Thursday, April 24, 2014

The Pact by Graeme Brown (Feed Your Imagination with Fantasy Tour) (Guest Post, Excerpt, Giveaway)

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Fantasy4-The Pact photo The-Pact.jpgTitle:  The Pact
Author:  Graeme Brown
Published:  May 2013
Publisher:  Champagne Book Group
Word Count:   17,000
Genre:  Dark Epic Fantasy
Recommended Age:  12+
Enter the world of Will Lesterall, a boy who’s grown up in the safety of his father’s castle.
Tales of the outside world ruled by warring kings and creatures of nightmare have never seemed a threat, yet on the night celebrating two hundred years of the sacred Pact that has kept Fort Lesterall safe, intrigues ripen, and in the course of a few hours Will is confronted with a choice greater than he can comprehend.
Join an unlikely hero as destiny pulls him into the middle of an ancient conflict between fallen gods and ambitious women, one that demands blood, both holy and wicked, and the power of an ancient fire bound in steel. As swords clash below a watching wood, hope and betrayal war as fiercely as fear and valor.
Whether he lives or dies, Will Lesterall will never be the same.

 Will felt a hand on his shoulder.

“Lie down,” the woman cooed.

The blade glowed like the moon through its sheen of blood and Will obeyed slowly, feeling the stone’s icy kiss against the back of his neck. He cursed himself in his mind, but the voice had no power. That was your only chance. You’re dead now. There’s no stopping her.

He still shook with grief, his whole body cold. He saw Robin and the fear in his brother’s eyes. The pain. Will wanted to run, but his body wouldn’t move. Finally, he closed his eyes, whimpering, folding up his legs and turning on his side.

He waited and waited, but the moment didn’t come. He waited more, before finally summoning the courage to open his eyes...


Every time I visited my grandmother as a child, I would spend time in front of the bookshelf. She had an exotic collection of books—Shel Silverstein’s Where the Sidewalk Ends, a fifty-year-old medical reference book, and Beezus and Ramona. One of them was tiny, and it had lots of words that I couldn’t read, but I enjoyed opening it up and looking at the maps inside. The Hobbit, it said, a book with a faded cover and picture of a dragon on a pile of gold.

I would spend hours in front of that shelf over the years to come. Night when I was sick, I’d hover over the humidifier and flip through the books. As I got older, I looked at the pictures in this book called The Hobbit, and wondered what it was about.

I was a late-bloomer not just to fantasy, but to reading. I started with horror, but nothing ever held my interest. It wasn’t until I was a teenager that I picked up a fantasy book and realized I loved it. Finally, my eye turned not just to The Hobbit, but to Lord of the Rings and the works of this guy named J.R.R. Tolkien.

Just like that, the engine inside Graeme Brown started chugging, and out came the stories. By the time I was an adult, I had a stack of paper that was half my height (most of it abandoned starts). With Tolkien came a love for maps and discovering other worlds. I tried others—Goodkind, Brooks, Dennis L. McKiernan—but it was Robert Jordan who brought me into the present day of fantasy.

Tolkien hinted at what it meant to write an epic. Robert Jordan went in and dared to dream without relent. When he passed away I was devastated. With each book, Mr. Jordan peeled back yet another layer, a series of Russian Dolls that took us closer and closer, deeper and deeper. His work was a perfect blend of endless imagination and mystic realism, and with his departure, I felt this light he showed us was forever gone.

My own writing turned from beginnings into unshapely novels—the first bad pancakes. I was reluctant to start a third, until I met the third master of fantasy, one who dared me not just to dream, but to seek realism to fantasy unlike I’d ever considered. I’m talking about George R. R. Martin.

I’d say Mr. Martin helped me find my voice. It was not his style or his work that had this effect on me. No, it was a live reading of his. I observed the way he paused before reading, the way he shifted slightly and became...something else. When the story commenced, he was living it. That made such an impression on me I realized this was what was lacking still in my writing. I started to read my work aloud, to see it not just as music, but as a sort of life of its own. Shortly after this, The Pact was born, a story whose germ was shaped in my mind for more than a decade, a blend of evolving ideas and approaching to writing, a thing that finally worked.

