Spotlight, Teasers, Dual Interview & 2015 Exclusive Excerpt : Tangled Paths (Intertwined Hearts #3) by Kimi Flores

Book Blurb & Info

Is it possible to flee your past? Or does it sit patiently, waiting for your return?

Tired of traveling the world in order to escape reality, Bri Hunter has finally found a place to call home. Settled into Santa Barbara, close to her brother and cousin, she’s ready for a little peace. Wanting to avoid the tormenting, incessant calls she receives, she throws herself into helping her sister-in-law’s growing floral business. It doesn’t take long to run smack into the one guy she’d given up on ever seeing again.

It’s been five years since Josh Tucker has sobered up, left his Hollywood lifestyle far behind, and sheltered himself in his horse ranch in Santa Ynez, California. If it hadn’t been for his family, he probably wouldn’t be around to tell his story. When a beautiful brunette shows up at his cousin’s vineyard, something in her spiteful eyes tells him their paths have tangled together before.

As Josh begins to uncover who Bri is, he finds himself falling for her. Will he find a way to convince her to trust him? And will she be able to let go of the past and move forward? When a traumatic event strikes, Bri will have to decide if she’s going to let life continue to cripple her…or set her free.

~ Reviewers agree that although this is technically the 3rd book in the Intertwined Hearts series, it reads smoothly as a stand alone as well ~

**Although this novel includes mature language and adult situations, there are no detailed sex scenes**

Buy Links
Goodreads / Amazon


Dual Interview

Hi Kimi and T,

Thank you ladies so much for sitting down with Toot's for an interview. I’m super excited to speak to both of you. As you know, we do lots of interview here at Toot’s but it is rare for us to do dual interview and I think you two are our first Author and Critique Partner pair. I couldn’t be more thrilled to have you both!!

Kimi/T - Thank you for having us, so glad we didn’t scare you off. We can be a handful when we are together.

Gushing aside now, If you don't mind, I have some questions for you two about your series, Intertwined Hearts, your new book, Tangled Paths, and your process for our budding Authors and Critique Partners as well as fans.

So first off, let’s talk book! Your newest book is part of your series, Intertwined Hearts. Let's talk about the series as a whole....

In your own words, what is the Intertwined Hearts series about?

Kimi/T The series is about four couples who each have their own struggles yet they work together to overcome those hurdles and fall in love along the way. Each character has their own personalities and baggage, making them easy for the reader to connect with. Once the love of their life presents a chance at happiness we see even the most unlikely character take that leap. It isn’t a smooth ride, many bumps in the road. It is a series of hope, forgiveness and love.

What inspired the series?

Kimi – I’m a very emotional reader and found that the books I was reading were either all about sex or squeaky clean with unrealistic stories/characters. They say that you should write the stories you want to read so that’s what I aimed to do. I really wanted to read something that pulled on my emotions (but wasn’t dark and twisted, because I wasn’t into that sort of thing at the time). I wanted to write about people I could hang out with that were funny yet snarky at times during their life journey. I also love Santa Barbara so the setting was easy to come up with.

What are some of the elements of the world you created?

Kimi – The world created in the series is not unrealistic. My characters live in Santa Barbara County and each of the events that occur could actually happen. I changed the name of some of the locations they visit but those places actually do exist. Their careers are also believable for that area. (Writer/Surfer/Teacher/Flower shop owner/Lawyer/one-time movie star/world traveler/vineyard owner and at home nurse practitioner)

T – She creates the world, I just live in it. For me, I find the most important element is she takes on those hidden issues that society doesn’t see as important and gives them a spotlight for a few chapters. It may not save the world but it allows her readers to not feel alone and validates that this issue is important enough to be written about.

If you had to pick one thing, what is your favorite thing about the world you’ve created for your series?

Kimi – Honestly, my characters. Just like in real life, they are all flawed and have to look past each other’s shortcomings in order to grow in their relationships. I also love that they all ban together and help each other out. Their expectations of one another are tangible and their problems are relatable to readers. I love that my humor in the stories has been well received because to me, laughing is the best part of life. Example - If all you have in your purse to stop a bloody leg is a party-liner, then you use it. Even if it is on a guy’s leg.

T – I have to say so far the best thing is when I can hand her something to clean the blood off her toe and she gives me that strange look as if I am insane. I can wink and just say “I read it in a book somewhere, now you know how Josh felt.” :) (Kimi - bwaa haa haaa)

Can you tell us a bit about the newest book in the series, Tangled Paths?

