Tag Archives: Anna Campbell

Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday 2017 logoWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the series where I share tasty teasers from new and past releases, and works-in-progress, and occasionally con good author buddies into doing the same.

Did you know there are only six weeks left until Christmas? You’re probably more than already aware given how much Christmassy stuff is already adorning the shops. They don’t like to let us forget the silly season’s arrival, do they?

I don’t mind so much this year. Why? Well, The Country Girl is scheduled to release on December 18th and that means there’ll be at least six days’ worth of Christmas shopping time for all you lovelies to grab a copy and stuff it into your, and all your bookaholic friends and families’ stockings. Woohoo!

Yeah, I know, I know. It’s all about me. But I LOVE this book and am so excited that you’ll soon be able to read it, and better still, be able grab a copy before you trek off on lazy summer holidays. The perfect book to make you even warmer and fuzzier, but without the sunburn (or frostbite for those in northern climes).

What you won’t have to wait for is our regular and hugely popular guest Anna Campbell’s new novella The Christmas Stranger because it’s coming out on Amazon this week. Rah!

Here’s Anna to tell you all about it. Make sure you read right to the end, because there could be a giveaway on offer.

Who says Christmas doesn’t come early?

Author Anna CampbellHi Cathryn!

Thank you for having me as your guest. I do so love to visit you – and what better time of year to swing by than in the run-up to Christmas?

I must be feeling particularly Christmassy this year because I’ve got two novellas out, and I’ve also put a previously published story into a great Christmas anthology called Romance Under the Mistletoe (check it out – great value!).

Today, I’m here to talk to you about The Christmas Stranger: A Regency Novella which touches on so many themes pertinent to the Season of Goodwill. Love at first sight. Finding a family. Taking a chance. Moving from darkness into light. Plus there’s a definite fairytale element to this romance!

Maggie Carr has been the housekeeper at isolated Thorncroft Hall for five years, and she’s convinced life is passing her by. But everything changes when architect Josiah Hale stumbles across her doorstep in the middle of a snowstorm. Joss brings the spirit of Christmas back into Maggie’s life, as you’ll see in this excerpt when our seemingly mismatched couple go in search of holly and ivy to decorate the rambling Jacobean mansion.

 

Thorncroft Hall, Yorkshire, 22nd December, 1821

Maggie laughed. And found herself laughing again and again, as she and Mr. Hale wandered the snowy woods behind the house in search of greenery. She’d thought they’d cut a few sprigs of holly before they headed home, but the cart was soon laden with boughs of pine and holly, enough to make the whole house bright.

The weather held while they were outside. Now and again, there was a glimmer of pale sunlight through the thick clouds. But as they turned back to the manor, the snow started again.

She turned her face up to the flakes and out of childish habit, stuck her tongue out to catch a couple. When she realized Mr. Hale was watching her, she blushed at her nonsense.

The Christmas Stranger by Anna Campbell“It’s supposed to be lucky,” she said defensively.

“I hadn’t heard that.” He stared at her as if he’d never seen a woman before.

“Mamma and I used to play games in the snow. I don’t know if it’s a real superstition or not, but we always did it.” Her eyes flickered down, then up again. “You must think I’m silly.”

He smiled at her, and her foolish heart stuttered, although surely only the fading light lent such tenderness to his expression. “It’s nice to see you being a bit silly. You mostly seem to take life very earnestly.”

She should tell him to mind his own business. But she found herself responding honestly. “In recent years, I haven’t had much fun. We used to. Papa was a very jolly vicar. Everyone loved him, and his parishioners were devastated when he died. They wanted us to stay in the village, but they were so poor themselves, we couldn’t take their charity. Mamma and I continued to celebrate Christmas after we came here. I just…I just seem to have got out of the habit.” She smiled at Joss. “Thank you for reminding me that it’s the season of goodwill, not the season for sitting around feeling sorry for yourself.”

“You’re such a sparkling girl.” Her gratitude didn’t seem to please him. Instead he looked troubled. “You should have the world at your feet.”

She fought to keep her smile in place, although she cringed at the poor figure she cut with her lack of sophistication and drab clothes. When she’d give anything to dazzle him with her wit and beauty.

And all was not lost. He’d called her sparkling.

“Well, I do have the king of Christmas in my thrall,” she said lightly.

To her surprise, he touched her cheek with one leather-gloved hand. The contact was over in an instant. Surely she must imagine the blast of heat sizzling through her, heat that made a mockery of the freezing air.

“You do at that,” he said softly.

 

You can read a longer excerpt and the blurb on my website.

The Christmas Stranger is only 99 cents on Amazon.com

Here are the buy links: AmazonBarnes and NobleKoboiBooks.

The Christmas Stranger meme

So let’s talk Christmas decorations. Are you a pile it on everywhere, the more the merrier type? Or are you a decorations minimalist? Do you put up the tree the minute you hear the first Christmas carol at Coles? Or are you someone who waits until Christmas Eve to stick up one string of tinsel?

GIVEAWAY!

I’ve got a Kindle download of A Christmas Stranger: A Regency Novella for someone who comments today. No geographical restrictions.

Good luck in the draw! And wishing you all the best of the Season!

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Friday AEST, 17th November 2017. Open internationally.

Great question, Anna. We’re hopeless with Christmas here in the Hein house, mostly because we tend to head interstate for Christmas to spend Christmas with family. But even when we do stay home – as will be the case this year – half the time we end up forgetting to put up the tree. Then a few days before the big day we look sheepishly at each other and go ‘oops’.

Anyway, Christmas isn’t about decorations and trees. It’s about being with or thinking about the ones you love.

And drinking fizz.

And eating naughty food.

And squealing over all the awesome books you’ve received in your stocking, like The Country Girl (ooh, I am SHAMELESS!!)

Are you forgetful like us, minimalist or get totally in the decorating spirit the moment the calendar flips over to December (or earlier)? Share and you’ll go into the draw for a Kindle copy of Anna’s gorgeous new book The Christmas Stranger.

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

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday 2017 logoWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the tantalising blog series where I share snippets from works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Unless I’m feeling lazy and invite good writing buddies to fill in for me, like today!

