First, here's a bit about the book:
Barnaby Brown has had enough of freezing winters, insurmountable debt, a dead-end job, and his solitary life as a young widower with no one but his beloved parrot Popsicle. He yearns to move to California and reawaken his long-lost early life as an artist. But new troubles come in threes. His ancient car crashes into a snowbank. Popsicle escapes through a window carelessly left open.
A New York gallery owner offers to represent Barnaby’s paintings—but is he on the up-and-up? All of it serves to shock Barnaby into confronting how low he has sunk, and he vows—again and again—to change. He has a few obstacles, starting with his heavy drinking and long-term neglect of his ancestral home. As he takes steps toward a better life, he re-discovers the value of old friendships and latent talents seen in new light, and finds the courage to consider a second chance at love. Rejoining the mainstream of life presents several startling mysteries he must unravel, with a few mortifying but enlightening stumbles.
A heart-warming novel about ordinary people reclaiming their dormant potential, Waterbury Winter celebrates the restorative value of art and the joy to be found in keeping promises.
Publisher: She Writes Press (May 2022)
Print length: 264 pages
About the Author
Linda Stewart Henley is the author of Estelle: A Novel. Among other honors, it won Silver in the Independent Publisher Book Awards for Historical Fiction and was a finalist for The Eric Hoffer Book Awards as well as for the 2021 Nancy Pearl Award. She lives in Anacortes, Washington, with her husband. Waterbury Winter is her second novel.
Visit her website at www.lindastewarthenleyauthor.com. Connect with her on Facebook: www.facebook.com/lindastewarthenley.
Praise for Waterbury Winter
“A reflective, witty, and fun story that elegantly crosses genres and addresses intriguing themes.”— Kirkus Reviews
“A heartfelt journey of two lost souls finding grace . . . and each other. Waterbury Winter is a must-read for anyone who believes in second chances and the power of kindness—or who wants to believe in them. This is one of those books that, when you have to put it down, you can’t wait to pick it up again.” —Donna Cameron, Nautilus Award–winning author of A Year of Living Kindly: Choices that Will Change Your Life and the World Around You
"... a page-turner. I found I could not put it down until I had reached the end. It makes you think about how you are handling your life and if you are stagnating because you are too afraid to take a chance. I enjoyed reading this book from the first page to the last and found the ending the best, due to the fact that I had started rooting early for the main characters." —Readers Favorite, 5 stars
“A tour de force reminiscent of A Man Called Ove. Barnaby Brown’s interactions and experiences unfold in such a way as to endear him to the reader. He’s not perfect, but his imperfections are what reveal his gentle and generous spirit, and we root for him at every upturn and downturn. Waterbury Winter is a memorable masterpiece.” —Saralyn Richard, award-winning author of the Detective Parrott mystery series and A Murder of Principal
“Linda Henley manages to combine drama, romance, humor, and even an art theft mystery in the highly entertaining Waterbury Winter. The novel introduces us to Barnaby Brown, an artist who is so down on his luck there’s no farther to slide. Through fast-paced writing and a series of remarkable plot twists, Henley constantly surprises the reader as Barnaby (accompanied by his faithful parrot, Popsicle) stumbles mightily in his efforts to redeem himself and become the man he wants to be. A many-layered novel, Waterbury Winter is, above all, a moving tribute to the healing power of art.” —Laurel Davis Huber, award-winning author of The Velveteen Daughter
“… a heart-warming story of loss and love, challenge and resistance, and the power of creative expression. Henley’s masterful descriptions of character and place make these pages the perfect spot to hang out. Readers will make themselves at home, cheer for the protagonist, Barnaby, and be totally charmed by his opinionated parrot, Popsicle.” —Romalyn Tilghman, award-winning author of To the Stars Through Difficulties
- Interview by Nicole Pyles
WOW: First, congratulations on your book Waterbury Winter! What inspired this book?
Linda: My husband and I were visiting family one snowy December for the holidays. The day after Christmas, we stopped by a drugstore. The place was deserted. At the checkout counter, the attendant asked us how our Christmas was. Fine, we said, and asked him the same question. “Well, I was here and my car broke down.” That was the inspiration for Barnaby Brown, a man who is down on his luck and doesn’t celebrate holidays.
WOW: I love how a real moment inspired this story! How did it transform from the first draft to final draft?
Linda: After many, and I mean many, revisions. I knew I wanted to tell the story of Barnaby’s journey to overcome his many problems and rediscover himself as an artist, but I didn’t think that was enough subject matter for a novel. To make the story more complex, I needed to introduce other characters and challenges along the way. I think all novelists go through this process, but perhaps some manage it more easily than I did.
WOW: I do the same kind of uncovering too in my writing! I noticed that Waterbury is a real place! How much research went into getting the setting just right for this book? What was your approach?
Linda: I wanted the town to mirror the broken man that Barnaby was at the beginning, and Waterbury is a town that has seen better days. I bought a couple of very thin books about Waterbury’s history. I became fascinated with the story of its brass and copper industries and I folded some of that history into the novel. I feel like this is a perfect book for these times we're in, especially as many of us are trying to reclaim joy in the midst of incredible challenges.
WOW: That must have been a great feeling to capture that town. What does your writing office or writing space look like?
Linda: After writing my first novel Estelle, I realized I needed better space than the kitchen table for working, so I bought a desk with drawers and shelves that I could install in an unused bedroom. This is now my office. So much better!
WOW: That must feel refreshing! What did you learn from the last book you wrote, Estelle, that helped you write this book?
Linda: That it’s much easier to write pure fiction than historical fiction! Almost no research is needed for the former.
WOW: I can understand! I feel like this is a perfect book for these times we're in, especially as many of us are trying to reclaim joy in the midst of incredible challenges. What do you hope people take away from reading this book?
Linda: Thank you for saying this! I hope people find the book uplifting, and that there’s value in creative expression at any level.
WOW: I think so too! Thank you for your time and best of luck on the tour!
- Blog Tour Calendar
May 2nd @ The Muffin
Join us as we celebrate the launch of Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley. We interview the author about her book and also give away a copy to one lucky reader.
May 3rd @ Lisa Haselton's Reviews and Interviews Blog
Stop by Lisa's blog today and read an interview with author Linda Stewart Henley.
May 3rd @ Fiona Ingram's Blog
Visit Fiona's blog and read Linda Stewart Henley's guest post about writing historical fiction.
May 5th @ Amanda Diaries
Visit Amanda's blog and read her review of author Linda Stewart Henley's book Waterbury Winter.
May 7th @ Boots, Shoes and Fashion
Join Linda as she interviews Linda Stewart Henley about her book, Waterbury Winter.
May 8th @ What is That Book About?
Michelle spotlights Linda Stewart Henley's book, Waterbury Winter.
May 9th @ Mindy McGinnis
Join Mindy as she features Linda Stewart Henley's guest post about mixed genres in writing.
May 12th @ Knotty Needle
Visit Judy's blog today and read her review of Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
May 13th @ CK Sorens' Blog
Visit Carrie's blog and read Linda Stewart Henley's guest post about the importance of setting. https://www.cksorens.com/blog
May 15th @ Choices
Visit Madeline's blog and read Linda Stewart Henley's guest post about what a difference an editor makes.
May 18th @ Beverley A. Baird
Visit Beverley's blog and her review of Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
May 19th @ Reading Is My Remedy
Join Chelsie over at her Instagram page today where she shares her review of Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
May 21st @ Bring on Lemons
Crystal shares her thoughts about the charming Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
May 24th @ Author Anthony Avina's Blog
Make sure to visit Anthony's blog and read his review of Linda Stewart Henley's book Waterbury Winter.
May 25th @ Beverley A. Baird
Join Beverley again as she features Linda Stewart Henley's post about inspiration in art.
May 26th @ The Frugalista Mom
Visit Roselyn's blog as she reviews Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
May 27th @ A Storybook World
Deirdra's blog features Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
May 30th @ Liberate and Lather
Stop by Angela's blog today and read her thoughts about Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
May 31st @ The Faerie Review
Lily spotlights Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
June 2nd @ Pages & Paws
Join Pages and Paws for their review of Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
June 4th @ World of My Imagination
Nicole reviews Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley.
June 5th @ Jill Sheets Blog
Visit Jill as she interviews author Linda Stewart Henley.
***** BOOK GIVEAWAY *****
Enter to win a copy of Waterbury Winter by Linda Stewart Henley by filling out the Rafflecopter form below. The giveaway ends May 15th at 11:59 CT. We will announce the winner the next day in the Rafflecopter widget and follow up via email. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway