Matthew Todd-Interview with the Cover Model

Matthew Todd-Interview with the Cover Model

August 3, 2014 marks the release of KM Scott’s new Club X series and we would like to introduce to you the cover model for book one TEMPTATION -Matthew Todd

Temptation July 14TRC: Hi Matthew and welcome to The Reading Café. Congratulations on the recent cover of KM Scott’s –Club X-TEMPTATION.

Matthew: Thank you! Happy to be here!

TRC: We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Follow Matthew on:  Facebook

Matthew: I’m 29, live in North Carolina, born and raised in New York though. I was a firefighter for 8 years, before starting my own company. On my off time I love to take out the motorcycle, and spend time with my wife and son.

TRC: What were your goals and aspirations growing up?

Matthew: Honestly? I always wanted to be a dad. There was just something about being a dad that I couldn’t wait for. And now that I am one, I love every second of it. I also knew I wanted to help people, hence joining the fire department at a young age.

TRC: Will you please tell us about how you got started in the modeling/cover modeling business?

Matthew: My wife is the owner of Cover Me, Darling, and out of the blue said she needed a favor… She asked me to model for a shoot, and the rest just took off from there.

Follow Cover Me, Darling on Facebook and Twitter

TRC: What was your first ‘published’ cover and by whom?

Matthew Todd 7Matthew: The first book that I actually got to hold in my hand was Strip Me Bare by Marissa Carmel. I believe that was the first one to be printed too.

TRC: Do you know how many covers on which your image has appeared?

Matthew: I think its around 6 or 7? Maybe?

TRC: At times, there has been a ‘stigma’ surrounding the male model and the romance-cover industry. What is your opinion about the recent popularity of the romance/paranormal storyline and the very busy industry of the romance cover model? IN other words, do you believe the cover images help sell the books?

Matthew Todd 1Matthew: Absolutely. I 100% believe that they help sell the books. If I’m looking to read a book, I’m going to go for one that has a cover that draws me in.

TRC: Have you ever had a photo shoot that went completely wrong?

Matthew: Every single one of them hahaha. It really doesn’t go wrong, it’s just that I joke around a lot and make the photographer (…wife) annoyed. I make a ton of ridiculous faces. So it’s not that it goes wrong, it’s that I go wrong I guess. lol

TRC: Where was the most exotic setting you have had the opportunity to work and model?

Matthew: I mostly do local shoots, so I haven’t gone anywhere too exotic for shoots yet. Hopefully I will someday, maybe Hawaii haha.

TRC: Nudity in modeling or acting can be controversial. Some pictures can cross the line between sexuality and pornography. What would you tell young models just entering the business about nude modeling?

Matthew Todd 2Matthew: If you’re comfortable with it, then go for it. Just make sure you are working with a professional, and don’t go beyond what you are okay with.

TRC: Whom do you most admire and why?

Matthew: Every firefighter that puts their life on the line to save someone elses.

TRC: What is your most embarrassing moment?

Matthew: I walked into a storm door the other day while I was working.. like a bird.. right in my face. That was pretty embarrassing.

TRC: When you are not modeling what can we find you doing-in other words-what is your ‘day job’? ;)

Matthew: I own a Home Theater Installation and IT company. So most likely, I’m on a job, scheduling a job, or doing an estimate to get a job. … or in the pool with my son ☺

TRC: What three (3) things would you like to accomplish in the next ten (10) years?

Matthew Todd coverMatthew: As an avid skydiver, I want to do a halo jump. I want to keep growing my company. And I also want to go to Antigua, it’s a long overdue trip for me and my wife.

TRC: What is something that few people (if any) know about you?

Matthew: I cry watching The Land Before Time… shh.

TRC: Would you please tell us what you do to relax?

Matthew: At this point in my life? I don’t know what “relax” means anymore. But the beach is always nice…

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Matthew: It’s a highly classified secret ;)

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Matthew: Yes! I will be at the Southern Girls Author Event, July 19th, in North Carolina. I’ll be sitting with Marissa Carmel. So come say hi!!!

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food: Penne Alla Vodka

Favorite Dessert: Tiramisu

Favorite TV Show: NCIS: Los Angeles

Last Movie You Saw: Shrek (with the little guy)

Dark or Milk Chocolate: Milk Chocolate

Favorite Song (at the moment): Summer by Calvin Harris

Secret Celebrity Crush: Daniela Ruah

Last Vacation Destination: New York

Pet Peeve: People stealing my food

TRC: Thank you Matthew for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on all of your success. We wish you the very best.

Matthew: Thank you for taking the time to get to know me! I had a lot of fun ☺

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Misdeeds by Kathryn Kelly-Review, Interview and Giveaway with the Author

Misdeeds by Kathryn Kelly-Review, Interview and Giveaway with the Author

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Misdeeds
Death Dwellers MC Novella 2.5
by Kathryn Kelly
Genre: contemporary, erotica, motorcycle club, violence
Release Date: June 5, 2014

Misdeeds

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk/ Barnes and Noble /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date June 5, 2014

John “Johnnie” Donovan is determined to make his relationship work with Kendall Miller, the attorney he met during his cousin’s birthday party. Before he can move on with his future, however, he still has loose ends to tie up from the past in the person of a rival MC’s president who is also Kendall’s ex-boyfriend. As Johnnie tries to balance his club life and personal life, another tragedy forces him to make a choice between the two. Will Johnnie be able to live with the choices he makes?

Kendall Miller is trying to pick up the pieces of her life in the wake of her ex-boyfriend’s assault. She’s ready to move on with her life and the man of her dreams, the sexy VP of the Death Dwellers MC. She demands his complete attention and isn’t willing to share her man with all the baggage of the MC. She doesn’t want to be an afterthought to him nor does she want to live her life in the midst of the clubhouse, especially with the competition taking place between Kendall and the club president’s wife. Then, catastrophe strikes and Kendall’s life is once again altered. Can she and Johnnie have a future together or has their love been doomed from the beginning?

•••••••••••••••••••••••

 

5 out of 5 for this reader folks!

If you’ve read my first combined review of the Death Dweller series, then you already know that this is a series NOT for the easily offended. For those that haven’t, I have to in good conscience state this straight up. This series is easily the most UN-PG series I have come across. There is strong descriptive violence, language, harsh situations, rape and heart ache. BUT, if you can handle all that .. there is an amazing group of bikers that you will fall in love with despite their rough edges, and old ladies that will make you laugh and tick you off all at the same time. This series take you THERE .. you know that icky but yummy place .. YA THAT!

We left smexy Johnnie “John Boy” Donovan one hot mess and happily for now with his recently proclaimed old lady Kendall Miller in the previous novel. Misdeeds by Kathryn Kelly is a continuation of their story and how they are trying to make it work. Revenge against Kendall’s ex “enemy club” boyfriend is still a priority for Johnnie and the Death Dwellers and our boys are going full on with mass destruction. In the midst of all that, Johnnie is trying to balance his relationship with Kendall (shining at moments and bombing at others), participate in club business, deal with family revelations and heal from a gunshot injury. In the meantime, Kendall is stirring the pot with Megan (the prez old lady), being selfish, manipulative .. of the list goes on! It’s a wonder that a man like Johnnie can stick with her. Revenge is served up indeed, and collateral damage is received, but I think we will see Johnnie and Kendall make it through. They grew together and separately in this book, leaving me hopeful for their future.

So much more happens here but I really wanted to focus the remainder of this review on Kathryn Kelly’s talent to make me LOVE HATE (yup you read that right) a heroine. Honestly, I really dislike Kendall. I think she is selfish, mean spirited and very immature. The things she said and did in this book made my blood boil .. but here is the thing… Kathryn Kelly also gave me moments of wanting to root for her and wishing she’d redeem herself. At times I felt like a ping pong ball, hating, liking, loving … UH I have never felt this strongly about ANY heroine I have ever read. She is a whole bag of damaged and I sympathized with her, but man I actually screamed at my ereader for her to smarten the you know what up. LOL

As an emotional reader, this series has hit my every button. I adore these bad ass bikers and their messed up seriously deviant and degenerate ways. We have been set up nicely for further stories and I am so excited for my next encounter with them! Again, an extremely raw read with lots to offend a reader, but man I love the shock and offensive experience because I get to experience something so intense and pure … as Christopher “Outlaw” would say. “It ain’t nothing but a thing!”

HAPPY READING! :)

Copy supplied by the author.

Reviewed by Rachel T.

Interview-Black

TRC: Hi Kathryn and welcome to The Reading Café. Congratulations of the success of your Death Dwellers MC series.

Kathryn: Thank you. It’s been quite a ride!

TRC: We would like to start with some background information. Please tell us something about yourself?

Follow Kathryn Kelly: Goodreads / Blog / Facebook / Twitter

Kathryn: I’m a born and bred New Orleans girl and a diehard Saints fan. Most of my family no longer lives in New Orleans because of Hurricane Katrina. I was pretty aimless while I was in college because I really didn’t know what I wanted to do when I was supposed to focus on acquiring the tools for a “real” job. I say I like to have firm plans but I usually enjoy myself more with spur of the moment activities. I will taste almost any type of food at least once, except squid ink soup, puffer fish or any type of insects. I’ve thought about going to one of the gourmet insect tastings where there’s stuff like sauteed grubs, fried crickets, etc., but I haven’t been able to convince myself I’ll be able to eat anything, so that’ll be $150 wasted. I’m a very private person, so I keep my personal life separate. I love the French Quarter, Mardi Gras, and Saints games.

TRC: Who or what influenced your career in writing?

Kathryn: My mother has been the biggest influence on my writing career by always encouraging me to go after my dreams no matter how big or how small.

TRC: When not writing, what do you do to relax?

Kathryn: I read and I also watch the ID channel.

MisdeedsTRC: MISDEEDS is the fourth instalment and June 2014 release in your contemporary erotic motorcycle club series. Would you please tell us something about the premise?

