Monthly Archives: December 2011

A Thrilling New Year Ahead

Do you make New Year’s resolutions, or do you avoid them like Aunt Myrtle’s fruitcake? Got any big dreams for 2012?

Today, seven of the Kiss and Thrill ladies are dishing on their goals and plans for the New Year.

Sarah Andre

This is a Big Birthday year for me, so if I don’t check myself into a sanitarium babbling cliches like ‘but I don’t feel that old!’ and ‘where did time go?’ this is how I’d like the year to unfold:

MY GOAL: To completely revise one manuscript and create/finish/edit a new romantic suspense novel (plot and characters currently unknown.)

MY RESOLUTION: To stop procrastinating…any suggestion on how would be super helpful (please?!)

WISH # 1: To finally get The Call from my agent that one of my manuscripts has sold to a NY Publishing House.

WISH # 2: I wish you all a happy and healthy New Year!

Carey Baldwin

I am one of those people who love New Year’s resolutions. I mean what could be better than a clean slate and a pocketful of dreams? This year, in addition to my usual list, I’m adding something special.

Along with three of my closest friends, Tessa Dare, Leigh LaValle, and Courtney Milan, I will train for and walk 60 miles in the Susan G. Komen 3-day event.  Our team, The Bodice Rippers, is hoping to raise a significant amount of money for breast cancer research. Please click here to learn more. Here’s wishing that 2012 will be your best year so far!

Sharon Wray

Each January, instead of resolutions, I choose a word. This word represents what is coming, what is wished for, the difficulties fading away. Last year, I chose Gratitude. Since 2007-2010 had been particularly hard, I wanted 2011 to be infused with the lessons of gratitude, for my children to understand true thankfulness for what they have, for what they never received. For 2012, I chose Courage. As the dark winter approaches, I see events which will require both sacrifice and hope. And I know, with love and courage, my family won’t just prevail, we’ll thrive. I hope you all have a Happy New Year and wish you all the best for 2012.

Rachel Grant

Between writing and critiquing, I don’t get nearly enough reading for pure enjoyment time.  I have a several books in my Kindle waiting for attention, but even scarier is the quantity of print books in my to-be-read pile–some have been waiting for years.  The stack got so big I had to banish it from my nightstand and moved it to the office where it takes up a significant amount of real estate.  This year I vow to read or give away every book in the print pile by year’s end.

Gwen Hernandez

2012 is going to be the year of renewed discipline for me. For good chunks of 2011, I let other things take priority over writing, and only recently got back on track. I can’t control whether an editor or agent likes my work, but I am in charge of how much time I spend writing, revising, learning my craft, and submitting manuscripts for consideration.

So, this year, my goal is two new, polished manuscripts by year’s end.

Beyond that I want to make more time for my husband and kids, exercise daily, eat well, and travel as much as possible.

I hope that 2012 is good to you!

Manda Collins

My birthday falls right after the first of the year, so I always think of New Year’s as a time to reflect on how far I’ve come, as well as to think ahead to the future. To me it’s not about successes and failures, it’s about growth. This year I’ll celebrate the release of my first book which will actually be the culmination of a lot of hard work I’ve put in over the past two years. I’ll also be planning out my next project, which I’m really excited about. It’s all cyclical, with one project wrapping up while another one starts. Which I love.

Diana Belchase

The heroine of my book is a spy.

Trina climbs tall buildings, socks it to the enemy, and fearlessly pilots a plummeting plane.

Me?  Well, I can’t even get on a roller coaster without becoming a nervous wreck.  But my imaginary heroine has taught me a few things.  She lives every day as if it’s her last, doesn’t mind getting dirty, and believes herself capable of almost anything.  I’d like to be like that, too.

So, in 2012 I’m going to worry a bit less, go where life takes me, and stop nagging at my husband the minute he accelerates to 60.

Well, perhaps the last is beyond my ken, but I’m sure going to try.

Best Wishes for 2012!

Those are our plans for the New Year. What are yours?

(HINT: Here’s an easy one…subscribe to Kiss and Thrill so you never miss another post! ;-))

Photo credit: CHRISTMAS – NEW YEAR PARTY – RED & GREEN © Roxana González | Dreamstime.com

And the WINNER is . . .

