Blog Archives

Nominate books in the AusRomToday Reader’s Choice Awards!

There’s a fabulous new website, AusRomToday, celebrating and promoting all the diverse sub-genres of romantic fiction, and they are holding their first Reader’s Choice Awards and taking nominations for your favourite books and authors from 2014. The top ten most nominated books and authors in each category will go through to the public voting round, so make sure you add all your faves to help them get to the top!

You can nominate books HERE.* *Remember, only Australian authors and their books are eligible for the awards.

If you’d like to nominate any of mine, hooray! Cyber hugs to you 😉 Here are some details to help you… >> My eligible books are:

  • THE JANUARY WISH
  • FEBRUARY OR FOREVER
  • HAUNTED EVER AFTER

>> My eligible categories (you can vote in any or all of them, and for multiple books and authors):

  • Best established author
  • Author of the year
  • Cover of the year
  • Book of the year

To nominate, fill in the simple web form on the page HERE. Thanks to readers for supporting Australian books and authors, and thanks to AusRomToday for hosting these awards! 🙂

Advertisements

At Home With Jenn J McLeod [Interview & Aussie Giveaway!]

To celebrate my new releases THE JANUARY WISH and FEBRUARY OR FOREVER, the first two books in my small town series set in Tarrin’s Bay; The Town of New Beginnings, I’m running a special interview segment called ‘At Home With…’

Today, we’re paying a visit to fellow small town storyteller, Jenn J McLeod… And just as her stories have lots of secrets, today she has a secret of her own to share! Read on…

 

Jenn1. Hi Jenn, where are you from and how long have you lived there?

I’m from a real life Calingarry Crossing. Locals in my hometown of Bonville/Sawtell certainly recognise a few landmarks in both House for all Seasons and my 2014 release, Simmering Season. A city girl by birth, I did the big sea/tree change in 2004. Lot’s of firsts followed: running a café, setting up a B&B for people who travel with their fur kids, and writing a book a year for Simon & Schuster. It’s said a rolling stone gathers no moss, so soon I will be on the move – literally – and my “new home” (“Hint”) has me feeling a little on edge, like a small pebble perched precariously on a precipice. (Like that?)

[Juliet ~ Isn’t it great to write stories set in a town based on our own? 🙂 ]

 

2. What do you love about the place you call home?

Right now home is a small acreage, nestled in a rural hamlet south of Coffs Harbour, at the base of the Great Dividing Range, but only a ten minute drive to the beach. Apart from the stars at night, the birds all day, the peace and privacy (should I go on?) my place is like fruit salad – crammed with a dozen different fruit varieties of citrus, custard apple, lychee, mango and persimmon.  Then there’s the vegie surprise patch! I love it when a surprise sprouts out of the compost our vegie scraps produce. It all makes for a very ‘informal’ vegie garden with the most recent sprouting of pumpkin, plus the usual cherry tomato surprise plants and sweet potato!

I love harvest time. Kind of a shame I’ll be in a “new home” and not here to enjoy the winter feast. (“Another hint!” Yes, I have a secret and those who have read my books know I love secrets.)

 

3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!

Our old café, Shimmers in Sawtell, is now called Tree-O, and it is still lovely. Recently, a bunch of local-ish authors and I met at The Old Butter Factory in Bellingen. We may have to do that again.

 

IMG_16074. Do you have any pets? If so, what are their names?

Strawberry & Daiquiri are little white fluffy rescue dogs of unknown age and origin. They are old, very naughty and spoilt rotten. But you can teach an old dog new tricks. I discovered this when my little muse, Daiquiri, lost an eye to cancer recently. So adaptable – and even more beautiful, don’t you think? [Juliet ~ Definitely. And yellow is the new black.]

I also had two budgies called Sunshine & Blue Skies. I don’t like caged birds really, but Sunshine was a tiny baby, found in the paddock next door. Too young to fly, I brought her home. Not expecting her to live, she gobbled down seed while sitting on my palm and was quite lively the next morning. When I couldn’t track down where she escaped from I had to get a mate because there’s one thing worse than a caged bird … That’s a lonely caged bird. With a loving relocation to a brand new aviary in the nursing home where my mum lived for a while, Sunshine and Blue Skies can now spread their wings – so I can spread mine soon. (“Hint”)

[Juliet ~ Any ideas yet, readers, about Jenn’s secret?]

 

5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?

My sunroom. I could eat, work and sleep in here. I’ve always said I don’t need a big house. One room to eat, write and sleep would be fine. Guess I’m going to get it after all. (“Hint”)

 

6. If you had to evacuate your house, what three items (apart from people and pets!) would you take?

My computer (and associated bits),

My mother’s memory box,

Oh wait! Soon I won’t have to limit myself to three. I’ll just take the whole house and get out of town. (“Hint”)

[Juliet ~ These hints are very cleverly inserted into your answers!]

 

7. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?

Maybe I’ll come back in six months from now and answer that question again, Juliet.

🙂 

 

8. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?

I would NEVER have a chef in my kitchen. I’ve seen what they do to appliances and equipment and how they treat food. Sorry, folks, but owning a food business (because I LOVED eating out) has stopped me eating out! Next time you are deciding where to eat, don’t look at the menu, look at the floor!

[Juliet ~ I’ll keep believing that ignorance is bliss 😉 ]

 

9. Name three books on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:

1. Safe Harbour by Helene Young

2. Losing Kate by Kylie Kaden

3. Season of Shadow and Light – yep! That’s mine. I just received the edits for book three so reading for pleasure must give way to reading to deadline.

And I want to see a book on my TBR pile by a new yet-to-be-pubbed author Louise Allan. You can check her blog out here. Sounds like my kind of story telling. http://louise-allan.com

 

10. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:

Too many to mention as I clear out and downsize my pantry (among other things) discovering blasts from the past like a jar of Wild Hibiscus Flowers! All the rage about a decade ago with the champagne set. Who remembers them?

[Juliet ~ Though I have never used them, I do recall seeing the odd recipe with Hibiscus Flowers!]

 

11. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?

We are about to find out! So I’d better clear up those “hints”. While my small towns can keep big secrets, I cannot. Time to reveal.

[Juliet ~ DRUMROLL…]

Check out the new home below:

1913247_479561268812378_2070147548_o

[Juliet ~ Congrats! Looks like you are going to have one hell of an adventure! It might inspire a new story… The Travelling Season? 😉 ]

 

12. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?

a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.

b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).

c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.

d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.

