Naughty or Nice Blog Tour: Interviews with Cara Elliott and Jennifer Delamere {Plus a 2-Book Giveaway!}

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Welcome to this stop on the Naughty or Nice Blog Tour! Today we have interviews with Cara Elliott, author of TOO DANGEROUS TO DESIRE, and Jennifer Delamere, author of AN HEIRESS AT HEART.

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CARA ELLIOTT

Welcome to Novel Reflections, Cara, and congratulations on your latest release TOO DANGEROUS TO DESIRE! Please share some juicy details about the story. What was your inspiration to write this book?

I’ve always been intrigued by the theme of “Second Chances.” Cameron Daggett, the hero of the story, has appeared in the previous two books as a man with a very mysterious past—even his two best friends don’t know anything about his early life. So I decided to throw him back together with his childhood sweetheart and mix in an old enemy who is threatening to ruin her . . .That Cameron and Sophie broke each other’s hearts years ago has made them wary of emotional attachments, but here I was giving them a chance to overcome heartache and regrets—and this time get it right. Does true love conquer all? Well, I’ll let you discover the answer on your own!

Because this is the “Naughty or Nice” Blog Tour, please tell us a little about your hero Cameron Daggett. Is he naughty, nice, or a little of both?

Oh, he’s definitely more than a little naughty! (Admit it, girls—don’t we all find a bad boy more attractive than we should!) Cameron is dark and dangerous . . . but locked beneath the layers of devil-may-care cynicism is a heart of gold. He’s just waiting for the right lady to come along with the key . . .

What makes your characters real and relatable?

They are far from perfect—like all of us, they make mistakes, they stumble, they trip, they occasionally fall. But deep down inside, despite the bumps and bruises, they never lose their belief in happily ever afters.

In your writing career, if you had it to do all over again, what would you change?

Other than having my first manuscript turn into a runaway bestseller? (Ha, ha, ha.) Seriously, if I hadn’t been so clueless about the world of publishing when I first started out, I never would have dared write my first book—so I wouldn’t change that! And even though writing is a crazy business, with lots of ups and downs, I feel that I’ve been incredibly lucky. I’ve make some of my best friends through meeting fellow authors, I work with wonderful editors and I get to write all these quirky stories that pop into my head. So really, no complaints!

What can readers expect next from you? Any works in progress you can share?

I just started work on a new trilogy that’s going to be a lot of fun. It’s about three unconventional sisters who share a passion for writing. Olivia, the eldest, pens fiery political essays, Anna, middle sister, writes racy romance novels, and Caro, who is not quite out of the schoolroom, is a budding poet. However, they must keep their passions a secret from Society. But as we all know, secret passions can get a girl into trouble . . . We haven’t set a release date yet for the first book yet, but I’ll keep readers posted on my website (www.caraelliott.com)

What does romance mean to you?

It means never forgetting that love is what really matters.


Can a Flame from the Past be Rekindled?

Long ago, Sophie Lawrance chose prudence over passion, rejecting a rebellious young rogue for the sake of her family-no matter the ache it left in her heart. But after a specter from her father’s past resurfaces, threatening to destroy all she holds dear, the desperate beauty knows there is only one man whose shadowy skills can save her.

Or Is It Too Dangerous to Play with Fire?

Cameron Daggett is a man of many secrets . . . and many sins. He’s never forgotten the pain of losing Sophie. But now, with a chance to win her back, Cameron sets aside his anger and agrees to help Sophie save her father’s honor. Together they embark on a perilous masquerade, leading them to a remote country estate near the sea. There, they must battle a cunning adversary-and their own burning desires. Will they be consumed by the flames? Or can they prove that true love conquers all?

Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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JENNIFER DELAMERE

Welcome to Novel Reflections, Jennifer, and congratulations on your debut historical romance AN HEIRESS AT HEART! Please tell us about your journey to becoming a published author.

Thank you so much! I’m thrilled to be here today.

