Tag Archives: Promises

Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser Tuesday 2017 logoWelcome to Teaser Tuesday, the blog series where I share snippets from new and past releases, and works-in-progress, and occasionally invite author buddies to do the same.

It’s August 1st and that means two wonderful things. One, it’s only 21 days until Chrissy and the Burroughs Boy releases. Rah! Have you pre-ordered your copy? If not, secure one today by visiting amazon.com, amazon.com.au, amazon.co.uk, iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble or Google Play. If you’re waiting on the print version, signed copies will be available to purchase direct from me after August 22nd (details in the release day newsletter – sign up here), or available to order from online book stores soon.

The second wonderful thing is that it’s the official birthday of the horse, at least in the southern hemisphere. If you’re out and about and spot a one of these lovely creatures, give it a pat or a carrot or blow it a kiss.

I’m going to celebrate by sharing a snippet from The Horseman’s Promise (formerly known as Promises). I love this book and am delighted that the rereleased edition is finding new readers in Australia and around the world. From the moment I started writing this book I knew it had something different, and I was right because it went on to become my first published novel.

Sophie and Aaron’s story is loaded with family drama, intense emotions and romance. But with Sophie riding event horses and Aaron being a racehorse trainer, it also has horses. Lots of them. Which is why it’s being featured on today’s Teaser Tuesday.

Here’s a snippet from Aaron’s point of view. He’s trying his hardest to not let it happen, but Sophie is getting under his skin…

 

It wasn’t only him Sophie was spoiling. Every day, the horses were favoured with a treat. Sometimes it was a bucket of carrots she’d share out before leaving for home. Other mornings she brought he Horsemans Promise by Cathryn Heinapples. The week before, Aaron had caught her feeding the horses peppermints.

The horses’ reactions to this unusual treat had her laughing so hard she’d had to grab at a rail to hold herself upright. Psycho kept raising his head in the air and curling his top lip like a randy ram that had just sniffed a ewe. Costa Mozta was leaning so far over the top rail of his yard, his rubbery lips extended and wiggling like an elephant’s nose as he tried to reach for the packet, that he was in danger of falling over. Rowdy had cocked his head to either side like a connoisseur thinking up superlatives to describe the taste, before flopping out his tongue and waggling it as if it needed airing.

Aaron had shaken his head and walked away grumbling about rotten teeth and dentist bills, but the sight of her laughing so joyously made his heart feel too big for his chest.

 

The Horseman’s Promise is available right now in ebook and print from amazon.com, amazon.com.au, amazon.co.uk, iBooks, Kobo, Google Play, Barnes and Noble, Bookdepository, Booktopia, and Angus and Robertson Bookworld. Grab your copy today and be charmed!

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser Tuesday 2017 logoWelcome to the delight that is Teaser Tuesday, the blog series where I share snippets from my novels, past, present and in progress, and occasionally sucker author buddies into taking over.

I’ve just returned from a trip to outback Queensland and have a brain full of juicy new story ideas. I love travelling, whether it’s a journey just up the road or somewhere thousands of miles away, there’s always something to learn and interesting things to gain inspiration from. As usual, I’ll be sharing photos from the trip in a This Writing Life post so watch out for that. There may be dinosaurs.

Righty-o, let’s get on to today’s Teaser Tuesday snippet. Make sure to read until the end because I have a special offer for you, and it’s a beauty too.

I’ve been thinking a lot about horse racing lately because I have a really cool story that I want to write that revolves around a horse race. This subject isn’t new for me. My debut novel Promises featured a racehorse trainer as the hero, and what a gorgeous man he was too. My crush on Aaron lasted aaaaaaages, until Lachie from Heart of the Valley strode in and stole my affections, but as with all my book heroes there will always be a special place in my heart for him.

I hope this little snippet of Aaron in action in Promises shows you why.

 

Aaron stilled and cocked his head. The distinctive knock-knock of the Range Rover filtered in through the door of Hakea Lodge’s feed room. He smiled and allowed himself a moment’s mild fantasy before shutting down his thoughts. Making it through the morning without touching Sophie would be hard enough.

