The North–South Divide

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By Shirley Wells, author of DEAD SIMPLE

This may surprise people across the pond, but there’s a strong North-South divide in England. This is strange when you consider the size of the country. Or perhaps it’s because the country’s so small that this divide exists.

Dylan Scott, private investigator and southerner, is heading back to the north in Dead Silent. Like most people from the south, Dylan believed that all northerners spend their time breeding pigeons, wearing flat caps on their heads and clogs on their feet like characters from Victorian times, and eating chips (fries) with gravy. Northerners, on the other hand, believe southerners are soft wimps, sound as if they’re sucking a lemon when they speak and – well, what’s wrong with chips and gravy anyway?

Dylan, however, is beginning to realize that life in the north isn’t as bad as he feared. Okay, the weather is harsher than he’s used to or would like, but the people are genuine and, unlike their southern counterparts, are happy to talk to strangers. That comes in useful when you’re a private investigator.

Those of you familiar with this series will know that Dylan is something of a chauvinist, but his heart’s in the right place and he’ll always, but always, fight the underdog’s corner. In Dead Simple he’s doing exactly that.

9781426899430-COVPrivate investigator Dylan Scott is struggling to come to terms with the death of his wife. He has to cope for the sake of his two children, though it’s easier to blame himself for her death and take comfort in a bottle of whisky.

When he hears that the man who helped him solve his first case has been killed in Dawson’s Clough, Dylan finds a new purpose and vows to put all his energy into finding justice for him. Who would have a motive to kill a kind man like Simple Stevie? As it turns out, everyone.

Dylan’s hunch is that Stevie must have snapped a photo of the wrong person, doing something they want erased, so he focuses his investigation on the town’s residents. But Dylan’s worst fears are realized when he again finds his own family in the crosshairs.

 

Download Dead Simple from Carina Press or your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | iBooks | Kobo 

 

I must admit that, as a southerner myself, I shared Dylan’s views of the north. When my husband’s job meant a move to the north, I had visions of grim, dirty old mill towns. What I found was rolling hills, mile upon mile of open moors for the dogs to enjoy and people who have a wit and warmth second to none. These days, I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.

Have you had preconceived notions of people or places that have turned out to be completely unfounded?

Shirley Wells shares her Lancashire home with her husband and two dogs. For more information about her crime/mystery novels, visit her website. To chat about books, dogs, football, chocolate, wine or anything else that takes your fancy, find her on Twitter and/or Facebook.

What We Want—New Adult Romance!

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9781426899294-COV9781426899638-COV9781426899607-COVCARINA_1014_9781426899195_StandByYou

Happy New Year! Carina Press is always excited and proud to publish wonderful, genre-crossing New Adult fiction—some of which you’ll see above—and we’re looking for more in 2015! Here are some details on the types of New Adult books our editors are looking to acquire.

Angela James, Editorial Director, would like to see:

  • New adult heist caper and romance. (I’d actually take a heist story in any age range, but this is a good place to start!)
  • A spy or military-set suspense new adult romance.
  • New adult-set male/male romance, particularly deeply emotional or angsty romances. Would also love to see a story that is super sexy or even erotic.
  • Dark new adult romance that deals with the darker side of obsession, jealousy, possessiveness and discovering sexuality and kink.

Kerri Buckley, Senior Editor, would like to see:

  • New Adult romantic suspense—sons and daughters swept up into dark family businesses, military heroes and heroines, nonstop action combined with traditional NA themes.
  • Super sexy New Adult set outside of college campuses. Supremely alpha heroes preferred.
  • New Adult mysteries or NA novels with mysterious elements

Rhonda Helms, Freelance Editor, would like to see:

  • Diverse New Adult romance—LGBTQ, people of color, multicultural.
  • Edgy, intense, emotional contemporary New Adult romance.
  • Non-contemporary New Adult with strong characters, emotion, resonant romance.

