Monday, January 30, 2012

Undercover Prince and the Secret Service Cinderella

The Contest is Closed. The winner is SARAH MCNEAL!   Congratulations!!

Sherry Gloag is joining us from England to share your romantic tale about an adventurous Prince and his unlikely Cinderella. Let's give her a warm welcome!

***Sherry is giving away an e-book copy of FROM NOW UNTIL FOREVER. So read on and find out how you may be crowned the winner!
KAREN: Let’s start with you telling the readers a little about yourself. (short bio)
SHERRY: I’m a transplanted Scot living in the beautiful English county of Norfolk, not very far away from the Queens Sandringham Estate.  The Wild Rose press released my debut novel, The Brat in October 2010 and Astraea Press will release my fifth story His Chosen Bride in time for Valentine’s Day this year.

I have tinkered with writing for almost as long as I can remember and had my first serious attempt confiscated by one of the teachers, and never saw it again!
‘Life’ got in the way of any further serious attempts at writing until the late 1990’s, but it was 2006 when I started writing The Brat.  Other than writing I love reading, enjoy gardening, and walking, and forget the time when I’m involved with my crystal craft work.

KAREN: From Now Until Forever is your new release. Tell us a little about the story. What inspired you to write this tale?
SHERRY:From Now Until Forever started out, just after the British ‘royal wedding’ as a short 1500 word short story, which when I put it through the wonderful critique group I belong to, the other members all ‘wanted more’.  At the same time another friend pointed me in the direction of a publisher seeking short 5k word stories, so I had a go.  Before sending it off, I asked a friend of mine to give it the ‘once over.’  Her response?  “If it’s rejected, I want it, but you’ll have to get it up to 15k words.”  Well, ‘yikes’ was my initial response; my next was, actually these characters deserve more.  So, when it was rejected in its 5k format, I set to work.  And the rest, as they say ‘is history’.

KAREN: Prince Liam is the hero of the story. What is he like? What is his first impression when he meets Melanie Babcot, the heroine of the story?
SHERRY:While Prince Liam is one of the good guys, he’s rebelled against family duties and commitments which edged out his own goals and interests and finally leaves home to travel the world incognito.  His father, the king of a small, wealthy European country instructs Melanie Babcott, one of his security staff, to keep up with his son wherever he goes.  It is not until Liam reaches Scotland that he and Melanie ‘meet’ for the first time; and he has only one intention in mind.  To learn what happens next, you’ll have to but the story J

KAREN: Tell us about Melanie. What does she think of Prince Liam?
SHERRY:Melanie has always had a ‘thing’ for Liam, but knows only too well her job and her background would exclude any chance of a future for her with the prince.  But then life has a way of throwing unexpected curves in your path, doesn’t it?  And believe me hers is not an easy one.

KAREN: What are your current projects and works in progress?
SHERRY:As you may have gather from my earlier comments, From Now Until forever, morphed several times before it became the novella it is today, and when I finished it, and even after it was published, I had no intention of writing another Gasquet prince story.  But there you go, ‘life’ threw another curveball, at me this time, and hey presto, Prince Henri, the eldest prince and heir to his father’s throne demanded I write his story too.  So His Chosen Bride has just completed final edits and should be released by Astraea Press in time for Valentine’s Day.  During the writing of His Chosen Bride the royal twins decided to get in on the act, so I have two more stories to write for this series, *that started out as a single book*!  I am also working on a Regency novel I began back in 2008.  I know how it will end, now, but not sure yet how to get there.

KAREN: Tell the readers where they can find you:
     SHERRY: My website is:  http://www.sherrygloag.com
      FB: http://www.facebook.com/sherry.gloag
      Twitter: http://twitter.com/SherryGloag
      
KAREN: Is there anything else you’d like to tell the readers?
SHERRY:Writing is almost ‘magical’ to me, and I often get lost in what is happening to my characters. I love hearing from my readers.

