Secret Winter Garden giveaway--hush: don't tell

Monday, January 3, 2011

Happy New Year to all my friends on the firefly blog!


Now, that I'm done with that, I know what you're thinking: I've been gone too long. What can I say? You're absolutely right. These past few months have been a real roller coaster ride. As many of you know, my son came home for Thanksgiving, and as always, we had a great time together. This year was a big one at my table--lots of cousins, aunts and uncles, and friends. I was especially happy to host my brother and his family (whom I adore). All of that cooking and shopping and table-setting paid off big time. For those of you who are interested, I stumbled across a KILLER sweet potato recipe. If you're interested, I'll be happy to share.

Then, of course, in the blink of an eye, it was December. You know what that means: the holidays. More cooking, cleaning, shopping, wrapping, and planning. My immediate family spent the holiday--as usual--skiing in Northern Idaho. The weather was flawless--bluebird skies, feet of new snow, and short lift lines. We had an absolute dream of a time. The only problem was that I spent most of the week trying to keep up with my twenty-three year old son (until his friends showed up en masse). I don't know if you've ever tried to ski all day (and I do mean all day) with a twenty-three year old who got new skiis for Christmas, but I can tell you it is HARD work. One steep black diamond run after another. I would just catch up with him and he would take off again.

Advil became my best friend.

Finally, his friends showed up and my role changed. I didn't have to keep up with the kids anymore, I just had to feed them. And feed them. And feed them. And oh yeah, mom, Ryan is a vegetarian. :) What can I say? It was crazy and madcap and I loved every minute.

Now, though, the holidays are over, and life is coming slowly (or not so slowly) back to normal. We are home again (nice title, don't you think?), our son is flying back to sunny So Cal even as we speak, and I have control of the remote again. :) I am back to work, writing. Or, well...kind of writing. I'm actually editing. I read the 150 pages I had written (the fourth draft) of the book for 2012, decided it was BORING, and threw most of it away. So, yes, I'm starting again. Sigh.

The biggest news is that Winter Garden is finally coming out in trade paperback. I'm really excited about this, because I know how many readers--and book clubs--have been waiting for this day as much as I have. As you know, I talk to book clubs via speakerphone, and I can't wait to start hearing from clubs who have chosen Winter Garden in paperback. Don't be shy.

And now, for the secret part of this blog. I do a lot on facebook these days, but this blog will always have my heart, so here it is: a secret giveaway. On January 6th, I will give away a signed copy of Winter Garden to someone who comments on this blog. I will close my eyes, pick a number and choose one of you to win a copy of the book. Good luck!



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just read about your writing in the Costco Connection and can't wait to read your books! I'm an avid reader and am setting up a book club, so maybe we'll hear from you one day!

I'd love to "win" your newest book.

January 4, 2011 at 12:23 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

Sounds like a wonderful Christmas!

January 4, 2011 at 12:34 AM  
Blogger smorseburg said...

Kristin, I can't wait to read this book! I just finished True Colors and couldn't put it down! I am a huge fan and can't wait to see where you take me next!!!

January 4, 2011 at 2:25 AM  
Blogger princessapr said...

I haven't skied all day since I was a kid. Plus, we ski western Maryland so it's not a huge, challenging mountain. My parents have a ski in/ski out house. We skied a couple of hours over Christmas, but part of that time was spent introducing Little Miss to skis (video on my blog - Christmas was still a zoo with parents, aunt/uncle and 2 teenage boy cousins, sister and nephew and the 3 of us. The boy had a bad gall bladder attack all Christmas and just had surgery yesterday. So, it's been a little hectic with us trying to take care of him and Little Miss but the parents and inlaws have been helping.

Looking forward to 2011 as lots of good books are coming out!

January 4, 2011 at 10:09 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Thank you for the chance to win Winter Garden signed by you personally! I have truly enjoyed each of the books I have been able to find by you. I started with True Colors (still one of my fav's) and can't get enough.

Happy New Year to you and your family!

January 4, 2011 at 11:10 AM  
Blogger Amy Jo said...

I'm a high school English teacher, and many of my students can't get enough of your books. I'd love to win a copy for my classroom library. Have a great New Year!

January 4, 2011 at 11:43 AM  
Anonymous Lynn said...

Happy New Year!!

I'm sure I speak for many when I say we'd love the killer sweet potato recipe.

Your trip sounds great. I wouldn't be able to keep up and I used to ski a lot. Now, I'm quite nervous about breaking a limb or worse. I'm sure I'd be so sore.

What is everyone reading? Currently, I am reading Elizabeth Street and I cannot put it down, yet I don't want it to end...a sign of a great book.

January 4, 2011 at 12:23 PM  
Blogger Holly H. said...

Kristin!! I am reading Winter Garden right now, and I am truly amazed at how you can consume me in a book! The first book I read of yours was Firefly Lane a few years ago. It to this day is still my favorite of all the novels I've ever read. I love when you go back in time and write with such fun detail. Thank you for taking me to different emotional places when I read your work. You let me leave my world behind for a while... which is a good thing sometimes when you have a 15 and 12 year old. :) Have a great 2011, and I look forward to your "not so boring" 2012 book!

January 4, 2011 at 12:51 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

You have a real talent for capturing and holding the readers attention and following it through to the end. I'm currently reading Magic Hour, and have read most of your other books. I too live in the Pacific Northwest and love it as much as you do. Thank you for all you do.

Carol from Chehalis

January 4, 2011 at 1:37 PM  
Blogger {Stephanie}The Drama Mama said...

I'm glad you had a great holiday. I just finished your Comfort & Joy, and WOW. You blew me away. I absolutely LOVED the twist you threw in there. I can't wait to read Winter Garden!!

January 4, 2011 at 1:40 PM  
Blogger avalen said...

I've read all of your books and can't wait to read Night Road. I would love a signed copy of Winter Garden.

January 4, 2011 at 1:46 PM  
Blogger Gayle Gardner Lin said...

I would love to win a copy of this book, but if I don't, it's still at the top of my "to read" list.

January 4, 2011 at 2:28 PM  
Blogger jopmav said...

I would love to win a signed copy of this book.

January 4, 2011 at 7:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't wait to read Night Road!! I love your books!!

January 4, 2011 at 7:52 PM  
Anonymous Kristin said...

Hi Kristin -- I keep up with you mostly on FB, but love to check out your site too. Looking forward to reading "Night Road". 2010 I made my way thru all your books, except "Comfort and Joy", so now I need to wait! Ciao!

January 4, 2011 at 11:31 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

I'm so glad to hear your holiday season seemed to go so well! I can't wait to go out and get Winter Garden, but now I have to wait until January 6th ;-).
Very excited aobut the 2011 and 2012 novels!

-Erin :)

January 4, 2011 at 11:33 PM  
Blogger Jessika said...

I just finished reading Winter Garden and fell madly in love with it!!

Can't wait for your new one!!

January 4, 2011 at 11:55 PM  
Blogger jackiero said...

Ohh, I am a very good secret keeper :) My eyeballs would enjoy, actually be thrilled, to read your Winter Garden.
:) Jackie in NC

January 5, 2011 at 11:34 AM  
Anonymous donna said...

I loved Winter Garden and would love to win a copy that I could gift to a friend. Looking forward to reading your next book. Don't forget about us on your blog!
All the best for the New Year,

January 5, 2011 at 11:47 AM  
Blogger Lowell and Son said...

Wow, I would love to win a signed copy of your book. I have not read any of your books yet but look forward to starting on them. I have read many nice things about your writing...

Thanks to having a Kindle on the way to me I have been immersing myself in the world of books online and stumbled upon your name on Goodreads. I have added your books to my to-read list and my Amazon wish list.


