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, January 29, 2014

Something Yellow by Laura Templeton (Author Guest Post / Book Review)

In association with Chick Lit Plus Blog Tours, Jersey Girl Book Reviews is pleased to host the virtual book tour event for Something Yellow by Author Laura Templeton!

Author Guest Post

I’m often asked what inspired me to write Something Yellow. The answer is complicated, and I thought I’d take this opportunity to provide more than the passing answer I usually give a reader I meet at a book signing event.

First, I must say that, in general, there is only one thing that inspires me to write: great writing. I was blessed with a wonderful mother who loved to read and who read to me from the time I was born. (I don’t think reading to babies in utero was in vogue at the time, so I can’t claim that advantage!) I read. A lot. Fiction. Poetry. Non-fiction. I appreciate great writers in a number of genres – from Frances Mayes to Barbara Kingsolver to Sue Monk Kidd to Melissa Fay Greene to Thomas Merton, to name just a few. Great writers and great books inspire me. And, yes, they intimidate me, too. I fear my words will never be as good as theirs. Still, I can aspire…

But to discuss why I wrote Something Yellow—a story about a young woman struggling with an ailing parent and a healthy dose of repressed grief—I’ll have to dig a bit deeper. When I started the book, my family was going through a difficult time. Within eight years, I’d lost both my parents and my mother-in-law. My in-laws were living with us, and after my mother-in-law’s death, my father-in-law began a slow decline. He developed dementia (it was never officially deemed Alzheimer’s disease) that led to the erosion of his mind in a painful way. He’d remained sharp and active into his nineties, so the decline was unexpected, sad, and difficult to cope with. My husband—who ran a business from our home—became his primary caregiver.

Our world narrowed to one of nurse’s assistants, sitters, walkers, adult diapers, doctor appointments, and mental anguish. Our home became a hospital room. Our freedom to go out was compromised. It felt as if everyone we loved was dead or dying…and I had a tendency, like Holly, to rail against this inevitable outcome. It’s difficult to lose parents (and siblings, spouses, friends), as I’m sure many of you know.

In the midst of this darkness, I began to write Something Yellow…and there was born Holly’s relationship with her mother, who is dying of breast cancer. Holly’s struggles were our struggles. As I watched my husband lose weight (that he didn’t need to lose) from lack of sleep and bad eating habits, Holly grew thin and tired. Caring for a loved one in this manner is exhausting, and I think if we had it to do over again we’d do things a bit differently. But the point is that writing about Holly and Marilyn, Houston and Jonah, helped me survive this dark and difficult time. I suppose I figured that if I could write about loss and grief being transformed into hope—I could create that hope in my life as well. And in some weird way, it worked.

My wish is that my readers will find hope in Something Yellow’s ending, as Holly puts the past behind her and…well, no spoilers here. You’ll have to read to find out just how Holly’s life turns out once she allows the light back into her heart.

About The Author

Laura Templeton lives near Athens, Georgia, with her husband, son, and a menagerie of animals, mostly rescues. In her day job she serves as Vice President of Operations for a laboratory equipment manufacturer. By night–early morning, actually–she writes fiction. Her first novel, Something Yellow, was released by PageSpring Publishing in October 2013. When she’s not writing, Laura enjoys reading, gardening, learning to figure skate—with a very patient instructor, and taking long walks on the quiet country roads near her home.

Laura can be contacted at


Book Review

Something Yellow by Laura Templeton
Publisher: Cup of Tea Books / PageSpring Publishing
Publication Date: September 16, 2013
Format: Paperback - 324 pages / Kindle - 860 KB / Nook - 2 MB
ISBN: 1939403154
Genre: Mystery / Romantic Suspense / Women's Fiction

BUY THE BOOK: Something Yellow

Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author / publisher in exchange for my honest review and participation in a virtual book tour event hosted by Chick Lit Plus Blog Tours.

Book Description:

It has been thirteen years since Holly’s nine-year-old sister, Rachel, disappeared without a trace.

It has been thirteen years since Holly left her hometown.

It has been thirteen years since Holly’s first love and high school boyfriend, Houston, was the only suspect.

Now another nine-year-old girl has disappeared.

Holly is back, and so is Houston—never charged and still proclaiming his innocence.

Can she trust him . . . should she trust him?

