Teaser Tuesday!

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

Are you ready for Easter? I hope the weather behaves for us all and we can get out and about. Jim and I won’t be travelling far, mainly catching up with friends locally and enjoying the beach and harbour. And enjoying my beloved Sydney Swans AFL team. Although, given the number of losses we’ve suffered so far this season, I’m not sure enjoying is the right word. It’s felt more like despair and frustration. Still, early days. Our hopes for the season aren’t dead yet.

The eternal optimism of fandom, eh?

I’ll probably make another batch of hot-cross buns too. They’re so easy using a bread-maker and they’re beautiful fresh out of the oven, and they make the house smell heavenly! I’ve been making them for ages from a recipe that I adjusted for use. You can find it here in this old Friday Feast, if you want to give it a try. (Remember that blog series? Faaaabulous recipes from a stack of even fabber Aussie authors.) Honestly, these hot-cross buns are dead simple and the most work you’ll have to do is kneading in the sultanas.

Looking at that Friday Feast reminded me that it was very close to this date five years ago that Rocking Horse Hill released. Rocking Horse Hill has now gone onto to spawn the (loosely related) Levenham Love Story series which has been huge fun to write, and for which Eddie and the Show Queen will be the next addition.

So to celebrate its five year anniversary, here’s a little snippet from Rocking Horse Hill. This one features Audrey Wallace, aka Granny B and matriarch of the privileged Wallace family. She’s naughty, clever and doesn’t suffer fools but she’s also generous, loyal and adores her family and community. I love her and I know many of you do too.

Here’s Granny B with the book’s hero Josh, who she invited to the Wallace family’s historic home for a drinks party …

‘Thinking about the last time you were here?’

He turned to Granny B. ‘How did you know?’

Rocking Horse Hill by Cathryn Hein - global cover‘I would consider it rather unusual if you didn’t recall that night.’ Granny B nodded Em’s way. ‘Fortunately, she’s grown up since then.’

‘We all have.’

‘Yes. Rather nicely, in your case. Although you always were a good-looking boy.’

He leaned in close and lowered his voice to a tease. ‘Granny B, are you flirting with me?’

She cocked her head and considered. ‘Do you know, I think you’d rather like it if I was.’

‘You bet I would.’

She laughed throatily. ‘Oh, I do so like you, Joshua. It’s good to have you back.’

Rocking Horse Hill is available in paperback and ebook from these stores. You can also order personally signed copies direct from me. Simply contact me via the Contact page of this website and we’ll sort it out.

Booktopia | Angus & Robertson | Bookdepository

Amazon.com | Amazon.au | Amazon.uk

iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Barnes and Noble

Remember, if you want to be the first to hear about Eddie and the Show Queen’s release, or any other upcoming books, make sure you join my newsletter. You’ll not only keep up with all the news, sneak peeks and other fun-stuff, you’ll receive a couple of free short stories to enjoy over a cuppa. Join here or click the image below.

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My Favourite Reads

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My Favourite Reads image

Welcome to My Favourite Reads for March 2019!

I had an excellent reading month, fitting in more books than normal. Probably because they were all so good. There are even a couple of non-fiction reads this month. Very unusual for me.

But my favourite read has to be…

The Lost Man by Jane Harper

The Lost Man by Jane HarperYep, it lived up to the hype. Bigtime.

As with The Dry (which I talked about here), the setting for The Lost Man was wonderfully drawn. You could feel the isolation and danger of the land. It added an extra dimension to what is already a tension filled story.

Lots of twists, fascinating family situation, the rules of survival in a harsh country, and a truly intriguing mystery. I’ve been reading quite a few Australian thrillers/crime novels recently and this is one of the best.

Highly recommended.

The 7 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart TurtonThe 7 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

I’ve been wanting to read this award-winning murder mystery since release but it was ridiculously priced in ebook (my reading preference) and I let it slide. Then it appeared on sale and there was much yippee-ing and one-clicking.

Be warned, The 7 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle is a complicated story (think Groundhog Day) and it took me a while to get my head around how it worked, but it was worth it in the end. Great characters. I enjoyed it a lot.

Hangman by Jack HeathHangman by Jack Heath

Regular readers will know how partial I am to juicy horror and gory crime, and Hangman looked smack in my zone. It certainly has elements of both horror and gory crime but… yikes! Sometimes this was even too much for me.

Fab read though. Great pacing and tantalising mystery and, despite his… um… interesting predilection, I couldn’t help admiring our icky hero.

Hangman is NOT for the fainthearted though. You have been warned.

The Woman Who Fooled the World by Nick Toscano and Beau DonellyThe Woman Who Fooled the World: Belle Gibson’s Cancer Con by Nick Toscano and Beau Donelly

Gawd, this book made me angry. Not because it was bad – it was fascinating, well-researched and well-written – and not all because of Gibson’s con. It was infuriating because of the people who enabled this farce and never questioned her story. Why the hell not? Blind Freddie could see her claims were bullshit.

