Friday, April 20, 2012

I'm Guest Blogging With Mimi Today

If you're looking for my Friday post, I'm guest blogging today about my love of the Victorian Era. You can find it over at TWRP author, Mimi Barbour's blog.

Stop by and leave a comment for a chance to win one of Mimi's books or one of mine.

See you over at Mimi's place. :-)

Friday, April 13, 2012

Welcome Isabella Macotte

Happy Friday 13th! Today’s blog guest is Isabella Macotte. Welcome, Isabella.      
Lilly, thanks so much for having me as your guest!
So, Isabella, what do you do to relax?
Whenever I take a quiet moment for myself, a good book is always in the picture.

You can usually find me curling up in comfy sweats, a sturdy mug of hot cocoa and real whipped cream waiting for a sip, and a sleepy pup warming the side of my leg.

And the book: a romantic, fantasy-filled, humorous story, spiriting me away from a life filled with mundane but necessary tasks. A feisty heroine who knows her own mind and a hunky hero who thinks he knows what the girl wants all add to the fun.

I’ve always been grateful to the wonderful writers who’ve helped me escape to another place and time. Now, I’m honored and humbled to be counted in their ranks.
I write what I love to read: historical, sexy, funny, all tied together with paranormal elements. Hopefully romance readers will give me a chance to share in their world now. I’ve written The Heart Gem for each and every one of you.
And I can’t wait to read it. I love historical and paranormal romance. In my opinion, these two genres go together as well as milk and cookies!
Isabella Macotte grew up in Chicago and now lives in the Midwest. Ever since she can remember, she was reading. Not just fiction but everything she could get her hands on. Science, romance, history and paranormal. Especially paranormal...anything scary, creepy, or gory, she loves it. From light paranormal elements to terrifying monsters, she'll make up a story to amaze or scare you.

Isabella Macotte writes the kind of romance she loves to read: a story with delicious dialogue, seductive encounters, a dash of the paranormal, and an irresistible hero you will never forget.

Passionate about books, Isabella keeps busy reading, writing and working in a library. But if a few moments remain at the end of the day, she spends them with a wonderful family and sweet bichon pup named Daisy.


Isabella's The Heart Gem is now available from The Wild Rose Press.
In 1885, a proper Victorian woman's place was in the home. Convention never appealed to Hallie Pinefoy.

But plans for financial independence through a successful doll-making venture have one impediment. She's inherited a curiosity shop and a handsome business partner who's proving to be a delicious distraction.

When Bremen Tyler inherits a shop in coastal England, he breaks from the mystical Ancestral clan to live a normal life. The only way to guarantee a permanent break is to marry his Heart Match, a perfect soul mate. Bremen recognizes the captivating Hallie as his true love, but she isn't cooperating with his courtship.

If he can retrieve the stolen Heart Gem, an Artifact of Love, he can use it to prove their match. The surface of the Gem reflects the essence of a couple's future life, but the risks are great. More importantly, will Hallie realize true love doesn't need proof?

Hallie’s bottom shifted from Bremen’s lap onto the cold stone garden bench. Why was he stopping just when the moment was getting interesting? Then she heard the footsteps in the distance, rustling along the garden path. Her head still blissfully dazed, Bremen’s possessive hands moved to straighten the aquamarine gown’s bodice, which had drawn away completely from her breasts.

Clay’s face was an angry red, even in the dark night. She jumped at the intrusion and attempted to yank her hand out of Bremen’s, but his firm palm held on without releasing.

“Bremen Tyler, how dare you encroach on our relationship? Hallie and I have a long-established agreement among our families. You must honor this arrangement and withdraw your presence.” The shrillness of Clay’s voice reverberated through the grounds.

“I haven’t been informed of a promise or understanding. In fact, I have heard from the lady she is uncommitted. A state I’m determined to reverse.” Bremen’s deep voice was low and controlled.

“She would be committed to me if it were not for you. You are confusing her; she loves me but you are filling her head with promises and nonsense.”

“I have given Hallie neither false promises nor nonsense. She knows my true feelings.”

“She also knows my feelings and has said she will consider my offer.”

“If Hallie tells me it is you she wants, I’ll say no other word.”

“Hallie, tell him you will marry me. I believe my request was clear at supper,” Clay demanded.

“My love, make your wishes known, and we will visit the reverend directly,” Bremen countered.

Both men stared, waiting for a decision.


