VIRTUALLY HERS came out Oct. 2009. Get it at SAMHAIN Publishing. VIRTUALLY ONE coming soon.

I've also made available at Amazon BIG BAD WOLF a COS Commando book, an earlier manuscript about Killian Nicholas Langley. You can sample the first five chapters right here. EBOOK now available for KINDLE, NOOK, and at SMASHWORDS for $4.99.

I appreciate all your emails. If you'd like to buy Virtually His NEW, please contact me. Thank you.


Big Bad Wolf Author's Note/CH. 1

Big Bad Wolf CH. 2

Big Bad Wolf Ch. 3

(more chapters on left side bar below)

To read excerpts of VIRTUALLY HERS, scroll down & click on the links on the right.



VIRTUALLY HERS OUT IN PRINT AUG 2010! Discounted at Amazon!

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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Harlequin Vintage Tote Bag 2009 Giveaway

These pretty bags were given out to RWA attendees this year. It's big and decorated with vintage Harlequin cover art. Many of my friends gave theirs to me because they were difficult to fold into their carry-on luggage without creasing.

I HAVE ONE TO GIVE AWAY. With maybe a book or two inside ;-).

If you'd like to win this awesome tote, write a comment in this post, telling me about your first romance book and what do you want to see/read in your romance book today.

For example, my first romance book was Rosemary Rogers' Sweet Savage Love. Or maybe it was a Barbara Cartland, but I can't remember a single title from my collection of her books. RR's story, however, definitely changed my reading habits forever ;-).

As for what I want to read in my romances today, I'd like fewer sex scenes and more h/h sexual tension and relationship exploration. I feel that 15 pages of bedroom antics followed by 2 pages of plot followed by another 15 pages of sexxoring too boring for my current taste. Thirty years ago, yeah, that was titillating. Good tight dialogue, filled with sexy tension, or angst, or Teh Funny is more satisfying and so lacking in my romance reading these days.

So, your turn.

Bear with me while I learn. The first button likes the POST. The second button likes the BLOG site. Please help me by "liking" me. Thanks!


J. said...

My first book was maybe by Catherine Coulter (The Maze) or Julie Garwood (The Heartbreaker). After that I started to check out other authors/books by reading those few pages at the end of the book where they advertise other titles and authors.

I love books where the story and the characters completely traps you in; where as you're reading you can vividly see the story playing out in your mind; and when you're just flipping the last page, you're left with a sense of wow and amazement.

I can't really put into words what would make a book have that effect; it can be so many things! I definitely like reading books that show a lot of the hero & heroine's pov and I don't like it when a book spends too much time on other supporting characters where then you wonder is the hero/heroine this couple or that one? But I can honestly say that those kind of books that leave such a lasting impression is what I hope to find nowadays. I've read a whole lot of books but I've only encountered a few that really made me go "WOW" after I finished it so hopefully I'll find more of that WOW factor.

Heather said...

You know... I remember my first one so well. Skye O'Malley by Bertrice Small. I think I must have been maybe 9 or 10 years old. I totally didn't get the sex scenes, so my mom (being the earth mother free spirit that she was) got me a copy of the unabridged Kama Sutra to "explain" it all to me. I still have both books. LOL!

What do I look for? I'm eclectic in my tastes. I look for books that don't have a cookie-cutter feel. I look for something different, fresh plotlines, new perspectives, something that sets a new trend rather than following them. (Last dozen books I read, I swear it was the same book with different character names inserted!)

I read voraciously in the pursuit of two things specifically. Knowledge and an emotional connection. I merely ask that it makes me feel something, no matter if it be positive or negative, no matter how grand in scope or insignificant.

In romance specifically, I want my men strong and my women stronger and neither of them neurotic, whiny, or out of touch with good old fashioned common sense. And while I'm thinking about it, is it so much to ask that publishers release more NON-regency historicals?? Nothing bores me faster than a regency historical with an anemic metrosexual hero. I just can't feel good about a hero that's more chicked out than I am.