Regular readers will know how much we adore having multi-award winning, best-selling historical romance author Anna Campbell on the blog. Why? Because she’s FUN, with juicy snippets, sumptuous covers and very often a giveaway.

So read on, my lovelies, and make sure you read to the end for your chance to win!

 

Historical romance author Anna CampbellHi Cathryn!

It’s me again! Thank you so much for letting me swing around to your blog so often to talk about my new releases. It’s starting to feel like a home away from home!

I’m very excited on this Pancake Day to talk to you about a book that I’ve always thought of as a delicious confection. I hope readers agree!

Even the cover is delicious! Don’t you love that purple dress?

Charming Sir Charles which was out yesterday is the fifth book in my bestselling Dashing Widows series. Sally Cowan, Lady Norwood, my heroine, is all sparkle on the outside, but on the inside, she hides deep wounds from her unhappy past (in this case her first marriage).

She’s convinced that love has passed her by. She’s so convinced, in fact, that she hasn’t picked up that the dashing baronet she’s earmarked as her niece’s future husband is actually madly in love with her!

As you can imagine, that’s a recipe for mayhem!

Pursuing Lord Pascal by Anna CampbellThis excerpt takes place early in the story at Amy and Pascal’s wedding reception (see Pursuing Lord Pascal, Dashing Widows 4) when Sally finds herself unexpectedly wistful as she sees her fellow Dashing Widows, Amy and Morwenna, finding love while she’s left on the shelf.

The problem is that the shelf is safe and comfortable, and she’s not sure she wants to jump off it any time soon!

 

Half Moon Street, Mayfair, April 1829

Sir Charles smiled. “So now Garson is pursuing Morwenna, I’d say the days of the Dashing Widows are definitely numbered.”

Sally tried her champagne, enjoying the crisp flavor with its hint of dryness. A little like Sir Charles’s conversation, in fact.

From the first, she’d enjoyed talking to him. He was a sensible, intelligent man, qualities Meg mightn’t appreciate fully at this stage. But Sally, having lived with a man neither sensible nor clever, knew that in the long term, her niece would come to value Sir Charles’s good sense. “I’ll have to gather some more Dashing Widows together, so I can keep the tradition going.”

Charming Sir Charles by Anna Campbell“Why on earth should you?” He settled that dark toffee gaze on her, and his tone was thoughtful. “After all, you’ll be married again yourself.”

Sally jerked, and spilled a few drops of her champagne, luckily on the floor, not on her lovely bronze silk dress. She struggled to keep her voice from betraying how his words had sent a cold chill down her spine. “Oh, I’m well past marrying age.”

“Utter nonsense,” he said, with more emphasis than she thought her statement deserved.

Sally shook her head and smiled. “Oh, perhaps some old codger might take me on, to make his life comfortable and run his house. But where would be the fun in that?”

“There wouldn’t be any.” Sir Charles frowned at her. “You speak as if you’re pushing fifty. When anyone with eyes can see you’re an attractive woman in the prime of life.”

“Why, thank you, sir,” she said with an exaggerated flutter of her eyelashes. “You flatter me.”

He didn’t smile back. Which was odd. His sense of humor was another of the many things she admired about him. “Sally, I’m serious.”

Startled, she stared at him, while disquiet stirred in her stomach.

Sally? Surely they weren’t on terms where he should use her Christian name. She bit back a protest. If he was to marry Meg, she supposed she couldn’t insist on the letter of propriety.

Had he been standing quite so close before? She’d never been so conscious of his height and power. The urge to deliver another frivolous answer withered under the unusually somber expression in his dark eyes.

“I’m too old for romance, Sir Charles.” She placed a slight weight on his title. “And I have no other reason to marry. I’m well provided for. I have a lovely home. I have wonderful friends.”

“What about companionship?” Her assertions left him visibly unimpressed. “Specifically of the masculine variety.”

Her lips tightened. “A lover, you mean?”

 

You can read a longer excerpt and the blurb on my website.

Charming Sir Charles is only 99 cents on Amazon.com!  Buy now from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo and iBooks.

The Dashing Widows series by Anna Campbell

GIVEAWAY!

I’ve got a Kindle download of Charming Sir Charles for someone who comments today. No geographical restrictions.

Just tell me your favourite way to have pancakes! Me? I like bananas, maple syrup and ice cream, or the classic crepes suzette with lemon juice and sugar. Yum! Betcha you like crepes suzette too, Cathryn, with your love for all things French.

Good luck in the draw!

You are quite right, Anna, I do love crepes suzette but when I make pancakes at home, which happen regularly on weekends, I have mine with butter and honey. So, so bad but oh so delicious!

What about you, readers? How do you love your pancakes? Share away and we’ll pop you in the draw to win a copy of Anna’s gorgeous new release Charming Sir Charles.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight AEDT, 3rd March 2017. Open internationally.

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

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the blog series where I share snippets from upcoming and past releases, and works-in-progress and invite writing buddies along to play.

Some people just aren’t content with writing one Christmas themed novella. Oh no. Some people have to show off and write and release two in the one year. I tell you, if historical romance author Anna Campbell wasn’t such a lovely friend I’d have to get snitty with her for being such an over-achiever and making the rest of us look bad.

As it stands, not only is Anna a good friend and regular here on Teaser Tuesday, I’m a total fangirl and the more books the merrier I say!

So here’s Anna to tell you about her second gorgeous 2016 Christmas themed novella, but make sure you read to the end. You know what a generous soul Anna is and there could be a giveaway.

 

Author Anna CampbellHello again, Cathryn! I feel like I was only here a couple of weeks ago. Oh, that’s right. I was! Thanks for asking me back to talk about my second Christmas novella for 2016, A Match Made in Mistletoe.

One of the things I find endlessly fascinating about human nature is that often we’re completely wrong about what we think will be best for us—and sometimes fate has to nudge us pretty hard (and occasionally tip us over a cliff) to point us in the right direction. In A Match Made in Mistletoe, my heroine Serena Talbot profoundly misunderstands her heart and what it wants—and mistletoe mayhem results.

This excerpt comes from early in the story when the guests turn up for the annual Talbot Christmas house party, including the man Serena’s had a lifelong crush on, Paul Garside, and his brooding, sardonic friend Giles Farraday, Marquess of Hallam. Serena is determined that this Christmas, Paul is going to propose, so she turns to an old superstition that if you put a sprig of mistletoe under your pillow, you’ll dream of the man you’re going to marry. Unfortunately, the person who turns up in her dream isn’t lovely, easygoing Paul but annoying Giles!

 

Torver House, Dorset, December 1820

Paul bent to kiss Serena’s cheek. She awaited the usual thrill at the touch of his lips. But the fleeting contact left her unmoved. Dear Lord, what was wrong with her?

As she drew away, she caught Giles’s interested gaze and stupidly, she blushed. The memory of that horrible dream constricted her breathing, so she sounded cursed fluttery as she greeted Paul’s friend. “And, Giles, welcome back to Torver. Did you have a good trip up from London?”

“Serena, how cruel.” Ironic humor lengthened Giles’s lips. “You’ve known me nearly as long as you’ve known this vagabond, yet I don’t merit the same rights?”

“Same…” Puzzled, she stared up at him. He towered over her, taller than Paul. How had she never noticed that before?

A Match Made in Mistletoe by Anna CampbellA purr of laughter escaped him as he leaned in. “Who needs mistletoe?”

He’d kissed her before in silly Christmas games. Since his first term at Eton, Frederick had invited Paul and Giles to spend school holidays at Torver House. While Giles’s visits in recent years had become rarer, he’d never missed a Christmas. He was part of the fabric of her life.

So why did his casual kiss stop the world? At the cool brush of his lips, shivery heat rippled through her. She closed her eyes, fighting for balance.

“Serena?” Giles’s soft, deep voice—why had she never before noted its beauty?—seemed to come from far away.

She blinked and with surprising reluctance, stepped apart from him. Another horrid blush stained her cheeks, and she only just stopped herself from raising a hand to touch where he’d kissed her. Her skin burned where his lips had touched.

Drat that dream. It had turned her batty.

Reluctantly, she met Giles’s eyes. Dark and somber, they settled on her face. She’d learned through the years that little escaped his penetrating intelligence. Right now, the idea of him seeing her confusion made her cringe.

“Welcome home,” she stammered, only realizing what she said after the words emerged.

For once, Giles’s smile lacked an edge. “Well, that’s a nice reception.”

She blinked again to bring the bustling room into focus and realized that the whole interaction had lasted mere seconds. Mary and Paul weren’t even looking at them, but talked about some mutual acquaintance.

Still those enigmatic eyes examined her face. She shifted awkwardly from one foot to the other. “I…I meant…”

To her surprise, he touched her cheek with one elegant hand. Mostly Giles kept his distance from her. Gestures of affection were unheard of. “Don’t spoil it.”

 

You can read a longer excerpt and the blurb on my website.

A Match Made in Mistletoe: A Regency Novella is only 99 cents on Kindle. Buy now from: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo and iBooks.

A Match Made in Mistletoe only 99 cents on Amazon

I think, like most people, I am slightly superstitious. Not about things like black cats or ladders, but I tend to notice omens, random coincidences that seem to bring me a message from the realms beyond. What about you? Are you superstitious? Any particular rituals you use to bring you luck or save you from disaster or confirm you’re on the right path?

GIVEAWAY!

I’ve got a Kindle download of A Match Made in Mistletoe (no geographical restrictions) to go to someone who leaves a comment today. Good luck!

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight AEST, 9th December 2016. Open internationally.

 

Ooh, being a mad (and sadly untalented) golfer, rituals and superstitions are definitely something I can comment on! I have this thing where my buggy must be to the right of the ball when I’m hitting. If it’s not, it does my head in because no matter how far away I leave it I’m convinced I’ll hit it in my backswing. I have lots of other little “issues” too but I’ll keep them private. I don’t want you all thinking I’m completely kooky!

What about you? Do you have any rituals or superstitions? Let us know and we’ll put you in the draw to win a Kindle download of Anna’s gorgeous novella, A Match Made in Mistletoe. Just the thing to put you in the Christmas mood.

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

 

Never miss a new release. Click to subscribe to Cathryn Hein's newsletter.

Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the tantalising blog series where I share snippets from works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Unless I’m feeling lazy and invite good writing buddies to fill in for me, like today!

It’s my great pleasure to welcome back multi award-winning historical romance author Anna Campbell to the blog. Regular readers will know Anna pops by quite often, is always hugely entertaining and usually offers a wonderful giveaway.

Today is no different, so read on, my lovelies!

 

Historical romance author Anna CampbellHi Cathryn! Lovely to be back on your blog again. Thank you so much for asking me to do another Tuesday Teaser!

I can hardly believe it’s time to talk about Christmas romances again! This year has just flown. I’ve got two Christmas stories out in 2016, a stand-alone called A Match Made in Mistletoe, and “Mistletoe and the Major,” part of the multi-author, multi-genre anthology Under the Kissing Bough.

Today, I’m going to tease you with “Mistletoe and the Major.” My last couple of Christmas novellas have been comedic romps. But with this one, I set out to write a touching, heartfelt story about a brave man returning from eight brutal years of war to establish a life with the wife he loves, but who he’s not sure loves him.

The excerpt takes place on Christmas Eve, Lord Canforth’s first night back on his country estate after leaving the army. He’s come home to face the fallout from a fraught fortnight’s honeymoon just before he shipped out with his regiment. To his surprise, the innocent and unsure girl he left behind has become a lovely, confident woman in his absence. And at last, they start to talk to each other and heal the wounds left from their past mistakes.

***

Otway Hall, Shropshire, December 1815

Flick’s lips turned down in a self-derisive smile. “I owe you an apology. That was a poor welcome I gave you. An empty house, and a wife stinking of the stables.”

