Thursday, December 16, 2010

Book Club: Welcome to Virgin River and a Visit with Robyn Carr

As I mentioned a time or three last week, I'm so excited to welcome one of my favorite authors to book club this week! I first discovered Robyn Carr's Virgin River series in the summer of 2009 and spent four memorable days devouring all seven of the available books. I've since read last year's trilogy and the start of this year's trilogy, "Promise Canyon," which Robyn sent to me as a special thank you for having her at book club. I should be thanking her because Jack, Mel, Preacher and their ever growing gang of friends and neighbors have brought me many hours of entertainment. So when Aly Hackett, today's co-hostess, suggested we do Virgin River for book club, I jumped up and down (cyber jumping that is) with excitement. Here are some of Aly's favorite moments in Virgin River:

Page 140 – The interaction between Jack and Rick is just fantastic. It speaks volumes of Jack as a man. This is where Jack gives Rick the condoms to use with Liz but is very torn about it. He wants them to have them just in case but doesn't want Rick to think he is endorsing the act. (From Marie: The Rick and Liz storyline was one of my favorites. Heartbreakingly real.)

Page 156 – Jack’s easiness and sense of humor just cracks me up. When Mel kisses him the first time after she declared that she was to make the next move. Jack doesn’t really respond to her kiss. “Did you not like that?” she asked. “Oh,” he said. “Am I allowed to respond?” (Marie says: I love Jack. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE him. I love his storyline in Promise Canyon and so will all you VR fans.)

Page 206 – This is when Preacher moves Jack to his apartment after The Boys leave, he gets drunk and Mel stays with him. She sniffed the pillow – Downy. Who was this guy? she found herself asking. Looks like Paul Bunyan, runs a bar, has all these guns, and clean and launders like Martha Stewart. I loved Mel’s description of him! (Awesome. Loved the Downey moment, too!)

Pages 221 – 223 – Mel’s breakdown in the rain just about killed me the first time I read it and still makes me ache when I reread it. I had read Robyn’s previous books—she was not a new author to me—but this is what made me fall in love with Robyn Carr as an author. It takes a lot to make me feel alongside the characters and Robyn got it. She made Mel’s pain—and Jack’s pain on her behalf—come off the page. (An amazing scene.)

The supporting cast of characters is great. Meeting The Boys—all the Marines—Rick, Preacher, Doc—they all make this book phenomenal and make you want to know more. Actually, it makes you want to move to Virgin River to find a “Jack” for yourself—even if you are happily married :)

Couldn't have said it better, Aly! It's the sense of community and neighbors becoming family to each other in their remote corner of the world that keeps me coming back for more whenever a new VR book is released. I'm looking forward to welcoming Robyn today and she is giving away a signed copy of Promise Canyon to one lucky commenter! Trust me when I say you'll want to comment to win this book!

Oh and hey Whip Cracking Book Club Wenches, if I am a dorky fan girl, have an intervention, will ya? Don't let me embarrass myself in front of Robyn. :-) She needs to leave here thinking I'm *ahem* a SERIOUS author. Got me?

Find out more about Robyn Carr on her website and on Facebook.

Here is what's in store when we head to Aly's house in Georgia for Book Club! (These recipes look like they could've come right from Preacher's kitchen!)

Grilled Pork with Glazed Apples and Yam Mash
3 ( 1 ¼ lb) yams, peeled and cut into cubes
¼ cup milk
¼ cup packed light brown sugar
2 tsp unsalted butter
¾ tsp salt
¾ tsp pepper
½ cup frozen apple juice concentrate, thawed
2 Tbsp yellow mustard
1 Tbsp grated onion
½ tsp each ground cumin and apple pie spice
3 large Golden Delicious apples cut into 4 thick slices
8 (2 oz) thing cut boneless loin pork chops

Combine yams and milk in a bowl; cover with vented plastic wrap. Microwave on high 10 minutes; let stand 5 minutes. Add sugar, butter and ¼ tsp each of the salt & pepper; mash until smooth. Keep warm.

Whisk juice concentrate, mustard, onion, cumin and spice; microwave on high 3 minutes or until glaze boils and begins to thicken. Arrange apple slices on a broiler pan (or a cookie sheet will work); brush apples with glaze. Broil 3 minutes, turn slices, then brush with more glaze. Broil second side for 3 minutes or until slightly brown and tender.

