Saturday, December 28, 2013

Happy 2014!

As 2013 draws to a close, let's remember the good times it brought it. The best movies, the best books, the best holidays.

So, the best book for me: Joshilyn Jackson's "Someone Else's Love Story". Best Eve Summers book: "Insert Name Here" (yes, that _is_ the title). The best romance movie: "Before Midnight". The best non-romance movie: "Star Trek 2". The best trip: the one on which I met Richie McCaw.

May the new year bring us happiness, health, and fulfilled dreams.


Friday, December 20, 2013

Party like Eve Summers!

Now, first off, I'd like to say I'm not the Eve Summers mentioned in this article. I party well, and I never cause trouble. Having said that, New Year's Eve will find me at the airport on the way to Singapore. And if they have a no-champagne-at-midnight policy in the waiting lounge, you might read about me in the papers on 1 January 2014, LOL.

Meanwhile, have an awesome Christmas. Party hard, party well, party wisely.


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Ho ho ho!

Have you been naughty or nice? Either way, here are some Christmas romances for you:

Naughty:



Nice:
And here is my Christmas gift to you: buy one of the above books and I'll send you the other free. Simply email me on yve at xtra dot co dot nz with the title of the book you bought, and I'll email you the other.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Mad About The Boy - review

"Mad About The Boy" is Helen Fielding's continuation of the Bridget Jones saga. Although time has passed, quite a lot of it, we find Bridget older, yet not wiser. For a grownup, she still has a long way to go before she grows up. For many readers, I'm sure, that's part of her charm. For me, Bridget is as exasperating as she was in Book 1 and Book 2.

Still, the book has a few nuggets of wisdom tucked in-between the silliness. It has a few tear-jerking motherhood moments. Ultimately, it's a light read, one that will make you feel good. You'll be able to put it down for days while more pressing matters arise, but you will pick it up again with pleasure. And when you turn the last page, you won't be left with a feeling that it was a waste of time. :-)



Monday, December 9, 2013

The Highwayman's Bride

The Highwayman's BrideThe Highwayman's Bride by Jane Beckenham
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The first twist in the tale comes in the very first sentence: "Alone on a darkened road, beneath the constant drip of a damp autumn rain, Tess Stanhope sat atop her stolen horse and waited for the unsuspecting travelers."

So the highwayman is a woman. Nice one. And the surprises just keep coming, as the action moves from the dark road to a village in, and from a ballroom to Charnley Hall with its secrets and riddles.

This is a romance at its purest, with a hero we can all love and a heroine we all want to be. There are the usual highlights, black moments and love scenes, but what makes this story unusual is the author's unique voice and the skill with which she leads us on this journey.

If you like historicals this is a book for you. Even if you just like contemporary romance, give The Highwayman's Bride a go - you will be pleasantly surprised how timeless this story is.

View all my reviews

Friday, November 29, 2013

Light Christmas Reads

Christmas is three and a half weeks away. If you're after some lightweight reads, I'd recommend the latest Bridger Jones, "Mad about the boy". Bridget is her usual self-obsessed, obsessive self. Not to be taken seriously - the heroine nor the book.

Nick Hornby's "How to be good" also falls in the category of good holiday reads, although it's much more solid reading.

And there is always Jane Porter's "Mrs. Perfect". Perfect for this time of the year, to remind us all what's truly important.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Midnight in Paris

An unusual love story. Or perhaps a usual love story, boy meets girl, in an unusual context? Midnight in Paris is a light-weight art movie with a super-light science fiction plot, but the end result is beautiful and memorable.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

New Releases in Romance

Heads up: Jane Beckenham’s new book is coming out soon. Watch out for: THE HIGHWAYMAN'S BRIDE - Scandalous/Entangled Publishing.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Sophie Kinsella’s Wedding Night

Sophie Kinsella’s latest book, Wedding Night, may not be quite up to the high standards set by Madeleine Wickham (the author’s real name under which she writes about intelligent heroines with sometimes questionable morals), but it’s still a chick-lit book that’s worth reading. Quick and easy and deliciously enjoyable, it’s like an indulgent chocolate praline after a kale salad with mung beans and tofu.

The story follows two sisters, Fliss and Lottie, on their way to a happily-ever-after. Lottie is the slightly ditzy one who wants to get married – and if the boyfriend of the last few years won’t take the hint, she’ll settle for her 15-years-ago-summer-fling who comes back to her life. Fliss is the bitter divorced one who desperately wants to prevent her younger sister from the perils of an inappropriate marriage.

If the plot sounds a bit meh at this point, rest assured you’re in good hands. The author’s writing skill would make even the action of watching paint dry fun and amusing and highly desirable (a bit like Tom Sawyer and his fence-painting chore). So sit back, enjoy the sunshine of a fictional Greek island, and ponder on the wisdom of every going back to a place where you were once young and happy. And just before you get too nostalgic and philosophical, enjoy the non-sugary happy ending.


