Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Christina Hovland | Exclusive Excerpt: THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT MOLLY
Author Guest / September 17, 2021

Chapter One “The very fact that you worry about being a good mom means that you already are one.” —Jodi Picoult Molly Of all the things Molly Princeton understood for certain, there was one thing in particular she had no doubts about—a woman was only as confident as her underwear. For real, she’d ask anyone to hear her out on this point. A girl could always spit shine the outside, but it was what lay underneath that told the true story. This was the reason she generally wore lace. Lace, unfortunately, that no one but herself ever saw. She sighed, a disappointed sigh that came from deep within the soul. Today, however, her life theory was thrown into a bit of a pickle, seeing as she wore no underwear at all. The no undies thing? Not her fault. Well, maybe a little her fault. She was the one who had forgotten to pack undies that wouldn’t show through the silk sheath dress her bestie Rachel had picked out for her as the maid of honor at her wedding. A wedding in the total boonies where there was no Nordstrom’s or even a Walmart to grab something that wouldn’t leave a…

Robin Bielman | Exclusive Excerpt: WRITTEN FOR YOU
Author Guest / August 23, 2021

Hi everyone! This scene picks up after Cam and Reese have just played a game of This or That with his brothers and things got a little sexy. He’s offered to walk her back to the guesthouse where she’s staying on his family’s property… “I’ll walk you back,” Cam said, making her jump. She hadn’t heard him follow her. “You don’t need to do that.” “I know.” They stepped onto the porch together. “About what just happened…” he trailed off, hands in the front pockets of his stylish sweatpants as they continued toward the guesthouse. “It was nothing. We got a little carried away is all. I call it the Nash influence.” “The Nash influence?” “Yes, he loves to infer dirty and sexual things, which in turn gets the people around him thinking them.” “Okay, but in this case…” They’d gone there on their own. Of course Mr. Smarty McSmartyPants would realize that. She spun and faced him, took backward steps. “Sugar Rush.” He raised an eyebrow. Just one brow, in that sexy way of his. “When a person eats sugar, the brain produces a surge in dopamine, which in turn makes them think of pleasurable things and then sometimes…

Jenn McKinlay | 20 Questions: WAIT FOR IT
Author Guest / August 10, 2021

1–What is the title of your latest release? WAIT FOR IT 2–What is it about? WAIT FOR IT is the love story of two people who have to change their self protective default settings if they want the romance that is sparkling right in front of them. This is much more challenging than they anticipate. Can Annabelle learn to ask for what she wants in a relationship instead of always putting her partner first? Can she stop picking men who need her instead of want her? Can Nick confront his anxiety and fear and be the man he once was? Can he believe in true love and its power to heal instead of harm? There’s only one way to find out! 3–What do you love about the setting of your book?  It’s set in Phoenix, AZ which has been my home for almost thirty years. 4–How did your heroine surprise you?  Annabelle stepped out of her comfort zone repeatedly and hilariously. It was a joy to watch her challenge herself even when it hurt. 5–Why will readers love your hero?  Nick has a huge heart. He pretends he doesn’t but it is obvious in all of his actions how much…

Hayden Stone | Exclusive Excerpt: AN UNEXPECTED KIND OF LOVE
Author Guest / August 9, 2021

We look at each other across the shop. Or, more accurately, I glare at her. Thankfully, there’re no customers present to witness my daily mortifications by a uni student barely younger than me who loves to mop up the floor with my pride. The truth is we met in a book club a couple of years back, and we became fast friends. She gave hilarious reviews, which turned out to be handy for the shop. She thought I was delightfully quirky. It would have been the perfect spring romance, except that I’m attracted to men, and I was together with my ex. At any rate, we’ve got the banter down, especially now that I rely on her help in the shop. Customers love her, too. She pretends to reconsider. “Or how about ‘Aubrey Barnes, Fierce Defender of Books’? That’s got a superhero thing going on. More sympathetic, I think. Am I right or am I right?” Gemma gives an impish smile. Once upon a time, I was just Aubrey Barnes, ready to go for pints or a gig or the occasional big night out. Back before life became too real. Now, I’m twenty-three going on forty-three. I sigh, noting the…

Julie Hammerle | Exclusive Excerpt: IT’S RAINING MEN
Author Guest / July 27, 2021

A loud crash and the sound of glass shattering cut her off, and my head snapped toward the bar. Our bartender, the guy with the eyes, was leaning over, gripping his leg. Blood trickled toward his ankle, and shards of the broken bottle surrounded his feet in a puddle of fizzy pink wine. I leaned over the bar. “Are you okay?” I shouted. He looked over at me. “I’m bleeding.” “I see that.” I glanced at Kelly, looking for permission. “Go,” she said, waving her hand. “Be the superhero. We’ll talk later.” “No.” I grabbed my purse and headed toward the injured patient. “Come with me. We’ll talk while I clean him up.” The bartender’s eyes widened in shock and concern. “What?” “I’m a doctor.” I motioned to one of the waiters working the tables. “Can someone clean this up, please?” The bartender tilted his head in disbelief as his eyes scanned my ensemble. “She is a doctor,” Kelly said, glancing at her phone, “and a damn expensive one, too. Consider yourself lucky.” “Where’s the manager’s office?” I asked, glancing around. “That way.” The bartender nodded toward a closed door in the hallway off to the right of the bar….

Lisa Wells | Casting Call for My Book + Giveaway!
Author Guest / July 20, 2021

Aggie the Horrible versus Max the Pompous Ass is an across-the-tracks romance that will lead the readers laughing one moment and shaking their heads the next at the hot mess these two main characters make out of their work-life situation. In a perfect world, Aggie the Horrible versus Max the Pompous Ass would become a primetime movie, AND I would be asked to cast all of its main characters. Afterall, no one knows them as well as I do. And since I hate to not be prepared for all of the what-ifs in the world, I thought I’d go ahead and pick the actors/actresses who would be invited to try out for each part. Cast of Characters: 1-AGGIE is a free-spirited young lady with a bit of a chip on her shoulder. She doesn’t feel the need to play by society’s rules. If anything, she takes pleasure in not playing by them. And she’s certainly not afraid to speak her mind. For her, I’d choose Emma Stone, most recently seen in Disney’s Cruella De Vil. 2-MAX was born into a dysfunctional wealthy family and was raised to view the world through rose-colored, privileged glasses. He’s driven to succeed for many…

Melonie Johnson | Exclusive Interview: TOO GOOD TO BE REAL
Author Guest / July 6, 2021

Danielle: Welcome back to Fresh Fiction, Melonie! We are so happy to have you here to chat about your new book, TOO GOOD TO BE REAL. Where did you get the idea for this novel, which is set at a rom-com resort? Melonie: I was actually working on a different book proposal for my editor, loosely based on my favorite rom-com, 10 Things I Hate About You. While I was brainstorming the plot points, I started thinking about how much fun it would be to actually get to experience some of the romantic moments in the movie, and other rom-com movies I love: paintball fights and karaoke serenades and kissing in the rain… and then BAM! The idea hit me. Why not? I love the movie Austenland, which is about an estate that provides guests a chance to live in the world of Jane Austen novels… so I decided why not create a resort that offers the same immersive experience for fans of romantic comedies? And thus, TOO GOOD TO BE REAL was born. I love how there’s an awesome girl group at the center of this story—your main character, Julia, brings her friends Kat and Andie along with her…

Brina Starler | 20 Questions: ANNE OF MANHATTAN
Author Guest / June 1, 2021

1–What is the title of your latest release? My upcoming release on June 1st, ANNE OF MANHATTAN, is a modern adaptation of Anne of Green Gables set on Long Island and in New York City. It’s actually my debut novel! 2–What is it about? Loosely based on some of the original book’s events, and inspired by L.M. Montgomery’s cast of beloved characters, Anne of Manhattan reimagines what it would be like if college-aged Anne Shirley, Gilbert Blythe, and their friends were going to school and living in modern NYC. It’s a romantic comedy that also deals with themes like #MeToo (sexual harassment) and learning how to trust in love. And hopefully, I’ve done a good job of paying tribute to a book I love so much! 3–What do you love about the setting of your book?  There are two main settings in the book. One is NYC, where Anne, Gil, and their friends go to school and live. That bounces between Brooklyn, the Village area, and Hell’s Kitchen. The second main setting is Avonlea, which I set on Long Island for the purposes of it making sense so many characters would wind up living in the city. Since I wanted…

Jennifer Bonds | Exclusive Excerpt: ROYAL TROUBLE
Author Guest / May 21, 2021

Hello! I’m so excited to be here at Fresh Fiction, sharing an exclusive excerpt from my upcoming release, ROYAL TROUBLE. The second book in the Royally Engaged series, ROYAL TROUBLE is a stand-alone romcom that asks the question, What happens when a member of the royal family unwittingly falls in love with a celebrity dirt reporter? If you like laugh-out-loud banter, sizzling chemistry, and swoon-worthy HEAs, keep reading for a sneak peek at Xander and Everly’s story and a wardrobe malfunction of royal proportions! … The bathroom door burst open with such force it smashed against the stopper before it was slammed shut again. Xander whirled to see Everly throw herself against the door and flip the deadbolt. When she turned to face him, chest heaving, she gave a startled squeal and clapped her hands over her mouth, covering the full lips he’d just been fantasizing about. Her cheeks were flushed, and her hair was more disheveled than when he’d left her, the chocolate and toffee strands brushing her collarbones in loose waves. Everly’s eyes narrowed in suspicion as she dropped her hands to her sides. “That’s not the reaction I usually get from the ladies,” he said, lifting a…

Mariah Ankenman | 20 Questions: THE WEDDING DILEMMA
Author Guest / May 21, 2021

1–What is the title of your latest release? The Wedding Dilemma 2–What is it about? An accident-prone artist is rescued from a failed body cast art project by a sexy firefighter, only to discover he’s going to be her new stepbrother! They have to help plan wedding parties together while fighting off the volcanic attraction they feel, but he’s keeping a secret that could ruin everyone’s happily ever after. 3–What do you love about the setting of your book?  It’s set in the Mile High City, aka Denver, Colorado, the best place to live (I might be a little bias since I live here, lol). 4–How did your heroine surprise you?  She was much more afraid of love than I first thought. 5–Why will readers love your hero?  He’s a Cinnamon Roll firefighter, what’s not to love;) 6–What was one of your biggest challenges while writing this book (spoiler-free, of course!)?  Researching all the firefighting facts. I did interviews with firefighters and my own personal research, but as I’ve never been a firefighter, I’m sure I made a mistake somewhere (my apologies for any mistakes made). 7–Do you look forward to or do you dread the revision process?  I dread…