Friday, December 30, 2011

Unwrapping: Traveling to the Past

My darling hubby gave me PRIDE AND PREJUDICE on Blu-Ray and I couldn't be happier than a pig in mud! I love the book immensely and adore the 2005 version even though it doesn't have Colin Firth as Darcy. My DH knows I can watch that film over and over and never tire of it so he was thoughtful enough to get it for me.  He even came in and joined me while I was watching it the other night.

While watching the movie, he commented that it would be cool to travel back to Jane Austen's time if even for a little while. When I reminded him that there was no toilet paper, toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorant and bathing wasn't exactly a routine behavior for the times, he quickly changed his mind. I laughed at how quickly the idea lost its appeal once he knew all those things we take for granted wouldn't be there.

While preparing for Christmas, wrapping gifts for 14 homeless kids, baking goodies to share with friends and family, I watched LOST IN AUSTEN which I had recorded when the episodes were re-aired over two days. I had forgotten how strange it would be for a 21st Century woman to be suddenly transported into Regency England. 

My favorite part was when Amanda Price suddenly found herself back in 21st Century London. She found her way home and immediately went to the bathroom and brushed her teeth. Having not been able to properly brush her teeth the entire time she was gone had not left her in a good mood! 
 UGH! Just the idea of using chalk makes me immediately want to rinse my mouth!

Anyway, consequently when her boyfriend commented that her "bum had gotten big", she replied through minty suds rather snarkily, "my bum isn't bigger, it's the dress that makes it look that way!"

And then there was the clothes! Personally, I love the style of dress with its empire waists and Spencer jackets... they may have looked a tad bit chunky in them but they certainly looked elegantly tall, too! But then again, would we really be comfortable in so much cloth with only the occasional bath?  I somehow doubt it.     

So I'm wondering, if you had the opportunity to travel back through time, as Amanda did, would you go and if so, what creature comforts would you bring that you know didn't exist yet? And don't just think about chocolate and how it's sooo much better now!

I'd like to extend my heartfelt thanks to Gaelen for allowing us some time with her.  Wednesday here at UNWRAPPING ROMANCE was so much fun. For those of you who weren't able to make it on Wednesday, please feel free to look in on the celebration of the release of MY RUTHLESS PRINCE and it's not too late to enter to win a copy of MY WICKED MARQUESS being given away by Gaelen to one lucky commenter. Please be sure to read the rules of the Giveaway. If you're interested, please click here.

Happy Reading or Movie watching Everyone and I'll see you next year!
Wishing everyone a very Happy New Year and only the best in the New Year, 2012!


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Unwrapping: Interview with Romance Author Gaelen Foley + Giveaway!

An interview with New York Times Bestselling Author of Historical Romance, Gaelen Foley - can it get any better than this? Would it surprise you to know the answer is YES?

I'm so excited because not only has Gaelen graciously consented to join us for some Q & A but she's going to reveal some wonderful news and award a copy of her first Inferno Club Romance - MY WICKED MARQUESS to one lucky commenter! It told you it could get even better.

Yesterday marked the release of MY RUTHLESS PRINCE, book 4 of the Inferno Club Series featuring some of the best heroes and heroines you can meet in print.

In case you're not acquainted with the men of the Inferno Club, they are a scandalous gathering of wealthy libertines and highborn rakehells devoted to their wicked pleasures. At least that's how the Club's members are known to London Society.  Little does the world suspect their true purpose or the danger that looms over England which these select, powerful lords are secretly sworn to fight.  Brave men, recruited as lads from noble familes and trained in an array of deadly arts,  are sent to countries throughout Europe to hunt down and destroy their targets. The members of the Inferno Club are operatives of an agency so secret that few beyond the Crown and a select few top officials even know it exists.

* In MY RUTHLESS PRINCE, the Earl of Westwood is suspected by his brother warriors of having turned traitor, but Emily Harper knows this is impossible for the man she has loved since childhood—as impossible as a marriage between them could ever be—she, the gamekeeper’s daughter and he, a bold and adventurous nobleman.

Driven by hatred and revenge, Westwood is playing a deadly game of deception, bent on destroying the enemy’s dark conspiracy from the inside, and he’s furious when Emily plunges herself into danger for his sake. Forced into close quarters, their long-suppressed desire explodes into all-consuming passion.