Oops. I’m getting ranty-ragey so I’ll shut up now.

Then again…

For crying out loud, what the hell happened to our belief in science? Since when did someone with an aptitude for posting pretty, aspirational pictures on social media become more trustworthy than those with education, expertise and experience? Are we seriously that bloody shallow?

Grrrrrrr.

Maybe this is why I don’t read a lot of non-fiction. It triggers too many rages.

Good book though.

The Colour of Bee Larkham’s Murder by Sarah J Harris

I loved this. A very close second for my favourite read of the month.

The Colour of Bee Larkham’s Murder has an autistic boy as the narrator and it’s hard not to want to compare the book to Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. There are similarities I think, but I read Haddon’s book so long ago it wouldn’t be fair to compare. All I know is that I loved both stories.

Very highly recommended.

Damn Fine Story by Chuck WendigDamn Fine Story by Chuck Wendig

One for the writers out there.

Like many authors, I have a decent library of writing craft books. Some are stuck at the back of the shelves, others are always within reach. Damn Fine Story will be an in-reach one.

This isn’t strictly a March read. I read it over a long period – months – but that’s not unusual for me with craft books. I find I miss too much of the good stuff if I try to gobble them down all at once. Either that, or I get information overload, develop terrible hang-ups or suffer plain old boredom. Much better to read them bit by bit.

My copy of Damn Fine Story looks a bit messy now that I’ve finished. It’s covered with sticky tags and pen marks where I’ve circled and ticked things, which is a good sign that I found it useful, with advice and tools I want to return to. The chapter on the building blocks of tension was particularly handy.

It also helps that Damn Fine Story is a fun read. Not something that can be said for a lot of craft books.

I found it very good. As with all how-to books, your mileage may vary.

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What were your favourite reads of March?

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Teaser Tuesday!

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

I hadn’t planned on doing a Teaser Tuesday this week. Life’s still a bit chaotic in the Hein house, with medical appointments and whatnot, and I need every moment I can spare to make up for the writing I’ve missed this past year. But I’m too excited that Eddie and the Show Queen is finally finished and ready to go to my editor to let the moment slide without at least a little wahoo.

So here are some (unedited) lines to whet your appetite. Not much, mind. Just a few to give you a taste of Eddie’s and Alice’s gorgeous lovers-reunited story.

When is Eddie and the Show Queen’s release date, you ask? It’s a-coming, I promise. Let me get through edits first and I’ll let you know.

In the meantime, enjoy!

Eddie grinned and plonked himself down, his shoulder pressing against Alice’s as though he was homing in for a kiss. Her breath caught, suspended between her ridiculous want and the need to desist, but the kiss didn’t come. He settled for a low ‘Hey’ instead.

A good thing, the non-kiss. Of course it was. Those lips were probably all over Zoe Robertson on Saturday night.

Want to be the first to know when Eddie and the Show Queen goes up for pre-order? Join my newsletter and you’ll also receive a couple of free short stories to put a big smile in your day.

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This Writing Life: ARR 19

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Last weekend I attended A Romantic Rendezvous in Sydney at the Bankstown Sports Club, where a lovely time was had by all.

There are four events in the A Romantic Rendezvous series, with Brisbane and Sydney held last weekend and Melbourne and Perth scheduled for this coming weekend (30th and 31st March). They were (and are) chockers full of authors representing every romance genre, and feature special guests like Aussie urban fantasy star Keri Arthur (who generously filled in at the last minute when Sherrilyn Kenyon had to pull out) and American historical author Celeste Bradley.

It’s always a thrill to catch up with readers, new and old. I love a good natter and what better topic to natter about than books?

I had planned to take lots of photos but got distracted, as tends to happen at these events. But here are a few piccies of the event for you to enjoy.

If you haven’t booked for this weekend in Melbourne or Perth, that’s okay. I’m sure you’ll be able to buy a ticket at the door. Visit the Australian Romance Readers Association for attending authors, venue details and times.

Me all set up and ready to go at ARR19, Sydney.
Me all set up and ready to go!
Authors Maddison Micheals, Amanda Knight and (standing) Bronwyn Parry at ARR19, Sydney.
Authors Maddison Micheals, Amanda Knight and (standing) Bronwyn Parry.
Jodi Perry, whose gorgeous book cover tablecloth I'm seriously jealous of, at ARR19, Sydney.
Jodi Perry, whose gorgeous book cover tablecloth I’m seriously jealous of!
Fellow Outback Brides author Kelly Hunter with Avril Tremayne at ARR19, Sydney.
Fellow Outback Brides author Kelly Hunter with Avril Tremayne.
Kandy Shepherd and special guest Keri Arthur at ARR19, Sydney.
Kandy Shepherd and special guest Keri Arthur.
Ann B Harrison with her gorgeous cowboys.
Ann B Harrison with her gorgeous cowboys (photo courtesy of Ann).
Penelope Janu, Amanda Knight and me at ARR 19, Sydney.
Penelope Janu, Amanda Knight and me (photo courtesy of Amanda).
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Teaser Tuesday!

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

Well, a brilliant time was had by all at last Sunday’s Australian Romance Reader Association booksigning in Sydney. There were lots of new reader faces and plenty of familiar ones, as well as author friends new and old. I had so much fun. My voice is a bit hoarse from all the chatting though. If I get the chance, I’ll make up a blog post of the photos to give you a bit of insight into the event.

On to what we’re here for: some teasing!

This week I’m delighted to host another author for you. She’s a Hunter Valley local too, which means she’s extra special. We don’t just produce beautiful wines in the region, we nurture wonderful writers too.

Ann B Harrison writes Aussie rural and USA-set cowboy romances. Make that LOTS of cowboy romances. You’ll be hard-pressed to run out of backlist to read with this lovely lady. Her heroines are strong, her heroes sexy, and you know you’re in for a punchy, emotional read when you pick up one of Ann’s books.

Ann’s latest release is The Convenient Cowboy. Here she is to tell you a little about it and share a tasty teaser.

 

Ann B Harrison authorNate Hansen desperately needs a reboot to his playboy image that doesn’t involve women, drinking and fighting. Rehabilitation and building a solid future proves elusive as he can’t land a permanent job until someone mentions local widow Joy Mitchell who’s advertising a full-time ranch job. Perfect.

Joy Mitchell is desperate for a ranch hand to help keep her dead husband’s legacy alive out of the greedy grasp of her manipulative father-in-law. Nate’s reputation precedes him, none of it good, but the ranch is running on empty, and Joy make the hard choice. Problem is the job she’s offering isn’t exactly what Nate had planned

Nate knows what it’s like to lose everything, but seriously, become a mail-order groom? But Joy won’t or can’t compromise.

 

“Mrs. Mitchell? I’ve come about the job.”

Joy stared at the man on her doorstep. Someone had to be playing a joke on her. This cowboy was nothing like the other applicants. He looked familiar but her frazzled and over tired mind couldn’t put a  name to his face. “I’m sorry, what did you say?”

“Someone told me you had a job going. I’m in need of employment. I’d prefer permanent but if you only have casual work, I’ll take that too.” He looked down at Toby clinging to her leg and smiled. “Cute, aint he? Anyways, as I was saying – I’m looking for work and I’m pretty sure that Kurt Whistler will give me a reference. Been filling in there for one of his men.”

“Did Kurt tell you what the job was?” Joy swallowed. Nobody had applied in person before and she had to hold down the wave of doubt and embarrassment that had pushed her to this point.

“No, ma’am, but I’m sure I’m up to the task.”

The Convenient Cowboy by Ann B HarrisonOh, he so was. Tall dark and handsome didn’t quite sound good enough for the cowboy that stood at her door. He had nervous energy running through him that would worry most people, almost like a caged mountain lion who’d had a bad week hunting.

She was too desperate to be picky and the two others that had applied already for the job didn’t have the least bit of appeal to them. Not that she’d seen them face to face, nor did she want to. They’d applied by mail via the newspaper office where she’d placed the advertisement. The first applicant was too old to even consider. She’d be the one looking after him if his age was anything to go by. The other gentleman was looking for his fifth wife and Joy didn’t intend that to be her. Last thing she wanted was a fortune hunter and that greasy suck up letter had oozed its writers character from the smell of cheap aftershave he’d drenched the envelope in to the flowery words he’d used.

She needed a hardworking cowboy that would take care of her and her son. Not someone who’d get a ring on her finger, a foot in the door and an attitude that screamed ‘takeover in progress.’ The man standing before her was used to working. His hands were calloused, his jeans worn and his boots dusty and in need of re-heeling. Even his hat had a work worn battered image to it.

“What’s your name, cowboy?” Toby put his arms around her leg, leaving jelly marks from his sticky fingers on the worn denim. Some clean up job that’d been.

“Nate Hansen.”

Oh heck! No wonder she thought she recognized him. Big sister Cassie had fallen for the love ‘em and leave ‘em man last fall and she’d pointed him out in the street once. He’d broken her heart and she still bemoaned how he was perfect for her. Seemed he didn’t agree as they never got past the third date.

“Seems your reputation precedes you. Not sure I’m willing to employ someone who cares more about drinking, fighting and flirting with every lady in town. I need someone who’s prepared to work an honest day’s work, not play.”

He looked down at his feet and sighed before meeting her gaze. “Mrs. Mitchell, give me a chance. I’ve been doing my best to mend my ways, to make a go of it ever since my grandpa died. I know my reputation and I’m doing everything I can to move on from that, I promise. My brother Jethro is running the ranch and there ain’t enough work for all of us. But if you want references, I know there’re people who’ll give you one, tell you how hard I work.”

“But what have you done long term, other than drink and fight?” And break girls hearts.

“Guess you got me there. Only work around has been short term, you  know. That’s why I’m keen to take on something I can sink my teeth into, something permanent where I can make my mark. If you’ll give me a chance, I’ll prove to you that I’m a good risk. I’ve changed. Ask my brother or his lawyer if you like. I know she’ll vouch for me too.”

“Who’s his lawyer?” It was so tempting to take him on but something still niggled in the back of her mind. Could she trust him after what he did to her sister?

“Sadie St. Martin and Layla Watson.”

Joy swallowed  back her relief. Her lawyer and the lady who wrote up Bradley’s will when he found out he was going to die. “I know them.”

“Great, so you’ll call and at least get a character reference then?”

Joy gripped her son’s hand and lifted him up onto her hip, ignoring the sticky jelly fingers as he clutched her shirt. Toby tucked his head into her neck and watched the stranger at the door. “I guess I can do that.”

“So, what’s the job then?”

I need a husband, Mr. Hansen. And I don’t have much time left to choose one.”

 

Wowsers!! Now how was that for a hook-me ending to Ann’s teaser?

You want this book, oh yes you do! Find out what happens between Nate and Joy by grabbing a copy of The Convenient Cowboy right now from these stores:

 

Amazon.com | Amazon.au | Amazon.uk

iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Barnes & Noble

If you’d like to learn more about Ann and her booksplease visit her website. You can also connect via FacebookInstagram and Twitter using @AnnBHarrison. And don’t forget to follow her on Bookbub to get notifications of more deals and news.

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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

Well, so much for Teaser Tuesday being occasional! This year, to make more room for writing, I’d planned to maybe post once or twice a month, yet here we are again with another fab, fun post from a lovely author friend. I’m not complaining, and I’m sure you’re not either because we’ve be treated to some wonderful teasers and some exciting giveaways, and we’ve loved how you’ve joined in. It’s very cheering.

God knows I’ve needed a bit of cheering up. I had a small biopsy operation last week that was supposed to be all very easy and painless, leaving me with a teensy-tiny snick in my throat where they entered for a dig-around. Yes, well, it was neither snick-like nor painless. Instead I ended up with a 4cm cut tied up with stitches that pulled every time I moved my neck, made sleeping more than a little difficult and left me feeling a tad sorry for myself.

Urk. Enough of that. I’m recovering nicely and it’s time for happy things, like this week’s guest!

I’m delighted to host Juanita Kees on the blog again. Many of you will know Juanita from her Wongan Creek books, a hugely successful rural suspense series, as well as her small-town USA stories featuring the Calhoun Customs Garage.

Juanita is here to tell you about the newest in the Wongan Creek series – Shadows Over Wongan Creek. I know you’re going to love this one, so read on. Oh, and make sure you pay attention because there could be another GIVEAWAY!

Juanita Kees authorA big thank you to Cathryn for hosting me today. I hope you’ll enjoy this little teaser from Shadows Over Wongan Creek. Released earlier this month, book 3 in the Wongan Creek series reunites old friends, Kieran and Fenella. Like most small towns, everyone knows each other, so if you’ve read books 1 and 2, you’ll run into some of the usual loveable locals, like dear old Harry, Travis Bailey and Mrs Turner. What I’d love to know from you at the end of this post, is what is your choice in wine and where is your favourite wine region? Mine is the beautiful Southwest region in and around Margaret River in Western Australia. Now to the teaser:

Kieran arrives back in town looking for a fresh start for himself and his young son, Liam, but what he finds is Fen in a world of trouble with danger dogging her every step.

In this scene, Fen is hosting a wedding at The Cranky Lizard winery when her past rises to threaten everything she holds dear. Shaken, she tries to keep the truth from Kieran, but one touch has her reaching for him instead.

‘Fen.’ His voice was quiet in the room. ‘Look at me.’

She shook her head, not trusting her voice because the tightness in her throat would have her choking on her words. Gentle hands settled on her shoulders and turned her around. She kept her gaze on the floor. How much longer could she keep fighting the demons, real and emotional, so determined to consume her?

He pulled her close and wrapped his arms around her, holding her against the unsteady beat of his heart. She put her hands to his chest, meant them to be a barrier, but no real barrier at all, because the feel of Kieran under her hands made her want to finish what she’d started right here in this poorly lit room all those years ago. To sink into his kiss, his body and everything he personified and push away the real world that snapped at her heels.

