A Late Hard Frost, the sequel to Compass North, was released this last December, and both books are currently available from Amazon.
I’ve had some questions about the title. Being from a northern clime, I thought everyone would know about hard frosts, but I’ve discovered it’s not so. Technically, a hard frost (sometimes called a hard freeze) is a period of at least four consecutive hours of air temperature below 25 degrees Fahrenheit. Many plants can survive a brief frost, but very few can survive a hard freeze. A late hard frost is a killing freeze that comes unexpectedly, after spring seems to have returned, devastating tender new growth.
But my novel isn’t about gardening. The title is a metaphor for what the characters in the book (and many of us in real life too) experience. You know how it goes: Everything is going fine in your life, right on track. You’re sailing along, happy and content, when suddenly an event you never anticipated derails you, and your life path changes in an instant.
So I hope you travel through the hard frost times with Merry, Cassandra and Nick, to discover what waits for them ahead…
And the second question I’m often asked: What kind of book is A Late Hard Frost? Well, like Compass North, it’s many things. In the bookstore you might find it under Mystery/Thriller, Romance or Women’s Fiction—and oh yes, Alaskan fiction too. Like Compass North, A Late Hard Frost takes place in Homer, Alaska, a wonderfully quirky fishing and tourist town on Kachemak Bay. It’s a very real place: Some photos and information about Homer are on my website: www.stephaniejoycecole.com
Finally, lately I’m asked if I have another book coming. The answer is yes, but my next book will be quite different. As many of you know, recent years brought radical changes to my life, after my husband was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and then passed away. During the agonizing time of his illness, the devastation of his death and my efforts to put my life back together, I blogged about my experiences. As I published my blogs, I was contacted by others who were moving through similar experiences. I’ve continued to write about my life journey, and the surprising places it has taken me, and these experiences will form the basis for the next book, tentatively titled Who Will Kill the Spiders?
I hope you enjoy A Late Hard Frost!