Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Katherine Center is on fire...plus a book giveaway

Photo by Skylar Reeves
We're thrilled to have Katherine Center at CLC today. Melissa A listed How to Walk Away as one of her 2018 favorites (reviewed here). Katherine's latest novel, Things You Save in a Fire (published August 13th by St. Martin's Press) is already on Melissa A's 2019 favorites list (reviewed here). Katherine has one copy of Things You Save in a Fire for a lucky reader!

Katherine Center is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of How to Walk Away. She’s also written five other bittersweet comic novels about love and family, including The Bright Side of Disaster, The Lost Husband, and Happiness for Beginners. The Lost Husband is currently in production as a feature film starring Josh Duhamel and Leslie Bibb. Katherine’s work has appeared in Redbook, InStyle, People, USA Today, Vanity Fair, The Atlantic, Real Simple, Southern Living, InTouch, the Dallas Morning News, the Houston Chronicle, and many others.

Katherine’s novels have been published in translation all around the world. She has won many awards for her work, including the Rose State President’s Distinguished Author Award, the Girls, Inc. Strong, Smart & Bold Award, the Writers In The Schools Founders’ Award, the St. John’s School Maverick Award, and the Vassar College Fiction Prize.

Katherine is also a speaker on writing, and reading, and how the stories we tell impact our lives—and she recently gave a TEDx talk on how stories teach us empathy. She lives in her hometown of Houston, Texas, with her awesome husband, two sweet children, and their fluffy-but-fierce dog. (Bio adapted from Katherine's website.)

Visit Katherine online:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram

Cassie Hanwell was born for emergencies. As one of the only female firefighters in her Texas firehouse, she's seen her fair share of them, and she's a total pro at other people's tragedies. But when her estranged and ailing mother asks her to give up her whole life and move to Boston, Cassie suddenly has an emergency of her own.

The tough, old-school Boston firehouse is as different from Cassie's old job as it could possibly be. Hazing, a lack of funding, and poor facilities mean that the firemen aren't exactly thrilled to have a "lady" on the crew—even one as competent and smart as Cassie. Except for the infatuation-inspiring rookie, who doesn't seem to mind having Cassie around. But she can't think about that. Because love is girly, and it’s not her thing. And don’t forget the advice her old captain gave her: Never date firefighters. Cassie can feel her resolve slipping...and it means risking it all—the only job she’s ever loved, and the hero she’s worked like hell to become.

Katherine Center's Things You Save in a Fire is a heartfelt and healing tour-de-force about the strength of vulnerability, the nourishing magic of forgiveness, and the life-changing power of defining courage, at last, for yourself. (Courtesy of Amazon.)

What is a favorite compliment you have received on your writing?
Last year, during the same summer, I got compared in reviews to both Jane Austen and Nora Ephron—two of my writing heroes. That has been my standing Greatest Compliment for a full year. But the other night, a woman on one of my book tour stops for Things You Save in a Fire told me that she'd loved reading the book so much, that when she got to the end, she hugged it. That was a pretty great moment, too.

How are you similar to or different from Cassie?
Cassie is basically about a third me, a third my volunteer firefighter husband, and a third her own self! Her love of firefighting, her physical courage, and her calm-in-the-storm quality, that’s all my hubby. Her gumption and grit and refusal to give up—that’s all me. And as she becomes more tender-hearted during the story, that’s my own tenderness I’m giving her. I came to really love Cassie—for how tough she is, but also for the courage it takes for her to let herself open up.

If Things You Save in a Fire were made into a movie, who would you cast in the leading roles?
That is a tough question! It’s always hard for me to fan-cast my books because the characters feel so real and specific to me. I’m not sure who I would pick to be Cassie—but I’d want her to be warm-hearted and able to convey both vulnerability and badassery. As for the rookie, I’d want him to have a very expressive face—you know, one where you can read his emotions as he’s watching Cassie. I’d want to see his admiration for her, and feel his longing to be closer to her. I’d want the attraction between them to be palpable.

What is the last book you read that you would recommend?
I read a time-travel love story by Bee Ridgway called The River of No Return this summer, and it has really stayed with me. Eloisa James blurbed it as “ the love-child of Jane Austen and Dr. Who,” and I was like, Sold!

What is the funniest thing that has happened to you recently?
At the start of my book tour for Things You Save in a Fire, I got to do two launch events in my hometown of Houston, and during both of them, I got to pull my volunteer firefighter hubby up in front of the crowd and ask him a little bit about firefighting. My husband is the funniest person I know, even just around the house, but he’s ten times funnier in front of a crowd. He got up there and told firefighter stories and cracked the whole room up—myself included.

If you were to take us on a tour of the town where you live, what are some must-see places we would visit?

I would take us on an eating tour. There are things to see, sure—but mostly there are things to EAT. Eating is basically our national sport down here—and we have food from every nook and cranny of the globe. We know how to eat in this town! We’d have to bring wheelbarrows with us to cart ourselves home, we’d get so full.

Thanks to Katherine for visiting with us and for sharing her book with our readers.

How to win: Use Rafflecopter to enter the giveaway. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. If you have trouble using Rafflecopter on our blog, enter the giveaway here

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway ends August 25th at midnight EST.


Suburban prep said...

1. wedding ring
2. family photos
3. an afghan a family member made for me when I went off to college.

Michelle L said...

Family photos, important documents, one of my vintage teddy bears

Nancy P said...

Photographs, children's keepsakes & cash I have stashed.

Lori Thomas said...

important papers, photos heirloom jewelry

Rita Wray said...

I would save my photos, some items my mom left me and important papers.

diannekc said...

My phone, wallet and important documents.

Mary Preston said...

Like most people; photos, documents and wallet.

Summer said...

Favorite books, cherished dolls from my childhood, and photos.

Anonymous said...

phone, wallet, pics

Kelly Rodriguez said...

Family photos, important documents, family heirlooms l.

Lelandlee said...

Photos, Documents, Jewelry

Xia Lee said...

Photos, Documents, Jewelry

Kristy F said...

Photos, my daughter's baby blanket and my phone

Jillian Too said...

I would save my photos, external hard drive, and documents.

LoriF said...

Not entering but a geat novel!