Wednesday, 13 December 2017
Highlander's Princess Bride
Princesses Book 3
Vanessa Kelly’s enchanting series, three young women descended from
royalty overcome their scandalous beginnings to win the hearts of
most eligible men . . .
illegitimate daughter of the Prince Regent might be expected to
pursue various dubious professions. Actress, perhaps, or artist’s
model. Even courtesan. Victoria Knight, however, has become a
governess—a respectable choice, until she travels to Scotland to
meet her new charges. The younger brothers of Nicholas Kendrick, Earl
of Arnprior, aren’t children at all. They’re brawny, wild
Highland men. As for the Earl, he’s handsome, guarded, and far too
compelling . . . especially for a woman hiding a dark secret.
needs a proper teacher to transform his unmarriageable brothers—and
wife for himself. Miss Knight seems to fit the bill on both counts.
But he soon discovers there is more to Victoria than he thought. It’s
not just her notorious origins, or the danger that’s followed her
all the way to Scotland. It’s the fiery loyalty beneath that sedate
façade. This, the real Victoria, is the woman Nick is starting to
desire so desperately. And what an earl wants, he’ll use every
seductive means to get . . .
read as a standalone!**
IN THE IMPROPER PRINCESSES SERIES!
WEEKS WITH A PRINCESSMY
by Booklist as one of the “New Stars of Historical
Romance,” USA Today bestselling author
books have been nominated for awards in a number of contests. She is
also the recipient of the prestigious Maggie Medallion for historical
romance. With a Master’s Degree in English Literature, Vanessa is
known for developing vibrant Regency settings, appealing characters,
and witty storylines that captivate readers. You can visit her on the
* Twitter *
the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts and a giveaway!
Tuesday, 12 December 2017
Hi Donna! It's great to have you here - I'm looking forward to learning more about you and your books. Wishing you many sales and much success with your latest release, A SWEETER SPOT! Let's start with my questions...
1.) What is the strangest talent you have?
Hmm…this is a tough question! Maybe the ability to open any book to an “inappropriate” passage. For many years, I worked in the library at a boys middle school, which is a tough group for whom to select books. The 8th graders can be very mature, and some of the 6th graders very young. Whenever my boss wanted to check to see if a book might be better-suited for our upper-school library, she would have me look at it, because I had the unerring knack for opening up to a curse word or a sex scene. Maybe it was some sort of romance writer super-power!
2.) What is the best Halloween costume you’ve ever worn?
I dressed as Cleopatra for a Halloween party once. It was not terribly authentic…more like the Elizabeth Taylor movie version of Cleo, than the actual woman. But I spent a lot of time making it, and doing my hair and make-up. I lost the costume contest to a woman who rented a clown costume, and I’m still a little bitter about it.
3.) Are the titles of your books important?
Titles are very important to me. I look for quotes that relate to the theme of my story, and then try to find a piece of the quotation that would make a good title. A Sweeter Spot is from a poem by Robert Montgomery––“Home, the spot of earth supremely blest. A dearer, sweeter spot than all the rest.”
I was struggling with my current work-in-progress, book 3 of the Rivers Bend trilogy, until I thought of a new title, and it spun things off in a better direction, and is moving right along now!
4.) If you’re struggling with a scene or difficult character, what methods help you through it?
Stepping away from the story for a bit can sometimes work for me. I’m usually working on more than one thing at once––for example, right now I’m doing Galley edits for Love is Lovelier, book 2 in the Rivers Bend trilogy, and also writing book 3, as well as a ghost story that I’m really enjoying writing. If I get stuck on one, I’ll work on one of the others for a while, and sometimes that’s enough to clear my head and provide a way forward.
5.) Do you prefer dog, cats or none of the above?
Dogs all the way for me! Nothing really against cats, although I am allergic to them. I’m just a dog lover! I still miss my beloved Shih Tzu, Wendy. She was trouble on four paws, but I loved her to bits! Petunia, Magda’s dog in A Sweeter Spot, is loosely based on Wendy.
6.) Who’s your favourite author? Why?
I love so many, it’s hard to narrow it down to just one! Hmm…probably my favourite author would be Agatha Christie. I can read and re-read her mysteries over and over again, and still enjoy them. She also wrote a non-fiction book about being on a dig with her archaeologist husband, and I love that one too! It’s called “Come Tell Me How You Live”, and it’s funny and interesting.
7.) Do you have a pet peeve?
This question tripped me up, I know I have pet peeves, but for some reason I was drawing a blank on it, so I asked my husband what he thought my pet peeves were. He came up with two––one, is amusing, and I acknowledge it is true. I’m fortunate that my husband enjoys cooking, and on the weekends will whip up a fabulous dish for us that will usually feed us for a few days during the week, hence freeing up my writing time. That being said, he seems to be physically incapable of shutting a cabinet door once he opens it. When he leaves the kitchen, it looks like a tornado blew through and opened all the cabinets! The second one was that I hate it when people are mean to children and animals. This one, I wasn’t as aware of, so I asked him what I do, and he said I get steamed. True. But I hadn’t really thought of it as a pet peeve before.
