Tag Archives: Jill Shalvis

Winner of February’s Contemporaries to Covet giveaway!

I was so happy to see everyone’s recommendations for contemporary romance releases in February. Looks like it’ll be a very romantic month!

The winner of a $10 book gift certificate is…Suz Glo!

And since Suz Glo said she loves Jill Shalvis’s novels, I’m also sending a $10 gift certificate to Jill on Suz’s behalf.

Thanks for commenting, everyone!

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Contemporaries to covet in February – & giveaway!

Every month, I’m giving you the chance to win a $10 book gift certificate for yourself AND one of your favorite contemporary romance authors.

How? Easy. Just let me know which contemporary romance novel being published this month you’re looking forward to reading. You can even mention one of the ones I recommend below. I’ll choose one winner and send that person a gift certificate. I’ll also send a gift certificate to the author they mention in their comment, on their behalf.

Giveaway details are at the bottom of this post. But first, there are a couple of contemporary romance novels I’ve read advanced copies of and can totally recommend. They’re both really fun, funny and entertaining books, so I hope you get a chance to read them!

Time Out by Jill Shalvis

(Read an excerpt on Jill’s blog)

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Class: How to Drive Him Crazy

Instructional program for women unexpectedly facing the totally dishy guy from their past. Everyone Welcome!

Time OutNHL coach Mark Diego’s plan to spend his off-season volunteering in his hometown goes awry when he learns that not only is he coaching teenage girls, but that the program is coordinated by energetic (and five feet two inches of trouble) coordinator Rainey Saunders, his childhood friend–and the woman he could never stand to see dating any other guy…

When their tempers flare, Mark and Rainey discover their fireworks don’t just burn angry–they burn very, very, hot! But that’ll just sweeten the victory. Because Mark always plays to win. And with Rainey, he’s planning on playing very dirty too…

224 pages
Publisher: Harlequin Blaze
Publication date: 21 Feb 2012

My opinion:

4 out of 5 stars!

Not only is this novel super hot, but it has all of Jill Shalvis’s trademark snort-out-loud humor and gut-twisting emotion. I absolutely LOVE Jill Shalvis and am convinced she couldn’t write a bad book.

This is her first Blaze for a while, and it’s wonderful to see how much conflict and energy she can pack into even this shorter format.

Her Lucky Catch by Amie Denman

Her Lucky CatchRecently divorced kindergarten teacher Jazz Shepherd is starting a new life in the quaint lakeside town of Bluegill. After taking a summer job at the local marina to help make ends meet, she’s stunned when the chief of police enlists her help in solving a crime.

Money has been disappearing from the city coffers, and a trail leads from Bluegill’s mayor to Damien Cerberus, a rich boat owner—and possible killer. The police chief is short-staffed and in need of someone to keep tabs on the suspect. Jazz’s job at the marina puts her in the perfect position to help—and puts her in the path of Kurt Reynolds, the hottie who mans the fireboat.

When things with Kurt start heating up, how can Jazz keep her investigation undercover while enjoying time under the covers with her summer flame?

67,000 words
Publisher: Carina Press
Publication date: 27 Feb 2012

My opinion:

4 out of 5 stars!

Told in the first person by a heroine with a wonderfully quirky voice, this novel is a highly entertaining read. Amie Denman manages to keep it hot and exciting without being overly descriptive in sex scenes, making this a wonderful book for those of you who get uncomfortable reading about detailed sexual encounters.

Fans of Kristan Higgins will really enjoy Her Lucky Catch. I read it while traveling from Denmark to the Netherlands, and it had me laughing out loud instead of pissing myself with fear on the flight or throttling a conductor when my train home was delayed by an hour. Seriously, it takes a lot to keep me in a good mood through a journey like that, and Amie Denman accomplished it.

Giveaway!

Answer one of the questions in bold below. By “contemporary romance” I mean romance between human beings set in the present day. It can be romantic suspense, inspirational, erotic, category-length or whatever.

I’ll choose one winner on Tuesday February 7th. That person will get a $10 gift certificate to the online book retailer of their choice, AND I’ll send the same to the author they mention.

If the winner mentions more than one author, I’ll ask her to choose which one gets the gift certificate.

This is open internationally.

Questions:

What contemporary romance novel(s) are you looking forward to in February? Have you read anything by the authors I mentioned? Which of their books do you like best?

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Review: Head Over Heels by Jill Shalvis

In nearly two years of reviewing, I’ve never given a single perfect score. Head Over Heels deserves to be the first.

Head Over HeelsChloe Traeger has a reputation for being Lucky Harbor’s wild child—a reputation she’s earned by saying “Screw you” to her severe asthma and living dangerously. She does extreme sports, frees dogs from notorious animal abusers…and taunts the town’s sheriff by nudging the line between legal and stupid.

Bad-boy-turned-sheriff Sawyer Thompson gets annoyed when people cross the line into stupid. But for some reason, it particularly bothers him when cute, curvy, mouthy Chloe Traeger does it. That couldn’t have anything to do with the fact he feels he has to live an exemplary life, which doesn’t come naturally to him. Nor could it be because Chloe’s condition makes it nearly impossible for her to have sex without dying.

But Sawyer’s sure tempted to explore ways of helping Chloe work up a sweat without getting herself killed.

I know there’s still over a month left in 2011, but so far Head Over Heels is my hands-down pick for best contemporary romance of the year.

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Sisters are doing it for themselves

I don’t have any sisters. I have a “little” (i.e. younger, but now well over six feet of muscles that belong on a romance cover) brother. You might remember him from my post The problem with having an alpha male brother.

Sister gets little brother in a headlock

© Christopher Low/istockphoto

My brother and I never got along when we were kids, though I can’t imagine why. I mean, I put so much effort into parenting him because my parents clearly weren’t doing a good enough job of it. As his big sister, I made sure he knew exactly what he was doing wrong at all times. He didn’t know as much as I did, and I pointed out all the things he was ignorant about so he’d learn.

Yes, I was the kid who spent weekends playing “school” and planned lessons for the neighbor kids to sit through. I also borrowed my brother’s motorized mini police car and drove up and down my street handing out tickets to kids who rode their bikes too fast.

In other words, I was a friendless loser for much of my childhood. And my little brother has always been the exact opposite.

Having another girl in the house would’ve been torture. I had to be the best at something, and if I couldn’t be the best at making friends then at least I could be the best girl in the house. No one else could be a girl the way I could—that meant shopping with Mom and my grandma, going on dates with Dad, and just generally smelling good and avoiding roughhousing.

If I’d had a sister? I’d have had to discover something else to be best at.

Girl pretends to push brother off a cliff

© M. Eric Honeycutt/istockphoto

By having a second child, my parents forced me to suffer decades of sibling rivalry—but I never regretted that it was a boy child (I just, y’know, regretted his entire existence sometimes. Hey, I’m not proud of myself for it).

Growing up with my biggest rival living in my own home and sharing my parents’ love has given me a deep affection for fictional heroines who have to endure bratty siblings—even if those siblings are grown up.
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Winner of the Jill Shalvis giveaway

Animal AttractionThanks to everyone who commented on my interview with Jill Shalvis last week.

The winner of Animal Attraction is…Na S!

Na, I’ve emailed you asking for your address, so check your spam folder if it’s not in your inbox.

Thanks very much to Jill for taking the time to answer my questions.

And don’t forget to comment on my interview with Victoria Dahl, who’s giving away her latest contemporary romance, Bad Boys Do, this week.

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Interview with Jill Shalvis – and giveaway!

Jill ShalvisThere are a handful of authors whose books I’ll buy without waiting to read a review. There’s an even smaller number whose books I’ll preorder without any qualms. Jill Shalvis is among the few, the proud, the best contemporary romance authors out there.

I’m thrilled she’s joining me and is giving away a copy of Animal Attraction, the second book in her Animal Magnetism series! I’ve got my copy pre-ordered, but you can win yours by leaving a comment below.

Welcome, Jill!

Simply Irresistible1. This year, you’re releasing two contemporary series, each with a different publisher. Are you the world’s most organized writer, or were you blessed with the power to freeze time for everyone but yourself? How do you do it?

I’m possibly the most unorganized person on the planet in every possible way … except for the writing.  I have a lot of stories to tell, apparently.  🙂  I like working on two different series.  I don’t get bored and it suits my ADHD.

2. What got you started writing and how long did it take you to first get published?

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Winners of the Jill Shalvis giveaway!

The winners of the Jill Shalvis giveaway are…

Terri Osburn (wins The Sweetest Thing)

and

Jamie Michele (wins Simply Irresistible)!

Congrats, Terry and Jamie. I know you’ll love these books. I’m emailing you, so if you don’t have an email from me in your inbox, check your junk mail.

And thanks to everyone who commented!

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Why community is key to contemporary romance – and giveaway!

“In contemporaries, community is key,” Selina McLemore, Senior Editor at Grand Central Publishing, told me at the Romance Writers of America national conference last week.

It makes sense, right? Those of us who love contemporary romance fall for books set in a particular town or city that feels as fleshed out as the hero and heroine. A place we’d love to visit, move to, or just immerse ourselves in for a few hours.

But community shouldn’t be confused with setting. It’s more than that.

It’s characters—oddballs who make a town unique and help the hero and heroine when they need it most; fast-talking city folks who are so savvy they make a reader jealous; and families who can overwhelm the most patient person but pull together when it’s most needed. It’s colleagues who challenge and sharpen you, while also making you howl with laughter, like in Louisa Edwards’s Recipe for Love series.

But community shouldn’t be confused with character development. It’s more than that.

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Jill Shalvis giveaway winner

And the winner of one of Jill Shalvis’s Lucy Harbor novels isAlexa-Lunchtime Explorer!

Congratulations, Alexa. I’ve emailed you to find out which novel you want.

Hope everyone has a lovely long weekend full of writing, good books and excellent friends!

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Don’t bulldoze your writing distractions – win one of mine!

Bulldozer

© the_edge/flickr.com

I’m not a natural motivator. I will never do an impersonation of an army drill instructor and yell at you to sit your butt in front of your computer or drop and give me twenty.

Why not? Because that’s not me. I’m not interested in having people yell at me, even if it’s online where I can flip them the bird without them knowing. I respond better to gentle, enthusiastic encouragement, and I found that the things (or *cough* husbands) that distract me from being productive also respond better to small changes than big ones.

This post, then, is to encourage you to figure out the little things that distract you from producing beautiful words and to find ways to manage those distractions.

And to encourage you to make those small changes, I’m giving away one of Jill Shalvis’s Lucky Harbor novels to someone who leaves a comment. Hey – blatant bribery always works for me.

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