Author Interview: Jean Sorrell


Interview Questions for “Shadow of Death”



What was it like studying English Literature?

Studying English Literature was like opening a gift box, a view of a world unknown to me before. The Brontes, Mary Shelley, Daphne du Mauier, Agatha Christie, Mary Stewart and so many other wonderful English women authors inspired me to want to be an author.

 

Should fiction authors consider getting a degree in Creative Writing like you did?

Everyone approaches the craft of writing in their own unique way. I should think writing comes more from “the doing” not just through academics. I’m glad I have my Ph.D. in Creative Writing, but I’ve learned so much more since then! I think it’s the process that’s most important.

 

You mentioned being a teacher and an art gallery owner. How have these career paths shaped your writing?

I love teaching. If I’ve imparted ideas that have encouraged others to write or just read great literature then I’ve been a successful teacher. I love Art. Maybe I should say I’m “in love” with Art, with every style from Classical to Post “Post” Modern, and every technique that artists have created.

 

How has living in Louisiana inspired your mysteries?

I search out and read mystery novels set in the British Isles, Ireland and other places in the world. Most of them offer atmosphere and images along with a plot that really appeals to me. When I decided to write mystery novels I wanted to create good stories, but also portray some of that wonderful eerie landscape I’ve enjoyed reading. Louisiana is that place and its sense of place and history inspires my stories.

 

Why is mystery your favorite genre?

Perhaps it’s because I like the puzzle of a whodunit. I also like entering a new place, seeing it for the first time, rooting for my protagonist to win the game, and ultimately her own personal stuggle.

 

When did you first begin to write?

I wrote my first story at the age of eight and I hope to still be writing at eighty-eight!

 

What advice would you give to writers struggling to find inspiration?

I tell my students all writing is personal. Search for inspiration everywhere but most often what you write about has a connection to your subjective self. Meditation helps.

 

I noticed your novel, Shadow of Death, is set during 1940 and in Louisiana. Why choose that particular time period?

I’ve been fascinated for years with the leper colony near Carville, Louisiana; the only hospital of its kind in America. In 1940 they were getting close to finding a cure for such a dreaded disease. That time frame, I decided, was important and would add texture to my story.

 

How would you describe your protagonist, Catherine Lyle?

She has just turned thirty and is a troubled woman. Her life has been filled with death and sorrow. She’s become a recluse in New Orleans, living in her own shadow world, buried beneath guilt and loneliness.

 

How many books have you written besides Shadow of Death?

One. “The Returning”
Will there be more mystery novels to come?

Yes. Catherine Lyle’s story isn’t finished.

 

How would you describe your writing using only three words?

Setting, Character, Plot.

 

Where can readers find you and your books online?

Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other e-book outlets.

 

 
 

 

Review: Before the Court of Heaven

Synopsis:

Historical Fiction based on a true story. A cautionary tale for today – how Germany’s Weimar democracy became the Nazi dictatorship.
Germany, after World War I. Ernst Werner Techow, son of a magistrate, a child of privilege, joins the violent right-wing response to Germany’s defeat. As a member of the para-military Free Corps and the murderous Organization C, he is recruited into a clandestine assassination network trying to bring down Germany’s fledgling Weimar democracy. These are the seeds of the Third Reich. Ernst participates in the murder of Foreign Minister Walther Rathenau, the highest-ranking Jew in the Weimar Republic. 
While on trial for his life, Ernst receives an unfathomable offer of forgiveness that jolts his surety in the fascist cause and sets him on a complex and harrowing journey of redemption. Throughout, he pursues his childhood sweetheart, Lisa. They are star-crossed lovers, their passion inextinguishable, buffeted by the rising storm of Nazi ascendance.
Before the Court of Heaven is populated by historical figures and accurately depicts events as they unfolded in Germany and beyond. Animated as historical fiction, Before the Court of Heaven is an immunization against recurrence. 

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

Before the Court of Heaven by Jack Mayer is a stunning historical novel. It’s based on a true event, World War I. In this book, I got to travel back in time. Placed in Germany. A frightening time in a world of confusion, conflict, and mistrust. War is something no one ever forgets. Before the Court of Heaven is a tale I’ll never forget. The characters lives stayed with me even when I finished. I felt like I was there as the events rolled by quickly. Realistic. Every page was believable. Jack Mayer’s talent is superb. His novel was well-written and told in an engaging way. I was hooked. Overall, I recommend this book to readers worldwide. 

