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September 2018: Favorite Heroine
~ Beth Hale ~

CTR asked:
QUESTION: Of your published titles to date, which heroine is your favorite and why?

Beth Hale said:
My favorite heroine to date is Lainey from Magnolia Secrets. Even though she’s in an abusive marriage, her spirit isn’t broken. She is a strong, courageous woman who has her reasons for staying. Those reasons are explained in the book.

I somewhat patterned Lainey after my own mother. She remained in an abusive marriage until my father’s death. Mama put up with years of verbal, mental, emotional, and physical abuse. She never publicly complained or filed charges. What she did do was hold her head high, take care of three children—one with special needs—and hold down a job while making sure the house was clean and supper was on the table.

I am not condoning my mother’s decision to stay. I think the older generation tends to see it as a “This is my problem, not yours, and I have to live with it” kind of mentality, especially here in the South. I will, however, say that my mother is one of the strongest, kindest women I have ever known.

My decision to pattern Lainey after my mother was a conscious one. I wanted a heroine that a lot of women could identify with, one who was flawed but with strong convictions. The choice to set the book in a small Mississippi town was easy to make, as was the choice to make her the wife of a cop.

I know abuse is often never reported, especially when the victim is the wife (or husband) of someone in law enforcement. I wanted to show Lainey in this position, in an effort to bring more attention to this problem. People may know but don’t intervene, because they don’t want to bring trouble to their own doorstep.

Lainey’s strength, courage, and dedication to those around her are what drives her decisions. Her beauty, while there, is a secondary factor in most of the book. I wanted to portray her as more than a pretty face. From the feedback of my readers, I think I succeeded.


Magnolia Secrets by Beth Hale cover

Magnolia Secrets

[Small Town Contemporary Romantic Suspense]

Sometimes small towns have the biggest secrets . . .

After an explosive night of passion, Walker awakens the following morning . . . alone.

Shrugging off their obvious connection as a glorious one-night stand, he accepts a position in a small rural town.

That’s when things get interesting.

The woman he can’t forget just happens to live in the same town. She is also married to the Chief of Police . . . and his new boss.

Lainey is terrified Walker will divulge their secret, but despite the danger, she can’t forget the passionate night she spent in his arms.

Drawn together by undeniable attraction, they risk their lives to seek answers to questions no one is willing to ask. Can they expose the sleepy town’s hidden secrets before a ruthless man destroys their hope of a brighter future?

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