Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Welcome our Special Guest, New York Times Bestselling author Jenna Bennett

Welcome our Special Guest, New York Times Bestselling author Jenna Bennett

Bio:

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jenna Bennett (Jennie Bentley) writes the Do It Yourself home renovation mysteries for Berkley Prime Crime and the Savannah Martin real estate mysteries for her own gratification. She also writes a variety of romance for a change of pace. For more information about her doings and undoings, please visit her website, www.jennabennett.com

·         Book Title: A Cutthroat Business

·         Blurb:  

Savannah Martin has always been a good girl, doing what was expected and fully expecting life to fall into place in its turn. But when her perfect husband turns out to be a lying, cheating slimeball - and bad in bed to boot - Savannah kicks the jerk to the curb and embarks on life on her own terms. With a new apartment, a new career, and a brand new outlook on life, she's all set to take the world by storm.

If only the world would stop throwing her curveballs...

A CUTTHROAT BUSINESS - #1

Everyone has warned new-minted realtor Savannah Martin that real estate is a cutthroat business. But Savannah doesn’t think she’s supposed to take the warning literally ... until an early morning phone call sends her to an empty house on the ‘bad’ side of town, where she finds herself standing over the butchered body of a competitor, face to face with the boy her mother always warned her about.

Rafe Collier is six feet three inches of testosterone and trouble; tall, dark, and dangerous, with a murky past and no future—not the kind of guy a perfect Southern Belle should want to tangle with. In any way. But wherever Savannah turns, there he is, and making no bones about what he wants from her.

Now Savannah must figure out who killed real estate queen Brenda Puckett, make a success of her new career, and avoid getting killed—or kissed—by Rafe, all before the money in her savings account runs out and she has to go back to selling make-up at the mall.
·         Book Buy Links:


·         Guest Post:
Over the river and through the ‘hood...

It’s a fun time to be living in East Nashville, Tennessee.

Just last week, as I was driving down the street to pick the kids up from their last day of school, I had to dodge actors and actresses dressed like bank employees, complete with name tags, gathering around the old Regions Bank building on the corner of Gallatin Road and Ardee in East Nashville.

It’s a gorgeous old mid-century building, square and boxy, with plate glass windows and exterior walls of black and white stone in a checkerboard pattern. It’s been sitting empty for a year or more now, since the bank operation moved into a newly constructed space a mile further up Gallatin Road, beside the new Home Depot, and when they started etching the new logo on the windows the week before, we’d gotten all excited about the prospect that something new was moving in.

As it turned out, it was a fake bank, staffed by actors, only there for a few days, but it was still fun.

There’s a lot of that going on the neighborhood these days. Empty buildings coming back to life for a day or two, houses for sale being transformed into TV sets for the week, streets closing to make room for camera set-ups and portapotties.

They used to call Nashville the Third Coast. There’s the east coast, with New York, and the west coast, with Hollywood, and then there was the third coast. Nashville.

I’ve lived here since the early 1990s. The days of Melrose Place. Does anyone else remember Melrose Place?

Well, back in the day, I thought someone ought to make a TV show called Third Coast, sort of like Melrose Place, but set in Nashville, in an apartment complex I had my eye on near Music Row. It was going to be all about young professionals struggling to get a foothold in the music industry, etcetera, etcetera.

Guess I was ahead of my time.

I didn’t end up doing anything with that idea, obviously. I still wouldn’t know how to write the script for a TV pilot, although I daresay I could figure it out if I had to. But somewhere along the way, I did learn how to write books. And as it happens, I wrote some of them about Nashville.

About the neighborhood where I live.

About a struggling real estate agent selling properties in historic East Nashville.

The same neighborhood where a lot of exterior scenes from the TV show Nashville are filmed, since characters Scarlett and Avery live there.

East Nashville began life as a playground for the rich and famous back a hundred and fifty years ago. The Civil War was over, reconstruction was well underway, and in the 1880s and -90s, the elite began building summer cottages on the other side of the Cumberland River from downtown. They’d leave their fancy mansions in the Belmont and West End areas, and go across the river to summer in Edgefield.

It’s a gorgeous neighborhood full of old Victorian buildings—the ones that survived the fire of 1916, when more than 700 homes were lost, and the tornado of 1998, which damaged 300 more, and the flood of 2010, which put downtown underwater.

During the economically depressing 1970s and -80s, many of the old buildings were divided up into apartments, and the area fell into disrepair and crime. We moved to East Nashville in 1992, and within the first year we lived there, there were four murders within a block of us. It had a bit of a Wild West atmosphere back in those days—almost like when Frank and Jesse James rented a house on Fatherland Street because things were too hot for them in Missouri.

The renovation revolution started with the bachelors in the early 1990s, and these days, it’s fun to be able to tell the new people moving in that we were the pioneers, that when we arrived, the house down the street, the one that’s on the market for a half a million dollars right now, was forty thousand back then.

It’s amazing the difference a couple of decades can make. And it’s nice, after all the years of plugging away at building a neighborhood, and renovating our own fair share of houses, and having a part in helping people buy and sell a few hundred others, that East Nashville is finally getting what it deserves.


37206—where everybody’s somebody!    

23 comments:

  1. Welcome Jenna, and thanks so much for being so kind an commenting on other posts when you had the chance today.

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  2. Thanks for inviting me to stop by, sweetie. And congrats on the new release!

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    1. Thanks. Getting reviews right away is always a relief. Putting out a new book is terrifying. Don't you feel the same way?

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    2. Honestly? No. By the time I put one out, I'm usually so deeply into the next one that I don't think much about it. The one in the past is in the past. Nothing more I can do about it. Avanti. Onward and upward. :)

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    3. I have them over the top of each other too, but I'm still a mess when one comes out. You are more experience than I am, by about double. I have to catch up. Ha! Like that will ever happen.

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    4. Past Due - coming this week - will be #21, I think. Published. There are two languishing that haven't made it out yet (although they will). Plus a couple of short stories. You've got some writing to do to catch up! ;-)

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    5. So excited that two of my favorite authors are together and looking forward to your release, Jenna. Seriously loving (B)adVice JLS!

      Jeanie Whitmire Jackson

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    6. Awww, thanks, Jeanie! Jamie and I go way back. We became friends before Fatal Fixer Upper was released, wa-a-a-ay back in 2008. :)

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  3. I love your Savannah Martin books. When is the next one coming out?

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    1. Um... Thursday? Maybe as early as tomorrow night, depending on how quick the various platforms can get the file live. It's ready now, but I didn't want to rain in Jamie's parade and publish on top of hers. But soon. :)

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    2. And thank you. :) I'm glad you've enjoyed the series so far.

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    3. I've been reading Jenna's Savannah Martin books since before they were published, and I'm hooked too. I've read everything she writes, that's why I had to have her as my guest.

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  4. I can't wait! Love the Savannah Martin books!

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  5. I had better read faster!

    JWJ

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    1. I want to learn speed reading, so I can read all of the hundreds of books on my Kindle. Thank goodness my husband can no longer see my "to be read" pile.

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  6. I love the show Nashville. Scarlet and Avery and the gang. DH thinks I like it because of the whole stardom thing, but I like that there is a vulnerable side even to the worst of the worst.

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    1. Here's where I have to admit I don't watch it. Hubby does. We moved to Nashville for the music scene, and I know people involved with the show. I just don't watch much TV. There isn't enough hours in the day for everything, and TV is usually what gets the short straw. I'd rather read if I'm not writing. :)

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    2. I DVR everything, then watch whenever I get around to it. When I was writing TV pilots, all I did was watch TV. I'm so over that now.

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    3. I think I have the ability to DVR things. I have no idea how to actually do it. Too old-school, I guess. I grew up watching what was on TV. If it wasn't on, I didn't watch it. :)

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  7. My time's up! Thanks for having me on the blog, Jamie. :) If anyone has any questions, I'll check back later, 'kay?

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  8. Hi Jenna! Thanks for sharing that post. Loved learning a bit about the history of East Nashville and hearing about the filming that takes place there.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Sarah. :) Yeah, East Nashville is a fun place to hang out. Lots of interesting people, and one of the more diverse parts of town, as far as the folks who call it home. All different colors, orientations, beliefs. We've been out here since we moved to town 20+ years ago, and wouldn't want to live anywhere else.

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