About Me

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Queensland, Australia
I'm an Australian author of Contemporary Romance, Romantic Action/Adventure, and Historical fiction. I live in Queensland, Australia. www.noelleclark.net

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

An Interview with Isabella Hargreaves - new historical book out now!

Writing group buddy and historian, Isabella Hargreaves, has just released her second novel in six months!

All Quiet on the Western Plains is a historical, rural romance set in Outback Queensland in the year 1924, not long after the war to end all wars - the Great War - which shattered world peace from 1914 until 1918.

One war, two battle-scarred hearts, one chance for happiness.
English nurse, Fleur Armitage, wants to escape all reminders of the Great War, which killed family and friends; by living as far from its reminders as possible - in outback Queensland. Jack Edgarson is a pastoralist, war hero and damaged man. Suffering from nightmares and sleep walking, he lives in isolation, fearful he may harm someone. Through a chance meeting, their lives become entangled. They come to share their love of the wide western plains, but dare they love each other?

Your love of history has led you down many paths. What is your favourite time period?
My favourite time period is a bit hard to pin down. I’ve done a lot of reading about the Victorian period over the last 20 years, but I get a bee in my bonnet and I’m off into another historical era - the latest that I’m published in being post-World War One. So, to answer your question, I would probably say any time after the Tudor era, except contemporary.

The centenary of the start of the Great War is a momentous time in history. Do you think the world has learned from the tragedies of World War One, or does history keep repeating itself?
I think there were a lot of lessons learnt from the Great War. No-one in the western world has fought a whole war of attrition from dug-in positions since then. Instead, war has morphed into other lethal methods where you don’t have to run at your enemy and be mown down. Instead, we have perfected killing impersonally from great distances. However, for as long as human nature is unchanged, there are aspects of history that will be repeated such as jingoist nationalism, which threatens those who don’t belong to the group.

The characters in All Quiet on the Western Plains—Fleur and Jack—are they based on real people?
They are based on real people only as far as I read a great many biographies and autobiographies of men and women who served in World War One. Fleur and Jack are the composite characters, with plenty of imagined differences, which came out of that soup in my head.

Their story would resonate with many who had relatives affected in the Great War. Did you make contact with anyone in particular to get background for this novel?
Being the age that I am, I remember people who served in World War One although they are now long dead. My grandfather was a pioneer in the Royal Engineers in WWI, and my uncle Leo was an AIF motorcycle despatch rider who was mentioned-in-despatches during Germany’s Operation Michael in 1918. Research is really my biggest source of information. That I had relatives who served in World War One makes the period more personal.

An English nurse in outback Queensland. Why did Fleur choose such a remote and harsh environment in which to heal?
Fleur needed to leave Britain with all its reminders of the war and of her deceased family and fiancé. If you were sitting in post-WWI England, the outback of Australia would seem about as far away as it was possible to travel, and a completely different environment. She hoped that by being in such an alien environment that she would be able to start her life afresh with no reminders.

Can you share what you’re now working on?
Sure! I’m editing a novella that I’ve set during the English Civil Wars in the seventeenth century and a novel that is set in the Regency period. I hope I can finish the edits soon as I have another couple of stories outlined that I would really love to start writing.

Thanks so much for visiting here today, Isabella, and I wish you the very best of luck with this wonderful release.

This is what Isabella says about herself:

I’m an Australian author of historical romances, mainly set during the Regency period. I’ve read historical fact and fiction since I was a child growing up in Brisbane. That wasn’t enough, so I became a historian and now spend every work day researching and writing about people, places and events from the past. It seemed the perfect idea to combine my love of history and romance in writing historical romances. I write about strong, determined heroines and heroes that aren’t afraid to match them. Recently Steam eReads published my first historical novel, The Persuasion of MissJane Brody.

Web: www.isabellahargreaves.com

All Quiet on the Western Plains on Amazon
Also available on Steam eReads

Monday, May 19, 2014

New from Renea Mason – Symphony of Light Book II – Between the Waters

Magic is no match for love… 

Trapped somewhere between life and death, demigod Cyril has lost the ability to communicate with his love. But not before giving her valuable lessons in magic, as well as his blessing to move on without him.

