All the featured authors are from the Romance Writers of Australia or Romance Writers of New Zealand, and have just been or are newly published with the digital imprints of Australian publishing houses like - Random House, Harlequin, Penguin and Pan Macmillan.
This week, please welcome Louise Forster.
Louise Forster grew up in a Victorian country town. She ran barefoot along dirt roads and loved looking through the leaves of tall eucalypts at the azure summer skies.
Eventually, she grew up, and the country town became a suburb of Melbourne. Running barefoot to catch her train to work would have caused more than a few raised eyebrows so she opted for stilettos, of course.
At eighteen, Louise travelled through Europe, parts of Africa and the Pacific Islands. These days Louise lives on the far north coast of New South Wales on a small property that includes her extended family, three dogs, three cats and all manner of wildlife.
Title – FINDING ELIZABETH
Release Date – 1st February
Publisher – Escape Publishing
Call Story – I didn’t hear about Harlequin’s Escape Publishing until the first round of authors were announced. Anyone would think I live in a cave and never venture out. The cave does have a window and I do make my escape sometimes.
I submitted a manuscript and thought, they won’t accept…nuh, I’ll never be that lucky. May as well deal with the inevitable now and soften the blow when the rejection come comes through. One morning, not expecting anything, I saw their email.
I looked at it for a couple of beats, took a deep breath, opened it and read, “Thank you for submitting Finding Elizabeth to Escape Publishing. I'm delighted to accept it for publication.”
Arms reaching for the sky, (have no idea why I did that) I jumped out of my office chair, ran around the house, yelling, Aarrgghh YAY-YAY-YAY!!!! I did it-I did it!
|Flowers given to Louise by her son-in-law.|
About your book:
Hero – Australian, Jack Riley, had a flawed upbringing, which he has overcome. He’s strong, takes control when heroine is in danger. Always gentle, caring, loving. Knows what he wants and is out to get it. Since he wants Katherine, he’ll freeze his butt off to make her his.
Heroine – Katherine Bell, is a loving, gentle person. She is strong, and protective of those she loves. Katherine makes the difficult decision to give up ballet and take up a new career. Falling in love with Jack soon proves there are far greater challenges ahead for her.
Setting – It’s almost Christmas in a snowbound country town in Alberta Canada.
She’d give anything for a mobile phone connection, and an empty biscuit tin.
Katherine Bell has finally returned home. She’s left the bright lights and the besotted stalker behind—or so she thinks. Can her newly rescued furry sidekick keep her safe? There’s a blizzard outside, and a daredevil girlfriend in her bed; and if that wasn’t enough, sexy Australian Jack Riley needs to be kept at arm’s length. So why did she let him kiss her? Especially since she knew Jack would leave the moment he found the person he was searching for. When Katherine disappears, will Jack go searching for her?Will Jack’s laid-back strength, tenderness and light-hearted banter change Katherine’s mind about him? He’s full of surprises. Will one too many have Katherine running for cover?
FINDING ELIZABETH excerpt
(From CHAPTER 2 Jack sees Katherine across the street.)
Jack Riley’s butt hit the icy bench. Instantly, the brutal cold pierced his skin through a thick layer of thermal underwear and denim.
Man, it was freezing. He should never have slogged into town wearing tennis racquets on his feet. With every step, snow splattered up the back of his legs. The locals must think him a novice. No, rephrase that, the locals knew he was a novice.
Stretching to remove the kinks from his spine and legs, Jack tried to catch as much of the sun’s rays as possible. He could have been lazing on white, sandy beaches under the tropical sun of Port Douglas or Sydney; instead he was in an icebox that made his face ache, his eyes water and his nose drip. He felt like moaning—so he did.
He lifted his sunglasses and rested them on the ridiculous multicoloured hat with a pom-pom on top…Everything about his hat made him smile.
“Wow, who’s that?” he whispered and quickly forced his slouching body upright.
A young woman had stopped at the kerb opposite him, making sure it was safe before she crossed. The blades of her skates, slung casually over one shoulder, flashed as they caught the sun. Her long raven hair, in brilliant contrast to her red snow hat, had escaped the scarf wound around her nose and face, and the dark waves bounced and fluttered in her wake. She had pushed her sunglasses up on top of her hat and all Jack could see were two inches of pale skin and a pair of expressive eyes. When her eyes met Jack’s, he held his breath.
If only he could see the rest of her face. She made his blood pulse hot through his body, which moments ago had almost been frostbitten. Her elegant posture, the sway of her hips and her long legs—everything about her made him smile.
Pull the scarf down. Come on, pull the scarf down.
Something about her seemed familiar. She waited in the centre of the road for a battered cream pickup to pass. It left a trail of polluted condensation. She coughed, and waved at the smog. It can’t be, Jack smiled. She came closer and caught him staring. Their eyes locked for a heartbeat. Oh, oh. Did he see a spark of anger—or worse accusation?
Dismissing him, she scanned the area up and down the street in search of something or someone. She was humming, perhaps to cover the fact that she was nervous, or wary. She approached, to the right of him, just feet away now, and her gaze dropped, pinning him with clear, blue eyes.
“G'day,” he said, giving her his best, slow easy smile.
Was that a nod? He wanted it to be. As she passed, the air moved and he caught a hint of her perfume; a light scent, a promise of spring.
|Louise's lovely beach view|
You can find out more about Louise and her books at her website, or follow her on Facebook or Twitter.