Monday, December 15, 2014

Take one cowboy, one tycoon and two desperate women...

This is the best fun! A book share with my best online buddy, Donna Alward is released in the United States today.

A Deal at the Altar is a two-in-one containing two marriage of convenience stories - Donna's cowboy romance HIRED BY THE COWBOY (originally published in 2007) and my UK/Dallas based romance, SOS: CONVENIENT HUSBAND REQUIRED (originally published 2010).

Here are the blurby bits -

Hired By the Cowboy

Alexis Grayson is good at looking after herself - she's been doing it all her life. So what if she's alone and pregnant? She'll cope But gorgeous cowboy Connor Madsen seems determined to take care of her. And Alexis can help him - he needs a temporary wife; she needs somewhere to live until the baby's born. A short-term marriage will solve all their difficulties!

SOS: Convenient Husband Required

May Coleridge must marry before she's thirty to inherit her family home and keep her new business afloat.

Adam Wavell comes from a long line of wastrels—but he's turned his life around. He's a corporate success story and a pillar of the community. Only, now his flaky sister has left him with her screaming baby! 

A deal must be done. May will help Adam with his niece if he'll answer her SOS!

Some reviews for Hired By the Cowboy
A story that will have you crying one minute and hoping that the love of two people can survive through anything. If you like a OLD fashion romance then read a good book by Donna Alward and you will have trouble putting the book down. A must read for any of the avid readers. I enjoyed the story immensely and friends would find anytime this book to read. ... a reader at Amazon

"...sincere, sweet, romantic, having all of the elements which make a great love story!" --Pink Heart Society Reviews

Some reviews for SOS: Convenient Husband Required

"This is a great summer fun read! I don’t think anyone but Liz Fielding could make this theme work or work so well. The story is part ‘baby on the doorstep’ (desktop), part ‘poor boy to rich boy’, part Jane Austen style entailment caused ‘marriage of convenience’ and for good measure there’s a touch of ‘thriller- adventure’ to give the story a dash of life and death drama. I guess you can do this after you’ve written over sixty books!" from a review posted by an member,

This was a great story of a love lost that is found again. A baby and archaic will help May and Adam realize that they always had one another but they just didn't know it! Angie at Goodreads

Here are the links -

Amazon US
Barnes and Noble

I'm sorry that there's no KOBO link, but they won't let me link to the US site from the UK, however if you click on the link in the sidebar I have no doubt it will take you to your home market.

Friday, December 05, 2014

Christmas Kisses and Mistletoe Wishes

The first of my new newsletters, Newsletter - Christmas Kisses and Mistletoe Wishes - was launched yesterday and if you haven't already signed up to receive it here are some great reasons why you should -

 1 I will never send more than one a month.

 2 My subscribers go into a weekly draw for a book from my back list.

 3 I run competitions and giveaways from time to time. Not huge ones - you won't win a 50" TV, but there will be good stuff.

 4 You'll get all the latest news of my releases, new and old, without having to go to my website, blog or facebook page - although that's good and I love to see you all there, too!

 5 I'll love you forever. :)

Meanwhile, if you haven't seen the December Newsletter, you can read it here and you can sign up here

Friday, November 21, 2014

It's getting to feel a lot like Christmas...

One of the fun things about being an author is writing a Christmas romance in the middle of the summer. I don't have a new one out this year - right now I'm knee deep in snow in a book that's going to come out in July. :)

Happily, Mills and Boon have been having a re-release fest with my books in the last few months and here are some of my backlist Christmas stories that are now available -

In which Maddy, on a break from Christmas, ends up sharing a deserted island with a man she's convinced is conning her Godmother out of her life's savings.

In which Lucy Bright, on the run from her fake fiance, discovers that Santa isn't always wearing a red coat.

Christmas Angel for the Billionaire and it's "Changing Places" twin Her Desert Dream
in which the nation's beloved Lady Rose changes places with her "lookalike", supermarket checkout girl, Lydia.

in which employment challenged Sophie gets a job as a dog walker and changes the lives of everyone she meets.

What is your favourite ever Christmas romance? Share it with us in the comments below - leave a little taster quote and a link if you have one. I'm not sure what Blogger will make of that, but I'll check the spam and make sure they're not held up there for long.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Backlist Bliss

Mills and Boon are putting out a dozen or so of my backlist books between now and January 1st and I'm having a lovely time watching Amazon to see the fabulous new covers as they're added to the listing.

The latest is for Chosen As the Sheikh's Wife, a novella that was written for the Mills and Boon centenary celebrations and originally published in the 100 Arabian Nights anthology.

