blue Adriatic. Heavenly! Opatija is a spa town built up in the 1800’s by Emperor Franz Josef for his wife Empress Elizabeth. The seaside is lined with mile after mile of grand baroque villas, now apartments and boutique hotels with restaurants.
Is there anything you’d like to share with the readers?
I really enjoy hearing from readers. I create a bios for each of my characters, a lot of which never shows up in the book, so I like to post those little tidbits on Facebook, my web page and Goodreads. Authors really rely on book reviews, so if you enjoy my stories, I’d love for you to leave a review on Amazon, Goodreads, or Barnes & Noble.
Thanks so much for being here. And you have a give away?
I’d like to do an audio giveaway of Celine and Alanna, my first two books in the When Hearts Dare series. My question is “If you were handed two round trip airline tickets, including all expenses paid to anywhere in the world where would you go and who would you take with you?”
Across the oceans, between worlds old and new—two lost souls find themselves at a crossroads
Following a devastating personal tragedy, Cameron Andrews, a wealthy shipping magnate, plans to sail off to nowhere for a few years. His plans are knocked off kilter when a precocious young girl bursts into his life, claiming to be his daughter. His attraction to the girl’s aunt, Josette LeBlanc—an independent beauty long scorned by society—is a complication neither wants. However, the passion that sparks between them cannot be denied. Soon, Cameron finds himself at Josette’s door during the oddest of hours. While both their hearts desperately need the healing they find in each other’s arms, will their wounded souls drive them apart forever?
Merde, but she was lovely. He’d guess Josette’s age to be three or four years younger than his thirty-two. And she was Louis LeBlanc’s widow? Egads. LeBlanc had been middle-aged even before Cameron left for England. “And you are a Thibodeaux as well, Madame LeBlanc?”
“Oui.” She glided into the room, the hem of her pale blue gown whispering across the floor. “Removed from the bayou to a lovely home in what people are referring to as the exclusive Garden District, yet no one in New Orleans has forgotten where I came from, or worse, that I am Odalie Thibodeaux’s daughter. Thus, I am considered even lower than Cajun bayou trash. I want something different for my niece.”
At her frank honesty, Cameron caught a glimpse of fleeting pain, replaced by a calm demeanor and benevolent smile. Oh, there was anger in this woman. And he’d not get within ten feet of it.
Kathleen Bittner Roth thrives on creating passionate stories featuring characters who are forced to draw on their strength of spirit to overcome adversity and find unending love. Her own fairy tale wedding in a Scottish castle led her to her current residence in Budapest, Hungary, considered one of Europe’s most romantic cities. However, she still keeps one boot firmly in Texas and the other in her home state of Minnesota. A member of Romance Writers of America®, she was a finalist in the prestigious Golden Heart® contest. Book three of her When Hearts Dare series, Josette, releases today. Find Kathleen on Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, Pinterest and www.kathleenbittnerroth.com.