My answer: Depending on the friend or relative I might choose: e) hitch up the home and hit the road!

 

Thanks for sharing all about your home life with us, Jenn! And looking forward to hearing how your new home turns out. 🙂

 

> Even though Jenn J McLeod would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?

Website/blog : Facebook : Twitter

Or better still, everyone, tell Jenn where in this big brown land you live, especially if you have a flat block that will accommodate a caravan – at the right price! 😉 She could be coming to a town near you in the near future.

 

> And help her pay for that in-house chef (or housekeeper) by buying a copy of her new book, Simmering Season, here:

Forget the chef, Jenn says. Petrol money appreciated, though, so she can discover new small towns to inspire more small town stories.

[Juliet ~ You’ll have to pay a visit to my small town down south! I am four minutes walk from a caravan park and beach. Not five minutes, four. Though it’s downhill so it could become three. 😉 ]

*BUY NOW from all good Australian bookstores, or there are lots of options here for purchasing: http://books.simonandschuster.com.au/Simmering-Season/Jenn-J-McLeod/9781922052070

 

Simmering Season Jenn J McLeod lgeSIMMERING SEASON

It’s summer storm season and Calingarry Crossing is sweltering.

Devoted mother, sole breadwinner, and now local publican, Maggie Lindeman is back in Calingarry Crossing with her teenage son to sell the family pub, hoping to turn their lives and finances around. The trouble is, the girl people once called Magpie is so busy protecting everyone else she has no idea the perfect storm is heading her way, until her past and present collide with the unexpected to blow the lid off a lifetime of secrets.

BOOK TRAILER: http://youtu.be/218LziN4Ank

 

House for all Seasons Jenn J McLeod>> GIVEAWAY! Australian postal addresses only (or perhaps Jenn might deliver the prize in person!)

Prize: A copy of Jenn’s first Calingarry Crossing novel, House for all Seasons, or if you already have it, a copy of Simmering Season.

How to enter: Leave a comment and tell Jenn where you would spend a week in a caravan and why. (Can’t be 4WD-only access and no National Parks as they don’t allow dogs).

*Competition drawn on Wed 16th April and winner notified by email. You’ll have one week to confirm your prize and provide an Australian delivery address or an alternate winner will be chosen. Good luck!

 

Alli Sinclair on her 3-book deal, writing, and the allure of the tango…

I’m so excited to welcome my wonderful friend and writing critique partner, Alli Sinclair to the blog today! Alli and I have known each other just over two years now, and barely a day has gone by when we haven’t communicated via facebook message, email, text, or phone! I had the pleasure of reading her book, LUNA TANGO, in manuscript stage, and can’t wait to read the finished product when it releases in print and ebook on 1st August 2014! It’s a rich, absorbing tale of dance, romance, mystery, and family ties. I know readers are going to love it. 🙂

I decided to ask Alli a few questions in honour of her first book deal. Here we go…

 

alli profile1. Congratulations on your three book deal with Harlequin Australia! How did you feel when you received your offer of publication?

Stunned is the first word that came to mind. Hubby saw my face as my amazing agent delivered the news on the telephone and he said he’d wished he’d videotaped it because my expression was priceless. Needless to say there was a lot of happy dancing and squeals of delight from the entire family!

2. Tell us about your book series and can you give us a blurb for your August release, LUNA TANGO?

Luna Tango is the first in the Dance Card series that explores dances and music that capture hearts both on and off the dance floor—Buenos Aires and the tango, Granada and the flamenco, and Paris and the Russian Ballet. With stories about love, loss, passion, and betrayal, the Dance Card Series takes readers on a journey full of colour, glitz, and dreams.

In Luna Tango, journalist Dani McKenna delves into the world of tango to expose the decades of lies and deception that threaten three generations of her family. She’s desperate to understand the reason her mother abandoned her twenty years ago to become a world-class tango dancer, why her grandma lives in fear of all things tango, and how the brutal murder of a tango music legend in 1950s Buenos Aires now affects her family.

Dani meets the enigmatic Carlos Escudero, a revered tango dancer and man of intense passion, who helps her unravel tango’s sordid history. Despite Dani’s lack of rhythm, they create their own dance of the souls until the differences in their cultures causes a deep rift. As she seeks to reconnect with Carlos and rebuild her family, tango – the dance of passion – becomes a complicated dance of betrayal.

Tango-credit--CarlosLuque3. What made you want to write a dance series?

That’s an excellent question and does it sound lame to say I’m not really sure? I grew up with dance and was surrounded by it when I lived in South America so it felt like a natural progression to write about something I love.

4. If you could tango with anyone in the world, who would it be? (I think I know the answer to this!)

You really need to ask this question? Who else but the man who inspired the character of Carlos in Luna Tango – Gilles Marini!

5. Your book has a present day timeline intertwined with a historical timeline. Did you face any challenges writing a dual timeline book? 

It can be a challenge tying up loose ends from the historical timeline into the present-day, but my eagle-eyed critique partners, agent, and editors make sure none get missed! I truly believe it takes a village to write a book!

6. What would you say to aspiring authors who are struggling to get published and feel like giving up?

Try it. Give up for a week, or a month – set a time limit – and see how you feel. If you’re itching to get back to the desk then you’re a writer through and through. This is a tough business and we spend hours, months, years honing our skills and receiving rejection after rejection so the only thing that keeps us going is our love for telling stories and the  hope that one day we can share that passion. If you know you are born to do this then giving up will be the hardest thing you could ever do and that will be the perfect sign for you to continue with your dream. I am all about people pursuing their goals and reaching for the stars!

7. What is your favourite dance movie?

Ohhh…. that’s like asking me to pick a favourite child! No fair! Anything with Gene Kelly (I’m a sucker for Hollywood musicals), Dirty Dancing (that one’s for you, Juliet!), Strictly Ballroom, Moulin Rouge, and… and… there’s too many to mention!

8. What are you most looking forward to about being a debut novelist?

Apart from holding my book baby in my hands? Sharing my characters with the world and giving readers a chance to go on a journey to an exotic destination and experience what it’s like to fall in love with tango.

9. You have a love of history and culture, what is your favourite place in the world, and if you could spend a year living in any time period which would you choose?