KAREN: ***CONTEST: Now for the chance to win a pdf copy of: FROM NOW UNTIL FOREVER. Who's your favorite prince and why? Fairytale or real, it doesn't matter. Don't forget to leave your email so Sherry may contact you if you should win! Good Luck!!
Contest ends on Sat. Feb. 12th at 12:00 pm PST.


Purchase From Now Until Forever AT:
      Blurb – From Now Until Forever 
For Prince Liam, families meant bad news, unwanted commitments, and the loss of his personal freedom.  Love spawned white picket fences, slippers at the hearth with a wife and kids making demands, so why did those images disappear when he met Melanie Babcot?
Melanie Babcot fought hard to escape the horrors of her youth and vowed to remain single and free, so when paid to protect Prince Liam from insurgents why did her personal pledge fly out the window?
****
EXCERPT:
Liam Fitzwilliam Gasquet stared in amazement at the blooming patch of red milliseconds before the pain exploded in his arm. Some trigger-happy idiot had fired in his direction. Indignation didn’t have time to take root before another bullet kicked the dust at his feet.  
Not ‘trigger-happy’.
Intentional.  
The rebels had found the fourth and youngest son of Jean-Phillipe Gasquet, ruler of the tiny kingdom adjacent to the Swiss border. When had they discovered his whereabouts?
With a reluctant sigh, he faced the truth of it. They hadn’t ‘found’ him at all. They’d followed him.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Bittersweet Romance Takes Readers By Leaps and Bounds

CONTEST IS CLOSED. CONGRATULATIONS CATHY N. ! THANK YOU READERS FOR JOINING US!
Laura Browning is the author of tantalizing paranormal tales and contemporary romance. No matter what genre she writes, her stories will keep you breathless. Her new release is BITTERSWEET and she's giving us the inside scoop about this intriguing tale. Let's give her a warm welcome. She's running a CONTEST so read on to find out how you may be a winner!
Karen: Let’s start by telling the readers a little about yourself.   
Laura: Obviously, I love to write. It’s hard to remember a time when I haven’t been doing that. As a kid, if I wasn’t reading or writing, I was probably drawing. I studied Journalism in college and spent a couple of decades working in television news everywhere from Paducah, Kentucky to Minneapolis, Minnesota. I changed careers several years back and now teach high school English.


Karen:Your new is release Bittersweet. What is the story about? What inspired you to write the tale? 
Laura: In addition to reading, writing and drawing, I’ve owned and ridden horses for most of my life. Bittersweet is the story of a show jumper, Chris Stevenson and a veterinarian, Anna Barlow. They share a past, though only she’s aware of that. Chris was actually a secondary character in my book, Winning Heart, one of those situations where the character demanded a story. Teaming a vet with him just felt like a good fit. As a horse owner, I’ve worked with plenty of veterinarians over the years, most of whom are a very dedicated group of professionals.

Karen:Anna Barlow is heroine of the story. What is she like? What is her first impression upon meeting the hero of the story Chris Stevenson again after so many years? What are her weaknesses? Strengths?  
Laura: Although brilliant, Anna is a very insecure heroine in many ways. She’s not at all confident in her looks or herself as a woman. When she meets Chris again, one of the first things she realizes is that he’s changed significantly from the playboy star of the horse show circuit.


Karen:What is Chris’ impression of Anna? What is he like? What are his weaknesses? His strengths? 
Laura: Chris’s first impression of Anna is that she’s one of those militant women’s rights types. Of course his assumption that the vet coming to his farm would be male kind of set her up to react that way. Chris is a man struggling to change. He’s taken a look at his life, not liked what he saw, and returned home to get away from the show circuit.


Karen:What do you find most rewarding about writing?  
Laura: That’s tough. I enjoy creating and telling stories, but I also simply enjoy being able to get ideas and information down on paper. It’s an expressive outlet, like drawing, that I think I would end up doing whether I ever made money at it or not. (Please don’t let my husband read this…lol)


Karen:What are your current projects and works in progress?  
Laura: I am the world’s worst multi-tasker, so I always have several WIPs. However, I am working on the next story about the Barlow-Barrett family—this one’s about Seth, one of Anna’s elder brothers.


Karen:Tell the readers where they can find you:  
Laura: You can find me on my website: http://www.laurabrowningbooks.com; on my blog: www.laurabrowningbooks.blogspot.com ; on facebook and on Twitter at LauraBrowning4.


Karen:Is there anything else you’d like to tell the readers?

Laura: Contest Question: I do have a question for your readers. With more and more books coming out in ebook format, are you still a physical book lover or an ebook lover? I have to admit I’ve jumped into ebooks pretty whole-heartedly. I even have my mother, who’s in her mid-80s, using an ereader! 

Laura: Contest Prize: For everyone who comments about ebooks vs. physical copies, I’ll enter them in a drawing for a digital copy of BITTERSWEET.


Karen:. You can Purchase your own copy of Bittersweet at Lyrical Press, Amazon, and Barnes and Noble.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Karen's Amazing Blog Event

THE WINNER IS....DIVA VIXEN QUEEN!  THANK YOU EVERYONE FOR PARTICIPATING IN THE EVENT!

If you're looking for the next post in the Amazing Blog Tour Event, you're at the right place. The inspiration for my steampunk western adventure, Storm Riders was Bodie, California. My aunt and uncle took us there one summer on our way home from a wonderful Tahoe vacation. I was eighteen and the visit is just as vivid in my mind as the day we walked the dusty streets. My cousin, Charlie and I explored every nook and cranny of the mining town. If there were ghosts to be found, we were determined to find them. lol Sadly, no ghosts appeared, but the memories were just as good if not better.  

For this event, I'm giving away a pdf copy of Storm Riders. All you need to do is read the excerpt (*hint) and answer the question Ginger will post on the last day of the event.  So have fun and follow the links for each day to discover a new Amazing Authors or find out what your favorite author has been up to.

Excerpt: 
Samantha studied Ace, her gaze sliding over him in admiration. Long, lean, and rather handsome even with a few days growth on his chin. He wore a cowboy hat, but his long hair peeked out. The color gleamed a rich dark brown as the sun beat down on the thick strands.
 
His eyes shifted in a subtle manner as if he were looking for someone.
 
"You have little faith," she whispered. She raised her hand, tapping her cowboy hat with a subtle gesture, but it caught his attention. For a split second, a look of surprised recognition flitted across his features. He didn't believe she'd show. She gave him a slight nod. He faced forward then with his shoulders back, standing tall before the crowd that chanted his death song.
 
The hangman lifted McTavish's hat to place the black cloth over his face, but Ace moved his head away. The hangman shrugged with indifference. Ace had the right to face his accusers. The hangman draped the rope around McTavish's neck, placing his hat firmly back down on his head. Then he tightened the rope around his neck. The reverend continued his sermon to save Ace's soul rather than words to comfort him.
 
Samantha tapped her earpiece. "Are you ready, Denny?"
 
"Aren't I always, luv?"
 
Her lips curved. "Let's show these eegits the meaning of a real show, shall we?"
 
"Your words are pure poetry to my ears, Sammy."
 
Denny could shoot a flea off a dog and she wasn't exaggerating. Denny was the best sharpshooter at the SR Institute. She won her share of medals too, but horses were her specialty. She grew up on a ranch, spending more time on a horse than anywhere else. She would be able to outrun whoever tried to come after them.
 
She kept her eyes on the hangman's hand. The reverend closed his book and gave a nod. The hangman's hand pressed the lever and the prisoner dropped. At the same time a shot rang out, severing the rope before it could constrict around McTavish's neck and break it.
 
Her horse tensed, but she stroked his neck and leaned forward. "You're fine, boy. Stay with me."
 
People screamed and ducked. Deputy Goodman who stood at the foot of the stairs drew his gun, looking for the man responsible for the interruption.
 
He kept the patrons hopping with shots flying over their heads. Deputy Chester couldn't leave the scaffold, the way the bullets flew at his feet, making him dance a jig.
 
Bless you, Denny Randeli.
 