January 5, 2011 at 12:17 PM  
Blogger cynthia "pete" hall said...

i just finished reading winter garden. so, of course, i am sending this through my tears. to say that your book moved me would not be enough. it changed something. i have been married to my husband for twenty years, best friends for thirty. when he came home last evening it was like i was seeing him for the first time again. the power of the written word. words matter.

January 5, 2011 at 1:22 PM  
Blogger VanillaBean said...

I just finished listening to Winter Garden on audio and would love to have a signed copy of your book for my library. Cannot wait for the next book!

Thank you for your writing,

January 5, 2011 at 2:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was fortunate to win an Advanced Readers' Copy of your book "Night Road" and could not put that book down!

That was the first of your books that I've been introduced to so far, and I would love to win "Winter Garden".

January 5, 2011 at 3:44 PM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Ooh, me me me!!! Thanks for the chance to win. You're amazing and I'm excited for more great works from you!

January 5, 2011 at 4:08 PM  
Anonymous Danielle Brookson said...

Kristin, I love your writing style. I just found you as one of my new favorite authors and I can NOT put your books down.
Thank you for writing.
Danielle Brookson

January 5, 2011 at 8:12 PM  
Anonymous Nakeisha Atkins said...

I love reading your books. I have been looking forward to Winter Garden and would love to win it.

January 6, 2011 at 3:50 PM  
Anonymous Angela Michaliga said...

I absolutely can not wait for your next book and to finally meet you on your book tour! :-)

January 6, 2011 at 5:45 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

Hi everyone!!! The winner of the double secret winter garden giveaway is...JESSIKA. (I closed my eyes, picked a number and chose the corresponding entry). Congratulations, Jessika. Contact Kim Fisk for details. :)

Don't forget: Night Road Giveway coming soon...

January 6, 2011 at 8:52 PM  
Blogger kristijrn said...

Family time is always fun and I love when my kids are here and their friends come over too..Best times ever!! Glad you had a good time.

January 6, 2011 at 8:57 PM  
Anonymous Connie Roution said...

Sounds like you had a great time Kristin! :)

January 6, 2011 at 9:01 PM  
Blogger Michele said...

I loved reading about your holiday adventures. My son is away at college too and I love the time we can spend together. We spent Christmas in Lake Placid, NY and loved it. It was my first time seeing snow and it my expectations were exceeded. I was too afraid to ski, but I did take a bobsled ride and a trip on the lake on a dog sled. I was thrilled to be in the middle of a frozen lake. I loved reading Winter Garden and would love to read it again!

January 6, 2011 at 9:11 PM  
Anonymous Teresa Kincer said...

I have to say my all time fave book is Winter garden! Thanks for a great story.

January 6, 2011 at 9:12 PM  
Anonymous Pat Valenti said...


So glad to hear you had a fun vacation and holiday season with your family. We're in beautiful Kaneohe, Hawaii, so skiing was not in our plans!!

I'm almost finished with Summer it as I do all of your books.

Come back to Hawaii when you have a chance!


Pat Valenti

January 6, 2011 at 9:14 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I would really love your sweet potato recipe! Please share! I always host Thanksgiving at my houst on the Saturday before the holiday and I cook everything but the Turkey...that's my husband's job! I'm glad you enjoyed the holidays. I'm currently reading Once in Every Life and I was hooked from the very beginning...can't wait to see what happens with this family. Hope you have a great evening! Brenda

January 6, 2011 at 9:19 PM  
Blogger Nickname unavailable said...

I love your blog. My daughter just started a blog 2 months ago. Fun things to do and places to go with your children.

January 6, 2011 at 9:21 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Hi Kristin,

I have been reading your books for a few years now and have enjoyed every one of them. I have introduced my sister to you and she also enjoys them. I am in the process of reading Winter Garden which i have borrowed from the library but would love to have a signed copy by you if i am the lucky one. I can't wait for the next book to come out. I am glad that you had a very good holiday with your family and friends. That is what the holidays are all about. I am following you on Facebook which is wonderful so i will know what you are working on.

Thank you for many years of wonderful reading.

