Hi guys! Thanks for having me here on the Romancing The Book Blog today. I’m so excited to be sharing my upcoming release, The Carny (coming July 7th from InkSpell Publishing) with everyone. This was such a fun, poignant story to write…I hope my readers enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it.
It all started with a dream. One night a year or so ago, I had a dream about being at a small town carnival, where a handsome carny kept following me around from ride to ride. It was all very gauzy and romantic, and when I woke up, I was left with two thoughts:
- First, what the crap was that dream about? Carny’s are…well, let’s be honest. Carny’s are creepers.
- And Second, I had to write a story about that. I mean, the music, the smell of elephant ears in the air, the lights…it really was very sappy.
As soon as I sat down to write The Carny, I was inundated with this desire to make the hero, Vincent, a Native American, and the heroine, Charlotte, a Caucasian. And it didn’t stop there. My characters were pushing me to touch on the sensitive subject of intolerance, especially directed at interracial couples.
Well, who am I do deny what my characters want?
So I sat down to write, and their story flowed so easily, so organically, it was almost as if The Carny wrote itself. Vin and Charlotte’s love wasn’t easily accepted by her family, but they simply had to be together, because they were meant for each other.
It wasn’t a stretch for me, as an author, to write about an interracial couple. I come from a very diverse family, have dates races other than my own, and my brother and his wife have been in an interracial marriage couple for twenty years. But I wanted to do such a sensitive subject justice. I didn’t just want to focus on how hot Native American Vincent Youngblood was. (though, if you’re asking—he is very hot.) I also didn’t want the main focus of the story to be the fact that he and Charlotte (who is Caucasian) are an interracial couple.
But I did want to show an interracial couple in a very relatable manner. They met, they fell in love with each other—and it wasn’t focused on either one’s ethnicity—and they had to forge ahead to be together forever. The intolerance they experienced wasn’t extreme, or particularly dangerous. It was just…present.
America has come a long way over the past several decades. We are a more tolerant and equal nation. This is expressed in television shows and feature films that feature interracial couples, and books that feature main characters who are of different ethnic backgrounds. As a reader, I love reading books that feature interracial couples. It’s easier for me to relate to, because I come from a diverse family. To see that diversity expressed in books nowadays pleases me.
If books—particularly romance novels—are meant to be related to by the reader, then why not express the changing times in our characters? Couples of all races are falling in love, getting married, and having beautiful families. Why not write about such couples?
Here’s the blurb for The Carny:
At a town fair on the coast of Oregon, handsome Native American carny, Vincent Youngblood, bestows an unforgettable kiss on shy, awkward teenager, Charlotte Davenport. Then he disappears without another word, leaving her baffled and enamored.
Ten years later, Charlotte is still living in the small fishing town of Astoria, while being trained to–reluctantly–take over for her philandering hotelier father when he retires. After all, who else will do it? Her two perfect sisters are busy being married to their flawless husbands and having cookie cutter children, while Charlotte remains single, childless, and every bit as mousy as she was a decade ago.
As Charlotte struggles to climb out from underneath her judgmental parents thumb, the carnival rolls back into town, and Charlotte finds herself face to face with Vin again. He’s back to run his father’s carnival, walking away from a promising career in medicine he started in Chicago. Will her biased and judgmental family accept her relationship with a man who is not only a Native American, but works as a carny for a living? And what unsavory secrets bind the well-educated and seemingly superlative Vin to that ramshackle carnival?
After all, you can’t judge a carny by its cover.
I hope that all of my readers come to love Charlotte and Vin’s story as much as I did. This book is filled with laughs, tears, and yes…a little bit of contention, for good measure. Above all, their love is interracial, yes, but my hope is that I’ve expressed that love—real love—is found with our blinders on.
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Brooke writes complex, character-driven stories about kismet, reunited lovers, first love, and the kind of romance that we should all have the chance at finding. She prefers her stories laced with some humor just for fun, and enough drama to keep her readers flipping the pages, and begging for more! Find her elsewhere on the web here: www.brookemoss.com
Jen will be attending a book signing and meeting up with Brooke on July 7th (for those of you in the Spokane area, you’re welcome to hit up the Barnes & Noble in the valley) and will be picking up a copy of The Carny for a lucky commenter. Fill out the Rafflecopter form to enter.
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