But it was a day for optimism. The storm had blown through, leaving clear skies and a landscape scrubbed clean. Earlier, he’d sat on the verandah steps watching the sun rise and the horses snort and stamp as the first rays of light drifted across the yards.

Promises by Cathryn HeinHe’d thought about Sophie, and dreamed of how it could have been between them – but never would be. At sixteen, he hadn’t understood that mothers were capable of selfish exploitation. Or that fathers could die of shame. They were lessons he’d learnt too late, just as he’d learnt too late that pity and compassion could turn into something else. Something they shouldn’t.

The combined thrill and terror of watching Sophie ride cross-country like some equestrian kamikaze still lingered, plucking at his conscience the way Tess’s words did. Little pecks of doubt, eating away at his perception of Sophie, making him question her fortitude and query his own judgement.

Yet the memory of her expression when she had looked up from Chuck’s sweating neck and saw him eclipsed everything. Mud-splattered, wearing that stupid egg on her head and that equally stupid body protector, she’d gazed at him with huge grey eyes full of tears and amazement, as if seeing him was the best thing that had ever happened to her.

No one had looked at him like that before. Ever.

 

Now, as I mentioned in the intro, I have a special offer for you. You can purchase signed copies of Promises direct from me for only $15 including delivery to your Australian postal address. What a bargain!

To take advantage of this deal – and you know you want to, oh yes you do! – simply email me at cathryn@cathrynhein.com to order or use the contact form on the contact page of this website, and I’ll send you the Paypal link.

I also have limited quantities of my other titles available that I can personally sign to you or to someone else as a gift. Just shoot me an email and we’ll work it the cost.

Want to learn more about Promises? You’ll find the story behind the book, reviews, and more excerpts on its book page on this website.

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser TuesdayIt’s Teaser Tuesday again, the tantalising series where I share snippets from my novels, old, new and in progress, and occasionally let author buddies take over.

We’re going with a blast from the past this week, with a teaser from my debut rural romance Promises. Aaron and Sophie will always have a special place in my heart. These two were a joy to write, especially Aaron who is so wonderfully tortured. He just needs to realise that Sophie is strong enough for both of them.

Did you know you can purchase signed print copies of Promises direct from me for only $18 delivered? (Australian postal addresses only) These are the large sized books with the original (and very romantic!) cover design. Simply email me via the contact form on this website and I’ll shoot you the details.

Now please enjoy this taste of Promises.

 

Sophie nodded, told Aaron she’d see him tomorrow and headed for her car.

On impulse, as she reached for the door, he called to her. She waited until he walked over, eyeing him with curiosity.

Promises by Cathryn HeinHe swallowed, suddenly feeling stupid, like a bumbling teenager trying to ask a girl out for the first time. He shoved his hands in his pockets to stop them fidgeting, and kicked at the ground, dirtying his clean boots.

She waited, her frown deepening as he struggled to get the words out.

‘You do have friends, Sophie. You have me.’

‘Do I?’

He nodded.

She stared at him for a second and then with a smile, she wrapped her arms around his neck and buried her face into his chest. At first he stood stiff and unsure, but as her soft body pressed against him, the awkwardness passed. He relaxed enough to pull his hands from his pockets and carefully fold his arms around her, surprised at how good it felt, like he was giving her the comfort he’d always wanted to. A tiny touch of humanity and kindness as reparation for his sins.

Friendship was good. He could cope with that.

©Cathryn Hein

Promises is available right now from Booktopia, Bookdepository, Amazon, iBooks, Kobo, Google Play or your favourite retailer. If you’d like to take advantage of the signed copy offer, please email me direct via the contact page.

Want to know more about Promises? Find the story behind the book, reviews, and more excerpts on its book page on this website.

 

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2016 Australia Day Book Giveaway Blog Hop!