Book Excerpt:

Jonah Salter brought bad news—it sat on him like heavy snow on a pine branch. I’d been home less than two weeks, barely time to adjust to the rhythm of the small mountain town, when he knocked on Mother’s front door. I knew right away he was the substitute preacher—from Atlanta, like me—because he wore a nice, camel-colored wool vest and a tie under his overcoat. And because my cousin, Tina Lynn, had already told me about him. “Good looking in a tortured sort of way,” she’d said.

I looked him up and down and decided she was right.

Behind him, the first patchy frost of the season sat on the grass, and the newness of the cold made it feel worse than it was. I introduced myself and invited him in, quickly closing the door to keep out the draft. I hadn’t turned on the furnace yet and relied on the kerosene heater in the kitchen to warm the house. Mother’s ancient, gray cardigan—which I’d thrown on over a T-shirt and faded jeans—hung limp and baggy on my small frame, and I tugged on it self-consciously. I hadn’t expected company.

Mother had lain down after breakfast, so I took Jonah to the kitchen and poured us both a cup of coffee. I doubted the caffeine would dull the impact of whatever he’d come to tell us—it hadn’t helped me cope with everything else that had happened these last few months. I’d resisted the urge to try anything stronger, though a prescription for Prozac lay crumpled in the bottom of my purse. I hadn’t filled it. But I hadn’t thrown it away either.

Jonah sipped the hot coffee and then carefully set the mug on the table. “I came to let you know that Mark and Natalie Hamilton’s daughter is missing.”

My years as a banking executive, negotiating loans and mortgages for major corporate clients in Atlanta, had taught me to temper my reaction to almost any news. I could sit across a table from a CFO and keep even a hint of a frown off my face when she told me her company’s debt ratio had slipped, making it impossible for me to renew their multi-million-dollar line of credit. Control was part of my job. But now all my training went out the window.

“What?” I stared at him in disbelief. “Cailey?” Gripping the table edge with both hands, I struggled to come to terms with the fact that the daughter of my high-school friends had apparently disappeared.

Jonah nodded. I’d braced myself to perhaps learn of the death of some great aunt or uncle, a sad eventuality that would have paled in comparison to the shocking news he delivered. I glanced toward the counter at my purse—I might need that prescription after all.

My Book Review:

In her debut novel, Something Yellow, author Laura Templeton weaves a wonderful multi-layered story that features an intriguing mixture of mystery, romantic suspense, and women's fiction.

Thirteen years ago, Holly McCann left her Appalachian Mountains hometown of White Cove, Virginia, for Atlanta, vowing never to return. But when she lost her banking executive position to the Great Recession, Holly returned home to take care of her mother, who is dying from breast cancer. Coming home is not easy for Holly, it has been thirteen years since her nine year old sister Rachel disappeared without a trace leaving her family shattered. Now the haunting past filled with old wounds, grief, suspicions, secrets and memories from Rachel's disappearance rise to the surface with the recent eerily similar disappearance of nine year old Cailey Hamilton. As Holly cares for her mother, she also has to face the secrets from her family's past in order to heal and move forward with her life.

Something Yellow is a riveting story that captivated my attention and drew me in from the beginning with its intriguing combination of mystery, romantic suspense, and intricate family dynamics. Written in the first person narrative with alternating flashbacks to the past interwoven with the present, the reader follows Holly's search for the truth surrounding the mysterious disappearance of her sister Rachel, while coming to terms with a complicated love relationship, and the hardship of dealing with a tangled web of family secrets, lies, and heartache from the past that comes to the surface with intriguing links to the recent disappearance of nine year old Cailey Hamilton.

With a richly detailed description of the setting, the author easily transports the reader to the picturesque Appalachian Mountains town of White Cove, Virginia. The author's depiction of the rural small mountain town and its townspeople is a realistic portrait, you can't help but feel like you are there with Holly and the townspeople.

This is an intriguing multi-layered and fast-paced story. The complexity of the characters come alive as the mystery unfolds and the family's past is uncovered. It is a gripping and emotional tale that has a lot of depth and keeps the reader in suspense and guessing with its riveting twists and turns until the surprisingly shocking conclusion.


Virtual Book Tour Schedule

Tour Schedule:

January 27 – Storm Goddess Book Reviews – Review & Q&A
January 28 – A Novel Thought – Review & Q&A
January 29 – Jersey Girl Book Reviews – Review, Guest Post & Excerpt
January 29 – Samantha March – Q&A & Excerpt
January 30 – Feeling Beachie – Review
January 31 – Chick Lit Plus – Review


  1. Thanks for being in the tour, loved this book!

    1. I really enjoyed reading this wonderful story too. Thank you for the opportunity to host the virtual book tour event.