Actually when Canforth had first touched her, he’d caught the scent of crushed flowers and something that was Flick alone. He’d remembered that fragrance immediately—it would always be the aroma of heaven. There might have been a hint of horse and hay, too, but he hadn’t cared. He’d been too busy fighting the urge to bury his face in her hair and tell her how much he’d missed her. Which would have ruined things between them forever. If he leaped on her like a starving wolf the minute he came home, she’d run for the hills.

Mistletoe and the Major by Anna Campbell“It’s still my home, empty or not, and I gave you no warning I was coming. But you haven’t told me why you’re spending Christmas alone.”

She took another sip of wine. “I didn’t feel like going through all the hullabaloo this year. It…it seemed easier to miss you here at Otway than in a noisy, happy crowd of people, however much I love them.”

Shock made him sit up straight and stare at her. “You missed me?”

The question surprised her. “Of course.”

“But I’ve been away for ages.”

She gave a grim laugh. “I know.”

By Jove, that was dashed nice to hear. Dashed nice. To think, she’d missed him. Perhaps his case wasn’t quite as hopeless as he thought. He leaned back and stretched his legs toward the fire. “Well.”

A smile lit her eyes to burned caramel. “Well, indeed.”

She set aside her wine and picked up her sewing, as if she hadn’t changed his world in the space of a second. “It means a plain Christmas dinner, I’m afraid. A returning hero deserves to have all the stops pulled out.”

Another silence fell, this one more comfortable than the last. Canforth finished his wine and let its warmth fortify the warmth seeping into his blood with every moment in his wife’s presence. For years, he’d been cold and lonely. Was his exile finally at an end?

 

You can read a longer excerpt and the blurb on my website.

Under the Kissing Bough, with 15 brand-new Christmas stories, including “Mistletoe and the Major,” is only 99 cents for a limited time.

Under the Kissing Bough boxed set

Buy now from: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo and iBooks.

It’s actually pretty funny that I’ve got two stories featuring mistletoe this Holiday season because “mistletoe” is one of those words I consistently type wrongly. It’s either “misletoe” or “miseltoe” or “mistetoe,” or some variation thereof!

Do you have any bugbear words? Words you consistently misspell or mistype? Homophones that trip you up? “Bare” and “bear” nearly always catch me out, although I’m perfectly well aware of the difference between them. How can a bare bear bear it?

GIVEAWAY!

So let’s confess our keyboard sins. I’ve got a Kindle download of Under the Kissing Bough to go to someone who comments today. No geographical restrictions on the giveaway. Good luck!

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Friday AEST, 25th November 2016. Open internationally.

Ah, those pesky misspelled words. I feel your pain, Anna. I have one I do ALL the time too and that’s mischief. Even though I know how to spell it, for some stupid reason my fingers always mix up the I and E. So frustrating!

What about you, lovely readers? Share your keyboard sins and you’ll go into the draw. I bet there are some auto correct doozies out there too.

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

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the tantalising blog series where I share snippets from works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Unless I invite good writing buddies to fill in for me, as is the case today.

Historical romance author Anna Campbell is a regular on the blog with good reason—she’s lovely, likes a good a natter over a glass of fizz, and writes fabulous romances! If you haven’t picked up any of the books in Anna’s Dashing Widows series you’re missing out. They’re huge fun. But I have to say her newest release Stranded with the Scottish Earl sounds even more fun. There’s something about men in kilts…

Here’s Anna to tell you more about it. Make sure you read to the end. There could be a GIVEAWAY!

Author Anna CampbellHi Cathryn! Or should I say Och aye the noo, lassie?

Thank you for having me as your guest today. I’m so excited to be back here on your wonderful blog to talk about my latest release which, as you’ve probably guessed, has a Scottish flavour.

Haggis, bagpipes, hunky Highlanders, what’s not to like? Well, maybe the haggis…

Stranded with the Scottish Earl: A Regency Novella is out 30th June (it’s up for pre-order now). As you can tell with a title like that, it’s a complex political thriller. Nah, I’m having you on. It’s a fun romance featuring a Scotsman and a feisty English lassie who, you guessed it, get stranded together in a flood in Hampshire.

When roguish Scotsman Ewan Macrae, Earl of Lyle, turns up on Charlotte Warren’s doorstep in the middle of a flood, he’s the last person she wants to see. Her father has decided Lyle will make her a wonderful husband, but resolutely independent Charlotte is having none of it. Until the weather traps them alone together in the house. Baby, it might be cold outside, but it’s sure heating up indoors!

The teaser takes place just after a passionate first kiss in Lyle’s borrowed bedroom.

 

“I don’t understand what happened,” Charlotte said dully.

“It’s quite simple.” Lyle pushed up until he sat beside her, leaning against the bedhead. “I wanted to kiss you the moment I saw you.”

Astonishment flared in her caramel eyes. And dangerous pleasure. He fought the urge to draw her back into his arms. He’d managed to stop once. Nothing on God’s green earth would restrain him if he succumbed to temptation a second time.

“But why did I let you?”

tranded with the Scottish Earl by Anna Campbell“Perhaps because we’re trapped here,” he said, knowing that the attraction went much deeper than mere propinquity.

“It must be more than that.” She studied him with a troubled expression. “I’ve never acted this way before.”

“I generally don’t leap on virtuous young women either,” he responded, stung.

“You seemed to know what you were doing.” It sounded like an accusation.

Lyle knew she picked a quarrel as a distraction. But he refused to oblige. He was experienced enough to know that a loss of temper would lead to a different loss of control. He stared into the fire and answered in a mild tone. “Does that mean you liked it?”

“I don’t have much to compare it to,” she muttered.

Shocked, he turned back to her. Shocked, and disgusted with himself. He’d jumped on her like a starving man snatched at a cheese sandwich. “You make me feel like a beast.” He paused as he pondered just what she’d said. “Much or nothing?”

She frowned at him. “What?”

“You said you didn’t have much to compare my kisses to.”

She blushed. “You have no right to ask that.”

“I had no right to kiss you either. Yet I did.” His gaze sharpened. “Who’s been trifling with your favors? And where do I need to go to kill him?”

She didn’t smile at his absurdity. Nor was he convinced he was joking. “I’ve been kissed before,” she admitted ungraciously. “It was…nice.”

A grunt of laughter escaped as he sagged with relief. “I don’t need to kill him after all. Heaven help your swains if that’s the best they can do.”

Miss Warren regarded him with displeasure. Thank God. He preferred her snap and fire to seeing her crushed with mortification.

“Your kisses weren’t nice.”

“I should hope not.”

“And I do wish you’d put a shirt on,” she said crossly, shifting to the edge of the bed but still—interesting again—without making any move to leave.

Feeling absurdly optimistic for a laddie who had been stopped in his wicked tracks, he rolled to his side of the bed and stood. The temptation of having her near tested what small restraint he retained.

 

Want a longer excerpt? You’ll find it on Anna’s website.

Stranded with the Scottish Earl is only 99 cents on Amazon.com. Talk about a bargain, so secure your copy today! You can also purchase from Smashwords and Barnes and Noble.

And now for an even more exciting bit. Yes, folks, we have a…

GIVEAWAY!

Anna says: I’ve got a Kindle download of Stranded with the Scottish Earl for someone who comments today. No geographical restrictions.

Do you like Highlander romances? Who’s your favourite Scottish hero?

Good luck in the draw!

And good luck from me too.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Friday AEST, 1st July 2016. Open internationally.

tranded with the Scottish Eart by Anna Campbell banner

Remember, Stranded with the Scottish Earl is only 99 cents on Amazon. That’s a whole lot of kilted romance for less than a dollar, so pre-order your copy now.

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the blog series where I share snippets from past and upcoming releases, and works-in-progress, and occasionally con author mates into joining in the fun.

Today I’m thrilled to welcome back historical romance author Anna Campbell. Regular followers will know what an Anna Campbell fangirl I am but here’s a tale for you. I’d never read an historical romance until I won a copy of Anna’s Tempt the Devil on a blog. I loved it and was so hooked I gobbled up all Anna’s previous novels and every release since. I’ve also gone on to read lots of other historical romance authors and fallen in love the with genre. All because of a book I won on a blog.

This, too, could be YOU. Yes, lovelies, there’s a giveaway. In fact, there are TWO GIVEAWAYS. So please give a hearty welcome to Anna and read on.

 

Author Anna CampbellHi Cathryn! Thank you so much for having me as your guest today. I love the Teaser Tuesday spot – it’s so great to get that delicious little taste of a book!

Winning Lord West, the third book in my Dashing Widows series, comes out on 30th April. I loved writing this story of childhood sweethearts reunited. If you’ve read the previous books in the series, The Seduction of Lord Stone and Tempting Mr. Townsend, you’ll know that Lady Crewe and Lord West have been circling each other for quite a while. It was great fun finally to bring them together.

The teaser takes place at a country house party before Silas and Caroline’s wedding. And I think this time round you can definitely say this is a teaser!

Fed up with Helena avoiding him, West invades her bedroom late one night. He wants to talk to her, but that’s not quite how things work out as attraction flares and sends good intentions right out the window!

***

“It’s a good thing I never knew what was under those dauntingly stylish gowns, or you’d have found yourself compromised well before this,” West said. “It was hard enough keeping my hands off you anyway.”

Helena looked gratifyingly intrigued. “Really?”

“Yes, really,” he said, as though he swore his life away. He drew a hairpin from the mass of black hair coiled at her nape. “With your hair like this, you remind me of a renaissance princess.”

Her mouth, red with kisses, quirked with familiar, endearing humor. “Lucretia Borgia?”

Winning Lord West by Anna Campbell“Someone a little less murderous.” He removed two more pins. A silky skein of black snaked down across her shoulder. Delicately he lifted it and brought it to his lips, breathing deep. Her rich scent flooded his senses. Smoky. Female. Unforgettable. So true to the woman she was.

Through the busy years, and lovers who had meant far too little, as he now recognized with regret, he’d never forgotten Helena. She was endlessly fascinating, extraordinary. Salty and satisfying, where sugar palled.

She responded to his kiss with pleasing swiftness, and his brief kiss turned into something long and profound. He buried his hands in her hair. When he drew away, it tumbled loose around her slender shoulders.

He nibbled a path down her neck, feeling her shiver, as he disposed of corset and shift. At last he set his hands on her naked body. “You’re beautiful.”

She raised her chin and faced him proudly. Tall. Slender. Long-legged. Graceful as a young goddess. “I’m glad you like me.”

“I’ve always liked you.” His smile was wry. “Haven’t you worked that out yet?”

She didn’t answer. That was all right. Soon she’d admit her fondness for him.

While West took off his trousers, Helena perched on the bed to remove slippers and stockings. The sight of her bare calves and feet enthralled him. Odd how random, seemingly insignificant moments kept catching him on the raw.

Tomorrow he’d ponder reasons. Right now, Helena awaited. He cast away the last of his clothing and strode toward the lovely woman, watching wide-eyed from the luxurious bed.

***

You can read a longer excerpt and the blurb on my website.

Winning Lord West is only 99 cents on Amazon!

Here are the buy links:

Amazon

Smashwords

Barnes and Noble

GIVEAWAY!

Two people who comment today will win a Kindle download of Winning Lord West. No geographical restrictions. Do you like reunion romances? Why do you think they’re so popular? Do you have a favourite reunion romance? Right now, I think I’m going to go for Casablanca!

Good luck in the draw!

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Friday AEST, 29th April 2016. Open to everyone, everywhere.

That’s two books and two winners, people, so get typing.

The Dashing Widows series by Anna Campbell

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Favourite Reads of March

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My Favourite Reads image

I had a fantastic reading month in March, with every book a page-turner. As usual the list is a bit eclectic but I really enjoy reading different genres and think it keeps me fresh and inspired. I also tried a few new-to-me authors and returned to the comfort of a couple of beloved series.

Two stories stood out, which made it hard to choose my favourite, but that title has to go to…

Letters to the Lost by Iona Grey

Letters to the Lost by Iona GreyThis book was amazing. I wept in the opening, sniffled a bit throughout and spent the last part bawling. I loved everything about this story – the characters, the dual timeline, the writing, the vivid settings. Most of all I loved the way it took my heart and squeezed it tight from beginning to end.

Letters to the Lost won the UK Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Goldsboro Books Romantic Novel Of The Year 2016 and I can see why. It’s simply beautiful. And because of the two timelines, one set during World War Two and the other contemporary, you get two romances in one. Bonus.

Perfect for Mother’s Day. Perfect for any day, really. Read it, but keep those tissues handy!

I also read…

The Lie Tree by Frances HardingeThe Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

My second favourite read of the month. Not a romance, but a wonderfully creepy Gothic tale set in Victorian times and featuring a unique premise and incredible writing. Another award winner too. The Lie Tree took out the prestigious 2015 Costa Book of the Year.

I want to read everything this author has written now. Next stop, Cuckoo Song.

Oh, and don’t be put off by its children’s book classification. The book felt about as child-suitable as a Stephen King novel to me!

The Last Sherlock Holmes Story by Michael DibdinThe Last Sherlock Holmes Story by Michael Dibdin

Regular followers will know what a Sherlock Holmes fan I am so I was never going to resist this one, especially when it also features the Jack the Ripper murders. The story rollicked along and was very entertaining but there’s a huge twist at the end that, while cleverly done, did leave me pretty gobsmacked. Can’t say more. You’ll have to find it out for yourself.

The Widow by Fiona BartonThe Widow by Fiona Barton

A mystery-thriller which follows the tale of a man suspected of a terrible crime, and how much, if anything, his wife knew about it. It’s something you wonder yourself, when you read about murderers and other terrible criminals.

A Vow To Secure His Legacy by Annie WestRebel’s Bargain by Annie West & A Vow To Secure His Legacy by Annie West

Annie is a friend and kindly sent me copies of her two books to read, and what fun I had! Arrogant alpha males usually leave me cold but Annie has the gift of keeping them real and relatable, as well as super sexy. I particularly enjoyed A Vow To Secure His Legacy. That one made me cry.

Odd Hours by Dean KoontzOdd Hours by Dean Koontz

I adore this Odd Thomas series, and while Odd Hours didn’t rate as a favourite it was still a good read. I’ve already bought Odd Apocalypse, the next in the series, and will be reading that soon. I need to know what happens to poor Odd!

Kings Rising by CS PacatKings Rising by CS Pacat

And, sadly, with this book the journey ends. What a stunner of a series. Unique and brilliantly written. Can we have more please, Ms Pacat? Pretty please?

Tempting Mr Townsend by Anna CampbellTempting Mr Townsend by Anna Campbell

I’ve loved all the books in the Dashing Widows series, and maybe it’s because it’s still on my mind but I think this one is my favourite so far. Anthony was gorgeous (I’m a sucker for a big man) and Fenella’s anguish and guilt over her burgeoning attraction for him very real.

 

What were your favourite reads?

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the tantalising blog series where I share snippets from works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Except on the days when I invite good writing buddies to fill in for me, like today!

What a thrill it is to have Anna Campbell returning to Teaser Tuesday. Those of you who’ve been following my blog and social media for a while will know what a fan of Anna’s work I am. Her Regency romances are wonderful, loaded with great characters and filled with passion. I’m a particular fan of her novellas. They might be short but those babies sure pack emotional punch.

Here’s Anna to tell you about her newest release, Tempting Mr. Townsend. Can’t wait to get into this one. It sounds fab.

Oh, and make sure you read the post to the end. There could be a giveaway.

 

Hi Cathryn! Thank you so much for having me as your guest today. I always love visiting your blog and I think a book called Tempting Mr. Townsend fits a spot called Teaser Tuesday to a T!

Author Anna CampbellI had huge fun writing my second Dashing Widows book, Tempting Mr. Townsend, especially its rough, gruff, heart-of-gold hero Anthony Townsend who comes from the wrong side of the tracks compared to delicate Lady Fenella. This is a bit of an opposites attract/Beauty and Beast story – two of my favourite tropes in romance. I love watching two people who start out with apparently nothing in common gradually reach an understanding as they fall in love.

This novella begins as a road trip to find two runaway schoolboys, but by the time we get to the excerpt, the boys are safe, but Fenella isn’t so sure that her heart is! The scene takes place in the library of Anthony’s newly acquired estate, the Beeches, on the night after their arrival.

 

Fenella threw her hands up. “Oh, you’re impossible. I’ll be glad to get back to my real life.”

“Will you?” Anthony asked softly.

Briefly she looked unsure, then her lush mouth firmed. “At least in Mayfair, I’m free of insane plutocrats and their persuasions.”

He laughed, enjoying himself. “Yet.”

He’d always intended to pursue her, but her confession of a weakness for him invited a more overt wooing. She was a grand little fighter, but he doubted she’d win when Anthony Townsend allied with her own desire against her.

Tempting Mr Townsend by Anna Campbell“There’s no point continuing. I’m tired, and you’re off your head. Good night, Mr. Townsend.” With an irritated swish of her skirts, she flounced off. He let her reach the door before he spoke. “Lady Deerham, there is one more thing.”

“What is it?” Annoyance roughened her voice.

A man of his size could cross the room in a few paces. He caught her arm and using her surprise, swung her around to face him. A gentle push and her back bumped against the closed door. “This.”

Furious eyes snapping blue fire focused on his face. “Mr. Townsend, just what on earth do you think you’re doing?”

“My dear Lady Deerham, surely it hasn’t been that long.”

“I’ll scream,” she warned, trying to slay him with her disapproval. Unfortunately for her, he found her spirit arousing. This close she smelled like a flower garden in spring. He drew that glorious scent deep into his lungs.

“I dare you.” One hand pressed her shoulder against the door while the other caught her chin to hold her still.

Not that she was struggling. Which was dashed interesting.

“You are the most provoking man,” she muttered.

“That’s insane plutocrats for you.” He hid a smile as anticipation made his blood rush. “Now stand still so I can kiss you.”

“Well, really,” she gasped before his lips stole her breath away.

