Joyfully Reviewed Welcomes Author Katy Regnery and her latest release, NEVER LET YOU GO!!
Regret, betrayal, kidnapping, loss, madness, abuse, passion, love.
In this modern retelling of Hansel and Gretel, thirteen-year-old foster children Griselda and Holden escape from their abductor after three years of brutal captivity, and try to cross the Shenandoah River on foot. Tragically, one of them makes it to safety, but the other is left behind.
Ten years later, Griselda’s boyfriend drags her to a fight club grudge match, and her world is turned upside down when she watches Holden step into the ring.
Though the connection between them is fierce, bitter regret, simmering rage, and a tangle of physical and emotional scars lie between them, just as dangerous as the white water of the Shenandoah.
Never Let You Go is a story of fear and hope, defeat and survival, and two people—once profoundly broken—who discover that love is the only thing that can make them whole again.
This girl. Everything about this girl made him want, made him long, made him yearn to change his life, start his life, finally live his life after a decade of going through the motions. He wanted to get a better job to take care of her. He wanted to stop fighting because she disapproved of it. He wanted enough money to have every tally mark lasered from his arm. He wanted some sort of guarantee that she’d never, ever leave him again. And he wanted all of it now. Yesterday. Ten years ago, and every day since.
Standing up slowly, he let his body settle into an upright position before taking his time crossing the hall to the bathroom and then heading out into the common room.
She stood at the stove with her back to him, her feet bare, her hair in a ponytail, the mouthwatering smell of fried chicken filling the entire cabin with goodness. Holden leaned against the wall, crossing his arms over his chest, a grin taking over his face as he watched her.
“It’s just the thought of you—the very thought of you, my love,” she sang, using a fork to transfer a golden leg to a paper towel–covered plate.
As she reached forward to turn off the stove, some of the leftover grease in the frying pan spat up at her and burned her wrist.
“Ow!” she yelped. “Damn it!”
With a sudden rush of adrenaline, Holden crossed the kitchen in two strides. He turned on the faucet and grabbed her arm to thrust her wrist under the cold stream. He held it there, wincing at the red blotch developing on her white skin. When he lifted his eyes to hers, she was staring at him with a surprised, curious expression.
“It’s just a little burn.”
He shrugged, still holding her arm, staring down at the burn.
“You were asleep,” she said.
“You were singing.”
“You remember that song?”
He slid his palm down her arm to cradle her wrist from below.
“The stove’s still on,” she said.
Without dropping her hand, he took a step closer to her, reached around her waist with his free hand, and flicked the burner off.
“I made fried chicken,” she said softly, her cheeks flushed.
“I can smell it.”
“You like fried chicken. I mean . . . you must have mentioned it to me a hundred times when we were—”
“It’s still my favorite.”
They were both silent for a few seconds, and Holden knew he should drop her hand and step away from her, but he couldn’t. She’d hurt herself doing something kind for him, and it just about shredded his heart.
Just another moment, he told himself. A few more seconds touching her and then I’ll move away.
“Sorry about the singing,” she whispered, unmoving, her breath kissing his throat.
He jerked his neck to face her, his thumb curling into her palm, his eyes searching hers for mercy.
“I loved it,” he murmured.
She stepped forward, closing the distance between them, her lips parting, her breasts grazing his chest through his T-shirt as she stared up at him.
“Holden, I . . .”
Every breath she took seemed to draw him closer to her, as if she was breathing him, not air. He leaned forward, into her, his free hand reaching for hers.
“Griselda . . .”
Her eyes, dark blue and churning, flicked to his lips, lingered there, then slid back up his face and seized his.
His self-control snapped.
After all, he was only human.
Please tell us about your novel.
Never Let You Go is a contemporary, new adult romance inspired by the Grimm fairytale, Hansel and Gretel.
In my story, Holden and Griselda are foster siblings (unrelated) who are kidnapped at 10-years-old, while running an errand for their foster mother. Held in brutal captivity by a delusional zealot, they plan an escape after three years, but while Griselda manages to get away, Holden is re-captured.
Ten years later, the two meet by chance and the tender feelings that sustained them during their abduction soon transition into a very passionate adult love. But they each have lives that don’t include the other, and deep scars from the three terrifying years they spent together.
The road to happily-ever-after is not smooth or easy for poor Holden and Griselda, but I only write HEAs, so while you may hold on by your nails a few times, I promise it’ll all work out in the end!
How did you research your novel, if applicable?
There were many subjects I needed to research: fist fighting, foster care, Stockholm Syndrome, canning fruits and vegetables, recovery from injuries, the Shenandoah River. The list was long, and I spent a lot of time on the internet getting my facts straight. Actually, to research fist fighting, I recorded “Fight Club” on my DVR and watched a particular scene four or five times, pausing and taking notes every few seconds. Suffice it to say, I think I could hold my own now!
Where can readers find you online?
Never Let You Go will be available on Amazon, Apple, Barnes & Noble, Google Play, Kobo and Smashwords on June 19, 2015.
When you are stuck on something, what is your go to cure?
I have two…the first is music. Sometimes, it’s just a matter of getting in the mood, and music can be a great way to get in touch with my feelings. I have playlists entitled “Sad,” “Happy,” “Sex” etc! The second is taking a drive with the windows down OR a shower. Whether I get in the car or strip and take a shower, the result is the same, and I think it’s because of the white noise each option offers. I can concentrate on my characters, how they feel, their motivations, hopes, dreams and insecurities, and tap into how I want to write their next scene.
Who is your favorite literary hero and heroine?
I have too many to choose only one!