Season pork chops on both sides with salt & pepper. Grilled approximately 7 minutes on each side until just barely pink at the thickest part.

Serve with apple slices & mashed yams

Cranberry-Pear Pie
Premade pie crust or your homemade one
3 large ripe but firm pears, peeled, cored and sliced
1 ½ cups fresh cranberries
½ cup dried cranberries
¾ cup sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp lemon zest
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp salt
1 Tbsp milk
1 Tbsp coarse sugar

Preheat oven to 425.

Mix pears, fresh & dried cranberries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon zest, ginger and salt; spoon into pie crust; cover with top pie crust. Fold top edge under bottom crust; crimp to seal. Brush with milk; sprinkle with coarse sugar. Cut vents in top.

Bake for 10 minutes at 425. Then lower temperature to 350 and back until the crust is brown, about 55 minutes.


Aly said...

And those were really just a few of the parts that I love about Virgin River. In truth the whole book is beyond amazing. Every single character comes off the page.

And just in case anyone is concerned...I would only invite you to the house when Mr. Hackett is home so he can cook for you b/c he is the Preacher in this house :)

Kara C said...

Good morning!
This book, and really the whole series, is AMAZING! I've reread some of these books, including VR, numerous times.
Thanks, Aly, for inviting us to your place today. Kinda glad we're just cyber visiting as things have been a bit chilly in your neck of the woods lately.
Marie, I don't know if most of us will be much help in your intervention - we'll be right there beside you doing our own impersonations of dorky fangirls! We will, however, give Robyn a big W.C.B.C.W. welcome.
Can't wait for the discussion to begin. I hope to be back around lunch time to check in.

Marie Force said...

Hi Aly and Kara,
The early birds! Thanks for chiming in and getting us started. Looking forward to today's chat about Virgin River. And I will do my best to behave. Somehow. (But squeee, did you hear Robyn Carr is coming by my blog today??) Ahem, sorry about that. Trying to keep it under wraps, but seriously....

Ronlyn said...

I agree with Aly & KK. LOVE this book. the emotions, the depth, the it all.

And, ahem. KK. "Dorky fan-girls"?? MOI?!

Hope said...

I have told Marie, but I will now share (collective sigh of relief lol). I had picked up this book a thousand times to buy and always put it back...don't ask why, I am who I am dang it :) When Marie posted Virgin River was going to be book club book, I finally bought it. I LOVE IT.

I agree with Aly in all of her favs, but one of the parts that really got me was Mel's breakdown, I was balling like a baby. That was a hard one to read, but I loved it cause it made me love them even more as a couple. Since I haven't read this series and don't know a lot about it, I seriously hope that Preacher gets his own HEA.

And, yes Robyn welcome, we are so excited to have you here.

P.S. I would come visit even if your "Preacher" wasn't there, PB&J is good too :)

Alison said...

Hi Everyone!

I was a little slow to find and read the VR series, but once I did there was nothing slow about how I bought and read these books! I became totally hooked! I loved how the previous characters returned in the later books. I love hearing how characters I'm attached to are doing!

Aly said...

Hope, I am not much of a crier when it comes to books. I mean I will ache with the characters but not really cry. Mel's breakdown did me in. And it wasn't just her breakdown but it was Jack's response to it. So many men don't know what to do and he just held her and man ::sigh:: that made me love Jack so much more than I already did!

And we do PB&F in this house...that would be Fluff! LOL!

Alison, I am like you, in that I love seeing how the characters are doing, watching their families grow and even seeing that just b/c they had their HEA in their book, that doesn't mean their trials & tribulations are over!

krisgils33 said...

I love being part of the WCBCW,but if we're going to be all fan-girl dorky, I might have to reassess! :-) I am dorky enough on my own, don't need to add to it!! so, I'll just say I love Robyn Carr's books and can't wait to read more!!

Robyn Carr said...

Nothing makes one feel like a force of nature like a little fan-girl dorky -- thank you, Marie!

Loved the comments -- your favorite parts are my favorite parts. One thing you might find interesting -- Rick, one of the most beloved characters in the series, was a complete afterthought! Complete! He came to life in the last revision before turning it in. My agent kept saying "I think something is missing..." and she listed possibilities. To each one I said, "eh..." Then she said, "Maybe you could use a teenage boy..." and the image of Jack, a bachelor from a large family, mentoring a young man instantly gelled! I got almost as much mail about Rick as I did about Jack and Preacher! Sometimes the hardest part about writing is knowing when to stop!

