Animation by Kayelle Allen at The Author's Secret

Thursday, April 10, 2014

New Spring Cover for Wishful Thinking - What Do You Think?

Don't you love spring?  The flowers re-emerging in every nook and cranny of the garden after their long sleep; the trees bedecked with blossoms; down by the river the ducks, geese and other waterfowl proudly parade their cute little bundles of fluff and feathers while in the fields the lambs trail close behind their mothers, trying to keep up. 

It all makes me feel so alive.

I've spring-cleaned the house, revamped my wardrobe, shampooed the cat (not really) and am still itching to do more, so I thought, why not give some of my book covers a facelift too?  

Don't get me wrong, I'm not throwing away their old garments—they're far too dear to me for that—just letting them try on something new for size.  So here's the first one (made by

The Blurb:
A high-speed blow-out in the fast lane of a busy motorway! Miraculously, Jess and her young son escape almost-certain death. 

Then, like another miracle, Jess encounters Christian Goodchild, famous pop star turned Hollywood A-lister and a man most women only ever meet in their dreams. Both are touched by the enchantment of the moment - leaving them longing for more. 

But Christian is enmeshed in a relationship so damaging that Jess doubts their love can survive in the glamorous but complex world of celebrity. Could it all turn out to be just wishful thinking?

Same story, just a brand new look.  And just in case you need reminding, here's what the old one looked like.

I'd love to know what you think of its new spring outfit.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

FLY OR FALL by Gilli Allan - A Review

I was delighted to receive a review copy of FLY OR FALL, since I have thoroughly enjoyed previous titles from this author, whose writing style is a little reminiscent of that excellent writer of women's fiction, Deborah Moggach.  What an engrossing story this is - Gilli Allan just gets better and better in my opinion.

The story concerns the quiet and self-effacing Eleanor, as she journeys through a traumatic period of her life.  Having become a teenage wife and mother, all she has known is devotion to her own invalid mother, her children and her husband.  Her 13 year old twins sometimes seem to be more worldly-wise than her.  She's suppressed her own needs and desires so completely that she seems almost without personality.  As such, she is quite difficult to relate to intimately and the reader has to get to know her in the same way as the other characters.  Nevertheless, it's impossible to dislike her.  Like all Allan's characters, Eleanor is complex and real.  

Eleanor's husband, Trevor is a rather devious, self-serving man; I suspected and disliked him from the outset and at no time did he redeem himself.  Yet he was no less real - in fact I felt I knew him all too well!  Having sold Eleanor's family home in Battersea for a substantial price, Trevor moves his family to the country to enjoy 'clean air, green fields, a house with a proper garden and a driveway'. Trevor selfishly pursues his new career and indulgences, while Eleanor tries to fit in with her sophisticated neighbours and sort out the marathon renovations of the new house.  Enter Patrick, the builder, a likeable rogue, whose constant harmless lies make him enigmatic and fascinating and who extends a warm hand of friendship to Eleanor, helping her through her most difficult times.

The village of Downland is peopled with interesting characters, Katherine, Felicity, Elizabeth and their husbands as well as Patrick and the even more mysterious David, to whom Eleanor is secretly drawn.  But no one in Downland is quite what they seem, as Eleanor has to discover in often painful ways.  This includes her own family and most of all, herself.  

Ms Allan writes about seemingly ordinary people in ordinary settings, but, of course, neither is ordinary.  The characters are richly drawn in all their complexities, yet grittily realistic and engaging.  The settings are carefully painted with the reverence of an artist who has a deep affinity with the countryside.  

The story is compellingly told with a well-sustained narrative flow.  I found it deeply engrossing and sat up late into the night more than once, unable to put it down.  It gathers momentum, like a snowball rolling downhill, hurtling towards its dramatic conclusion.  I look forward to reading more from this talented writer and am pleased to bring out all FIVE cute cats to award this book.

And here's a real bonus: FLY OR FALL is on sale at 99p only for a limited time.

