Pop Quiz ~ Lisa Belcastro with a giveaway

Lisa Belcastro

Discover more about

Lisa Belcastro

and her time travel romance

Shenandoah Dreams

Oak Tara



A favourite childhood book?

When I was very young, I loved Robert McCloskey’s Make Way for Ducklings. My mom or dad would read it to me night after night.  In my teen years, I devoured the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, multiple times. Thirty years later, I flew out to the Midwest with my youngest, also a Little House fan, and we drove to all but one of the home sites.

Do you remember the title of the first story you ever wrote? What was it about?

Is it horrible to confess that I don’t remember the exact title? Something like: My Cat Fluffy or perhaps Fluffy and Me. And you’ve guessed the story was about my cat named Fluffy. My mother made the appropriate oohs and aahs as she read about how I loved Fluffy and Fluffy loved me. I think I was five or six. I wouldn’t be surprised if my mother still had it buried in one of the many boxes in the attic.

If you weren’t a writer, what career would you/did you/do you have pursued?

I am torn between a landscape artist, as I love plants and designing gardens, or an architect. I remodelled three of the homes I’ve lived in. I can picture myself thoroughly enjoying the process of creating beautiful, eco-friendly, unique homes of all sizes for families or individuals to live in.

Why do you write stories?

I have to write them because the characters talking and acting out in my head don’t stop speaking and moving until I get their stories down on paper. But don’t you know, that before I’m done one book, another group of characters starts telling me their story. Fortunately this leads to many incredible dreams. I love the creative process of imaging people, their lives, where they are going, what they are going to say and do, and then watching it all come to life. While I experience this on one level with my children, my novel friends rarely drive me to the point of wanting to pull my hair out. LOL

Shenandoah DreamsShenandoah Dreams

What if she met the man of her dreams…in another century?

Tisbury, Massachusetts, Martha s Vineyard.

It’s just a dream, Melissa Smith whispers as she stares into the intense eyes of a man dressed in Colonial clothes, as though stepping out of an American Revolution movie set. A school chaperone with Holmes Hole Elementary, she d boarded the old schooner Shenandoah for a weeklong educational sail. But they are not visiting Plimoth Plantation, the Boston Tea Party Museum, or the Concord Bridge reenactment. They’re sailing the waters around the island of Martha’s Vineyard. Yet, when she awakes in Cabin 8, the captain claims to be Isaiah Reed, who sailed the original Shenandoah in the eighteenth century. He cannot possibly be real, Melissa thinks. And traveling back in time is impossible. But days pass, and she s still in 1770.

What if Isaiah, who is simply too handsome to be real, is real? What if the fire he ignites in her from barely a touch isn’t in her imagination? Can a dream last for weeks on end? If so, how will she find her way home…to the twenty-first century? And can she bear to leave the one man who has captured her heart, when everything in her longs to stay?

Describe your novel in 5 adjectives

Redeeming, romantic, hopeful, adventurous, fantasy

Please share a little about one of your main characters

Melissa Smith, my heroine, is your average woman. I love that about her. She’s real. I could be her; any one of my girlfriends could be Melissa. She’s smart, kind, talented, independent, and natural. You won’t find Melissa spending hours on hair and makeup, nor will she shop until she drops. During the school year, her teacher look is compromised of long skirts with loose shirts or comfy sweaters. In the summer Melissa’s happiest in shorts and tee shirts, which is perfect for the days she spends sailing aboard the Shenandoah. Her latest passion is photography, and she’s working up the courage to develop a line of greeting cards to sell in the Island gift stores. Melissa’s faith grounds her, though she’s been known to need a nudge or two in church if the pastor goes on too long. As I was writing Melissa’s story, I discovered how much I liked her as a person. She’s a dedicated teacher with a heart for her students. Melissa’s life is not headline material by society’s standards, yet every day, through kindness and love, Melissa impacts people around her in a positive way. I would be honoured to call her my friend.

What spiritual theme or question does your story deal with?

The hero and heroine in Shenandoah Dreams have each experienced heartache and loss. Never wants to walk down the aisle again, and both have careers that they enjoy and are living lives that they believe is the right choice for them. When each of their worlds is turned upside down, Melissa and Isaiah must learn to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6

Share a recent movie or tv show that you have loved, and why?

