September 17, 2012

Interview & Giveaway: Rebecca Rogers Maher


Image Credit: Florin Gorgan

Today we’re interviewing author Rebecca Rogers Maher. She writes very emotional books that I recommend to fans of angsty Romance and Women’s Fiction. Please let’s give her a warm welcome.

Hello Rebecca, welcome to Romance Around the Corner.

RRM: Thank you so much for having me!

Q. For all of our readers who may not be familiar with your work, could you tell us a bit about yourself and your books?

RRM: Sure! I live in Brooklyn, New York with my husband of twelve years and our two little boys. I’m a former New York City public school teacher. A few years ago I started writing, and three books tumbled out all on top of each other. They ended up becoming the Recovery Trilogy—I’ll Become the Sea, Snowbound with a Stranger and my most recent, Fault Lines. All three are stories about real women facing very real-life problems. And as they go about dealing with these problems they meet some incredibly sexy and kind-hearted men.

Q. Fault Lines is the last book in your Recovery Trilogy. Did you always know you were writing three different stories? What came first, the characters or the plot?

RRM: I didn’t set out to write a trilogy, but these secondary characters started haunting me and I felt called to write their stories too. Then I realized that all three books were about women recovering from different kinds of emotional trauma, so their stories shared similar themes as well as being about women who knew one another. 

Usually a character’s problem comes to me first, and it’s often a problem I relate to or that someone I know has gone though. You know how it is – girlfriends get together and talk to each other about what’s troubling them. Those are the kinds of stories that interest me – real stories that real women are experiencing right now. When I’m writing, I think about the problem I’ve chosen, and then about what kind of woman would have a problem like that and how she would go about solving it, and as I think all that through, the character deepens and the plot starts to emerge. 

Q. Abuse is a recurrent theme in your books, especially in I’ll Become the Sea and Fault Lines. Those books weren’t easy to read and I assume they weren’t easy to write. Why did you choose to portray this subject? 

RRM: To me, I’ll Become the Sea and Fault Lines are not so much about abuse as they are about recovering from abuse – what that looks like, how it might be possible, and how beautiful it is. People who’ve been through tough things are strong and interesting, and their stories are moving – particularly people who’ve been through tough things and then recovered from them and found happiness. I know a lot of strong women like that! When I write, I like to hang out with characters like them, because their bravery inspires me. The books were difficult to write, yes, but they were also inspiring, and I hope that readers will have that experience too—that they will take away a feeling of strength and hope. 

Q. What can you tell us about Fault Lines?

RRM: I’ll be honest; Fault Lines is a difficult book. Sarah is a rape survivor, and her story is painful, but I think it’s beautiful how she comes through it. It contains some of the most intense and realistic sex scenes I’ve ever written, as well as some seriously moving relationships between Sarah and the women in her life. The story is also purposely short, and it doesn’t spell everything out for you. That’s because I know my readers are smart enough to handle a book that asks questions and doesn’t necessarily answer them, that makes you think and stays with you. Sarah is a strong character, and her experience is very realistic. So when she gets her happy ending, it is incredibly powerful. 

Q. What do you think is the main appeal of Contemporary Romance? Have you ever considered writing in a different genre?

RRM: For me, the appeal of contemporary romance is that we can talk directly about real things that are happening in our lives right now. The characters can be just like people we know and can have the same problems we have. And they can get happy endings too, because they deserve them. Just like all of us real women do!

I love historical romance and science fiction, so one day I’d like to try my hand at those, although I have to admit I might not have the patience for all the research that’s required. So if I ever do it, I’ll probably just make things up like crazy and hope nobody notices. 

Q. What else are you working on? What can we expect from you in the future? 

RRM: I’m finally biting the bullet and writing a standard-length 80,000-word contemporary. I’ve resisted it in the past because I think it’s almost impossible to maintain the tension at the level I like for that long of a book. (I like to keep the screws turned tight!) But this story has some twists, so it’s working out well. It’s about an agoraphobic woman who can’t leave the house and the carpenter who comes to renovate. They hate each other! It’s awesome.


Q. Finally, what’s your favorite Romance Novel?

RRM: I love Lisa Kleypas’s books, and my favorite is Devil in Winter.

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions. We’re so happy you could join us, please come back soon!

RRM: Thank you! It’s been wonderful to be here. 