The Kiss and Thrill ladies would like to thank Jessica Scott again for visiting our site this week. We enjoyed hosting her and we hope she comes back soon, especially once her next book Back to You is released!

Now, it’s time to announce the winner.

(Note: Only commenters with a U.S. mailing address are eligible, so if anyone announced below does not provide a U.S. mailing address, we will choose another winner.)

The winner of one e-copy of Because of You along with a $25 Barnes and Noble gift card is: Khaki (Kathy) Crouch!

CONGRATULATIONS! To redeem your free book or gift card – please email your snail mail address and preferred email address to contact@kissandthrill.com (or go to contact page for details). Remember, we must hear from you within 10 days.

Thank you all so much for commenting! We hope you will bookmark KissAndThrill and visit often or better yet, subscribe!

What’s next you ask?

Our own Diana Belchase is currently gathering words of thanks, holiday greetings, and uplifting messages to send to US troops.  Please join her at www.DianaBelchase.com and follow the links to Cyber-Hugs for Heroes to add your own sentiments.  Every message counts, so please spread the word!

Next week, on December 27, please join the ladies of Kiss and Thrill as we offer our resolutions, hopes, and dreams for the New Year. We’d love to hear about yours as well.

We also have an exciting line-up of author interviews in January  including Rebecca York, Roxanne St. Clair, Elisabeth Naughton, our very own Manda Collins, as well as inspiring posts from our own Gwen Hernandez and Krista Hall. We all look forward to seeing you there!

Jessica Scott: Spotlight on the Author and Soldier

 Adding to our wonderful line-up of author interviews, today we are excited to welcome Jessica Scott to Kiss and Thrill.

A career soldier with 16 years in the Army, Jessica is a Company Commander in charge of 130 soldiers, a mom with two young kids who never sit still, and an Army wife, whose husband is back in Iraq. Blogging from Iraq landed her a spot on PBS Point of View, tackling tough issues involving women and war.

Her novels are all pulled from her experiences as an soldier who has lived through both being deployed and being the spouse left at home with the kids.

Her first release, Because of You, is a Loveswept eBook original which has garnered rave reviews from press, peers, and public alike.

Thank you so much Jessica for spending your day with us and answering all our questions. So let’s get started with some fab reviews!

“Edgy and current–and a truly satisfying love story. Put this book, Jessica Scott’s BECAUSE OF YOU, on your “must read” list.”  Suzanne Brockmann | New York Times Bestselling Author

“Jessica Scott is an exciting new voice in romantic fiction who bursts upon the scene with an unputdownable debut novel!” Robyn Carr | New York Times Bestselling Author

“BECAUSE OF YOU is powerful, timely and wonderfully executed. Jessica Scott should be on every reader’s list.” Brenda Novak | New York Times Bestselling Author

“Jessica Scott writes with a soldier’s heart. BECAUSE OF YOU is touching, authentic and a fantastic read.Cindy Gerard | New York Times Bestselling Author

“Crackling with realism, sizzling with sexual tension, and pulsing with emotion, Jessica Scott has penned an unforgettable military romance that delivers heartache and hope on every page.” Roxanne St. Claire | New York Times Bestselling Author

“Watch out Navy SEALS, there’s a new hero in town and he’s wearing Army gray!  BECAUSE OF YOU is a beautifully crafted, wonderfully emotional debut.” JoAnn Ross | New York Times Bestselling Author

Sharon: What was it like to get so many amazing reviews from some of the today’s top romance authors?

Jessica: I was really awe struck. I mean we’re talking pillars of the genre and they liked my book. It was kind of awe inspiring and humbling all at once.

Sharon: Is Because of You the first book you’ve ever written?

Jessica: Technically, it’s the second book I ever wrote but it’s the one that I’ve spent the most time with over the years. I kept coming back to it no matter how many times I put it under the bed and tried to move on to the next project.

Sharon: How long did it take you to write Because of You?

Jessica: Which time? I’ve written and rewritten that sucker so many times I lost count. The very first draft I wrote in a week when I was supposed to be paying attention in class and it will never, ever, ever see the light of day, not even in a bloopers reel.

