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Thursday, February 28, 2013

Meet Charlene A. Wilson

I'm pleased to welcome Charlene A. Wilson, a fellow Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal RWA chapter member. Charlene's on a virtual tour for her latest book, One for Kami. 

Charlene is an author of paranormal tales that take you away to other dimensions.  She weaves magic, lasting love, and intrigue to immerse you into the lives of her characters.

She began writing in her early teens when her vivid dreams stayed with her long after she had them.  The characters and worlds were so amazing that she brought them to life through her books.

Readers can find more about Charlene at:
Author site:  http://CharleneAWilson.com
Blog:  http://bit.ly/CharBlogs
Facebook:  http://bit.ly/CharleneAWilsonFan
Twitter:  http://twitter.com/AuthorCAWilson
Goodreads:  http://bit.ly/CharleneAWilsonGR
Pinterest:  http://pinterest.com/charleneawilson/

Welcome, Charlene.
Thank you for having me on your lovely blog to share my thoughts today, Diane. This is a real treat. *smile*

      Love is something we all long for, to find that someone who we ultimately share our lives with. But how we go about finding the right one is approached differently around our world. There are many customs when it comes to love and marriage. I once had a friend whose parents came to America from China. Theirs was an arranged marriage and they met each other for the first time during their wedding ceremony. They learned to build a loving relationship, had several children, and were celebrating 37 years together. When I asked her how her parents felt about having to accept who was chosen for them, her answer surprised me a bit.

     “It’s hard to find the right person to build a life-long relationship with. Lasting love takes a lot of hard work. Who better to choose a partner than the parents that know you better than you probably know yourself?”

     Another example would be of when the oldest daughter is given in marriage first. I heard of an instance where the wife died during childbirth and her younger sister stepped in as wife #2.  And of course, history is littered with countries bonding royal sons and daughters to keep peace. While here in the US, we’re accustomed to choosing our own mates, there are definitely other views the world over that work for them.

     In my new release, One for Kami, Kami and Ian are faced with having to comply with their own dimension’s laws on the subject. And Kami is not at all happy with it.

     On their home realm, Two-Eight-Five, every male of the Elite class must take three wives to help alleviate the poverty-stricken population. One may hold the same status, but the others must be from a lower standing, and they must have as many children as will come to them. The impoverished are only allowed one wife and one child.

     Kami, being born an Elite and an only child of her father’s third wife, swore she’d never marry a man under those requirements. She looked for love among the poor so she wouldn’t have to share him with two other women, and thought she found just the right man. Nothing Ian wore, said, or did ever hinted that he was wealthy. After all, what member of the Elite took their date on peanut butter sandwich pic-nicks, played with scruffy dogs in the park with a knotted sock, or worked among the soup houses?

     But, there he was. An Elite.

     Devastated, she heads to a world where people can fall in love, marry, and live happily-ever-after regardless of their position in society. But, Ian has his own agenda....