I absolutely love writing sheikh books and the dh and I (we spent a lot of time working in the Middle East when we were young) had a ball brainstorming ideas.

Here's a little taster -

It was the phone that woke her.  Dragging her from somewhere so deep that she was certain that it must have been ringing for some time. 
She ignored it and finally it stopped, allowing her to concentrate on her headache, and the fact that her eyes felt as if someone had been shovelling grit in them all night. 
The bright sunshine didn’t help. 
With her hand shading her eyes, she made it to the bathroom.  She was in the shower when the phone began to ring again.  Sarah, she thought.  It would be Sarah, worrying about her.  She’d call her back…
She washed her hair, brushed her teeth.  Decided to forget about getting dressed until she’d had coffee. 
The local newspaper was lying on the mat.  Her gran had liked her to read the local news to her…
She bent to pick it up, groaning as the headache she thought she’d defeated slid forward and collided with the back of her aching eyes. 
Then she groaned again as she saw the front page.  It must have been a slow news day because she seemed to fill the front page, staring like a rabbit caught in the media headlights, with the Trash or Treasure expert beside her displaying the khanjar.  In full colour.
The doorbell rang and without thinking she wrenched it open, certain that it would Sarah.  She’d taken to dropping in every morning in the last few weeks, to see if she needed anything.  She usually came round the back, letting herself in with her “good neighbour” key as she had yesterday when she’d heard her cry for help when the floor had given way.
Clearly the fact that the phone had gone unanswered was causing her concern, but since she’d bolted the back door last night, the key would be useless.
But it wasn’t Sarah, who was tiny – apart from around the middle where she was spreading spectacularly – and fair;  the  figure that filled the tiny porch was her opposite in every conceivable way.
Tall, spare, broad-shouldered, male, there was nothing soft about him.  His features were austere, chiselled to the bone, his beard closely cut against olive-toned skin that was positively Mediterranean against a snowy band-collared shirt, fastened to the neck.  His hair was thick and crisply cut.  But it was his eyes that held her. 
Dark as midnight and just as dangerous.
He looked very … foreign.
He was also stunningly, knee-wobblingly handsome. 
Violet was suitably stunned.  And her knees dutifully wobbled. 
Just her luck that she’d emerged from the shower pink of face, with her hair in it’s usual wet tangle and nothing between her and decency but a film of moisturiser and a faded pink bathrobe that could only be described as … functional.
‘Miss Hamilton?’
Oh, and guess what…  He had a voice like melted chocolate, delicately flavoured with an exotic, barely-there accent. 
Whatever he was selling she was buying by the crate…
Except, of course, that he was far too expensively dressed to be a door-to-door salesman.  She knew clothes.  And what he was wearing did not come off a peg in the High Street.
Oh, well.  She was expecting a visit from a representative of the finance company to call any day with the release papers for her to sign so that they could sell the house, recover their money.
This had to be him.
‘Miss Violet Hamilton?’ he repeated, when she didn’t answer.
‘Who?’ she asked, just to hear him say Violet again.  Long and slow.
Pronouncing every syllable, turning a name she’d loathed only slightly less than the hideously shortened “Vi” into the most desirable name in the entire world.
‘I’m looking for Miss Violet Hamilton.’  And taking the newspaper from her hand, he held the front page up for her to see.  ‘I believe I’ve found her.’
No point pretending to be the lodger, then.  Asking him to come back when she’d gussied herself up;  straightened her hair, applied some make-up, was decked out in one of her more creative outfits.  Oh, well…
‘And here I was kidding myself that the photograph is so awful that you couldn’t possibly tell,’ she said.  ‘Clearly I was fooling myself.’
He looked at the photograph and then at her for rather longer than seemed necessary just to confirm the likeness.  Then, clearly thinking better of commenting one way or the other, he returned the paper and said, ‘I am Fayad al Khalifa, Miss Hamilton.’  And he held out a visiting card -- as if they couldn’t printed off by the dozen in any name you cared to dream up by anyone with a computer. 
Except that this wasn’t a do-it-yourself job, but embossed on heavy ivory-coloured card.
 If he was from the finance company, he certainly wasn’t one of the foot-soldiers.
The front of the card gave no hint, but contained only his name: Fayad al Khalifa.  Unusual enough.  She turned it over.  The back was blank.  No address, no phone number.
Obviously this was a man whose name was enough for those with the wit to recognise it.  Which did not include her.
‘Nice card,’ she said.  ‘But a trifle shy of information.’
‘The Ras al Kawi embassy will vouch for me.’
‘Oh, well, that’s all right then,’ she said.  Her friends would have recognised sarcasm.  He apparently did not, but merely nodded.  Good grief, he was serious…
Ras al Kawi?  Where was that?
‘I need to talk to you about a khanjar that I believe is in your possession,’ he said.  ‘It is possible that it once belonged to my family.’
‘Oh?’  Then, realising that he come to demand it back, ‘It’s amazing how fast good news spreads.’
‘You have no idea.  Perhaps I should wait in my car while you …’ 
He made the vaguest of gestures, resolutely looking at her face, avoiding her bare legs, the shabby bathrobe that had a tendency to gape at the neck.  It made no difference, every inch of her skin tingled.
‘Dress?’ she offered, lippy to the last.  Except that the word didn’t come out quite as she’d intended, but thick and throaty and more to avoid those eyes, than because she was interested in his choice in transport, Violet looked past him.
A black Rolls Royce was parked at the kerb.  The little green and gold flag on the bonnet stirred in the breeze.
She barely stopped herself from letting slip an expression that would have brought her a rebuke from her grandma.
Her breathless, ‘Who are you?’ wasn’t a whole heap better.
‘If your story is true, Miss Hamilton, then your great-great-grandmother, Princess Fatima al-Sayyid, was once married to my great-great-grandfather.’
At which point she did let slip a word that she used only under the most extreme pressure. 
She would have been embarrassed about that, but a scream from rear of the house – Sarah’s scream -- obliterated the sound.

