24 Nov 2014

The Next Breath by Laurel Osterkamp


Welcome to my tour stop for The Next Breath by Laurel Osterkamp. This is an adult contemporary and the tour runs November 17-28th with reviews, interviews & guest posts. Check out the tour schedule for all the posts.

nextbreath-osterkamp-ebookThe Next Breath, 313 pages

I kiss him, choosing love over honesty, which is a choice nobody should ever have to make…"

Robin loves sweet, responsible Nick, with his penchant for Beethoven and Ben Folds Five. But she also still loves her college boyfriend Jed, an irreverent playwright plagued with cystic fibrosis. Now Robin is struggling to reveal her secrets and confront her past, as she finally performs in the play that Jed wrote for her, eleven years ago. Will Robin have the strength to keep her promise and stay true to her heart?

Alternating between present-day scenes, college flashbacks, and segments from Jed’s play, this tear-jerking yet uplifting tale illustrates how life is finite but love is infinite, and the road to recovery begins with the next breath.  
Goodreads | Amazon

Can you tell us a little about your latest book?
It’s a flashback/flashforward story. Present-day Robin is in love with her boyfriend, Nick, but she can’t bring herself to tell him about her relationship with her college love Jed, who had cystic fibrosis. But now, eleven years later, Robin’s performing in the play Jed wrote for her, and she’s forced to revisit the heartbreak she went through so long ago.

What inspired you to write it?
The Next Breath stars Robin, the same main character as in my 2013 release, The Holdout. I had the best time writing it and knew I wanted to continue Robin’s story. But when I started writing a second book I felt that sophomore slump. How do I write something unique and dynamic? I decided I need to play around with flashbacks, and put Robin in a life or death situation. I wanted to capture the raw feeling of being young and in love, when the stakes are super-high.

How did you come up with the idea for the cover?

Christa Holland, at PaperandSage.com designed the cover, and I think she did an amazing job! I found the photo and she added the lighting effects, composed it, and put in this cool font. I smile every time I look at it.

If it was made into a movie, who would you like to play the main characters?
Blake Lively would play Robin, Max Greenfield would play Nick, Ian Somerhalder would play Jed, and Mary McDonnell would play Catherine.

What is it about this genre that appeals to you so much?
I fell in love with “chick lit” back in the 90s, because of the intimate tone and sense of humor that most of those books have. Reading one was like having a cocktail with my girlfriend! I guess the books I write are more “women’s fiction” because they tackle serious subjects, but really, the labels can be a little silly, right? Readers like to know what they’re getting, so it makes sense to try and classify them, but when it comes down to it, we just want our reading material to be good!

If you could have a dinner party with any authors from any time in history, who would you choose and why?
Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Henrik Ibsen, Douglas Copeland, Donna Tartt. J.K. Rowling, Suzanne Collins, Curtis Sittenfeld and Sandra Cisernos. Most of these authors are alive, and all of them were/are amazing, but very different from each other. The main reason I pick them is because they all have inspired me and I’d love to learn from them.
The problem would be: what to serve? I doubt Shakespeare and Suzanne Collins would have the same taste in appetizers! Also, I’d love to invite F. Scott Fitzgerald, but I could see him being really pretentious and annoying the other guests. ☺

Tell us a random fact about yourself.
I drink more water in a day than most people drink in a week, and it’s never with ice.

Tell us an interesting fact about where you live.
There is so much to do and see in Minneapolis. I’m convinced that if it wasn’t for the cold weather, people would be flocking here. But alas, last winter we had MANY days with temps at 20 below. It keeps our city’s population down!

What are your (writing) plans for the future?
I’m planning one last book about Robin. She’ll be in NYC, doing a Project Runway-type show, and she’ll help out a ballet dancer turned model who is in serious trouble.

LAO_2Laurel Osterkamp becomes very attached to her characters, and it’s hard for her to stop writing about them.  The Holdout, November Surprise, Blue State, Campaign Promises, American Angst and The Next Breath all feature the Bricker family, as their stories continue. (But you can read any of these books in any order.) You can find Laurel on Twitter but she needs to work on sending clever Tweets. A better idea is to follow her blog at www.laurelosterkamp.blogspot.com. Laurel teaches in Minneapolis, MN, where she tries to stay warm, spend time with her two nearly perfect children and husband, and find the time to write.  Her other novels are Following My Toes and Starring in the Movie of My Life. Visit her at www.laurelosterkamp.com.
Website | Twitter

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  1. Minneapolis is a great city. We went there a lot when I was a kid but much of the time was in the winter around (or at) Christmas and it is SO cold! I'm not great with the super cold temps. But in the summer it's awesome!
    I agree about labels. I usually say I don't read women's fiction, but I really love these books and I think they're kind of a mix of women's fiction and chick lit. Either way, I love them!

    Thanks for hosting a tour stop Suzy!

  2. Thanks for the interview, Suzy! I appreciate it. :)


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