Spotlight & Giveaway: Rebel in a Small Town by Kristina Knight

Posted July 5th, 2017 by in Blog, Spotlight / 57 comments

Today it is my pleasure to Welcome author Kristina Knight to HJ!
Spotlight&Giveaway

Hi Kristina and welcome to HJ! We’re so excited to chat with you about your new release, Rebel in a Small Town!

 
Hi, everyone! It’s so good to be back on Harlequin Junkie!
 

Please summarize the book for the readers here:

Rebel in a Small Town is book 2 in my new Slippery Rock series – it’s a reunion romance between interim sheriff James Calhoun and former-town-rebel Mara Tyler…and there’s a secret baby twist in there – lots of fun emotion, great conversation, and some fab smex, too!
 

What’s your favorite line(s) from the book?:

It’s the whole scene, really, but this little ditty between James and Mara in the beginning of the book still makes me laugh:

“It’s okay to be a lesbian—”
“I’m not a lesbian.”
“Okay, a bisexual—”
“If that look means you think you might be joining in a little three-way action now that I’m back in town, think again, Deputy Doofus. I’m not bisexual and I’m not a lesbian. I am a straight, CIS-gendered female who likes men.”

 

When you sat down to start this book, what was the biggest challenge you faced? What were you most excited about?

I was really excited to dig into what separated James and Mara in the first place. You might remember Mara’s brother, Collin, from the first book. It was challenging to delve into just why she felt she was at fault for their parents’ abandonment, and how that has shaped her world-view…and it was so fun helping her to see that she wasn’t at fault, and that she could have a full, love-filled life!

 

Please tell us a little about the characters in your book. As you wrote your protagonist was there anything about them that surprised you?

James’ need to *not* be the spitting image of his father was a surprise. His family has been the law enforcement in Slippery Rock for 3 generations at the start of the book, so I always considered him a law-and-order type guy. But he surprised me with how he wanted to make his own mark – he’s very much still a law-abiding soul…but he’s got a touch of rebel in him, too.

 

What have you learned about your own writing process/you as an author while writing this book?

That sometimes it’s best to let the characters lead the way! I had definite thoughts on both James and Mara when I was in the plotting stages, but they definitely led the book is slightly different directions that what I envisioned…and it’s such a better book because of that.

The First kiss…

Her mouth was soft against his, and she opened to him, her tongue tangling with his. She tasted like banana, and her hair was silky against the back of his hand. James wrapped the length around his fist, holding her in place so that his mouth could plunder hers. Mara wrapped her arms around his neck in response, rising on tiptoe and slanting her head.
This they could do and it would be simple and easy. Just like it had been right up until Nashville. Kissing Mara was the easiest thing in the world for James. It was coming home while also having an adventure—familiar but exciting at the same time.
She made a low sound in her throat, pressing her body against his. Her breasts were fuller than he remembered. He reached to cup her rear with his hand. Her hips were rounder, sexier. She wove her fingers through the short hair at the back of his head, sending another shiver of awareness through his body. Then she pushed her hips against his.

 

Did any scene have you crying or laughing (or blushing) while writing it?

This scene was a hoot to write – Mara’s on a security check at a local grocery store (she’s there to re-write their security protocols) and is caught ‘shop-lifting’:

A crowd gathered behind the check stand, mostly middle-aged women wearing jeans and T-shirts and probably boots, just like their husbands would. A few had small children with them and pushed the kids behind their carts as if Mara might be dangerous. “Turn off the buzzers,” she yelled, putting her hands over her ears.
The checker hung up the phone and came over to the glass. She said something that sounded peculiarly like “Criminals deserve discomfort” before backing away to the safety of her check stand. As if Mara was about to draw a gun or something.
“Now I know what the goldfish at the office feels like,” she muttered, still holding her hands over her ears. She pushed one foot against the inner and outer doors, but neither budged.
Finally the beepers stopped and everything quieted. Mara took her hands from her ears and tried the doors again. They didn’t budge. She repeated her call through the thick glass.
“I’m here on a security check. I need to speak with Michael Mallard.” The clerk shot a glance behind her toward an area marked Employees Only. No one appeared. The crowd began to disperse, lessening the goldfish effect.
She tugged at her earlobe when a low siren began to wail. Was this some kind of second-tier warning system? The clerk crossed her arms over her chest as if in triumph. The wailing became louder, and it wasn’t coming from inside the store. Mara pressed her face against the outer door, looking left and then right.
“No, no, no. Please, no.”

 

If your book was optioned for a movie, what scene would you use for the audition of the main characters?

Definitely the lesbian/bi-sexual/CIS-gendered conversation – because it tells so much about both James and Mara.

James blinked. “But she’s… And you’re… You said she was here to hook up with you.”
“I didn’t mean hook up hook up. God, why do men assume women can be friends with one another only if they’re also hooking up?”
“It was a natural assumption from the way you introduced her.”
“Are you sure you passed that police academy test? Your deductive reasoning could use a little work.”
“Yes, I’m sure I passed it, and my deductive reasoning isn’t flawed. You insinuated—”
“—that she was my friend. She’s also my employee, and no, that doesn’t mean I pay her for sex.” Mara intentionally lowered her voice even though there were no other people on the sidewalk. “There is no sex between Cheryl and me. I thought you’d already gotten the memo that my preferences lean toward men.”
“I didn’t know friends randomly meet up with other friends in strange towns where one or the other of them is working.”
“Then you obviously don’t have very good friends.” Mara crossed her arms over her chest. “Or you live in a town with a single stoplight, and so do all your friends.”
“Touché.” James put his hands in his pockets. “You look good.”
“So now that I’m not an attached lesbian-slash-bisexual, you’re going straight into hook-up mode?”
James grinned. “It was a statement of fact,” he said, “not an invitation for either of us to go jumping into whatever lake we were swimming in up until two years ago.”

 

Readers should read this book….

If they want to have fun, but have a few heart-tugging moments, too…and if they love a secret baby (because baby Zeke was so much fun to write!).
 

What are you currently working on? What are your up-coming releases?

I’ve got book 3 of the Slippery Rock series coming up next in September. It’s called Breakup in a Small Town. Then in October, a novella from the series, titled Outsider in a Small Town will be part of the Falling for You anthology with 9 other Harlequin Superromance authors…and in December, we wrap up Slippery Rock (at least for now!) with Christmas in a Small Town!

 

Thanks for blogging at HJ!

 

Giveaway: 1 winner will win a print copy of Famous in a Small Town (book 1 in the Slippery Rock series), along with some fun author swag! **open to US residents only**

 

To enter Giveaway: Please complete the Rafflecopter form and Post a comment to this Q: James is the interim sheriff of Slippery Rock when the book opens, and his family has been in law enforcement for 3 generations. Did you go into the family business? And, if not, what family business would you have liked to have been in?

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Excerpt from Rebel in a Small Town:

The gum-smacking teen pointed a broom handle at her as if she were under fire, and the bored clerk talked animatedly into the phone, waving her hands as she said something Mara couldn’t make out from her side of the thick-paned door.
She motioned to her bag and tried to shout above the racket of the beepers. “I’m with Cannon Security,” she said, but the teenager kept wielding the broom handle at her like it was a machete. “I’m on a security check,” she said, trying again, but neither of the employees seemed able to hear her. Maybe the two of them didn’t want to hear her.
Damn it. She checked her watch. She needed to be at the bed and breakfast in twenty minutes, and she didn’t see that happening. Crap, crap, crap. She never missed Zeke’s postnap snack. Never.
A crowd gathered behind the check stand, mostly middle-aged women wearing jeans and T-shirts and probably boots, just like their husbands would. A few had small children with them and pushed the kids behind their carts as if Mara might be dangerous. “Turn off the buzzers,” she yelled, putting her hands over her ears.
The checker hung up the phone and came over to the glass. She said something that sounded peculiarly like “Criminals deserve discomfort” before backing away to the safety of her check stand. As if Mara was about to draw a gun or something.
“Now I know what the goldfish at the office feels like,” she muttered, still holding her hands over her ears. She pushed one foot against the inner and outer doors, but neither budged.
Finally the beepers stopped and everything quieted. Mara took her hands from her ears and tried the doors again. They didn’t budge. She repeated her call through the thick glass.
“I’m here on a security check. I need to speak with Michael Mallard.” The clerk shot a glance behind her toward an area marked Employees Only. No one appeared. The crowd began to disperse, lessening the goldfish effect.
She tugged at her earlobe when a low siren began to wail. Was this some kind of second-tier warning system? The clerk crossed her arms over her chest as if in triumph. The wailing became louder, and it wasn’t coming from inside the store. Mara pressed her face against the outer door, looking left and then right.
“No, no, no. Please, no.”
The siren grew louder, and a few cars passing on the street pulled to the side.
“Let it be a fire. Let it be a fire.”
But it wasn’t a red fire truck that entered the parking lot. It was a big black SUV with Wall County Sheriff plastered along its side. She was definitely not making it to the B and B for snack time.
As the SUV came to a stop, she could make out the driver, a large man with brown hair and big aviator sunglasses over his eyes—eyes she knew would be the color of molten chocolate. This man had been interrupting her dreams since she’d hit puberty and began to figure out why male and female body parts were made so deliciously dissimilar.
“Crap, crappity crap.”