My grandmother has passed away, and that apartment where I once crouched before the bookcase is gone. But sometimes, when I write, I take a moment to close my eyes and imagine I’m there again. If only I’d known where that little book would have led me, as I pored over its pages, full of intrigue and wonder—as only a child can.

If only I’d known; and here I am now, grown up, but a child nonetheless, staring at maps and stories, daring to venture into their terrain, to discover their secrets, to take the journey into one place where I will never be the same.

 Fantasy4-Author Brown photo Graeme-Brown.jpgAbout the Author:
Graeme Brown has been enchanted by the epic fantasy genre since he was a child, and consequently he started creating his own world with its stories at the age of thirteen. Influenced by writers like J.R.R. Tolkien, Robert Jordan, and George R. R. Martin, he has finally brought the first of those stories to life with his debut title, a short story called The Pact—48 pages that will whisk you away to a dark, medieval fantasy world with gritty realism. When he’s not writing, he can be found exploring number theory problems or writing computer programs, training for a marathon, or unwinding in a yoga hot room. He has also explored other facets of art, both as a hobby and a profession, including vector graphics, pen and ink, classical piano, and web design. He just finished writing the first of many sequels to The Pact, A Thousand Roads.
Giveaway Details:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:

  • GRAND PRIZE:  One winner will receive 5 surprise fantasy eBooks from Champagne Book Group.


Giveaway is International.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Finding Eve by Rita Bay (Paranormal) (guest post, excerpt, giveaway, review)

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Fantasy4-Finding Eve photo Finding-Eve.jpgTitle:  Finding Eve
Author:  Rita Bay
Published:  September 2013
Publisher:   Champagne Book Group
Word Count:  13,500
Genre: Shape-shifter Paranormal
Content Warning:  Adult content
Recommended Age:  18+
Nicholas Lyons, chief physician to the Lyons clan of shape-shifters, has mourned the death of his promised lifemate until a rogue shapeshifter reports having seen her at an exotic animal sale. Accompanied by Marie Lyons who is no stranger to the dark side, her new lifemate Anthony, and the imperious Lady Bat, he embarks on a frantic search for Eve through the dangerous world of exotic animal trafficking.
Eve, whose first memories are of recovering from an injury at an isolated animal refuge, has lived through a succession of owners in a world filled with cages and cruelty. When Eve meets Marie at the exotic animal sale, she begins to have flashes of a different life – a life in which she was something other than feline. Her last sale, however, has landed her as prey to exotic animal hunters and the clock is ticking.
Fantasy4-author Rita Bay photo Rita-Bay.jpgAbout the Author:
Rita’s journey began on the Gulf Coast. Over the years, she lived and/or traveled in the eastern US and Western Europe. While juggling family and work, she participated in archaeological digs, earned a black belt in Shotokan karate, prospected for gold and crystals, camped across Europe, and volunteered with the American Red Cross Disaster and Education Services. Rita has worked as a registered nurse, educator and school system administrator. She lives with her family on the Gulf Coast, except when she’s in Atlanta, at least for now.
Rita is published in multiple genres with several publishers including paranormal and erotic novellas (Champagne Book Group – Champagne Books and Carnal Passions), historical novels (Siren BookStrand), and contemporary F/M and M/M novellas (Secret Cravings). She posts random bits of historical trivia about western history and culture on Rita Bay’s Blog at
My Review

I'm sorry I waited over a month after this was initially showcased on my blog to finally read this. It was short and more importantly pulled you into the story immediately. Although I could tell that we were in the middle of series, I couldn't put it down after the first page.

The story has two heroines: Eve, the shapeshifter who's trapped in feline form and about to be auctioned off, and Marie, the shapeshifter who is just making her way back to the way of their People, who can sense that Eve is more than just a powerful feline.

