One of the things I like to do in my novels is add something personal, some small detail that comes from my own life. In A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME, this detail is the name of the fictitious high school where the reunion takes place in western Pennsylvania.
I’ve named it George F. Wright, Jr. High, after my father. He wasn’t an educator, at least not at that level. He did teach math when he was in the Air Force, back in the 1950s. But after he retired from his work as a personnel manager at a large Erie hospital, he began a long run of volunteer service to various governmental agencies, including the local school board. Now, this is not a job I would ever want, mind you. I saw the piles of documents he brought home every week, and he ACTUALLY read them. I can’t imagine everyone who takes on that position can say that. And thankless? I think we can see by what todays school boards are dealing with, that it’s not a job for the weak of heart. Did I mention it’s volunteer?
So thank you, George Wright, for your service, even if you’ll never see this tribute. I’m proud of you.
Release Date January 10, 2022 from The Wild Rose Press
Up-and-coming mommyblogger and single mom Marisol Herrera Slade returns to her old hometown in western Pennsylvania for her 20th high school reunion in 2005, reluctant and yet compelled to see her high school sweetheart, Russell Asher, who dumped her for the homecoming queen.
Russell’s marriage to the golden girl, however, ended in a nasty divorce, and he has been systematically excluded from his sons’ lives. In his Internet wanderings, he’s found feminist blogger named Jerrika Jones, who glorifies single motherhood, essentially putting a stamp of approval on what’s happened to him. His group of single dad advocates have vowed to take this woman down.
What Russell doesn’t know, when he thinks to rekindle what he had with Marisol, is that Marisol and Jerrika are one and the same. When his group discovers the truth, will their drive for revenge derail any chance the couple have to reunite? Or will they find they have more in common than they ever expected?
Reconnecting with her high school buds did hold some appeal. Teresa and Analisa had pulled Marisol through some pretty rough times, including the death of her mother. She’d done the same for them, the three of them spending many of their darkest nights supporting each other like the sisters none of them had. They stayed in touch a few times a year, just enough to make sure nothing terrible had happened.
Sure would be nice to see them again in person.
Listening to the keening sound of insects in the palm trees overhead, she leaned back and closed her eyes. Maybe she could do it.
None of them knew she was Jerrika Jones. She carefully protected her identity—or more correctly, her son’s identity—over the last dozen years while she built her brand as the single mothers’ go-to girl. Hard as it was to score points with a teenaged son, she’d decided not to task him with the potential embarrassment of a hopefully-famous-someday mother as well.
But now that Mark got out on his own more, maybe she could claim her sassy online personality. She could show West Exeter that the girl voted most likely to work as an invisible clerical made something of herself after all. All on her own.
More energized, she went inside, washed her face, and clicked the email. Many of the activities listed were too fancy for her limited budget. The ‘’80s-themed dance caught her eye. She smiled at the thought of all of them back in Madonna-esque lace gloves, hair ratted up as high as they could get it to stand, bangs looking like a tidal wave, dancing to Blondie’s “Heart of Glass” or Wham!’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go.”
Just maybe, this moment could change her life.
Alana Lorens has been a published writer for more than forty years, after working as a pizza maker, a floral designer, a journalist and a family law attorney. Currently a resident of Asheville, North Carolina, the aging hippie loves her time in the smoky blue mountains. She writes romance and suspense as Alana Lorens, and sci-fi, fantasy and paranormal mystery as Lyndi Alexander. One of her novellas, THAT GIRL’S THE ONE I LOVE, is set in the city of Asheville during the old Bele Chere festival. She lives with her daughter on the autism spectrum, who is the youngest of her seven children, and she is ruled by three crotchety old cats, and six kittens of various ages.
Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/Alana-Lorens/e/B005GE0WBC/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1