Kathryn: Misdeeds continues the story of John “Johnnie” Donovan and Kendall Miller as they attempt to make a go of a relationship that didn’t start off on the best terms. Kendall is trying to cope with situations in every aspect of her life. The deaths of her mother and her sister. Her assault and self-image issues. The lost pocket of time she had while she was drugged and held prisoner. The loss of her career, which she felt was the only good thing about herself and she’d worked hard to achieve. Her impending motherhood and her feelings for Johnnie who seems so detached from her most of the time. After going through so much—and being rejected by her mother most of her life—she doesn’t trust anyone’s overtures of kindness or friendship. Because of this toxic combination, she makes decisions that will lead to some dire consequences.
Meanwhile, Johnnie is dealing with a lot himself and finds himself pitted against Christopher because Kendall and Megan can’t get along.

TRC: Like most MC series, your storylines are graphically and sexually violent. What do you say to the reader of romance who is reticent or reluctant to read your series?

Kathryn: That’s a tough one to answer because it depends on the reason(s) for their reticence. There’s no denying the violence in my books, but, at the core is the romance between the hero and heroine. They are gritty, raw, and, at times, dark, but there’s also an underlying message within each book.

MisbehaviorTRC: MISBEHAVIOR is your September 2014 release. Will you please tell us something about the premise?

Kathryn: Misbehavior is Zoann and Val’s story and it starts two months after Misdeeds ended. The two of them have a lot to overcome, especially Zoann’s mistrust and Val isn’t the most patient or the most communicative one of the brothers. He sees how she treats everyone except bikers and he wants that from her, too. He’s going to realize how helpless and powerless she felt during her attack and will have to allow her some control in the relationship, which won’t be easy for a man like him. She trusted him enough once before to try for a relationship. Now, the stakes are higher because Val knows this is a make or break time for them. Will he be able to give her the lead in their relationship? Will she trust him just once more or will she walk away from him for good? Then, there’s the whole Christopher angle and the fact she feels he turned his back on her when she needed him most.

TRC: How many books do you have planned for the series?

Kathryn: Before I answer that, I have to say when I released Misled, I hadn’t planned on writing anymore books about the MC. Christopher wouldn’t be denied so I had to write him and once I finished his story, I was really sad to write THE END. It was fun and exhilarating to know I could write an entire novel all by myself. Before I hit publish, though…I changed my mind several times. When I convinced myself to just do it that last time, I knew it was a ‘now or never’ moment. I’d been requesting reviews for two weeks, but when it came time to actually publish it, I was almost trembling. I wanted someone to see in Christopher what Meggie and I saw in him. When I began receiving requests to continue the series, it was such an easy decision because I was already so vested in the characters.

Now, in response to the original question, I have eight definite releases planned: Misled (#1), Misappropriate (#1.5), Misunderstood (#2), Misdeeds (#2.5), Misbehavior (#3), Misguided (#4), Misconduct (#5) and Misfit, which will be another novella either between books 3 and 4 or 4 and 5. Mistrust is questionable, since it would be about Dinah, and I’m not sure where her character is going.

 

Death Dwellers Series 2

Click HERE for our reviews of Misled, Misappropriate and Misunderstood

TRC: Have you considered a spinoff concentrating on a rival MC club?

Kathryn: I’ve thought about doing a spinoff with the American Scorpions MC, which was Cee Cee’s club. However, I’m also getting ideas for a series about Ophelia’s band members. Ophelia is Christopher’s sister who will end up in a relationship with Stretch and Cash. So we’ll see.

TRC: Are any of the characters or the premise based in reality or a combination of reality and fiction?

Kathryn: The characters are a combination of reality and fiction.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, logistics, background) did you encounter writing this particular series?

Kathryn: I do most of my research on the MC lifestyle via non-fiction articles, books, and documentaries. We all have something we respond to, so the emotions I (try) to write in the books come easier than the situations concerning the MC brothers. I’m always concerned about how much of what I write will readers believe? Is Christopher bold enough to stake out someone’s house in broad daylight holding an assault weapon? Well, yes, and I’m sure readers familiar with the series know that? Will they be able to suspend disbelief about actually reading about him doing it? Suppose readers are familiar with the story of a real MC member who did something similar? Did I portray the scene accurately (but still fictitiously, if that makes sense) to those people who know about the real-life event and did I write it with believability for the readers who aren’t aware. I have to add the similarities between real life and my characters are purely coincidental because I research for accuracy with club rules (and make some up of my own), and the biker lifestyle.

TRC: What are your thoughts on writing a series and ending an instalment with a major cliff hanger?

Kathryn: I enjoy reading a series because the characters become like family to me. If there’s a long time between releases, I dislike books with cliffhangers. It is being used too often nowadays and it becomes frustrating to have to wait for answers to major plot lines in book after book. It’s one thing to have the option of reading previous books in a series to get all the backstory. It’s another thing to HAVE to read upcoming books to get to the HEA (or HFN sometimes) in a couple’s story.

Misunderstood ends on a cliffhanger. It completely drained me and I was actually falling into a depression researching human trafficking and suicide and the effects of drugs and alcohol on a developing fetus. I got to a point where I had to stop. See, I suffer with major depression and insomnia and the story just kicked my butt really good. I’d pushed the deadline back because I saw I needed more time to tie up all the loose ends. But the day I wrote the last chapter to Misunderstood, I didn’t realize Spoon hadn’t been taken care of. Yes, I said it. My major cliffhanger was completely unintended. A few days after Misunderstood came out someone called me and told me about a review pointing out a warning to readers that it ended on a cliffhanger. I had to go back and reread the last scene and I was like…well, I can’t put what I said but it was laced with epitaphs. I’d already discussed the possibility of Misdeeds because of the HFN Misdeeds ended on and how unhappy it made readers. As a reader, I know how it feels to be unhappy and disappointed with an ending and completely annoyed with a cliffhanger. I decided to rectify it, sooner rather than later. Now, I have to write like mad to catch up to where I want to be with Misbehavior.

TRC: When writing a storyline, do the characters direct the writing or do you direct the characters?

Kathryn: The characters definitely direct the writing. I’ll give you Kendall as an example. Every time I attempted to steer her in a way I thought she should go, her character veered in another direction and reminded me the setbacks she suffered within Misunderstood and Misdeeds happened in a very short period of time. She, as the character, wasn’t ready to go in the direction I thought she should. I rewrote several scenes in the book and directed her character the way I thought she needed to go. The scenes never worked out. Kendall wasn’t an easy character to deal with and she was even harder to write.

TRC: The mark of a good writer is to pull the reader into the storyline so that they experience the emotions along with the characters. What do you believe a writer must do to make this happen? Where do you believe writer’s fail in this endeavor?

Kathryn: I think writers must be willing to take risks with their characters and their storylines. Don’t water your writing down to have sympathetic characters because you think it’s the right thing to do. Characters should make readers either sympathize with them, understand them even if their actions and decisions aren’t the best, or detest them, plain and simple. Writers fail in pulling readers into the storyline along with their characters by not knowing their characters and telling us what’s going rather than showing us. A well-rounded character draws readers in because motivations are understood in every situation he or she may be in. If we don’t make a reader feel, see, hear, taste and experience a character’s world, then we’ve failed at our job.

TRC: Writer’s Block is a very real phenomenon. How do you handle the pressures and anxiety of writer’s block?

Kathryn: Writer’s Block is indeed a very real phenomenon and hits me when I’m under the most pressure. I try to keep writing. Sometimes, your best writing comes on your worst days. I didn’t have much writer’s block with Misled, but every book since, I’ve experienced it. It’s frustrating and it’s frightening. My uppermost thought is suppose ideas never return. Was this book just a one-time thing? Well, now (knock on wood), four times. It isn’t a good feeling and I haven’t gotten used to it. I’ve learned to step back for a day or two and, then, force myself back to it. Even if I have to throw away everything I write at the end of the door.

TRC: Many authors bounce ideas and information with other authors or friends and family. With whom do you bounce ideas?

Kathryn: Crystal Cuffley, who edits my books and designs the covers, my mother, a couple of beta reads, one of the writers I’m friends with, and a couple friends. Most of the time, I bounce the ideas around after I’ve already started or completed the first draft, the exception being Misdeeds. I bounced ideas around beforehand. The final copy is nothing near to any of the discussions.

TRC: What three things would you like to accomplish in the next five years?

Kathryn: In writing: writing a big historical, hitting a bestseller list at least once, and connecting with more readers

Personally: losing about 30 more pounds and getting a clean bill of health. I can’t think of anything else other than saving up for another vehicle before the one I have leaves me stranded.

TRC: What is something that few, if any people, know about you?

Kathryn: I don’t think many people know I have children, but I’m paranoid so I keep them off the radar most of the time.

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Kathryn: I’m currently working on Val’s and Zoann’s story, Misbehavior.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Kathryn: Every reader is important to me. I definitely want to pull in new readers, but I don’t want to ignore the readers I already have. No writer will ever satisfy every reader every time. Unintentional cliffhangers are within my power to rectify, though.

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food –French fries

Favorite Dessert –Molten chocolate cake

Favorite TV Show –Scandal

Last Movie You Saw –Maleficent

Favorite Song – Can’t name any in particular

Dark or Milk Chocolate –Milk Chocolate

Secret Celebrity Crush –Let’s say secret celebrity crushes. Channing Tatum, Dwayne Johnson, Kellan Lutz, and Johnny Depp. One of my newest celebrity crushes is Travis Lee Ferguson.

Last Vacation Destination –Vacation? What’s that? LOL. My next vacation destinations (hopefully) are Vegas, Dallas, NYC, Puerto Rico, and Paris. ←Not necessarily in that order. Oh, yeah, and Disneyworld.

Pet Peeve I can’t think of any right now! If I think of any, I’ll post it in the comment section.

