Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Blog Tour and Giveaway: Tara Taylor Quinn and The Chapman Files series

Today, I'm honored to have author Tara Taylor Quinn as a guest on my blog. Ms. Quinn has a new series out, The Chapman Files. The first two books in this series, The First Wife and The Second Lie, are already out in stores.

The lovely Ms. Quinn was nice enough to take some time out and answer a few questions for me...

Ali: Today, I'd like to welcome author Tara Taylor Quinn to my blog! Ms. Quinn has a new series out, The Chapman Files, with MIRA Books. The first four books are being release each month consecutively, starting with the first that released in September. Congratulations on your book releases!!

What can you tell us about The Chapman Files and your heroine Kelly Chapman? What inspired this series?

Tara Taylor Quinn: The Chapman Files centers around expert witness psychologist Dr. Kelly Chapman. Each book is one of her files – one of her cases. Kelly still lives and works in the small town where she was born. Her town is fashioned after the small town where I currently live – my husband’s home town. I moved here three years ago, having never lived in a small town before. And while we’re moving back to the city, to Phoenix , this year, there are things about this town that I will miss. They are the things that Kelly loves about her town. The caring of the people. The feeling of belonging, of knowing every inch of the town, every house. The sense of community and oneness. Still, living in a small town was difficult for me. I was an outsider, you see. My husband knew everyone we passed. I knew no one. He knew who’d lived in houses three times prior to the current owner. I didn’t even know the current owner. And so, as I have done my entire life, I created my own sense of belonging. I created Chandler , Ohio . And as soon as I had my town, Kelly Chapman appeared. Her office is the one on the corner of one of the main streets in town. I pass it every morning on my way to get my diet coke. And soon, Kelly started telling me stories about the people around me. And about herself. Those stories became The Chapman Files.

Ali: How many more books are you planning for this series?

TTQ: As many as MIRA will buy! Kelly has so many files, I could have stories for the next ten years. At least.

Ali: Which of the first four books in this series would you say is your favorite? Why?

TTQ: That’s a tough one. It’s like asking a parent to choose which of her kids is her favorite kid. Each book is my favorite for a different reason.

The Third Secret is my favorite because the book wrote itself. It just seemed to flow together of its own accord, many many different pieces fitting together effortlessly. I didn’t have to plot. The puzzle just went together.

The Second Lie, which debuted this week, is also my favorite. The story took me beyond my normal stories – with plots that intertwined on their own. I love Maggie Winston, the fourteen year old girl who tries so hard to be accountable for the fact that she was conceived when her mother was sixteen. The Second Lie also holds a special place for me because this is the book where I really got to know Kelly as a person, not just as a psychologist.

The Fourth Victim is my favorite because it’s Kelly’s story. I can’t say enough about her and writing her story was an honor. I hated having it done. I also favor The Fourth Victim because it involves in-line skating which is also my passion.

And The First Wife – it came first. You always have a special place for the first. This book is also dear to me because of the subject matter. Some of it I related to on a personal level.

Ali: I heard that during your blog tour you and Kelley are also raising money for Strengthen our Sisters. Can you tell us about this organization and how you became involved?

TTQ: A few years ago Harlequin asked me to write a novella based on the life and work of Sandra Ramos, the founder of Strengthen our Sisters. SOS was the first battered women’s shelter in the United States . It came about at a time when women who were abused stayed with their abusers because society expected them to do so. Spousal abuse was something that was largely not talked about. Sandra changed that in a huge way. She not only housed battered women in her own living room, but she fought bureaucracy, even faced jail time, to get laws into place that protected battered women and their children. Thirty years later SOS consists of ten homes filled to capacity with battered women and their children.

When Harlequin asked me to write this story, I agreed immediately. Because Sandra’s cause is very dear to my heart. It was a cause I was already involved with fighting. On a personal level. That first interview with Sandra changed my life. Here was a petit woman, past the age of sixty, who wasn’t afraid to face anything. She works tirelessly, from early morning until late at night, accompanying victims to court, holding hands, fund raising, and teaching college. She doesn’t give up. She never stops believing. And because of her, I don’t either.

This year, in a downed economy, SOS lost more than $400,000.00 in donations. Right now some staff members are working without pay as they struggle to keep the roofs over the heads of battered women and their children. Now is my chance to give back to Sandra all of the energy and support and fight that she’s given to hundreds of women over the past thirty years. I can’t do enough for her.

If you’d like to donate to SOS, you can do so securely at, https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=VR7WPWDHR6KFS

Ali: Now... one of my favorite questions to ask *bg*... what's your favorite dessert or sweet treat?

TTQ: Christmas sugar cookies from my grandmother’s recipie. Scotcheroos – a rice krispie peanut butter and butterscotch and chocolate bits treat. And white birthday cake with white butter cream icing. I guess I’m not real good with choosing favorites!