Sharon: How long did it take to sell Because of You?

Jessica: A really, really long time, mostly because I started querying waaay too early and didn’t spend enough time honing my craft. Trust me, just because you wrote The End does not mean it’s time to hit Send on the query.

Sharon: Do you have a favorite holiday book or movie?

Jessica: I don’t generally enjoy holiday films for some reason. I think maybe it’s got something to do with the overwhelming pressure at the holidays to shop shop shop and generally meet everyone else’s expectations when it should be something simpler like creating memories and family.

Sharon: What other genres of fiction do you read?

Jessica: I like a lot of thrillers but if I’m not reading romance, I’m most likely reading non fiction.

Sharon: Can you name one (or more) book(s) that changed your life?

Jessica: There are lots of books that have stuck with me. Anne McCaffrey’s Dragon Riders of Pern have been on my keeper shelf since the 7th grade. Laura Kinsale’s The Shadow and The Star made me want to learn Japanese in high school. The Hunger Games makes me wish I could write a book that caused me such a strong reaction. BlackHawk Down made me want to be able to capture that raw emotion on the page. There are far too many to mention, honestly. My keeper shelf is vast and full.

Sharon: When did you decide to join the army? Did you always know you wanted to make it a career?

Jessica: I joined the Army right out of high school. I didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up so I figured I’d join the Army to see what life had to offer. Guess it stuck because it turned out to be the first thing in my life that I was really good at and it became my passion. I love what I do every single day and it’s an honor and a privilege to wear the uniform.

Sharon: What made you decide to make the jump from enlisted to officer?

Jessica: I love my years as an NCO (noncommissioned officer) but eventually, I starting thinking I wanted to be part of the folks making the decisions instead of implementing them. I wanted a stronger ability to impact change on a higher level than what I felt I could attain in the NCO Corps.

Sharon: Will you be deploying overseas again?

Jessica: Probably. The war in Afghanistan is still on going. My turn will come around again at some point.

Jessica Scott and Roxanne St. Clair

Sharon: What made you decide to write a novel?

Jessica: Honestly, I don’t remember. I remember starting After the War in Officer Candidate School and I just kind of never stopped writing since.

Sharon: Did you ever consider self-publishing Because of You?

Jessica: I did but when I crunched the numbers, it simply didn’t pan out. I wasn’t able to justify spending 3,000 – 5,000$ putting together a book that might never have left my circle of family members. Mind you, I had somewhat of a web presence, too, from my blogging from Iraq. So while I toyed with the idea, never seriously once the reality of the numbers game stared back at me.

Sharon: Were all three books in this trilogy (Because of You, Back to You, and Until There Was You) written before the contract?

Jessica:  In some version and by that I mean, I had an idea which characters each book would be about. But written and ready to submit? Not even close.

Sharon: How important was your blog on your path to publication?

Jessica: Very but then again, remember, I blogged about being a mom, soldier and writer, not just about being a writer. Blogging and tweeting from Iraq were the smartest things I ever did because it enabled me to learn more about the industry and to interact more with the industry professionals like other authors and agents. I blogged about being in Iraq, about being a female soldier, about being a mom away from my babies. All of that was far more traffic generating than my breaking up with my agent or any writing drama I went through.

Jessica Scott and Cindy Gerard

Sharon: Do the people you work with know that you write romance novels? How do they feel about it?

Jessica: Some do and not a single person has been a jerk about it.

Sharon: What is your preferred source of caffeine? Coffee, tea, soda?

Jessica: Coffee, coffee, coffee, Venom, coffee.

Sharon: Do you have any time management secrets you can share? (I honestly don’t know how you do everything you do)

Jessica: Crack, coffee, coffee, coffee. Kidding. I’m very calendar driven. I just keep knocking down the next thing that’s due. If it’s not on my calendar, it probably won’t get done. That’s why deadlines are my friend because I HATE being late.

Sharon: Thank you so much Jessica for answering all of our questions. And because Jessica is as generous as she is lovely, she’s giving away a copy of Because of  You along with a $25 gift card for BN for one lucky commenter. The winner will be announced here at Kiss and Thrill on December 22.

Jessica: Thanks for letting me blog with y’all!