Friday, November 1, 2013

She wants to be in the top 5....

Yvonne Walus would like to see OPERATION: GENOCIDE on the Stairway Press bestseller list in November. Buy OPERATION: GENOCIDE between now and the end of November 2013 and:
  • e-mail her on yve@xtra.co.nz with the title "Bought OPERATION: GENOCIDE" to get a free copy of her collection of murder mystery stories, SHORT OF CRIME;
  • she will also send you a free copy of her SF collection, SEX LIES AND HERE BE DRAGONS;
  • and she will send you a $5 Amazon gift voucher;
  • if the sales reach 100 she will send one lucky reader a $100 Amazon voucher.
If you buy more than one copy (OPERATION: GENOCIDE makes a great Christmas present), your name will be entered in the $100 draw for every copy you purchase. And of course you will receive a $5 Amazon voucher for every copy you buy.

This offer is valid for the paperback version as well as the Kindle version. If you do the math:
  • the Kindle copy of OPERATION: GENOCIDE is $7.95
  • the two free books you'll get add up to $1.98
  • and you get a $5 gift voucher
  • so OPERATION: GENOCIDE will only cost you 97 cents in Kindle.
If you buy the paperback, which is only $14.84, it'll actually only cost you $7.86 - less than the Kindle version.

Makes sense, doesn't it? Oh, the link is here.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The proper care and feeding of marriage....

How's this for romance: marriage is not the happily-ever-after. Not unless you work on it. Not unless you shed what you believe is feminism (but isn;t really). Not unless you read this book. It might make you angry. It might make you cry. But ultimately, it'll make you think.






Thursday, October 3, 2013

Gone Girl - So Not A Romance

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn is an anti-romance. It shows you the unhappily-ever-after. Part mystery, part suspense, this book is a real page turner. You probably won't like the hero much. Or the heroine. And yet their story will continue to fascinate.

Give it a go.


Thursday, September 26, 2013

What’s the most romantic holiday destination?

Paris. I’m sure everyone will think of Paris first. But is Paris as romantic as its reputation? In my experience, Paris is dirty and crowded and way overpriced. 

I’d choose any Greek island over Paris, though of all the Greek islands put together, Naxos is my very top pick. Naxos, with its grey-green olive groves, white walls and impossibly see-through-blue sea. Naxos is where I travel in my mind for an ultra-romantic fantasy.

Where do you go?


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Do all romance books have to end in a committed relationship?


Do all romance books have to end in a committed relationship, such as marriage or living together or going steady? Not when it's romantic suspense, according to Yvonne Walus, whose internationall thriller, OPERATION GENOCIDE was released by Stairway Press earlier this week.

An inhuman agenda…In 1982, Annette Pretorius lives a life of privilege afforded to those of European descent in South Africa, but when her husband is murdered, she discovers a shattering secret: he’d been commissioned by the whites-only South African government to develop a lethal virus aimed at controlling the growth of the black population–already oppressed under the cruel system of apartheid.

A clandestine organization…
The murder came with a warning to Annette from a secretive organization: keep our secrets or you too will die. Captain Trevor Watson, Annette’s former boyfriend, is appointed to lead the investigation. Watson’s loyalty is tested as the evidence stacks against his high school sweetheart.

And the killing isn’t over yet…
When the investigation points in a terrifying direction, Annette and Watson face a wrenching choice: protect those they love or sacrifice all to save innocents from racial extermination.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Shirley Jump

Shirley Jump is the type of person you will love the moment you meet her. She vibrates with energy, humour, and that old-fashioned, almost forgotten quality: kindness.

Her books mirror her personality beautifully: they are sweet, funny, original and uplifting. In her own words, Shirley writes romances set in small American towns, and they are all about love, family and food... not necessarily in that order.

Here is an excerpt from her romance, A PRINCESS FOR CHRISTMAS:

