Tiki Hut - Canadian Style

LOL...now this post has a title! My bad.

We have a new visitor today Under the Tiki Hut. Joan Leacott has been a writer friend of mine for a few years now, and she's here to tell you a little about herself and her debut novel, ABOVE SCANDAL. She lives in Toronto, Canada, and we met through an online goal-setting group. Please slap a couple of those bright red maple leaves together, and give Joan a warm welcome.

Warm...Canada...Tiki Hut...get it?

I apologize :)
I'll shut up now and let Joan talk.

What is your fondest book-related memory?

The library in my mid-sized hometown was an old municipal building with a formal façade of limestone stairs and columns beneath a triangular portico. The front doors were so heavy that my dad had to open them for Mom and me. The fiction section was down creaky stairs and into the basement. The adult book stacks ringed the sides. A carved stand proudly held a massive dictionary. The children’s area was in the centre of the adult area, surrounded by benches and screens. Clever planning, eh? The book I remember reading first is Harold and his Purple Crayon by Crockett Jones. I’m thrilled that Harold and his adventures are still available.

What are you working on?

I’m finishing another round of edits on Sight for Sore Eyes, the second book in the Clarence Bay Chronicles. Emma Finn has inherited her grandmother’s china shop. She’s looking forward to a peaceful life with family and friends. Asher Stockdale, the new doctor in town, has a different vision for Emma, a vision of romance. But Emma’s resistant to change—she’s had quite enough of it, thank you very much. So a pair of scheming seniors decide to nudge Emma and Asher towards their happily-ever-after.

Your books are set in Clarence Bay, Canada. How different is that from the Tiki Hut?

At this time of year, the obvious difference is the weather; it’s cold and dark up here, and getting more so every day until the winter solstice. The leaves have changed colour and fallen to cover roads, gardens, and unwary cats. Brrr! Come summer, though, the two places are much more similar. Hot sunny beaches, cool blue water, long lazy days. A glass of wine and a good book in a Muskoka chair amid the trees. Much better!

Joan Leacott lives in Toronto, Canada with her husband and son. She attends piano classes, melts in the hot yoga studio, and loves to cook for family and friends. She spends her summers on the shores of Georgian Bay.

Three generations of Rossetti women are hoarding secrets.

Cathy Rossetti’s secret is Hayley, her outspoken ten-year-old daughter, who’s about to meet her family for the first time. Sadly, it’s taken a terminal illness to bring Cathy back to her hometown.

The elder generation of Rossetti women guards a thirty-year old secret with the power to rock Cathy’s world. Will her mother take their secret to her grave, or will her aunt break her punishing vow of silence?

Hayley hates secrets, so she’s sleuthing around Clarence Bay looking for her daddy. Is it her new BFF’s father or mayoral candidate Ryan Chisholm or Ryan’s handsome campaign manager?

Ryan has a secret, too. He’s still in love with Cathy, his high-school sweetheart. For a man running his election campaign on a platform of honesty, this could cause problems. Will dumping his popular fiancée cost him the election? And if Cathy still loves him after eleven years' absence, she’s not telling.

Deep Dark Secrets are usually
more fun in books than they are in real life.
Do you have a secret?
What if we found out?


Nice to meet you on here Joan!
Shelly said…
Great interview. I love reading about your favorite book related memory. I wish we could send a little of the South Texas heat up your way...
Austin Towers said…
Thank you for the interesting interview! :) It looks like an intriguing read! :)
Julie Flanders said…
I love that memory of the library. Reminded me of my own trips to the library when I was a kid and I was always totally enchanted by the place.

Great to meet you, Joan! Your book sounds great - good luck with it!
Melissa said…
Ooo. Family secrets and paternity issues. Great premise.

Enjoyed the interview, Ladies. Good to meet you, Joan.
Sounds like a great book! And I know Toronto is lovely, even though summer is probably the best time to visit. :)
Joan Leacott said…
Thanks for having me, Carol. It's lovely to be here and be warm. No warmth for me until next June. :( Unless I come visit? ;)

It's so nice to meet you all as well. I hope you all like my story when you read it. I had great fun writing it.

Shelley, I'll take every degree you send my way. Next summer, I'll send you some cool. :)

Elizabeth, yeah, spring to fall is the best time of year to visit. No July can get uncomfortably hot and humid. If it's snow you want, try Quebec or British Columbia.

Jay Noel said…
Great interview, Joan, and the only maple leaf I could find was from my Japanese maple!

