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Feature book: Entwined

19 July 2017

Entwined by JC Harroway

This is a beautifully written second-chance at love story. This trope is kept nice and refreshing as it’s set in Wales. I found it to be quite a steamy read. It is the second book in JC Harroway’s ‘Recovery’ series, but can be read as a standalone.

Jess Bellamy is a nurse who is returning home from London to Swansea to attend her cousin Mel’s wedding. She does not want to stay there long and definitely does not want anything to do with her ex; Morgan Price. It has been five years since she has seen him last at her father’s funeral and their breakup. At Mel’s hen’s party she is dared to kiss the next guy to walk in the door. Jess does not expect it be Morgan. She wants to keep him erased from her mind but one mind-blowing kiss unravels everything.

Morgan Price has done quite well for himself after school. He is now the owner of an art gallery. Jess confronts Morgan at his gallery to talk about their past as she does not want to make a scene at the wedding. During this heated exchange you learn that they both still have feelings for each other despite their break up. Learning this, Jess hopes to get Morgan out of her system once and for all.

After getting drunk at the wedding to forget her problems, her dysfunctional relationship with her mother and all the secrets she is keeping, Jess ends up spending the night with Morgan.

Jess makes no secret that she wants nothing to do with her home town and Morgan. Morgan wants to learn why she ran away in the beginning and why she broke his heart. Now Jess must make a big decision in a couple of days, keeping running from her past and hold onto her secrets, or take a chance on love again.

I found the plot line very intriguing as the hero and heroine’s background is given to you in bits and pieces, which keeps you wanting for more. Even though there are a few predictable tropes in this story, I still found it to be quite an enjoyable read.

Reviewed by Juliette

A review copy of this book was provided by the publisher.

Release day: Indigo Lake

18 July 2017

Today is the official release of Indigo Lake by Jodi Thomas (paperback, Harlequin). Here’s the blurb:

Two families long divided by an ancient feud. Can a powerful love finally unite them?

Blade Hamilton is the last of his line. He’s never even heard of Crossroads, Texas, until he inherits land there. Riding in on his vintage Harley-Davidson, Blade finds a weathered ranch house, an empty prairie and a dark river that cuts a decisive path between the Hamiltons’ land and that of their estranged neighbors.

When Dakota helps a stranger on the roadside, she isn’t prepared for the charisma of the man on the motorbike—or for the last name he bears: Hamilton, of her family’s sworn enemies, representing all she’s been raised to loathe. The problem is, it looks like Blade is in town to stay, and there’s something about his wolf-gray eyes she just can’t ignore.

Lauren Brigman feels adrift. Unhappy in work and unlucky in love, she knows she ought to be striving for more, but she’s never truly at peace unless she’s at home in Crossroads. If the wider world can’t satisfy her, is home truly where her heart is?

Jodi dropped by today to tell us a little about this book:

It was a dark and stormy night… I’ve always wanted to write that line. I think all writers do. So I decided to give it a try in Indigo Lake, a book about a hundred-year-old feud between two families. And, of course, my hero is from one and my heroine is from the other. You will love reading this story, which pulls out the richness of legends and superstitions among the early families who settled West Texas. Good news for all my Ransom Canyon readers: tucked in the back of the book is a copy of Winter’s Camp.

You can find out more about this book at Jodi’s website or buy it from Amazon.

Guest blogger: Sandy Vaile

16 July 2017

I’m a motorbike-riding daredevil who isn’t happy with a story unless there’s a courageous heroine and a dead body. So is it any wonder that my latest heroine, Neve, has been trained in guerrilla warfare tactics by her ex-veteran father, and is handy with a bow and arrow?

I think I’d been watching way too much of those doomsday prepper shows on TV at the time I came up with this story idea. Those people are so passionate about being able to protect their loved ones, and I wanted to show that in a woman who was comfortable in the native bushland, but had to face an enemy that was more powerful than her. And so Neve came to life. She’s the kind of woman I could relate to, and who is willing to put everything on the line for a child that isn’t hers.

Neve is inherently private, and hates everything money stands for, since a rich drunk driver killed half her family and got off scot-free. So, letting mega-rich Micah into her home or heart is the last thing she wants … but she won’t let someone die in her place again, and if that means working with the billionaire, so be it.

Neve isn’t used to having her minimalistic lifestyle scrutinised, and is surprised how comfortable Micah seems in her bush shack. There is more to this entrepreneur than meets the eye, and as his professional persona fades, a potent and unexpected attraction ignites.

I love writing about spirited women, because I mean equally amazing real life women all the time, and like to think I might be one myself. 🙂 I’ve certainly had some amazing life experiences. Right now I’m lucky enough to live amongst the vineyards on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia. It is one of the most beautiful places in the world, which is why I set my books there. Of course, to avoid offending any of the locals, I have changed the town name, but there are plenty of landmarks that are recognisable.

