For a bit about Alicia's entry into Criminal Christmas, The Twelth Day, read on:
As a teen, party girl Sabrina Spencer was the lone survivor of a serial killer’s attack on her family. Her testimony put the killer behind bars, and she spent the following decade carving out a new life and trying to forget.
But someone hasn’t forgotten. Two weeks before Christmas, she begins receiving daily packages containing bizarre gifts and threatening messages with demented references to the Twelve Days of Christmas.
Handyman Josh Cravens is remodeling the lake house she rents each year to escape the painful reminders Christmas brings. While his dimples and blue eyes are hard to resist, he’s the exact kind of player she’s been avoiding since she outgrew her wild days. But the isolated cabin and threatening messages boost her paranoia to fever pitch.
As Christmas draws closer, she’s torn between finding comfort in Josh’s arms, and fear that he might be behind the twisted countdown to the twelfth day.
Let's talk a bit with Sabrina Spencer. Where are you from? Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.
Tell us a bit about The Twelfth Day. It is a Christmas Romantic Suspense about a woman who avoids holiday reminders by hiding out at a secluded lake cabin. But instead of finding the peace she’s seeking, odd and ominous messages begin arriving, and she worries that the killer who attacked her family a decade ago has resurfaced.
What did you think the first time you saw Josh Cravens? At first, I thought he was a criminal, a murderer perhaps.
And your second thought? That he was sexy, and disturbingly appealing, considering he wasn’t my type at all.
Did you feel it was love at first sight? No, I’d say lust, although it turned into love very quickly.
What do you like most about him? I love that he has a caring heart, even though he doesn’t always let it show.
How would you describe him? When I met him, he was a bit of a womanizer and drank too much. But, beneath his wild, untamed exterior, he is a wonderful person. He cares deeply for people, especially Dustin, Josh’s mentally challenged friend.
How would he describe you? We didn’t exactly hit it off when we first met. He thought I was a prudish nerd. He called me Polly Poindexter.
What made you choose teaching high school science for a career? I have always loved science, well, since I was eighteen, not long after I lost my entire family. Before that, I didn’t care much about anything, other than fun. I think what I love most about science is that there’s an explanation for everything, and it’s an exciting field of discovery. I love the order and logic of it all, no worries about the unknown. And I adore teaching it. When I see a student develop a love for science, to really ‘get’ what I’m explaining, it gives me the warm fuzzies.
What is your biggest fear? I’m terrified of the dark, of being alone.
How do you relax? I love to read and watch television.
Who is your favorite fictional character and why? This is going to sound crazy, but I love the Professor from Gilligan’s Island. I watch old reruns on MeTV, and I find him sexy and intelligent. I guess his scientific mind is a real turn-on.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received? I suppose it would be the advice I received from my mother, but I didn’t follow it until after she was gone. She told me that having fun was fine, but if I didn’t work hard and focus, I would never realize my dreams.
Thanks, Sabrina. This has been terrific. To purchase, Criminal Christmas, go to:
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/criminal-christmas-alexa-grace/1122676723?ean=2940152314052
Now a few questions for our friend, Alicia: What movies or books have had an impact on your career as a writer and why? The books that had an impact on my writing were most of the books I’ve read, especially in my younger days. Mainly, though, Gone with the Wind and Sweet Savage Love. They pulled me in and made me realize what it felt like to get lost in a make-believe world that sometimes felt more real than my own world. I wanted to give other people that same feeling.
Holy cow!! You named the first two historical romances we ever read!!! How odd. What event in your private life were you able to bring to this story and how do you feel it impacted the novel? I didn’t really bring an event from my private life into this story, other than having my heroine make ‘homemade’ hot chocolate like my mom used to make, which she got from the box of Hershey’s cocoa. Fortunately, my family wasn’t murdered. I don’t like science, and I love football, which my heroine does, and does not, so there wasn’t much of ‘me’ at all in this story.
What project[s] are you working on now? I have several projects I need to write, including a new suspense, the third book in the Northland Crime Chronicles, the second book in my Reaper series, and a Peter Pan inspired romantic suspense with paranormal elements. But, my next project is my Martini Club 4 – The 1940’s novella.
What's up next for you? My publisher currently has Liberty Empowered, Book 3 of the Isle of Fangs series, so I’m hoping that will be released in early 2016. And, as I mentioned, working on my MC4 story, which should be released in perhaps February or March.
Want to know more about Alicia? In her own words: I live in Edmond, Oklahoma. I have three grown children and a huge network of supportive friends and family. I write mostly contemporary suspense and paranormal, but have also written in other genres, including a few vintage historicals.
Other than reading and writing, my passions are Elvis Presley, MLB, NFL (I usually work in a mention of one or all three into my stories) and watching my favorite televisions shows like Vampire Diaries, Justified, Sons of Anarchy, Haven, New Girl, The Mindy Project, and Dexter (Yes, I know some have ended, but I will forever be a fan). Some of my favorite authors are Michael Connelly, Dennis Lehane, Lee Child, Lisa Gardner, Sharon Sala, Jordan Dane, Ridley Pearson, Joseph Finder, and Jonathan Kellerman…to name a few.
Ali brought along an excerpt from The Twelth Day for us:
With the expectant stares glued to her, Sabrina felt put on the spot. Reluctantly, she peeled off the wrapping. Hopefully, it wasn’t something sappy and romantic. Mitch had a tendency toward that sort of thing.
She opened the box lid. “The Twelve Days of Christmas” played from one of those little discs like they put into greeting cards. A silver bracelet lay amidst crumpled red tissue paper. And a note. On the third day of Christmas…
She gasped. The box fell from her trembling hands and landed on the table.
“Hey,” Josh’s low voice spoke beside her. He put his hand over hers, and a slight sense of calm stole through her. “You all right?”
All eyes were on her. “I-I thought I saw a spider in the box. I’m fine.”
“You sure?” His gaze captured hers. Doubt lingered in their blue depths.
Sabrina nodded, and everyone went back to eating, but she could barely focus on the remainder of the meal. This wasn’t just a computer glitch. The bracelet was just like the one she wore often, had been wearing when she was rescued. Someone was purposely referencing her past. But why? Was it a sick joke? Everyone knew Samuel Goodman had hummed “Twelve Days of Christmas” over and over while he held her captive. They would know he used duct tape and rope, and would know about the bracelet. She’d been wearing it in the photographs shown on the news. All the information she’d given to the police had made it into the media. So it could be anyone, someone just screwing with her. It couldn’t be Goodman. He was serving a life sentence in a maximum-security prison. Or was he…?
To learn more about Alica Dean and the stories she creates, go to: