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Twilight Comes by B.J.
Intrigue, Montana Mystique, ISBN: 0373228767
He'd waited for this day--this woman--for forever it seemed. Harry Ballantine had been a prisoner of Fernhaven forest and now he found the key to his salvation in Jenna Dante. But would she surrender to him before she left the hidden hamlet?
With an angry ex on her tail and rain pouring, the last thing Jenna Dante needed was car trouble and a cranky child. Her only option was to seek refuge in the desolate hotel on the hill in Fernhaven. But the restored walls seemed to hold more than memories. For Jenna they vibrated with life and an all-male seduction she could only see and feel in her mind. But when danger came to call, she would need flesh-and-blood protection--and maybe something more lethal...like transcending love.
Heart by Dana
Intrigue, ISBN: 0373886497
Investigating a bunker filled with explosives in the Malaysian jungle, secret soldier Brian Welkins was killed on his first mission, his body blown to pieces. Or so everybody thinks.
Nobody on his old team suspects that fate spared him. Badly hurt, he was captured by guerrillas who kept him as their prisoner in a tiger cage for the past four years. He spent every minute of these years to strengthen himself in body and mind, learn the members of the group, their habits and weaknesses. Now there is an opportunity to escape, and he is strong enough to take it.
But before he could make his move, the guerrillas take another captive-- an American woman.
of Secrets by Tracy
Intrigue, Mission: Family, ISBN: 0373228775
See no evil - The house was impossible to stay away from, but he couldn't tell the beautiful woman inside why. For P.I. Joe Lopez didn't remember why....
Hear no evil - Then the memories came flooding back, and if not for professor Emma Jensen Reese, Joe would have walked away...forever.
Speak no evil - But once the shots rang out, connecting him and Emma in life and nearly in death, Joe was determined to learn what really happened in that house more than twenty years ago. Even as someone else was hell-bent on keeping the past buried...
Privilege by Ann
Voss Peterson, Harlequin
Intrigue, ISBN: 0373228783
"My name isn't Alec Martin," he'd said. Laura thought she'd married a salesman and that their unborn baby would have the idyllic childhood she'd never had. But suddenly her ordinary husband knew how to do extraordinary things, like fire guns and hot-wire cars. A nd thanks to a witness, the mob had been brought to their doorstep with every intention of bringing Laura's "husband," Nikolai Stanislov, and his future offspring, back into the family fold.
Now Laura's only option was to go on the run with a man she barely knew. A man who was proving, time and again, that he wouldn't go down without a fight. Or let her go without one. She'd never loved him more. Or trusted him less.
and each individual has contributed or been involved somehow with the relief effort
(whether tangible or in the form of good wishes or prayers.)
As a writer, how do you deal with current events in your writing and/or the subject matter of your books?
As a reader, I know there is nothing more
wonderful than losing myself in a book and forgetting everything else for
a while. I love to read stories that are uplifting, that steal me away
for hours at a time into another world where there is hope. I think that
is one reason why stories about strong independent women are so popular.
Our heroines overcome everything and find happiness in the end. Isn't that
what we all want. And isn't that why we read romances. We want to believe
in happy endings and I think we give others that hope as well.
Actually, current events often inspire story ideas for me although I've never written a book totally based on an event. Author should be careful about using dates and specific events, because doing so may date your book, and we want our books to be enjoyed ten years from now just as they are now.
I was already working on a single title romantic suspense novel for HQN that was set in New Orleans before Katrina hit. That tragedy made me question elements in my story (Killer Confessions Oct 06). I was so moved, touched and upset over Katrina, that I almost changed the setting. But after talking with my editors, we decided I wouldn' t change the setting, but that I would include a Dear Reader letter in the front. I also decided to mention a hurricane but not name it because that would date the story, and I'm incorporating the theme of rebuilding, and surviving terrible tragedies, etc., to show that the heart, soul and history of New Orleans survived as well as the family in my story
In my upcoming November Intrigue anthology,
(Nov 05), my plot line evolves around a universal story--a child
witnesses his mother's murder, then the killer comes after the child. This
story line has definitely been covered in the news, yet I make it my own
through my characters--the little boy is traumatized and refuses to talk
afterwards. I also used the Christmas holidays (a special time for
families) to add another emotional layer to the story.
Current events are a part of our everyday life when we write contemporary romance. We delve into the lives of current day men and women, and therefore we must acknowledge what's going on around us. At the same time, there's a sense of 'timelessness' that I like to bring to even a contemporary book. I try not to set a book so concretely in time that I can't adjust it as needed. The book I'm working on now, which won't be out for a year or so is set on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. By the time it comes out, the repairs and renovations will be well underway in that ravaged area of my home state. So I acknowledge Hurricane Katrina in the book, but I don't mention specifically how long it's been since the storm.
In my upcoming novella, "Merry's Christmas,"
in the anthology Epiphany (Nov 05), with Rita Herron and
Debra Webb, the story is set in an ice storm in Atlanta on Christmas Eve.
I don't know for certain that there's ever been such a storm on that day
in Atlanta, but it happens in my book!
Many of my books are inspired by current events. Hardship brings out the best in some people and the worst in others, something I like to explore in my novels. In my current release Camouflage Heart (Oct 05), my hero and heroine has been captured by enemy terrorists. Their story is about healing. I think, many times, novels are the author's way to try to make sense of this world. And I think readers relate to that.
Last year I wrote a continuity book set during a hurricane disaster (CODE RED: Riding the Storm), and had to do research as I live in tornado alley, not on the coast. I had many writers share their personal experiences with me of surviving Andrew and the like. With their permission, though without using specific place names or real events, I used some of their experiences in my story--dangers they faced, specific things they did to survive and cope. I think it added a sense of realism to my story, allowing readers to believe the emotional impact on people in that situation. My heart and prayers have gone out to the victims, survivors, rescuers and rebuilders of Katrina and Rita. Watching their stories play out on the news gives me a spooky feeling of deja vu. I'd gotten details scarily right, and that sort of haunts me.
I have a friend whose family lives in Louisiana,
and Katrina has changed their lives. Our church has collected clothes to
be distributed at schools in her hometown. But she told me that the best
way anyone can help is to donate to a reputable organization such as the
Red Cross, the Humane Society or the Salvation Army--and to pray for strength
Ann Voss Peterson:
I occasionally touch on actual events in my books, but more often I use bigger questions behind current events to fuel my stories. When writing Marital Privilege (Oct 05), for instance, I was doing a lot of thinking about the idea of pre-emptive war. But since I didn't want to write a war story, I changed my focus to pre-emptive self-defense, asking what circumstances might make a hero believe he had to kill another person before he was killed, and would he be justified in doing so? I had to write the book to find out!
Current events are often a jumping off point for me. I like incorporating topical issues, but often only as a backdrop for the story. I try not to lose sight of the fact that I write to entertain, so the true horrors of things like natural disasters and war are things I tend to avoid.
While I've never put a disaster with the far reaching consequences of Katrina in one of my novels, my stories often draw from real life. For example, On the List, (Aug 04), came directly from the sniper who was killing people in the DC area a couple of years ago. I kept wondering who would do such a thing and why and came up with a "what if" that I wanted to write. The sense of satisfaction that I get from writing such a story is that I can make sure that justice is done. The sniper is caught and punished. If I were to write about a disaster some day, it would be to show the courage of the ordinary person. I believe we all have within us the ability to rise beyond our own self-imposed limits and be the heroes of our own stories. There have been so many examples of courage and generosity over the past month that I am convinced of it.
I think a writer of contemporary stories must deal with current events. Unfortunately, I can think of several story ideas directly related to the devastation on New Orleans. But it will be a while before I want to tackle the topic--since it's so emotionally charged. If I do end up using it, I will probably make up a different hurricane.
I live near Washington, D. C., and when I got page proofs of Killing Moon, one of my Berkley single titles, I knew I had to put in a reference to the recent sniper case that had been so prominent in the news. Particularly since my bad guy was a security guard at a local mall--and that was a reason for the mall to put on extra guards. I wrote in a reference to "The D. C. area sniper." Unfortunately, I have horrible handwriting. So when I got the galleys, the editorial assistant had written it as "The Dr. Sierra sniper." I blanched when I read the mangled sentence. Luckily for me, I was able to fix it before the book came out.
|Kelsey Roberts a.k.a. Rhonda Pollero,
just sold a chick-lit mystery series to Kensington. The first book
in the series will debut in early 2007. More exciting News: Cosmo
(yes, THE Cosmo) magazine will be excerpting "Killer Christmas"
from Red Hot Santa in their December issue. It will
be on the stands in mid-November.
Kurtz: Win a signed copy of Heart of a Hunter and
of a Hunter and a windchime. For more details, visit Sylvie's website.
Sylvie sends congratulations to Sharon Shearouse from Florida who won the
Rebecca York: An autographed copy of the Harlequin edition of Rebecca's Peregrine Connection novel, In Search of the Dove, will be sent to the winner of a drawing on November 1.
Watch for our weekly contests at NovelTalk as well!
You can purchase any of these books at Author, Author!
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