Shadows Over Wongan Creek by Juanita KeesShadows Over Wongan Creek by Juanita KeesHe tipped up her chin, his gaze holding hers in the dim light of the storeroom. A flicker of something she couldn’t read in the shadows cast by that light, and then his head blocked out what was left of it, and she met him half way.

The minute his lips touched hers, she was lost in his taste, a flavour she remembered every time she thought of him, but different. Newer, fresher, better. Too good. His hands cupped her face, the thumbs — rough from hard work — rubbing against her jaw, creating a hunger far more desperate than she remembered.

Kieran explored at his own pace and created a fire in her that would take more than a cold shower to cool it. She returned each nip and tease, her hands slipping from his chest and tracing a path to his hips, his body hard, muscled and toned under her palms.

His hands tangled in her hair and drew her closer, deepening the kiss until she melted against him, into him, forgetting all the reasons she shouldn’t. He whispered her name against her lips, before releasing her mouth and holding her head against his chest, their hearts beating erratically out of rhythm with each other, bodies radiating warmth off one another, the world outside the storeroom forgotten.

She should stop this before she lost herself in him again, make him go. Make him take Liam far away from the shitstorm to come, from the danger Luke and his damned brotherhood presented. From the mess she’d made of her life and the nightmares she couldn’t escape.

Oooh! There’s nothing like a kiss to ratchet up the drama, and it sounds like Wongan Creek is in for a lot of it. Find out what happens with your very own copy of Shadows Over Wongan Creek. Grab yours today from these stores:

Amazon.comAmazon.au | Amazon.uk

Kobo | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Google Play

Prefer to read a series in order? You’re in luck because the first two books in the Wongan Creek series are on sale from March 15th until April 15th for only 99c. What a bargain!

Grab your copies here:

Secrets at Wongan Creek

Amazon.com | Amazon.au | Amazon.uk | Kobo | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Google Play

Whispers at Wongan Creek

Amazon.com | Amazon.au | Amazon.uk | Kobo | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Google Play

Now, as we hinted at in the intro, there’s a…

GIVEAWAY!

Simply share your favourite wine or wine region in the comments and we’ll pop you into the draw to win an ebook copy of Shadows Over Wongan Creek, thanks to Escape Publishing.

Being from south-east South Australia, I’m always going to be partial to wines from Coonawarra, Wrattonbully and Padthaway, but I’ve also been hugely impressed by some of the wines being produced around my home town of Mount Gambier, especially the Kongorong area to the south. I’ve had some REALLY good rieslings from there and a tasty chardonnay. Must try some reds next time I’m home.

What about you? What’s your favourite wine or wine region? Share and we’ll pop you into the draw.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight, Australian Eastern Daylight Time, Sunday 24th March 2019. Open worldwide.

Juanita loves to hear from readers! Get in contact via her website, Facebook or Twitter, and make sure you follow her on Bookbub so you don’t miss out on any deals.

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My Favourite Reads

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My Favourite Reads image

Welcome to My Favourite Reads for February 2019!

February was mostly taken up reading books for the Romance Writers of America Rita Award but I still managed to squeeze in four off my to-be-read pile, and they were all beauties.

My favourite though was… 

Wicked Games by MJ Scott

Wicked Games by MJ ScottWicked Games is the first in MJ Scott’s new TechWitch series and I’m hanging out for the next. This had so much to love – big conflicts, romance, friendship, action and I really enjoyed the mix of high technology and magic. Maybe this isn’t unusual in the urban fantasy genre but for me the combination felt new and fresh.

Loved the characters, the setting was interesting, and I liked the spookiness and how dark the story got. I look forward to discovering where Maggie goes to next and how her relationship with magic and sexy Damon evolves.

Fab.

 

The Second Cure by Margaret MorganThe Second Cure by Margaret Morgan

Ooh, where do I start with The Second Cure? This has politics, science, religion and much more. Most of all it’s scary because it is so easy to imagine a scenario like this unfolding.

Great premise, good writing and likeable characters – even the baddies had their moments – made for a fascinating, page-turning journey.

Clever. Really clever. A book to make you think, and maybe fret a bit. Check it out.

 

Her Forgotten Lover's Heir by Annie WestHer Forgotten Lover’s Heir by Annie West

Annie never lets me down with her fabulous romances. Her Forgotten Lover’s Heir made me cry too. I adore books that do that. It’s why we read romance – to feel!

The amnesia trope is one I’ve always been a bit sceptical about, but Molly’s situation is very believable and I felt for her enormously as she tried to deal with her memory loss and find her way forward. Pietro was great too – a nice combination of sexy alpha hero, as you’d expect for a Harlequin Presents title, and deeply caring man who’s fallen in love without realising.

A lovely story with great chemistry between the hero and heroine.

