Allow me to introduce, Celia Kennedy, the author of Venus Rising and Charlotte's Restrained. Today we get a look at what books have inspired her and remained with her throughout the years.
Celia Kennedy was born in Wurzburg, Germany on an American Army base. Her parents' penchant for traveling the world, via a Volkswagen Minibus with a Porsche engine, sparked her imagination. Staring out the window, sometimes through fog and rain, at other times at sunny blue skies, she began to make up stories for the places and spaces they passed by. The in-between time, the most fascinating to her.
The imagined world has always fascinated Celia. She has studied Landscape Architecture, Architecture, Interior Design, and pretty much every other subject matter. Like her childhood, it was the ride that was the most entertaining, arrival at a degree, not anywhere as important.
Mark Twain said, "Write what you know." When combining this concept with her unusual life experiences (working at a nuclear submarine base when Chernobyl blew, testing software Bill Gates kept close tabs on, travelling extensively while quite broke, or falling in love with her boyfriend's close friend) thinking of what to write about isn't challenging; there just needs to be more hours in the day.
Celia published Charlotte's Restrained, The Accidental Stalker in December of 2012 and Venus Rising in August of 2013. Look for Kathleen's Undressed, The Accidental Enigma, a companion novel to Charlotte's Restrained, to be published in November 2014.
Top 10 Favorite Authors:
"This is based upon who I’ve read, not who I know!!"
- Celia Kennedy
1) Jane Austen – Feminist, idealist, tongue-in-cheek, perfection!
2) Kate Chopin – The Awakening was my first taste of adult sorrow’s in literature.
3) Suzanne Collins – Chills when I think of her creativity and storytelling.
4) Marian Keyes – To laugh and cry at the same time is perfection!
5) Phillipa Gregory – Only author to make English history make sense.
6) Amy Tan – Genius at tranporting into another cultures folklore and traditions
7) Iain Pears – Hurt my brain in a good way writer.
8) Derek Van Arman – Scariest book I’ve ever read that I thoroughly enjoyed.
9) John Steinbeck – The Painted Pony… I will never recover!
10) Mark Twain – Wit, smarts, dialog and descriptive narrative genius! Oh, the banter!!
Now, let's take a look at the book Celia Kennedy is currently touring, Venus Rising.
Akshaya Bertrand, an exotic beauty from India, is also a Professor of Art History at an elite small college in New England. The patina of the Ivy League campus is the perfect canvas for the exotic beauty from India. It is also an environment that she can navigate safely. A small world that she can minimize, make manageable.
Dr. Jared Harrison, a journalist who's been based in the Middle East, accepts a position as a guest lecturer at this exclusive college. Having just left India, Jared arrives barely in time to set up office on campus. Attending a faculty mixer as the semester begins, he catches glimpse of Akshaya Bertrand. Immediately, he learns from those who have tried and failed, that the beautiful professor is an enigma. Proclaimed to rival Lakshmi, Venus, and Aphrodite, she is a seductive piece of sculpture behind a wall of glass.
Whilst searching for a way to slip past her armor and into her life, Jared confronts the images and tragedies of the people affected by the war torn world of the Middle East. The two find themselves drawn to each other, sensing the depth of the each other's scars and compassion. While these traits serve to bond them, they must also walk the precarious path of letting each other heal.
Funding from the college provides an opportunity to combine Akshaya’s love of art and Jared’s skill as a war correspondent. They travel to Afghanistan and India for work, and it is here that both finally face the past that has shaped them and the present that defines them. Amongst beauty and poverty as well as war and friendship they find the answers to their individual truths.