Book Reviews Home

Labor of Love Audiobook Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Labor of Love

Author: Marguerite Martin Gray

Narrated: Christa DelSorbo

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: September 21, 2023

Something sinister lurks in Pitti Palace.

Despite having spent eight years as companion to her cousins, Ana Geovani still questions her role and place in the Medici household. This uncertainty compounds and alarms as her cousin’s marriage approaches and a marriage is arranged for Ana.

With no say in her own future, fear and despair dulls even the splendor of the gardens she holds so dear.

As the newest under-gardener at the palace, Marco Rossi should have everything he’s dreamed of—beautiful gardens to tend and master architects and gardeners to learn from. Yet a secret mission threatens his peace of mind, his position, and even the love of Ana. Although God is always with him, reminding him of a bigger plan, Marco feels the weight of the consequences he will face if he challenges a Medici member.

The desires of men and women, both royal and common, create costly dilemmas and potential disasters of hearts and souls. What will it take for Marco and Ana to prevail against everything driving them apart?


Click here to get your copy!


About the Author

Marguerite Martin Gray is the author of the Revolutionary Faith series, Gardens in Time series, and Room for Love in the Suamalie Islands series. She enjoys researching and studying history. An avid traveler and reader, she teaches French and Spanish. She currently lives in North Louisiana with her husband and rescue pets. Her two adult children and two grandsons keep her up to date and young.


More from Marguerite

My audio book experience.

Do you enjoy audio books? They have become special companions since I now work at home. My first experience with audio books involved cassettes on long road trips which morphed into CDs. I would purchase the ones I knew I could listen to again or pass on to someone else. The library became a source to fulfill my burgeoning habit.

It took me a while to consider audible books as a “reading” endeavor. But when I really thought about it, I changed my mind. As I listen, I am challenged with new and old vocabulary words where I must deduce the meaning from the context. My concentration is zeroed in on the story unless I miss some strategic details similar to straying on a page and not knowing what is going on. I have the same euphoric reaction as the plot unfolds.

Now, I’m never without an audio book. When I was offered the opportunity to have Labor of Love presented in audio format, my heart quivered knowing what joy it could bring to readers while doing housework, caring for loved ones, or relaxing in a comfy chair. I hope you enjoy this format as much as I do.

Happy reading!

Interview with the Author

  1. How do you select the names of your characters?

I write historical fiction which gives me an era and a way to narrow the name pool. In Labor of Love, I researched sixteenth century Italian names. I tried to use names that would be easy to pronounce and remember except for the historical figures whose names remain true to the historical period. My heroine and hero are Ana and Marco. Easy enough. I find a list and play with first and last names to find something that sounds appropriate. Someone told me one time to avoid having characters with the same first letter which causes me to rearrange names sometime.


  1. What was your hardest scene to write?

In Labor of Love, one of the characters suffers extreme grief through the loss of his daughter. Writing about the broken heart of a father is difficult. This affects the rest of the family in the planning of a wedding. Children are always missed. I had to put this scene and plot item in because it was important to the historical flow of the novel. I struggle with putting death in other books too.


  1. What is your favorite childhood book?

The Black Stallion by Walter Farley is a childhood favorite book. I spent two years in England and fell in love with horses and riding. Since I already read all the time, I added books about horses beginning with The Black Stallion and all the books in the series. Upon returning from England, my parents gave me a beautiful black horse to occupy my time and imagination.


  1. If you had to do something differently as a child or teenager to become a better writer as an adult, what would you do?

I don’t like to live with what ifs hanging around too long, but if I could be a teenager again, I would begin to write novels and have a stash of complete or almost complete novels to polish as an adult. I began my serious writing as an older adult. When I run into a young writer, I try to encourage the writer to pursue his or her writing endeavors early in life. One thing I’m glad I started as a preteen is a daily journal. I have kept up that habit for years.


  1. What comes first, the plot or characters?

The overall general background and plot comes first—the setting, era, and basic plot. The characters are not far behind with names and characteristics developing as I research the details of the plot. For example, one of my favorite places from my travels is Florence, Italy became an easy setting for Labor of Love with a palace and gardens for my characters. Once I choose the era, the plot takes shape with the characters dancing in and out of the research notes.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 7

Texas Book-aholic, February 8

By the Book, February 9

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, February 10 (Author Interview)

Devoted To Hope, February 10

Exploring the Written Word, February 11

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 12

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 13

For the Love of Literature, February 14 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 15

Holly’s Book Corner, February 16

By The Book, February 17 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 18

Back Porch Reads, February 19

Artistic Nobody, February 20 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, February 20


To celebrate her tour, Marguerite is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and an audiobook or eBook copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.