Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Evelyn Sola | 5 Things That Make a Swoon-Worthy Hero + Giveaway!
Author Guest / June 22, 2020

I think it’s safe to say that a swoon-worthy hero, the ever-elusive book boyfriend, is what makes a good book great.  As a reader, I’m always chasing this man. To me, he’s like the unicorn of the contemporary romance world. They come in many forms. We have the nice guys, alpaholes, daddies, and Dominants, mob bosses, to name just a few. What’s swoon-worthy for one reader might not cut it for another. For example, I tend to prefer the nice guy to the alphahole, but nice guys and alphaholes can share many things in common. I’ve written a three-book series. The heroes are all different, but they each possessive some of the same attributes that make me swoon. I’ve been reading romance way before I started writing, and it’s all about the hero for me. Yes, I love a strong, feisty heroine, but I read to find a book boyfriend, and now that I’m a writer, I can mold and shape my hero to meet my book boyfriend criteria. Here are the five things that make me fall in love with a fictional character, whether a nice guy or not. POSSESSIVENESS – A hero who knows what he wants and…

Sourcebooks Cozy Mystery Authors | Cozy up at Home with these Cozy Mystery Series and a Giveaway!
Author Guest / April 27, 2020

Staying home means more time to read. Right? To help pass the time between books, we asked six of our cozy mystery authors to share what they’re doing during their time at home! We hope you’ll cozy up at home with these first in the cozy mystery series: Can’t Judge a Book by Its Murder by Amy Lillard, a Main Street Book Club Mystery Live and Let Chai by Bree Baker, a Seaside Cafe Mystery Death on Windmill Way by Carrie Doyle, a Hampton’s Murder Mystery Penne Dreadful by Catherine Bruns, an Italian Chef Mystery Dead in the Water by Denise Swanson, a Welcome Back to Scumble River mystery Last Pen Standing by Vivian Conroy, a Stationery Shop Mystery Keep reading to cozy up with our authors and check out the books over here! You’re trapped in a remote cabin with one character from your series for one week. Who would it be and why? Amy Lillard: Hands down-Fern. She might not have Helen’s cooking skills or Camille’s bottomless handbag or even Arlo’s practical side, but being stranded definitely wouldn’t be boring with Fern! Bree Baker: I would definitely spend the week with Everly Swan, the heroine of my Seaside Cafe Mysteries!…

MK Moore | Top Five Favorites About the 425 Madison World
Author Guest / April 21, 2020

Hi! MK here! I had so much fun writing Let Me Stay. I am so ready for it to be out in the world because I can’t wait for readers to read it. Let Me Stay loosely connects with my novellas Mobbed Up Love, Don’t You Know, and Don’t You See. I love writing mobster with a heart! Thanks for having me here, Fresh Fiction! My favorite neighbor in the 425 Madison building: Gwen from Must Love Coffee by Leigh Lennon; she is totally awesome! My favorite mode of transportation around NYC: The Subway for sure!  My favorite or must-see NYC landmark: Times Square! It has that “bright lights, big city” vibe that I love! My favorite thing about “city” life: The different types of food that are pretty available 24/7! My favorite thing about being a part of the 425 Madison world: I love being a part of this series because of the writer friends I’ve gained. I also love the atmosphere 425 Madison provides. So many different kinds of stories to be told there. — COMMENT TO WIN: What’s your favorite thing about where you live? Tell us in the comments and you’ll be entered to win a…

Marissa Backlin | Recommended Reads from LOVE’S SWEET ARROW + a Giveaway!
Author Guest / April 16, 2020

Hi everyone! I thought this week, I could talk about what I’ve been reading lately and why I think I am reading these things. Just like everyone else, I am struggling a lot with the social distancing and isolation as a result of the Corona Virus Pandemic. I moved out three years ago to my own place and I currently live alone with my two dogs (a big reason I picked the place I did – it allows up to two pets). Normally, that’s not so bad and I like having my own space, but it’s been difficult this past month. Also, my younger dog, Lady, has been having trouble too because she’s very social and misses my family too. We’ve had some recurrence of accidents and she is easily scared more than usual by things. If anyone else is dealing with this with their pets, one thing that has been helping immensely is having special body massage time and extra cuddles! I have always taken comfort in reading. When I was in junior high and struggling to make friends, I reread Anne of Green Gables and Tamora Pierce over and over, finding comfort in the found families and the…

Marissa Backlin | Bookseller-Reader Match: LOVE’S SWEET ARROW + Giveaway!
Author Guest / April 8, 2020

Instead of trying to find your perfect match in a dating app, we bring you the “Bookseller-Reader Match” where we introduce you to a bookstore as a reader you may fall in love with. It’s our great pleasure to present Marissa of Love’s Sweet Arrow!  Writes/Sells: I’m Marissa, one of the co-owners of the romance bookstore Love’s Sweet Arrow, the second one in the country! Love’s Sweet Arrow opened last June in Tinley Park, so we are coming up on our first anniversary soon! Love’s Sweet Arrow focuses on having a diverse variety of romance in all subgenres, but also has fun t-shirts, tote bags, buttons, and stickers (some made by BestFriendKelly), soaps (by Perennial Soaps), and candles (NovellyYours, Big White Yeti, and Hearth and Hammer). About: I am 31 and I’ve been a bookstore owner for almost a year now. Before this, I was a special education kindergarten teacher in a local school for a few years and I’m currently a one-on-one paraprofessional in a kindergarten classroom in a different school, which means I’m home from that job too. Before that, I was actually involved in the performing arts and I have an undergraduate degree in music (vocal performance). I’ve got an interesting…

Marissa Backlin | Exclusive Interview: LOVE’S SWEET ARROW, a Romance Bookstore + Giveaway!
Author Guest / April 1, 2020

Throughout the month, we’ll be checking in with Marissa Backlin, co-owner of Love’s Sweet Arrow, a romance-focused independent bookstore in Tinley Park, IL. Be sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, sign up for their newsletter, and check out their Patreon. Their online store is still open! Up first, an interview with LSA co-owner Marissa Backlin and FF’s Editorial Manager, Danielle Dresser.  Danielle: Welcome to the Fresh Fiction blog, Marissa! We are so thrilled to learn more about Love’s Sweet Arrow. Where did the idea come from to open a romance-only bookstore in Chicagoland? Marissa: Roseann and I have always been big romance readers. I’ve been reading romance since I was sneaking it around 12 and Mom read it growing up too. I also ordered a few times from The Ripped Bodice once they opened and two Christmases ago, I got Mom the Lydia Bennett box! So two summers ago, we were just talking about how if we had an unlimited amount of money, opening a romance bookstore would be one of the things we would love to do. After a whole summer of daydreaming together about it, we decided to go for it! What are some of your…

Evelyn Sola | Author-Reader Match: CRAVE + Giveaway!
Author Guest / March 3, 2020

Instead of trying to find your perfect match in a dating app, we bring you the “Author-ReaderMatch” where we introduce you to authors as a reader you may fall in love with. It’s our great pleasure to present EVELYN SOLA! Writes: I focus on contemporary romance filled with love, laughs, and drama. My stories tend to be on the lighter side but will pull on your heartstrings. Flirtatious banter, interesting family dynamics, the push and pull between the two lovers are just a few of my trademarks. My debut novel is CRAVE (March, 2nd), a diverse romance about a man who had given up on love until he spots her from across the room. Unfortunately for him, things transpire that evening that sends his lady love running as far and as fast as she can. The chase is on after that! About: New author seeks lover of contemporary romance who appreciates heroines who aren’t afraid to speak up, and a hero who knows exactly what he wants and isn’t afraid to fight for it. What I’m looking for in my ideal reader match: Knows that a hero who swears off love falls the fastest. Has a weakness for smart independent heroines….

Melanie Munton | Cover Reveal: SINS & SCARS + Giveaway!
Author Guest / February 18, 2020

Thank you so much for being here today, and welcome to the Scars & Sins Cover Reveal!!!! It is my pleasure to introduce you to Ace Rossetti, the second flaming hot alpha brother in my mafia romantic suspense series, Brooklyn Brothers, and his sweet and saucy little Roxy. For those of you who have read Lace & Lies (Brooklyn Brothers #1), we get even deeper into the mafia world in this second book. There’s more action, more danger, and, of course, more secrets. With Ace and Roxy, it’s all forbidden love and stolen moments. They come from enemy families, so they have to hide the way they feel from everyone. D’Angelo v. Rossetti. Manhattan v. Brooklyn. They shouldn’t even be in the same room together, let alone the same bed. But they’re not Romeo and Juliet. Both of them died. And Ace refuses to let anything happen to Roxy. They will start a war if they’re discovered. Then they’ll have a lot more to worry about than their own Scars & Sins. . . This cover went through so many rounds of revisions, and this wasn’t even the first final draft! It looked completely different up until about a month…

Juanita Kees | Meet the Calhoun Siblings
Author Guest / July 23, 2019

Hello dear readers and thank you for joining me on Fresh Fiction. Today I’d like to introduce you to the five siblings at Calhouns Customs Garage. Nurturing this family to life on the page has been an exciting and frustrating journey. They’re a sexy, moody, complicated and daring bunch. Poor dad, Marty, had his hands full raising them. But here they are, all grown up. He has one last parental responsibility as Parkinson’s Disease begins to steal his independence. Ex-Nascar race king, Marty Calhoun, has built a legacy for his family, and now it’s time to round them up and bring them home to claim it.  Each of his five children have hearts in need of overhauling. They all have hard lessons to learn. The one thing Marty wants most is to see his children find happiness and love at Calhoun Customs Garage. Chase Chase stars in book 1, Overdrive. He’s the eldest. This hero had to grow up fast. With five kids under ten and having lost his wife in childbirth, Marty needed help. Chase stepped up to the plate, earning himself the nickname of ‘Mother’. He cares for his siblings, watches over them, and runs the family garage…

Michele Pariza Wacek | 5 Reasons Why We Love Ghost Stories + Giveaway!
Author Guest , Giveaways / July 1, 2019

Who doesn’t love an old fashioned ghost story? Whether it’s something scary on Halloween or a frightening tale told late at night sitting around a campfire, ghost stories have been around for as long as humans have been telling stories. In fact, I’m such a fan of ghost stories I created a whole series “Secrets of Redemption” that combines the psychological thriller genre with a haunted house. (Because who doesn’t love a haunted house? Except … is the house even haunted? Hmmm.) And, to celebrate the launch of the 3rd book The Evil That Was Done in my award-winning “Secrets of Redemption” series, I thought I’d dive into the question of why ARE we so obsessed with ghosts. Below are five reasons to help explain our ghostly fascinations: 1. Overall, stories provide a safe container for us to feel our emotions. So many of us spend our lives trying to push our uncomfortable emotions away (such as sadness and worry and shame), or numb them or run away from them or whatever it takes to not feel them. The problem with that is if we aren’t feeling our difficult emotions, we also aren’t feeling our joyful, happy emotions. And, as…