Welcome to my stop on the MELTDOWN tour! Today I have an interview with the author, and then my review for MELTDOWN. I hope you'll help me welcome Tara by leaving a comment or question!
tell me about yourself, and your writing.
I am a married mother of three who spends too much time chasing her children & reading other people’s delicious books, but not enough at the gym or working on my second novel. I am a vegetarian who would like to be a strict vegan except that I can’t seem to break up with cheese completely. And my perfect day would involve ice-cold margaritas (notice the plural ending!) and a sizzling beach read.
So far there is just Meltdown, which follows a group of sexy, ambitious people with big careers and scandalous love lives. From New York’s Wall Street to the catwalks of Paris, Meltdown is a glitzy, international, fast-paced novel which leaves you guessing until the very last page.
How long have you been writing? How many published books do you have, and what genres?
I’ve been writing forever (or about thirty years which feels like forever). I just have Meltdown so far, which you could call contemporary women’s fiction or chick-lit, your choice.
Do you write in multiple genres or just one? If just one, do you ever consider straying outside your genre?
I wouldn’t mind delving into erotic romance, to be honest. As long as I felt I could keep it fresh and not just rehash what is already out there. But for now, my next novel is about a couple adjusting to the often traumatic first year of marriage and first-time parenthood... and there’s not much going on between the sheets for Lila and James as they discover life doesn’t always turn out ‘happily ever after.’
Are you a plotter or do you write from the seat of your pants?
I plot in my head, and then I just sit down and see where my characters take me.
What is a typical writing day like for you?
I get the kids off to school, then head back home to enjoy a cup of coffee with Matt Lauer (I know everyone’s mad at him these days, but he’s still my fave). Sometimes it takes eight weather reports, but eventually I turn the TV off and write... until it’s time to get the kids or I get hungry. Hopefully I’m able to get back to it, but I’m definitely more of a morning person when it comes to writing.
Who do you love to read? Favorite authors, favorite books?
Once I moved beyond Francine Pascal and her Sweet Valley High crew, I discovered Sidney Sheldon. He is definitely my favorite author of all time. But these days I rarely miss a Kristen Hannah (the fabulous TullyandKate from Firefly Lane are two characters so well created and developed I still think about them like they’re real friends of mine), Jeffrey Archer (Harry Clifton- swoon!) as well as Jane Green, Sarah Pekkanen, Sarah Jio and Jane Porter.
What is something you'd like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
I’d like to finish my second novel and decide if I want to indie publish again or get an agent and go the traditional route. I’d also like to attend a writer’s workshop in Westport. We recently moved to Connecticut and there’s a thriving writing community here that I’d like to become involved in.
If you could have one paranormal ability, what would it be?
To see into the future... no wait, to be invisible. Actually, both.
If you could keep a mythical/ paranormal creature as a pet, what would you have?
A unicorn, of course!
Tell us a little about your latest release.
NYSSA escaped an abusive father and successfully navigated life’s seedy underbelly to become a runway renegade, although not without leaving her share of enemies behind. Lately she’s caught the eye of STEVE, handsome hometown hero and soon-to-be Governor of Texas. He publicly dumps his perfect, former Miss Texas wife for Hollywood’s latest ‘It’ girl as his state faces the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression. Can he turn things around or is he too embroiled in his political sex scandal? His good friend and business partner DEMETRI is at the top of his professional game and tries to save his friend from near financial ruin. Yet he’s distracted by Steve’s new girlfriend. Years ago, Nyssa ran from him and he’s never forgotten her. But why is he still interested? Demetri’s dating AISLINN, a woman as brilliant as she is beautiful. Enjoying all the perks of having a billionaire boyfriend, she’s falling fast for Demetri and has no idea that she might be the one getting played.
In this novel, no one is exactly who they appear to be... And all of them are heading for a MELTDOWN.
What is something that you absolutely can't live without? (Other than family members)
Sunglasses. I have light eyes and bright sunlight gives me headaches.
Could you ever co author a book with someone? If so, who would you choose, and what would you write?
I think so, especially if we each wrote our own characters and collaborated more on the overall plot and timing. It would be a gift to work with any established author as I’m so new to this. As the lowest man on the totem pole, so to speak, I would definitely defer to them and just try to live up to their standards.
If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?
The great thing about reading is that my answer changes based on the latest historical novel I’ve read. Who doesn’t want to travel back in time after reading a Philippa Gregory novel??? But if I had to be honest, I would probably use that gift to ask Sidney Sheldon for a masterclass in the art of writing a blockbuster novel, as he did so many, many times. Master of the Game, Rage of Angels, The Other Side of Midnight, Windmills of the Gods... how can one single person write so many fascinating, by-the-seat-of-your-pants novels???
What are some of your other hobbies outside of writing?
