Author Archives: Cathryn Hein

Cathryn Hein

About Cathryn Hein

Best-selling Australian romance author, mad keen but inept golfer, and die-hard Sydney Swans supporter. For news, excerpts and more visit cathrynhein.com

Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday MemeWelcome to Teaser Tuesday where I share snippets from new and past releases, and works-in-progress, and sometimes twist the arms of author buddies to do the same.

I’m thrilled to say that today is one of those days, and even more thrilled to announce that our guest is Helene Young!

Romantic suspense fans will be very familiar with Helene’s work. She’s a multiple award winner, including winning the Romance Writers of Australia prestigious Romantic Book of the Year award (the Ruby) not once but twice, and winning the Australian Romance Readers Association Favourite Romantic Suspense award multiple times.

Photography and sailing fans will know Helene from her adventures aboard her catamaran the Roo Bin Esque. If that isn’t enough, Helene has also had a long career as a pilot.

I know, I know, TOTAL overachiever, but we love her anyway cos she’s awesome.

Best of all Helene has a new book coming out. Return to Roseglen releases 2nd July, 2018 and it looks brilliant. One read of this excerpt and you’ll be click-swipe-tapping your fingers like crazy pre-ordering a copy.

Because we’re the blog with the most-est, there may also be a chance to win a Return to Roseglen paperback. So give a big welcome to Helene, and read on.

 

Helene Young - AuthorCathryn, it’s lovely to be visiting your blog again and thanks for the opportunity to share a sneak peek inside the covers of Return to Roseglen. It’s a story that’s been 3 years in the writing and I think the issues of elder abuse and the ‘sandwich’ generation of women who juggle careers, children, parents, menopause and mid-life melt downs have never been more important!

This excerpt is the opening chapter where we meet fiercely independent Ivy Dunmore, who at 93, is battling to remain at home on her sprawling cattle property in North Queensland. Growing old is the least of her problems as she realises jealousy and greed are tearing her family apart.  She’s always known that the truth would come out in the end, but that doesn’t make it any easier to tell.

 

Ivy’s hand trembled as she drew the brush over her lips, in dan­ger of smudging the bright colour. Who would have thought at ninety-three she’d feel the need for war paint to stare down her son? Her Aunt Leonie always maintained that the devil caught most souls in a golden net. After last night’s conversation with Ken she finally understood what her aunt meant.

‘They’re going to foreclose on me,’ her son had said. ‘There’s only one option, one way to save both properties. You’ll need to sign them. No one needs to know.’

Her whole body had gone rigid. How could this be? But, in her heart, she’d seen it coming.

Return to Roseglen by Helene YoungShe pressed her lips together, smoothing the lipstick, then tilted her head to find a clear reflection in the mirror. The silver back­ing had starting to fall away around the edges. Another repair that would never be done now.

She peered at the face in the mirror. ‘Hello, Ivy Dunmore,’ she murmured, feeling like she was meeting an old friend for the first time in years. Wispy white hair was brushed back from a high forehead, the pale skin surprisingly unlined despite the years in the sun. Those summer blue eyes had paled to a frosty winter hue, framed by gold-rimmed glasses. There were creases in the cheeks, lines carved around the eyes – from laughter, she told herself – eyelashes that clump together, short and sparse. No point in batting them at a good-looking young digger anymore.

She tried a smile and examined her teeth. At least they were all her own, even if they wouldn’t be advertising toothpaste any time soon. She caught a glimpse of a feisty girl with her skirts flying as she whirled around the old Methodist Hall, bright eyes sliding towards the tall rangy cattleman who, dressed in his army uniform, lounged against the doorframe.

Wex and Lady interrupted the memory, their barks as creaky as her joints. The kelpies were the only survivors of the pack that helped Charlie rule sprawling Roseglen with benevolent care.

At the sound of a car speeding up the dusty track to the homestead Ivy sat taller on her wheeled walker. She looked to the faded photo of her husband beside their bed. Charlie’s battered felt hat was tilted back, his laughing eyes framed by a deep web of lines. There was strength in the chords of his neck and muscles of his shoulders. Behind him was Roseglen’s whitewashed chapel with the family graveyard and beyond that the ridgeline with the silhouette of towering gums. He was seventy that year, a man still vigorous and alive. That was the way he’d always be in her memory.

Hurried footsteps sounded up the stairs and across the verandah. She heard the front door swing open.

‘Mum? Mum? Where are you?’ Ken called.

No rush. I’m still alive, dear. She bit back the retort. Even at sixty-three he could be so needy.

‘I’m here, son. I’ll be out in a moment.’

‘Right.’ Ken stopped outside the door. ‘I’ve got the papers.’

Well, of course you’ve got the papers. Why else would you be here? She swallowed a laugh and hiccupped. ‘Put the kettle on, there’s a dear,’ she said, hoping her voice sounded bright.

‘I’m on a tight schedule, Mum.’

‘Yes, I know, but there’s time for a cuppa. I’ll just be a moment.’

His heels thudded on the hall runner as he strode back across to the kitchen. Why could he not remember to take his boots off outside? The drought had sucked the moisture from the dirt in the front yard and he’d be leaving a trail of dust behind him on the old Persian carpet.

She sighed and glanced around the room, taking comfort from the pressed metal ceilings, the painting of the homestead surrounded by lush pastures and sleek cattle, and the solid oak furniture, gleaming with beeswax.

It had been her home for sixty years, ever since they moved from the tiny manager’s cottage to care for Old Mrs Dunmore. She loved every plank, every French door, every polished floorboard. The memories were as thick and rich as the chocolate topping she used to make for Charlie’s favourite pudding. She fingered a linen and lace doily on the dressing table. One wet season, when Lissie was just a toddler and the road was cut by floodwaters for a month, she’d grown bored with baking. That had resulted in a collection of doilies and tablecloths. Not too shabby an effort if she said so herself.

Sinbad, her Siamese, lounged on the handmade patchwork quilt, his gaze unwavering.

‘Yes, lovely boy. You stay here.’ The tip of his tail flicked. Ken had no love for cats.

In the kitchen the kettle screamed. Ivy could picture Ken on his phone, trying to ignore it. If he wasn’t poking at the screen, then he was talking, like a disembodied head holding a conversation with a ghost. Bluetooth, he’d told her one day when she’d chipped him about it. Sounds like a reason to visit the dentist, she’d retorted.

The whistle shut off abruptly.

‘Mum!’ He was imperious this time.

All right, all right. I’m not one of the dogs rounding up cattle. She’d a mind to make him wait, but instead she stood and turned, straightened the skirt of her favourite blue dress, the fabric rippling over her legs, then gripped the handles of her walker and released the brakes. Let’s get this over and done with, Ivy Dunmore.

Doesn’t that sound fab? I adore this line: “Bluetooth, he’d told her one day when she’d chipped him about it. Sounds like a reason to visit the dentist, she’d retorted.” Made me laugh out loud and I suspect Ivy will give us plenty more of those in Return to Roseglen.

Return to Roseglen releases 2nd July 2018. Order your copy today from:

Booktopia | Angus & Robertson |Bookdepository | Dymocks
Amazon.com | Amazon.com.au | iBooks | Kobo | Google Play

Now, as mentioned in the introduction, we have a…

GIVEAWAY!

Ivy Dunmore is a demon Scrabble player who at 93 still likes to reign supreme. ‘No such thing as a free ride in this family,’ she tells her children. What board games do you and your family play? Do you have a favourite? One you played growing up perhaps?

Return to Roseglen by Helene YoungShare in the comments and you’ll go into a draw to win a paperback copy of Return to Roseglen.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Friday, Australian Eastern Time, 22nd June 2018. Australian postal addresses only.

Ooooh, so many board games to choose from. We played a lot of cards too (I was a crafty canasta player and there was another we called ‘spit’ which was sort of like snap but more violent), however I used to love Chinese Checkers when I was little – it was the coloured marbles I think – then when I was older we had some epic Monopoly battles. That game is the best.

What’s your favourite family board game? Or, if you didn’t play board games, what other game kept you amused? Reveal all and we’ll pop you into the draw for a copy of Return to Roseglen.

If you’d like to learn more about Helene and her books, please visit her website. You can also connect via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter using @HeleneYoung.

EVENTS!

Join in the conversation as Jaye Ford interviews three of Australia’s favourite authors of stories for women

When:  Saturday, 14 July, 1.30pm

Where: Cardiff Library, Cardiff Marketplace, Cnr Main and Macquarie Road, Cardiff NSW 2285

Cost: Free

Be enthralled by Helene Young, Christine Wells and Cathryn Hein, as they discuss their writing careers, writing stories that resonate with their female audience and the inspiration behind their latest books; Return to Roseglen, The Juliet Code, and The Country Girl.

