Sunday, November 12, 2017

Thankful Author 2017- Charlotte O'Shay

Thank You Angela for allowing me to appear on your blog to share what I am most thankful for this season.

I’m thankful to enjoy the freedoms and embrace the responsibilities of my precious citizenship in this beautiful country. I’m grateful for my family and friends and the warmth and laughter we share everyday.

But this year I’m MOST thankful the sexual harassment/sexual assault issue has come to a head and is out in the open in this country.

I know this isn’t a typical thankfulness topic and if you stop reading here, I get it.

One of the biggest problems sexual assault victims face is the knowledge that if they speak out on the violation(s) they have endured— the predator often has the power to malign them in the press, drag them through the legal system, blackball them in their profession or just simply ignore them.

So speaking out is a risk many choose not to take.

I’m compelled to address the issue because in the perfect storm of circumstances, the sexual assault/harassment allegations in the media hit home for me in a big way.

(And not just because my second book, A Model Engagement deals with the issue.)

This month, after many years of willful ignorance and outright denial, the order of priests, one of whose members preyed upon my brother as a teenager, admitted the abuse and apologized.

They admitted the abuse to me as his legal and medical representative because of our family’s fear revisiting the assault would have no positive effect on his fragile mental health.

How did I feel on his behalf? At first, I was bitter and angry. My brother, who won a scholarship to an elite Jesuit high school, where he was a stellar athlete (soccer and baseball) and recipient of an appointment to the Air Force Academy, lost it all in a haze of alcohol and drugs in the aftermath of the abuse. A young man of great promise now struggles with the activities of daily living. But he is still our brother, my ‘irish twin’ and we love him.

I am thankful his story was heard. I am thankful I still believe in God.

I am thankful I was able to tell my mother the crime was finally acknowledged. Bless her, at this point mom has forgotten practically everything, including the rooms in her own house, but she’s never forgotten the assault on her son and the reports she made to the Catholic Church, all ignored.

I am thankful for those who’ve had the courage to speak out on their own behalf and on behalf of others. I am thankful some people are finally listening.


Lacey Reed jumps at the chance for independence with a career in the big city. But her naivety and ambition blind her to the lure of a blackmailer.

With her savings gone she has nowhere to turn when she literally runs into financier Connor Devlin.

Though dazzled by Lacey, Connor sees the desperation she tries to hide. He hires her as his fake fiancée. Now Lacey has a job and he has a bandage for a family crisis.

When the blackmailer ups the ante, Lacey resolves to face him down— no matter what the consequences.

Does that mean Lacey will lose the only man who’s ever seen who she truly is?

 A Model Engagement Excerpt

In that moment, she relived just why she needed a job so damn bad. In that moment, all she could remember were the targeted emails, the strategic telephone calls and the persuasive texts she’d received from Barry as he set out to reel her in like the very gullible fish she was.

It all came back like a rush of filthy sewage.

How he’d drawn her in. Discovered her desire to reap the most financial benefit from her career before retiring. Then, in a seemingly normal progression, he set up a meeting at his office. Designed for shoptalk so that they could discuss photographic details of her breakout exclusive ad campaign for Mon Secret.

His home office as it turned out, complete with multiple couches and a closet full of evening wear
and fur, props for the shoot. Lacey had developed a veneer of sophistication during her four plus
years in the business. Or so she’d thought. But Barry’s lavish living and working space wowed her.

She cringed as she remembered telling him how eager she was to start.

Lacey relived it all in that split second and Connor, who’d done nothing more than offer her his jacket and then a ride home was suddenly a stand in for the monster who had taken her piece of mind along with practically every red cent she possessed.

 Buy Links:

Author Bio and Links: 

Charlotte O'Shay was born into a big family and married into another big family.

The drama! The noise! The inspiration!

Negotiating skills honed at the dinner table led her to a career in law. After four beautiful children joined the crowded family tree, Charlotte traded her legal career to write about happily ever afters. She lives on the far westside only 3 subway stops from where she grew up.

When Charlotte isn't reading or writing steamy contemporaries featuring heroines in crisis and swoony heroes with issues, she's on the hunt for that perfect pair of sunglasses. 

She LOVES to hear from readers.

Sign up to my newsletter to find out about giveaways and new releases:

Twitter (@charlotte_oshay) 
Instagram (charlotte_oshay_author) 
Facebook (Authorcharlotteoshay)

The City of Dreams series are standalone books linked by the wedding in The Marriage Ultimatum.
Book 1, The Marriage Ultimatum ~ Sabrina & Vlad
Book 2, A Model Engagement ~ Lacey & Connor 
Book 3, An Short Term Affair ~ Honey & Jake



  1. Thank you for this brave post. I'm so sorry about what brother endured and am glad, at the very least, that the crime was acknowledged. I agree, it's beyond time this issue has come to a head. Beautiful post.

  2. I'm thankful for this as well. It's hitting all of us in different ways and I'm glad moving things into the open can allow everyone to heal. Wishing your brother and your family the best.

  3. I agree. Acknowledging and apologizing starts the healing. Long overdue.

  4. Thank you for sharing this post and especially about your brother. This issue is one that is opening all wounds, but I pray the victims can now begin the healing process. Wishing you and your family all the best.

  5. Thank you for sharing your story, Charlotte. Stories like yours make me so angry. I'm glad people are finally starting to wake up to sexual assault and harassment. I wish nothing but the best for your brother. I hope he can find some peace.

    1. I know. It's hard to let go of the anger. I'm trying to focus on the thankfulness.

  6. Charlotte, I am just sickened that so many of these stories are coming to light these days. In some ways it's such an ugly, brutal world we live in. Thank you for sharing your story. I hope your family finds healing.

    1. You're right Debra. And the ugliness is so much worse when it's covered in a religious veneer. Thank you.

  7. Charlotte, thanks for sharing this brave post, and I hope things get better for your brother.

  8. Thank you for this courageous post. My heart breaks for the loss of what could have been. You have an amazing faith and love. Though not enough solace, I hope you and your sweet family gain some closure, knowing that your standing up may save another innocent from such abuse.
    You are talented in many ways. Writing is one of them. Wishing you great success.

    1. I know Sandy. It hard to let go of what might have been.

  9. Thanks Katie. The acknowledgment of the abuse helps us.

  10. Charlotte, I'm so sorry for what your brother and family have gone through. I pray all of you--especially your brother--find lasting healing. Wishing you great success with all your writing endeavors.

  11. Thank you Judith. I appreciate the prayers.

  12. Charlotte you are a brave soul to address this subject that is finally out in the open. Bless you and your family! I believe the coming days will bring to light a lot more with more brave souls coming forward. A cleansing experience for all! Wishing you lots of success with your book and your writing!

  13. Wow! Powerful post. Very brave of you to be so forthcoming. You're right we can no longer be ashamed. We need to continue to address this very important issue. All the best for you and your brother and all the other victims of sexual abuse.

  14. A current and relevant topic, for sure. I am so glad that courageous women, and men, too, have stood up to their abusers at long last. And...what a theme for your writing! Best wishes for future success.

  15. Thank you Christine. There is such shame and then to add insult to the injury to be told for years it "couldn't or didn't happen.

  16. I hope your brother can find some measure of peace. Best wishes to you and your family.

  17. Thank you for sharing this, Charlotte. I'm so sorry that such promising life was interrupted. All the best to you and your family.

  18. I agree Barbara sometimes that thought breaks my heart.