After the first few pages, the race is on: Marie has to help her lifemate Tony, the leader of the People, locate Eve, who also happens to be the lifemate of his close friend, Nick. But all of them have to figure out what happened to Eve in the first place, and how her disappearance is connected to her treacherous grandmother Ellen- and the fate of Marie's parents.

I finished this in about two hours, mostly because I couldn't put it down. It wasn't perfect- the dialogued felt a little stilted at times, and the back story of some of the characters could have been fleshed out better for this second book- but overall it was a great read and I can't wait to see the rest of the series.
A Revolution in Fantasy/Scifi by Rita Bay

My first fantasy/sci-fi book was Anne McCaffrey’s Restoree. Written in 1967, it totally changed the perception of women in scifi/fantasy as victims who cowered in corners awaiting rescue by Alpha males. In Restoree, Earth native Sara awakened hanging from a meat hook in a cargo hole of a spaceship, a kidnap victim and a skinned meal for the humanity-eating Mil. Rescued by human natives of Lothar, she is mistaken for Lotharian, “restored,” and put to work in a mental institution. Sara who didn’t suffer from the mental illness common to rescued Lotharians, finds Harlan, the Lotharian ruler, who is drugged and held captive. She rescues him. They fall in love. He is reinstated and they live happily ever after.

Sounds like an innocuous story, but McCaffrey began a revolution with it. While genre romance was focused on bodice-rippers with risqué covers, McCaffrey wrote the Song stories and created the magnificent world of Pern. A world filled with dragons, but also independent women who functioned as equals in worlds filled with danger. I was hooked.
What if the author is writing a scifi/fantasy romance? McCaffrey provides a model. The author must craft deviations from the “normal” that are both believable and entertaining, then weave those deviations into the “normal” world to create a story. Whether the scifi/fantasy characters hide from, coexist with, or attempt to conquer the “normal” characters in the story becomes part of the plot. Although the author doesn’t need to dump an entire alternative universe on the reader, he/she should present a thorough and cohesive picture of the elements of that culture.
The author creating a worldview of his/her own must answer certain questions. For instance, What is our society’s explanation of the world?; Where are we heading? (the future); "What should we do?" (ethics and values); "How should we attain our goals?"; "What is true and false?" (knowledge); and Where did we come from? (origins). The answers to those questions form the basis for an alternative culture/world.
Champagne Book Group published my first paranormal story, Into the Lyons’ Den, a shapeshifter paranormal in which Marie Maxwell, Atlanta's most sought-after event planner, is lured to Anthony Lyons’ isolated estate North Carolina to plan a wedding for 200 guests in 10 day. She is confronted by a mysterious stalker, two thwarted murder attempts, and dark shadows from her shrouded past. In Finding Eve, the second story of The Lyons Tales, Eve, one of the People suffering from amnesia, falls victim to the exotic animal trade. Marie, Anthony, Eve’s future lifemate Nicholas, accompanied by Cynthia Lyons and her security team, must rescue her from rogue hunters and the clock is ticking. The final story, The Alpha’s Prey, is my current work in progress.
Visit my website/blog,, for books, blurbs, and excerpts; random bits of historical and cultural trivia that you won’t find anywhere else; and freebies. Comment to enter to win Lyons’ Tales ebooks that I’m giving away each week of our book tour.
Giveaway Details:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:

  • GRAND PRIZE:  One winner will receive 5 surprise fantasy eBooks from Champagne Book Group.

Giveaway is International.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Plot Thickens by Danielle-Claude Ngontang Mba- on sale for 99 cents!

The Plot Thickens (a novella) – Book Two
Lengh: 100 pages
Release date: December 27th, 2013

18+ adult content
What happened while Semya Slotin and Josh Heinz were busy solving Johanna Cartier's murder in Bird Of Prey?
Polliannah's story... When Polliannah Koch Guryev meets John Allen, she thinks that she's finally found her Prince Charming a tall, blond and handsome banker. What could go wrong?
John Allen has a job to do and getting closer to the beautiful Miss Koch Guryev is supposed to be a means to an end. But then they fall in love. He's a hit man on a mission, she's the sister of his targets. What possible future could they have? Now he and his Russian Princess have to leave London for their safety. But it may already be too late for them...

