Saturday, March 15, 2008

Carolina's Walking Tour -- A New Release!

Just a quick note about the release of my newest 'Novel Byte' from Uncial Press. Carolina's Walking Tour was released yesterday and is available for purchase. Here's a blurb about the story:

On his return from the Peninsular War, grievously wounded and troubled in spirit, Alexander Quainton decides that an insouciant manner is the best way to avoid the pity he abhors. Exercising his damaged body with daily walking excursions proves an excellent way of avoiding social engagements. Carolina Finmere, shy and no more than passable in looks, has failed in three seasons to attract a suitor.

For three months, they tramp Bath and its surrounding hills together, gaining in strength and--unwittingly--in intimacy. When September comes it is time to part, unless they admit their love for each other. Carolina knows she must initiate the declarations of devotion, for Alexander is convinced that a man so damaged is no fit mate for a gently bred woman. How can Carolina love someone so scarred and deformed as he?

Plucking up her courage, Carolina declares her love for Alexander. Will he admit his for her, or will his fear of seeing revulsion in her eyes put paid to their blossoming love?

I hope you will check it out at

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Austenland by Shannon Hale

I just finished reading "Austenland" by Shannon Hale, and thoroughly enjoyed it. If you enjoy a contemporary romance with Regency overtones, this book is for you. The heroine is obsessed with Colin Firth's Darcy and is given an opportunity to experience the Regency lifestyle at a Regency theme-park style resort. The real and make-believe worlds collide and for a while it's anyone's guess which will triumph.

The heroine's confusion became my confusion for a while--I can't decide if that was good writing or bad writing--or just my problem . The heroine was definitely conflicted about what she was experiencing and her tussles with truth and fiction became bewildering. Eventually however the heroine and this reader settled down. For a while toward the end, I thought the writer might be going to sermonize on the ills of expecting real life to imitate fiction, but she avoided that trap. A happy ending was believably achieved, and there were some good insights along the way.
An enjoyable read that I have no hesitation in recommending.

Now back to work; Carolina's Walking Tour will be released on Friday by Uncial Press, and this afternoon is dedicated to work on The Education of Portia.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

A new contest on my website

It's that time again; a new bi-monthly contest has gone up on my website. The John Lennon poster was won by Anne from Alaska! The new prize is a book -- "Panoramas of England" -- and it's a great book if you love England. It has double page spread pictures of wonderful English views that give you a feeling of seeing the vista in person. If you sign the guest book during March or April you are automatically entered to win the book. You also get added to my mailing list, but you'll never be spammed--I only send one email every two months! And I never share my mailing list.

I've been busy with contest work, and website updates, and preparing for my release on March 14. "Carolina's Walking Tour" used to be available free on my stories page, but I always loved the story and when Uncial Press gave me the opportunity to turn it into a 'Novel Byte' I jumped at the chance. It's been expanded, and carefully edited, and given a wonderful cover by Shakoriel. This might be my favourite of all Shakoriel's covers, but it would be hard to choose which I like best.
Go to my website to read an excerpt of Carolina's Walking Tour.