I am thrilled to welcome author Virginia Kantra to the blog today. I recently read her Dare Island series, and fell in love with the Fletcher family, the romance, and the gorgeous setting. I will be reviewing the series later this month. In the meantime, enjoy the interview!
Hi, Virginia. I would like to start by saying that I have truly enjoyed the Dare Island series. And congratulations on the release of Carolina Man!
VK: Thank you! I'm loving writing this series. I'm so glad you like it!
VK: Dare Island (named for Virginia Dare, the first child born to English parents in North America) is set in North Carolina’s Outer Banks. But you can find little pieces of it everywhere from Manteo to Hatteras, Ocracoke to Swan Quarter, in Emerald Isle, Topsail Beach, Fort Fisher, and Southport. Researching this series is a joy. I love talking to people, strangers, about their lives: the girl behind the counter in the gift shop, the couple running their own bed and breakfast, the teacher in the parking lot, the fisherman coming in with his catch at the end of the day.
VK: Actually, that's one of the easiest things for me. There's a part of me that still remembers what it's like to be ten years old, and a lot of my own life and attitudes come out in matriarch Tess.
Plus, I borrowed liberally from my own family. (Sssh...Don't tell the boys!)
And to that point, in other books, I often find that younger characters, in this case a tween and teen, seem to be an afterthought, even when their struggles are important to the plot. Was it difficult to balance the romance with the family issues?
VK: Well, sure. Ask any woman who's trying to find "private" time with her husband how that works with the kids around! But it also adds a level of conflict and realism to the stories that I think feels authentic.
VK: I always love the couple in the book I'm writing, and Kate's absolute determination to do the right thing without any idea how to manage it emotionally was very poignant to me. Maybe because Tess and Taylor anchor the series as viewpoint characters, I've been inside them the longest. And of course I couldn't let this story arc go until Luke had the chance to be his daughter's hero!
An intriguing character is introduced in Carolina Man, Jack Rossi. I noticed that he is the lead in the next book, Carolina Blues. Are you anxious and/or excited about having a non-Fletcher lead?
VK: Anxious AND excited. Although on a small island, you can count on encountering some of the same people. Luke appears in the next book, and the heroine, Lauren Patterson, is Meg's first client ("hostage girl") from CAROLINA GIRL. I'm also having great fun writing another Fletcher family wedding!
I adore Josh Fletcher. I know he's a bit young, now, but do you have any plans to give Josh a story?
VK: Yes! (Oh, I'm so glad you like him.) In fact, Josh and Thalia's story is continued in CAROLINA BLUES. I can't say more without giving too much away.
VK: Just...thank you. Please keep reading them. I do love to hear from readers.
And to get a sneak peek at the next Dare Island book, sign up for my newsletter http://eepurl.com/vMykD
The Dare Island Series
(covers lead to GoodReads page)
About the author