Former Navy Meets Wallflower

Happy Friday, everybody.  Today is my day to blog, but I had a manuscript due, so I imposed on my friend, Author Jennifer McAndrews.  I’m so glad I did because 1) it’s her anniversay — Happy Anniversary, Jen and 2) she’s got a new book out.  Plus, I love it when a couple beats the odds.  Please join me in welcoming Jennifer McAndrews.  ~ Donnell

 My mother phoned me this morning. She opened the conversation as she always does, with the phrase, “This is your mother.” As if I can’t recognize her voice. As if I don’t know that tone that means she feels I don’t call her enough. I know her voice, her tones, and what her deep sighs mean. For Mom, a deep sigh is the same as saying, “I can’t believe you’re doing this to your poor mother. I can’t believe after all the work I put into raising you that you think/believe/do this idea/faith/thing I don’t approve of.” This is often followed shortly by, “When I’m dead, remember…”
She sighed when I got engaged. It’s true. Right there in the kitchen, in her bathrobe, summoned from cleaning the bathroom so we could share our good news with her, she sighed. Really? Scrubbing the toilet was a better option than me with fiance, a diamond ring and a bottle of champagne? Heck, I’d pretend to be happy just to get out of the cleaning task.
In fairness, there were probably a lot of people letting out heavy sighs at the news. We weren’t what you might call an “obvious match,” you see. He was Led Zeppelin, and I was Beethoven; he was a conversion van and I was a sedate sedan; he was former Navy, and I was former wallflower. Okay, in retrospect, maybe we did have disaster written all over us. But he said will you and I said yes. And then we planned the wedding. We did the math on what the event would cost, determined how much money we could put aside each paycheck, and scheduled the wedding for one week after the bank balance would cover the cost. The goal was to be married already, darn it.
We set the wedding October. I envisioned beautiful pictures featuring fall foliage.
We had rain.
Mixed with snow.
And a million other absurd problems along the way to the big day. Even I look back and can’t understand how I didn’t see all the signs from the Universe that this might be a bad idea.
But sometimes…sometimes the Universe throws you challenges so you prove to yourself how important your goal is. Those challenges were portents, I figure. Warnings that the road ahead would not always be easy. We could dream all we wanted of gold and russet leaves, but we’d better have a sturdy umbrella and a solid back-up plan. And it would be a huge bonus if we could learn to find the humor in the a wide variety of situations.
Learn we did. And now, twenty-four years later, he’s hard rock and I’m opera, together we are singer-songwriter; he’s land yacht and I’m sporty coupe, together we adore our Honda Element; he’s former single guy, I’m former single girl and together we laugh when my mother sighs.



When Hollywood heavyweight Shepard Brown suspects someone has poisoned his pizza, he calls on long-time friend Lorraine Keys to keep him safe. Newly licensed and eager to prove to her boss she’s capable of guarding more than vacant banks, Lorraine takes the job. Amid the chaos of a film set — where threats against Shepard are escalating — Lorraine has to separate the divas from the dangerous before the killer succeeds in knocking off Shepard and anyone who gets in the way – including Lorraine herself.

 (The book is available in hardcover now and paperback and ebook on 10/16 (can be pre-ordered AND there’s a look inside at Amazon so readers can check out some pages ahead. woo! I love that feature!)

 Thanks, Jen, can’t wait to read DEADLY FARCE!  ~ Donnell