Sneak Peek at Golden Heart® RS Nominees’ Opening Lines

Today you’re in for a special treat: a sneak peek at some of the most exciting up-and-coming writers in the romantic suspense genre. It’s likely these 2012 Romance Writers of America Golden Heart® romantic suspense nominees will be in the next wave of debut authors we’ll be adding to our stack of “must read” books so I asked them to share the first line of their nominated novels with us today.


BODY OF EVIDENCE by Rachel Grant

 “Rise, Mara Garrett.”

by Mary Oldham

At precisely 9:00 a.m., Dr. Devlin Gallagher pushed through the massive glass doors, which opened into the modern chrome and granite lobby of the company that bore his name.

by Elizabeth Bemis

FBI Special Agent Draghana Yenichek’s chest locked in paralyzing rage as her gaze swept the bloody body of a young woman, making each breath a triumph, each coherent thought a victory.

EXPOSURE by Robena Grant

 The Salton Sea, isolated and stinky, could be downright beautiful.

 IN WOLF’S CLOTHING by Sally Eggert

 Lenny was holding court by the dartboard, the undisputed king of loveable drunks.


 He wasn’t going to steal this time.

ROGUE’S RETURN by Sharon Wray

Juliet’s house had disappeared.

SPY IN THE HAREM by Diana Belchase



The manuscripts of these eight writers were judged by romance writers to be the very best unpublished romantic suspense novels of the hundreds of entries submitted to the competition this year. The winner of the romantic suspense Golden Heart® award will be announced Saturday at the RWA awards ceremony in Anaheim. Three of our K&T authors—Sharon, Rachel & Diana—are among the nominees this year! Kiss&Thrill congratulates the 2012 Golden Heart® nominees! Thank you for letting us have a special preview of your awesome manuscripts! Good luck tomorrow—you are all winners in my opinion!

I always read the first line of a book before I decide to buy it. How about you? What draws you to a book? Is it the first sentence or paragraph? The title or cover? The blurb on the back? One lucky commenter this week will win an e-book (Amazon/BN) of the romantic suspense novel awarded the 2012 RITA®. 

In celebration of the RWA annual conference this week, the winning commenter will be randomly selected from the comments on Tuesday through Friday until 5 pm EDT and announced next Tuesday!

Join us next week when K&T authors share the latest romantic suspense news coming out of the 32nd Annual RWA Conference! And find out if you’re the lucky winner of the 2012 RITA awarded romantic suspense e-book!

About Krista Hall

Author of RWA Golden Heart ® Award for BROKEN PLACES

Posted on July 26, 2012, in Author Spotlight, Diana Belchase, Krista Hall, Rachel Grant, Sharon Wray and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 18 Comments.

  1. For me, it is the first page. The first sentence will grab me, but I want the rest of the page to hold me there. I do read the back cover to give me an idea of the story line. While I do like the covers (yum), they don’t influence me to buy or not buy the book. Bottom line, if I am hooked by the first page, I will buy the book. Good luck to all the nominees.

  2. Hi Trish, I like to read the first page and back cover blurb, too. But I hate it when the back cover blurb gives away too much of the story. I can go either way with the front cover–I really liked the US cover for THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO. I would have been drawn to that book even without all the publicity.

  3. How about Amazon reviews? Do they influence your decision to buy or read a book?

  4. Hello from Anaheim!
    My sequence: The yummy cover will make me pick up the book–which I immediately turn over. The back cover blurb will make me open to the first page. The first page determines whether I reach for my Visa, LOL!

    No, I don’t read reviews online from regular readers or in the book’s intro from famous authors, reviewers. The online ones from often sound like a book report and give way too many twists away and the professional ones are straight cliche’s that say nothing.

    Some interesting first lines posted, Krista, I can hardly wait for Sat to see who wins!!! Fingers crossed it’s one of our talented K&T members…Rachel, Diana or Sharon.

    Great post, thank you!!

    • Hi Sarah! From the opening lines, you can see why these manuscripts were nominated for this year’s Golden Heart. I love how unique each one is–one word, dialogue, setting, humor, intensity, etc 🙂

      Enjoy that front row seat at the awards ceremony on Saturday! Can’t wait to hear who wins! Thanks for taking time out of your busy day to stop by.

  5. What wonderful first lines. So much fun to be reading each other’s stories, and I’m so honored to be part of this group. Thank you so much Krista for putting this together today!


  6. Golden Heart Nominee SALLY EGGERT stopped by a few minutes ago to post an update from Anaheim. 🙂 Unfortunately the K&T comment box was being temperamental and wouldn’t post her comment 😦 I’m blaming it on the Olympics 😉 Here’s what she said:

    Hi, everyone! Hi, Krista–thanks so much for doing this!

    Wow, this is the first time I’m seeing my fellow finalists’ first lines–they all look so great! I can’t wait to read all their novels when they’re published!

    Here I am in Anaheim, having fun, learning a lot, and getting a little frazzled already. In a good way. 😛

    Congrats and good luck to my fellow finalists!! And thanks so much to KissAndThrill!


  7. Congratulations! Great opening lines.

  8. News from twitterverse #RWA12…Stephanie Laurens rocks the house in Anaheim with her Carpe Diem keynote speech: “There has never been a better time to be a storyteller.”

  9. A HUGE thanks to all the GH12 RS nominees for sharing their opening lines with us today! Best wishes for Saturday!

  10. Sorry to be late to the party!

    Unless it’s an author I’m familiar with, it’s pretty much the same. Jacket, flap copy, back cover, first page or two. That’s enough to make an informed decision, although like everyone, there have been more than a few I was disappointed in.

    Reviews? (shrug) I have, on occasion, deliberately bought a book that got horrible reviews, and I personally enjoyed every page. Conversely, I’ve also purchased The Hot New Bestseller and wondered, “Did we read the same book?!?!”

    • At K&T there’s no such thing as too late, Will. Thanks for stopping by! I’m looking forward to your guest spot here on August 7th 🙂 with the incomparable Sarah Andre!

  11. Congrats to all!

    Such fun reading all the opening lines. Make me want to read more though.

  12. The cover/title will catch my attention but the back cover blurb is what gets me to buy it. I do rely a lot on my friends reviews on goodreads though. Especially my friends that i know have the same taste in books that i do.

Thrill us with your wit...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: