Saturday, June 6, 2015

Karen Witemeyer and Characters

Y'all, I'm SO excited today. Want to know why? Do ya? Do ya? Do ya?

What would YOU do if you had the chance to host one of your favorite-est-ever authors on your blog?
  • Faint?
  • Scream?
  • Jump up and down like a three year old when they hear the My Little Pony theme song?
  • Fist pump your laptop in the air and whisper, "Yesss."?
  • Go into cardiac arrest?
Yeah, nobody ever said the bookish life was easy.

I know, I know. With so many author friends, I'm not supposed to have "favorites," but sometimes an author's work just resonates with you and you have no choice but to like all of their books. Besides, it's my blog. I'll have "favorite authors" if I want to. Boom. ;)

Today, I have the proud-peacock pleasure of introducing to you the incomparable inspirational historical romance writer, Karen Witemeyer. (Yes, I warned her I might gush a bit.) 

She has graciously brought along her newest hero and heroine to answer random questions for our reading pleasure. Warning: you will fall in love with each character by page 24 or I'll eat my cat. (Don't worry, I don't have a cat. This is probably why.) 

Why page 24? IDK, maybe because that's when I stopped to giggle and wiggle my toes. 

I know you want to hear from her, and I've "talked enough, already," so here's Karen:

Christy Award finalist and winner of both the ACFW Carol Award and HOLT Medallion, CBA bestselling author Karen Witemeyer writes Christian historical romance for Bethany House, believing the world needs more happily-ever-afters. She is an avid cross-stitcher and makes her home in Abilene, TX with her husband and three children. To learn more about her books or to sign up for her newsletter, please visit her website at

I decided to let both of my main characters answer these fun questions. To give you a quick glimpse at who they are so you can better understand their points of view, I've included a brief character sketch of each:

1891, Texas

Stone Hammond – Orphaned at a young age, Stone has made his own way in the world. He worked for years bringing in bounties on outlaws and renegades until he built a reputation of being the best "retriever" in Texas. Now he hires himself out for non-criminal retrievals, his current project being to find the kidnapped granddaughter of a powerful railroad investor.

 Charlotte Atherton – Charlotte is the headmistress at an academy for exceptional youths. She, herself, was a musical child prodigy, yet she hates being in the spotlight. She would much rather live quiet and unnoticed, keeping attachments to a minimum. People can't hurt you, after all, if you're not attached to them. Yet when danger threatens her charges, she realizes she can remain detached no longer. She secrets the children away and vows to do whatever it takes to protect them.

These interview questions were answered after the conclusion of their adventure together.

Your most embarrassing moment?

Charlotte: When my former beau asked me to pretend to have twisted my ankle so that his actual fiancé (who had shown up unexpectedly) wouldn't wonder why I had been holding his arm. Needless to say, I never stepped out with that particular young man again. Lying scoundrel.

Stone: Posing for that ridiculous photograph that appeared in the final installment of the Dead-Eye Dan dime novel series. My former partner, Dan Barrett, still hasn't let me hear the end of it. Only did it 'cause Charlotte and Lily asked. It was the only way to get Stephen's father to allow him to come back to school, so I guess the ribbing was worth it. Stephen's a good kid. Practically family.

What is your first reaction when you meet a fetching lady/handsome gentleman? Blush? Stutter? Run? Flirt? Engage them in intelligent or witty conversation? Start an argument to see how handle anger? Offer a helping hand? Ask a friend what they know about them?

Stone: If I need information from them, I smile and flatter and get them to talk until I learn all I can. If they aren't part of the job, I keep my distance. Keep things simple, that's my motto. Followed it, too, until Charlotte came around. Nothin' simple about that woman, but she was well worth the pursuin'.

Charlotte: I did my best to avoid men most of my life. After my father's betrayal and that of my beau, I didn't trust them. Especially the handsome, charming ones. Didn't trust Stone, either, when we first met—we were enemies, after all—but he wore down my resistance. Takes a patient man to get through all the walls I had erected to protect myself. I'm thankful he's the persistent type.

Are there any children or pets in your life? What do you love about them?

Stone: Lily is our adopted daughter, as full of life as ever, and reading books faster than we can set them in front of her. We're pursuing adoption for John Chang, as well. Charlotte believes he will soon exceed her talents on the piano, but I find that hard to believe. No music stirs my soul more than my wife's rendition of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata. Stephen Farley is a regular at the Hammond School for Exceptional Youths, and we are accepting a couple new students next year as well. Oh, and despite me and my wife being much older than most new parents, God has blessed us with our own new babe, due in just a few weeks. That's sure to be our biggest adventure yet.

What are your hobbies?

Charlotte: Playing the piano and knitting baby blankets and booties for the coming little one.

