Trying to remember how I met my online friends is tricky. I’m pretty sure though I first came across Mae while visiting L.J. Kentowski’s blog last autumn. Since then I’ve been a regular visit to Mae’s blog. Her debut novel, Weathering Rock, a beautifully spun paranormal romance tale was one of my favourite reads of last year.
I’m delighted to have her on today to talk about her new release, a contemporary romance published by Lyrical Press, Twelfth Sun. Take it away, Mae.
My last book, WEATHERING ROCK, was a paranormal romance, but TWELFTH SUN is a change of direction for me. It’s a contemporary romantic mystery.
On my blog, I’m known for writing about mythical beasts, strange creatures and folklore. Although the first two are missing from TWELFTH SUN, I was able to weave a few elements of folklore throughout the story. From the time I was a kid, I’ve been enamored of old sailing vessels and nautical legends. The eastern seaboard of the U.S. is a second home to me and I dream of someday living in a quaint coastal village. Beach settings inspire me, and I’m instantly intrigued by any snippet of maritime lore I stumble across. I couldn’t resist combining a few of those in a book. 🙂
TWELFTH SUN is the story of Reagan Cassidy and Elijah Cross, an older woman/younger man who find themselves caught up in an elaborate scavenger hunt to retrieve a journal that once belonged to a passenger aboard the doomed nineteenth century schooner, Twelfth Sun.
Reagan is just trying to do her uncle a favor when she agrees to meet his friend, a marine archaeologist (whom she imagines a stodgy old professor), and a bid on the maritime artifact. What she didn’t count on was finding a man ten years her junior with a cocky attitude, a PhD, and a way of shattering her reservations about romance.
Dr. Elijah Cross thought it would be a simple matter to authenticate the journal for his friend Gavin Cassidy, but finds himself sucked into week-long scavenger hunt along with Gavin’s sexy niece, Reagan, and several oddball competitors. As guests of Eric Sothern, a reclusive billionaire no one has ever seen, Elijah and the others are invited to lodge at Sothern’s lavish seaside mansion.
He finds it hard to concentrate on marine artifacts with the alluring Reagan occupying his mind, a series of cryptic riddles to solve, and a saboteur intent on claiming the journal even if it means playing dirty to win. When the clues take a strangely personal turn and a series of mishaps occur, he and Reagan are left to wonder if anyone is really who they seem.
TWELFTH SUN was the equivalent of a writer’s playground for me. It allowed me to combine multiple story elements I love and weave them into a tale of escapist fun, including a smattering of nautical myths, superstition and folklore. The early summer setting in a small coastal town was just icing on the cake.
Thanks for allowing me to share TWELFTH SUN with your readers, Emma!
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.”
TWELFTH SUN is Available From:
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
It sounds fabulous! The sun is shining here in Cork today, no better time to start reading Twelfth Sun. Best of luck with the release, Mae. Great to have you here today.