Best wishes and much success.
Emily R. King said…
Always great to meet another Canadian! Congrats on your debut, Joan!
Johanna Garth said…
Welcome and best of luck with your new book Joan. I love the sound of your childhood library.
Janie Junebug said…
What a good interview.

Helena said…
Me? Have a deep dark secret? Okay, maybe I've got a few, and I definitely don't want you to find out about them.

Joan's book sounds like fun, so I'll check it out.
Bish Denham said…
I love the idea of the children's books being surrounded by the adult books. Nice story, nice memory.
Joan Leacott said…
Hey, Jay. Japanese maples are lovely, with one drawback, no maple syrup. :)

Hey Emily, what part of Canada do you hail from. Waving from Clarence Bay.

Thank you, Janie, Helena, and Bish. Good to meet you. I've thought whoever designed that library must have been a mom who loved to browse.
Southpaw said…
Nice to meet you Joan. Buuurrrrr, cold up there (here too). It's always nice to take a break and warm up here at the Tiki Hut.
Welcome Joan. That early library sounds wonderful.
And thank you Carol for yet again waving another book at my weak willed self.
Lynda R Young said…
Great interview. The summers sound wonderful! Not sure about the winters though ;)
Nas said…
Sounds interesting read. Thanks for lovely interview.

Joan Leacott said…
Hey, Southpaw. I'm a lefty and I cook, too! ::spoon clap:: Your cookbooks look awesome. ::going shopping::

Thank you, EC. I hope you enjoy discovering Cathy's secret.

Hi, Lynda. I love reading Aussie romances. One of these days, I'll visit.

Carol Kilgore said…
Did y'all think I vanished?

I just told someone else, today has been one of those days when I've started a dozen projects and finished none. I think they will all finish up one after another like a falling row of dominos. I hope they all finish today, but it will likely not happen for all of them until tomorrow.
Carol Kilgore said…
Shelly - It was chilly, cloudy and damp here in San Antonio for a few days . Today is gorgeous, though - sunny and 70s. Tomorrow Joan is shipping in some Canada Cold according to the local weather.

Helena - Secrets? You? I'll say!

EC - You're most welcome :)

Joan - Southpaw's cookbooks ARE awesome!
~Sia McKye~ said…
Oh, what an interesting storyline. It would be a fun book to read.

Where I lived before moving here we had a really nice library. When I was a kid, most of the libraries were at the schools--or at least a branch of it. My mom would give me list to check out and bring home. It was a cool feeling to bring books home to mom. :-)

We're not as far south as Carol, but its closer to her than you. It's cold and dreary this evening.

Sia McKye Over Coffee
klahanie said…
Hi Carol and Joan,

Right then, how's it goin, eh? I see your books are set in Clarence Bay, Joan. And indeed, the folks of Clarence Bay are a romantic lot.

Seems a fascinating series.

Gary from, amongst other places, Vancouver. Can I mention Vancouver? Actually, my playwright brother is currently residing in Toronto.

Take care, eh.

Gary :)
Joan Leacott said…
Hi Sia, I'm glad the story line appeals to you. I had great fun giving it a good twist. Cold, wet, and dreary here, too. Is it spring yet?
Joan Leacott said…
Hey Gary, Clarence Bay is really Parry Sound in disguise. Sure you can mention Vancouver. My niece is out there doing her medical internship. One of these days, I'll get out there. Closest I've been is Banff. Thanks for stopping by.
klahanie said…
Hey Joan,

If you make it to Vancouver, I can arrange the parade in your honour. All the best for your niece with her medical internship.

Ah Banff to Jasper. One of the world's most beautiful drives.

Joan Leacott said…
HI Nas, Thanks for dropping in to share the beautiful view.
This time of the year would be much nicer if it weren't for the cold and dark. But at least Toronto isn't that far north. Not like some cities in Canada. :)
Joan Leacott said…
So true, Stina. Toronto is south of the 49th parallel so we get a full day's sunlight. Unlike folks in the Yukon (beside Alaska) who only get a vague twilight before it's back to darkness. Makes me shiver just thinking of it.
VR Barkowski said…
Wonderful interview you two! I'm reminded of how little of Canada I've seen. In fact I've never been east of Vancouver. Maybe next summer?

Best of luck with ABOVE SCANDAL, Joan! I love plots that revolve arounds secrets.

VR Barkowski
Joan Leacott said…
VR, never east of Vancouver? You sure missed a lot of Canada. :) For me, nothing beats a good secret, except for a double secret. ;) Thanks for your good wishes.
I would also love to visit Toronto. Some of our relatives visited in October, and raved about everything including the weather! It was nice meeting you Joan. Best of luck with your intriguing book! Thanks Carol!

