The Lake House: Week 1 Questions

The Lake House final cover

Photo Credit: Goodreads

This is week 1 of Book Lovers Unite discussion for The Lake House. Because it’s December, because we’re all busy, because my niece was recently born, because my family will be in and out of town the next several weeks, because of a million things- I did not post a reading schedule. Why? The discussion questions are going to be more open, more to let you think about things as you are reading at your own pace. This book is a book that is delightful- it’s got moments of humor and sadness- but it’s a great story and one that you should read.

The next 2 Friday’s will have the discussion questions as well. I encourage you to read at your own pace- enjoy the book and let it give you some relaxation during the upcoming holidays.

Questions for Week 1

1. Victoria chased her dreams instead of honoring the pact that she made with her friends about never leaving the lake area. When she returns, her friends snub her. Can you understand why the snub her? Can you understand why Victoria wanted to return? Should her friends still be mad after all these years? Is there more to the story of why these friends are mad?

2. Heather is a globe trotter- but she longs for the safety of a home of her own. Why? Why does a young person want to put roots somewhere?



Thanks for joining in Week 1 questions!


Thanks for reading- and for joining in at the fun at Traveling With T (see my new blog signature!)


Announcing December Book Lovers Unite selection: The Lake House by Marci Nault

marci nault ad fb


Yes folks it’s time to announce the #bookloversunite selection for December- and I’m pleased to report that it will be:


The Lake House by Marci Nault!


Join in the fun as we read along and discuss Marci Nault’s debut novel. Who knows- Marci might pop in to chime in on the discussion 😉


The reading schedule will be posted ASAP- but if you are interested in reading the book- go buy, borrow from the library or steal (no- don’t really steal!)


A couple of notes:

1. December is going to be busy- I KNOW this. Between holidays, decorating, making memories with family and more- December is going to be BUSY. However, you readers of Traveling With T, need some time to relax- and there is not much better than relaxing with a book! Hope to see you around!


2. To add to the BUSY-ness of the first reason- I will also have some personal things happening in December. My niece, Little Baby Owl (seriously, that’s not her name- but for the internets it’s her name) will be arriving (hopefully the 2nd week of December). What does this mean for you? Not too much- as the bloggy-blog will keep on running even while I’m giving hugs and kisses to Little Baby Owl- however, my reply time might be a little slow. Fear not- I will answer- I’m just alerting to not send out a rescue party for T if you haven’t heard from me in a day or 2.


3. I NEVER do this- but if anyone has suggestions for January’s read- send them on! Just comment on this post!


4. Please tell your book loving friends to join in- the discussion is super-fun!



Author Spotlight: Marci Nault

The Lake House final cover

Marci Nault has stopped by to reveal her #literaryconfessions and #literarycrush! Be sure and check out the interview and #giveaway about Marci Nault and The Lake House!


Author Spotlight: Marci Nault

Marci- who are some of your favorite authors?

Anne Patchett, Jodi Picoult, John Grisham, Caroline Leavitt, Leslie Lehr, Mary Alice Monroe, Meg Donohue, Lisa Genova.


What book or books will you always make room for on your book shelf?

Chocolat and The Girl With No Shadow, Bel Canto, Stephen King’s On Writing, The Power of Now


Are you a hardback, paperback or e-book kind of reader?

I fought the e-reader for a long time, until my agent gave me one for Christmas. I still love paperback books. Hardcovers for me are too heavy to read in bed or to carry on planes and I travel quite a bit. I love my e-reader for travel. I can be a world away from home and have a complete library at the touch of a button.

Do you have any #literaryconfessions? 

I’m so afraid to say this, but I didn’t like Wuthering Heights or Ayn Rand. I’ve been told to give Wuthering Heights another look, and maybe I will someday.


Do you have a #literarycrush?

I have to admit that I have a crush on Tommy from my own novel, The Lake House. Boy do I wish he were real!


What books are you looking forward to reading in 2013?

Becoming a published author I’ve been able to meet so many great authors and my to-be-read is piling up. I’ve started about three books that I’m really enjoying, but I realize I want the time to sink in, so I’ve put them aside until I can take a vacation. Love, Water, Memory, This is Tomorrow, What a Mother Knows.

What is the best book you have read (so far) in 2013?

Fully completed (because the books I’ve mentioned above are all wonderful) – The Language of Flowers.


Some say books go best with chocolate- what do you think books go hand in hand with? Chocolate? Wine? Dessert?

I love a great book and a cappuccino from a small local coffee shop. A glass of wine on a Sunday afternoon while sitting in a vineyard is a favorite. I live surrounded by wine country so I can do this. I spent many hours in Piazza Signora in Florence eating truffles and reading, so good chocolate is always a choice. Good literature and something yummy is just what makes life decadent!