What are your thoughts on love and marriage? If you had a choice, which custom would you select? Why?
Blurb for One for Kami
     Can love be true if shared with more than one?  Kami doesn’t think so when she finds Ian is an elite and required to take three wives to eliminate the poverty-stricken population.  Why can’t he be poor the way she thought he was when she fell in love with him?
     Determined to find a realm that doesn’t have such dictates, she travels to dimension Three-Two-Three to begin her search.  But is love truer in a place that only allows one spouse than it is in Ian’s heart?
Excerpt from One for Kami
     Kami’s blouse bunched up her back as she slid down the wide oak’s trunk.  Bark grazed her skin and snagged her hair with its aged layers until her bottom hit the ground.  She cringed at the sharp pangs.  Folding her knees to her chest, she buried her face in her arms and welcomed the punishment.  Hurting Ian pained her more than anything she’d done in her life.
     Autumn leaves crunched beneath his footsteps as he paced the woodland’s small clearing.  Each stride matched two beats of her heart and crushed the sweet memories of their grove.  Dust scented the air as he shuffled into a turn.
     “Why are you just now telling me this?”  His breath hitched and he cleared his throat.
     Words wouldn’t form as Kami lifted her gaze.
     Setting his hands at his slender waist, his hazel gaze shifted to the shadows of the young birch trees.  A cloud of insects drifted through the pale trunks, soft hums filling the air as they paused.  Wiping his hand across his strong jaw, he looked back at her.
     “You know I love you, Kami.”
     Tears stung as they seeped beneath her lids and she blinked to relieve the burn.  “I need to be the only one, Ian.  I can’t know you might love someone else more than me when you choose another wife.”
     She lowered her gaze to the thick roots that surrounded her.  They wove within the caramel-colored ground, creating a perfect lounge for two lovers in an embrace.  How many times had they sat there and shared their secrets, their love?  How many times had he told her she was the one, the only one?  She cursed the fact that she was gullible enough to believe it could be true.
     Kami forced her voice through her tight throat.  “When I first saw you, you were playing with that scruffy looking little dog in the park.  Its hair was so long and matted I thought you couldn’t afford to pay a groomer.  I thought that sock with the knot in it was all you could come up with to be his toy.”
      He lowered his gaze.  “That stray lives at the park and I removed my sock to have some fun with him.”
     “I know that now.  But then I assumed you were poor.  And after the third date of peanut butter sandwich picnics by the river, I thought I knew for certain.  I mean, who could love peanut butter that much?  And what member of the elite class prefers such a simple activity for a date?”
      She scanned his solemn countenance.  His love of nature was one of the things she adored about him, alongside the fact that he didn’t feel the need to flaunt his wealth.  But to keep such a fact from her under the circumstances...  “I fell in love with you, believing you would make me the one choice you were allowed as a member of the lower class.”
     A gust of wind lifted his black hair to dance around his face.  The cheery motion seemed to mock his lips as they dipped into a deep frown.  “If it were up to me, I’d have only you.  Can’t you believe that?  I’ve waited, pushed the age limit to wed, looking for the right one to be my first.  My first, Kami.  The others will never mean what you do to me.”
     “If you really love me, you’d want me alone.  No other.  Period.”  Frustration bubbled in her chest at her misconception of their love.
     He tilted his head and bit his lips together.  “I can’t help that I was born an elite.  If it were possible...”
     “If it were possible, what?  You’d give up your birthright and join the ranks of the vagabonds who can’t afford food for the one wife and child they’re allowed?  Or you’d buck the system and refuse to wed the other two?  That would only land you earthbound, exiled to a foreign dimension, and stripped of everything but the clothes you wear.  And while you’re considering it, I’d advise you to wear a thick coat and heavy boots because I hear they choose some pretty rough climates for those who refuse to live by this law.”
     The sarcastic response rolled off her tongue before she realized it, but she didn’t care.  It wasn’t right.  None of the counsel’s decisions on eliminating poverty was.  The lower class weds one spouse and bears only one child while the elite must choose three and produce as many offspring that would come to them?  It was absurd.
     Find another way to spread the wealth than through inheritance.
     She looked at him, and her voice rose with her exclamation.  “I can’t stay here and conform to the laws of this dimension.  Not when I know there are other places that don’t require such things.  I need the freedom to love whomever I want whoever they are, without the stipulation of a quota.  And if that means transferring, then that’s what I’ll do.”
     “If your mother was alive...”
     “Well, she’s not.”  Kami scowled.  She had expected him to try to bring her mother into this, but it hurt just the same.  “But, I can’t believe she wouldn’t want me to be happy.  She was one of a quota, Ian, one that had only one child.  Father’s attention stayed on the others.”
     Ian’s broad shoulders lifted as he took a deep breath and sent his gaze back to the trees.
     “I’m leaving for a six-month stay in Three-Two-Three.  With me gone, you’ll be free to start your family before you turn twenty-five.  I won’t stand in your way to fulfill your obligation.  You’ll have time to find a woman that will happily live by the law.”  Her voice lowered to a mumble.  “And I won’t have to see you do it.”
     Ian’s heavy brow furrowed and his dark lashes narrowed his gaze.  “And what will happen if you find someone while you’re there?  That realm doesn’t know we exist, Kami.  What will you tell him when you leave every six months to come back to renew your travel rights?”
     “When I choose someone, it will be because our love is true.  He’ll understand I need some time away.”
     His mouth dropped open and he shook his head.  “What love that’s true has those kinds of secrets?”  A scowl crossed his face and he drew his hand through the air.  “And what makes you think a love there would be truer than my love here?”
     “They choose only one.  They pledge their hearts and it lasts a lifetime.”
     “Promises can be broken whichever realm you’re in.”  Orange and yellow leaves scattered as he marched across the small tract and sunk to the ground before her.  Taking her hands in his, he looked into her eyes.  “Stay here.  Marry me.  Be my elite choice.  There can be only one first time, and I want it to be you.  Let it be enough.”
     It took all of Kami’s strength to look away.  She clenched her jaw, trying to control the hiccup that would surely release a sob.
     Ian shook his head and his voice lowered to a plea.  “Please, Kami.  Don’t go.”
     She pinched her lips together and the hiccup forced its way to her throat.  Snatching her breath, she kept it silent, but it jarred her into action.  “The consort has already granted my leave.  I’ve taken the training and temporary employment is waiting for me.  If I can make it work, I’ll arrange to stay longer.”
     The frank tone of her voice gave her strength as she stood.  “Goodbye, Ian.”
     Ian’s hands slowly released her as he rose and stepped back.  His square jaw flexed.  “Never say goodbye.  This isn’t the end.”
      Tearing her gaze from his hazel eyes, Kami focused her thoughts on the Inter-dimensional Courtyard.  A wave of heat sizzled through her veins as her elements prepared to shift through space.  The scene before her distorted and a soft fizz buzzed in her ears as she synced into the atrium.
Available at Amazon: http://bit.ly/OneforKami

What they’re saying about One for Kami:

“Sweet, romantic, and heartfelt.  A great introduction to the author’s world.”—J.D. Brown Book Club

“One for Kami is a story that will have you willing to give up everything for your one true love.”—Annette, Gothic Mom’s Book Reviews

“[Wilson] spins a tale of true love spanning time and dimensions that will inspire the reader to sacrifice everything to find their soul mate.”—Debbie, Read2Review

Charlene is offering a giveaway of an e-copy of One for Kami to a lucky commenter. Be sure to leave your email address with your comment. She's also holding a tour-wide giveaway and all commenters will be added to the Rafflecopter for a chance to win. Readers can follow along and enter/answer the questions from here. Each stop with have a question related to it for readers to answer and rack up the entries.