Hosted by JT Crowley
British Author JT Crowley is talking books with international authors online and on screen. These video chats will reveal the stories and characters as they are built from the ground up. Join JT and his guests to take the journey of engaging audiences through writing and story-telling.
Cricket Rohman is an American author who has a voracious appetite for both reading and writing. The reading part stems right back to her primary years in the wilds of Colorado where she and her brother grew up among the coyotes, bears, cougars and bobcats, as well as the pretty blue columbine flowers native to the Rocky Mountains that dominate vast swathes of America’s west and north westerly states. When I saw where Cricket came from, I have to say I was extremely jealous, and I can see why she chose to put a lot of her book settings in this beautiful part of the world. Despite her unquenchable thirst for reading, like most authors Cricket didn’t cross over the bridge from reading to writing until the 1980’s, maybe that was a timing issue in her life, for when you look at her life, you’ll see that she’s been an actor, singer, teacher, school principal, educational professor and now an avid writer.
So far Cricket has written fourteen books with the fifteenth due out shortly. Her books are about the great outdoors, dogs, teachers, romance, and mystery thrillers. You have The Lindsey Lark Series, The Fantasy Maker Series, Creative Hearts Sweet Romance section of four books, as well as a couple of stand-alone books, like Christmas in The North Woods. But right now, we’re going to look at The McAllister Brother Series and Saving Madeline.
The McAllister Brother Series Consists of four books, Colorado Takedown, Montana Countdown, Wyoming Sundown in that order with Wild Weddings the fourth in the series due shortly. Cricket categorises these books as romantic western adventures. Having read the books and coming from a male perspective I’d tabulate them as western cowboy suspense thrillers with a touch of romance. Trace and Troy are the cowboy Mc Allister brothers, their father Clint has gifted them huge ranches to manage and build upon, The Mc Allister’s are rich, but they have enemies, both brothers are womanisers more so Troy but the main women in their lives Hannah and Ivy are dragged into the ranch stile life and the mire. Who is after the McAllister wealth, treasures and Why? These stories are full of tension, delicate love scenes, intrigue, crime, murder, family relations. For me, these books have it all, and are real page turners.
Saving Madeline is an endearing book about the precarious lives of three women who find themselves living together in one apartment. Roxy a poor out of work actor coping with the harsh rejections of her profession and struggling to pay her way. Her neighbour Ginn a retired army veteran left blinded by second blast injuries she received from an I.E.D incident in Afghanistan. They move in together, for Roxy it’s financial support, for Ginn it’s emotional support, but having moved in together what they didn’t anticipate was Roxy’s mother Maddie being forced on them. Maddie has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and the story is how Roxy and Ginn go about coping with Maddie’s idiosyncrasies and disappearance as well as dealing with their own issues.
What I can’t understand is why this author isn’t a best-seller yet, for her books certainly warrant that status.
I was born on a warm summer’s evening to Irish immigrants. My father was born in Ireland under British rule, he kept British citizenship, which allowed him to join the British Royal Air Force and follow a career in aero engineering at Rolls Royce in Derby. My mother was actually born in Manhattan New York but after the tragic death of her father when she was just seven months old led her mother eventually having remarried several years later to return to Ireland, it was there on the wild west coastline my mother spent much of her childhood.
In August 1957 my parents married and settled in Derby where my brother and I along with our late sister grew up. On reflection we weren’t particularly financially well off but there again nor where the kids that we grew up with, so we were non the wiser. However my parents instilled in us to respect others and to do things with our lives that they weren’t able to do.
When I was at school I excelled in Geography looking at all the different places in the world. So I suppose it was that geographical background coupled with wanting to achieve things that my parents weren’t able to do so, that set me on my worldly travels.
The excitement of travel coupled with the allure of seeing different cultures especially the many facets of kid’s lives in those places in contrast to my own narrow childhood inspired me to write the book. I want kids to see beyond their own streets and their smartphones and I hope that when they’ve read the book they will start to see that different kids from dissimilar places in the world live and experience contrasting lives and some of those lifestyles can be defined as harsh. But above all I hope it inspires some of my young readers to follow in my footsteps and witness life in all its forms.
The one thing that I’ve learnt in life is that theory in itself is fine but putting that theory into a practical form like a book is somewhat different. I suppose what I’m trying to say here is having an idea for a book and actually writing it and promoting it to the public is a far cry from the initial notion. So what made me take the leap from the first mental pictures to transferring them to words on a page that kids and adults alike can read any where in the world, well that hawks back to my parents encouragement wanting me to achieve things they couldn’t.
As a child writing never came easy to me, and when I look back at some of the letters I wrote to my parents from boarding school I can only hang my head in shame. I suppose being a boy more interested with what was going on in the school playground rather than the classroom would lead my mother who was by then an English teacher to tearing her hair out, the look of despondency written on her face as she tried to get me to read a single page of a book only to hear me begrudgingly recite a page in front of her and asking having got to the end of the page, ”can I go now.” Little did I know then that not having the ability to read and write properly would set me back in life, something I later rectified. So kids you can change but go and see the world in all its beauty, and don’t forget respect all nations.