Gilli Allan started to write in childhood - a hobby pursued throughout her teenage. Writing was only abandoned when she left home and real life supplanted the fiction. Gilli did not go to Oxford or Cambridge but after just enough exam passes to squeak in, she attended Croydon College of Art. 
She did not work on any of the broadsheets or in television, but has done a variety of slightly less prestigious jobs. She was a shop assistant in several West End department stores, selling wigs, shoes, children’s clothes and accessories. She has also been a beauty consultant, a bar-maid and did a job with no title which involved spotting American tourists in London and persuading them to go on a free guided-tour that culminated in lunch at the Hilton. There they had to endure a high pressure pitch selling real-estate in Florida! Gilli worked longest, and most happily, in her dream job as an illustrator in advertising. 
She only started writing again when at home with her young son, Tom, and her first two completed novels, Just Before Dawn and Desires & Dreams, were immediately accepted by a mainstream publisher. But the publisher ceased to trade and after a period in the wilderness, Gilli went independent. TORN, LIFE CLASS and FLY or FALL are all currently available both as Kindle books and in paperback. She also has a short story - Holiday Romance - in the e-edition of the recently published RNA anthology, TRULY, MADLY, DEEPLY.
Gilli has been a school governor, a contributor to local newspapers, and a driving force behind the establishment of a community shop in her village.  Still a keen artist, Gilli designs the annual family Christmas card and in 2013, she and her son, Tom Williams, collaborated on a children’s book. He wrote and she illustrated THE TALE of KING HARALD - The Last Viking Adventure, published by British Museum Press to coincide with the ‘Vikings - Life and Legend’ exhibition, which has just opened at the British Museum.  

(All links go to the UK Amazon store, so for US readers, simply change to .com in the subject line).

You can also connect with Gilli on any of the following links: 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Piracy - Arrr ye sittin' on t' fence?

Last year Forbes printed an interesting (if rather depressing) article on piracy—something that is becoming an increasing problem in the publishing industry and affects practically all authors indiscriminately.  If you've poured sweat and tears into your treasured book, someone out there wants to own it (whether or not they ever choose to read it) for free.  These people are effectively thieves, and our dilemma is: do we fight them, or not?  
One popular argument is that people who seek out free download sites for music, films or books would be unlikely to dig into their pockets to actually pay for the booty, if it were not available for free; ergo piracy does not affect your royalties.  On the other hand, research has also shown that those who pirate do spend more—at least on music—than 'non-sharers', so are we losing potential sales?  Should we become complacent and turn a blind eye to this scourge of the world wide web, or do our utmost to fight it?
Many authors prefer to do nothing, but one author group has been proactive in seeking out pirate sites and warning other authors as well as making their thoughts on the subject known wherever possible.  I was so impressed by author Rowena Cherry's articulate response to the Forbes' article that I asked her permission to quote this in full on my blog.  Here it is:
Piracy is not the saviour of the book industry. It's the bread and butter of Search and of advertising. The money in ebooks is being made by Google, and by those whom Google and Yahoo and Bing pay to display advertisements.
Unfortunately, the media --including Forbes, CNBC, and others-- promote and encourage and validate piracy and immoral business models. That is why public attitudes have changed, piracy is widely accepted.... and embraced. The law cannot keep up, and the lawmakers follow either the money (Google) or the wishes of the majority (who want free content).
Advising authors and musicians to turn themselves into street corner buskers is simply not realistic. If every author and musician were on the street (or on the road, or on the internet superhighway) giving away their content willingly, and begging for charity, the culture would be depreciated.
You might as well advise authors to buy stocks and shares in Google and Amazon and PayPal/EBay, and share in the profits from piracy.
Suggesting that authors and publishers give away more, or add additional content (why would that not be ripped off, too?) , or take more time away from what they do best to "engage" with the public is simply not going to improve the quality, depth and diversity of what is written.
It's killing the golden-egg-laying goose for its feathers. It's eroding copyright protection for content creators. Eventually, there will be no incentive for smart and original minds to invest the time to hone their craft and "share" their stories.
Shame on Forbes for lending its gravitas to the forced redistribution of property. Make no mistake, that's what piracy is --a forced redistribution of wealth-- real wealth, and intellectual property. The irony is that the wealth is being taken from the weak, the minority, the relatively poor and given to the rich.... Amazon, EBay, and Google.
So what do you think?  On which side of the fence do you feel most comfortable?

Report piracy: 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Wednesday's Writer: Jade Kerrion - with her thrilling new release

Eternal Night ebook

Look who's back with a super-exciting brand new release!