Deborah Nemeth, Freelance Editor, would like to see:

  • New Adult with multicultural and interracial couples. African-American heroes, Latina heroines, Bollywood romances…

  • New Adult featuring heroes or heroines in uniform, including m/m, contemp and suspense.

Submit your new adult manuscripts to Carina Press now, right here!

Welcome Elizabeth Harmon, Caitlin Sinead and Alyssa Cole to Carina Press!

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This February we’re welcoming three new authors to Carina Press. Elizabeth Harmon, Caitlin Sinead and Alyssa Cole are here to introduce themselves and their fantastic forthcoming books! Comment on this post for a chance to win one of three sets of all three books when they release next month! Sweepstakes ends 11:59pm ET, January 31, 2015. Open to US/CAN residents, excluding QC. Full rules HERE.

Elizabeth Harmon, author of PAIRING OFF

The first time I laced on a pair of figure skates, it was the start of a love that’s lasted all my life. Though I never reached the Olympic podium—or any podium for that matter—the beauty and athleticism of figure skating leaves me in awe.  I also love the romance of it, especially when I watch a man and woman skating two as one, the essence of pair skating.

To capture that emotion was my goal when I wrote my debut novel, PAIRING OFF. The story of Carrie and Anton not only depicts the challenge of training to compete on the world’s biggest stage, the Winter Olympics, it’s also the story of a pairs figure skating duo who fall in love despite their differences.

Since I love fish out water stories, I decided to take my all-American heroine out of her comfort zone (and mine!) and drop her into the country best known for champion pair skating, Russia. Getting to know more about Russia…and Russians was a blast.  It was also fun to present that world and a sexy Russian hero, in a slightly different way.  “Pairing Off” is humorous and heartfelt.  And hot, especially when Anton and Carrie dive in for a late night skinny dip in a deserted swimming pool.

PAIRING OFF is the first installment in my debut Carina series, Red Hot Russians. I’m very excited to share three handsome heroes who know how to warm up the coldest nights, and show their heroines that in any language, love is a beautiful thing.

9781426899508-COVPAIRING OFF (available February 2, 2015)

American figure skater Carrie Parker’s Winter Games dreams were dashed when her philandering partner caused one of the greatest scandals in skating history. Blacklisted from competing in the United States, her career is over…until she receives a mysterious invitation and is paired with the most infuriating, talented—and handsome—skater she’s ever met.

Russian champion Anton Belikov knows sacrifice. He gave up a normal life and any hope of a meaningful relationship to pursue his dream. And he’s come close—with a silver medal already under his belt, the next stop is the gold. All he needs is a partner. While he’s never forgotten the young American skater he seduced one long-ago night in Amsterdam, he never expected to be confronted with their past…never mind share the ice with her.

When what starts as a publicity stunt grows into something real, Carrie and Anton’s partnership will test their loyalties to family, country and each other. With only a few months to train for the competition of a lifetime, can they master technique and their emotions, or will they lose their footing and fall victim to the heartaches of their pasts?

 

Preorder your copy now!
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | iBooks | Kobo

 

Connect with Elizabeth!

Facebook | Twitter | Blog | Goodreads


Caitlin Sinead, author of HEARTSICK

When I found out Carina Press wanted to publish my debut novel, I did a rather awkward, but very fun, happy dance. I couldn’t believe it. And now that we’re so close to the release date, I’m pinching myself even more!

I got the idea for HEARTSICK two years ago, but it has changed a lot since its original inception. Initially, I wanted to set the story in a small town that had been quarantined for a few years. Eventually, though, I decided that the start of the quarantine would be more interesting.

I didn’t set out to write a contemporary romance, but I love heavy romantic subplots, so I knew Quinn would also be falling in love. And after each revision, Quinn and Luke’s story become more and more prominent. I’ve surprised myself several times because on the 23rd, 48th, and 67th reads of certain scenes, I still get all giddy over their interactions.

