Who Lights Up Your Life + Giveaway

by Susan Stephens, author of The Purest of Diamonds?

purestofdiamondsThere are some wonderful people who can brighten a day and lighten your life. I count myself lucky to have family members, as well a few precious friends just like this, and they –combined into one character–were the inspiration for my heroine Leila Skavanga.

Leila, the third and, apparently, the quietest of my Skavanga Diamonds, is one of these radiant types who makes us smile and feel good while they’re around. I guess we root for them to succeed more than most other types, because while they’re busy spreading a glow over everyone else’s life they don’t spare a thought for themselves.

And of course I had to pick the hardest of my three men for Leila. Raffa Leon, a ruthless Spanish grandee, finds himself hog-tied and mesmerised by someone so forthright and appealing, he just can’t sustain his ruthlessness for very long – though he sure as heck tries! Just as Leila decides that for once in her life that she’s going to ‘let that mouse (inside her) roar’!

I hope you enjoy reading the result of this combustible pairing as much as I enjoyed writing the book. And now my question is this…

And as usual, makes us laugh, make us cry, or just lay down the plain facts.

Who in your life ‘lights up your life’ and why?

There’s a signed copy of my book waiting for the best answer, and I for one can’t wait to get this happy focused chat underway!!

 

All the very best of luck to all of you

And, Happy Reading!

Susan

***

About The Purest of Diamonds?

When ice meets fire…!

As the youngest of the famous Skavanga sisters, beautiful Leila has earned her reputation as the untouched Skavanga diamond—and is tired of it! It’s time to start living her life, and who better to teach her how than gorgeous Spaniard Raffa Leon?

Raffa has no problem mixing business with pleasure! Intrigued by her shy purity and enticed by her request, he’ll ensure Leila enjoys everything life has to offer. But as her frosty facade gives way to an unleashed passion, Raffa realizes that there are consequences to playing with fire!

***

Giveaway Who lights up your life? Leave your answer in the comments to win! Contest with close May 4th at 11:59 pm, and winner will be chosen by random draw and announced on May 5th. Open to residents of US and Canada. For full giveaway rules, click here.

Tagged , , 4 Comments

Excerpt: A D’Angelo Like No Other by Carole Mortimer

The latest in The Devilish D’Angelos miniseries is out this month–A D’Angelo Like No Other by Carole Mortimer! Read on for an exciting excerpt.

***

Archangel gallery, Paris.

‘What the??’ Michael looked up to scowl his displeasure as he heard what sounded like a baby crying in the office opposite his own. He stood up quickly behind his desk as several voices now clamoured to be heard above the noise.

The sound of raised voices, so close to the inner sanctum of Michael’s private third-floor office, was unusual enough, but a baby crying…? In one of the private areas of the prestigious Paris Archangel gallery and auction house? It was unheard of! And Michael had little patience for it having occurred now.

He continued to scowl as he strode forcefully across his office to wrench open the door into the hallway, only to come to an abrupt halt, his verbal protest dying in his throat at the pandemonium that met his narrowed gaze.

Continue reading »

Tagged , , 1 Comment

Always a Bridesmaid…

Pippa Hearts Presents

The journey of one (relatively) young, single girl’s romance with Harlequin Presents!

 by Associate Editor Pippa Roscoe

Hard as it may seem to believe, with Christmas feeling like only yesterday, spring has sprung!! (And thank heavens for that!) And with spring comes another magical time of year.

The start of the Wedding season!

And in Romance HQ – London, we do love a wedding! This year our fearless leader, Joanne Grant, is set to be Maid of Honor, Assistant Editor Laurie Johnson is heading off to a magical honeymoon in Hawaii, and I am reprising my role as bridesmaid!

I am preparing myself for another island wedding – not Greece this time, but a little island off the English coastline. This will be a wedding with not one but TWO brides sharing their love and commitment in front of friends and family. And two brides means…

MORE BRIDEMAIDS!!!

One of the things I love about being a bridesmaid is the dress. It brings to mind the film 27 Dresses, and heaven forbid – Bridesmaids! But my lovely friends have outdone themselves. They have found a dress that can be worn 20 different ways! The nine (yes, nine!) bridesmaids, will all be able to add their own distinctive style. So I will be set to indulge in a mini makeover all of my own.

Yay!

But the thing I love most about being a bridesmaid?

The wedding dress: (Or dresses in this instance!)

I LOVE helping the blushing bride go in hunt of the perfect wedding dress. You enter the exquisite boutique where everything is spoken in hushed tones as if to raising your voice would upset the dresses…and there are so very many of them! Miles and miles of perfect white, off white, oyster and cream-colored silk, satin, tulle and lace.

It seems to me that the bride always has an idea of what she thinks she wants from a dress. But as she tries on different styles, fabrics and colors, you see the change… the dawning realization that what she really wants is what she never expected to love. And then, there she is – one of your closest friends having her perfect Cinderella moment. And when she finds ‘the one’ her eyes lit up, and you are pressing your eyes closed to hold back the joy. Because that’s the moment it becomes real.

And isn’t that what is so wonderful about our Presents books? Each and every heroine finds that moment, when she is taken from her day to day life and transformed into the beautiful swan who knows that she is in love and loved. It’s the happy-ever-after that we’re all looking for.

(Aside from that, of course, there’s always the chance that I might meet – okay, no best man here, but still – my ‘one’!)

So ladies, tell me. How long until you found your perfect dress? Or do you have any bridesmaid stories, you’d like to share?! Did anyone happen to meet their very own hero at a wedding? Please? Anyone?

Xx

Tagged , , , , , , , 13 Comments

What are you favorite locations for a Presents story?

by Abby Green, author of When Christakos Meets his Match

My latest Presents, When Christakos Meets his Match, is the second book in my Blood Brothers trilogy. It features Greek aviation tycoon Alexio Christakos, who happens to be an inveterate playboy. Unlike his more intense half – brothers, he’s hidden all of his vulnerabilities under a devastatingly sexy smile and the lure of fun with no strings attached.

He’s addicted to beautiful women and allergic to commitment ;) .

That is, until he takes a seat on one of his planes in economy class and finds himself beside Sidonie Fitzgerald, the first woman, ever, to try to get away from him…

In this book Alexio takes Sidonie on a whirlwind fairytale trip to Santorini in Greece.

Now, when it comes to settings in Presents, the more glamorous the better, right? And, even better if, as the writer, you’ve actually been there. I however, have the unfortunate tendency to write about a place and then go there afterwards.

And this was exactly the same. I wrote my scenes in Santorini before I’d been there. But luckily I happened to be traveling to that island shortly after I’d written the book and when I got home I was able to change one of the scenes to more accurately reflect the island.

Obviously it would be lovely to be able to travel to every place you write about for these books, but alas more often than not it’s with a helping hand of Google Earth or a travel book/program!

What are you favorite locations for a Presents story? The idyllic azure setting of the Mediterranean? Or the desert sands of a fictional Sheikhdom? Or is it the glittering glamour of cities like London or New York?

I think Santorini was one of the most romantic places I ever visited so for me for now, it’s got to be the Greek isles!

About When Christakos Meets his Match:

meetshismatchLet the games begin!

The seat-belt sign hasn’t even switched off before the chemistry is mile-high between airline CEO Alexio Christakos and Sidonie Fitzgerald! Accustomed to brief encounters with aloof socialites, her unaffected innocence has him hooked and determined to enjoy a night of pleasure in her arms.

Sidonie is meant to be sorting out her life, not starting an affair with a Greek tycoon! But Alexio is the ultimate distraction…until he learns of her strained finances and, to her horror, accuses her of wanting more than just his body! But Sidonie’s innocence masks a backbone of steel, and she won’t take his accusation lying down…

Tagged , 7 Comments

How do you feel about office romances?

by Maya Blake, author of What the Greek’s Money Can’t Buy

When I toyed with the idea of writing a trilogy, two things immediately jumped to mind – a steaming office romance…and an equally red-hot Greek hero. Don’t get me wrong, I love, love, love all Presents heroes but there’s something about the words Greek Shipping Magnate that just gets my romance addict heart racing!

Throw in a PA/Executive assistant with a HUGE secret past which you just know is going to blow up in her face and well, I was so excited I pitched it to my then editor very quickly after I sold to Harlequin Presents almost, gosh, 2 years ago tomorrow!

Happily, she said yes and the idea of Sakis, Arion and Theo Pantelides – three superhot brothers, championship-winning ex-rowers and my “Untameable Greeks”, was born. Untameable Greeks…doesn’t that just send a delicious shiver down your spine? It certainly does mine, lol.

What The Greek’s Money Can’t Buy is Sakis and Brianna’s story. It starts with a bang when one of Sakis’s oil tankers runs aground off the Coast of Africa (and I had so much fun researching this location, which was a fabulous bonus!). But it was the explosions within their own personal relationship that made this story one of my favourite to write.

Here’s a little bit about What The Greek’s Money Can’t Buy:

whatthegreeksmoneycantbuyThe forbidden tastes all the sweeter…

Oil magnate Sakis Pantelides always gets what he wants – after all, he’s drop-dead gorgeous, powerful, and wealthy beyond words. But the one thing he can’t have is his stunning assistant, Brianna Moneypenny – because she’s the only woman this cynical Greek can trust.

When an international crisis throws them together twenty-four-seven, intriguingly buttoned-up Brianna reveals a sensual hunger that rivals his own, and he realises just what he’s been denying himself for so long. But when his perfect PA’s secret is discovered will he pay the price for taking what he wants?

What’s your personal view on office romances?

Tagged , 3 Comments