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Friday, 18 September 2015

ℚ Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn - Linda Bennett Pennell

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn (, The Wild Rose Press, Inc, 308 pages) a a Historical Fiction novel, with romantic elements.

Author Q&A | Synopsis | Teaser | Other Works | About the Author | Giveaway & Tour Stops


A very warm welcome to Linda Bennett Pennell, thank you for joining us on BooksChatter.

What was the inspiration for Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn?

"I have always been interested in World War II history and wanted to write in that era.  Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn was originally entitled Wings and was about a ninety-day-wonder, as Army Air Corps pilots in training were known, and an army nurse set in Hialeah, Florida.  It might have been an okay story, but it just wasn’t working for me.  When a fellow author, who was also a WWII pilot, mentioned a friend who had been stationed at Casablanca during the war, I did some research and decided the First Allied Conference provided much more fascinating possibilities for murder and mayhem."
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?
"I would like to think that Sarah’s fierce loyalty to friends, loved ones, and ideals are expressions of who I am, at least in some part."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover.  Can you tell us about your cover for Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"The cover artist is Tina Lynn Stout.  Tina took my ideas about showing old Casablanca on a cover that appeared antiqued and created something rather magical, in my opinion."
Why should we read Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn and what sets it apart from the rest?
"If you like your historical fiction filled with suspense and spiced with a touch of romance, you will love my books!"
Can you tell us something quirky about Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn, its story and characters?
"Kurt, my hero, is based on a well digger.  Well, not exactly, but his family history is loosely based on that of a former neighbour who dug a well for us long ago.  Mr. Borgstet, the well digger, was a second generation German American who still spoke with a touch of an accent.  His grandparents immigrated shortly before the turn of the last century and settled among the many German-American families who already lived in the Northwest Harris County, Texas area.  He shared stories of how German was spoken exclusively in the homes and expected their children to marry within their community.  I moved his family to Boerne, Texas and made them dairy farmers.  The dairy farm was also based on a different former neighbour who also was part of the German community in my area."
Who would you recommend Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?
"Anyone who enjoys historical fiction will enjoy Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn. It has a little something for everyone: suspense, spies, double agents, acts of heroism, and romance. I would say the book is PG13 due to limited violence and language necessary to the plot of a war novel. Any sex is behind closed doors."
If you could / wished to turn Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn into a movie, who would be your dream team?
"Who else but Steven Spielberg to direct?  Think Saving Private Ryan with a much happier outcome and romance included.  For the leads: Kurt played by either Chris Hemsworth or Josh Holloway and Sarah played by either Emma Stone or Rachel McAdams.  In truth, Josh Holloway is probably too old for the part, but he is from Freehome, Georgia where I started my teaching career.  I think I taught one of his older brothers!"
What do you like to write and read about?  Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?
"Historical fiction is my first love for both reading and writing, followed by mysteries and women’s fiction."
What is your writing process?
"I am a plotter with pantser tendencies.  I usually know the beginning, the end, and the major plot points and themes before I start.  I also usually have my title before I begin as well.  The rest just sort of reveals itself as I go."
What is in store next?
"My work in progress is set in Miami and Havana.  It features the history professor from my first book, Al Capone at the Blanche Hotel.  This time she is chasing Meyer Lansky!"
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?
"Wow, this is a hard one because I am the family photographer.  There are very few pictures of me and anything!  I’ll see what I can find."

Very fitting!  That is definitely a 'Awww' picture :-)  Thank you, and have a great blog tour!

Casablanca: Appointment at Dawn 
Available NOW!

UK: purchase from Amazon.co.uk purchase from Nook UK purchase from Kobo UK find on Goodreads
US: purchase from Amazon.com purchase from Barnes & Noble purchase from Kobo

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