Friday, April 6, 2012

What Men Want

Today I welcome sister rose, author Lynne Marshall who's going to tell us women what men really want.  I've been married 30+ years, and I still can't figure it out. lol! And since today is also the day after my birthday, I'm going to draw a name from those who leave a comment today and give that person a free PDF copy of my historical romance, Slightly Tarnished.

So, Lynne, what do men want?

WHAT MEN WANT by Lynne Marshall

I recently noticed an article on Yahoo about what men notice first about women.  Surprisingly, it isn’t a super figure. Nope.  Seventy-four percent of the men questioned said it’s the hair that makes them first notice a woman.  The article said gorgeous hair trumps a curvy figure every time.  Surprise, surprise.  Here’s the link:

Is it any wonder authors write the characters that most attract men? The point of the story in romance is to find two people, often complete opposites, and make them fall in love, so first they have to notice each other. As a woman who has had short hair for many, many years, it is difficult to accept that men only want long, lustrous hair.  Especially since my husband likes my short hair! However, looking back, I did have long hair when we met.  Maybe he’s just humoring me now? Something to think about anyway.

I think the key to this immediate attraction is being well groomed.  If you read the article, you’ll notice that grooming is a big part of the equation when it comes to attraction. Continuing on with the theme of attraction, one thing, both men and women have in common in many surveys is that a physically fit person is very appealing.  As romance writers and readers, I think we all know that.  All anyone has to do is look at the latest batch of romance novels and it is very apparent the fitter the model, the sexier the book cover. 

Good thing Paul Valverde, the hero in An Indiscretion, my latest book from The Wild Rose Press, is a slim hipped Spanish-American who knows how to dance the rumba and Paso DoblĂ©. Who also takes total control of his partner in many inventive ways, and is a top notch doctor at St. Stephen’s Hospital in Los Angeles, despite his setbacks earlier in life.

In An Indiscretion, my current offering in the Champagne line, one of the first things the hero remembers about the heroine (they’d known each other as young teenagers) is her gorgeous red hair.  See, there was a method to my ponderings. The book cover doesn’t feature this trait because Carrington Hanover, who is an RN, is wearing surgical garb – a mask and OR cap – but her beautiful blue eyes tell a story all of their own.  By the way, I was given a special dispensation from WRP editor - Kinan Werdski - allowing me to write a red-headed, blue-eyed heroine JUST THIS ONCE!  According to her, in submitted manuscripts, 99% of the women on the planet have “auburn tresses and emerald (or blue) eyes.” See Rachel Brimble’s blog - March 15, 2012.

I’ve also seen reader boards at Amazon chastising romance authors for writing too many red-headed heroines. According to some of them, it is an ongoing joke amongst readers.

Yes, maybe redheads have been overdone in romance novels, but I think it all goes back to what the guys find most attractive about women in that article – beautiful hair!  How often have we noticed a woman with natural red hair and thought, wow, that’s the most gorgeous color I’ve ever seen?  And what do we suppose is the most popular hair dye color requested by women in salons?  Just look around.

Here’s a picture of the lady with great hair that I envisioned when I wrote Carrington Hanover.

An Indiscretion by Lynne Marshall:
A doctor…a nurse…an indiscretion. RN Carrington Hanover leaves her money-hungry fiancĂ© at the altar insisting the next man in her life must love her, not her rich father’s money.                                                                                                                             
All work and no play has made Dr. Paul Valverde an unfulfilled man, and the resurrected redheaded crush from his youth is driving him to distraction, but can their complicated past become untangled by their newfound attraction–or will their love be doomed by mistrust and long-held resentment?

What is your favorite color of hair on guys or ladies? 
I’ll give one of my backlist books away to one commenter.

Thanks so much for having me, Lilly!

Great post, Lynne. So, there's a chance today to win one of TWO prizes if you leave a comment.

Now, as to a man's hair color, I love a bit of contrast. I love to see a handsome man with blond hair and brown eyes or dark hair and brown eyes. And although my husband once had very dark hair and blue eyes, his hair is now silver leaning toward white with a few dark strands remaining. Oh, and of my two daughters, the oldest has the most beautiful long red hair and blue eyes. So, I don't find the abundance of red haired heroines odd at all. Now, if every woman in the same book had red hair...

Thank you so much for joining me today, Lynne.

Lynne Marshall is a multi-published author of contemporary romance for Harlequin Special Edition and The Wild Rose Press, and Medical Romance for Mills & Boon. Her latest book for Special Edition is, Courting His Favorite Nurse, March 2012. Lynne hopes you’ll give her redheaded heroine of An Indiscretion a chance at her happily ever after. You can find out more about Lynne at her website: