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Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Spotlight on Patti Lacy and An Irishwoman's Tale


PATTI LACY, a displaced Southerner, has lived in the Midwest for thirteen years. In 2005, she resigned her community college teaching position and started writing full-time. An Irishwoman's Tale, her first novel, released in August 2008 and is selling in the United States and overseas, including Hong Kong, Japan, Great Britain, Canada, Australia, Sweden, and Norway. Her second novel, which digs deep into a murky Louisiana bayou to uncover long-buried secrets, will release in spring or summer of 2009. Patti is married and has two wonderful adult children and a dog named Laura.

Her book is sold at many fine retail outlets, including Barnes & Noble and Parable Christian stores, and most online bookstores.

by Patti Lacy
Published by Kregel Publications


A shattered cup. Cheap tea. Bitter voices asking what’s to be done with the little eejit. Mary, an impetuous Irishwoman, won't face the haunting memories—until her daughter's crisis propels her back to County Clare. As Mary unearths horrible secrets, God reveals a way for her to bury a dysfunctional past

Buy Your Copy of An Irishwoman's Tale Today!


1. What gave you the inspiration for this story?

In 1995, God yanked our family from our warm Southern porch and dumped us in the cold Midwest. To fight loneliness, I started a book discussion group. After one of the meetings, "Mary," a striking red-haired woman, paced up and down while I picked at the hors d'oeuvres I'd spent days baking. She made me nervous, and when I get nervous, I talk.

In the midst of a monologue about my children, Mary turned to me, her eyes narrowed to slits. "What is your first memory?" she asked.

"I don't know." I shrugged. "I've never really had to think about it."

"How pretty, not to think about it." Her eyes glazed, as if she were far away. "My first memory's been burned into me. Moon-shaped faces, guzzling bitter tea, asking what's to be done with the little eejit."

"How awful!" I took her arm and guided her out the door to our comfortable front porch chairs.

"Yes," she said in a monotone. "But it's what happened next that's really awful."

Hours later, I'd been gifted with a wonderful story of redemption in spite of not one but two dysfunctional homes. In 2005, I wrote my first draft of An Irishwoman's Tale.

2. How much of your own experiences influenced your characters? What aspects became traits that are theirs and theirs alone?

Since this book follows the life of Mary, my brave best friend, I didn't have to add much to her personality to create an engaging character. Sally, the secondary protagonist, has my propensity to embellish the truth and my chatty nature. We both crave chocolate and can hit a halfway decent backhand. Old Sally quickly developed empathy for Mary, which I might be reticent to do, and she lavishes love a bit more generously than I do.

3. If one of your characters were an ice cream flavor, what he/she be and why?

Poor Mary doesn't eat sweets! Can you imagine? If she did, I'll bet she'd choose pistachio nut because she loves the color green AND loves nuts. But Sally would eat every flavour and slosh hot fudge sauce and then nuts on the top of her sundae.

4. What themes exist in An Irishwoman's Tale that you hope the reader sees? Are there any themes that weren't overt but developed as the story progressed?

Romans 8:28: God works for good in the lives of those who love Him, who calls on His name. In spite of Mary's shattered and dysfunctional life, God crafted all the broken pieces into a dazzling work of art.

As the novel moved toward the climax on Ireland's storied Croagh Patrick, Mary seized the opportunity to live out 2 Corinthians 1:4, to comfort others with the comfort she has received from God.

5. What were your most difficult parts to write? Your favorite?

Mary's rejection by her mothers. Since my family spread love as thick as wallpaper paste, it was hard to get the emotion right in those scenes.

I loved trying to capture mystical Ireland on paper! When everyone was awake, I cranked up my CD player and let Liam Lawton's and Eden's Bridge music wash over me.

6. When is your next book coming out and what is the story?

April of 2009. The great Kregel team's working now on the title! Probably something about a bayou and secrets!

In 1960s Louisiana, segregation and a chain link fence separated twelve-year-old Sally Flowers from her best friend, Ella Ward. Yet a brutal rape and a blood oath bound them together.

Forty years later, when a community college student is raped, Sally must decide whether to dredge up childhood secrets long buried beneath bayou waters in order to help the young black woman she's grown to love.

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Thank you, Patti, for being in the spotlight with us.

Readers, leave a comment for your chance to win a FREE autographed copy of An Irishwoman's Tale.

If you wish to comment but don't want to be entered, say so when you post. Make sure you also leave your email address (name at domainname Wouldn't want you to miss out on winning a book. :)

And if you want to make certain you don't miss anything, check the box that says 'email follow-up comments to:' when you leave a comment and they'll be sent to the email address associated with your blogging account. That way you'll be notified of any comments and will know when I announce the winner.

This week, the contest is open to anyone worldwide.

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Stormi said...

Would love to win this book, I have heard a lot about it.


ladystorm282001 at yahoo dot com

haras w said...

sounds like a really great book. please enter my name in the draw.
sarahwoll at hotmail dot com

windycindy said...

I enjoy reading books that are written about other countries and their culture. Please enter me in your drawing. I always appreciate it! Thanks, Cindi

Julie Lessman said...

Patti and Tiff -- what a great interview!! So much fun to learn more about you, Patti!

I am thrilled to say that I have already read An Irishwoman's Tale (so don't enter me in the drawing), and it is one of the best women's fiction I have ever read (if not THE best!). The deeply stirring characters and richly hued settings are STILL haunting me!

Patti Lacy said...

You special women
Thanks for the nice comments! Y'all have made a 53-year-old from Normal feel pretty special. And on a cold, rainy day, that's manna from heaven!

Be sure to give Tiff a hand--or maybe a few taps on your computer keyes...

biffyjn said...

Looks like a great book. I can't wait to read it. Please enter me in the drawing.

tetewa said...

Thanks for introducing me to yet another new author, sounds good!

Tiffany Amber Stockton said...

We have a winner from this drawing and that is:


Congratulations! I've sent your mailing information to Patti so she can send out your book.

Also, check out the interviews on Kristin Billerbeck and Ramona Richards to see if you've won.

As always, thanks to everyone for your continued support.