 Only 99 cents until April 22nd!

“It looks like someone vomited the nineties in here. Is that man smoking?” Polliannah exclaimed as they were entering the club. “Or a regular Eastern European club,” she added.
“I thought you might like it,” John teased back. She gently knocked his ribcage.
“I love it.” She looked a little out of the place. She was wearing jeans and not a flashy dress and dangerously high heels. Sémya would have been proud. Sémya would have loved it here. Maybe she should ask her to come with Josh? She caressed John’s grin. “I love you.”
“I love you more,” he said back.
Wow! “Just tell me that you’re not one of those men who just stared at women dancing in the shadows. Creeps!” She moved her head and hips to the music.
“I would have let you know that I’m an excellent dancer… after a few drinks,” he joked back leading her to dance floor. “So two bottles of wine and a couple of vodka shots…”
She just laughed, happy to be out with him. He wasn’t lying, he was good. He seemed more relaxed tonight that he had been for the past four weeks. The DJ was going Daft Punk crazy. Sémya would have really loved it here. They used to be Daft Punk diehard fans. Daft Punk and absinth… the nineties!
 She looked at him completely letting loose when One More Time started. “It’s been a very long day!” he said over the music.
“I am not judging! I’ve had a very long year,” Polliannah said and asked for a cigarette. She lit it and laughed when Roses by Outkast came on. “Not that I don’t enjoy the music but the DJ knows it’s 2013?” Always the same shit with Eastern European style club. But they usually have the best absinth… “I’m thirsty,” she whispered in his ear while she was dancing against him.
“What do you want to drink Princess?” he groaned back.
Polliannah played with his soft blond hair before diving into his deep blue eyes, “Absinth please, straight up,” she said against his lips. She saw the admiration in his eyes, “I have my vices too.”
He kissed her and pressed her tighter against him, “I see…,” he mumbled taking a drag from her cigarette.  California Love started, “…after this song!”
“Oh you were on these white lads!” she said rolling her eyes. He eagerly nodded as he sung. She just laughed and kept on dancing. Can this night be more perfect?

Bird Of Prey – Book one is available everywhere at $2.99!

Length: 200 pages
Release date: October 7th 2013
18+ adult content

Who killed the infamous Johanna Cartier? Sémya Slotin is thrown back in the business of solving mysteries when she found her body. With the help of her best friend Polliannah Koch, DCI Ally Gibbons and the mysterious but extremely sexy Josh Heinz, she vows to see this through.
This was supposed to be an easy case... 
Sémya Slotin had spent the last three years living in London with her best friend Polliannah Koch staying away from solving cases. After Hawaii, she was taking a break from puzzles, cases and mysteries that could potentially get her killed. Instead, she had been doing her second and third favorite things, drinking and selling expensive vintage wines and having earth-shattering sex with the mysterious, sexy, beautiful but ever so secretive Josh Heinz. Life in London was good....until her funds ran out. Too much wine drinking, not enough wine selling!
 When fashion designer and adoptive mother, Annika Slotin, summoned her back to Paris to hire her for what Sémya considered being the easiest case of her amateur sleuth career, all she could think of and see was money signs and a well-deserved Cuban holiday once it was solved. 
What Sémya didn't see was her stumbling on the fresh corpse of supermodel Johanna Cartier. She didn't think that male model turned fashion designer Julian Marais-Caldwin, who also happened to be Sémya's ex, would be suspected of brutally murdering her. Johanna was his girlfriend, his muse and he loved her. Sémya didn't see the dead bodies piling up or the conspiracy theories. 
Sémya was a little rusty. But then again, it was supposed to be an easy case and she was going to solve it. One vintage wine at a time... Sémya Slotin was officially back in business!

About the author

Meet Danielle-Claude Ngontang Mba The Author, The Blogger, The Cheeky Reviewer
“My life journey is like my playlist, amazingly unique but full of contradictions with surprising joys with every song...”