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2016 Australia Day Book Giveaway Blog Hop!Welcome to the 2016 Australia Day Book Giveaway Blog Hop brought to you by that most excellent of book blogs Book’d Out.

And what is the hop all about? It’s all about giving you, lovely readers, the opportunity to win lots of books by Australian authors, along with other goodies. For the full list of participants simply visit Book’d Out’s blog hop page.

Cover of Summer and the Groomsman by Cathryn HeinSo what giveaway am I offering?

How about a signed print copy of the utterly charming rural romance novella Summer and the Groomsman? You will love this story. It’s gorgeous, not to mention a lot of fun, and has the added bonus of featuring hat-tipping Mr Sexy on the cover.

But that’s not all!

Because it’s Australia Day, and because I’m feeling all summery and cheery, I’m going to throw in a signed copy of my debut rural release Promises. I adore this story. It’s beautifully romantic, with lots of horses, secrets and drama in a fabulous setting.

But you’ll have to work a little to be in the giveaway. Nothing too onerous because that wouldn’t be in the spirit of things, would it? No, all you have to do is reveal what you’ll be scoffing (or want to be scoffing) this Australia Day.

Promises by Cathryn HeinDo you hanker for snags or a lamb chop on the barbie, or can’t wait for a great glistening platter of fresh seafood? Perhaps a pavlova or lamington sugar-high is on your agenda, or even the deep-fried awesomeness of a Chiko Roll! Whatever Australia Day fare you’re indulging in or wish you were having, share it in the comments below and I’ll pop you into the draw to win the above book package.

Please note: Australian postal addresses only. Giveaway opens midday AEDT, Sunday January 24th, 2016 and closes midnight AEDT on Wednesday January 27th, 2016. Winner notified by email within 7 days of closing date and announced in the comments.

Want to keep up with all my releases, plus have access to exclusive content, giveaways and subscriber-only short stories? Sign up to my newsletter. It’s fun, plus I’ll love you.

Got your entry in? Good. Now skip on back to Book’d Out and check out all the other blog hop giveaway opportunities.

And don’t forget to have a fantastic Australia Day!

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Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser TuesdayIt’s Teaser Tuesday again, the tantalising series where I share snippets from my novels, old, new and in progress, and occasionally let author buddies take over.

This week a look back at my debut rural romance Promises. Oh, how I adore this book and its tortured hero Aaron and feisty young Sophie. With its feuding families, dark secrets, vivid landscape, and thoroughbred racing action, it was exciting, romantic and fun to write. I especially loved creating the horse characters. Nothing new there though!

If you haven’t tried Promises I have a super special deal going. You can purchase signed print copies direct from me for only $18, including postage (Australian postal addresses only). These are the large format, trade paperback-sized books, rather than the smaller ones, and very nice! Simply email me using the Contact form on this website and I’ll shoot you the details.

Now please enjoy this taste of Promises.

 

With trackwork over and breakfast eaten in Hakea Lodge’s warm kitchen, Aaron sent Sophie outside to play with Rowdy while he made a few phone calls. Though still cold, a breeze had risen, driving the worst of the early morning drizzle eastward. Between the racing clouds, scraps of sun appeared, helping to dry the yard. It wouldn’t have mattered if it was still freezing. Sophie took any chance available to spend time with Rowdy and Costa Motza.

Promises by Cathryn HeinTen minutes later, he found her leaning against the half-door chattering to the horse, arm stretched as she caressed Rowdy’s neck. The flickering sunshine shot Sophie’s mousy hair with pretty, pale-gold highlights. Her shirt had come loose, and he caught a glimpse of white as each reach of her arm caused her snug-fitting fleecy jumper to pull up, dragging the shirt with it. Aaron crossed the yard, unable to take his eyes off that tiny patch of skin.

As he approached, Sophie didn’t move, her attention focused on Rowdy. Aaron halted, his throat feeling rough as he sucked in cool air. He closed his eyes but the image of her skin stayed, like his mind had taken a photograph. He opened them again, staring at her as if he’d never seen female flesh before. Oblivious to his scrutiny and still happily chattering, Sophie reached up higher to fondle Rowdy’s ears, rucking her jumper up even further.

