Friday, September 19, 2014

INTERVIEW + GIVEAWAY: Leaving Liberty by Virginia Carmichael

Leaving Liberty 
by Virginia Carmichael 
Publication date: July 1st 2013
Genres: Adult, Romance

At eighteen, Daisy McConnell left Liberty, Colorado and never looked back. The only bright spot in a childhood of neglect and loneliness was the town librarian, Marie. Now settled as a teacher in sunny Fresno, Daisy does her best to forget everything about Liberty including her drunk father, her MIA mother, and the town she hated with every beat of her heart.

Lane Bennett’s life as a small town cop is pretty close to perfect. He’s got his dog, a pretty date when he needs one, and plenty of time to fish on the weekends. No other place can compare to his hometown and he’s happy to devote his life to keeping the folks of Liberty safe. When Marie passes away, Lane knows one of the best parts about living in Liberty is gone, along with the old Carnegie library. It needs repairs the city can’t afford and the city managers won’t pay the new flood insurance. It’s too bad, but safety comes first.

When Daisy comes home for Marie’s funeral and hears the only safe place she knew as a child is going to close, she refuses to let it happen. She hatches a plan to save the old library, run the summer reading program, and keep Marie’s legacy alive.

She once vowed never to come home and he’s vowed never to leave. Daisy and Lane discover together that true love happens when you least expect it and you should never say never in Liberty.

What was your favorite book when you were a child/teen?
Oh, there are too many to count! I’ve been reading longer than I can remember. But when I was about nine or ten, I read A Wrinkle in Time and fell in love with Calvin O’Keefe. He was probably my first book crush and all other heroes must measure up to Calvin!

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
Prague, The Czech Republic 
I went to the Warsaw School of Economics in Warsaw, Poland and although I wouldn’t recommend that anybody move to Warsaw, I definitely would tell them to travel about four hundred miles south west. A truly magical city and one of the few places that wasn’t destroyed in WWI or WWII.

How did you know you should become an author?
When I got tired of being poor, haha. Seriously, I’ve had a lot of different jobs (mostly working in libraries) but balancing the cost of child care and finding a well-paying job in a small town finally convinced me that I needed to work at something out of an office. I needed a job I could do at night, or on my own schedule. I didn’t tell a soul when I started writing, because I didn’t know if it would ever come to anything, but I’m so glad I started. It’s been a lot of fun and I wouldn’t trade it for any other job in the world!

Favorite Food?
  Hmmmm…. This is hard. I love to eat. I love to eat lots of different foods. In fact, I think there are only two or three things I’d rather not eat (cabbage and cactus, for example). But I’ll choose a really good fettucine alfredo as my favorite because it sounds good right now!

Icecream or cake?
Tillamook slow-churned Oregon strawberry ice cream.


You have won one million dollars what is the first thing that you would buy?
That’s another hard one. I can’t think of anything we really need. If you’d asked me a few weeks ago when the washer was dead, I’d have an answer. Maybe a maid? But then my kids would get really spoiled without chores. I guess I’d buy a house with a big library because right now, there is now more room for shelving in my house and the stacks of books are getting pretty tall.

Who or what inspired you to become an author?
Again, poverty. (Ok, and just maybe the fact I love books and thought it just might be fun to try and write my own.)

Print or Ebook?
Print all the way. I do have a Kindle but the kids just play games on it. I can’t stand reading on a screen. But as an author who sells mostly in digital copies, we’ll keep this between you and me.

M&M’s or Skittles?
Depends on whether I need chocolate or a hit of straight sugar. (Probably skittles)

What book are reading now?
I just finished “Counting by 7s” by Holly Goldberg Sloan. This afternoon I opened “City of Heavenly Fire” by Cassandra Clare (you can tell I’m behind in my reading!). Next up is “Outlander” by Diana Gabaldon. I’ve tried to read it about 5 times before, but I have friensd who are fanatical about the series, so I’ll give it one more try.

What was the hardest part about writing your book?
I think the hardest part is always just sitting down and making myself work. I’m a naturally lazy person and I’d rather goof off than work any day, but the book won’t finish itself. So, day after day, I sit down and force myself to start. Once I start, I love it!

 Can you share a little about the current title you are working on?
Right now I’m working on (and I hope I’m done by the time this is up) is another contemporary romance about a woman who owns a rare book shop in a tiny town in the low country of Louisiana. (I know, total wish fulfilment. I’ve become a horribly self-indulgent writer.) She becomes embroiled in a feud with the owner of the country’s largest video game retailer, but the man she believes is responsible for killing bookstores is not quite what he seems. It’s “Romeo and Juliet” with lots of books (and a happy ever after), or maybe “You’ve Got Mail” with Xboxes. I’m not really sure where it will fit or even which pen name it will be under (Mary Jane Hathaway is my other name) but I’m having a great time writing it! 


Virginia was born near the Rocky Mountains and although she has traveled around the world, the wilds of Colorado run in her veins. A big fan of the wide open sky and all four seasons, she believes in embracing the small moments of everyday life. A home schooling mom of six young children who rarely wear shoes, those moments usually involve a lot of noise, a lot of mess, or a whole bunch of warm cookies. Virginia holds degrees in Linguistics and Religious Studies from the University of Oregon. She lives with her habanero-eating husband, Crusberto, who is her polar opposite in all things except faith. They’ve learned to speak in short-hand code and look forward to the day they can actually finish a sentence. In the meantime, Virginia thanks God for the laughter and abundance of hugs that fill her day as she plots her next book.

Awesome swag pack with the following (will be customized with the winner's preferred name)
  • Custom self inking books stamp
  • Library book necklace
  • Dr. Who library quote magnet
  • Got Books? necklace 
  • Library card Love note

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Giselle said...

Thanks for being on the tour, Michelle! And City of Heavenly Fire that's like book 5-6 right? I haven't read past book 4 yet - not sure if I ever will I hear it's downhill from there >.<

Mary Jane Hathaway said...

Giselle, did you hear that?? Maybe that's why I'm behind. I usually read when I'm influenced by my friends' reviews and comments and I just hadn't heard much about that series for a while so it fell off my radar.

Thanks for having me on you blog, Michelle!