"Hey." Carmen nudged Mariabella. "Did you see that?"
"What?"
"Eye candy, two o'clock."
"Eye…what?"
"Cute guy, walking past the gallery." She nudged Mariabella's shoulder a second time.
"Mmm… okay." Mariabella kept working on the catalog's corrections.
Carmen let out a frustrated gust. "You should go talk to him."
That got Mariabella's attention. "Go talk to him? Why?"
"Because he's alone, and you're alone, and it's about time you took number one, a few hours for yourself, and number two, a step out of that comfort zone you're so determined to stay glued to."
Mariabella wanted to tell Carmen she had already taken a giant step out of her comfort zone, something beyond opening the gallery. A step that had brought her all the way across the world, from a tiny little country outside of Italy to here, an even tinier town in Massachusetts.
To a new life. A life without kings and queens.
Without expectations.
Carmen did have a point about the dating, though. In all the time Mariabella had been in Harborside, she hadn't dated anyone, hadn't gotten close to a man. She'd made friends, yes, but not true relationships, nothing deep. Part of that was because she'd had no time, as Carmen mentioned, but a bigger part was self-preservation.
She thought again of the woman in the painting. Had that woman dared to open her heart?
If so, was the price she'd had to pay as high as Mariabella's?
"Let's focus on catalogs and canapés, instead of my love life," Mariabella said to her assistant. "I think the artist will be upset if I tell him I spent my time pursuing a hot date instead of concentrating on his show."
Carmen turned to Mariabella and opened her mouth, as if she wanted to argue the point, then shut it again. "Okay. I can see when the stars are out of alignment for this topic. I'll zip down to Make it Memorable and check on the appetizers for Tuesday's opening."
Mariabella sent up a wave, while she kept on checking the page proofs. "Thank you. I'll hold down the tent."
Carmen laughed. "Fort, Mariabella. Fort."
Heat filled Mariabella's cheeks. Her accented English was flawless, but she'd yet to master all those odd little idioms. "I meant fort."
"Hey, a horse is still a horse, even if you call it a pony." Carmen toodled a wave, then left the gallery, with the hurried step that marked her every movement.
Soft, jazzy Christmas music flowing from the gallery's sound system provided companion noise for Mariabella as she got back to work. She settled onto a chair behind the counter, content to be alone, surrounded by the art she loved. All her life, she'd craved this kind of shop, this exact kind of cozy gallery. There were many days when she couldn't believe she actually owned this place, and had seen this dream come true. It made up for all those arguments with her father, all the tears she'd shed.
She paused a moment and cast a glance out the bay window behind her, drawing in the view of the ocean that lay down the dock from the gallery. Through the window, the sun-drenched day could have passed for summer, if the calendar didn't read a few days before Christmas. No snow lay on the ground yet, though the temperature outside was all winter. The ocean curled gently in and out, while seagulls dipped down to the beach for a late morning meal. Bright sunshine cast sparkles of light over the water. How different Harborside was from where Mariabella had grown up, yet how similar, too. She'd lived on the coast then, too, but that coast had been full of rocky cliffs, houses nestled among the stone paths and lush landscape. Here, the land was less hilly, more populated and didn't have hundreds of years of history carved into the side of every building. But Harborside offered something else Mariabella couldn't have in her old home. Something precious.
Anonymity.
A sense of peace draped over Mariabella like a cozy blanket. She loved this town, loved the haven she had found here. She thought of the letter in her purse, and wondered what answer she could possibly give. How she could ever explain she had found something in Harborside that she could never imagine leaving.
But soon, duty demanded her return. As always.
The bell over the door jingled and Mariabella jerked to attention. The man she and Carmen had seen earlier stood in the doorway, his tall figure cutting an imposing stance.
"May I help you?" Mariabella said, moving away from the front desk.
"Just looking, thank you." He stepped inside, giving Mariabella a better view of him.
Dark hair, dark eyes. What appeared to be an athletic build beneath the navy pinstriped suit, clearly tailored to fit his frame. She recognized his shoes as designer, his briefcase as fine leather. No ordinary tourist, that was clear. Most people who came to Harborside wore jeans in winter or shorts in the summer—dressed to relax and make the most of the boating, swimming and fishing the coastal town had to offer.
This man looked ready to steer a corporation, not a catamaran.
He stood about six feet tall, maybe six-two, and when he moved about the open space of the gallery, he had the stride of a man who knew his place in the world.
A zing of attraction ran through Mariabella. No wonder Carmen had called him eye candy. He had more to offer than a ten-pound chocolate bar.
"Our main gallery houses the artist in residence," she said, falling into step a few feet away from him, "who has some mixed media pieces in his collection as well as a number of portraits. In the west room, you will find our sculptures and art deco pieces, and the east room, which overlooks the ocean, features our landscapes, if you're looking for a picture of Harborside to take home or back to your office."
"I'm not looking for something for my home. Or office."
He barely glanced at her as he said the words, but more, he hadn't looked at a single painting. His gaze went, not to the landscapes, portraits and fresco panels, but to the—
Walls. The ceiling. The floors.
Then to her.
A chill chased up her spine.
Had they found her? Was her time here over? No, no, it couldn't be. She had two more months. That was the agreement.
It was too soon, she wasn't ready to leave. She loved her home, loved her gallery, and she didn't want to go back. Not yet.
Mariabella hung back, watching the stranger. He paused to look out the window, the one that provided a view of the entire boardwalk. He took a few steps, as if assessing all of Harborside, then returned to his perusal of the main room of Harborside Art Gallery.
Perhaps he hadn't come here after her. Perhaps he was only sizing up the gallery. Maybe he owned a place in a nearby town and he'd come here to check out the competition.
Except…
Doubt nagged at Mariabella. A whisper of more here, a hidden agenda. But what?