Love the cyber-dinner party! You don't have to vacuum for that!

Thanks for having me visit!

Ronlyn said...

WOW! Rick is one heck of an afterthought!

I admit to really enjoying seeing a confirmed bachelor fall so hard.

Aly said...

Huh, I hadn't even thought of vacuuming. Of course since my hair isn't brushed and I am still in my pajamas, I haven't put much thought into anything today!!

I am with Ronlyn, Rick is certainly one heck of an afterthought. Watching him grow has been such an amazing ride.

Marie Force said...

LOL on the vacuuming, Robyn. That's the best part of our cyber book club--no cleaning necessary!

If you want dorky fan girl in spades, here I am! I'm not usually such a dork (shut up, you guys!) but something about the VR books really struck a chord with me. Maybe because some of my books are similar in tone--the ones that haven't sold yet--LOL! Aly and Ronlyn have read them and can attest to the big sprawling family (or created family) theme. I love writing and reading those types of books, and I wish there were more like the Virgin River series out there.

Can't believe Rick was an afterthought. He is such a great part of the series, and I love how he showed Jack he had the father gene after all. That happened for me after my niece was born. Everything I felt for her convinced me I could be a mother when I'd had my doubts. I tell my kids they have their cousin to thank for their existence!

flchen1 said...

Wow, Aly and Marie! I've got the whole VR stack on my TBR, but keep putting off starting--once I get reading a series, I like to tear through the whole thing, and there hasn't been time to do that--argh!

Hi, Robyn! I've only heard raves about this series--can't wait to get reading! Maybe this Christmas... :D

And I love the virtual dinner party--mmmm...

Marie Force said...

Make sure you clear your decks before you dive in because Virgin River sucks you in big time and then it's a sprint through all the books! Hope you enjoy them! Thanks for coming by!

Marie Force said...

One thing I've wondered about is the inspiration for the fictional town of Virgin River. Is there a similar place in Northern California or an amalgamation of a number of places?

Hope said...

Does anyone have a favorite quote from the book? I think mine is "We better get back to the kitchen, he gets surly when I brag" (Sam saying to Mel after he showed her all of Jack's accomplishments in the military). I love Jack's dad :)

Ronlyn said...

I dont pay a lot of attention to quotes, but that was a sweet moment Hope.

When Jack handed Rick some condoms; their whole talk was wonderful. I admire the underlying message (which is carried on later) that they were still proud of Rick, regardless of any mistakes or anything else.

Mel's breakdown, like Aly said, was gut wrenching and moving.

Mystery Man showing up at the cabin to take Mel to the birth? I was tense!

Trying to think of other specific moments...

Mary G said...

Hi All
Great choice for book club. I've loved all of Robyn's books. I love stories that emphasize characterization. Even though the books have multiple plots going, I never feel like "get to the main characters". I love that all the plots are intertwined. The best part: the writing is hot too. LOL.

Aly said...

I agree with "the writing is hot too" Mary! So often we get these great emotional romances but the bedroom door is closed! And honestly, what fun is that in a romance novel? LOL!

I think Robyn does a fantastic job of writing powerful stories with hot sex ;) There! I said it!

Jolene Allcock and Family said...

Love this series, but I gotta say when I stumbled on it, I didn't realize how much catching up I had to do :) Keep em coming, I'm eating them up

Ronlyn said...

oh! another favorite scene is when Jack's sisters were telling Mel about his youthful torture...when the 'porn collection' was found under the mattress, his teasing of them. Loved it.

Mary G said...

I agree Aly. I love the whole package no matter what genre I'm reading (I guess I mean the whole package literally LOL).

Robyn Carr said...

Marie's question about inspiration -- years ago when I was visiting Mendocino County, I was standing out on the road with one of the locals and a helicopter painted in camouflage flew over. I said I didn't realize there was an Army post nearby and the guy said, "That's not Army, that's DEA -- this is the biggest pot growing area in the US." Ding ding ding! I was jazzed by that little piece of information. I went home and got to work on the Grace Valley series.

The first one was published 10 years ago or so. When readers asked for more (and I felt that series was complete) my way of extending the series was to create a new town -- Virgin River -- pretty close by, where the new characters could meet the old characters and the readers who wanted more could get a little more. But I also had a chance to write a series that was edgier and sexier than Grace Valley, and I was hungry for that.

And yes, Marie -- there are lots of little towns like Virgin River in those mountains. I've seen dozens. Unfortunately I never did see Jack! ;)


Cindy said...

How could I not want to read this book after all of these reviews? My TBR pile is forever growing, but this one will have to make it's way to the top! Once the rush of the Holidays are over, I'll have time to tackle it!

Marie Force said...

Great info about the inspiration for Virgin River, Robyn. Glad to know it all goes back to the pot--LOL! That was a very interesting subplot in the series, something I'd never known anything about and it added a lot to the story. I can't remember which book it was (forgive me) but when Mel is taken to one of the pot-growing camps to deliver a baby, wow... Scary stuff!

I also wanted to say that I really enjoyed the storyline with Vanessa, Matt and Paul and how that was handled. Very realistic during wartime to bring that into the story.

Another question for you: What kind of research did you do to prepare to write a midwife? The labor and delivery elements in the entire series are always so intriguing.

Marie Force said...

Waving hello to Mary G, Jolene and Cindy. Thanks for coming by today!

Marie Force said...

Another question is about your writing routine. You're producing new VR trilogies annually these days, so what kind of writing routine does that require for you?

Roberta said...

Loving this series too! I am just 2 books in so far, but looking forward to reading more. Coincidentally I took Virgin River with me on vacation to my family's cabin in the California Sierras last summer (Shaver Lake area, for anyone familiar with it), and I really felt like it added to my enjoyment.

Marie Force said...

Readers: Let's talk about characters? Who is your ALL TIME favorite Virgin River character and why?

Marie Force said...

Ohhh, Roberta, what a great coincidence. I have no doubt VR made that vacation better! Thanks for coming by! Keep reading the series and feel free to pop back to let us know what you think of future books!

That goes for those of you who haven't read VR yet--feel free to come back and chat about it once you have read it. That's the beauty of online book club: it's forever.

Ronlyn said...

Marie, meet my buddy Bobbie: Bobbie, ignore everything Marie says about me. :-)

All time favorite?
Jack is the easy answer...cuz he's JACK. LOL.
I admit to having a soft spot for Preacher. Something about a huge, powerful man who's a teddybear.
Rick is amazing. Watching him grow has been a great part of the series.

Marie Force said...

Speaking of Jack, I've got to ask if anyone else pictures the guy from Men in Trees (also a Jack if I am recalling correctly), Anne Heche's love interest.. What's his name... Googling... James Tupper!! when they think of Jack from VR?

Ronlyn said...

no, the Jack that lives in my brain is bigger than that guy. LOL

Marie Force said...

Okay, I'll give you a BIGGER Tupper then. That sounds so dirty, doesn't it? :-)

Ronlyn said...

LOL! Sounds like something I may want to try later. *snort*

I'm SO making up a drink and calling it the bigger tupper.

Marie Force said...

Peeing my pants laughing! Bigger Tuppers for everyone! A new Book Club tradition!

Ronlyn said...

I love it. i'm thinking a spiced cider with brandy...something along those lines. I'll get working on it.

Hope said...

Sheesh, I leave for a few minutes and you two are getting everyone drunk...I should have known LOL

Marie Force said...

Oh hush, Hope! You know you want a sip of Bigger Tupper!

Hope said...

I have a question...for Marie and Robyn if she is still around. Has nothing to do with the book sorry, just my own curiosity...When you write, do you listen to specific music for specific scenes or do you prefer quiet?

Marie Force said...

Great question, Hope. Let me just swallow this large mouthful of Bigger Tupper... Ahhh, that's GOOD! LOL, it just gets dirtier and dirtier!

I don't write with music, but I do write in the midst of chaos right in my living room with kids and dog and hubby underfoot. Good thing I don't need silence. I'd still be working on my first book living in this madhouse!

Aly said...

This will teach me to go grocery shopping! Bigger Tupper! LMAO!!!

Ronlyn said...

ROTFLMAO! "swallow this Bigger Tupper"!! *wiping tears*

Marie Force said...

