The Guests on South Battery by Karen White

The Guests on South Battery by Karen White is now available wherever books are sold! Check out our exclusive interview with the New York Times bestselling author of The Tradd Street series.

What inspired you to write The Tradd Street Series which is set amid the sights and sounds of historic Charleston?

The main character, Melanie Middleton, whacked me upside the head one morning while I was trying to shower and wouldn’t let me go. Seriously! And, I needed a good excuse to visit Charleston often.

In the latest installment, The Guests on South Battery, Melanie Trenholm is returning to work after maternity leave. How has she evolved as a wife, mother, and real estate agent?

With the help of her growing circle of friends and family, she has begun to realize that she doesn’t really have it all together in all aspects of her life as she’d like to think and that she might, in fact, be a tad dysfunctional. She tries really hard to change, but as it is with all lifelong habits, she takes two steps forward and three steps back. But, she still tries.

What is the driving force behind Melanie’s affinity for the house on South Battery?

A huge commission!  Beyond that, the previous owner was a friend of her mother’s and loved the house.  And Melanie’s best friend, Sophie, who is a professor of Historic Preservation at the College of Charleston, would probably never forgive Melanie if she allowed her client to sell the house as is without giving Sophie a chance to restore it.

How does the appearance of spirits, both malevolent and benign, affect Melanie’s relationships, especially with Jack?

Jack is used to it, accepts it, and even admires this trait in his new wife. Those who love Melanie, like Nola and Sophie, handle Melanie’s abilities like a special talent. But Melanie is aware that others might not be as accepting, and might actually call her downright crazy, so she tries very hard to not publicize the fact that she can see dead people—especially people who might need a real estate agent.

Will there be a sixth book in the series?

There will actually be two more books in the series after this one—and both of those stories are set up in this one!

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Dog Tales

Dog TalesI make no bones about it. I love my dog! How can I not? Our rescue pooch Charlie is a faithful companion who never leaves my family’s side. Like clockwork, he greets us at the door with a wag of his fluffy tail, and only seeks a good belly rub in return for his affection. Our house wouldn’t be a home without our playful pup. The same is true for these four extraordinary writers whose latest releases highlight the special bond between a pet and its owner. Dog lovers are in for a real treat for these unforgettable stories are now available wherever books are sold.

Dog TalesElle & Coach: Diabetes, the Fight for My Daughter’s Life, and the Dog Who Changed Everything by Stefany Shaheen with Mark Dagostino is a true story about a family whose lives dramatically change when their daughter Elle is diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. From pricking Elle’s fingers to testing her blood sugar levels and administering insulin, the family had to learn to adjust to what would quickly become their new normal. And, who better to show them the way than a loyal service dog named Coach. This book  immediately grabbed my attention for like Elle, my teenage niece suffers from juvenile diabetes.

Dog TalesAll Dogs Go To Kevin: Everything Three Dogs Taught Me that I Didn’t Learn in Veterinary School by Dr. Jessica Vogelsang is a poignant memoir filled with kindness and compassion depicting one resilient woman’s journey of personal growth. Veterinarian Jessica Vogelsang’s life has been defined by the three dogs that have guided her through adolescence, veterinarian school, and early motherhood. Each canine has taught her valuable life lessons in empathy and humility. The same is true for the parade of pooches who have passed through her veterinary doors. But when the unthinkable happens, Jessica finally learns the true meaning of a dog’s unconditional love.

Dog TalesLawyer for the Dog: A Novel by Lee Robinson is the only fictional title to make my must-read list. How could it not? It’s set in Charleston, one of my favorite cities to visit, and it’s about an adorable miniature schnauzer named Sherman whose owners are fighting for guardianship. In this heartwarming tale, family lawyer Sally Baynard faces her toughest case courtesy of her ex-husband, Judge Joe Baynard. The spirited southern belle is thrown right in the mix of a contested divorce of two upstanding Charlestonians while trying to make peace with her ex-lover as well as her ailing mother.

