Julie Lessman made a big splash with her debut series, the Daughters of Boston. She continues the O’Connor family saga with the much anticipated A Hope Undaunted, the first in her Winds of Change trilogy. Julie does nothing by half measure so I know you will enjoy this fabulous insight into an all grown up Katie and the man that was the young rapscallion, Cluny McGee!
Over to you, Julie:~
Katie is eighteen years old going on thirty with a sassy attitude WAY taller than she. Five foot two, eyes of blue, Katie has a stylish blond Dutch-boy bob and can eat whatever she wants and still fit into the rail-thin styles of the Roaring 20s, which annoys her friends to no end. With her biting wit and cool air, Katie’s petite size is no hindrance in keeping everyone on their toes … especially the pest from her past, Cluny McGee.
Think Reese Witherspoon with an attitude.
From street orphan to gang thug to lawyer, Cluny McGee exudes charm and charisma from every pore. With a muscular frame of six-foot-three, clear blue eyes that can pierce right through and a teasing, almost cocky grin, Cluny is a natural athlete who does not like to lose. He spends endless hours playing sports with the kids in the streets, garnering a year-round tan that hides most of his freckles and bleaches his hair to white blond in the summer.
Imagine a younger, toe-head Brad Pitt.
KATIE: Katie is a spitfire with dry wit and more than her fair share of spunk, making her a force to be reckoned with. But it’s her underlying compassion, staunch defense of the underdog and her devotion to women’s rights that sets Katie apart from the average eighteen-year-old girl during an era when women are just coming into their own.
CLUNY: As a street orphan who led a gang on the streets of New York, Cluny McGee is a strong-willed leader who is resilient and tough despite his deep longing for family. He has a heart for children, especially those who are orphans and an incredible loyalty and love for friends, whom he sees as the “family” he never had. He’s charismatic and funny, charming women of all ages, from tomboy orphans to the nuns at the orphanage, and his greatest attribute is his total willingness to give of himself to those he loves.
KATIE: As the baby of the O’Connor family, Katie has a tendency to be a bit spoiled and used to getting her own way, causing her father to refer to her as a “handful.” Her faith in God is minimal at best due to her no-nonsense practicality and she leans toward being the loner in the family due to the age span between her and her sisters. She tends to hold a grudge, particularly toward her father and Cluny McGee.
CLUNY: With a temper mostly subdued thanks to his spiritual mentor, John Brady, Cluny still has no qualms about taking anyone on in a fight. He’s relentless in sports and games and a bit cocky when he wins, which is most of the time. He’s got a stubborn streak that’s a bit controlling and because of his big size, he tends to try and bully those who don’t see things his way … particularly Katie O’Connor!
Katie has a weakness for Life Saver candy … and Cluny McGee’s kisses.
Cluny hates suit coats and ties and is forever taking them off and almost never loses at Pinochle.
Inspiration for the characters
My own twenty-two-year-old daughter Amy, who like Katie, has a dry wit, is in law school and has an actual written list (just like Katie) as to what she wants in husband.
Cluny actually just started out as a bit player who was only to appear in a couple of lines in A Passion Denied, but he so charmed me in that one scene, that I expanded his role in that book to be a major subordinate character who now has his very own story!
What happens when the boy she loved to hate …
becomes the man she hates to love?
The 1920s are drawing to a close, and feisty Katie O’Connor is the epitome of the new woman—smart and sassy with goals for her future that include the perfect husband and a challenging career in law. Her boyfriend Jack fits all of her criteria for a husband—good-looking, well-connected, wealthy, and eating out of her hand. But when she is forced to spend the summer of 1929 with Cluny McGee, the bane of her childhood existence, Katie comes face to face with a choice. Will she follow her well-laid plans to marry Jack? Or will she fall for the man she swore to despise forever?
Julie ~ it is so much fun having you here. As always, thanks for the energy and effort you put into your spotlights
Julie is graciously giving away a signed and personalised copy of one of her books here at Relz Reviewz ~ thank you, Julie! To enter, complete the form below.
On Thursday, the spotlight shines on Mary Ellis’ Sarah Beachy from the just released, Sarah’s Christmas Miracle
Relz Reviewz Extras
Character spotlight on Lizzie & Brady
Interview with Julie
Visit Julie’s website