I fell head over heels in love with Roxanne St. Claire's world of Barefoot Bay a few books ago, which is one of the reasons I'm SO excited I was able to interview her here on Wit and Sin! Ms. St. Claire's latest release is Barefoot in White, the first book in her Barefoot Bay Brides trilogy. You can read my review of Barefoot in White here, but I can tell you right now that this is already one of my favorite books of the year :)
Now onto the good stuff - Q&A time with Roxanne St. Claire!
Q: What inspired you to write the Barefoot Brides series?
A: When I looked for pictures to help me imagine the Casa Blanca Resort & Spa that grew from nothing to a jewel on the gulf in the first four books, I kept finding images of destination weddings on the beach. The idea just grew organically -- of course they’d have on-site wedding planners, and who doesn’t love a bride book? I introduced them in that fourth book as secondary characters visiting the property, and couldn’t wait to dive into their stories.
Q: The Barefoot Brides trilogy marks your third series set in Barefoot Bay. Was it always your intention to return to Barefoot Bay after the initial quartet, or is there something about Barefoot Bay that keeps drawing you back?
A: I knew I couldn’t leave Barefoot Bay! I had only planned four books in the original series, but regret set in when I started writing BAREFOOT BY THE SEA, the last of the quartet. I don’t really remember the light bulb moment, but as the resort setting grew, it seemed like a natural thing to have weddings there...and that led to the idea of wedding planners as heroines of their own trilogy! I had those billionaires on the brain, though, so I released them first. And now there’s a minor league baseball team moving to the island.... I guess there is something magical about Barefoot Bay. I like to joke that there’s been more water sex, proposals, and now weddings on that beach than anywhere else in the world!
Q: Do you have any favorites of the characters you’ve written?
A: Of course some of the earliest characters are close to my heart. I seem to find a role for Lacey Walker, the heroine of the very first book and lead owner of the resort, in every story. I also have a soft spot for her daughter, who might have to get her own book some day. I still love Ian from the last Barefoot Bay book and I just wrote a scene with Charity, the obnoxious owner of the Super Min convenience store. I love ‘em all!
Q: What's one thing about being an author you wish someone had told you before you were first published?
A: IT’S SO HARD IT HURTS. And it doesn’t get easier. In fact, each book is more challenging than the one before. I’m sorry, but this isn’t a fun job -- it’s an incredible amount of blood, sweat, and tears but after every book is finished, the work is incredibly satisfying.
Q: When you're not writing, what do you like to do?
A:There are so many aspects to the job that are “not writing,” sometimes it feels like I’m never not working! But when I escape, I love to spend time with my family and dogs, I read a lot, and since I live on the water, I get to kayak and enjoy the Florida sunshine. I volunteer at my church (in the nursery -- so much fun for a baby lover like me) and I kind of like to shop a little too much. Wait, is there such a thing?
Thanks for having me! If you or your readers have any other questions, fire away!
About Barefoot in White:
Destination wedding consultant Willow Ambrose has fought a battle with the scale for much of her life, but she has finally won the war. By putting her past behind her and cutting off all contact with anyone who knew her before and, of course, controlling everything she can, Willow has carved out a new body and a new life. But when she comes face to face with someone who left an indelible mark on her heart years before, all that threatens to crumble.
Navy SEAL Nick Hershey is on medical leave, doing a friend a favor as a stand in “man of honor” at a beach wedding. He might not be that interested in the nuptials, but the wedding planner catches his eye the minute they meet. When he realizes Willow is really a girl he knew in college — and a girl he unintentionally hurt to the core — he knows he has some making up to do.
Willow has learned how to beat every temptation...but Nick’s sweet as candy kisses just might be the one thing she can't resist. But the closer they get, the more the past threatens to tear them apart. Can overcome their history in order to have a forever future?
My Review | Amazon | B&N | Kobo
About Roxanne St. Claire:
Roxanne St. Claire is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than thirty novels of suspense and romance, including three popular series (The Bullet Catchers, The Guardian Angelinos, and Barefoot Bay) and multiple stand alone books.
In addition to being a six-time nominee and one-time winner of the RITA Award, Roxanne’s novels have won the National Reader’s Choice Award for best romantic suspense three times, as well as the Daphne du Maurier Award, the HOLT Medallion, the Maggie, Booksellers Best, Book Buyers Best, the Award of Excellence, and many others. Her books have been translated into dozens of languages and are routinely included as a Doubleday/Rhapsody Book Club Selection of the Month.