Archive for September 11th, 2012

The blurb:

Sarah Murphy plans other people’s weddings. She’s gorgeous and successful, but she also carries a dark secret.

At one of her events, she meets Joe Sullivan, a sexy photographer with a difficult past of his own. When he snaps a rare unguarded photograph of her and captures the real person hiding behind the facade, she feels exposed. To restore the upper hand, she tries to do what she always does: use sex to defuse the situation.

While Joe is eager to deepen his relationship with Sarah, he’s aware of her emotional shield and the way she disconnects from her body. Seeing her at her most vulnerable doesn’t scare him off, but he needs to know what she’s hiding.

Sarah has a tough decision to make. Does she want to go on living a lonely, emotionally frozen life? Or can she finally risk revealing the truth and move forward with Joe?

When Sarah is unable to control the situation with Joe with sex as she has done many times, it starts a cascade of emotions that she never wanted to deal with. Not only has she found a man that she can’t go numb on, the mentally ill uncle that raped her as a teen is back in her life, dying of cancer. As she tries to push all those feelings down and be the support system her mother needs, everything comes tumbling down. The fear, guilt, and self mutilation she thought she had conquered years ago are back and she can’t get the emotional distance she has used to survive all these years.

Fault Lines is a stark and raw story of recovery. While beautifully written, it was difficult to read at times. It’s novella length but I had to take frequent breaks because it can be overwhelming. It brought tears more than once as Sarah broke and struggled to find her way back. The moment when she decides to confide in Joe was perfect and the scenes with her best friend Jane were some of the best moments of female friendship that I’ve read in romance. There are no secrets between them and Jane is fierce in her love for her troubled friend.

Jane gripped Sarah’s wrist, hard. “You listen to me.”

“No, Jane, it’s—”

“No! Listen to me. You were a kid. Fourteen is not an adult. Especially not when the person hurting you is someone you trusted and someone you loved. It is not your fault, Sarah. Do you hear me? Just because your mother didn’t see it doesn’t mean it wasn’t wrong. Even if you tell her and she ends up defending him, it won’t mean that it wasn’t wrong. He raped you. You were not to blame for that.”

Sarah wrapped her fingers around Jane’s grip and leaned her forehead against their joined hands. Her whole body shook.

“Don’t worry about forgiving him, Sarah. Whatever it is you think you did…you need to see it for what it is. It wasn’t your fault. If you want to forgive someone, start with yourself.”

The only problem I had with Fault Lines is it is labeled as romance and I don’t feel that it is. Sarah and Joe have very little page time together and when the “I love you”s came, I didn’t buy it. It is also told entirely from Sarah’s POV and I think that added to the non-romance feel. Joe was more of the supporting cast than the hero and his importance to the story was less than Jane’s or Sarah’s mom.

If the book was just fiction, I would have given it 5 stars.  It was amazing and I would love to read another story about Sarah a few years into her recovery. But given the romance label it has and the unfulfilled expectations that gives, I’m giving it a 4.

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: September 24th, 2012
Format: Digital

Barnes & Noble

Read Full Post »

This summer has been a marked change of pace from the previous year for the Arend family. Last year we were finishing up a round North America RV tour. This year we’re setting down roots and have begun building a house.


It’s a vast change from waking up in the RV and shuffling around other people in the confines of the camper. While we’re building, we’re renting a house, and my husband, daughter and I have way more room to spread out.


So why do we all end up in the same five feet of space at the same time every morning?


It’s like some on-going comedy routine. The kitchen in the rental house is a decent size, and well laid out, but we still seem to all get caught between the kettle, the fridge and the toaster. Someone is putting away the clean dishes, someone is making breakfast. Under each other’s feet seems to be the natural situation we gravitate toward.


Fortunately, we like each other, so even when there are elbows bumping, tempers stay in control (—most of time. Just don’t stop me from getting my coffee…)


This week SILVER MINE is out. The second book in the Takhini Wolves takes the hero/heroine from the confines of a small veterinary office into the great wilderness of the northern Yukon. And sure enough, no matter how much space they have around them—yup. They end up right in each other’s way most of the time.


Which isn’t really a bad place to be in the end, since Shelley and Chase have more in common than they first think. They’re both determined to do what’s right, both strong and caring individuals. Maybe that’s why they end up together so much—just like my family and I, at the root of it all, we like each other.


Stumbling around in a crowded area together is more fun than being in a big space all by ourselves.






Silver Mine:
 Takhini Wolves, Book 2

(Digital release Sept 11, 2012. Print Trade August 2103)


If a tree falls in the forest, duck…


Life in isolation is the safest place for Chase Johnson, a crossbreed who doesn’t know which form he’ll assume next—cougar or wolf. Once a year, his unelected position as spokesman for the Yukon outcasts forces him to visit civilization. This time he runs across someone unexpected. She’s not his mate, but she pushes all the right buttons.


It’s taken years for Shelley Bradley to gather the courage to return to her home pack. In spite of being the lowest of the low—a shifter who can’t shift—she’s determined to make a place for herself as the Whitehorse locals’ new vet-slash-doctor.


There’s definite electricity between her and Chase, but sex with fellow shifters and the inherent mind games got old a long time ago. Ignoring him seems best. When he shows up at her office with a wound that won’t heal, she’s stuck—yet drawn to solve this medical mystery.


As they journey deep into outcast territory in search of answers, their powerful sexual attraction crumbles her resistance. But time is of the essence. If a cure can’t be found before his human and cougar succumb to his injury, he—and others like him—will die.


Warning: Contains a silver-tongued, hairy-chested, lean-muscled Alpha who’s got what it takes to lead in the wilderness and in the bedroom. Yeah, I know…not really much of a deterrent, is it? Throw in continuing territorial wars and a domestic cat. Stir and enjoy the chaos.




Buy Links:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble


Vivian Arend in one word: Adventurous. In a sentence: Willing to try just about anything once. That wide-eyed attitude has taken her around North America, through parts of Europe, and into Central and South America, often with no running water.


Her optimistic outlook also meant that when challenged to write a book, she gave it a shot, and discovered creating worlds to play in was nearly as addictive as traveling the real one.  Now a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of both contemporary and paranormal stories, Vivian continues to explore, write and otherwise keep herself well entertained.


Vivian Arend: Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads




Leave a comment to win a copy of the first book in the series, Black Gold, in the winner’s choice of print or ebook. What room of the house does your family end up all gathering in at the same time? Or where at work do you find it the most crowded?

Read Full Post »