Archive for the ‘St. Martin's Press’ Category

He has a hungry mind.

Bad-boy chef Wes Murphy dreads his final semester cooking class—Food Chemistry 101—until he meets the new substitute teacher. Dr. Rosemary Wilkins is a feast for the eyes, though her approach to food is strictly academic. So Wes decides to rattle her Bunsen burner by asking for her hands-on advice—on aphrodisiacs . . .

She’s got love down to a science.

Rosemary is a little wary about working with Wes, whose casual flirtations leave her hot under the collar. But once they begin testing the love-enhancing power of chocolate, oysters, and strawberries, it becomes scientifically evident that the brainy science nerd and the boyish chef have some major chemistry together—and it’s delicious . . .


Opposites attract.  How many times have you heard that?  What a cliché!  But it proves the point that clichés exist for a reason—they so often contain a grain of truth.

Many of my favorite romances are between a hero and a heroine who could not be more different from each other, at least on the outside.  And it’s what I like to write, as well. There’s so much tension and drama inherent in a pairing like that!

Take Wes and Rosemary, the hero and heroine of my most recent Recipe for Love novel, JUST ONE TASTE.  Wes was raised running scams with his con-artist father, trained from a young age to trust his instincts and read people, the better to be able to manipulate them.  Rosemary was essentially ignored by her ambitious parents, and never learned to read people at all.  In fact, she has a hard time connecting with anyone.  Wes is at culinary school when we meet him, but never managed to finish high school.  Rosemary has multiple advanced degrees from Ivy League institutions.  Wes is a charmer; Rosemary is awkward and nerdy.

But for all their external differences, there is a core to each character that enables them to relate to one another.  For instance, both are dedicated to achieving excellence in their respective fields.  Both have felt alone for most of their lives.  And, most importantly, both are ultimately very accepting.  Wes never tries to change Rosemary, and vice versa—in the end, they love each other because of their differences, not in spite of them. What could be more romantic than that?

Who are some of your favorite odd couples from romances you’ve read?  I have an autographed set of my Recipe for Love series for one lucky reader!


Thank you to Louisa for joining us today! You can find out more about Louisa and her books at her website. Don’t forget to leave a comment for a chance to win the prize package pictured above.

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Visit Fireworks Over Toccoa before March 30th to enter Jeffrey Stepakoff’s Sweepstakes. One Grand Prize winner will win a gourmet romantic picnic basket for two along with their copy of Fireworks Over Toccoa300 runners-up will receive a copy of FIREWORKS OVER TOCCOA.

Every so often that story comes along that reminds us of what it’s like to experience love for the first time—against the odds, when you least expect it, and with such passion that it completely changes you forever.

An unexpected discovery takes eighty-four-year-old Lily Davis Woodward to 1945, and the five days that forever changed her life. Married for only a week before her husband was sent to fight in WWII, Lily is anxious for his return, and the chance to begin their life together. In honor of the soldiers’ homecoming, the small Georgia town of Toccoa plans a big celebration. And Jake Russo, a handsome Italian immigrant, also back from war, is responsible for the elaborate fireworks display the town commissioned. But after a chance encounter in a star-lit field, he steals Lily’s heart and soul—and fulfills her in ways her socially-minded, upper-class family cannot. Now, torn by duty to society and her husband—and the poor, passionate man who might be her only true love—Lily must choose between a commitment she’s already made and a love she’s never known before.

Fireworks Over Toccoa takes us to a moment in time that will resonate with readers long after the book’s unforgettable conclusion. A devastating and poignant story, this debut novel will resonate with anyone who believes in love.

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First in a breathtaking new series, the bold and passionate Lucan MacLeod—one of three brothers cursed by dark magic for eternity—is driven by desire for the one woman he dare not let himself possess…


He is magnificently strong—and dangerously seductive. One of the fiercest of his clan, Lucan MacLeod is a legend among warriors, inspiring fear in man and woman alike. For three hundred years, he has locked himself away from the world, hiding the vengeful god imprisoned in his soul. But then, a young lass caught in a raging storm awakens his deepest impulses…and darkest desires.


Cara doesn’t believe the rumors about MacLeod castle—until the majestic Highland warrior appears like a fiery vision in the storm, pulling her into his powerful arms, and into his world of magic and Druids. An epic war between good and evil is brewing. And Lucan must battle his all-consuming attraction for Cara—or surrender to the flames of a reckless, impossible love that threatens to destroy them both…






Maybe it’s because I write historical, but one of the most asked questions I get is “would you travel back in time and to where?”

It’s an easy answer for me.  Yes, I would travel back in time, and I’d go to Medieval Scotland.  It would take some getting used to, especially the lack of plumbing, toothbrushes, caffeine, and pasta.

I have no doubt life would be more than difficult.  After all, we’re used to remote control TV, information easily – and quickly – accessible through computers, not to mention cell phones and iPods. We’re the information age with instant gratification.

Our world is so drastically different than Medieval Scotland.  In a few short hundred years, lives went from basic living off the land and seeing people daily to hectic days, buying food from grocery stores, and going months, if not years, without seeing or speaking to your neighbor, much less speaking to people you pass on the street or the mall.

Could we survive in medieval times?  Putting aside the leap in physical hygiene over the ages, life was much simpler back then.  If you had a problem with someone, you faced them instead of texting or emailing them.  If you wanted to call off an affair, there was no hiding behind technology.  You stood before them and said your piece.

There’s a debate in whether medieval life was more violent.  At least in medieval times, you saw your opponent attack and you had time to retaliate or hide.  Now, with bombs that can cross oceans, that silent, almost constant worry hangs over our head.

Still, knowing all of this, I would love to see Medieval Scotland.  I’ve always been drawn to Scotland.  Maybe that’s why I centered my new Dark Sword series there.  The first book in the series, DANGEROUS HIGHLANDER, releases today, and I hope you pick up the book to be transported back to another time and place.

I’ll be giving away a signed copy of either MUTUAL DESIRE or THE PLEASURE OF HIS BED to a commenter.  Happy Reading! 

To find out more about me or the Dark Sword series, please visit my website at www.donnagrant.com.





Donna — thanks for being our guest today! Happy Release Day! 🙂

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Happy Friday! 🙂 St. Martin’s Press has generously offered me three copies of THE DEVIL’S QUEEN by Jeanne Kalogridis to do a giveaway here on the blog. Contest will run from today, July 31st until Monday, August 10th. Winners will be chosen on Tuesday, August 11th and will have 48 hours to email me their info to get book sent out. Easy to enter for a chance to win one. Just tell me what you’ve read lately that I must get my hands on. 😉


From Jeanne Kalogridis, the bestselling author ofI, Mona Lisa and The Borgia Bride, comes a new novel that tells the passionate story of a queen who loved not wisely . . . but all too well.

Confidante of Nostradamus, scheming mother-in-law to Mary, Queen of Scots, and architect of the bloody St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre, Catherine de Medici is one of the most maligned monarchs in history. In her latest historical fiction, Jeanne Kalogridis tells Catherine’s story—that of a tender young girl, destined to be a pawn in Machiavellian games.

Born into one of Florence’s most powerful families, Catherine was soon left a fabulously rich heiress by the early deaths of her parents. Violent conflict rent the city state and she found herself imprisoned and threatened by her family’s enemies before finally being released and married off to the handsome Prince Henry of France.

Overshadowed by her husband’s mistress, the gorgeous, conniving Diane de Poitiers, and unable to bear children, Catherine resorted to the dark arts of sorcery to win Henry’s love and enhance her fertility—for which she would pay a price. Against the lavish and decadent backdrop of the French court, and Catherine’s blood-soaked visions of the future, Kalogridis reveals the great love and desire Catherine bore for her husband, Henry, and her stark determination to keep her sons on the throne.

There’s also a freebie e-book you can check out that’s connected to THE DEVIL’S QUEEN, titled BOOK OF BLACK MAGIC: THE DEVIL’S QUEEN GRIMOIRE.

*****Sorry, Giveaway open to US and Canada residents only.******

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