"What makes Kerrion’s writing so compelling is the beautifully flawed characters that find themselves in unexpected relationships...these kind of character level conflicts make Kerrion’s writing so deliciously addictive."—Noor A Jahangir, Author of The Changeling King

“Everything you want in a great story. Love, intrigue, action, betrayal, and understanding.”—Ch’kara Silverwolf, Author of Daughter of Light and Dark

Alone for a millennium, since a human murdered her beloved consort, Ashra, the immortal icrathari queen, rules over Aeternae Noctis, the domed city of eternal night. Her loneliness appears to be at an end when her consort’s soul is reborn in a human, Jaden Hunter, but their reunion will not be easy.

Icrathari are born, not made. If Ashra infuses Jaden with her immortal blood, he will be a vampire, a lesser creature of the night, a blood-drinker rather than a soul-drinker.

Furthermore, Jaden is sworn to protect his half-sister, five-year-old Khiarra. She is the child of prophecy, destined to end the eternal night and the dominion of the Night Terrors—the icrathari and the vampires.

As Ashra struggles to sustain her crumbling kingdom in the face of enemies without and treachery within, Jaden fights to defend his sister and unravel a greater mystery: what is the city of eternal night, and how did it come to be?

E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords

Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository


With Tera beside her, Ashra strode forward. A wall of vampires parted to reveal the other two icrathari, Siri and Elsker. A dark-haired human slumped at Elsker’s feet, his wrists cuffed behind his back. Ashra stifled a chuckle. Surely Tera was overreacting; the human was by far the weakest creature in the chamber.

Tera knelt down, wrapped her fingers into the human’s hair, and pulled his head back. The human’s face was handsome enough—the slash of his cheekbones accentuated his perfectly proportioned, sculptured features—but taken as a whole, he was not compelling enough to justify the fuss.

Ashra shrugged. “You’re wasting my time, Tera.”

Apparently undeterred, the icrathari warlord shook the human hard. His eyes flashed open. They were brilliant green, the exact color of the emerald ring Ashra wore on the index finger of her right hand. His gaze was unfocused, and the reflexive narrowing of his eyes matched the clenching of his jaw, hinting of wrenching pain.

Tera looked up and met Ashra’s gaze. “Taste his soul.”

Ashra recoiled, her upper lip curling in disgust. She had no desire to taste a human’s soul. Over the centuries, humans had grown weak, their small lives consumed by superstition and fear. It was better to live on the edge of perpetual starvation than fill her hunger with the pitiful excuse humans called a soul.

“Go deep,” Tera said.

But why? Ashra’s brow furrowed. She glanced at Siri and Elsker, but the two icrathari shrugged, apparently no more clued in than she was. She looked back at Tera. The icrathari warlord known as Ashra’s Blade was the epitome of calm understatement. If she was so insistent, she must have had a reason.

Ashra knelt beside the human. Without flinching, she placed her hand against his muscled abdomen. It was bloody, his flesh ripped by a vampire’s talons.

The man tensed at her touch, and his eyes flared wide with agony when her soul-sucking powers leeched into him. His breath came hard and fast, his chest heaving with the effort as he twisted in Tera’s unyielding grip, trying to break free.

Ashra’s eyes narrowed. The human was weakened—tapped into his life source, she waded through his dazed thoughts and shivered from the echo of each spasm of pain that wracked his body—but still, he fought Tera on the physical plane and Ashra on the psychic dimension, denying her access to his memories and to his soul.

She frowned and slammed her will against his, tearing an anguished scream from his throat, but still, his will did not crumble.

Askance, Ashra looked at Tera. “Did you taste him?”

Tera nodded. “It wasn’t hard the first time; he didn’t know what to expect, but apparently, he does now and is doing a fine job of fighting back.”

Was that grudging respect she heard in Tera’s voice? “Does his soul really matter?”

The icrathari nodded again.

Ashra’s shoulders shifted with the motion of a silent sigh. His resistance left her with little choice. She leaned forward and glided her lips over his in a whisper of a kiss.

Human myths spoke of succubi and incubi—demons that, with a touch, could stir lust in their unwilling victims. All myths were based in reality. The maddening beauty and soul-sucking powers of the icrathari had spawned the legends of succubi and incubi. With a touch, the icrathari could lure their victims into a state of sexual ecstasy, bending the will and baring the soul.

