Author Interview – Laurel Blount – Shelter in the Storm

Shelter in the Storm JustRead Blog + Review Tour

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for Shelter in the Storm by Laurel Blount, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Shelter in the Storm

Title: Shelter in the Storm
Series: Johns Mill Amish Romance #1
Author: Laurel Blount
Publisher: Berkley Books
Release Date: May 25, 2021
Genre: Christian Contemporary/Amish Romance

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In this moving Amish romance, two broken hearts find hope in each other after a terrible loss.

Unspeakable tragedy strikes the Amish hamlet of Johns Mill when an unstable Englischer opens fire in the Hochstedler’s General Store. In the aftermath, and under the media’s spotlight, Joseph Hochstedler struggles to hold his shattered family together, drawing unexpected comfort from a faithful childhood friend.

Born with a serious heart defect, optimist Naomi Schrock has always longed to live a life of service. She rolls up her sleeves, determined to help Joseph cope with this terrible crisis. But dare she hope that his friendship will finally deepen into love?

As the media’s obsession with the Hochstedler shooting escalates, Joseph and Naomi find themselves caught between tradition and compromise, lingering sorrows and uncertain hopes. And in the end, two people who’ve already lost far too much must find the courage to trust their hearts one last time.

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | IndieBound | BookBub

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Laurel Blount

Carol award-winning author Laurel Blount writes captivating romances full of grit and grace—with characters who’ll walk right off the page and into your heart. She lives on a farm in Georgia with her husband, their four fabulous kids, and an assortment of ridiculously spoiled animals. Connect with her at www.laurelblountbooks.com

CONNECT WITH LAUREL: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

INTERVIEW WITH LAUREL BLOUNT

When did you first know you wanted to be an author? 

 I’ve always loved books, and I can’t remember a time when I didn’t dream of writing one myself! When I was very young, I wrote stories and poems and hid them in a box under my bed. I was in awe of ‘real’ authors. They seemed like such incredible, amazing creatures—I didn’t believe that I could ever actually become one. I’m so thankful that I get to do this—it’s truly a dream come true.

When you are not writing, what other hats do you wear? What do you do for fun?

I’ve been a homeschool mom of four for many years. I’ve graduated two, but I still have a high schooler and a middle schooler at home. I also teach Spanish for our homeschool co-op. We live on a hobby farm, so there are always animals and plants to tend to, plus I love to can and preserve and that keeps me busy during gardening season. (Can you see why writing an Amish story was a natural choice for me? 😊 ) For fun I love to poke around antique shops with my friends, bake and of course, read wonderful books! And this fall—I’m going to get a brand new hat. I’ll become a grandma for the very first time! I can’t wait.

What is your favorite genre to read? What about that genre draws you?

When it comes to books, I’m like a hungry person at a buffet! I try a little of this and a little of that. I love romance (of course), Amish, women’s fiction, cozy mysteries, thrillers, romantic suspense. I prefer inspirational or “clean” reads, but other than that, I’m open for pretty much anything, depending on my mood!

What is your favorite thing about summer? And why?

I’d have to say my favorite thing about summer is the more relaxed schedule! I also love the fact that my husband takes over a lot of the cooking—he loves to grill!

What historical figure do you admire and why?

That’s a tough question! Apart from Christ, I admire cautiously, recognizing that nobody is perfect. But so many people in the past exhibited stellar qualities that inspire me to be a better human being today. I admire Winston Churchill’s bulldoggish tenacity, Eleanor Roosevelt’s indomitable spirit, George Washington’s humility and courage, Abraham Lincoln’s quiet wisdom, C.S. Lewis’ spiritual depth and more recently, Jaime Escalante’s commitment to excellence in education. This is a lengthy list, for sure!

Who did you have in mind as you wrote the book?

I wrote this for my sweet friends who are so hungry right now for uplifting stories—for reminders that good can and does triumph over evil, that forgiveness is a sign of strength, that love can flourish even in hard times. It’s so easy to be bogged down by the negativity around us. Shelter in the Storm is meant to be a balm for weary hearts—a chance to stand up and cheer when joy breaks through the darkness!

As a former K-12 school librarian I have to ask – what is your favorite children’s book?

My very favorite children’s book has always been The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams. I still have the copy my mother read to me as a child, and it remains one of my most beloved stories!

What advice would you give to a child or teen who wants to be a writer?

Read all you can—the best books you can find. When you find a book you particularly love, read it more than once. Try to figure out how the author makes the story sing. Write, write write! And never ever give up—nobody can tell your stories except for you!

Thank you for joining us today. We enjoyed having you.

Thank you so much for letting me visit! I’ve had a wonderful time!


TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive an Amish Meets Amazon prize package including a silver Shelter in the Storm bookmark, a hand-knitted dishcloth, a package of Amish church mints, and a $25 Amazon gift card!

Shelter in the Storm JustRead Giveaway

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway began at midnight May 24, 2021 and lasts through 11:59 PM EST on May 31, 2021. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

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