While their relationship is a large aspect of the novel, the story also involves a mystery and speculative elements. I like to think there’s a little something for everyone. I’m very excited to share it with readers!

9781426899607-COVHEARTSICK (available February 16, 2015)

Quinn is looking forward to her senior year at Poe University. She has big plans to hang out with her best friend, flirt with a certain boy genius, party at her favorite dive bar and figure out what she’s going to do after graduation with her not-so-useful art major. But that’s before she meets Luke, a hot townie who’s moved back home to help take care of his dying sister. And it’s before a weird epidemic sweeps across campus, mysteriously turning people’s eyes purple.

Is it an odd side effect from a new party drug?
Is it a rogue virus developed in a campus lab?
Is it the mark of the devil?

Soon the town starts blaming the university and the student religious group becomes frighteningly aggressive in their on-campus accusations. Quinn and Luke are caught in the middle—until a tragic accident forces Luke to reveal the one part of himself he’s kept carefully hidden. That he’s so much more than the happy-go-lucky boy next door Quinn had believed him to be isn’t a surprise…but this truth might be too dangerous for her to handle.

 

Preorder your copy now!
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | iBooks | Kobo

 

Connect with Caitlin!

Website | Facebook | Twitter


Alyssa Cole, author of RADIO SILENCE

Like most writers, I draw inspiration from both the world around me and the dark, creepy recesses of my mind. Radio Silence was written during a time when preparing for the Apocalypse was becoming a kind of trend—there was even a reality show! I found the whole thing interesting, because preparing for disaster had always been a part of my life. When I was a kid, I enjoyed collecting flashlights and Swiss Army knives, just in case. As an adult, friends made fun of me for my purse that was always stuffed with basically anything you could need in an emergency situation. In a way, preparing for the worst is a way of warding it off. But what if the Apocalypse, or something just as world changing, actually happened? How would people deal with the loss of creature comforts like Internet and cell phones, and the things that have become basic human rights, like clean water and access to food? What would you do if you were separated from your family, and how would you adapt to being thrown into an uncomfortable situation? Arden, the heroine, is a tough cookie, but she’s also just a girl who is worried to death about her parents. Gabriel is a smart, capable hero, but his main objective is keeping his family safe and happy. Radio Silence is a romance about finding laughter, hope, and love in the face of an uncertain future.

9781426899638-COVRADIO SILENCE (available February 2, 2015)

No one expects the apocalypse.

Arden Highmore was living your average postgrad life in Rochester, New York, when someone flipped the “off” switch on the world. No cell phones, no power, no running water—and no one knows why. All she and her roommate, John, know for sure is that they have to get out, stat. His family’s cabin near the Canadian border seemed like the safest choice.

It turns out isolation doesn’t necessarily equal safety.

When scavengers attack, it’s John’s ridiculously handsome brother, Gabriel, who comes to the rescue. He saves Arden’s life, so he can’t be all bad…but he’s also a controlling jerk who treats her like an idiot. Now their parents are missing and it seems John, Gabriel, their kid sister, Maggie, and Arden are the only people left alive who aren’t bloodthirsty maniacs.

No one knows when—or if—the lights will come back on and, in the midst of all that, Arden and Gabriel are finding that there’s a fine line indeed between love and hate. How long can they expect to last in this terrifying new world, be it together or apart?

Book one of Off the Grid

 

Preorder your copy now!
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | iBooks | Kobo

 

Connect with Alyssa!

Twitter | Website

News from the Fatal Series

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Are you ready to dive into the latest in Marie Force’s Fatal Series? Fatal Scandal is out now, placing Sam and Nick in their riskiest case yet!

Order Fatal Scandal on Carina Press or major online retailers

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Google | iBooks

Did you know you can discuss your favorite Fatal Series books with other fans? Visit MarieForce.com for both reader groups and individual book groups!

