Please join me in welcoming Janyre Tromp to the blog today to chat about her debut novel, Shadows in the Mind’s Eye – a historical suspense novel that releases this April!
Janyre Tromp is a historical novelist whose loves spinning tales that, at their core, hunt for beauty, even when it isn’t pretty. She’s the author of Shadows in the Mind’s Eye and coauthor of both O Little Town (releasing Fall 2022) and It’s a Wonderful Christmas. She’s also a book editor, published children’s book author, and lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan with her family, two crazy cats, and a slightly eccentric Shetland Sheepdog.
You can find her on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and her website, www.JanyreTromp.com (where you can grab a free copy of her novella Wide Open).
SHADOWS IN THE MIND’S EYE by Janyre Tromp
GENRE: Inspirational Historical Suspense
RELEASE DATE: April 19, 2022
“Tromp weaves a complex historical tale incorporating love, suspense, hurt, and healing–all the elements that keep the pages turning.”
–Julie Cantrell, New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of Perennials
Charlotte Anne Mattas longs to turn back the clock. Before her husband, Sam, went to serve his country in the war, he was the man everyone could rely on–responsible, intelligent, and loving. But the person who’s come back to their family farm is very different from the protector Annie remembers. Sam’s experience in the Pacific theater has left him broken in ways no one can understand–but that everyone is learning to fear.
Tongues start wagging after Sam nearly kills his own brother. Now when he claims to have seen men on the mountain when no one else has seen them, Annie isn’t the only one questioning his sanity and her safety. If there were criminals haunting the hills, there should be evidence beyond his claims. Is he really seeing what he says, or is his war-tortured mind conjuring ghosts?
Annie desperately wants to believe her husband. But between his irrational choices and his nightmares leaking into the daytime, she’s terrified he’s going mad. Can she trust God to heal Sam’s mental wounds–or will sticking by him mean keeping her marriage at the cost of her own life?
Debut novelist Janyre Tromp delivers a deliciously eerie, Hitchcockian story filled with love and suspense. Readers of psychological thrillers and historical fiction by Jaime Jo Wright and Sarah Sundin will add Tromp to their favorite authors list.
Hi Janyre! Welcome to the blog!
Janyre: Winter in Michigan is beautiful, but it’s so cold it hurts. So I much prefer summer. It doesn’t hurt that I live about thirty minutes from the white sand beaches of the salt-free ocean also known as Lake Michigan. I’d put our summer beaches up against any others.
Carrie: I remember those cold winters from growing up in Northern Illinois – i do miss it now though … but I probably would change my mind if I had to live there again lol
Janyre: I live in apple country . . . literally a few miles from my house are several apple orchards (along with farms of all kinds. There’s a cow farm that shares the same basic space as our middle school and a corn field across from the high school). You can’t beat the snap of a freshly picked apple . . . and don’t even get me started on homemade applesauce, apple pie, and apple muffins.
Carrie: yum! my mouth is watering!
Janyre: Over. It’s way easier to find the start when you wake up your daily 3 am restroom break. Please tell me someone else knows what I’m talking about here.
Carrie: yes – WHY is it always 3 am?? lol
Janyre: Ummm. Do I have to choose? I love all my fur babies. We have a Shetland Sheepdog named Odie who has been my shadow since we rescued him nine years ago. And we also have two Balinese cats (they’re cousins to Siamese) who are my kids’ best friends. We got them as a way to get my daughter through some incredibly difficult medical issues. Her kitty, Brave, has been a godsend in giving her someone other than her parents who loves her unconditionally and will just snuggle when she needs it most.
Carrie: awww i love that! Pets are just the best ♥
Q: Around here I like to say that reading is my superpower. If YOU had a superpower, what would it be?
Janyre: I would love to be able to stop and start time. I need more hours in the day!
Carrie: yes please!!!
Q: Who is your favorite book character from childhood?
Janyre: I think Lucy Pensieve from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe is not only my favorite childhood character, but my favorite character period. I read this book for the first time in first grade and absolutely identified with Lucy. As a kid I always felt like I was on the outside and searching for something to believe in . . . something my adult self can identify with as well. She was smart, creative, gentle, and often underestimated by those around her and yet had a courageous faith and strength of character that I admire. I guess in Lucy I saw who I am and who I want to be.
Carrie: i have always adored Lucy too – and you’ve beautifully expressed why!
Q: If I asked your characters to describe YOU as an author, what would they say?
Janyre: Oh man. I’m kind of afraid to explore this question, but here goes:
Sam would probably glare at me for torturing his family even while admitting that I never stopped fighting for them and working to get them through to the other side of the shadows.
Annie would say I was annoyingly persistent. While my books tend to have some suspense, they are ultimately character driven. So I do a lot of digging, and I don’t let my characters get away with hiding their motivations. And Annie tends to hold her cards pretty close to her chest.
Dovie May would smile, pat my cheek, and say something like, “You know just how to find the light in all that broken mess. Good for you, sweetheart.”
Carrie: what a fabulous answer!!
Q: Did you have the whole plot outlined before you started writing Shadows in the Mind’s Eye, or did you let the characters dictate what came next?
Janyre: I typically do a little of both. I do massive amounts of character work and then have the turning points mostly sketched before I dive into writing. But this book was an odd case. I had a little more than half of it written when my daughter became gravely ill. She nearly died twice, and I spent a significant amount of time with her in the hospital. I obviously set the book aside as I fought to help my daughter when doctors didn’t know what was happening.
When I returned to the book a year or so after the University of Michigan helped us, I poured into this story my fears and frustrations at watching a loved one struggle. I’d already dealt with some PTSD because of some childhood trauma, but watching my kiddo fight for her life only amplified the nightmares and flashbacks. Because my experiences with PTSD were so fresh, it shifted the focus of the book more toward Sam’s battlefield trauma and how family and hope help heal . . . all of which meant that the plot shifted a bit and I had to compensate for some of the new direction.
Carrie: I hate that you and your daughter had to go through all of that, but I also love how God doesn’t waste anything we experience…
Q: What is one of your favorite quotes from Shadows in the Mind’s Eye & why do you love it?
Janyre: Sam’s mom, Dovie May, might be one of my favorite characters I’ve ever written. She’s steady, thoughtful, and full of spit and fire. She has so many quotable moments, but one of my favorites is: “You’d think holding joy right up against sadness would shatter a body. But it don’t. Joy, it sneaks in all around, sticks everything together, and finds a way to make you whole.”
There’s something beautiful about finding joy even when life’s circumstances aren’t pretty. Even popular psychology recognizes the power of gratefulness. Counting blessings somehow shifts our focus away from ourselves and all the ugly things. And when that focus becomes a habit, joy can’t help but blossom from the wreckage.
Carrie: yes! Absolutely. I have definitely found this to be true in my own life…
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.
Janyre: Thank you so much for having me. I love talking books and can’t wait for everyone to meet Sam, Annie, and Dovie May in Shadows in the Mind’s Eye. What’s next? I’m just finishing the final editing stages for my contribution to O Little Town: A Christmas Romance Collection (releasing Fall 2022), which also includes Deborah Raney and Amanda Wen. It’s a collection about three generations living in the sleepy small town of Mapleview, Michigan, as they long for love–and find it–on the most wonderful night of the year.
Janyre Tromp is offering a print copy of Shadows in the Mind’s Eye to one of my readers! (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) 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? What makes you want to read Shadows in the Mind’s Eye by Janyre Tromp?
I enjoy suspense books. Thank you so much for sharing. God bless you.
I love historical, and I enjoy suspense/mystery. Having both in the same book is the best.
Sounds really great
What a fun and insightful interview! I can’t wait to read this book!
My favorite genre!
The characters sound really interesting.
Lovely interview, Carrie and Janyre! This book sounds so intriguing! Sounds like I might have to read it during the day. I have a hard time reading suspenseful books at night!
New author for me.
I love historical fiction and the war element makes this especially exciting!
This looks like a very interesting read.
This historical sounds captivating and memorable.
I love the cover of this one. Sounds like a good story.
I love reading books that are page turners like this one.
This book sounds fascinating! I can’t wait to read it!
PTSD is a topic of interest for me.
What a great interview! I’m looking forward to reading Janyre’s book. Winning a copy would be fabulous!
The mystery and suspense element of the book is intriguing to me.
The book summary is intriguing and Julie Cantrell’s endorsement also pulls me in 🙂
My favorite genre. Must read.
This sounds so appealing to me…I’m generally not huge into suspense, but the historical aspect really grabs my attention. Congrats on the upcoming release Janyre!
I feel for Sam just reading this interview. I don’t have experience with anybody close to me having PTSD, but it Hass to be difficult for everyone all around.