New Beginnings by Janet Olson
Updated: Jan 23
I am so excited to introduce you to my next Indie Author, Janet Olson! New Beginnings is her debut novel and it is so good that I devoured it in two days!
Before we chat, let’s read the synopsis for New Beginnings:
Ida and Engen’s 13-year-old friendship is altered when the death of their friend comes between them. Engen, guilt-ridden over Janelle’s passing, has become violent. Ida, in her grief, attempts to fill the loss with a one-night stand, which leaves her pregnant. As punishment, their parents force them to join a program called Youth of America Help a Nation, and they are sent to Africa to work assignments. Enter Lev Rosen, Ida’s irresistible boss at the orphanage where she’s been appointed. Lev has his own connection to Ida, although she doesn’t know it yet. Engen hoped the time away would give him the courage to finally tell Ida his true feelings for her, but how can he do that now that she is getting closer to lev?
J.C. - Hi Janet! Thank you so much for letting me interview you. Can we start by having you say hi and introduce yourself to our readers?
J.O. - Hello everybody! My name is Janet and I am very excited to be interviewed by the remarkable Jessica Cantwell. Thank you for taking the time to read!
J.C. - New Beginnings is your debut novel. What made you come up with the idea?
J.O. - The idea for New Beginnings came from a very short dream I had of a young, pregnant girl who was working in Africa. She was sweeping a hut when she came across a rodent and was startled by it. A guy came over to help her out and I somehow just knew his name was Lev. I also knew the dream must've meant something because I rarely remember my dreams, so I sat down and did some brainstorming.
J.C. - Ida made a mistake that has major repercussions. How would you feel if you were in her shoes and sent off to Africa?
J.O. - I would not be happy in the least. I can not see adapting at all. It is one thing to want to travel to a foreign country, but being told you have to is quite a different thing.
J.C. - Enter Lev Rosen – a young sexy Good-Samaritan who happens to be Ida’s boss at the orphanage where she is assigned to work. When reading about him, I couldn’t help think that he has a darker/edgier side. Is there more to Lev than meets the eye?
J.O. - What you need to understand about Lev is that he knew he was in love with Ida before he even officially met her. Lev is a genuinely nice person, but aspects of his personality may have been altered/hidden in order to gain Ida's affections. In the sequel, Between Two Worlds, readers will get a closer look at what it is like inside Lev's head and see the lengths he is willing to go to in order to be with Ida.
J.C. - Engen, though hot tempered, is well - hot! He’s also compassionate, loving and devoted. Does he share any personality traits with anyone you personally know?
J.O. - Well, with the above traits you named I would be in the doghouse if I didn't say my husband shared those traits as well ;-)
J.C. - To drum up attention you started a Team Lev or Team Engen campaign. Dare I ask, whose team you are on?
J.O. - I actually can't take the credit for #TeamEngen and #TeamLev. @rcchristiansenauthor is a diehard Engen fan and @authorsarahhill is all about Lev, and the two of them started using those hashtags when they would have little "fights" in the comment section of my posts, so that is how the idea to market it as a Team War was born. I am Team Engen simply because he never tried to hide behind a 'perfect' facade. He was always very upfront about his flaws.
J.C. - Who has been your biggest support system while on this writing adventure?
J.O. - My husband, mother, and a handful of close friends have been with me from the very start of this book, over 10 years ago now, and I will be forever grateful to them. The most unexpected support system has come from my fellow indie authors on Instagram. If you had told me a year ago that people living in the UK and Canada would read my book over my family members, I would've fainted dead away. If you told me people in Australia and Idaho would read my book over the people I spend 40 hours a week with, I would've bet my entire life savings against you, and I would've lost. So a big thank you to everyone on Instagram that I have been fortunate enough to connect with!
J.C. - Finish the sentence. In ten years I’d like to…
J.O. - Be writing full time while living in Hawaii.
J.C. - Take me with you!!
J.C. - The ending, in my opinion, was perfect but leaves you on a cliff hanger. What can you tell us about book two?
J.O. - Book two was released on February 16th!
J.C. - Lastly, where can readers find you and your work?
J.O. - New Beginnings is available in paperback and Kindle only on Amazon. You can even give it a try for free with Kindle Unlimited. If you want to reach out to me for any reason, questions on the book, or about doing a read/review swap with your book, I am on Instagram @janetolsonauthor.
Thank you for reading about Janet Olsen and New Beginnings. Incase my interview questions didn’t give it away, I am team Engen all the way! Can’t wait to dive into book 2. Grab your copy today to find out who’s team you are on.