Saturday, February 12, 2011

Like Reading About Married Couples Who Keep the Spark Alive?

Do you enjoy reading stories about married couples who keep the spark alive in their romantic life? My book, Finding Hope (2008, Wings ePress) starts out with Janet DeMarco writing a letter of resignation to her family, quitting her job, changing her hair color, and renaming herself Hope. Her husband, Anthony, is totally confused, and her two teenagers think she's finally gone off the deep end. As Hope, Janet takes time to review the choices she's made for life while she watches her children make plans for college and their own futures.

One thing that doesn't waver, however, is the sometimes conflictual, always faithful, and occasionally steamy relationship she shares with Anthony.

Dear family, I quit. Effective immediately, I am no longer the cook, laundress, shopper, housekeeper, chauffeur, landscaper, or resident problem-solver. Oh, I’m also not the banker or the ATM. I am, however, the instructor. Classes will begin tomorrow and seating is limited, so you should sign-up early...

Finding Hope - 2010 EPIC e-Book Award Finalist.

Available from Wings ePress.


I crossed the street to the park and sat on my bench where I made a mental list of things I needed to get for Michael before he left for college in six weeks. My first child, my son, was leaving and striking out on his own. My throat tightened at the thought. Everyone seemed to be getting their lives together. What about me?

My husband and each of my children filled a specific role in my life. Anthony was my best friend, my lover, my other half who made me feel special and whole. Gabby was my baby girl, who brought drama and humor and spontaneity to my life. From the time Michael was an infant, he’d had a stabilizing effect on me. I was anxious as a new mother, so afraid I’d do the wrong thing and ruin him for life. Then he’d look at me with those huge, dark eyes and flash a smile that stretched from ear to ear, and I’d know everything was fine. He’d grown into a sensitive young man with impeccable timing, always knowing just what to say. He was still my stabilizer. I was going to miss him so much.

I removed my sunglasses, wiped my eyes and finished the latte. Suddenly I needed to be at home.

Anthony was shirtless and cutting the grass when I pulled into the drive. He turned off the mower. “I thought you were working today.”
“I quit. Where’s Michael? I thought he was going to cut the grass.”
“Teddy called him in to work, so I took over. Gabby’s gone to the mall with Megan and her mother.”

Anthony’s thick black hair was damp and his muscular chest beaded with perspiration. He was tanned and looked darned sexy in denim cutoffs. “So, it’s just you and me?”

“Yup,” he grinned. “Uh-oh. Something tells me this grass isn’t getting cut today.”

“Whatever do you mean?”

He stepped away from the mower and ran a finger down my cheek and along my jaw. “You’ve got the look.”

I smiled. “What look?”

“The look you always accuse me of having.” He brushed his lips against mine lightly. “I can finish the grass in half an hour.”

“Or there’s always tomorrow.”

“For the grass or…?”

I stood on my toes and whispered into his ear, “You, me, the shower--ten minutes. Don’t be late.”

We moved from the shower to the bedroom. It had been a long time since we’d had a day alone like this. Maybe Michael’s leaving won’t be so bad. Now, how can we get Gabby out of the house?

“God, Jan, I think I’m having a heart attack, but at least I’ll die happy,” Anthony said as he struggled to control his breathing.

I rested my head on his shoulder. “Now, how would I explain that to your mother?”

“Well, you could drag me out to the back yard and tell her I died while cutting the grass.”

“She’d never buy it. You don’t smile like that when you cut the grass.”

Linda Rettstatt


Dru said...

this looks like a fun book.

lovdrua at aol dot com

Kasey said...

Yeah, marriage ain’t no joke. Folks need to work on it. I like the premise of this book.

linda_rettstatt said...

Exactly. I wanted to show that one person in a marriage could go a little crazy for a minute and still the marriage can be strong, can survive those subtle changes that occur in families.

linda_rettstatt said...

Oh, and a sense of humor is essential!

Caffey said...

First congrats on the EPIC finalist for this book! Its been some time since I read one that brings the spark back into the marriage. I could feel that comfort feeling they had for each other too with the humor!

cathiecaffey @

linda_rettstatt said...

My favorite character in the book, though not in this scene, is Grandma Carmela. She's like Sophia from the Golden Girls meets Grandma Mazur from Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series. She's 80 going on 18 and becomes Janet/Hope's biggest supporter. The book is really a family dramady--drama and comedy all rolled into one big, happy Italian family.