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Guest Post and $25 Amazon Giftcard International Giveaway by Author Patricia Yager Delagrange

Monday, July 2, 2012

Inspiration behind the book:

How many times have I seen an Amber Alert on the news which ends in the child’s death? How many times have I been driving down the freeway and read about another child kidnapping in yellow lights across a billboard? How many times have watched on the news that another child has been murdered?

Too may times. ONE time is too many.

And each time this occurs I wondered how in the world do the parents make it through such a tragedy? How do they go on? How can they return to work? How can they face interacting with family and friends after their child’s death?... How do they go on living?

This question had burned in my mind for years and I wanted to write about it. People have asked me how I can write about something that’s never happened to me. I counter with: I write fiction. All fiction writers tell a story they’ve made up in their heads. But they imbue that story with their own feelings. Which is what makes a good book. And I have a wealth of feelings that I used when I wrote Moon Over Alcatraz. I have two children. I know what it’s like to love two human beings unconditionally, with no reservations. My kids often ask me, “Do you love me, mom?” And my answer is, “Always and forever.”

So I took a happily married couple, excited to have their first child, placed them in the delivery room, and had the umbilical cord wrapped around the baby’s neck, which produced a still birth.

And that’s pretty much what happened to that couple - their lift stood still. They didn’t know how to move on from there. Instead of looking to each other for solace and renewal, they turned away from each other. Both of them, unbeknownst to the other, dealt with their grief in a way that broke them apart, instead of pulling them together.

Losing a child is devastating. And each person deals with that emotional turmoil in their own particular way. I’d go so far as to say that no one can predict how they would act in that circumstance. Emotions can be unpredictable, surprising even to the person who’s experiencing them. This is what happens to Brandy and Weston. You have a difference in their emotional upheaval. One character is the mother who carried her baby to term, and the other is the father who didn’t have that same physical experience.

How you chose the cover/characters:

I chose a woman who is strong , who believes in her marriage, desires children, and loves her husband. However, losing her child was an overwhelming experience that she needed to go through and grow through, in her own time and in her own way. She progressed through the various stages of grief, from denial to final acceptance; but her husband’s grief, as is everyone’s grief, was different than his wife’s. And he didn’t allow her the time to work through the various stages of her grief. Instead of sticking by her “for better or for worse” he abandons her to work on the East coast for months, which ultimately proves to be the demise of her marriage.

I wanted the cover of my book to show a pregnant woman because the story is based on what happens to Brandy and Weston after the death of their child. Without giving too much of the story away, it has a happy ending. Brandy works through her depression and her dream of having a child and a family is never far from her mind. How she fulfills that dream is what makes up the gist of the novel.

What do I think of happily ever after endings?:

I don’t like to read books that leave me depressed. I believe your thoughts and your actions are all colored by your attitude, that you can turn most bad situations around and find a lesson to be learned that will ultimately serve to add to your life’s happiness. That’s what I did in Moon Over Alcatraz. So, if a reader is looking to end up with a smile on his or her face, I give them that. Life is good, my father-in-law Dick used to say.

I agree with him.


“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.”


  1. Dyniy said...:

    OMG If the rest of this book is like this excerpt Ms Delagrange has one big hit on her hands. I have got to read this one and soon. My TBR list is awfully big but this is going on the top. Thanks for the great guest post and the giveaway. ;-)

  1. A very emotional excerpt. Beautifully written. I want more.


  1. Thank you for hosting Patricia today.

  1. Unknown said...:

    Wow! That excerpt got me hooked! I wanna know more! I definitely have to read this book!

    I read the post of the author and I agree with everything she said. I think she's a very passionate in everything she does especially on her writing about her beliefs and feelings.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    ladykrishna at gmail dot com

  1. Emily said...:

    This sounds really interesting. Thanks so much for sharing!

  1. Rebecca Hipworth said...:

    Thank you for the giveaway. :)

  1. Patricia said...:

    Thank you for hosting me today on my virtual blog tour. I'm loving all the comments.
    And thank you to Dynie, Lady Krishna, Emily, Marybelle, and Rebecca for commenting.
    Good luck in the contest.

