GIVEAWAY!! Blog Tour: Ripple the Twine by Jenn Flynn-Shon with an Interview and Excerpt


Ripple the Twine
written by Jenn Flynn-Shon         
published by Writesy Press

find it here: Barnes & NobleAmazon, Goodreads

Why did I pick this book: I participated in the blog tour for this book organized by CLP Blog Tours. (I received a copy of this book for review purposes.)


Did I enjoy this book: I did enjoy this book. I read it every free chance I had and finished it in about 2 days. I did not want to put it down. It was a quick read that held my attention and wouldn’t let go.

I liked that the four friends – Robyn, Perth, Sara, and Edward – were a family. They all cared about each other and were there for each other. As with all families, they tried to keep things from one another but the truth always comes out…and for the better. I felt for each of them and hoped for the best for all of them. The main character, Sara, was fantastic. I love a sports-loving, independent lead female who is searching for “the one.” I wanted her to find more happiness than what she had. And Ben was fantastic. I would love to hear his accent in person. I can imagine swooning  over it. 

Would I recommend it: I would recommend this book to any chick-lit lover.

Will I read it again: Probably not. 

About the book – from Goodreads: Sara Quinn is a Sportswriter from Boston and over the past year she has started to earn major respect in the local market. In the process, however, she abandoned her personal relationships and put her emotions in the box. Regardless of her self-imposed timeout, a friend introduces her to Ben. With blue eyes, black hair and a brogue, he’s her ultimate triple threat. But they connect just as Sara learns that her friends are facing heavy emotional crises. She starts offering advice, becoming a rock for everyone else, and in the process Sara unearths her own long dormant insecurities. But a bag of peanut butter cups and a hockey game won’t fix her issues. She’s got to move past her emotional past without hiding behind her career for once. She needs her friend’s support as much as they need hers and the four will quickly discover that, when they stick together, their offense is virtually unstoppable.

And now I would like to welcome the author, Jenn Flynn-Shon, who graciously answered a few questions from me for all of you!

Why did you become a writer? Pure visceral need.  I’ve lived lots of working lives – everything from Executive Assistant to Owner of my own Decorative Painting company – but nothing ever gave me as much personal satisfaction as when I was writing.  Once I started getting into the fundamentals of the business side of things in addition to the creative side I realized how hooked I truly was.
If you weren’t a writer, what would you be doing as a career? I can’t even fathom an answer to this question.  Everything I did for work before was nothing more than a job; a place to do research for my career as a Writer.  I’ve never felt strong enough about anything to make it a career before this and I can’t imagine doing anything else.
Which character was your favorite to write about? Which was your least favorite? 
The character I approached with reckless abandon was Perth.  She was the Yin to Sara’s Yang and always seemed to show up just as things were getting heavy.  I loved her lightness and sassy frivolity but her dedication to her friends was her most endearing quality.  I tend to analyze what I’m going to say and don’t always shoot from the hip like she does so getting to write her was fun.
For a few rounds of edits I was disenchanted with writing Sara to be honest.  Because I had to get to know her so intimately it became like a chore at times trying to get out what she was saying.  By the end of my final edit though I had fallen back in love with her and couldn’t wait to share her successes and failures.  She was more layered and real.

Which character in Ripple the Twine do you relate to the most? Why? Probably Sara, though I’m married and she’s a single gal.  Her analytical and organized approach to her career is something I’m in touch with.  She’s also an observer, though when entrenched in her own chaos it’s tough for her to see everything going on around her and it throws her off balance.  I can be like that at times.  Plus I remember how tough it was to open up and trust anyone again after my first really bad break up.  The first time I felt like I could do that again was after I fixed my own stuff, and Sara has a lot to fix.  And of course there’s the fact that we’re both Boston Bruins fans!
What was your favorite scene to write in Ripple the Twine? Why? Sara’s first date with Ben.  The whole thing, though it is spread out over multiple chapters, was so much fun to write.  They both go through some emotional ups and downs during the date and connect pretty quickly through conversations.  It forced me to dig into different wells so Sara could downshift her feelings as quickly as if the events happened in real time. 
How long did it take you to write Ripple the Twine? What was your writing process like? The character of Sara Quinn actually started developing back in 1999.  I had written about twenty-five pages of what I hoped would be a novel.  At the time I couldn’t get it to work so I filed it away.  Years later I heard about NaNoWriMo and thought it would be worth giving it a try so I pulled out my old character of Sara.  That was in 2009.  Everything, with the exception of her first name, what she does for a living (Sportswriter) and the setting, changed.  NaNo was a great fit for an analyzer like me – it forced me to forget about editing and finally just get a full novel down on the page.  I put it away for about a year after typing that first draft (exhausted!).  It took me another year after that to edit, send it out for feedback, make more edits, and then make a few more edits.
Then I was satisfied with the story.  If I’d kept going on it I don’t think it would have ever left my computer!  I never dreamed how much work it would be to write a novel and how many steps are involved in self-publishing but I enjoyed every minute of it.
Can you explain the significance of the title and cover of Ripple the Twine? And the definition of the hockey terminology at the beginning of each chapter? I’m a big sports fan.  Or, to clarify, I’m a big fan of most of the professional sports teams in Boston/New England.  Sara, a Sportswriter and a Boston girl (like me) is also a Bruins hockey fan.  But Tomboys are sometimes girlie on the inside.  And Sara wasn’t exempt.  Hence the puck and flirty shoes together.
The more I dug around and studied, the more I found that Sara’s life was lining up with terms used in hockey.  Howitzer, for example, is a fast slap shot.  Getting hit with one will sting regardless of how much padding you’re wearing.  In that chapter (Ten) Sara learns that life is fluid, that things and people change, and it comes as a huge blow.  One she doesn’t expect or see coming.  An emotional whammy, and she has no armor to protect herself from its sting.
As a sucker for a happy ending there was no chance Sara wouldn’t “win the game” in her own way.  The title, Ripple the Twine, means to score a goal.  I wanted Sara to score the proverbial goal in the end by bringing her career and life together into one manageable package where she’s happy and successful in life and love.
In one sentence, tell us why we should read your book. It’s a fun story about a quirky group of friends looking to find themselves while figuring out how to rely on each other which makes for a great relaxing-on-the-weekend summer read.
What is your favorite book? This year?  Ha, ha!  I recently finished reading a friend’s book, Magic Bridge by Thomasina Burke, and really loved the depth she brought to her main character, Bridgete.  The book centers on life, love, loss and the willingness to do it all over again even if the only person you fall in love with in the end is yourself.  It is a beautiful contemporary Women’s Fiction story and set to be a trilogy.
Of all time my go-to book is Different Seasons by Stephen King.  I read that book for the first time when I was twelve and still have my first copy.  Even though it’s a falling apart paperback and the pages are yellow it was the first of King’s books I’d read. But it certainly wasn’t the last!
Who is/are your favorite author(s)? Already mentioned King, plus I always love a punchy female voice like Jen Lancaster, Marisa de los Santos or Marian Keyes.  Lately though I’ve been drawn toward more Indie Authors like Burke, and also Susan Pohlman, and have found myself exploring the vast world of memoir.
What are you currently reading right now? I’m reading two books right now.  The first is a memoir titled Return to Viet Nam: One Veteran’s Journey of Healing by Linda G. Myers and its fascinating.  I’m not one for war books and this one isn’t.  The story centers on (co-Author) Art’s returning to the country where he fought, as a way to bring peace and clarity to himself after years of struggling with PTSD.  It is truly inspirational.
The second is Moon Shell Beach by Nancy Thayer.  I just started this one but it seems promising.  And timely.  After moving across the country and leaving my childhood best friend (of twenty-seven years) behind last year, the reuniting best friend angle has me hooked.
I see in your bio that you love to travel. What is your favorite place that you have visited? Where do you want to travel to the most? Picking only one place would be impossible!  Mid-west coast of Ireland, Amsterdam, San Diego, Toronto, The Bahamas, Disney World, upstate New York…  One of my favorite trips was about twelve years ago when my husband and I first started dating.  He was living in Ohio at the time and I was in Boston.  He bought a car in Boston so I joined him for the drive back across the country then flew home by myself.  We drove for seventeen straight hours, made some of the best memories, and had great conversation the entire time.
As for somewhere I want to visit, I can’t get Tahiti out of my head.  I want to wake up in one of those huts out over the ocean listening to the lapping waves, watching as the calm breeze blows sheer white curtains around, eating fresh caught fish and fresh picked mangoes flavored by just a hint of salt from the humid ocean air. Mmm, heaven!

About the author: Jenn Flynn-Shon is an Author, born and raised in the Boston, Massachusetts area but currently living and working in Phoenix, Arizona. She quite happily lives, child-free, with her husband in the Valley of the Sun. She is an avid recycler, upcycler, and refuser of superfluous things. Love of sports is a cultural experience, an almost mandated way of life for most Bostonians, and Jenn is no exception to that rule. Jenn loves to travel, read, spend time with family and friends, and blog. “Ripple the Twine” is her first fiction novel. 

Find Ms. Flynn-Shon here: Facebook, Twitter, blog, Writesy, Goodreads


Please enjoy the following excerpt:
 Chapter 7 of Ripple the Twine!

Quick Whistle: The official will whistle the play “dead” with the puck still visible. This often draws an unfavorable reaction from hometown crowds especially when the whistle negates a perceived scoring chance for the home team.
“I have no idea what the hell I’m doing going to this silly dinner tonight.  Please talk me out of this.”  Sara said.  She stood in front of her full length mirror and fiddled with the neck of her shirt.
“Are you freaking kidding me?  Look babe, you so need a date.  Really, all you do is sit in your house and write or come to The Rose.  You have got to get out and meet someone.” 
Once it started to sink in that her mother was setting her up on a blind date, Sara’s one time nerves of steel faded into rusted flecks of iron on the breeze.  Sara had decided Perth would be the one to give her an excuse for how to get out of the fix up.  Sara had informed Perth that Paul was a lawyer, homeowner, allegedly gorgeous, apparently never married and that he had no children.  Suddenly, her best friend was a highly uncooperative participant in Sara’s plan.
“Thanks… friend. Or should I just call you Mother?”
“I don’t care if it’s a set up by your mother, this guy sounds unreal.  You can try that pity crap but the only one feeling bad is you.  I know the way you critique yourself but you look amazing and regardless, you deserve a fling at least.”
“Perth, you know I’m wicked conservative.  I can’t just jump into bed with someone I just met.  I mean, my mother never even mentioned his last name.  How can I possibly have a fling with someone when I don’t even know his last name?”
“Because sweetie, that’s just it.  I am talking about a fling, last names are for guys you plan to marry, and then it’s only for the invitations.”
“Please don’t be flip, I’m not kidding.”
“Yeah well neither am I.  Go and meet him, have a couple glasses of wine, flirt the way you do at The Rose and then bring the boy home.  I’m not talking a lifelong commitment here.  I beg you, just get some before you go loopy and take the rest of us down with you.”
“I’ll think about it.” 
Sara wasn’t surprised that her friend could have so easily changed her mind in such short order; it had been far too long since she had some good naked fun with anyone.  And she was stressed about work.
“Truth?  Don’t listen to your mother.  Listen to the person who really knows you.  Me.  Have fun and, you know, show him that move you do with your hips every Thursday on the dance floor.”  
Sara fumbled with her mascara wand as she sharply inhaled then laughed into the receiver.  She had never been as comfortable talking about sex as Perth; even after all those years Sara still got embarrassed by her friend’s many comments.
“Hey watch it, you almost made me ruin my outfit.”
“Details.”
“OK, um, my boot cut Levis.”
“The ones that show off your butt or the black ones?”
“The butt ones.”
“Yup, nice.”
“Brown boots.”
“Which ones?”
“Those ones with the back zipper, I think I got them with Robyn but they’re really cute and have a little leather flower on the outer ankle.”  Sara paused and watched as her face in the mirror flashed back a look of contemplation.  “But I highly doubt he’ll be looking at them all that closely so I suppose it doesn’t really matter.  Oh, and my garnet top.”
“That low dipping, sleeveless, cowl neck one you got when we went out last month?”
“Yeah?” 
Sara was instantly pensive with her response.  The tone in Perth’s voice suddenly made Sara question if her friend thought the outfit made her look too desperate.
“Yeah, that’s hot.  It’ll look even better on your floor tomorrow morning after you wake up to find he snuck out before the sun came up.”
“Perth!  Come on, I don’t want to look slutty, just…good.”  Sara heard Perth laugh.  “Great.  I need to change.”
“Okay, I’m sorry.  Don’t change, it looks fantastic on you and think of how easy it will be for him to take it off.”  Her friend giggled and Sara rolled her eyes, Perth was pathological. She should have been used to her best friend’s frankness but Sara still turned tomato red.
“Ugh.  Alright, I’m running late and you know my mother will be all frantic.  I don’t know if this guy can even carry on a conversation.  Guess we’ll see.”
“Sweetie the only thing he has to know how to say is ‘how can I please you?’”

Now is your chance to enter the GIVEAWAY for a paperback copy of Ripple the Twine by Jenn Flynn-Shon!!! Fill out the Rafflecopter form below.

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Happy reading wherever you are and whenever you get a free chance!!!

Comments

  1. Thanks so much for being in the tour!

  2. Thanks so much for featuring me and Ripple the Twine! Can’t wait to find out who wins the giveaway, good luck everyone!

  3. The interview is well done! I hope to win a copy of a book I have had my eye on. Its on my TBR list(Goodreads)I enjoy reading!
    Cyndee Thomas
    cyndee.thomas0@gmail.com
    (A book-a-holic!)

  4. Thank you for doing the tour! The book was amazing!!!!!
    cornyrex(at)yahoo(dot)com
    http://wackyreader.blogspot.com/

  5. thank you for the chance I would love to read this it sounds great.

  6. I am really looking forward to having a chance to read Jenn’s book, once I read it I will donate my copy to the main Library in Halifax:)

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