A Perfect Summer Novel from a Best-Seller

welcome back to the morning blend our next guest is the best-selling author of nearly two dozen novels and two children's books Mary Alice Monroe's best-selling novel the beach house was adapted into a Hallmark Hall of Fame original movie in 2018 and her new standalone novel the summer guests is one of southern livings beach reads perfect for summer and just made what number nine and nine in the New York Times we never take it for granted we're always grateful this is pretty cool I mean tell us a little bit about this book in particular because this is your new their client is standalone novel and ilona and what does that mean that you don't have to read any of your the beach house is a series and so and it's unfortunate to have a series that's beloved and so they're five books so this is standalone although one of the characters Kara is in the book okay it's it's about a hurricane evacuation and I live on the Isle of Palms God knows I have lived through 20 plus years of hurricanes mm-hmm and so we run from the sea to escape in the mountains and it's a her ocation is what we call and it's perfect because you're up there and I was up this is autobiographical yeah in the sense that I actually escaped a hurricane went to a horse farm in North Carolina and all these people came from Florida with their horses and from Georgia and South Carolina and we're all like in that remember the children's book or the mushroom we're all in this big old horse and I slept over the barn and hearing the horses talk at night yeah you know all that it connected me to the animals and every book I write if I don't I work with whales I work with dolphins I work with turtles I have to identify and connect with the animal and when I connect then when you read the book you connect so this time it's horses and who doesn't love horses okay I think that's fantastic I was a reporter near Galveston Texas so I I had a her occasion you know it's weird because you're in a safe spot but you're not safe right there's a storm like a monster coming up along the shore and here you have tornadoes and flooding and with climate reigns is going to intensify so I this is putting a personal note on the question what do you take with you when you leave yeah yeah you treasure when you what do you treasure and the characters I love it because when I was at the farm all the women helped each other and we helped the horses because they're all coming in from rescues rescue dogs everywhere my dog was in heat so it added a little little Mayim to oh wow yeah and it I said I watched all these women helping each other and I thought this is what I write about yeah you know nurturing husbands and wives sisters and friends so it's poignant has a lot of drama a lot of emotion but I think it's my funniest book – okay I know what it is The Big Chill with horses and dogs so I want to know what you find them because you've taken many of these her occasions no what do you find that people treasure the most clearly animals are top of the list well that's the question I when you close the book I want people to have loved the story I want them to think if there's a tornado or if there's a storm I thought about it what do you take with you what do you value for me I've evacuated for 20-some years and I used to take my mom a silver Apparel's and all right take that jewelry take my three dogs yeah high five Canaries and my grandson's goldfish five Canaries five Canaries if you read the beach house for rent those are my Canaries wow that is fast animal lover and you know you realize you can't take it with you yes yeah well in it that's what matter and I think what what you treasure changes through the years so I think of course I would take my children but well you mean so much of it is photographs are so important because those those memories it's like and now everybody has it on Jojo yeah I wrote I cuz yeah I thought I'd take my iPad which has the pictures I would take my cat blue and I would take some jewelry that he's thought about it I did because I wanted to know like if I really had to go fast what would I care to grab and that's what I would care to grab we have in the South we have a little plastic bin where we call our Go Bag yeah and we put insurance papers in there and so it's right by the door from June till October smart run out the door I like that all should have that – yeah one question I have for authors especially people as prolific and as many books as you have so I'm in a book club I have I always ask in our our meetings I'm the only one that sometimes doesn't finish the book before the meeting so I'm calling myself Alice but I always say to everybody my group when you find the time to read and part of it is because I realized I felt guilty reading like I have to have the dishes done in the laundry and everything taken care of but I wonder for authors when do you write well first of all for reading I read audiobooks a lot yeah I Drive okay I just and that's why I like to have my books come out in the summer people read in the summer yeah and I want people to be on the beach reading my book when they see dolphins and whales and horses but what I read I don't read novels when I write novels because it's my voice I don't want anyone's voice yeah but when I soon as this book tours done I'm on the beach with a book yeah and I read my girlfriend's books yeah with the Lowcountry authors now I'm from Chicago and I lived here in Milwaukee y'all know that I taught at MATC and it's my gosh what's going on in Milwaukee it's like huge gorgeous city but when I go home I go to the beach and I just read that's my vacation yeah is reading good for you laugh at a time there's a book again the summer guests and we'll be right back

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