If he waited long enough, she’d turn around, break the enchantment, but Aaron didn’t want her to. Holding his breath, he took another step forward and slowly reached out, his fingers hovering over that small exposed area on her side.

Very gently, he brushed his fingertips against her skin.

©Cathryn Hein

 

For instant gratification, buy your ebook copy of Promises right now from Amazon, iBooks, Kobo or Google Play. For print copies, visit Booktopia or, if you’d like to take advantage of the special offer mentioned above, contact me direct.

Hankering for more about Promises? Find the story behind the book, reviews, and more excerpts on its book page on this website.

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FRIDAY FEAST with Cathryn Hein

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This week on Friday Feast, lucky devils that you are, you have ME again. I’m sharing one of my absolute favourite pasta recipes, showing off my new release again (because I can, and I love it to bits and want you to as well), and… oh, let’s have a giveaway. It’s been too long!

But before you get to that excitement, you must endure news from Us Heins Weren’t Meant To Play Golf. As mentioned last week, the past weekend saw me compete in the final round of the Romance author Cathryn Heinclub championships and I came SECOND! Okay, so technically with only two of us ladies left in the field I also came last but we’ll  ignore that. What was kind of cool was the gallery (aka the hecklers) surrounding the 18th green, watching the field come in, and me making a very respectable par in front of them instead of cracking under the pressure. Not normal Hein golfing behaviour at all!

Now to plug my book, which I’m allowed to do to my heart’s content because it’s my blog and I have overlord (overlady?) powers. I will, however, try not to be boring.

So… reviews for my new release Summer and the Groomsman are coming in and they’re lovely! I’m so chuffed. 5 stars from Talking Books Blog and 8/10 from Bree at 1 Girl 2 Many Books, along with lots of very kind comments about the sweet characters and the humour of the story.

It’s enough to make a girl a little teary. Or drink fizz. I prefer the latter.

On the off chance you haven’t had enough of it yet (which of course you haven’t), here’s the cover and blurb.

SUMMER AND THE GROOMSMAN

Cover of Summer and the Groomsman by Cathryn HeinIt’s Levenham’s wedding of the year but unlucky-in-love Harry Argyle has more on his mind than being groomsman.

After yet again nearly colliding with an escaped horse while driving home to the family farm, Harry Argyle comes face-to-face with its pretty owner, and doesn’t hold back his disapproval.

Confronted by a bad-tempered giant on a dark country road, beautician and new arrival in town Summer Taylor doesn’t know who to be more afraid for: herself or her darling horse Binky. It’s not her fault Binky keeps escaping. The alcoholic owner of the paddock she rents won’t fix the fence and Binky can be sneaky when it comes to filling his stomach. But no matter how big and muscled the bully, she refuses to be intimidated.

When Harry’s wedding party book a session at the day spa where Summer works, both she and Harry are horrified to be paired together. Grudgingly, they agree to make the most of it – only for the session to spiral into disaster. Realising he’s made a dill of himself in front of sweet Summer yet again, Harry vows to set things right.

Summer isn’t about to easily forgive the man who called her horse stupid, no matter how brave and kind, but with everyone on Harry’s side, even fate, resistance is hard. Can these two find love or will Summer’s wayward horse put his hoof in it again?

Oooh, this story is FUN. And you should buy it now, oh yes you should! Try Amazon.com, Amazon.au, Amazon.uk, Kobo, iBooks or Nook.

Now, grab those pots and fire up that stove, because this recipe’s a cracker.

Pucker-Up For Pasta

By now you’re all probably aware that I’m a sucker for recipes that taste disproportionately impressive to the amount of effort they take to prepare. I never used to be this way though. In fact, there was once a time when the longer the recipe, the more complicated, the more ingredients it required, the happier I was. And if it involved learning some obscure new technique, even better.

Personally, I blame the 80s.

Me at uni graduation with big hair

Me on graduation day with big hair and even bigger shoulder pads beneath my gown.

Everything had to be bigger and better then: hair, shoulder pads… plates. Remember enormous white plates with tiny bits of lonely food on them? So fashionable. I still have the most beautiful Royal Doulton set in my crockery collection. You could eat entree and main off those things and still have room for dessert, but I’ll never get rid of them because they’re so nice.

The ‘more is better’ fad followed me into the early 90’s too, when I moved to Melbourne. I used to hold these dinner parties that would take days to prepare for and involve early morning trips to Queen Victoria Market followed by hours in the kitchen and exhaustion by the end of the evening. Vogue Entertaining magazine was my bible, along with Elle Cuisine and another short-lived ultra-cheffy one I can’t recall the name of.

These days? It’s all about maximum taste from minimum effort.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to spend an afternoon in the kitchen playing around with something novel. I adore cooking, trying new ingredients, learning new techniques, especially on a Friday when there’s the end of the week to celebrate. Weekdays though, it’s all good food done fast. Well, not necessarily fast but certainly without drama.

Which brings me to today’s recipe, pasta e fagioli. Pasta and beans.

I’m sure there are hundreds of different recipes for this, and I certainly don’t claim the following as authentic. Not even close. In fact, my version is a total mash-up, and even then I change it around, depending on my mood. But in my book adaptability is a sign of a great recipe, plus mucking about is fun. I think traditionally, like many cucina povera dishes, pasta e fagioli is meatless. I also believe it’s meant to be runnier, like a soup. I make my version thick and serve as a plated pasta. Easy to eat and very satisfying.

The key to the success of this recipe is in the sausages. Honestly, if you don’t have good Italian sausages, don’t bother making it. Without them the dish will turn out ordinary. With them, it’ll be delicious. But as I’m sure you know, using quality ingredients is the secret to getting the best out of all recipes.

Look for lovely chunky pork sausages with plenty of seasoning. Fennel is a must, and if you can score ones with chilli in them as well, even better.

Pasta e Fagioli – Pasta and Beans

Serves 4

My Pasta e Fagioli

Ingredients

Olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

4 fat Italian sausages

1 tablespoon tomato paste

Dried chilli flakes to taste (if the sausages are chilli-less), 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon

400g can tomato polpa (or used tinned tomatoes and crush them up with your hands or a potato masher)

½ cup (125ml) beef stock

400g can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

250g macaroni (or any small pasta – tiny penne works well as tubetti and ditalini)

Grated parmesan to serve

Method

Squeeze the sausage meat from the casings and chop if really chunky or you can feel gristly bits.

Squeezed out Italian sausage meat

Heat a good splodge of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Throw in onion and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring, until softened.

Cooking chopped onion

Add garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring. Increase the heat a little and add sausage meat. Cook for 5 minutes or so, breaking up any lumps with a wooden spoon, until browned. Add tomato paste, chopped tomato, chilli (if needed) and stock, then simmer for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened.

Simmering tomato and sausage meat

Taste and season as needed, then stir in beans to heat through.

Tomato, sausage mince and beans

Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to packet instructions until al dente. Drain, add to the sauce and mix.

Spoon onto plates and serve with plenty of grated parmesan, and watch those plates clear!

Empty plate

Okey-dokey, cos I’m feeling in the mood for one, let’s have a…

GIVEAWAY!

Hmm, which book shall I put up for grabs? I had planned to give away a print copy of Summer and the Groomsman but, annoyingly, they’re not ready yet (gah!). How about a copy of my debut Promises by Cathryn Heinrelease Promises instead? I love that story. It’s a bit Romeo and Juliette-ish, is set in south-east South Australia where I’m from, and has lots of gorgeous horses. Perfect!

Already have a copy? That’s okay. If you win, you can always give the copy away as a present. I’ll sign it to whoever you like.

So, to be in the draw to win a signed paperback copy of Promises, simply leave a comment revealing your favourite pasta or noodle dish.

How’s that for easy peasy?

