Hello and welcome to my blog for another round of Meet the Characters! Today I am featuring a guest blogger who has graciously agreed to let me do a character interview, which is my favorite kind of interview. Join me in welcoming author, Mae Clair, and her characters from Twelfth Sun. It’s a fantastic romantic mystery with wonderful characters so without further ado here is the interview with Dr. Elijah Cross and Reagan Cassidy.
Thanks for hosting me, Jennifer!
How did you first meet your writer?
Elijah: Through a book. Mae always has her nose buried in one. This time she was reading about marine archaeology and started imaging the kind of guy who’d go poking around old shipwrecks. Naturally, I came to mind. I’d been rattling around in her head for a while, but the book opened the door for me to take center stage.
What are your favorite scenes in your book: the action, the dialog or the romance?
Reagan: I’ll answer that one. Elijah had a lot of fun dialogue, especially when he was trading barbs with Felix Pellar, Mr. Sothern’s staff manager.
Elijah: You mean Prim-and-Proper.
Reagan: *rolls eyes* They did not get along. It probably would have helped if Mr. Sothern was around, but he was a no show. He’s a reclusive billionaire who lives in the coastal town of Serenity Harbor. He invited us – along with a number of other antiquities collectors – to his mansion and then was always mysteriously absent.
Elijah: Despite roping us into a treasure hunt. And getting back to the original question, the romance rocked it for me, hands down. It took Reagan a while to get over the ten year gap in our ages, but having her fall for me was worth the wait. *grins openly at Reagan* We tried a “hands-off” thing for a week but I’m pretty sure she was the one who caved in and broke the rules first.
Reagan: *flushing* It’s hard to resist a twenty-five-year-old guy with a PhD, who looks like a club musician. Brains and good looks. Now if he’d just get over his love affair with grape soda.
What is your least favorite characteristic your writer has attributed to you?
Elijah: *frowning* She made me a light-weight when it comes to alcohol.
Reagan: He got hung over on three and a half glasses of wine. He even had my sympathy vote that morning and that was when I was still trying to avoid him!
What do you do for a living?
Reagan: I have an interior design firm called Winning Concepts. My Uncle Gavin stepped in as a financial backer when I was just getting started. He’s done so much for me through the years, especially since losing my father when I was fourteen. It’s one of the reasons I couldn’t say no when Uncle Gavin asked me to hook-up with Elijah to track down a nineteenth century ship’s journal. At the time, I thought I was meeting a stodgy old professor not a hot young guy with a PhD.
Elijah: Flattery will get you everywhere *waggles eyebrows* especially my bed.
Reagan: Do you see what a corrupting influence he is?
What do you think your greatest weakness is?
Elijah: *shifting uncomfortably* I hate social situations. I have no problem giving an academic lecture to a packed hall, but I cringe when I have to make small talk at dinner parties. Especially stuffy affairs like the ones Pellar was always foisting on us. It’s a throwback to when I was a kid taking college classes. Everyone else was so much older, out of my league socially. I felt like a fish out of water.
Reagan: It turns him into a smart-ass and makes him run at the mouth. Usually at Pellar. *giggles*
What embarrasses you?
Reagan: I can think of one thing that mortified me! The very first time I saw Elijah, I walked into his hotel room thinking it was mine.
Elijah: She caught me coming out of the bathroom completely nude.
Reagan: I’ve never been so embarrassed. After I got over the initial shock and fright, I wanted to sink through the floor.
Elijah: *laughing* Needless to say, I made a lasting first impression. She got an eyeful.
Reagan: He’s completely uninhibited. Most of the time. I told him once that for someone who has no qualms about sex, he has a lot of walls when it comes to intimacy.
Elijah: We won’t go there. *clears throat* Next question.
What is your most prized possession?
Elijah: An old necklace my sister gave me when I was a kid. It represents the constellation Crux, the Southern Cross. Even though my parents are gone, it’s the symbol that binds all of us together.
Do you like the way the book ended?
Reagan: Oh, most definitely! I’m glad Mae worked things out for us, even if she did make us jump through hurdles to get there.
Elijah: The ending was a shock for me. Mae had a several surprises tucked up her sleeve, but I can’t complain. That’s part of being front and center in a romantic mystery, I guess. The way everything came together rocked my world, but the icing on the cake was, Reagan. *takes her hand and grins* Now, if I could just get her to drink grape soda!
