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Guest Author- Elizabeth Ellen Carter

EECarter3Joining me today is historical romance author, Elizabeth Ellen Carter. Elizabeth is a local Brisbane author who has just released the third instalment in her Heart of the Corsairs Series, Shadow of the Corsairs!

Welcome Elizabeth and congratulations on your new release.

Thanks Bernadette, it’s great to be here.
Can you tell me what you love about historical romance stories?

Historical romances bring important events of our past to life. And, when well done, give an insight into how people lived in times past. I think that a great understanding and appreciation of history is absolutely vital because understanding history is all about understanding ourselves.
Whether we know it or not, we have a strong connection with the past – in fact it is built into our very DNA!
So, to live in another time or participate in historical events through the lens of a well-researched and well written historical novel is an accessible way to reconnect with our pasts.

What gave you the idea for this story? The series?

I came across an article about the pirates of the Barbary Coast which connected the dots between some of the events we’re witnessing in more recent times. For instance, the reason why France colonised North Africa in 1830 was to finally put an end to the slave trade in that region.
Between 1650 and 1830 between 800,000 and 1.25 million Europeans, some as far away as Iceland were abducted and sold into slavery.
The more I read about the Ottoman Empire and its slaving past the more I wanted to tell a story about how slavery affects individuals. Every main character in the Heart of the Corsairs series has been touched – directly or indirectly by the brutal and predatory tactics of the Barbary Coast slavers.

shadow-of-the-corsairs-cover

Let’s take a moment discover what Shadow of the Corsairs is all about- here’s the blurb:

The Past Casts a Shadow Over a Second Chance For Love….

Palermo, 1810

Morwena Gambino is struggling to keep her family’s business going against mounting troubles. Her widowed father, once shrewd, is now increasingly forgetful, letting debts mount and disavowing his sons. Morwena runs the shop behind his back, forced to hide her enterprise not only from her father but also her bitter older brother.

In Tunisia, Tewodros “Jonathan” Afua is struggling to stay alive. Once an Ethiopian prince, he is a captive of the corsairs who slaughtered his wife and children. When a US naval bombardment provides an opening for escape, Jonathan falls in with a seemingly deranged English pirate. Aboard Kit Hardacre’s rundown ship with its ragtag crew, Jonathan learns the real reason he was taken by slavers.

Reluctantly joining Hardacre’s crew, he meets Morwena in Palermo. The fiery young Sicilian woman is the opposite of his quiet reserve, but he is attracted to her despite mourning for his late wife. As he and Morwena grow closer, it emerges that they have something in common – secret betrayal by those close to them – and they must count what they’re willing to risk for a future together.

*****

Read all three books in the Heart of the Corsair series:

Captive of the Corsairs
Revenge of the Corsairs
Shadow of the Corsairs

*****

Historical fiction usually necessitates quite a deal of research. Was there any travel involved in preparing for this book and where did you go?

I would love to travel for research, but my budget doesn’t stretch that far! I had to content myself reading historical references and university articles on the subject – and spending a bit of time looking at beautiful photographs of Sicily, Tunisia, Libya, Turkey and Ethiopia.

A pirate is one of the secondary characters, did you take to the high seas before writing it?

I wish! One interesting thing I did discover was they don’t have notable tides in the Mediterranean – only a few centimetres difference between high and low tide. That wasn’t something which had occurred to me!

Do you have any historical hobbies?

I love museums, antiques fairs and historical architecture – it’s like a gift from the past that we can enjoy today.

What is your favourite genre to read?

I love reading history, historical fiction, historical romance, mystery, and the classics.

What’s next for Elizabeth Ellen Carter?

I’ve started a new series! The overarching hero of the Heart of the Corsairs series has proved to be so popular that I’m reaching back into his past. Kit believes himself to be an orphan. What he doesn’t know is his father is still alive – so what happened to separate them? That will be answered in the first book of The King’s Rogues series called Live And Let Spy.

*****

EECarter4Elizabeth Ellen Carter is an award-winning historical romance writer who pens richly detailed historical romantic adventures. A former newspaper journalist, Carter ran an award-winning PR agency for 12 years. The author lives in Australia with her husband and two cats.

