The Honeymoon Cottage
The Little Flower Shop
The Love Shack
Each of Foster’s non suspense books, the Indiana Summer books, The Honeymoon Cottage, The Little Flower Shop, and The Love Shack, out in June 2024 have two romances in it. The lead characters, and the secondary characters. There’s also a close friendship and a deepening of other relationships, such as Yardley (The Honeymoon Cottage) with Betty, who is the town matriarch; Emily (The Little Flower Shop) with her aunt and uncle.
Elise Cooper: How did you get the idea for the “Honeymoon Cottage Series?”
Lori Foster: My husband and I saw a little town with an odd name, and we discovered it was named after a person – an original founder of the town. I immediately imagined how difficult that would be for local venues… but I also thought that someone clever could really capitalize on it.
From there, my muse took over and soon I had everything mapped out in my brain.
That’s how most ideas happen for me. One thing sparks a thought, that carries over to another thought, and suddenly I have a series in my head.
EC: Do you enjoy writing one type of genre versus another?
LF: I love writing my romantic suspense, action books the most, but my writer’s brain thrives best with variety. Often after writing a book full of sexy romance, action and danger, I enjoy the focus of family relationships and the intricacies of a community. Length can vary too, from a novella (shorter book) to a trade or mass market (longer) book.
EC: Are there any similarities/differences between this series and your suspense series with the McKenzies and Osborns and Jodi?
LF: One big difference is that in my more suspenseful series, there’s a lot more violence. Good guys don’t hesitate to battle it out with evil guys. In my trade books, instead of evil there are the more common problems and frustrations we all deal with.
EC: Why name the setting Cemetery and can you describe it?
LF: That’s just my quirky brain finding humor everywhere. Would you live in a town named Cemetery? What if it was a really wonderful place? Full of fun characters. With a vacation lake. And kitschy stores. And nearly all the people are interesting… or at least unique.
I based the setting off of Culver, Indiana, which is an awesome little town on a vacation lake. I fictionalize everything, but if anyone has read the books, and then looks at Culver, you’ll see the similarities.
EC: Can you describe Yardley?
LF: Yardley is a generous soul who likes to nurture everyone from her bestie, Mimi, to the elder matriarch of the town, to each business owner. It’s her natural inclination to stick up for others, but she rarely sticks up for herself. She has a lot of love to give, and that makes her a perfect wedding planner. She’s written off the idea of her own “Happily ever after,” until she meets Travis, and even then, she takes some convincing.
EC: Can you describe Travis?
LF: Travis is an awesome big brother. After losing their parents, he’d do almost anything for his sister, but he’s also something of a know-it-all. He likes tradition and a sure bet, and he loves the charm of older homes with a lot of character – especially the old Victorian home where Yardley and her mother and aunt live, and where she also keeps the wedding business. Little by little, Travis realizes that while he and Yardley are opposites in a lot of ways, they also have a lot in common.
EC: Can you describe Emily?
LF: Emily is a 40 year old divorcee who takes herself a little too seriously. She’s all about priorities – the aunt and uncle who raised her, and her perfect little flower shop. She loves both, and is overall content with her life. In the town, she’s known mostly as “the flower lady,” because as a florist, she deals with every emotion there is. Happiness, grief, worry, celebration… Emily likens herself to a bartender who listens when others talk.
She’s not very good at listening to herself though, even though she has her own wishes and desires.
EC: Can you describe Saul?
LF: He’s the owner of the town restaurant and the most popular bachelor. A wee bit younger Emily, and very focused on her. He’s been subtly trying to loosen her up for years, but it’s not until his own life gets a shakeup that he realizes he really needs to get on the ball if he wants to win her over – for good.
EC: What about the relationship between Yardley and Travis versus the relationship between Emily and Saul?
LF: Yardley is younger and a dreamer, whereas Emily – who is not old, but thinks of herself that way – is more settled and realistic. Both women need a nudge in the right direction. For Yardley, her bestie Mimi is there to prod her along. For Emily, it’s her new hire, Gentry, who gently urges her to notice what Saul is dishing out.
EC: What is the role of the Honeymoon Cottage?
LF: As the title suggests, it’s a wonderful little cottage for honeymooners – and as the local wedding planner, it was one of the places Yardley often recommended. She supports all the local businesses, but she also loved the cottage for personal reasons. She grew up imagining her own perfect wedding, ending with a stay at the cottage…until those dreams slipped away, or so she thought.
EC: Why did you nickname Yardley’s mom and aunt Cruella and Maleficent?
LF: Their thoughtless cruelty was nearly comical, so it seemed to fit. I’ve known people like that, who think they’re offering a suggestion, or giving good advice, and instead it’s intrusive and rude. For Yardley, it wasn’t worth correcting them because she’d grown up hearing the comments, and of course, that only encouraged their bad behavior. It wasn’t until she set some boundaries – which everyone needs to nicely do – that they caught on and began considering their actions.
EC: What was the role of Mimi in both books?
LF: Mimi only had a noticeable role in The Honeymoon Cottage. As Yardley’s best friend, close enough to be her sister, she was Yardley’s confidante, supporter and defender. It was very much a mutually beneficial friendship, because the two women often leaned on each other.
EC: hat about your next suspense book, other books: Title, when will they come out, a little something about the plot?
LF: THE DANGEROUS ONE will be released in February. It’s about Hunter Osborn, a park ranger who happened onto a grisly scene, and ultimately had his life badly disrupted by media. He needs time away from everything familiar, and distances himself from almost everyone, including the family he loves. Unfortunately, Jodi Bentley moves in the rundown shack near his property, and there’s no ignoring her. She’s big trouble in a small package. When dangers erupts, Hunter is all about protecting her – even though Jodi is beyond capable herself.
THE FEARLESS ONE will be out December 26, and it features Memphis Osborn, Hunter’s brother. Now that Jodi has cracked the ice around his brother, Memphis moves closer to be nearer them both.
Note: Each book stands alone!
Memphis has a plan to be as bad ass, as heroic, as his brother, but with technology instead of fists and guns. Best laid plans though… Memphis takes over a campground known for shady deals where he can report crimes in progress. Then Diah shows up, and although she’s the opposite of Jodi, she also has trouble on her tail. It doesn’t take Memphis long to know that protecting her is his new priority, and along the way he not only falls in love, he and Diah manage to solve a very old cold case… which just might set her free.