Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Six Sinners and One Saint Capture our Hearts
Top 5 / February 20, 2018

By Miranda Owen In general, I prefer the nice guy, Clark Kent-type heroes to bad boys. But if I do like a bad boy hero, I like him to have hidden depths. All the heroes on this list are nothing short of amazing, and would make great fictional dates to snuggle up with for an hour or two this month of love while reading their stories. Benedick Lisle is a vicar, a gentleman, a great listener, and a hunk. This gallery of rogues and rakes are a tantalizing group of charming yet complicated hotties. Callum MacCreath and Mick Trewlove are men bent on revenge, but are swayed by love along the way. Julian Danvers and Ruan Bettancourt fall head over heels by a woman who takes them by surprise. Rhys Tremayne makes an unlikely knight-errant, but manages to wear it well and win the woman of his dreams. Lord Dutton has taken a few well-deserved knocks over the years before proving himself worthy of Anne Staverton. I invite you to check out these six sinners and one saint.   WALLFLOWER MOST WANTED by Manda Collins. Benedick: “Don’t make a saint of me, Sophia. I’m a man. Nothing More. I do…

Elizabeth Heiter | The five suspense novels I’m loving right now
Author Guest / February 12, 2018

Writers all get their start as avid readers, and most of us never stop devouring books. One of the coolest benefits of being an author is getting the inside scoop about upcoming books. So, I want to share with you some of the books that have just released within the past month – or are coming soon – that I’ve already read and loved, or can’t wait to get my hands on! Here are those books – and a secret look behind the scenes from each author! (Make sure you read to the bottom to see how you can win signed copies of two of these fabulous books now!) BREAKING POINT by Allison Brennan What it’s about: Lucy Kincaid is on the hot-seat with her new boss, but that won’t stop her from helping her friend JT Caruso find his sister, who goes missing while working undercover in a human trafficking organization. Go behind the scenes: Breaking Point is a Lucy Kincaid book, but former cop Bella Caruso kicks off the book and I immediately fell in love with her. Bella is both smart and dangerous, and is willing to take any risk to protect the most innocent in society….

Allison B. Collins | Who doesn’t love a cowboy?
Author Guest / February 6, 2018

Thank you so much for having me on the Fresh Fiction blog. I’m thrilled to be here to talk to readers about the first book, A FAMILY FOR THE RANCHER, in my new series, Cowboys to Grooms, with Harlequin Western Romance. I love cowboys—specifically the horse-riding, boot-wearing, yeehawing type, not the football-playing type. So when I had a dream a couple of years ago about five brothers who worked a ranch in Montana with their dad, I knew I had to turn it into a story. Or actually, into five stories, since of course I had to focus on one brother per book. *GRIN* How do I love cowboys? Let me count the ways. They evoke a sense of honor, a code of ethics, that no one else has. Book one, A FAMILY FOR THE RANCHER, introduces the oldest brother, Nash. Home from the military, and a lot worse for wear, he has a code of ethics that saw him through battles that nearly broke him. He’s struggling to find his place again, with the family and on the ranch. They love the land they live, work, and play on. In book two, FALLING FOR THE REBEL COWBOY, Wyatt Sullivan…

Interview | Lynne Connolly talks SINLESS, M/M romance, and love in Georgian England
Author Guest , Interviews / February 1, 2018

Monique Daoust: It is my pleasure to welcome Lynne Connolly to Fresh Fiction! Congratulations on your new book SINLESS, which I loved! Lynne Connolly: Thank you so much. It’s wonderful to be here. Monique Daoust: Lynne, you have just started your new series, The Shaws, and the second book, a novella, features an m/m romance, your first, I believe. What prompted you to do an m/m romance in the middle of the series? Lynne Connolly: It was all because of the hero, Darius. He is the twin of Valentinian, the hero of an Emperors of London book, and he’s a notorious dandy and man-about-town. Val had tired of his outrageous behaviour some time ago, but he kept it up for his brother because Darius was gay in an age when it was illegal. You could be hanged for it. So Val acted as cover for an increasingly irritated Darius. So many people asked me to write Darius’s book that I had to do it. Monique Daoust: SINLESS and The Shaws are set in the Georgian era; would you tell us more about the research you had to do regarding homosexuality? What surprised you the most? How was homosexuality perceived at…

Best of List: The Fall’s Top Reads
Top 5 / December 7, 2017

By Miranda Owen As a fan of romance novels, and somebody who loves making lists, I’m instantly drawn to the many “Best of…” book lists that come out as the year draws to a close. I’d thought about doing one that encompasses the entire year, but then I was struck by how many fabulous books have been published just this fall alone. With each new book I read, the list of books that have blown my mind kept growing. I’ve read some amazing books by a few of my favorite authors, but I’ve also been lucky enough to stumble on one or two books by authors whose books I haven’t read in the past. Three books by new-to-me authors are: WHAT THE EARL NEEDS NOW by Michelle Willingham, A DARING ARRANGEMENT by Joanna Shupe, and A DUKE IN SHINING ARMOR by Loretta Chase. Based on other readers’ recommendations, I read and enjoyed LORD OF SCOUNDRELS by Loretta Chase, but I hadn’t gotten around to reading another book by her until now. I was initially drawn to A DUKE IN SHINING ARMOR because of the runaway bride theme. After a page or two, the delightful witty banter had me hooked. Watching…

