Mmm, Hot Chocolate…

I’ve just returned from spending a few days in Belgium, based in the beautiful city of Bruges, famous for its canals and historic bell tower, and of course, for being the setting of the brilliant black comedy In Bruges, but the friend I travelled with and I also found time to visit Ghent and Brussels. I chose Brussels as the setting for my Tirgearr novella, One Night in Brussels, because it’s a fascinating place, mixing old and new. It’s only a short journey from the modern political hub of the European Union headquarters to the historic Grote Markt, with its incredible fairytale buildings that stand as a tribute to the city’s past.

img_1142Belgium is also well known for its chocolate, and if you want to sample the very best cup of hot chocolate the city has to offer (a must on a cold and windy day like the one I just spent there) you need to take a ten-minute walk from the Grote Markt to the Quai aux Briques, in the shadow of St Catherine’s church. There you’ll find the shop cum cafe of Frederic Blondeel, where you can drink what I can only describe as liquid heaven. You can have your chocolate straight up, if you like it dark and intense, or with additions including honey, vanilla, and even a hint of chili. (And the little piece of pistachio cake – scoffed by both of us before the photo was taken – and gianduja praline were a perfect accompaniment.) Blondeel also produces a range of truffles and chocolates in just about every flavour you can think of and some more unusual ones, such as Earl Grey, cardamom and pink pepper. You can find these in our favourite chocolate shop in the city, Elisabeth on the Rue au Beurre, who also stock gorgeous treats like Bakker Danny’s Zwevezeelse florentines, topped with butter cream and white chocolate, and their own mello-cakes – a luxury version of the chocolate teacake.

Chocolate shops may not feature in One Night in Brussels, but the couple at the heart of the story, SaOne_Night_in_Brussels_by_Elizabeth_Coldwell-500skia and Dominic, certainly get to discover many of the city’s other attractions, as well as having a run-in with a robber who threatens to make their night together memorable for all the wrong reasons. Of course, if Dominic hadn’t made off with a necklace from a jeweller’s close to the Grote Markt, he and Saskia might not have found themselves in quite so much trouble. But if you want to learn how they get out of their predicament, and what comes of their growing attraction to one another, One Night in Brussels is available until March 8th for the special price of 99p from Amazon UK as part of Tirgearr Publishing’s fifth birthday bash. It’s best read with a cup of something nice…

 

Tirgearr Is Five…

…and to celebrate, they’re throwing a big birthday bash. There’s a huge prize giveaway with a top prize of a Kindle Fire HD8 tablet, as well as loads of print books, ebooks and Tirgearr teeshirts. The competition runs until March 8th, and you can click on the image below to enter via Rafflecopter:

tirgearr-birthday-graphic

As well as the giveaway, lots of Tirgearr’s books are on sale for 99p, including my City Nights novella, One Night in Brussels. Here’s the blurb for the story:

Saskia van Gaal works as a translator for the European Commission, dreaming of a life filled with excitement and hot sex. When she bumps into suave, sexy Englishman, Dominic May, and offers to be his tour guide in the beautiful city of Brussels, she doesn’t realise she’s about to embark on the wildest night of her life.

A stolen necklace is only the beginning of the adventure, and when Dominic and Saskia are threatened by a knife-wielding robber, things threaten to spiral out of control.

Has Saskia misjudged Dominic? Should she trust him? And as their sex games grow hotter and ever more inventive, can she ever guess how this night will end?

One Night in Brussels is available at the special price of 99p from Amazon UK until March 8th.

And if you’d like to know more about one of Brussels’ best-kept secrets – where to get the best cup of hot chocolate in the city – come back to the Naughty Corner tomorrow and I’ll reveal all!

 

Interview With Jan Graham

Jan Graham is my guest at the Naughty Corner, with plenty to share about her Tirgearr City Nights erotic novella, One Night in Sydney, which launches today.