Kimi – On the surface, the book is about second chance love and forgiveness. As you dive deeper, you’ll find a story about moving on in life when forgiveness is not an option. When I wrote my first and second books, Stefen and Bri’s mother was a monster. I knew there was much more to the story than her being a total witch. Once I learned about T’s relationship with her mom, T opened herself up to painful memories in order to help me understand feelings I’ve not experienced personally. As T said, there were many tears shed over this book and many (uhem) disagreements but ultimately it strengthened our relationship and I honestly feel like it’s the best book in the series.

T - We shed a lot of tears writing the mother/daughter scenes. I had to relive it and she learned of the pain involved. I think the main goal for us was to show the public that not every mother knows how to love her child in a way we expect. People sometimes look down on children who have to escape the mental abuse from a parent without finding out the facts from the child’s side, it isn’t always as cut and dry as society likes to make it seem.

How did you come up with the title of your newest book in the series and can you tell us its significance?

Kimi – I wanted something that inferred there was a past relationship. I also liked the idea of all the books in the series having “Intertwined” titles so once It all Started with a Lima Bean came to me, An Exceptional Twist, Tangled Paths and Grafted Vines all followed quickly behind.

How does the new book, Tangled Paths, fit into the series?

Kimi – Funny thing is that Tangled Paths was supposed to be the last one in the series not the 3rd. When I originally envisioned each book, Dani’s story (the female character in the 4th novel- Grafted Vines) had already happened before Bri’s. When we started working on Grafted Vines, it just wasn’t flowing. I couldn’t figure out why it wasn’t working out when I already had the series mapped out, THEN there was that phone call from T.

“Kimi, why are you working on Dani’s story when clearly Bri’s happens first?”

Of course I put up a fight, because, well, I normally do but Bri was screaming in the background for me to work on hers. 

NOW to answer the question (hee hee hee, sorry I get sidetracked easily), although each can be read as a standalone, most of the characters in the series appear in every books. Bri made her appearance in It All Started with a Lima Bean and I was careful to start painting a very small part of her journey. That first book was about her cousin and the second was about her brother, both were her protectors.

T – How I saw it was a bit different when she first explained the order of the books. Kimi started out as a newbie with Lima Bean, she then expanded her horizons a bit more with An Exceptional Twist. Going directly to Dani’s story would have been insane because I feel her story is going to be the grittiest and most heart breaking out of the four women. By doing Bri’s story next, I think we both have a better picture of Dani and the pain she carries with her. As most women, Dani wears a mask and Tangled Paths needed to be the third book so Kimi could gain her confidence and understanding to tell Dani’s story in a manner that Dani deserves.

What genre would you say Tangled Paths is and what sets your book apart for fans of the genre?

Kimi – All of my books are in the Contemporary Romance genre and I’ll tell you what readers have said, sets them apart. Although I use “adult language and situations”, the series is fairly clean. I’ve been told that readers enjoy my books because my characters are a more “real” and relatable. One of my goals is to make readers, feel my stories without all the detailed sex scenes that sometimes overshadow the plot.

What was your favorite scene to write or critique in Tangled Paths?

Kimi – Like T said, there are so many but the moment I really loved was watching Bri’s brother, Stefen, as he reluctantly allowed Josh to take over. After working with Stefen for 3 books, I have to say that was HUGE for him. Bri knew it and so did Leah. Stefen is the character that has evolved the most in this series. I also love all of the scenes with Josh’s mom. She cracked me up. Oh and Josh’s sexy dance (to I’m Bringing Sexy Back - Justin Timberlake) in Catalina and…(LOL)

T – There are a few that I am very fond of. I love the beach scene because Kimi let me just start writing and then made fun of me because I do have a mushy side. What she didn’t know at the time was the words I wrote out were the ones my husband said to me when I finally let the walls down and allowed myself to feel his love. Of course she went back and made it her own which is one of my rules but I loved the freedom and trust she gave me in that scene. I have to say I was VERY proud of the funeral scene. I begged her to allow Bri just let it out and she was stubborn about it at first but when she started writing it I just sat back and cheered her on. I think she really grabbed the attention of the readers and let her heart lead her with that scene. I also loved that she let Stefen really shine in this one.

What was the hardest scene to write or critique for Tangled Paths?