Annie Gannon

January 6, 2011 at 9:34 PM  
Blogger keizerfire said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful time! I love being with my grown kids, and often their friends. It touches a place in my heart that my children like to be with me and that we are friends aside from being family. Hope the new year is equally as wonderful coming up, for you. As for me, I am getting a new grandbaby in July, from my son who has been married 10 years - this is their first!

January 6, 2011 at 9:37 PM  
Anonymous Denise Strudthoff said...

Sounds like a great Christmas. I don't downhill ski; but we just bought XC skis for each other for Christmas; so looking forward to the snow.

January 6, 2011 at 9:48 PM  
Blogger Patricia T. said...

Congratulations Jessika!

I've been checking for a new post for a long time, and can't believe I missed this post on Monday.

Kristin -- Glad you had a wonderful holiday season with family and friends. Boy has this blog now grown! Would love to know what "Room" is about if that's you favorite pick this year.

LOL when I read you tossed your manuscript out because it was boring! Author Caroline Myss deleted a complete book she'd written, her editor nearly had a heart attack, and what she ended up writing turned out to be one of the her most important books --"Entering the Castle."

So, I expect that will happen for you.

Hope to finally meet you in the New Year! So many good things going on in my life!

Wishing everyone a happy, healthy New Year!

Patricia T.

January 6, 2011 at 10:12 PM  
Anonymous LisaL said...

Would LOVE the sweet potato recipe! Post it? So glad you had a wonderful holiday too!

January 6, 2011 at 10:17 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I loved reading your blog! Sounds like you had a wonderful holiday! I am an avid fan of your books and love your Facebook page!

Lisa Jankowski

January 6, 2011 at 10:23 PM  
Anonymous Betty Savage said...

Winter Garden is one of my top five favorite books for 2010! Thank you for yet another great well as a historical learning experience.

January 6, 2011 at 10:25 PM  
Blogger Wendy Buhler said...

I discovered your writing last February. I read True Colors and within a month I had bought all the rest of your books and finished those that month as well. Amazing writing!

January 6, 2011 at 10:43 PM  
Anonymous Mary Jo said...

Well here I am trying to figure out how to attempt my 1st BLOG! I was searing your website for the 1st time looking for what book I would like to read next and saw that you wre giving one free to one lucky person today, January 6th - Now I see that you already picked a name and in Massachusetts it is still Jan 6th @ 11:19 PM, so I thought I would have had a chance!! I have read three of your books now and looking for my 4th, I just finished Mystic Lake and loved it as well as Firefly Lane and True Colors. I have never read so much and from one author - looking forward to starting my next. Would love your sweet potato recipe...great website and I'll check in again. ~ Mary Jo

January 6, 2011 at 11:24 PM  
Blogger rbooth43 said...

I just received a Kindle and would love to win Winter Garden.

January 7, 2011 at 1:56 AM  
Blogger Stacey said...

I would love a chance to win, thanks. glad to hear your holidays were nice, mine were spent sick, now is recovery.
ps a good book is just the cure.


January 7, 2011 at 5:53 AM  
Blogger Jessika said...

Thanks so much Kristin!!

But how do I contact Kim Fisk?

:) :) :) :) :) :)


January 7, 2011 at 10:09 AM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

GRRR!! I missed it AGAIN :) Ok, I need your Killer Sweet Potato recipe... And BTW, I'm catching up with your faves of 2010... especally ROOM. Can't wait, can't wait!!

To tell everyone what happened at a Christmas party I went to:
I know Kristin already knows this. I gave away Firefly Lane and my friends informed me that they hardly read. So I say, what kind of friends are THESE???

And then I saw this movie on Lifetime. There was a woman with a fiance Ben and a boss named Tucker who was interested in her, as well as a niece named Kristen. Yeah, it's spelled wrong, but how cool is that? LOL

Hope you're all enjoying January and see you in a little bit. Kristin, hope I finally get to meet you this year.

January 7, 2011 at 3:20 PM  
Blogger Tracie Lynne Hall said...

