Sunday, 28 April 2013

Book Spotlight & Giveaway: Trails in the Sand by P.C. Zick

The Deepwater Horizon oil spill sends environmental writer Caroline Carlisle on a journey reporting about oiled wildlife and nesting sea turtles. Her reporting leads to an assignment covering the efforts to save sea turtles nests as oil continues to gush into the Gulf of Mexico. At the same time her husband Simon is grieving the death of his cousin and best friend Jason who was one of the miners killed in the Upper Big Branch coal mine explosion in West Virginia weeks before the oil spill. 
While covering the story of the endangered sea turtles, Caroline uncovers mysteries, secrets, and lies going back two generations. Lost journals, a fake tablecloth, and nesting sea turtles lead her to discover why her uncle committed suicide, why her sister developed anorexia, and why her mother only wanted to be loved.

Caroline and Simon discover love lasts despite decades of separation, but when reunited they must overcome the wounds inflicted when Simon first married Caroline’s sister. Caroline’s niece Jodi, caught in the crossfire of family tensions and lies, struggles to find a way to forgive her father and her aunt so she can move into the future.

Trails in the Sand explores the struggles to replenish and restore destruction, in nature and in a family, as both head to the brink of disaster. Through it all, sea turtles serve as a constant reminder that life moves forward despite the best efforts to destroy it.



Caroline – April 20, 2010

Our paddles caressed the water without creating a ripple as we floated by turtles sunning on tree trunks fallen into the river. A great blue heron spread its wings on the banks and lifted its large body into the air, breaking the silence of a warm spring day in north Florida.

The heron led us down the river of our youth stopping to rest when we fell too far behind. The white spider lilies of spring covered the green banks of the Santa Fe River in north Florida.

“Do you remember the spot where we always swam?” my husband Simon asked. “Isn’t it around here?”

“I can’t remember back that far,” I said.

Simon pulled his kayak up alongside mine as a mullet jumped out of the water in front of us and slapped its body back into the water.

“Still the dumbest fish in the river,” I said.

The leaves on the trees were fully green and returned to glory after a tough winter of frosts and freezes. Wild low-growing azalea bushes were completing their blooming cycle, and the dogwoods dropped their white blossoms a month ago. The magnolia flower buds would burst into large white blossoms within a month.

Simon and I missed the peak of spring on the river. However, we finally escaped our work on a warm Tuesday morning in late April.

“I hope things settle down. We should spend all summer on the river,” Simon said.

“Maybe we can get Jodi to come with us when she gets home from Auburn,” I said.

“Don’t count on it. Promise me you won’t be disappointed if she refuses.”

“I wish you wouldn’t be such a pessimist. That upsets me more than anything.”

Simon didn’t respond, which usually happened when I tried to talk about his daughter Jodi.

When we were kids, Simon and I spent many days in an old canoe on this river. Those idyllic days ended when he married my sister Amy. I never forgave Amy, even when she died two years ago. I eventually forgave Simon.

Even though I didn’t miss or mourn my sister, Jodi, my niece, did. She lost a mother she loved and believed Simon and I trampled her mother’s grave when we married nearly a year ago.

“At least winter is over,” Simon said. “Let’s hope for a quiet hurricane season.”

About the Author
P.C. Zick’s career as a writer began in 1998 with the publication of her first column in a local paper in The High Springs Herald. By day, she was a high school English teacher at Gainesville High School in Gainesville, Fla., but at night and on vacations, she began writing novels and working as a freelance journalist. By 2001, she left teaching and began pursuing a full-time gig as a writer. In addition to writing for The Herald, she was a correspondent with The Gainesville Sun and wrote for several statewide magazines. She describes herself as a "storyteller" no matter the genre.

Currently, she writes two blogs. Trails in the Sand is her fifth novel and the second one self-published. She published Live from the Road in May 2012.

Her blog and her novels contain the elements most dear to her heart, ranging from love to the environment. She believes in living lightly upon this earth with love, laughter, and passion.

She resides in Pennsylvania with her husband Robert.

Where to purchase Trails in the Sand

Trails in the Sand - Behind the Scenes with the Author 
I was embroiled in the real-life drama of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill as a public relations director for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. I handled the media for the sea turtle nest relocation project that took place during the summer of 2010. At the same time, I was beginning a new relationship with a lost love from thirty-five years ago. We married in August 2010. During the environmental disaster, I was in the process of moving to Pittsburgh to be with my new husband. Two weeks prior to the oil spill, twenty-nine miners were killed in a coal mine explosion in West Virginia, just a few hours from where I was moving. It all fell into place to write about the oil spill and the coal mine disaster and our quest for profit and fossil fuels at any cost. I made the environmental disasters the backdrop for the love story of two people who must overcome many obstacles to restore lost love.
Superior Accomplishment Award from Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission as a member of the Sea Turtle Response Team for the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill 
2008 Award for Column, Association of Free Community Papers 
2008 Award for Feature Article, Community Papers of Florida 
2007 Award for Serious Column, Florida Press Association 
2007 Award for Humorous Column, Florida Press Association 
2006 Award for Editorial, Association of Free Community Papers 
2005 First Place Mainstream Fiction from Promoting Outstanding Writers 
2002 Award for Serious Column, Florida Press Association 
2002 Second Place Award in Community Service, Florida Press Association
2001 First Place Award Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Essay Contest 
2001 First Place for Serious Column, Florida Press Association 


1 comment:

  1. Thank you for featuring Trails in the Sand today. Very nice!


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