Author Interview (and a Giveaway!): Kendra Broekhuis & Between You and Us

Posted March 13, 2024 by meezcarrie in Author Interview, Christian, contemporary, giveaway, Kendra Broekhuis, magical realism, women's fiction / 23 Comments


Kendra Broekhuis interview

Please join me in welcoming author Kendra Broekhuis to the blog today to chat about her debut novel, Between You and Us – women’s fiction with a twist!

Kendra Broekhuis

Kendra Broekhuis lives in the city of Milwaukee. For her day job, she stays home with four of her children and drives them from one place to another in her minivan. You can find her sarcastic ramblings and serious encouragement—including the grief of losing her baby at thirty-three weeks pregnant—on social media and at KendraBroekhuis.comBetween You and Us is her first novel.


Between You and Us by Kendara BroekhuisBETWEEN YOU AND US by Kendra Broekhuis
GENRE: Women’s Fiction/Speculative (Christian)
PUBLISHER: WaterBrook
RELEASE DATE: March 12, 2024
PAGES: 337

When a grieving woman unexpectedly steps into a different version of her life, she must choose between the husband she loves and the daughter she lost in this brave, gripping novel.

“A beautiful story that will make you rethink all the moments you’ve wished for a different outcome.”—Johanna Rojas Vann, author of An American Immigrant

Two possible lives to live. One impossible choice to make.

When Leona Warlon heads across the city to meet her husband, David, for a rare dinner out, she hopes they can share a moment of relief after their year of loss. But Leona quickly realizes this is no ordinary date night. She hasn’t just stepped into an upscale ristorante; she’s stepped into a different version of her life. One in which her marriage is no longer tender, in which her days are pressured by her powerful in-laws, and in which her precious baby girl lived.

Now Leona must weigh the bitter and sweet of both trajectories, facing an unimaginable choice: Stay in a world where tragedy hasn’t struck but where the meaningful life she built with David is gone? Or return to a reality that’s filled with struggle and sorrow but also deep and enduring love?

 

affiliate links used


Hi Kendra! Welcome to the blog!

Kendra: SUMMER! My favorite place to read is at the beach while sweating. I’m continuing to learn how to make winter more enjoyable in order to better survive being from the Midwest, but I still prefer warm days, lots of daylight, open ice cream shops, and playing bubbles with my kids outside.

Carrie: my whole life plan is basically about how to avoid sweating at all costs… LOL

Kendra: COFFEE! I started drinking coffee only a couple years ago and it changed my life. (For the better.) I didn’t know it was possible to get through a day with little kids without feeling like I needed a nap myself.

Carrie: desperate times call for desperate measures!

Kendra: NETFLIX! I love the variety of shows that Netflix offers: drama, action, romance, comedy, documentary, and stand-up comedy specials.

Carrie: something for everyone, for sure 🙂

Kendra: UNDER! What am I, a sociopath?!

Carrie: THANK YOU!! (Though we are some of the only non-sociopaths in existence based on the majority of the answers to this question lol)

Q: Around here I like to say that reading is my superpower. If YOU had a superpower, what would it be?

Kendra: My superpower would be the ways I simplify my possessions and routines. I love organizing and creating systems in our home that support my family’s current season of life. I also love being able to clean less while maintaining a calm environment—something my brain craves as a mom of four young kids where lots of things are already chaotic. Simplifying at home gives me more time for the things I love—very few of which are things!

But, can I be honest? Sometimes I wish cooking was my superpower.

Carrie: i really need simplifying AND cooking to be my superpowers

Q: Tell me some good books you’ve read recently.

Kendra: A few great books I read recently include: Johanna Rojas Vann’s An American Immigrant, Amanda Cox’s He Should Have Told the Bees, and Daniel Nayeri’s  Everything Sad Is Untrue.

Carrie: yes! Such great reads!

Q: Writing spaces are as diverse as authors and books. Where is your favorite space to write?

Kendra: I’ve had to learn how to write wherever, whenever and be okay with it. And most of the time, as long as I have my computer and earplugs, I can get a lot done! However, my current favorite space to write is on my reclining couch with a thick blanket on my lap when my house is quiet. Feeling cozy wakes up my creative side.

Carrie: ooo a reclining couch sounds delightful!

Q: Which of your main characters in Between You and Us is most like you?

Kendra: In Between You and Us, the protagonist Leona Warlon is like me in that she’s introverted and loves to read and write. And, when she’s around the right people, she opens up a lot and is more willing to reveal her quirks and sense of humor. She has a vibrant inner-thought life, which means that even when her mouth is quiet, she has plenty of thoughts and opinions swirling through her head.

Carrie: I’m looking forward to meeting her on the pages 🙂

Q: Did you have the whole plot outlined before you started writing, or did you let the characters dictate what came next?

Kendra: I’m definitely a plotter. I like to have all the main events of a story outlined into each chapter before I begin writing my first draft so that I’m confident I have enough content to fill an entire book. I typically end up with about 50 pages of chapter outline, character descriptions, chronological events, and relevant research before I begin.

Flexibility is also a writing muscle that I value though, because that helps when receiving feedback from editors. So, if what I originally plotted doesn’t seem to be working in my drafts, that’s okay too! I remind myself to focus on what will make the story the best version of itself, even if that means updating my outline as I go and accepting a couple plot twists I didn’t plot ahead of time.

Carrie: “writing muscle” – i love that!

Q: What do you most want readers to take away from Between You and Us?

Kendra: Between You and Us has a heavy theme of grief throughout, but the story is also cushioned with a lot of humor, connected relationships, a complex love story, and banter between characters too. My prayer is that the book will give readers a safe space to lament their sorrows and what-if questions, while also allowing them to experience glimmering reminders of hope.

Carrie: both are so important ♥

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.

Kendra: I’m working on another novel that will release with WaterBrook in September 2025! It’s called Nearly Beloved, and it’s about a woman who finds out on the day of her dad’s funeral that they aren’t biologically related.


Between You and Us giveaway

WaterBrook is offering a print copy of Between You and Us by Kendra Broekhuis 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.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

What about you? What makes you want to read Between You and Us by Kendra Broekhuis?

Tags: , , , , , , ,

23 responses to “Author Interview (and a Giveaway!): Kendra Broekhuis & Between You and Us

  1. Your husband or a daughter you lost. I can’t imagine facing such a choice. This novel is more than intriguing. I love Vann’s comment. At times we wish for different outcomes, that if they truly happened, it would be worse.

  2. Julie Pripps

    As a mom who lost her 22 year old 7 years ago, I’m interested in the grief aspect of this book and how the characters deal with their feelings.

  3. Rebecca Maney

    Not only do I enjoy the discovery of a new writing voice, but it’s a treat to read stories with an unexpected but totally understandable twist. This book sounds so interesting.

  4. Patty

    What an interesting concept for a book! And the one she has releasing next year sounds totally interesting too.

  5. Lexi Henegar

    First – the cover! It’s lovely! But it sounds like such a profound topic about loss and asking yourself “what if.” Sounds really thought provoking!

  6. Linda May

    The book sounds like a book I wouldn’t want to put down till I finished it. Thanks for your great generosity.

Leave a Reply