8.) Do you remember your dreams when you wake up in the morning?
I do! My husband rarely remembers his, so he always enjoys hearing mine in the morning. They can be really cinematic. A lot of times, I get great ideas for my writing during that fuzzy half-awake/half-asleep time in the morning. I keep a notepad next to the bed, to jot them down before I forget them.
Magda knows a 28-year-old shouldn’t run away from home, but Rivers Bend is the ideal escape. Helping out her best friend will get her away from her uber-wealthy, controlling grandmother and duplicitous ex. She doesn’t expect the quirky little town to feel so much like home. Add in hotter-than-the-sun Jeff and his daughter, and leaving seems as unthinkable as it is inevitable.
Raising Sam alone, Jeff knew he wanted her to grow up in his supportive hometown. The arrival of a feisty new tenant sends Jeff's world spinning. Magda fills a void in his life that he’d like to make permanent.
Will love triumph over the most powerful woman in the country, and can they figure out how to make this happy-for-now in Rivers Bend into their happy-ever-after?
Barnes & Noble:
My career has been a winding road. I worked in the business world for years, got my MLS and worked in a school library, and am now living my dream as an author. I love to read and write contemporary and fantasy romance. I live in Maryland, with my husband, who is my real-life romance hero. We both enjoy traveling to visit our far-flung family and friends, and spending time on the beach with an umbrella drink and a good book.
Posted by Rachel Brimble at 01:52
Saturday, 9 December 2017
When my good friend, Teri Wilson told me she was coming from Texas for a visit in the UK, it didn't take me more than a second to agree to travel to London for an overnight stay. As excited as I was, the trip was made all the better when I learned we'd be joined by Julia London and Katherine Gabera. We stayed in the beautiful Pelham Hotel in the ultra-glamourous South Kensington and after a quick catch up, we headed to Kensington Palace.
The palace is currently hosting a Princess Diana exhibition and several of her AMAZING dresses and outfits are on public display. As a huge Diana fan I cannot tell you how it feels to see her dresses up close and personal. They are beautiful and displayed from her very first public appearances to her transformation post-divorce. Well worth a visit!
After a lunch that involved a lot of laughter, writerly talk and encouragement, we took a walk through Hyde Park and returned to Knightsbridge where we visited Harrods...and had more than a little trouble finding our way back out!
After more laughter and a couple of glasses of wine, we took a cab to beautiful Belgravia for dinner. The streets are lit for Christmas and the decorations are stunning! We were then joined by the fabulous Sarah Morgan and Julia Kelly. We had a marvellous time exchanging stories, ancedotes and, for me, a lot of advice was given about how to stay positive in what has been my quietest year contract wise for over 5 years.
These women are amazing and I can safely say, I have made four new friends that I will be able to count on for future chats and good times.
A truly wonderful day and night, I'll never forget!
Posted by Rachel Brimble at 01:30
Thursday, 7 December 2017
Hi Erin! It's so great to have you here - I'm really looking forward to finding out more about you and your work. Wishing you much success with your latest release, A CHRISTMAS WISH - let's start things off with my questions...
1. What do you wish men understood about women?
I wish some men understood that woman don’t always desire the grand gestures in life but crave the tiny, personal moments spent together that others never view. Those small looks of love across a crowded room, the briefest touch of a hand or a gentle word when upset mean much more to me than the lavish gifts, the public declaration of love and the materialistic trappings of life. You know you’ve found ‘The One’ when such simple gestures are what you long forward to after a long day.
2. Do you only work on one book at a time?
I tend to have multiple projects on the go at the same time. I’m currently promoting and launching my debut novel ‘A Christmas Wish’ while book 2 ‘The Single Girl’s Calendar’ is being produced by the publishers, so every now and then I’ve had edits and proofreading to attend to. Whilst simultaneously writing draft 1 of a new Christmas book for 2018. I have a degree in juggling life so it bodes well for being an author. I tend to switch and swap tasks as required. I have a collection of project boxes that have the potential to become novels – when an interesting plot point comes to mind, I scribble it down on a post-it note and stash it within the relevant project box – that system is an ongoing one.
3. Who is your favorite fictional couple?
Cinderella and Prince Charming – it must have been the first romance I read as a child and it has always stuck with me as the ideal cute/meet situation. In my singleton days, I probably compared all dates to Prince Charming which was very unfair of me given that none of them had a Kingdom or a crown.
4. Do you have a favorite quote that sums up how you feel about life?
Where ever there is sunshine, shadow must fall.