Nice to have you here, Jan. Tell us a little about your City Nights story, One Night in Sydney?

onenightinsydneybyjangraham200Well, to state the obvious, it’s set in Sydney, Australia. Lol. The story starts with Abby and Kane meeting on a plane while they travel to the city, both for very different reason. As the story unfolds readers discover that the couple have more in common than just an overnight fling. As time passes, tension and high emotions come into play with both Abby and Kane faced with choices they never anticipated having to make.

Out of all the major cities in Australia, why did you choose Sydney as the setting for the book?

I chose Sydney for a couple of reason. Firstly, I’m very familiar with Sydney and what the city has to offer visitors. I live about two hours away from Sydney so have spent a bit of time there, especially in my younger years. Secondly, I wanted to incorporate a festival or event of some sort into the story and Sydney has a great event called Vivid. Basically artists set up light and art displays all over the city, images are projected onto some of the major attractions like the Harbour Bridge and Opera House. There are also street performers and concerts organised during the two-week long festival. It’s amazing to see.

The couple in your story, Abigail and Kane, meet on a plane. Have you ever had any interesting experiences while flying?

I have actually. On a flight to Melbourne about ten years ago I drew the attention of a football team, yes the whole team. I spent the flight fending off advances and offers to join the mile-high club. Some of the offers were tempting but I declined on all counts. I did leave the plane with offers to join the group at the Spring Racing Carnival and lots of phone numbers. I was very flattered…lol.

If you were going to spend 24 hours with a hot stranger, which city would you choose to do it in, and why?

I’d probably choose Edinburgh. I’ve always wanted to visit Scotland and there’d be a good chance my hot stranger might be even sexier than I imagined if he was wearing a kilt. You can’t beat a man in a kilt. J

You write erotic fiction in a variety of genres. Which is your favourite to write?

I love writing erotic romantic suspense. The challenge of weaving a suspenseful story together fires up my imagination. Of course they take longer to write due to the length of the book and the added research needed to devise a credible plot. It’s all worth it though.

Is there any genre you actively avoid writing, or that doesn’t interest you as a reader?

I wouldn’t write historical romance. I don’t mind reading it but to write anything historical doesn’t tweak my interest at all.

A lot of your work has BDSM themes. What interests you about the BDSM dynamic?

I’ve been involved in the BDSM scene for about fifteen years so I have a personal interest in how the practice is portrayed. When I write a story that has BDSM elements I try to make them reflect reality. The BDSM isn’t the story, it’s only a part of it because one or more of the characters is a Dom or a sub, for example.

What are you reading at the moment?

I’m currently reading Dark Promises by Christine Feehan. I love paranormal romances and in particular vampires so Christine ticks all my paranormal boxes. 🙂

What is your next writing project?

I’m working of two things at the moment. The next book in the Wylde Shore Series, Tempting Marcus. It’s a romantic suspense novel and like the others involves appearances by characters from the previous books as well as some new ones. The second book that’s yelling out at me is a love story based on a true story. I haven’t got a title for that one yet but it will come in time.

What is the one thing about you that would surprise people reading this interview?

I think I mentioned it earlier, I’m a member of the BDSM community. Although I guess that’s not surprising now having already stated it. 🙂

Blurb:

Abigail Devon is all about business, until the dream of keeping her company alive fails and she finds herself seeking distraction in the arms of a tempting stranger she met on the plane. Kane Matheson is a man like no other, and once Abby gives into her attraction to him, passions spark and a night of erotic pleasure begins.

Kane can’t believe his luck when his flight to Sydney places Abby along his path to a fun filled weekend. She’s his kind of woman—business minded, clever, and with curves in all the right places. When he discovers they have more in common than savvy business expertise and undeniable sexual heat, he’s faced with a daunting choice, and left wondering if pleasure can win out over wise business sense in one of the most beautiful harbor side cities of the world.