©Anna Campbell

You can read a longer excerpt and the blurb on my website.

Tempting Mr. Townsend is only 99 cents on Amazon! Why not grab your copy today? Instant gratification could be yours. Visit Amazon, Barnes & Noble or iBooks.

GIVEAWAY!

Two people who comment today will win a Kindle download of Tempting Mr. Townsend. No geographical restrictions.

I’ve told you that one of my favourite themes in a romance is Beauty and the Beast. What’s yours? Fish out of water? Friends to lovers? Cinderella? Secret baby? Cowboys? Sheikhs? Billionaires? There’s so many of them and they’re all great! Let’s talk classic romance tropes today on Teaser Tuesday.

Please Note: Giveaway closes midnight Friday AEST, 18th March, 2016. Open internationally.

That’s TWO BOOKS UP FOR GRABS, dear readers. So get commenting and good luck!

The Dashing Widows series by Anna Campbell

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the tantalising blog series where I share snippets from works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Unless I’m feeling lazy and invite good writing buddies to fill in for me, like today!

I’m very excited to show off a sample of historical romance author Anna Campbell’s new Regency novella. Not only do I adore her books, she’s huge fun at writerly get-togethers and is always up for a glass of fizz, which makes her very much my kind of person. Anna has won the Australian Romance Readers Awards Favourite Australian Romance Author so many times I nicknamed her the Romance Queen. A title. I must say, she wears magnificently.

Anyway, enough of me. Here’s Anna to tell you about her new release. This one sounds a hoot. Make sure you read to the end. There might be a special giveaway.

Author Anna CampbellHi Cathryn! Thank you so much for having me as your guest today.

Usually I’m drooling over the recipes on Friday Feast on your blog – it’s nice to be here for the low-calorie Teaser Tuesday spot! Snerk. Which doesn’t mean I plan on delivering one of those tasteless low fat cheese kind of teasers.

No, this one’s as full-blooded and swashbuckling as my hero in A Pirate for Christmas, my seasonal novella this year.

Actually Rory Beaton, the new Earl of Channing, isn’t a pirate – gossip just paints him as one. He is, however, neglecting his duties as lord of the manor and redoubtable vicar’s daughter, Bess Farrar, beards him in his den to point out his obligations – and to get permission to borrow his donkey for the annual nativity play.

Cue entry of mischievous donkey Daisy who was a lot of fun to write. Now, she really does have a pirate heart!

Here’s the first meeting between Rory and Bess – and if you catch a whiff of classic British comedy To the Manor Born, your nostrils are not deceiving you!

 

“If you leave a note, I promise to deliver it,” the man said.

Bess’s lips firmed as she shifted to find a comfortable spot on the unforgiving seat. The noble Earl of Channing didn’t want visitors settling in. Indications were that he didn’t want visitors at all.

Too bad for the noble Earl of Channing.

“So he can ignore it, the way he’s ignored my other correspondence?” she asked sweetly.

A Pirate for Christmas by Anna Camobell coverThe studious-looking man avoided her eyes. “His lordship has been busy since taking over, Miss Farrar.”

Bess glanced around the dusty, empty great hall. “Not with domestic matters.”

“His lordship—”

His lordship stormed in.

At least Bess assumed that the disheveled auburn-haired man who crashed through the door at the other end of the hall must be Penton Abbey’s elusive new master. He stalked past her, brandishing a sheaf of papers.

“That blasted Farrar besom is hounding me again, Ned. I thought I asked you to put her off.” His Scottish brogue added an exotic edge to his heated remarks.

He didn’t see her as his long stride ate up the tiled floor. It would be hard to make out an army in this gloom, especially with the sky darkening for snow.

“Rory, for heaven’s sake,” the other man stammered, casting Bess an embarrassed glance.

Bess stood and performed a perfunctory curtsy. “Good afternoon, my lord.”

He turned on her. He was as tall as his friend, but much more heavily muscled. A more formidable character altogether, she could already tell. “Just who the devil are you?”

She permitted herself a cool smile. “I believe I’m the blasted Farrar besom.”

“Oh, hell,” he muttered, staring at her thunderstruck. He looked as shocked as if one of these iron-hard oak chairs had stood up, bowed and asked him to dance.

©Anna Campbell

You can read a longer excerpt and the blurb on my website.

A Pirate for Christmas is only 99 cents on Amazon! Buy from Amazon.com, Amazon.au and Smashwords.

GIVEAWAY!

True to the tradition of Friday Feast, which I know this isn’t, do you have a favourite cheese? I must admit to a liking for brie and gouda.

Anna's favourite cheeses

I’ve got two Kindle downloads of A Pirate for Christmas: A Regency Novella to give away to people who share their cheesy stories today. Good luck!

Please Note: Giveaway closes midnight Friday AEST, 6th November 2015. Open internationally.

That’s TWO BOOKS UP FOR GRABS, lovely readers. So get commenting!

Click to subscribe to my newsletter

FRIDAY FEAST with Anna Campbell

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Greetings, Feasty lovelies, and welcome to a positively cherry-topped Friday Feast. This week we play host to one of my favourite historical romance authors who has the perfect accompaniment for a cuppa. Plus there’s an even more perfect giveaway!

Not a lot to report this week from the Us Heins Weren’t Meant To Play Golf trenches. We suffered so much rain on the morning of our ladies open day the event was washed out. With the weekend equally soaked, there was no chance for play. I can only hope that the time off will result in some easing of my current formus horribillus (a dreadful disease no golfer wishes to catch).

Historical romance author Anna CampbellNow onto my delightful guest!

It’s always a pleasure to host historical romance author Anna Campbell on Friday Feast. Not only do I have a major fan-girl crush on Anna and her books, her posts are always hugely entertaining. I fondly refer to Anna as the Romance Queen, thanks to her many awards and best-selling status. And because in person she does have a touch of regality!

I’m also very excited to have a copy of her brand new release, A Scoundrel by Moonlight beside me as I type. I’ve loved all the books in Anna’s Sons of Sin series and it’s wonderful to see it continuing on. Can’t wait to get into this one.