Lexa Cain said…
There are few things more exciting in a book than secrets, except maybe if the secrets are about a juicy sex scandal! Sounds like a fun read - good luck, Joan! :-)
Joan Leacott said…
ENI, October is usually one the best months, weather-wise. Thank you for your good wishes.

Lexa, Yep, the more personal the secret, the greater the impact. Thank you for stopping by.
Carol Kilgore said…
I haven't been to Canada, but I hope to remedy that before too much longer. We almost made it to Montreal several years ago, but chose a different destination instead.
LR said…
Nice interview! That chair looks comfy.

Getting dark and cold here too. What a pity.
Joan Leacott said…
Carol, Montreal is nice, but Quebec City is nicer. I'm having great fun here Under the Tiki Hut. You have such a great group of friends.

Hi LR, That's a Muskoka chair and they are super comfy, especially for a nap. Cottage country wouldn't be the same without them. Thanks for stopping by.
Carol Kilgore said…
Joan - I'm glad you having fun poking your toes into some Tiki sand. Aren't my friends awesome? I love them all!
I love Canada, and the concept of scandal. It's an intriguing combination. Best wishes for great book success, Joan.

Thanks for hosting this, Carol.
Be well.
Nice interview, ladies. That library sounds like the very grand Enoch Pratt Library in Baltimore. It was huge and imposing, and every book-lovers dream. (Even had Edgar Allen Poe's writing desk in there.)
Joan Leacott said…
I'm fond of the place, myself. :) Thanks for dropping in, Robyn.

Susan, The library seemed huge when I was tiny thing, but shrank considerably when I visited some years later. Now you've made wonder if it's still there.
Raquel Somatra said…
Love this! Your library experience sounds so gloriously magical, no wonder you became a writer! The book looks fantastic too.
LD Masterson said…
Always nice to meet a neighbor from the north. I'd enjoy sitting in that chair with a good book. In the summer, of course.
Joan Leacott said…
Hi Raquel, Someday, I'll use the memory in a book.

Hey LD, Nice to meet you, too. Oh, yeah, definitely in the summer. Or Australia in the winter. :)
Morgan said…
Carol, thanks so much for sharing Joan with us here today! She is absolutely delightful. What a fun post and her work looks wonderful.
J.L. Campbell said…
Hi, Carol,
Joan's book sounds intriguing. Nice cover too. The backdrop is nice.
Gwen Gardner said…
Ohhh, I'm sure there's a ghost story somewhere in that library.

The book sounds lovely, Joan. Congrats!

Hi Carol!
Joan Leacott said…
Morgan, I'm blushing. I'm glad you enjoyed the post.

JL, The backdrop is a classic Georgian Bay shot. My small fictional town is set on its shores.

Gwen, Ghost story! Now why didn't I think of that? Thanks for stopping by.
Anonymous said…
I'm pleased to meet the author. I enjoyed reading about the library and weather. That chair looks inviting.
Oooh, the description of Joan's hometown library really captured my imagination! I actually read and re-read that part... love the "formal facade of limestone stairs and columns beneath a triangular portico"...
I'm wondering if Joan considered using that library description in a scene from one of her stories....? It's sooooo appealing...
Nice to meet you, Joan.

Hi Carol.
Joan Leacott said…
Thank you, Medeia. Such a pretty name. I'm pleased to meet you, too. Thank you for dropping by.

Hi Michelle, Thank you for such the lovely compliment of re-reading. Clarence Bay does have a library, built in the 1980s. But I think it just morphed into my hometown library.
Rula Sinara said…
Congrats, Joan! Your story sounds fabulous...and so does your library. I love buildings that hold a story of their own.
Ava Quinn said…
Great interview, ladies! Joan, your book sounds great!!
Joan Leacott said…
Thank you, Rula. A building with it's own story--great idea.

Ava, Thank you for stopping to sit a while on the seashore. Cheers!
Old Kitty said…
Goodness me all these secrets floating around in Above Scandal - no wonder Hayley is determined to unravel one of them closest to her! Good for her!!

Am totally slapping my syrup soaked maple leaves together for lovely Joan!! Take care
Joan Leacott said…
Thank you, Kitty! Hayley was such a fun character to write. Eventually, she grows up and gets her own book.
Carol Kilgore said…
Thanks to all of you for stopping by. And to Joan for writing such a great post.