Stone: Building things. All my life I wanted a permanent home I could call my own. Now that I've got it, I make sure everything stays in perfect working order. Except for when the gnome gets to it first. Dobson likes to beat me to the punch, old codger. Unless it's the roof. After his near miss, he lets me do all the repairs up there.

When’s the last time you had a really good meal? Courtesy of whom?

Stone: Last night. Charlotte and Lily outdid themselves with ham steak, potatoes, string beans from the garden, yeast rolls, and strawberry pie for dessert. If I'm not careful, I'm gonna be in the market for some new trousers soon, ones with a wider middle.

Stone Hammond is the best tracker in Texas. He never comes home empty-handed. So when a wealthy railroad investor hires him to find his abducted granddaughter, Stone eagerly accepts.

Charlotte Atherton, former headmistress of Sullivan's Academy for Exceptional Youths, will do anything to keep her charges safe, especially the little girl entrusted to her care after her mother's death. Charlotte promised Lily's mother she'd keep the girl away from her unscrupulous grandfather, and nothing will stop Charlotte from fulfilling that pledge. Not even the handsome bounty hunter with surprisingly honest eyes who comes looking for them.

When the teacher he's after produces documentation that shows she's the little girl's legal guardian, Stone must reevaluate everything he's been led to believe. Is Miss Atherton villain or victim? She acts more like a loving mother than an abductress, and the children in her care clearly adore her.

Then a new danger threatens, and Charlotte is forced to trust the man sent to destroy her. Stone becomes determined to protect what he once sought to tear apart. Besides, he's ready to start a new pursuit: winning Charlotte's heart.

*Squee* Natalie, here. Doesn't this make you want to read the book so bad? Well, then. I have GREAT news! Karen has generously offered an AUTOGRAPHED PAPERBACK to one happy U.S. resident. To enter the giveaway, use the Rafflecopter below.
So everyone else commenting will know, the comment-question in the Rafflecopter is: What made you smile when reading the characters' answers? Do you have any questions about the book?

P.S. I would've included a link to my reviews of this book, but alas, I don't have them up yet! I'll do that soon, though, and do a review here on the blog later.


  1. I loved the part about Stone's persistence wearing down her emotional walls. So sweet!

    I need to read this one!

  2. I can't read this is in to much detail because I haven't gotten a chance to read the book yet, but Karen is my most favorite author too! I wish she could put out more than 1 book per year :(

  3. I haven't read it yet but I am very excited to get to know her as a new author to me. Thank you so much. Your books are right up my alley.

  4. I liked his answer about how Charlotte could get him to do anything. Would like to win.

  5. The whole interview made me smile! Though, like Candy, I didn't read too carefully since I haven't read the book yet! Don't want too many spoilers! LOVE Karen's books!

  6. Stones answer to the most embarrassing moment made me smile. I can picture the ribbing that he took for posing for the photograph.

  7. What a fun blog post! I loved Karen's book and reading these extras about the character was fun!

  8. I haven't had the pleasure of reading one of Karen's books--but I'd like to.

  9. It was a wonderful story with and equally wonderful ending. You all will enjoy the dickens out of it!!!!

  10. Karen's one of my favorite authors too. I think I've read all her books except A Worthy Pursuit. I'd like to know if Charlotte and Stone are going to help more needy children.

  11. This sounds like a wonderful book to read!

  12. My favorite answer was Stone's to his hobby. Any reference to Dobson as the the gnome makes me laugh!

  13. Where do you get the inspiration for the books?

  14. I like Stone's persistance and that Charlotte recognized she had some walls that needed to come down before she could accept him. I really enjoy Karen's books and am looking forward to reading this one.


  15. Hey, everybody! Had an unexpected event this morning, but everything's back to normal now. Haha! Will try to get to all the comments! Y'all are fantastic!!

  16. Thank you sooo much for the chance to win!!!


  17. Tonya Robinette7:25 PM, June 06, 2015

    The whole conversation made me smile. I don't think I have ever seen an interview with the characters answering the questions like that.

  18. I'm not sure they made me laugh or sigh, but I loved them all the same! :) I think my favorite one was the one where Stone talks about the gnome! That one REALLY made me want to read the book and see what that was all about! :D All of these replies made me want to read the book all the more and see what happens! I LOVE your writing Karen! Short Straw Bride was my first of yours and it is still one of my all time favorites out of all the books I've read and reviewed! I could read it again and again!

    Many Blessings, Amada (pronounced:

  19. Hi, COURTNEY! I know it, isn't it precious? :) Thanks for coming over!

    Hi, CANDY! Welcome to the Sweet South Blog! I know what you mean. I can't get enough of Karen's books. Best wishes in the giveaway!