  1. Shelley B said...:

    I LOVED LOVED LOVED this book! Great characters, wonderful setting, intriquing story. Patti is one of my new favorite authors...can't wait for the next one.

  1. Patricia said...:

    Wow, Shelley. Could you be my professional promotions manager? I am so happy you liked my book. This is my FIRST smile of the day.
    Thank you.

  1. Sakira said...:

    Love the excerpt. It's very heartfelt :)

    elfdrop at gmail dot com

  1. Patricia said...:

    Thank you, Sakira. Kind words are always good to hear.

  1. Karen H said...:

    OK, the line is out, the hook is set, just reel me in! All I can say is WOW, what an excerpt. Can't wait for more!

    kareninnc at gmail dot com

  1. Patricia said...:

    Thank you, Karen. These comments make my day!

  1. Anonymous said...:

    It sounds super-intense, but it's good to know there's a happy ending...


  1. Sounds really promising. Thanks for sharing!


    drinkshrunkentears at gmail dot com

  1. Patricia said...:

    Thanks for stopping by, Stephanie (and Anonymous) and leaving a comment. Yes, it definitely has a happily ever after.

  1. Jennifer said...:

    Thanks for the interview.
    jlkalman26 at gmail dot com

  1. bas1chs said...:

    Thank you so much for your post - I agree with your father-in-law (-; I think the same thing about the Amber alerts aftermath - there are lots of things I will just never understand.

    bas1chsemail at gmail dot com

  1. Now I really want to know what happens next in the book! Love the excerpt. Thanks for the giveaway!

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.
  1. I'm glad there's a happy ending despite the turmoil. Everyone needs the hope of a happy ending!

    volta2173 at sbcglobal dot net

  1. Unknown said...:

    If this excerpt is any indication of the rest of the book, it seems that this is a great thrilling read-
    Thanks for the giveaway
    email: laracilia at hotmail dot com

  1. Malvina Beatrice said...:

    Thank you for the post, hope I'll be able to read the story sounds promising.


  1. Unknown said...:

    Very emotional. Would like to read the rest
    92georgiabrown@gmail(dot) com

  1. That was such an emotional and heartfelt post. I am the same, every time a child gets hurt, I immediately think of the mother and how she would ever be able to cope with such a loss. Men and women tend to react differently to the loss of a child. They either become closer than they have ever been in their marriage or they tend to drift apart.
    This book has definitely caught my attention and interest. I cant wait to read this book.


  1. Patricia said...:

    Thank you for stopping by Georgia, Malvina, Shamara, Jennifer, Lacey, Bas, and Ann. Good luck to all of you in the contest.
    My book is available for $4.99 as an e-book.

  1. andieleah said...:

    Wow how heart wrenching

  1. Unknown said...:

    I hope that I get to read your fantastic book. It seems so heart-wrenching.

    Thank you so much!!


  1. I Soo Loved The Excerpt And I Cant Wait To Get The Book.

  1. Loving this excerpt! I need to get my hands on this book now :) Thank you for sharing!!


  1. Patricia said...:

    Thank you Tiffany, April, Brionna, Andie, and Bookie Bee for your VERY kind words. I'd love to hear your comments about the book if you end up reading it.

  1. Cathy C said...:

    i enjoyed the excerpt- sounds like a great read!

    catherine0807 at hotmail dot com

  1. G said...:

    have to know what happens!

  1. magic5905 said...:

    Sounds good, thanks for the giveaway.
    magic5905 at embarqmail dot com

  1. "One time is too many" Totally agree with you. Your book sounds great, and the excerpt.. Ok, can we get more of it? LOL Thanks!

    Lissette_125 at hotmail dot com

  1. christaj3 said...:

    I am really going to have to read this book! After my three year old son died in 2009 after battling leukemia for over a year, I found the answer to the same question you seem to have wondered about- how can a parent survive the death of their child?? All I can say is: Barely.