Books will be available for purchase and signing. Bookings are essential. To find out more call Cardiff Library on 4921 0775 or book online here.

Writing Popular Fiction That Sells Workshop

With over thirty published novels in romance, historical fiction, mystery, suspense and women’s fiction, Helene, Christine and Cathryn know what it takes to write a cracking yarn that publishers will buy and readers will love.

When:  Saturday, 14 July, 9.00 am – 12.00 pm

Where: Toronto Library, Brighton Ave & Pemell Street, Toronto, NSW 2283

In this workshop, you will learn how to get ideas and turn them into a working premise for a novel, how to write characters who leap off the page, and how to sell or self-publish your story once it’s finished.

Perfect for beginners and experienced writers alike, this fun, interactive workshop will both inform and inspire.

Bookings essential. For further information contract Toronto Library on 49210641 or secure your spot today here.

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My Favourite Reads of May 2018

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My Favourite Reads image

Welcome to the latest edition of My Favourite Reads. A tad late again, but regular blog readers will know from recent Teaser Tuesdays that we had to take a short-notice journey to north Queensland and that has put me a bit off schedule. Not to worry, I’m home and making amends!

I am not, however, enjoying the cold weather. I’ve been donning a thick beanie for my morning walks, and it was so bitter when I was out running chores on Tuesday I had to pull my fleecy hoody over my head. Neither is a good look, but at least beanies and hoodies keep my ears from freezing.

Enough of my cold weather woes. Let’s get on to my favourite reads of May.

I’ve been thinking quite hard on my favourite and the truth is I can’t really choose. Yeah, that’s a bit of a cop-out but all the books were enjoyable, suited my mood at the time and made me happy. Given what was occurring around me, that’s exactly what I needed.

Here they are.

The Alchemist’s Secret by Scott MarianiThe Alchemist’s Secret by Scott Mariani

I’ve had this book on my e-reader for at least four years now and could never get into it. That happens, as I’m sure you understand. It doesn’t matter how good a book is, sometimes you’re just not in the mood.

This time round I had no trouble and found The Alchemist’s Secret a great ride. If you love a Dan Brown style action-adventure-mystery-thriller, then this is smack in your zone.

The first in Mariani’s long-running Ben Hope series that so far tallies 17 books. Clearly he’s doing something right!

 

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail HoneymanEleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

This book has been a blockbuster seller of late so naturally I had to see what all the fuss was about.

It’s a wonderful story about a damaged but strong – if socially clumsy – woman making her way in a world she doesn’t quite relate to. Eleanor is a great character, but I adored Raymond. He’s my kind of hero.

A read to make you feel good and smile at the joy of friendship.

 

Extinct by RR HaywardExtinct by RR Hayward

I’ve raved about this totally bonkers series before in previous Favourite Reads (Extracted here and Executed here).

Extinct is the last in the trilogy and it didn’t let me down. The plot is funny, action-packed, potty-mouthed, violent, sort-of sexy, and completely over the top. The characters no different. They are so cool! But old-fashioned, decent and ridiculously brave Harry is my favourite.

A rollicking ride. Loved it.

 

The Convent’s Secret by CJ ArcherThe Convent’s Secret by CJ Archer

This series is so comforting. I know when I grab a new Glass and Steele book that I’m in for a hugely entertaining read, filled with mystery, romance and characters I fell in love with from first meeting.

Things have really moved along for Matt, India and the gang but I suspect there’ll be several backward steps in future books. I hope so. Journeying with this group as they tackle all the many obstacles thrown at them is what makes it fun.

Yeah, I’m a total fangirl, but I can’t recommend this series enough.

 

Deadly Secrets by Robert BryndzaDeadly Secrets by Robert Bryndza

Another comfort read that hit the spot. Deadly Secrets was a cracking addition to the Detective Erika Foster series. Maybe even my favourite.

The mystery in Deadly Secrets was very tangled – so many suspects to choose from – and Erika’s life took a few interesting turns too.

I’ll be auto-buying the next when it comes out.

 

What reads have you enjoyed lately?

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser Tuesday MemeWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the series where I share snippets from new and past releases and works-in-progress, and sometimes con author buddies into doing the same.