5. Do you set daily writing goals? Word count? Number of chapters? Do you get a chance to write every day?
I am a goal setting person so it has become second nature to record word counts on a spreadsheet. It helps to maintain a momentum if a project begins to wax and wane. But, can help me with future planning for other projects as I know what I am capable of when focused on the task in hand. There were times, before publication, it made me feel like a proper author by knowing my word output.
6. What do you like better, Twitter or Facebook? Why?
I use both but for very different reasons. I use FaceBook to connect with close friends and writing buddies – I like the closed element for those interactions. I love Twitter thought for everything else. I love the laughs it beings me each day, the reader friends that I’ve made and the global audience that is available. It has made the world so much smaller.
7. What are you working on now?
I am working on draft 1 of a new Christmas novel for 2018. I love the first stage of writing when a blank page sits before me awaiting my imagination. There are days when the words rush from my fingers tips and I can hardly keep up the pace of typing. Armed with copious amounts of tea - those are my glory days. I have about three weeks more writing before draft 1 is complete.
Genre: Romance Contemporary
Release Date: 1st August 2017
Publisher: Aria Fiction/Head of Zeus
Flora Phillips has an excuse for every disaster in her life; she was abandoned as a new-born on a doorstep one cold autumn night, wrapped in nothing but a towel. Her philosophy is simple: if your mother doesn't want you – who will?
Now a thirty-year-old, without a boyfriend, a career or home she figures she might as well tackle the biggest question of them all – who is she? So, whilst everyone else enjoys their Christmas Eve traditions, Flora escapes the masses and drives to the village of Pooley to seek a specific doorstep. Her doorstep.
But in Pooley she finds more than her life story. She finds friends, laughter, and perhaps even a love to last a lifetime. Because once you know where you come from, it's so much easier to know where you're going.
A story of redemption and love, romance and Christmas dreams-come-true, the perfect novel to snuggle up with this festive season.
ABOUT ERIN GREEN
Erin was born and raised in Warwickshire, where she resides with her husband. An avid reader since childhood, her imagination was instinctively drawn to creative writing as she grew older. Erin has two Hons degrees: BA English literature and another BSc Psychology – her previous careers have ranged from part-time waitress, the retail industry, fitness industry and education. She has an obsession about time, owns several tortoises and an infectious laugh!
Erin’s writes contemporary novels focusing on love, life and laughter. Erin is an active member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and was delighted to be awarded The Katie Fforde Bursary in 2017. An ideal day for Erin involves writing, people watching and drinking copious amounts of tea.
Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16881009.Erin_Green
A signed copy of the book for 5 lucky winners! (UK only)
Posted by Rachel Brimble at 00:30
Tuesday, 5 December 2017
I'm thrilled to welcome Laurie Ellingham to my blog today and to be a part of her ongoing tour - wishing you much sales and success with OURS IS THE WINTER! Let's start with my questions...
Hi Rachel, thanks for having me on your blog today!
1.) What was your first job? Did you like or dislike it? Why?
My first job (at fifteen) was working in an old ladies clothing outlet on a Saturday afternoon. Think very big knickers and very long skirts and you’re on the right track. It was pretty boring but I stuck it out for a year so I can’t have hated it. I used to get my pay in a brown envelope at the end of each shift. A whopping £15 woo woo! It wasn’t much but there weren’t many places that would employ a fifteen year old so I was happy.
2.) Do you have a pet peeve? If so what is it?
Whistling. I can’t stand the sound of it.
For books, I don’t like reading a back cover blurb and feeling like I know exactly what’s going to happen. If it’s a book with a good tag line then I’ll dive right in without reading the blurb.
3.) Would you describe your style as shabby chic, timeless elegance, eclectic, country or ____?
I don’t think I’m stylish enough to have a style. Probably might style is warmth. Stick me in a woolly jumper and slippers and I’m happy.
4.) Tell me about your book Ours is the Winter and where you got your inspiration for it?
Ours is the Winter follows Erica, Molly and Noah’s journey across the frozen wilderness of the arctic for a week’s husky sled challenge. They are all hiding things about their lives and see the trip as way to escape, but in gruelling subzero temperatures, it isn’t long before the cracks in their lives start to show.
The inspiration for Ours is the Winter came from the characters themselves. Erica, Molly and Noah are three people who on the outside seem pretty much OK, but each of them is struggling with life. I wanted to throw them together in a place where they couldn’t just walk away or bury their heads in the sand (or snow) and the husky sled challenge seemed like a great way to do this.
There are so many elements to journeying across the arctic and the challenge itself that I really enjoyed writing about. Erica, for instance, hates the cold and is petrified of dogs and yet she has to manage a pack of huskies.
The biggest challenge for me was finding so many ways to describe snow :-)
5.) Who is your role model? Why?
I don’t have one particular role model. When I read a great book, and when I see my writing friends working hard, I feel inspired and motivated to work harder and smarter, and to push myself out of my comfort zone.
6.) How much of your book is realistic?
The characters are my own creation but I’ve tried to capture the realism of the sledding experience across the arctic, as well as the little things, like how your hair freezes because it’s so cold. I loved doing the research in this novel and enjoyed meeting some very fluffy (and smelly) huskies. A friend of mine did this trip for charity a few years ago and was a superstar when it came to helping with the research (Thanks Donna).
7.) What are your ambitions for your writing career?
To keep writing books that challenge me as a writer and that I wake up every day excited to write. As for everything else, I seem to have a habit of moving the goal posts. I feel incredibly fortunate to have signed with an agent earlier this year, which is a big step for me. I still feel at the start of my journey, which is funny really because the women’s fiction writing workshop we met on was way back in 2007 (I still owe you a glass of wine, Rachel :-)).
8.) Share one fact about yourself that would surprise people.
I would choose being at home on a Saturday night in my pjs over a night out, which surprises people as I’m outgoing in most aspects of my life, but I prefer being home with my family than anywhere else.
Journeying across the Arctic, their pasts are about to catch up with them.
Erica, Molly and Noah are embarking on the challenge of a lifetime, driving Siberian huskies across the frozen wilderness of the Arctic. Cut off from the world and their loved ones and thrown together under gruelling conditions, it isn’t long before the cracks start to show.
Erica has it all. A loving husband, a successful career and the most adorable baby daughter. But Erica has been living a double life, and as she nears her fortieth birthday her lies threaten to come crashing down.
Molly was on her way to stardom. But when her brother died, so did her dreams of becoming an Olympic champion. Consumed by rage and grief, she has shut out everyone around her, but now she’s about to learn that comfort can come from the most unexpected places.
Noah has a darkness inside him and is hounded by nightmares from his past. Tortured, trapped and struggling to save his fractured relationship, he knows this journey is not going to help, but try telling his girlfriend that.
As their lives and lies become ever more entwined, it becomes clear that in the frozen wilds there is nowhere to hide.
Ours is the Winter - Extract
A startled scream left Erica’s mouth. It was her last sound before the fear gripped her body and stole her voice. Not that it would have mattered if she could’ve shouted for help. No one would’ve heard her, not even Molly standing two metres away, already on her sled and ready to go.
The huskies, with the exception of the one eyeballing Erica with an I’m-going-to-rip-out-your-throat glare, were all attached to the sled lines, their heads pointed to the sky and a stream of incessant barking filled the air. Every few seconds one of the pack would break from the barking to add a screeching yelp to the noise.
So much for having nothing to do with dogs. So much for ‘they’ll do their thing and I’ll do mine.’ Erica almost laughed at her own naivety. Stupidity more like. But laughing required movement and she was currently frozen to the spot about to be mauled by the biggest dog Erica had ever seen.
The creature was head to toe black and shiny, like the monitors at the studio right before being switched on in the morning. Its dark eyes fixed on Erica’s face as it crouched down, losing its front paws in the snow before barking at Erica. It wasn’t the excited chattering type of barks of the rest of the huskies, but something ferocious – a vicious warning.
A second later the dog launched into the air and flew at Erica. The force of his weight – a furry bus – slammed into her body sending her falling to the ground with the dog on top of her. Erica scrunched her eyes shut as the putrid stench of the dog’s breath hit her senses. Her body tensed as she waited for the pain of its teeth to sink into her skin.
‘Wow, Erica,’ Lee said from somewhere above her. ‘Looks like you’ve made a friend.’
Erica felt the weight of the dog lift from her body and she scrambled to her feet. ‘He … he just turned on me,’ she said with a sudden urge to burst into tears, from the fall, or the fear, or the frustration that she was the only one incapable of handling the dogs. A mix of them all, she guessed.
‘This is Kriger,’ Lee said, holding the dog by the back of his collar with one hand, and stroking its back with his other. ‘Kriger is the Norwegian word for warrior.’
‘He was going to bite me.’ Her voice was high and as screechy as the yelps from the rest of the huskies.
Lee laughed, a bellowing chuckle-like noise. ‘He gives the other dogs the odd nip now and again when they misbehave but he’s never bitten a human yet.’
Yet? Gee, how reassuring.
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0739SQG3P/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=6738
Author bio: When I'm not running around after my two children, my husband, our Cockerpoo Rodney, or just plain running, I love nothing more than disappearing into the fictional world of my characters preferably with a large coffee and a Twix (or two) to hand.
When I am in the thick of a character crisis, I can often be seen walking around the village with my jumper on inside out and back to front, chatting (and occasionally laughing) away to myself.
I have a first class honours degree in psychology and a background in Public Relations, both of which help in everything I do.
Prize: 1 signed paperback of Laurie's previous book, “One Endless Summer”.