TRC: Thank you Kathryn for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on all of your success and we wish you all the best.

Kathryn: Thank you and thank you for the interview. I enjoyed answering your questions.

giveaway

Kathryn Kelly is offering an ebook set of Misled, Misappropriate, Misunderstood and Misdeeds to ONE (1) lucky commenter at The Reading Cafe. You MUST be over 18 years of age to qualify.

Death Dwellers Series

1. If you have not previously registered at The Reading Cafe, please register by using the log-in at the top of the page (side bar) or by using one of the social log-ins.

2. If you are using a social log-in, please post your email address with your comment.

3. LIKE us on FACEBOOK and then click GET NOTIFICATION under ‘liked’ for an additional entry.

4. LIKE us on Twitter for an additional entry.

5. Like Kathryn Kelly on Facebook

6. Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY.

7. Giveaway runs from June 17 to June 21, 2014

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Something Like Normal (Something Like Normal #1) by Monica James-Review,Interview & Giveaway

SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL (Something Like Normal #1) by Monica James-Review, Interview and Giveaway

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Something Like Normal
Something Like Normal #1
by Monica James
Genre: New Adult, contemporary
Release Date: May 13, 2014

Something LIke Normal

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk/ Barnes and Noble /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date May 13, 2014

Mia Lee has a secret…

A secret she’s kept hidden since she was eight years old, however, Mia will no longer allow that secret to define her.

An irrevocable decision has left Mia Lee a fugitive and on the run—a circumstance that should leave her weak and scared, yet Mia has never felt so alive.

Under the pseudonym of Paige Cassidy, Mia is ready to live the life she’s never had, and she’s determined not to allow her tainted past dictate her promising future.

Paige is on a Greyhound bus heading from L.A. to South Boston, Virginia, to start a new life. A life that includes finding her mother, who abandoned her at age three. But what she finds, is four people, who will change her life forever.

Yet no one can outrun their past…

Especially one filled with bitter memories, which refuse to remain hidden

••••••••••••••••••••

REVIEW: SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL is the first instalment in Monica James’s contemporary, new adult series of the same name. The focus of the series is on nineteen year old Mia Lee (aka Paige Cassidy) and the horror that has been her life.

Told from first person (Mia/Paige) POV, the storyline premise follows Paige as she runs from her past. Landing in South Boston, Virginia with only a few dollars and a backpack with little more, Paige will discover that sometimes family has nothing to do with the blood in your veins but the people you meet along the way.Much of the back story is told through flashbacks and nightmares.

Monica James pulls the reader into an emotional storyline where a young woman had to make a choice –a choice that haunts her sleep but a choice that had to be made. Meeting Quinn and Tristan Berkeley, Hank the motel operator and Tabitha (her new BFF), Paige learns what it means to be family-a family of misfits who are there when the world begins to spiral out of control.

There is a slight love triangle formula developing between Paige and the Berkeley brothers which amped up my anxiety with an already emotional and heartbreaking storyline. Tristan and Quinn’s family history is just a step up from Mia’s horrific past and Paige (Mia) will find a kindred soul mate in Quinn.

The secondary characters (Tabitha, Quinn, Tristan, Hank) play a major role throughout the story and become one another’s sole source of comfort and support. The world building brings the abhorrent face of abuse, betrayal, neglect and addiction –front and center-in a storyline that will tug at your heart and your soul.

Monica James writes a seductive story about one woman finding solace and support from the unlikeliest of people and places. SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL is a provocative, emotional, intense and passionate storyline; the back story is gritty, abrasive and startling; and the present is traumatic and profound. You will not walk away untouched.

Copy supplied by the author.

Reviewed by Sandy

Interview beige

TRC: Hi Monica and welcome to The Reading Cafe. Congratulations on the release of SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL and the success of your I, Surrender series.

We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Follow Monica James: Goodreads Twitter / Facebook

Monica JamesMonica: Well, I am a humbled girl from Australia, who is incredibly grateful to be doing an interview with someone halfway across the world. I studied Philosophy and Literature at University and I loved it. I loved reading the philosophies of Aristotle, Plato and Nietzsche because their writings are simply beautiful. So I guess in a way, these philosophers inspired me to follow my dream, and take a chance to start writing seriously.

TRC: Who or what influenced your career in writing?

Monica: Life inspired, and still inspires me to write. I never really had a moment where I was like, ‘Yes, I want to be a writer.’ I just loved being able to express myself onto paper, as writing came so naturally to me. It started out jotting down simple phrases, quotes, thoughts, and then it extended into poems and short stories. Then it just exploded and went from there. I love being able to tell a story, and share my vision with everyone who reads my work.

TRC: When not writing, what do you do to relax?

Monica: I love hanging out with my pets. And of course, reading.

Something LIke NormalTRC: SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL is the first release in your latest contemporary, new adult series. Would you please tell us something about the premise?

Monica: Something like Normal is a manuscript I hold very close to my heart. This book was a very challenging, taxing project to write, but I loved every minute of it. I wanted to write a different story, and challenge myself as a writer, and also, challenge my readers. Some readers may find the context a little dark, but that’s what I love about this series. Every chapter challenges me, and also pushes me to write outside my comfort zone, which I love. The premise is simple: my characters just want to find their piece of normalcy in a not so normal world.

TRC: Are any of the characters or the premise based in reality or a combination of reality and fiction?

Monica: Honestly, I had to do a lot of research for this book. I wanted it to be as accurate as possible, and also, I wanted it to be confronting. It is mainly fiction; however, the characters are loosely based on people I know.

TRC: How many books do you have planned for the series?

Monica: There are 4 books in this series, and they all follow the same characters throughout each book. These characters have a lot of secrets, and I really wanted to ensure I didn’t rush anyone’s past, especially Mia’s and Quinn’s.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, logistics, background) did you encounter writing this particular story and series?

Monica: Heaps. This story involves certain situations and topics which I have never personally encountered before. I wanted to make the story as real, and as raw as possible. Everything that you read was researched, and double checked, to ensure that what you are reading is factual.

TRC: SURRENDERED-the final book in your I Surrender trilogy will be released in July 2014. Will you give us any hints or clues about the premise?

Monica: It was actually very sad writing, Surrendered. I have become very attached to these characters, and wrapping up their stories was hard. I did cry a few times LOL Hints- hmm, let’s just say Jasper White is gonna make you swoon!

TRC: Have you considered a spinoff or novella series when the trilogy is complete?

Monica: Yes, I have. If the fans want it, then I’ll see what I can do ;)

I Surrender seriesTRC: We have read where you have re-written the first two books –I Surrender and Surrender to Me-in your I Surrender series. Has the premise changed from the original storylines such that reading the new release will be confusing to previous readers?

 

Click HERE for our reviews of I, Surrender and Surrender to Me.

Monica: Not at all. When I say they are rewritten, this means the flow of the storyline has been rewritten. The actual plot itself has remained the same. A few scenes have been added, so think of these as bonus scenes.

TRC: What are your thoughts on writing a series and ending an instalment with a major cliff hanger?

Monica: LOL I know many readers hate them, but I feel they are needed to keep the readers coming back for more. Personally, as a reader, the more powerful and devastating an ending, the more chance I have at remembering the story. I love eagerly awaiting the next book in a series I love, because it’s like Christmas morning when I get my hands on it!

TRC: When writing a storyline, do the characters direct the writing or do you direct the characters?

Monica: If only I had a say! It’s 100% the characters. I cannot tell you how many times I have sat down in front of my laptop with a clear vision in my head, and then by the end of it, it reads like a totally different story. Some characters are louder and more obnoxious than others LOL, but I do try and stay true to them, and even though their decisions are sometimes questioned by readers, there is a reason why they are doing it.

TRC: The mark of a good writer is to pull the reader into the storyline so that they experience the emotions along with the characters. What do you believe a writer must do to make this happen? Where do you believe writer’s fail in this endeavor?

Monica: This is a really good question. There is only one rule I religiously follow when writing, and that is, write what you know. Your readers are intelligent, and they will know if you’re trying to write about something you’re not comfortable with. I am not talking about subject matter, because like I mentioned, Something like Normal was a project out of my comfort zone. I’m referring to writing style, words, flow etc…

An honest, raw piece of literature which showcases your talent, I believe, is what makes a successful story. If you want to write about something totally foreign to you, just make sure you have done your homework.

TRC: Writer’s Block is a very real phenomenon. How do you handle the pressures and anxiety of writer’s block?

Monica: I usually take a breather for a few days. I watch movies, read, and listen to music, that kind of thing. The more pressure put on oneself, I believe, the worse it gets. Writing should be expressive, not structured and controlled.

TRC: Many authors bounce ideas and information with other authors or friends and family. With whom do you bounce ideas?

Monica: I am a very private writer, and I actually only use one other person to bounce my ideas off, and that is my friend, and fellow author, Lisa Edward.

TRC: What three things would you like to accomplish in the next five years?

Monica: Well, I am honoured to be an Amazon bestselling author, so I guess the next step would be reaching for the stars.

TRC: What is something that few, if any people, know about you?

Monica: I am terrified of Air Blown Inflatable Characters

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Monica: Book 2 of the Something like Normal series, and a standalone.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Monica: I wanted to give a shout out to my ever supportive, forever loyal readers- You guys mean everything to me. Without you, I wouldn’t be where I am now. It’s because of your enthusiasm and loyalty that I am able to do what I love, and for that, I will forever be grateful to each and every one of you. And the only way I can repay you, is to continue writing stories I hope you will love.

Thanks for this. It was fun x

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food Pizza

Favorite Dessert Pancakes

Favorite TV Show Dexter and Supernatural

Last Movie You Saw The Lego Movie

Favorite Musical Group 30 Seconds to Mars

Dark or Milk Chocolate Dark

Secret Celebrity Crush Animal (yes, the character from The Muppets)

Last Vacation Destination USA (I miss you guys ☹)

Pet Peeve Dog ears in books!