The human tensed against Ashra, resisting the intimate contact. She almost recoiled. Had the centuries dulled her innate powers? Surely she had not forgotten how to lure a man.

She closed her eyes and remembered love.

As always, Rohkeus’s fine-featured face—those beautiful gold-flecked green eyes, so unusual for an icrathari, and teasing smile—came to the fore. With a dreamy half-smile, she deepened the kiss, driving the memory of love before her like a sharpened stake.

At last, the man relaxed, succumbing to the kiss. She leaned into him, heedless of his crimson blood staining her white gown. He was warm, feverish even. Just skimming over six feet, he had more than twelve inches on her, but his physical strength, compared to hers, was puny. She was well aged; over four millennia old, she was the oldest of the icrathari and the strongest. She could have broken his neck with as little effort as a human child snapping a twig.

Her hand trailed across his muscled torso. He made it easy for her to be gentle. His body trembled as if he longed for her. His mouth was hungry for her kiss. He arched up against her, as if craving more. His need was like a living creature, wild and aching for her touch.

Eyes closed, Ashra shivered. Only one other person had desired her as much.

And he was dead.

She forced her way through the memories of pale bodies tangled upon cool silk sheets. When her soul-sucking power leeched out, it found no opposition. Images of the human’s life rewound in a blaze of vivid sights, sounds, and sensations.

Ashra looked up at Tera, her smile little more than a barely perceptible curve of her lips. “He fancies himself the protector of the child of prophecy. Was she among those taken tonight?”

Tera nodded.

Ashra chuckled, the sound without humor. “It’s a pity her genetic heritage wasn’t sufficiently superior to prevent her from being culled.”

“There’s more. Go deep.”

She pushed past the blackness at the start of his memories, expecting deeper darkness. Instead, the colors shifted into shades of ochre and gray. Memories, older than his body, resided in his soul; memories of an Earth long since lost to them—a planet surrounded and nourished by water; images of tall buildings glistening beneath a benevolent sun, and of thriving cities filled with the bustle of humans; memories of quiet and intimate conversations beneath a silver moon, the same silver moon that now graced Malum Turris with its light, though a thousand years older and viewed only from beneath the protection of the dome.

She saw herself as he must have seen her, a much-younger icrathari, still hopeful for the future, never realizing that the Earth they had all known and loved was irretrievably lost. Had she ever looked that vulnerable? Had her smile ever been so beautiful, so filled with love as she looked upon—

Rohkeus?” Oh, blessed Creator, was that stricken whisper her voice?


Wow! I don't know about you, but I seriously doubt I can wait any longer!  I'm off to Amazon...

E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords

Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository

Connect with Jade Kerrion at: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Amazon

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Wednesday's Writer - Heather Greenis

This week's guest is Heather Greenis, author of Natasha's Dream and the soon to be released Natasha's Diary.  I've been looking forward to interviewing her for some time, so I'll get straight on with it.

Heather, what inspired you to write your first novel and did you always know your genre would be romance?

My novel, the saga was actually inspired by a dream I had. I couldn’t get the characters or a particular scene out of my head. I have a very active imagination, as all artists do, so my husband suggested I write.
As for romance, I never considered the Natasha’s Saga a romance novel. My publisher classified it into that genre. It has a romance to it, but I considered it more than that. That’s probably why the guys reading it are enjoying the story. To me a romance novel is ‘boy meets girl, chases her, they experience some type of crises, they make up and all is good in the world’. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a good romantic drama comedy. The Boat House, The Notebook & Ever After are some of my favourite chick movies. I must add Safe Haven to the list. I read the book and then watched the movie and became a fan of Josh Duhamel.
My saga isn’t a typical romance novel and anyone expecting a fast pace romance will be disappointed, or won’t like it. Personally, I like a good drama that gets me thinking and touches a nerve. If it brings a tear to my eye or gets me sobbing, struggling to see through my watering eyes, even better. That’s why I enjoyed your novel, Killing Jenna Crane. I didn’t cry, but it touched a nerve. (Ah geez).  When I’m looking for a break, I want something lighter. I’ve begun reading YA and really enjoy them. I also enjoy a fun easy read book.

