I have let a few people I know read my book “Breathe”. Almost all of them have asked the same question. Why Lafayette, Louisiana? I have to laugh. I’m from Southern California. Most people here love it and can’t imagine leaving it for someplace else. They figure we have great weather and if you look beyond the traffic and the earthquakes it can be ideal.
But what if life here was less than ideal? What if people stared or looked at you with sympathy every time you walked by? What if that wasn’t going to change and the pressure felt like someone was crushing you in a vice? That's how my main character, Jasmine felt after the murder of her sister, Daisy. The memories, the public eye and the lack of closure from Daisy’s death was more than she could handle.
I wondered how would I feel? Where would I want to go? I’ll tell you what I came up with. Someplace very different than here. Someplace where the people, the weather and even the culture were different. Where can you get that and still be in the U.S.? The South. As Jasmine explains in the beginning of the book you can’t get more different from the deserts in California than the swamps in Louisiana.
I enjoyed all the research I did about Lafayette. It is a very interesting place. It has some great culture being the heart of Acadian history in the U.S. There are great restaurants and art galleries. It had everything I wanted for a romantic and suspenseful story. The swamps and rivers came in handy too. It had mystery and charm. Perfect.
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