Books are food for my soul! Pull up a beach chair and stick your toes in the sand as the Jersey surf rolls in and out, now open your book and let your imagination take you away.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Author Guest Post: Patricia Yager Delagrange, Author of Moon Over Alcatraz

In association with Goddess Fish Promotions, Jersey Girl Book Reviews welcomes Patricia Yager Delagrange, author of Moon Over Alcatraz!

Where Do My Ideas Come From?

My first book Passing Through Brandiss is about a young woman, Annie Davidson, whose husband is killed and she is left with her young son Rafe in a house where they are surrounded by all the memories of the three of them as a family. She decides to move, sells the house, stores their belongings, and drives away, leaving Sausalito, California, behind. 

She takes the Pacific Coast Highway and heads south until she and her son stumble upon the small town of Brandiss where they find a beautiful Craftsman house for sale. They decide to make Brandiss their home. There she meets and befriends a pregnant teenager who wants Annie to adopt her baby. 

I wanted to tell a story about adoption. After I gave birth to my son Dylan we wanted to have another child but alas, it was not meant to be. We had never considered adoption, but when I found out I was already peri-menopausal and in vitro was too expensive, my husband and I made the decision to look into adoption. 

We hired an attorney who only dealt with open adoptions and within six months one of the mothers saw our brochure, asked to meet us, and chose us as the people she wanted to adopt her child. The adoption progressed without any complications whatsoever. In fact, the birth mother Kim decided to waive the nine-month waiting period during which time she could change her mind. And Allessandra became legally our child sooner than expected. 

I took "literary license" and changed the story. In Passing Through Brandiss Annie's adoption does not proceed easily. Why did I do this? Because I wanted to write about the fears I'd never expressed to anyone. After we took Allessandra home from the hospital when she was less than twenty-four hours old, I was afraid during the following nine months that Kim would change her mind.

In my second book, Moon Over Alcatraz, which was published in January of this year, I explore the issue of the death of a child and how that can affect a couple's marriage. That idea came from watching so many news broadcasts and Amber Alerts about children who are taken from their parents and many times are murdered. I had always wondered how parents survive the loss of a child. So I decided to explore that loss in Moon Over Alcatraz. Granted, such a tragedy has never befallen me or my family, but I am a mother. Therefore, I know what it is to love a child unconditionally, to be willing to die for them if it were necessary. 

Warning! Moon Over Alcatraz has a happy ending.

I believe that attitude is everything. In Moon Over Alcatraz Brandy loses her child and struggles with depression afterward. But she's a strong woman, an author, who struggles through that difficult time and comes through it to attain her Happily Ever After. 

Ideas come from anywhere and everywhere. A germ of an idea can pop into my head and if it has the potential to make me "feel" a ton of emotions, then usually I can write a story about it. And hopefully readers will feel emotions when they read it. 

About The Author:

Patricia Yager Delgrange was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. She attended St. Mary's College, studied her junior year at the University of Madrid, and received her B.A. in Spanish at UC Santa Barbara, then went on to get her Master's degree in Education at Oregon State University. She live with her husband and two teenage children in Alameda, across the bay from San Francisco, along with our two very large chocolate labs, Annabella and her son Jack. Her horse lives in the Oakland hills in a stall with a million dollar view. 

BUY THE BOOK: Moon Over Alcatraz

Book Description: Moon Over Alcatraz

Following the death of their baby during a difficult birth, Brandy and Weston Chambers are grief-stricken and withdraw from each other, both seeking solace outside of their marriage; however, they vow to work through their painful disloyalty. But when the man Brandy slept with moves back to their hometown, three lives are forever changed by his return.

Book Excerpt: Moon Over Alcatraz

"What are you doing? Where are you going? Please, let's talk about this."

"I work my ass off in New York while you're at home screwing other dudes?"

I pulled the sheet around me, ran over and grabbed his arm. "I wasn't screwing other dudes." He ripped his arm out of my grasp. "I was the one who was all screwed up. Then you went to New York and all we ever did was argue on the phone. You don't tell your secretary you're married and she treats me like crap on the phone ..."

By now, he was fully dressed, shoes and jacket on, wallet grabbed off the bureau. His hand hovered above the door knob. His face looked void of emotion, wiped clean of all expression. "I can't do this," he mumbled.

I sobbed, knowing I'd hurt him and betrayed his trust. I felt like a slut. "I'm sorry. I made a mistake. But I love you."

He stood near the door, shaking his head, tears dripping from his chin.

My legs shook. My stomach cramped. I had to make him understand. "I know I've hurt you and that wasn't my intention, but I wasn't thinking straight. I'll regret it forever. You don't deserve this but I'm asking you to forgive me."

His eyes swam with tears and his chin quivered. His Adam's apple twitched up and down as he swallowed. "I had sex with Carol Smith."

* Contest Giveaway* 

Moon Over Alcatraz Contest Giveaway:

$25 Amazon Gift Card

Author Patricia Yager Delagrange will award a $25 Amazon Gift card to one randomly drawn commenter during the Moon Over Alcatraz virtual book tour. Follow the tour stops and comment on each tour stop for additional chances of winning! 

Click on the tour page link for a list of all the tour stops: Moon Over Alcatraz Virtual Book Tour Event Page


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you for the opportunity to host Patricia's virtual book event! :)

  2. That's a nice story about your family and Alessandra. Good luck with Passing Through Brandiss!

    1. Thank you for commenting, Cheryl. I hope Passing Through Brandiss captures the readers' attention. I loved writing it.

    2. Thank you Cheryl for stopping by and commenting on Patricia's guest post. :)

  3. It sounds as though you have the capacity to write about things that really grab your heart. I would love to read your first book.

    1. Thank you for stopping by and commenting on Patricia's guest post. If you get a chance to read her books, it will be worth it and it does grab your heart. :)

    2. Hey Mom Jane! My first book will come out sometime (hopefully) by the end of the year. If you subscribe to my blog, you'll know everything about that. It's:

  4. I also do book reviews on my blog.

    Currently, I am reviewing books for Little Brown and Company. I am always interested in connecting with other like minded individuals as well as other publishers to continue doing book reviews. Thank you for the awesome blog.

    1. Hi Jason! Thank you for stopping by and commenting on Patricia's guest post. Always glad to see other book reviewers leave a shout out to our awesome authors. :)

  5. You deal with such challenging parent/child issues, fraught with emotional baggage. How do you keep it from getting maudlin? I think that a real test for a writer.

    1. Well, Catherine, all my books have a happy endings. They just deal with issues of importance to couples and/or families. But you can be assured of a smile throughout.

  6. Thank you for sharing your personal story of adoption. I will read PASSING THROUGH BRANDISS with different eyes.