Kids want to know WHY I am crying laughing. How do I explain the Bigger Tupper to them?

Hope said...

Marie *taking a HUGE sip of my ice cold PEPSI* - I find it interesting how some don't listen to music, I can read through anything and even enjoy music on, but one of my friends can't have any TV or music distractions when reading.

Back to the question...My favorite character would have to be Preacher. I think he is mysterious, which is why I love him. One of the military friends is from Grants Pass, Oregon (about 15 minutes from me), so he is up there for me too (got to remember his name *thunk thunk*)

Robyn Carr said...

My research was exhaustive! First of all, I spent a lot of time in the Humboldt County area -- and this was after writing the Grace Valley series. I think I made about five trips, interviewed locals, took pictures. Then when it came to the characters, I had to find experts in their fields -- I had certified nurse midwife who not only answered my questions but then read through the first few manuscripts to make sure I was clinically correct. I also had an OB-Gyn expert, local law enforcement, a couple of marines I interviewed. For this most recent VR book -- I had to get help from a farrier (i know nothing about horses!) and a Native American man who helped with the cultural issues. And even with my eye turned constantly to the details, I make mistakes -- and believe me, I hear about them!! If there's one typo in a book -- I get a letter about it!

As for my schedule -- you're going to be sorry you asked. I get up early, caffeinate, stumble to the computer in my pajamas and get to it -- usually by six a.m., seven at the latest. And I work till seven p.m. I break to eat, dress, do a few chores, run a few errands. I work seven days a week! I will be the first to admit, writing is my favorite thing and I'm having a wonderful time; I'm not being punished, nor am I struggling with discipline issues. But I also must admit -- I'm ready for a more balanced life. I want some weekends off; I need a few vacations as happens in the real world.

But I think what it takes is focus and very hard work.

Robyn Carr said...

Hope -- Paul Haggerty and Joe Benson are both from Grants Pass!!

And I listen to music all day long and I do choose according the the mood of the book. But also, I listen to music because I have mild tinitis -- ringing in the ears. Mine isn't ringing so much as soft buzzing. It only bothers me if I'm wide awake in a really quiet house!! Otherwise, I don't even notice!

Marie Force said...

Ahh Robyn the letters, some are wonderful and then there are others... Your research certainly comes through in the stories. Very authentic! I learned a LOT about horses in Promise Canyon and was shocked when Robyn told me she'd started from knowing next to nothing about horses before that book!

I love your writing schedule and I'm jealous! I WISH I could write during the day, but I have a day job. I do write seven nights a week (when I'm working on a book), and I agree, it takes a tremendous amount of discipline to stick with that schedule. We're all enjoying the benefits of your productivity!

Alison said...

WOW! I leave and go to work and it turns into a party in here! Too bad I still have a couple hours of work left...a BIGGER TUPPER cocktail sounds like just what I need!

I've been thinking about who my favorite all time is and its so hard to decide! I love Mel, she is the friend you can tell anything too and she won't spill your secret. I also loved Luke, he was so big and sexy, plus he was such a sweetie to give Art a home and a job helping him with the cabins.

Back to work...booo :(

Robyn Carr said...

Marie -- I've been in this business for 35 years (I sold my first book in '78) and one of the things I've come to know is that most writers tend to make big sacrifices for the luxery of doing work they love! And one of the first goals of many is to earn enough money to justify quitting the day job -- so I do hear you on that schedule of yours! Writing is no get rich quick scheme.

Marie Force said...

You are so right about that, Robyn! Even though people hear you've sold a book and think you are automatically raking in the millions! WHERE do they get that idea??

I'm very lucky that I love my day job. I've been at it for 15 years and there's many among my close family and friends who have wondered if I would quit even if I did make the writing big time. Probably not... I'd be afraid to change anything about a writing dynamic that works quite well for me, so jamming it into a few hours at night and on weekends will probably always be my pattern. Sick as it is! LOL

Mary G said...

Oh yeah, life is tough. Doing a job you love, probably in your pj's, getting paid for it, and best of all - loads of adoring fans, worshipping at your feet or your blog. LOL

Seriously, I so admire the work that goes into a book. Words that can make me laugh, cry, "blush" and make me forget it's not real - my most fave thing in the world.

And I thank you both for doing it.

Aly said...

