Spotlight & Giveaway: The Callaways Series by Barbara Freethy

Posted April 23rd, 2013 by in Blog, Spotlight, _Contemporary / 41 comments

Today it is my pleasure to welcome NY times Bestselling Author, Barbara Freethy to HJ

Barbara welcome to HJ! Would you please introduce yourself to the readers here, what would you say are the defining characteristics of a Barbara Freethy novel?

Barbara: Hi everyone! I’m so happy to be here, and I’m looking forward to hearing your comments and answering any questions you may have.BarbaraI started publishing about twenty years ago, and sold my first book to Silhouette Romance under the pen name Kristina Logan. I wrote seven books for Silhouette and then moved on to single title romance. Since then I’ve written 27 single title novels ranging from contemporary romance to romantic suspense and women’s fiction. I’ve been published by four publishers, and in January of 2011, I began self publishing both backlist and original titles. Since then, I’m thrilled to announce I’ve sold more than 2.8 million self-published ebooks!

The defining characteristics of Barbara Freethy novel would be lots of emotion and plenty of twists and turns. I love to write layered stories and characters with flaws.

In your opinion, what ingredients are needed to make up a good love story?

Barbara: Great characters, lots of emotion, and a plot that enhances the love story. I really like writing about ordinary people caught up in extraordinary adventures.

What is your writing process like, what comes first, characters or story?

Barbara: It depends on the books. Sometimes a story begins with a character. Other times, it begins with a “what if” type question and launches from there. My story ideas come from everywhere – a snippet of conversation, an interesting character trait, a real-life event… I never know when a new idea will spring into my head. But I do have a really BIG imagination, so that helps.

What are the five best things about being a writer?

1) I get to tell stories and make a living off my imagination. That’s really fun!
2) I can work from anywhere. I can write at home, in the car, while waiting for my kids, or on vacation… So, while I’m tied to my computer, I’m not tied to one location.
3) I get to express myself through my writing. Whatever emotions or experiences I’m going through can end up in a book. They’re always changed, of course, but writing can be a cathartic experience.
4) Now that I’m self publishing. I not only to get write the book but also pick just the right cover and book description. So now the writing is even more fun.
5) I get to touch people’s lives in ways I never imagined! I have one book, ONE TRUE LOVE, about a couple who lost a child and got divorced because the tragedy was too much. Years later they reconnect. I received lots of mail and one letter from a woman who said that she’d been through a similar experience in her life. After reading my novel, she called her ex-husband and they started talking again. For me, that was a really touching story. Readers can take things from your books that you never expected!

Please tell us about The Callaways, your newest 8 book series 

Barbara: I’d been wanting to write a connected family series for a long time and The Callways were the perfect choice. They’re a blended family. The father had four sons. The mom had two daughters. And together they had twins. Now the eight siblings are grown and each will have their own adventure and love story. The family’s motto is to “serve and protect” and many of the siblings are San Franciso firefighters or serve in other ways, one in search in rescue, another in medicine, etc. Of course there is one rebel rock star in the bunch. The series began in January of this year with ON A NIGHT LIKE THIS (Callaways #1)

Let’s talk about your newest release SO THIS IS LOVE (Callaways #2), If you had to sum up the book for the reader here…

newsothisislove250at100Barbara: SO THIS IS LOVE, which was released in March, pits Emma Callaway, a sexy arson investigator with a lot of passion against Max Harrison, a cool, calm detective who simmers underneath all his guarded layers. There are other family secrets beginning to unravel as well…

What was your biggest challenge while writing this book?

Learning about arson investigation! I wanted Emma to be a believable investigator, but I also didn’t want the story to get too procedural, because this is a relationship/romance novel.