Samantha didn't waste time and rammed her feet into the horse's flank, sending them flying forward through the crowd of scrambling people. McTavish looked stunned, but he was already working to free his hands.
 
"Need some help, cowboy." She tipped back her hat and smiled. She pulled her knife out and he stumbled back. "Don't be stupid. Let me cut the ropes."
 
"Who are ye, lass?" His thick Scottish brogue laced his words.
 
"I'm the woman who's going to save your arse. Now turn around and let me cut you free."
 
He didn't hesitate now, whirling around and giving her his backside. A nice backside, too, but now wasn't the time to admire it. Keeping the horse steady, she leaned down and slashed the binds free from his hands. She shoved the knife back in its holder and offered her hand.
He turned to stare at her. In the bright of day, his eyes stood out like clear green gems with no other pigment clouding the color.
 
"Come on." She thrust out her gloved hand.
 
His grip was firm as he swung up behind her.
 
"Hold on," she told him. "Hiyah!" The horse bolted at the command and the sudden slam of her boot heel against its flank. She maneuvered around the scrambling crowd with ease and jumped over obstacles in her way.
 
"St. Brigid in Heaven, you're an angel." McTavish clung to her, his hands around her waist—warm and large, the heat from him sent a strange feeling to the pit of her stomach.
She shook her head. It was the thrill of the escape, not how McTavish felt against her. She tried to convince herself with no avail.
 
"Do you have the package?" Denny's voice echoed in her ear, making her focus.
 
"Got him and we're on the right trail to lose anyone who follows. We'll stop at the first hideout and see if there's trouble. If it looks clear, we'll meet you back at the safe house tonight.
 
"Be safe," Denny told her.
 
"Back at you."
 
"Who are ye talkin' to, darlin'?" McTavish leaned his head next to hers, his breath whispering against her cheek.
 
"None of your concern, cowboy. Just keep holding on. We have a rough ride ahead of us if we want to cover our tracks."
 
She thought she heard him chuckle. "Oh, doonae fash yerself. I willnae let go."
I hope enjoyed the except!
For the next trek on the blog tour visit Anna K. Lanier tomorrow at: http://annakathrynlanier.blogspot.com/ 

Tweet the Event with the hashtag: #amazingauthorevent


Here's the list of Amazing Blog Event Participating Authors. Each Blog post goes live the day indicated and will be there for you to go back and revisit throughout the blog tour. See you there!!
Jan. 12.  Caroline Clemmons (historical & contemporary genre fiction)
Jan. 13. Beth Trissel (historical & light paranormal romance)
Jan. 14. Roseanne Dowell (romance)
Jan. 15.  Cathie Dunn (historical fiction & romantic adventure)
Jan. 16. Maggie Toussaint (romance & mystery with a Southern dash)
Jan. 17. Patsy Parker (paranormal fantasy romance)
Jan. 18. S.G. Rogers (fantasy, romantic fantasy, young adult fantasy)
Jan. 19. Linda LaRoque (western contemporary & time travel romance)
Jan. 20 Jacquie Rogers (dragons, princesses & romance)
Jan. 21. Karen Nutt (paranormal romance)
Jan. 22. Anna Kathryn Lanier (sensual contemporary & historical westerns)
Jan. 23. Barbara Edwards (riveting romance with an edge)
Jan. 24. Ginger Simpson (historical & contemporary romance)

Remember on the last day of the tour, Ginger Simpson is going to post some fun and easy questions you must answer for the chance to win free reads. (Hint: there will be a link to each author’s post so you can quickly double check).
We’re looking forward to meeting you.


Friday, January 20, 2012

Author Claire Ashgrove Shares: A Day in the Life


Karen: Claire Ashgrove writes contemporary, paranormal, and historical romance that are sure to please. KMN Books is just one of the stops on her Blog Tour, so make sure to drop by the other blogs, too. Not only is she promoting her new release, Immortal Hope, she's also giving away two Amazon Gift Certificates to two lucky winners. (More details below so read on and enjoy!)

