Tag Archives | Someone Else’s Love Story

Book Club Recipe: Someone Else’s Love Story

Today’s post by chef Ingrid of Edible Tapestry | @EdibleTapestry

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Not that there was anything wrong with Someone Else’s Love Story by Joshilyn Jackson, or her writing, but I did stamp my foot a little when I didn’t get the ending I was hoping for. My first thought was that somebody should have given that girl, Shandi, something more stimulating to tempt “Thor” with than a pot of potato soup. Yes, he was a simple, down-to-earth guy who would appreciate such a basic, home-cooked meal, but I thought we were on a mission, here! Weren’t we? Was I the only one who was rooting for her? Surely, I thought, Mimmy had some fabulous concoction from her time as owner of the Olde Timey Fudge Shoppe that would work wonderfully to entice a potential lover. But considering the fact that she had spent years loving just one man, and from a distance, I guess seduction, and teaching her daughter the art of, had been the last thing on Mimmy’s mind.

If characters were real and we could jump into books to help them out, I’d pop into this one and sneak my recipe for Orange Creamsicle Fudge into Mimmy’s recipe file so it would be on hand for Shandi when she needed it. I know that the outcome would have been the same. It would have to be, it’s too beautiful and perfect, but at least Shandi could always have known that she gave it her best shot.

Ingredients:

3/4 stick butter

Dash of salt

1/2 to 1 T heavy cream

1 tsp. orange extract

1 tsp vanilla

3 c. confectioner’s sugar

Food color to make orange fudge

Method:

Heat the butter in a small saucepan over low, just until it is melted.

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Remove from the heat. Whisk in the salt and extracts. Using a heavy spoon, stir in the sugar, adding cream as needed until a workable confection is made.

Divide the fudge in half.

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Add just enough food color to make one half a bright orange. I used just a smidge of peach paste color and a couple of drops of liquid yellow.

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Knead in the color, then very lightly mix the orange colored fudge into the remaining white fudge to swirl and marbleize it. Press it into a plastic or parchment lined 9X9″ square pan, or something similar, and chill.

When it’s solid, cut it into squares.

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Yield: approximately 1 lb.

About Ariel Lawhon

Ariel Lawhon is the author of THE WIFE THE MAID AND THE MISTRESS (2014), FLIGHT OF DREAMS (2016), and I WAS ANASTASIA (2018). Her books have been translated into numerous languages and have been Library Reads, One Book One County, and Book of the Month Club selections. She is the co-founder of SheReads.org and lives in the rolling hills outside Nashville, Tennessee, with her family.

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Tell Me Something True: A Visit With Joshilyn Jackson

Today’s post by this month’s featured author, Joshilyn Jackson | @JoshilynJackson

Joshilyn JacksonSOMEONE ELSE’S LOVE STORY features two sets of male/female best friends: Walcott and Shandi, William and Paula. Shandi falls for William in chapter one, when they are caught together in a robbery gone bad and William steps between the gun and Shandi’s little son.

I wanted the romantic focus to stay on William and Shandi, and yet they each had a best friend of the opposite sex. There was too much possibility! Love is powerful, and sex is sneaky. They can sprout between the most unlikely people.

Here’s the short (very expurgated) version of my own love story: I met Scott when I was a 19 and he was 20. We were both theatre majors. He was a long, gangly fellow, very quiet, very introspective. His silence set him apart from the flamboyant gaggle of wild actors I ran with. I gravitated to it.

I learned he was a shameless geek with a thousand comic books kept mint in special plastic sleeves and a secret dream to one day ride the space shuttle. He reminded me of a German shepherd puppy, a little goofy, with skinny legs and feet way too big for his body.

He quickly became my best friend. Back then, if you had asked me if men and women could be just friends, I would have jerked my thumb at Scott and said, “Obviously. ”

Scott and JoshilynBut as the years passed, the German Shepherd puppy grew into his giant feet. Love and Sex twined around us and ate us up, whole, so fast and sly I didn’t notice —until I did. Then I married him and had his charming babies, and I still like him best. The end.

When I wanted to write about male/female best friend sets in SOMEONE ELSE’S LOVE STORY, I had to find a way to take possibility out of the equation. Granted, not every man and woman who become friends end up in bed—but as long as they stay out of bed, the possibility remains. Turns out, possibility is harder to remove than sex itself.

I couldn’t make the dynamics work until I took away the speculation; I made both pairs of friends have sex with each other before the novel begins. It was the only thing that worked! I found no way to get my characters around possibility, so I moved them through it. Through it, and into something else.

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SOMEONE ELSE'S LOVE STORYSomeone Else’s Love Story  is beloved and highly acclaimed  New York Times  bestselling author Joshilyn Jackson’s funny, charming, and poignant novel about science and miracles, secrets and truths, faith and forgiveness; about falling in love, and learning that things aren’t always what they seem—or what we hope they will be.