Coming to terms with Cyril’s absence isn’t easy, but Linden is doing her best to honor his wishes. Until she receives an unusual request from Moreaux, an estranged member of Cyril’s family. Bizarre things are going on with Mary, the former housekeeper, and Linden can’t let them go. But when her investigation leads to a mistake that nearly costs her life, Cyril’s best friend, Overton, steps in and violates a promise he made centuries before to bring her back from the dead.

Gratitude turns to comfort, comfort turns to desire, and desire leads Linden to a shocking revelation. In her charge to uncover the truth behind Mary and Moreaux, she discovers a spell she can’t undo without leaving wounds on her heart, wounds she knows will never heal…

Out now from Etopia Press.

Renea Mason writes steamy romances to help even out the estrogen to testosterone imbalance caused by living in a house full of men.

When she isn’t putting pen to paper crafting sensual stories filled with supernatural lovers, she spends time with her beyond-supportive husband, two wonderful sons and three loving but needy cats.

Her debut novel, Symphony of Light and Winter, finished second for Best New Paranormal Series of 2013 in Paranormal Cravings’ Battle of the Books and received a third place award for Best New Paranormal Romance of 2013 in The Paranormal Romance Guild’s Reviewers Choice Awards.

She is also a founding member of Coffee Talk Writers and the Coffee Talk website–a site designed to support established writers and foster new talent.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Home Truths - out on 1st June from Louise Forster

Australian author, Louise Forster, has another great book coming out on 1st June with Escape Publishing.
I’ve been a fan of Louise’s writing for some time, and this one won’t fail to satisfy.

Here’s a little about Home Truths.

A small-town romance about secrets, community and the family we make for ourselves.

London-based chef Jennifer Dove loves her exciting, fast-paced life and she has every intention of returning to it ASAP. This trip to Tumble Creek — middle-of-nowhere Australia — is just a blip, a trip out of time, to visit her sister and niece and farewell her beloved Uncle.

But barely hours into her stay, she disturbs an intruder in her uncle’s house, is questioned by police, and finds a pair of fluffy pink stilettos in the bedroom. Things are not all they seem in Tumble Creek, and much as she tries not to, Jennifer is sucked in to the mystery surrounding her uncle. Who is his girlfriend Veronica, and why is she not here? What are the locals hiding? And why can she not get sexy local Calum McGregor out of her mind?

All is not what it seems in this sleepy, small town, and as Jennifer unravels its mysteries, she might just be tying herself to Tumble Creek forever.

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.


4 of 5 stars -- bookshelves: new-to-me-authors 
In Home Truths by Louise Forster, Jennifer has come to Tumble Creek, Australia from London for her beloved Uncle's funeral. From the moment she meets up with her sister and niece in Tumble Creek, things seem a bit off. There is mystery surrounding their Uncle's life, and more mysterious events happening in Tumble Creek. If something is going to happen, it will happen to Jennifer!!
There is a lot happening besides Uncle Bob's funeral, and Jennifer meets Calum, a handsome Australian who has her insides quivering. At first Calum is just helping her out, then he's keeping her safe and things quickly become hot and heavy between them. Despite the promise and beauty of Tumble Creek, especially compared to grey, dull London, Jennifer has no plans to stay. She has plans in London, and every intention of going back. When Tumble Creek starts to feel more like home, and her feelings towards Calum just keep growing, there is still trouble brewing and unsolved mysteries. Soon it all feels like too much and Jennifer starts to panic.
Will Jennifer ever uncover Uncle Bob's mysteries? Will Jennifer leave behind all she's found and the promise of Tumble Creek?
Home Truths is a fast paced, easy to read and follow book. It is entertaining with fun dialogue and some hilarious scenes that will have you laughing out loud, and wondering about those pink stilettos! Jennifer and Calum's romance may be quick, but at the same time Louise gives us a sense of realism with her character descriptions, their strengths and their weaknesses. Louise manages to keep you guessing just when you think you've figured out the mystery of Uncle Bob, with her multi-layered plot. The sub-plots in Home Truths added an extra bit of intrigue, even if for some of them I would have liked a little less unknown and more background.
There are a lot of family dynamics in Home Truths, and Louise writes these in well so that they give us the information we need but don't overwhelm and take away from the plot.
The people in Tumble Creek and the characteristics of the small town really give a lot of strength to Home Truths. It is the perfect setting for this story and Louise's descriptions of Tumble Creek will have you right there with everyone else.
Any romance reader that loves a small town setting, a bit of mystery and a hero/heroine that can really steam up your pages will enjoy Home Truths.

