Dear Reader,

I’m Lisa Dale, and my first book, Simple Wishes, came out early this year. Life’s turned upside down a bit since the book debuted, and it’s been tons of fun.

Simple Wishes is romance with a strong women’s fiction feel. I wanted to write a romance that was emotional, smart, deep, and intense—a story of how love beyond all expectation can come from the challenging situations of real life.

My heroine, Adele, is a survivor. At nineteen, she left home to escape her oppressive home life, running away to New York City to make a life for herself. Then, over a decade later, she makes a mistake that forces her to return to the quiet, secluded mountains of Eastern Pennsylvania.

Her deceased mother’s cottage is dreary and dull, but her neighbors are enlightening. She meets Jay, a sexy carpenter and artist who loves mountain life and wants to settle down and have a family on Notch Lane. And she also meets Beatrice, a Korean American grandmother who inadvertently hints that Adele’s hard childhood was not exactly as it seemed.

Just when Adele lets her guard down and allows herself to acknowledge that she’s falling in love with Jay, dark secrets from the past turn her world upside and threaten to send her running again. If she’s going to make a good life for herself, she’s got to learn that happiness begins with Simple Wishes.

I’m really excited to tell you about this book and I hope that you’ll come along with me on this journey of finding light, love, friendship, and beauty even in difficult times.

Stop by my Web site for more info—or search “Lisa Dale” on Facebook—and say hi. I’d love to virtually “meet” you.

As for my Simple Wish for you?

Much happy reading!

Lisa Dale

Excerpt from Simple Wishes

© Lisa Dale

Adele couldn’t remember the last time she’d been excited. But now, her whole body was on pins and needles with anticipation. It was nice to be distracted from the deeper, more serious problems that had been on her mind.

Standing so his toes nearly touched hers, Jay kissed her and scrunched down her pink wool hat so it covered her eyes. She laughed inwardly as he used the hat to tip her head to a more agreeable angle, prepping for a deeper kiss. She melted. He groaned and pushed her away.

“You’re distracting me.”

Moi?” she said, laughing and straightening her hat.

“Yes, you. In your big hat and mittens. Come here and kiss me again.”

“No.” Adele edged away from him, her rear end bumping into his refrigerator. “You said you have a surprise for me.” “So what are you still standing there for? Let’s go.”

“This better be good.” Adele followed him outside into the freezing cold and shut the door behind her. With the storm last night had come a blanket of stillness and silence, pristine as the snow that swaddled the mountains in white. Thick branches shouldered inches of powder high above their heads, and now gusts of wind whipped the flakes into prisms of glinting light. Adele trudged behind Jay into the woods. She liked the way he looked against the sparkling trees and mounds of whitewashed rocks. His broad shoulders appeared even broader in his stuffed suede coat. His tight-laced boots made his stride long and sure. His breath trailed behind him in a feathery cloud.

The clear cold and bright colors of the day gave her a sense of overwhelming freedom as they hiked. She was content, for the moment. She wished the afternoon would last forever.

Jay took her hand and squeezed it through her mitten. “You okay?”


“You seem distracted. Is it the holidays? People always get a little crazy around the holidays.”

“No. They don’t bother me. Are you going to the Lopresti’s for Christmas?”

He shook his head. “We go to my aunt’s house in Bethlehem.”

“Christmas capital of the world, eh?” Adele sighed.

“You got it. What’s wrong?”

“Oh, nothing.” In her unthinking holiday gusto, she’d assumed he would be around on Christmas. Oh well. She wouldn’t let it get to her. She wouldn’t. If her eyes grew watery, it was only the wind. “Bethlehem, huh? I haven’t been there in years.”

“You’re welcome to join me,” Jay said. “If you want to.”

Adele slowed her pace. Her boots scrunched the snow under her feet. Could she go with him, be a part of his family’s Christmas? The thought of spending the holidays near him—and near the people who meant so much to him—was very inviting. But if she went, it would mean their romance had evolved from a fling into something more serious. She wasn’t ready to tell him no, but yes had implications she wasn’t prepared for. There were deep waters ahead.

“Can I think about it?” she asked.

“No pressure,” he said. But she could hear the disappointment in his voice. “We’re almost there.”

They walked until they came to the top of a low hill. Though it was freezing and the wind chilled her nose, Adele was pleasantly warm from hiking. Above them, the sky was a bright, cloudless blue.

“Look,” he said.

There, on a hillside covered in short evergreens, was a single tree decorated in red ribbons and a cheerful silver star. It stood out among the others like a ruby in a handful of emeralds. Adele’s breath caught in her throat.

“You did this?”

Jay put his arm around her shoulders, hugged her close.

“Is it…you did it for me?”

“Of course I did it for you.” He kissed her temple as she stared at the gift.


He turned her to face him, holding her wrists as he looked into her eyes. “Because. I didn’t know how else to show you that I…I love you.”

He loved her! She knew it! It was like having the wind knocked out of her. Goose bumps rose on her warmed skin. He loved her. She couldn’t remember a time in her entire adult life that she’d ever felt so special. She covered her face so he wouldn’t see her cry.

His arms fell from her sides. “Well…not exactly the reaction I’d been hoping for.”

She laughed. “Oh Jay.” She threw her arms around him. “I don’t know what to say.”

“Say you love me too.”

She buried her face in his scarf and breathed in the clean, male scent of him. She did love him. So much. So much. But could she say it?

She tried to remember the last time she told another person I love you. And she came up with nothing. Probably her mother had been the last person to hear the words from her, but that had been when she was very young.

Well…she did love him. Whether she said it or not, the damage was done. She told him: “I love you too.”

And then she kissed him. His lips were roughly chapped and cold from the wind. The thickness of their coats kept her from feeling anything but the cotton over his chest. She tried to concentrate on the kiss, but she was distracted. Something felt too surreal, too unbelievable to be true. She didn’t trust that the moment was genuine. She wished, in some dark corner of her mind, that she’d been the one to say it first.

When he pulled away from her, she caught a glimpse of the Christmas tree on the side of the mountain and her heart warmed again. She was just nervous—that was all. She had no reason to be nervous. This was love, not a jail sentence. She would take the moment for what it was worth. And months from now, when she was living back in New York and Jay was still here among the pines, at least she would have this day as a memory—a keepsake—of her time on Notch Lane.

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Simple Wishes was released in January 2009 and because it's her debut novel, Lisa's still riding high on a wave of celebration! To share her love of books with readers and to give thanks to all who bought Simple Wishes (or plan to pick up a copy soon!), Lisa's giving away a $25 gift card from Barnes & Noble to two lucky winners. For a chance to win, please check out Lisa's website to answer this question:

What's the title of Lisa's November 2009 book?

Then email us at with your answer. Be sure to include your full name and mailing address. Please note, emails sent to any other email address will be disregarded. Send your entries to only.

Contest deadline - April 27th, 2009.

Winners will be contacted via shortly thereafter. Good luck!

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