Excerpt from A Princess For Christmas by Shirley Jump
All rights reserved

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Thinking back to the RWNZ Annual Conference 2013

So I'm back home from the wonderful, wonderful RWNZ conference with the wonderful, wonderful Shirley Jump, and I don't want to let go. That's why I'm re-posting what a fellow writer blogged:
Check it out!

Shirley Jump

Friday, August 30, 2013

RWNZ and Rugby

What do romance writers and rugby players have in common? A week ago, it was that they stayed at the same Wellington hotel for three nights. Eve Summers was there and she slept on top of the All Blacks captain. Well, her room was above his, anyway. That counts, right?

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

RWNZ - here I come!

Eve Summers will be visiting Wellington's A Capital Affair - the RWNZ annual writers' conference. Hope to see you there!

Friday, August 16, 2013

It's Here!

INSERT NAME HERE by Eve Summers has just been released by Red Rose Publishing. Heat Rate: Sensual.

When her fiancé dumped her before the wedding, Cass took the first airplane out of her hometown. Now she’s in Africa, going through her bucket-list of things to do before she turns thirty. One of the items on the list is to have a one-night stand. Trouble is, she knows just the guy to have that one-night stand with, and she also knows she’ll have her heart broken all over again….

Friday, August 9, 2013

Insert Name Here

INSERT NAME HERE, by Eve Summers, is coming to Red Rose Publishing on 15 August 2013. Wait till you see the cover! Meanwhile, here's an excerpt:



This is my To–Do–Before–I–Turn–30 list:
·        Eat an ostrich egg. Check.
·        Play with a cheetah cub. Check.
·        Swim with a dolphin. Check.
·        Scuba dive in a foreign country. Double check for doing it at night.
·        Skydive. Check, bonus points because I wasn’t scared.
·        Dare to love again. Nah, cross it out. So not going to happen. I’ve learned
        my lesson.
·        Make love on a yacht.
·        ... With a stranger for extra points.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not into one–night stands. The idea of getting close and intimate with someone I’m not emotionally involved with gives me the creeps. I only included it in my to–do list because I was hurt and devastated and not thinking straight.
Getting dumped wasn’t on my to–do list. Neither was an impromptu trip to Africa. When my now–ex–boyfriend broke up with me, I simply sold my engagement ring and booked the first holiday package I found. My Before–I–Turn–30 list was born on the long flight towards the Dark Continent.

This buy link will become active when the book is released.




Friday, August 2, 2013

Online Courses

I know online courses aren’t for everybody. Some people don’t like computers. Some prefer the face-to-face. But if you’re reading this blog, chances are, you’ve done at least one online course. Did you like the experience? For me, it’s all about the participants, they can make or break a course. And that’s whether I’m doing the learning or the teaching. I’m very fortunate to be tutoring an online course at Savvy Authors at the moment, and I’m loving it. We’re a medium-sized group of like-minded writers, and we’re having a ball. I’m already planning to teach another topic in 2014, that’s how much I’m enjoying it. Stay tuned….

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Learn to Write Sexy


Eve Summers is offering a unique opportunity this month: learn to write sexy in just 4 weeks. Click here for more details.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Stephanie Plum

The Stephanie Plum books - are they romances? Here's what Goodreads has to say: "Stephanie Plum is a bounty hunter with attitude. In Stephanie's opinion, toxic waste, rabid drivers, armed schizophrenics, and August heat, humidity, and hydrocarbons are all part of the great adventure of living in Jersey. She's a product of blue-collar Trenton, where houses are attached and narrow, cars are American, windows are clean, and dinner is served at six.


Out of work and out of money, with her Miata repossessed and her refrigerator empty, Stephanie blackmails her bail bondsman cousin, Vinnie, into giving her a try as an apprehension agent. And that’s only the beginning of series that will set her on the trail of fugitives. Stephanie will have to sharpen her sleuthing skills, because she's got many a mystery to solve."    
  I'm currently reading number 19 in the series: "After a slow summer of chasing low-level skips for her cousin Vinnie’s bail bonds agency, Stephanie Plum finally lands an assignment that could put her checkbook back in the black. Geoffrey Cubbin, facing trial for embezzling millions from Trenton’s premier assisted-living facility, has mysteriously vanished from the hospital after an emergency appendectomy. Now it’s on Stephanie to track down the con man. Unfortunately, Cubbin has disappeared without a trace, a witness, or his money-hungry wife. Rumors are stirring that he must have had help with the daring escape . . . or that maybe he never made it out of his room alive. Since the hospital staff’s lips seem to be tighter than the security, and it’s hard for Stephanie to blend in to assisted living, Stephanie’s Grandma Mazur goes in undercover. But when a second felon goes missing from the same hospital, Stephanie is forced into working side by side with Trenton’s hottest cop, Joe Morelli, in order to crack the case.