You can join Jessica at her website, blog, Twitter, and Facebook because the Army adventure never stops! Her next novel Back to You is now scheduled for a Fall 2012 release. Look for it!

And the WINNER is. . .

The Kiss-and-Thrill ladies would like to thank Harlan Coben again for visiting our site this week. We enjoyed hosting him and look forward to reading his books and watching movies of his books for years to come! We hope he’ll come back soon!

Now, it’s time to announce the winners!

(Note: Only commenters with a U.S. mailing address are eligible, so if anyone announced below does not provide a U.S. mailing address, we will choose another winner.)

The winner of one e-copy of LIVE WIRE is: Jillian Chantal

The winner of one e-copy of  SHELTER is: Steph Bochenek

CONGRATULATIONS! To redeem your free books – please send your email address to contact@kissandthrill.com (or go to contact page for details). Remember, we must hear from you within 10 days.

Thank you all so much for commenting! We hope you will bookmark KissAndThrill and visit often or better yet, subscribe!

What’s next you ask?

December 20th, we host debut author Jessica Scott!

Jessica Scott is a career soldier (a company commander), a mom, and wife of a career soldier. She served in Iraq and blogged about it and has just published her first novel in a trilogy about a soldier coming home. Her debut novel Because of You released in November to wide acclaim.

Then, please join us on December 22 when we announce the winners of Jessica’s giveaway.

HARLAN COBEN: Carey spotlights the New York Times Best-Selling Author and Self-Proclaimed Snazzy Dancer

Be Patient. There’s an interview with Harlan Coben coming.

But first…What on earth, you wonder, you do wonder don’t you, is that?


That is my copy of GONE FOR GOOD by Harlan Coben.  Okay, that was back in the day when I used to color code the good parts in my favorite books in an effort to teach myself to write. By now I’ve forgotten what all the colors stand for, except I’m pretty sure pink is for emotion.  I’ve got this passage (page 64, Gone For Good) marked with a pink sticky, so let’s see:

If Mel was lying on her belly, her feet kicking in the air, she was talking about boys and parties and that nonsense. But when she lay on her back and stared at the ceiling, well, that was for dreams. I thought about her dreams. I thought about how none of them had come true.

“I love you,” I said.

And, as though she could see into my thoughts, Melissa started to cry.

I was right. Pink is for emotion. Which is sort of my point about Harlan Coben novels. You buy them for the twists and turns and wind up reading a love story. Not necessarily a boy-girl love story, but more often than not, what’s driving the protagonist forward throughout the book is love. Love for a wife, sweetheart, brother, or child. So if you think Harlan Coben doesn’t write romance, you either haven’t read Harlan Coben, or you have a very narrow definition of the term. So without further ado (no idea what ado is) here is my Q and A with Harlan Coben.

Harlan Coben, Photo by Miriam Berkley

With 50 million books in print worldwide, Harlan Coben’s last four consecutive novels, LIVE WIRE, CAUGHT,  LONG LOST and HOLD TIGHT all debuted  at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and lists around the world. His first Young Adult novel SHELTER was just released this fall. His books are published in 41 languages around the globe and have been number one bestsellers in over a dozen countries. (Bio from www.HarlanCoben.com)

Carey:  If you were stranded on a desert island with one other author, yes the real author, not a book, who would it be and why?

Harlan: Boring answer: I’d rather be with a friend than a stranger.  Luckily, I have many writer-friends I admire – if I start listing them the interview will run too long – but they are all good company.

Carey:  You are known for your fantastic plot twists. What’s your secret recipe for keeping readers surprised?

Harlan: I wish there was a recipe.  It is more like a long hike through deep woods.  You have to cut a different path each time – so it’s harder.  But you know you’ve done it before – so it’s comforting.

Carey: Do you have a special way you order your food? For example, do you always hold the sprouts on your salad or ask for a side of cherries with your diet coke?

Harlan: I’m ridiculously low maintenance in that way.  So no.

Carey is about as low maintenance as a Real-New-Jersey Housewife: I’m the same! How did you come to write your first manuscript?

Harlan: I spent summers working as a tour guide in Spain for Americans traveling on vacation.  At some point I decided to write a book about the experience.  The book was horrible, but the writing virus – yes, that’s how I’d describe it – was unleashed.

Carey:  Do you have a personal hero?

Harlan: My father.

Carey: Perhaps that’s why you wrote so movingly about a father in your Father’s Day essay for the New York Times. Which of your series or which of your books is your favorite?

Harlan: It’s so hard to say.  I usually like the newer books.  I can see the seams in the old ones.  They’re like that college essay you thought was so brilliant and you find it now and think, “Wow, this doesn’t work at all.”  It’s like that with old books.

That said, TELL NO ONE was my first big bestseller and movie, so that will always hold a special place in my heart.  FADE AWAY won the Edgar and the Shamus and revealed how Myron Bolitar “became” Myron Bolitar.  So those are the two I’d pick.

Carey.   I recently finished your young adult novel, SHELTER. Mickey Bolitar tugged at my heart from the opening line. What motivated you to write a young adult novel, and will you spill any secrets about Mickey and his future?

Harlan: I have four kids, ages 17 to 10.  I wanted to write a novel for them.  I also had a great idea for a book, but the hero was only fifteen years old.  That means, yep, Young Adult.

 Carey: Your novel LIVE WIRE features Myron Bolitar, a beloved character from prior series who is also Mickey’s uncle. How do your storylines intersect?

Harlan: My stand-alone books and my series books take place in the same world.  Sometimes they intersect.  I think it’s fun when that happens.

Carey:  What do you like to read in your down time?

Harlan: It’s pretty varied, except for the fact that I read almost exclusively fiction.  Right now, for example, I’m reading a short story collection by Elissa Schappell.

Carey makes a note for her TBR pile. What scares you?

Harlan: Not much.  I get a lot of it out on paper and then I block a lot in real life.  Of course, once you have children, you always live with fear.

Carey: Please tell us about your upcoming release STAY CLOSE. Do you prefer writing series or stand alones?

Harlan: STAY CLOSE is a slightly darker tale.  Usually I have a romantic vision of the American dream and those who fight to get it.  This time, well, not so much.  It is, I believe, the best thing I’ve done.

Carey wonders where she can pre-order STAY CLOSE. Oh, here:

Harlan: I don’t have a preference between writing stand-alones or series.  They are both equally torturous.

Carey: Do you have a special cause that is close to your heart?

Harlan: Medical services for poor children.  My wife is a pediatrician and this is our big focus.  Anne runs a medical facility for foster children via Children’s Aid and Family Services in New Jersey www.cafsnj.org .

Carey: Is there a story you are itching to write, but haven’t done so?

Harlan: No.  If I’m itching to write it, I write it.

Carey: TELL NO ONE is the first Harlan Coben book I ever read. It kept me up all night and kept me surprised to the last page. It’s been made into a movie and is currently available on DVD. What do you think about how the story transitioned onto the big screen?

Harlan: I thought the French (Guillaume Canet) did a wonderful job.  It was a critical and commercial success, getting nine nominations for the French Oscar (the Cesar) and winning four of them.  It’s also readily available on Netflix Instant, so give it a watch (with subtitles).  Ben Affleck is working on an American remake, and I’m very excited about his passion and ideas.

Carey is also excited about Ben Affleck….er…his passion and ideas.  I loved the book TELL NO ONE, and I am seriously stoked that it will be made into an American film. I don’t know why I haven’t seen the French version yet, but I know what subtitled film I’ll be watching this weekend.

Harlan, thank you so much for taking the time to be with us today. It was truly an honor to have you here. And now I’d like to open things up for comments or questions.

We love Harlan’s books so much we are going to give away one e-copy of SHELTER and LIVE WIRE. There will be two winners. One book per winner. Be sure to check Friday’s blog to see if you are a winner.

Thank you to Cindy Gerard! Our next guest is ….Harlan Coben! And the winners are…

Thank you so much to CINDY GERARD! We had a great time and hope you’ll come back very soon! We want One-Eyed Jacks!

Readers, yesterday you heard about SEAL OF MY DREAMS a collection of stories by a group of 18! amazing authors- so there’s something for everyone. Remember ALL proceeds go to a nonprofit foundation supporting veteran’s medical research.

You can buy it  and read SEALed With A Kiss by Cindy Gerard. I dare you not to smile when you reconnect with Luke and Val (protagonists of WITH NO REMORSE) and when you meet Tango.  The story is short and sweet so I won’t spoil it, but be warned, there may be man-poetry involved :-).  Bring your scuba gear and take a wild dive!

Harlan Coben, Photo by Miriam Berkley

Tomorrow we are thrilled to host HARLAN COBEN. With 50 million books in print worldwide, Harlan Coben’s last four consecutive novels, LIVE WIRE, CAUGHT,  LONG LOST and HOLD TIGHT all debuted  at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and lists around the world. His first Young Adult novel SHELTER was just released this fall. His books are published in 41 languages around the globe and have been number one bestsellers in over a dozen countries. (Bio from www.HarlanCoben.com)

WINNERS! Remember you must contact us within 10 days at Contact@KissandThrill.com to claim your prize. Please send your email address where you wish to have your e-book gift notice delivered.

The winners of an e-book for kindle are as follows:

WITH NO REMORSE- Kris Gilson

SEAL OF MY DREAMS-Tasha Clanton

LAST MAN STANDING (to be delivered as soon as it is released)- Donna Cummings (please note this will be delivered as soon as it is available).

Cindy Gerard: Carey’s Spotlight Hits the New York Times Best-Selling Author

We’ve got a fun interview with Cindy, but first, here is Carey’s spotlight recommendation:

WITH NO REMORSE.

Whenever I pick up a Cindy Gerard novel, I expect to be transported to a world that, although very real, is someplace I can never access on my own. I expect that she will suck me in so deep, I’ll feel the reality of that world as clearly as my own. In WITH NO REMORSE, she delivers in spades.

From the first page, I’m drawn to Luke (Doc). I’m inside the head of a warrior and privy to not only his courage, but also his self-doubt and vulnerability. Likewise, Val’s need to gain some semblance of control over her life makes her relatable, despite her outrageous beauty and celebrity. The fiery chemistry between Luke and Val ignites the story as much as the deftly woven plot.

I love the vitality and vibrant color of the writing. The pacing is break-neck, so buckle up. Description is sparse, yet beautiful and fresh and perfectly sets the scene. Early on, Gerard writes, “Outside, the night scrolled by, star-studded and black.” For me, that is an apt description of her prose. It scrolls by, hypnotizing me. WITH NO REMORSE is action packed, unexpected and heart-rending. That’s why I chose it for my spotlight pick for Cindy. I can’t wait to get my hands on the final book in her Black Ops series, LAST MAN STANDING, which releases on Jan. 31.

Today Cindy joins us and reveals secrets about her new release and much more as I turn the Kiss and Thrill spotlight on Cindy Gerard!

CINDY GERARD

New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly and USA Today Bestseller, Cindy Gerard, is a 6 time Rita finalist and is proud to display 2 RITAs in her office. Cindy writes fast, sexy, action-adventure romantic suspense featuring former Spec Ops warriors and is proud to count many military families among her readers.  Catch up on Cindy’s news at www.cindygerard.com.

  

Carey:  If you were stranded on a desert island with one other author, yes the real author, not his or her book, who would it be and why?

Cindy: Glenna McReynolds aka Tara Janzen.  Number one, I’m a huge fan.  Number two, we’re best buddies.  I don’t think we’d ever run out of things to talk about.  Some friendships are just like that.

Carey: What is your favorite book?

Cindy: Seriously?  I have to pick one?  Oh, man.  I will go with LaVryle Spencer’s, THE HUMMINGBIRD.  Just an all time favorite read for me AND the reason I started writing.

Carey: That’s great! I haven’t read that one and now have another book for my TBR pile. What is your favorite song?

Cindy: Again … seriously?  I have to pick one?  There are too many so I’ll just go with my most recent favorite, HELL IN HEELS by the Pistol Annies.  Attitude to spare and great harmonies led by Miranda Lambert.

Carey surreptitiously navigates to iTunes store: Do you have a special way you order your food? For example, do you always hold the sprouts on your salad or ask for a side of cherries with your diet coke?

