I once knew someone who read a book just for the setting. If the book took place in Georgia, where she was from, she’d read it for that reason alone. For me, a book can take place anywhere. I read for the characters. That said, I love, love settings that are woven into the stories. The right setting should work as a mirror. It should reflect and contrast the emotional context of a story. It can even enhance the plot. In some books, the setting can almost be a character.
If you’ve kept up with my Facebook page you know I just came from the Book Lover’s Con in New Orleans. I love that city. It has character and history. It has an ambiance that is unique. The sounds of Jazz, the Cajun accents. It smells like New Orleans. The famous to die for food, and not just the Cajun, the city is full of food from so many different cultures. There’s the smell of the bayous, Lake Pontchartrain, and the Mississippi River. There’s the image of the sun setting on the water’s horizon. The coffee with chicory and cream. Oh, and let’s not forget the beignets with a heavy dusting of powdered sugar.
Every time I go to Louisiana and especially New Orleans, I think I want to write a story set there. But then I always go back to my own unique state of Texas. No, I’m not from here, but I’ve hung my hat here longer than I have anyplace else. Texas has its own vibe, its own history and for sure, its own charm. And because I know it, I always find I’m more comfortable using it as my backdrop.
I think another reason I use it is because crazy crap really does happen here. Almost every town has some ghost stories, and oh, the characters we have here! From cowboys to hippies. And true crimes stories so bizarre that people outside of Texas just don’t believe them.
Three Heartbeats Away takes place in the fictional town of Catwalk, Texas, in the Lone Star State. In this book, Riley spends a lot of time in the hospital. Since Riley sees dead people, it’s not really her favorite hangout spot. But when someone she cares about is shot, not being there isn’t an option.
She also spends a lot of time at a donut shop in one of those neighborhoods that is both commercial and residential. You see, Delicious Donuts is across the street from an abandoned commercial building where her latest ghost was murdered. She goes there numerous times hoping the murderer will return to the scene of the crime. It’s there, with the sweet aroma of donuts and coffee, that Riley discovers her suspects. Three Heartbeats Away has a real who-done-it plot that will keep you guessing.
Today, I’ll give away a C.C. Hunter T-shirt to one person who leaves a comment about what kind of settings they like and how important settings are to your reading pleasure.
Oh, and don’t forget my preorder contest. Just preorder Three Heartbeats Away at Amazon, Barnes & Noble or Kobo, and send a screen shot or copy of the receipt to me at email@example.com. Then you’ll be entered to win this cool tote filled with awesome swag (promo stuff). But hurry, I’ll close this contest June 18th with the release of Three Heartbeats Away.(Sorry but this giveaway is limited to U.S. residents.)
Happy reading, guys!