Sunday, January 24, 2016

Salsa and Speedbumps by Susan Baganz

Salsa & Speed Bumps
by Susan Baganz
January, 2016
Prism Book Group
Ebook $3.99
Print $13.99
ISBN 978-1523256983
Buy on Amazon

About the book:
One moment of sin leads to a path of pain ...and unexpected love.

Stephanie’s life hits a speed bump in the wake of her boyfriend’s sin. Splitting up with him, she faces a future of difficult choices shaded in shame. She wants to do what is right but the new man in her life leaves her fantasizing about a future that is now beyond her grasp.

Roberto finds his heart and professional world turned upside down by the beautiful bombshell. He struggles with his own inner demons and past so he’s not about to cast stones. When he is accused of immoral behavior, and temptation haunts him from every side, can he stand true to the calling God has given him?

Joining forces to face the future though comes at a high cost for them both as their individual pasts rise up to destroy them and their relationship. Integrity comes with a high price tag. With a deep faith in God and the help of friends at Orchard Hill Church, can they find happiness and love they long for? 

A brief interview with the author:

Susan, tell us what you love about this book.
I love Roberto’s integrity, especially in the midst of difficult circumstances and in spite of his own pain. While the story is more Stephanie’s, Roberto made a great tortured hero. Stephanie has been a rock for her friend Renata (Pesto & Potholes) and when I shook up her world I didn’t know what to expect. The two of them together? Sizzle.

Introduce us to your most quirky character.
The quirky characters would be Roberto’s parents, but they are really just sweet and exuberant.

Can you share something you learned during the research?
I didn’t do a ton of research that I remember . . . but I wrote the original draft about four years ago! Most of my “research” came from conversations over the years that informed the writing of the story.

What are you reading now?
I’m reading Her Deadly Inheritance by Beth Ziarnik. But I read a lot of book at one time. I’m also working through some non-fiction books: The Divine Conspiracy (Dallas Willard), Humilitas (John Dickson) and Switch (Chip & Dan Heath). And of course the Bible which stands in a class by itself. In Matthew right now.

What’s next? 
Book three in the Orchard Hill series is Feta & Freeways and is tentatively due out in September. 

A novella which is part of the “Love Is . . .” series by Prism Book Group, is called The Baron’s Blunder and is due out in August but also serves as a prequel to my Regency series. I’m juggling edits and revisions on several manuscripts right now!

Thank you for coming today, Susan, and best wishes with your work.

My review:
Baganz’s tale of contemporary relationships, choices, reactions to the things that happen is a thoughtful and cautionary story. It is not traditional romance, and told with equal vulnerability from both the male and female interpretation of a relationship.

The author’s background in mental health authenticates the reluctance and shame behind criminal actions such as forced sexual relations between adults in potential compromising situations. Baganz’s female protagonist is an extraordinarily beautiful woman, desired not only by a dangerous illegal immigrant cook working at the restaurant where she’s a silent partner and server, but also by the owner of the family corporation for nefarious purposes. Another of her instant admirers has the potential to steal her heart. But Stephanie’s secret colors her life and future. With the support of her friends and business partners she explores a heart-wrenching decision. Stephanie’s new admirer, however, attorney Roberto, offers another option. Roberto is as close to a rescuing knight as can be, but for a shameful recent past that changed his life and leaves him in great physical pain that stretches his coping skills.

Two very broken people, from families that directly influenced them, come together through faith and hope to forge a new future, one that is threatened even after their marriage. Surviving the tough stuff becomes more than just a saying for Stephanie and Roberto. Salsa and Speedbumps is great food for thought. Told from multiple viewpoints. Recommended for readers who enjoy some thrills and danger, and heavy duty emotional inspirational stories.

About the author:

Susan M. BaganzSusan M. Baganz chases after three Hobbits and is a native of Wisconsin. She is an Acquisitions Editor with Prism Book Group specializing in bringing great romance novels and novellas to publication. Susan writes adventurous historical and contemporary romances with a biblical world-view. 

Susan speaks, teaches and encourages others to follow God in being all He has created them to be. With her seminary degree in counseling psychology, a background in the field of mental health, and years serving in church ministry, she understands the complexities and pain of life as well as its craziness. She serves behind-the-scenes in various capacities at her church. Her favorite pastimes are lazy ones--snuggling with her dog while reading a good book, or sitting with a friend chatting over a cup of spiced chai latte.

You can learn more by following her blog, her twitter feed @susanbaganz or her fan page,

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