Rebecca lives in Brooklyn, New York with her husband and children 

You can find her on:


Sarah Murphy plans other people's weddings. She's gorgeous and successful, but she also carries a dark secret.
At one of her events, she meets Joe Sullivan, a sexy photographer with a difficult past of his own. When he snaps a rare unguarded photograph of her and captures the real person hiding behind the facade, she feels exposed. To restore the upper hand, she tries to do what she always does: use sex to defuse the situation.
While Joe is eager to deepen his relationship with Sarah, he's aware of her emotional shield and the way she disconnects from her body. Seeing her at her most vulnerable doesn't scare him off, but he needs to know what she's hiding.
Sarah has a tough decision to make. Does she want to go on living a lonely, emotionally frozen life? Or can she finally risk revealing the truth and move forward with Joe?

Fault Lines will be out next week, you can preorder it here:

Giveaway:

Click on the banner for extra tour stops and giveaways.

As part of Rebecca’s blog tour, we’re giving away one e-copy of Fault Lines to one lucky commenter. For a chance to win just leave a comment with your email. Contest open to all, I’ll pick the winner on 9/28. You have until then to enter. Additional tour stops can be found here.

Rules:
  • Winner gets one e-copy of Fault Lines by Rebecca Rogers Maher
  • Contest open internationally.
  • Ends 9/28/12
  • Winner will be selected using random.org and announced here, via email and will have 73 hours to respond.
  • For more details read our giveaway policy.

17 comments:

  1. Thank you for hosting Rebecca today, Brie! :)

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    1. Yes, Brie, thank you so much! It was wonderful talking with you. And thanks for all the fantastic work you do at Romance Around the Corner. It's such a great resource for us romance readers!

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  2. Sounds like some tough women with some tough issues. These books must have been difficult to write. I'm interested in the new book. The concept sounds interesting. I can imagine the tension between the MC and the Carpenter.

    Nice interview and thanks for the giveaway!

    jadaloves[at]gmail[dot]com

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    1. Thank you Jade! Good luck ;-)

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    2. Hi Jade! Yes, I love tough women. :) They're difficult to write in a good way, in a challenging way, because I want to do them justice and make them real. But their happy endings mean something because they've earned them, and I love that.

      So glad you stopped by today -- thanks for saying hello!

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  3. Great interview. I read all three of Maher's books and loved every one of them. Her writing is really smart and sharp. All her characters are so well written and fully developed. Her female characters are beautifully flawed, struggling, courageous women who make mistakes and continue to strive forward. The heros are equally interesting and very sexy. I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of Fault Lines and highly recommend it, especially to anyone who is the survivor of abuse, rape or trauma. It is an intense novel who unravels how her heroine experiences the fallout of her experience, fumbles, then eventually comes to terms and faces her reality. Plus you don't get to see the story of a rape survivor very often and Maher does an amazing job portraying the effects of ptsd.

    I can't wait for the next book!

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    1. Thanks for the thoughtful comment. She does write emotional stories. I haven't read Snowbound with a Stranger, but Fault Lines and I'll Become the Sea were great. I also look forward to her next book, hopefully it will come out soon.

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    2. What a kind comment -- thank you! Courage is a big theme for me. I know so many brave women, and I think there's a place for real stories like theirs in romance. Stories of emotional bravery, I mean, and recovery. I'm so glad you've connected with the Recovery Trilogy books. Thank you for reading them and for taking the time to tell me what you thought. So nice to hear from you!

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  4. I've never read books on these topics before. This sounds like a great book and I'd love the opportunity to read it.

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    1. Hi Elaine! I can't find your email on your profile and I won't be able to count your entry as valid. If you come back leave a reply with the address so you don't miss the chance to win the book.

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    2. Thank you, Elaine! Good luck with the giveaway!

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  5. Very nice interview.

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  6. These books sound fabulous! I've worked in crisis response and I'm always glad to see authors use trauma in a realistic and sensitive way (rather than as a one dimensional plot point).

    I'd love to win!

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  7. Katie, that is a great point. With Fault Lines, I wanted to show what trauma and recovery might really look like, not just as a shortcut to character development, but in a meaningful day-to-day way. One of the many benefits of that choice is how satisfying the happy ending is, because after everything Sarah has been through, she really deserves it.

    Thanks for writing, and good luck with the contest!

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  8. This is the first I have heard of your books, they sound wonderful. I read all sub genres of romance and there are times when I want to dig into a book that grabs at your heart strings and these sound like they will do just that.

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    1. Thank you so much! I read all sub-genres of romance too. It's the ones that make me cry that I love the best -- they stay with you, right? Thank you for coming by to say hello!

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The books reviewed here were purchased by us. If the book was provided by the author or publisher for review, it will be noted on the post. We do not get any type of monetary compensation from publishers or authors.