A Day in the Life by Claire Ashgrove

I hate talking about myself.  Ask our gracious host – when I sent over the material for today, I remarked the bio could be included or casually forgotten, and it wouldn’t matter to me.  Now, I like talking about my books, but me?  Nah.  I’ll pass if given the opportunity.

That said, I have been asked a lot lately to share bits and pieces of me.  So, to appease that call, I’m sharing a glimpse of a day in the life.

6:30am – I make a mad dash out of bed, cursing over the snooze I somehow hit twice (because, of course, I’ve been up until at least 2 the night before), race into the kitchen and scrounge through the cupboards for something for my sons to eat.

6:40am – With hot water ready for hot cereal, or the toaster fired up for waffles, I race back up the stairs, trip over a dog or two en route, and wake up my eldest demi-demon for school.  Amidst much, much, fussing (Gee, wonder where he gets that from.) we get dressed.  About 20 minutes later, we’re out the door for school.

8:00am – My eldest is in school now, and I sit down at the computer to wade through a sea of emails.  I delete anything solicitous and answer anything that’s personally addressed.  I check status on the manuscripts I free-lance edit, and line up my work for that evening.

10:00am – I’ve downed at least three cups of coffee and managed to change my clothes somehow.  Now it’s off to build websites for my day-job for a few hours.  I chat with my boss a bit, tell him anything new on the publishing front, and fire up Twitter so I can keep in touch with the world while I’m getting cozy with code.

3:00pm – Time to pick up the eldest from school, line him up for an after school snack, then wade through much complaining about how playtime is far more fun than farm chores.  We eventually finish the theatrics, (he should really consider acting!), and head off to take care of horses.

7:00pm – all the menial things like chores and dinner are finished.  The demi-demons are fighting in the playroom, the electric train is whistling around the track, Alpha and Omega are on the television.  Now, I get to do for myself a bit.  I’ll work in a chapter’s worth of words before I can’t take the noise anymore and bribe them with some sort of snack.

9:00pm – One demi-demon down for bed, the eldest is now sitting at the table beside me, practicing his letters while I’m on my second chapter of words.  This one takes a bit longer than the other, as I’m routinely polled about letter shape and drawn into animated conversations about matchbox cars and wrecks and tow-trucks as well.

10:30pm – The children are fast asleep, the dogs have all been out, the cat’s come out of hiding and is sitting on my lap, and the pet mouse is on the dining room table to entertain me when I’m stuck on a thought.  Now it’s my time.  Coffee is fresh.  Snacks are nearby.  If I can just keep the phone from ringing now that the whole world knows my house is quiet enough to talk…

1:00am – Time to call it quits.  The dogs are passed out, the cat is now drooling in my lap in sleep, the mouse is burrowed back in his den.  My house is silent.  My eyelids are drooping.  I’d really love to finish out this scene, but if I wait a moment longer, I’ll wake up cursing again.

Somehow it all works.  Some days I know I’ve done a whole lot but have little physical evidence of such.  Others, I can manage to get five chapters written. 

No, I don’t require a silent household to work.  But I’ve found I work much better without the interrupts.  I can tune out the noise, but “Mom!” isn’t so easy to ignore.  Even if I know it’s being screeched only because someone took a toy away, or the other demi-demon drove his matchbox car on the brother’s imaginary road.

What about all of you – when you sit down to read, or write, or engage in whatever hobby you might enjoy, do you have to have utter quiet to focus?

~Claire
Twitter:  @ClaireAshgrove



Claire will be giving away a $25 Amazon.com gift certificate to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour, and a second $25.00 Amazon.com gift certificate to a second randomly drawn commenter at the end of the tour.  Be sure to follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning! Click the Blog Tour badge for a complete list of blog stops.




BLURB:
CENTURIES AGO,
Templar knights defied the archangels and unearthed the copper scroll, revealing the gates to hell. Cursed for their forbidden act, they forever roam the earth protecting mankind from evil. But darkness stalks them, and battles they fight bring them ever-closer to eternal damnation. One promise remains to give them salvation – the return of the seraphs.