Ooh, another author who finds inspiration from dreams, like me.  I'm thrilled! I see your first novel has been described as a classic fairy tale - does this reflect what you like to read yourself and do you have specific views on what should and shouldn't be included in romance novels?

I hope people have a different view by the time they read the second book. It’s different than the first. The interesting part of a saga is the fact it does continue. Natasha’s Dream is the first in a four part saga which means it takes a reader 1/4 of the way into a story. I broke the story into four because it was so long. My editor finished my first book and raved about it. When she finished the second book, Natasha’s Diary she sent me an email describing how much she enjoyed it and then spoke of her favourite sections. She preferred the second book over the first. She hasn’t seen the third, yet. (I’m privileged to work with two editors, content and line)
There is a moral to the entire story, more than one. It’s the reason I wrote it.

Has any part of yourself crept into the heroines of any of your romances?

There is a lot of me in the sub character, Keeghan. She has the vivid dreams, she has a soft heart and she holds grudges. I shouldn’t admit that, should I! Yikes!

What is the most desirable characteristic you've bestowed on the hero of your latest novel?

Stewart is compassionate and wants to do what’s right. The last thing he want to do is hurt anyone, especially family. He loves with all his heart.

Do you think you'll always write in the same genre and style or do you have desires to experiment and if so, in what way?

I hope not. I don’t want to get stuck in a rut. The Natasha Saga is a historical romance. Never say never, but i don’t plan anything historical again. It was interesting researching things, the telephone, the automobile, electricity, clothing styles, but no need to do that twice.
I use the term Wow throughout the series. One reviewer questioned it, saying it was too modern. Researching the term, it dates back to the 1700s in a poem. My heroine, Natasha is an avid reader of anything she can get her hands on so she could and apparently did come across the word and took a liking to it. Technicalities!
The Natasha Saga has strong female characters. My line editor called Natasha and later a future character a bada$$. I’m thrilled that came through. Historical women had guts and brains. They weren’t barefoot and pregnant all the time.
I’d love to team up with my husband as a writing partner. He’s an avid reader and a beta reader for me. Unfortunately he has a million things on the go at any given time so I’m not sure I get keep him sitting and typing long enough to be of value in that sense. Time will tell.
I feel privileged to have the opportunity to meet (through the cyber world) and read works by some amazing authors, yourself included. There are some wonderful stories out there from lesser known authors. Readers simply need to step away from the fan favourites.

I totally agree!  What do you do when you're not reading or writing?

I love being outside, gardening, cutting grass, playing with our dog, whatever.
Hubby and I are both curlers. That indoor winter sport that’s played on the ice with brooms and granite rocks. I play a minimum of twice a week and manage the league for our future curlers. I have three regular coaches that work with me and together we teach 6 to 18 year olds.
I love to travel. Both hubby and I have a passion for photography so the camera is always ready, I like shots with us, he likes to take pics of stuff.
I also assist a not-for-profit organization called the Healing Cycle - Hospice Palliative Care. I volunteer at their large annual fund raiser. It’s a long but rewarding day. In 2012, a gentleman with stage 4 cancer rode 160km on a bike (pedalling) Next year I plan to find the time to assist volunteering at my local hospice. 

Natasha's Dream

Growing up, her only friends were her brothers and Nanny. In her parent’s mind, she was a mistake. As a result of an innocent swim, she discovered life existed beyond the walls of her home. Families, peers, underprivileged children. Can a dream turn into reality? Anything is possible, but dreams come with consequences that not only affect her, but those she loves. What is Natasha willing to risk to persevere? 

Natasha's Diary - The second in the saga...

Keeghan’s subconscious has played tricks on her in the past, but she’s
normally able to control the outcome of her dreams. No such luck with this story. The mystery magnifies when her husband William discovers something else by the eroding sea wall, something that peaks their curiosity even further. Now, Keeghan wants the saga to continue. Drawn into the story more than she was prepared for, she needs answers.
Hope is growing up quickly. She's intelligent, independent, and stubborn. Negative traits inherited from both her parents surface at inconvenient times. Will her beauty help or hinder her? 
A tragedy. Stewart is forced to make a decision that will affect his life and the rest of his family. Then, an encounter that changes everything. Is he ready for this? Has Stewart’s past really been left behind? Will history repeat itself? Trust, integrity, and tradition all come into question.