Plus, get a look behind the scenes of the Fatal Series in this interview with Marie Force:

Confessions of a Resolution Junkie

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I have a confession to make, Carina Press readers. I’m a resolution junkie: making no less than 3 resolutions a year, I venture out and try a few new things—some dubious, some really, really fun. (And speaking of fun things: one year, my resolution was to get onto a TV show, and true enough, ended up getting into Canadian Idol auditions—that was both terrifying AND AMAZING #truefact.) But unfortunately, one thing or the other often sidetracks me from my goals and those once-exciting plans are forgotten.

BUT! I am determined to break that streak, readers, and I’m not only here to help myself but to help YOU. Do you want to read more in the New Year? Write more? Shop more responsibly? Play Kim Kardashian’s Hollywood less? (It gets addictive really quickly, amiright?) I have JUST the tools to help you succeed in 2015.

Do you have dreams of being a kajillionaire? Mint.com—both the app and the website—provides you with tools to stay on budget and plan for your future! Free to download and sign up, they provide you with budgeting advice, investment information and, bonus, colorful graphs to tell you how much you REALLY spent last month at Starbucks. There is nowhere to hide, friends.

Do you want to write more? The internet is chock-full of writing resources but I love, love, love Hanx Writer (created by Tom Hanks himself); not only because of the typewriter interface and sounds, but it’s also easy to use and get lost in.

Do you want to learn new skills? Duolingo and Lingua.ly (both free, iOS and Android) have made learning new languages fun and achievable. Codecademy (free, browser) will help you learn how to code that first website or app all by yourself.

Do you want to make sure you can stay motivated throughout the year? Lift (free, iOS and Android) promises to “help you reach your goals.” With a number of categories you can choose from, you can get prompts from goal “coaches,” get support from the Lift community of users and easily keep yourself accountable throughout the year. No excuses.

So, are you ready for 2015 yet? I know I am! What are your go-to apps and sites that help keep you motivated?

—–

Patty Anasco (@pattyanasco) is Assistant Manager, Website Operations for Harlequin.com and a member of the Carina Press Acquisition team.

Kindle Daily Deals! December 29, 2014

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Is the eReader you got for Christmas begging to have great romances added, without breaking the bank? Here are 10 Kindle daily deals, ranging from historical to suspense, sports to new adult, contemporary to male/male—all 99¢–$1.99 each!

Click on the image or title below to read more.

Prices valid December 29, 2014 ONLY. 

Fatal AffairMidnight VengeanceAll In with the DukeUp To MeNo Such ThingWild OnesNo Accounting for CowboysHate to Love YouOn The SurfaceThe Kent Brothers Trilogy

“It’s A Wrap!”

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All good things must come to an end, and we’re here to showcase the fantastic final books of three great series! Plus, if you’re looking for a new series for 2015, we have some suggestions below that you’ll love.

Dead Simple by Shirley Wells:  A Dylan Scott Mystery

9781426899430-COVPrivate investigator Dylan Scott is struggling to come to terms with the death of his wife. He has to cope for the sake of his two children, though it’s easier to blame himself for her death and take comfort in a bottle of whisky.

When he hears that the man who helped him solve his first case has been killed in Dawson’s Clough, Dylan finds a new purpose and vows to put all his energy into finding justice for him. Who would have a motive to kill a kind man like Simple Stevie? As it turns out, everyone.

Dylan’s hunch is that Stevie must have snapped a photo of the wrong person, doing something they want erased, so he focuses his investigation on the town’s residents. But Dylan’s worst fears are realized when he again finds his own family in the crosshairs.

Start from the beginning: Presumed Dead

Transmuted by Karina Cooper: The Cherry St. Criox Chronicles

9781426899485-COVIn this final installment of Cherry St. Croix’s adventures, only one thing could compel the disgraced countess to return to Society—the threat of immortality.

All is not peaceful in the wake of the Midnight Menagerie’s ruin. Although the Karakash Veil has been forced to flee its stronghold, the mysterious head of the criminal organization is not content to fade away.

