Tag Archives: women’s fiction

Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayIt’s Teaser Tuesday time again, the blog series where I share juicy bits from works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Except when I let good buddies take over, as is the case today!

I’m thrilled to welcome Rachael Johns to the blog again. Rach is mostly known for her fab rural romances but last year she released her first women’s fiction novel, The Patterson Girls, and it was a ginormous hit (read a Teaser Tuesday snippet here). It also won a prestigious Australian Book Industry Award for General Fiction Book of the Year. Pretty. Damn. Cool.

This week sees the release of Rach’s second women’s fiction, The Art of Keeping Secrets. Here’s Rach to tell you a bit about it and share a taste.

 

Author Rachael JohnsI’m so excited that my new book THE ART OF KEEPING SECRETS is FINALLY out!! This book is about female friendship and the secrets we keep for our friends, sometimes from our friends, and occasionally, the secrets we even keep from ourselves. My three main characters – Flick, Neve and Emma – head off on a girls’ trip to New York for a bit of fun and frivolity but even more importantly to hunt down Neve’s ex-lover and tell him he has a now seventeen year old son. However, while they’re in NYC, some other secrets come out. This extract I’m sharing with you today is from a scene in Central Park just before Flick reveals her big secret to her two best friends. Happy reading.

 

As their waiter retreated, Emma took a sip of her sparkling water and Flick’s phone beeped. She glanced down at where it sat beside them on the table, then sucked in a breath. Her cheeks flared red.

            ‘What it is?’ Emma asked.

            ‘Nothing. Just an old friend I met last night requesting friendship on Facebook.’

            ‘Jeremy?’ Neve exclaimed. ‘You’re not going to accept, are you?’

            Emma had no idea who they were talking about.

            Flick shrugged. ‘Why wouldn’t I? It was nice to see him again.’

            The Art of Keeping Secrets by Rachael JohnsNice? The way you two were acting it looked a lot more than nice.’

            ‘Could someone fill me in?’ Emma asked, wondering what exactly she’d missed by going to bed early.

            ‘Flick met an old boyfriend in the bar last night and things got pretty damn cosy.’

            ‘What?’ Flick spluttered, her eyes wide. ‘For one, he was never my boyfriend and for two, things weren’t cosy. We were just catching up.’

            Neve raised her eyebrows. ‘And would your catching up have been any different if your husband had been there?’

            But Neve had to be overreacting – she’d had an emotional night and drank a fair bit – no way Flick would ever do anything to jeopardize her relationship with Seb. Emma scrutinised her friend’s face as they waited for her answer.

            ‘That’s none of your business,’ Flick said finally.

            Worry lodged itself in Emma’s throat. Where was Flick’s defence that of course she’d act the same if Seb had been there?

            ‘I beg to differ.’ Neve leaned forward, encroaching across the table into Flick’s personal space. ‘You’re a good friend, Flick, but so is Seb. He dotes on you and the kids, he’s a great father and the best darn husband I’ve ever known. Not many men would stay up so they could pick up their wife from a drunken night out with her friends you know. I don’t like to think of you…’

            Flick slammed her hand against the table top, rattling the silver cutlery. ‘Can you just stop going on and on about how bloody wonderful Seb is? Sometimes I think the two of you are more in love with him than I am, but things on the inside aren’t always as they look on the outside. And you don’t have the patent on secrets, Neve.’

 

Ooooh! Secrets! Just the sort of story we all love and you could be reading The Art of Keeping Secrets right now with just a clickety-click. Buy from Booktopia, Angus & Roberston Bookworld, Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play or duck down to your favourite independent book store or chain and grab a copy off the shelf.

 

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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 for the weeks when writing buddies kindly fill in for me, like today!

It’s my pleasure to welcome Sandy Curtis to the blog. Sandy is a romantic suspense author whose tagline is the very cool “where crime and passion collide”. She hails from Queensland’s central coast and lives not far from the beach, and loves to spend time walking the sand while mulling over intricate, edge-of-your-seat plots for her books. If like your romance with an edge of danger, Sandy’s novels are for you.

Her latest release is a women’s fiction novel with the intriguing title of Murder, Mayhem and Men On Pause, available with just one click from Amazon. It sounds an absolutely cracking read too. Here’s Sandy to tell you more about it.

Author Sandy CurtisCathryn, thank you for having me on Teaser Tuesday and letting me share a piece of Murder, Mayhem and Men On Pause. I started writing this book over ten years ago (under a different title), but it was going to be one of those angsty women’s fiction novels that had the characters going through major traumas and showing how they dealt with them. But I couldn’t keep writing it. It was too depressing. A couple of years ago those characters told me they’d been kept in limbo too long and it was time for me to let them show the world that women have the kind of enduring strength that enables them to cope with whatever life throws at them.  Yes, they might go down for a while, but they grit their teeth and get back up and take control of their lives.

So I started writing again, but this time with a different flavour. There are losses and sorrows, but also happiness and laughter, and the kinds of friendships I’ve been lucky to have in my life.

This teaser has Ellie, who has been hospitalised with concussion, being visited by her new friend (they’re not lovers … yet), police officer Chris Ryan. And then her separated husband, Damien, turns up.

 

A flash of blue in the doorway made her heart thump. Chris. Oh, God, but he looked good, standing there, all lean but solid at the same time, a bunch of roses in one hand, police cap in the other, and a look in his eyes that said “caring” more than any words could.

‘You look better than you did last night,’ he said, and walked in, closing the door behind him.

 ‘I hope so.’ Hell, she’d seen herself in the mirror – she still looked like crap, only a better version. ‘I still can’t remember what happened. Miranda told me about Mouse finding me. Was he able to give you a clue?’

Chris shook his head. He placed the roses on the bed and gently kissed her. Ellie gave silent thanks that she’d cleaned her teeth before melting into the warmth of his lips. When he moved back, she breathed, ‘Thank you,’ and wasn’t thinking of the flowers.

Murder Mayhem and Men on Pause by Sandy CurtisHe looked like he was going to kiss her again, but sat on the visitor’s chair instead. ‘From what we can work out, your heel caught in the carpet on the stairs and you fell onto the tiled floor and hit your head.’

Something flicked in Ellie’s mind at his words, but it quickly went. ‘I must thank Mouse for calling Miranda. I could have been lying there a lot longer.’

A smile made its way across Chris’s face. ‘I think you and Miranda have a friend for life there. And I gained a few brownie points by suggesting to him that if he had anything on him he didn’t want the attending police to see then he might want to leave it in the garden before they arrived to take him to the station to make a statement.’

‘You did?’ Ellie smiled. ‘That was very un-cop-like of you.’

‘I’ve attended a lot of crime scenes, and it was pretty obvious that you’d fallen and not been pushed or hit. I figured I owed Mouse a favour. He could have left you there and no-one would have known, but he didn’t.’

‘Maybe you should offer to take one of his kittens. You’d join his friends-for-life club.’

Before he could reply, the door opened.

Damien walked into the room.

Ellie stared. She felt her jaw drop.

He’d lost weight, his expensive suit tailored to fit his trimmer physique. In one hand he carried an overnight bag. The other held a bouquet of flowers that screamed ostentatious. She found her voice. ‘Damien. What are you doing here?’

He glared at Chris before striding over to the bed and thrusting the flowers at Ellie. ‘Miranda called and told me about your accident. I caught the first plane I could.’ He glared at Chris again. ‘I’m Damien Cummins, Ellie’s husband.’

Ellie almost groaned. Damien had made the statement sound like a challenge. She saw the gleam of battle in Chris’s eyes as he stood.

‘Separated husband,’ Chris reminded him.

It was like a rag waved at a bull. Damien clenched his teeth, and Ellie wouldn’t have been surprised if his eyes bulged. ‘We’re still married,’ he ground out.

‘That’s only a legality.’ Chris’s tone was mild, but Ellie could see the tension in his body and the way his fingers gripped his cap.

‘I came here to be with my wife, and would appreciate some privacy, if you don’t mind.’

‘Perhaps Ellie minds.’

Both men held each other’s gaze for a few more seconds, then turned to look at her. It was like being confronted by the headmistress when you knew you had to take the blame or rat on your friends – dead whichever way she went. Then anger bubbled up. She tossed the flowers to the end of the bed. ‘What about your girlfriend, Damien? How does she feel about this?’

Ooh, now that’s what I call an intriguing teaser. Murder, Mayhem and Men On Pause is available right now from Amazon. Grab your copy today!

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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It’s Teaser Tuesday time again, the blog series where I share tantalising snippets from works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Except when I let good buddies take over. Like today!

Teaser TuesdayRachael Johns is known and loved for her rural romances, including her phenomenally successful Outback series. But Rach is multi-talented and has now turned her hand to women’s fiction. The result is The Patterson Girls, a story I’m very much looking forward to reading and I know Rachael’s fans are too. Which means it’s going to be in huuuuge demand and you should snare your copy right this instant. Grab The Patterson Girls from Booktopia, Amazon, iBooks, Kobo, Google Play or your favourite retailer.

Now here’s Rach to tell you a little bit about the book and give a taste of what’s to come. Enjoy!

Author Rachael JohnsTHE PATTERSON GIRLS is my first women’s fiction book, but it also has a lot of the trademark elements of my rural romances. It’s set mostly in a small South Aussie town and has four delicious male leads for you to fall in love with. About sisters and a family secret, I hope you’ll love it as much as I do. This extract is in Abigail Patterson’s point-of-view. Abigail is the youngest sister and lives in London, but is on the edge of destitution after recently losing her job!

 

Her hands shaking—she’d never done anything illegal before in her life but couldn’t afford the time or money it would take to get a busker’s permit—she bent down and released the clasps on her violin case.

‘I’m sorry,’ she whispered as she tenderly picked it and the bow up out of its case. It felt like sacrilege to be playing her prized instrument on a dirty London street with the overcast sky frowning down at them, but the second she lifted it up and put her chin on the chin rest, she began to relax. She positioned her fingers on the strings, took a deep breath and launched into Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in D major.

The Patterson Girls by Rachael JohnsBefore long a small crowd had gathered around her and people were tossing money in her case at a pleasing rate. She smiled her thanks as the coins dropped and clinked against each other, thinking that perhaps she’d go out and splurge on a baby name book when she was done. And something delicious to eat. If she was pregnant, she needed to keep her strength up. She was so distracted by these thoughts and the actual glee of playing for an audience again that she almost didn’t hear the shout from one of the onlookers.

‘Pigs are coming!’

Her fingers faltered on the strings, as she wondered what farm animals were doing in central London, and then it clicked. Police. How the person guessed she didn’t have a busker’s permit she had no clue, but she called out her thanks as she shoved her violin and bow back into the case and fumbled to get it shut. A coin lodged in one of the clasps and a cold sweat erupted on the back of her neck as the crowd dispersed.

A menacing figure dressed in the Met’s navy blue approached from about twenty metres away. Clutching her not-quite-shut case under her arm, Abigail launched into a run. She didn’t know where she was headed, just that she needed to get away.

‘Oi, Miss!’ The policeman’s angry voice followed her and she upped her speed as if she were running from a rabid dog. No Abigail, nothing like that. Just the law. Good Lord, what had become of her?

©Rachael Johns

 

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