Shandi Pierce is juggling finishing college, raising her delightful three-year-old genius son Nathan, aka Natty Bumppo, and keeping the peace between her eternally warring, long-divorced parents. She’s got enough complications without getting caught in the middle of a stick-up and falling in love with William Ashe, who willingly steps between the robber and her son.

Shandi doesn’t know that her blond god Thor has his own complications. When he looked down the barrel of that gun he believed it was destiny: It’s been one year to the day since a tragic act of physics shattered his world. But William doesn’t define destiny the way others do. A brilliant geneticist who believes in facts and numbers, destiny to him is about choice. Now, he and Shandi are about to meet their so-called destinies head on, making choices that will reveal unexpected truths about love, life, and the world they think they know.

About Ariel Lawhon

Ariel Lawhon is the author of THE WIFE THE MAID AND THE MISTRESS (2014), FLIGHT OF DREAMS (2016), and I WAS ANASTASIA (2018). Her books have been translated into numerous languages and have been Library Reads, One Book One County, and Book of the Month Club selections. She is the co-founder of SheReads.org and lives in the rolling hills outside Nashville, Tennessee, with her family.

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My Own Miraculous: a love story

Today’s post by this month’s featured author, Joshilyn Jackson | @JoshilynJackson

My Own MiraculousMY OWN MIRACULOUS is a long short story (or short novella) about all the ways motherhood changes us, and about how we change into mothers.

In a perfect world, these transformations would happen simultaneously. Our baby would be placed in our arms, and boom! All at once, we would understand exactly how to love, care for, feed, nurture, discipline without stifling, indulge without spoiling, hope for without burying in expectations, and rock to sleep our mysterious, terrifying, beautiful baby.

It’s not a perfect world.

I’ll tell you what I do know: Love fills the gaps as we are learning.

Oddly enough this truth was recently reinforced by our daughter’s silly little dog, Ansley. The very day we brought Ansley home from our local Pet Rescue, she adopted our son’s hound, Bagel. Never mind that Bagel was older and three times her size. Bagel is so genuinely dim-witted and good natured that he was happy to be a surrogate puppy. Or a throw pillow. Whatever.

We watched her herding him, the way she rested her chin on his butt as he slept, keeping her own eyes open and alert. It was clear she had been a mother at least once before she was spayed. Her own body confirmed it a little later, when she trusted us enough to roll over for a good tummy scratch.

“Why are her, um, her dog bosoms all floppy? ” Maisy demanded. “Bagel isn’t like that. ”

“Ansley has had puppies, ” I explained to my then third grader. “They stretched her nipples out like that when they were nursing. ”

“Ew, ” Maisy said. “I’m glad that doesn’t happen to HUMAN mommies. ”

I held my tongue. No need to explain to a nine year old ALL the way motherhood changes us. (What? I want grandchildren one day. )

Three years later, Ansley still mommies giant Bagel, coddling him, watching over him, and prancing with pride when he does something wonderful. Well, dog-wonderful, so this usually means something awful for us. I remember once Ansley came tearing up to the house, clearly thrilled out of her tiny mind, doing a joyful version of the Timmy-is-in-the-well, back-and-forth dash to entice us to follow her. We did, and she took us behind the garden shed, where her most marvelous Bagel had unearthed the very, very deadest squirrel in all of Georgia. He was rolling in it. Repulsive! But she was proud enough to bust.

This weekend Bagel had to go to the vet for a tummy problem, and Scott leashed him up and walked him out of the house. Ansley was left at home. This is what she did, for the entire half hour Bagel was missing:

It was an endless, grieving ,restless terrified yammer of sound. THE MAN! HE TOOK BAGEL! WHAT WILL HAPPEN! HELP! Maisy and I coddled her and petted her and talked to her, but she was disconsolate. Nothing was right with the world. She wept and paced and whined and dug at the door.

If dogs can’t recover from becoming mommy-dogs, what chance do we people have, with our much larger imaginations, with our greater understanding of how dangerous the world is? We are very brave, all of us mothers. We have to be.

MY OWN MIRACULOUS  is the story of one girl who becomes a mother way too young, and how danger came, and what she does to earn the title. It’s exciting and love-affirming, but I don’t want to spoil the end. Instead, I’ll show you how Ansley’s story ended.

anlsey is happy

About Ariel Lawhon

Ariel Lawhon is the author of THE WIFE THE MAID AND THE MISTRESS (2014), FLIGHT OF DREAMS (2016), and I WAS ANASTASIA (2018). Her books have been translated into numerous languages and have been Library Reads, One Book One County, and Book of the Month Club selections. She is the co-founder of SheReads.org and lives in the rolling hills outside Nashville, Tennessee, with her family.

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