Thrilled to chat with Carol Van Den Hende about Goodbye, Orchid, which is out now!
Author Name: Carol Van Den Hende
Book Title: Goodbye, Orchid
Book Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Release Date: October 1, 2020
Publisher: Koehler Books
Welcome, Carol! Please tell us a bit about Goodbye, Orchid.
Award-winning Goodbye, Orchid is a “modern-day Affair to Remember” that asks: what happens when a successful entrepreneur suffers an accident that forces him to decide, to love his woman, will he need to leave her? Readers have called this “page-turner” both heartwarming and heart-breaking.
What sparked the idea for your book?
Goodbye, Orchid is inspired by combat-wounded veterans, especially their strength and resilience to “get back to good.” Though the characters aren’t military veterans, the accident that Phoenix Walker suffers mirrors the experience of some combat-wounded soldiers.
Did you do have to do any research for Goodbye, Orchid?
Goodbye, Orchid is well-researched. I’m thankful for the input from medical professionals, psychologists, and survivors who assessed the veracity of Goodbye, Orchid. The story is inspired by combat-wounded veterans, so I’m fortunate to have military heroes both shape the book, and love the finished story. Their endorsements have really touched me:
“As a combat decorated and wounded veteran, I was truly captivated by Carol’s amazing storytelling. Goodbye Orchid transported me to my post-war self from fourteen years ago. Phoenix Walker captures the mindset, roller-coaster and daily heroics of my experience after being injured. I could relate from many levels, and even gained new insights from seeing the perspective of loved ones. All around excellence.” —Doc Jacobs, Bronze Star with Valor and Purple Heart-decorated Navy Corpsman, CEO Doc Jacobs Foundation, author There and Back Again
“In this most worthy novel, the protagonists’ lives are shattered and they re-emerge champions, showing a true test of character. Phoenix is fiercely independent and successful until something happens to break him. Everything he knew, everything he was, everything he dreamed of is thrown into chaos. He is all of us, unconquerable until we’re conquered. A tale of sacrifice and rebirth; heroism is in the details.” —SSGT Aaron Michael Grant, author of TAKING BAGHDAD: Victory in Iraq With the US Marines
If you were speaking to someone who hasn’t read your writing before, why should they want to read Goodbye, Orchid?
Goodbye, Orchid inspires hope and empathy. It aims to do good in the world, not only through its message but also by donating a portion of profits to charities, including The Heather Abbott Foundation and USA Cares, to help post-9/11 veterans and their families.
Readers love the story, more than 90% rate it 5-stars high. They’re delighted by the design features, like the animation of the cover’s shattering orchids in a gif, and the interior orchids that appear to shatter when you flip the pages of the physical book.
Goodbye, Orchid has been recognized with six awards, including a Pinnacle for Multicultural Fiction, IAN for Best First Novel 50-80K words, American Fiction Award for urban fiction and two Royal Dragonfly awards. Plus, it’s been named a most anticipated fall read by Parade, Buzzfeed and Travel+Leisure and featured in Popsugar, Brit+Co, LA Times and more.
What are your interests outside of writing and reading?
Outside of being an author, I’m also a speaker, Climate Reality Leader, Board member, wife and mom of twins. I work full-time as a strategist for Mars Incorporated, and have enjoyed careers there as a marketer and digital technologist. I’ve spent more than 20 years applying my MBA to brands like M&M’S®, TWIX®, 3MUSKETEERS, MILKY WAY®, DOVE® Chocolate and more. I like to say that there’s no “sweeter” job!
How does your day job inform your novel writing?
Orchid Paige is a brand marketer in the beauty industry and Phoenix Walker founded an ad agency, so they both enjoy careers that I know well. Readers have appreciated the authenticity of the Manhattan and NJ worlds the characters traverse.
Are you working on a new project?
Readers have loved the characters in Goodbye, Orchid, saying they’re like “new friends,” so I’m working to extend that world into more books. For instance, Phoenix’s tattooed twin, Caleb, has unresolved tension with his ex-girlfriend, latex-wearing Sascha.
Where can readers find you? Feel free to include any upcoming, live/online events, workshops, too!
Please join for a book club to discuss Goodbye, Orchid hosted by Women Who Write on Dec 16th: https://www.womenwhowrite.org/programs
Please join for a conversation with Bronze Star of Valor combat-decorated veteran Doc Jacobs on National Heroes Day December 29th: FB Live 12/29 1pm EST/ 10am PST https://www.facebook.com/groups/tinahogangrant
Enter for a chance to win an ebook copy of Doc Jacobs’ memoir here: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/96a104f41/
Thank you, Carol! Goodbye, Orchid is out NOW.
What happens when an entrepreneur suffers an accident that changes him forever and he has to decide: to love his woman, will he need to leave her?
One July morning in Manhattan, handsome athlete and entrepreneur Phoenix Walker accompanies his love, half-Asian beauty Orchid Paige, to the airport. Neither believes today is goodbye.
But soon after Orchid leaves, disaster strikes.
Phoenix wakes in the hospital, broken, forever changed.
Now, he’s faced with the hardest decision of his life. Does he burden the woman whose traumatic childhood makes him feel protective of her? Or does true love mean having to say Goodbye, Orchid?
Rising from ashes is hard. Leaving the one you love is harder.
CAROL VAN DEN HENDE is an award-winning author who pens stories of resilience and hope. Her novel Goodbye, Orchid has been recognized as the 2020 American Fiction Award winner for urban fiction, and 2020 Pinnacle Achievement Award winner for multicultural fiction. Plus, it’s been named one of the most anticipated fall reads by Buzzfeed, Parade, and Travel+Leisure.
She’s also a speaker, strategist, Board member and Climate Reality Leader. One secret to her good fortune? Her humorous husband, fun-loving twins, and rescue cat, who prove that love really does conquer all.