    Hi, PENNY! Thanks for commenting! I have no doubt you will LOVE Karen's books! All of them are good, but my favorite is probably To Win Her Heart. It's so sweet. :)

    Hi, CONNIE! That was cute, wasn't it? Best wishes in the giveaway!

    AMY! Welcome to the Sweet South Blog! Thanks for commenting! I know what you mean--spoilers are for the birds. Haha! I know you'll love Karen's new book!

    Hey, CINDY! I know it. That image was hilarious in my mind. :D Best of luck in the giveaway!

    Hi, MELANIE! Glad you enjoyed the post! Thanks for visiting the Sweet South Blog!

    CATHY! Oh my goodness gracious, I know you'll love Karen's books! You must try one!

    Hi, ANONYMOUS!! HAHAHAHAHA!!! I think that's the best blog comment I've ever read!

    Good to see you, ELAINE! I think that's probably safe to assume, since these characters have such big hearts. :)

    Hi, BEVERLY!!! Welcome to the Sweet South Blog! Best wishes in the giveaway!

    Oh, DOM I thought the same thing. The "gnome" is such a vivid mental image. Cracks me up. Thanks for commenting! Best wishes in the giveaway!

    Hi, BONNIE! HERE is a link to a post where Karen answered that question in detail. Great article. Thanks for entering the giveaway!

    Hi, Pam! Thanks for coming by the Sweet South Blog! Best wishes in the giveaway!

  20. Hi, CHARIS! You're very welcome. :) P.S. I know only one other person who has your name. It's beautiful!

    TONYA! Glad you enjoyed the interview!!!! Best wishes in the giveaway!

    Hey AMADA! Good to see you again!! Oh, yes, you must read this one! Best wishes in the giveaway!!!

  21. Such a fun interview with Charlotte and Stone. I thought it was funny what Stone considered his most embarrassing moment. I think that was one of the most comical aspects of the book, Lily's infatuation with him and Dead-Eye Dan.

  22. Not only are Karen's stories good, the covers are wonderful. Getting to know the characters was fun. Thanks!

    Nancy C

  23. I like where Stone said that Charlotte was worth the pursuin. Brought a smile to my face when I read that!
    marypopmom (at) yahoo (dot) com

  24. I can't wait to read this book. I've read all of Karen's other books and I love, love them all! Thanks much for the giveaway and wonderful interview!
    Blessings Joy

  25. Hi, REBECCA! Welcome to the Sweet South Blog! Glad you enjoyed the interview!

    NANCY! Good to see you again, lady! :) I know it. I can't get enough of Karen's characters. :)

    Hey there, MERRY! It doesn't get more swoon-worthy than a man knowing which gal he wants and doing what it takes to win her heart. :)

    JOY! Thanks for coming by the Sweet South Blog! Great to have you here! I've come to the conclusion that Karen couldn't write a dud if she wanted. :) Best wishes in the giveaway!

  26. He hated posing for that ridiculous photograph ! !
    dkstevensne AToutlookDoTCoM

  27. Love, love, love anything by Karen Witemeyer! Hope to win the giveaway. ;)

  28. I love the idea of interviewing characters! That was fun!

  29. LOVED this post! I will start following you. I enjoyed your writing! I would love to own a autographed copy of A Worthy Pursuit. Thank you!

  30. DEANNA! Best wishes in the giveaway! Thanks for being here! You're awesome!

    Hi, ANONYMOUS! Best of luck in the giveaway! Thanks for coming by the Sweet South Blog!

    R.J.!!! YAY! So glad to see you! :) I love character interviews, too, especially for those ones you just can't get enough of in one novel. :)

    BOB AND TERESA, welcome to the Sweet South Blog! Wow, what a compliment! So glad you enjoyed the interview. Thanks for the follow!!

    You're welcome, AMADA. ;)

  31. I haven't read this yet and don't want to read to much of the excerpt because of spoliers. I loved this part though from Stone, Oh, and despite me and my wife being much older than most new parents, God has blessed us with our own new babe, due in just a few weeks. That's sure to be our biggest adventure yet.

  32. Too funny! I actually saw this book yesterday at Barnes and Noble, and I was tempted to buy it. :) Every time I go into a book store, I seen to come out with a handful of books.

    The answers from both characters was brilliant, but Stone's answers were priceless in regards to him sounding like a somewhat thrilling, rugged, handsome character. :)

  33. Oh this sounds like such a good book, I can't wait to read it!!

  34. Hi, DEANNE! Congrats on your new little one! Thanks for coming by!

    HEATHER! I do the same thing at bookstores. That's why I love going to Goodwill book stores! I still come out with a pile of books, but at least I'm not broke. :D

    Hi, Abby! Welcome to the Sweet South Blog! Thanks for coming by! I know you'll love AWP!


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