Unfortunately, eating and drinking are on the list, although I don’t enjoy cooking all that much. I love going to the movies with my husband and cuddling with my kids. Even though I don’t work in finance anymore, I’m still fascinated by the global markets. Interior design is a huge passion and since we’re in the process of moving into a new house, I’m having fun exploring it for myself instead of working with pesky clients.
If you were on the staff to have a book adapted to movie, what would you pick?
Probably Adored, by Tilly Bagshawe. Although it might be more Lifetime Movie Network than Movie Theatre.
What is a talent you wish you had, but don't?
I would kill to be a parent that LOVED helping her kids with school projects. Not one that was just good at them, but a mom who actually enjoyed making ridiculously creative, over-the-top projects that their kids are proud to bring into school. Unfortunately for my children, I am neither a good nor creative project-mom. I find them tedious and truly frustrating. I wasn’t good at projects when I was in school, but for some reason it wasn’t as big of a deal back then. Most of the other kids brought in relatively lame projects too, made with markers and construction paper. Volcanoes were made in science class... by the science teacher. Not at home, in my kitchen. By me.
Remember book reports? Apparently they are a thing of the past. This year my eight year old told me he needed to make a movie based on the Star Wars book he read. I whipped out the construction paper and markers- and then wrote a note to the teacher telling her there was already a movie.... It was called Star Wars.
Yep, my special power would definitely be- “Awesome Project Mom.”
I was going to say pink until I looked into my closet- a sea of black. But according to the pile of fabric swatches beside me it is grey. And my kitchen idea book would say white. (Ummmm yes, my favorite store is Black House, White Market.)
Weather: Hot or cold?
Hot, with a cool breeze and an icy margarita in hand.
Favorite place to read?
In a chair by the pool. Or my bed. Or anywhere there are no screaming children keeping me from turning the page.
Anything (vegetarian) Mexican, Indian or Thai.
Favorite non-alcoholic drink.
Coffee with coconut milk creamer in the morning and iced water with lemon in the afternoon.
If you could travel anywhere and do anything, no limits or money holding you back, where would you go?
Back in time to see my grandmother who died almost fifteen years ago and whom I still miss terribly.
NYSSA, internationally renown supermodel, is accustomed to turning heads. As a young girl, her flawless face attracted the wrong kind of attention. She escaped an abusive father and successfully navigated life’s seedy underbelly to become a runway renegade, although not without leaving her share of enemies behind. Lately she’s caught the eye of....
STEVE, handsome hometown hero and soon-to-be Governor of Texas. Unfortunately he’s already married. As Steve publicly dumps his perfect, former Miss Texas wife for Hollywood’s latest ‘It’ girl, his state faces the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression. Will he be able to turn things around, or is he too embroiled in his political sex scandal? His good friend and business partner....
DEMETRI, sexy hedge fund manager, is at the top of his professional game and tries to save his friend from near financial ruin. Yet he’s distracted by Steve’s new girlfriend, who just happens to be Demetri’s old flame. Years ago, Nyssa ran from him and he’s never forgotten her. But why is he still interested? Demetri’s dating....
AISLINN, a woman as brilliant as she is beautiful. Enjoying all the perks of having a billionaire boyfriend, she’s falling fast for Demetri and has no idea that she might be the one getting played. Although she bets big on Wall Street, the largest casino in the world, nothing is more risky than giving her heart away.
In this fun, juicy, glamorous novel, no one is exactly who they appear to be...
And all of them are heading for a MELTDOWN.
Who will rise from the ashes?
Review Rating: 4 LIGHTNING BOLTS
Review: The well crafted and deep complexity of the characters of this book is what drew me in right away. There's four central characters, each have their flaws and their journey to find peace from the past took me on a wild adventure. To some, they may have everything they could ever want with a big career and dream job, but if you look deep down, you'll notice that's certainly not the case.
Meltdown is a riveting novel with plenty of twists and turns, suspense, romance, and emotion. The author's voice and writing style makes it easy to read and the pages turning. The character's lives intertwine, making for plenty of explosive results, but in the end, things find their place.
I'm intrigued by this author and certainly look forward to more!
I am a married thirty-something with three awesome kids and a sweet, workaholic husband. We had two dogs but about the time I was feeling completely overwhelmed, they abandoned my chaotic house for doggie heaven (for their sakes, I hope no children are chasing them anymore). In my former life I attended Washington University in St. Louis and Columbia Business School in New York, and worked on Wall Street and Main Street before giving up on both. I thoroughly enjoyed my twenties and am quite content settling down to a much quieter life in Suburbia, USA. For me, writing is a much welcome respite from the reality of running to the bus stop, pediatrician, food store, gym, soccer games, tennis lessons, etc. etc etc. My family and I recently moved from Garden City, Long Island to Wilton, Connecticut and couldn’t be happier.
Buy the book!