In the past two years, while living in Canada, England and France I wrote four novels: This Could Have Been Our Song! A coulda woulda shoulda ballad... (Book one) currently available on amazon, iTunes, Kobo, Barnes and Nobles and Smashwords. The sequel This Would Have Been Our Song! Catchy tune and dancers’ tales has been in January 2014. Bird Of Prey, my first mystery romance novel has been released in October 7th, 2013 and its first sequel The Plot Thickens (a novella) in December. The second one Polliannah Got Married! will be released in June 2014. I’m currently residing in Paris, France.

Blogger website Danielle-Claude Indie Book Reviews:
Twitter: @weissdaughter
Danielle-Claude Indie Book Reviews facebook page:

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Oh No, I've Fallen In Love! by Louise Wise (re-release) (excerpt, interview)

On the surface, Valerie Anthrope was happy with her life. She had her own brokerage with Sunny Oak Insurance and was financially solvent. But once asleep, she was plunged into a world of nightmares that reminded her she was cursed.

And that meant she couldn’t fall in love. Ever.

Lex Kendal was a multi-millionaire. Women flocked to him, preened and flaunted for his attention. But one woman, Valerie, knocked him back. Hard. It dented his pride and Lex set out to convince himself he still ‘had it’ by pursuing her.

Only he found himself being needed in a way he never, ever, expected and, for once in his life, money wasn’t the answer.


