Rhubarb in the Family w/ Deanna Wadsworth + Giveaway

July 31, 2017

Rhubarb for Generations

 

I’m so excited about my latest Dreamspinner release THE RHUBARB PATCH.

It’s funny where inspiration comes from. THE RHUBARB PATCH, the first book in my new Men of Gilead series about a small country town in Ohio, has an exceptionally funny story at the heart of its creation.

Or humiliating, it depends on how you want to look at it.

Rhubarb is one of those fruits that’s often forgotten about, but it’s delicious in pies, rhubarb bread, or my grandma’s rhubarb crumble—you can find the recipe HERE. My family has a weird affinity for all things rhubarb so when someone gave my grandmother a free rhubarb plant years ago, naturally, she was thrilled. Sadly she passed away that spring and never got to plant it. So my mom brought the bucket over, wondering if I wanted to plant the rhubarb at my new house. I told her to just pop it in the ground by the woodpile and if it grew? Great. If not? Oh well. I had only recently moved into my new house and a vegetable garden was the last thing on my mind. We didn’t even have grass growing.

As with all things nostalgic, the rhubarb soon lured my attention after a year or so of neglect. I started watering the spindly looking plants, determined to get a nice harvest to make my grandma’s rhubarb crumble. The stupid plant went to seed and died on me…. or so I thought.

The next year it came back up!

And not just one plant, it had sprinkled seeds and had babies.

I was so excited! I landscaped around it, posted it on Instagram—yes, I post pics of my garden, my dogs and alcohol on Instagram LOL, you can find me here: @DeannaWads. I even tried to make jelly with my rhubarb, though the batches turned out lousy.

One day, five years into cultivating my precious rhubarb, I realized the cable company was on the back of my property tearing up the dirt to get at underground lines.

Right next to my rhubarb patch.

I was in my pajamas and no, not the cute ones. I hesitated at the door before I ran out to yell at them because I didn’t know if they were actually going to damage my grandma’s rhubarb. So like a logical person, I got up got dressed before I went out and checked.

My plants were safe.

Whew! Those guys didn’t want to face me if they’d harmed them, believe me!

As I was driving somewhere later that day, Phineas Robertson popped into my head.

I didn’t know who he was, or who we was going to fall in love with, but I knew darn well someone was going to tear up his precious rhubarb patch. Maybe the new man who just moved in next door would weed whack his rhubarb? If that happened, naturally Phin wouldn’t hesitate at the door and get dressed, would he? No! He would run outside in nothing but old white underwear and orange rubber garden boots!

The result of this little plot bunny was THE RHUBARB PATCH and the birth of my sweet little town of Gilead, Ohio—based on the town I live in.

It didn’t take long for me to plan the story or a dozen others to take place in Gilead. One thing I didn’t expect is for every single quirky gardening story I’ve ever been involved with or been told by friends or family—from the owl that gets into Phin’s chicken coop, to the little Schnauzer on the book cover eating all the beets and green beans out of the garden—to end up in THE RHUBARB PATCH. I’ve never written a book with so many true stories. As you’re reading the book and stumbling across something odd, like the existence of nuns who like to “hand screw tomatoes” or the raspberry jelly fiasco during the Red Wedding, or mysterious tomatoes from Italy, and even 150 year old sourdough starters…. rest assured it’s all true.

Well, with a little creative license to protect the innocent, of course.

Now you might be thinking, “Deanna, that’s not that really funny or humiliating.”

Wanna know a secret?

For seven years, I wasn’t growing rhubarb at all!

But I can’t tell that story, without spoiling THE RHUBARB PATCH. I’ll let Phin tell it, his version is better anyway.

 

Do you have a weird gardening story or something bizarre that happened to you in a small town? Maybe a favorite way you enjoy rhubarb?

Leave a comment and you’ll be entered to win one of my Dreamspinner backlist books.

 

Check out The Rhubarb Patch today!

 

RhubarbPatch_postcard_front_DSP

 

Blurb:

A Men of Gilead Novel

City boy, sci-fi novelist, and recovering pushover Scott Howe doesn’t know what to expect when he inherits his grandmother’s house outside the quaint village of Gilead, Ohio—but it isn’t an enormous bald man in nothing but tighty-whities and orange rubber boots shouting at him to keep his weed whacker away from the rhubarb patch.

Scott has never met anyone like Phineas Robertson: homesteader, recluse… Republican. A tender—if unlikely—friendship grows over the summer while Phin and his schnauzer, Sister Mary Katherine, teach Scott about life in the country and the grandmother he never knew. Opposites attract, but widower Phin worries his secret will send Scott running faster than his politics, and Phin isn’t convinced he deserves a second chance at romance.

Scott is convinced—rural life, and his one-of-a-kind older neighbor, is the future he wants. Before he can settle in, his mother drops a bombshell that strains their already tenuous relationship, and a cousin who believes he is the rightful heir to the property puts Scott in danger. It’ll take a lot of compromises, and even dodging a few bullets before they’re out of the weeds, but nurturing something as special as true love always takes hard work.

 

Author Bio:

Deanna Wadsworth might be a bestselling erotica author, but she leads a pretty vanilla life in Ohio with her wonderful husband and a couple adorable cocker spaniels. She has been spinning tales and penning stories since childhood, and her first erotic novella was published in 2010. She has served multiple board positions at her local RWA chapter and is the current President 2017 for Rainbow Romance Writers of America. When she isn’t writing books or brainstorming with friends, you can find her making people gorgeous in a beauty salon. She loves music and dancing, and can often be seen hanging out on the sandbar in the muddy Maumee River or chilling with her hubby and a cocktail in their basement bar. In between all that fun, Deanna cherishes the quiet times when she can let her wildly active imagination have the full run of her mind. Her fascination with people and the interworkings of their relationships have always inspired her to write romance with spice and love without boundaries.

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You can also find her young adult alter ego, K.D. Worth FacebookTwitter

7 Responses to “Rhubarb in the Family w/ Deanna Wadsworth + Giveaway”

  1. Lillyg says:

    Hello Deanna! I love rhubarb! I mostly do pies with it, and sometimes jam (perfect with vanilla). Not so long ago in a fancy restaurant there was some in my fish dish. The acidity went very well with it. It was delicious.

    Your book sound very sweet. Best of luck.

    Lillyg

  2. Lillyg says:

    Oh by the way, watch out with your furries since rhubarb leaves are toxic (though you are most probably already aware). I put mine where my pets can’t reach it too much.

  3. H.B. says:

    Congrats on your new book!
    I guess I should confess right now and get it out of the way. I’ve never had rhubarb before. I’ve heard of it and seen it via the food network but never seen it in RL. It’s just not sold in the supermarkets where I live on the east coast and I haven’t seen it as a pie option in any diners. I suppose if I really wanted I could buy seeds to grow my own. I have a great green thumb but just no time to garden. I also have a pretty bad aversion to bugs…

  4. susana says:

    Hi!
    I must recognise I’m not much of a gardener myself… AS for rhubarb, it is not very common here in my country (Spain). So no special recipes either. But I do love the sound of your new story. I just added it to my TBR pile!

  5. Deanna says:

    LillyG
    Thanks for stopping by! I’ve had rhubarb with vanilla, and just recently rhubarb pineapple jam–YUM!–but in a fish dish? Hmmm, might be something to try!

  6. Deanna says:

    HB,
    LOL I think lots of people have never had it. I am surprised it’s not in markets on the east coast. It’s such a hearty perennial. You should just order some rhubarb jelly online and try it.

  7. Deanna says:

    Susana,
    I hope you enjoy the book! I wonder what country rhubarb is most common in….runs off to google it….

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