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2aRozej

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2aHdEUP

Nook: http://bit.ly/2agGsFF

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2azWTcH

iBooks: http://apple.co/2azWBTc

Smashwords: http://bit.ly/2ataqaC

Bio:

Writing a bio that lets readers know who you are is tricky at times because I describe myself in so many ways. Like l13aeki8my books I fall into different genres, all of which depend on my mood and inspiration at the time. I am a writer, submissive, orphan, widow, sister, aunt, friend and sometimes, a wild child.

My writing currently falls under a variety of genres including BDSM, contemporary romance and romantic suspense but who knows where my literary future will lead. That’s going to be the next exciting chapter.

You can find out more about me and my work by stalking the following sites.

http://www.jangraham.com.au

http://jangraham.blogspot.com

https://www.facebook.com/JanGrahamAuthorpage/

https://twitter.com/jan_graham

https://au.pinterest.com/JanGrahamauthor/

https://www.goodreads.com/jangraham

Book Review: Running Man By Jennifer Young

Giorgia Manfredi has been groomed to work in the family’s hotel on the shores of Lake Garda, and has never reallyrunning-man experienced a life outside its walls. When she’s the victim of an attempted mugging, she wants to thank Danny Davies, the mysterious man who returned her bag. Danny has secrets he’d rather Giorgia didn’t know about, and so he runs into the shadows where he feels more comfortable. As the fortunes of the Manfredis and the Davies grow increasingly entwined and the differences between Danny and Giorgia come sharply into focus, can a boy from the wrong side of the tracks really find happiness with a girl who’s never known anything but luxury?

Running Man is the third book in Jennifer Young’s Lake Garda series, and while this story concentrates on Giorgia where the previous books, A Portrait of My Love and Coming Home, have featured her older sister, Leona, you really need to read Coming Home first, as Running Man deals with the fall-out from the big revelations in that book and so contains plot spoilers. Taken in isolation, Running Man is an enjoyable and twisty thriller that has fun with the well-worn trope of opposites attracting. Danny is smitten with Giorgia at first sight, and the attraction is strong and mutual, but there’s a rival for her affections in her fellow hotel employee, Matt. However, Matt’s intentions may not be as honorable as they seem. He’s in danger of losing his beloved boat, the Rosaria, because he’s overstretched himself financially to pay for her, so getting involved with a wealthy heiress could be the answer to all his problems. Throw Danny’s brother and petty crook, Will, into the mix, and things become darker and even more complicated…

For fans of sweet romance, and readers who are keen to find out how the events of Coming Home have resolved themselves, this is the perfect light read. Danny and Giorgia have realistic problems to overcome, rather than the artificial conflicts that are so often used to keep a couple apart, and their romance is played out against a backdrop of compelling family tensions. Running Man feels like a natural conclusion to the Lake Garda series, but given the Manfredis’ sprawling family structure, who’s to say new relatives couldn’t be introduced for future books.

Running Man is available from Amazon US, Amazon UK and Smashwords, and you can find out more about Jennifer Young on her Tirgearr author page.

Tirgearr’s Smash-ing Offer!

One_Night_in_Brussels_by_Elizabeth_Coldwell-500If you’re looking to stock up on holiday reading, here’s something that will help you load up your e-reader. Tirgearr are having a sale at Smashwords throughout July, and you can get 50 per cent off all their titles. This includes the City Nights erotic romance series, so if you’re travelling to New York, Madrid, Dublin, Amsterdam, San Francisco or Barcelona, to name only a few, you can enjoy a story that’ll give you the authentic flavour of a city combined with some hot and sensual sex. Or you could try my contribution to the series, One Night in Brussels, and discover there’s more to Belgium than an under-achieving football team. (Too soon?)