TRC: Thank you Monica for taking the time to answer our questions. It is always fun to meet the author. Congratulations on the release of SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL and the upcoming release of SURRENDERED.

Giveaway beige

Monica James is offering an ecopy of SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL to one (1) lucky commenter at The Reading Cafe

1. Please register using the log-in at the top of the page (side bar) or by using one of the social log-ins.

2. If you are using a social log-in, please post your email address with your comment.

3. LIKE us on FACEBOOK and then click GET NOTIFICATION under ‘liked’ for an additional entry.

4. LIKE us on Twitter for an additional entry.

5. Giveaway is open to INTERNATIONAL.

6. Giveaway runs from May 19 to May 23, 2014, 2014

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The Highlander’s Reluctant Bride by Cathy MacRae-Review, Interview and Giveaway

The Highlander’s Reluctant Bride by Cathy MacRae-Review, Interview and Giveaway

The Highlander's Reluctant Bride banner

The Highlander’s Reluctant Bride
by Cathy MacRae
Release Date:
Genre: Highlander, historical, romance

The Highlander's Reluctant Bride

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk/

THE HIGHLANDER’S RELUCTANT BRIDE (Highlander’s Bride #2) by Cathy MacRae

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date March 15, 2014

Determined to keep the Macrory clan holdings out of the clutches of the Lord of the Isles and marauding pirates, King Robert II sends his man, Lord Ranald Scott, to hold Scaurness Castle. There, Laird Macrory lies dying, awaiting word from his son who is missing on the battlefields of France. If the son is not found before the old laird dies, Ranald will take over as laird–and marry Laird Macrory’s headstrong daughter.

Lady Caitriona sees no reason she cannot rule the clan in her brother’s stead, and is bitterly disappointed with the king’s decision to send a man to oversee the castle and its people. Not only is Ranald Scott only distantly related to the Macrory clan, but he was her childhood nemesis. She has little trust or like for him.

Her disappointment turns to panic when the king’s plan is completely revealed and she realizes she must wed Ranald. Pirates, treachery, and a 4-year-old girl stand between her and Ranald’s chance at happiness. What will it take for them to learn to trust each other and find the love they both deserve?

••••••••••••••••

REVIEW: THE HIGHLANDER’S RELUCTANT BRIDE is the second instalment in Cathy MacRae’s Highlander historical romance series. This is Lord Ranald Scott and Lady Riona Macrory’s story. Following the death of Laird Macrory, King Robert sends Ranald to Scaurness Castle to secure and assume the position of Laird. To establish ownership, Ranald is ordered to marry Lady Macrory and is not surprised when she denies any claim of marriage. The two have a prior history that goes back a number of years.

The premise focuses on the building relationship between Ranald and Riona as well as defending the castle from would be claimants-a one time friend of the former Laird: and the head of the Laird’s guards. When treachery and treason is suspected Ranald must ensure his position of authority or lose control of the castle and the men.

The relationship between Ranald and Riona began as children but neither had seen one another in years. Their attraction to one another is immediate although both deny feelings or their emotions. But Riona hides a secret that she believes will push Ranald away and in doing so will discover that her past has come back to claim what he believes belongs to him. When Riona chooses her past over her present Ranald knows that the future he promised was never going to happen.

The world building continues with the inclusion of Laird Eaden Scott (Ranald’s brother) from the first storyline. With the backdrop of Scottish castles and the salt water ocean you can feel the moisture and dew on the misty shores. The secondary characters include family, friends and enemies all carefully placed who reveal bits and pieces about the history of the family and the guards.

Cathy MacRae pulls the reader into a romantic storyline of struggle, betrayal, heartbreak and love. The Highlander storylines are always a favorite genre for many romance readers and THE HIGHLANDER’S RELUCTANT BRIDE is the perfect romance read for love in the afternoon.

Copy supplied by the author.

Reviewed by Sandy

Interview orange:black

TRC: Hi Cathy and welcome to The Reading Café. Congratulations on the recent release of THE HIGHLANDER’S RELUCTANT BRIDE.

Cathy: Thank you so much! It’s great to be here today. The Highlander’s Reluctant Bride is just shy of its two month birthday.

Cathy MacRaeTRC: We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Follow Cathy: Twitter / Goodreads Website / Facebook

Cathy: Well, like other writers, I love to read and cannot remember a time when I didn’t have a book in my hand- two or three in my desk at school as a kid, books in my car (before ereaders) for downtime while kids were at one practice or another. When I decided to start writing Scottish historical romance, a fellow writer challenged me to enter a writing competition, and the genre has stuck with me. I love it! And, really, it’s not hard to appreciate men in kilts. **J I was fortunate enough to take a trip to Scotland two years ago and will definitely go again!

TRC: Who or what influenced your career in writing?

Cathy: My local writing group was my first support group. **J My current critique group is awesome and of course, there are numerous authors in my genre whose stories I love.

TRC: THE HIGHLANDER’S RELUCTANT BRIDE is the March 2014 and second release in your historical Highlander Brides series. Would you please tell us something about the premise?

Cathy: It is a stand alone book, but if you read the first one, you would recognize the hero in this book, Ranald, as the brother of the hero in The Highlander’s Accidental Bride.The Highlander's Reluctant Bride

In The Highlander’s Reluctant Bride, King Robert II has received an urgent request from Laird Macrory to send someone to help hold Scaurness Castle, a strategic site overlooking the Firth of Clyde. Both the Lord of the Isles and marauding pirates would love to claim it for their own.*

The king sends Ranald and sets three mandates. First, secure the castle in the name of the king. Second, take over as laird if the old laird dies before his son can be found and returned from France’s battlefields. The third mandate hinges on the second. To strengthen his claim on the Macrory clan (he is distantly related), he must marry the old laird’s headstrong daughter. Unfortunately, Ranald remembers her as an annoying child he didn’t like very much. Their story revolves around their early dislike of each other as well as a few unexpected obstacles they must overcome in order for them to learn to trust and then love one another.

TRC: How many books do you have planned for the series? Can each of the books be read as a stand alone?

Cathy: I currently have two more in queue for the series, with a couple more possible. Each will be a stand alone, but of course it is fun to recognize characters as they weave in and out of each other’s stories.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, historical, logistics,background) did you encounter writing this particular story and series?

Cathy: The logistics of the time period are always challenging. There is the basic clan feuding to build around, but I want to include some of the issues of the time. Who was king? What were his policies? Did he support the highland clans or intrigue to keep them fighting each other? What were other notable wars/treaties/upheavals going on at this time?

TRC: Do you believe that fictional historical storylines should adhere to the ‘real history’ of the time period in the book(s)?

Cathy: To a degree, yes. I’d be happy reading something that was not historically accurate as long as the author was clear about it from the beginning.

TRC: What are your thoughts on writing a series and ending an installment with a major cliff hanger?

Cathy: I like my cliff hangers inside the book. **J There is a lot to be said about enticing readers to eagerly anticipate the next installment, but I don’t know if I’d write that way or not. I’m happier with an emotionally satisfying ending.

TRC: When writing a storyline, do the characters direct the writing or do you direct the characters?

Cathy: One of my favorite things about writing is I’m never quite sure how the story will progress. The characters definitely direct the story for me.

TRC: The mark of a good writer is to pull the reader into the storyline so that they experience the emotions along with the characters. What do you believe a writer must do to make this happen? Where do you believe writer’s fail in this endeavor?

Cathy: I think a good writer must engage the reader’s empathy for the hero and heroine and keep them true to their character. If a writer changes the heroor heroine’s reaction to a situation (except for an expected character change as the story progresses), the story will lose its believability. Characters with real, understandable flaws are wonderful. I think books are better with a hero and heroine who are just as fallible in the book as people would be in real life. I want to believe, no matter what happens in a person’s life, there can be a HEA.

TRC: Writer’s Block is a very real phenomenon. How do you handle the pressures and anxiety of writer’s block?

Cathy: Usually, when writer’s block is staring me in the face, I have written a character into an unbelievable situation. It might take some rereading of the story up to that point to see where it went wrong. Occasionally I just jump to another chapter and keep writing. I can usually backtrack and fix the ‘dead spot’ later.

TRC: Many authors bounce ideas and information with other authors or friends and family. With whom do you bounce ideas?

Cathy: My DH loves to hear my plots and is great at helping me find information. He usually does the first edits on my chapters. I often bounce ideas with my critique group, too. They are a HUGE help!

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Cathy: In The Highlander’s Reluctant Bride, a 4-year-old named Gilda is introduced. My next book is her story- twelve years later, of course. It is called The Highlander’s Tempestuous Bride.

TRC: What three things would you like to accomplish in the next five years?

Cathy: I am entering the arena of self-publication and career as a full-time author. I’m not sure I have time for anything else, lol! But if I do, I would love to take another trip to Scotland.

TRC: What is something that few, if any people, know about you?

Cathy: A few people know I worked as a tour guide at George Dickel Distillery for about a year recently. I absolutely loved the job! I met people from all over the world and learned a lot of amazing things, both about whisky and life in general.I suppose if I hadn’t moved, I’d still be there.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Cathy: Writing is such fun for me. I love interacting with readers, too. Readers can find me at my Website on Facebook or my author page at Cathy MacRae Author.

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food- shrimp

Favorite Dessert- anything chocolate or ice cream (preferably Ben & Jerry’s
cookie dough)

Favorite TV Show- NCIS

Last Movie You Saw- Robin Hood with Russell Crowe

Favorite Musical Group- The John Scofield Trio (funky jazz)

Dark or Milk Chocolate- Milk chocolate

Secret Celebrity Crush- George Clooney

Last Vacation Destination- Eureka Springs, AK

Pet Peeve- poor grammar

TRC: Thank you Cathy for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on the release of THE HIGHLANDER’S RELUCTANT BRIDE. We
wish you all the best.

