From National Bestselling author Melissa Bourbon comes a small town magical story with a heart-stopping hero, a sigh-worthy romance, beautiful writing, and characters that jump off the page. Get ready to be charmed by Storie and Reid, and watch out for the twist!
Storie Bell is a witch. Not the kind that lives in Harry Potter’s world. No, she is more like Glinda, the good witch of the North, minus the munchkins and Dorothy. But a witch trying to blend in in a small southern town is no easy feat. She’s grown up believing that mortals and witchcraft don’t mix.
Storie thinks the biggest threat to her future—opening The Storiebook Cafe, where happy endings begin— is Reid Malone, the very man she ran away from years before. He seems hell bent on getting in the way of her bookstore’s grand opening. But when a mysterious woman from Storie’s past shows up and makes claims that leave Storie confused, she rethinks her entire future.
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Melissa Bourbon, the author of the Magical Dressmaking Mysteries (A Seamless Murder, A Killing Notion, A Custom-Fit Crime, Deadly Patterns), sometimes answers to her Latina-by-marriage name, Misa Ramirez. She gave up teaching middle and high school kids in northern California to write full-time amid horses and Longhorns in north Texas. She fantasizes about spending summers writing in quaint, cozy locales, has a love-hate relationship with yoga and chocolate, is devoted to her family, and can’t believe she’s lucky enough to be living the life of her dreams.
Can you tell readers a little bit about yourself and what inspired to write in this particular genre?
I’ve written cozy mysteries, caper mysteries, and romantic suspense novels. A light paranormal romance is a completely different type of book. Weaving in just the right amount of magic into a contemporary romance takes more finesse than you might imagine. Turns out it’s right up my alley, though. It’s how I’d like the world to be. Making Storie a witch gave me the opportunity to bring that big of magic into my writing. I can’t wait to do it again!
What inspired you to write this book?
The whole concept for the Storiebook Café, the bookstore/café in the book, was inspired by a store of the same name in a little Texas town called Glen Rose. Glen Rose is a cute little town, and the owner of the store, also named Storie, just sparked this idea. I asked her if I could base a book off of her store and name, she said, “Of course!”, and I went to town writing!
Basically, Storie is a down-on-her-luck witch who’s not very good or experienced at what she does (for a variety of reasons). She and her friend, Harper, set up a bookshop/café in Whiskey Creek, and she runs into Reid Malone, a man she once had a, um, run-in with years ago. They don’t see eye to eye on things and sparks fly. It’s a lot of fun!
Please tell us about your latest release.
I’d love to! Storiebook Charm is a short contemporary romance with a light paranormal twist. It’s about Storie Bell and Reid Malone and the love story that began for them twelve years prior to when the actual story takes place. It’s Southern, has a little spicy, and is a lot of fun.
What is your favorite scene from the book? Could you share a little bit of it, without spoilers of course?
The moment when Storie first realizes that maybe Reid Malone isn’t so bad is a favorite of mine. She thinks he’s going to do (and want) one thing, but he does something different and that surprises her. It felt right and was a great way to bring them together, even if later in the scene a big conflict rips them apart again.
What is the most interesting thing you have physically done for book related research purposes?
I visited a nudist resort when I was researching Bare-Naked Lola, the 3rd book in my Lola Cruz mystery series. Talk about surreal. It was a very interesting experience.
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? How do you deal with it?
Sometimes, when writing sex scenes, I struggle a little bit. My mom is my biggest fan and when she first bought Silent Echoes, I was horrified that she’d be reading the sex scenes. She laughed and said she knew she’d be shocked that I knew the things I wrote about! I’m 53 with 5 kids, so I got a good chuckle out of that. Still, I always think, holy smokes, my parents might read this!
Where is your favorite place to read? Do you have a cozy corner or special reading spot?
My nighttime ritual includes reading just before I go to bed. I have a NOOK and that’s typically what I read on these days. If I don’t read just before bed, something feels off.
What can readers expect next from you?
I’m working on a new mystery series. The series is Book Magic, and the first book is as yet unnamed. I’m so excited about it. It’s about a bibliomancer. I am also finishing up book 6 in my Bread Shop cozy mystery series. I have lots of balls in the air!