*Special thanks to Marci Nault for this author spotlight!


marci nault twitter

Marci Nault’s debut novel, The Lake House (Gallery/ Simon & Schuster) was a Chicago Tribune, Cape May Herald, CBS, and Amazon Premier summer read pick. Originally from Massachusetts, today she can be found figure skating, salsa dancing, hiking and wine tasting around her home in California. Marci is the founder of 101 Dreams Come True, a motivational website that encourages visitors to follow their improbable dreams. Her story about attempting to complete 101 of her biggest dreams has been featured in newspapers and magazines nationwide, and she regularly speaks on the subject on radio stations in both the United States and Canada. She’s also the owner of, a couture lingerie, dress, and jewelry store.





The Lake House by Marci Nault

The Lake House final cover

Marci Nault’s The Lake House is a tale of love, forgiveness, being true to yourself, and finding peace.

Victoria- one of the original Nagog residents. She and her girlfriends make the pact to never leave Nagog and live life there forever- with husbands, children, grandchildren. Then the war comes, the ladies sweethearts leave, and Victoria gets restless. She longs to experience life beyond the area of Nagog. Victoria breaks the pact and leaves- creating a rift with her friends. A rift, that for some, may never be able to be repaired.

Heather- from the outside she has everything. A career that she’s proud of, a man that cares for her, and a diamond engagement ring- Heather appears to be set for life. Except, she’s not. She doesn’t feel content or safe- and she longs to have a place, a life that is hers- a place where she won’t feel if she makes a mistake, life is over. Heather finds a place in Nagog and feels the stirrings of safety- so she buys the place.

Nagog, though, does not welcome either Heather or Victoria with open arms. Resentment burns through some of the community toward Victoria for past differences, misunderstandings and hurt feelings. For Heather, the residents do not want young people moving in the area- so they do everything to make the place least welcoming as possible.

Heather and Victoria strike up a friendship- and although neither are aware- both fill a need in each other’s life. As their friendship grows, secrets and advice are shared- and the bond deepens.

Can Victoria make amends to the community and people she left behind? Can Heather find the safety and happiness she has been craving? Read The Lake House to find out!

Traveling With T’s Thoughts:

Enjoyable read. Well thought out characters. Great setting. Wonderful storyline. A perfect read for pool-side or lake/beach-side. Victoria and Heather- characters that have had sadness- but deserve some happiness. You, as the reader, root for them to find their happy ending. Recommended.


Interview with Marci Nault, author of The Lake House

The Lake House final cover

Marci Nault’s The Lake House has been on my TBR list for some time. First the cover- well it just screams “read me!”- couple that with the plot and well- color me intrigued!

I won my copy of The Lake House from A Novel Review (Thanks, Laura!) and then Marci and I started chatting- and she agreed to be interviewed! So today is the interview with Marci (plus a #giveaway!) and then Wednesday will be an author spotlight.


Interview with Marci Nault

Marci, what was the inspiration for The Lake House?


I was living in California in an apartment I hated and terribly missing my family in Boston. I had a dream that I found my perfect lake house in Massachusetts and I bought it on the spot without doing any research. When I moved in, everyone was over the age of seventy and had lived there their entire lives. The neighbors would stop over and bring me casseroles and try to set me up with their grandsons. When I woke I knew I needed to write the story.


When creating characters, do you find that you base them on people you know or create them from your own imagination?

My main characters come to me. The first time I saw, Victoria Rose, she was standing in a sunroom at night with three candles lit. An old crocheted sweater was wrapped around her shoulders as she swayed to Patsy Cline. I realized that each flame was for a woman she’d lost and that she was grieving. Her pain was so real that in my mind I wanted to reach out and touch her. For months, Victoria would wake me at four in the morning wanting to tell me her story.

Secondary characters have aspects of the people in my life. Molly looks so much like my great grandmother. She was a pillow of hugs and always smelled like lilacs. Bill has traits of my grandfather and Carl my great uncle. But for the most part my characters take on a life of their own and they take me for a ride. I love the adventure of finding out what will happen next.


Who is your favorite character in The Lake House?

I love them all and they were so much fun to have in my life, but I have to say Molly is my favorite. She loves unconditionally and wraps everyone in warmth and care. I think everyone wishes they had a Molly in their lives. But Thomas, the old Casanova, was the most fun to write.


Can you describe The Lake House in 10 words or less?

Laughter, heartache, friendship, and the need to find home.


Marci- tell us about your writing space. Do you have a space or a routine?

