Tule Author Q&A: Justine Davis delves into dialogue

Tule author Justine Davis took a moment to discuss her latest release set in Last Stand, Texas, Lone Star Nights.



How does Slater integrate his Ivy League education into his bartending?
Since his degree is in philosophy, he looks at people from that perspective. He’s always that half-step back, observing, and tends to categorize people in that way. People in all their varied types intrigue him, and he is fascinated when someone is a dichotomy, philosophically. He likes to draw them out to get them to see the conflict and see if they cling to it or change.


There definitely some history there, how did Slater and Joey first meet?
Joey was fourteen when she first saw Slater at the Last Stand Bluebonnet Festival, when she was doing a story reading at the library booth. (her career path was set early on!) When she finished she looked up and saw him, and he told her it was the best telling of that story he’d ever heard. She fell for him like the proverbial ton of bricks, but was mostly in awe and a little bit afraid, since he was an “older man.” (He was eighteen) And unfortunately for Joey’s tender heart, he was there waiting for her glamorous older sister. And that is a shadow she has trouble stepping out of.


Slater and Joey have such great dialogue. What inspired you to write it?
I’ve always collected quotations, from serious to funny. Sometimes the quotes themselves are meaningful, some are meaningful—or funny—when you consider who said them. So when I threw these two together, she being a librarian, and him a constant reader, somewhere along the line they fell into conversing in quotations, and trying to trip each other up on knowing the source. I used several from my collection for the book, but some of my favorites didn’t quite fit. For instance:


  • Wise men speak when they have something to say, fools speak because they have to say something. ~Aristotle
  • Some people die at 25 and aren’t buried until 75. ~Ben Franklin
  • Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity. ~George S. Patton
  • Searching is half the fun: life is much more manageable when thought of as a scavenger hunt as opposed to a surprise party. ~Jimmy Buffett
  • Words fascinate me. They always have. For me, browsing in a dictionary is like being turned loose in a bank.  ~Eddie Cantor (this one is truly me!)
  • Not everything that counts can be counted. Not everything that can be counted, counts. ~Albert Einstein
  • There’s more treasure in books than all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island. Best of all, you can enjoy these riches every day of your life. ~Walt Disney
  • Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind. ~Rudyard Kipling
  • And one of my all time favorites: You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. ~Wayne Gretzky


What is the fastest way to ruffle Joey’s feathers?
Compare her to her beautiful, glamorous, and utterly self-serving older sister. Joey has lived in her shadow all her life, and she’s tired of it. And that Slater was engaged to that sister first makes her doubt…everything.


What are you currently reading?
Besides keeping up with the Last Stand authors, I’ve been on a Regency binge for some reason (probably having recently discovered Darcy Burke!). But it’s been interrupted to re-read the brilliant Nalini Singh’s Archangel’s Prophecy in preparation for the next book, Archangel’s War coming next month. (That noise you hear is me champing at the bit…) There are not many authors I reread, but she is definitely one. I’m in awe of her world building and Raphael is the most incredible hero ever created in romance.


About the Author

Author of more than 70 books, (she sold her first ten in less than two years) Justine Davis is a five time winner of the coveted RWA RITA Award, including for being inducted into the RWA Hall of Fame. A fifteen time nominee for RT Book Review awards, she has won four times, received three of their lifetime achievement awards, and had four titles on the magazine’s 200 Best of all Time list. Her books have appeared on national best seller lists, including USA Today. She has been featured on CNN, taught at several national and international conferences, and at the UCLA writer’s program.


After years of working in law enforcement, and more years doing both, Justine now writes full time. She lives near beautiful Puget Sound in Washington State, peacefully coexisting with deer, bears, a pair of bald eagles, a tailless raccoon, and her beloved ’67 Corvette roadster. When she’s not writing, taking photographs, or driving said roadster (and yes, it goes very fast) she tends to her knitting. Literally.


  1. Thank you so much for this background look at Justine and Slater. I loved the quotes you shared too. I’m looking forward to reading this book!!

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