Embittered by his purpose, Merrick du Loire must honor an ancient pact and bring peace to his cousin’s soul. When he stumbles upon history professor Anne MacPherson, he discovers she possesses a sacred artifact that marks her as a seraph. Duty demands he set aside his personal quest and locate the knight she’s fated to heal. As he struggles with conflicting oaths, Anne arouses buried hope and sparks forbidden desire that challenges everything he’s sworn to uphold.

Anne has six weeks to complete her thesis on the Knights Templar. When Merrick takes her to the Templar stronghold, he presents her with all she needs—and awakens a soul-deep ache, he alone can soothe. Yet loving Merrick comes with a price. If she admits she's destined for him, her gift of foresight predicts his death.


EXCERPT:

He took a deep fortifying breath at Anne’s door. A small portion of his soul demanded he let himself inside and take the liberties he would have enjoyed had she wandered into his life nine hundred years ago. Whilst he shared the residence with many others, the simple fact remained, she resided in his house. Once he had dreamed of such a circumstance. Now the fantasy only created a bitter taste in his mouth.

Resigning himself to reality, he knocked twice upon her door.

She answered as he lifted his hand for the third, concurrent rap. Briefly, she stared, bewildered. Then, her gaze fell to his armload of supplies, and her porcelain features lit with such delight a fist clamped around Merrick’s heart.

“My things,” she murmured as he moved past her. “Oh, Merrick, you brought my radio.”

The whimsical quality of her voice, the gratitude that turned her words into music, swelled his chest. Damnation. She had turned him as soft as butter. This trial of loyalty would surely be the death of him.

He set the bags down, unwilling to look at her for fear she would see how deeply she affected him. “I brought what I thought you might desire. Should you find something missing, we shall discuss it in the morn.”

“Oh. You’re leaving again?”

His back to her, he closed his eyes. The touch of disappointment that fringed her question disturbed the accursed hollowness in his gut. “Aye.”

Before he could fully shrug off the thick straps digging into his shoulder, her hand settled against the small of his back. “I’d hoped you might stay with me for a while,” she murmured.

Her fingertips slid up his back, warming his skin. As he righted himself, she ducked under his elbow and looped her arms around his neck. Stepping in close, Anne pressed her body to his.

Everything inside Merrick coiled tight. Her warmth, the feel of her breath upon his neck, the perfume in her hair, she overwhelmed him in a heartbeat. He battled with the urge to slide his arms around her waist and draw her even closer. The longing to capture her mouth and drink from her honeyed lips assailed his senses with the force of a battering ram. Like a strangled man desperate for one gulp of fresh air, he disentangled himself from her embrace and took a step away.

He knew only one way to combat the fierce desire she awakened. “I must fight tonight.”

About the Author:
Claire Ashgrove has been writing since her early teens and maintained the hobby for twenty years before deciding to leap into the professional world. Her first contemporary novel, Seduction's Stakes, sold to The Wild Rose Press in 2008, where she continues to write steamy, sexy stories for the Champagne and Black Rose lines. Adding to these critically acclaimed contemporaries, Claire’s paranormal romance series, The Curse of the Templars, debuts with Tor in January 2012. For those who prefer the more erotic side of romance, she also writes for Berkley Heat under the pen name Tori St. Claire.

Claire lives on a small farm in Missouri with her two toddler sons, fifteen horses, four cats, and five dogs. In her “free” time, she enjoys cooking, winning at rummy, studying ancient civilizations, and spending quiet moments with her family, including the critters. She credits her success to her family's constant support and endless patience.

To learn more about Claire, visit her at:
Twitter: @ClaireAshgrove


Monday, January 16, 2012

Romantic Suspense Can Be DEADLY!


Karen: Vonnie Hughes sets the stage for her intriguing novels with romantic suspense that will keep you at the edge of your seat. She's here today to tell us about her new release, Lethal Refuge. Let's give her a warm welcome. She's running a contest on her website, too. So read on to find out how you may enter. 
Take it away, Vonnie!

