Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Sue Ward Drake | Exclusive Interview: WALKING THE EDGE
Author Guest / December 28, 2020

Hi, Sue! Welcome to Fresh Fiction. Please introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about your new romantic suspense novel, WALKING THE EDGE.   Thank you for the welcome. I’ve written romance a very long time and have always loved mystery and suspense and New Orleans, starting when I attended kindergarten at a historical mansion on the edge of the French Quarter. After college (in New Orleans) and eight months’ reprieve (in Greece) I worked at various, assorted careers until retirement. Finally, I’m able to devote all my time to writing, and it’s heaven.      In WALKING THE EDGE a handsome, ex-army sniper turned bail recovery agent must trust a beautiful ghost tour guide to find his fugitive, the beauty’s younger brother—before the clock strikes midnight on Mardi Gras. Where did the idea for the Danger in the Big Easy series come from? What kind of research did you do for this first book?  I liked the idea of a group of brothers all fighting for justice. As for research, I drew on a lifetime of living and working in New Orleans. I often fantasized about the old houses near Bayou St. John and reworked one to be the hero’s home. When I…

Alexia A. Chamberlynn | Playing with Your Creative Passions
Author Guest / December 23, 2020

It’s both a blessing and a curse to have two big passions in life. That’s been me from a very early age. I wrote my first story about a girl getting a pony for Christmas when I was six (not in ANY way meant to manipulate my parents into getting said pony). I tried to write my first novel when I was twelve, also about a girl and a horse. After that, my writing strayed into the fantasy lane, with a horse making a cameo here and there. Until I had the idea a few years back to write a fantasy western. And to make that fantasy western a feminist twist on the four horsemen of the Apocalypse. Fast forward to today. A WAR OF DAISIES, the first book of seven in the Four Horsewomen of the Apocalypse series, released in late October. It has been a super fun ride (pun intended) combining my two passions into one. I even got really crazy and decided to star in my own book trailer with my horse Max. In it, we portray Death and her pale horse. It made perfect sense when the idea popped into my head – I mean, I…

Fresh Fiction Reviewer Spotlight: Jennifer Vido
Author Guest / December 23, 2020

We’re in for a treat today! One of our regular Fresh Fiction Blog Columnists, author Jennifer Vido, is taking part in our Fresh Fiction reviewer spotlights! We hope you enjoy getting to know her better and about some of her favorite interviews from her Jen’s Jewels column this year.  Your Name Jennifer Vido How long have you been a Fresh Fiction reviewer?  I wrote my first Jen’s Jewels author interview column back in 2006! Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of chatting with New York Times bestselling authors, as well as up and coming stars. What are your favorite genres to read and review? My favorite genres to read and review are contemporary romances and cozy mysteries. What are your TOP 3-5 Books of 2020? My top 5 interviews of 2020 were Cleo McDougal Regrets Nothing by Allison Winn Scotch Feels Like Falling by Kristy Woodson Harvey The Lions of Fifth Avenue by Fiona Davis Hello Summer by Mary Kay Andrews Musical Chairs by Amy Poeppel What do you like to do outside of reading? I enjoy teaching an adult water exercise class for seniors and volunteering with the Arthritis Foundation. What are some of your holiday traditions?  My…

Kate Bateman | Exclusive Excerpt: THE PRINCESS AND THE ROGUE
Author Guest / December 23, 2020

Chapter Two Anya quelled a spurt of incredulous anger. “I most certainly will not. My father denied your suit three years ago. As did my brother, when you persisted. You want my dowry, Vasili. You have no regard for me at all.” A cynical smile curved the corners of his mouth beneath his blond mustache. She’d always disliked men with mustaches. “I don’t deny it,” he said coolly. “Why should I apologize for being ambitious? We’ll make a good team, you and I. You’re intelligent, for a woman. You know how to run a household, order servants. You’ll make an excellent hostess.” His gaze swept her features and a greedy, lecherous look kindled in his expression which made her skin crawl. “You know full well you’re beautiful. Admit it, you loved having all the boys panting after you at court, didn’t you? And this ice princess facade? I’ll melt it. Bedding you will be no hardship at all.” Anya snatched her hand away from his. Her expression must have shown her disdain because he raised an amused brow. “What’s the matter? I’ll make you like it.” She sent a panicked glance at the door. Where was Elizaveta? Vasili was watching…

Michelle Major | Exclusive Excerpt: HER TEXAS NEW YEAR’S WISH
Author Guest / December 22, 2020

“This doesn’t make any sense.” Callum dashed a hand through his hair as he paced the small waiting room in the Rambling Rose Medical Center emergency room. “In all my years of construction, I’ve never had something like that happen on one of our projects.” “We’ll figure out what caused it,” Wiley said from where he sat on a patterned chair situated against the far wall. “But first we need to make sure Grace is okay. She’s the priority right now.” Callum nodded. “You’re right. But what if it had been a hotel guest or one of the kids on that balcony when it collapsed? Can you imagine if there were people on the patio below?” Wiley understood his brother’s train of thought but felt oddly defensive at the subtle suggestion that the accident wasn’t as catastrophic because a mere employee had been injured. As if sensing his irritation, Callum held up a hand. He wore dark slacks and a button-down shirt that was covered with dust from the rubble of the mess that had been made when the balcony collapsed. “I’m not insinuating that Grace is disposable. I would never put her or any employee at risk. You know…

Tricia Lynne | 20 Questions: PROTECTIVE INSTINCT
Author Guest / December 22, 2020

1–What’s the name of your latest release?  Protective Instinct – The Unlovabulls Series Book One 2–What is it about?  When Dallas football player, Brody, teams up with curvy dog trainer, Lily, to shut down the notorious puppy mill his rescue dog escaped from, chemistry ignites between them. But Brody needs to keep his hands off the trainer, or risk getting traded from his hometown team. And when Lily starts receiving threats to back off the mill search, she’ll have to decide––ruin the career of the star linebacker, or risk losing the dogs that need to be rescued. 3–What word best describes your heroine?  Overly-independent. Wait, is that cheating? 4–What makes your hero irresistible?  Brody is a big, tough guy on the football field, but he’s a total softy for his dog—and for Lily.  5–Who are the people your main characters turn to when they need help? Lily turns to the friends she’s developed in the dog sports community, a kind of cobbled together family for her she can count on. Brody’s teammate Hayes is the guy he can trust to always give it to him straight and support him through thick and thin. 6–What do you love about the setting…

Stacy Reid | Exclusive Excerpt: HER WICKED MARQUESS
Author Guest / December 21, 2020

“How silly you are,” Nicolas murmured, surprised at the measure of amusement he felt. She wanted him to kiss her. Flicking his eyes over the ridiculous list once more, he amended that: she wanted him to ruin her. Ah yes, he recalled that the next plan she’d been about to discuss with her brother was how to escape a marriage. With a low chuckle, Nicolas replaced the note in his pocket and left the study. He took his time walking down the hallway, hugging to the shadows so that he remained unidentified to the few guests he passed in the hallway. At the wide-open doors that led to the ballroom, he paused, keeping to the edge and scanning the room. There. It did not take long at all for him to find her. She stood with a group of young ladies on the sidelines, speaking with animation. It was clearly a habit of hers to push her spectacles up the bridge of her nose, but such a charming one. She must have been out in society for some time now, yet he had never seen her before. If not for her returning to the garden with that shovel, perhaps she…

Fresh Fiction Reviewer Spotlight: Helen Williams
Author Guest / December 21, 2020

Our Fresh Fiction Reviewer Spotlights continue, now through January! Read on to learn more about Helen Williams.  Your Name Helen Williams How long have you been a Fresh Fiction reviewer? * 5 years What are your favorite genres to read and review?  Romance What are your TOP 3-5 Books of 2020 (that were reviewed on FF)? The Silent Wife by Karin Slaughter Defending Raven by Susan Stoker The Best Man Plan by Jaci Burton The Seaside Cafe by Rochelle Alers Tough Talking Cowboy by Jennifer Ryan What do you like to do outside of reading? Listen to Jazz, Soduko and try new recipes What are some of your holiday traditions? Spending time with family What are your reading resolutions/intentions/goals for 2021?  Read as much as possible What do you love about being a Fresh Fiction Book Reviewer? Reading favorite authors and learning about new ones

Tara Johnson | The Makings of a Hero
Author Guest / December 18, 2020

I had just finished a walking tour through Oxford, a city rife with memories of people like Shakespeare, C.S. Lewis, Tokien, William Tyndale and countless others. Ornate college buildings rose up on every side. People of all nationalities clogged the sidewalks as they scurried from store to store, their sacks bulging with brand name apparel and souvenirs. I had just passed “The Eagle and Child” pub and was admiring the spiraling cathedrals when a steady rain began to fall. I pulled out my umbrella when I saw him. A homeless man sat huddled under a blanket in the pouring rain. His shoulders were hunched. An open duffel bag rested near his knees. Its contents boasted a folded tarp, a few paltry coins and an empty soda can. Nothing else. As I passed his slight form, I heard his soft plea. “Could you spare a coin, me love?” I dug through my wallet and handed him a few pounds. His dirt-crusted fingers reached for the coins. “God bless ye.” “God bless you too.” I walked away but my heart twisted. The sights I wanted to see paled in comparison to the emaciated form sitting in the deluge. Whirling back, I walked up…

Cari Z | Exclusive Excerpt: HIS HOLIDAY CRUSH
Author Guest / December 18, 2020

Chapter Two Dominic Dinah’s Diner was the first place you saw coming into Edgewood, and the last place you passed leaving it. It was the unofficial hangout of the force, with good food that was fairly cheap, as long as you didn’t mind Dinah listening over your shoulder as calls came in over the radio. I was halfway through a plate of meatloaf and mashed potatoes when I got the call from dispatch with word of a car accident on Route Ten. No injuries, but the car was undriveable, from the sound of things, and the guy needed someone to come and pick him up. I sighed and put my fork down. I was the only person in the diner tonight other than Dinah and her husband Troy, who doubled as the line cook. It was just seven-thirty, but with this weather, nobody else was dumb enough to be out and about. As Edgewood’s officer on call until tomorrow morning, it meant that this and whatever any other unlucky soul or drunk dumbass decided to do in the next twelve hours was all on me. Dinah, a plump redhead in her sixties wearing a handmade gingham apron over her Metallica…