After a couple of weeks in the tropics I’m home, where it is lovely but, sadly, not tropical. This is not necessarily a bad thing, mind. If I had weather like that all the time I’d never get any writing done.

A couple of housekeeping items. If you’re in Western Australia or are planning a trip over there later in the year, make sure you mark your diaries for the West Coast Fiction Festival on November 3rd, 2018 at the Rendezvous Hotel, Scarborough. This is going to be a terrific event, chockers with fab authors from Australia and overseas. The full list of attending authors and anything else you’d like to know is available on the West Coast Fiction Festival website. Tickets go on sale now and selling fast, with all ticket profits going to Share the Dignity.

I will have a limited number of my books for sale but you can guarantee your copies with a pre-order. Simply read the instructions and fill out the form here and you’ll be set.

The second housekeeping item is this website’s new privacy policy. Maintaining your trust is important to me, so please take a moment to read it.

Right. Back to booky goodness!

There is now less than a month until Elsa’s Stand releases. Rah! I am so excited about this book. It’s one of my favourites and I love the characters to bits, and I can’t wait for you to read it.

Newsflash! YES, there will be print copies. They’re currently available for pre-order on Amazon.com, Amazon.com.au, Amazon.co.uk and Booktopia, and I should have signed copies available for direct purchase from me. As soon as I have an idea of prices, I’ll let you know. Please note that newsletter subscribers will get first dibs on these. Sign up here if you don’t want to miss out.

Here’s a little teaser to show what you’re in for with Elsa and Jack. You will love them, oh yes you will!!

 

‘Excellent. I’ll give you a call. See if we can’t arrange it for next week.’ Suddenly Angus’s attention was taken by something behind Jack. A smile broke across his face. Elsa's Stand by Cathryn Hein‘Here’s trouble.’

Jack checked over his shoulder. Elsa was in the middle of the road, hopping foot to foot as she waited for a couple of cars to pass. Being the country, they were slow, the driver in front waving to someone on the cake stall as they crawled past. Elsa had pulled up her hair into a sort-of bun with wispy dangly bits loose around the sides of her face. Her thigh-high, off-the-shoulder dress was white and frilly, and paired with matching heeled sandals. Against the dark bitumen, she glowed.

Jack breathed in and slowly out. Skin. Pale skin, freckly skin. Lots of skin. And a smile that lit the entire street. Elsa was gorgeous normally but this … this was going to take serious control.

 

He he. Poor Jack. Elsa is awesome at scrambling his brain. Such fun!

Make sure you don’t miss out on this gorgeous tale by pre-ordering today from:

amazon.com | amazon.com.au | amazon.co.uk
iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Barnes and Noble | Booktopia

Newsletter subscribers will have first dibs on personally signed print copies, so please make sure you’re signed up. Not only will you get all the news first, you’ll also receive access to a couple of bonus short stories to read over a cuppa.

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday MemeWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the series where I share snippets from new and past releases and works-in-progress, and occasionally con author buddies into doing the same.

Greetings from tropical north Queensland! I’m in Townsville right now, where the winter weather is gorgeous and the streets are busy with backpackers and southerners escaping the cold. I was up here this time last year for the Bowen River Campdraft and Rodeo (photos and more from that here) but I won’t be attending this year. I will, however, be visiting my favourite rural clothing outfitters Donohues. Love that place. They have the best jeans. And boots. And belts. And tops. And hats. And…

Eh hem.

Enough of my shopping obsessions. We’re here to talk books!

Can you believe it’s only five weeks until Elsa’s Stand releases? And even less until the first of the Outback Brides books – Maggie’s Run by Kelly Hunter – hits e-readers around the world. But what about print versions, you ask? I’ll have news on that soon and I think it’ll make you veeeery happy.

Also something to make you happy, a taste of sexy, silent Jack, the hero of Elsa’s Stand. Sigh. Love this man. LOVE HIM.

 

Jack was so furious and flat out getting organised that it was hours into his journey before reality sank in. A wave of grief slammed into his chest so hard he had to pull over and breathe through it while the semi-trailers and caravans he’d overtaken earlier whooshed past, their slipstreams rocking his car and camping trailer.

Elsa's Stand by Cathryn HeinHis mum, gone.

It didn’t seem real. It couldn’t be real.

Yet it was.

Jack rubbed his face and stared at his palms. They were rough, covered in nicks and abrasions and calluses from years of digging for opal. Hands that had been forged by his mother’s side, as she took him fossicking and regaled him with stories about miraculous finds. About gold fever and opal curses, and sapphires that lay buried somewhere in the overburden and beds of Strathroy’s ancient creeks.

 

Be ready to comfort Jack on his July 9th release day with a pre-order of Elsa’s Stand from these stores:

amazon.com | amazon.com.au | amazon.co.uk
iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Barnes and Noble

For another excerpt visit the book page for Elsa’s Stand. You can also read the first chapter on the Tule Publishing website. While you’re there, check out all the books in the Outback Brides series and get your pre-orders in.

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday MemeWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the series where I share snippets from new and past releases and works-in-progress, and occasionally pester writer buddies to do the same. Like this week!

This week I’m delighted to welcome back well-travelled Australian author Alli Sinclair to the blog. You may remember Alli from her previous visit where we showcased her beautiful story Beneath the Parisian Skies. She’s gone in a slightly different direction with her new release. Back in time, in fact.

The book is called Burning Fields and you are going to love it, oh yes you are! Think Romeo and Juliet set in Queensland’s sugar cane fields in 1948. Throw in women’s roles in post-war society, family upheaval and loss, the struggles of immigrants in a new country, and a long-held secret, and you have cracking big story.

Here’s Alli to tell you more about Burning Fields and share a lovely excerpt.

 

Alli Sinclair authorA little bit of background:

Rosie has recently returned to the family farm in Piri River and is struggling with her father’s traditional ways and his dislike for Italians after she’s experienced independence and a more open-minded community in Brisbane. Tomas has recently arrived from Italy and finds his adjustment to the Australian way of life difficult Italy. They’re neighbours and often seek each other out for a “walk and talk” of an evening. They find solace in each other because of their inability to fit in, but what they don’t realise is they are starting to fall for each other. This scene opens with Rosie on the roadside having just replaced the spare tire on the farm ute and Tomas has encountered her. Rosie, as usual, is more than capable of looking after herself but is slowly realising she doesn’t need Tomas’s company, but she certainly wants it.

 

Rosie rested her gaze on the shadow of eucalypts and wattle behind him. ‘So you like the landscape here?

Burning Fields by Alli Sinclair‘Of course! How could I not? It is beautiful, no? Look at this,’ he walked over with the torch to the silver wattle and reached out and gently touched the yellow flowers. ‘Mother of Nature is an artist. Here,’ he broke off a flower and handed it to her. ‘Two years ago in Italy the women started to receive this flower from men they know as part of La Festa della Donna, International Women’s Day. We do this to celebrate women and to show we value what you do. We also do this to let women know you are not alone in the struggle to be considered equal.’ 

‘Wow.’ She held the flower like it was her most treasured possession. ‘I didn’t even know there were wattles in Italy. I thought they were only in Australia.

‘I believe we imported them a long time ago. We call them Mimosa.

‘Hmmm …’ Rosie inhaled the flower’s scent. It seemed sweeter than normal. ‘So this plant is significant for both of our countries.

‘Yes, it is.

‘Do you miss Italy?

Tomas drew his brows together. ‘Sometimes yes, sometimes no. I miss my people, the culture, history, the language. It’s a part of who I am and always will be.

 

Find out what happens to Rosie and Tomas with your own copy of Burning Fields. If you grab the ebook, you could be reading in minutes. Too easy!

Amazon.com | Amazon.au | iBooks | Kobo | Google Play

Booktopia | Angus & Robertson Bookworld | Dymocks

Want to read the first three chapters of Burning Fields? You’ll find them here.

If you’d like to learn more about Alli or her books, please visit her website. You can also connect via Facebook and Twitter using‎ @allisinclair.

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday MemeWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the series where I share snippets from new and past releases and works-in-progress, and occasionally twist the arms of writer buddies to do the same.

I haven’t been doing a lot of cooking lately. I’ve tried out a few new recipes but none were exciting and none went on the keeper pile. Actually I lie. This recipe for Balinese Beef Curry was lovely. And this one for Banana Caramel Oat Slice from online magazine Beauty and Lace was pretty tasty too.

I’m not sure why I’m not cooking much. I suspect it’s because my head is too full of Eddie and the Show Queen (this book is taking forever to write, gah!) but also because we’ve been doing stuff on Fridays, which is my usual day for hitting the kitchen for a good cooking sesh.

