Kat Drennan (Author Interview)
March 17, 2016
Please tell us a little about yourself, the romance subgenre(s) in which you write, and your newest book.
I’m a California girl, through and through, and my work, whether fantasy, historical, contemporary, or women’s fiction, reflects the beauty, excitement, diversity, and danger of living on the edge of a continent. My romances to date have been in romantic suspense as I love to write villains almost as much as I love to write heroes.
My newest romance, Mint Condition, and first in my Classic Love Series, is all about falling in love in the front seat of a classic Cadillac. It’s a sexy romp that starts out innocently enough, but when news of the sale of this rare automobile from the fifties goes out over the internet, the skeletons come out of the closet.
What inspired you to write romance fiction?
The first romance I read while still in high school was Victoria Holt’s Mistress of Mellyn, very typical of Holt’s gothic work. I loved the dark mystery and danger mixed in with the undeniable romance. But once I discovered the work of later authors such as Sandra Brown, Tami Hoag, and Heather Graham, I was hooked on more contemporary romantic suspense and thrillers. My writing naturally fell into a romantic theme, with plots going to dark side, and plenty of twisty turns.
Some people love them, some hate them. What’s your stance on alpha heroes?
I love a strong, hunky Alpha hero, as long as he has a soft side. Doesn’t get any better than Jaime Fraser. But my hero doesn’t have to be an alpha to win my heart.
Tell us about your favorite hero from one of your stories. What do you love about him?
Right now, I’m totally in love with Luke Berlin from my work in progress, Little Red Corvette, the sequel to Mint Condition. He’s six foot two, 180 solid pounds of straight up GQ, suit wearing Assistant DA with Lincoln Lawyer confidence, a Michael Phelps bod, and a soul-wrenching black-and-white sense of right and wrong. A good trait if you’re running for District Attorney of Santa Barbara County, but in love, not so much. Recently banned from Gina’s bedroom until he produces a ring and sets a date, he’s been rethinking his priorities. He may be black and white on the law, but he’s not above turning up at midnight with one-eyed stray kitten inside his coat to break his girlfriend’s resolve.
What’s your favorite part of writing?
I love that epiphany moment when I’ve been struggling and the solution just poofs out of nowhere. Sometimes you’re going along and you see how you’ve missed a place to take the excitement to the next level. Ding, ding, ding! You’re off and running again. Recently, working on the Classic Love series, I had one of those moments, small, but significant in improving the story’s overall appeal. Each love story in the series features a different classic car. I wanted to include one of my favorites, a rare Corvette, with the original Blue Flame Six engine and a twisty take on the myths surrounding James Dean’s horrific accident in his little sports car. Blue Flame Six was born. But who’s interested in some obscure engine, let alone a romance junkie looking for the happy every after? Hello? What was I thinking? My title was DOA. But who doesn’t get a warm, sizzling feeling when they hear the words “Little Red Corvette”? Same story, new title, brighter appeal. Love it. These are the things that wake you in the middle of the night.
Kat Drennan, born and raised in California, writes sensual stories from the heart of the Golden State.
From the curling surf at the edge of the continent, to the granite sculptures of the Sierra Nevada; from San Francisco to Death Valley and all the way to the Mexican border, California’s unique landscape and history step forward as characters in each of her novels.
She is an alumni of the Squaw Valley Community of Writers and a member of Romance Writers of America, Contemporary and LARA Chapters. She lives in Ojai, California with her handsome dogs, and two controlling cats.
Twenty-five-year-old Maddie Kerrigan is known at Midwest auto auctions as the tall, hot babe in the tight jumpsuit and red stilettos. To take her car restoration company to the next level, she must sell a prized family heirloom: a one off, 53’ Cadillac Eldorado in mint condition.
Maddie’s senses go into over drive when the gorgeous California investor, Nick Berlin, shows up with a blank check in his hand and an irresistible gleam in his eye. He doesn’t know much about old cars, but when Maddie invites him behind the wheel, he’s ready to push the pedal down.
But when a letter from her estranged father claims ownership of the car, and ties Nick to an old family enemy, Maddie puts the brakes on the sale and launches a road trip across country to confront her past. How far will Nick go to get his hands on her chassis?
She stalked across the pitted gravel lot and stopped a few feet away, remembering the shattering moment their eyes had met across the graveyard.
Maddie squared her shoulders. She didn’t care how good looking he was, she would set this guy straight right now and send him on his way.
“So what is he? A coward? Or just too important to bother?”
He whirled at the sound of her voice. “Excuse me?” A matched set of startled blue-green eyes locked onto hers. Dreamy, seductive eyes. The kind a wise woman avoided.
“No excuse.” She stepped closer. “A man shows up to his father’s funeral. Regardless.” Heat bloomed at her chest and neck. His quick glance down said he hadn’t missed it.
He took a gentlemanly step away, shoving his hands in his pockets. “That lets me off the hook. My old man’s alive and kickin’.” He fished his cell phone out of his jacket to show her. “Just blocked a call from His Highness a minute ago.”
She angled away, some of the heat melting away. “My father didn’t send you?”
“Not unless we’re related.” That smile again, warmer, wider.
She cocked her head. Tears she’d held at bay all morning stung the corners of her eyes. She raised the back of her hand to her cheek, tightening the dress over her breast.
His gaze went there, the reflex of a man interested in more than a funeral.
She dipped her head, folded her arms, and to her own surprise, emitted a low chuckle. “I sure hope we’re not.”
His smile faltered. “Not what?” he asked dryly.
“Related.” Warmth blossomed on her cheeks, and she had to look away. It had been far too long since she’d let a man’s stray look get a rise out of her. Her mind might be on a funeral, but her body had a mind of its own.