Above the foggy drift, a priceless diamond vanishes. In the dangerous Underground, a murderous rampage demands retribution. The hunt for the mastermind behind these misdeeds sends me back to Society—and into the unforgiving embrace of the world I’d left behind.

Nothing is what it seems. Enemies, allies—and a man who struggles with a nature even devotion cannot tame. Torn between the scars of the past and fragile new beginnings, I must create balance in the world I have chosen—and with the people I have come to love. The game has changed; should the Veil achieve the immortality it craves, I will have nowhere left to run.

Start from the beginning: The Mysterious Case of Mr. Strangeway

Party Lines by Emma Barry: The East Part

{054453FC-D2B7-4F75-BED6-4161CF1EE658}Img100It’s not personal–it’s politics.

Michael Picetti: a cynical Democrat who has seen too many failed campaigns. It’s not his first primary, and it’s been a while since he’s truly believed policy and public good trump all.

Lydia Reales: young, hard-working, optimistic…Republican. Getting her candidate in office means everything to her, and leaves zero time for a love life.

Both are determined that opposites don’t attract–at least when it comes to crossing party lines. As aides for opposing presidential candidates, Michael and Lydia are competing in an industry that requires total loyalty to their side. It doesn’t matter that with each teasing encounter they’re more and more attracted to each other. It doesn’t matter that casual flirting escalates to a powerful physical connection. It doesn’t matter that they might not be able to step away from each other without consequences.

As the campaign rages on and a reckless affair becomes a relationship, the inevitable reality sets in. In the end, loyalty to the campaign has to win. It doesn’t matter at what cost.

Start from the beginning: Special Interests

 Start a series for the new year!

The Lexi Charmichael Mystery Series by Julie Moffett

Full of mystery, action and geeky humor, you won’t want to miss Lexi Charmichael’s adventures!

The Fatal Series by Marie Force

Politics, mystery…and romance. Follow Sam Holland and Nick Cappuano as they crack intense cases in Washington, D.C.

The Shadowminds by AJ Larrieu

If you’re a fan of the paranormal, check out The Shadowminds, featuring a heroine with telekinetic powers and romance!

Falling Under by Jeffe Kennedy

Looking for a new erotic read? Heat things up with the Falling Under series.

Trends in Male/Male Romance

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Happy Holidays from Ava March, A.M Arthur and Josh Lanyon. The three of us write what is known as male/male romance, a relatively new but steadily growing sub-genre where strong and intelligent men fall in love with…other strong and intelligent men! Today we’d like to share a little bit about our work with you.

 

All In with the DukeCARINA_0614_9781426898464_SharpLove

Ava March

When I ‘discovered’ historical romance years ago, I fell hard and fast for the subgenre. I glommed books from my local libraries. Seriously, I’d check out ten at a time and read them all before they were due. Then I’d go back and get more. Once I realized M/M romances existed, I went on another glom. But back in 2007, there weren’t that many M/M historicals out there. In the grand scheme of things, there weren’t a heck of a lot of M/M romances, period. So for the first time in years, I read other genres and discovered some amazing books. Yet I wanted to read erotic stories of men in Regency England falling in love. So I started penning my own.

As the ebook market has grown, so has the quantity and diversity of M/M romances. And with that growth has come more M/M historicals. I set my books in England during the Regency era…which happens to be my favorite time period for romance. The gorgeous clothes, the proper manners, the luscious element of excess. A time when men strove to be gentlemen…at least when out in public. Yet the historical subgenre includes up through World War II, which gives readers a vast array of options.

If you are in the mood for gladiators, 18th century spy catchers, WWI fighters, or an Age of Sail romance, you can find them from Fae Sutherland/Marguerite Labbe, Tyler Flynn, Charlie Cochrane and Alex Beecroft. And if you are in the mood for a smoking hot Regency romance with some yummy angst, check out the books in my Gambling on Love series, with book #3 (Viscount’s Wager) coming in 2015.

