Guest Review of Amara Royce's Never Too Late, Super Sweet Award, and a Snip for ROW80 and the kcdyer Project August Check Ins!

Got a guest review today!

Amara Royce's Never Too Late is out now!

"Expect the unexpected, especially in a room filled with books...

Honoria Duchamp is well aware that men often consider widows easy prey for the role of mistress. What else could explain the attentions of handsome Lord Devin, and his visits to her bookshop? The much younger Viscount has even shown interest in the printing press with which she creates pamphlets on London’s basest injustices. Yet his chief interest appears to be in her...

Coerced to investigate Nora's controversial pamphlets, Devin expected to find a bookish matron. Instead, he is taken with Nora's womanly beauty, sharp intellect, and quick wit. Soon, what begins as an unwelcome task becomes a pleasure, and Devin's job becomes more dangerous -- for them both. For Nora has no idea of the vicious element she's crossed. Now Devin will risk his reputation to protect her -- and much more to win her love..."

And here is my friend Sarah Meral's review:

Amara Royce's debut Never Too Late was released in May this year, at first only as an e-book. Recently it has also become available in print. Amara was so kind to send me a print copy to Germany, since we can only get the e-book version here yet (and I prefer print books :-)).

The heroine of Never Too Late, Honoria, has a book store. I love that! As a book lover I would love to be surrounded by books the whole day :-) She is a strong woman, who faces danger to help and save others. She has a big heart. And she also has a great sense of humour ("show of daughter's teeth"), even when it sometimes only shows through her internals.

The Hero, Lord Alexander Devin, like Honoria cares for others, especially his family and he does everything to protect them.

The secondary characters are all wonderful, too. Especially Lady Devin, who is a colourful and lovely Lady. She is supportive and has a mind of her own.

In my opinion, it is the small details that make this book special. All chapters that feature Honoria's point of view at least once have "Evan's principles" at the beginning. These principles are short sentences explaining basic rules for business, but at the same time giving great advice for other situations [g] And the heroine isn't a young and unmarried girl, but older and widowed.

I love about the book, not only that the hero and heroine don't know each other's secrets, but that we readers have to guess as well :-) As readers, we are given more precise clues for the hero's secrets, but there are clues to Honoria's secrets from the beginning as well.
If you love historical books with strong heroes and heroines, this is a must read :-) 

Get your copy at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, eKensington Books, and other e-booksellers!

Cupcakes for all!

Glynis was passing out the Super Sweet Blog Award the other day, and now I'm passing it on to you! Who doesn't love a cupcake or two?

Here are the questions that go with it:

1. Cookies or Cake?

Cookies, I think. I only really like my mother's cheesecake!

2. Chocolate or Vanilla?

Chocolate! Of course. The darker the better.

3. Favourite sweet treat?

Really dark chocolate. Really high quality chocolate mousse or a chocolate eclair. With fruit!

4. When do you crave sweet things the most?

After one of those dinners that leaves you feeling satisfied and just full enough that you have room for dessert. What hobbits call the "filling in the corners" stage.

5. Sweet nickname?

I had a good friend once who called me Den-Den.

Mmm... I feel like licking icing now...

As for ROW80, I've been doing well! Submitted two queries and signed up for another check in, which ran only for the month of August, over at author kc dyer's blog. The best part about Project August is kc's incentives - she's donating books in the name of those who complete their projects to the Thistalah Memorial Library in Bella Bella, British Columbia!

Speaking of kc dyer, I entered the Surrey International Writers' Conference writing contest the other day.

There are four separate categories and there's still lots of time to enter:

SIWC Storyteller's Award: short stories 2,500 — 5,000 words
SIWC Non-fiction Award: maximum length 1,500 words
SiWC Writing For Young People Award: maximum length 1,500 words
SIWC Poetry Award: one poem per submission: 100 lines max.

That was the short story I finished. But I've also started typing up the prequel to Out of the Water, featuring Rosa's parents Santiago and Magdalena back when they first fell in love. This one's called Captive of the Sea, and the first line is:

I was born on King Arthur's grave.

Here's a wee snip from Chapter One:

"Santiago was a few streets away from the docks when he saw her.

She was on her father's arm. Rather, he hung on to hers. Through the curls of mist winding up from the river, Santiago watched them from across the street. Her slight figure, angular and awkward with new-maidenhood, yet with a burgeoning softness that promised a womanly fullness to come, was bent nearly double under the weight of the older man who stumbled alongside.

She hadn't sat with them in that back room at her father's warehouse, nor spoken more than two words in that soft enchanting lilt. He did not know whether she would be grateful for his help or resent his interference, but it was too late to wonder when he was already crossing the road, throwing his shoulders back and blinking hard in an effort to clear his drunken fog.

"Good evening, Master, milady." He made a leg.

She met his glance with an expression of pure defiance, eyes snapping in the flickering light of his torch. Her father was not in the habit, then, of drinking himself senseless."

What stories are you working on?

Any Labour Day weekend plans?

Oh, and look: an interview with the Whisky Trench Riders!

Any interesting new album releases you're looking forward to?


Zan Marie said…
I *love* Amara's NTL! Your snip is just a morsel and I want more, Deniz--Now! LOL! But I do understand the time it takes to get books out.

I'm still working on plugging holes in FF. We're going away for a couple of nights next Wednesday. Not Labor Day, but our anniversary. Will that do? ;-)
Deniz Bevan said…
oh, that's right, your anniversary is near mine! I was hoping for a weekend trip too... Hope you have a lovely time!
S.P. Bowers said…
Oooo, Love Sarah's Review. Anything that happens in a book shop is good. Though I don't think I could own one. I'd have a hard time selling the books.
Deniz Bevan said…
I'd have a hard time too, Sara.

Very happy that I could feature Sarah on the blog!
Crystal Collier said…
Okay, my TBR list is one book thicker. Whew! It sounds amazing.

What am I working on right now? I'm desperately trying finish book 2 (only 10K more to go!) while putting together all the publicity stuff for my debut release.

It's a busy life, eh?
Deniz Bevan said…
Good luck with both projects Crystal!
M Pax said…
That sounds like a wonderful book. I need to add that to my TBR.
Anonymous said…
Labor day plans? I'm going to Helen, GA for the weekend for our 31st anniversary!

I just put this book on my TBR list.
Congratulations! I crave something sweet after popcorn. Must be the salt.
I plan on hiding for most of Labor Day.
Editors At Work said…
Congratulations! That sounds like a wonderful book. I need to add that to my list.

Anonymous said…
Three, even four, posts in one ;)

Great review. I'll definitely check out the book.

Congrats on the award.

It sounds like you're making good progress on your goals. Way to go!

Good luck with the contest. Loved the snippet!

As for the long weekend...sleep! LOL, seriously, trying to get oldest wee beastie up and out the door on time has exhausted me. Not to mention killed my D&E.
Damyanti said…
A historical romance around books-- sure I'd love to download it :). Thanks for the review!
Lara Lacombe said…
Great review, Sarah!

Deniz, excellent first line for your short story--I want to read more! :)
Sarah Meral said…
Thanks for the nice feedback everyone :)
Thanks for telling me about the book, Deniz. I'd like to be surrounded by books all day too!

Cheesecake is one of my favorite things to eat. Congrats on your blog award.

I'm not sure what we're doing this Labor Day weekend. We just got back from a trip, so probably not much. School/work begins next week!

I've been editing as I receive feedback for an upper middle grade. I hope it's going to be query-worthy very soon.

Misha Gericke said…
You've sold me. I'll read it this weekend. ;-)
Anonymous said…
Great ROW80 update and that award has made me hungry.

Thanks for the book rec.
Anonymous said…
Always plenty going on over here! A bookstore? Sounds like a cool setting -- could be historical fiction in a few years. =[
Deniz Bevan said…
Thanks M, Lauralynn, Alex and Nas!

Hope you got lots of sleep in, Raelyn!

Thank you, Damyanti!

Ooh, I'm glad Lara.

Good luck, Theresa! Hope the querying goes smoothly.

Hope you like it, Misha!

Thanks Medeia and Milo!

Vielen Dank for being on the blog, Sarah :-)
Sarah Meral said…
Thanks again :)

And thank you Deniz for having me!

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