Vonnie: I’m a New Zealander living in Australia. I love animals, reading, jog/walking and the gym.
I wrote short stories and poems when I was very young (many of which got published) but did not begin novel writing until about six years ago. I write Regencies and romantic suspense novels, novellas and short stories. 


My earliest book is still available from Robert Hale Ltd. It’s called COMING HOME and is about a soldier and a nurse, thrown together during the Napoleonic wars, who find more danger on their return to England than they ever did on the Iberian Peninsula. This hardback can be purchased from  http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/book/9780709090052/Coming-Home It has just become available as an e-book, too, from my Amazon page



THE SECOND SON, is available as an e-book from Musa Publishing or from my Amazon page. It’s a prequel to COMING HOME. Guilt wracks a man who stands to inherits a marquessate when the brother he’s always loathed dies. He turns to Marguerite Ninian, a young disabled woman for emotional support, and along the way, loneliness turns to love. 


My new release is LETHAL REFUGE. It is a romantic suspense set in New Zealand. Célie Francis has had to be strong-minded and independent ever since she was abused and deserted as a child. But when she witnesses the aftermath of a murder, she is tossed into the witness protection program (the Unit) and must comply with their edicts if she is to survive. Brand Turner, the police psychologist for the Unit, tries to gain her trust, but Célie, helpless and rudderless, cannot quite bring herself to trust him. When the killer seems to anticipate their every move and it becomes apparent he has inside information, who can Célie turn to?


I wrote it because many years ago, the opening scene happened to me when I was out for a jog in the early morning mist over the tops of the cliffs in north Auckland. I will never forget that creepy feeling of being followed by someone you could hear, but couldn’t see through the fog.

Karen: What are your hero and heroine of the story like?

Vonnie: Yes, well, Célie is not exactly sweetness personified. She’s tough because she’s had to be, and no way is she going to let a bunch of policemen tell her how to live. So of course she almost gets caught by the murderer who has already killed her two best friends. Then she has  to rely on Brand Turner to help her, even though at first she writes him off as an ineffective intellectual with no life experience. Oh boy is she wrong. Brand has some very good ideas up his sleeve. He’s good at things that have nothing to do with evading murderers too.


Brand is not quite the opposite of Célie, but almost. He’s not deterred by her snarl and fire because at their first meeting he recognises the fear that has boxed Célie into a corner; not just a fear of the murderer, but also the fear of an independent person forced to rely on others. But he has to be careful. His instincts are to protect her, not something Ms Francis can tolerate. He has already had one woman walk away telling him she “needs space.” But he’s secure enough to ignore Célie’s little jabs, and when they realise that someone is feeding information to the murderer from either the Unit itself or from the police team seconded to the Unit, they team up together and go on the run 

Karen: What do you find most rewarding about writing?

Vonnie: Some days, nothing at all. It’s a long, hard slog just getting the words down. Once the words are done and I slip into edit mode, then I enjoy the writing. That’s when I add the layers that really count. Sometimes it involves twists to the plot; other times it’s a foible of characterisation that makes a character do something unexpected. That’s what I find rewarding.

Karen: What are your current projects?

Vonnie: On January 27 I have another Regency being released by Musa as an e-book. It’s called MR. MONFORT’S MARRIAGE and is hotter than my usual Regencies. Well, they are married so I can really go to town! Here’s the blurb: 


Matthew Monfort has two excellent reasons for loathing members of the ton, but thanks to his father's machinations he finds himself inveigled into offering for Lady Verity Tristan. Anyway it's time he married and she's...well, she's different; in fact she's quite delightful...and intelligent...and sweet...but she needn't think she's going to win him over.


I’m also three-quarters of the way through a Regency novella about two sisters and halfway through another romantic suspense set in New Zealand. This time it’s about one of their Armed Offenders’ Squads (i.e. Swat team). I’ve just completed several articles for various blogs and hey, I think I need a break! 

Karen: Where can the readers find you?

Vonnie: My website is www.vonniehughes.com

Email me on vonniehughes@gmail.com



***Contest info: On my blogsite at present there’s a contest to win a free paperback copy of LETHAL REFUGE.

Karen: Remember, if you want to buy any of Vonnie's books just go to her Amazon page: 


Vonnie: Thanks for having me, Karen and everyone.

