Her great-granddaughter wants to know if Bette remembers World War II for a school project and her questions revive old memories. . .
Small town school teacher Bette Sullivan's life was interrupted when the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor on December 7th 1941 but her world changed forever when she met Private Benny Levy, a soldier from the Flatbush neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York stationed at Camp Crowder, the local Army base.
Their attraction is immediate and mutual but as their relationship grows their love and lives are shadowed by World War II. As the future looms uncertain the couple comes together with almost desperate need and a powerful love they hope can weather anything, including the war
Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy writes romance from sweet to heat, from historical to contemporary. She grew up in a blue collar neighborhood in the old river town of St. Joseph, Missouri where the past always seemed close enough to touch. Her Granny shared stories of love and life and when Grandma took her along to the beauty shop, Lee Ann learned more than any child should about romance! As soon as she could, she did her own field research into the subject.
Her romance novels for Rebel Ink Press include Love Never Fails, Witness Protection Program, Sing We Now of Christmas, A Patient Heart, In Love’s Own Time, Miss Good Samaritan, In The Shadow of War, Guy’s Angel, Heart of the Ozarks, and Dustbowl Dreams, available now or coming soon. She has numerous other writing credits in fiction, non-fiction, and other media.
Lee Ann is a member of Romance Writers of America, Missouri Writers Guild, and the Ozark Writers League. She earned a degree in both Communication Arts and History from Missouri Southern State University as well as a degree from Crowder College. She spent a decade working in broadcast media and interviewed everyone from pro-league baseball players to country music icons and politicians. In recent years she worked for the local school district. She is an active member of the local library board of directors and participates in a variety of community events and affairs.
She now lives in a small Missouri town in what passes for the suburbs. Her husband, Roy, and her three children share her life along with her adorable Jack Russell terrier,
Also by Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy
Wolfe’s Lady, eBook, December 2010, Evernight Publishing
Love Tattoo, eBook, March 2011, Evernight Publishing (Love Covenant Series)
Love Never Fails, eBook and paperback, May 2011, April 2011, Rebel Ink Press
Love Scars, eBook, June 2011, Evernight Publishing (Love Covenant Series)
The Marriage Cure, eBook, July 2011, Astraea Press
Kinfolk, eBook and paperback, July 2011, Champagne Books
Love Knots, eBook, August 2011, Evernight Publishing (Love Covenant series)
Witness Protection Program, eBook, October 2011, Rebel Ink Press
A Time To Love, eBook and paperback, October 2011, Champagne Books
Sing We Now of Christmas eBook, December 2011, Rebel Ink Press
A Patient Heart, eBook, February 3, 2012, Rebel Ink Press
In Love’s Own Time, eBook, February 17, 2012 Rebel Ink Press
Miss Good Samaritan, eBook, April 2012, Rebel Ink Press
Guy's Angel, eBook, June 2012, Rebel Ink Press
An Interview with Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy
By Holly Hewson for The Romance Studio
HH: Lee Ann, thank you for talking with us at TRS. Your featured book is The Shadow of War. Where did you get the idea for this unique love story?
LA: I live in the small town of Neosho, Missouri. Just as World War II began, the Army opened a new training camp, Camp Crowder just outside town. Thousands of soldiers poured into the region and soon filled not just Neosho but other nearby towns as well, looking for diversion when not on duty. I've always been fascinated with the era and grew up on stories from the 1940's. I attended my first two years of college at Crowder College, on what was once the Army post. I did a series of articles for the campus newspaper about the history and decided then I'd write a romance set in the time period. In The Shadow of War is that story.
HH: What do you like best about Bette and why will readers relate to her?
LA: Bette is an average young woman, a first year English teacher. She's like the quintenssential girl next door and I think readers will like her because they'll see a little of themselves in her.
HH: What do you like best about Benny and why will readers love him?
LA: Benny is an original. He's a fast talking Brooklyn guy who deals with his mixed heritage (Irish and Jewish) amazingly well. He's funny but he's got a romantic streak and when it comes to Bette, he's a pushover. I think readers will like his style and personality.
HH:What sort of research was required to bring this amazing story to life?
LA: I read a lot about WWII. I read soldiers' letters, personal accounts of the war, everything I could find describing actual life at Camp Crowder. I drove around what I could of the area once the camp. I also visited the small museum located on campus with all kinds of memorbilila from the Army years. I also bought some books from the actual camp era on Ebay! I've always loved Big Band and 1940's music so listening to it for research was a pleasure!
HH: What was your favorite part of writing this original tale?
LA: I enjoyed creating a tale from all the facts and weaving it against the backdrop of history. Until I researched deeper, I really didn't realize how poignant the period was for couples in love.
HH: What else do you have in store for lucky readers?
LA: I have another historical romance coming out in June. Guy's Angel is set in my hometown of St. Joseph, MO in 1925. My heroine is a determined young woman who wants to fly airplanes and the hero is World War I flying ace Guy Richter. On August 3, I have a contemporary romance, Heart of The Ozarks coming out and in September, another historical romance, Dust Bowl Dreams, a love story involving a desperate young man with a failed crop and siblings to feed. It's inspired by real life outlaw Charley Floyd, better known as "Pretty Boy" Floyd.
HH: Where can readers find all of your works?
LA: They're all on Amazon.com and All Romance Ebooks. Most are also on Bookstrand.com.
My books - most of them - are also on Barnes and Noble's website but some are harder to find because of the way my name was spaced on a few titles.
HH: What would we find in your to-be-read pile?
LA: I've got about half of Rebel Ink Press' backlist on my Kindle, waiting. The other half, I've read and enjoyed. Other books on my TBR pile include "The Face On Miss Fanny's Wall" by Gweneth Greer, some non-fiction books about the Dust Bowl migrants to California (there's probably another historical romance cooking in my brain) and "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I loved the movie so I thought it was time to read the original short story.
HH: What in person or online appearances will you be making this year?
LA: I've already done one author fair and plan to do another this fall in Springfield, MO. I spoke at an Ozarks Romance Authors meeting in May. I hope to attend an annual writer's conference in Eureka Springs in October. Online, I do a lot of guest blogs and I'll probably be doing some more radio programs. I'm hosting a couple of chats later in the year at Night Owl too.
HH: When you're not reading or promoting you like to __________?
LA: Be outdoors! Whether I'm working in the yard, relaxing on the deck or front porch, taking a hike through some of the Ozarks natural beauty, or going to the lake, I adore being outside!