Review: One More Taste

 

Synopsis:

If you can’t take the heat…

Chef Emily Ford has the talent and ambition to make it in the cutthroat culinary world—which is why she refuses to accept her demotion at the hands of Knox Briscoe, the new CEO of Briscoe Ranch Resort. He has grand plans that include bringing in a celebrity chef to helm an exciting new restaurant at the resort, but Emily has plans of her own—to do whatever it takes to change his mind…

ONE MORE TASTE

Cut out of the Briscoe fortune by an old feud that left his family in ruins, Knox grew up dreaming of revenge. Out-maneuvering his uncle for control of Briscoe Ranch is merely the first step in a grand plan that doesn’t include the brazen and beautiful Emily Ford…or the attraction that sizzles between them. With both their futures on the line, can they keep their desires on simmer—or are they headed from the frying pan straight into the fire?

Return to Briscoe Ranch Resort in the second book in Melissa Cutler’s One and Only Texas series!

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

One More Taste is indeed the perfect title to this stunning new release by Melissa Cutler. Inside, readers will find a story about passion, food, and family. The words create sensual yet exotic tale woven beautifully for all to enjoy. Yet, something dark and secretive is inside as well. Abusive relationships both present and the past are woken. A young woman ran away from her abusive family. But now, after meeting one man. She learns that she can’t hide any longer. Love and safety need to happen on her terms. Worked her life as a chef for one wonderfully rich family gave her the security and safety she needed. Until Knox. He brought out the truth. But Emily isn’t the only one trying to figure her life out…Knox has no idea what really happened that caused his father to break away from the family. But now, living and working with the big family, more questions than answers pop up…

One More Taste creates an irresistible need to know what happens. It dragged me into its depth. I was fascinated. A family was torn over an incident, and a woman hiding from abusive parents. But then fate has a funny way of bringing together those who do not seek it. Love, chemistry, and something deeper conspired in this magnificent read. I couldn’t help but follow the interesting characters. Their troubles and dramas became my own as I continued turning the pages. Absolutely loved reading another of Melissa Cutler’s finest novels. Overall, I highly recommend this romantic story to readers everywhere.

 

Review: The Light of Day by Kristen Kehoe

The Light of Day by Kristen Kehoe is the very first of her novels that I have read. I couldn’t believe just how amazingly the story was woven together. A new adult romance that can be read without having read the first book in this series.  The characters are so life-like it’s hard to believe it is world of fiction that is beautifully crafted by a talented writer.

There is something special about The Light of Day. Readers will immerse themselves into a world so hauntingly close to our own that it’s stunning. Two individuals are in rehab for two different reasons. A young woman does everything she can just to get her mother to notice her then one day realizes what she’s doing and why. Just as she’s about to take on her life with her feet planted firmly on the ground, she ends up meeting a man. Not just any man, but one who was injured from his career and is burying himself in his drinks and tons of one night stands. Then there she is… a young woman who draws him in like a magnet. What will become of two broken souls and their undeniable chemistry? Kristen Kehoe knows exactly what to give her readers and how to entice them into her glorious world of romance. I am hooked. I can’t wait to read more by Kristen Kehoe and would highly recommend her novel to all. I rate The Light of Day five out of five stars.

Book Review: Breathe Out by Martha Sweeney

Breathe Out by Martha Sweeney

Breathe Out is the second greatest novel that Martha Sweeney has so brilliantly written for her readers to enjoy. I don’t know how she does it, but once again she has captured readers to her novel like a moth to a flame. It’s hard to ignore when it’s so luring.

Breathe Out is part of a trilogy that readers won’t want to put down. The main female character Emma is back again and her struggles are just as sinfully entertaining as the first novel. Here, we see so much going on and how Emma has certain rules that must never be broken. Yet, dare she break two of them at once? Joe has way of making Emma question herself. I love how he so easily can break into her and turn her on light a light switch. Emma seems to do things that she doesn’t really think much about, but to Joe, he thinks he knows what Emma really wants. The real question is, does he really know what Emma wants? Also, readers’ hearts will be tugged at as Joe makes Emma feel things that she’s not ready to feel. Lust is beyond great but there’s more to Emma and Joe than Emma’s letting on. I love how beautifully written the story overall is put together. It’s hot, bold, and daring. Readers will be up all night long reading, as Joe keeps pecking away into Emma interior. And not just making her wetter than wet…

Martha Sweeney’s talent is raw, addictive, and masterfully done. It’s not just hot sex. I get more radiating from the characters and the fiery words. A real page turner and a writer, who knows how to write, exactly what her readers want or shall I say need? Breathe Out is a remarkable romance for all. I highly recommend it to readers worldwide. Once you read this…you’ll be begging for more. Overall, I rate Breathe Out a five out of five stars. Breathe In, Breathe Out, and Just Breathe…because the third and final sexy installment is out!