Click on any of the following links for further details:

buy links

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Wednesday's Writer: Jac Wright

This week my guest  is Jac Wright, author of The Reckless Engineer.  Before we take a look at that intriguing title, let's take a closer look at Jac, shall we?

Hi Jac and welcome.  First of all, tell us what inspired you to write your first novel.

I had written poetry and short stories before published in literary magazines. So it was a natural transition to write the Great British Novel as the next step.

Suspense, mystery, and classic literary fiction are the genre I have always loved to read and watch on TV. My father got me addicted to suspense watching Tales of the Unexpected, Mission Impossible, Perry Mason, and MacGyver without missing an episode every week when I was a child and these stories I watched with my father have stayed with me through the years.

With The Reckless Engineer I wanted to create a hero who is an engineer like me, and a series about an engineering firm. The only hero in fiction I can think of who is an engineer is Barney from the Mission Impossible TV series. There are so many legal and medical dramas, but where are the dramas centred on engineering firms?  I wanted to bring an engineering drama to life treated for an audience not familiar with the profession the same way that legal and medical dramas are. I want young adults to know how entertaining, satisfying, powerful, and glamorous the engineering field is so that they will be attracted to the profession.

I picked Portsmouth because I love the beautiful seaside town where Charles Dickens was born.  My mother loved Dickens’ work and she also loves the city and the Isle of Wight off the coast of Portsmouth. One of the earliest memories I have is of her reading David Copperfield to me. So I knew I wanted the setting to be Portsmouth.

And so it came together like that.

Portsmouth, England.
I see your novel has been described as 'an Agatha Christie-style classic mystery and legal thriller' - does this reflect what you like to read yourself? Have any particular titles influenced you?

I read a lot of Agatha Christies in my late teens and a couple while I was writing the book also.  I read suspense like Roald Dahl’s Tales of the unexpected, Patricia Highsmith’s work; a bit of Benjamin Black and Ian Rankin though noir is not my style.  I also read a lot of classics and literary fiction. The book is a classic mystery in many ways even though the setting is contemporary.  I also do like to inject some action, Mission Impossible style.  It is also a legal drama and that part is unique because there are no legal thrillers through the British criminal courts currently published.  Even in the US most of the legal drama series, like John Grisham’s, are based in civil litigation. In that way the book is very unique.

I notice your protagonist is called Jack; has any part of yourself crept into his portrayal?

There’s a bit of me in several of the characters.  I admit there has been a time in life that I have been in a bit of a mess like Jack not entirely through my own fault.  So I know what he would feel like.  Does he deserve to go through what he has to if he is innocent of murder?  And if he is guilty should he get away with it?  (This is a big “if” you have to find out in the book.)  However, I think there is more of me in Jeremy. Maybe Jeremy is more what I should like to be. He lives the life I want and I live it through him.

I'm intrigued by Jack, since I created something of an anti-hero for one of my own novels.  From reading your blurb, it seems Jack has it all - yet clearly 'all' is not enough, so it sounds as if he deserves what happens to him. Does he have any redeeming features? 

I too, am fascinated by anti-heroes.  Patricia Highsmith’s The Talented Mr Ripley is my favourite suspense series.  For The Reckless Engineer title I took the word “Reckless” from “reckless abandon” with which Jack acts.  Jack does it because he thinks he can get away with it.  He is of a somewhat smaller made build and is a bit of a geek, even though he is brilliant and very confident at his work. His psychology is that he tries to overcompensate for it by going after glamorous and vivacious women.

Redeeming qualities? He is a bloody brilliant engineer and he was a great friend to Jeremy at his time of need.  I think the two friendships that Jeremy has with Jack and Harry respectively are very interesting. They are very different, but very close and touching in their own ways.

However the hero in the books is not Jack; it is Jeremy, my series lead.

Do you think you'll always write in the same genre and style or do you have desires to experiment and if so, in what way?

Well, I write poetry which is based in love and romance with no hint of suspense.

My other series, Summerset Tales, leans more towards literary fiction, but there is a touch of suspense in that series too similar to Roald Dahl’s work.  The nest 3 books I have started work on are all mystery, suspense, and thriller books.  I do have fourth planned that is pure literary fiction similar to Leonard Woolf’s Village in the Jungle.

