Friday, May 8, 2015

Author Spotlight + GIVEAWAY: Tamera Alexander, Part 2


Welcome to Part 2 of Tamera Alexander's interview. For the giveaway, remember that you can leave a comment on both parts for a double entry. Click here to see Part 1.

I appreciate the graciousness of both Tamera and Litfuse Publicity in making this interview and giveaway available. Now enjoy more of what Tamera has to share about her wonderful new book, To Win Her Favor (click on title to see my review) . . .



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Litfuse Interview with Tamera Alexander, Part 2


Q: As a southerner yourself, how do you embrace the culture of the south while still acknowledging its difficult place in the American story?

Very simply, the only way to embrace the Southern culture (or any culture) is by knowing how that culture was formed and by acknowledging all parts of its history, even the ugly and shameful parts. Dig deep enough into any culture’s history (you won’t have to dig far), and you’ll find deceit, greed, lust, murder, envy, and strife. Because at the core of who we are, we are all the same: sinners in need of a Savior, no matter the color of one’s skin. So to downplay the racial injustices perpetrated by the people of that time — toward people of every race, color and creed — is to risk making those same reprehensible choices again.


Q: What can this era and the story in To Win Her Favor teach us about forgiveness?

I’m always amazed at how those who have suffered the most are often the most forgiving. At the heart of forgiveness is a humility of spirit and an awareness of personal sin. Once you’ve seen how much you’ve been forgiven, I believe it’s easier (not easy, but easier) to forgive others for wrongs done to you. The characters in To Win Her Favor each learn about forgiveness — both in the giving and receiving — in their own ways.



Q: Your heroine, Maggie Linden, has lost all four of her brothers in the war and her mother shortly thereafter. Why do you think God allows such hardship and grief to affect those who love him?

Ah . . . the age-old question. Volumes have been written attempting to answer this question, so I’ll briefly share what helps me reconcile a hurting world with a loving God. This earthly life is transient. This world is not a believer’s home and was never intended to be. It’s vital in a believer’s faith walk to continually draw our focus back to an eternal perspective, which isn’t our natural bent. Not by far. I try to see each day (and everything that happens) as a way to grow closer to Christ. I try to focus not so much on “why” something is happening in my life but rather focus on what I can learn from it. And, more importantly, how I can bring glory to Jesus Christ through the experience. Eternal perspective changes everything.


Q: Have you ever felt like something bad that happened to you was a punishment for past choices?

Sure. Because sin has consequences. However, not everything bad that happens in a person’s life is due to him or her having done something bad. We live in a fallen world where bad things happen to good people all the time. It’s the nature of free will and a consequence of living in a fallen world.


Q: Like many women throughout history, Maggie finds herself in a position where it seems her only way to save her dreams and family fortune is through a marriage of convenience. What do you think you might have done if you were in her shoes?

I think I would’ve done precisely what Maggie did, which made it especially interesting to take that journey with her. Someone recently said to me, “All marriages are marriages of convenience on some level.” It’s a thought-provoking statement.


Q: You’ve said Kizzy is your favorite character in this book; tell us about her and why she captured your heart.

I fell in love with Kizzy and would love to write her continuing story some day. Kizzy represents so much of the bold hope, tenacity, and raw courage that was present in the generation of freedmen children coming of age after the Civil War. In many ways, it was a brave new world for them. Yet, in others, the world hadn’t changed nearly enough, and the war was still being fought. I adore Kizzy’s approach to life and how she sees herself. And how she sees others.


Q: Do you have a favorite way to celebrate the completion of a new novel?

I’m embarrassed to tell you, and no one has ever asked me this before. But I treat myself to one of my favorite guilty pleasures. Remember the Hostess cupcakes with the cream filling? The ones that come in the two-pack and are absolutely horrible for you and have so many preservatives they could withstand a nuclear holocaust? Well, I treat myself to a pack of those, and then I read for days on end. Just dive headlong into a stack of novels and relish the experience.


Q: What kind of impact do you hope To Win Her Favor will have on readers?

The same kind of impact it had on me . . . that it will cause readers to search their own motives and hearts in relation to prejudice and that they’ll have the courage to follow God’s lead in taking whatever steps are necessary toward healing the divide.





To keep up with Tamera Alexander, visit www.tameraalexander.com, become a fan on Facebook (tamera.alexander) or follow her on Twitter (@tameraalexander) or Pinterest (tameraauthor).


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GIVEAWAY

To enter the drawing for To Win Her Favor, please leave a comment for Tamera or about something you read in her interview. You can also leave a comment on Part 1 for a second entry. Thanks to everyone for being interested in Tamera's novel and taking the time to comment. I've tried to respond to each of you back on Part 1.

BE SURE TO LEAVE YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESS in a safe format - [at] and [dot] - for the drawing.

If you'd like to receive e-mail notifications of reviews, author interviews and giveaways, please subscribe to my blog in the upper right corner. "Likes" on my Facebook page, ThePowerofWordsBookReviews, are also greatly appreciated, as are followers on Google+, Pinterest, Twitter, and this blog.

E-mail required for entry in the drawing. Contest ends at midnight PST on Sunday, May 17. Winner will be chosen by Random.org and contacted by e-mail. Respond within 48 hours of notification or another winner will be chosen.

Eligibility: US residents, 18 and older

20 comments:

  1. I love reading your books. They are all so wonderful. Keep at it.
    Thereadmaster(at)me(dot)com

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  2. Tamera, I love your Hostess cupcake indulgence! You deserve the treat!!! I'm so excitedt o read your latest. I always await them eagerly!!!!!!
    kathrynlvoss(at)gmail(dot)com

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  3. You like.. Hostess cupcakes with the cream filling? My favorite is the Zebra Cakes. White cake with white frosting & black drizzles of chocolate & yes that cream filling!
    I think your book sounds so good! It's definitely on my TBR list :)
    dkstevensneAT outlookDoTCoM

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  4. I'm really enjoying the Belmont Mansion and Belle Meade books. Now that there are two books in each series, I'm wondering if there will be more in each for us to look forward to. I hope so!
    pmkellogg56[at]gmail[dot]com

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  5. Thanks for the interesting interview and the giveaway opportunity, Tamera and Carole!! I had to laugh at Tamera's confession re: her treat when finishing the writing of a novel - I love Hostess cupcakes, and fear I would want a reward of more than 1 package, love the idea of reading - as a reward, also. I love Tamera's writing and would love to read "To Win Her Favor" - love the storyline!!

    bonnieroof60(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  6. Hi Carole. I really enjoyed hearing about the characters in Tamera's new book. Tamera, I like the way you celebrate finishing a book. Would love to win your book.
    Thanks, > mac262(at)me(dot)com <

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  7. It is sometimes hard to understand that bad things happen to good people.
    pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

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  8. I have dystonia, a neurological disorder, it is bad. However, through it, I met my hubby, we adopted, and it's why we live in Maine. God has used it to bless me and to direct our paths. Something's aren't always what they seem. God knows far better what is best for us. Ewe_r_merritt(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  9. I really like what I have read about this book. I want to read about Kizzy too. Great interview, love the way Tamara celebrates by eating Hostess Cupcakes. Hahah
    pam1lunsford (at ) gmail ( dot ) com

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  10. Ha! Love that you eat the Hostess cupcakes! You go girl! Celebrate!

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  11. I like your explanation of the eternal perspective. Our five senses only know this world, so it's so easy to get bogged down by the earthly perspective. Thank you so much for writing books that point our attention back to God's plan and the eternal perspective!

    rachaeldalquist(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  12. What a great interview! Loved both parts of it. Tamera shows such grace and wisdom even in just a short online interview.

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  13. Cannot wait to start reading this book, Really enjoyed the interview. Thanks for sharing.

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  14. Thank you for sharing the heart behind & within the story of To Win Her Favor. As for indulgences, I like Ho Ho's & Nutty Buddy's, & I love the idea of rewarding yourself with reading! :)

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    1. Oops! Forgot to put my email address: nj[dot]bossman[at]gmail[dot]com

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  15. I love how you celebrate completing a new book. After all that hard work, you definitely deserve a cupcake...or two! If I win this book, I will be celebrating too! grace_soo_amazing at yahoo dot com

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  16. I love how you celebrate the completion of a new book....! I find myself wondering about whether or not I carry prejudice with me in my day to day life. I pray this is not the case, but I must admit, I will certainly have to put some thought into this! Thanks for the giveaway - I certainly wan to read this book.
    bettimace at gmail dot com

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  17. Tamera I love the research you put into your books it makes for a wonderfully exciting read.
    Deanne
    Cnnamongirl(at)aol(dot)com

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  18. I loved what you said about each of us need to search our hearts and motives behind prejudice and that maybe someday we can close the divide. Our nation needs that more than ever right now. I hope thru your book and the words written on the pages, will help others to soften their hearts, forgive and close the divide!
    Deana
    Jhdwayne(at)peoplepc(dot)com

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  19. "Because at the core of who we are, we are all the same: sinners in need of a Savior, no matter the color of one’s skin."

    I love that quote! Prejudice is still alive in many different ways. How true that at the core we are all same and we all need a Savior!
    Tamera, thanks for the giveaway and opening eyes and hearts to a condition we all need to work on.
    Carole, thanks for blessing us your readers.

    amylsmithatbledsoedotnet

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