My journey began with my love of reading, of course! My love for the movies also played a big part. I have always had an interest in screenwriting, and I’ve written several screenplays. A few years ago I read Save the Cat! — a famous book on screenwriting by Blake Snyder. For some reason I decided to visit Blake’s website, and I noticed he was going to present his plotting workshop in Charleston, South Carolina, in just over a week’s time! I couldn’t believe it! Instead of me having to go to L.A., here was his superb workshop just a few hours away. I knew I had to drop everything and sign up. When I got there, I discovered that every other attendee was a member of Romance Writers of America, and most were published authors. They introduced me to RWA, and not long after that I joined my local RWA chapter. They gave me the tools, inspiration, and publishing knowledge to turn my ideas into a completed novel—and to sell it.

Share a little about your new book. What inspired you to write the story?

For years I’ve been fascinated with stories about a person who steps into another person’s shoes and tries to live their life. This probably began when I saw the French film The Return of Martin Guerre. (It was later made into the American film Somersby.) Movies like While You Were Sleeping and Monte Carlo are in that mold, too. Maybe I’m so intrigued by these stories because of the lovely irony that in the end, each character actually discovers their true self.

Because this is the “Naughty or Nice” Blog Tour, please tell us a little about your hero Geoffrey Somerville. Is he naughty, nice, or a little of both?

Geoffrey is a good man, but he is about to find his high principles severely tested. He is a clergyman who unexpectedly inherits a barony. He is trying to live up to the pressures of his sudden elevation to the peerage, a position he never wanted and for which he feels ill-prepared. In this respect, he reminds me of King George VI in The King’s Speech or Matthew Crawley in Downton Abbey.

When Geoffrey finds himself attracted to Lizzie, the woman he thinks is his brother’s widow, this adds a moral dilemma. Not only does he feel traitorous to his brother’s memory, but at that time in England it would have been illegal for them to marry. Geoffrey finds himself seriously contemplating going against the mores of the day, willing to face scandal because he cannot bear the thought of living without her.

How do you make your characters real and relatable?

I try hard to put myself in my characters’ shoes, so to speak. My editor has been marvelous at helping me get my characters’ thoughts and emotions more clearly onto the page. I’m also grateful for the feedback I get from my critique group and my beta readers. Two of them are men who help me make my male characters better by pointing out places where a man might think, say, or do something differently than I’ve written it.

What can readers expect next from you? Any work(s) in progress you can share?

I’m working on the next book in the Love’s Grace trilogy, A Lady Most Lovely, which will be out next year. Readers will recognize some characters from An Heiress at Heart. It has as its central plot a marriage of convenience, which is one of my favorite kinds of stories.

What does romance mean to you?

Romance begins with that bubbly thrill of finding someone you care for truly, madly, and deeply. It’s about the sizzle when two people really connect. Even though this newfound love might be severely tested (as Shakespeare said, “The course of true love never did run smooth”), it’s about the joy of finding it can overcome any obstacle.

I totally buy into Romance Writers of America’s assertion that a romance novel must have an emotionally satisfying and optimistic ending. We like to believe that things will work out in the end, that troubles can be overcome and problems solved. The hero and heroine work hard to achieve their happily ever after, and we as readers want them to get it. If it doesn’t have a happy ending, it may be a “love story,” but it ain’t a romance.

 

A youthful indiscretion has cost Lizzie Poole more than just her honor. After five years living in exile, she’s finally returning home, but she’s still living a secret life. Her best friend, Ria’s dying wish was for Lizzie to assume her identity, return to London, and make amends that Ria herself would never live to make. Bearing a striking resemblance to her friend, and harboring more secrets than ever before, Lizzie embarks on a journey that tempts her reckless heart once again…

A committed clergyman, Geoffrey Somerville’s world is upended when he suddenly inherits the title of Lord Somerville. Now he’s invited to every ball and sought after by the matchmaking mothers of London society. Yet the only woman to capture his heart is the one he cannot have: his brother’s young widow, Ria. Duty demands he deny his feelings, but his heart longs for the mysterious beauty. With both their futures at stake, will Lizzie be able to keep up her façade? Or will she find the strength to share her secret and put her faith in true love?

Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Giveaway Details:

Updated 11/25/2012: The winner is Joanne B. Congratulations!

One commenter will be randomly chosen to receive a paperback copy of TOO DANGEROUS TO DESIRE and AN HEIRESS AT HEART compliments of Forever Romance! (One winner gets both books!) The giveaway is open to US residents 18 and over. No P.O. Boxes, please. Entries will be accepted until 11/20/2012 at 11:59 pm EST. Good luck!