 

Butterface by Avery FlynnButterface by Avery Flynn

Butterface is book one in Avery Flynn’s the Hartigans series and such a fun a story I gobbled it down.

Although scarred by school bullying, Gina is a strong character who’s accepted her not-so-pretty looks and is merrily living the life she wants. She’s smart and funny and has a bod to die for. I wish I could stretch like her! Ford is a gorgeous, if totally anal, cop. When these two a thrown together, first via a wedding “kiss-cam” then by other circumstances it’s kind of like beauty and the beast in reverse.

Great dialogue and a wonderful romance, and the families were a hoot!

 

What did you enjoy reading in February?

 

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday Meme

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

Did you enjoy last week’s visit from Jennie Jones? That was fun, and we loved your wonderful airport stories. I hope you’re in another sharing mood this week because, my little darlings, we have another guest and another giveaway. Whoop!

But first, news from the Hein house.

After much tweaking and several moments of brain hurtiness caused by maths calculations (you’ll understand when you read it), I finished the second draft of Eddie and the Show Queen. Now it’s time to move on to stage three of my process: the full read-through. This is kind of scary because it’s looking at the big stuff. Things like characterisation and story flow that can lead to whole lot of rewriting or just more tweaks. As you can imagine, I’m hoping for the latter.

Enough of scary things, let’s get onto the fun stuff.

Today’s guest is a blog regular and an author I know you all adore. Fiona McArthur writes gorgeous rural romances, medical dramas and women’s fiction. You’ll also know her from Holly’s Heart which was book 4 in our hugely successful Outback Brides series (my Elsa’s Stand was book 3) and a beautiful story that really tugged those heartstrings.

Well, our brides are going from strength to strength and this month sees the launch of a second series – Outback Brides of Wirralong – and this time Fiona’s in the lead with her new release Lacey.

Here’s Fiona to tell you a little about Lacey and to share a snippet. Make sure you read until the end. We wouldn’t want you to miss out on your giveaway chance!

blamk

Author Fiona McArthur

Thanks so much for having me, Cathryn, and it’s such a fun thing to be introducing “Series 2 of The Outback Brides Of Wirralong,” tada!! Especially after all the crazy reader love of the first series. We were all so excited that Wirralong proved to be a fun place for readers.

Last series started with Maggie, Belle, and right after your gorgeous ELSA, finished with Holly. It was at Holly’s wedding that my new book starts. LACEY and Cameron have been on opposite paths but still magnetically attracted. And fighting it.

Lacey was celebrating her freedom finally from a disastrous secret marriage and Cameron just couldn’t seem to look anywhere else than at Lacey. She seemed so different tonight…

Ahem. And that was that.

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It was just because he’d had fantasies. About her. For what felt like a year, but it had only been months.

Why was she so different to any other lovely lady he’d danced with? His hand drifted down the shimmery fabric on her back. ‘I love your dress,’ Cam murmured.

She twirled in his arms and laughed up at him. Her eyes dark pools of promise? ‘A present to myself to celebrate. Wicked, eh?’

Outback Brides of Wirralong: Lacey by Fiona McArthur

‘As sin,’ he said huskily and pulled her closer into his arms, still grappling with this new Lacey, and wondered what she was celebrating. Wondered more if he could join the celebrations.

She filled his senses like a potent wine and, while there was so much about her behaviour that baffled him, he wanted to protect this fragile bubble of make-believe because he knew she would slip through his fingers and disappear tomorrow like Cinderella.

When the wedding party left and the guests drifted toward the gate, he looked at the clock with indecision. He felt like a randy sixteen-year-old and just as unsure of himself. Not the usual Cameron. He couldn’t let her go yet.

‘I’d rather this evening didn’t end, Lacey. Will you come home with me and stay the night?’ He gazed down at her and her eyes were like blazing jewels in her face, glittering as she stared up at him.

***

Lacey looked at the ridiculously sexy man standing there with that wicked promise in his eyes, asking her home after chatting her up all night.

Long-suppressed excitement fizzed and popped in her belly and her skin felt warm and wanton with the need for a good man’s touch. No strings. They both knew it was only one night.

She glanced at the strong masculine fingers reaching out to her. The small dark mole on Cameron’s wrist looked almost like a heart. She did have it bad if she was seeing cosmic signs.

Well, hadn’t this been a night of unexpected performances.

First the breaking of the obscurity she’d hidden behind, by standing up and playing her saxophone at a wedding—and yes, it had been confronting when she’d opened her eyes, but she still buzzed from the incredible joy of revelling in her music and seeing those who watched lost in it too. Seeing Cameron James drinking in the music like an addict.

And now, flirting with the bad-boy lawman who all the girls gossiped about. Was this some sort of post-divorce rebirth strategy? Maggie had said auspicious.

Step one. Play in public.

