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Rancho Santa Fe author releases final book in award-winning trilogy

Sarka-Jonae Miller
Sarka-Jonae Miller

Between Heartbreak and HappinessBy Kristina Houck

After more than a decade of developing the series, Rancho Santa Fe author Sárka-Jonae Miller has recently released “Between Heartbreak and Happiness,” the final book in her in award-winning trilogy.

“It was always planned to be a trilogy,” Miller said. “Getting this third one out is a real accomplishment.”

The “Between Boyfriends” series follows 21-year-old Jan Weston after her boyfriend breaks up with her and her wealthy parents cut her off. Self-published in 2011, Booktrope republished the first novel in November 2013. “Between Boyfriends” recently made the shortlist of comedy novels in the Indie Author Land search for the top 50 books from indie authors published in 2013.

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Booktrope released Miller’s sequel, “Between the Sheets,” on Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day. In the follow-up, Weston studies abroad in Thailand.

In the third installment, which was released in May, Weston travels to Australia. Now in her mid-20s, Weston has “definitely matured a bit,” Miller explained.

“My biggest goal with the series was to take Jan from a place that a lot of people in their early 20s have been, and show her growth,” said Miller, who was also named a MARSocial Author of the Year runner-up after submitting an excerpt of “Between Boyfriends” in the social media-based competition. “I don’t think you can get too much realistic development in just one book.”

Like Weston at the start of the series, Miller, too, was 21 when she first developed the character.

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Like her main character, Miller is single, grew up in San Diego and has worked as a massage therapist and a pet groomer. Weston, however, has an obsession with men and relationships, and a self-centered view of the world. She is a composite of a number of people Miller met while studying at San Dieguito Academy and earning a degree in magazine journalism at Syracuse University in New York.

Now 33, Miller has grown up as her main character has also matured.

“I really wanted Jan to get a happy ending, but I wanted her to earn it,” Miller said.

“I’m definitely not the same person I was when I thought of the series and started writing the series,” she added. “I think a lot of people in their 20s have this pressure to be adults. Technically, they are adults and they should act like adults and aspire to be adults, but the 20s are also really a time to grow.”

Although Weston’s tale comes to a close in “Between Heartbreak and Happiness,” Miller is exploring the possibility of developing the secondary characters in the series. She is also working on a young adult fantasy novel and two other fiction novels.

“There will be new stuff soon,” Miller said. “Stay tuned.”

“Between Heartbreak and Happiness” and the first two novels of the “Between Boyfriends” series is available for purchase on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and iTunes.

For more information about Miller, visit www.sarkajonae.com.

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