I love Darcy and Elizabeth (Pride and Prejudice, Austen.) I love Derek and Sara (Dreaming of You, Kleypas.) I love Jamie and Claire (Outlander, Gabaldon.) I love Newt and Catherine (“The Long Walk To Forever,” Welcome to the Monkey House, Vonnegut.) I love George and Lucy (A Room With A View, Forrester.) Those are some top choices, but there are so many more!
Are you character or plot driven? Why?
I am so character driven, it’s not funny. I like to say that a year after I finish a book, you could ask me what a character from that book is having for breakfast tomorrow morning, and I could still tell you. I get deep into my character’s psyches. I know what they fear, what they love, what they long for, what makes them tick. I also find that once I create two deep, multi-dimensional characters, the story often writes itself. If you really, really know your characters, and you place Character A and Character B into Situation Z, you know exactly how they’re going to react and behave. It leads you seamlessly through the situation and into the next conflict.
How do you feel about social media? Is it a help or hindrance to you?
I LOVE SOCIAL MEDIA. (Phew! That felt good!) I adore Facebook. In fact, I think I built most of my audience on Facebook. I also love Twitter, but it’s not as intimate. I think of Twitter as a cocktail party in a massive air plane hangar with millions of people milling around and you really need to work your ass off to connect. Even though I have thousands of Facebook fans, I still feel like Facebook is more like a porch with a pitcher of lemonade where I’m surrounded by friends, just chatting the day away. And I like Pinterest a lot, but I’m not fabulous about pinning new material on my boards once I’ve created a character.
In the beginning of my career, I made a promise to myself that I would answer (or at least acknowledge) every tweet, Facebook post, message, or e-mail that I received. It’s kept me very tight with my audience. So, yes, absolutely, I adore social media and I love the people I’ve been privileged to meet.
What are the first five titles on your kindle?
Cape Cod Kisses (Bella Andre & Melissa Foster)
Come Away With Me (Kristen Proby)
Dare to Hold (Carly Phillips)
All I Ever Need Is You (Bella Andre)
Dare to Touch (Carly Phillips)
Where do you see yourself and your writing in the next five years?
Is it crazy that I have a five year plan?! LOL! In 2020, I will have finished my 20-book Blueberry Lane Series, and I hope to be writing another long series like that. I will have also finished my a modern fairytale and a modern legend series, so I will hopefully have moved on to a modern fable or a modern folktale. By 2020 – if all goes according to plan – I will have written and published over 40 novels and novellas. And it would be really, really nice if I’ve made the New York Times bestseller list by then! (Dream big, Katy!)
How many books do you own and what does your bookshelf look like?
My husband and I are voracious readers, and when we moved into our house, we made a point to have books in every single room of our house (even the bathrooms!) So we have thousands of books in our house, and some bookshelves are very neat, while others are a wreck.
If you are published traditionally and independently, which do you prefer and why?
I have six books published with a small press and twelve books that I have published on my own. I much prefer the control of self-publishing—I write at my own pace, choose/change my covers at will, make edits on my books, jockey with pricing, run deals – the list is endless. I cannot imagine letting someone else have control over my books now that I know how it feels to run my own show.
What advice do you have for people that are trying indie publishing right out of the gate?
Be patient. It takes a lot of hours to build an audience. But if you work hard at it, and if you deliver quality entertainment, the audience will find you.
Do you have a favorite charity?
Each of my a modern fairytale books (The Vixen and the Vet, Never Let You Go) is written as a fundraiser.
In June and July 2014, I gave 50% of my gross profits on The Vixen and the Vet to Operation Mend, and I totally fell in love with the amazing work they’re doing at UCLA.
In June and July 2015, I will be giving 25% of my gross profits on Never Let You Go to the Elizabeth Smart Foundation. I am so inspired by Elizabeth’s story and I love the mission of her foundation: to support the Internet Crimes Against Children task force and to educate children about violent and sexual crime. The ESF in the process of merging with Operation Underground Railroad to combine efforts in the fight against human trafficking.
Your family is safe and sound. You have 24 hours to live and have been given the ability to do anything in the world, what do you do?
Oh, my gosh! As a full-time author and a full-time at-home mom, I barely dream of a day like that!! But since I am utterly obsessed with Outlander on Starz, I would zip over to the highlands of Scotland and spend a day doing a book-inspired tour! Doesn’t that sound like heaven?
Award-winning and Amazon bestselling author Katy Regnery started her writing career by enrolling in a short story class in January 2012. One year later, she signed her first contract for a winter romance entitled By Proxy.
Now a hybrid author who publishes both independently and traditionally, Katy claims authorship of the six-book Heart of Montana series, the six-book English Brothers series, and a Kindle Worlds novella entitled Four Weddings and a Fiasco: The Wedding Date. Katy’s short story “The Long Way Home” appears in the first Romance Writers of America anthology, Premiere, and she has published two stand-alone novels, Playing for Love at Deep Haven and the Amazon bestseller The Vixen and the Vet, which is book one in Katy’s a m o d e r n f a i r y t a l e collection. The Vixen and the Vet was nominated for a RITA® Award in 2015.
Katy lives in the relative wilds of northern Fairfield County, Connecticut, where her writing room looks out at the woods, and her husband, two young children, and two dogs create just enough cheerful chaos to remind her that the very best love stories begin at home.
Upcoming (2015) Projects:
The Winslow Brothers (Books #1-4)
Ginger’s Heart, a modern fairytale
Connect with Katy:
Katy LOVES connecting with her readers and answers every e-mail, message, tweet, and post personally! Click below to connect with Katy!