Another “pick your favourite child” question! But I have to say Buenos Aires, Argentina is my number one place in the world and has been since I first travelled there in 1995. And as for time period, 1920s Buenos Aires because that is when tango came back from Europe as a “civilised” dance, rather than frowned upon by Argentines like it was many years prior. That must have been an amazing time to see the elite Argentines finally embracing a dance that was once considered “uncouth”.

10. What do you hope readers will get out of reading LUNA TANGO?

An experience that triggers many emotions and inspires the reader to get on the next plane to Argentina or book into a tango class!

11. How can readers connect with you or keep updated on your upcoming release?

12. And lastly, would you like to share your book trailer with us?

Of course! A very talented friend, Sean McGee composed the music and some incredibly clever photographers contributed to the trailer. View the trailer HERE.

Thanks Alli! I can’t wait to see the cover for LUNA TANGO when it’s available, and can’t wait for August! 🙂

*Photo credit of tango: Carlos Luque, wikimedia commons

 

At Home With… Margareta Osborn [Author Interview & Giveaway]

To celebrate my new releases THE JANUARY WISH and FEBRUARY OR FOREVER, the first two books in my small town series set in Tarrin’s Bay; The Town of New Beginnings, I’m running a special interview segment called ‘At Home With…’

Today, we’re paying a visit to Australian rural romance author Margareta Osborn! She’s also giving away an ebook copy of her new release, Mountain Ash, to someone in Aus or NZ – read on for details…

 

Author photo1. Hi Margareta, where are you from and how long have you lived there?

Hi Juliet. I’m a fifth generation farmer from East Gippsland in Victoria. My family have called the Macalister Valley home since the mid 1800’s so you could say the Osborn’s are a tad entrenched in our neck of the woods. In my twenties and early thirties I moved away on occasions, spending time on other properties both here in Gippsland and up north, but I kept coming back over that cattlegrid leading to home, which I’m sure must’ve driven my father nuts 🙂

My husband and I, along with our three children, now have a beef property in the foothills.

 

2. What do you love about the place you call home?

Beautiful property picI love the evocative, yet solid, sense of place, of belonging, of being part of a community where our history goes back so many generations. It gives us strong roots, a very real and grounded place to call home.

Also, the mountains and the sea are all within an hour of us so it doesn’t matter whether you prefer the high country or the ocean, just make a selection and you can be there without driving all day. We have the best of all worlds here in the eastern part of Victoria.

 

3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!

Oh golly. That’s tough. I don’t do restaurants, cafe’s and such. Ummm … probably the Newry pub for a good old-fashioned family meal or the Tinamba Hotel for more upmarket dining. There’s also a fabulous winery just down the road from our farm called ‘Blue Gables’. They make the most fabulous wood fired pizzas!

 

JM Blog - Me with Echo4. Do you have any pets? If so, what are their names?

Lucy, my dog. She’s a Jack Russell, Papillion Cross and she’s one of my best mates. You’ll find her about a foot from my work boot all day long. I also have a beautiful, old ex-buck-jumping mare called Echo. She is my sanity. When the world of books, kids, cattle and life in general gets too much, Echo is my ‘ride out of town.’

 

5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?

As we have just moved farms it’s a little hard for me to answer that one. I haven’t decided yet. Can I say that the hill just 20 metres from the homestead is currently my favourite place? Why you ask? Because this is where my writing shack will be built. It has 360 degree views of rolling hills, Lake Glenmaggie and out across the irrigation flats, depending on which direction you look. It is stunning and my husband’s working out how he can make me a writing hut that rotates. That’ll be something to see!

[Juliet ~ a rotating writing hut? Wow! Though I hope you won’t get dizzy 😉 ]

 

6. If you had to evacuate your house, what three items (apart from people and pets!) would you take?

My hearing aids (worn them since I was seven and can hear pretty much zip without them :)), photo’s and the jewellery box my Dad gave me. In that order.

 

JM Blog - photo of Glenmaggie weir7. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?

Blow the garden (which is a dust bowl at the minute), the house (it’ll survive), the area where I live (they’ll survive too), I’d pack the family in the Landcruiser and head north with that wand and wave it over the drought affected parts of NSW and QLD. Those poor people are in diabolical trouble.

[Juliet ~ Good idea.]

 

8. It’s movie night at your place, the popcorn’s out, and everyone’s nabbed their favourite couch corner or armchair… what movie/s will we watch?

The Man from Snowy River (because I LOVE it) or 27 Dresses because everyone tells me its great but be damned if I can find it to hire.

[Juliet ~ 27 Dresses IS a lot of fun!]

 

9. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?

Lol. If a fancy chef managed drive all the way out to our farm, he can cook ANYTHING he likes!

 

JM Blog - Me & Lucy10. Name three books on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:

Cicada – Moira McKinnon

A Savage Garden – Chris Muir

The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles – Katherine Pancol

 

11. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:

Cattle vaccine

[Juliet ~ you have something in common with Alissa Callen 😉 ]

 

12. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?

Northern Territory or Northern outback QLD in the wet.

or

Canada or Montana – I’d love to see the differences in farming here to farming there.

 

13. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?

a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.

b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).

c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.

d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.

 

Well first up they don’t usually ring, they just arrive. But If Lucy barks her ‘someone’s here bark’ as distinct from ‘there’s a rabbit/wombat/roo and I’m gunna chase it’ bark, you have time to do C) minus checking the reflection in the mirror. It’s best not to do that. I’d frighten myself on a normal workday!

🙂

 

> Even though Margareta would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?

Website : Blog : FacebookTwitterGoodreads

> And help her pay for that in-house chef (or housekeeper) by buying a copy of her new book, Mountain Ash, here.

 

MAcoverMountain Ash 

From bestselling author Margareta Osborn comes another scintillating rural romance with a devastating love triangle twist.

After years of struggling as a single mother, Jodie Ashton has given up on love and passion. What she craves now is security for herself and her beloved daughter Milly. And marriage to widower Alex McGregor, the owner of the prosperous Glenevelyn cattle station in East Gippsland, will certainly offer that. If only he wasn’t so much older and so controlling.

Needing space to decide her future, Jodie reluctantly agrees to a girls-only weekend at the Riverton rodeo …

Meanwhile, cowboy Nate McGregor vows off women, after his latest one-night stand costs him his job in the Northern Territory. Perhaps it’s time to head back to his family home, Glenevelyn, to check out for himself the ‘gold-digger’ his father seems determined to marry.

But first, on his way through Riverton, he plans to stop off at a rodeo.