Kimi – What T said. It’s funny that the ones that tore us up didn’t even make it in the book. AND pretty panties are IMPORTANT T :P 

T –Well I guess it is time to spill the beans here. We actually got in a fight and didn’t talk for 48 hours over a wedding scene that wasn’t even included in the book. I think we finally agreed that a barn wedding Kansas style is NOT the same thing as a California barn wedding. With compromise and a ton of love and respect for each other we came up with a new plan as you will see in the book. There was also that time she called me one morning and said Bri needed to die in the book. A lot of talking was done and tears shed as we debated back and forth. I finally told her to just write the scene as she saw it. I will admit, I cried a lot reading that and I know it took so much out of Kimi while doing it. I was so proud of Kimi, she really ripped her own heart out writing that but in the end, Bri came through too much in her life, she deserved to be happy. Then you have those scenes with Kimi and her character’s underwear…..geez talk about eye rolling on my side of the computer. 

What is your favorite line or quote from Tangled Paths?

Kimi – I’ll take the easy way out and say that the teasers included here are some of my favorite lines.


As a writing/critique duo, how did you two meet and how did you decide to work together?

Kimi – I know how much work goes into blogging and I truly appreciate each and every review I get so when I read T’s review of my first book, I was in tears (she writes the best reviews and don’t let her tell you otherwise). I had to not only thank the blog publically, but wanted her to know how much her review meant to me. T basically covers the rest in her answer.

T – All I remember is at the time I had my own blog and I did a review for Lima Bean. I was really impressed with that story and that Kimi wrote a clean book. Kimi reached out to me in private message and thanked me I believe for the review. One of my personality quirks is I rarely will reach out to an author, I don’t want to bother them and another thing is I don’t carry on conversations with strangers very often. Thank goodness Kimi is what I call the little flea that Frontline won’t touch and she kept messaging me and a friendship was created. Then I believe she asked me to beta read Exceptional Twist which I did and before I knew it she was always correcting me when I would say I was her beta reader. LOL I gained the title of critique partner and had no clue how that happened. All I knew was I just told her what I thought. She reminds me that I am NOT a normal beta reader so maybe she just gave me the title as critique partner because it fit better. 

What is the best part of creating a book as a duo?

Kimi – I second guess myself A LOT and it's very freeing to have someone walk along side me reassuring me that I’m on the right track (or not) without blowing smoke up my behind and not making me feel like I’m lame for thinking outside of the box. I agree with T’s answer but have to add that she also helps me out when I’ve hit a wall. She has the ability to peek up ahead, grab my hand and guide me around the corner where the answer is sitting there waiting.

T – The time spent together is the best part for me. I enjoy figuring out plots and expressing what I would want as a reader. I love pushing Kimi past her comfort zone and then watching her get all excited when she realized she could do it. 

What’s the hardest part?

Kimi – I will agree with finding the balance. We are from two different worlds. I was born and raised in Sothern California and sometimes the ideas I have don’t always mesh with T’s Kansas upbringing. I think I get away with a lot though because all of my stories are based in California ;) and I do tend to walk around in my happy little bubble and work so much better under pressure which is the complete opposite of my critique partner and her big picture planning. 

P.S. – I LOVE to read when I’m supposed to be working. It drives T CRAZY (hee hee hee).

T – Well for me the hardest part is finding a balance. The fact we are total opposites makes it difficult for us. I am an ABC, OCD planner who needs to be organized and scheduled. She is a fly by the seat of your pants kind of person. I am usually the one yelling Let’s Roll and she is saying No I want to read. We both have parts of the story that we are passionate about but once in a while we black and white with how we see it should work. I love dark and gritty stories, I want to see the worst life has to offer and how you overcome it, she loves fluffy, cheesy stuff and wants everyone to be happy, never experiencing any pain. Finding the balance and still having it HER story is tricky at times. 

What are some of the elements in/of your writing process?

Kimi – I’d love to say that I map out a story, make an outline and so on but really, I just write. I go from chapter 1 to 10 to 7 then back to 11. I’m very disorganized but in the end, it all comes together.

T and I work closely together on Google Docs. I type out the story, T goes through and adds comment/suggestions, asking questions that I never considered, I go through and answer the questions through my writing. If I get stuck, she will make AMAZING suggestions that I often have to steal from her. Once we agree that it’s ready, I send it off to my Fairy God Mother/Editor, Megan, who sprinkles her magic fairy dust on it (aka LOTS of red font). I go through and make whatever corrections are necessary, T reads it AGAIN (I know! I don’t know how she doesn’t get tired of it) then I do another tweak session based on what her eagle eyes catch before sending it off to my beta readers. Once I get their notes back and make final corrections, I send the manuscript off to a proofreader and voila.

For those who might not know, what is a Critique Partner?

Kimi – It means something different to every author/critique partner duo. I found this on google…”Generally, a critique partner is someone who willingly reads your writing and provides honest feedback that will both encourage and push you to write better. They'll tell you what's missing and what's working, and will (hopefully) be someone you can go to time and time again to discuss writing with.” For me it goes WAY beyond that. T takes every step right by my side and kicks my butt into gear when I don’t think I can take another step. It doesn’t hurt that I found a kick-butt friend who doesn’t complain (too much ;) when I whine about books and life in general.

T – Good question I have wondered what I am supposed to be doing as well. When I started beta reading I thought I was supposed to tell her when things weren’t consistent, or didn’t flow well. I should point out if she incorrectly used a word or maybe suggest a different word or phrase. Somehow that morphed into me being able to write a few paragraphs regarding how I see them and suggesting them to her or letting her know what I thought about her characters. Recently one of her characters invaded my brain since she wasn’t listening to her. We had to fix that problem quickly because that was annoying.

For other writers out there that are thinking of pairing up with a Critique Partner, what advice would you offer?

Kimi – One of the things we have learned the hard way is to first define the roles. To the writer I say, figure out how involved you are willing to let your critique partner be and to the critique partner, be honest with how involved you want to be. It’s a give and take at times and you can’t let personal feelings get in the way. We have many arguments over scenes and specific wording. Sometimes I’m very stubborn even if it’s not working. If I am adamant about something though, T will ask that I explain why. That forces me to really think if it is important and if the reader will get the message I’m trying to give them. At times, I bend and change things while other times I dig my heels in and leave things as they are. T always reminds me that they are my stories and ultimately mine to tell. 

T – On my side of things, I am not sure how much of a benefit it is for the author to have our voice in their ear all of the time but I find it rather fun. My first suggestion, NEVER forget that your name will NOT be on the cover so you can’t claim this as your project. The author gets final say in all things, even down to when they will work on it. Get to know who you are working for and respect their vision. Listen to the direction the author wants to go in and try to make that path work yet keeping the book quality high.

Have you released anything under a different pen name or individually?

Kimi – I’m STOKED about a book we are currently working on called, Relinquished, that I’m going to publish it under my new pen name K.A. Hunter. The first part will be published in February in an anthology that benefits the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. You are not going to want to miss that one. It will be filled with original, never before published stories from something like 25 writers, most of which are best-selling authors. I’ll make sure to post lots of info about it when it becomes available.

I also plan on publishing the entire story as a full novel (July 2015 ish) under K.A. Hunter. I’ve included a never before seen teaser from chapter 1.

T hasn’t published a book (YET) I’m still hoping to persuade her because she is an incredibly gifted writer herself.

What's next for you two?

Kimi - I’ve felt like my first book doesn’t coincide with the writing style I’ve developed while working on the last couple of books so that is being reedited while we work on Relinquished then we’ll jump to Grafted Vines, which I hope to publish March/April next year (fingers crossed that I can stay focused lol) There are plenty more stories coming under both Kimi Flores and K.A. Hunter in the future and I’m thankful T will be right by my side.

T - While I wait for her to get started, I will continue to beta read for my other authors and do reviews for the two blogs I work for.

Is there anything you’d like to add or say to your fans?

Kimi – I’ve been blessed to meet so many in person and want to let everyone know how thankful I am that you’ve taken the time to read my books. Although I would love to be known for my writing, what I really hope you take away is that you are never too old to follow your dreams. I didn’t get up enough courage to start writing until I was just over 40. I have dyslexia and fought my dream of ever writing anything because I let it cripple me. Don’t let your stumbles keep you from doing what you really want in life. The worst thing that will happen if you don’t try is that YOU DIDN’T TRY. When I fail at something now, I pick myself up and take those experiences with me. I would love to know that I can inspire just one person to do the same.

T – The only fans I have are the ones that go round and round and collect dust while cooling me off because I stay invisible in the process. In all seriousness, I want to take this time to tell the readers some things they might not know about Kimi. When you are holding one of her books, I don’t think you realize what she has conquered in life to write it. This series was a dream of hers and she writes every word in hopes that it will touch a broken soul. She wants everyone who feels alone to know they aren’t. She wanted to remind the readers of love and forgiveness and that those two things haven’t died in society, they are just harder to find. She understands what learning disabilities are and she wants to prove that you should NEVER let anyone put you in a box and tell you that you can’t achieve your dreams. She tweaks her work for HOURS (and I do mean HOURS, sometimes days and even weeks) just to make it perfect for her readers. When you buy one of her books, you are purchasing a part of her soul all wrapped up in a ribbon of hard work, so appreciate it, love it and cherish it. 

Kimi  :’( 

T- and yes I do adore the fact I can make her cry sometimes.

Personal questions......

Rather than traditional “get to know you” questions, I thought we’d play a quick game with the two of you *grin*

Or Game (in no particular order)…….

Paperback or Ebook?

Kimi – Ebooks to read but I love my signed paperbacks. Unlike T, I SHARE my paperbacks with anyone that I know is responsible to return them in one piece.

T – E book to read, paper to cherish. Yes I don’t share my paper copies, I don’t like fingerprints on my babies.

Zombies or Vampires?

Kimi – VAMPIRES. Especially the sparkly ones. ;)

T –not a huge fan of either but vampires would be my pick out of those two.

Water or Soda?

Kimi – I should say water but in reality, PEPSI. You can see below that this is a problem.

T – Soda, all the way and NO PEPSI products

The Golden Girls or Sex in the City?

Kimi – While we ACT like the Golden Girls, I prefer watching Sex in the City.

T –Golden Girls, as a matter of fact I call her Rose quite often.

Twitter or Facebook?

Kimi – Facebook. I still don’t get Twitter

T –Facebook

Dog or Cat?

Kimi – Neither. Squirrels and hummingbirds oh and unicorns and rainbows and...

T – Both, while my dog loves me no matter what, my cats keep my ego in check and remind me I am here to serve them.

Leather or Lace?

Kimi – Lace. I’m a vegan and don’t really dig leather but I’m not weird or anything. I won’t come and spray your leather jacket.

T –Leather, I leave the lace stuff to Kimi

City or Country?

Kimi – City to answer the questions but really...the beach is where I feel at home

T – Country, no doubt about it. She just recently learned that bless your heart is NOT always a nice term.

Hero in Jeans or Hero in Suits?

Kimi – SUITS. And yeah...if they are wearing jeans, I DON’T MIND the pant legs rolled up. It’s a thing T. I’m telling you ;)

T – I will say jeans WITHOUT the pants being rolled up <eye roll>. Love my rugged, southern heroes but I will melt for any man who calls his woman “little one.”

Shopping or Reading?

Kimi – READING! I HATE SHOPPING unless it’s for books!

T – READING. Since I am anti-social and pretty blunt, it is always a gamble taking me out in public.

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for taking time to chat with us!

Hugs and love to you both - Toot

Author Info

Kimi grew up in the San Gabriel Valley (mostly Alhambra) and still lives in Southern California. She's been married to her high-school sweetheart and prom date for 22 years and they have two hilarious boys.

When she's not reading or writing, Kimi spends her time in the kitchen trying to come up with vegan meals that don't taste like cardboard. Her family might disagree with this however.

Although she doesn't loyally follow or have favorite teams/athletes, Kimi loves a good hockey game or motorcross/x-treme sports event.

Volunteering is extremely important to her and her family. They work with several local non-profit organizations. A portion of her sales will always go to charity.

She's currently working on a story that will be part of an anthology under a pen name. All proceeds for the anthology will go to benefit the Avon walk for breast cancer. Once she's handed that story over to the organizer, she will finish the 4th book in her Intertwined Hearts series, Grafted Vines. That book is anticipated to publish in early 2015.

Author Links
Goodreads / Website /  Facebook

Critique Partner Info

I have a very blessed life with my husband and three kids. I found that there really isn’t job security in being a mom because they keep growing and soon leave the nest. I was lucky to find a couple of authors who asked me to beta read for them a year and a half ago. That has grown to the point now I have a wonderful group of ladies that I either beta read for or critique with. My home nest might become empty but my Tbird nest keeps growing. I have loved reading all of my life so while I am not doing my first job I also review for Crystal’s Many Reviewers and recently joined Bare Naked Words Blog. Both blogs are so awesome to work with and I really enjoy my time with them. My favorite genre is the dark and twisted themes but I do love those books with human angst, suspense and drama. I love finding new authors who are just starting out and watch them grown and mature as they continue to write and I find authors who are established and try to learn from their style to help my authors become the best they can be. I still do the mommy and go to MMA tournaments for my girls, along with piano and karate. I am an avid NASCAR fan along with hockey, football and college basketball games. In my spare time, yeah like I remember what that is, I read the books that are on my TBR list NOT the schedule.

Coming Soon in 2015


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