You can find Elizabeth here:

• Web: http://eecarter.com
• Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ElizabethEllenCarter
• Newsletter: http://eecarter.com/index.php/homepage/book-club/
• Twitter: https://twitter.com/EECarterAuthor
• Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/eecarterauthor/
• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/elizabeth_ellen_carter/
• YouTube Trailers: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=elizabeth+ellen+carter

 

 

Cover Reveal!

Sorceress front cover (1)

This might be my best cover yet! Not long now until The Master and the Sorceress is released. Here is the cover and below is the blurb.

The Master and the Sorceress

Desperate sorceress, Katrine Aranati, no longer knows how to deal with the woman she has become. She runs headlong into a man whose heart’s desire is order and control. James Tomel, master jeweler, is outwardly a pillar of society but he hides more than one dangerous secret.

When they are thrown together on a trip to Brightcastle, fierce creatures from legend pursue them but even more dangerous are the feelings swirling between them. When their hearts and bodies come together, one will flee while the other demands an accounting. Can they find common ground where their love will flourish or will secrets and betrayal kill all hope of a life together?

Find out if love and chaos can defeat order and control in the fourth exciting instalment of the Wildecoast Saga.

 

It’s been over a year since I released The Lady and the Pirate on Valentine’s Day 2017.  In that book, readers were intrigued by Katrine, the younger sister of the heroine, Esta. At times she threatened to take over the story. Well, now she has her own story and we get to find out what motivates her and the caliber of man who might be up to the task of being her hero.

I don’t have a release date yet but as soon as I do, it will be posted here and pre-orders will open. I hope you love the cover as much as I do!

In the meantime, if you like shape-shifter heroes, please click on the image below and check out these free books.

Shifter promo image

Until next time, happy reading

Bernadette x

 

Destiny 2018

cropped-bernadette-rowley-author-shot-resizeIt’s a month since I made my New Year’s resolutions and I thought we could compare notes on how we are going. I’ll refresh you:

I will write more / procrastinate less– just the fact that I have put this out there is keeping me honest with this resolution. It has helped that I’ve been editing which I find easy to do at all times of the day and night.

I will release two new books this year– the first of these, The Master and the Sorceress, is with my editor now and my designer is working on the cover for both print and ebook. This motivated me to write the back cover blurb this morning.

Start the next book– I will follow through on this once The Master and the Sorceress is released but I’m already tossing around ideas. If something enticing pops up, I can get started sooner! The muse is an amazing creature when you get her thinking.

Market my titles so I can earn enough to support my writing habit– I’m concentrating fiercely on this and tackling it from all directions. I’ve had some encouraging approaches from readers, I’m building a street team for my next release and planning the logistics of that launch

Mark out of 10? I would give myself a 7/10- I think I can improve over the next month in the procrastination department.

8319234 - beautiful young brunette woman  on a horseback

8319234 – beautiful young brunette woman on a horseback

Exciting news! There is a better than even chance that this image will form the basis of the cover for The Master and the Sorceress. The model is just how I envisaged Katrine Aranati and the horse is perfect for Demon, too.

 

 

How would you rate your New Year resolution progress? It’s okay if you haven’t accomplished much- there’s still eleven months to go. Perhaps you need to sit down and map out how you will achieve your goals? Or maybe adjust them to make them more achievable. If you need extra help, tell someone about your goals so they can keep you accountable.

If you’re looking to pick up a free copy of my book Princess Avenger, I now have a page where you can do just that.

Or if you’d rather use this Book Cave Innovations promotion, you can pick Princess Avenger up FREE here

Innovation share 5.jpg

Until next time, happy reading and don’t forget to leave a review!

Bernadette x

The Lady’s Choice FREE!

The Lady's Choice Cover- newThis lovely lady is feeling like she has been forgotten. Yes! I’m talking about my second book, The Lady’s Choice. She’s normally $2.99 but if you sign up to my newsletter HERE I’ll send you The Lady’s Choice ebook FREE. With Princess Avenger already FREE, there has never been a better time to check out  my stories. Read on to find the teasers for these books.