I’ve just shared mine, although I do have many other recipes in my collection that I adore. Veal ragù with home-made papardelle springs to mind – that dish is amaaaazing – and I just love spinach and ricotta canneloni. Ooh, and how can one go past pumpkin ravioli with sage butter? That dish is like eating autumn!

So what’s your favourite? Share and I’ll pop you into the draw.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Tuesday AEST, 17th November 2015. Australian postal addresses only.

If you’d like to learn more about me or my books, there’s plenty to discover on this website, including a fun video on my About page on How To Grow An Australian Romance Author, plus The Story Behind each book and more on its book page. You can also connect with me on Facebook, Twitter using @CathrynHein, Google +, Goodreads and Pinterest.

Friday Feast recipe index link.

 

 

FRIDAY FEAST with Cathryn Hein

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Greetings Feasty lovelies, and welcome to another tasty edition of Friday Feast, coming to you again from the mighty metropolis of Melbourne where I’ve been for the Romance Writers of Australia annual conference. What a ball we had. I promise to post lots of photos for you when I get home. In the meantime you can enjoy this Friday Feast from me, where I wax lyrical about one of my favourite food destinations.

Cathryn Hein playing golfBut first, news from Us Heins Weren’t Meant To Play Golf. Not a lot of golf to talk about thanks to the conference but I did sneak down the Mornington Peninsula for a hit during the week. It was not pretty. The course was playing mean, it was bloody freezing, and I lost to His Majesty after being four shots up. Gah! But while the golf might have been ordinary, the views were good and the miserable day gave us the excuse to snuggle up in an Irish pub afterward with pints of Guinness and some hot, hearty food. There’s always a silver lining!

This week I’m going to feature my debut novel, Promises, which hit shelves almost four years ago to the day, on the 29th August 2011. Such an exciting time!

PROMISES

Promises by Cathryn HeinA father with something to hide, a jockey with a taste for blackmail, a man with an agonising secret. . . and a young woman in love, defying them all.

Sophie Dixon is determined to leave her tragic past behind and forge a bright future on her beloved farm. While looking to buy a new horse, she is drawn into her neighbour Aaron’s Laidlaw’s orbit, despite the bad blood between their families.

As the racing season unfolds, Sophie and Aaron’s feelings for each other deepen. But Aaron is torn, haunted by a dark secret he fears can never be forgiven – especially by Sophie.

Sophie believes herself strong, but the truth behind her mother’s death will test her strength, and her love, to the limit. She’s been broken once. No one wants to see her broken again. Least of all the man who has grown to love her.

This is such a wonderful book, with feuding families, deep secrets, loads of romance and a whole lot of good feeling. I’m horribly biased of course, but this story is completely sigh-worthy. If you missed Teaser Tuesday this week, there’s a little snippet for your reading pleasure there, plus a another extract on the Promises book page. Or why not just buy the whole book? You know you want to… Try Booktopia, Bookworld, Angus & Robertson, Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play, JB Hi-Fi or your favourite book store or e-tailer.

All set? Good. Now come enjoy some happy foodie snaps from Mighty Melbournetown!

To Market, To Market!

I’ve never been shy about how much I adore Melbourne. It’s my favourite Australian capital. Melbourne has a great vibe, one of action and excitement, of fantastic food and culture, of interesting architecture and art, and it’s the spiritual home of that most excellent and pervable of sports, Australian Rules Football.

Pasta at Queen Victoria Market

Seafood at Queen Victoria Market

In many ways, it’s the city I grew up with. Mount Gambier, my home town, is almost equidistant between Adelaide and Melbourne. Being South Australian, you’d think we’d gravitate to our own capital for big city experiences but it was Melbourne that we frequented most. I guess simply because it was so much bigger. Or it could be that the road was easier. Driving to Adelaide via the Coorong was, admittedly, scenic but back then the road was pretty ordinary, and the alternative route through the upper south-east not much better, whereas Victoria’s Glenelg Highway and Princes Highway weren’t too bad. But that could be my faulty childhood memory. The older I get the more I find discover how many tricks that can play.

