Tag Archives: Outback set stories

Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayWelcome again to another intriguing instalment of Teaser Tuesday, the blog series where I share snippets from my works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Most of the time. Occasionally it’s good to swap things around and invite good writing buddies to play.

Today is one of those days, and I’m delighted to welcome back super-popular romance and women’s fiction author Rachael Johns.

Rachael’s Outback series has been a phenomenal success. Starting with Outback Dreams and continuing with Outback Blaze and Outback Ghost, the series is much loved by readers who can’t wait to discover what’s happening in Bunyip Bay. These are heart-warming, delightful stories, loaded with characters you’ll fall in love with.

Outback Sisters is book four in the series and will knock your socks off. Don’t believe me? Check out this sample from the book!

 

Logan smiled as she approached and she almost stumbled at the sight of him in black cargo shorts and a greenish-blue t-shirt, a picnic rug at his feet, and an honest to God wicker basket sitting on top of it. Swoon.

‘You came,’ he said as he reached his hand out.

‘As if there was ever any doubt,’ she replied, slipping her hand inside his, heat flooding her at the connection.

He pulled her against him, dipped his head beneath the brim of her sun hat and kissed her. It was as simple as that. And she kissed him back because it felt more right than anything had ever felt before, as if her sole reason for being born was to kiss this man.

Outback Sisters by Rachael Johns‘Why are you hiding all your gorgeous hair?’ he asked, reaching under the hat to touch it when they finally broke apart.

‘It’s a disguise,’ she whispered with mock-seriousness, and his beautiful lips broke into a grin.

‘Ahh, I see.’ Then, ‘It’s so good to see you.’

‘Ditto.’ Her brain was still a bit scrambled from that kiss so a more eloquent description of how she felt was out of the question.

‘Are you hungry?’ he asked, gesturing to the picnic rug and basket.

She nodded. Truthfully she was only hungry for one thing but she didn’t want to appear like a hussy.

‘In that case, take a seat.’ With the hand that wasn’t still holding hers, he gestured to the picnic rug – a quaint tartan number that Frankie guessed had been in his family a while. Her family had never been the camping or picnicking type – like Simone, their mum Ruth had been single for almost as long as Frankie could remember and she’d never bothered much with outdoorsy pursuits. Visits to Aunty Esther and Uncle Dave’s farm had been as close to nature as they’d got.

Getting comfy on the rug, she made a vow to herself that when she had a family, she’d take them on hundreds of picnics and they’d camp out under the stars and roast marshmallows on bonfires.

‘What are you grinning at?’ Logan asked as he knelt down beside her.

‘Oh… just the beautiful day,’ she said, nodding ahead towards the ocean. Probably too early to be telling him the truth – that she’d been picturing him with a little red-headed girl on his shoulders and a little boy that looked the spitting image of him running ahead along the beach holding her hand. Didn’t want to scare him off.

©Rachael Johns

Excited by that teaser? Of course you are! But think of how even more excited you’d be with the whole book. A book you can purchase right now from our good friends at Booktopia. Or, for the ebook, try Amazon, iBooks, Kobo or Google Play. Go on. It ‘s the first day of the month and a new season. Surely that deserves a present!

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FRIDAY FEAST with Joan Kilby

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Hello, food and book lovers, and welcome to another super-tasty edition of Friday Feast. This week, a sexy outback romance, a delicious cake, and an even more delicious book giveaway!

But first, news from Us Heins Weren’t Meant To Play Golf. This week marked the first round of my golf club’s premier ladies competition, the Goblet. It also coincided with me coming down with a filthy cold but, being the dedicated golfing fool that I am, I dragged myself out to play. Probably should have stayed in bed because while my front nine was quite good, by the time I hit the turn my cold ‘n flu tabs had worn off and I was knackered. The only positive is that I’m not coming last but maaaaan, am I close!

Author Joan KilbyEnough of that. It’s time for something uplifting, sweet and maybe just a bit sexy too, all of which we’ll find with my guest today, contemporary romance author Joan Kilby. Originally from Vancouver but now a staunch Melbournian, Joan has published over 30 novels. In an exciting move, Joan has joined with fellow authors Sarah Mayberry and Karina Bliss to release The Outback Bachelor Ball series, with Joan’s book Win Me as the lead title.

This series looks fabulous, not to mention hot! Take a look.

WIN ME

Cover of Win Me by Joan KilbyShe’ll do anything to get him to see her as a woman…

Feisty, fearless Ellie McFarlane has tried forever to get cattle station manager, Rick Drummond, to notice she’s not another cowhand. So when her gal pals talk her into glamming up for an Outback Bachelor and Spinster ball she’s eager to prove she’s all woman, all the time, and leave her boneheaded cowboy eating dust.

Sexy wrangler Rick is crazy about Ellie just as she is but her father – his boss – told him long ago that his daughter was off limits. Even though she’s all grown up now, Rick still feels it’s his job is to protect her, not seduce her. Plus, he’s finally got an opportunity to buy back his family farm which means moving far away.