  1. Sena said...:

    I really want to know what happens next!!!
    sena.sagani at gmail dot com

  1. Alba said...:

    oh my GOD! this sounds JUST like my kind of read!! I stand up and applaud you for taking a risk at writing about something so sad yet so real... and because I just AM DYING to read it I won't read the excerpt... that's what happens to me when I just NEED a book :D

    Thanks for the giveaway too, but seriously...thanks for writing the book!


  1. Thank you for a superb giveaway. Keep on writing!

  1. Sounds so interesting!!

    ejhtan @ gmail . com

  1. Unknown said...:

    With all the medical miracles, there are still too many infant deaths, it seems to me, and yes one is too many. Thank you for daring to bring this story to your readers. i loved the post, and thanks for the chance to win.

    marianne dot wanham at gmail dot com

  1. "How many times have I seen an Amber Alert on the news which ends in the child’s death? How many times have I been driving down the freeway and read about another child kidnapping in yellow lights across a billboard? How many times have watched on the news that another child has been murdered?

    Too may times. ONE time is too many."

    I read these words, and I knew, beyond a doubt that I'm reading whatever this author is writing! You are absolutely right, author Delagrange - couldn't agree more. Being in the medical field, I've seen couples deal with their grief over a stillbirth, or a spontaneous abortion, or an abruptio placenta...and it is difficult to even observe the dynamic, I can not even fathom what it must feel to go through it.

    Thank you about writing about subjects that bring awareness, and explore intricate subjects like love and grief. I'd LOVE to read this book. Thank you SO much for the giveaway opportunity.

    Name: Hira Hasnain
    Email: Enamoredsoul(at)gmail(dot)com

  1. Ramisa R. said...:

    Beautiful writing! Absolutely beautiful. ♥

    Remy @

  1. Nancy said...:

    Can imagine what this scenario would do to any parent. I'd like to read this. Thanks.

  1. Unknown said...:

    Love how you found the inspiration for the book!! and I love the excerpt!

  1. Munnaza said...:

    I really enjoyed the excerpt. Thank you again for the giveaway!

  1. Unknown said...:
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  1. Unknown said...:

    Wow that excerpt was amazing, it definitely made me want to read the book...I'm still wondering if Carol was the secretary or not. Anyways, thanks for the giveaway! :)

  1. Kendra said...:

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  1. Suz Reads said...:

    I just heard an Amber Alert recently and I agree with your comments of wondering how the family is feeling and how they cope. Thanks for writing this book and exploring that idea!

    susanw28 (at) mindspring (dot) com

  1. Sayomay said...:

    Def on my TBR list!
    thank u for the giveaway!

  1. I agree with Dick- today is a good day! And I don't like to ruin it with sad endings- I like the HEA;s.

    jill.watkins (at)

  1. Evie said...:

    Another wonderful book that I have discovered here today thanks to you posting about it! :)

    This one sounds like a very poignant and harrowing read (LOVE those!), and one with a really interesting plot line. I loved reading about the author's inspiration behind the book - it's always so interesting to learn what inspired a book, how the idea came to life and how it was executed!

    I also really like the cover. i think going with a pregnant woman was an excellent choice, it gave us a good idea of what we can expect from the book. Love it!

    Thank you for the fantastic post!

    evieseo at gmail com

  1. Unknown said...:

    This book sounds really good. Thanks for the chance!
    amandarwest atgmaildotcom

  1. This book sounds awesome! Thank you for sharing and for the giveaway. :)
    Love, Carina

  1. katayoun said...:

    losing a child is a worst thing that can happen to any parents and i can see how people deal with such a tragedy, how they try to stay sane, go on and also not lose each other can make an interesting read and it's sooooo good to know that it's one with a happy ending

  1. Anonymous said...:

    It's a horrible tragedy and has to be unbearable for a parent.

  1. Andra said...:

    I have great respect for writers who bring up difficult subjects in their books - as losing a child.

    heartstick (at) hotmail (dot) com

  1. Isa said...:

    This sounds like a realistic and emotional read, I know a family who lost one of their children and it has ripped the family apart, similar to what is described by the author. I loved reading the excerpt, it definitely has me interested and I like that it has a happy ending. :)


  1. Lilian said...:

    Fortunately, I don't know anyone who has lost a child. And I am sure the pain must be great, and I can only begin to understand that grief vicariously through novels.

