Thursday, April 21, 2016

Real #Cats In #Mystery Silence Of The Lamps by Karen Rose Smith

Caprice De Luca, my sleuth in my Caprice De Luca Home Staging mystery series, takes in stray animals and tries to find good homes for them. I so enjoy writing these subplots in Caprice's stories because cats are so much a part of my everyday life. Like Caprice, my husband and I have rescued stray and feral cats. 

London became Valentine, the stray kitten
Caprice De Luca's grandmother adopts. 
Our "rescue" story began over fifteen years ago when we took in two farm cats who were half sisters. I nursed Ebbie back to health from a respiratory infection and she became my soulmate. London is still with us, though she prefers the quiet of an upstairs bedroom these days. Four years ago, we found 1 1/2 pound Zoie Joy in a shrub in our backyard and immediately brought her in the house. We were also fortunate to have helped Lance and Sunnybud, our outside yellow tabbies, and learned so much from them about befriending strays and caring for them. Our dealings with all our our felines has provided the basis for Caprice's love of animals and her willingness to find good homes for any who cross her path. She knows the ins and outs of handling them, feeding them, nursing them to health, dealing with vets and matching them to a good forever home.

Sophia, Caprice's long-haired calico cat is based on a feline beauty that our son adopted from a cat shelter. She is a ball of fur and cuddles with us when we visit. At first sight, I knew she had to be a permanent part of Caprice's feline family. 

Halo came to us two years ago this May. She appeared under a bush in our yard, looked at me and meowed. She was malnourished and scruffy and I immediately knew she would be joining our inside family eventually. A form of her rescue story appears in SILENCE OF THE LAMPS, my newest Caprice De Luca mystery set to be released next week. Although it took slightly longer to integrate her into our inside fold than it does in the book, I could easily write her story into the mystery plot because my husband and I experienced it firsthand--from her acceptance and trust that we would help her, to her first vet visits and eventually to the birth of her kittens. Dulcina, Caprice's neighbor who adopts Halo in SILENCE OF THE LAMPS, handles the adoption and birth of Halo's kittens much as we did. 

Halo on the patio
Halo's first vet visit

A pregnant Halo in my office

Halo and her kittens
Our adopted feline have given us countless hours of enjoyment, comfort when we are feeling down and many laughs with their antics. My cats in my Caprice stories, mirror our cats in the way they stretch, play and nap. Caprice absolutely shares my love of cats (as well as dogs), and future novels in the series will definitely feature more of the Smith feline family.  

Available April 26, 2016 from 
Book 5, Caprice De Luca Mystery Series


USA TODAY Bestselling Author Karen Rose Smith is an only child who delved into books at an early age. She learned about kindred spirits from Anne of Green Gables, solved mysteries with Nancy Drew and wished she could have been the rider on The Black Stallion. Yet even though she escaped often into story worlds, she had many aunts, uncles and cousins around her on weekends. Her sense of family and relationships began there. Maybe that's why families are a strong theme in her novels, whether mysteries or romances. Her 95th novel will be released in 2016.

Readers often ask her about her pastimes. She has herb, flowers and vegetable gardens that help her relax. In the winter, she cooks rather than gardens.  And year round she spends most of her time with her husband, as well as her four rescued cats who are her constant companions. They chase rainbows from sun catchers, reminding her life isn't all about work, awards and bestseller lists. Everyone needs that rainbow to chase.

Karen looks forward to interacting with readers. They can find her at the links below. 




Deborah Blake said...

I love knowing that your real-life cats have made it into the pages of your books!

Vonnie Alto said...

I love your cats! How exciting that you write about them! What a blessing!