Thursday, June 19, 2014


 Contemporary Romance

Doug Dolan’s been burned by a woman who used him to get near his music superstar brother, Jon. Badly hurt, he flees from LA to New York in hopes of restarting his career as a videographer. At a photo shoot for one of Jon’s events, he meets Gillian Eddings, a British still photographer working for BBC America. They hit it off but agree: no dating, just friends. While getting acquainted, they develop a bond both call friendship, but their mutual attraction proves the elephant in the room.

When Gillian’s employer insists she use the friendship to arrange a major feature article, she resists and sets it up in another way. When the interview occurs, Doug doesn’t believe Gillian hasn’t used him, and blows up, bringing the old hurt to the fore and blaming Gillian unjustly. Faced with her own challenges – is she or is she not relapsing in leukemia? – she can’t make him believe the truth.

They allow Doug's prejedices to separate them until Gillian's challenges require she seek help. Will Doug be the jerk he fears becoming, or rise to her need and become the man he wants to be?


Doug set the camera rolling just before Jon took the mic in both gloved hands. He began by welcoming the crowd, which had thickened into a crush without Doug noticing. Jon began with “Silent Night”, the band and violinist keeping soft pace.
For the second tune Doug changed the feel. He wanted a close-up of his brother’s face while singing the emotional “I’ll Be Home for Christmas.” The passion with which he sang made for good contrast with the wide angle footage. During the bridge he panned carefully onto the violinist. Julia Corsiglia, a vivacious dark-haired lady he’d met in LA at several parties, played the fiddle like she had ten fingers on each hand. Like many of the band, she’d toured with Jon for years.
He kept careful control of his taping, determined not to vary from his concept. He wanted to get footage that’d be worth—say—a rental deposit on a New York apartment. When Jon finally finished, beckoning for applause to his band, he gave a bow to the enraptured audience. Doug let the camera run a few seconds longer to make sure to capture the crowd’s appreciation. He found it drawing out, and the ovation continued for minutes.
Finally he hit stop and the gig was captured. “My word,” said Gillian at his side. “What a voice…” Words seemed to fail her.
Suppressing a smile, he watched as she shook her dark head. “He’s good,” was all he said.
“He’s all that.” She pocketed the light meter and packed her camera carefully in its bag. He noticed the specially carved foam ready to receive it. Clearly, an artist who took care of her tools.
“And the camera loves him. I couldn’t find a bad angle. Can’t say yet, of course, but I daresay there isn’t one of these I won’t be able to use.” She latched the case and held his gear bag open so he could stow the camera and tripod. “Cold as a politician’s heart out here. Say, I fancy a tea. And I owe you. It’s on me. Care to get a cuppa?”
“Um. Yeah, sure. I have to go inside for a minute,” he told her. “Don’t leave.”
“All right. I’ll be as close to here as the crowd will allow. I expect it’ll be a long time emptying out.”
He all but ran back into the store, told Becca in as few words as possible that he’d find his own way back to the Beresford, and trotted back outside.
At first he didn’t see Gillian. At her height—he guessed she was maybe five-three, certainly no taller—the dispersing crowd hid her really well. But then he elbowed a little closer to his pier and spotted her.
Okay. It was just tea. Just a place to warm up from a wind-chill that must have dipped into the teens by now.
Tea. He could do this. Just because Amanda had crapped on him, it didn’t mean every female on the planet posed a potential threat. Even if he and Gillian clicked, he wouldn’t take it anywhere. He didn’t want…
He just wanted tea.

Why did you write this novel?

I didn't intend to write this one any more than the first one. But it came to me while writing Jon and Becca's story--how would a sibling feel about a brother with Jon's talents? Faced with what appears to be a perfect life, how would the younger brother respond? Dough's story came out of that. I had some challenges portraying Dough as both loving and resentful of his "all-that" brother. I'll have to wait and see what the readers think of him.

Tell us something topical, interesting, funny, or something we would not expect about the writing or research for this novel.

I had to do a lot of digging for this one. Though my dad was a professional photographer, he never worked in the digital age like my character, Gillian, does. I had to morph what I knew from his teaching into what happens now when a pro takes photos. It was fun to relearn what I “knew.”


Jon Dolan has everything a pop singer could want—fame, a voice with unequalled power and scope. His is a satisfying career with plenty of money, a supportive family, good friends, a crack musical team, and abundant chances to enjoy the good life. Yet why isn’t it enough?

Small-town girl Rebecca Tillman works to find her niche in the big, uncertain world of the break-out mystery novelist. They come from two different worlds, yet the first meeting captures them both. Can they overcome obstacles to create their own canzone d’ amore?


Jon grabbed one of the featured author’s books, lined up for the cash register, paid, and returned to the end of the line outside. While waiting he had plenty of time to thumb through it, study the dustjacket and get a sense of its nature. It took forty minutes for him to reach indoors once more, and the line snaked all the way back to the rear wall of the store.
Another ten minutes, and he could see a second table. This bore several stacks of books, piled six to eight high, with a poster announcing the date and “Bestselling author Rebecca Tillman signs her new mystery, LAST ENCORE, two to six.” A giant blow-up of the cover had been propped on an easel. As yet no sign of the author herself.
Jon flipped the book over to give the author photo a second look. He liked mysteries, just the thing, on the rare evenings when he vegged and TV was boring. The photo was of a young woman in sunglasses. Nice smile. He couldn’t get much feel for her looks, though, for it was in black-and-white.
Smart move. They’re hinting at something mysterious. Almost the look of a starlet from a forties movie. Except for the sunglasses. Classy, whoever this kid is.
After a boring wait during which he flipped through the book and read a paragraph here and a chapter title there, Jon reached the front of the line. He thrust the book through a small opening between stacks of hardbacks. What were they trying to do, smother the poor kid? Or was she so grotty that the bookstore management had considered it wiser to hide her?
Lightning struck.
“Hello,” said the girl behind the books. He froze, book hanging from hand. She glanced up when he didn’t respond. For the life of him, he could produce no sound. Two gazes met and locked. The lockup shocked him, rattled him down to the cellular level. Almost as though he knew the person behind those large, heavily lashed gray-green eyes.
The last time he’d seen eyes so unforgettable, he’d been singing a duet with Nelly Furtado.
This petite girl, jailed in an unnecessary prison of books, looked as stunned as he felt.
He felt the silence drag out too long. “Hi,” he managed.
She appeared not to notice he’d picked the only word in English that said nothing.
“How should I sign it?” Gently she freed his copy from his powerless hand and opened it for signing, her black felt-tip pen poised.
“To me.” Lame, double lame, hell. What if she’s not a fan?
Weakly he grinned, hoping a smile might cover his gaffe.
“Cut me a little slack here.” She gave him a brilliant smile. “I’ll need, like, your name.
What a grin. She knows she’s being a smartass, and she’s not apologizing.
Chuckling, he leaned close, wanting to keep his identity private—just for her. Besides, it let him close enough to catch the scent of her hair. Some kind of herb shampoo. The mingled fragrance of hair and body spoke of caresses and Christmas. It was children skipping in fields of gold. It whispered of butter and homemade apple pie and slow, comfortable kisses under a winter moon.
My God.

Why did you write this novel?

I didn’t mean to. I wrote it by accident. Really. I had a project due to my publisher, and I wanted desperately to stay focused. It’s a medieval (see above for “Faith Box” series information). I needed to stay focused. So in rushes this contemporary story, almost born full-grown like Athena bursting from the helmet of Zeus. I kept whining, “No! No! I need to work on this other book!” My muse (I call her Sulky Brat) wouldn’t shut up. So I sat down and wrote just one scene, just to get it out of my brain. Just one. Yeah. Right. A month (!) and 65K words later, I had a first draft. Yes, I did get the other project turned in. Whew! But this other idea just came. Writing it was the most fun I’ve had since Twitter.

Tell us something topical, interesting, funny, or something we would not expect about the writing or research for this novel.

I didn’t plan to write this book, but it came so easily it was as though I was a witness to things as they actually happened. All I had to do was jot things down. And though I tried to squeeze my characters into a believers’ box, they simply would not be squeezed. They insisted on being their own people, making their own bad choices at times. This is why one reviewer calls LOVE ONLY KNOWS a departure from my earlier work. These folks are believers, but not in the classic style, and that surprised me to no end.


“In a departure from her usual brand of story, Ms. Kinnard here takes on a flight of fancy with the pairing of Rebecca, a brand-new bestselling author, and Jon, a superstar entertainer. It's a blend of sweet and spicy, propelled by an attraction between the two that neither can explain and at least one of them (Rebecca) wants to fight...but, of course, she can't. And who can blame her? Jon is a forthright, honest, and thoughtful character, a man who readily admits that there's a gap between their two lifestyles but who also tries to bring Rebecca into his world as gently and as smoothly as he can. Bec, for her part, is no shrinking violet: she's a strong woman, usually comfortable in her own skin, but one whose feet are on the ground for almost the whole time. (You can't have your feet on the ground ALL the time when you're falling in love!) Romance fans will love the sweet interplay between these two, the special gifts they give each other, and the strength of their commitment; and, although this is not a Christian romance, it shows characters who have a viewpoint on life colored by each's relationship with God and not a little prayer. Above all, this is a book that keeps you turning pages--which I did, several times, long past my bedtime. It's sweet, it's a little spicy, and it hits all the right romantic notes. Try it, you'll like it!” ~ Amazon review


Deb Kinnard started writing at age ten, hacked off because “Bonanza” lacked a ten year old girl with her own pony. From adventures on the Ponderosa, she moved to teenage angsty love stories and dreadful poetry.

After a career that embraced feeding basketball players breakfast, coping with el-ed majors and various ERs different from the ones on TV, she married the man of her dreams and raised two active girls amongst the books.

She sold her first novel, POWERLINE, in 2002 and twelve others since. Her most recent published series is with Desert Breeze Publishing, called “The Faith Box.” PEACEWEAVER, set in 973 Wales, THE HEALING TREE, a tale of 1353 Cornwall, and WHEN THE ROSES BLOOMED, a Romeo-and-Juliet with a happy ending, told in the chaos of 1485 England. More recently she’s embarked on direct-to-reader publishing with two linked contemporary romances, LOVE ONLY KNOWS and FALLING SLOWLY. A third linked story, IF EVER I FALL, will release this autumn.
Deb enjoys beadwork and music. She loves to travel and is a constant people watcher. So if you meet a short-round woman with an acquisitive light in her eye…

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