Monday, October 24, 2011

Lisa Lickel & Shellie Neumeier's "A Summer in Oakville"

Title: A Summer in Oakville
Publisher: Black Lyon Publishing
Cover blurb:
One Magical Summer in Oakville, Wisconsin,
Love Finds its Way through Four Entwined Lives.

Meet Tessa, Lindsay, Art and Andy.

Tessa Hasmer Murphy has a secret. Estranged from her husband, will she let a past love and a fight to save the family farm destroy her marriage and daughter Lindsay’s happiness?

Lindsay Murphy plans to live on her grandparents’ farm until she can find a job, but developer Brandon Calloway has other plans for the property. As she wages war against him, will she lose her heart and the farm both?

Widower Arthur Hasmer’s life and that of his son, Andy, spiral out of control. Then old friend, Dana London, reenters the picture with the power to help them all back to love, joy and faith.

Andy Hasmer has the ultimate bummer life. No mom, not much of a dad, no future. When he’s sent to the farm and wrecks the truck, nothing could be worse than the lousy job he takes to pay Grampa back—except maybe putting up with the pastor’s daughter, Ella.

1) How did this story come to you?
Lisa: I have to take the blame for coming up with the convoluted idea – four stories in one book was the theme of our original target publisher, romantic stories, but then we worked it out so that the stories worked with each other to tell one tale. The theme, trying to keep the rural life they are familiar with, can’t bear to give up even though the adult children don’t farm or live on the home place, is a very real problem in the US that few people understand. The way of the family farm has passed, and while we don’t purposefully try to villainize anyone, not even the developers, I do want to draw attention to the fact that single families can’t make a living, in general, from an 80-120-acre farm in the 21st century. We still grow our own food, but fewer urban children truly understand where it comes from, and it would be a shame if we lost that connection.

Shellie: Well said, Lisa! I was privileged to be a part of this collection, since it is so much more than four romantic tales. A Summer in Oakville epitomizes the difficulties rural Wisconsin—America—has experienced for generations, and it highlights the beautiful strength you find in family ties and homegrown roots. To answer your question, Dawn, the stories, Andy’s and Lindsay’s, came to me as I listened and watched my neighbors and friends…Lisa included.

2) Tell us about the journey to getting this book published.
Lisa: When I heard that Barbour Publishing (the publisher of my first novel, a mystery called The Gold Standard) offered one more opportunity for authors in the form of “Four-in-One” novels, I asked my new writing friend Shellie if she’d be interested in writing one with me. You can read more about that here.!/permalink.php?story_fbid=202789583103568&id=200940583288468

Shellie: Not everything was as we imagined, but it was as God ordained. Fortunately, neither Lisa nor I could let this family’s story sleep, and I’m so grateful it didn’t sleep long! How’s that for vague:D. **giggles** No really check the FB fan page.

3) Tell me three things about yourself that would surprise your readers.
Lisa: You mean, without scaring them away? Um…I’m probably the only woman in the world who wishes her hair would start thinning, I like science fiction and history, but not really at the same time, I would give up chocolate before bread.

Shellie: Oooh, can I tell Lisa’s? :D. JK, though I’m sure she’d have fun telling a few of mine;). I bet readers don’t know I’ve gone spelunking and loved it (no, really…crawled through tunnels and little caves, they have those in Wisconsin); I’m actually shy, but I work hard at overcoming that little trait (requires a lot of down time); and I have a wretched sense of humor that surfaces only when I’m tired.

4) What are you working on now and what's next for you?
Lisa: I’m working on a couple of projects; one is the rewrite (again) of a story I like about a couple trying to make their marriage work in today’s busy-ness. He’s a former medical missionary who was forced to return to the states and who never planned on getting married; she’s a businesswoman who planned to marry her parent’s choice for a husband and live quietly, boringly ever after. Then God laughed. I’m also teaching some more online and in person workshops and working with some other local authors on signing and panel talk events.

Shellie: I have a mid-grade chapter book, co-written with my youngest two kiddos, entitled The Wishing Ring which releases in February 2012. I’m also cleaning up a story near and dear to my heart. It’s a story about an autistic seventeen year-old boy. Imagine Rainman meets Karate Kid, only this time a trophy isn’t at stake, its Delaney’s life.

5) Parting comments?
Lisa: thank you for having us! We love to chat with folks, and would enjoy visiting your bookclubs, too. For some fun recipes, visit our Summer in Oakville Facebook page.

Shellie: Yes, thank you! We’d love to hear your family’s story too. Leave us a tale in the comments below and you’ll be entered in a drawing for a copy of A Summer in Oakville. I don’t know about your relatives, but I’m thinking not every family has just one black sheep…

6) Where can fans find you on the internet?
Lisa: All my links can be found on my web site:

Shellie: Facebook:


  1. Sounds like a well written book with very imaginative plots. The problems and people seem quite real. This is exactly what I consider a wonderful read. Family struggles aren't new, but I love it when Jesus enters. Please add me to this giveaway and thank you for the chance to win a copy.

    God Bless,
    Barb Shelton
    barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

  2. I'm excited to get my hands on a copy of this book - pdf works for me!

  3. would love to win.

  4. Thank you, Barb and Tracy and nakiassgeorge. We appreciate your enthusiasm and encouraging words about our book.

  5. thanks for the interview love to be included in the giveaway.

    ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

  6. I love these family involved stories! Thanks for the giveaway!


  7. Thank you everyone. And a big good luck to each of you. Hope you enjoy it:D

  8. I'd love to read a story about the struggles of a modern family farm!

    valerie at valeriecomer dot com

  9. love combined with a fight with a developer over farmland sounds like my kind of story!


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