I have an office that overlooks a park. My kittens like to sit at the window and watch the birds in the tree. The birds seem to know that the kittens can’t get them and so they come to the window and taunt.

When I need to feel like there’s a world outside my imagination and my house I have three different coffee shops where I work. And unfortunately many of my best ideas come at four in the morning, so I keep my laptop under my bed for these times.

I’m trying to find a routine, and I wish I were a writer who could sit down at the same time everyday and write, but my ideas come when they come. Sometimes they need to stew for a day or two and at other times I work around the clock. There are times I envy the 9-5 jobs my friends have. But most days I’m just incredibly grateful to do what I love.


101 Dreams Come True is a project of yours. How did it begin? How many dreams have you completed?

In the beginning of 2008, my life blew-up and continued to hit me hard for six months. Little did I know that it was destroying everything I didn’t need in order to have the life I was meant to live. By June I was sitting in a park in Sonoma, California praying for the pain to end. I was alone, lost, scared, and couldn’t remember the last time I laughed. I began to make a list of the times I was happiest in my life and I came up with about 15 things. Then I asked, “What if I wasn’t afraid? What if money wasn’t an issue? What if I didn’t fear failure? What would I want? How would I live?”

I began to make a list of dreams: live in Florence for a month; become a published novelist with a big publisher; learn to say what I feel without need or expectation; buy my home outright; and laugh so hard with a stranger my sides hurt. When I was done I had a list of 101 Dreams. I looked at the list and thought, yeah right!

 That night I was at a hotel in Napa hanging out with strangers and I ended up laughing so hard my stomach hurt. I went into the restroom and in the mirror I saw the smile on my face and thought, What if?

Since that day I’ve completed 90 of my biggest dreams in life including getting published with Gallery Books an imprint of Simon & Schuster.


Marci- what are you working on next? Do you have an idea for a future book?

I’m working on a novel about how our memories define who we are. It’s a love story that takes the main character on a journey through South America. But at this time, there’s been a strong call for a sequel to THE LAKE HOUSE, and I have to admit that I wouldn’t mind revisiting the characters of Nagog.


*Special thanks to Marci Nault for agreeing to be interviewed!


marci nault twitter

Marci Nault, author of The Lake House, can be found at Facebook, Twitter, and her website, plus the 101 Dreams Come True website. Marci is steadily working on her 101 Dreams List- and hopes you are too!


*Giveaway: 2 copies of The Lake House are up for grabs! To enter: comment and tell me the number of dreams you have for your life. Giveaway is open to US only (sorry!). Enter from August 5th-12th. Contest ends August 12th at 11:59pm EST. Winner will be notified August 13th.

Monday Mashup

It’s been a while since I’ve done a mashup- so I’m bringing it back!


A Novel Review is giving away THE LAKE HOUSE by Marci Nault (! Day left to enter- so get those entries in there!)


The Book Wheel and Love at First Book are still rocking on with their nonfiction pick for May. If nonfiction floats your boat- then there is still time to join in on the fun!

Traveling With T  (that’s me!) and Book-alicious Mama are working hard on getting RECONSTRUCTING AMELIA ready for June. Thanks to a special person, I hope to have blog buttons by June.  Plans for the hashtag #bookloversunite will be revealed on Friday.

Southern Lit Lovers on Goodreads are discussing Julie Kibler’s CALLING ME HOME. If you missed the chance to talk about it with me at She Reads- do stop by Goodreads.

My review of CALLING ME HOME by Julie Kibler.


The Book Wheel has started her own literary consulting company. Read her blog post for the details.

On Danna Pycher’s blog- I was given a lovely shout-out for my interview with Danna that posted on Friday. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

More good news for me: I won an autographed copy of TIME FLIES by Claire Cook– I don’t think I even need to explain how excited I was since TIME FLIES since it made my Beach Bag Reads list!


I reviewed THE COTTAGE AT GLASS BEACH today. Beautiful cover, good book, mystery and intrigue- worth a read!

Do you like a little chill in your reading for the summer? Marybeth Whalen, co-creator of She Reads, has got a list of summer reads for you then! Looking over the list of A Little Chill in the Summer– I already have marked to read LIE STILL by Julia Heaberlin- looks like I have more to add!

I created a Book Signings board on Pinterest- go check it out- it’s every book signing that I’ve been to!

Last week was Bout of Books– here is how my week went with that!

LASTLY: Twitter chat with CHRISTINA BAKER KLINE, author of ORPHAN TRAIN  Thursday, May 23 at 8pmEST. Use #srchat to join in! It’ll be fun and fabulous!

My review of ORPHAN TRAIN by Christina Baker Kline