Karen: Thank you, Vonnie for joining us today. I wish you the best. 

Monday, January 9, 2012

Jennifer Jakes Takes to the High Seas!

The Contest is now Closed. The winner is Hotch12! Congratulations!!

Jennifer Jakes pens sensual and seductive historical romances that will sweep you back in time. She's here to tell us about her new release, Twice in a Lifetime. Come aboard mateys. Ther'd be pirates.  
***Pirate booty: One lucky winner will receive an e-book copy of TWICE in a LIFETIME. Drawing will take place on Sat Jan. 14th. at 12:00 pm PST.  Read on and find out how to enter. 
Karen: Let's start by telling the readers a little about yourself.

Jennifer: After trying several careers—everything from a beautician to a dump truck driver—I finally returned to my first love, writing. Maybe it was all those Clint Eastwood movies I watched growing up, but in my opinion there is no better read than a steamy western historical.


Married to my very own hero, I live on fifteen acres along with two beautiful daughters, three spoiled cats, three hyper dogs and one fat rabbit.


 During the summer I do Civil War re-enacting and have found it a great research tool, not to mention I have continued appreciation for my microwave and hot water heater.


Karen: Your new release is Twice in a Lifetime. What inspired you to write the tale? 
Jennifer: It was just one of those ideas that wouldn’t go away! J I had the thought of a modern, kick-butt woman dumped onto a pirate ship. So I had to figure out who she was and why she was there.


Karen: Why did you decide to self-publish this tale? Who created your lovely book cover?  It’s stunning. 
 Jennifer: I think in this ever changing publishing world, it’s smart to explore all avenues. A novella seemed the perfect way to try self-publishing.

And Kim Killion of HOT DAMN Designs did my cover. I am so happy with how it turned out.

Karen: Isabella Douglas is the heroine of the story. What is she like? How did she end up in 1768 and aboard a Caribbean pirate ship? 

Jennifer: Izzy is a woman who acts tough as nails on the outside – she is a stuntwoman – but is scared of being hurt again on the inside. As the story opens, Izzy is opening her divorce papers and agonizing over the decision of whether to sign them. Did I mention it’s her birthday? Anyway, a wish to have her “old Ian back” goes awry and she finds herself in 1768 aboard a ship captained by her husband.


Karen I really enjoy historical time travels and this story has definitely caught my attention.

The hero of the story is Captain Ian Douglas. Tell the readers about him. What is he like? What is his first impression of Isabella? 

Jennifer: He is someone who never, ever gives up on those he loves. Trouble is, he doesn’t remember Izzy and thinks she is an insane woman claiming to be his wife.


Karen: What do you find most rewarding about writing?
Jennifer: I think crafting the story and once I’m finished, seeing what I’d imagined, played out on paper ( or screen). 


Karen: What are your current projects and works in progress? 
Jennifer: I’m working on a novel set in 1898 Alaska during the gold rush, titled ALASKAN HEAT.


Karen: What genre inspires your writing? 
Jennifer: Historical all the way. And for the most part, western historical. But a girl needs a pirate every once in awhile. LOL


Karen: Tell the readers where they can find you: 
Jennifer: My website is http://www.jenniferjakes.com

My blog is http://authorjenniferjakes.blogspot.com and I have man candy every Monday.

I’m on FaceBook and GoodReads as Jennifer Jakes and on Twitter as @erotichistory


Karen: Now for the contest. Answer Jennifer's question and be entered to win an e-book copy of TWICE in a LIFETIME. Don't forget to leave your email so we may contact you if you should win.
****Jennifer: Contest question: Are you a bigger fans of pirate romance or cowboy romance?

To Purchase your own copy of: TWICE IN A LIFETIME for only .99 cents at Amazon http://tinyurl.com/7gvanj6 B&N http://tinyurl.com/6vvgrzf


Karen: Jennifer, Thank you so much for coming by and sharing your new release with us. I wish you the best success!