To kick off our tour this summer and find out about what my friends and fellow authors are reading I asked Regina a few questions. Here are my questions and what she had to say!
1. What is your favorite word? - "Love"
2. What is your least favorite word? – "Whatever"; indicates to me a passivity and indifference that are difficult for me to respect.
3. What turns you on? – Intelligence – yikes!
4. What turns you off? – Pomposity
5. What sound do you love? – Running water, ‘brookiling’ streams (yes, I made that word up)
6. What sound do you hate? – Dogfights
7. What is your favorite curse word? - Fongool
8. What profession other than yours would you like to attempt? – Even though I’m a writer, which is so solitary, my personality is quite social and I have always loved theater. So I would love to be a touring actress with a musical since I love to sing, too. Relative to that in terms of appearing before others but in a different vein, right brain I guess, I would be a prosecuting attorney; I was enrolled in law school and due to family circumstances left and never went back. Seeking justice and correcting injustices are such valiant endeavors!
9. What profession would you not like to do? – the person who empties, sanitizes and changes the feminine protection containers in the rest room.
10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? ”You did good, Gina.”
You can get to know more about Regina at:
Blog address: www.reginaandrews.wordpress.com
My website: www.reginaandrews.com
And to check out her latest release Light of the Heart
Amazon link to "Light of the Heart": http://amzn.to/KnSw4q
Desert Breeze link to "Light of the Heart" bit.ly/ygOin0
Awe-Struck Mundania link to "In Good Faith": http://bit.ly/KSEfdv
Introductory Blurb: "Light of the Heart"
A stained-glass artist based in Boston, Cascade Preston’s world is a kaleidoscope of color and beauty. She has overcome a dark childhood, deeply shadowed by domestic violence, in the town of Sterling Lakes. When she is approached to design new windows for a refurbished church in Sterling Lakes, she ignores the request. But when the no-nonsense Project Manager Dan McQuay appears looking for the window plans, the project takes on a whole new light. Will Cascade be able to keep the dark, protective cocoon she has built around herself intact, or will McQuay break through and shine new light into her heart? Is it possible that God’s plan for Cascade will lead her to forgive the town that ignored the situation her family?
Excerpt from “Light of the Heart” by Regina Andrews
The afternoon class at Tanglewood Women's Prison was a spectrum of tension, as separated and splintered as a beam of light refracted through a prism. Cascade Preston held her student's template assignment up to the light overhead, and spoke carefully on the quality of the stained glass project.
"With two lights, or openings, Brenda, I would say your idea of a church window for this one would be correct."
Sighing, the student replied, "So you think I'm making progress?"
"Of course." She tossed her honey-colored curls behind her shoulders. "Don't you?"
Brenda snorted. "Heck, no. I'm in here for domestic assault. What do I know about progress? My life is over."
This stopped Cascade in her tracks. "Look, we all make mistakes. God has told us that sinners should flock to him. What do you think? "
Brenda shrugged. "God has his own agenda. We'll see what the parole board says about mine in two weeks."
"For now, let's focus on next week's class. Bring me a flower for that one.”
"Where are we supposed to get a flower?" someone muttered.
"Draw one, stupid," Brenda answered.
"Bye, ladies. Take care."
"See you." Sad-eyed, Brenda gave her a high-five as Cascade walked past her.
Cascade's heels clicked efficiently with her every crisp step, and she made sure to shuttle as closely as possible alongside the beefy guard who escorted her from the holding room. Getting into her Corolla, she whispered a prayer. "I don't think I'm doing any good here, Lord, but I feel you telling me to stick with it. So I will. Maybe this is the kind of thing that saved my mother." She tried to block the images of her mother's bruises from her mind, but they wouldn't go away. They never did.
The drive back into Boston passed by quickly, without too much traffic. "Lean on Me" blasted from her audio system, and she sang along with all her heart. At twenty-seven, she knew it was technically an oldie, but to her, it was fresh and filled with meaning. Cascade wondered as she sang what it would feel like to have someone to lean on, because she had always been alone.
"There's only one thing that could make tonight perfect," she mused as she pulled into the parking area for her condo complex, "and that's not going to happen, for sure."
