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Cary Grant and Grace Kelly Made Me Do it

DamienBY MICHELLE MONKOU
Showing my age, here, but remember Cary Grant and Grace Kelly in To Catch A Thief, a 1955 romantic thriller directed by Alfred Hitchcock. If you’ve never seen it, try placing a request with your library. Anyway, the story takes place in the French Riviera with glorious scenes of the landscape, which earned an Oscar for Best Cinematography.

So what did this movie do to me?

It made me fall in love with Monaco. It’s the image of a paradise for the young and rich, and those who live and love like there’s no tomorrow. After visiting Milan where beautiful people are wearing beautiful clothes, I imagine Monaco has the same vibe times 1,000.

Imagine narrow winding roads slicing haphazardly through quaint towns and villages, penthouses with fantastic views and opulent floor plans, yachts that are custom designed for particular tastes.  And here’s to the people who are proud of their history and generous with their hospitality.

Writing a three-novella series with the Laurent brothers of Monaco felt perfectly natural. The 3-Ds—Damien, Dane, Dallon—have a bit of the bad boy in them. Confidence, a touch of arrogance, and lots of sexy describe these men who will meet their match with beautiful women who have independent spirits.

All three books—Damien, Dane, Dallon--will be released on September 14 and are now available for preorder on Kindle.

By the way, it was while serving on the U.S. delegation for the Cannes Festival that Grace Kelly met Prince Rainier III, later marrying him and becoming a princess. Talk about fairy tale endings.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Michelle Monkou is a multi-published USA TODAY Best Selling author with over 20 books in print and digital. She began her writing career in 2002 and writes contemporary romances, paranormal/urban fantasy, new adult and young adult. She also writes as Michelle Rhys for explicit/erotic stories. Her stories speak to the heart and offer that happy ever after ending for the romance fiction reader. Michelle is also an active participant with romance writers’ advocacy efforts. She resides in Maryland writing many more stories to fill the hands and e-readers of romantic bookaholics. Her Website: http://michellemonkou.com
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Damien (Tall, Dark and Sexy, Book 1)

Two worlds collide. And the battle of wills sizzle. Losing?—That’s out of the question.

Damien Laurent is the ultimate bad boy of the Laurent Dynasty. After a series of tabloid faux pas, the family votes an immediate suspension, against him, from the real estate family business. One brother demands that he gets his head back in the game. The other brother suggests that he discovers his passion. No one knows the real reason for his hyperactive do or die antics. And he’s not telling.

Except Anna di Torino, the Italian enchantress of royal blood, knows Damien all too well. Their torrid affairs had set headlines ablaze until she’d turned down his marriage proposal. Her family obligations continue to war with her desire for the man whose family from humble beginnings now owns most of Monaco.

On a modeling assignment, she is thrust into the new world of professional electric car racing—Damien’s new playground. Seeing him again, revives the heady, sensual longing that she thought she’d successfully buried. Their reunion sets the headlines abuzz. But this time, she doesn’t want a bad boy. She wants a husband. Only one man stokes her desire, satisfies her needs, and seduces her heart…Damien!

Available now on Amazon

First Steps and Chinese Take-Aways

WildLifeBY   ALISON BRODIE

Chinese philosophers always take the easy view of life. They shrink challenges that freak out the rest of us down into pithy one-liners. Take Confucius. Forget the legendary ‘Go To Work On An Egg’ and consider:

·         ‘Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.’

·         ‘Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.’
and the perennially useful:

·         ‘Never give a sword to a man who can’t dance.’

Five Easy Ways to Mess up a New Relationship

sharethemoonBY SHARON STRUTH

Thanks for hosting me today. SHARE THE MOON character Sophie Shaw has graciously offered to step in to handle this blog post with a few words of wisdom on starting a new relationship. Take it away, Sophie…


Five Easy Ways to Mess up a New Relationship
By Sophie Shaw, Senior Reporter, Blue Moon Gazette

Since my divorce, I’ve concluded the available men in the small town of Northbridge, Connecticut is as predictable as the assortment at the dollar rental video store, filled with decade-old hits I’ve seen so many times they hold little interest. So the day I stumbled upon Duncan Jamieson at Blue Moon Lake, I could hardly believe my good luck.

Scotland’s Rugged Beauty

dukesdaughterBY SASHA COTTMAN

My historical romance books, The Duke of Strathmore series, covers the lives and loves of a family who have their roots in Scotland.

The family owns a magnificent castle in the rugged wilds of Scotland. I love being able to write about their lives in the glittering world of London ballrooms, but just as much fun is being able to talk about their love for the woods and fens of Scotland.

Summer to Fall

MercysRescueBY DEBRA HOLT

Summer will soon come to an end and fall will be fast approaching.  Every season has great things in its favor.  Summer has the Fourth of July with its fireworks and patriotic parades. Fall will come in with its changing colors and smells of pumpkins and burning leaves and fun festivals with corn mazes and school carnivals.

Sex, Secrets, & Happily Ever Afters

SexSecretsBY DEB JULIENNE

When it comes to writing Heroes, I want a man that looks beyond what’s in front of him. A man who isn’t afraid to think or dream, and wants to make wishes come true without losing himself. Travis stole my heart when he saw the look in Angel’s eyes as she spied something in the window as they walked past. This is my kind of man. It’s not about material things. It’s all about paying attention.

Starry Knight

Starry-NightBY NINA MASON

The Knights of Avalon, the four-part erotic PNR/UF series Starry Knight launches, was born of a simple idea: to write a series incorporating different forms of divination. From that kernel grew the far more complex world of the series. The “knights” of Avalon, the enchanted otherworld isle featured in Arthurian and Celtic legend, were Scottish noblemen who, after falling in battle, were taken by the fairies to serve as breeding drones to their queen. Each of the four books in the series tells the story of a particular knight and the heroine whose love saves him from his unhappy existence.

For God’s Sake, Just Talk it Out

HerShirtlessGentlemanBY M.Q. BARBER

You know that feeling when you’re reading a book and the characters won’t talk to each other? Their whole problem could be solved with a five-minute conversation, but they’re being stubborn idiots endangering the lives of people around you who might be hit by a flying projectile at any second. (Not to mention the hole in the wall or the cracked screen on your e-reader.)

I hate that feeling.

Body Image in Regency

lady-beresfords-loverBY ELLA QUINN

My new release deals with body image, and how a perfectly lovely woman can believe she is undesirable. Naturally, that meant that I really needed to get my research right about what was considered beautiful during the Regency era. What I discovered may surprise you.

If you are a Regency reader, you have no doubt seen the fashion plates that depict tall slender women. But was the idea of beauty really tall and slender. Not so much. In fact, not at all. Just a glance at the portraits of the day will show that none of the women considered Diamonds of the First Water were anything but what we would consider plump, or even a little on the plus side.

A little more research revealed that if a woman’s collar bones were showing, she was considered vulgar. And here is a quote from 1809, which shows one lady’s distress at the possibility that she might have lost weight. S. T. Coleridge Three Graves iv, in Friend 21 Sept. 94   Oft she said, ‘I’m not grown thin!’ And then her wrist she spann’d.

Why was it that being thin was so unfashionable? For the most part, it meant that the person was too poor to afford sufficient food, or was suffering from ill health.

As for being tall, well the cant term, ‘long meg’ says it all.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Bestselling author Ella Quinn’s studies and other jobs have always been on the serious side. Reading historical romances, especially Regencies, were her escape. Eventually her love of historical novels led her to start writing them. She has just finished her first series, The Marriage Game, and her new series will start in April 2016.

She is married to her wonderful husband of over thirty years. They have a son and granddaughter, one cat and a dog. After living in the South Pacific, Central America, North Africa, England and Europe, she and her husband decided to make their dreams come true and are now living on a sailboat cruising the Caribbean and North America.

Ella is a member of the Romance Writers of American, The Beau Monde and Hearts Through History. She is represented by Elizabeth Pomada of Larsen-Pomada Literary Agency, and published by Kensington.

Website: www.ellaquinnauthor.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/EllaQuinnAuthor
Twitter www.twitter.com/ellaquinnauthor
Blog http://ellaquinnauthor.wordpresscom


ABOUT THE BOOK

Lady Beresford’s Lover

Ella Quinn’s bachelors are quite sure of what they want in life—and love—until the right woman opens their eyes…

After a painful heartbreak, Rupert, the handsome young Earl of Stanstead, has decided that when it comes to love, avoidance is best. Until he meets a woman who makes him forget his plan—and remember his longing for a wife and family. Yet he senses that she too has been hurt, though she attempts to hide her feelings—and more—in the most baffling and alluring way. Intrigued, Rupert is willing to play along, if winning her is the prize…

Crushed by her late husband’s scorn, Vivian, Countess of Beresford, believes she is monstrously undesirable. Sadly childless, she has moved to London resigned to a solitary life. Still, when she encounters Rupert at a masquerade ball, her disguise as Cleopatra emboldens her. Convinced he doesn’t recognize her, she begins an after-hours affair with him, always in costume—while allowing him to innocently court the real her by day. But when Rupert makes a shocking choice, will Vivian be able to handle the truth?…

Available at: Amazon, Barnes & Noble

To Genre or Not to Genre

FatChanceBY CELIA BONADUCE

When I started sending my first novel, MERCHANT OF VENICE BEACH, to agents, I got several flat-out “thanks but no thanks”. But frequently I got “personalized rejections” I would read these dismissals over and over, trying to decode the mystery of why I wasn’t selling my book. Basically, the personalized rejection letters all said the same thing – the agent found the book funny/smart/insert positive feedback here, but they weren’t sure how to sell my story. While there was romance, the story didn’t’ fit the classic definition of a romance novel. But it also didn’t have the “weight” of women’s fiction.