Out on June 1st 

Friday, May 2, 2014

Hard to Hold - an interview with Incy Black

British Romantic Suspense author, Incy Black, joins me today to discuss her brand new release - Hard to Hold. Filled with action, danger, and angst, this hot and steamy book will make you clamber for more from this very talented author.

Here's the blurb for Hard to Hold:

Anna Key Marshall is pregnant. Granted, it’s through a sperm donor instead of her ex-husband, but you can’t have everything. When she becomes the target for murder, she’ll do whatever it takes to protect her unborn child—even turning to her ex, the Black Ops specialist who broke her heart. Nick Marshall can't forgive the woman who betrayed him, but when she finds herself in trouble, he'll do what he does best—protect her at all costs. Fueled by a powerful love he can't leave behind, can he hold on to the woman he still loves?

Got your attention now? Well, I wanted to meet up with Incy to ask her about this book. I wanted to know how she came to write such a compelling story, with hard-as-granite characters, and enough action to leave you breathless. Here's our interview:

The title, Hard to Hold, hints at a relationship pushed and pulled; repelled by betrayal, yet drawn by undeniable magnetism. Can you describe how you came up with two such feisty, strong characters?
A man guilty of swallowing all the darkness of the night introduced himself to me thus: “Fuck, no! Not this side of Armageddon”. My mind reeled—What? Why? Who? The what and the why became the story, Nick Marshall was that man. A rigid, emotionally repressed hero, his soul bound tight in razor wire. Tactless, hard, numb rather than living, he needed a foil. Enter Anna Key, determined to live life on the fun side and swinging her own set of balls—just as big and brassy as Nick’s.

What inspired you to write about a British Intelligence agent?
My heroes, hardened, damaged, tongues like metal-tipped whips, Machiavellian, don’t recognise boundaries. They don’t much like rules, unless they’ve laid them down themselves. I needed a stage on which to show their lawlessness. The covert intelligence community (who knows what they really get up to) provides said stage. And British, because that dry sarcasm for which as a nation we are misunderstood, I find hilarious, though some find it offensive.

Your hero, Nick Marshall, keeps his emotions well hidden. As the author, were you tempted to soften his edges right from the start?
Nope, I write hard-core bastards, Nick’s one of the more civilized ones. As it is, I had to hold him against a grinder to blunt the worst of him. He has soft spots but he prefers to guard them. Anna knows the location and how to work each one.

My first thoughts are of Daniel Craig – did you channel the 007 type of tough/sweet guy?
LOL, but no. James Bond had finesse and charm—Nick’s not one to be arsed. Stand in his way, and he won’t politely ask you to move aside, he’ll shoulder you into the wall. He makes the narrowest of concessions for Anna. When she gets in his way, he picks her up, tucks her under his arm and keeps going.

Anna – she’s probably the only woman prepared to put up with Nick. Why?
Anna comes armed with a ‘what’s the worst that can happen’ attitude. She needs excitement to distract her from what’s lacking in her life—someone who gives a damn about her. What she wants she tries for, no matter how hard or how often she falls as she clambers the rock face of life. Nick’s one such rock face, the most difficult to scale of her life. She just doesn’t know how to give up, not on life, and not on Nick—though she did divorce his ass for five years so she could sharpen the spikes on her grappling iron ready for her next assault on him.

Ladies and Gentlemen - please allow me to introduce the fabulous INCY BLACK!
It took a swan dive from a roof to convince Incy (aged 5) she wasn’t an avenging fairy and that no, she most certainly couldn’t fly. Bruised but undefeated she retreated deeper into her make-believe world populated with the brave and the poisonous.
When not fighting injustice and righting wrongs on ‘Planet Incy’ she works as a Marketing Director. (Unfortunately, her law degree languishes unused, the distinction between good and evil proving too worrisome in real life.)
Her five children are well versed in what scares her (most things) and delight in pushing her neurotic buttons—at their peril.

Read more about Incy Black's 'Hard to Hold' here:
Jane Joliffe - 5 star review   
Milady Fury's Book Club
Shehanne Moore
Susanne Bellamy - 5 star review
Tracey Rogers - 5 star review