I’m going to say it and then hide: Frozen.  I LOVE that movie. I love the music. I love the story. I love that I shared it with my girls and we continue to sing the songs almost every day. I’m a sucker for happily ever after endings, and also a true Disney fan.

What novel are you working on now?

I’ve started a new series tied to the Possible Dreams Auction, a yearly fundraiser for the Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. People come from all walks of life to bid, buy, and gawk at the improbable items for sale. In the first book, A Dream for Love, my heroine wins a week stay at a movie star’s summer home. She’s thrilled to have the time with her daughter . . . until the bad boy Hollywood heartthrob arrives after a scandal hits the tabloids and he’s kicked off his latest film location. They are an unlikely pair. Laurel’s faith is strong, and she’s devoted to being a good mom. Ryan is trouble with a capital ‘T’ and best observed on the big screen. Situations pull them together, but Laurel is convinced she should never trust a man again, never mind one with a womanizing track record longer than her ex-husband’s prison record. Ryan, on the other hand, decided long ago that single moms should be avoided like the plague. I love watching as one or both of them feels a twinge of attraction and then tries to squelch it before the thought becomes something more.

Thanks Lisa!

Relz Reviewz Extras
Visit Lisa’s website
Buy at Amazon: Shenandoah Dreams

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44 Responses to Pop Quiz ~ Lisa Belcastro with a giveaway

  1. I read my first time travel novel “Healer of Carthage” by Lynne Gentry and LOVED it! It’s part of the Carthage Chronicles, so I’m looking forward to more. This book sounds intriguing as well and appreciate the chance to win it.

    • Hi Amy, My first time travel book was A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux. I was hooked. I had a blast researching and writing the three books in the Winds of Change trilogy. Going back to the American Revolution was a great adventure. I hope you enjoy it.

  2. I have never read a time travel novel but have seen a few movies. It seems like it would be an interesting read.

    • Hi Ellen, I enjoy a good time travel movie, as long as it isn’t violent. Have you seen The Lake House? I really loved that movie. I hope you have the chance to read Shenandoah Dreams.

  3. I love time travel novels. Lisa’s series is one of my favorites that I have read.

  4. I’ve actually never read a time travel novel, but this one has me intrigued.

  5. I have mixed emotions about time travel novels. Sometimes I find them confusing but they are never boring, so that is a good thing!

    • Hi Connie,
      I hope you are neither confused nor bored reading Shenandoah Dreams. The time travel sequences are fairly smooth, and though Melissa has no idea what is going on at first, I’m certain the reader will be clued in. :-)

  6. I have only read a few time travel novels and surprised myself that I enjoyed them. Lisa book looks very interesting.
    Thank you for featuring her and her book.

  7. I’m looking forward to reading your book. I would buy the book based on the cover alone. Thanks for entering me in your giveaway.

  8. I wonder if we actually could go back in time if we would want too.
    I’ve read time travel novels and have enjoyed them very much.

    • Hi Janet, I’m thrilled you like the book cover. I love the cover photos for all three books in the series. Photographer Alison Shaw took the pictures. She is incredibly talented and I’m blessed her images worked for the covers of my trilogy! I hope you enjoy the books as much as covers.

  9. I think it’s very cool that I’m not the only one really obsessed with Frozen too! Thanks Mrs. Belcastro!

    • Frozen is tops in our home, Angelica. We walk around singing “Do You Wanna Build a Snowman” and “Let It Go” as though there were no other songs on the radio. I won’t embarrass myself and admit to how many times I’ve watched it. Glad to meet another Frozen fan!

  10. Andrea Williams

    I have not read any time travel novels that I remember, but I have seen a few interesting movies. Why not?

    • I hope you enjoy the books, Andrea. I love time travel, whether it’s in movies or books. I read my first time travel romance as an adult, but C.S. Lewis captured my imagination with the Narnia series. I’ve now re-read the seven Narnia books with my children.

  11. I think it’s very cool that I’m not the only one really obsessed with Frozen too! Thanks Mrs. Belcastro! I don’t think I have ready any time travel books yet. I have too though.