Excerpts. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
 

Book Info:

He’s not giving up his family without a fight
James Calhoun has never been able to resist Mara Tyler, or her knack for mischief. Her reputation as a reckless teenager drove Mara from their hometown. So Slippery Rock is the last place James ever expected to see her, and Mara’s timing couldn’t be worse. With the upcoming election for sheriff, she threatens the squeaky-clean image James needs to win. Because Mara has brought with her the result of their steamy affair: his two-year-old son, Zeke. After the initial shock, James is determined to have both his family and career. He just needs to convince Mara that her home is where it’s always been. With him.

Book Links: Amazon B&N iBooks  
 

Meet the Author:

Once upon a time, Kristina Knight spent her days running from car crash to fire to meetings with local police–no, she wasn’t a troublemaker, she was a journalist. Her career took her all over the United States, writing about everything from a serial killer’s capture to the National Finals Rodeo. Along the way, she found her very own Knight in Shining Cowboy Boots and an abiding love for romance novels. And just like the characters from her favorite books, she’s living her own happily ever after.
Kristina writes sassy contemporary romance novels; her books have appeared on Kindle Best Seller Lists. She loves hearing from readers, so drop her a line!
Website | Facebook | Twitter |
 
 
 

57 Responses to “Spotlight & Giveaway: Rebel in a Small Town by Kristina Knight”

  1. clickclickmycat

    I did not go into a family business. I always just wanted to work with animals. I got a job at a vets office, and lasted 3 days. I couldn’t handle the sadness.

  2. Connie Lee

    We didn’t have a family business, everyone worked separate types of jobs. I can’t think of a business right now that I would have liked to go into.

  3. ladyvampire

    We do not have a family business sadly. But if we did, I would love one where we would all be stars in the music industry. Thanks for the chance to win.

  4. laurieg72

    No family business My dad was a small town doctor. I became a nurse.

    I would have loved an outdoor business store like REI. I love outdoor adventures. I could see my husband and I leading trips, camping, hiking, rafting etc.

  5. Kate Sparks

    My parents were realtors, but none of us are. We know too much about the crazy hours and strange people!

  6. Amy Rickman

    No, I didn’t go into the family business as we don’t have a family business. If we did have a family business I would have wanted it to be a bookstore.

  7. Kay Garrett

    No, didn’t follow because there wasn’t a family business. My father was a military man. <3 I think it would be interesting and nice to follow in generations of running a business though. With my love of baking (as well as my Mother did as well), it would have been nice to have had a bakery in the family for several generations.

  8. Nancy Luebke

    No, both my father and father in law were factory workers. our mothers were stay at home mom’s. I worked in accounting for a while, then later a custodian.

  9. Patricia B.

    I did help out at my dad’s two businesses, but neither was something I was interested in pursuing. I was the oldest in the family and of the cousins. I struck out in new directions being the first one ever to attend college and get a job that took me overseas.

  10. Meredith Miller

    I did not go into the family business. My grandfather owned a hardware store in a small town many years ago.

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