Friday, July 19, 2013

Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove

Recommendation by Suzie Johnson

If you've ever read any of Debbie Macomber's books, you know they feature everyday, hometown, next-door characters. Whether they live in the "big city" of Seattle, the small town of Leavenworth, the navy town of Bremerton, or the fictional town of Cedar Cove (a.k.a. Port Orchard), Debbie's characters are as down to earth as most of the rest of us. Well, unless their names are Shirley, Goodness, or Mercy.

I read a wide variety of genres, but Debbie's books soothe my soul and I always turn to them when I need to hide within the healing balm of fiction. Perhaps it's because I'm a hopeless romantic. More likely, it's because her characters are such a reflection of herself that when I read her books I can hear her voice. Her speaking voice, that is. Just as if she's sitting across from me, reading me the story.

Currently, I'm reading Starting Now. It's about a dedicated, hard-working attorney named Libby who loses her job and receives the following advice: "I hope that you will take this time to find some balance in life. Starting now." I can't wait to see what Debbie has in store for Libby. I haven't read enough to do a review, but I'm experiencing one of those "seasons" where I need to read a Debbie-book.

Or maybe what I really need is a Debbie-television show. And I'm in luck, because tomorrow night is the debut of the television series, Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove, starring Andie MacDowell. On the Hallmark channel, it's based on Debbie's Cedar Cove books.

The books feature an ensemble cast, and weave you through their lives. Some characters get their happy endings, and others - well, rest assured, Debbie hasn't forgotten about them. But they might have to hang on for another book or six before they get the happy ending they couldn't have otherwise imagined.

I'm not sure how close Hallmark will stick to the books. But since they're borrowing from Debbie's imagination, I'm sure her readers will be more than satisfied.

And for anyone in Northwest Washington, KOMO News is airing Elisa Jaffe's interview with Debbie at 4 and 6pm tonight.

Do you have a favorite Debbie Macomber book or series?

Will you be watching the Cedar Cove series?

True North is Suzie Johnson’s second novel. Her first novel, No Substitute, a contemporary inspirational novel, is out now from White Rose Press of The Pelican Book Group. She is a regular contributor to the Inkwell Inspirations blog, a member of ACFW, RWA, and is the cancer registrar at her local hospital. Suzie and her husband live in the Pacific Northwest with their naughty little cat on an island that is definitely not tropical. Together, they are the parents of a wonderful grown son who makes them proud every day – even though he lives way too far away. You can visit Suzie at the following places:



  1. I hope the series is a treat success. So many could use a good clean series that warms the heart and gives some peace in our crazy world. I also hope it broadens her audience as well as interest in Christian fiction.

    Thanks Suzie. Debbie Macomber was a real blessing to hear at the ACFW conference.

  2. Yes, I'm with Deb. I hope the series is a great success. We need some normal injected back into our culture.

  3. I agree with you both, Deb and DeAnna.I was just thinking of something - are there any other tv series on Hallmark? Or would this be the first?

  4. I've been seeing the commercials for this series and wondered if it was based on Debbie's books. I'd love to see it.

    I really enjoy both Andie McDowell and Bruce Boxleitner as actors so that a strong selling point for me.

    And I think it's great that it was filmed in BC since they have such beautiful scenery. I'd watch it for that aspect alone.

    Unfortunately, Hallmark isn't available to Canadians. It's the reason I don't buy Hallmark cards.

  5. I have tried and tried to read Debbie Macomber and just couldn't get into any of the books I picked up. Most of my friends love her stuff, so I must have been in the wrong mood or grabbed the wrong book to start with.
    I am looking forward to the Hallmark series... just have to check and make sure Hallmark is on our current TV plan!

  6. Anita! That's just plain sad. I hope it's on DVD soon. If I had a VCR that worked, I'd record it for you.

    Yes, they film a lot of shows in Vancouver, BC, which is just above us on the map. I can always tell when something is filmed there because it looks like home.

  7. Niki, remember Dina's post from the other day? It could be because you're already certain of a happy ending when you start reading. I'm glad we're all different or the world would be boring.

  8. Good point, Suzie - yes, the Washington scenery is just as gorgeous and I know the only reason it's filmed in BC is because of all the tax credits and other perks.

    In a recent Seattle Times interview, Debbie said she tried to set the location in Washington but, "...the problem is we don't have the infrastructure Canada does."

    By that, I'm sure she means experienced film catering crews, wardrobe, makeup people, equipment, etc already in place in Vancouver as opposed to lugging everything up from LA.

  9. BTW, check out the Cedar Cove website for all the background info on the series including pages for:
    - recipes (only 3 so far)
    - a family tree of residents so you know how they're all connected

  10. That was a great article, Anita. I'm looking forward to the interview on the news tonight. I hardly ever make a point of watching the news, but tonight I will. Hopefully the interview will be available on you tube or even on her website.

    They've filmed movies here on Whidbey before, so I'm not sure what she means the infrastructure. It could be just what you said. I know Hollywood has really taken to filming in Vancouver. So I think they probably do have huge sets and wardrobes, etc. up there. Or for you, is it over there or down there? ;)

    (I do think the tax system plays a large part, even though it's not something they speak of much.)

  11. Oh, thank you for the Cedar Cove website link, Anita.

  12. Every time I see the ad for the show, I think of you, Suzie! It looks wonderful.

    No Hallmark channel in Canada, Anita? Sigh. Hopefully it'll be out on rental soon.

  13. Aw, Susie, that's so sweet. I've read every single book. :)

  14. I love Debbie Macomber because she's so real and I find that refreshing. I know what I'm getting with her books and that is reassuring. :)

    Her nonfiction book Knit Together is my favorite, though. She shares her process, her schedule, and her faith.

    Congratulations Suzie!!!

  15. Hi Cheryl! I'm so glad to see you here. I do think Debbie is very real. I think that's part of why I feel like I'm sitting down with someone I know when I read her books. I have not read her non fiction books yet. One of these days! Too many books and not enough time, so I always make fiction my priority unless it's a history or research book. (Shhh! Don't tell anyone.)

  16. Last night I was blessed to find Cedar Cove on my Sunday night lineup on The Women's Network!

    WTN shows a few new or recent romance movies every night and were instrumental when Harlequin made all those TV movies a few years ago. I should have realized because Debbie Macomber started her career writing for Harlequin which is located in/near Toronto just like WTN.

    I was so happy to see it. And tape it, too.

    Except I'm working through my day and I can't get her characters out of my head. To tell you the truth, I don't know which episode has Bruce Boxleitner but I didn't miss him last night at all.

    Mmmm that Dylan Neal? guy is something to watch, eh. :)

  17. Anita! Yay! I'm so glad. That Dylan Neal was a pleasant surprisr, wasn't he? Most of the actors looked as I'd pictured them. Except for him and Andi McDowell. They look good together.


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