Konigsberg, Texas, Book 7
MG Carmody never figured her musical dreams would crash against the reality of Nashville. Now the only thing she has going for her is her late grandfather’s chicken farm, which comes with molting hens that won’t lay, one irascible rooster, and a huge mortgage held by a ruthless opponent—her Great Aunt Nedda.
With fewer eggs to sell, MG needs extra money, fast. Even if it means carving out time for a job as a prep cook at The Rose—and resisting her attraction to its sexy head chef.
Joe LeBlanc has problems of his own. He’s got a kitchen full of
temperamental cooks—one of whom is a sneak thief—a demanding cooking competition to prepare for, and an attraction to MG that could easily boil over into something tasty. If he could figure out the cause of the shy beauty’s lack of self-confidence.
In Joe’s arms, MG’s heart begins to find its voice. But between kitchen
thieves, performance anxiety, saucy saboteurs, greedy relatives, and one
very pissed-off rooster, the chances of them ever making sweet music are
looking slimmer by the day.
Texas and Me
Why did I choose Texas for my Konigsburg series? I guess the answer is Texas chose me. I lived in San Antonio for over twenty years (I live in Colorado now). It’s an exciting, vibrant city, and it’s also the gateway to the Hill Country, the part of Texas where Texans themselves like to go for vacation. It’s a unique area—lots of rolling limestone hills with caves and winding creek beds, full of peach orchards, goat herds, wild flowers, and vineyards. The towns are quirky and historic, many of them a mixture of old-fashioned buildings and new-fashioned tourist industry. There’s also a mixture of cultures—German, Mexican, and Old West—and history you won’t find anywhere else (a range war took place between German settlers and English settlers in Mason during the mid-nineteenth century).
I knew I wanted to work with the Hill Country. It’s got color and cussedness—what more can you ask for a romance? Konigsburg, my Hill Country town, borrows from a wide range of real places like Fredericksburg, Marble Falls, Mason, Wimberley, and Dripping Springs. Most are an easy drive from San Antonio or Austin, but they’re all unique towns with restaurants, wineries, bars, and honky tonks. I’ve spent time in all of them—bought jelly in Dripping Springs, watched glass being blown in Wimberley, listened to Joe Ely in the park at Marble Falls, and danced to Ponty Bone and the boys in Fredericksburg. These are small towns, but they’re small towns with a difference—a bit of sophistication and a touch of sass.
My main problem, after deciding the Hill Country was where I wanted to be based, was trying to overcome the popular idea of a Texas romance. People ask me (frequently with a long-suffering scowl) if I write about cowboys. I don’t. Nothing against cowboys or ranchers or rodeo, but that’s not the Hill Country. My heroes are veterinarians and cops and chefs and bar owners and, in one case, an accountant. The Hill Country isn’t South Fork—it’s different.
So now I’ve done Konigsburg, Book 7, Fearless Love, and I’d argue that it could only take place in the Texas Hill Country. My hero, Joe LeBlanc, is a chef at a fancy restaurant at a bed and breakfast, the Rose. My heroine, MG Carmody, is a former singer who came back to town to nurse her dying grandfather and is making a very small living as a chicken farmer. MG needs a job so that she can pay off the mortgage on the farm her grandfather left her. Joe needs someone to help in the kitchen (and he’s very taken with the sexy chicken farmer who lives down the road). MG joins the kitchen at the Rose and finds her voice again. There’s a nefarious sous chef, a nasty great aunt, and some certified kitchen warriors around the sidelines, as well as lots of food and lots of music. Yes, it’s Texas, but it’s Hill Country Texas—a place apart in a lot of ways, and a great place for romance. Come visit me there. I think you’ll like it.
Meg Benjamin is an award-winning author of contemporary romance. Her Konigsburg series for Samhain Publishing is set in the Texas Hill Country. Book #3, Be My Baby, won a 2011 EPIC Award for Contemporary Romance. Book #4, Long Time Gone, received the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award for Indie Press Romance. Book #5, Brand New Me, won the Holt Medallion from Virginia Romance Writers and was nominated for Book Of the Year at Long and Short Reviews. Meg lives in Colorado with her DH and two rather large Maine coon kitties (well, partly Maine Coon anyway).
Her Web site is http://www.MegBenjamin.com
Meg loves to hear from readers—contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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