Posts tagged with: The Thief

Sandy Blair guest booty winner!!

1BanditBooty

WE HAVE A WINNER!!

The winner of the autographed copy of THE THIEF by Sandy Blair is…………..

ALYN!!

CONGRATULATIONS, Alyn!

Please contact me at suzanne AT suzanneferrell DOT com and I’ll see Sandy get you your prize ASAP!

V.R. Marks and Military Heroes

Banditas and Buddies, you may recall I had VR Marks here in the Lair as a guest in December as one of three authors of the A Season For Romance anthology. According to Alfred Hitchcock, “There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it.” V.R. Marks feels the same way about writing romantic suspense. Marks combines a passion for suspense films with a passion for writing to create adventurous romantic suspense novels. You may also recall that Marks confessed a penchant for military stories when he was here before. Today, he is here to talk to us about his romantic suspense novels and why military heroes are so appealing to him as an author. V.R., welcome back to the Lair!

VR-Marks-googleplusI can’t say I’ve ever been greeted quite like that before. Not by anyone who didn’t want to kill me, anyway.

No, I expect not. Still, it’s a cozy sort of Lair and the boys regularly check around corners and in the broom closets for bad guys, so it should be safe enough. Even for one as naturally suspicious as yourself!

If you say so…

Please, have a seat and make yourself comfy. I would normally offer a mojito or perhaps a glass of sangria to a visiting guest, but you strike me as a beer kind of guy. Sven, a beer for the manly man, please!  Now, do tell me more about your military heroes. I, for one, adore a military hero and I know many of my friends here do, as well. We adore the uniforms and muscles, mostly, but…er…what do you see in military heroes? Have you served in the military yourself?

VR Marks the hostage-cover-mAs a romantic suspense author who enjoys writing characters from military backgrounds, it was a real compliment when one of my beta readers said my books read like I’d been in the Army. While I’ve never served myself, I have friends and family who serve and I’m grateful for everyone who does. Apparently after listening to so many tales – good and bad – a few details have stuck with me.

My books The Thief, The Witness and the latest, The Hostage, all feature lead characters who served together in a Special Forces unit for the U.S. Army. Once they left the service, Ross, Rick and Eva regrouped and combined their skills into a cutting edge investigations team for private clients as well as local law enforcement.

When I’m writing a novel, the military heroes (or heroine in The Hostage) always seem to bring a world view or experience to the situation that the rest of us who haven’t “been there” just can’t fully understand.

VR Marks the thiefFINAL-198x300Whether it’s determination, creative problem solving or even the cold dread or comic relief of paranoia, the military hero offers a unique perspective.

Military heroes do seem to have a universal appeal, something for both male and female readers of all ages.

Yeah, what is the universal appeal of a military hero to readers? It has to go beyond the uniform or a fascination with Captain America or NCIS (I’m a fan of both).

Military heroes show up in all of my favorite books and movies, and what I like best is the inherent code of honor they all share: the willingness to stand tall in the face of danger, the drive to defend the innocent and the courage to do what’s right and to hell with public opinion.

That code of honor and selfless commitment to helping others are the heroic traits I admire most, and it leads characters to make the most intriguing decisions along the course of their adventures.

VR Marks the witness-cover-198x300That makes perfect sense to me. I knew it couldn’t just be the fetching berets or bulging biceps. Honor, yes, that is obviously the thing! 

I’d like to hear what your readers here think. How about we give away some prizes as an incentive to share their thoughts?

Ooh, we LOVE prizes!

All right Banditas and Buddies. Let us know what you think makes a military hero believable, relatable, or memorable to you and you’ll be entered to win one of today’s three giveaways:

  • V.R. Marks t-shirt plus an ebook edition of The Thief (1 winner) OR
  • Winner’s choice: An ebook edition of any one of my novels (2 winners).

And while we’re all here chatting, I’ll just let you know that I have FINALLY set up an author page on Facebook. I know, I’m the slowest writer on the planet, right? But if you get a chance, I would love for you to check it out and Like it! http://www.facebook.com/CarenCraneAuthor

A Holiday Anthology For Everyone!

I’m excited to host some old Romance Bandits friends here in the Lair. Some of you may recall a previous visit from the gorgeous Regan Black. Well, Regan is back with a great anthology she’s put together with three other fabulous writers! Joining Regan is my long-time friend Kimberly Hope, plus new friends V.R. Marks and Jay Keelan.

Guys, we adore anthologies here in the Lair and we also adore holiday stories. So a collection of holiday novellas is sure to delight Banditas and Buddies alike. What can you tell us about this promising collection?

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Thanks, Caren, for having us here today.  Our holiday anthology, A Season for Romance, started as a bright idea over the phone one day when we were steadfastly avoiding work and a thousand miles separated us all. “Oooh. We should write a holiday anthology of short stories. We have plenty of time!” Things went downhill from there, kind of like this:

 

Kimberly Hope: I’m writing a Christmas story.

 

Jay Keelan: I’m writing a Christmas story, too.

 

Regan Black: {blushing} My story’s YA.

 

VR Marks: Mine’s a Thanksgiving story. Don’t give me any grief. You know we men are all about the food.

 

Kimberly: I’m writing a contemporary reunion story.

 

Jay: I’m writing a contemporary reunion story, too.

 

Regan: Mine’s a contemporary story. With a paranormal angle.

 

VR: No reunion. Sorry. But it is contemporary.

 

Are you sensing a pattern here? This is what happens when you throw four independent authors into one mix. Contemporary. Paranormal. Suspense. Multiple holidays. Yeah, our cover artist loves us. But there’s something in A Season for Romance for everyone.

 

All of the stories are set in small town North or South Carolina. Except Snow Covered Resolutions by Regan Black. That’s set in the Midwest.

 

So as release time closed in, we searched for any common ground beyond ‘contemporary’ and started shooting random interview questions back and forth via email. Here are the highlights:

 

Which Disney character would you be?

Kimberly: Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty (unless someone knows where to find the Hunstman from Once Upon a Time… then I’ll be whoever he wants me to be).  :-)

 

Jay: Rapunzel, because I have a frying pan and I’m not afraid to use it.

 

Regan:  Mulan because she can kick butt like my daring, adventurous heroines.

 

VR: The Genie from Aladdin. (short answer wins!)

 

What kind of pets “help” you write?

 

Kimberly: My Doberman keeps me at the keyboard, sometimes she even lets me type.

 

Jay: Like Kimberly, my dog keeps my toes warm after she steals my slippers.

 

Regan: Our two greyhounds usually let me write while they’re napping.

 

VR: Two cats. {crickets chirp in the silence} But they’re manly, Maine Coon cats.

 

“Common ground” might be a pipe dream in this anthology. Clearly, we’re all a little whacked. But the one thing that ties all our short stories together is that they’re all about discovering what matters most about heart and home.

 

So, it’s the holiday season. While you’re playing ’12 Days of Christmas’ on your iPod, we’re playing Sesame Street’s ‘Which One of These Things Is Not Like the Others?’ As illustrated here:

 

Kimberly: In my first sassy contemporary romance, The Heiress and Her Fake Fiancé, Jessica’s Grandma Violet is the town matchmaker. In my Meddling with Mistletoe in the anthology, we see Violet’s first matchmaking attempt, involving Jessica’s parents and a wine cellar.

 Jay: In Finding the Focus, when Ethan Myers, an award-winning photographer who is short on inspiration, leaves his studio for the road, he never predicted he’d run into the one woman he had never forgotten.

 

VR: We meet Sheriff Cochran in my romantic suspense novel, The Thief, but we don’t learn exactly how he feels about Ruth Williams, the owner of the local diner, until her annual Thanksgiving feast in The Sheriff’s Proposal in the anthology.

Regan: In Snow-Covered Resolutions, it’s New Year’s Eve and all the Pixie Chicks from my previous YA novels have someone special to kiss at midnight – except Austin. In this season of resolutions will she stick to hers, or will the snow-covered magic of Hobbitville sweep her up in a whole new adventure?

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In addition to the short stories, Kimberly Hope and VR Marks have both added the first chapters of the first books in these series to the anthology. And in the spirit of the season, we’re giving away one copy of the anthology and one of each full-length novel: A Season for Romance, Kimberly Hope’s The Heiress and Her Fake Fiancé, and VR Marks’s The Thief.

To enter, all you have to do is post a comment telling us which Disney character you’d be and why! Okay, Banditas and Buddies, which one will it be? I’m off to do some animated movie watching…I mean, research…

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Be sure to come back to the Lair on December 13 when we kick off the annual 12 BANDITA DAYS OF CHRISTMAS! Prizes and recipes every day!! Roosters. Books. Starbucks goodies. Books. Dragons. Books. Cookies. Books. Godiva. You know you want the cookies, for sure, so come home to the Lair for the Holidays! Who knows, you might win something, and you’ll be guaranteed to have fun!! (Did we mention there might be books?)