Welcome Debut Author-Mary Strand!

Welcome today to my dear friend, Golden Heart winner AND I’m so pleased to announce published fellow author, Mary Strand. Her debut novel COOPER’S FOLLY was released last week by Belle Bridge Books—and it has not just a gorgeous cover and a hunky hero—but an amazing story as well. She’s got a fun interview for us at GLIAS today. And, when you’re done reading all about her awesome new novel—hop over to FB and visit her and several really cool authors at her LAUNCH PARTY!

AUTHOR:  Mary Strand
Title: Cooper’s Folly
Publisher: Bell Bridge Books


Mary Strand practiced corporate law in a large Minneapolis law firm for 16 years until the day she set aside her pointy-toed shoes (or most of them!) and escaped the land of mergers and acquisitions to write novels.  Her first novel, Cooper’s Folly, won Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart award.  Cooper’s Folly, published by Bell Bridge Books, is her debut novel.  Mary lives on a lake in Minneapolis with her husband, two cute kidlets, and a stuffed monkey named Philip. When not writing, she loves traveling, live music, and playing sports with reckless abandon and a high probability of injury.

 He took a dare.  She took a chance.
Burned-out lawyer Cooper Meredith decides success isn't all it's cracked up to be. Trading his ties for T-shirts, he chucks it all and becomes nanny to a wild pair of four-year-olds ... and the four-year-olds win every time. The kids' mom, Molly Perrell, a stressed-to-the-max retail exec, just wants someone she can count on. It doesn't appear to be Cooper, who turns out to be the world's worst nanny. Their clashes, and their undeniable attraction, turn Cooper's summer folly into the chance of a lifetime.


             Molly reviewed her options one last time.  Unfortunately, she had just one.  This man.  This—okay—tall, very attractive, very blond, very tempting man.  The guy had the most beautiful blue eyes, with flecks of gold, reminding her of the sky on a hazy August day at the lake.  Hips slim enough to slide her arms around.  The hint of contoured muscles under his shirt that gave him an indefinable sense of power.  Of strength.  The type of man her next-door neighbor, Brooke, would eat for lunch.  And dinner, and most definitely breakfast. 
            Molly had neither the time nor the tolerance for casual or even not-so-casual flings, but she appreciated a gorgeous man when she saw one.  She wasn’t dead yet.  Cooper Meredith was clearly not dead yet, either.  What had Emma said?  Oh, yeah—cute.  Very cute.  More Saturday-night-date material than nanny material, but maybe she could make this work until she got home from New York.  With a little help from her sister-in-law and a little luck.
            She drew in a long breath and slowly let it out.  Paused. Made her decision.  “If, and I mean if, your references check out, you’ve gotten yourself a temporary job.  I’ll just have to pray nothing goes wrong.”
            After she described the hours, salary, and benefits, which she knew were standard, he replied with just a slight tilt of his eyebrows.  Silence.  Molly tried to wait him out but couldn’t stand the suspense.  She needed him.  She steeled herself for the inevitable refusal but asked anyway.
            “Well, Mr. Meredith?  What’s your answer?”
            “Ms. Perrell, it’s a resounding yes.”


LIZ: How often do you get lost in a story?
MARY:    It’s more difficult for me now to get lost in a story, because my “writer hat” can interfere with a good read!  I get lost as often as possible, though, most often when I read in genres I don’t write.  My favorite for doing that would be Regencies.

LIZ: What’s the first book you remember reading? 
MARY:     I vividly remember reading all the Laura Ingalls Wilder books in first grade.  Of the series, though, I liked Farmer Boy (the only book not about Laura) best.  I always loved boys!

LIZ: What’s your favorite “love” word?
MARY:     My favorite “love” word would probably be “passion.”  My life tends to be focused on intensity, immediacy, and, well, passion.  I want to FEEL things.  Everything.  I want to soar.

LIZ: What one thing about your hero drives his heroine crazy? And what one thing about your heroine drives her hero nuts?
MARY:     The biggest thing about my hero, Cooper, that drives the heroine, Molly, nuts is that, as the nanny for her kids, he rarely does anything she tells him to do!  The biggest thing about Molly that drives Cooper nuts is that she tries so hard to be self-reliant that she never asks him for help.

LIZ: Name three things that are, at this moment, in your heroine’s purse, satchel, reticule, weapons belt or amulet bag (or whatever she carries)?
MARY:     It would be a designer purse, probably by Coach.  Three things would include an energy bar, five shades of lipstick, and a package of wet wipes.  She’s always prepared for anything.

LIZ: What sound or noise do you love?
MARY:     My favorite sound might well be the sound of the ocean crashing against the shore, especially late at night.  I can stand on a beach for ages listening to it.
LIZ: If you were given a chance to travel to the past where would you go and specifically why?
MARY:     Ha!  It’s a bit difficult for me to separate this question from my interest in and knowledge of past lives.  But ... hmm.  Oh!  This is an easy one.  I would travel back to Atlantis (which I absolutely believe existed) to learn all that the people of Atlantis knew and understood and could do, which was apparently far more advanced than what people can do today.

LIZ: What will always make you smile, even on a bad day?
MARY:     It’s a rare day that I don’t smile (or more likely laugh), but my favorite instant smiles would come from (1) driving around, fast, on a gorgeous day with the top down on my convertible, (2) playing basketball, (3) swing dancing to a really fast song by my favorite local band, and (4) standing in a museum surrounded by works by Degas.
LIZ: What’s your favorite movie of all time?
MARY:     Gidget.  I am SUCH a Gidget, and the love of my life would be Moondoggie.

LIZ: What is your biggest vice?
MARY:     Pasta in all forms!  Noooooo!  Must not eat!  I’m supposed to be an Atkins girl!

LIZ HAS GOTTA ASK: What’s the most personal thing you’ve ever put in one of your books?
MARY:     One entire book that I wrote was extremely personal to me, start to finish, and left me entirely wrung out for two months after finishing it a year ago.  The most personal thing in it (of many) was exactly how I felt about the first guy I really fell in love with ... and who shattered my heart.

Cooper and Molly actually asked this of each other in Cooper’s Folly:  If you could have the job of your dreams, what would it be? 
I’ll be giving an ebook version of Cooper’s Folly to one lucky commenter!

Website:  www.marystrand.com
Facebook:  www.facebook.com/marystrandauthor
Twitter: http://twitter.com/Mary_Strand
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7328368.Mary_Strand

Purchase COOPER'S FOLLY:  Amazon



  1. I think it would be fun to own a bakery/chocolate shop. Just the smells alone would be heavenly. :)

    This book sounds so fun. And I also loved Farmer Boy the best of all the Little House books. LOL

    Marcy Shuler

    1. Thanks, Marcy! If I owned a bakery or chocolate shop ... I'd be in deep doo-doo. I love them too much!

  2. If there is a job where all I do is read books that I like... that would be my dream job!

    1. Reading books would indeed be a dream job. My own dream job would have to be more active, though. I'd love to be paid to play sports all day!

  3. Hi Mar,
    Thanks for being here on GLIAS today. I'd say I kind of have my dream job--sitting on my bum, saying I'm writing, and having my husband cook for me. I'd kind of like to do it in, like, Australia or Hawaii though! Glad you're here today!

    1. Thanks for having me here, Liz! I'll see your Australia or Hawaii and raise you Paris or Venice! :-)

  4. Hi, Mary. I really have two of my dream jobs (altho' having both at once can be a pain at times), but the one I guess I regret not having is as a dramaturge (yes, that is the correct spelling, spellcheck). I love the theatre and with that job my analytic mind would get me there in lieu of my paltry acting skills. Congratulations on the book (yay!). Fun interview, too, guys.

    1. hi Nancy! Never too late to go after your dream! And thanks on my book!

  5. Hi, Mary! Congrats on the debut of 'Cooper's Folly!' My dream job is pretty much what I do now, but with better pay and benefits. :) I love writing (or having written anyhow) and because of my short attention span, augmenting that with artwork, music and graphic design projects.

    1. hi Naomi! Thanks! I probably have the shortest attention span on the planet, so I know all about needing to augment whatever I'm doing with a few other things.

  6. What an awesome excerpt and interview! I'm with you at the beach Mary! That's my go to place all the time when I need to relax and focus. I would love to use my creativity on the computer.

    1. Thanks, Jody! Yeah, I loooove the beach ... but particularly first thing in the morning and last thing at night. But what is this talk of "focus"? heh heh.

  7. I would love to be a writer. By the way I loved the Gidget movie too. lol

    1. Rita, if you'd love to be a writer, you should be a writer. Even if you need to do something else, too. Go for it!

  8. Hi, Mary! Welcome to Get Lost in a Story! Doing a cartwheel in your honor on your wonderful debut Cooper's Folly. (I'll send the chiropractor bill later :) Wishing you wonderful sales and many more to come!

    1. Thanks, Donnell! Hey, careful with those cartwheels! OTOH, maybe we could get a group discount on medical costs? :-)

  9. Nice interview. Travel around the world

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

  10. CONGRATULATIONS on your release, Mary !