This post is brought to you as part of The Chapman Files International Blog Tour. Over the next three months, as we celebrate The Chapman Files, expert witness psychologist, Kelly Chapman and I are going to be asking you to join us in our fight against Domestic Abuse. If you’d like to help, click here to go directly to a secure paypal sight. https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=VR7WPWDHR6KFS Or just comment here to show your support.

There’s an item from our new book, The Second Lie, hidden on the tour with us. Guess the item to enter the drawing to win it! Today’s clue: Most households have one. Send all guesses to staff@tarataylorquinn.com. To see previous clues visit blog sites listed at www.tarataylorquinn.com. Guess as many times as you’d like!

Don’t miss The Chapman File tour party on December 4th at http://www.eharlequin.com/ ! Tour prize winners will be announced!

E-books of all of The Chapman File Stories are available for pre-order at amzn.to/bmJzp4.

Next tour stop: Wednesday, October 6, 2010. Storybroads:
http://www.storybroads.com/ . We hope to see you there! The more blogs you visit with us, the more chances you have to win! Every time you comment your name is dropped in the bag for the prize drawings.


**Giveaway... as bonus to those who stop by my blog... leave a comment/question for Tara Taylor Quinn and I'll enter you in a giveaway for the first book in The Chapman Files series, The First Wife... or if you have that one, the 2nd book, The Second Lie. Let me know which one you'd like to be entered for in your comments. Please leave your e-mail address so I can get a hold of you.

**Donating to a good cause... I've always enjoyed supporting a good cause and Strengthen Our Sisters sounds like a wonderful organization... I'll already be donating to this cause, but for each new comment I receive on this post up until Friday, October 8, 2010 (payday, hehe), I'll add a dollar to my donation total, up to $100. I will not count multiple comments by the same person, sorry. So, help spread the word if you can :)

Thanks, again, to Tara Taylor Quinn for stopping by my blog!


catslady said...

I've enjoyed many of Tara's books and I'm sure this is another winner. Thanks so much for offering the first in the series - I'm one of those readers that likes to read in order lol.

Darla said...

I have both books already but love the idea that you will give a dollar for my comment!

This series is not only excellent in my opinion its brings needed attention severe problems in our society.

My question for Tara is way off base but...can I get the recipe for the Scotcheroos?

Lynda K said...

I loved the first two and am now even more excited for the next two!! Thanks, Ali, for your generosity. It's such a marvelous cause, and I wish more authors would follow Tara's lead in publicly helping out a cause they believe in. Every dollar helps.

And I'm with Darla.... I immediately began thinking what of those Scotheroo supplies I had in my kitchen and trying to figure out how to create such yumminess.

Tara Taylor Quinn said...


Thanks for stopping by the tour! Just for your comment, you're entered to win tour prizes that will be announced online at e-harlequin.com on December 4th.

Darla and Lynda,

Here you go!

1 C Light Karo syrup
1 C white sugar
1 C peanut butter

Melt all three together over low heat until...they're melted. It looks like soup to me! If you melt them over higher heats, the mixture takes on a burned taste.

Remove from heat and quickly stir in 6 cups of rice krispies. Then just as quickly spread the mixture in a buttered 13x9 pan. You want the mixture spread evenly, like a cake. A buttered soup spoon works great for that part.

While that's cooling melt 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate bits and 1 cup of butterscotch bits over low heat. I usually let a few more chips slip in there. When it's like soup and completely smooth, spread the mixture over the rice krispie mixture.

I put this completed product in the freezer to set the chocolate topping. It needs to be as hard as the chips were to begin with in order to cut. But...then I have to take them out and let them warm up to room temperature because the frozen krispie part won't cut at all! This freezing/warming up process takes about an hour.

What my aunt used to do was just set the whole thing aside on the counter until the chocolate hardened, but that takes HOURS!

Anonymous said...

I love strong and highly competent heroines like Kelly.

If I win the drawing, I would like The Second Lie. Thank you, Ali, for the giveaway & the donation.

headlessfowl at jteers dot net

Anonymous said...

Thanks for offering to donate to SOS one dollar for each reader comment!


I have the first two books in the Chapman series so please pick someone who hasn't had a chance to read these great books.


Anonymous said...

Thanks again for the donation to a worthy cause! I have read The First Wife already and it was very good! I am looking forward to the next three!

Anonymous said...

I read The First Wife and The Second Lie and am looking forward to reading The Third Secret and The Fourth Victim. I think it's great that The Chapman Files is numbered so that fans can easily determine the order of books in the series. What a brilliant idea!

Mary M

LynnK said...

Tara's Blog Tour has introduced me to a lot of terrific blogs, including this one. More than I have the opportunity to read, alas, but I've bookmarked many of them for revisits.

So many books and blogs, so little time!

Tara Taylor Quinn said...


Thank you so much for your continued support. Thanks for being on the road with Kelly and I!!!