I’m so excited that there are more authors now than ever writing M/M historicals. The subgenre was my first love of romance, after all. And I’ll be on the lookout for more historicals to add to my to-read list in the new year.

About Ava March

Ava March is an author of sexy, emotionally intense M/M historical erotic romances. She loves writing in the Regency time period, where proper decorum is of the utmost importance, but where anything can happen behind closed doors. With over fifteen works to her credit, her books have been finalists in the Rainbow Awards and More Than Magic contest, and deemed ‘must-haves’ for Historical M/M romance by RT Book Reviews readers.

Connect with Ava March: Website | Blog | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

 


 

CARINA_0315_9781426897962_NoSuchThingCARINA_1014_9781426899195_StandByYouCARINA_0315_9781426898716_MaybeThisTime

A.M Arthur

M/M romance is an exciting, dynamic genre in which to both read and write. I’ve been a fan and loyal reader of many of my fellow m//m authors long before I first published my own stories. When I first discovered the genre, I admit that I went on a bit of reading binge. I sampled a little bit of everything: contemporary, historical, SF/F, humor, erotica, and everything in between. As a reader, I enjoy diversity in my subgenres. As a writer, I most enjoy contemporaries with adult characters.

When New Adult became a thing, I decided that I wanted to give writing an NA series a shot, and that is how the Belonging Series was born, and I am very lucky to have a found a great home for it with Carina Press. The unique troubles and stresses of NA characters was a fun playground, and I adore those boys. For me 2014 was definitely the year of New Adult.

But as the trilogy came to an end and another character decided he wanted his own book, I realized that James wouldn’t fit into the world of the Belonging characters. To start, he’s thirty-four and so is his love interest. All of his friends are twenty-nine or older. So I left NA behind and a new trilogy of adult contemporaries was born. The first book, Getting It Right, kicks off the Restoration series on March 16, 2015, with two more books to follow. I had a blast getting back to adult contemporary stories for 2015, and I can’t wait to see wear my characters decide to take me for 2016.

CARINA_0315_9781426899577_GettingItRight

Preorder GETTING IT RIGHT from your favorite ebook retailer:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | GooglePlay | iBooks | Kobo

 

About A.M. Arthur

A.M. Arthur was born and raised in the same kind of small town that she likes to write about, a stone’s throw from both beach resorts and generational farmland.  She’s been creating stories in her head since she was a child and scribbling them down nearly as long, in a losing battle to make the fictional voices stop.  She credits an early fascination with male friendships (bromance hadn’t been coined yet back then) with her later discovery of and subsequent love affair with m/m romance stories.

When not exorcising the voices in her head, she toils away in a retail job that tests her patience and gives her lots of story fodder.  She can also be found in her kitchen, pretending she’s an amateur chef and trying to not poison herself or others with her cuisine experiments.

Contact with A.M. Arthur!
Email | Website | Twitter | Tumblr

 


 

strangerontheshore CARINA_1114_9781426890451_FairGame CARINA_1114_9781426898976_FairPlay

Josh Lanyon

My first love is mystery. I grew up reading everything from Raymond Chandler to Mary Stewart, so it was natural that my first efforts at writing Male/Male fiction would combine equal parts romance and suspense. Somehow if my guys aren’t stumbling over bodies or chasing clues together, it just doesn’t seem like true love to me.

I write contemporary, historical, and sometimes speculative fiction, but there’s always a mysterious element. What kind of men will you find in my stories? All kinds! I write about sensitive, artistic types — college professors and writers and ballet dancers — and I write about tough guys, men hard as nails — cops and FBI agents and Texas Rangers. I write about smart, competent grown-ups because that’s what I find attractive in a man — and in a woman, for that matter. A sense of humor doesn’t hurt either.

