I am delighted to have the chance to chat with Amanda Barratt today! She and I met in person in Nashville last year and she’s such a sweetheart!
ECPA bestselling author Amanda Barratt, fell in love with writing in grade school when she wrote her first story – a spinoff of Jane Eyre. Now, Amanda writes inspirational historical romance, penning stories that transport readers to a variety of locales – from the sweeping coastline of Newport, Rhode Island, to the rugged landscape of Central Texas.
A member of American Christian Fiction Writers, she lives in the woods of Michigan with her fabulous family, who kindly put up with the invisible people she calls characters.
These days, Amanda can be found reading way too many books, watching an eclectic mix of BBC dramas and romantic chick flicks, and trying to figure out a way to get on the first possible flight to England.
Her newest novella “The Cost of a Heart” appears in The Secret Admirer Romance Collection!
Declaring one’s love can be hard—even risky—especially when faced with some of life’s greatest challenges.
Separated by class, time, distance, and more, some loves must remain secret until the time is right. Instead, notes of affection, acts of kindness, gifts of admiration, and lots of prayer are circulated.
From New England mansions to homestead hovels, love is quietly being nourished and waiting for the right time to be revealed. But when love can finally be boldly expressed, will it be received by love in return?
Hi Amanda! Welcome to the blog! I’m so honored to have you here!
Amanda: Thank you so much, Carrie. I’m so thrilled to be joining y’all!
I start all of my guests out with a fast four –
Amanda: Apples, hands down. I eat at least one apple a day, because I like the taste, and because of all the super-good nutrients contained in the skin.
Carrie: Apples are just the best, aren’t they?
Amanda: “Summertime, and the livin’ is easy” Okay, enough Ella Fitzgerald. LOL. I love the ability to go to the beach, take long, contemplative walks, and sit in front of a crackling campfire. All things snowy Northern MI winters don’t permit.
Carrie: Ok… but … for the record – I’m completely jealous of your snowy winters.
Amanda: Kittens. They’re so small and cuddly…need I say more. 🙂
Carrie: Yes… you need to say ‘puppies’ too 😉
Amanda: I’m going to be oh-so-British and go with tea. Caffeine tends to keep me awake. And I love green tea, especially when sipped from a fancy china cup.
Carrie: I don’t care for tea normally (or coffee, for that matter) but I had THE BEST tea this weekend – in a fancy china cup. It’s called “chocolate strawberry sundae” tea and oh my word! The chocolate masks the tea flavor that I don’t like and it’s just yumminess in a fancy china cup!
Around here I like to say that reading is my superpower. If YOU had a superpower, what would it be?
Amanda: Being able to travel back in time and spend weeks living in the English countryside as a Regency lady (married to Mr. Darcy, of course!) And then beam myself back to 21st century America whenever something went wrong medically!
And you are definitely a Reading (and blogging) Superwoman! I love your insightful book reviews!
Carrie: You’re so sweet – thank you!! And I love your time travel idea, the best of both worlds quite literally!
Tell me some good books you’ve read recently
Amanda: How long can this answer be? LOL. I recently read The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischof, which I simply adored!! Joanne’s prose is beautiful and I wanted to savor and linger over each line. I also just finished The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, which was incredibly thought-provoking and spiritually challenging. And I spent last Sunday afternoon reading The Scarlet Pimpernel by Emma Orczy, a delightfully daring tale and soo sigh-worthy. Sir Percy Blakeney has become one of my favorite heroes in classic literature!
Carrie: The Lady & The Lionheart is one of my top ten fave books ever!
If I sneaked a peek in your purse right now (which I would never do, I promise!), what would it tell me about you?
Amanda: That I’m an organization freak who likes Jane Austen planners, notepads full of scribbled plot ideas, an avid reader who always has a book (or two) handy, and am a great person to have around when a headache strikes, as I always carry ibuprofen!
Carrie: I think you’re the first author who has said I would find a book in your purse! I love that!! <<glances at the two books and kindle in my own purse>>
Your newest novella is part of The Secret Admirer Romance Collection. Who do you secretly (or not so secretly) admire?
Amanda: My amazing mom and sister would definitely make the top of the list! They are both wise women who serve and love the Lord—and adore BBC dramas, which makes our evening movie viewing very fun indeed.
Also, I’m a huge fan of the band For King and Country. Their message about the value of a woman’s worth is so timely in a culture that often speaks the opposite. And their new film Priceless is a must-see!
Carrie: You are the second person to mention Priceless to me in as many days. I definitely need to watch this!
In your novella “The Cost of a Heart”, your hero and heroine are from very different backgrounds. Describe the main characters for us and tell us which one you related to the most.
Amanda: Nathan Evans is a farm boy who found work as a servant in the homes of the Gilded Age elite to help make ends meet for his family. He’s fiercely loyal to his employer, Lily Montgomery, due to the abuse she received at the hands of her late husband. And he might find himself thinking a wee bit too much about her sweet smiles and beautiful eyes. (wink.)
Due to her husband’s treatment of her, Lily has a hard time accepting her own worth. She’s not as model-gorgeous as some women she knows, and feels insecure about herself as a person. I can relate to her in that respect, and the Lord used some of the truths Lily learns in the novella to work through issues in my own heart.
Carrie: This sounds delightfully romantic and full of great truth!
What do you most want readers to take away from The Cost of a Heart?
Amanda: That they are more than the lies others and the world have told them. That God cherishes them just the way they are, and lavishes them with a love beyond what anyone else can offer. And hopefully, they’ll enjoy the Downton-esque upstairs/downstairs romance element!
Amanda, thank you so much for taking time to talk with me! 🙂 Before we say goodbye for today, tell us what‘s coming up next for you.
Amanda: In November, First Comes Marriage releases as part of The Regency Brides Collection. I’m so excited to share my very first British-set novella with everyone, and am looking forward to introducing you all to my Lydia-Bennet-turned-good-heroine, and my brooding sea captain hero. And the story is set in Cornwall, one of the most beautiful counties in England!
My first full-length novel “My Heart Belongs in Niagara Falls, New York”, releases in January 2018. (Insert excited squeals and happy dancing here. 🙂 ) The novel features an English heroine who travels to America in search of a wealthy husband to save her family estate from bankruptcy, but ends up finding herself altogether too attracted to a handsome daredevil preparing to cross Niagara Falls by tightrope.
To learn more about these releases, I’d love for you to follow me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/amandabarrattauthor. I’ll be running lots of giveaways and contests, plus sharing quotes from the stories, character pictures, and historical tidbits. Also, on my website www.amandabarratt.net, you can sign up for my newsletter, where I share recipes related to my books, sneak previews, and much more!
Thank you so much for hosting me today, Carrie! It’s been such a delight!
Amanda Barrett is giving away a copy of The Secret Admirer Romance Collection and an elegant Victorian bookmark! (US only) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.
What about you? If you could travel back in time (but still get back home quickly) where would you want to go?