Cathy: Thank you for having me here today! I’m so glad to get a chance to chat with you!

Giveaway Black and Orange

Cathy is offering the following prize package at The Reading Cafe.

-one commenter will receive the coconut soap and bookmark
-one commenter will receive a signed copy of THE HIGHLANDER’S ACCIDENTAL BRIDE
Cathy MacRae prize

1. Please register using the log-in at the top of the page.

2. If you are using a social log-in such as Twitter or Facebook, please post your email address with your comment.

3. LIKE us on FACEBOOK and then click GET NOTIFICATION under ‘liked’ for an additional entry.

 4. LIKE us on Twitter for an additional entry.

5. LIKE Cathy MacRae on Facebook for an additional entry.

6. Giveaway open to USA only

7. Giveaway runs from May 16 to May 21, 2014

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Rock My World by Julie Shackman-Review and Interview with the Author

Rock My World by Julie Shackman-Review and Interview with the Author

Rock My World

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date February 14, 2014

Ruby Cameron is an ambitious reporter for a local paper where she is fed scraps of news, and lives with a man whose “idea of living dangerously is to leave the heating on when we pop out to the shops”. But after catching her squeaky clean boyfriend in flagrante delicto she ups sticks and moves into her own small home, only to discover the ghostly presence of a cheeky rock star who becomes her confidant as the dynamics of her small town, and her feelings about her dashing new boss, begin to throw up more questions than she can answer. Will Ruby discover who she really is, and perhaps more importantly, who she wants to be?

••••••••••••••••••

REVIEW: ROCK MY WORLD is a contemporary, paranormal, romance, suspense storyline focusing on twenty eight year old newspaper reporter Ruby Cameron and the ghost who resides in her new home. After she finds her boyfriend having sex with a younger woman, Ruby moves into a new housing development, built upon the grounds of a former theatre, where she is immediately assaulted by the familiar tones of 80s rock anthems. To Ruby’s surprise she is the only person who hears the music and with it will come the apparition of the long deceased Stevie V-front man and singer for the former Scottish rock group Legend who died close to twenty eight years earlier-on the very spot.

The storyline focuses on Ruby’s investigation into the death of Stevie V. The rocker has not been able to move on since his demise and pleads with Ruby to investigate what he believes was not an accident but a murder. As a reporter Ruby has more connections than the average person but what Ruby uncovers will shock everyone including herself. As if investigating Stevie’s death isn’t enough, Ruby will be introduced to a new reporter whose father owns the struggling paper and her attraction to Matt Jardine is immediate and unwelcome.

Julie Shackman writes an inviting storyline about one woman’s search for the truth but what she uncovers will change her life, as well. This is a story of suspense and mystery; betrayal and jealousy; losing and second chances. Our heroine Ruby will be given a second chance at love in the guise of a fellow reporter but what ensues is a game of push and pull.

The storyline is told from alternating first person (Ruby) and close third person POV. The writing style is simple and the backstory is revealed through investigation, interviews and reflection. A good portion of the storyline goes back and forth between present day and the past but not always in the same time period-the story spans over thirty years.

Julie Shackman references many of the songs, fads and happenings of the 1980s to give the storyline a familiar edge in reality. The secondary characters are an eclectic mix of family, friends and co-workers who add a little color and entertainment to the storyline.

ROCK MY WORLD is an entertaining and spirited story with a little bit of romance, a little bit of sex, a little bit of mystery and a little bit of suspense. If you like a mystery storyline with a little bit of romance woven throughout then ROCK MY WORLD will definitely entertain.

Copy supplied by the author.

Reviewed by Sandy

Interview

TRC: Hi Julie and welcome to The Reading Café.

Julie Shackman We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

FOLLOW Julie: Twitter/ Facebook / Blog/ Goodreads

Julie: I trained as a journalist but writing romance has always been a dream of mine. When I’ve not got my head in a book or drafting one, I write verses and captions for greetings card companies. Writing at home seems to be incredibly difficult for me – I usually require coffee, music and noise. I’m married with two sons and live in Scotland.

TRC: What or who influenced your foray into writing?

Julie: I remember reading novels by writers like Judith Krantz when I was about 13 and I thought “Wow!” The idea of sitting writing and using your ideas and your words to make readers laugh, cry and empathise with you just seemed wonderful to me. I’ve always been obsessed with writing and books from an
early age.

TRC: You once were employed as a writer for greeting cards. Please tell us the details ;)

Julie: I still write verses and captions for greetings card companies and really enjoy doing it! The idea came to me when I read about a writer in theStates who’d make a success of it and I wondered whether I should give it a try. I pulled together several different verses and started sending them off to greetings card companies. After a couple of weeks, two came back and said they wanted to purchase some of my work and that was it.

TRC: Did you have the opportunity to ‘see’ the greeting cards prior to writing the verses?

Julie: I do occasionally get sent the designs to work from. Other times, I’m provided with a description or design brief saying what they are looking for. A lot of the art work is gorgeous.

TRC: As a journalist were you able to travel the world? What do you miss most?

Julie: I didn’t travel the world no, but I did cover some very diverse stories and met some really interesting characters. I probably miss some of them the most!

Rock My WorldTRC: ROCK MY WORLD is your February 2014 release. Would you please tell us something about the premise?

Julie: Ruby Cameron is an ambitious reporter for a local paper where she is fed scraps of news, and lives with a man whose “idea of living dangerously is to leave the heating on when we pop out to the shops”. But after catching her squeaky clean boyfriend in flagrante delicto she ups sticks and movesinto her own small home, only to discover the ghostly presence of a cheeky rock star who becomes her confidant as the dynamics of her small town, and her feelings about her dashing new boss, begin to throw up more questions than she can answer. Will Ruby discover who she really is, and perhaps more importantly, who she wants to be?

TRC: Is this a standalone novel or do you have plans for a series?

Julie: “Rock My World” is a stand-alone novel. I don’t have any plans to make it into a series. I think Ruby, Stevie and Matt (my three main characters) would agree that their story has been told. I did love writing it though and got a bit emotional when I’d typed “The End.”

TRC: Are any of the characters or the storyline premise based in reality?

Julie: No, they’re not wholly based on people I’ve met. There’s elements there of people I know…!

TRC: What are your thoughts on writing a series and ending an instalment with a major cliff hanger?

Julie: I think writing like that is a great idea and really helps to hook readers. However, I think as a writer you have to follow your heart. It’s probably just a case of finding the type of writing style, story and genre that suits you and that you love and then just going with it.

TRC: When writing a storyline, do the characters direct the writing or do you direct the characters?

Julie: There’s definitely a bit of both of these elements going on at times! Usually though, my characters seem to do their own thing and I try to give them freedom.

TRC: The mark of a good writer is to pull the reader into the storyline so that they experience the emotions along with the characters. What do you believe a writer must do to make this happen? Where do you believe writer’s fail in this endeavor?

Julie: I often read “Write what you know” and “If you enjoy writing your novel, it comes through and the reader will enjoy it too.” So if you can put some of your own genuine feelings and emotions into your characters and into the story generally (whilst loving doing it!) I think you’ll hook the reader.

TRC: Writer’s Block is a very real phenomenon. How do you handle the pressures and anxiety of writer’s block?

Julie: I’ll go out for a walk; read a book or listen to some music. Sometimes though, I’ll try to push through it and even if I seem to write a lot of rubbish, I’ll leave it and go back and try to improve it the next day.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, logistics, background) did you encounter writing this particular story and series?

Julie: I didn’t really find any difficulties writing “Rock My World.” I did quite a bit of research on the internet, just checking facts on 80s rock music and lifestyle/politics of the time. That brought back a few memories!

TRC: Many authors bounce ideas and information with other authors or friends and family. With whom do you bounce ideas?

Julie: I bounce ideas off my Husband and friends and family mainly. I can usually see on their faces what they make of my ideas!

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Julie: I have just finished writing my second novel (a rom-com) and am polishing that at the moment. I’m also pulling together research and ideas for my third novel (also a rom-com) which has a well-known historical figure as its main character.

TRC: What three things would you like to accomplish in the next five years?

Julie: I just want to keep writing romances that make people laugh and cry.

Secondly, like most writers, I would love for one of my books to be turned into a TV drama.

Lastly, I wouldn’t mind getting involved in writing a mini-series for TV.

TRC: What is something that few, if any people, know about you?

Julie: I learnt Russian at secondary school and got an O Level in it.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Julie: Just to say thank you so much to The Reading Cafe for this great interview!

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food - Anything Italian!

Favorite Dessert - Sticky Toffee Pudding

Favorite TV Show - Strictly Come Dancing and The Musketeers

Last Movie You SawThe Hobbit – The Desolation of Smaug – I’m a huge
Richard Armitage fan and have been for a few years now.

Dark or Milk Chocolate - Milk Chocolate – preferably with nuts!

Secret Celebrity Crush - Richard Armitage (again!) I also think Bradley
Cooper is a honey.

Last Vacation Destination - Malta – It was beautiful.

Pet Peeve - I can’t stand it when people jump queues or don’t say please
and thank you. If they happen to do both, it sets my teeth on edge!

TRC: Thank you Julie for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on the release of ROCK MY WORLD. We wish you all the best.

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Axel Jordan-Interview with the Musician and Model

Axel Jordan-Interview with the Musician and Model

Today, at The Reading Cafe, we would like to introduce musician and model Axel Jordan. Hope everyone enjoys getting to know today’s cover model !!

TRC: Hi Axel and welcome to The Reading Cafe.

We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Follow Axel: Twitter / Facebook / Website/

Axel Jordan 1AXEL: Sure thing! I’m a musician. Born and raised here in NYC. I keep myself pretty busy. Constantly studying music; my craft. And castings around the city.

TRC: What were your goals and aspirations growing up?