Step two. Get back in charge of her own sexuality with a man she’d fancied and banned herself from as a married woman.

Hell.

She was divorced.

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Ooh, now this sounds sex-citing! I bet you’re now as hungry as I am to read the full story. Satisfy that hunger immediately with an ebook download from these stores:

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Amazon.com | Amazon.au | Amazon.uk

Kobo | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Google Play

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As we teased earlier, here’s the…

GIVEAWAY!

Here’s Fiona again to tell you about it.

I love that Lacey makes Cameron totally unsure of himself – not like the confident swooner that he normally portrays. I hope you enjoy ‘Lacey and Cameron’s story’ and I’d love to offer an ebook version (or print book for Oz readers if they prefer) for your thoughts on secret baby books. Not what Cameron and Lacey expected.

Warmest regards xx Fi

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So, my lovelies, we’re talking secret babies. Have you come across this trope before? What did you think? Can you recommend some secret baby titles for those who haven’t tried it or are looking for more?

Share your thoughts and we’ll pop you into the draw for an ebook download of Outback Brides of Wirralong: Lacey. Or, if you’re an Australian reader, you have the choice of ebook or print.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Sunday 17th March 2019, Australian Eastern Daylight Time. Ebook giveaway open worldwide. Choice of paperback giveaway available for Australian postal addresses only.

If you’d like to learn more about Fiona and her books, please visit her website. You can also connect via Facebook.

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday Meme

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

I hope you’re excited, my lovelies, because today we have a guest author and she’s offering a GIVEAWAY.

But first, news from the Hein house. I’ve finished the first draft of Eddie and the Show Queen. RAH! Still a long way to go but the hard work of getting the story down is finally done. My next task is to consult my list of ‘things to fix’ and set about fixing them. It’s quite long and will likely take a while, and thanks to my ongoing health dramas I’m still not confident of setting a release date yet. We’re getting closer to one though, so stay tuned!

Speaking of staying tuned, you’ll want to sit up now because it’s time to welcome our guest Jennie Jones.

I’m sure you all know Jennie from her previous visits to Teaser Tuesday and general best-seller stardom, just as I’m sure you gobble up her small-town and rural romances because they’re FABULOUS. Jennie’s books are full of what we adore – love, laughter and life. Settling down with one is like settling down with a good friend.

Jennie has a new book out this month: Lone Star Protector, book two in the fun and romantic Calamity Valley series. She’s here today to tell you a little about it and to tease you with a snippet. Think larger than life characters, humour and a gorgeous happy ever after. Plus, for the eagle-eyed, there’s a chance to win a paperback copy of Lone Star Protector.

Read on!

Author Jennie Jones

It’s always a pleasure to be on Teaser Tuesday with Cathryn! I’d like to introduce my latest Texas-set romance Lone Star Protector (just released) which is book #2 in the Calamity Valley series – fun and romantic tales of three cousins returning home to their country towns in order to find some solace and each getting more than they bargained for.

In this little excerpt, Mark and Lauren have just met for the first time at LAX airport where they’ve been delayed. Lauren is keeping her identity secret and intends to remain incognito, but Mark knows who she is and since he’s being blackmailed into keeping an eye on her, is not about to tell her who he is! So, for different reasons, they enter into what they both think is a playful, flirtatious banter – pretending to be someone else until their grounded flights take off. But when the sun rises on the next day they’ll meet again, under very different circumstances…

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Mark turned on his seat. “Since we’ve got so much time on our hands, why don’t we pretend we’re heading somewhere else? Where would you like to go, Miss—” He let the question hang in the air.

“Scarlet Juliette Barrett-Bernard.”

He managed to hold on to his laugh. “How do you do, Miss Barrett-Bernard? Pleasure to meet you. Danton Alexandre Dubois.”

“French?” she asked, eyes wide.

“On my grandmother’s side.” Not strictly true, but close enough for his use. Granny Dubois had been an Idaho backcountry logger. Came from Quebec pioneer stock and followed in her granddaddy Dubois’s footsteps, running the family firm until she was forced to retire at the age of eighty-three due to arthritis and an inability to swing the axe or type out an invoice. And he wasn’t making that up. He had fond memories of visiting her as a kid.

Lone Star Protector by Jennie Jones

“You’re not nobility in disguise, are you?” Lauren—Scarlet—asked, with a wry lift of her eyebrow.

Her eyes were mesmerizing. Moss green; dark and inviting. She made him feel like he was sitting in the lobby of some grand old hotel, surrounded by the peace and coolness of potted palms and the water music of a courtyard fountain.

She wasn’t his type at all. He loathed potted palms and teacups with dainty handles a guy couldn’t get his thumb around.

“Shall we pretend we are chic aristocrats from Europe?” he suggested. She’d find out soon enough that he wasn’t Danton Alexandre Dubois.