Ellie’s transformation from Cinder-Ellie to belle of the ball has Rick’s jaw dropping – and all the other cowboys falling at her feet. Ellie tries to revel in her new-found sex-pot status but without Rick it’s a hollow victory. Has Rick left it too late to claim the only woman he’ll ever truly love…?

Doesn’t that sound fun? What a hoot! And you can be assured you’re in expert story-telling hands with Joan. Win Me releases October 20th but you can pre-order it right now from Amazon.com, Amazon.auAmazon.uk, Amazon.ca, iBooks, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo. Want to read a sample? Joan has a very tasty excerpt on her website. You’ll love it, and while you’re there check out the other two titles in the series, Karina Bliss’s Woo Me and Sarah Mayberry’s Wait For Me.

All set? Excellent. Now please give a warm welcome to Joan because she has something veeeeery nice for you!

Girlfriends and Cake – Best Friends Forever

Thanks, Cathryn, for having me on Friday Feast.

Cooking and baking are among my favourite hobbies, right up there with eating. Probably like a lot of people, I learned to cook by helping and watching my mother. Mum was an awesome baker. Mouth-watering smells of homemade bread, cookies, cakes, pies formed a sensory backdrop to my childhood. Mum even made cookies or brownies on weekday mornings so we would have something yummy in our school lunches.

The recipe for coffee cake I’m sharing today was Mum’s. Australia has tea cake but the Canadian equivalent – a delicious, quick and easy cake that’s best served warm – is coffee cake. It’s quite a bit richer than a tea cake so anyone who’s avoiding sugar and butter, look away now.

My mum and a group of her friends formed a diet club and called themselves the “Fat Ladies.” Mum would always make this cake when it was her turn as hostess. She and her friends never lost any weight – and were unabashed and unconcerned by the fact – but they had a lot of fun. I remember the gales of laughter coming from the kitchen during their get-togethers. And now, when I have friends over, I make Mum’s coffee cake.

The Outback Bachelor Ball seriesThis idea of women friends having fun together has special significance with my latest release. In Win Me, my heroine, Ellie, and her two best girlfriends have a reunion at a Bachelor and Spinster Ball. Not that Ellie has much time to cook – she’s got a hot cowboy to wrangle. In a case of life imitating art, writing friends Sarah Mayberry, Karina Bliss and I had a wonderful time collaborating on The Outback Bachelor ball series. I only wish we could have sat around a kitchen table and eaten coffee cake while we discussed our stories instead of relying on email and Skype.

I’m not sure where Mum got this coffee cake recipe from but I’ve copied it down from her hand-written recipe card complete with vanilla stains, butter spots and a smear of cinnamon. These are the original amounts but Mum (and I) always doubled the recipe because, well, nuts and cinnamon and buttery deliciousness! And because I love the topping so much I always increase those amounts by another third. Any leftover topping can, of course, be eaten straight from the bowl. I also add extra cinnamon because you can never have too much cinnamon. The batter doesn’t seem like it’s going to be enough but somehow it rises and fluffs up around the topping. And it’s all about the topping!

I’m giving away a copy of Win Me (Book 1, The Outback Bachelor Ball series), any e-format, anywhere in the world.

What’s your favourite recipe that you got from your mother or grandmother?

Nut Coffee Cake

Joan Kilby's Nut Coffee Cake

Topping:

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon (or to taste)

1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

3 tbsp butter

Batter:

1 1/4 cups all purpose flour

2 tbsp butter

2 tsp baking powder

1 egg, beaten

1/2 tsp salt

2/3 cup milk

2/3 cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla

Prepare topping: Melt butter and combine with brown sugar, nuts and cinnamon

Joan Kilby's Nut Coffee Cake in panPrepare batter: Combine flour, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla and beat till light. Gradually stir in dry ingredients alternately with milk. Spread half the batter into a greased 8 X 8 inch pan (20 X 20 cm). Sprinkle on half the topping. Spread the rest of the batter on and sprinkle on the remaining topping.

Bake at 180 C for about 30 min or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let sit for 10 – 15 minutes. Eat while it’s warm.

*

That sounds unreal, Joan! I am so giving this one a try. I love easy recipes that are disproportionately tasty to the amount of time they take to make. They’re real keepers.

Now, my Feasty lovelies, you heard Joan, we have a…

GIVEAWAY!

For your chance to win an ebook copy of Win Me, book 1 in The Outback Bachelor Ball series, simply share the favourite recipe that you snaffled from your mother or grandmother. An aunt, godparent or family friend will also do.

I have so many I don’t know where to start! There’s my mum’s pavlova, my grandmother’s buttery scones, my godmother’s cream puffs… I’m a bowerbird when it comes to recipes and the list is huge. What about you? Share and we’ll pop you into the draw.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Tuesday AEST, 20th October 2015. Open internationally. Rah!

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

Friday Feast recipe index link.