    Lilian @ A Novel Toybox

  1. Darlene said...:

    The book sounds like it would be emotionally riveting. Thanks for the giveaway!

    darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com

  1. Carol M said...:

    I can't wait to read this! It sounds really good!
    mittens0831 at aol dot com

  1. Lisa said...:


    lhoffpauir at gmail

  1. missymyt said...:

    sounds good!

    missymyt (at) hotmail (dot) com

  1. I like happily ever after books, but sometimes I love a book that gives me a good cry so that can be good too lol
    roswello at hotmail dot com

  1. Thank you! :)
    holliister at gmail dot com

  1. Emmanuelle said...:

    I would love to win this! I've got nearly 50 books on my wishlist on Amazon!

  1. Wow! Love the excerpt and now I want to read it!

  1. Thanks for the chance to win!

  1. can't wait to read the rest of the book!!

  1. Unknown said...:

    Oh my that excerpt was amazing I can not wait to read this book! Thanks for the chance to win!

  1. Unknown said...:

    The emotions the author speaks of are something everyone can relate to.

  1. This sounds really good Thank you for sharing and for the great giveaway!
    Latisha D

  1. Unknown said...:

    I have to have a HEA.

  1. Kia89 said...:

    This sounds really interesting.

  1. peg42 said...:

    This book really sounds so interesting and emotional. What a hard subject this must have been to write about.
    Thanks so much for this giveaway.

  1. Kathy said...:

    This looks like a book I'd enjoy!

  1. Jane said...:

    Thanks for the giveaway. I have a friend who would love this book.
    jcottey at aol dot com

  1. Ann Fantom said...:

    This book sounds very interesting, and I like to read it.

    abfantom at yahoo dot com

  1. thank you so much for the giveaway! it sounds like a great book!


  1. Daniel M said...:

    sounds like a good one, thanks for the giveaway! - regnod(at)yahoo(d0t)com

  1. susan1215 said...:

    This sounds like a great book that I would be intererested in

    s2s2 at comcast dot net

  1. Anonymous said...:

    Sounds very interestiung.

  1. Rebecca Kingston said...:

    Great giveaway :)

  1. This sounds like a great book! Thank you for the giveaway! Here's my email address

    Gabby @ What's Beyond Forks?

  1. Cayce said...:

    Moon Over Alcatraz, what a great title!
    I love HEA very much, so this book sounds like my kind of book :)

    cayce006 at yahoo dot com

  1. What a teaser! I have got to read this book!
    BookJunkieMom (dot blogspot dot com) @ Rainy Day Reviews

  1. slehan said...:

    I admit that I like to come away from a book feeling better. I've learned that I do not do well with tragic endings so I'm glad to hear that you believe in happy endings.
    Thanks for the contest.

    slehan at juno dot com

  1. Sounds like a book that would make me bawl my eyes out. I think that everyone needs a good cry every once in a while though and I love when a book can move you that way

    megnate at telus dot net

  1. Sounds like an emotional read.

    niteofblu at gmail dot com

  1. This sounds really intense and the guest post was great.


  1. Unknown said...:

    A really compelling excerpt. Sounds like my type of story.


  1. Lili said...:

    I like how her inspiration came from a real life experience, though it is an unfortunate one. I also like how people can't believe she can write about something she hasn't experienced herself, but her response is "I write fiction!" She writes a story from how she thinks it'll be.

  1. Violette said...:

    This sounds like a truly heart-breaking story, and one that would certainly tear at my heartstrings.

    Thank you for sharing!

    violettewaits at gmail dot com

  1. Unknown said...:

    I didn't read the excerpt but the rest of the post made me have chills. I have 4 children and couldn't imagine life without them.

  1. Just reading this interview I got goosebumps on my skin. In my country kidnapping isn`t very common, but sometimes there are news on Tv about kidnapped or murdered kids and that really makes me sad


  1. Nancy said...:

    Difficult story to read, I'm certain.