I risked a look at the tall man sitting beside me. His golden eyes were on the road. I took a chance to observe his ruggedly textured face and noticed a small scar on his left eyebrow, and the laughter lines that fanned out from his eyes.
My eyes slid over his dark-coloured dinner jacket; his body contoured to it as though it’d melted over him. And, no matter how hard I tried to stop myself, my eyes dropped lower still towards his groin. I brought my head up, shocked at my actions, and stared straight ahead with my hands folded in my lap.
He looked askance. ‘Have I passed?’
‘At least you’ve combed your hair.’
Lex laughed.
I watched his hands as they managed the powerful car. He really was a magnificent looking man – if you liked the arrogant feral type. I sniffed, and looked away.
The restaurant was in the heart of London, close to the London Eye. The city was alive with people, music and laughter. Both manager of the restaurant and the maître d’ were there to meet us, and reminded me how influential Lex was. He was greeted with firm handshakes, and a few courteous words about Ladwick. Lex answered politely, but kept a possessive hand firmly on the small of my back. Instead of feeling annoyed, I felt cherished. It was a nice feeling.
The maître d’ showed us to a small table for two in an alcove. A bottle of champagne on ice was waiting for us, and my place was set with a red rose lying across a side plate. The maître d’ lit the candle in the centre of the table, and then uncorked the champagne bottle with a bang. My nerves evaporated - it was obvious that Lex was trying to impress me. I almost laughed; probably would have too had I not been trying not to throw up at all the over-the-top sweetness and ickiness of it all. I watched the vapour rise from the top of the green bottle, then the maître d’ filled our glasses and finally left us alone.
‘Dear God,’ I said, as a violinist serenaded a blushing woman while her partner looked on. Lex handed me my glass of champagne.
‘Just call me Lex,’ he said.
I looked back at him. He honestly thought I’d be impressed? ‘Lex, be serious, are you sure about this place?’
He looked puzzled, but then winked and said with a grin, ‘It’s where I bring the ladies.’
I remembered the kissing and the female voice on the telephone and the spear of jealousy to my stomach shocked me. Keep it light, I reminded myself.
‘Your conquests,’ I said. I’d forgotten how nice champagne was as the bubbles hit the back of my throat. ‘Tell me, Lex, do you win them all?’
He frowned. ‘Not all, no.’
It wasn’t the answer I was expecting. To hide my confusion I picked up the menu. It was one of those restaurants where there were only a few choice dishes with the prices absent. I put it down again.
‘How was Dublin?’ I asked.
He pushed the candle to one side and the shadows danced against the wall. ‘Irish. How was your day?’
‘Fine. How’d the plans go for another Ladwick there?’
‘Do we have to talk about business? I’ve been talking about Ladwick nonstop for four days now. I want to talk about you.’
‘Short conversation,’ I said and he chuckled.
‘How do you like the champagne?’
‘I can take it or leave it,’ I said.
‘You’re a hard lady to impress.’
‘Why’d you want to impress me? We’re having a casual dinner, that’s all.’
He stared at me a moment. ‘What if I don’t want it to be casual?’
‘I wouldn’t believe you. You’re the country’s latest famous bachelor and enjoying every moment.’ I picked up the menu, but then put it down again. ‘There’s a little Greek restaurant around the corner. Fancy it?’
‘I thought women liked these types of places.’
I pushed back my chair. ‘Oh, you so need to be educated!’
Lex peeled off some notes and laid them on the table, and then, giggling like kids, we dashed from the restaurant. Leaving the car where it was, we walked across the road towards a sedate little taverna. It was quiet and the gentle music of Greek ancestry played. A dark-haired waitress escorted us to a small table at the rear, and gave us both a menu.
‘This is better,’ I said.
‘You always surprise me,’ Lex said. ‘I really thought you’d have liked the Coral.’
‘Did you now?’ I peek over the top of my menu at him. ‘You don’t know me at all, Mr Kendal. You just assume you do; like you assume you understand women.’ I dropped my gaze to the words on the menu, not paying them much attention, but feeling his burning gaze on the top of my head.
‘You’re right. I’ve underestimated you. I apologise.’
I raised my eyes. His hands were clasped in front of him on the table and he was actually looking contrite. ‘I was going to wine and dine you. Impress you with my fluent French –’
‘Parlez-vous français?’
He smiled but said, ‘Oui.’
My face remained passive as I said, ‘Dites-moi que vous avez toujours été un idiot?’
He looked shocked, but then laughed. ‘Yes, I’ve always been an idiot, I guess. So you speak French too?’
‘A little,’ I said. I was smiling too, only my smile was hidden behind the menu. I didn’t want him to see me thawing – not yet. ‘So, supposing you’d impressed me by speaking French, then what?’
‘The French and champagne not enough?’
I shook my head.
‘Well, after dinner we’d have gone for a drive. It’s a nice starry evening, and what could be better than cruising along listening to Van Morrison? ’
‘You made up a CD especially, didn’t you?’
He pulled a rueful face, and I laughed.
‘So where would you have taken me on the drive?’
‘A place where we could walk along the Thames just by ourselves; it’d be beautiful watching the silver moon dance on the surface. I’d have taken your hand…’
‘Yes?’ My heart was thumping; the menu – my guard - was lowering from my face.
‘Kissed each one of your fingers, and told you how beautiful you looked.’ His honey-coloured eyes were watching me intently. ‘I’d lean in, you’d lean in and we’d kiss. Gently. Softly. You’d look shocked, maybe embarrassed, and then I’d say, let’s walk. And we’d walk along the river bank. My coat around your shoulders. We’d hold hands, you’d relax. Then, beneath the moon, I’d stop, pull you against me and kiss you again. This time you wouldn’t be embarrassed.’
I couldn’t believe this. He was doing it again!
‘Did you have lessons?’ I asked, breathless.
‘In seduction.’
His mouth twitched. He sat back, and picked up the menu. ‘Admit it, Velvet, you were falling for it.’
Insufferable, but correct, man. He was good, I’d give him that. Playboy at his best. I’d have to stay alert. Maybe I shouldn’t drink anything alcoholic tonight. Just in case.
Ooh, they had cocktails! I love cocktails. I snatched up the cocktail menu and, yep, they had my favourite – Fuzzy Navel.
One wouldn’t hurt.
Author Interview

DNK: You originally entitled your book "The Fall of the Misanthrope". How do you define misanthrope?

LW: A misanthrope is a pessimist, a cynic and someone who doesn’t get on with others. She, Valerie Anthrope, is the misanthrope. She doesn’t cope well in groups of people, but the title conjured up literary or ‘serious’ and the book is anything but, so a title change had to be done and Oh no, I’ve Fallen in Love! sums up Valerie’s dilemma perfectly.

