Thursday, August 18, 2016

#GiveAway #Interview - BATTERED not broken by CHARITY WEST

not broken


Crystal: I'm so happy to have CHARITY WEST visit today. Welcome Charity! Would you share a little bit about yourself with us today?

Charity: I love to write young adult and new adult romances, in both first and third person. Battered Not Broken is my second published book. I’ve loved books since I was little, and even tried writing one in high school, but it never occurred to me to try to get one published. A friend encouraged me to submit my work to some publishers to see what would happen.  At the time, I was working at a college, but I’ve had a lot of jobs before becoming a full-time author. I’ve worked for a counseling center, a karate dojo, county government, and two different colleges. I have to say, writing is my favorite job.

Crystal: What are you currently working on?

Charity:  I started a new book the other day, but I’m not sure if it’s something I’ll finish or not. I have a ton of partials. Some are one page long and others are several thousand long. The book that’s holding my interest right now is about a rock star.

Crystal: Where did you come up with the idea for for either your current release or the WIP you are working on now?

Charity:  Battered Not Broken is about a girl who rises above the abuse she’s dealt with at home and starts a new life for herself. There are so many battered teens out there, and I guess I wanted to give them a voice, and give them a happily-ever-after.

Crystal: Do you have a favorite snack that like to munch on while writing? If so would you mind sharing what it is with us?

Charity:  Not a snack, but I do love to drink Starbucks while I’m writing. If I don’t feel like driving to one for a hot white mocha, then I keep the bottled mochas in my fridge, as well as the mocha energy drinks. And if I’m not drinking one of those, then I have a coke nearby.

Crystal:  Do you have a favorite scene you would like to share with us?

Charity: I think my favorite scene is when my heroine meets the hero for the first time…

My break came to an end, and I clocked back in and tied my apron around my waist again. I pulled out my pad and pen as I headed back into my section, pausing momentarily when I saw broad shoulders covered in khaki and knew one of the deputies was in my section. It seemed I was going to be baptized in fire tonight. Plastering a smile on my face, I approached the table. My jaw nearly dropped when I got a good look at the guy. I’d been expecting someone older, but he had to be around my age. As his green gaze clashed with mine, my breath caught in my throat.
His lips tipped up in a smile, and my heart gave a kick. I gave myself a mental slap and reminded myself that I needed to focus on my job and avoid the law, even if they came in tempting packages like this one. I licked my lips and tried to steady my hand as I gripped my pen.
“Are you ready to order?” I asked.
“Sweet tea with the special,” he answered. “I don’t believe we’ve met before. I’m Gray.”
I stared at the hand he held out before finally grasping it. He had a firm shake, and the callused feel of his palm against mine made shivers run down my spine. I had to admit, uniform aside, he was just the kind of guy I would normally go for. If it weren’t the fact that I was fairly certain I was breaking some sort of law, I might have been tempted to flirt a little. But the last thing I needed was a cop getting close to me. Cops asked questions, and I was pretty sure he wouldn’t like my answers.
“Wendy,” I said after realizing I never gave him my name.
“You must be new to the diner,” he said. “I come in here all the time, and I’ve never seen you before.”
“It’s my first day.”
He nodded. “I figured as much. I hope you decide to stick around.”
I opened and shut my mouth a few times. Was he flirting with me? “I, ah…”
Gray winked, and my knees nearly buckled. Hurrying away from his table, I turned in his order, glancing over my shoulder to find him still watching me. Something told me he was going to be trouble, but I wasn’t sure if it was the kind of trouble that would find me arrested or the kind that was going to arrest my heart. Either way, it was better to steer clear of him, if I could.

Crystal: When you are not busy writing wonderful stories to keep us lucky readers entertained, what do you like to do? Do you have a hobby? 

Charity: Mostly, I read. I read romance, predominantly, but there are a handful of mystery authors I enjoy as well. Aside from reading and writing, a lot of my time is spent taking the kids to school, my husband to work, and running errands.

Crystal: Do you have a favorite background noise you like to having going while you write (TV, Music, kids playing)?

Charity: I like to rotate some of my favorite movies when I’m writing, but when everyone is home and someone else has control of the TV, I listen to music on my Amazon player. Tim Burton movies are my favorites to listen to while I work.

Crystal: Thank you for visiting today. It has been a pleasure to visit with you. Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

Charity:  I’m lucky enough to have my dream job. I know not everyone is quite as lucky, and a lot of people just work a job to pay the bills, while wishing they could do something else. Never give up hope. The future is full of possibilities.

About the Book:

Who knew falling for a man in Khaki could cause so much trouble?

Battered and bruised, Wren has taken a lot from her father over the years, but when he throws her out of the house, she sees it as a blessing in disguise. She has no job, no home, and never finished high school, but what’s all that compared to a life without abuse? When she starts over in a new town, under a new identity, she makes it her goal to fly under the radar.

New town, new life. Only, there’s a corrupt deputy intent on stealing Deputy Gray Frampton’s family fortune, a slight case of aggravated identity fraud, and a night in the local jail. It’s enough to make any girl’s head spin. Wren Michaels has to find a way not to spend the next three years in jail, warn Gray that Deputy Pritchard is after him, and somehow hold onto the
happily-ever-after that is finally within her grasp—assuming Gray wants a felon as his girlfriend. Who knew falling for a man in khaki could cause so much trouble?