Chosen As the Sheikh's Wife is available to pre-order at Amazon as an ebook for $1.89 in the US - here's the link and for £1.19 in the UK here

 Nook UK and Kobo also have it listed with the new cover - and I imagine iBooks (where the book is available but showing the old cover), will catch up soon.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A little ghost story for Halloween...

‘MUM!’ Polly leaned over the banister rail and called down to her mother, busy directing the removal men. ‘Mum, can I have the attic room?’
Her mother, frowning distractedly, glanced up. ‘Attic room? I don’t remember an attic.’
‘Where’s this to go, Mrs Rutland?’ Polly’s mother stared at the table distractedly before waving her hand in the direction of the door on her left.
‘In there for now.’
‘Can I mum?’ Polly persisted.
‘Can you what?’ She started to walk away, not listening. ‘Lizzie, have you found the kettle yet?’
Polly grinned. Her mother hadn’t said no and she dumped her backpack on the floor, staking her claim to the little room before her sister, Lizzie, saw it. And that included the rocking chair.
It was set at an angle in front of a small dormer window and Polly had planned to sit in it and inspect the street from this handy watch point. But someone had beaten her to it.
‘Lizzie, this is my room!’ she protested. ‘I asked mum—’ But the girl in the rocking chair was not her sister. ‘Who are you?’
The girl did not speak, just rocked gently back and forth in the chair, her arm around a battered rag doll. The rockers made no sound against the bare, wooden floor.
‘Who are you?’ Polly demanded again, crossly. ‘This is my room.’
‘It used to be mine.’
The girl’s voice rustled, like tissue paper and Polly, not known to back down over anything, took a step back. ‘Did it?’ Then, ‘Well, we’ve moved in now so you’ll have to leave.’
The girl turned to look at her. ‘I know. I keep telling them that want to go, but I can’t.’
‘Don’t be silly…’ Polly started firmly enough but the girl’s face was so suddenly pleading that she trailed off. ‘You must.’
‘I will. I you’ll help me.’
‘Polly? Polly! Are you all right?’ Polly looked up from the rocking chair into her mother’s concerned face. ‘I’ve been calling and calling. You must have been asleep.’ She looked around and shivered. ‘Are you sure you want this room? It’s very... I don’t know…’ She rubbed her arms briskly. ‘It wasn’t on the house details and the agent never brought us up here. Almost as if he didn’t know. Or didn’t want us to see it.’ She shook her head, half laughed. ‘That’s just stupid. Everyone wants an extra room.’ She glanced around again, and then said, ‘Have you been picking lavender from the garden?’
‘No.’ But as Polly opened her hand she saw that she was clutching a dry, crumbled stalk. It was almost unrecognisable as lavender, but the scent was still strong. ‘I, um, found it up here,’ she said.
’Oh, right. Well, Dad’s been out to fetch some pizza.’
‘Wicked!’ It had been hours since breakfast. ‘Who used to live here?’ Polly asked, following her mother downstairs. ‘Was there a girl about my age?’
‘Just a young couple, I think. Too young to have a daughter of twelve. They had to move quickly which is why we managed to get the house so cheap.
Her mother turned and looked back. ‘Why what?’
‘Why did they have to move quickly?’
‘Who knows? New job, maybe? Like your dad.’

After her bed and chest of drawers had been carried up to the little room, and a rug had been found for the floor, Polly returned to the rocking chair.
She could see the whole street from her perch in the roof. There were some boys playing with a football. A woman was taking her time about mowing a tiny scrap of lawn while she eyed up her new neighbours.
An old lady was walking along the street carrying some flowers and, as she stopped at their gate, she looked up at the attic window. As she saw caught sight of her sitting there, the flowers dropped from her hand, spilled onto the path as she clutched at the gate, her mouth moving.
Polly watched her mother running down the path to help the lady into the house. Her sister Lizzie picked up the flowers. Then she looked up, too. Polly poked out her tongue.
She didn’t go down. She was watching for the girl who must have snuck into the house while everyone was busy. She must live nearby. She wasn’t left in peace though, instead Lizzie burst into the room. ‘Mum says you’re to come downstairs this minute!’ She couldn’t resist a smirk. ‘You’re in big trouble!’
In the kitchen her mother was pouring the old lady a cup of tea. ‘At last. Didn’t you hear me calling?’ Then, turning to the old lady, ‘You see, Mrs Potter? It was my younger daughter, Polly, you saw in the window.’
‘No. It wasn’t.’ The old lady looked pale and shaken, but her voice was firm. ‘It was Emily. She was much fairer than your daughter. All gold and white she was, poor little girl. Like a little angel until she took so ill. Then she used to sit there, all day, watching what went on. It gave me such a turn when I looked up and saw her.’
Polly recognised Emily at once as her visitor in the rocking chair. Okay, “white and gold” was a bit over the top, but she’d had fair hair and really pale skin.
‘Does she still live around here?’ she asked.
‘Sssh!’ her mum said, trying to shut her up. ‘Mrs Potter has brought us some flowers to welcome us to the house.’
But the old lady smiled at her, said, ‘No, dear. She was lost. During the war. Her mum and dad and Emily were in the air raid shelter in the garden when it took a direct hit.
‘Were they all killed?’ she asked.
‘Polly!’ She gave her the “look”. ‘See if you can find the biscuit tin.’
But Mrs Potter, recognising a kindred spirit, leaned forward. ‘Emily’s mum and dad were found in the shelter,’ she half whispered, ‘but there wasn’t a trace of poor Emily.’
Polly felt a shiver run through her. ‘Didn’t anyone look for her?’
‘They looked. When they couldn’t find her they thought she might have wandered off. Lost her memory, maybe.’ She paused. ‘She never turned up, though and I don’t believe she ever left. She’s still here somewhere, you mark my words.’
Polly’s eyes widened. ‘You mean out there? In the garden?’
‘Biscuit, Mrs Potter?’ her mum said sharply. ‘Polly, take your dad out his tea before it gets cold. Now.’
Outside, her father was surveying a cleared patch of ground.
‘Is this where the garage is going to be?’ Polly asked as she gave her dad a mug of tea.
‘That’s right. I had some men clear the site as soon as we exchanged contracts on the house. The concrete will be coming tomorrow for the floor slab.’
She looked around. The garden was a mess. Neglected. ‘What was here before?’
Her dad laughed. ‘What wasn’t!  Piles of rubbish, overgrown bushes, even part of the old air raid shelter from the war. It must have been… Polly?’

The empty rocking chair was moving gently by the window. ‘Hello, Emily,’ she whispered.
‘I’m here. I want to help. Tell me what to do.’
‘Show them,’ the papery voice commanded. ‘Show them where I am.’
‘But I don’t know –‘
‘Sit here and you’ll see.’
As Polly took a hesitant step forward the rocking chair moved invitingly and she lowered herself into it. Closed her eyes.

It was her mother’s urgent voice that woke her, calling her downstairs and then she heard the air raid siren. She shouldn’t be up in the attic and she shouted, ‘Coming!’ before they came looking for her. She stopped to pick up her doll from her bedroom, catch her breath, then again outside. Above her the night sky was bright with stars.
‘Emily!’ Her mother was standing in the shelter doorway. ‘What are you doing?’
The sweet scent of the lavender lining the path was strong and she stopped to break of a piece to take with her into the stuffy shelter.

Polly was digging with her hands. Her fingers were clawing, tearing at the earth as her father grabbed her, lifting her away.
‘Stop it!’ He shook her. ‘Polly!  What are you doing? What is it?’
‘It’s Emily!’ She struggled to free herself. ‘Emily’s buried here. She showed me. Please, daddy! You’ve got to help me find her!’
Mrs Rutland took her daughter from her husband’s arms, and said, ‘I think you’d better cancel the concrete, Peter. And fetch your spade.’