Thanks Jac, that's great.  Now let's take a closer look at The Reckless Engineer.

The Reckless Engineer Blurb

Can you forgive betrayal?

The aftershocks of an affair reverberate out to those in the lives of the lovers, who will NOT take it lying down. 

Jack Connor lives an idyllic life by the Portsmouth seaside married to Caitlin McAllen, a stunning billionaire heiress, and working at his two jobs as the Head of Radar Engineering of Marine Electronics and as the Director of Engineering of McAllen BlackGold, his powerful father-in-law's extreme engineering company in oil & gas. He loves his two sons from his first marriage and is amicably divorced from his beautiful first wife, Marianne Connor. Their delicately balanced lives are shattered when the alluring Michelle Williams, with whom Jack is having a secret affair, is found dead and Jack is arrested on suspicion for the murder.

Jeremy Stone brings in a top London defence attorney, Harry Stavers, to handle his best friend's defence.

Who is the bald man with the tattoo of a skull seen entering the victim's house? Who is the "KC" that Caitlin makes secret calls to from a disposable mobile? Has the powerful Douglas McAllen already killed his daughter's first partner, and is he capable of killing again? Is Caitlin's brother's power struggle with Jack for the control of McAllen Industries so intense that he is prepared to kill and frame him? Is the divorce from his first wife as amicable on her part as they believe it to be? Are his sons prepared to kill for their vast inheritance? Who are the ghosts from Caitlin's past haunting the marriage? What is the involvement of Jack's manager at Marine Electronics?

While Jack is charged and his murder trial proceeds in the Crown Court under barrister Harry Stavers' expert care, Jeremy runs a race against time to find the real killer and save his friend's life, if he is in fact innocent, in a tense tale of love, friendship, power, and ambition.

Author Bio

Jac Wright is a poet published in literary magazines, a published author, and an electronics engineer educated at Stanford, University College London, and Cambridge who lives and works in England.  Jac studied English literature from the early age of three, developing an intense love for poetry, drama, and writing in Trinity College Speech & Drama classes taken afternoons and Saturdays for fourteen years, and in subsequent creative writing classes taken during the university years.  A published poet, Jac's first passion was for literary fiction and poetry writing as well as for the dramatic arts.  You will find these influences in the poetic imagery and prose, the dramatic scene setting, and the deep character creation.
These passions - for poetry, drama, literary fiction, and electronic engineering - have all been lovingly combined to create the first book in the literary suspense series, The Reckless Engineer.  There are millions of professionals in high tech corporate environments who work in thousands of cities in the US, the UK, and the world such as engineers, technicians, technical managers, investment bankers, and corporate lawyers.  High drama, power struggles, and human interest stories play out in the arena every day.  Yet there are hardly any books that tell their stories; there are not many books that they can identify with.  Jac feels compelled to tell their stories in The Reckless Engineer series.
Jac also writes the literary short fiction series, Summerset Tales, in which he explores characters struggling against their passions and social circumstances in the semi-fictional region of contemporary England called Summerset, partly the region that Thomas Hardy called Wessex.  Some of the tales have an added element of suspense similar to Roald Dahl's Tales of the Unexpected.  The collection is published as individual tales in the tradition of Charles Dickens' The Pickwick Papers and Thomas Hardy's Wessex Tales.  The first tale, The Closet, accompanies the author's first full-length literary suspense title, The Reckless Engineer.

You can find out even more about Jac by clicking on any of the following links:

The Reckless Engineer buy links for and Amazon UK

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Wednesday's Writer - DONNA FASANO

What an honour it is this week for me to have USA Today best-selling author Donna Fasano as my guest. Donna  is a three time winner of the HOLT Medallion, a CataRomance Reviewers Choice Award winner for Best Single Title, a Desert Rose Golden Quill Award finalist, and a Golden Heart finalist. Her books have sold nearly 4 million copies worldwide and have been published in two dozen languages.They have made the Kindle Top 10 List, the Nook Top 10 List, and the iBooks Top 10 List. She has so much to tell us and there's so much I want to ask her, so let's get up close and personal without any further delay.

Donna, What attracted you to writing in the first place?

I came to writing from my love of reading. While growing up, I lost myself in books in order to escape an unhappy childhood.