Cindy: OMG.  These questions are hysterical.  I always hold the dressing on my salad, steak rare, veggies steamed.

Carey: How did you come to write your first manuscript?

Cindy: On a very old portable typewriter (yes, I said typewriter) with a sticky E on my lunch hours and nights and weekends.  It wasn’t pretty.

Carey wants to know what sticky lunch food Cindy spilled on the E, but asks instead: Do you have a personal hero?

Cindy: My mom.  She was the kindest, least judgmental, most generous and loving person I’ve ever known.   And she was so courageous fighting the illness that finally defeated her several years ago.  I’ll miss her for a long, long time.

Carey: Cindy, I think she passed a lot of  those characteristics on to you. It’s pretty wonderful how our moms live on in us. Which of your series or which of your books is your favorite?

Cindy: Again?  SERIOUSLY?  They are all like my babies.  Well, I don’t think of the heroes as babies 😮 but you get my drift.  I suppose, though, that I’ll always have a soft spot for Johnny Duane Reed and WHISPER NO LIES.

Carey interrupts with a wistful sigh.

Cindy smiles. Though I have to tell you, Joe Green really surprised me in his book – LAST MAN STANDING that will be coming out January 31st.  There was so much more to that guy than I had ever imagined.

Carey: Which of your books would you suggest for a reader if they could only read one?

Cindy: Wow.  I think that Whisper No Lies would be a good one to recommend.  It has all the action and adventure and romance (plus some irreverent humor) that I love to toss into a book.  The characters are fun and grow into much more than when the book starts and the action is off the charts.

Carey pushes her luck with the “favorites” questions: Do you have a favorite among your female protagonists and why?

Cindy: That would probably be a toss up between Jenna McMillan (Show No Mercy), Crystal – aka Tinkerbelle Debrowski (Whisper No Lies) and B.J. Chase (Feel The Heat) But truthfully, I love them all.  They are all different and all have their special strengths – or weaknesses that they have to fight to overcome.

Carey- still pushing her luck: Do you have a favorite among your male protagonists and why?

Cindy: You are cruel, I tell you, cruel to ask me to choose.  I love all my guys.  Take Gabe – the Arc Angel – Jones (Show No Mercy).  The things that man suffered and yet, he had the most amazing capacity for love.  Sam Lang (Take No Prisoners) – again, he went through so much and came out so much stronger.  And Johnny (Whisper No Lies) was such an arrogant, womanizing bad boy and yet – he grew into a man any woman would die to love.  Rafe?  Wyatt?  Luke – OMG – what’s NOT to love about Luke?  And as I said, Joe Green just gave me one surprise after another.

Giving up on getting Cindy to play favorites, Carey says: Please tell us about your upcoming release, LAST MAN STANDING.

Cindy: I am so eagerly anticipating the release of this book.  LAST MAN STANDING is the last book in the Black Ops., Inc. series and brings us full circle to how the BOI’s originally came about and what really did happen to cause the death of their brother in arms, Bryan Tompkins (an event that happened in book 1, Show No Mercy). This book truly is a redemption book – for both Joe Green, who has felt the weight of Bryan’s death for many years and for Stephanie (Bryan’s sister) who must dig deep inside of herself to find a strength she had no idea she possessed.  I loved writing this story, and I think my readers are going to love it, too.

Carey: How did SEAL OF MY DREAMS come about?

Cindy: That’s a wonderful story.  Christie Ridgway and Alison Kent deserve all the credit.  The two of them were tweeting about a photo of a navy SEAL that had been posted in the NYT shortly after Bin Laden was killed.  In addition to feeling patriotic, they were feeling very, um, shall we say, ‘drawn’ to this amazing photo which was a shot of a SEAL’s naked back (a beautifully muscled naked back).

Carey waggles her brows and motions for Cindy to continue.

Cindy winks. In any event, the tweeting began and the idea took root that it would be a great tribute to write a collection of short stories and donate the proceeds to a military charity.  Christie and Alison contacted a total of 16 other authors. We said YES, and all of us somehow made it happen.  We went from a kernel of an idea in May to a finished product that was released November 11th – Veteran’s Day.  Belle Books and the amazing Debra Dixon and Debra Smith got on board and have published it beautifully.  All proceeds (ALL proceeds) go the Veteran’s Research Corp, which benefits our Veterans with all kinds of medical issues – most specifically traumatic brain injury and PTSD.   If any of you have missed it, it’s a great collection.  You can buy it in either e-book or trade paperback at Amazon or B&N as well as BelleBook.com.

