Saturday, May 30, 2015

Guest Post: Hannah Fielding

Creating the cover for Indiscretion
Cover creation is a part of the publishing process that I thoroughly enjoy – but it is always challenging finding a design that conveys the essence of the book. Here’s the cover for my new book, Indiscretion.

When I saw the final Indiscretion cover, sent over by my publisher, I was delighted that the designer had so evocatively captured these elements of the story:
The setting: Indiscretion is largely set in Andalusia, Spain, at the heroine’s family hacienda, situated in a rugged and untouched landscape as depicted here. The colours pick up on the traditional hues of the Spanish flag.
The culture: Flamenco, bullfighting, fans – all of these aspects of Spanish culture, and more, feature prominently in the book.
The mystique: There is something of mystery in the girl’s eyes, and how she shields part of her face with a fan.
The passion: That is the word that encapsulates the book above all else, and I think the hot, sultry, sensuous air comes through.
It was also important that the Indiscretion cover sit well alongside my other books, Burning Embers and The Echoes of Love. So we’ve established an overall ‘look’ for my covers.

In my writing room at home, I have a shelf devoted only to my books. I can’t wait to see a long line of covers to complete the set! I’m on tenterhooks awaiting the draft cover for my next book, Masquerade, the sequel to Indiscretion

Indiscretion is the new novel from award-winning romance novelist Hannah Fielding. Written in Fielding’s signature style, infused with an old-school Hollywood glamour, Indiscretion evokes the drama and passion of 1950s post-war Spain.
1950’s London. Alexandra, a young writer is bored of her suffocating but privileged life amongst the gilded balls and parties of Chelsea. Keen for an adventure, Alexandra travels to Spain to be reunited with her estranged Spanish family on a huge estate in Andalucía.
Arriving in sun-drenched southern Spain for the first time, Alexandra is soon caught up in the wild customs of the region. From bull fighting matadors and the mysterious Gypsy encampments in the grounds of the family’s estate, to the passionate dances of the region and the incredible horsemanship of the local caballeros, Alexandra is instantly seduced by the drama and passion of her new home.
When Alexandra inevitably falls for Salvador, the mercurial heir to her family’s estate and the region’s most eligible man, she finds herself entangled in a web of secrets, lies and indiscretion. Alexandra soon falls prey to scheming members of her own family, the jealousy of a beautiful marquésa and the predatory charms of a toreador, all intent on keeping the two lovers apart.
But nothing can prepare Alexandra for Salvador’s own dangerous liaisons with a dark-eyed Gypsy.
Can Alexandra trust that love will triumph, or will Salvador’s indiscretion be their undoing?

Hannah Fielding bio
Hannah Fielding is an incurable romantic. The seeds for her writing career were sown in early childhood, spent in Egypt, when she came to an agreement with her governess Zula: for each fairy story Zula told, Hannah would invent and relate one of her own. Years later – following a degree in French literature, several years of travelling in Europe, falling in love with an Englishman, the arrival of two beautiful children and a career in property development – Hannah decided after so many years of yearning to write that the time was now. Today, she lives the dream: writing full time at her homes in Kent, England, and the South of France, where she dreams up romances overlooking breath-taking views of the Mediterranean.
To date, Hannah has published three novels: Burning Embers, ‘romance like Hollywood used to make’, set in Kenya, 1970; the award-winning Echoes of Love, ‘an epic love story that is beautifully told’ set in turn-of-the-millennium Italy; and Indiscretion, her fieriest novel yet, set in 1950s Spain.

Social links
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Disclosure: this post contains links to an affiliate program (Amazon), for which I receive a few cents if you make purchases. 

Friday, May 29, 2015

Spotlight: J.T. Williams

Winemaker of the North
They destroyed those of magic... and a bane upon the land was healed...

Sviska is an assassin questioning the sanctity of his lifetime of bloodshed in service to an ancient sect. Perceiving their acts have become random and senseless, he refuses to murder a young child. He wishes to leave his life with the Order, but they have another assignment for him and if he refuses this too, he will be killed. 

Sent to an isolated mountain city called Elinathrond, Sviska finds a place where a plague is rampant; a wine used to prevent the ailment has run out. Sviska's task is to ferment a medicinal wine for the people and it is here he discovers that magic, an extinct force in his lands, is very much alive. But why the Order would send him here to procure this life saving elixir for those they wish dead, confuses him. 

In this last refuge for magical peoples, a weakening spell exposes more of them to the sickness with every moment. Rumors are spreading that the city is no longer safe, and a malicious evil is growing beneath the streets. If he fails to procure the wine, Elinathrond faces desolation, but the death of the last winemaker was no accident, and Sviska may be next.

Winemaker Of The North is the debut novel in the sword and sorcery fantasy series Saints of Wura.

Arcane Awakening
Elinathrond burns. But the book of magic is safe from the grasp of The Order... for now. 

Shipwrecked onto a rocky island, the Saints of Wura find help from unexpected quarters. Learning that their purpose is to return magic to the world, they must travel south in search of two relics crafted by the elves and dwarves just before the curse was unleashed in the age before.

With storms of rebellion brewing and old evils closing in, the Saints learn that the Legions are marching across the northern realms kidnapping the innocent and tightening their grip upon society. A rift is erupting across the lands, a change is coming to the world, and at every turn they are hunted.

Even among the Saints, disunity disrupts their course and threatens all they hold dear. If they are to remain true to their ordained tasks, they must resist their personal desires or a greater darkness will consume them all.

Arcane Awakening is book two in the Saints of Wura 

Raven's Requiem
Sometimes it is unexpected, while still other wretched souls earn their own bane. No matter... one cannot escape death though many have tried. It is by the Raven's Requiem, you are denounced your breath of life. Tales of morbid drear and trickery of approximately 2500 words each! 

About the Author:

Jeremy Williams (J.T. Williams) is a fantasy author that resides in Texas with his wife and four kids. He has been writing as long as he has been able to put pencil to paper and hasn't ever stopped.

Starting back in elementary school (and generally whenever he was in math class thereafter), he could be found writing away in spiral notebooks of fantasy worlds, imagined battles, and drawing maps of places that only existed in his imagination. This explains why he is rather horrible at math.

Jeremy loves history and has been particularly inspired in his latest works by the late ages of the Roman Empire and their struggles against the many Germanic tribes and foreign invaders such as the Huns. He draws inspiration from both mainstream fantasy and history across the ages blending the two into a familiar but original creation of his own.

Author's Website 
Twitter: @authorziok

Disclosure: this post contains links to an affiliate program (Amazon), for which I receive a few cents if you make purchases. 

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Character Spotlight – Temsik Storm

Character Spotlight:
Hey! Thanks for stopping by the Fair Maiden for a chat. I’m Temsik, by the way, but you can call me Tem. I imagine you’ll be having yourself an ale while you’re here? Go on, then, you won’t find a better brew anywhere in the Outlying Lands. That’s what they tell me, anyway. I’ll know for sure when I turn eighteen and can order one myself.

The girl sitting at the exchange table? Oh, that’s Willow. Aye, I know her. Met her on the playground when she was just a wee thing. Fighting off a bully, she was, and getting her pretty backside tossed into the dirt. So I stepped in and we’ve been friends ever since. She’s a jewel. Stubborn as a mule, though. Gets herself into a fair amount of trouble. I step in a lot, come to think of it.

What? No, she hasn’t got a boyfriend, and I can see where you’re going with that. But you’d best put your eyes back in your head. She’s too busy for that nonsense, and anyway, she’ll see right through your intentions. I never met a lass as smart as Willow. She’ll box your ears just for thinking that way, got it?

Aye, it’s a beast of a night. Always is when we’re expecting our messenger. Can’t hardly take a step in here without bumping into someone. But Knox will be walking through the tavern door any minute now, and then we’ll finally get some news. I can’t stand the way the Core keeps us in the dark. If you ask me, six months is far too long to go without hearing anything.

The contract? Last I knew, it was still taking place. The Tiernam lad just turned eighteen, so it’s only a couple years now before he marries the heiress. I can’t wait. We’ll all rest a bit easier when the threat of war is behind us. I’m ready to settle down and start a family in peace.

With Willow? Are you daft? She’s not ready for marriage. Aye, she’s sixteen, but she’s dead set against tying herself to anyone. And she’s got a devil of a temper, in case you didn’t know. It’ll take a strong man to keep that one happy.

Not that I haven’t given it some thought. I mean, she outshines every girl in this village. Just look at that smile. See what I mean? And there’s a heart of gold under all that fire. I’ve lived here my whole life and haven’t found anyone quite like her. She’s special, that’s for sure.

Another ale? No, don’t get up. I’m heading over to see if Willow needs help, so I’ll flag a barmaid to bring you a refill. If I don’t catch you again, have a safe journey. Keep to the road and avoid the patrols if you can.

Oh, and good luck . . . out here, you’re definitely going to need it.

About the book:

Sixteen-year-old Willow Kent believed she was normal. But when a genetically-advanced military officer shows up in her village and questions her identity, long-buried secrets begin to emerge. With remarkable skills and a shocking genetic code the Core and its enemies will do anything to obtain, Willow suddenly finds the freedom she craves slipping through her fingers. Greed, corruption, and genetic tampering threaten every aspect of her existence as she's thrust, unwilling, into the sophisticated culture of the elite Core city. To ensure peace, she must leave the past behind, marry a man she's never met, and submit to the authority of a relentless officer with a hidden agenda of his own.

Her life has become a dangerous game. How much will she sacrifice in order to win?

About the author:
C.L. Denault is a speculative fiction writer who loves dreaming up tales of adventure and intrigue. A former systems analyst, she gave up her nerdy code-writing skills to care for her family (including a son with special needs), and currently lives among the vast stretches of cornfields in Illinois.
Writing stories and posting on The INFJ Café are her biggest passions, along with drinking coffee and watching sci-fi. When she’s not hanging out with her husband and kids, she can usually be found at a library or tucked away in the shadowy corner of a hip coffeehouse. She’s also been glimpsed sneaking into her garage, late at night, to work on her time machine.
Her debut novel, Gambit, is the first in a Young Adult dystopian series.


Disclosure: this post contains links to an affiliate program (Amazon), for which I receive a few cents if you make purchases.