Images of her long-gone fiancé, Kevin, came into her mind and heart. Where was he this fine June evening? More importantly, why were things so much better for him without her in his life?
A form crossing her path brought her back to reality. Her eyes narrowed as she noticed someone walking towards her car. A guy -- a big guy she did not recognize.
She shaded her eyes from the late day sun. Dark hair and outdoorsy looks. Work boots. "Nope,” she murmured to herself, “I don't know him."
Hopping from her car, she said, "Can I help you?"
"If you're Cascade Preston, you sure can."
He folded his arms across his chest. With all those muscles moving, Cascade could only imagine the stress put on the seams of his light blue cotton shirt.
"And you are..."
"Dan McQuay." He extended his arm towards her. "From the site."
"Hi." Cascade pumped his strong hand, lost in his sky blue eyes. "What site?"
He tilted his head. "The construction site."
"I'm not following you."
He looked at her steadily. "I'm project manager for the retrofit on the church in Sterling Lakes. The one that you're doing the windows for."
Cascade’s heartbeat quickened. Just hearing the name of the town where she grew up made her anxious and tense. "It seems there's been a misunderstanding. No way am I working on anything in Sterling Lakes." She started to bustle past him. "Now if you'll excuse me?"
"Don't run away, Ms. Preston. There's a problem here."
His tone of voice got her attention. He sounded like he cared... about her. That was crazy. She was a total stranger to him.
She nodded. "Apparently there is a problem, you're right. I don't know what you're talking about. Like I said, I'm not doing any work in Sterling Lakes, and I never will. That's the last place in the world I ever would go."
He gave a slow whistle. "Well, that's a loaded speech if I ever heard one."
In spite of herself, she smiled. "I didn't mean to get all hot and huffy, but it is how I feel, and I have my good reasons."
He eyed her intently before he finally spoke. "Understood. The thing is, your name is on the plans that I have, and my crew is ready to get going. We haven't heard from you, and we need to have a job meeting. Mostly, we need your specs."
Cascade noticed the strong line of his jaw when he spoke, and oh, those bluer than blue eyes of his were so easy to get lost in. She swallowed.
"I don't know what to tell you. I'm not contracted for that job. Your project executive should be able to answer your questions." She toyed with the zipper on her oversized leather shoulder bag as she watched thunderclouds roll across his handsome face. "Look, why don't you give me his name? I'll check things out at my studio in the morning and get in touch with him. Maybe I can get to the bottom of this."
"Yup." He took his hands out of his pockets. "Here's my business card, and here's his. Try and remember, every day is money to me."
"Okay, I know. I'm in business, too, so I get it. I know every job I'm on, and this one is not on my list. Let me see if I can find out why I'm on the list of subcontractors... if I really am."
"I shouldn't be, so there's a mistake. I never even sent in a bid."
"At least we found out something tonight," he said with a shrug. "Other than you being a whole lot prettier in person than in the pictures all those magazine articles and newspaper stories print about you."
Cascade’s face warmed up at his compliment. "Now you're trying to butter me up."
"Just stating the truth, plain and simple like I always do, Ms. Preston. That's my way. Thank you for your time."
He started walking over to his truck. "Talk to you tomorrow."
"Right. And there's one more thing."
He questioned her with a wondering look.
"Please call me Cascade." Her smile lingered as she watched him drive off into the Boston twilight. Too bad this job was in Sterling Lakes. It might not be that bad to do a job with Dan McQuay. Not bad at all.
Light of the Heart is available for purchase at Desert Breeze Publishing.
Reviews “Light of the Heart”
"Light of the Heart by Regina Andrews is a beautiful book inside and out... If you want to read a beautiful book with a filtered-light story, this is the one."
"The author made this couple do and say things that I have seen myself say or do. Being able to relate that personally gives the book more ooomph, so to speak. And that makes it an even more enjoyable read. Also, with this being the first of a series, I look forward to seeing what happens next at Sterling Lakes."
Rating = 4 Books
"It is a wonderful story about the lasting effects of our pasts and the power of forgiveness... The story is truly a joyful, uplifting read that clearly illustrates the freedom found in act of of forgiveness. I look forward to the next story in the series."
Rating = 4 Hearts