The real problem is, no Cubbin also means no way to pay the rent. Desperate for money—or maybe just desperate—Stephanie accepts a secondary job guarding her secretive and mouthwatering mentor Ranger from a deadly Special Forces adversary. While Stephanie is notorious for finding trouble, she may have found a little more than she bargained for this time around. Then again—a little food poisoning, some threatening notes, and a bridesmaid’s dress with an excess of taffeta never killed anyone . . . or did they? If Stephanie Plum wants to bring in a paycheck, she’ll have to remember: No guts, no glory. . . ."


Thursday, July 18, 2013

The "Before" Trilogy

"Before Sunrise" was my very favourite movie of 1995. For those of you who missed it, here is a blurb:

American tourist Jesse and French student Celine meet by chance on the train from Budapest to Vienna. Sensing that they are developing a connection, Jesse asks Celine to spend the day with him in Vienna, and she agrees. Passing the time before his scheduled flight the next morning. How do two perfect strangers connect so intimately over the course of a single day? What is that special thing that bonds two people so strongly? As their bond turns to love, what will happen to them the next morning when Jesse flies away? Written by randywong70@comcast.net

My favourite quote from the movie was this: "Sometimes I dream about being a good father and a good husband. And sometimes it feels really close. But then other times it seems silly like it would ruin my whole life. And it's not just a fear of commitment or that I'm incapable of caring or loving because... I can. It's just that, if I'm totally honest with myself I think I'd rather die knowing that I was really good at something. That I had excelled in some way than that I'd just been in a nice, caring relationship."

Nine years later came "Before Sunset". While not as original as its predecessor, it was still quirky and told a lot of home truths, e.g., "What is love, if it's not respect, trust, admiration? And I felt all those things. So cut to the present tense: I feel like I'm running a small nursery with somebody I used to date."

Now it's nine years later again, and I can't wait to see "Before Midnight". It made a brief appearance in the big movie complexes, and now it's leaving the art cinemas. Hope we make it!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Hunger Games Trilogy

I've just finished re-reading the Hunger Games trilogy, this time concentrating on the romance plot. Yet again, I found it... wanting.

SPOILER
SPOILER
SPOILER

It's just that I believe she belongs with the hurricane, the whirlwind, the passionate one. She may think she needs warmth. But the Girl On Fire craves heat.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Celebrate With Me!

I've just heard that my short story ‘A Love Seat’ placed number 1 over all in the RWNZ Chapter Short Story Contest. To celebrate, I'd like to give away something to all you wonderful people. So, please comment on this blog and tell me what your favourite Eve Summers title is, and next month I'll select a winner of a $10 Amazon gift voucher.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Superior Sex Scenes - A Workshop by Eve Summers

  • Do you cringe every time your characters get to second base?
  • Do you enjoy reading sex scenes but loathe writing them?
  • Would you like to take your writing to the next level?

Then this workshop is for you.

For more information, please click here.


Thursday, June 20, 2013

The Rosie Project

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion is a book you will read at one sitting. Even if you start it at 10PM, you will read it at one sitting, starting in the armchair, moving to the bathtub and ending up in bed, not once putting down the book until you've turned the very last page.

Is it a romance? Yes.
Is it humorous? Very.
Is it original? You have no idea.

I'll quickly sketch the setup, so you can rush out and buy the book. Figuratively speaking, of course. I know you'll probably just click your Kindle button.

The protagonist, an undiagnosed Asperger's and a professor of genetics, is embarking on a project: Find A Wife. She should:
  • be a great cook
  • drink moderately
  • eat everything, including offal
  • not wear makeup
  • or jewellery.
With a premise like that, you just know he's going to get the complete opposite, don' t you?



Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Thursday, June 6, 2013

5 Romantic Holidays

Everybody's romantic holiday looks a little different. Here are my top five picks:
  1. Any Greek island, like Naxos or Santorini.
  2. A luxurious resort in Fiji (check out my book, FIJI ON FIRE, FIJI ON ICE).
  3. A luxurious resort in Tahiti (check out my book, I WANT TO KNOW WHAT LOVE IS).
  4. A week at the Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town (book coming out next year).
  5. A cruise - as long as the water is flat (check out my Cruise Liner Books, DANCE LIKE NOBODY'S WATCHING and ELEVATOR WITH A VIEW and CHRISTMAS HOPE).





Thursday, May 30, 2013

10 Ultimate Geek Movies Versus 10 Best Chick Flicks

So, the poll is out. What are the 10 movies true geeks define as ultimate? And, to counterbalance that, which 10 movies should a girl subject her geek boyfriend to, given that he's just made her watch Star Wars... again?

Geek:
  1. Star Wars IV
  2. Star Wars V
  3. Star Wars VI
  4. Matrix 1
  5. Source Code
  6. The Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind
  7. Jacob's Ladder
  8. Safety Not Guaranteed
  9. Inception
  10. Sneakers

Chick:

  1. Gone With The Wind
  2. Ruby Sparks
  3. Titanic
  4. Casablanca
  5. 500 Days Of Summer
  6. 50 First Dates
  7. Before Sunrise
  8. Mamma Mia
  9. Impromptu
  10. When Harry Met Sally

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

African Bliss and PhotoShopped

Eve Summers and Red Rose Publishing are pleased to announce two more titles to appear later this year:
  1. African Bliss
  2. PhotoShopped
Watch this space for details.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

How To Kiss

We all know how to kiss, right? How about kissing from head to toe? Check out this cool video (an excerpt from Nikki Leigh's "Art of Kissing" e-book) packed with tips on the subject of kissing.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Making time for Simple Sexy Food™




In our ridiculously fast-paced, hectic lives filled with fast food and occasional, perfunctory rolls in the hay, many couples find their bodies expanding, energy sagging, and their sex lives languishing. The antidote: Try a Simple Sexy Food™ approach to preparing and sharing a meal. Slow down to make better, sexier food choices. As you savor them, connect with your lover. Appreciate the fragrance of his skin, the curve of her hips, the beauty of your lover’s smile.

This pleasure-focused approach to food and your bodies goes beyond oysters and chocolate to include a full eighty-eight foods, herbs, and spices with intriguing, fun aphrodisiac reputations, AND sexy nutrients that support those reputations! In Simple Sexy Food™, you’ll learn about scientific research that shows the power of pumpkin pie spice scent to get a man’s blood flowing, or the lore revealing Catherine de’Medici’s passion for artichokes that created scandal in 16th century Europe.

Also uncovered are the results of my 21st Century aphrodisiac survey findings showing that 50% of personal favorites are finger foods, from chocolate-covered strawberries, to sushi, to grapes. As for drinks, champagne tops the list, followed by red wine.re are a few tips and suggestions to rev your libido with simple, sexy foods:

1. Schedule a date night that includes simple sexy food. One Spanish couple had a weekly tapas night, a small-bites meal with wine; it always inspired the sexual activity that followed.

2. Another couple loved lazy Sunday mornings filled with the aromas of freshly baked pumpkin bread (Simple Sexy Food™ offers recipes for pumpkin-Coconut Bread and Pumpkin Pancakes) and their favorite coffee, or on special occasions, a mimosa (mix of orange juice and champagne). They ate this breakfast in bed, and were inspired to remain there for an hour or so longer.

3. Co-prepare a meal to ease the workload and, if a dish calls for a 30 minute simmer or time in the oven, take advantage! “Intermezzo moments” involving flirting and kissing, caressing and fondling will whet appetites of all sorts!

4. Develop a sexy food mind-set. When preparing an otherwise ordinary meal, think about how to create a sensual context in which to enjoy it. Wear a sexy apron or lingerie while cooking; dim the lights or set out candles; set a table on the balcony or in the back yard, gather some flowers from the garden; suggestively arrange food on a platter.

5. Take advantage of unexpected moments for a sexy food exchange: spontaneously flirt with your lover, telling him or her you feel like feeding them, and pop something in their mouth, maintaining a sexy gaze.

6. If you love the idea of sharing sexy mealtime moments in theory, but find it tough to pull off in practice because of kids, enlist grandparents to enjoy them for an evening or a weekend, or regularly trade sleepovers with another couple.

7. Don’t forget! Put your relationship first! Cut off all electronic devices (that includes the television)! The world will still be there when you reconnect!

© Aphrodite Media 2013 All rights reserved. Permission granted to Yvonne Walus to post on her blog

Do aphrodisiacs work? What exactly are they? How can I use them? We answer these questions and many more during the Simple Sexy Food virtual tour with clinical sex therapist and foodie – Linda DeVillers, PhD. There are many ordinary foods that can have aphrodisiac effects – and we’re going to help you understand them.

Linda DeVillers, PhD, Clinical Sex Therapist and Foodie, shares her knowledge about the myths and truth about aphrodisiacs. She also share over 80 recipes and a wealth of love and sex tips. Get your copy at -http://www.amazon.com/Simple-Sexy-Food-Linda-Villers/dp/097095655X/. We invite you to participate in the Simple Sexy Food Recipe Photo Contest - http://www.lovecoachjourney.com/recipe-photo-contest - the grand prize winner will get a one on one aphrodisiac consultation and five runner ups will receive a digital copy of Love Skills by Linda De Villers.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Bones - again!

At long last, after a barely watchable Season 6, BONES is good again in Season 7. I like the finally-realised romance between Bones and Booth, I like Michelle's budding romance, I like the heart and the humour.

I'll keep on watching...

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Lest we forget...