So what’s this got to do with Teaser Tuesday? Well, the other day when I was tooling around in my files I found the raw footage for a Cooking The Country Girl video I’d planned to share with you (watch the first one here). That never eventuated because of house moving hell followed by internet connection dramas that still haven’t been resolved. Anyway, seeing those video files reminded me of how much I adore that book and that we haven’t featured it on Teaser Tuesday on it for a while. Since early February, in fact.

It also made me think that now my new herb garden is kicking along I should make a big serve of Tash’s tortelli di zucca. It’s perfect for the cold weather and because it contains pumpkin, I can claim it as healthy (we won’t mention the butter and sage sauce). It’ll also give me a chance to get out the pasta machine. I love that gadget. It’s so shiny and cool looking, and fresh pasta is awesome.

Which leads me back to The Country Girl and Tash’s gorgeous, gardening guru grandfather. Here he is with Tash.

 

Thursday morning brought Pa and a pumpkin the size, weight and colour of a small boulder.

The Country Girl by Cathryn Hein‘Did you put it on steroids or something?’ Tash asked as he hoisted the monster onto the bench.

‘No, Flossie. That’s just good old-fashioned poo.’

‘Nice. I’ll be sure to tell my fans that.’

She eyed it dubiously. A pumpkin of that size was bound to be woody. Maybe she could save it for October and do something Halloween-y with it.

‘Don’t look at my baby like that.’ Pa patted it as though it were a dog. ‘That’s prime Queensland Blue.’

‘A Queensland Blue I’ll need a chainsaw to cut into,’ said Tash, turning on the espresso machine. ‘Or maybe an axe.’

 

Ah, Pa. He was such a great character to write. Enjoy more of him, and Tash and Patrick, with your own copy of The Country Girl. Available now from these stores:

amazon.com | amazon.com.au | amazon.co.uk
iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Nook
Booktopia | Dymocks
Angus & Robertson Bookworld

Read another excerpt, watch an embarrassing cooking video or learn how I came to write The Country Girl on its book page.

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Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser Tuesday MemeWelcome to Teaser Tuesday where I share snippets from new and past releases and works-in-progress, and occasionally con author mates into doing the same.

Those of you who subscribe to my newsletter (gorgeous people that you are) will have already seen the new cover for The Falls. I’m thrilled to bits with it. It’s bright and passionate, and Merlin the nutty ram even gets a look in.

Another change for The Falls is that it’s now available worldwide in ebook, with the print version coming available over the next few months. So now everyone can enjoy the fun, no matter where they are. Rah! But even better, along with expanded availability comes a significant drop in the ebook price. Double Rah!

With the exception of April’s Rainbow, my stories are usually told only from the heroine’s and hero’s points of view, but The Falls also includes that of Teagan’s Aunt Vanessa. I couldn’t help myself. She was a too interesting and lively character to let her voice go unheard. What that means for readers it that The Falls gives you two romances in one – Teagan’s and Lucas’s and Vanessa’s and Dom’s – and at around 400 pages, a lovely fat read.

Anyway, if you haven’t seen The Falls gorgeous new cover, here it is, along with a snippet from when Teagan first meets a very naughty Merlin.

 

‘Merlin? His name is Merlin?’

‘Merlin the Magic Ram.’ Ness placed a hand on the sheep’s head and gave him an affectionate rub. ‘So named by the family who bottle-raised him after he was abandoned by his mother. They thought him cute until he started bowling over the children. Then it was The Falls by Cathryn Heineither the chop or here, and I couldn’t stand by and let the poor thing be slaughtered for doing what comes naturally. It’s hardly fair. He has his moments, I admit, but I’ve grown quite fond of him.’

The ram sniffed Vanessa’s knee, lifting the skirt of her dress slightly to expose more smooth white leg. His nose wrinkling, Merlin raised his head and curled his top lip before releasing another throaty bleat.

‘Oh, be quiet, you stinky old goat. Here,’ Vanessa said, grabbing a horn, ‘let me sort him out. You look like you could do with a wash and a drink. There’s a fresh jug of margarita in the fridge. Help yourself.’

Leaving her bemused niece, she marched the ram towards the yard Teagan had spied earlier, Merlin bunting and bellyaching the entire way.

 

Oh, Merlin, I had such fun with him. He was so cunning!

Purchase your copy of The Falls today from these ebook retailers.

Amazon.com | Amazon.au | Amazon.co.uk

iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Nook

Print coming soon.

And don’t forget to let me know what you think of the new cover.

 

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My Favourite Reads of April 2018

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My Favourite Reads image

Welcome to another edition of My Favourite Reads. There are few positives to being sick, but one of them is reading time. Thanks to me catching a horrid lurgy that required lots of miserable fevery hours in bed or on the couch with my blanky, April was a great reading month.

I enjoyed some excellent books too, which made it very hard to choose a favourite, but my favourite is a story that continues to resonate in my mind, and that story is …

The Juliet Code by Christine Wells

The Juliet Code by Christine WellsI’ve adored all Christine’s books so far. The Wife’s Tale and The Traitor’s Girl were wonderful reads, so I was super keen to get into the The Juliet Code. Obviously, it didn’t disappoint!

This book had everything I adore – intrigue, romance, atmosphere, fantastic characters and a plot loaded with delicious twisty-turns. There’s love and betrayal, heroics and evil. And, if that wasn’t enough, The Juliet Code is also beautiful to look at. That cover just demands to be stroked lovingly.

Snap up a copy for yourself today. You won’t regret it.

 

The Family Next Door by Sally HepworthThe Family Next Door by Sally Hepworth

Fans of domestic thrillers will love this one set in a “nice” suburban street where everyone looks successful and normal. Except hiding behind their veils of normal are families thick with secrets, and they’re about to be exposed.

The Family Next Door was a compelling read with a cool plot twist.

The Ruin by Dervla McTiernanThe Ruin by Dervla McTiernan

A terrific crime novel set in Ireland and introducing Cormac Reilly, an interesting new detective who I’ve read we’ll also see in a second book, and more after that I’m sure.

The Ruin was a nicely atmospheric, gritty and solidly plotted murder-mystery. Also topical.

Enchant by Demelza CarltonEnchant by Demelza Carlton

I read this one when I was under the weather and it was the perfect pick-me-up. Enchant is the first in Demelza’s Romance a Medieval Fairytale series, this one based around Beauty and the Beast. It’s fast-paced, with a cool female lead and fun plot. Perfect for an afternoon blanky snuggling with a book.

You can pick Enchant up for free on Amazon.

Redemption Point by Candice FoxRedemption Point by Candice Fox

Ooh, I enjoyed this one, probably even more than the first, Crimson Lake. It was so good to catch up with Ted and Amanda again, and to see how their lives were progressing. Pretty rockily, but that’s exactly what makes this series so page-turnery. That and the great writing.

Candice Fox’s stand-alone novels remain an auto-buy for me. Can’t wait for the next.

The Tipping Point by Malcolm GladwellThe Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

Apart from writing craft books, of which I own a ridiculous amount, and books bought specifically for story research, I’m not a big reader of non-fiction. Most of the time I either don’t finish the books or skim-read until I get to a good bit, but I read The Tipping Point the entire way through.

Gladwell’s argument for why some things reach a tipping point and take off was compelling. I also liked his entertaining style. There were some eye-widening examples given too.

The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth HoganThe Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan

This was a lovely book, filled with warmth and gentle English humour. It’s more like two stories, really, related but not parallel, and each as charming as the other. I loved Bomber and Eunice. They were fun (although I found their story bittersweet). Anthony’s, Laura’s, Freddy’s and Sunshine’s tale is a bit more complex, but no less entertaining.

I enjoyed the ‘lost things’ stories, too. They were clever and some had real bite.

Hero at the Fall by Alwyn HamiltonHero at the Fall by Alwyn Hamilton

The final book in the Rebel of the Sands trilogy. I’m sad to leave this world! It was such a richly built one, loaded with magic and mayhem, heroes and baddies, and others that could slide either way, depending on circumstances. Amani was a terrific heroine, and the other characters wonderfully realised. Shazad was brilliant. Loved her.

Overall, a satisfying way to end the series.

 

What reads have you enjoyed lately?

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday MemeWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the series where I share snippets of new and past releases, and works-in-progress.

The last two weeks on Teaser Tuesday have been very exciting, with guests Christine Wells and Victoria Purman showing off their new releases, and hosting giveaways. Thanks to everyone who shared their stories of multiculturalism and spy names. It was great fun.

By now you should have heard the news about Elsa’s Stand, the book I’ve been keeping a secret for quite a while now. If you haven’t, then you need to join my newsletter, because those clever subscribers heard days ago, and many – beautiful lovelies that they are – already have their orders in.

Elsa’s Stand releases July 9th and is part of a new rural romance series called Outback Brides. So far there are four books in the series, each by a different Australian author. You might recognise their names – Fiona McArthur, Victoria Purman and Kelly Hunter. A highly talented bunch indeed. Expect to see excerpts from their books around release time.

Today’s snippet is from – you guessed it – Elsa’s StandI adore this book and yes, I know I sound like a cracked record when I say that, but it’s true. I love this book to bits. I loved writing it, I love the characters, I love the cover, I love the blurb. Everything. Sitting on news about its release has been more than a bit torturous, let me tell you.

But now we can talk about Elsa’s Stand and its upcoming release all we like, and share snippets. Rah!

Here’s Elsa thinking about Jack, as any red-blooded girl would. He’s certainly occupied a good deal of my brain space!

 

It was those eyes. ‘Paul Newman eyes’ her mum, who was a huge fan of the actor, would call them. With their pale hue they should have been cold, instead the surrounding fringe of thick dark lashes Elsa's Stand by Cathryn Heinmade them more intense than icy. When they’d settled on Elsa, it was like being lasered.

Jack’s size only added to his appeal. Elsa hadn’t been joking about describing him as a giant. The man was huge, close to six-feet-six, but that wasn’t what made him seem so enormous. It was the breadth of him, combined with a bearing she couldn’t explain, except it reminded her a bit of American actor John Wayne. Thanks to her classic movie buff mum, Elsa had seen every one of the actor’s westerns, and while this hadn’t endeared Wayne to her—nor her mum for making her suffer through such boredom—she couldn’t help but acknowledge Wayne’s screen presence.

And she bet John Wayne never filled out a pair of suit pants and T-shirt the way Jack Hargreaves did.

 

Ah Jack… so silent, so sighworthy! And he could be yours with just a tap, swipe or click. Well, yours on July 9th at least. Until then, he’s mine, I tell you. ALL MINE!

Eh hem.

Pre-order your copy of Elsa’s Stand from:

amazon.com | amazon.com.au | amazon.co.uk
iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Barnes and Noble

Go on. You are going to love this one. I promise.

 

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Say hello to Elsa’s Stand!

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I’ve been keeping a secret from you …

I have a new release coming out this July!

Elsa's Stand by Cathryn Hein

When the sudden death of his mother forces outback opal miner Jack Hargreaves home to Wirralong, his plan is simple: mourn his mother, sort out the family farm, and get the hell out of the town that has always hated him. But Elsa O’Donoghue, the beautiful hairdresser with a big heart and even brighter smile, has other plans.

From the moment Jack strides into her salon and helps himself to her clippers, Elsa is in lust. He might be a poster boy for the strong silent type, but she senses there’s a good man behind that stoic facade. With her business taking off, Elsa is finally ready for a relationship and Jack is just her kind of man. Not to mention, she’s never said no to a challenge.

Worried their association will harm Elsa’s business, Jack tries to avoid her, but Elsa is irresistible. Soon, she has him believing and hoping for a future with her in Wirralong, but another family tragedy shatters Jack’s fragile dream. Jack knows he must leave Elsa to protect her, no matter the cost to himself.

 

ELSA’S STAND releases July 9th, 2018
Secure your ebook today with a pre-order from:

amazon.com | amazon.com.au | amazon.co.uk
iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Barnes and Noble

 

Elsa’s Stand is part of Outback Brides, a wonderful new rural romance series set in the historic gold rush town of Wirralong, in the shadow of Victoria’s stunning Grampian Ranges.

You are going to adore Elsa. She’s smart, sassy, gorgeous and a force to be reckoned with. It’s no wonder our hero Jack can’t resist her, though he tries. Oh how he tries!

There are four books to the Outback Brides series (so far). Mine is Elsa’s Stand but you can also expect stories from Fiona McArthur, Victoria Purman, and Kelly Hunter. How’s that for a bunch of Aussie talent?

I can’t wait to share more about Elsa’s Stand and the Outback Brides series with you. This book was amazing fun to write, and I think you’re going to have even more fun reading it because Elsa and Jack are gorgeous together.

Elsa’s Stand releases July 9th. Pre-order your copy today.

 

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