Take a look.

A SCOUNDREL BY MOONLIGHT

A Scoundrel by Moonlight by Anna CampbellAnything can happen in the moonlight…

Justice. That’s all Nell Trim wants – for her sister and for the countless other young women the Marquess of Leath has ruined with his wildly seductive ways. Now she has a bold plan to take him down… as long as she can resist the scoundrel’s temptations herself.

From the moment Nell meets James Fairbrother, the air positively sizzles. Yet for all his size and power, there’s something amazingly tender in his touch. Could he really be such a depraved rogue? The only way to find out is to beat the devil at his own game… one tempting kiss at a time.

 

Doesn’t that sound wonderful? And you can be guaranteed that this will be a highly emotional, passionate and romantic read. Believe me, with Anna you’re in expert hands. Which means you’ll be wanting to buy a copy of A Scoundrel by Moonlight right now. In which case, get clickety-clicking straight over to those good people at Booktopia, Bookworld or Angus & Robertson. You can also purchase a copy from Book Depository. For the ebook, try Amazon, iBooks, Barnes & Noble, or your favourite retailer.

Now please give a bow to Queen Anna.

A Happy Accident!

Hi Cathryn! Thank you for having me as your guest today. I always love visiting your blog – and this time I’ve got a recipe that is genuinely mine.

Last year, I was waiting for a visit from my dear friend and regular Friday Feaster Annie West and I’d decided to make cherry nut cookies, an Australian Women’s Weekly recipe that’s one of my favorites.

Quote from A Scoundrel by Moonlight by Anna CampbellSacre bleu, what was I to do when I was halfway through cooking them and discovered that I didn’t have a major ingredient? These lovely little buttery morsels are usually rolled in crushed peanuts before you put the cherry on top. But my pantry was bare of crushed peanuts.

As any good writer will tell you, when you’re stuck, improvise. I had a bag of flaked almonds which I keep on hand for apple crumble.

Problem solved – almost.

The flaked almonds were far too big to sit on the outside of my biscuits. So I decided to try mixing them in with the dough. Worked a treat – as Annie was kind enough to tell me.

I’ve since made this a couple of times and I think I actually prefer them to the original. So it’s time to share my recipe with the world.

Quote from A Scoundrel by Moonlight by Anna CampbellA happy accident is how I’d describe my latest book, A SCOUNDREL BY MOONLIGHT which is out in North America this month.* The Sons of Sin series grew out of a stand-alone proposal to Grand Central Forever in New York for SEVEN NIGHTS IN A ROGUE’S BED. They liked the idea so much, they wanted more of the same with some linked books. So I hastily put together a trilogy about three friends who meet at Eton. In one way or another, the shadow of bastardy looms over Jonas Merrick, Richard Harmsworth and Camden Rothermere, but all three discover their true selves when they fall in love.

As I wrote the books, another man loomed larger and larger. James Fairbrother, Marquess of Leath, is mentioned in book 2, A RAKE’S MIDNIGHT KISS, as the villain’s nephew. He plays a much more significant role in book 3, WHAT A DUKE DARES, when his sister forms a scandalous liaison with Harry Thorne, the heroine’s brother.

lincolncollage2

When Grand Central approached me about continuing the series, Leath was the obvious hero to choose. So A SCOUNDREL BY MOONLIGHT was born. Because I love to put my characters through the wringer, I make him fall in love with a woman who threatens everything he’s always wanted. Life as a writer is fun that way.

But of course, meeting Nell Trim turns out to be a happy accident for Leath too! Under normal circumstances, their paths would never have crossed. And their clash makes for fireworks.

What sort? You’ll have to read A SCOUNDREL BY MOONLIGHT to find out!

In the meantime, have fun at afternoon tea with my biscuits.

Anna Campbell’s Cherry Almond Biscuits

Anna Campbell's Cherry Almond Biscuits

Ingredients:

125g butter

¼ cup sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup self-raising flour

200g flaked almonds

Glace cherries

Method:

Anna Campbell's Cherry Almond BiscuitsCream butter and sugar until light and creamy, add egg and vanilla, beat well. Add sifted flour and mix to a firm dough. By hand, mix in flaked almonds until evenly distributed. Roll teaspoonfuls of mixture into small ball shapes. Press half a cherry on top. Put on lightly greased oven trays, allow room for spreading; bake in moderate oven 15 to 20 minutes or until golden. Cool slightly before removing from trays. Makes about 30.

*Aussies can order a print edition of A SCOUNDREL BY MOONLIGHT from Booktopia or the Book Depository. If you’d like an ebook, there will be a local edition later in the year, date to be confirmed.

 

Oh, I love the sound of these, Anna! I must admit, I’d much prefer your almond version than the peanut one. While I love peanuts (my mother-in-law makes the BEST peanut biscuits), I reckon almonds and cherries is a much better match. A cuppa and a biscuit, a squishy chair in a patch of winter sun, and A Scoundrel by Moonlight. Sounds like a perfect morning to me.

Now, my tasty little Feasty beasties, because Anna is such a generous soul (as all good queens are), she’s offering a…

GIVEAWAY!

To be in the draw to win a signed copy of Anna’s brand new release, A Scoundrel by Moonlight, simply answer this question:

Have you ever had a happy accident – something unexpected that happened and took you in a new and better direction?

Maybe you’ve taken a wrong turn and discovered something wonderful, or accidentally hit the one-click buy button on a book or other item you didn’t intend to purchase and serendipitously discovered a gem. Me, I’ve had some gorgeous moments travelling when I’ve gotten lost and found magic. The same with food when I’ve ordered what I thought was one thing only to be served something totally different but also totally delicious (also totally horrid as was once the case with rognons de veau in France *shudder*).

Simply share your happy accident with us and you’ll be in the draw to win.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Tuesday AEST, 12th May 2015. Open internationally. Rah!

If you’d like to learn more about Anna and her books, please visit her website. You can also connect via Facebook, Goodreads, and Twitter using @AnnaCampbellOz. You’ll also find her at Romance Bandits.

Friday Feast recipe index link.

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