Olives at Queen Victoria Market

Cheese at Queen Victoria Market

I’ve been fortunate enough to live in Melbourne twice. The first time was post-university when I was employed by a pasture seed company that had a depot in Melbourne. The second time was in 2012 when Jim scored a brief posting here. Boy-oh-boy, did we make the most of that year. I think we spent every weekend doing something, whether it was going to the footy, taking a ferry up the Yarra, visiting a museum or gallery, shopping up a storm, or lunching at one of Melbourne’s many great restaurants.

Chicken nibbles at Queen Victoria Market

Offal at Queen Victoria Market

One of my absolute favourite things to do in Melbourne is visit the markets. The South Melbourne Markets were our regular haunt in 2012 but before then it was either Prahran Market or Queen Victoria Market.

Octopus and Cuttlefish at Queen Victoria Market

Chillies at Queen Victoria Market

Visiting Queen Vic late on a Saturday morning back in the 90s was a blast, especially the meat and seafood areas. The butchers and fishmongers would be in a mad scramble to shift stock before closing and if you timed it right you could snag some real bargains. Our favourite was 3 rolled beef seasoned roasts for $10 and trays of crumbed schnitzel for ridiculous prices. It was noisy, crowded and great theatre, and I revelled in it.

Gurnard at Queen Victoria Market

Fruit and Veg at Queen Victoria Market

Fishmonger at Queen Victoria Market

Female pork cuts at Queen Victoria Market

Naturally, being in Melbourne this past week for the RWA conference, I couldn’t miss another trip back to the market. We needed cheese and salumi to munch on and I wanted new ugg boots, and I just like the colour, atmosphere and interesting produce.

Duck eggs at Queen Victoria Market

Duck Breasts at Queen Victoria Market

Deli at Queen Victoria Market

Bread at Queen Victoria Market

What’s your favourite shopping experience? I’d love to hear recommendations, even if it’s not foodie.

While I adore Melbourne’s markets, I have to admit that my best shopping experiences have been overseas. Wandering through the ancient streets of Aix-en-Provence on market days is still one of the most vivid memories of our years in France. There was always something fascinating and the produce stalls were amazing.

What about you? Where can you recommend to shop?

If you’d like to learn more about me and my books, please feel free to explore my website. You’ll find everything from my book releases to past Friday Feasts and other blog posts. You might even discover some secret things about me. If you’d like to connect with me elsewhere, I’m on Facebook, Twitter as @CathrynHein, Google+, Goodreads and Pinterest.

For all the latest news and new releases, plus free short stories and other goodies, please sign up to my newsletter. I luuuurve newsletter subscribers and treat them super-special.

Friday Feast recipe index link.

Teaser Tuesday!

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Welcome to another Teaser Tuesday! The weekly series where I tantalise you with snippets from upcoming and past book releases, and works-in-progress.  This week I’m celebrating a birthday. Not mine, one of my book’s!

Teaser TuesdayIt was this time in August 2011 that my first rural romance Promises hit the shelves. Oh, I adore this book! Racehorse trainer Aaron’s and his farming neighbour Sophie’s story is super romantic and it looks like they’re never going to get together. Aaron holds such a terrible secret in his heart and no matter how many times Sophie tries to tell him otherwise, he knows the moment she discovers the truth behind her mother’s death any love Sophie has for him will be destroyed.

Cosmopolitan magazine wrote: “Take two feuding families with a dark history, add two beautiful offspring from those families, and let the angst-ridden romance begin.”

Sounds a tad Romeo and Juliet but never fear, being a romance, this one all ends happily in the end.

If you haven’t tried Promises it’s available now in paperback and ebook from Booktopia, Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play, JB Hi-Fi or your favourite retailer.

Now enjoy this little snippet from one of my most adored stories.

Aaron and Sophie have taken refuge from a storm in the back of Sophie’s horse float…

 

The aluminium sides of the float vibrated as thunder rumbled overhead. She gave Buck another glance, but he appeared fine. She turned back to Aaron. He leaned stiffly against the right-hand chest bar with his hat in his hands, watching her.

‘I suppose we’ll just have to wait,’ she said.

‘It’ll blow over soon enough. In ten minutes the sun will probably start shining.’

Promises by Cathryn Hein‘Yep. Typical western districts weather. Four seasons in one day.’

With the ramp and top rear doors closed and little light penetrating the tinted windows, it was strangely intimate inside the float. The comforting, familiar smell of leather, hay and horse hung in the still air. The spacious float seemed cramped and small, and unable to accommodate two people at once.

Despite the cold, Sophie’s skin flushed in the close confines. Aaron’s eyes seemed anchored to hers, but not in a way she wanted. He was scrutinising her, in the same way a child would observe an insect, as though she were something alien and scary, but awesome    and fascinating at the same time.

‘I wonder if they’ll cancel the presentation,’ she said.

He didn’t answer.

‘You should probably leave.’

‘I want to stay.’

‘Oh.’ She took a deep breath, trying to summon up the courage to ask why. He said something but she couldn’t hear him through the rain. ‘Sorry, what did you say?’

‘Do you wish I hadn’t come?’

‘No. I’m glad you’re here.’ She took a step toward him. His Adam’s apple bobbed as he swallowed. She took his hand and held it with both of hers. ‘It means a lot.’

He swallowed again and gave her a tight smile. ‘I’m glad,’ he said, and then, very gently, he removed his hand from her grip.

©Cathryn Hein

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Rural Romance Book Heaven Could Be Yours!

How would you like the chance to win a Valentine’s bouquet that lasts forever? Well, perhaps not forever, but a bloody long time.

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AustralianRuralRomance.com

Valentine’s Day Giveaway!

There are 6 book bouquets – yes, SIX! – up for grabs, with each bunch containing 5 of the best from our Australian rural romance stars. We’re talking the likes of Rachael Johns, Fiona Palmer, Loretta Hill, Helene Young, Tricia Stringer, Barbara Hannay, Fleur McDonald, Fiona McArthur, Jenn J McLeod, Mandy Magro, Margareta Osborn, Bronwyn Parry, Jennifer Scoullar and many more. And all you have to do to be in the draw is sign up to the australianruralromance.com blog. Easy-peasy.

Lucky me is in two book bouquets, one featuring a signed copy of Promises, the other a copy of Heart of the Valley. Check out the amazing company I’m in…

Australian rural romance book bouquet with Promises

 

Australian rural romance book bouquet with Heart of the Valley

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Winners will be drawn on February 14th. Australian postal addresses only.

 

New Cover For PROMISES

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On August 27th, the smaller (and cheaper) ‘B’ format paperback edition of my debut rural romance PROMISES will hit the shelves, complete with a swanky new cover.

Isn’t it lovely? I adored the original with the couple gazing into each other’s eyes, but this one’s gorgeous. Then again, I’m a terrible sucker for a noble headed horse!

Don’t yet own a copy of Promises? Pre-order this new edition from Booktopia or Bookworld. The ebooks are also available right now from Amazon, iBooks, Kobo, Google Play, JB Hi-Fi or your favourite ebook retailer.

 

Promises by Cathryn Hein

A father with something to hide, a jockey with a taste for blackmail, a man with an agonising secret… and a young woman in love, defying them all.

Sophie Dixon is determined to leave her tragic past behind and forge a bright future on her beloved farm. While looking to buy a new horse, she is drawn into her neighbour Aaron Laidlaw’s orbit, despite the bad blood between their families. As the racing season unfolds, Sophie and Aaron’s feelings for each other deepen. But Aaron is torn, haunted by a dark secret he fears can never be forgiven – especially by Sophie.

Sophie believes herself strong, but the truth behind her mother’s death will test her strength, and her love, to the limit. She’s been broken once. No one wants to see her broken again. Least of all the man who has grown to love her.