Christine Warren talks sexy shifters
Author Guest / November 14, 2017

Christine Warren, author of HARD BREAKER, chatted with Fresh Fiction about her latest book, where she sees the series going, and whether or not she plans to write more books in The Guardian series. Fresh Fiction: Now that the major battle between the Guardians and the demons has been fought, will you be continuing the story line and taking it a new direction? The Guardians series was always intended to have a fixed start and end point. I wanted to try something different after the Others and see if I could carry a single story thread across multiple books. With my previous work, stories were more loosely connected by characters. For me, the Guardians have done what they set out to do, and now they get to enjoy their retirement with their mates! Fresh Fiction: What was your inspiration for the Guardians and their wardens? Is it based on any folklore? It’s not really based on any one specific story or myth. I simply liked the idea of an epic Good vs. Evil struggle and the idea of heroes who look scarier than the things they’re saving the world from. That was enough to get my imagination firing. Fresh Fiction:…

Elizabeth Heiter | Top 10 Mysteries and Thrillers Made into Movies
Author Guest / November 14, 2017

Always read the book before you see the movie. That’s my rule for any movie that’s been adapted from a novel, because 99% of the time, I enjoy the book more. Maybe that’s because it’s hard to distill a 100,000 word novel down to 60 or 100 pages of screen time. Inevitably, subplots come out, plots get simplified, characters are merged. But sometimes, the movies stand up to the books and even add something. Here are some of my favorites, in no particular order: SILENCE OF THE LAMBS – When this classic psychological suspense by Thomas Harris was made into a movie, Anthony Hopkins brought nuanced life to incarcerated killer Dr. Hannibal Lecter. When I re-read the book, it’s Hopkins – in that famous mask – I picture as Lecter leads New Agent in Training Starling to serial killer Buffalo Bill. GONE GIRL – The book by Gillian Flynn that kicked off so many trends popular in suspense novels right now was a twisted glimpse into troubled minds, and Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike were perfectly cast. On screen, just as in the book, you can believe Nick Dunne might have murdered his wife, and it’s just as easy to…

Meet Mika Jolie at Readers & ‘ritas in November!
Author Guest / October 31, 2017

As part of our countdown to Readers & ‘ritas 2017, our Meet the Author interview series helps you get to know the authors joining us in Texas on November 10-12. Read on to get acquainted with Mika Jolie, and purchase your tickets to meet her in person at Readers & ‘ritas! What book made you fall in love with the genre you write? It was The Passionate Lover by Carole Mortimer under Harlequin Presents. I found it at used bookstore, and from that moment, I was hooked. I’d count the day for her releases and stay up all night and read. For me, the contemporary romance genre tackles a myriad of relatable issues that women deal with on this beautiful journey called life. But also, at the heart of those novels is learning to forgive, discovering something new, and loving the men in our lives, our families, and our friends. If a movie were made of your most recent book, who would you cast in the lead and why? Lance Parker is my Dean. He was my muse while I was writing THE BOY FRIEND. I actually have a whole page on my website dedicated to my muses. What was…

Meet Cooper McKenzie at Readers & ‘ritas in November!
Author Spotlight / October 10, 2017

As part of our countdown to Readers & ‘ritas 2017, our Meet the Author interview series helps you get to know the authors joining us inTexas on November 10-12. Read on to get acquainted with Cooper McKenzie, and purchase your tickets to meet her in person at Readers &‘ritas! What book made you fall in love with the genre you write? I fell in love with the romance genre in 8th grade after reading THE IVORY KEY by Rita Estrada. I’ve read that book several times over the years and recently found a copy to keep in my own library. If a movie were made of your most recent book, who would you cast in the lead and why? If a movie was made of IRON LUST by my Keely Jakes pen name, I would Try very hard to talk the men who suggested I write a bodybuilder romance, and who are featured on the cover, Christian James and Daniel Treat. What was the first story you wrote? The first story I ever wrote was a teenage angst novel about a girl escaping into her dreams to keep from killing herself. It sucked and was destroyed about a year after…

Elizabeth Heiter | When the End Is Really the Beginning
Author Guest / October 9, 2017

“Guilty.” That’s the opening to my short story, The Second Shot, part of the anthology BETRAYED, releasing in ebook next week. My heroine, seventeen-year-old Regan Adderly, has just been found guilty of murdering her abusive father. But it’s really the end. Or is it? From this scene, the story travels backward through four days of the trial, from the perspectives of others who were connected to the crime: the cop who arrested Regan on the night of the murder; Regan’s dependent, drug-addicted mother; her desperate little brother; and her conniving older boyfriend. It ends a year earlier, back in Regan’s perspective, with the actual crime. Along the way, the story weaves through the hours and leading up to the shooting, and asks the question: who fired the shot that killed Maxwell Adderly? With most mysteries, part of the joy is following alongside the protagonist, trying to figure out who did it, how and why – and then catch them. It was a lot of fun to turn this idea on its head, beginning with the guilty party already caught and tried, and then leading readers on a journey to determine if the verdict was right – and deserved. Besides the…