Spotlight on K.M. Daughters and Jewel of the Adriatic
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
K.M. Daughters is the writing team of sisters, Patricia (Pat) Casiello and Kathleen (Kathie) Clare. The penname is dedicated to their parents, Katherine and Michael.
Pat is a former technical writer, newsletter editor and corporate communications manager. She is also the founder and President of a relocation benefit management company and a real estate appraisal management company. Pat is married to Nick Casiello and has three/four children, Jen, Brian and Emilie and new son-in-law, Jeff. Pat and Nick live in the western suburbs of Chicago.
Kathie currently runs the appraisal company and has been a retail storeowner and accounting executive. She is married to Tom Clare and has two sons, Tom and Michael. She is also the proud Nana of five year old, Natalie and four-month old, Michael John. Kathie and Tom live in the sisters' hometown in New Jersey.
JEWEL OF THE ADRIATIC
by K.M. Daughters
Published by Wild Rose Press
ABOUT THE BOOK
A nightgown model and a soap opera star meet in Valselo, a Croatian village where millions believe the Mother of God appears to three visionaries. Yugoslavian born Maya Lidovic owns Intimate Whispers, a New York based sleepwear company. Determined not to lose her faith in a secular world, she spends her vacations leading tours in Valselo where her parents run an inn. Colin O'Reilly plays heartthrob, Dr. Brock Stone, on the soap opera Tides Of Tomorrow. Through various setbacks in life he's managed to keep God first. But now he's furious at God for taking his mother. Colin doesn't believe that God has sent the Virgin Mary to earth with messages of hope. He doesn't believe that God cares about the world. A series of apparitions, prophetic dreams and earthy attraction draw these different people together. Human frailties obscure the intention of the call that brought them to their destinies.
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1. What gave you the inspiration for this book?
The collective experiences of three trips we took together: Fatima, Portugal; Lourdes, France; and Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina inspired us to write Jewel Of The Adriatic. We felt called to these places, historic and contemporary sites of Marian apparitions - the first time, shortly after our mother's sudden death. They were healing journeys for us that connected us to God and deepened our faith.
2. How much of your own experiences influenced your characters? What aspects became traits that are theirs and theirs alone?
Our Dad died when we were teenagers. Mom died suddenly when our children were young. Dad's absence for all our milestone adult moments and Mom's absence for many give us insight into the burdens of grief – we would give anything if they were here to see K.M. Daughters published! But, we have experienced and continue to experience the healing power of prayer. Belief that our dad and mom are with God consoles us. Seeing God in nature – in all good things - helps us live lives of gratitude. No matter how difficult things seem, or truly are, turning burdens over to God brings peace. In Jewel of the Adriatic, Maya’s central defining trait is she IS her faith. She has doubts and failings and fears, but she handles them by seeking God's help. Colin is stuck in that place of constant anger at God for ripping away Maggie, someone he loves fiercely and needs sorely – in the here and now. And the prayers of well-meaning souls just serve to rip the scabs off his wounds, make the pain fresh and start the cycle of anger again. He needs God's healing love...he just has to get to the point where he wants it. But ah – the power of love.
3. What themes exist in Jewel of the Adriatic that you hope the reader sees? Are there any themes that weren't overt but developed as the story progressed?
The central theme in all our writing is "love heals." Jewel's recurrent theme is pray, pray, pray. Turn your hearts to God. "Cast your burdens unto the Lord." Perhaps less overt, but hopefully inspiring to readers is the theme that with faith and trust in God come joy and riches beyond anything you can imagine for yourself. Ask and you shall receive surprising, wonderful gifts.
4. What were your most difficult parts to write? Your favorite?
The most difficult parts were the "guide-talk" parts. Maya's job as a part-time guide in the village is an important role for her in the story, but we didn't want to set her "apart" from Colin too much. Limiting that narrative, but still conveying the "history" and flavor of events in the fictional village was sometimes difficult. Writing the rest of the book was our favorite. It felt like weaving a prayer for us.
5. When is your next book coming out and what is the story?
We're close to a release date for Against Doctors Orders, the first in our Sullivan Boys series. Gotta love those handsome Sullivan boys, all professional law enforcers.
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Thank you, Pat and Kathie, for being in the spotlight with us.
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