AXEL: I was also a performer of some sort. Even as a little kid, I knew I wanted to sing at the top of my lungs. I was either going to be a performer or a veterinarian. I love Animals. Always have.

TRC: Will you please tell us about how you got started in the modeling/cover modeling business?

AXEL: Fortunately, I was blessed and modeled as a kid. It allowed me to meet a lot of people. As I grew up I still maintained contacts with my agents and work pretty consistently. It’s a great way to keep myself busy, make some money and meet a lot of people.

SparkTRC: You recently appeared on the covers of Brigid Kemmerer’s SPARK and BREATHLESS. Many YA and romance novels use the cover model as the
depiction of the storyline hero. What do you say to all of the ‘fans’ who imagine YOU -Axel Jordan- as their storyline hero?

AXEL: To that I say, Thank You. It’s quite flattering when I receive messages about how readers relate the characters to me. I can
personally relate to both characters, Nick & Gabriel, so I take it as a compliment.

TRC: Do you know the number of novel covers that your image has appeared?

AXEL: To date, I’ve appeared on the cover of 4 novels.

TRC: What was your first PUBLISHED cover and by which author?

BreathlessAXEL: The first were the covers of Brigid Kemmerer’s novels.

TRC: At times, there has been a stigma surrounding the male model and the romance-cover industry. But the popularity of the paranormal romance and YA (Young Adult) storylines has skyrocketed in the last few years. What is your opinion about the recent popularity and the very busy industry of the ‘romance and young adult cover model’?

AXEL: I think in the past, YA stories weren’t as honest as they are today. In today’s society, young adults are actually talking truthfully about their feelings and encounters. They aren’t hiding behind the idea of what is considered to be “Right” or “Wrong”. Whether it’s on TV shows or in novels, you’re really getting a close idea of how the minds of young adults actually work. As an artist, I personally believe in living your truth. All day, everyday. So I give it two thumbs up*!

TRC: Have you ever had a photo shoot that went completely wrong?

AXEL: Completely wrong, No. But I’ve certainly had shoots where things weren’t going right. But it’s a job and I’m pretty dedicated to work so I pull it together and make it work.

Axel Jordan2TRC: Nudity in modeling or acting can be controversial. Some pictures can cross the line between sexuality and pornography. What would you tell young models just entering the business about nude modeling?

AXEL: Not always and not all models, but often times models are looking for recognition and are looking to be the best they can be. That can sometimes leave you open to be taken advantage of. Truth is, yes, modeling is about knowing your body. It’s about sexuality and sensuality. But it’s also about confidence. Know yourself and know your boundaries. I always say, know the job and know your worth. If Calvin Klein called and wanted me to shoot partially nude or nude, I would consider it. Till then, no thanks.

TRC: What is your most embarrassing moment?

AXEL: I don’t know if I have any. I can roll with the punches and tend to find humor in most things. So, I’m not easily embarrassed

TRC: When you are not modeling what can we find you doing-in other words-what is your ‘day job’? ;)

Axel Jordan 3AXEL: I’m a musician. Currently working on an album. Released my debut single on iTunes a while back. Go check it out. Via my website
AxelJordan.com or on iTunes. Song is titled “Release You”

Click HERE and download a copy of RELEASE YOU for only .99cents from iTunes.

TRC: What three (3) things would you like to accomplish in the next ten (10) years?

 

 

AXEL: In 10 years ….
– Receive many Grammy’s
– Travel the world. Several Times over.
– Start a family. This one will be closer to the 10 year mark though.

TRC: What is something that few people (if any) know about you?

AXEL: I love to go to Live Stand-up Comedy shows. Oh, and I’m a total Sci-Fi geek.

TRC: Would you please tell us what you do to relax?

AXEL: I run. I run a few times a week. Either outside (if its nice out) or indoors, I can just zone out for 6-miles. It clears my head andeverything just makes sense afterwards.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

AXEL: ummmm nope. I think you pretty much covered it all.

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food

- Pizza

Favorite Dessert

- Cake

Favorite TV Show

- Game Of Thrones

Last Movie You Saw

- Frozen. On a plane yesterday.

Dark or Milk Chocolate

- Milk

Secret Celebrity Crush

- Mila Kunis

Last Vacation Destination

- Puerto Rico

TRC: Thank you Axel for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on all of your success and we look forward to many more covers.

AXEL: Thank You! I Look forward to sharing more with ya’ sometime.

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A Strange There After (Savannah Shadows #2) by Missy Fleming-Review & Interview with the Author

A Strange There After (Savannah Shadows #2) by Missy Fleming-Review and Interview with the Author

A Strange There After

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk/

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date March 26, 2014

Ghosts exist. Quinn Roberts knows this because she is one – kind of. The spirit of a dysfunctional ancestor, Catherine, has evicted Quinn from her own body, forcing her to live in a world with the paranormal. No one can see, touch or hear her, except the ghosts she grew up with and the bane of her existence, a self-centered paranormal investigator named Boone.

Forced to watch the growing bond between her boyfriend, Jason, and the body snatcher, Catherine, Quinn delves deeper into the history of her family in search of a way to reverse what’s been done. What she finds is a dangerous entity more terrifying than anything she’s encountered before. He’s willing to grant all her desires…for a price.

As Quinn faces painful decisions and makes unlikely alliances, she learns how far she will go to get her life back. Desperation is a wicked thing and she soon realizes that recovering her body may only be the beginning of her end.

••••••••••••••••••••

REVIEW: A STRANGE THERE AFTER is the second instalment in Missy Fleming’s contemporary, young adult Savannah Shadows paranormal storyline focusing on a centuries old curse that has followed Quinn Roberts family through the generations. As the sole surviving Roberts family member, Quinn has become the target of ghosts and spirits avenging their death at the hands of Quinn’s ancestors. Now that Quinn’s spirit has been forced from her own body, she must find a way to let everyone know that the spirit inhabiting her body is not Quinn but someone who hopes to make the switch permanent.

Missy Fleming continues the world building from book one where Quinn’s life read like a Cinderella fairy tale including the wicked step-mother and step-sisters but in A STRANGE THERE AFTER the fairy tale takes on a more sinister note. With her extended family out of the picture, Quinn will discover that not everything they did was under their control. With the Savannah, Georgia area notorious for hauntings and magical incantations Quinn, along with the help of her best friend and a young psychic with connections to the other side, Quinn sets out to find a way to reverse the curse set upon her family for hundreds of years.

A STRANGE THERE AFTER is a young adult storyline (written in first person POV) with all the hallmarks of the genre-a love triangle; absent parents; misguided and misunderstood youth; villainous adults; and the requisite mean girl who pushes Quinn from her body and takes over her life as well as her boyfriend. Quinn’s friends try desperately to find a way to reverse the curse but Quinn takes it upon herself to make a deal with an otherworldly spirit only the Devil himself would love.

The storyline is well paced; there is mystery and suspense; perceived betrayal and broken hearts. The secondary characters are colorful but Quinn’s long suffering boyfriend plays only a small role in the second storyline. The reader is pulled into a story where voodoo, magic and revenge have crossed hundreds of years to finally come full circle with the last of the cursed family. Once Quinn is out of the picture, what’s an angry spirit to do for fun?

Reading Order
1. Happily Never After
2. A Strange There After

Copy supplied by the author.

Reviewed by Sandy

Interview orange:black

TRC: Hi Missy and welcome to The Reading Café. Congratulations on the release of A STRANGE THERE AFTER.

WE would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Check out Missy’s Website

Missy FlemingMissy: I live in beautiful Bozeman, Montana, not far from Yellowstone National Park. Being outside, especially in summer, is a bit of a necessity, so that often leaves me with less time for writing than I’d like. I love traveling, am an adoring aunt, and spend a lot of time with my family. When I’m writing, I always have to have something on in the background; music or the TV. For some reason, I am not the type who does well with silence.

TRC: What or who influenced your foray into writing?

Missy: As much as I hate to admit it, I’d have to say it started with Stephanie Meyer. If it weren’t for Twilight and the craze causing me to pick the book up, I might not have fallen as hard and fast as I did for the Young Adult genre. Although I grew up reading Nora Roberts, I find it MUCH harder to write adult books. My other biggest influence is my critique/writing partner. She has been amazing at giving me tough love, helping me become a better writer. I will always be thankful to her.

A Strange There AfterTRC: A STRANGE THERE AFTER is the second installment in your young adult, paranormal Savannah Shadows series. Would you please tell us something about the series and book premise?

Missy: Quinn Roberts has grown up in the shadow of her stepsisters, often neglected by her stepmother, and can’t wait to get away from them, even if it means leaving her beloved childhood home. Quinn is a sensitive, meaning she can hear and see ghosts. But there is something evil in her house, affecting her stepmother. The further she delves into the history of her family, the more disturbing things she finds. And as the series progresses, she winds up in a position she never imagined, fighting for her life and to get back all she has lost.

TRC: The first book –HAPPILY NEVER AFTER- followed the ‘Cinderella’ outline. What was the deciding factor to use an established fairy tale formula for the introductory storyline?

Click HERE for our review of Happily Never After

Happily Never AfterMissy: Personally, I love fairy tale retellings and I love ghost stories—much like what Marissa Marr has done with her Cinder series. Putting those beloved stories into a modern setting makes them relevant to new readers, makes them more relatable. I wondered what it would be like if the fairy godmother was a ghost and the prince, an actor. In the second book, I kind of flirted with the whole Rumplestilskin tale, about trading favors and making good on a contract or partnership.

TRC: Why Savannah, Georgia? Do you have a connection to the town and the people?

Missy: Savannah is steeped in history, especially the kind centered around the paranormal. It is said to be the most haunted town in America. It seemed to be the perfect place to set the story. The town has always fascinated me.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, logistics, background, history,etc) did you encounter writing this particular story and series?

