Thursday, July 13, 2023

THE BEAUTY OF RAIN, by author JAMIE BECK (out July 18th!)

Two devoted sisters at a tragic breaking point discover the beautiful and painful truths of being alive in a powerful novel by Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author Jamie Beck.

Winning the lottery changed Amy Walsh’s life, but the cost was greater than she could bear. In the aftermath, she struggles to find joy and purpose. Only one thing feels certain now—she will never spend one cent of the prize money on herself.

Worried, her older sister, Kristin DeMarco, invites Amy to live with her family while she heals. Unfortunately, this arrangement leads to trouble for Kristin: Divided focus affects her career. Her daughter prefers Amy to her. And Amy’s unsolicited opinions provoke tension between Kristin and her husband.

Meanwhile, Amy is making drastic plans of her own, which include giving away all her money. But first she must convince Kristin not to squander her most valuable asset—time with her family.

As the sisters help each other reimagine their futures, life’s unpredictability sends them to surprising places that test their love and resilience. Will they learn to live in the now, before it’s too late?

Reviews ~

Selected by She Reads as a “Best Book Club Picks of Summer 2023”

“Heartbreaking, uplifting, and wise beyond measure, The Beauty of the Rain is a masterful tale rendered perfectly by an author truly hitting her stride. I was completely captured by the story of two sisters who each have to learn to really live—before they run out of chances. So powerful!” —Barbara O’Neal, bestselling author of This Place of Wonder

“A thoughtful and clear-headed exploration into life’s most brutal challenges. Jamie Beck insightfully dives into the intricacies of grief, marriage, ambition, and love of family in a way that will make you stop and ponder your life choices. An important and meaningful read about what makes life beautiful.” —Sonali Dev, bestselling author of The Vibrant Years

“Jamie Beck’s The Beauty of Rain is a poignant look at love and hope, grief and healing, and finding peace after life-shattering loss. At the heart of this wise, insightful book is a beautifully flawed family—sisters, spouses, children, parents—in all their messy glory. Be prepared to read into the wee hours of the night, because you’re going to keep promising yourself ‘just one more chapter.’” —Mariah Stewart, New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author

Author interview with Jamie ~

What are some things you enjoy when not writing?

I love to travel with family and friends, and I love to eat at funky restaurants. I’m always listening to music (wish I had more opportunities to dance). To unwind, I love a good dramatic movie or TV show. For outdoor fun, I like to ski and hike (and recently picked up Pickleball!). And, of course, I love to read!

Do you have a particular writing routine?

I used to be more regimented, but life has gotten a little hectic lately, so I’ve learned to be more fluid. I am a plotter, though. I start with a theme I want to explore or discuss, then build a character who would struggle the most to adopt that message, and then try to set up a plot that pushes that character through the meatgrinder to get them to learn what must be learned.

Is there anything major that changed in this novel from when you first plotted it out?

The ending! That’s all I’ll say about that.

Finish this: “I can’t write without…”


What is something about you that would surprise people?

Although I’m exceptionally punctual, I’m also chronically disorganized. My desk is covered in papers (not files—just random pages of notes and such). Thank god my husband enjoys being our in-house administrator!


What was the original title of this book?


This is the original title, which was a riff off the Dar Williams song The Beauty of the Rain.


Where do you get your ideas, or what inspired this book plot?


This book is my most personal and was inspired by a health crisis that made me look at my entire life differently. I hope it encourages every single reader to seriously evaluate whether they are living each day with intention and joy/gratitude.


Do you have a manuscript(s) in your drawer? If so, will it ever see the light of day?


Sadly, I just gave up on a manuscript that I’d been very excited about. It is difficult to walk away at 60,000 words, but it wasn’t working, and I could not figure out how to salvage it. Unless I wake up with a major epiphany, I don’t foresee this one making it to market. But never say never…


Is there a particular author or book that influenced or inspired your writing or decision to write?


When I was a teen, I loved Danielle Steel’s books. As a young adult, I found Jodi Picoult. In a strange way, I think my more recent work is sort of a blend of these two types of novels.


Is anything in your book based on real-life experiences?


Actually, yes. There are some “afterlife” encounters that are based on things I, my mother, and my daughter have experienced after losing someone close to us. That makes the book sound paranormal, but it isn’t. It does, however, touch upon the little signs we sometimes get from loved ones after they’re gone.


Do you have a favorite character?

I don’t have a favorite, but I can share which character is most like me: Kristin. I didn’t start out planning for her to mirror many of my traits and concerns, but she ended up more like me than not!


What would your dream job be if you didn’t write books? (assuming this is your dream job!)


Well, if I had any talent for it, I would absolutely love to be a singer-songwriter. Unfortunately, I cannot carry a tune (ask anyone who has the misfortune of riding along on a road trip).


Is there anything you’d like to say to your readers and fans?

Thank you for your time, your letters, and your encouragement and support. You have not only given me this career, you’ve made me feel like I have made a difference in your life, and that is the most precious gift. I treasure your trust.

To connect with Jamie ~

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