Contemporary/Romance/Young Adult


Evernight Teen Publishing

Buy Links:  

14+ due to violence and adult situations


The shadows crept closer as a deep

cold settled into my bones. I cowered on the floor of my closet, hidden behind
shoes and clothes, as I listened to the slap of flesh against flesh. He’d come
home drunk again, even more so than usual, and he’d barely cleared the door
before landing the first blow. It was cowardly of me to hide. I should stand up
and fight—do something to make him stop. My phone was still clutched in my
hand, and my heart pounded in my chest, the thump-thump loud in my ears.
I knew I should call 9-1-1 and get help for Mom, but I also knew that even if
they arrested him, they’d never keep him. Mom would give the cops some bullshit
excuse as to why he was beating her, or say she fell, and then she’d refuse to
press charges. If I thought things were bad now, they’d be even worse if he
went to jail for the night. We’d lived through that horror once already, and
once was more than enough. No one had to tell me my dad was an abusive asshole
who thrived on being a bully. I’d experienced it firsthand.

My palms grew slick as I heard my

mother’s whimpers and then booted steps coming down the hall. Was I going to be
next? The footsteps grew louder, and I heard my bedroom door slam into the
wall. I bit my lip to stifle my cry, hoping he wouldn’t find me. He shuffled
around my room, his boots clomping and scraping the wood floor as he searched
for me. When the closet doors were flung open, I squeezed myself as far into
the corner as I could, but I knew it wouldn’t be enough.

An iron grip closed around my arm,

his fingers biting into my skin, as he jerked me out of the closet. I stumbled
and fell to my knees at his feet, bracing myself for what would happen next. My
head was wrenched back, tears stinging in my eyes as he fisted my hair. There
was such hatred in his gaze, such contempt, as if he couldn’t even stand to
look at me. I’d always done everything he’d ever asked, and still it wasn’t
enough. As far as my dad was concerned, I’d ruined his life, and he was going
to make me pay for it until I was able to leave this place behind.

“Thought you could hide from me?” he

slurred. “Stupid little bitch.”

The slap across my cheek made tears

spill down my face, but I ground my teeth together so I wouldn’t make a sound.
When he knew he was causing me pain, he seemed to enjoy it more, and I wouldn’t
give him the satisfaction. He pulled hard until I was standing upright, my hair
still clutched in his fist, and then he punched me in the stomach. I folded at
the waist, gasping for breath as stars danced in my vision and bile rose in my

“Worthless. That’s what you are.” He

kicked out and knocked me to my knees again. “You should be groveling, thanking
me for your life. If it weren’t for me, you wouldn’t even be here, you
ungrateful shit.”

Yes, because thanking him for the

abuse he heaped on me day after day, thanking him for all the hurtful names I’d
been called, thanking him for the days I’d had to skip school because I
couldn’t hide the bruises—that was exactly what I wanted to do. One day, he
would get what was coming to him. I didn’t know how or who would do it, but I
knew someday he’d piss off the wrong person and they’d beat his ass until he
cried like a baby. And I hoped like hell I was there to see it. I’d kick back
with some popcorn and enjoy the show. I hated him. Hated him.

“You think I don’t see the way you

look at me?” he demanded. “Well, I’m tired of it. I’m finished with you. My
life was better before your mother got knocked up. Ever since she popped you
out, you’ve been nothing but a financial drain. Not anymore. You have five
minutes to pack your shit and get the fuck out of my house. And if I ever see
you again, I’ll make you wish you were never born.”

Like I didn’t already wish that every

day of my life. I should thank him for offering me freedom, even if I had
nowhere to go. Anything was better than staying here. Plenty of people lived on
the streets, so there wasn’t any reason I couldn’t do it, too. It just meant
I’d have to find a way to get my GED sooner rather than later. Dropping out of
high school hadn’t been the best decision in the world, but when Dad had broken
my arm, Mom had thought it would be better than facing questions we couldn’t

He stomped out of the room, and I

heard his bedroom door slam. After grabbing a bag out of my closet, I shoved
several outfits, underthings, and socks into it. I snatched my toothbrush and
hairbrush out of the bathroom and crammed them in there, too. As an
afterthought, I grabbed the travel pouch from under the sink that had shampoo,
soap, and a razor tucked inside. I didn’t know where I would go to shower, or
where I was going to sleep tonight, but I would figure it out. Maybe Mom would
let me come home to bathe while Dad was at work a few times a week. Plus, it
would give me a chance to check on her.

I zipped up my bag and then grabbed

my backpack and purse off the bed. With my keys clutched tight, I walked out of
the only home I’d ever known. Mom didn’t say a word as I passed her, and she
didn’t try to stop me. Maybe she figured I was better off living anywhere but
at home, and she may have been right.

About the Author:

Charity West is a young adult romance author who has always had her head in the clouds. She had her first crush when she was four, and it lasted for six years. Then she quickly fell head over heels for another boy, until she had to move away and leave him behind. Jumping

from one boy to another, she finally found a keeper when she was twenty, and she’s been married to him ever since.

By the time Charity was twelve, she was sneaking her mother’s Harlequin romances and reading them in secret when she was supposed to be asleep. Teased throughout middle school and high school for the bodice ripper covers on the books she openly read in class, she knew that one day she wanted to write her own happily-ever-afters.


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