FRIDAY FEAST with Suzanne Brandyn

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Are you all Christmas partied out? I nearly am, although I have to say it’s been fun and there’s still more to come. Speaking of more to come, this week on Friday Feast I introduce a fab new author who’s sharing a dessert to die for, but first, brace yourself… yes, it’s Us Heins Weren’t Meant To Play Golf Weekly.Romantic suspense author Suzanne Brandyn

Thanks to not too much buffoonery on the golf course last week (unless you count that really ugly duffed ball in the water shot on the 17th that I’m still trying to wipe from memory, and some highly incompetent putting), I managed to shave half a stroke off my handicap. Methinks the golfing gods are teasing me again but we shall see. Perhaps a triumph approacheth? Stay tuned!

And now tune in even more for this week’s Friday Feast guest, Australian romantic suspense author Suzanne Brandyn. Born on the edge of Australia’s outback, Suzanne has taken her knowledge and empathy for this amazing land, her love of romance and delight in a good thrill, and created books filled with strong characters and vivid landscapes.

Her latest release is Cold Fear. Check it out…

 

COLD FEAR

 

Cover of Cold Fear by Suzanne BrandynMacy Donavan battles a terrifying nightmare to protect her two-year-old daughter, Faith from an intruder, and is knocked unconscious. When she regains consciousness, her daughter is missing.

As the police widen their futile search, Macy struggles to pick up the pieces of an unimaginable life. Urged to take a break she heads to an isolated cabin with a girlfriend to recuperate so she can continue searching, only to face her worst nightmare— times ten.

Trapped by a man she believed dead, he demands she play a game.

She runs, he hunts.  There is no place to hide.

 

Wow, doesn’t Cold Fear sound amazing? Well, thanks to the magic of the internet you can own a copy right now with just a couple of clickety-clicks. Visit amazon.com or amazon.com.au, hit that buy button and copy will be on its way to your Kindle reader or Kindle reading app in seconds.

Loaded up? Good. Now prepare to die! (In the nicest possible way, of course)

 

CHOCOMANIA

 

Good morning, Cathryn. I am thrilled to be here. Thank you for having me.

It’s a great time of year here in Australia, with summer about to carve up the landscape and Christmas around the corner. It’s a time for barbeques, outdoor parties and celebrations. There is  not a year that goes by when Death by Chocolate doesn’t hit my outdoor area.  A “to die for desert,” just like our heroes in our novels, something we all can’t get enough of. 🙂

Wait until you try it. I give it a good go, although at times my palate doesn’t take to one single ingredient… Can you pick which one? The answer could win you copy of my latest release Cold Fear. 🙂

 

Death by Chocolate

 

Ingredients for Death By Chocolate

  • Two Sarah Lee chocolate cakes. (You can bake two choc cakes if you so desire. As long as they are chocolate.
  • Two tubs of chocolate mousse.
  • Two Cadbury Flake chocolate bars.
  • One tub of cream.
  • Strawberries.

Bowl of fresh strawberries

  • Wash and cut strawberries in half.

Bowl of cut strawberries

  • Beat cream and add a little caster sugar to sweeten.
  • If using frozen choc cake, defrost.
  • Place slices of chocolate cake into bottom of bowl. Press down to organise in a neat fashion.

Arranging chocolate cake in the bowl

  • Add one layer of thickened cream.
  • Add one layer of chocolate mousse.
  • Add one layer of strawberries.
  • Repeat this until you are at the top of your dish, finishing off with a layer of rich thickened cream, strawberries, and finely grate the Flakes over the top.

Finished Death By Chocolate top view

 Side on photo of Death By Chocolate

Yum. Perfect for barbeques, and/or formal dishes. The secret is in what dish you toss it all in. Fancy china, a glass bowl, or a bright plastic outdoorsy dish for barbeques. It’s a hit for all occasions.

Wella. To die for all right. Lol. Death By Chocolate. There’s no better way to go. Enjoy.

Question: Which ingredient of Death By Chocolate don’t I eat much of?

I like it, but my tastebuds have a hard time adjusting, although my brain says yes, yes, yes. Lol. Guess correctly and you could win a copy of Cold Fear. 🙂 It’s easy peasy, seeing I’m so not the norm. 🙂

 

I don’t know, you Friday Feast guests are determined to make everyone fat! But surely in this case it has to be worth it. Your Death By Chocolate looks absolutely divine, Suzanne.

Now, my Feasters, being a super-lovely guest, Suzanne has kindly offered a giveaway. You can win yourself a Kindle ebook copy of Cold Fear. But you’re going to have to work for it. Guess correctly which ingredient in Death By Chocolate Suzanne can’t eat much of and you’ll go into the draw to win.

Giveaway closes midnight Tuesday AEST, 17th December 2013. Open internationally. Rah!

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

Pssst. If you’d like an opportunity to win a $25 Amazon voucher, Suzanne has a giveaway running on her Facebook page. So toddle on over and get “liking”.