IT'S BEEN QUITE A WEEK!
Gale force winds brought down a huge tree that smashed through the roof of the old village school in Golden Grove (if you're an Under Milk Wood fan that name will ring a bell), just down the road from us. It's been closed for a couple of years and there was no one inside at the time, but when I drove past yesterday it was a sorry sight. It's a pretty stone building in a group with an equally pretty village church and the great manse. Needless to say, I didn't have my camera with me.
Then, the minute I finished posting my blog on Monday, my laptop died on me. I'm usually good about backing up, but somehow my head has been all over the place with the book I'm writing and a whole lot of stuff slipped through the net. The poor thing was picked up this morning and taken away to be made better (fingers crossed) and now I'm struggling with a strange machine.
My worst concern was the fact that I'd lost all the stuff that this week's guest, Donna Alward, had sent me in plenty of time.
I met Donna online on the eHarlequin message boards before she was published by Harlequin/Mills & Boon. She was enormous fun, loved the Harlequin Romance series and we all gave the biggest cheer when HIRED BY THE COWBOY was bought and published.
This wonderful warm and emotional read set the standard for Donna's storytelling and she has quickly become a fan-favourite. I'm delighted that, in what is a very hectic time for her, she's able to spend a little time celebrating with me and sharing news of her latest book, THE SOLDIER'S HOMECOMING with all of us.
I’m so happy to be here and help Liz celebrate such a glorious milestone. Some days I get to be completely awed at what I’m doing and the company I’m doing it with. This is one of those days.
When I first starting reading in the Romance line, Liz was one author I knew I was going to love, as soon as I read the first book. She creates such memorable characters. One of my favourites ever is Dodi from The Bridesmaid’s Reward…I mean who can’t appreciate a woman with a love of a fine hamburger! I’ll always love that scene!
And when I was a regular on the eharlequin boards looking to get published, she was incredibly generous with her advice and support. I was a little star-struck at first but she’s so friendly and has such a unique sense of humour that I soon got over it! Well, for the most part. I think I’ll always be a little star-struck because I simply respect her and what she’s accomplished so much.
Now I’m fortunate to call her my friend, and that’s very, very special to me.
To help celebrate Liz has again shown her generosity in inviting several of us to tell you about our latest books. Mine is THE SOLDIER'S HOMECOMING, out this month and it is the hardest thing I’ve ever written, probably because I loved my hero so much that it hurt to torture him so! I could feel his pain, his guilt, his feelings that he wasn’t worthy any more. He’s a Special Forces soldier, wounded, working as an instructor as he isn’t medically cleared for combat. He’s feeling guilty because he survived an attack that he considers his fault. Everything he based his identity on, is gone.
Of course, what he needs a woman strong enough to stand beside him. The only problem is, that very woman has betrayed him by keeping a secret…the fact that she had his baby five years earlier.
Here’s a short excerpt…from when he learns the truth:
The door to the back opened and she heard his voice talking to Geneva, thanking her politely. Shannyn turned her head towards the sound, only to snap it back abruptly as the front office door swung open carrying laughter with it.
A charged bundle in jeans and a red t-shirt barreled across the floor towards Shannyn’s desk, bouncing to a halt and grinning up precociously. “Surprise! I came from kindergarten!”
Jonas released Geneva’s hand as he turned, his heart stopping for a brief moment as the girl wrapped her chubby arms around Shannyn’s neck.
I have a daughter. The thought struck him like the sure aim of a bullet.
As if she sensed something was off, the girl turned her head and their eyes met, green to green. Every muscle in his body tightened with the impact of the truth. This is Shannyn’s daughter.
She’s in school. I left six years ago. She has my eyes.
Shannyn’s cheeks coloured; the blatant guilt on her face and the way she shifted in her chair seemed to confirm his suspicion. This was his daughter, one Shannyn had kept hidden from him all this time. A tiny poppet who looked eerily like the pictures of himself he remembered from his grandmother’s photo album.
All of it left him gutted. How much more could he lose? He clenched his fingers. It wasn’t enough to have the life he’d made for himself ripped away in the space of a moment. Now he had to find out he had another, separate life that he hadn’t even known existed.
It took every ounce of his self-control to not go to the little girl, to kneel before her and demand to see her eyes again. Moss green eyes. His eyes in a miniature of Shannyn’s delicate features. But what would that accomplish beyond frightening the child? She wouldn’t understand. He didn’t understand.
Congratulations Liz on Fifty Fabulous books! And thanks for letting me celebrate with you!
I’ve got a copy of The Soldier’s Homecoming up for grabs…all you have to do is post in the comments and tell us who your favourite Liz Fielding character is!
And, a final word from Liz, if you can't wait,you can buy now here. And don't forget, it's also available as an eBook!