Two lives are about to collide in one passionate moment – with devastating results…

…See more here.

 

> MOUNTAIN ASH is also Random House’s MARCH BOOK OF THE MONTH. You can access reading questions here.  

> Should your book group decide to read and review MOUNTAIN ASH, check out this offer!

 

>> WIN! an ebook copy of MOUNTAIN ASH (available to Aus/NZ readers only): Simply comment below for a chance to win. Winner drawn and notified on Friday 14th March. 🙂 

MObooks

At Home With… Pamela Cook [Author Interview]

To celebrate my new releases THE JANUARY WISH and FEBRUARY OR FOREVER, the first two books in my small town series set in Tarrin’s Bay; The Town of New Beginnings, I’m running a special interview segment called ‘At Home With…’

Today, we’re paying a visit to Pamela Cook, author of Australian rural fiction…

 

PamelaCook1. Hi Pamela, where are you from and how long have you lived there?

Hi Juliet, thanks for having me on your blog and congrats on your new release! I live in the southern suburbs of Sydney where I have lived all my life (in a few different locations) apart from a two-year stint overseas in my twenties. I’m also lucky to have a ‘home away from home’ at Little Forest, near Milton, on the gorgeous south coast. Not too far from where you are 🙂

[Juliet ~ The south coast is a beautiful place! 😉 ]

 

2. What do you love about the place you call home?

My house in Sydney is about as country style as a city place can get. It’s actually an old poultry farm and a few of the rooms still have the original timber panelling and ceilings. It also has a gorgeous carved timber fireplace. Being a country girl at heart I’ve tried to keep it close to the original style. Sadly that includes all the horse gear and feed that clutters the front veranda. No matter how I try I just can’t seem to keep it clear for more than a few days at a time.

 

3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!

Since I spend so much time in Milton I’m going to give a plug to a couple of my favourite locals down there. First of all there’s the fabulous Pilgrims – a vegetarian burger place and café that does THE best milkshakes on the south coast. Their Bliss Burgers are to die for. Great Mexican food too. And I have to give a shout out to my friends Gary and Michelle at the Harbour Bookstore in Ulladulla. Such a great selection of books combined with friendly service. Definitely pay them a visit if you’re in the area.

[Juliet ~ I will have to pay them a visit!]

 

photo-384. Do you have any pets? If so, what are their names? (Feel free to share a photo)

That makes me laugh. We have a menagerie that includes a dog (we used to have two but that’s another story) Bridie, Kiara the cat, Harley and Pepper our two rabbits, Charlie the  ringneck parrot that meows and a tankful of fish. We also have 6 horses but sadly they don’t live with us. My handsome boy is Morocco, a quarter horse gelding.

[Juliet ~ Wow. So just a small few then. 😉 ]

 

5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?

I have two. One is our lounge room with the fireplace. There’s no TV in there so it’s a great place to chill out or tinkle around on the piano. I also love my study. It has grape coloured panelled walls, floor to ceiling bookshelves, all my favourite knick-knacks and a giant gold framed Moulin Rouge poster bought in Paris. Unfortunately at the moment it’s full of clutter but writing this has inspired me to go tidy it up!

 

6. If you had to evacuate your house, what three items (apart from people and pets!) would you take?

Now that’s a tough question. Definitely my laptop with my writing on it. As many photo albums as I could carry. And maybe the crystal horse work colleagues gave me when I finished teaching to write full time. It’s a great symbol to me of following my dreams and continually looking for inspiration.

 

7. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?

Definitely the constant clutter. With three not very tidy girls that magic wand would come in very handy!

 

8. It’s movie night at your place, the popcorn’s out, and everyone’s nabbed their favourite couch corner or armchair… what movie/s will we watch?

I love the old rom coms like Sleepless in Seattle, Notting Hill and You’ve Got Mail. Never get sick of watching them. We’re also big fans of animations like Ice Age and Toy Story.

[Juliet ~ Love those movies!]

 

9. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?

A sumptuous Indian banquet would go down a treat.

 

10. Name three books on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:

Burial Rites by Hannah Kent, Eyrie by Tim Winton and Ember island by Kimberley Freeman. If only there were more hours in the day.

 

11. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:

Nothing exotic I’m afraid although I do like to keep a bottle of champagne on ice.

 

12. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?

Definitely Paris. I was just there for a week over the Christmas break and didn’t want to leave. I’ve been there a few times now and never tire of the buildings, the light…etc.

 

13. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?

a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.

b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).

c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.

d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.

I’d like to say C but I know it would be B!

 

 

>> Even though Pamela would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?

Website : Blog : Twitter : Goodreads : Pinterest

>> And help her pay for that in-house chef (or housekeeper) by buying a copy of her book here:

Booktopia / Amazon Aus / Or Australian bookstores!

 

 

EssiesWayESSIE’S WAY

A captivating story of family, love and following your heart, from the author of Blackwattle Lake.

Miranda McIntyre thinks she has it all sorted. A successful lawyer, she s planning her wedding and ticking off all the right boxes. When searching for something old to go with her wedding dress she remembers an antique necklace from her childhood, but her mother denies any knowledge of it. Miranda is sure it exists. Trying to find the necklace, she discovers evidence that perhaps the grandmother she thought was dead is still alive.

Ignoring the creeping uncertainty about her impending marriage, and the worry that she is not living the life she really wants, Miranda takes off on a road trip in search of answers to the family mystery but also in search of herself.

Ultimately, she will find that looking back can lead you home.

 

At Home With… Whitney KE [Author Interview]

To celebrate my new releases THE JANUARY WISH and FEBRUARY OR FOREVER, the first two books in my small town series set in Tarrin’s Bay; The Town of New Beginnings, I’m running a special interview segment called ‘At Home With…’

Today, we’re paying a visit to author of rural romance and books set in Ireland, Whitney KE!

 

DeceiveMeInIreland_LRG1. Hi Whitney where are you from and how long have you lived there?

I’m from Newcastle, NSW, and I have lived here for fourteen years. 🙂

 

2. What do you love about the place you call home?

I love the beaches. And I also love that I don’t have to go far to be in the country.

 

3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!

I have two. Goldbergs and Zinc on Darby. Love them both.  Good coffee and great food.

 

7559_10202372589250275_779079237_n4. Do you have any pets? If so, what are their names? (Feel free to share a photo)

I have a mini foxie (who also has a coffee addiction) and a 18 year old Thoroughbred Gelding who keeps me on my toes.

[Juliet ~ cute, and beautiful!]

 

5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?

My bedroom. I do all my thinking and creating there. Most of my writing is done there and I love to read in bed.

[Juliet ~ me too!]

1501760_10202343376199967_6686965_n

6. If you had to evacuate your house, what three items (apart from people and pets!) would you take?

My USB (has all my writing on it, photos from my trip overseas), my pop’s medals and maybe the signed copies of my favourite books (which would make that more than three…)

 

7. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?

The distance from my house to the beach and Darby Street hehe!

 

8. It’s movie night at your place, the popcorn’s out, and everyone’s nabbed their favourite couch corner or armchair… what movie/s will we watch?

Bridget Jones’ Diary. Or anything with Meryl Streep in it. I love Meryl!

[Juliet ~ sounds good to me! Have you heard of The Meryl Streep Movie Club book?]

 

9. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?

God… I’m terribly boring with food. I love a good steak! But I have no idea. I’m not a cook. I’d tell them to surprise me.

 

10. Name a book on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:

The Girl in the Hard Hat by Loretta Hill.

 

11. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:

Nothing? Like literally nothing hehe. I need to go shopping.

 

12. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?

Dublin, Ireland. Of course.

 

13. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?

a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.

b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).

c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.

d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.

 My friends know me. I’ll boil the kettle when they are here as good company is always a great excuse for coffee.

 

>> Even though Whitney would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?

Website/blog : Facebook : Twitter : Goodreads

>> And help her pay for that in-house chef by buying a copy of her book, DECEIVE ME IN IRELAND, here:

Deceive Me in Ireland is available in ebook on  Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Itunes, Smashwords and All Romance Ebooks, published by Secret Cravings Publishing.

DeceiveMeInIreland_LRG“Never call a Kerry man a fool until you’re sure he’s not a rogue.”
Her cousin, Kate had warned her about the Irish charm. And Cara had been foolish enough to ignore her. In Ireland to be Maid of Honor in Kate’s wedding, Cara hasn’t a clue that the handsome Irishman who is seated next to her is the infamous brother of her cousin’s fiancé. And William O’Reilly doesn’t plan on telling her. Not yet, anyway.

Silver-tongued and devilishly handsome, William had Cara wondering if he is the same man she met on the plane. Should she give him a chance or heed her cousin’s warning and keep him at a distance? 

The same unique and quirky characters from What Happens in Ireland come together again to celebrate the wedding of Kate and Jack in the fresh and humorous sequel, Deceive Me in Ireland. 

Like Kate Barrow, her cousin Cara discovers that resisting the charms of an Irishman isn’t as easy as it seems. William O’Reilly is as silver-tongued as his brother, Jack and determined to make the woman realize his worth. And her own.

At Home With… Ann B Harrison [Author Interview]

To celebrate the launch of my new series with THE JANUARY WISH and FEBRUARY OR FOREVER now available, I’m running a special interview segment called ‘At Home With…’

Today, we’re paying a visit to Ann B Harrison!

 

AnnBHarrison1. Hi Ann B Harrison, where are you from and how long have you lived there?

I live in the beautiful Hunter Valley in New South Wales, Australia

 

2. What do you love about the place you call home?

I’m surrounded by wineries, rolling hills and fabulous gardens. That does it for me.

 

3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!

I love http://www.huntervalleygardens.com.au/ We go to the snow festival in the middle of the year and I take every visitor I get to spend time in the gardens or check out the chocolate factory.

[Juliet ~ I was a bridesmaid at a wedding there. Beautiful place!]

 

zac4. Do you have any pets? If so, what are their names? 

I have three dogs and a multitude of chickens. My oldest boy Zac has had trouble with his little googly eyes and had to have one removed. Here he is before the trouble started.

 

5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?

My office. I can lock myself away from the family and put on my music – usually Pink on the earphones – and write to my hearts content. It is the one room that nobody is allowed to touch.

 

6. If you had to evacuate your house, what three items (apart from people and pets!) would you take?

My laptop, my bag of heritage seeds and iPad.

 

7. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?

The wind. I love it some days but lately, we have almost been blown away.

[Juliet ~ I’m the same! It can get very windy here on the coast]

 

8. It’s movie night at your place, the popcorn’s out, and everyone’s nabbed their favourite couch corner or armchair… what movie/s will we watch?

I’ve just watched Whitehouse Down and loved it. The next one I want to see and I believe it’s out soon, is Thanks for Sharing, starring Pink. (Can you tell I have girl crush on her?)

[Juliet ~ I really enjoyed Whitehouse Down too.]

 

9. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?

It has to be something healthy for me. I’m a salad girl and prefer fish or chicken to red meat. Bit partial to a dessert too.

 

10. Name three books on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:

I have hundreds. Presently reading the ARC of Gina Maxwells’ Fighting for Irish, Rome by Jay Crownover, Fallen Crest Public by Tijan.

 

11. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:

Dog injections for arthritis. Is that weird enough? I have an old lab who needs a shot every month.

 

12. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?

Scotland, I need my share of men in kilts.

 

13. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?

a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.

b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).

c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.

d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.

C for sure but I’d probably forget to look in the mirror.

 

>> Even though Ann would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?

Website : Blog : Facebook : Twitter : Goodreads : Pinterest

>> And help her pay for that in-house chef (or housekeeper) by buying a copy of her book, COMING HOME, here:

Amazon.

 

20429535COMING HOME—but is the price too high for the Williams siblings? 
Their father drove them away, now the conditions of his will are forcing them home and they may not like the rules he’s set. 
The city hasn’t been kind to Doctor Russ Williams and he can’t wait to leave his broken marriage behind him. Superstar rugby player Cade, his career threatened by a crippling injury, has to face the fact that his glory days might be over. Rooney, carrying a secret she won’t be able to hide if she returns but lured by the promise of owning a vet practice. Three very different siblings with their own dreams, forced to face reality on the family property, confronted at every turn by their past. Will there be time for love? 

Australia Day Book Giveaway Blog Hop

I’m taking part in Book’d Out’s Australia Day Book Giveaway Blog Hop!

AustraliaDaybloghop2014

FoFBetween now and midnight on the 28th January, you have the chance to win prizes from myself and all the other participating blogs (which you can see here.). I’m giving away an advanced ebook copy of my upcoming release, FEBRUARY OR FOREVER, a heartwarming story set in a small Australian coastal town.

To win, enter via the Rafflecopter link at the bottom of this blog post. Contest open worldwide and winner notified via email and in the comments on this post. Good luck! 🙂

And now, for my Australia Day post:

 

AUSTRALIAN FICTION – My Top Picks

I love the diversity of Australian fiction, and I find I’m reading more and more books by Australian authors these days, partly because many of the authors have become my friends, and partly because I relate to the Aussie voice, sense of humour, and landscape.

Whether it’s rural, coastal, or urban, it doesn’t matter – I like all kinds of Australian settings. Though I am particularly drawn to small town settings because I love the community atmosphere and close-knit relationships between characters. And that’s why I’m writing my own small town series, the Tarrin’s Bay series, to explore the many stories and characters that can be present in small towns, and bring them to life. The first book in this series, The January Wish, has just been released, and the second book (though they can be read in any order), February or Forever, is out on 1st February (but as mentioned, you could win an early copy!).

Today I thought I’d give some of my fellow authors a plug and share a few Australian books I’ve enjoyed, both recently, and in the last few years. These books are all by Australian authors, and are set in Australia.

 

> Rural Top Pick: JILTED by Rachael Johns

Jilted bookpage– Three words to describe it: emotional, honest, fulfilling

She left him at the altar, but her heart was always his…

After more than ten years away, Australian soap star Ellie Hughes returns to the small country town of Hope Junction, determined to remain anonymous while caring for her injured godmother, Matilda.

But word spreads fast in the tight-knit community. It isn’t long before the people of Hope’s are gossiping about the real reason for Ellie’s visit and why she broke the heart of golden boy Flynn Quartermaine all those years ago.

Soon Ellie and Flynn are thrown back together again, forced to deal with the unresolved emotions between them. For Ellie is not the only one with secrets. Flynn has his own demons to battle, and Matilda is hiding something from her much-loved goddaughter.

When all is uncovered, can the ill-fated lovers overcome the wounds of their past? Or is Flynn destined to be jilted again?

 

> Small Town Top Pick: HOUSE FOR ALL SEASONS by Jenn J McLeod

HFAS-– Three words to describe it: clever, intriguing, original

Four women. Four lives unravelled. The truth will bind them forever.

Bequeathed a century-old house, four estranged friends return to their hometown, Calingarry Crossing, where each must stay for a season at the Dandelion House to fulfil the wishes of their benefactor, Gypsy.

But coming home to the country stirs shameful memories of the past, including the tragic end-of-school muck up day accident twenty years earlier.

Sara, a breast cancer survivor afraid to fall in love;

Poppy, a tough, ambitions journo still craving her father’s approval;

Amber, a spoilt socialite addicted to painkillers and cosmetic procedures;

Caitlin, a doctor frustrated by a controlling family and her flat-lining life.

At the Dandelion House, the women will discover something about themselves and a secret that ties all four to each other and to the house – forever.

Small towns can keep big secrets…

 

> Romantic Suspense Top Pick: WINGS OF FEAR by Helene Young

Wings-of-Fear-Front-Cover1-184x300– Three words to describe it: riveting, well-written, intelligent

High above the crystal-blue waters of North Queensland, Captain Morgan Pentland patrols the vast Australian coastline. When Customs Agent Rafe Daniels joins her crew, she is immediately suspicious. Why is he boarding her plane when she isn’t there? And why is he asking so many questions?

What Morgan doesn’t know is that Rafe has her under surveillance. Critical information about their Border Watch operations is being leaked and she is the main suspect.

Morgan’s ex, elite police officer Carl Wiseman, is back on the scene after she finally found the courage to throw him out. Is he trying to regain Morgan’s affections of are his intentions more sinister?

When Morgan and Rafe are shot down in a tragic midair attack, they realise they have to start working together – and quickly. One of Australia’s most loved icons is the next target and they have only nine days to stop it.

Will they uncover details of the plot in time, or will the tension that is growing between them jeopardise everything?

 

> Thriller/Crime Top Pick: BEYOND FEAR by Jaye Ford

coverLeft– Three words to describe it: unputdownable, scary, cinematic

Imagine if your worst fears came true. . . Again.

At seventeen, Jodie Cramer survived a terrifying assault at the hands of three strangers. Her schoolmate Angie was not so lucky…

Now thirty-five, Jodie is a teacher and mother of two – and her past is a horror she’s buried deep. When she sets out for a weekend in the country with three friends, all she has in mind is a few laughs and a break from routine.

However, unknown to the four women, their secluded cabin was once the focus of a police investigation and, like Jodie, it nurtures a dark secret. As her friends relax, the isolation reawakens Jodie’s terrifying memories. When she finds evidence of trespassers, she is convinced they are being watched.

But no one will believe her and as her past threatens to overwhelm her, she begins to doubt herself – and her sanity. Until two men knock at their door …

 

> Coastal Romance Top Pick: NOBODY BUT HIM by Victoria Purman

19292– Three words to describe it: sexy, beachy, satisfying

She didn’t expect to run into her first love… or to fall back in love with him! 

At eighteen, Julia Jones left for the city with a head full of grand plans for an exciting life that certainly didn’t include her home town of Middle Point – a main street with a pub – or Ryan Blackburn.

But fifteen years – and a lifetime later – she’s forced to put her big city life on hold when she heads home to finalise her mother’s estate. Which is where she runs smack bang into the town’s new champion… the same Ryan Blackburn. The sensible thing to do? Stay the hell away from him and head back to Melbourne as fast as her stilettos can carry her. But Julia finds his offer of a helping hand and a hot body too delicious to refuse and dives into a reckless, one-time fling. What she doesn’t realise is that tomorrow has a way of sneaking up, and that saying goodbye to her home town – and to Ryan – is much harder the second time around.

 

> Romantic Comedy Top Pick: HINDSIGHT by Sarah Belle

9689– Three words to describe it: funny, heartwarming, magical

Humour, wit, and just a touch of humility: the swinging 60s as you’ve never seen them before.

The universe has sent Juliette a sign. She wishes it had been an email instead…

Juliette’s career is on fire, her marriage and family are in melt-down, and a red-hot goddess wants her husband. But those are the least of her worries when she wakes up on her lounge room floor in the year 1961.