Carey: I love your hummingbird story. Can we see the hummingbird? Will you tell us the story?

Cindy: Here’s a link to the blog post I wrote about the little guy – complete with photos 😮

RIDING WITH THE TOP DOWN

Carey: When you are not busy rescuing hummingbirds, what other causes do you champion?

Cindy: LOL.  My hubby and I are big supporters of our troops.  I’m a supporter of the Romance genre and Brenda Novak’s Juvenile Diabetes cause.

Carey goes bonkers and inexplicably suggests a free association test. Please say the first word that comes to your mind- no cheating! Turn off that editor!

Candlewax

Piea la mode

Boygirl

Strengthwoman

Redwhite and blue

Dancetango

Playtag

Writestuff

Carey’s analysis: Cindy secretly wishes to wax poetic about a Tom Wolfe novel, whilst eating pie a la mode and watching a boy tango with Dancing with the Stars’ Hope Solo to the tune of the Star Spangled Banner. There may be a reason Carey is no longer a psychologist

THANK YOU CINDY, for your time, all that you do for our troops and their families,  your fellow writers and hummingbirds. And thanks for being a splendid sport today!

COMMENTERS -as a special treat for stopping by today, we will be giving away one e-copy for Kindle of each of the following books: SEAL OF MY DREAMS, WITH NO REMORSE, and LAST MAN STANDING (as soon as it is released). There will be 3 winners. One book per winner. Don’t forget to check Wednesday’s blog on Dec. 14th to find out if you are a winner and read my spotlight of Cindy’s story in SEAL OF MY DREAMS. And, oh my gosh! Harlan Coben will be here Thursday Dec. 15th! 

The floor is open for questions or comments for Cindy Gerard, so fire away!

And the WINNER is…

The Kiss-and-Thrill ladies would like to thank Brenda Novak again for posting on our site this week. We so enjoyed having her and look forward to reading her amazing books for years to come! And thank you again, Brenda, for offering a trilogy from your Last Stand series to three lucky blog commenters.

Now, it’s time to announce the winners!

(Note: Only commenters with a U.S. mailing address are eligible, so if anyone announced below does not provide a U.S. mailing address, we will choose another winner.)

Each of the following commenters will receive the The Last Stand trilogy books The Perfect Couple, The Perfect Liar, and The Perfect Murder: Emily Tarde, Melissa Lamb, and Kelly Louise!

Congratulations!

To redeem your free books – please email your snail mail address to contact@kissandthrill.com (or go to contact page for details). Remember, we must hear from you within 10 days.

Thank you all so much for commenting! We hope you will bookmark KissAndThrill and visit often or better yet, subscribe!

What’s next you ask?

December 13th, we host author Cindy Gerard!

New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly and USA Today Bestseller, Cindy Gerard, is a 6 time Rita finalist and is proud to display 2 RITAs in her office. Cindy writes fast, sexy, action-adventure romantic suspense featuring former Spec Ops warriors and is proud to count many military families among her readers.  Catch up on Cindy’s news at www.cindygerard.com.

December 15th, we are hosting Harlan Coben.With 50 million books in print worldwide, Harlan Coben’s last four consecutive novels, LIVE WIRE, CAUGHT,  LONG LOST and HOLD TIGHT all debuted  at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and lists around the world.  (Bio from www.HarlanCoben.com)

December 20th, we are hosting Jessica Scott (http://www.jessicascott.net). She’s a career  soldier (a company commander), a mom, and wife of a career soldier. She served in Iraq and blogged about it and has just published her first novel in a trilogy about a soldier coming home.

Kiss and Thrill would LOVE to compile questions from our readers to give to Jessica in advance as part of her interview.

If you have some burning questions for Jessica, please use our contact page to send them to us!

See you next Tuesday, December 13th, when we host the fabulous Cindy Gerard!

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