If you had to pick your favorite scene …

There are so many – that’s a tough question! Emma has to battle against a firebug at one point, and when the hero sees her bruised face afterwards, he’s more than a little amazed by her bravery but also finds her competitive endearing when she tells him that the other guy looks a lot worse! Emma is a really fun character. She grew up with five brothers, so she has some toughness, but she’s still very much a woman. And she has women friends a well as men friends. Max is one of those darker heroes, who has a lot of secrets, and after some bruising has put his heart under lock and key. But his determination to stay single is no match for the beautiful, sexy, smart Emma.

Who would play Emma and Max in the movie version of your book? And why?

Barbara: I can never answer this question. I just don’t think of my characters in terms of actors/actresses. If I had to guess, I’d probably pick another Emma – Emma Stone for the lead, because I like her sexy quirkiness. And the hero might be someone like Ian Somerhalder from the Vampire Diaries.

What are you currently working on? What other releases so you have planned for 2013?

Barbara: I’m going to write two more Callaway books that will be released in the summer and fall! So lots more books on the way!


Giveaway: 3 copies of ON A NIGHT LIKE THIS, the first book in my Callaway Series, either print or ebook.

To enter Giveaway: Please complete the Rafflecopter form below and post a comment to this Q: As a reader so you prefer stand alone books or connected stories (series) and why?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About On A Night Like This Callaway liked to make his own path. The second oldest of the Callaway clan, he veered from the family tradition of urban firefighting and became a smokejumper, never questioning his choice until the job took the life of his friend, Kyle, and left Aiden with injuries and fractured memories. Everyone blames Aiden for what happened, but he doesn’t remember, nor is he sure he wants to remember. The truth may clear Aiden of blame but destroy Kyle’s reputation and hurt the people he left behind.

Aiden seeks help from an unlikely partner…

Sara had always been untouchable, sweet, innocent, his sister’s best friend, and the girl next door. But one reckless night in their youth took their relationship to a new level. Then Aiden brought it crashing down. Sara has never forgiven or forgotten, but she’s no longer that girl with the crazy crush. She’s a woman in search of her own truth.

The sparks between Aiden and Sara have been smoldering for a very long time. Sara is afraid to take another chance on a man who broke her heart, and Aiden knows better than anyone how dangerous an intense fire can be.

As teenagers they weren’t ready for each other. Are they now?

41 Responses to “Spotlight & Giveaway: The Callaways Series by Barbara Freethy”

  1. Sue Peace

    I love Barbara’s books!!! I like series if they’re not spread too far apart! But I also like stand alone books that have an ending!!

  2. rebecca moe (@beckymmoe)

    I love series. It’s like seeing old friends again when you find out what the H/h from the other books are doing now, and I always want the secondary characters (friends, siblings, etc) to have HEAs too! 🙂

  3. Cindy Hamilton

    I really like series books, they are a way of learning what happens after a couples story is told. There seems like more interaction of family members in series books.

  4. Leanna Hiner

    I prefer series. I like that all the little characters eventually get their own stories. You also get updates on characters from previous books. The bad part of series is waiting for the next book to come out.

  5. Winnie Lim

    I love series especially when it’s about a huge family. I love reading about them as individuals and subsequently reading about them as a couple in the later books. I love that connection.

  6. Arely Z.

    It really depends. When my life is hectic, like it is right now, I prefer stand-a-lone books so I can read and be done with it (that sounds horrible).
    But connected series are so much fun and make you feel like part of a family or friends 🙂

  7. shadowluvs2read

    i like both. it honestly depends on how much time i have and how much money i have in the bank. If i want a quick read, i like stand alones, but series, i do adore them! the connecting characters, the plots, everything! 🙂 though, i hate waiting for the next book in the series, and i hate it when i get stuck in a series and i dont have the funds to buy the next one and get my fix! lol

  8. Michelle Harlan

    I prefer connected stories. It’s always nice to have a sense of “home” with familiar characters. That being said, I tend to look more for series between 3-6 books now. The wait for the “next” book is excrutiating!

  9. Aline

    Actually I prefer stand alone books but I don’t mind connected books either as long as they have interesting characters whom I like to see in the next books 🙂

  10. Kai W.

    It’s depend. Like with Eve Dallas in the “In Death” series, I want to know more about her and those lost memories she has. There are some stories that I prefer them to be stand alone. There are some series, I love the stand alone for each of the secondary characters in the stories.

  11. martha lawson

    I like connected books as long as they aren’t too long in coming out! I read so much, I always forget something..

  12. Chelsea B.

    Is it ok if I say both? 🙂 Because it’s true. I adore standalone novels– being able to feel satisfied and happy after a single book. But I also adore series’– being able to revisit characters stay invested in the story for longer.

  13. Joni Payne

    I like both types sometimes a good stand alone is what I want and what I look for. If it’s a series it really depends on the characters main and secondary if I will continue with the series. I read a lot of series though and will stalk the internet if I find a stand alone that has secondary characters that I love.

  14. Christine Merritt

    If I could wave a magic wand I would find a completed series, having all of the stories right in front of me to enjoy them one after the other. I get so wrapped in a series (especially family/sibling stories) that it is SO HARD to wait for the next book. Often I have to reread one story to really enjoy the next.

    Congratulations on all of your self published books!

  15. Alicia Jespersen

    I like series better because stand Aline’s seem to be too short and I always want to see what happens after they first fall in love..! Thanks for the chance to win!


    I love book series, when you have great characters and storylines, it’s fun to revisit the characters from book to book. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

  17. Ada

    I do enjoy stand-alone books but I really love series. Anytime you can catch up with characters you met before even if the arc is over generations, it just makes the stories better.

  18. DebraG

    I like them both. It is nice to go back and visit with old friends in series books and sometimes, it is nice to just read it all by it self.

  19. CateS

    I’m great with either and both! I love the connectiveness of a series.. seeing the previous characters interacting with those currently being written.. But I love the stand alones… although sometimes I wish that the secondary characters would get a chance to tell their stories, also!

  20. Rita Wray

    I love a series. When I like the characters I’m happy to see them again in another book and see what they’re up to.

  21. Tawnya Bentley

    I actually love series books, especially about families. However, I do appreciate when they can stand alone in case I get hooked on lets say book 3 of an 8 book series and have trouble finding the first two.

  22. Jennifer Zorko-Legan

    I love series books that are connected character to character. It gives me a chance to revisit the characters I love over and over and over again.

  23. Joanne B

    I like them both but enjoy connected stories more. You get to know the characters better.

  24. Sue G.

    I love series. I love how you start to feel like you know these families, that you are a part of them!

    Thanks for the chance to win.

  25. Barbara

    Hi everyone! So fun to read your comments. I tend to like both series and standalones, too, as a reader and a writer. Some worlds are fun to revisit. I’m really enjoying writing the Callaways because it’s fun to see the other characters come back to life. But I’ve also written tons of standalone books that I also love like DON’T SAY A WORD and SUMMER SECRETS, which have lots of twists and turns, with everything wrapped up in one book!

  26. Anita

    I like both types – stand alone books are fun but it’s really nice to find connected series because it feels like you’re back among family and friends!

  27. Lily B

    both, but I like the series better. Sometimes if its right, it has more depth and I get to see what the characters are doing after book1 among others that were introduced

  28. chey

    I like them both. It depends on how much time I have to read. If I don’t have much time to read, I I want a stand alone so it’s over when I’m finished that book.

  29. Veronica

    I like connected stories because we can see the characters happily ever afters in other books and catch-up

  30. Jenn Y.

    I definitely like connected books. I will never get tired of a series because there is always a book following it. But I also like stand-alone books, they can be very interesting.

  31. Mary Preston

    I do love stand alone reads. I like the completeness of them. However, there are times when a series fills my need to hold onto characters & worlds. I do tend to like series to be complete before I begin, then I can read back to back. I do not like the waiting in between.

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