Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss

Senior Reviewer Debbie Wiley  I don’t remember the first fantasy novel I ever read but I do remember the first one I fell in love with. JRR Tolkien’s THE HOBBIT captivated me like no other book had, taking me on a long and winding quest where creatures of legend lived and breathed. Since that long-ago time in 8th grade, I’ve soared on the backs of dragons with Anne McCaffrey, attended wizarding school with Harry Potter and JK Rowling, and...

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When I started developing the Chocoverse, I wanted to tell a story without easy answers, where nobody was exactly in the right, and they are all trying their best despite difficult circumstances.  I mean, come on, my heroine commits treason to her home planet within the first few chapters of the first book – because she believes stealing a cacao pod from one of Earth’s heavily guarded plantations will actually prevent war.  (The basic premi...

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One of the most unusual upper-class traditions during the American Gilded Age and the English Victorian and Edwardian Eras was that of American heiresses marrying into British nobility for money.  This fascinated me and led to years of research to write American Duchess. Some famous examples of dollar brides include Winston Churchill’s mother Jennie Jerome; Cora, Lady Grantham in Downton Abbey (yes, I know that one is fiction) and my very r...

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One of the first harbingers of spring in my area is the appearance of several tiny flowers that thrive in the grass, a miniature violet with a bloom smaller than a fingernail and one plant with a bitty yellow snapdragon-shaped flower.  Easy to overlook, they are nonetheless beautiful. For this month of emerging spring, we will likewise look at the stories of some fascinating but relatively unknown Tudor ladies.  Most readers are familiar with t...

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Meet Colter Hayes. He’s 6’2” tall, 180 pounds of mostly muscle, with close-cropped dark blond hair and intense blue eyes. He’s loyal to a fault, loves dogs (he lives with the Combat Tracker Dog who was his partner in the Marines), and can make a woman feel dangerous things. But all he sees is a man who’s damaged. Someone who came home from war with an injury that left him less than whole. Partly it’s his leg, now held together by a ro...

The not-so-tough go to the beach, which is exactly where my main character Celeste Jones in The Summer Retreat goes after her latest true love turns out not to be so true. This is another story set in my new fictional town of Moonlight Harbor, which I based loosely on the charming beach town of Ocean Shores, Washington. Ocean Shores offers visitors an impressive system of canals for kayaking and a funky downtown that is a mix of both new and vint...

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We use the word beauty in many different scenarios and situation, but could we ever use it to describe death? In Glimpse, the Beautiful Deaths, criminal psychologist Patricia Holmes, attached to the Major Crime Squad of the Western Australian Police Department does. That’s a beautiful dress, we might say, or what a beautiful day, those flowers are beautiful, that child has a beautiful personality, she has a beauty spot on her cheek……….You...

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There are buddy cop films where the plot involves two people of different personalities who are forced to work together to defeat the bad guys, sometimes learning from each other in the process. And then there are buddy writers. Two people of comparative personalities who choose to work together to create a story that readers will hopefully love, most definitely learning from each other in the process. Crockett & Tubbs, Murtaugh & Riggs, ...

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Enjoy this chat between bestselling author Sarah Morgan and Fresh Fiction Editorial Manager Danielle Dresser! The unlikely friendship between Grace and Audrey is my favorite part of this novel. How did these two characters come to life for you? I’m pleased you enjoyed that part of the book because it was my favorite part to write! I knew from the start of this book that I wanted to write an inter-generational friendship. I felt it would add a r...

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First, a word about the romance genre. As those of us who write—and read—romance know, romance is often the underdog of fiction. Literary types in particular often look down on it. How sad for them. For romance has the power to sweep us away on a magical journey where heroes and heroines triumph against daunting odds. It uplifts, encourages and fills us with hope. It’s the stuff of inspiration. I’m proud to write it—for these reasons: 1...

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Debbie Wiley | Recent Paranormal and Fantasy Novels I’ve Enjoyed
Author Guest / April 18, 2019

Senior Reviewer Debbie Wiley  I don’t remember the first fantasy novel I ever read but I do remember the first one I fell in love with. JRR Tolkien’s THE HOBBIT captivated me like no other book had, taking me on a long and winding quest where creatures of legend lived and breathed. Since that long-ago time in 8th grade, I’ve soared on the backs of dragons with Anne McCaffrey, attended wizarding school with Harry Potter and JK Ro...