  12. I love time travel books… :) You can go anywhere with a book! Why not back in time!!! I love Michelle Griep’s books and Lynne Gentry’s new one (can’t wait for book 2)… This books sounds amazing! Can’t wait to get my hands on it! :)

  13. Lisa’s book sounds fascinating on a number of fronts, but especially the time travel theme. Looking forward to having an opportunity to read it!

    • Hi Sherrey,
      I love the idea of time travel. I’m not sure I’d want to go into the future, but I’d love the chance to travel back in time to witness major moments in history, talk to Jesus, and then come home. I hope you enjoy Melissa’s story.

      • Oh, Lisa, I do believe I have seen enough the “future” from the perspective of the changes witnessed in my 68 years. However, traveling back in time would give me the property to ask some extraordinary figures some burning questions. I’d start with Jesus and if need be, we could call on God for really burning ones. Then I’d love to talk with L.M. Montgomery, Helen Keller, Anne Frank, Ernest Hemingway, Eleanor Roosevelt and so many more! Are you packed and ready to go with me?

        • I am right there with you Sherrey! My bags are packed – at least what I’ll need. I wish I could bring my camera or phone. There are so many people I would want to spend a day or so with. I have to add Ruth and Boaz to the list, and King David. Let’s definitely start with Jesus. We may never leave though!

  14. I love time travel novels! One of my all time favorite time travel series is the River Of Time series by Lisa T. Bergren, if you like medieval Italy you should check them out! I just finished Shenandoah Nights a couple of days ago and loved it! Thanks for the chance to win :)

    • Hi Caitlyn,
      A friend just recommended the River of Time series. I’ve got to read them! I love Italy. So glad you enjoyed Shenandoah Nights. I’ve had tons of fun with these characters.

  15. I enjoy time travel novels because they may portray people who have similar beliefs, ethics, problems, ambitions but with different societies, governments, antagonists, mores, environments. As a longtime teacher, I saw children from different countries trying to cope with a new lifestyle here in the United States. Even in the same time period, some coped better than others, and it was always a challenge to help them.
    Also, I was a great fan of the Scott Bakula series on TV where the main character had to live a part of someone’s life in a different year.

    • Hello Kaye,
      I’m with you, time travel stories provide me with glimpses into another way of life, perhaps in my hometown but two hundred years earlier. I love allowing my imagination to consider the possibilities: would I adapt? what would I miss? toilet paper? hot running water? chocolate bars? My gut tells me I’d be great at visiting another era, but I wouldn’t want to stay too long. :-)
      Thank you for being a teacher!

  16. I have not read a time travel novel as of yet. I am always ready to read a good bookthough. Thank you for the chance to win.

  17. Thanks for sharing. I love to hear more about authors and how they write. This story sounds fun. Growing up on the Oklahoma prairies when I was a little girl I used to lay awake at night imagining what i would be like to wake up in a different time and place and be friends with Laura.

    • I was the same way, Mary! Though I was in New England, I’d imagine myself riding across the plains in a covered wagon. My younger self had a rather romantic view of the journey. Of course, I didn’t give a thought then to where hot water came from, indoor plumbing or “having” a roof over my head instead of needing to build one. :-)

  18. I think, if done right, time travel novels can be awesome! And by “done right,” I mean, of course, that there’s a happily ever after. 😉

  19. I would love to read and review them.

  20. I enjoy time travel novels. I have read your first one and I also really liked Dreamspell by Tamara Leigh. I am also a huge Disney fan and I have collected the dolls for Frozen.

    • I hope you enjoy Shenandoah Dreams Amy. One of my best friends hosted a Frozen party for her 4-year-old daughter last Sunday. And fan of Frozen would have LOVED it. All the girls left with goody bags to create their own edible Olaf. My heart soared. :-)

  21. huge fan of time travel romance and novels –
    and this one now being added to my wishlist!
    thanks for the intro and the generosity –
    from another childhood FLuffy luver 😉

  22. I’m a HUGE fan of anything time travel! I’m still waiting for The Doctor to show up and invite me to be his companion for a while =)

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