The hunky young PhD knows all about seduction, but what does he know about love?
Reagan Cassidy is settled in her life. She has a thriving interior design firm, an upscale condo, two cats, and a goldfish. As a favor to her uncle, she agrees to team up with his marine archeologist friend to validate and retrieve a nineteenth-century journal, reputedly that of a passenger aboard the doomed schooner Twelfth Sun. Finding a hunky twenty-five-year-old coming out of the shower in her hotel room wasn’t part of the deal, but it’s hard to complain…
Dr. Elijah Cross is cocky and he knows it. He enjoys trading barbs with the lovely Reagan. Barbs, and some innuendo. He can tell she’d rather get back home to her business than stick around for the extended treasure hunt they’ve been talked into, but he’s fine with the situation. At least, until the “clues” start getting personal.
Reagan finds Dr. Gorgeous is as skilled in matters of the heart as he is behind the lectern. Throw in a series of clues which mean more to Elijah than he’ll explain, several odd-ball competitors out to win the journal, a saboteur, and a lavish seaside mansion, and Reagan has enough trouble keeping her head straight, let alone her heart.
WARNING: Younger man, older woman, nautical riddles and romance.
Reagan glanced at her watch. She’d dragged herself from bed hours before any civilized person should be up, for the sole purpose of meeting Elijah Cross. The marine archeologist was already ten minutes late–not a brilliant way to begin a working relationship. She’d learned through firsthand experience many of her uncle’s friends were as unreliable as they were eccentric. Foolishly, she had hoped Dr. Cross wouldn’t fall into the same category.
Resigned to passing the time, she added hot water to her tea. From the corner of her eye she spied movement at the door of the cafe. A man stepped inside, shaking rain from his jacket. The door banged shut behind him, ensnaring her full attention. He wore a battered black fedora and worn jeans with scuffed dock shoes. There was something oddly familiar about him. He turned slightly and she caught his profile, realizing he was the man from room ten. Self-conscious, she looked away, hoping to sink through the floor. He spoke briefly with the hostess and then headed in her direction.
She tensed. What were the odds of encountering him now when she was scheduled to meet Dr. Cross, a highly-respected and, no doubt critical, academic? How would it look to her uncle’s friend if he walked in on a conversation revolving around naked men and the color of her undergarments?
Chagrined, she bowed her head over her teacup. Her hair spilled forward, concealing her face behind curtains of red-gold. With any luck he’d go away. With any luck, he’d leave her alone.
Reagan raised her head fully convinced mischievous imps had tracked her to Shipwright Landing and were even now performing rituals of bad luck. “Hi.” She pressed her lips together. “I don’t mean to be rude, but I’m expecting someone.”
“Yeah, I know.” He grinned. “You’re Reagan Cassidy.”
She blinked. She’d given the hostess her name only because she was expecting Dr. Cross and neither had any idea what the other looked like. She certainly hadn’t expected the woman to share her name with any longhaired Lothario who asked for it. “The hostess told you.”
He nodded. Removing his hat by the crown, he dropped it on the table. “Some storm.” He shrugged out of his jacket and hooked it over the back of the nearest chair. “Good thing it’ll be over soon.”
Reagan watched flabbergasted as he sat across from her and picked up a menu. “Excuse me.” Her voice rose sharply, edged like a knife. “I didn’t invite you to sit. I told you I’m expecting someone.”
“Yeah, I know.” He flashed that same irritating grin. “I’m Elijah Cross.”
Buy the Book:
Mae Clair opened a Pandora’s Box of characters when she was a child and never looked back. Her father, an artist who tinkered with writing, encouraged her to create make-believe worlds by spinning tales of far-off places on summer nights beneath the stars. She snagged the tail of a comet, hitched a ride, and discovered her writer’s Muse on the journey.
Mae loves creating character-driven fiction in settings that vary from contemporary to mythical. Wherever her pen takes her, she flavors her stories with conflict, romance and elements of mystery. Married to her high school sweetheart, she lives in Pennsylvania and is passionate about writing, old photographs, a good Maine lobster tail and cats.
Discover more about Mae on her website and blog at www.MaeClair.com
As a special treat Mae is giving away a Kindle copy of TWELFTH SUN to one commenter so be sure to include your email address when you comment so she can contact you if you win!
Thank you for joining us today! I hope you enjoyed this round of Meet the Characters and will join us again next week!