  1. Rachel said...:

    I don't like unhappy endings either. When I read books, they should make people HAPPY. At least that's what I like, lol.

  1. Julie S said...:

    Wow this sounds like a really painful experience. I certainly don't think I could read a book like this that didn't have some sort of happy ending.

  1. Thanks for sharing about this really hard experience. And thanks for the giveaway.

  1. ann said...:

    Sounds like a book I would enjoy - have a great day

  1. Jessica said...:

    great giveaway! and the book sounds great!

  1. Mary ann said...:

    "Ouch!" The excerpt seems to said it all. I think this book will make readers cry and realize some things.

    Thanks for the giveaway.<3

  1. This book sounds like a real tear jerker. Having lost a son at the age of 8 I can probably relate to this. Also my son was born with the umbilical cord around his neck but he lived. Thanks for the giveaway. Gale

  1. Anonymous said...:

    Thank you for the awesome giveaway! Looks interesting zzfoxfire@msnDOTcom

  1. Heather said...:

    The book will make people cry and notice finally!

  1. Jeryl M. said...:

    Sounds like a good book. I'd like to read it.

  1. Rachel said...:

    Forgot to post my email!! it's


  1. I lost my mom a few years back and that was hard it must be 100x as difficult losing your child.

  1. Kw mccabe said...:

    This book sounds awesome. I wanted to write a story about a kidnapped child also, I actually wrote 2-3 chapters, but got caught up writing other things so I haven't finished it. I should finish it--it was sort of like a mystery.

  1. Anonymous said...:

    I am also a fan of happily ever afters.

  1. Vicki said...:

    How did I miss this book? What a sad but interesting story!

  1. Kristen said...:

    Wow, sounds like an exciting novel. Thanks!

    dragonzgoil at gmail dot com

  1. Unknown said...:
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  1. Unknown said...:

    This novel sounds quite intersting. I beleive many mothers and fathers a like would probably be able to relate easily to this. The excerpt is fantastic great job!

    rcenosonwhrcenoso at gmail dot com

  1. Wow! Tough topic. I have a rough time reading about stuff like this. My oldest now 5 Almost died at 9 months old. But I do see where this is a great book. Thank you for the giveaway! <3
    tobihelton at gmail dot com

  1. Gigi said...:

    A need to read moreeeeee!! Please I need to know what is going to happend next! Pretty good excerpt!


  1. Thanks for the giveaway and excerpt! :D


  1. Natalie said...:

    I could never read this book because the topic is too close to home. I'm sure it is wonderful though.

  1. I love hearing about inspirtaions behind books. Great guest post and excerpt!

    TY for the giveaway!

  1. Anonymous said...:

    Sounds good! Thanks!

  1. Unknown said...:

    I agree! I love happy endings! I try to avoid depressing books. I want inspiration. Turn something bad into something good.

  1. Kara D. said...:

    Great excerpt. For whatever reason, I tend to be attracted to depressing books with sad endings. Perhaps I'm a bit cynical of happy endings.


  1. I don't know how people deal with the loss of a child either, it must be terrible!
    I much prefer books with happy endings too, I hate reading things that make me miserable!
    book sounds fab from the excerpt :)

  1. Unknown said...:

    That's quite the excerpt! And even if I mainly read YA I may make an exception for this dramatic book! Or at least. O see what happens after that scene...

  1. Sounds pretty cool. Thanks for the giveaway.

  1. Liese2 said...:

    this sounds like a very interesting read. It deals with something every mother is terrified of. Thanks for the info, and this is going on my TBR list!

  1. wow sounds really cool! I'll read it :)

  1. London Judge said...:

    Thanks for the giveaway :)

  1. Unknown said...:

    Thanks for the chance to win!

  1. Unknown said...:

    This book sounds like it would take you on a roller coaster of emotions. Thanks for the giveaway!

    snhoveln At gmail Dot com

  1. Inguze said...:

    Would love to win!

  1. samantha said...:

    wow that was a great excerpt. I want to read the rest!

  1. a chance to win is awesome