Next year I’ll be writing something a little different for Carina Press. Jefferson Blythe, Esquire is a New Adult caper. It’s about old maps, new adventures, getting lost, getting found, getting drunk, and being mistaken for an international criminal. In other words, normal summer vacation when you’re in your twenties. It’s going to be a change of pace for me and my readers, but I think we’re all up to the challenge.

Start reading Josh Lanyon’s Carina Press titles today!

About Josh Lanyon

A distinct voice in gay fiction, multi-award-winning author Josh Lanyon has been writing gay mystery, adventure and romance for over a decade. In addition to numerous short stories, novellas, and novels, Josh is the author of the critically acclaimed Adrien English series, including The Hell You Say, winner of the 2006 USABookNews awards for GLBT Fiction. Josh is an Eppie Award winner and a three-time Lambda Literary Award finalist.

Connect with Josh Lanyon!
Website | Blog | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

 

What about you? Are you up to the challenge of reading something new? Have you tried Male/Male romance yet? Comment on this post in the section below to be entered in a drawing for a $50.00 gift certificate to your favorite online bookseller.

Author Spotlight: Emma Barry

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Opposites attract in Party Lines, the newest book in Emma Barry’s The Easy Part series. Her combination of romance and politics make for a truly exciting read! Look below for a note from the author herself and more.

Behind the Podium

We’ve all seen it on the evening news a thousand times. A candidate steps up to the podium. He—it’s almost always a he—shuffles some papers in his hand, clears his throat and begins speaking. The press corps shouts questions. Cameras flash. The candidate waves his hands, saying something noncommittal. Or maybe he pounds the air with his fists and goes on a diatribe. Whatever he says is news—or at least we’re told it is. He raises money, makes promises, and dominates our TVs in the months before the election.

But I’m actually not interested in him.

Standing a bit behind the candidate is a young woman clutching a smartphone. She’s overworked and tense, juggling what her boss is saying with the twenty-five other things she has to do. She works twelve to sixteen hour days when she’s on the road, which is most of the year. She hasn’t slept an eight-hour stretch in weeks or eaten a decent meal in longer. She’s smart, driven, and she can shape the campaign—and by extension, the city or state or nation.

She’s the one I’m writing about.

In The Easy Part series, my heroes and heroines have been the ones behind the podium: congressional aides, campaign staffers, fundraisers, and political bloggers. They are young and ambitious, some are cynical and some idealistic, but they all want to make a difference in the world.

I understand that politics might seem like an odd venue for romance: it’s confrontational and messy. But negotiation and compromise are potent metaphors for love. The stakes and the risk of failure are high. Because compared to love, politics is easy.

 

About Party Lines:

 

23010019It’s not personal—it’s politics.

Michael Picetti: a cynical Democrat who has seen too many failed campaigns. It’s not his first primary, and it’s been a while since he’s truly believed policy and public good trump all.

Lydia Reales: young, hard-working, optimistic…Republican. Getting her candidate in office means everything to her, and leaves zero time for a love life.

Both are determined that opposites don’t attract—at least when it comes to crossing party lines. As aides for opposing presidential candidates, Michael and Lydia are competing in an industry that requires total loyalty to their side. It doesn’t matter that with each teasing encounter they’re more and more attracted to each other. It doesn’t matter that casual flirting escalates to a powerful physical connection. It doesn’t matter that they might not be able to step away from each other without consequences.

As the campaign rages on and a reckless affair becomes a relationship, the inevitable reality sets in. In the end, loyalty to the campaign has to win. It doesn’t matter at what cost.

 

Discover The Easy Part series…

 

Special Interests

{DE91C464-7FEB-48D3-9CAA-B59B5602C00F}Img100Compared to love, politics is easy

Union organizer Millie Frank’s world isn’t filled with cocktails and nightclubs…until she’s turned into an unwitting minor celebrity. As if being part of a hostage situation wasn’t traumatizing enough, now her face is splashed across the news. But Millie’s got fresher wounds to nurse–like being shot down by the arrogant bad boy she stupidly hit on.

Parker Beckett will do whatever it takes to close a deal for the senate majority leader, including selling out union labor. Charming and smart on the surface, he’s also cynical and uncommitted–an asset on the Hill. But something about Millie has stuck with him and when negotiations bring her to his office, Parker breaks his own rules and asks her out.

Parker can’t understand how Millie has retained her idealism in a place like D.C. Millie can’t believe what Parker’s willing to sacrifice in order to pass a budget. But as they navigate their political differences, what grows between them looks a lot like a relationship…and maybe even a little like love.

Private Politics

{EF6573DE-67E4-4B95-A29C-80063D83074C}Img100Book two of The Easy Part

New York socialite Alyse Philips is not the airhead people take her for–she’s great at convincing D.C.’s rich and powerful to open their wallets. Never one to coast on her family’s connections, her real dream is to help charities in a bigger way. Before she can pursue her ambitions, she discovers a money-laundering scandal that’s got her signature all over it. If Alyse can’t clear her name, she’ll never work in nonprofits again.

Political blogger Liam Nussbaum has been pining after Alyse for six months, certain she’d never go for a quiet guy like him. Helping her with the investigation is a no-brainer. But going up against a seedy network of money and influence isn’t just a romantic opportunity or a chance to grab the headline that will take him into the big time–it’s a gamble that could destroy his blog’s reputation.

As Liam and Alyse dig deeper, their hearts collide alongside their ambition. Will they choose love or politics? Because in Washington, everything comes at a price.

 

Visit Emma Barry at her website, and don’t forget to follow her on Twitter!

Holiday Travel Survival Guide from the Carina Press Team

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While we at Carina Press are wrapping up 2014 in a nice and tidy bow before the holidays start, we haven’t quite talked about the amazing, crazy and sometimes challenging period called “Holiday Travel Season”.

Our fearless leader, Angela James, has documented proof that the very best planned itineraries don’t often go smoothly.

So what do you do to maintain your holiday cheer in the midst of travel delays? Or how do you ensure road trips don’t get sidelined? Here are some tips from the Carina Press team (a.k.a. your holiday travel experts) to help survive the season!

“Put any liquids in Ziplock bags – spills in suitcases happen!” – Amy Loosemore (@amy_loosemore), new homeowner and packing expert!

“Wear festive gear if you can get away with it. Last year, a reindeer headband got me a business upgrade for free!” – Patty Anasco (@pattyanasco), holiday cheer-leader

“If travelling by car, assume the trip will take twice as long as you think, due to weather and/or traffic. Plan to leave early and kill time sightseeing if necessary.” – Jenny Bullough (@jennybullough), road warrior

“(For airport delays) Make sure you talk to a rep and be super nice and see if you can get a free hotel stay or free meal vouchers. Oh and make sure your Kindle/ebook reader is fully loaded with books beforehand.” – Carly Chow (@carly_chow), world traveler

And speaking of books, heed Carly’s advice and make sure you plan ahead for your holiday reads starting today! Here are a few recommendations to keep you entertained on that trip back home:

  1. The Season for Love: A Shannon Stacey Holiday Box Set – Three holiday themed stories to keep you in the spirit of the season during your travels. Only $0.99 until January 2, 2015!!
  2. A Christmas Reunion by Susanna Fraser – A romance set in regency England, Susanna Fraser tells us about a romance between a soldier of the British Army and a lady engaged to someone else. It’s a compelling read even while under an airline blanket.
  3. All I’m Asking For: A Contemporary Christmas Anthology featuring stories by Christi Barth, Brighton Walsh and Kat Latham – Last year’s anthology will warm your heart wherever you are.

We’re sending positive vibes that your holiday travel is on schedule and filled with free meals and seat upgrades! And may your road trips be filled with scenic routes and open highways!

Now it’s over to you, dear reader. What are the best holiday travel tips you’ve received?