Missy: Believe it or not, I have never been to Savannah, so I have to always consult maps and visitor guides. In book two, I had a whole new set of obstacles. I won’t spoil it for anyone who hasn’t read the first, but involving Quinn became nearly impossible. I had to get inventive and introduce new characters to make it work. It frustrated me to no end, but I am extremely happy with how it turned out.

TRC: How many books do you have planned for the series?

Missy: Three. I will be starting the third book very soon. Been jotting down notes and ideas so it’s time to make sense of them.

TRC: Why your interest in writing ‘young adult’ storylines? Have you considered writing other genres? Adult storylines?

Missy: I love the younger voice. The stories come easier to me. It’s hard to explain. I have an adult/women’s fiction I’ve been trying to tweak for years, but it never feels just right. While I can pop out a YA book in a few months. I think I may venture into New Adult eventually, but right now, I am happy where I am. I love the genre and I think it still has a lot of places to go.

TRC: If you could virtually cast the leading characters (Quinn, Catherine, Abby, Jason, Boone) in this storyline, which models or actors best represents your ideal image?

Missy: To me, Quinn has always been either Victoria Justice or Vanessa Hudgens. They both have the same look as Quinn and I’d totally cast either of them.

For Abby, I would choose Taylor Swift. I think she’d be great in that part, feisty and determined.

Jason is a tough one. Maybe Brant Daughtry from Pretty Little Liars or Chase Crawford.

Boone was based off of Zak Bagans from Ghost Adventures, a little embarrassing to admit, but I can’t see him being cast as anyone else. Maybe Zak wants to try out acting!

TRC: How do you keep the plot unpredictable without sacrificing content and believability?

Missy: I like to think of the least predictable road, what would be the least cliché option. I don’t want to ever be just another paranormal. I want to be different. It can take a couple tries, but eventually you find something that fits and it feels good.

TRC: When writing a storyline, do the characters direct the writing or do you direct the characters?

Missy: The characters direct me. There’s been plenty of times I am surprised by where the story has gone, how a certain character has evolved. I never intended to bring another love interest into the story for Quinn with Boone, but it happened that way. I wasn’t sure how this experience would change her but it does. She surprised me and I love it when that happens.

TRC: The mark of a good writer is to pull the reader into the storyline so that they experience the emotions along with the characters. What do you believe a writer must do to make this happen? Where do you believe writer’s fail in this endeavor?

Missy: Sometimes, I think writers try too hard, they overreach, have the characters react to something and go overboard. To me, emotion comes from the simple things, from a struggle the everyday reader can relate to. And it has to feel real.

TRC: Writer’s Block is a very real phenomenon. How do you handle the pressures and anxiety of writer’s block?

Missy: I don’t force it. Even if it puts me behind schedule, I don’t force it. It will only make me more frustrated. Often, I will switch to some other project for a bit or lay in bed at night working through it in my head. Walking away is often the best medicine.

TRC: Many authors bounce ideas and information with other authors or friends and family. With whom do you bounce ideas?

Missy: My sister is a good one. She’s read most of my works in progress. The best person I have is a fellow writer. We write and edit together and I have learned so much from her. She’ll tell me exactly why she doesn’t like something and often, I have to mull it over to realize she is right. We have our routine down to an art.

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Missy: A historical Young Adult set in the 1860’s gold rush in Montana. While that may not sound like something a lot of teens would read, I’ve added the whole Hatfields & McCoys element, or more recognizable, Romeo and Juliet. It’s about a girl who has lost everything and takes a chance to go west, leaping into the unknown, and is caught between two warring families. It does have a love triangle and the gold rush town it is set in actually still exists today. The boom and excitement of instant wealth is just the backdrop to the story. It’s my first historical and I’m really happy with how it’s turning out. Well, I still have to figure out the end, so we shall see.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Missy: Thanks for this opportunity! As an author, I am still learning the ins and outs of marketing myself. Sites like this have helped immensely. I am that writer, and reader, who gets so caught up in their current project, they often forget the real world exists out there. I’d love to hear from any of my readers so feel free to contact me through Goodreads or my (very neglected) website.

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food
Love any kind of seafood. And popcorn. That’s my go-to snack.

Favorite Dessert
A certain chocolate cake of my mom’s. And angel food cake.

Favorite TV Show
Once Upon a Time – go figure – and Scandal. Also ADDICTED to Game of Thrones

Last Movie You Saw
New movie? I’d have to say that would be Frozen. And I am in love with it.

Dark or Milk Chocolate
Dark!

Favorite Song (at the moment)
Happy by Pharell. It’s just a happy song. How can anyone hear it and not want to smile or move?

Secret Celebrity Crush
Ian Somerhalder. Not only is he hot but he is into environmental awareness and an animal lover. Whole package

Last Vacation Destination
Just got back from Orlando two days ago. It was a work thing, but we spent a couple days extra going to Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom. Lots of people but something about that place is amazing. So much to see and do.

Pet Peeve
Oh wow. Not sure. People who think they are entitled to certain things. Like on an airplane. Just because you get on first doesn’t mean we’re leaving any sooner, so stop pushing your way through the crowd!

TRC: Thank you Missy for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on all of your success. We wish you all the best.

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Releasing Me by Jewel E.Ann -Reviews, Interview and Giveaway

Releasing Me by Jewel. E.Ann-Reviews, Interview and Giveaway

Releasing Me Banner

Releasing Me
Holding You #2
by Jewel E. Ann
Release Date: April 18, 2014
Genre: Adult, contemporary, erotic, romance

Releasing Me

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk/ Barnes and Noble / KOBO /

RELEASING ME (Holding You #2) by Jewel E. Ann

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date April 18, 2014

A tragic accident. A hidden past. An unbreakable love.

Never goodbye …

I thought Addy stole my soul.

Her beauty blinded me.
Her heart called to me.
Her touch healed me.

She gave everything and asked for nothing. Then I broke her. The depths of her pain were veiled by the reflection of my own. I didn’t deserve her, but I wanted her––I needed her. In my darkest hell, I heard her voice. That’s when I knew …

Addy was my soul.

Deep breath … I am peaceful, I am strong.

Quinn was worth the risk.

He took away the numbness and gave me unfathomable pleasure. Every emotion felt magnified, every moment felt like the last.

My heart found purpose.
My body came to life.
My soul returned.

His weakness gave me strength, and his past held my future. He saved me by … releasing me.

•••••••••••••••••••••••

REVIEW: RELEASING ME is the second and final instalment in Jewel E Ann’s contemporary, adult romance Holding You duology and readers are in for an emotional ride. Releasing Me continues the story of Adler Brecken and Quinn Cohen. At the end of Holding You an accident left our couple fighting for survival. Release Me will reveal that words said in anger; actions meant to hurt; and betrayal of both the heart and the soul will break even the hardest of humans-but when someone is already broken, the cracks will weaken the spirit until there is nothing left on which to hold. Sometimes pushing too hard means losing everything and everyone that means anything in your life.

The storyline focuses on recovery, addiction and fighting for the one you love. Painful words, heartbreaking betrayal and, buried pasts find our couple in a hell of their own making. Hidden secrets will force Addy and Quinn into a battle for both their lives and their love but in the end, pain and sorrow may be all that is left at the end of the day.

Jewel E. Ann has written a story where one woman has suffered so many losses and heartbreaks in her life that one more seems inevitable and revealing. At times RELEASING ME is a difficult storyline with the amount of devastating and emotional pain that our heroine must endure. And when she finally puts her heart on the line she is pushed into the abyss by a man who is floundering in the knowledge that he did not really know the woman with whom he had fallen in love. His actions are unforgiveable; he is weakened by both physical and emotional pain; yet our heroine is willing to stand by and watch the disaster play out to its’ final demise.

RELEASING ME is a storyline with a little mystery, plenty of secrets, and a whole lot of emotional heartache. The secondary characters are pulled into the turbulent life of two people who love beyond the present but continue to hurt one another through their actions, their secrets and their hidden pasts but sometimes the past must remain in the past or the memories wound like daggers of the mind and the heart.

The relationship between Addy and Quinn is sexual, sensual, angry and seductive. There is betrayal of the heart; of the mind; and of the soul for two people so emotionally injured that they can’t see beyond the present-a lack of maturity fueled the pain and the ever present ghost in the room.

Jewel E Ann pulls the readers into a story where love and hatred straddle a infinite line; where betrayal and anger are the fuel for words meant to wound; and where the heart knows that there will never be anyone who can compare to the one who holds your life and your soul –for all time. Releasing Me is a story of love between two people who refused to give up and in the end realized that there was more of a connection to one another then anyone could ever have imagined.

Copy supplied by the author.

_______________

Holding You
Holding You #1
by Jewel E.Ann
Release Date: February 21, 2014
Genre: adult, contemporary, erotic,romance

Holding You

Special Price .99cents for a limited time: Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk/ Barnes and Noble / KOBO /

About the book:

Deep breath … I am peaceful, I am strong.

Free-spirited Addy Brecken is Milwaukee’s most talented vegan chef and co-owner of Sage Leaf Café. She has a genius IQ, a padded savings account, an amazing view of Lake Michigan, and a heart that won’t stop beating.

An early April morning finds her drowning in the seductive fragrance of lilacs and the warmth of the morning sun when she’s nearly hit by a car in front of her café. The peaceful existence she’s desperately tried to maintain after the horrific loss of her family is suddenly shaken by the Range Rover driving, arrogant, sex-on-legs Quinn Cohen.

A successful, Latino businessman from New York, Quinn has a taste for the finer things in life. A typical playboy, he has the money, the houses, the cars, and the women. Quinn is everything Addy avoids. Where she lives simply and prefers to help the less fortunate, he has no problem spending an obscene amount of money on a briefcase. Their opposite personalities lend to several heated encounters, and Addy finds herself propositioning Quinn for the one thing she never imagined needing … sex.

Offering only her body, Addy tries to keep Quinn at a safe distance from her heart and a world away from her past. Their passion-filled connection makes Addy feel something unfamiliar, alive. But with passion comes more feelings: anger, jealousy, love. When Addy surrenders to the unimaginable and lets go of her past, she’s faced with the impossible … holding on to her future.

Deep breath … I am peaceful, I am strong.

•••••••••••••••••••

REVIEW: HOLDING YOU is the first instalment in Jewel E. Ann’s adult, contemporary, erotic series by the same name. The storyline follows vegan chef Adler (Addy) Brecken and millionaire Quinn Cohen as they navigate the mine field that is their life.

Addy has a secret- a past mired in pain, sorrow and heartbreak and, one that she is reluctant to talk about or revisit. Quinn doesn’t do relationships-at least nothing longer than six weeks so embarking on an almost-friends with benefits kind of relationship suits both Addy and Quinn –for the moment. But, like all sexual relationship between two people both physically and emotionally attracted to one another the heart will fall before the mind has had a chance to catch up. And in this, Quinn will ensure that Addy’s knows he is not the man for her.

The reader is pulled into a heartbreaking storyline about two people afraid to commit to one another; afraid to tell the truth; afraid to allow their emotions to guide them through the fall-out of every revelation. This is a story where the heart is broken when the reality of the situation comes crashing home-after all-they agreed to friends with benefits –ONLY. Quinn never promised fidelity and Addy never promised to lose her heart.

Addy and Quinn’s relationship follows a love-hate path where one man is unable to commit and his actions speak to his betrayal. Addy is afraid to love again and with Quinn’s history, she knows that her choices are probably for the best. But falling in love is often out of our control. The sex scenes are plentiful; there is no holding back and nothing is off limits for Abby and Quinn.

Jewel E. Ann has written a heartbreaking story where two people who love one another are afraid to acknowledge the demons from their past, but the demons from Quinn’s past resurface at every occasion. Addy’s secrets weigh heavily on her mind and in her heart but the man with whom she is falling in love has never pushed for the truth until now. As Addy’s secrets begin to reveal themselves to Quinn, it may be too late when the biggest secret of all, comes crashing down.

HOLDING YOU is a story about an independent, strong and centered woman who knows what she wants and she wants Quinn Cohen-a man who has never wanted for anything in his life. If you like a storyline with betrayal and heartache; pain and sorrow; billionaire lifestyles of the rich and famous than Holding You is the perfect read.

Copy supplied by the author.

Reviewed by Sandy

releasing me teaser 3

 

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Jewel E AnnTRC: Hi Jewel and welcome to The Reading Cafe. Congratulations on the release of HOLDING YOU and RELEASING ME.

Jewel: Thank you for having me!

TRC: We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Jewel: Sure! I live in Iowa with my fabulous husband, 3 boys, and a dog.

TRC: HOLDING YOU is your February 2014 release focusing on Addy Brecken and Quinn Cohen. Would you please tell us something about the premise?

Jewel: The premise behind Addy and Quinn’s journey is life is fragile, love is unexpected, and forgiveness comes from within.

TRC: You heroine Addy is the owner and chef at a vegan eatery. Are you a vegan? And if so, do you encounter ‘negativity’ as it pertains to the ‘special dietary’ concerns at private and public functions?

Jewel: Yes, I am a vegan or basically I try to eat a whole foods diet. I don’t obsess over the specifics of “veganism” for example, honey, leather goods, etc. I strive for living a life of compassion toward all life which includes not judging other people and their lifestyle choices. I find, like the Golden Rule, this compassion usually comes back. When it doesn’t, it’s not really my problem.

As for “negativity,” it’s pretty rare. I don’t make a point of drawing attention to myself and my “special dietary,” needs. I usually don’t show up hungry so it’s easy to find something to throw on my plate so the focus of the gathering stays social instead of 21 questions about my eating habits. If anything, most people are curious about a vegan diet since the health benefits of a plant-based diet have become more mainstream.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, logistics, background) did you encounter writing this particular story and series?

Jewel: Fortunately, not too many. Holding You is my first novel so I chose to write what I knew or topics that family and friends could be “experts” on. I wanted to focus on developing a writing style that felt natural and uniquely mine. Too much research might have hindered that process. Don’t get me wrong. There were a few challenges, such as the timeline. The series doesn’t take place over days or even months, it’s years and keeping the timeline accurate was sometimes overwhelming.

TRC: Are any of the characters in your storylines based in reality or a compilation of people and your imagination?

Jewel: Definitely a compilation of people and my imagination. If we look hard enough we can see reflections of ourselves in everyone else. I hope my characters are that way too.

TRC: If you could virtually cast the leading characters in this storyline, which models or actors best represents your ideal image?

Jewel: Ugh! You’re going to wish you asked me a different question. I’d have a terrible time casting Addy and Quinn. While it’s fun to look at Pinterest boards where fans have put faces and oh so hot bodies to my characters, nothing matches the physical descriptions, especially facial, in my head. However, because this is a popular question I will say Sienna Miller could pass for Addy and Marcos Pitombo would be an acceptable Quinn.

TRC: RELEASING ME (May 2014) is the second and final installment in the duology. Do you have any plans to continue the storyline with novellas or short stories to keep your readers up to date on the lives of Quinn and Addy? Or perhaps another duology concentrating on Jake? Mac and Evan?

Holding You Series

Jewel: No, I don’t have plans for Addy & Quinn. I love their story and it’s complete. I hope readers trust me to take them on new journeys and open their minds and their hearts to the unknown again.

As for Jake, my husband thinks Jake deserves “more.” I haven’t shut the door on him, but it would take a huge surge of requests for me to consider a literary resurrection of Jake.

Mac and Evan’s story feels complete too. It would be possible to do a novella on how they met pre-Holding You. I love Mac’s personality and I could write about her all day.

TRC: How do you keep the plot unpredictable without sacrificing content and believability?

Jewel: I try to keep readers in the moment. If I can fill the journey with lots of emotional peaks and valleys then what’s over the horizon doesn’t matter. As for believability, there seems to be a lot of wiggle room. Readers believe what they want to believe. I love the Edmond Wilson’s quote: “No two persons ever read the same book.”

TRC: When writing a storyline, do the characters direct the writing or do youdirect the characters?

Jewel: A little of both. Initially, I direct the characters. Then, much like children, they take over and that in my mind is when the story gets really good!

TRC: The mark of a good writer is to pull the reader into the storyline so that they experience the emotions along with the characters. What do you believe a writer must do to make this happen? Where do you believe writer’s fail in this endeavor?

Jewel: I can only speak for myself. But I have to completely immerse myself into each character. If I’m not 100% emotionally invested in my characters then I certainly can’t expect my readers to be. I haven’t reached my emotional target until I’m laughing out loud, or bawling my eyes out, or so turned on that I have to take a break from writing and proposition my husband for sex. I know I’m on to something when I tell my husband, “I’m so excited to see what happens next.” I know it’s weird, but I actually get excited about the ideas that are cultivating in my head but have not yet sprouted in my conscious mind.

TRC: Writer’s Block is a very real phenomenon. How do you handle the pressures and anxiety of writer’s block?

Jewel: I let go. Whenever words start to feel forced I stop. Sometimes for a few hours sometimes a few weeks. The solution is not always the same either. Sometimes it’s yoga or walking the dog. Sometimes I binge on books and Netflix, like a mini-vacation. Then other times all it takes is the right song or playlist to ignite the emotions I need to feed my creative rhythm.

TRC: Many authors bounce ideas and information with other authors or friends and family. With whom do you bounce ideas?

Jewel: My best friend, my sister, my mom, and my husband. They are great about it too. Most of the time they are more of a sounding board. But sometimes they see things I don’t, and they’re never offended if I don’t take their advice.

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Jewel: Undeniably You – It’s a sexy, humorous, and unexpected love story with a tomboy turned sexy twenty-three-year-old art history graduate/housesitter, a talented, college football wide receiver turned doctor, one handsome and socially awkward veterinarian, and one crazy Weimaraner. In thirty days they find love, break hearts, shatter dreams and find their lives changed forever. It is a standalone book … no cliffhangers! The release date will be in August 2014.

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food
fresh guacamole and corn chips

Favorite Dessert
carrot cake

Favorite TV Show
How I Met Your Mother

Last Movie You Saw
Endless Love

Dark or Milk Chocolate
Dark

Secret Celebrity Crush
Stephen Amell

Last Vacation Destination
Colorado

Pet Peeve
Overusing plastic bags. Really, a bag for lipstick and candy bar?

TRC: Thank you Jewel for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulation on the release of HOLDING YOU and RELEASING ME.

Jewel: Thanks again for having me and taking a chance on my books!

 

Website: http://www.jeweleann.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorjeweleann
Intagram: http://instagram.com/authorjeweleann
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JewelE_Ann
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7505427.Jewel_E_Ann
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/jeweleannauthor/

 

Giveaway -black and white

EXCLUSIVE GIVEAWAY

Jewel E Ann has an exclusive giveaway at The Reading Cafe- a paper copy of HOLDING YOU and a paper copy of RELEASING ME (ebook if international) to ONE (a) lucky commenter.

Holding You Series

1. Please register using the log-in at the top of the page (side bar) or by using one of the social log-ins.

2. If you are using a social log-in, please post your email address with your comment.

3. LIKE us on FACEBOOK and then click GET NOTIFICATION under ‘liked’ for an additional entry.

4. LIKE us on Twitter for an additional entry.

5. Giveaway=>  Paper copies available to US/Canada only: ebook open to international 

6. The giveaway runs from April 20  to April 25, 2014

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NOTE: The Reading Cafe is NOT responsible for the rafflecopter giveaway. If you have any questions, please contact the tour promoter.

-Signed paperback of both Holding You & Releasing Me
-$25 Amazon Gift Card
-$25 Gift Certificate to Allison’s Gourmet Desserts.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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