Besides Jack? I mean really? Who doesn't love Jack!!

I really love Luke...and Rick...and Preacher...and Aiden...and Sean :) LOL!

I will say that Jack's family dynamic as well as that of the Riordan family is such a great part of these books. To see families supporting each other in such a way is wonderful and makes you want to become a part of it!

Plus the Riordan family has a soft spot in my heart b/c Riordan is what I wanted to name my son...I got overruled :(

Humboldt County is gorgeous! My Aunt & Uncle live in Arcata and my Uncle is a professor at Humboldt State U. I haven't been there in years but we went hiking and river swimming when we were there and it was magnificent!

Crystal (cmac) said...

I have had Virgin River in my TBR pile for months. Aly, Ronlyn, and the girls strongly suggested I read it. I am so glad I did. Wow I can't believe I've had such a great book on my shelf for so long. Luckily I also had Shelter Mountain too. I really enjoyed both. Virgin River had every emotion humor, tears, anger, frustration, and most important love. This is a book I highly recommend to all my friends.

Kara C said...

Favorite character? Preacher, Mike, Rick. Like Aly, I am not really a cryer when it comes to books, but Rick returning home made me shed a few! I think it has to do, like Ronlyn said, with the fact that we watched him grow up.

Robyn, how do you handle those 'not so nice' reviews that some people feel compelled to write? I think it must take a very tough skin to go through those (tougher than I have for sure).

Ronlyn, not touching your Bigger,wait. I mean..

Ronlyn said...

LMAO KK. Uh huh. You know you want a Bigger Tupper for yourself.

Robyn Carr said...

I'll be honest, Kara -- I sometimes have a hard time with negative reviews. I have no problem with someone not liking my book -- Kirkus once called one of my historical characters "a limp oatcake" and I laughed until I almost left a little wet spot on the floor! But when the critic gets ugly and starts name calling, it bothers me. All that being said, I've been lucky -- I haven't suffered too much; the vast majority of the reviews have been positive. But it is a good lesson -- no amount of money or popularity makes you immune to a cruel comment.

Marie Force said...

So true, Robyn. And aren't we all so good at obsessing about that one cruel comment while forgetting all the positive words that have been said/written about our books? At the end of the day, authors are human too!

Kara C said...

Thanks, Robyn.
A limp oatcake, huh? I may have to try putting that into my every day vocab for a while. LOL!

Aly said...

OK so I have changed my mind and decided that Rosie is my favorite!

I know so many others haven't gotten to Angel's Peak yet so I won't say much!

But I was just doing a reread of it and got to the part where she wants her mom to check that she wiped good after going potty! OMG! I forgot what a wonderful job Robyn did of writing her! That girl cracks me up!!!

Hope said...

This is soooo not fair, I only have read the first darn book, I don't know who these other people are, good thing I have 2 and a half weeks off starting tomorrow, gotta catch up :)

Aly said...

Hope but don't you realize so many of us are jealous of you b/c you still have so much to read!

Hope said...

Aly, that is good, I like to be envied - LOL

Marie Force said...

I am envious that you have the whole series ahead of you to read! You will have hours of entertainment!

Marie Force said...

Ronlyn and the girls are rarely wrong! They've been driving my TBR for weeks now and haven't steered me wrong yet (I expect that they will eventually! LOL)

I finished Wallflower Christmas and Home for the Holidays in the last few days and both are EXCELLENT. We've got some good Christmas chats ahead!

Marie Force said...

I'd say I'm with you. I think that as much as Jack is heart of Virgin River, Mel is the soul. I really love how she manages everyone without them feeling managed (I can relate to that as I play that role in several sectors of my life). It doesn't always make you/her popular, but it fills a critical role. The day of the attack in the clinic, what she went through to have her children, what she survived before she even came to VR. She is my favorite.

Marie Force said...

Mary G,
While working in your PJs sounds so fun, the longer I work from home (12 years now) the more of a housebound freak-a-zoid I seem to become. It also takes a LOT of discipline to "show up" for work every day when no one is looking, if that makes sense. I am very regimented about work days and stick to a routine that allows me to get it all done, but it's not always as easy as it looks. And it's damned lonely, thus my love for my online "family," especially since Thursdays became a lot more fun!

Robyn Carr said...