How very sad.  Can you tell us how your upbringing influenced your writing?

I think authors who face a lot of pain and anguish seem to write stories with great depth, with honesty and compassion. It could be that dealing with trauma brings out the best (or worst) in people. I believe that losing my mother at such a young age had a huge impact on me not just as a writer but as a human being. I became, I don't know, more maternal towards my family, my friends, heck, towards everyone I meet... more giving of myself, I guess you could say. My mother's death could have made me bitter and angry. I'm just so grateful that the exact opposite seems to describe me.

I still find it painful to talk about losing my mother, so I can identify with that.  What genre are you most comfortable writing?

Romance. I wrote for Harlequin for 20 years, writing sweet romance (as Donna Clayton) and women's fiction (under my own name). I have self-published some of my books. The Merry-Go-Round was my first indie-published book. Reclaim My Heart is my very first Montlake publication. I am proud and excited to have been picked up by such a prestigious publisher.

That must be fabulous.  Where do you get your inspiration and ideas from?

My mind is always on the alert. The writer in me is inspired by everything I see, hear, read, and experience. I have been known to take a snippet of conversation overheard in an elevator and turn it into a book (Return of the Runaway Bride), or from a location (His Wife for a While), or from a person I met (Taking Love in Stride). So be careful! If you interact with me, you might end up in one of my novels. 

Lol!  We'll all take note of that.  What about places, what’s your favourite place in the entire world?

I have visited so many beautiful places. The South of France, the rolling mountains of Italy, the Mediterranean Sea, the cobbled streets of Brussels, the red rocks of Sedona, Arizona, beautiful Morro Bay, California, and I spend lots of time in Ocean City, Maryland. I obviously can't pick a favorite. Besides, there are so many places waiting to be seen!

I agree - and you've named some of my favourites ones too.  What was your favourite part of this book to write? Which part was the hardest?

I really enjoyed writing the love scenes. In my sweet romances, all the 'spice' takes place behind closed doors. So this was very fun. And which part was hardest? The "kitchen love scene" (naughty pun intended!).

When you were a child, what did you want to be when you “grew up”?

I wanted to be a teacher. My aunt attended college and earned her teaching degree. I always idolized her. I've dedicated Reclaim My Heart to my Aunt Dot.

How lovely.  If you couldn’t be an author, what would your ideal career be?

Elementary school teacher. I love children, and I often include them in my stories. I always say that children are very innocent and outspoken. Kids inject a great deal of fun into a book with their in-your-face honesty.

Too true.  I love reading about the world of childhood.  If you could live inside the world of a book, which book would you choose?

Pride and Prejudice. Love that Mr. Darcy!

Ahhh, don't we all?  Returning to earth, give your fans three fun facts that they may not already know about you.

I love to cook! (I often post recipes on my blog.)
My reading tastes are crazy-eclectic. I read anything and everything.
I'm a little on the chubby side. 

Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.

I put my heart and soul into Reclaim My Heart, and I think it shows… in the story but especially in the characters.

I think it's time to wind this down so I can get onto reading it.  So what’s next for you as an author? Any last words?

I'm thinking of writing a book that revolves around three friends in different stages of marriage, but I'm not sure yet. I've worked very hard on Reclaim My Heart and I'm going to take a few days off. Then I'll get back to work!

Reclaim My Heart - Blurb

Sixteen years ago, Tyne Whitlock cut all ties to her past and left town under the shameful shadow of a teenage pregnancy. Now her fifteen-year-old son is in trouble with the law and she is desperate for help. But reaching out to high-powered attorney Lucas Silver Hawk will tear open the heart-wrenching past in ways Tyne never imagined.

Forced to return to the Delaware Indian community where Lucas was raised, Tyne and Lucas are tempted by the heated passion that consumed them as teens. Tyne rediscovers all the reasons she found this man irresistible, but there are scandalous secrets waiting to be revealed, disgraceful choices made in the past that cannot be denied. Love is a powerful force that could heal them both—if the truth doesn't rip them apart.

Thanks, Donna - it's been a pleasure talking to you.

I want to thank you for hosting me, and I want to thank your followers for taking the time to read about Reclaim My Heart.

If you want to connect with Donna, just click on any of the following links: