Q & A with the authors from Small Town, Large Hearts

What can you tell us about the small town setting of your upcoming romance?

Samantha Chase (author of RETURN TO YOU): The south shore of Long Island had always been my heroine Selena’s home. Born and raised minutes from the beach, she always dreamed that it would be where she’d find love, raise a family and live happily ever after. The small coastal town really hadn’t been part of James Montgomery’s plan for his own life, after meeting Selena, it’s suddenly a very appealing part of his future.

Grace Burrowes (author of KISS ME HELLO): Damson Valley lies in rural Maryland, about an hour away from both Washington, DC, and Baltimore. The Appalachian Mountains give the town a protected, bucolic feel, despite the proximity of big city lights. My hero attorney MacKenzie Knightley loved growing up with his brothers on a farm right outside Damson Valley, and was all too happy to go into practice with both James and Trent. The Knightley farm is now owned by foster mom Sidonie Lindstrom, who has moved away from Baltimore to give her foster son a better start in life. Sid has no patience for small town life, though before too long, the scenery does catch her interest…

Andrea Laurence (author of FEEDING THE FIRE): If you’re willing to turn your car off the highway and venture from the beaten path, you might be lucky enough to run across a town like Rosewood, Alabama. Steeped in southern charm and the traditional values of God, Family and Football (although not always in that order), Rosewood is like a time capsule preserving everything modern cities have lost. Here, you’ll find homemade pies, perfectly brewed sweet tea, and beauty parlors filled with lively gossip. It’s the kind of town where everybody knows everybody – and everybody knows your business whether you like it or not! Thanks for stopping by. Sit a spell and tell us what you know.

Word can really get around in a small town. Do noisy neighbors and gossip cause any problems in your couple’s romance?

Grace Burrowes: Mac and Sid’s first shared meal is in a local pizza joint, and before he even sits down, Mac realizes he’s making a mistake. His old choir director is two tables over, his nemesis from high school wrestling tournaments is grinning at him from the bar, and the woman he took to the senior prom—many years and several dress sizes ago—is smirking at him from across the room.

No way will MacKenzie Knightley’s little brothers won’t learn of his outing with Sid. Oops!

What is the most romantic spot in town?

Samantha Chase: At the time of their meeting, Selena is a senior in high school and James – who is two years older – is working for a landscaping company.  For them, the most romantic spot in town is the beach.  They’re not far from the larger beaches – like Jones Beach or Smith’s Point – but it’s the smaller beaches that they love to frequent.

When they meet up again ten years later, the town is still the same but their time together there is very short and I believe Selena would have loved to revisit the shore and walk in the sand with James, but they never get the opportunity to. 

When your heroine and her friends go on a ‘girls night out’, where do they go?

Andrea Laurence: There’s really only one hot spot in Rosewood, so the ladies dress up and head to Woody’s Bar too. The only thing that will tear the guys’ attention away from football is a tight pair of jeans, so there’s always love connections happening at Woody’s. If they’re looking for something more sophisticated, the ladies will hop in the car and head to Birmingham in search of shopping, sushi and champagne.

About the Authors and Books

Samantha Chase

New York Times and USA Today Bestseller Samantha Chase released her debut novel, Jordan's Return, in November 2011. Although she waited until she was in her 40's to publish for the first time, writing has been a lifelong passion. Her motivation to take that step was her students: teaching creative writing to elementary age students all the way up through high school and encouraging those students to follow their writing dreams gave Samantha the confidence to take that step as well. 

When she's not working on a new story, she spends her time reading contemporary romances, playing way too many games of Scrabble or Solitaire on Facebook and spending time with her husband of 25 years and their two sons in North Carolina.

RETURN TO YOU releases March 3, 2015. You can preorder the title here


Grace Burrowes

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Grace Burrowes' bestsellers include The Heir, The Soldier, Lady Maggie's Secret Scandal, Lady Sophie's Christmas Wish and Lady Eve's Indiscretion. The Heir was aPublishers Weekly Best Book of 2010, The Soldier was a PW Best Spring Romance of 2011, Lady Sophie's Christmas Wish won Best Historical Romance of the Year in 2011 from RT Reviewers' Choice Awards, Lady Louisa's Christmas Knight was a Library Journal Best Book of 2012, and The Bridegroom Wore Plaid was a PWBest Book of 2012. Her Regency romances have received extensive praise, including starred reviews fromPublishers Weekly and Booklist. Grace is branching out into short stories and Scotland-set Victorian romance with Sourcebooks. She is a practicing family law attorney and lives in rural Maryland.

KISS ME HELLO releases March 3, 2015. You can preorder the title here


Andrea Laurence

Andrea Laurence has been a lover of reading and writing stories since she learned to read at a young age. She always dreamed of seeing her work in print and is thrilled to finally be able to share her special blend of sensuality and dry, sarcastic humor with the world. A dedicated West Coast girl transplanted into the Deep South, she's working on her own "happily ever after" with her boyfriend and their collection of animals including a Siberian Husky that sheds like nobody's business.

FEEDING THE FIRE releases March 16, 2015. You can preorder the title here