The Lady’s Choice

Lady Benae Branasar will sacrifice her ‘happily ever after’ for an arranged marriage with a powerful prince. But can she turn her back on her feelings for the prince’s squire, Ramón Zorba? Ramón is obsessed with the prince’s daughter and tries hard to ignore fiery Benae. As they are drawn inexorably together, Benae and Ramón must choose between keeping personal vows and being true to each other.

I’ll tell you a secret. The Lady’s Choice is my favourite of all my stories. I’m very attached to the heroine, Benae, and I think it’s because she has such a close relationship to her horse. She reminds me of myself as a young woman. If you enjoy my stories, please leave a rating and a brief review at your favourite ebook retailer.

Princess Avenger Ebook coverPrincess Avenger

Passionate Princess Alecia sets out to avenge the slaying of her first love. Captain Vard Anton is dealing with his own dark secrets. When he is appointed Alecia’s protector, both find it hard to ignore the chemistry between them. Can Alecia resist the enigmatic Vard while trying to exact revenge? Will their fatal attraction ultimately lead to tragedy or can love unite Alecia and Vard forever?

Some of you will already have read these books or signed up to my newsletter and I thank you for your support. Stay tuned for more news and offers in the future.

Until next time

4 weeks until The Elf King’s Lady!

0515 The Elf King's Lady_FinalActually it’s less than four weeks as this is late! Last week’s winner was Pam and her favourite hero, described in five words was: Blonde tall blue eyed hero.

That is certainly one of the stereotypical heroes and a favourite with many. My favourite is more like General Kain Jazara from The Elf King’s Lady or Captain Vard Anton from Princess Avenger– tall, dark, brooding and mysterious; a man not easy to get close to but one who is loyal once he falls in love.

This week, to mark four weeks from release of The Elf King’s Lady, I want to shift the focus to the girls. Please describe in four words, your ideal heroine. The winner can select any one of my books for their very own.

Until next week…

This Writing Life

The Lord and the Mermaid coverIs there anything better than telling a story to the world? No, there is not!

I thought I’d put some thoughts down about my writing life. It’s a wonderful mix of left brain/right brain, love/hate, drive/ procrastination, confidence/despair. A writer’s life holds such contradictions, it’s no wonder we fear for our sanity.

But a writing life is wonderful. There is nothing better than escaping into one’s own world, in fact, I live there most of the time. Creating a character from our imagination and then having them surprise us with their actions or words is such a joy. For, though readers like to imagine a writer has control of all aspects of their manuscript, this isn’t the case. Once let loose on the page, our imagination and characters can and do make amazing things happen.

The Lady's Choice Cover- newAt the moment, the right side of my brain is taking a back seat to the left- yes, I’m editing. I love this part of the process where you get to file off all the rough edges and see your word sculpture taking shape. It’s a multistep process. For example, The Elf King’s Lady, which I’m working on at the moment, was edited multiple times by myself before it was sent to my editor. She has come back with suggested changes which I’m currently working on. Once this is complete, the manuscript will move to another editor and then her suggestions will be sent back to me for another revision. There will be another edit after that and more work for me to do but by then I will almost have the finished product.

With at least four books to be released this year, I’ve been editing all year and the pressure is mounting within to write another story. I have three ideas in mind, involving my world for which there are now two series: my self-published Brightcastle Saga and Momentum’s Wildecoast Saga. Momentum’s will obviously be the focus. Lucky I have Brightcastle Saga Book 2 already written and-you guessed it- awaiting another edit!

Princess Avenger Ebook coverSounds busy but I pace myself. I have to. All writers have another life and most have other jobs. Almost all have children or grandchildren to care for (other than their book babies).

I hope that gives an insight into my writing life though I really haven’t touched on the agony of actually writing the story yet. That would be a whole blog series! Perhaps I can look at that later in the year and get some other writers to help.

In the meantime, happy reading- you’d better enjoy it because now you know how much blood sweat and tears goes into a book.

Kendall Talbot’s Treasured Secrets Revealed

Kendall Talbot public pictureToday I have the pleasure of Kendall Talbot’s company on my blog. Kendall Talbot is an award winning author, thrill seeker and hopeless romantic. She’s travelled extensively, some 36 countries so far and she’s addicted to experiences that make her scream… white water rafting, scuba diving with sharks and hang gliding are just a few. Her stories reflect her sense of adventure and her love affair with her very own hero.