Without any of her modern conveniences — nanny, housekeeper, surgically attached mobile phone, designer wardrobe, and intravenous lattes — Juliette is just over fifty years out of her comfort zone. But as she takes on the role of a 1961 housewife, with gritted liberated teeth, she discovers an unexpected truth: slower doesn’t mean boring, at home doesn’t mean dull, and priorities don’t mean sacrifices.

As she finds unexpected friendships, a resuscitated love life, tragedy and triumph, Juliette begins to wonder if she really wants to return home after all.

 

> Women’s Fiction Top Pick: THE HUSBAND’S SECRET by Liane Moriarty

Husband'sSecret_Aus– Three words to describe it: honest, interesting, compelling

A funny, heartbreaking novel of marriage, grief, love and secrets.

When her husband announces he’s in love with her best friend, painfully shy Tess picks up her young son and returns to her mother’s house. There she begins an unexpected affair with an old flame.

Rachel is a woman in her sixties consumed by grief and anger at the loss of her daughter twenty years earlier. When her son announces he is taking her beloved grandson overseas, Rachel begins a descent into deeper bitterness and pain.

Cecilia is the quintessential “I don’t know how she does it” woman. A devoted mother to three daughters, she runs her household like clockwork, is President of the P&C, owns an extremely successful Tupperware business and is happy in her fifteen-year marriage. Until she discovers a letter in their attic labelled: “To my wife Cecilia, to be opened in the event of my death”… Her husband’s secret is a bombshell beyond all imagining with repercussions across the lives of all three women.

 

Have you read any of these books? If not, why not check them out! What are some of your favourite Australian books? Feel free to let me know in the comments!

>>And now, to WIN an ebook copy of FEBRUARY OR FOREVER, simply click the Rafflecopter link and follow the instructions. It’s quick and easy. Remember, giveaway closes midnight Jan 28th. Enter here: a Rafflecopter giveaway

>>Once you’ve done that, head over to Book’d Out to see the list of participating blogs and enter their giveaways too!

 

Good luck… I’ll leave you with a brief blurb for the first two books in my Tarrin’s Bay series:

TheJanuaryWishcoverTHE JANUARY WISH: When Dr Sylvia Greene makes an impromptu wish at the Tarrin’s Bay Wishing Festival, it’s the most out of character action she can think of. Hers is not a life of wishes. Hers is a controlled life of order, plans and preparation…of science and research and diagnosis and treatment. But her past has been weighing on her mind, and decisions made long ago have far-reaching consequences.

A week later, the daughter she secretly gave up for adoption at sixteen arrives in Sylvia’s small coastal town with secrets that can’t be shared. Between feelings of guilt, gossip, and a growing attraction to an emotionally unavailable colleague, Sylvia’s well-ordered life is soon thrown into chaos. She is no longer alone, and for the first time she feels as if her world is open to possibilities.

They say be careful what you wish for, but, for Sylvia, the unexpected consequences may be just what the doctor ordered.

 

FoFFEBRUARY OR FOREVERYoga teacher and single mother, Chrissie Burns has a plan: move into the rundown beach house left to her by her deceased aunt, renovate it, sell it, and move on. The scene of a terrible accident years ago, the house needs to get out of Chrissie’s hands as soon as possible.

But Tarrin’s Bay, where the house stands, has more to offer than bad memories. The town is lovely, the people friendly, and even Chrissie’s young son finds friends and begins coming out of his shell. Employed at Serendipity Retreat as a yoga instructor, Chrissie is shocked to be given the role of private teacher to Drew Williams, Australia’s top singer/songwriter for the month.

Relationships between instructors and clients are strictly forbidden, but Drew draws happiness out of Chrissie with his down-to-earth nature and sense of humour. Days of stretching and bending may bring Chrissie unexpected peace and strength, but she knows that this interlude must end, and there’s no pose or position to aid her when Drew walks away and leaves her broken-hearted. 

At Home With Tea Cooper [Author Interview & Giveaway]

To celebrate my new release, THE JANUARY WISH, the first book in my small town series set in Tarrin’s Bay; The Town of New Beginnings, I’m hosting a new interview segment called ‘At Home With…’

Today, we’re paying a visit to Téa Cooper…

 

©HarrisonPhotography

©HarrisonPhotography

1. Hi Téa, where are you from and how long have you lived there?

Hi Juliet! Great to visit. I live on 100 acres of bush just outside a tiny little village in the Hunter Valley, NSW called Wollombi. I moved here about five years ago – I used to live about closer to the big smoke but when I gave up teaching I decided I liked the idea of living in a smaller community.

 

16062. What do you love about the place you call home?

I love my house. It’s built from the rock that forms most of my “backyard”. (Think the movie Picnic at Hanging Rock). I love the outlook – virgin bush one side and bucolic cattle grazing amongst the vines on the creek flats on the other side, the peace and the isolation. I also love living in a village – being one of the “locals”. I know it is a bit contradictory…that’s me!

 

3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!

I have two favourite cafés – one is Café Wollombi, affectionately known as The Girls. They do the best juices, a mean lamb burger, delicious pasta and prawns and a Caesar salad to die for. The other is Panino Restaurant, Café & Deli, better known as Bruno’s – delicious Italian style food and of course entertainment courtesy of Bruno himself! And then there is The Great Northern Trading PostLaguna to the locals – Friday night is jam night and some really good food!

 

Poppy small4. Do you have any pets? If so, what are their names? 

Poppy – the Rotweiller shares her home with me!

 

5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?

That’s difficult – I’m spoilt. It depends on the weather and my mood. A toss up between the “library”, my study and the sitting room-kitchen-dining room, one big room with an open fire and an air conditioner!

 

Banner small6. If you had to evacuate your house, what three items (apart from people and pets!) would you take?

Too easy…I live in a seriously bushfire prone area. No mucking around. Poppy and I can be out in five! My MacBook Pro, my passport and a rather eclectic collection of jewellery I’ve acquired over the years – none of which I wear very often!!

 

7. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?

I wouldn’t so much change anything as buy a helicopter…I’d like to live here in this environment but be able to avoid the wretched F3 – the freeway from hell – when I wanted to go to Sydney.

[Juliet ~ Oh, that would be convenient. I might wish for one too!] 

 

8. It’s movie night at your place, the popcorn’s out, and everyone’s nabbed their favourite couch corner or armchair… what movie/s will we watch?

No – sorry. We wouldn’t do it here. Wollombi has its very own outdoor film night every so often and it’s pizza from Panino and Noyce Bros wine and a variety of films. The most recent was The Graduate and Priscilla is up next, followed by Casablanca.

