Robyn Carr on the Setting of Thunder Point + Preorder Giveaway
When Robyn Carr first launched her Thunder Point series, she shared with readers why she chose to set it on the rugged Oregon coast. Read on for a throwback of what she had to say, and don’t miss Wildest Dreams, Robyn’s newest Thunder Point novel, on sale August 25.
Already ordered the new book? Register your preorder by August 24 for a chance to have a character named after them in one of the books in Robyn Carr’s upcoming new Sullivan’s Crossing series! Everyone who registers their purchase will also receive a letter from Robyn Carr & a digital Thunder Point Map via email. Click here for details and to register!
My husband and I moved a lot during our marriage. First the Air Force and then commercial aviation saw us crossing the country a few times. There were times we’d land in a city, a state, and I had the instant feeling it was temporary. I could live there, enjoy it, but it wasn’t home. There were other times I could just feel it in my heart—this is it. One of those times happened when we crossed the Sierras into Northern California. I was not only overwhelmed by the majestic beauty of the mountains, the trees, the sky, but there was just something in the air that embraced me and I thought, this feels like home. I belong. I knew this place in my bones, as if I was meant to be there.
Choosing a setting for a series of books is something like that. It requires so much; many challenges and love stories will happen there. The place must demand something of the characters; the characters must be as drawn to the setting as I am because ultimately the location, the town, will become its own character. And in searching for Thunder Point, I had big shoes to fill. Virgin River, with its redwoods and rivers, had become beloved to me and my readers. And I didn’t want to stray too far.
I looked at hundreds of pictures online. I wanted a rugged and sexy place. I wasn’t looking for “cute” or “sweet.” I had my heart set on something overwhelming, something that would make me gasp on first sight. And yet it had to also look like a safe harbor, a place that would nurture, where love could grow and become secure.
From pictures alone, I thought the Oregon coast could be it, so I headed up the coast highway and I wasn’t far over the California/Oregon border before I had to pull over at a scenic lookout and take in the big, dark haystack rocks in the ocean, rising like sea monsters in the mist. Way down the hillside was a vast and barren beach. Though the weather was warm, there weren’t a half dozen people down there. The Pacific sunset streaked red and orange over those rocks, over the sand and driftwood. Mother Nature wasn’t being playful here, she was showing her power. And I felt the gasp.
We drove a little further to yet another lookout point, another stunning view. And another. And then came a lookout between two promontories. One stretched out to the sea, covered with huge trees, brush, ground cover, all rocky mountainous hillside down to the ocean. On the other promontory a small town and harbor was cradled, safe inside this wide, rock-peppered bay. Houses were built up the hillside in layers so that almost every one had a view, a view that would be different every day, depending on the weather. The lowest of those had long, steep stairs to the beach and out at the far end, a lighthouse stood sentry.
I said, “There it is. That’s it.”
I knew immediately that the people there wouldn’t have it easy, yet they’d never want to leave. They would team-up against the elements and take comfort in the beauty. That town wasn’t for sissies. They would need tools—commitment to the town and each other, patience, big hearts, humor, courage and wisdom. They were living on the ocean, after all, and the ocean serves up challenge. It was perfect.
Welcome to Thunder Point. Pack your dreams.
About Wildest Dreams:
Blake Smiley searched the country for just the right place to call home. The professional triathlete has traveled the world, but Thunder Point has what he needs to put down the roots he’s never had. In the quiet coastal town, he can focus on his training without distractions. Until he meets his new neighbors and everything changes.
Lin Su Simmons and her teenage son, Charlie, are fixtures at Winnie Banks’s house as Lin Su nurses Winnie through the realities of ALS. A single mother, Lin Su is proud of taking charge and never showing weakness. But she has her hands full coping with a job, debt and Charlie’s health issues. And Charlie is asking questions about his family history—questions she doesn’t want to answer.
When Charlie enlists Blake’s help to escape his overprotective mother, Lin Su resents the interference in her life. But Blake is certain he can break through her barriers and be the man she and Charlie need. When faced with a terrible situation, Blake comes to the rescue, and Lin Su realizes he just might be the man of her dreams. Together, they recognize that family is who you choose it to be.
Editor’s note: This letter and photos originally appeared on Harlequin.com in April 2013.