Mich "-) said...

My first romance book was Julie Garwood's "The Wedding" & fell in love with her and romance books. I then went back to the library and read every book they had of hers and thus started my love of romance.

I'm pretty easy with my book wants: good story, good character development, story moves along at a reasonable pace and a HEA. I do like series and trilogies in order to revisit characters or be introduced to them in order to anticipate their stories. I also like to read the different genres so that the stories & characters all don't start to blur together when trying to recall a book.

I read to relax from and at time escape from my world. A good story allows that regardless of all the tween & teen angst/drama going on at my house--that is with a good bottle of wine too! "-)

Diane M. said...

Mine was one of my aunt's Harlequins. She loved garage sales and we could always borrow some. First book I went to book store to buy was The Kadin by Bertrice Small.

Casee said...

Ooooh, I want!! ::g::

My first romance was Message From Nam by Danielle Steel. Though I no longer read her, I still have fond memories of that book.

I would like to see more emotional depth in the characters. Lately, I've noticed that they all seem so superficial. And they change their minds at the drop of a hat. Annoying.

Anonymous said...

i dont rember but i rreaad teen romance too
but i read a connie mason book
and was hooked. dont knwo the name
those look great.

i wnat more contemp books

Leilani said...

I can't remember the name of the first romance I ever read... I started reading them as a teen. But the first pne that sticks in my mind is Love, Cherish Me by Rebecca Brandewyne. The whole story was different from the tame harlequins I'd been reading. The hero was big, bad and a little scary. The heroine innocent but strong. She was on her way west with her "nurse/nanny" when her stagecoach was robbed and she was kidnapped. I think the hero won her in a card game. It was a long sweeping story. I cried with her when her baby died. The story really made an impact on me even though it's been over 25 years since I read it last.

LadyZannah said...

I started reading romance only a couple of years ago. I was more into sci-fi and mysteries. My first was Christina Skye and her SEALs. I love romance stories with a lot of action, a really well written bad guy, lots of tension and THEN a good love scene or two. That is why I like The Protector the most out of all your books Jenn, Jazz had to work hard to get Vivi and the SEALs saw a lot of action (of course it didn't hurt to have so much of Cumber in that story).

Jane said...

My first romance was Julie Garwood's "The Bride." I read a lot of romantic suspense and would like to see a better balance of the two. I've read many books that are listed as romantic suspense and there is little or no romance in the story.

Lisa W. said...

My first romance was Anita Mills four book series: Lady of Fire; Fire and Steel; The Fire and the Fury; Hearts of Fire. I still have them put up in my closet and will probably never part with them b/c I don't have the heart to. :-) They even have the original price stickers on them for $3.95 a piece. I loved her writing. I don't even remember the last time I read something from her unfortuatly.

Since growing a little older I guess I would love to see more of the romance and chase drawn out more. More pages of how the couple generates a realtionship to one another and the sexual heat and tension. Don't get me wrong, I like the sex in there too but it doesn't have to be this ultra vivid picture of the action itself. For myself, it's the tension and the leading up to the sex than the act itself. It's an emotional thing.

I also like to see an "actual plot" with real characters and issues. Not a little action here and there with the majority of sex taking up the whole book and this ultra unreal moncho man that couldn't ever possibly be a for real person. Not that I don't appreciate a white knight here and there. ;-)
I'm also not into the "gang bang" thing as some books have but I do like erotica.

I don't know...Maybe I'm just getting old and value the relationship more... LOL!

Jude said...

Oh, those bags are ten thousand kinds of awesome.

My first romance novel was given to me by Franny Flynn in seventh grade (1977). It was a Harlequin, I don't remember the actual book, only that I groaned and tried to give it back.

Franny said, "Just try it."

I did, and I was instantly, utterly hooked. I have a memory of sitting on the living room floor at age 13 and re-reading a thousand times a passage where the taciturn hero went pale at the thought of losing his love.

I love paranormal, strong heroines, and HEA. Humor never hurts either.

Thank you, Franny, wherever you are.

Sara said...

My first book was A whisper of Roses by Teresa Medeiro. This was 17 years ago. I like the names in the book is the reason why I read it.

I love reading romance books. I love reading about them falling in love, the first kiss, I love the build up between the characters. I love happy ending this is why I love romance books.
In the books I read I want sexual tention, chemistry, I want to be trap in the book.

WK said...

My first "true romance" was Jude Deveraux's VELVET PROMISE, way back in the 90s. I then glommed everything she'd written and still MUST read anything she writes. Back then I just wanted the LOVE. That was all. As long as it had LOVE not sex, but love then I was happy. If it had a sexy highlander, well then I had to have it.LOL

Now, I would honestly love to see more true straight romances. No paranormal whatever,no mystery/suspense, just a straight story of hero and heroine meeting falling in love, facing a challenge or two(like a lie told break them up, or an over protective daddy), but in the end, love wins all.

And I took would like to see more tension than just hey I think you set me on fire, lets get it on, oh wait we have a killer chasing us, or your ex is nuts, or whatever.....Don't get me wrong, I like sex and while I've been reading a few erotica, I find I want more and more to read just a straight romance and it's hard to find them.

Anyone got suggestions for just straight romances?

Oh and I want that bag!!!! My mom talked a woman into giving her one, but I didn't get one....see me crying? don't you feel sorry for me?

kim said...

read a few harlequins my mother had lying around, but the first (aside from the previously (in other comments) mentioned and hated sheikh/kidnapping) romance i read that i still remember was johanna lindsey's defy not the heart, complete with fabio on the cover. funny considering i don't read historicals now. decent book, read it a few times through in fact. stood out from other 80s romances in that the heroine actually had a spine and was sassy, loved that.

what i wish i could see more of? romantic suspense/adventure series's (god i dont feel like looking up the rules to plural that at midnight so please just roll with it) where the heroines are as tough as the alpha males, the males are OK WITH IT, and both get to appear in future adventures in the series, not just the dudes. think brockmann's alyssa. hell that's what i wish for in real life too ;p also like the pushing the emotional edge of ward's books. not uber well crafted books individually i'll grant, but the cancer and ~death of the two human females were jarring, and jarring isn't something you always find... a welcome change. OH and what i'm really looking forward to find is the rest of the virtual series ;-D [waggles eyebrows]

qt said...

My first adult romance novel was "Her Brother's Keeper" by Patricia Coughlin. A Silhouette Special Edition #726. I remember picking this book up because it was the only book that didn't feature Fabio on the cover. Something about Fabio's hair freaked me out.

Though, I consider the Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys Supermysteries as my first exposure to the romantic genre. Also, my first exposure to how cool it'd be to drive a Mustang GTO.

With the Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys Supermystery it wasn't all about how Frank Hardy would save Nancy Drew. In fact, Nancy saved Frank a couple times. Go girl power!

And Nancy and Frank were always fighting their attraction to one another as they were already dating others. But something about Nancy/Frank drew the other. But no! It was FORBIDDEN!

I like any romantic novel where the girl doesn't play stupid/cowering helpless waif who has to wait for the guy to save her. Throw in some witty repartee between the principal characters and some sexual tension, and you've got a good story.

And if you could make the cover model have six-pack abs, chiseled hairless chest, clean shaven and close cropped locks...

Jude said...

This is such a fun thread to read. :)

yovana88 said...

My first book was "Killjoy" by Sandra Brown. I loved it because the characters were so wonderful and the story kept me turning the pages. I was only 13 at the time and I remember I picked it from the library because I was home sick. I've been hooked on reading ever since.

As for current romances, I don't mind having the occasional sex scene here and there, but I'd rather have that tension oozing from the pages a la Hell/Jed. It's so much more satisfying, isn't it?

PS> Delicious bag. Really colourful.

Andrea said...

My first real romance was probably "Bet Me" by Jenny Crusie. I probably read 'Romance' books before, and I was definitely into books that had romances in the plot, but this was the first book that made me take notice of the Romance genre in the good way. I loved it, I read it twice from cover to cover in about 48 hours. With 8 hours of sleep in there.

What I want more of is the genuine sexual tension. I love the wanting, but not being able to. Especially if that is followed by two people getting to know each other. Most of the time when people fall into bed right away I'm less caught up in their story. I love the tension of the almost kiss and the emotional rollercoaster of wanting to be kissed.

But I have to say I HATE the 'interruptus' method of prolonging sexual tension. Kissing is one thing, but getting really close then backing off because of something I might consider stupid is just irritating.

Tressa said...

My first book was Devil's Desire by Laurie McBain. I want more relationship building, more sexual tension, more humor, more getting to know the person before the sex, so that when the sex happens, it means more than a one night stand. I want an alpha male who has no idea how to handle what is happening to him because he has never experienced it with anyone before. I want them to be mates for life, where they are half a person if something happens to the other. I want intensity. I want more Gennita Low.

Anonymous said...

my first romance book was an anthology called Upon A Midnight Clear with a story by Linda Howard called "White Out". I had no idea such things existed, had been a mystery reader for years. I've been hooked ever since. Collection is 5400 and counting. I want a non-wimpy heroine, or at least one who learns to be strong during the course of the book, and a man who is confident and protective. If he starts out too arrogant, he'd better learn something by the end of the book!
Kay S.

Maria said...

First romance was a Harlequin romance written by Susan Barrie back in 1968. My cousin Debbie, who was two years older, gave it to me while we were visiting during that summer. I can't remember the name of the book but it involved a schloss in Switzerland.

Gennita said...

These are great, guys! Contest is open all weekend long! I'll pick a winner Sunday evening.

CrystalGB said...

My first romance was a Harlequin Presents by Carole Mortimer. I was a preteen and my mom chose which romance books I could read.

Anonymous said...

My first romance was a Silhouette series by Nora Roberts about an author and an anthropologist. The humor was fantastic. That was followed by on by Linda Howard (maybe Eye of the Tiger). I think this was the beginning of Silhouettes Intimate Moments line. I still read Roberts and Howard today and still consider them some of my favorite authors.

Currently, I seem to be enjoying urban fantasy and spy stories. Whatever I read, I always appreciate humor, whether light or dark.

I cannot wait for for your release from Samhain publishing. I am so excited for you.

I appreciate you wanting to share your goodies. Happy writing.

S. Stron

Tamara Westphal-Holbert said...

Let me see if I can remember it.. My first romance novel. That was it right? My first romance novel was "Forever" by Judy Blume. I first read it when I was ten or eleven years old. OOO WEEE, did I think I was reading something reeeally naughty!!! I suppose with me being eleven and it being the 1970's , it was quite risque'!! Soon after , I ... Read Moregraduated to "Sweet Savage Love"by Rosemary Rogers and "Loveswept"by Lynne Lowry. "Steve Morgan" taught me that I really do love the bad boys and "Jared Northrup" convinced me that I should name my first born after him! Well, I never did choose to become a mom but, "Jared" is still my fave boy name!! In my opinion, the aforementioned novels still stand the test of time. I may now sometimes want a little more steam and spice or to visit paranormal land but, that's the glory of books isn't it? We may go wherever and with whomever we desire. Thanks Jenn!! :)

Susan said...

Gosh...I can't remember the title but I know it was a Barbara Cartland book. My older sister got me reading them. I love the happily ever after first off. And I love the rich characterizations where I can totally visualize what the author is trying to do - from the characters to the places. I also love learning new things - I learned so much (and retained!) about the Ton reading my historicals! and I also admit to enjoying the sweetness of romance (mixed it with my steamy scenes!).

Dara Edmondson said...

My first was Sydney Sheldon's The Other Side of Midnight. Read it aloud at summer camp by flashlight with half a dozen other pre-pubescent girls crowing around me.


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