All the details of this offer are on the banner below – click on it to be taken straight to the Smashwords site.

tirgearr smashwords sale

Book Review: Going Back by Jennifer Young

GoingBackbyJenniferYoung-200Leona Castellano has only just returned from an eventful trip to Italy where she was the victim of a kidnapping , but she’s already planning her return. She hopes she can end the feud between her own family and that of the man she’s falling in love with, Nico Manfredi, and is prepared to do whatever it takes to bring about a reconciliation. However, she hasn’t counted on the Manfredi family’s bitter old patriarch, Faustino. The last thing Faustino wants to see is his grandson in love with a Castellano, and so he reveals a shocking secret that threatens to destroy Leona and Manfredi’s relationship almost before it’s begun…

Going Back is Book Two in the Lake Garda series, but it doesn’t matter if you haven’t read the first book in the series, A Portrait of My Love, because Jennifer Young swiftly fills in the events that have brought Leona to this point.  The story offers two romances for the price of one, as Leona’s mother, Alexandra, who has her ow n troubled history with the Manfredis and a desire to keep Leona and Nico apart, is coming to realise the true extent of own feelings for the man she married on the rebound, Simon Smart, and believes there’s still a chance for them to find love even though they’ve been divorced for years. Their gentle but sincere attraction is in contrast to the hotter burn of the passion between the feisty Leona and  the equally impetuous Nico, who both tend to act first and consider the consequences afterwards.

A good chunk of the action is set in and around  the town of Verona, including a visit made by Alexandra and Simon to Juliet’s balcony, and the tale of Romeo and Juliet is a strong influence on Going Back. But Young gives the concept of warring families a contemporary twist or two, making you root for both Leona and Nico as they attempt to thwart Faustino’s evil plans.

My only quibble is that the chapters from Leona’s point of view are told in the first person and those of the other characters in the third person, a stylistic choice I’ve never been very keen on – I’d rather see all first person or all third person. But that’s a personal preference and one that doesn’t really detract from the gripping storyline and the satisfying emotional resolution. For fans of sweet romance with a dash of suspense, and those who dream of love under the Italian sun, Going Back is a recommended read.

Going Back is published by Tirgearr and is available from retailers including Amazon US, Amazon UK, Smashwords, and Apple.

Book Review: One Night In Pamplona By JD Martins

one night in pamplonaJeff is an American tourist in Spain, enjoying a break from his stressful job in a Boston law firm. He’s arrived in Pamplona at the height of the famous San Fermin festival, a time when the whole town dresses in red and white and gets together to dance, drink, pelt each other with saffron powder, enjoy the fireworks displays and, of course, run with the bulls through the town’s narrow streets. It’s also traditional for single people to go on the hunt for fun and flirtation, and while Jeff doesn’t have any plans to ditch his bachelor lifestyle, the festival’s intoxicating atmosphere soon has him in the mood to make the most of his stay and hook up with someone. When he meets local girl Idoia and practices his rusty Spanish on her, he’s initially drawn by her beauty, but Idoia is more than just a pretty face. She knows exactly what she wants from life, with plans to travel and enjoy a good career. More than that, she’s feisty and has a sense of adventure that matches Jeff’s. With her by his side, Jeff knows he’ll have a better time at the festival than he could ever have hoped for, but will his insistence on joining in the bull run against Idoia’s wishes end their budding romance before it’s even begun.

One Night in Pamplona is a breezy, captivating romp through a beautiful Spanish city in the company of an engaging hero and heroine. Jeff and Idoia are two well-matched characters, both with a stubborn streak and a refreshing sense of self-awareness, and their mutual attraction, though very swift, is believable . JD Martins evokes the sights and sounds of the San Fermin Festival, plunging the reader into streets crowded with revellers and beautifully describing Pamplona’s historic buildings. Much of the sex in the story takes place in semi-public places, and has a heat and urgency that will immediately draw you in. While any conflict in the story is resolved pretty easily, this is overall a fun and upbeat read that will have you longing for a Spanish sojourn of your own. And as the author is donating 10 per cent of royalties to the World Wildlife Fund, you’ll also be doing good by treating yourself to this book

Find out more about One Night In Pamplona, and JD Martins, at http://tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Martins_JD/one-night-in-pamplona.htm And don’t forget the Tirgearr anniversary sale runs until February 29th, with lots of titles marked down to just 99p/99c.