DNK: You describe your book as dark, and others have described it as "funny" (although maybe darkly so) and having a bit of "magical realism". That's a lot in one book! What motivated you to write that kind of story?

LW: I like realism and as you know life has a habit of being funny. There is dark in the book and that’s down to Valerie’s realisation that her behaviour is due to her being depressed, but because the book is a romantic comedy I’ve written it in a fun and chatty way, but by no means am I laughing at the illness. Depression is a serious condition and very misunderstood, as is Valerie.

I’m not sure what the motivation was, I’d like to say I was doing it for the depressive society (is there one?) but I’d be lying. I just wanted Valerie to be as damaged as she possibly could be.

The magical element is a matter of what the reader will take from the story. It is magical or a coincidence? I’ve left that up to the reader to decided and going by reviews, they’ve decided on the magical element.

DNK: Not to give too much away, but mental illness is a theme in this novel. How difficult was it to write from the point of view of someone suffering from that?

LW: I work in medicine (pharmaceutical) so was able to research the drugs well. Also, mental illness seems to run in our family. I have members of my (not immediate) family who have all suffered, but  all find the illness an embarrassment. It’s something to hide from and never admit to, just like Valerie. So in answer to your question, I didn’t really find it difficult, in fact I think it’d be easy to switch off, withdraw and allow the world to pass me by so I could ‘get into character’ very easily. Maybe I’ve the depressive trait…? Personally, I don’t think there is enough being done to treat the illness. It’s far more common than anyone thinks.

DNK: Money is a bit of a theme here too, particularly the ways in which can protect us (to a point). What made you write along those lines?

LW: In chick lit it’s usually the rich man helping out the poor defenceless female. I wanted them equal but still have that ‘typical’ theme. Lex was rich and Valerie, although not poor, wasn’t as well off as Lex. And in the end, Lex’s money couldn’t help Valerie. It’d protected him all through his life, from childhood (expensive schools) to opening doors at work and climbing the ladder to where he is now as a director at Ladwicks, until it couldn’t protect him from the devastation of love.

DNK: What can you say about another theme: not growing up?

LW: [Lex] was a rich kid and grew into a rich adult. Spoilt rotten and treated women like fine clothes (to be worn and discarded for something new).

DNK: Isn't there an extent to which Valerie is also trapped by her childhood?

LW: She is trapped. By her upbringing, her memories and her own perception of this 'curse' that she thinks she has. It's all a bit tragic really, but she sees no way out and Ellen is truly her fairy godmother by realising in time that Valerie needs professional help. I think we could all do with an interfering friend from time to time!

DNK: What are you hoping people walk away with after they read this story?

LW: I want them to walk away wondering about the so-called magical element at the end of the book. Was it something paranormal/magical going on, or pure coincidence? And then I'd like them to take away that mental illness isn't all about tortured people sectioned in institutions, but everyday people like you and I.

Purchase Links


Married, with four children, Louise Wise lives in England. She is a pharmacist technician by day and a writer by night. She was educated in an ordinary state school and left without achieving much in the way of qualifications; you could say she was the result of a crap school. Hungry for knowledge she enrolled in an Adult Education centre and studied English, maths and creative writing. Whereas other young girls asked for makeup and clothes for their birthdays, she asked for encyclopaedias!

Louise Wise used her general love of romantic fiction and interest in astronomy to write her first book. The book received many rejections stating the novel was too original for the current market, until finally, an agent took the book on but subsequently failed to find a publisher for it. Instead of becoming despondent, it made Louise realise that becoming a published writer WAS possible. She turned her back on traditionally publishing, threw herself into the indie world and went on to publish her first chick lit book, A Proper Charlie and then Oh no, I’ve Fallen in Love!

As for the ‘too original’ Eden it has been such a hit that Louise has now followed it up with the sequel, Hunted. So far, they are both selling well.