Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Soul of the Storm by Jean M. Grant - Book Tour and Giveaway

Charlotte MacGregor lost the thrill of conquering mountains five years ago when her sister disappeared on a hiking adventure without her. Still guilt-ridden, Charlotte heads for a vacation to rustic Vermont with a friend—where she's surrounded by reminders of her devastating loss and plagued with unanswered questions.

Matiu Christiansen is an outdoors buff. He works multiple jobs to save for his dream of owning an outfitter in New Zealand. He's never quite felt at home in the United States and he yearns for his Maori roots, but his attraction to Charlotte puts a kink in his plans to move home later this year.

Thrown together by coincidence, Charlotte and Matiu form a kindred bond through their shared love of the outdoors. Can Charlotte surmount her demons to assist Matiu on a rescue when a late-season snowstorm hits? And can Matiu help Charlotte heal from the pain of the past?


Charlotte sat on the top porch step instead of in a rocker. Her breath puffed in a misty cloud before her as she waited. Again, the scent of a fire from the back pit infused the air. She traced the knots in the planks of the porch with the toe of her shoe, ignoring her thudding pulse. Matiu shuffled through the side door. She rose to help him with the cups. 


“Kia ora,” he said, smile deep and teeth bright beneath the lamps. “It’s colder tonight.” 

“You need a jacket,” she said with a nod to his thinner long-sleeved top that clung nicely to his muscles. 

“I’ll sit closer to you. Nice quilt.” 

“I’m always cold. I won’t have much heat to share.” 

“Logging in my assessment file.” He tapped his temple. 

She shivered from nerves as he settled beside her on the top step. 

“Ya know, we could have tea inside,” he suggested. 

“What about consorting? Besides, I like the clear sky and fresh air. Night is my time.”

He nodded. “Ah, clear skies are amazing. I prefer morning. Not sure about tomorrow. Neil’s sick with the flu, and so is Kelly. They work on the search and rescue team, and Kelly also does mucking with us for the US Forest Service. Seems like the germs haven’t left for the season.” 

“Nor the cold temps. Both tend to bite us in the ass in April.” 

“I was serious. You going to share that quilt with me?” He inched closer. 

“Nope. Get your own.” 

He pressed a hand to his heart. “Shot down!” Tea splashed as his laugh vibrated. 

Her pulse quickened with the idea of sharing warmth with him. 

He said, “I’m knackered. That paddle got me sore. Bit more wind today than I’d expected.” 

“You’re not the only one.” 

He was so close. She subtly inhaled his natural scent. She couldn’t place it. Probably his shampoo… combined with sweat and cooking oils. They sat quietly, unsure what to say next. His nearness upset her equilibrium. She drank the tea.


Where did you get the idea for your most recent book?

I adore New Zealand and live in New England. I wanted my characters from both places. I also love to hike, have some heartache in my past (I lost my sister young), and I just sat down one day and churned this idea onto paper. I submitted the idea to my editor and the rest is history. It’s interesting how real life (and our imagination) can inspire us. I don’t usually have a set specific moment when I get inspired, but rather my stories are overlapping memories, life experiences, or ideas generated from visiting places, speaking to people, or daydreaming. This one though came fast and easily.

What 5 words would you use to describe your main characters?

Oh, I’ll dig out my Character Development charts for this one! I enjoy spending a good deal of time with my characters before I even type the first word of the story. I make charts, analyze their backstory, and dig into their goals, motivation, conflict, emotional wounds, mannerisms, and many other things.
Matiu Christiansen: spiritual, restless, outdoor enthusiast, ambitious, competent, even-keeled, but messy! (Okay that was more than 5)
Charlotte MacGregor: Practical, guilt-ridden, over-organized, reliable, naturalist.
Some of my characters are like fire and water: opposites attract! But in this case, I had more overlapping commonalities that naturally brought these two together.

What is your favorite scene in the book?

I am an outdoors lover, so all those outdoorsy scenes: climbing a rocky cliff beside a waterfall, kayaking the Mad River, and the final rescue scene up the Long Trail.

The best book/s you ever read?

Outlander! All of them, including the novellas.

What do you think makes a book a really good/bestseller?

Voice and character(s) we can relate to. The real/rawness to some characters or plot lines. Of course, I do appreciate a good mystical or paranormal adventure, too. It all comes down to characters, and a polished manuscript with relational writing. We want to be inspired. We want to be swept away or cry. We want to close the book with a sigh of completion and connection.
Have you started your next project?

Always! I am juggling the promotion of three books coming out each a month apart (don’t ask…I did not plan this, but I am riding this fun wave!). I’m writing the third book in my historical trilogy and have an idea percolating for a mainstream/upmarket edgy women’s fiction.

Anything else you might want to add?

Thanks for hosting me!


About the Author

Jean’s background is in science and she draws from her interests in history, nature, and her family for inspiration. She writes historical and contemporary romances and women’s fiction. She also writes articles for family-oriented travel magazines. When she’s not writing or chasing children, she enjoys tending to her flower gardens, hiking, and doing just about anything in the outdoors.

Social Media links:

Jean M. Grant will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Your story truly inspires!! I loved getting to know you..

    1. Thanks for stopping by! Glad I can inspire a bit.

  2. Thanks for sharing this book with us. I think we all enjoy reading about new books we previously didn't know about. Also, thank you for the giveaway.

  3. Are any of the characters based on real people?

  4. Charlotte, the heroine, is loosely based on me...but I embellished. And I also lost a sister in an accident (a different kind), so I felt compelled to tell a story of a sister dealing with grief.

  5. I enjoyed learning about this author and this looks really good!

  6. I haven't read the outlander books but it sounds like a great series and the show looks good too