I’d love to hear about the types of heroines you like to read, and your own life adventures.

You can find Sandy here: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Combatting Fear

How far would you go to save a child that wasn’t yours?

Mild-mannered kindergarten teacher, Neve Botticelli, leads a double life. At home with her paranoid father, she is a combat trained survivalist who lives off-the-grid.

When self-made billionaire, Micah Kincaid, storms into town in search of his four-year-old son, Rowan, he’s pushy, entitled, and stands for everything Neve despises.

But something far more sinister than a cheating estranged wife, is lurking in rural Turners Gully, and it has its sights set on little Rowan’s inheritance. It turns out there is one thing Micah and Neve can agree on, and that’s keeping Rowan safe.

As they work together to free Rowan, they glimpse beneath one another’s guises. Falling in love could be even more dangerous than hunting deadly criminals.

 

ARRA newsletter #96

15 July 2017

Purple news

The July issue of the ARRA newsletter is out today. Members should have received the download code via email.

Here’s a quick run down on some of the information you can find in the newsletter this month:

  • a Romantic Rendezvous with a mystery guest author—check out the lead article
  • we’re looking for some extra proofreaders—see page 2
  • the next #AuthorHour is on 26 July
  • have your heard about The Australian Reading Hour? Some early details on page 4
  • Rhyll and Charlotte’s web watch column this month explores Better Reading
  • don’t forget to try your hand at the Find the Heart giveaway

Plus our regular columns—romance roundup, publisher news, self-publishing highlights, events, reviews, freebies, author interviews and upcoming releases.

If anyone has any publishing news or deals to report, please send information through. And we are always looking for authors to do a Q&A for the newsletter. If you haven’t done one yet, please contact me at arra.editor@gmail.com.

Happy reading everyone!

PS – if any authors are interested in being a host at the Sydney High Tea next year, fill in the EOI here: https://australianromancereaders.wordpress.com/eoi-for-high-tea-host-author/

PPS – Perth readers: don’t forget to buy your ticket for the High Tea in September: https://www.trybooking.com/289227

 

Feature book: The Temporary Mrs Marchetti

12 July 2017

The Temporary Mrs Marchetti by Melanie Milburne

It could be a deal breaker. Marriage for six months and some money for her growing business or spending six months in close proximity to him.

Alice Piper has built her own business after her ill-fated affair with Cristiano. Seven years have passed and Alice still feels the chemistry, but she doesn’t want to be married to Cristiano or, in fact, anyone. She doesn’t want children, or so she thought. She has tried several relationships over the years but there is something missing in each one.

Cristiano Marchetti arrives to tell Alice that his grandmother has left her something in her will, but it means that he and Alice have to marry for six months. Cristiano regrets not telling his grandmother about his wastrel cousin, but it is what it is, and he will do what he can to stop his cousin getting any money.

The discussion between Alice and Cristiano regarding the ground rules for their marriage creates a lot of tension. They finally decide it will be a chaste marriage. Alice is then set to thinking about having children, which is the opposite of how she felt seven years ago. Cristiano is now at the ‘I no longer want children’ point. The announcement of their marriage makes the newspapers, but calling it off makes more news. A stint in hospital and a possible pregnancy changes things (and no I won’t tell if she is or she isn’t). Nevertheless, Alice and Cristiano do marry.

This story had an interesting twist with Cristiano wanting to marry and have children and Alice prepared to walk away as she doesn’t want children. The will forces them back together with considerable tension between the couple. When Alice learns of Cristiano’s background, she gains understanding of his position and in this case vice versa when Cristiano learns more of Alice’s background. Naturally, the couple do sort through their differences and there is a very nice resolution and HEA.

Another enjoyable read from Ms Milburne.

Reviewed by Heather

A review copy of this book was supplied by the author’s publicist.

Guest blogger: Charlotte Nash

9 July 2017

Paris, revisited

I had the idea for The Paris Wedding when my son was about four months old. I’d been madly editing The Horseman, working mostly with him on my lap (my son, that is, though I would have preferred my horseman hero if given the choice …). Anyway, my memories of that time are kinda hazy, but I was probably fantasising about escape. It might surprise you that Paris was not the most logical choice for such an escape.

You see, I’d been to Paris before, way back when I was twenty-one and travelling to Europe to meet up with this guy I liked, who was working in Bratislava at the time (he’s now my husband—but that’s a whole other story). It was the middle of winter, very cold and grim, and I was very ill with the flu. I had an eight-hour layover waiting for a train, so I went looking for Notre Dame, because I’d heard of that, and I couldn’t even find it. No joke. It was the era before smart phones where all I had was the map in my Lonely Planet and rusty high-school French.

I ended up wandering around with my Brisbane-summer internal thermostat ringing alarm bells (which could have been the fever) under drab grey skies and over mushy footpaths. The photo below is me, at 21, cold and sick with the Eiffel Tower just peeking through in the top left. Look at that barely-out-of-teenage petulance. Almost makes me nostalgic.

Needless to say, my memories of Paris weren’t rosy.

But again and again, I would hear Paris held up as this amazing and romantic place. I began to appreciate that a little when I found the film Midnight in Paris, which I watched over and over, because it’s about writers and time travel and wonderful characters (tick, tick, tick), and I think that was sitting in my mind. Somehow from that grew this unshakable idea about a wedding in Paris, but not your wedding. It’s the love of your life marrying someone else. And from there, I started to imagine how such a situation had happened. Someone who’d given up their great love for a greater one—and this became Rachael, a young woman who stays on the family farm to care for her ill mother, while her boyfriend moves away to medical school in Sydney and forgets about her.

I knew the story had to open as Rachael’s mother had died, leaving her cast adrift. She’s given ten years of her life to someone else, willingly, but what does she do now? Then the invitation arrives, and throws a spanner in the works, because what Rachael wants most of all is the life she gave up. And maybe Matthew hasn’t forgotten her after all.

To write that story, where I knew Paris would be a transformative experience, I needed a different view of Paris to the one I’d had on my first visit. So last year in Spring, I went.

Before you get ready with the envy, I should say that travelling long-haul with a one-year-old is not really the way to do the city of love. You arrive exhausted, you need two people to do the metro stairs with a pram, and forget going out for romantic evening dining. Think passed-out, exhausted, at eight while the city is just getting going. And yet … my husband and my son are the two people I love most in the world, and we went to French playgrounds and ate croissants, and found little out-of-the-way cafes. We goofed around at the Louvre and the Chapel of Saint Sulpice doing the Da Vinci Code thing.

We watched the trees all come in to bloom, and walked along the Seine, and I heard all the stories I knew about Paris echoing around. That was really why I went—to have the feel of the place imprinted on me, to translate that fondness into the book. Many of those moments made it in to the text in some way. This is us after finding a fab playground in the Jardin du Luxembourg on one of the only grey days—and me, I finally found Notre Dame!

 

Rachael finds something quite different in Paris, but I won’t spoil all those details. The great thing about all this (other than hopefully the story!) is that memory is rewritable, and I’m pleased to say that when I think of Paris now, I think of sunny days by the river and being with the people I love.

You can find Charlotte here: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

The Paris Wedding

Ten years ago, Rachael gave up the love of her life. Now, he’s marrying someone else. In Paris.

The Paris Wedding is the story of Rachael West, who stayed on her family property to care for mother rather than follow her love, Matthew to Sydney. Ten years later after her mother’s sudden death, she unexpectedly receives an invitation to Matthew’s wedding. Initially against the idea of attending, she eventually decides to go, if only to convince herself that she is over him once and for all.

She doesn’t count on what happens when she sees him again, nor on the other turns the city of light and love has for her. After this week, nothing will be the same again.

Publisher pitch: Pride Publishing, Jul 2017

8 July 2017

PrideHello everyone, and happy July!

We have some fantastic new releases to share with you this month, from standalone stories of lust and longing to great additions to your favourite book series.

We kick the month off with gay erotic romance Misdemeanor, the latest offering from CF White, and book one of the exciting new Responsible Adult serial; keep tuned for future releases coming soon.

The 4th of July also brings us a brand new book from bestseller Morticia Knight. Facing Fears brings us lots of BDSM thrills and suspense we’ve come to expect from the Kiss of Leather series, but as the men celebrate the resolution of the case of Corey’s kidnappers, Master Hunter worries that he’ll never see Tobey again …

SA Meade treats us to An Unexpected Truth on 11 July, as we discover that a trust destroyed is a trust that is hard to recover in this brilliant contemporary romance laced with suspense.

For lovers of a man in uniform, Crossfire by Jon Keys will be available from 18 July. A gripping tale of murder, kidnapping and a disappearance; Trooper Rick Anthis could use a break, but he hopes it isn’t too late in coming.

And we close the month with book two in the Redwood Shifters series, Finding You by Lily Harlem. When shifters Aleco and Pedro find their world torn in two, they have to stick together, fight together and be as one in a way they never have before …

Keep track of what else we have coming up by visiting our website.

You can also like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter where we always share the latest goings on …

Here is the full list of our releases in July:

  • Misdemeanor by CF White
  • Burning Boundaries by Bellora Quinn and Sadie Rose Bermingham
  • Facing Fears by Morticia Knight
  • Rush in the Dark by Lynn Lorenz
  • We Belong Together by Megan Slayer
  • An Unexpected Truth by SA Meade
  • Finnegan’s Promise by Carol Lynne
  • Behind the Mask by Liz Coldwell
  • Crossfire by Jon Keys
  • A Wolf in PI’s Clothing by Sydney Presley
  • Riptide by Helena Maeve
  • Finding You by Lily Harlem