Oops. Clearly I must return to checking here daily. I missed it--(today's the 7th)!
Glad to read that the holidays were full of activity, excitement, and love for you Kristin! Your son probably disagreed with the "sunny" description when he got back to us--it's been an unusually damp December/January--but yeah, I know I'm spoiled with our weather.
I suppose you guys noticed that "Water for Elephants" is soon to come out on celuloid (movies *are* still "film" aren't they?)? Was it April and Kristin who'd read that? I listened to the audio which was done quite well.
Congrats again on WG in pbk. & happy new year!
Take care all,

January 7, 2011 at 3:31 PM  
Blogger Kimberly Fisk said...

Congratulations, Jessika!! When you get a chance, please send me your snail mail addy to [email protected]. Congrats again!

January 7, 2011 at 6:12 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Reading your blog is like hearing from an old friend.Thank you for sharing with us. I love sweet potatoes and love to get new recipes. So (killer sweet potato recipe sound even better)!

January 8, 2011 at 11:34 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Hi Kristin! Just started reading your blog...will make sure I do often! I love your books...right now I am reading Magic Hour! It is hard to put down, just like all of your books! Looking forward to your new one coming out!I would love the sweet potatoe recipe!

January 8, 2011 at 9:26 PM  
Anonymous Jessica Shreck said...


This is my first time on your blog and I am a huge fan! My friend Erin and I have our own two person book club.... We read True Colours and fell in love with it; it was the start of our love for your writing! I have read the majority of your books and have even got my Mom reading too! I hope that I get picked so I can have a signed copy of Winter Garden! I already have a copy of it and have read it, but it would be very special to get it with your signature.

January 9, 2011 at 10:57 AM  
Blogger Tracie Lynne Hall said...

Since the open question is "what-cha-readin'" (besides the obvious Kristin reading), I'll just mention that over my Christmas break I started a non-fiction called, "The Great Beyond: Higher Dimensions, Parallel Universes, and the Extraordinary Search for a Theory of Everything" by Paul Halpern. It's a 2004 copyright, so might be outdated, considering how fast science can move, but even catching up on old science is enlightening for *me*. And that's pretty much what this does. It seems to summarize the progress, or lack of it, of the scientific community, toward settling on some kind of workable theory that explains electromagnetism and gravity in one fell swoop.I'm not quite done yet though, so can't yet tell you if there is a happy ending. :-)
Take care all and happy reading (and publishing!),

January 9, 2011 at 9:10 PM  
Blogger Linda said...

Too late for the giveaway.. But I would like that Sweet Potato recipe if you would be so kind! I have listened to WG at least twice and loaned it out to my mom and aunt as well. We all BALLED big huge tears several times. This book was just phenomenal. I went to re-listen to True Colors and somehow the MP3 was destroyed with a HUGE scratch on it. The scratch was so bad that it rendered the MP3 unplayable..I am on the lookout for one so that I can replace it. I am SO totally clueless about how this happened, but the scratch causes 3 chapters to completely disappear in hisses and spits and repeat/repeat/blip, blip, etc..

Firefly Lane is still intact though.. :) As are all of the others.

Christmas was okay..not great.. not bad.. just different. I was out of work for 2.5 months due to an injury at work. Hence, no money to do anything with anyone. Depressing really.

Thanksgiving was about the same..Thanksgiving weekend, my aunt got me started on knitting..Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, I knitted 2 scarves and 2 hats for my nephew and niece..We got snowed in Christmas weekend, so we didn't see family until New Years Day.. but my little 2-year-old niece was seriously loving her magenta/hot pink scarf and hat. She was WAY too cute! :)

Anyway.. Not a lot going on.. Just went back to work about 2 weeks ago..Just long enough to get a full pay period worked.. It is SO stressful when one of the 2 incomes goes south even for a short period of time.

Sooo, what was your 2012 book about since you destroyed it.. :) Firefly Lane, part 2, on the menu anytime soon?

January 10, 2011 at 10:22 PM  
Blogger bea said...

