Amanda McIntyre- Best of Contemporary: A visit with Tina DeSalvo


I first met Tina DeSalvo last year at a Romantic Times conference where we were both involved in a special RT romance anthology put out by our mutual friends at 13Thirty Books.

 This next year, I am thrilled to be partnering with Tina for a pop-up author signing at RT 2017 in Atlanta. (Time and date TBA) She writes contemporary romantic fiction,  grew up in one of my favorite cities in the whole world--New Orleans-- and has kicked ass, fighting stage 3 cancer--I admire and love her so much and know you will , too!

So, getting started--let's find out a little about Tina...WELCOME Tina!!

TINA: Thank you Amanda for inviting me to be part of your exciting blog. I love talking about my books, in particular the latest story of my Second Chance Novel series, each of which can be read as stand-alones. 

Amanda: Tell us a bit about the series and your other books.

 TINA: my Second Chance Novel series is inspired by the people and places of Louisiana. I  grew up in the suburbs of New Orleans, only minutes from the French Quarter. I moved to Cajun Country after college to take a job as a broadcast journalist. Like New Orleans had, the area offered this creative author heart the inspiration for her writing with its rich culture, unique traditions and interesting people. My Second Chance Novel series includes Elli and Jewell, full length novels and the fun novellas- Hunt for Christmas (Under the Kissing Bough Collection) and Last Chance in Vegas (Romantic Times in Vegas Vol.3) Coming in early 2017- Abby, a Second Chance Novel.
Amanda: It sounds like you've had some wonderful, and harrowing experiences. What inspired you to write this particular story?

 TINA: What inspired me to write the novella, Hunt for Christmas, are the lovely memories I have from when I was reporter covering the Bayou Christmas boat parades in South Louisiana. Those boat parades touched all of my senses! There were the beautiful multi-colored lights reflecting off of the still bayou water; the cheerful music greeting people on the banks who sat on lawn chairs or on blankets waving to the boats that passed by; the excited voices on board the boats as they held a warm, fragrant mug of hot chocolate or seasoned bowl of gumbo as stories were shared of Christmas memories. I loved it all both onboard one of the boats and from the banks. I always wanted to write a romance including those memories and got the chance when I was invited by the remarkable author, Barbara Devlin, to join the Under the Kissing Bough Christmas collection. I knew exactly where I wanted to set the story- in the bayou community where the other Second Chance novels were set. I also knew that I wanted to include the Christmas boat parades to share the remarkable feelings I enjoyed when I participated in them!
Amanda: It sounds like an amazing collection! How about a sneak peek overview of the story?
TINA: I returned to a whimsical secret idea I had as a reporter...a What If?  What if you had to ride in a boat parade to get to a remote and extravagant Cajun Christmas celebration in the cypress swamp? Wouldn’t that be lovely? My story, Hunt for Christmas, a Second Chance Novella, was born from that.  Photographer Hunter James has just purchased a remote island in the swamps of Louisiana where he can replenish his battered soul from photographing some of the worst and best of man and nature. Only, he had no idea that a huge, noisy, Cajun Bayou Christmas celebration is held in the nearby village of Fa La La. Not only that, but part of that crowded month-long event had also been held on his island for generations. Hunter doesn’t want that to happen anymore. The heroine, Dr. Camille Comeaux, tries to convince him otherwise because it’s economically critical for her family and the village if they are to keep their way of life that his celebration supports.
FIND HUNT for CHRISTMAS in Under the Kissing Bough collection!

Amanda: Your first novel in the SECOND CHANCE series-Ellie is special to you as well, tell us why...

TINA:I am a stage 3 breast cancer survivor. In my journey to fight the deadly disease, I found Elli's journey. I used my fears, emotions, triumphs and those of the people fighting cancer alongside of me, to create Elli's story when Elli redefines her life after cancer in that wonderful, difficult, joyful, fearful time after the treatment ends.

Note: Tina wants you to know that all of the author proceeds for Elli will be donated to help women who are fighting breast cancer with important needs that is unmet by other means. Find out more at: www.tinadesalvo.com


Amanda: We're a week before Christmas, what is one of your favorite holiday traditions?

TINA: Cooking Lasagna (and eating it!) as part of our Christmas meal. My second-generation Italian mom always included a HUGE pan (or three) of lasagna for our main meal on Christmas day. It was a big production preparing for it and cooking it. We’d go to the best Italian shops in New Orleans to get fresh mozzarella, ricotta, Italian sausage and olive oil a few days before Christmas. I remember how amazing the aromas were when we’d walk into those specialty shops...garlic, rosemary, anise and oh, the sweet pastries too! And, of course we’d sample what we could.

Amanda: That makes my mouth water just reading about it! What fun!  It has been wonderful getting to k now more about you! Where can readers find out more and connect with you? 

TINA: Thanks for asking, Amanda.  I love to visit with readers, so please contact me. Maybe we can share a recipe our two...or five!  
One person-chosen at random-- leaving a comment will receive eBook copies of the first two novels in the Second Chance series--Elli and Jewel!


  1. Welcome to GLIAS Tina! What a wonderful and touching interview. We're delighted to have you come visit and share your Christmas story and your series. Both sound like great reads! Thank you for the generous gift to our readers, as well. Have a very Merry Christmas!

  2. Good article, is the town "Fa La La," I hope so. Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas

    1. Congrats Dean! You are guessed the correct town first! Please email me at amandamcintyre.author@gmail.com

  3. Welcome to GLIAS, Tina. MERRY CHRISTMAS !!

  4. Welcome!!! I think the village is Fa La La. Happy Holidays to you and yours!!

    1. Thanks Nancy! Merry Christmas!! You've got it right!

  5. Merry Christmas Everyone Thanks so much for the chance to win copies of these books. They really look great.

  6. Fa La La

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

  7. Merry Christmas Angi! Thank you for stopping in to read my chat with Amanda!

  8. Thanks for all of your kind comments and...GOOD LUCK!!

  9. I will go with the crowd... Fa La La
    ty and Merry Xmas!

  10. THANKS EVERYONE FOR STOPPING IN TO VISIT WITH TINA! The winner of two eBooks Elli and Jewel is DEAN Y! Congratulations! I'll be in touch to arrange for your prize!