Amber Royer | Developing the Chocoverse
Author Guest / April 18, 2019

When I started developing the Chocoverse, I wanted to tell a story without easy answers, where nobody was exactly in the right, and they are all trying their best despite difficult circumstances.  I mean, come on, my heroine commits treason to her home planet within the first few chapters of the first book – because she believes stealing a cacao pod from one of Earth’s heavily guarded plantations will actually prevent war.  (The b...

Karen Harper | Cash for Class: American Dollar Brides
Author Guest / April 17, 2019

One of the most unusual upper-class traditions during the American Gilded Age and the English Victorian and Edwardian Eras was that of American heiresses marrying into British nobility for money.  This fascinated me and led to years of research to write American Duchess. Some famous examples of dollar brides include Winston Churchill’s mother Jennie Jerome; Cora, Lady Grantham in Downton Abbey (yes, I know that one is fiction) and...

Julia Justiss | History ReFreshed: Lesser-Known Tudors: The Lives of the Not-So-Famous and Powerful
Author Guest / April 17, 2019

One of the first harbingers of spring in my area is the appearance of several tiny flowers that thrive in the grass, a miniature violet with a bloom smaller than a fingernail and one plant with a bitty yellow snapdragon-shaped flower.  Easy to overlook, they are nonetheless beautiful. For this month of emerging spring, we will likewise look at the stories of some fascinating but relatively unknown Tudor ladies.  Most readers are famil...

Elizabeth Heiter | Writing an Injured Ex-Marine Hero
Author Guest / April 16, 2019

Meet Colter Hayes. He’s 6’2” tall, 180 pounds of mostly muscle, with close-cropped dark blond hair and intense blue eyes. He’s loyal to a fault, loves dogs (he lives with the Combat Tracker Dog who was his partner in the Marines), and can make a woman feel dangerous things. But all he sees is a man who’s damaged. Someone who came home from war with an injury that left him less than whole. Partly it’s his leg, now held togeth...

Sheila Roberts | When the Going Gets Tough…
Author Guest / April 16, 2019

The not-so-tough go to the beach, which is exactly where my main character Celeste Jones in The Summer Retreat goes after her latest true love turns out not to be so true. This is another story set in my new fictional town of Moonlight Harbor, which I based loosely on the charming beach town of Ocean Shores, Washington. Ocean Shores offers visitors an impressive system of canals for kayaking and a funky downtown that is a mix of both ne...

Stephen B. King | The Incongruity of Beauty
Author Guest / April 15, 2019

We use the word beauty in many different scenarios and situation, but could we ever use it to describe death? In Glimpse, the Beautiful Deaths, criminal psychologist Patricia Holmes, attached to the Major Crime Squad of the Western Australian Police Department does. That’s a beautiful dress, we might say, or what a beautiful day, those flowers are beautiful, that child has a beautiful personality, she has a beauty spot on her cheek…...

Robin Bielman & Samanthe Beck | Buddy Writing
Author Guest / April 15, 2019

There are buddy cop films where the plot involves two people of different personalities who are forced to work together to defeat the bad guys, sometimes learning from each other in the process. And then there are buddy writers. Two people of comparative personalities who choose to work together to create a story that readers will hopefully love, most definitely learning from each other in the process. Crockett & Tubbs, Murtaugh &am...

Sarah Morgan | Exclusive Interview: ONE SUMMER IN PARIS
Author Guest / April 12, 2019

Enjoy this chat between bestselling author Sarah Morgan and Fresh Fiction Editorial Manager Danielle Dresser! The unlikely friendship between Grace and Audrey is my favorite part of this novel. How did these two characters come to life for you? I’m pleased you enjoyed that part of the book because it was my favorite part to write! I knew from the start of this book that I wanted to write an inter-generational friendship. I felt it wou...

Irene Hannon | Top Five Reasons I Write Romance
Author Guest / April 11, 2019

First, a word about the romance genre. As those of us who write—and read—romance know, romance is often the underdog of fiction. Literary types in particular often look down on it. How sad for them. For romance has the power to sweep us away on a magical journey where heroes and heroines triumph against daunting odds. It uplifts, encourages and fills us with hope. It’s the stuff of inspiration. I’m proud to write it—for these ...