Love your blog-I have read all your books-I keep them on a shelf so I can go back to review which even have a little book mark of notes with names so I do not get confused between books... LOVE them all :) would LOVE to win a book

January 11, 2011 at 2:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just discovered your books a few weeks ago and LOVE THEM!! I am running out fast! I see you have a new one which I just put on hold at our local library. But I have 3 to read before then.
I have recommended your books to a lot of my friends. They keep you interested the whole way through.

Sherry Deines

January 14, 2011 at 3:51 PM  
Blogger Tracie Lynne Hall said...

Great idea Sewingthreads (the bookmark of notes)! I need to do that with Jane Austen--I'm forever mixing up Elizabeth Bennet with Elinor and Emma--and it doesn't help that in the movie an "Emma" plays Elinor!

January 14, 2011 at 4:13 PM  
Blogger Kelley said...

Hello Kristen,
As a child, I was not a very good reader. In fact, I hated to read. I never would read a book for enjoyment. The first real Author I read was Jodi Picoult... then I got hooked on the Twilight saga :) Gotta love me some vampires once in a while.LOL Last week I went on a business trip and needed to get a book. SO I made a midnight run to a store to find a book and I found you. I read the backs of your books so I could find the perfect one... that was hard. They all looked great, but for some reason, I chose WInter Garden. I have never been moved by words they way your words moved me. I have never cried with such emotion as I did the last 50 pages. I took the place of a storyteller and sat with my family when I got home, and told your amazing story. My nine year old daughter was captivated at my every word as I revealed the mysteries of your book. Even my husband wanted more. This book was able to bring my family together. Thank you.I can't wait to read the rest of your books, and look forward to next novel. Thank you for your words.

January 16, 2011 at 11:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I follow you on Facebook...but still love this cool is it to see those numbers climb on how many follow you on FB? Looking forward to will be the start of Spring here in the South...AND the debut of Night Road......

January 18, 2011 at 12:57 PM  
Blogger Sherri said...

oh wow....first time reader of your blog and your books! I picked up a hard copy of Winter Garden and OMG, I truly loved it! I am an avid WWII era buff and this book just fit right in with many of my favorite historical fiction books, you did an awesome job with this book and brought me a few hours (cuz I couldn't put it down and stayed up really late : ) of "reading joy"! Thank you. I am already scoping out your other books and will definitely be back here to comment on your other treasures

January 21, 2011 at 5:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just finished reading Winter Garden this morning! What a wonderful book, it really drew me in and I couldn't put it down (for me that is good). I will now be looking forward to reading your other books. Thanks so much! Darlene

January 21, 2011 at 7:25 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

You are a new author to me. I just read Mystic Lake and fell in love! I look forward to reading the rest of your novels, however, I know it will be hard when I catch up. Waiting for the next book has never been easy!!

January 23, 2011 at 7:10 PM  
Blogger Linda said...

Oh where oh where has Kristin gone..Oh where oh where can she be?:) We haven't heard from her since January 3, 2011.. And we are having Kristin withdrawal..

Yes, I know the last part doesn't rhyme..LOL.. I am just trying to get Kristin's attention! I hope you are sick or something. I don't think it has ever been more than 30 days between your blog posts..This one is right at 45 since we heard from you..

I hope that we see a new blog post soon..Please?

Linda H. in NC

February 14, 2011 at 8:46 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

It is 2:34 a.m. on Feb. 20th. I have just finished Winter Garden for my book club. I have submitted a hopeful request to have a conference call with you on the night we discuss your book. (March 3rd) I so thoroughly enjoyed your book. You are a master writer. You wove Vera's story so beautifully... I felt like Vera was in the room with me, telling me the story. I have a pile of tissues sitting on the table beside me. I feel lucky to be able to tell you how much your book moved me. This whole "blog" thing is wonderful. Tomorrow I will be heading to Barnes and Noble to purchase Firefly Lane... you have a new fan.

February 20, 2011 at 2:43 AM  

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