Amy Hatvany, author of Heart of Mine (March 19) chats with the SheKnows Book Lounge about her novel, her passion for cooking and her next project.
SheKnows: Tweet us a blurb of your novel (In 140 characters or fewer, of course!)
Amy Hatvany: Ugh. This is so hard. (I need to preface your reading this tweet with the fact that it’s only what I hope readers will say about the book… OK? Because otherwise it sounds like I have WAY too high an opinion of myself. Which I don’t. When it comes to my writing, I’m mostly an insecure mess.)
“Heart Like Mine is an honest look at the aftermath of loss and the messy emotions that make up the foundation of a blended family.”
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SK: How did you think of the idea for Heart Like Mine?
AH: It came from a conversation I had with my husband a couple of years ago, in which we were discussing our family and some of the particular challenges of being a step-parent. (We both are “steps” — he to my two children and me to his daughter.) That sparked a question in my mind of what it would feel like to be a woman who doesn’t have children — who isn’t sure she’d make a good mother in the first place — but ends up falling in love with a divorced man with two children.
Blended families are more common than ever, and with such complicated emotional dynamics, for me, it was a ground ripe with issues to explore.
SK: What are you reading now? What’s up next?
AH: I actually just had an early read of Stacey Ballis’ upcoming release, Out To Lunch, and it was totally funny and smart and moving. I loved it. I’m not sure what I’ll be reading next — my too-read pile is starting to overtake the house, though, so I’d better get on it!
SK: OK, so spill your secret, how do you have time to cook gourmet meals, write books, and be a wife and mom? And on that note, what’s your current favorite recipe?
AH: Ha! Well, I don’t think there is a secret. I’m like every other woman out there with a job and a family to take care of. I get up and I do whatever next step is put in front of me, you know? Write, clean the bathroom, go grocery shopping, cook dinner. I find it helps me not get overwhelmed with all I have to do if I break it down into single events and then just take them one at a time.
And picking a favorite recipe is tough, because I tend to be sort of an impromptu chef — picking whatever I have around and adding ingredients until it tastes good. But my favorite chef is Ina Garten, so I think I will go with her Turkey Meatloaf Recipe. It’s healthy, not complicated, and total winner with my family… and me, because it’s HUGE and the leftover sandwiches are fantastic.
SK: Can you give us any details on your next book?
AH: Yes! It’s called Safe With Me, and it’s about three women who are linked together by tragedy, bound together by secrets, and when all is revealed, become each others’ salvation. I realize this description is a little cryptic, but I don’t want to give too much away!