Winner of the Amie Denman giveaway!

Her Lucky CatchThanks so much to everyone who commented on my interview with contemporary romance novelist Amie Denman. And thanks to Amie for her fantastic, thoughtful answers.

The very lucky winner of Her Lucky Catch is…Na S!

Na, if it’s all right with you, I’ll give Amie your email address so she can send you the digital book.

Everyone, this week you can enter to win Samantha Grace’s debut Miss Hillary Schools a Scoundrel.

And remember, every time you comment before March 13th you’ll be entered into my $25 book gift certificate giveaway. If you haven’t subscribed to my blog yet, please do so!

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

Interview with Amie Denman—and giveaway!

Amie DenmanLast month, I was lucky enough to get to read an advance copy of Amie Denman’s HER LUCKY CATCH. I loved it so much it became one of my top contemporary romance reads for February. Laugh-out-loud funny with a down-to-earth heroine, Her Lucky Catch caught me from its opening pages.

I’m so glad to have Amie here today. Her Lucky Catch is coming out on February 27th, and Amie’s giving away a copy to one lucky commenter, so make sure you say hello or ask her a question!

Welcome, Amie!

1. I love hearing new authors’ publication stories. How did it happen for you?

I’ve been writing a novel in my head, on paper, or with a keyboard for twenty years. My early manuscript attempts look like a technology timeline! Big square floppy disks, zip drives, discarded laptops, sleek thumb drives, and even stacks of paper give testimony to my undying desire to keep trying to find a home for the characters in my head.

Her Lucky CatchHer Lucky Catch was, I think, the sixth full-length novel I finished—maybe the seventh, there were a few forgettable ones along the way…

Although I’d submitted earlier manuscripts to different houses and gathered many rejections, Carina Press was the first and only place I sent Her Lucky Catch.

I had a wonderful gut feeling about Carina before it even opened its doors. I attended the Carina “launch party” at the Romantic Times Convention in 2010 and sat in the back of the room listening with fascination to Angela James and other Harlequin executives talk about the new line. I resolved then to write something fresh to submit. Her Lucky Catch was a bit of a risk for me because it was the first novel I had written in the first person with comic intentions.

Turns out, I loved using that voice. Carina must have liked it, too, because I did NOT get a rejection. Instead, I got a very polite “revise and resubmit” from Angela James. I considered this hugely encouraging and knocked myself out making the suggested changes.

I’ll admit, I was a little less enthusiastic when I got a second “revise and resubmit” but I didn’t give up. I figured if my wonderful Carina editor, Gina Bernal, saw enough potential in the manuscript to ask for another revision, it really was a good sign.

A few months later, I received a message on my answering machine from Carina with an offer of publication. I had to rush upstairs to my computer to read the follow-up email confirming the offer—just in case a prank caller decided to pose as Angela James. I still get a tidal wave of happy endorphins just remembering the moment I got the offer.

And I believe in signs! The day I sent off the second “R & R,” I hopped in my car to go shopping. I got stuck behind a slow boat on a trailer on the highway. The boat’s name? Sunshine. In Her Lucky Catch, my hottie fireman Kurt uses the nickname Sunshine for my heroine. I smiled all the way home.

2. Her Lucky Catch is set in the quirky town of Bluegill. Have you ever lived in a place like Bluegill? Is it based on somewhere you know, or is it purely from your imagination?

Although the name has been changed to protect the innocent (and the guilty—I’m an equal opportunity author), I live in a town that is exactly like Bluegill. It’s a wonderful place on a lake in the Midwest that happens to have a quaint marina and a snazzy fireboat just like in Her Lucky Catch. It’s the kind of town where kids learn to ride bikes in the church parking lot, people leave their houses unlocked, and secrets have a very short shelf-life.

3. You have Her Lucky Catch coming out this month from Carina Press, and you also have a couple of books out with Turquoise Morning Press. What’s it like working with two publishers?

Blue Bottle BeachMy experience with both houses has been overwhelmingly positive and a great opportunity to connect with a circle of authors and learn from them. Turquoise Morning Press is a smaller press than Carina, but it is also only a few years old. It’s exciting to be fairly close to the ground floor at both places, and I think both of them really want to “grow” their authors. Gosh, I hope so!

My novels with Turquoise Morning Press, Blue Bottle Beach and Will Work for Love (October 2012), are more serious contemporary romances. I’m hoping—fingers crossed!—Her Lucky Catch might have a sibling with Carina in the next year.

4. Her Lucky Catch isn’t out yet but it’s already getting really good reviews. Do you have something special lined up to celebrate release day?

Being featured on terrific blogs like yours is a great way to celebrate. Thanks very much for your generous review and invitation to be here today.

What will I do on the actual release date? My friends have asked the same thing. Seriously, this is a dream come true! It’s tempting to dial 911 and ask for a truck full of the hottest firefighters in town to help me celebrate. Think they’d let me blow the siren?

Honestly, I’ll probably look at the Carina website or Amazon twelve million times then go out to dinner with my family. I believe Jazz would recommend a margarita or two and I know just the place.

5. Your writing style reminded me a lot of Kristan Higgins. You have funny characters but also a lot of poignant scenes. Who are some of the authors who’ve inspired you?

For great stories and a laugh, I go with Janet Evanovich, Kristan Higgins, Jill Shalvis, and Shannon Stacey. For a more serious romantic read, I love Julia Quinn, Mary Balogh, Lisa Kleypas, Susan Wiggs, and Nora Roberts.


Amie’s giving away a digital copy of Her Lucky Catch to one person who leaves a comment. I’ll randomly choose a winner on Tuesday February 28th!

Commenters will also automatically be entered into my $25 gift certificate giveaway.

Contemporaries to covet in February – & giveaway!

Every month, I’m giving you the chance to win a $10 book gift certificate for yourself AND one of your favorite contemporary romance authors.

How? Easy. Just let me know which contemporary romance novel being published this month you’re looking forward to reading. You can even mention one of the ones I recommend below. I’ll choose one winner and send that person a gift certificate. I’ll also send a gift certificate to the author they mention in their comment, on their behalf.

Giveaway details are at the bottom of this post. But first, there are a couple of contemporary romance novels I’ve read advanced copies of and can totally recommend. They’re both really fun, funny and entertaining books, so I hope you get a chance to read them!

Time Out by Jill Shalvis

(Read an excerpt on Jill’s blog)

Sign up for recreational adult programs now!
Class: How to Drive Him Crazy

Instructional program for women unexpectedly facing the totally dishy guy from their past. Everyone Welcome!

Time OutNHL coach Mark Diego’s plan to spend his off-season volunteering in his hometown goes awry when he learns that not only is he coaching teenage girls, but that the program is coordinated by energetic (and five feet two inches of trouble) coordinator Rainey Saunders, his childhood friend–and the woman he could never stand to see dating any other guy…

When their tempers flare, Mark and Rainey discover their fireworks don’t just burn angry–they burn very, very, hot! But that’ll just sweeten the victory. Because Mark always plays to win. And with Rainey, he’s planning on playing very dirty too…

224 pages
Publisher: Harlequin Blaze
Publication date: 21 Feb 2012

My opinion:

4 out of 5 stars!

Not only is this novel super hot, but it has all of Jill Shalvis’s trademark snort-out-loud humor and gut-twisting emotion. I absolutely LOVE Jill Shalvis and am convinced she couldn’t write a bad book.

This is her first Blaze for a while, and it’s wonderful to see how much conflict and energy she can pack into even this shorter format.

Her Lucky Catch by Amie Denman

Her Lucky CatchRecently divorced kindergarten teacher Jazz Shepherd is starting a new life in the quaint lakeside town of Bluegill. After taking a summer job at the local marina to help make ends meet, she’s stunned when the chief of police enlists her help in solving a crime.

Money has been disappearing from the city coffers, and a trail leads from Bluegill’s mayor to Damien Cerberus, a rich boat owner—and possible killer. The police chief is short-staffed and in need of someone to keep tabs on the suspect. Jazz’s job at the marina puts her in the perfect position to help—and puts her in the path of Kurt Reynolds, the hottie who mans the fireboat.

When things with Kurt start heating up, how can Jazz keep her investigation undercover while enjoying time under the covers with her summer flame?

67,000 words
Publisher: Carina Press
Publication date: 27 Feb 2012

My opinion:

4 out of 5 stars!

Told in the first person by a heroine with a wonderfully quirky voice, this novel is a highly entertaining read. Amie Denman manages to keep it hot and exciting without being overly descriptive in sex scenes, making this a wonderful book for those of you who get uncomfortable reading about detailed sexual encounters.

Fans of Kristan Higgins will really enjoy Her Lucky Catch. I read it while traveling from Denmark to the Netherlands, and it had me laughing out loud instead of pissing myself with fear on the flight or throttling a conductor when my train home was delayed by an hour. Seriously, it takes a lot to keep me in a good mood through a journey like that, and Amie Denman accomplished it.


Answer one of the questions in bold below. By “contemporary romance” I mean romance between human beings set in the present day. It can be romantic suspense, inspirational, erotic, category-length or whatever.

I’ll choose one winner on Tuesday February 7th. That person will get a $10 gift certificate to the online book retailer of their choice, AND I’ll send the same to the author they mention.

If the winner mentions more than one author, I’ll ask her to choose which one gets the gift certificate.

This is open internationally.


What contemporary romance novel(s) are you looking forward to in February? Have you read anything by the authors I mentioned? Which of their books do you like best?