Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Martini Club Welcomes Judith Arnold

It's Sunday! You know what that, laundry and cocktails with Penny! Today's guest is a fellow NECRWA member who writes well-beloved contemporary romance----Judith Arnold. I must admit reading her description about Goodbye to All That has me intrigued. And I love the scene with the margarita and running mascara. That's my kind of bar scene! Big thanks to Judith for this entertaining post and her California-style strawberry daiquiri recipe. Yum! Here's Judith.......


          I’m a wine-and-beer kind of girl, not big on mixed drinks. I like a beer if I’m doing anything that might make me sweat: exercise, yard work, dancing, eating spicy foods. For all other occasions, wine works fine for me. I love good wines, but I’m not picky. If a good wine isn’t available, a mediocre one will do. As for bad wines, well, the more you drink, the less you care about how bad they taste.

         However, while I rarely drink cocktails myself, I admire, even envy, cocktail drinkers. Mixed drinks seem so sophisticated. They look more festive, too. (Let’s face it—you can’t stick a skewered olive into a mug of Sam Adams or a glass of Zinfandel.) While I tend to avoid cocktails, I often have the characters in my books drink them, so I can feel festive and sophisticated vicariously.

         My new release, Goodbye to All That, contains a scene in which one of the main characters, Melissa Bendel, enjoys a margarita. Okay, maybe enjoys isn’t the right word. She’s enduring a difficult stretch. Her parents have separated after forty-two years of marriage. Although she earns a decent salary as an associate in a large New York City law firm, she’s having trouble saving enough money to buy a co-op apartment. Her hair-stylist boyfriend is involved in something suspicious with her brother’s wife, and Melissa wants to break up with him, but if she does, who will take care of her hair? Her sister is supposed to be maneuvering their parents back together but is failing in this mission. And Melissa has just spent an entire day enclosed in a tiny room with Aidan O’Leary, an appallingly sexy attorney opposing her in a law suit, who has charmed the judge into ruling that Aidan and Melissa should hammer out a settlement and not proceed to trial. Melissa is stressed out, strung out, and wrung out. When Aidan suggests they have a drink after their hard-fought negotiations, all she can think of is her desperate thirst for a margarita.

         They wind up in a chi-chi watering hole in SoHo, where her margarita comes in a glass as big as a minivan’s headlight. Aidan orders a Guinness stout for himself. Melissa sips her margarita and is soon sobbing and leaving streaks of mascara on her cocktail napkin as she shares all her woes with Aidan. From such moments are great romances born.

         I confess that I’d rather drink a Guinness stout than a margarita. But I do have a recipe for a mixed drink, a favorite of mine when I lived in California years ago: a strawberry daiquiri. When I lived there, strawberries were plentiful and cheap. My friends and I didn’t mess with sugar, lime juice, schnapps or any of the other variations I’ve seen in published recipes. We were purists, and this is how we made our strawberry daiquiris:

         Toss 6-8 ice cubes into a blender. Add a pint of ripe strawberries (rinse them and remove the stems first.) Add about a half cup of rum (more if you aren’t planning on driving anywhere afterward.) Blend until it’s the consistency of a smoothie. Poor into tall glasses (paper umbrellas optional.) Cheers!


Thanks, Judith, for the "purist" recipe....I'm right on board with that! I'm also heading over to Amazon to get this book. Even though I don't normally read a lot of contemporary romance, you hooked me with the hair-stylist dilemma and bar scene. For anyone interested in checking out Judith's book, here's the Amazon link and Goodreads link.

Happy Sloshy Sunday!