Emily knows her love can save him…but Drake is a man who doesn’t want to be saved.  *

Gaelen Foley is one of the most talented writers in the Romance genre. Her stories are gripping and so well-researched that the readers may feel as if they are actually there in Regency London. Gaelen is one of those intelligent Romance Writers who write intelligent Romance Novels for intelligent Romance Novel Readers. She's an award-winning author who has written seventeen historical romances which are available in 15 languages.  I wonder if John Grisham can claim that?

Since she's very busy working on her next novel even as her newest release is only now on the shelves, I thank her very much for giving us some of her precious time.  I hope you will join me in welcoming Gaelen here today.

Amy:  Gaelen, thank you so much for joining us, it's such a delight for me to have you here and since you are quite busy, we won't keep you long.
You mentioned in your bio interview that you knew you wanted to write as early as high school. I can relate because that was when I was inspired to write and major in English in college. I began to hone my writing talents with poetry and short stories. What direction did your creative juices take you in the beginning?

Gaelen:  When I was little, I used to write plays for my sisters and cousins and neighborhood kids to act out for our audience of parents and doting grandparents. But my main thing early on (kind of embarrassing!) was actually poetry.

Amy:  LOL! I know what you mean, I thought my poetry was pretty good at the time but when I read it now, omg!
Over the years, you've created quite a library of works. The majority of which are centered around Regency England. I know this is your favorite era in history yet your first published novel was THE PIRATE PRINCE. This wonderful story was actually your fifth completed manuscript, if I'm correct. In regards to the first four, were they Regency Romances and were they ever published or are they still living on a shelf somewhere?

Gaelen:  They were all historicals, but they were all over the map. I had one with a gambler on a Mississippi paddlewheel boat. Another took place in Habsburg Vienna in the late 1700's. My favorite one was a treasure hunt historical with hero and heroine fighting their way into the jungles of Central America searching for some lost Mayan temple. Oh, wow, now that I think of it, one of them actually WAS a contemporary--but it wasn't really a romance. It was kind of like that dreadful 80's movie with Robert Downey Jr., "Less Than Zero." (LOL) I think it was trying to be literary fiction, but that could never work for me because, go figure, I prefer happy endings. The fifth one, I can't remember. I guess it must've been pretty forgettable!!!

Amy:  Well, then I guess that last one is living way back on a shelf somewhere! I actually think some of the others sound very interesting especially the Mayan temple adventure. I hope you'll consider revisiting them someday. 
We all fell madly in love with the Knights, (my particular fave is bad boy, Lucien) and then along came the cousins in the Spice Trilogy, oh my! [fanning myself] Now, we are fully in love with and ensconced in the adventures of the Inferno Club members. When you began the Knight Family Series, did you already see the adventurous and mysterious dealings of the Inferno Club looming on the horizon?

Gaelen:  No, not at all. I was totally focused on one book at a time and didn't really start thinking about what to do next until I had turned in the complete manuscript for the final Spice book, HER EVERY PLEASURE. I took a good long rest after that, then started developing the Inferno Club series. Once I had a proposal together for the Inferno series, we ended up having an auction. I don't normally report my deals to Publisher's Lunch, but a few different houses were interested, which was something I could never have dreamed would happen to me back in my pre-pubbed days. I ended up choosing Avon. I LOVE my editor, Lucia Macro, and can't say enough good about Avon and their extremely supportive publicity dept and sales team. Avon is really good at publishing historical romance, in particular.

Amy:  That's wonderful to know that you think so highly of them for I'm hoping to call myself an Avon author some day. I've been reading Avon romances forever and tend to follow their authors more than other publishers and perhaps now I know why although it something I've always suspected - they have the best authors and strong author loyalty. 

With the release of MY RUTHLESS PRINCE, which is now available for sale, we are pulled into the dangerous world of treachery and deception with Drake and Emily. It sounds dangerous and very exciting! We're all hoping Emily can save Drake from his desire for revenge and from himself. Next up, I understand that it will be Beau and Carissa's turn to encounter their own mysteries and dangers but we'll have to wait until next Fall for that one. How many more members of the Inferno Club do you see emerging to have their stories told?

Gaelen:  Well, Amy, that is the great question ...and you and your blog readers can be the first to know (cuz I haven't yet announced it) that there will be three more books after MY RUTHLESS PRINCE. For those who are following the series, you probably saw Beau's book coming, so that won't be a surprise (Autumn 2012). If you recall, our rakish pal Beau has been worried as hell about his two buddies, Nick and Trevor, who haven't been heard from in months. Here's a hint: They're alive! *g* But all is not well...

