Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Be Our Guest: Raquel Byrnes on Inspiration

Today I would like to welcome Raquel Byrnes to the blog. Her book Purple Knot will be released on June 3rd. Raquel will be talking about what inspired her to write Purple Knot. Take it away, Raquel.

What Inspired You to Write Your Book?

I started writing the main character’s story about a year before I actually wrote the manuscript for Purple Knot.  I was in the Pacific Northwest visiting a friend who was going through a terrible time in her personal life. She had called and asked me to sit in on a surgery she was having and I agreed despite reservations about blood and how it made me faint without notice.

After her surgery, I stayed with her in the hospital for almost a week. Being an insomniac, I wandered the halls and cafeteria at odd hours. Sitting in the booth near the rear of the room, I had a view of all the drama and day to day happenings inside that huge hospital. From dating doctors to grieving parents it all unfolded for me during that trying time.

I always have a notebook with me. Often it is pocket sized, but this time it had a black and white composition book and I filled it with everything I saw. I scribbled down impressions of character, interesting quirks I noticed, gossip that floated over the steaming soup barrels whatever came my way.

When I began constructing Purple Knot’s plot a while later, the experience flooded back to me as I paged through the notebook. An amalgam of what I’d been through came tumbling out of me and onto the pages of my novel; the fears and frustrations in dealing with a friend on the edge of destruction, the hopelessness of seeing they’re past your reach, and the sliver of hope that keeps you going.

I wrote Purple Knot, not only as a suspenseful romance, but as a testament to the power of hope and the abundant grace available to us even in our darkest moments.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

A killer strikes. A love rekindled. A life-altering choice.

When her best friend, is murdered, Reyna Cruz doesn't believe the police have the whole story. An investigator by trade, she has the talent to track Summer’s killer, but when clues lead to a family connection and a vicious gang, she suddenly becomes the hunted. At the end of her rope, Reyna must decide to trust the God she believes abandoned her. 

Wanting justice for his sister’s murder, lawyer Jimmy Corbeau agrees to help Reyna—even though she’s his ex-fiancĂ©, and their break-up devastated him. Romance is reawakened, but so are memories of their tragic undoing. Jimmy must decide if he will fight for a future with Reyna or allow their past to derail the investigation and his second chance at love.

When the investigation goes awry and Summer’s infant daughter is kidnapped, Reyna must put her life on the line. Will Jimmy and Reyna survive the desperate measures it takes to recover his niece, catch a killer, and secure a happily-ever-after for them all?

Raquel Byrnes lives in Southern, California with her husband of sixteen years and their six children. She considers inspirational fiction a wonderful way to minister to others. She writes romantic suspense with an edge-your-seat pace. Her first book the Shades of Hope Series, Purple Knot, is set to release from White Rose on June 3rd. You can visit her at her website: and her writing blog, Edge of Your Seat Romance.


Margo Benson said...

Thank you Cherie and Raquel for such an interesting peek into how the inspiration came about. I'm a notebook addict and am forever jotting down snippets from wherever I am....maybe one day mine will be in a published novel too!
The story sounds intriguing and it's going straight on my TBR list. Wishing Raquel the best of luck with it :-)

Dora Hiers said...

Thanks, ladies. Great insight into how Purple Knot came to be. Hope your friend recovered, Raquel.

Can't wait to read Purple Knot now! Congrats Raquel on your debut novel!!

Raquel Byrnes said...

Thank you so much for hosting me, Cherie!

Margo - keep writing, you'll get there for sure. :)

Dora - Thank you for stopping by...and my friend is doing awesome. God is Good!
Edge of Your Seat Romance

Carol Riggs said...

Nice interview, girls! Thanks for this info--sounds like an exciting, suspenseful book! And I really like the cover. :)

Raquel Byrnes said...

Thanks, Carol! I appreciate you stopping by.
Edge of Your Seat Romance

Unknown said...

Thank you, Raquel and Cherie, for a great post. Sounds like a wonderful book, Raquel!

Deb Harper

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Inspired by a hospital! That has to be a first.

Linda Glaz said...

Never knew that's how you created your character. Be blessed with this and all books in the series!

Raquel Byrnes said...

Deborah - Thanks so much!

Alex - You have no idea how many crazy things go on in one!

Linda - You are so kind. :)

Nas said...

Hi Raquel, Hello Cherie,

Thank you for sharing about the inspiration behind PURPLE KNOT, Raquel.

Sounds like a great stoty!

Jo Schaffer Layton said...

This book sounds great. I like how her real life experience was such an inspiration for it. Thanks for the review.

Raquel Byrnes said...

Thanks for stopping by, Nas and Jo! Cherie did an awesome job getting the story behind the story out of me. :)