Anzac Day here Down Under in New Zealand and Australia. Today is when we remember the soldiers who fought in both world wars. Today is also when we think of all soldiers, all wars, all nations.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Ruby Sparks - Review

Ok, so now I've watched Ruby Sparks. Loved it. Here's why.

Ruby Sparks is the truest love story since the movie Love Story. Although based on an event that can't be real (write about a book character and see her come to life), the actual relationship (between Ruby Sparks, the book character, and Calvin Weir-Fields, the novelist who created her) is the most authentic cinematic portrayal yet.

What the movie is actually about is control and the balance of power in a relationship. What I got out of it, though, is this: even your dream girl will get on your nerves, even your dream girl will want to go out without you from time to time, even your dream girl will stop loving you if you don't treat her right.

There. How's that for romance?
As good as it gets.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Ruby Sparks

I'm looking forward to watching Ruby Sparks on DVD tonight. An ultimate love story or an ultimate writer's fantasy?

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Famous first lines

What famous first lines do you remember? Here are some of my favourites:
  • Sophie Dempsey didn't like Temptation even before the Garveys smashed into her '86 Civic, broke her sister's sunglasses, and confirmed all her worst suspicions about people from small towns who drove beige Cadillacs. ~ Welcome to Temptation, Jennifer Crusie

  • My desert island, all-time, top five most memorable split-ups, in chronological order: ~ High Fidelity, Nick Hornby

  • The moment Tanya Redford spotted the caramel-skinned hunk in the hotel foyer she knew two things: that the guy was a con artist and that she was in trouble – big time. ~ Fiji On Fire Fiji On Ice, Eve Summers

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Easter Romance Books

What does Red Rose Publishing have in store for you in the line of Easter and love? Find out....

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

How To Write Sex Well

Check out the How To Write Sex Well, by Eve Summers.

This book is meant for writers. Erotica writers, romance writers, writers who are considering spicing up their thriller or literary work with a bedroom scene. It’s not a comprehensive how-to book and it won’t give you a ready step-by-step recipe. Rather, it’s a handful of rules and reflections on the topic of writing sex, and doing a good job of it.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Bones and Booth

Spoiler: I know Bones and Booth end up living together, but I'm about halfway through Season 6 and it's a slog to watch. He's with Hannah, Bones cracks silly jokes and the cases are pedestrian at best. Trouble is, I really like Hannah, even if I find her friendship with Bones a bit of a stretch. So on the one hand, I don't want them to break up, but on the other, I can't wait for the story arc to reach a more satisfying point.

In many ways, I still find Series 1 the best. I loved Zack and Dr Goodman.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Romance And Marriage

... and they lived happily ever after.

Or did they? Did Cinderella's love for the Prince survive his mood swings, his long jorneys around the kingdom, the difference in their background? Did the Prince love her through PMS and adore her post-pregnancy belly?

How do you keep romance alive in marriage? Here are a few suggestions from friends:
  • kiss every day
  • say "I love you"
  • dye the grey out (women) and shave off that stubble (men)
  • respect one another
  • treat them with the same politeness you'd offer your boss or client
  • date night
  • no, make every night as special as a date night, even if you're staying home....
  • ???

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Me Before You



They had nothing in common until love gave them everything to lose. Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has never been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex–Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life—big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel—and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is. Will is acerbic, moody, bossy—but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living. A Love Story for this generation, Me Before You brings to life two people who couldn’t have less in common—a heartbreakingly romantic novel that asks, What do you do when making the person you love happy also means breaking your own heart?

The above blurb (from Amazon) makes it sound like a romance book. When I read it, however, it was anything but. Yes, there was a love angle, but it wasn't a love story. Not as such. It was a story of love. See the difference?

It was also a story of friendship, family, financial reality, life's general unfairness and adventure. Written in a deceptively simple, yet beautiful language, this is a book to be savoured.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Romantic Recipes

You know how they say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach? Whether your man is a health nut or has a sweet tooth, cooking him his favourite dishes will put you in his good books. (And, conversely, if he ever annoys you, just prepare him something he's not crazy about... in our household, you know things aren't rosy when it's stir fry for dinner!)

Here is a recipe I do when I want to show my husband love and deep appreciation: chocolate mousse.

250g chocolate (I use chocolate that has no vegetable oil in it)
3 egg yolks
5ml real vanilla essence
30ml orange liqueur
200ml cream




  1. Melt the chocolate.
  2. Add egg yolks, vanilla and liqueur.
  3. Stir until smooth.
  4. Beat the cream.
  5. Fold the chocolate mixture into the cream.
  6. Refrigerate.
Yum!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Valentine's Day and Chocolate

Because it's almost Valentine's Day, I've decided to give away a box of chocolates to a lucky reader (or two, or three). Simply buy an e-copy of "Not Complicated" and send the invoice number to bestseller at xtra dot co dot nz (email subject: Love Romance!).


For every 10 emails, I'll select 1 lucky winner. So your chance to win is 1 in 10 (or 1 in 5, or 1 in 2, depending how many entries I get). Not bad for 99c, huh?



Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Greatest Love Story On Film

My top five greatest romance movies:
  1. Casablanca
  2. The Impromptu
  3. 50 First Dates (am I the only one who found the ending sad?)
  4. Red Dwarf (if TV series count)
  5. Titanic

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Romance Writers Conference - Wellington

So excited! I've just booked my air tickets to Wellington, where this year's Romance Writers of New Zealand annual conference takes place. Yippee!

Quoting from their website: "We already have a fantastic line up of speakers confirmed for our 2013 conference, “A Capital Affair“, including award-winning romance author and popular teacher Shirley Jump, American agent Nalini Akolekar, Entangled editor Stacy Abrams and NYT & USA Today best selling and award-winning author Allison Brennan.


We are also bringing you the best in internationally acclaimed, home grown talent such as Nalini Singh and Catherine Robertson, who both represented New Zealand fiction at the Frankfurt Book Fair in October 2012."


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Interview with Eve Summers

Eve Summers speaks about travelling the world and writing romance. See the interview on Laurie's Thoughts And Reviews here to find out:
  • Who Eve's favourite author is
  • What's under her bed
  • Her favourite restaurant

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Simple Sexy Food Recipe Photo Contest

Simple Sexy Food Recipe Photo Contest
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(re-posted with permission, feel free to re-post yourselves)




Welcome to the Simple Sexy Food Recipe Photo Contest.
We are holding a recipe photo contest as part of the virtual tour. There is a list of recipes in the book - http://bookpromotionservices.com/2012/12/21/simple-sexy-food-recipe-list/. We supply the recipe, you prepare the aphrodisiac food and submit a picture of the finished recipe – for the contest. Keep in mind that the quality of the pictures will make a big difference in choosing the winner. Contact nikki @ nikkileigh.com to enter. We show the ingredients on Pinterest - now show us what you can do with the recipes.
For details about the Simple Sexy Food Virtual Tour, click here.  There are a few more openings on the tour if you are interested.

Any questions - contact nikki@nikkileigh.com

 

The Basic Rules
1 – Visit http://bookpromotionservices.com/2012/12/21/simple-sexy-food-recipe-list/ ‎ and pick 2 or 3 recipes that sound good. Email nikki@nikkileigh.com and we’ll send you the recipes.
2 – Prepare the recipe or recipes of your choice and take a picture. We suggest making the picture interesting – not just a serving on a plate on the table. Get creative and have fun with it.
3 – Once the picture is ready, go to the entry page and fill out the short form and upload your picture. If you have more than 1 picture, please enter each one individually. (Enter below.)
4 – The picture will be added to the contest board at http://pinterest.com/ready4love/recipe-photo-contest-simple-sexy-food/.  You can visit this page for samples of pictures from the book = http://pinterest.com/ready4love/simple-sexy-food-book/.
5 – Once your picture or pictures are posted to the board, be sure to subscribe to http://pinterest.com/ready4love/ and encourage your friends and family to repin, like and comment on your picture.
6 – The picture with the most likes, repins and comments on February 28th will win. In the case of a tie, Aphrodite Media and Promo 101 will pick the winner from the pictures with the most likes, repins and comments.
7 – Most important – have fun!
9 - The Grand Prize (for the person with the most repins, likes and comments) is a 1 or 1 private consultation with Linda DeVillers who will offer  personalized recommendations about sexy, playful and sensual ways to include aphrodisiacs into your personal life. The winner will also receive an autographed copy of Simple Sexy Food and Love Skills - both by Linda DeVillers. The 5 runner ups will each receive a digital copy of Love Skills - a perennial best selling book by Linda DeVillers and currently in its 5th edition.
 Enter Here

A few simple sexy foods for you...

Spicy Tuna Sushi Rolls
Melon and Prosciutto Wraps
Marinated Mushrooms
Spiced Pumpkin Pancakes
Coconut Pumpkin Nut Bread
Baked Eggs over Creamy Leeks
Features egg, leek, sage
Herb Crêpes with Caviar
Fish Tacos
Lobster Tail and Watermelon Salad
Roasted Cornish Game Hen with Red Grapes
Chile Relleno Casserole
Curry with Shrimp, Clams, and Pineapple
Orange Beef Stir-Fry
Saffron Rice
Jamaican Chicken with Salsa
Walnut Torte with Whipped Cream
Forget-Me-Not Cookies
Cherries Jubilee Crêpes
Date and Oat Squares
Fresh Fruit with Honey–Lemon Sauce
Tropical Coconut Flan
Poached Pears with Raspberry Brandy Sauce
and Much more...

Enter Here