Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Interview with Mary Behre, author of Spirited and Giveaway - March 4, 2014

Please welcome Mary Behre to The Qwillery as part of the 2014 Debut Author Challenge Interviews. Spirited (Tidewater 1) is published today by Berkley. Please join The Qwillery in wishing Mary a Happy Publication Day!

TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery. When and why did you start writing?

Mary:  Hi! Thank you for inviting me to the Qwillery. I'm not sure when I started writing. I've been playing with words since I learned how to spell. As to why I write. . . well, that's easy. I can't NOT write. Writing is just part of me.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Mary:  I'm a die-hard plantser. LOL. I walk that fine line between plotting and pantsing. Usually, I get an idea for a scene in a book and build the story around it. I outline the five turning points in the story, but only vaguely. Then I write. More often than not, the villain surprises me.

TQ:  What is the most challenging thing for you about writing? Where do you write?

Mary:  Ha! The most challenging thing about writing for me is where I write. My desk sits in the in the back of the family room. Not a lot of privacy. So, if I don't get my daily word count met before the children come home from school, I've got to pick up and move to a more private area--like the kitchen. LOL.

TQ:  Who are some of your literary influences? Favorite authors?

Mary:  Ooh, that's a tough one. I have so many. Let's see Agatha Christie, Stephen King, Lynsay Sands, Beverly Barton, Suzanne Brockmann, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Valerie Bowman, and Ray Bradbury, just to name a bunch.

They're all extremely talented and each one speaks to me. Christie had this way of presenting a mystery that made the reader hungry to solve the puzzle. King can scare the Dickens out of you on one page and break your heart on the next. Sands has this fabulous ability to combine mystery, vampires and humor so smoothly, the reader wants to walk in the world she creates. Barton was gifted with writing three-dimensional villains that the reader could hate and sometimes even pity. Brockmann knows all about deep POV. Reading her books is like crawling around in someone's head and getting a glimpse of the world from a completely different perspective. Bradbury could spin worlds and teach a lesson without really trying. And Bowman, she's a newer author, she delivers witty banter that keeps me laughing and turning the pages.

TQ:  Describe Spirited (Tidewater 1) in 140 characters or less.

Mary:  Spirited has stolen gems, a pesky ghost with communication issues and dead bodies. A blend of humor, suspense and a psychic love connection.

TQ:  Tell us something about Spirited that is not in the book description.

Mary:  Jules has recently returned to Tidewater to help out her adoptive parents with their florist shop. But she's also in search of her two sisters. The three of them went into the foster care system after their mother died and due to errors and issues were separated. Jules has made it her mission to reunite with her siblings.

TQ:  What inspired you to write Spirited? Why did you choose to write Paranormal Romance? Do you want to write in any other genres or sub-genres?

Mary:  I woke up one morning thinking about a woman, dressed as a hooker, climbing through someone's bedroom window. I wondered who she was, why was she dressed like that (because in my head, she wasn't a hooker), and what drove her to breaking and entering. It sort of grew from there. As to why I write paranormal romance, well I like ghost stories and psychic phenomena. It came naturally.

My writing is a bit of a mash up between paranormal romance and romantic suspense and a dash of humor for good measure.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for Spirited?

Mary:  I went to the Edgar Cayce Foundation in Virginia Beach and picked up a few books. Edgar Cayce was a famous psychic in the 20th century who wrote a short pamphlet on auras. I did a lot of research on auras and found that he was one of the only psychics to discuss both positive as well as the negative aspects of aura colors. For example: red can be hatred or it can be passion, depending on the individual, the environment, and the moment.

TQ:  Who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why? Who is your favorite good guy, bad guy or ethically ambiguous character?

Mary:  Sam, the homeless war vet. I loved him from the moment he appeared on the page. His story flowed so easily. The hardest character to write was Mason Hart. He kept me revising. Every time I thought I had him figured out, he'd do something to surprise me.

My favorite character? Yikes, that like asking me which of my children is my favorite. I love all my characters, even the villains. After all, everyone's a hero of their own story.

TQ:  Give us one of your favorite lines from Spirited.

Mary:  "Ohmigawd, he's a walking condom commercial."

TQ:  What's next?

Mary:  SPIRITED introduced the readers to Jules, book 2, GUARDED, will bring Jules's younger sister, Shelley to Tidewater. Where Jules sees and speaks to ghosts, Shelley is a vet who is a psychic version of Dr. Doolittle. When Shelley notices the odd disappearances of animals at the zoo, she calls on an old college friend, Dev (Seth's partner from SPIRITED) to help her solve the mystery. When Shelley is implicated as murder suspect, Dev is forced to choose between risking his career or risking his budding romance with Shelley.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Mary:  Thank you for having me here today!


Tidewater 1
Berkley, March 4, 2014
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 320 pages

She’s running from who she is…

All Jules Scott wants is to live a normal, quiet life—preferably one that doesn’t include ghosts. Jules’s talent for communicating with the dead has brought her nothing but trouble. Despite her best efforts, needy spirits always find her and draw her into their otherworldly drama. When one implicates her in a series of deadly crimes, she may need to entrust her secrets to the person least likely to believe her…

He’ll do whatever it takes to catch her.

Detective Seth English can’t get distracted from the big case he’s working on, not even by his alluring new neighbor. He doesn’t believe that Jules had anything to do with the string of robberies-turned-murders that he’s investigating, but when she keeps showing up in all the wrong places, his gut tells him she knows more than she’s letting on. To solve his case, he’ll need to expose what the sexy redhead is hiding—no matter how impossible the truth may be…

About Mary

Mary Behre is the lone female in a house full of males and the undisputed queen of her domain. She even has the glittery tiara to prove it. She loves stories with humor, ghosts, mysteries and above all else, a good romance. When not writing, she enjoys reading, gluten-free baking, and spending time at the ocean.

When not hanging out with her husband and sons, she can regularly be found in her office. With her Pomeranian at her feet and her hands on the keyboard, she spends her time plotting new ways to torture her characters before they find their happily ever afters.

Mary loves to hear from readers. Find her on Twitter, Facebook, http://chickletsinthekitchen or at her website http://marybehre.com.

The Giveaway

What:  One entrant will win a Mass Market Paperback copy of Spirited (Tidewater 1) by Mary Behre.

How:  Log into and follow the directions in the Rafflecopter below.

Who and When:  The giveaway is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Giveaway ends at 11:59PM US Eastern Time on March 14, 2014. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. A romantic mystery with ghosts? I'm in.

  2. Sounds like a great story!

  3. Happy Release Day, Mary. I enjoy ghost stories and enjoyed many by Heather Graham.

  4. this book looks and sounds awesome!!! Congrats to Mary on the new release! I've read such fantastic reviews for this book :)

  5. I love the book cover and the book description. This is a book I would really read.

  6. The more I hear about Spirited, the more excited I am to read it. I think it sounds like a fantastic story.

  7. Love that it is a paranormal romantic mystery. It has everything I love in a great read. Thanks for the spotlight and great interview.

  8. A great post thank you. I love finding new series to start.

  9. Happy release day for Spirited! Looking forward to read this

  10. I like the cover book, and from the title, this book look interesting.
    Thanks for chance :)