Her debut novel Lost in Kakadu (Escape Publishing, 2013) has resulted in a clutch of award nominations and most notably won the exclusive title of Romantic Book of the Year 2014.

Kendall collects junky jewellery and expensive perfume, her favourite night out is with great friends and a fabulous bottle of wine or two, and she rarely watches TV. She lives in Brisbane with her hubby, her two grown sons and her fluffy little dog, Josie McLuvin.

Welcome Kendall!

Thanks, Bernadette, it’s great to be here!

Tresured Secrets book cover mediumThis book is such an adventure, taking readers from Tuscany to a yacht off the coast of Greece. Where did you come up with the plot idea?

One of the major inspirations behind Treasured Secrets came from my 20th anniversary holiday to Tuscany. Florence is a treasure trove of history and architecture, bustling with tourists and little café’s eager to serve you bread and wine within seconds of finding a table to sit at. My husband and I went on a couple of city tours and one such tour took us to the Church of St Apostoli, a small insignificant church compared to many of the other magnificent churches dotted throughout Florence. Inside the church, inlaid in the mosaic floor tiles, was an oval pattern. Our tour guide told us it was the trap door where they tossed the bodies during the 13th century plague that killed 50 million people in Europe. My mind went crazy thinking about entire families being wiped out by that horrible disease. Then I began to wonder what happened to all their precious things they left behind. On the plane flight home, I began plotting my Treasured Secrets action adventure romance.

The way you research the books is kind of off the charts! (Witchetty grubs? You are a braver woman than I!) What type of research did you do for TREASURED SECRETS?

I was really lucky with those witchetty grubs I just happened to find them in my garden. How else was I going to get the flavour right in my scene? It’s important for me to write about and draw from actual experiences. Obviously many of them are pure fabrication, and thank goodness too, some of my characters go to hell and back. Treasured Secrets is as much a treasure hunt as it is a culinary adventure. Rosalina, my Italian heroine in Treasured Secrets is a talented chef, so food and flavours abound as much as the treasure hunt action. Every one of the meals she makes in my books I made for myself. In fact, recipes from “Treasured Secrets” debut in their own book “Rosalina’s Treasured Treats” you can find this on my website and cook along as you read the book if you like. In addition to the cooking, Rosalina’s home in Treasured Secrets is a 700 year old villa that I holiday in in Tuscany. Villa Pandolfini is in Signa, a little village just a fifteen minute train ride from Florence. This spectacular historic villa with extremely high ceilings, magnificent frescoes and original antique furniture was surrounded by vineyards and olive-groves and offered an extensive view of Arno Valley.

What are you working on now? Any new books on the horizon?

Book two in this series, Treasured Lies will be out in October 2015 and book three, Treasured Love, will be released April 2016.

I used to daydream about robbing a bank that I worked at in 1992. So guess what? I robbed that bank. In a book of course. Double Take my first crime novel, is a gritty Quinten Tarantino meets Nora Roberts story set in that bank I worked in. I also chose 1992 as the year its set, a time before the internet, mobile phones and electric windows. It was also a time of Cheers, Cagney and Lacey, boom boxes and Carrington Blush fake champagne. It was so much fun writing in that era.

Lost in Kakadu image003_jpg@01D07AB0 Rosalina s Treasured Treats Cookbook cover medium sizeTell us about the cookbook:

Treasured Secrets is as much a treasure hunt as it is a culinary adventure. Rosalina, my Italian heroine in Treasured Secrets is a talented chef, so food and flavours abound as much as the treasure hunt action. Every one of the meals she makes in my books I made for myself. In fact, recipes from “Treasured Secrets” debut in their own book “Rosalina’s Treasured Treats” readers can find this on my website and cook along as they read Treasured Secrets if they like.

What inspires you to write? 

The story. Once I get an idea for a story in my head it won’t leave me alone. I dream about it. I think about it constantly, even at work when I’m trying to do my boring bookkeeping job. It’s like I’m possessed and the only way to rid it from my brain is to write about it. My bank robbery stayed in there for 22 years, so when I finally sat down to write it, it took just 3 months.