Dog TalesHaatchi & Little B: The Inspiring True Story of One Boy and His Dog by Wendy Holden is a true testament of love between a boy and his dog. Grab a box of Kleenex before you delve into this remarkable gem. It’s the story of an Anatolian Shepherd puppy who was sadly abused and left to die on the railroad tracks and a little boy named Owen who suffers from a rare genetic disorder that leaves him confined in a wheelchair. Together, they beat the odds and become the most unlikely of pairs who learn to navigate life’s difficult journey.

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Summer Family Travel to Kiawah Island, South Carolina

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There is no place our family would rather spend summer vacation than on Kiawah Island, South Carolina. For the past 13 years, my husband and I have packed up our two sons and headed to this picturesque destination located about 21 miles south of Charleston. With five championship golf courses and two world-renowned tennis facilities, you can’t beat the first-rate amenities.

Summer Family Travel to Kiawah Island, SCThis year, we opted to bring along our newly adopted rescue dog, Charlie. For those who travel regularly with their furry friends, Kiawah Island offers various pet-friendly accommodations for budget-conscious families. We chose to stay in a villa located next to Night Heron Park which consists of over 21 acres of natural adventures. Charlie was able to join us for lunch after our family swim.Summer Family Travel to Kiawah Island, SCThe recently renovated pools offer hours of outdoor fun. Our teenage sons spent the majority of their waking hours carousing on the two waterslides. Afterwards, we dined at the Night Heron Grill located adjacent to the pool area. For those who have kids ages 3 to 11, Night Heron Park is also home to Camp Kiawah. Trained counselors will spend the day providing them with fun-filled activities while mom and dad experience all the island has to offer.

Summer Family Travel to Kiawah Island, SCOf course, one of the main attractions to this barrier island is the ten miles of sandy beaches. We spent many lazy afternoons relaxing on the beach while Charlie frolicked along the shoreline. Dogs are permitted on the beach 24/7, but they must be kept on a leash. If your family likes to hike or bike, there are over 30 miles of trails waiting to be explored. We rented bikes for the week and toured the island every morning in search of gators.

Summer Family Travel to Kiawah Island, SCThrough the Night Heron Nature Center, you can choose from various activities like canoeing, walking tours, paddle boarding, dolphin excursions, fishing, archery, yoga, water painting, and much more. One of the highlights of our trip was paddle boarding. The boys set off for a wild time in search of sea creatures. We also chartered a boat and cruised along the river while looking for dolphins.

Summer Family Travel to Kiawah Island, SCCharlie hit the jackpot when we pulled up alongside a pod consisting of about 20 dolphins. We were truly amazed by the dolphins’ willingness to approach the boat. Needless to say, we had to hold on tight to Charlie so he wouldn’t go overboard!

jasmine-porch-entrance-en-gbAs for dining options, there are approximately a dozen restaurants located within the resort like The Ryder Cup Bar with spectacular views and Tomasso at Turtle Point featuring scrumptious Italian cuisine. Our all-time favorite for any meal is the Jasmine Porch located in the only hotel on the island, The Sanctuary.

Summer Family Travel to Kiawah Island, SCThis magnificent hotel is located right on the majestic Atlantic shoreline. Its breath-taking views and superb hospitality make it a popular destination for weddings and special occasions. If you chose to dine in, the Town Center Market has groceries readily available and you can even have them delivered right to your villa for a nominal fee.

photo-6With Charleston practically on your doorstep, a quick drive to this historic city makes for an easy day trip or night on the town. Our favorite must-eat Charleston restaurants include Taco Boy, Fuel, and Poogan’s Porch which are all dog-friendly.

Summer Family Travel to Kiawah Island, SCCharlie enjoyed his culinary adventures as much as we did. If you’re thinking of planning a vacation, check out Kiawah Island. For more information, visit their website at www.kiawahresort.com.

Momtrends was not paid for this post. We were given a complimentary lunch for four in exchange for an honest review.

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