I'm going to have to sign off, ladies -- I'm hosting our annual ornament exchange tonight -- in about 40 minutes! But I had a very good time -- thank you so much for inviting me. It's wonderful to see these books through your eyes and it means so much to me that you would read one of mine!

If you want to see some interestig stuff -- the girls over at Jack's Bar (link on my site) are doing The 12 Days of Virgin River -- a VR novel is being outlined and discussed every day. They've also constructed a couple of Christmas Trees of Honor with the names of service men and women on the decorations -- it's quite something!

If you ever have a question or comment, you can always reach me at Do stay in touch.

Marie -- thank you, dear! It was a treat!

Marie Force said...

Thanks a million for hanging out with us today, Robyn! It was great to hear about the story behind the stories.

Ladies, I'll get with Robyn to choose a winner of the giveaway book! Thanks to everyone for a fun time today.

And Bigger Tuppers for everyone!

Marie Force said...

Our winner for today is....


Contact me at with your address and I will pass it along to Robyn.

Thanks again, everyone! It was a great time, and I don't think I was TOO much of a fan girl dork (shut up, I was NOT).

Roberta said...

WOO HOO!! Just sent off my mailing info! So exciting!!
P.S. Jack is my fav so far. :)

Ronlyn said...

Congrats Bobbi!

Marie Force said...

Funny, I'm watching a re-run of Gray's Anatomy and there he is: Bigger Tupper!

Ronlyn said...

LOL! see, it was meant to be.

rin said...

I have loved all of the Virgin River books and cannot wait to meet the rest of the Riordan boys and more of the secondary characters we have come to love. That is what is great about the series, you never feel like you have lost your friends (aka the previous book's hero and herione) as they are always visiting!

While I have read other books that attempt to integrate mutilple characters into one story, Virgin River is the only series I believe has done it in a way that truly allows the main characters to still be the focus of the book but also satisfy your desire to still connect and grow with previous characters. I cannot say enough about these books or the wonderful author who writes them, and my only wish is to be able to continue to read these books for many years to come.

Thank you Marie for having Virgin River featured and thank you Robyn for your amazing work!!!!

Mary G said...

Congrats & enjoy Roberta!

I know it takes discipline to work from home & I think it's amazing that you can do it & do it well.

I don't know that I would be good at it. I say I'd like to work from home but I know I can get easily distracted. Blame the Peeces LOL.

flchen1 said...

LOL! Popping by to catch up on the fun! Congrats, Roberta! Marie, I KNOW! That's one reason I haven't started yet--I know I'm going to want to keep on going, and that amount of reading time is a little too much to hope for, at least right now! Wooot!

Marie Force said...

I agree that Robyn has been very successful in managing a very large cast and giving them all their moment in the spotlight while bringing our favorites back in for frequent visits. You will enjoy the storyline she gives Jack in Promise Canyon. :-)

There are days when I am easily distracted, too, such as Thursdays! LOL

Be ready. That's my only advice! Ship the kids off to grandma's and buy frozen food. You won't want to do anything but READ! Do check back here and tell us what you thought when you are done!

oklanannie said...

Been fighting the fever, cough, and stuffy nose syndrome that seems to be plaguing the countryside. Hiding under a blanket with a cup of hot chocolate, hot tea, and chicken noodle soup -- and books!!!

I am so SORRY I missed book club review of Robyn Carr's amazing VIRGIN RIVER series. This is my "comfort" read when I need to feel the love! My journeys to Virgin River have all brought delight! I can honestly say that I don't have a favorite book in this series. I've loved each and every character that makes up the town and surrounding area -- the young and old!! I've laughed and cried and closed each book with a sigh and a smile. Can't wait for my next visit with the Virgin River neighbors and friends.

And YUM, Aly! Can't wait to try the recipes. They sound superb! Always looking for new recipes with sweet potatoes which I love.

Thanks to both Marie and Aly for hosting the book club this week. And I'm so sorry that I missed Robyn Carr's visit.

Marie Force said...

Ohhh, Anne, so sorry you're under the weather. We missed you at Book Club. We had a great time with Robyn!

The folks who run the Jack's Bar fan site asked me to moderate one of the chats next week so I will let you all know when that will be. In the meantime, check out the site Robyn referenced for Jack's Bar to participate in the ongoing chats about the entire series in the next week or so.