She gave a little shrug. “Why not.”

He could use this opportunity and gain more intel on what the Mackillop women had in mind to deter Donaldson’s salesmen who wanted to buy the valley land. As soon as he had that information, this whole business would be finished and he could get back to doing what he did best—living life his way. The casual, take-it-as-it-happens way instead of the constant looking-over-his-shoulder-due-to-being-blackmailed-by-Donaldson way.

“Nice to meet you.” He swiveled on the chair and held out his hand.

As she slid hers into his, her skin soft and cool, something fizzed, deep in his gut. 

“Let’s pretend we’re off to Paris,” he said, needing to keep the camaraderie going. “What’s the first thing you want to do when you get there?”

“Stroll down the Avenue des Champs-Élysées.” There was a wave of warmth in her voice and she’d answered without hesitation.

“Sounds good.” He settled further into the hard seat. “Can I join you? I’ll buy the coffee when we get to the Arc de Triomphe.” It earned him a glance, and a smile, and small though it was, he was rewarded by its value. He had a feeling she hadn’t cracked a grin in a long time, and her response pierced him in his most vulnerable part—the heart.

Want to go someplace more comfortable?” he said. “One of the lounges?”

“They’re VIP.”

“I pre-purchased a priority pass. I’m pretty sure I can take a guest, or persuade them…”

 “Thank you, Mr. Dubois. A decent place to sit and relax would be welcome.”

He smiled, and stood. “It’s Danton. Let’s go, Scarlet. We’ve got memories to share from our trip to Paris and only three hours in which to make them.”

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Ooh, I’m intrigued, and I bet you are too, but we’ll have to grab the book if we want to know how these two fare the morning after, and you can do that right here:

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Amazon.com | Amazon.au | Amazon.uk

Kobo | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Google Play

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Now, as mentioned, there just happens to be a…

GIVEAWAY!

As usual, we’re going to make you work for your chance. To be in the draw to win a paperback copy of Lone Star Protector simply share in the comments your favourite airport. It doesn’t have to be one you’ve visited – not everyone’s a frequent flyer or even a flyer at all. It could be the one you’d most love to land at or transit through.

Lone Star Protector by Jennie Jones

Airports aren’t usually favourite places, are they? Mostly they’re messy, noisy and full of overpriced shops and food stalls. So I’m going to choose Newcastle Airport as my favourite, because it’s clean and quiet, and being there means I’m either off on an adventure or I’m coming home. Both nice things.

So cough up. What’s your favourite? Share and we’ll pop you into the draw for a paperback copy of Lone Star Protector.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Sunday 10th March 2019, Australian Eastern Daylight Time. Australian postal addresses only.

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

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Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser Tuesday Meme

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

Ha! You thought TT wasn’t returning, didn’t you? Well it is, although more on an ad hoc basis than weekly, but with the same news and juicy teasers from myself and guests.

Last year was a difficult year for me personally and the beginning of 2019 isn’t being much kinder. The things I’m going through continue to have a major effect on my productivity, which is stressing me out, quite frankly, and stress is a demon none of us need. I have a LOT of writing to catch up on and that means I need to prioritise. Books must come first. The blog will be a lagging second.

I’ll do my best to keep it rollicking along though. I like blogging and I know a lot of you enjoy the posts but if I’m not making my word count, then it’s blog that will miss out until they’re done. I’m sure, like me, you’d much rather a new book than a new blog post!

Speaking of writing, I’ve finally come to the last chapters of Eddie and the Show Queen. Rah! Once I get those done, I’ll settle in for a full read. I’m looking forward to that. This book has taken a long time to write and revisiting Eddie’s and Alice’s romance will be fun. I love this couple. They’re ridiculously cute and Eddie is a sweetheart, and the Levenham gang are great to hang with.

Here’s a little sample of what you can expect from Eddie and the Show Queen. Please note that this is from an unedited manuscript, so you’ll have to forgive any wobbly bits.

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Eddie might have sauntered up to the microphone like a seasoned rock star but the truth was he was crapping himself.

What if Alice hated his poem? Or the footy boys laughed and made him look like a numpty in front of her? Dressing up as Elvis and belting out “It’s Now or Never” to a bunch of shoppers was just a bit of stupid fun, as was modelling jocks and socks in McAdams front window, but this was serious. He’d watched Alice’s face as she’d listened rapt to emo fringe-kid and the urge to create that same reaction ached like hunger.

He glanced at his poem. Sheep. He wrote about frigging sheep. Great way to impress a girl.

Not.

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Stay tuned for news on Eddie and the Show Queen’s release date, cover reveal and pre-order links. Newsletter subscribers always get the exciting bits first. Join the cool kids here and be smug little Vegemites, just like them. Plus you’ll receive a couple of free short stories to enjoy over a cuppa. All the wins!

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