Amy:  OMG!! That IS very exciting news and folks, you heard it here first!! I was hoping you would say there would be more ... that is wonderful news indeed!
Gaelen, thank you for your time, I know how busy you are right now and I do so appreciate you coming to visit us. I have but one more question and it's not at all related to any of the above. If you could become any character from any book, who would it be and why?

Gaelen:  Hmm...what a fun question!! Well...I think I would love to become Jane Bennet from Pride & Prejudice, at least for a few days. The reason is that she's SUCH a good, kind, gentle, obedient person. I would love to find out what it feels like to be that sweet and good and demure, lol. I'm much more of a headstrong, passionate Marianne Dashwood by nature, LOL (see Kate Winslet in Sense & Sensibility) Ah well, it's better to admit one's own flaws than have someone else point them out to you, ha ha. If I couldn't be Jane Bennet, then I'd opt for Melanie Wilkes in Gone With The Wind for the same reason. Such a saint! What must that be like?? Unfortunately, I already have plenty in common with Scarlett, lol. What about you? Who would you be? Do tell!

Amy:  I love asking that question because it generally gives us some interesting insight into the person living beneath the surface.  Gaelen, I believe there's some Jane Bennet or Melanie Wilkes in you but I suspect you would soon be bored but then again being like Scarlett or Marianne Dashwood isn't such a bad thing ... they were both romantics, much more than Jane or Melanie.  Thank you again for visiting us today!

Gaelen:  Thank you so much for letting me visit your blog today, Amy! Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a very Happy New Year to you all! Don't forget, if you would like to read Ch. 1 of MY RUTHLESS PRINCE, it is posted at my website, at  All the best!

Amy:  You're welcome here any time and I am personally very excited about reading MY RUTHLESS PRINCE. Drake sounds sexy and dangerous, so until my next pretend 'boyfriend' comes along, I'd like to be Emily just because she gets to have a thrilling adventure with Drake.   ; )

So how about y'all ... Gaelen would like to hear who you would be if you could be any character from any book?  Answer Gaelen's question in a comment and please be sure to leave your email address to qualify for a chance to win a copy of Gaelen's first book in the Inferno Club series, MY WICKED MARQUESS - the one that started it all.

The Marquess of Rotherstone has decided it’s time to
restore the family's good name. But as a member of
the Inferno Club, he knows there is only one way to
redeem himself in Society's eyes:  marry a lady of
impeccable beauty and breeding, whose reputation
is, above all, spotless. Someone quite unlike
Daphne Starling. True, she's temptingly lovely, but
a jilted suitor has nearly ruined her reputation.
Still Max cannot resist her allure - or the challenge
of proving London's gossips wrong. He would
do anything to win her hand ...
and show that even a wicked marquess can make a perfect husband.

This Giveaway is open to U.S. COMMENTERS ONLY! This Giveaway will run till the end of the year - literally. This contest will close at 11:59 PM EST, on Saturday, December 31st. Remember, if you don't leave an e-mail address, you will NOT be entered for a chance to win MY WICKED MARQUESS.  (for further info, see my FTC Guidelines.)

Happy Reading Everyone and Good Luck!


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Unwrapping: New Release Tuesday!

Christmas may have come and gone but the gifts keep right on coming.

There are some wonderful New Releases coming to us through January that will surely keep us warm on those cold winter days ahead.  Here's a taste of what's here now and coming soon.

Releasing today:

                  Galen Foley's Book 4 of the Inferno Club - MY RUTHLESS PRINCE

Eloisa James' THE DUKE IS MINE


Laura Lee Guhrke's TROUBLE AT THE WEDDING: Abandoned at the Altar

January 3, 2012 - Anne Gracie's BRIDE BY MISTAKE


Christina Brooke's MAD ABOUT THE EARL

January 24, 2012 - Pamela Palmer's newest from her Esri series, A WARRIOR'S DESIRE

January 31, 2012 - Terri Garey's A DEVIL NAMED DESIRE

Is that not the hottest cover you ever saw?!
Stephanie Lauren's newest Cynster Sisters Novel, THE CAPTURE OF THE EARL OF GLENCRAE

Happy Reading Everyone!

Please come back Wednesday when I'll be hosting the delightful New York Times bestselling author, Gaelen Foley! 
I believe she'll be giving away one of her Inferno Club titles.