[Juliet ~ An outdoor film night sounds fantastic!]

 

9. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?

Lobster tails on the BBQ with a garden salad (actually I don’t really need the chef).

 

10. Name three books on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:

Twiggy: The High-Stakes Life of Andrew Forrest by Andrew Burrell

Girl of Shadows by Deborah Challinor

The Far Pavilions by M M Kaye (a re-read.)

 

11. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:

A weird assortment of Indian spices – I lived in India once upon a time and like to play with them!

 

12. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?

Oh! That’s hard…probably Paris because I’ve never “lived” there.

 

13. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?

a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.

b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).

c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.

d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.

Definitely (a)…it’s called “Catch as Catch Can” around here!

 

 

>>Even though Téa would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?

Website : Blog : Facebook : Twitter : Goodreads : Pinterest

>>And help her buy that helicopter by buying her book, Matilda’s Freedom here: 😉

Amazon | iTunes | Kobo | B & N

 

Matilda'sFreedom 300MATILDA’S FREEDOM (set in…Wollombi!)

An unconventional woman clashes with colonial society in this spicy and sweet Australian-set historical romance.

His carefree bachelor days over, Christopher Matcham returns to Sydney to take responsibility for his mother, two stepsisters, and the family property. Fortune smiles on him when he is introduced to Matilda Sweet, a woman in need of work. Though unusual, Christopher senses that her fresh ideals and positive outlook can only benefit his sisters, so he hires her as a companion.

By the time they arrive at Christopher’s family home, the two are fast friends. But Matilda’s unorthodox ways and her convict heritage make her a second-class citizen to the family. Christopher has responsibilities, and they include an advantageous match. A breeches-wearing, creek-swimming, plain-talking convict’s daughter will never figure in. After all, romance is a luxury the upper classes cannot afford . . .

 

>>WIN! You could win an ebook of your choice by Tea Cooper. Simply leave a comment below and Poppy will choose a winner! Open worldwide. Winner drawn Wed 29th Jan.

email small

At Home With RITA Award Winning Author Fiona Lowe (& Giveaway!)

To celebrate my new release, THE JANUARY WISH, the first book in my small coastal town series set in Tarrin’s Bay; The Town of New Beginnings, I’m running a new interview segment called ‘At Home With…’

Today, I’m excited to be paying a visit to award-winning author, Fiona Lowe! Read on to see how you could win a copy of Runaway groom.

 

fiona lowe 021. Hi Fiona, where are you from and how long have you lived there?

I’m from all over the place. I was born in country NSW, raised  for a bit in Papua New Guinea, lived my twenties in Melbourne, my thirties in the USA and now I’m in coastal Victoria.

2. What do you love about the place you call home?

The sea, the size of the town and the fact if I have to drive more than 15 minutes to get anywhere, it’s a long way out of town.

3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!

I am the world’s worst shopper. Seriously, I would do anything to avoid going shopping so I’m not great at helping the retail economy at all.

Peko-4. Do you have any pets? If so, what are their names? (Feel free to share a photo)

I have Pekoe, the feisty cat. She plays soccer with all balls and she is an excellent goalie. NOTHING gets past her.

5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?

I have two fave rooms. My office because it has a view of the sea and my living room because it is the only place I ever sit down!

[Juliet ~ An office with a sea view – lovely!)

6. If you had to evacuate your house, what three items (apart from people and pets!) would you take?

My external hard-drive because it has all the family photos on it.

The moustache cup that came from England with my grandmother.

My Rita statue!

[Juliet ~ And with that heavy Rita statue it would be hard to carry anything else! — See the pic below of me with Fiona, I’m helping her carry it because it’s so heavy. Nah, I just wanted to touch it! 😉 ]

photo 47. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?

I’d have a north-facing back garden  instead of a south-facing one and a lovely deck to go with it.

8. It’s movie night at your place, the popcorn’s out, and everyone’s nabbed their favourite couch corner or armchair… what movie/s will we watch?

Anything directed by Richard Curtis. I think his latest film, About Time is up there with Love Actually and Four Weddings and a Funeral.

[Juliet ~ I agree. About Time is definitely one of my new favourite movies!]

9. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?

It really wouldn’t matter what it was because the fact I did not have to cook it would mean it would taste fantastic.

10. Name three books on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:

A Question of Travel by Michelle de Krester

Love A Little Sideways by Shannon Stacey

Holding out for  a Hero by Amy Andrews

11. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:

Lemon Myrtle. It’s great on chicken and fish.

12. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?

Well, as I’ve seen a lot of the world, I would go someplace I’ve never been so that would be either  Africa or South America.

13. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?

a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.

b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).

 Seriously? A person can do all that in five minutes? 😉

c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.

d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.

‘C’ sounds like me. Everyone is welcome but they need to take me as they find me which is usually in trackies or shorts depending on the season, and a white T-shirt; my writing uniform.

 

>> Even though Fiona would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?

Website : Blog : Facebook : Twitter : Goodreads : Pinterest

>> And help her pay for that in-house chef (or housekeeper) by buying a copy of her book here:

Amazon KindleBarnes and Noble, Carina Press, Kobo, iBooks, Booktopia

 

RunawayGroomRunaway Groom. Book three of Wedding Fever trilogy

Amy Sagar’s life is in ruins. Fired from her fast-track job and dumped by her double-crossing boyfriend, she retreats to Whitetail, Wisconsin, to lick her wounds and regroup. Meeting an impossible, sexy Australian isn’t part of her strategy for getting back on track.

Aussie, Ben Armytage is running away. After being left at the altar and publicly humiliated, he’s taking his vintage motorcycle on an extended road trip from Argentina to Alaska. Having his journey interrupted by a breakdown and sharing a house with a curvy, redheaded lawyer in a town obsessed with weddings was never on his itinerary.

Though being stuck in a luxury log cabin isn’t really a hardship, living together with their broken hearts isn’t easy. When the attraction between Amy and Ben proves unstoppable, they’ll both begin rethinking their plans…

For more weddings in Whitetail, check out Saved by the Bride and Picture Perfect Weddingavailable now!

 

>> WIN! Fiona would love to give away an  ecopy of Runaway Groom. To be in with a chance, please tell me which cover out of the Wedding Fever trilogy (below) you like best and why. Open worldwide. Winner will be drawn 22nd Jan so get in quick!

weddingfevertrilogy