Time-travel romances offer such a unique escape for me as a reader. It's that marriage of modern day characters, the shock of being thrust into a historical setting and the "are they going to get back to their time?" question that makes them so appealing.
But what if the author chose a different venue to connect the characters? What would that venue be and why choose that instead of another? These were questions I had when I read the synopsis for Laura Tobias' new book What Lainey Sees, and Ms. Tobias has been kind enough to answer them.
Thanks for hosting me on Written Love Reviews. I’m happy to be here.
Your question: I adore second chance romances and time travel (contemporary to historical) romances, but haven't come across one quite like yours before. The use of visions to show the past is intriguing. Why use visions? Why not have the characters fall through time to when they'd first met?
Like you, I’m a huge fan of second chance and time travel (contemporary to historical) romances, sometimes called time slip or dual romance novels. I’m fascinated by the concept of past lives and I knew one day I’d write a book where a past life was an important part of the story. That book became What Lainey Sees.
What Lainey Sees isn’t a classic time travel in the sense of the word but more of a dual story line where the main character – Lainey - taps into a life she lived centuries earlier. That past life influences and impacts the crisis she finds herself in now. In the present day story line, Seattle newspaper reporter Lainey Hughes is desperate to find her mother who has disappeared into a doomsday cult sequestered somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. She teams up with Gage Stuart, a jaded cop whose young son is also being held there. As they race up the coast in a kayak searching for their loved ones, their past life intrudes and Lainey has visions of being a powerful Indian shaman woman called Bright Eyes. She knows, with certainty, that Gage was her lover in that life – a powerful Nootka warrior named Satsokis. Given that their past life was tempestuous and ultimately tragic, trust is hard to come by in this life too. But they must learn to trust in order to save their family members and claim the love that’s rightfully theirs.
I used visions to have Lainey access the historical timeline for a couple of reasons. I wanted the access to the past to feel real. Much of the research I did around the subject of past lives indicated that most people who tap into them do it either through dreams or under hypnosis. Hypnosis wouldn’t work for this particular story (though I’ll probably use it for another past life romance) but dreams and visions would. So I decided visions would be the vehicle with which Lainey would access her life as a Native American shaman woman.
Another reason I chose visions was because it plays into the conflict of Lainey’s psychic ability. At the beginning of the novel, Lainey is a repressed and reluctant psychic. As part of her character arc, she must grow to accept her psychic ability. Through that journey, she comes to understand that denying her psychic ability and her visions in her past life created many problems. Problems that will happen again if she doesn’t break the pattern. At the same time that Lainey is learning to accept her visions, Gage is denying them. This goes to the essential conflict between them. And, at the big, black moment, when everything is on the line, Gage must decide if he’s willing to accept something he cannot see and doesn’t trust in order to save his son.
Lainey’s visions became an important element in What Lainey Sees. They allowed her to travel back in time, they were at the heart of the conflict between her and Gage, and, ultimately, they taught Lainey the importance of trusting and believing in yourself. So they played a fundamental role in the story.
Thanks for asking such a great question!
Thank you, Laura, for stopping by to answer my questions. *grins* I love that your story is different from others in its genre and I can't wait to read it.
Readers, thank you so much for hanging out with me and Laura today. To find out more about her book, keep reading and don't forget to enter the giveaway!
Title: What Lainey Sees
Release Date: March 2015
Genre: Time Travel (Contemporary to Historical), Suspense, Native American, Romance
Centuries ago, the passion they shared as Native American lovers ended in tragedy. Together again and unaware of their past, can they claim the love that’s rightfully theirs?
Seattle newspaper reporter Lainey Hughes is desperate to find her mother who has disappeared into a doomsday cult sequestered somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. She teams up with Gage Stuart, a jaded cop whose young son is also being held there. As they race up the coast in a kayak searching for their loved ones, Lainey’s visions show her the past . . . the present . . . and the future.
Lives are on the line. Love is within reach. And trust is hard to come by.
What Lainey Sees may help two wounded souls embrace their future . . . but only if they’ll learn from past mistakes.
On sale at Amazon until August 28 for only $0.99!
She interrupted him. “Hold me, Gage. Just hold me. We could have died back there. My God, what would have happened to my mother?”
There were times to think and times not to think. Like now. Gage shut his eyes and held her. For a minute, he pretended Keven was safe. They were safe. That everything was normal. He inhaled Lainey’s scent, the feel of her breasts beneath her jacket. His hand traced the curve of her hip, the swell of her tight, round ass. Sweet Carolina, she felt good.
She dropped her arms, took his head between her hands and brought his face forward until his lips were within grazing distance of her own. “I . . . want . . . you.” Each word was a puff of heat sliding out from her lips into his.
His body responded in the most elemental way. He wanted her. Bad. He wanted to make this respite from danger last just a little bit longer. But that was his dick talking, and the last time he’d listened, he’d gotten his rocks burned, not off. He inched back and put some space between them. “You’re in shock, Lainey. You don’t know what you’re saying.”
She feathered her lips over his. “I’m saying I want you.”
The backs of his knees quivered.
She brushed her lips over his a second time. “You. Gage Stuart.”
“Now who’s teasing?” he asked thickly.
“I’m not teasing, I’m begging.” This lip brush had a little tongue action.
He trembled. He’d told her she would beg for him.
“Isn’t that what you wanted?” She licked his lower lip. “Me to beg?”
His mouth was on fire. “You don’t know what you’re saying.”
“I do, Gage. This time, I do. Make love to me.” Her eyes were a rich, dark chocolate, heavy-lidded with passion. “I need to forget everything for a little while. Celebrate being alive.” Her arms went under his shirt. “No strings. No ulterior motives. Just two people taking comfort from each other.” Her jacket sleeve was slippery cold against his skin, but her fingers were hot as they grazed his belly, his nipples. He shivered.
He was standing in a cold cave with a warm woman crawling all over him. Wanting him. His need was great, his body was primed, the woman was ready and willing. So why couldn’t he pretend it was just about sex?
Because this was different. The why of it didn’t matter. It just was. He needed Lainey Hughes like he needed his next breath.
Maybe even more.
By the time she hit Grade Four, Laura Tobias knew she was going to be a writer. So did the teachers. It was the persistent daydreaming and invisible friends that tipped them off. The question was: how could she daydream for the rest of her life and get paid for it? The answer: Trade the crayons for a computer and write those stories down. Oh, and grow up first. She’s managed the first two. She’s still working on the growing up part.
Laura Tobias lives with her family, including two Shetland sheepdogs, in the Pacific Northwest. When she’s not reading or writing she’s either playing in the garden or spying on people at the grocery store. Laura is an award winning author of 19 books for teens and children written as Laura Langston.