Thanks Kendall, it’s great to get an insight into your writing life!

You can purchase Treasured Secrets here:

Amazon

Booktopia

Kobo 

iTunes

Google Play

You can find Kendall here:

Email: kendall@universe.com.au

Web: www.kendalltalbot.com.au

Facebook: www.facebook.com/kendalltalbotbooks

twitter: https://twitter.com/KendallBooks

The Lord and the Mermaid – Cover Reveal

It is with great pleasure that I reveal the cover of my first book with Pan Macmillan’s Momentum line: The Lord and the Mermaid.

Set in the same fantasy world as Princess Avenger and The Lady’s Choice, The Lord and the Mermaid introduces to readers a brand new hero and heroine, mermaid Merielle and Lord Nikolas Cosara.

The Lord and the Mermaid cover

Fans of C.L. Wilson will love this fantasy romance about two lovers from different worlds who will break the laws of land and sea in their quest to be together.

 

 

Mermaid Merielle has fled the sea, disgusted at the actions of her people and desperate to build a life for herself on land. But to truly live as a woman, she must find a human man to fall in love with her.

Lord Nikolas Cosara has lost his brother at sea, and is driven to discover whether his sibling has died at the dangerously seductive hands of a mermaid. But when Nik finds Merielle washed up on the beach, he reluctantly saves her. Despite his antipathy for her kind, Nik is drawn to Meri, who is slowly working her way into his damaged heart.

 

Can Nik surrender to his love for Meri before her hopes of a human life are lost forever? Or will a devastating secret bring all her efforts to naught?

 

The Lord and the Mermaid is due for release in June 2015.

The Avenging Princess Returns

Princess Avenger Ebook coverYes, you heard it here first! The avenging princess Alecia is back and looking better than ever. After much thought, I decided to self publish my first two titles, previously published with Penguin Australia: Princess Avenger and The Lady’s Choice. Both have new covers and will be available from all good ebook retailers.

The Lady's Choice Cover- newAdded to that news, I have plans to complete the trilogy begun with Princess Avenger:

Book 2 of the Brightcastle Saga is Princess in Exile– already written and in the editing process.

Book 3 of the Brightcastle Saga is The Queen Returns

The covers of these two books I will hold close to my chest until closer to their release dates.

Also remembering that this year sees the release of my two Momentum Australia titles: The Lord and the Mermaid and Love Alliance. You can read an outline of these stories on my Coming Soon page.

Next week, the cover reveal of The Lord and the Mermaid is planned so watch this space! It’s release date is June 2015.

 

 

Momentous News

Mermaid 1(123)I know things have been a little quiet lately on this blog but this was worth waiting for. After a year of not knowing what the future would hold for my writing, I’m pleased to announce that this week I have signed a two book deal with Momentum, Pan Macmillan’s Australian Digital First Romance Imprint.

The genre is of course fantasy romance and I’ll be continuing my series begun with Princess Avenger and The Lady’s Choice with Destiny Romance. This is an incredibly exciting opportunity for me and I hope to bring you further good news in the near future. Both books will be released in 2015.

In Love Thy Enemy, my heroine is a mermaid yearning for a human to love; my hero a dread-locked sailing captain desperate to find his brother, lost at sea. It’s a redemption story involving Nikolas Cosara, a sailor with tragedy in his past, and Merielle, a mermaid who has fled her people, determined to find a man who will love her. For Nik, it’s hate at first sight but Merielle instantly recognises this damaged man needs help. Merielle must somehow overcome the antipathy he feels but the devastating secret she holds might bring all her efforts to naught.

Kain JazaraLove Alliance begins with the dark elven menace threatening the kingdom. Captain Kain Jazara must juggle the demands of a strife-torn city and kingdom while rescuing the family of the irritating Lady Alique Zorba. Readers will remember Alique as the younger sister of Ramón Zorba from The Lady’s Choice. As they are thrown together, the two develop feelings for each other. When Kain’s world is torn apart by a personal revelation he shuts Alique out. Can he overcome the accident of his birth or will he allow it to destroy his relationship and his happiness?

I can’t wait to bring my readers more from my world of fantasy romance.