Urban families with Amy Andrews

When people ask me to describe Risky Business, I tell them it’s an urban-family rom-com which is kinda guaranteed to get me a blank look.

Just what the hell is an urban family?

Oh, I’m so pleased you asked!  :)

I guess I can give you the long answer – a group of people – some could be related but not necessarily – from different places, coming together to form a community within an urban setting.

But, personally I’ve always found a picture is worth a thousand words….

bridget jonesThe first time I ever heard the term urban-family was in Bridget Jones’s Diary and her three besties are absolutely the epitome of this modern cultural phenomena. Jude, Tom, and Shazza are Bridget’s family in the city. They’re not related in any way but as a bunch of London singletons they’ve formed a close-knit, “family” unit.

Another classic example of an urban-family is the gang from Friends.

Friends, set in New York, has more complex relationships going on between its characters. Ross and Monica are siblings. Monica and Rachel are old school friends. Chandler and Ross also went to school together. Joey lives with Chandler in the apartment across the hall from Monica and Phoebe forms the 6th member of the family whose daily lives revolve around each other and their friendships.

A more modern example is the brilliant Big Bang Theory.

Big Bang is set in Pasadena starring a bunch of geeks (none of them related to each other) and one hot blonde coming from cities and towns all over the USA and finding their tribe.

All these shows have an urban family at their core. The other thing they all have is a common place to meet, which I believe is another important element in the urban-family dynamic. In Bridget Jones it’s their local pub. In Friends, it’s Monica’s apartment or maybe the coffee shop Central Perk. In Big Bang its Sheldon’s apartment.

In my urban-family rom-com Risky Business the 21489hub of the community is a second-hand romance bookshop. An injured Nick comes home to recover and, for something to do, takes over the reins of his dead grandmother’s bookshop. Samantha, his brainy, curvy neighbour and romance novel devotee needs a job so she ends up there too. Then we have the regulars that come into the shop. Old Dulcie Reardon. Sal the office worker who got dumped by her boyfriend for “getting too fat”. Kelly whose initial crush on Sam morphs into a lovely friendship. Vonnie who likes her books hot and spicy, Dora who likes a spot of romantic suspense, and Bernie who pops into buy historicals for his mum and her friends at the nursing home.

Then there’s Sam’s sister, Bec, who, although isn’t there in person until the end, is as much a part of the community consciousness as any of them.

So here we have another bunch of people from different walks of life coming together to form a community and the shop is their hub. It’s the place where books are read, lamingtons are eaten, and a campaign to save their favourite iconic tea shop from the wrecker’s ball is run. It’s the place where Nick and Sam fall in love.

I love these kind of stories. I love their urban, contemporary feel, but I also love how they have a sense of “small town” about them despite the broader cityscape. Urban-family stories are, above all, community stories with all the heart and quirk and richness that brings to a book.

I think they deserve their own sub-genre and I’m going to be writing a lot more of them!

 

Two heroes and the women they love…

Escape welcomes Susanne Bellamy, Juanita Kees, and their delicious heroes to the blog…

Players:

Matt Mahoney, Engaging the Enemy

Matt Mahoney, hero, Engaging the Enemy

Andie de Villiers, heroine, Engaging the Enemy

Andie de Villiers, heroine, Engaging the Enemy

Mark Johnson, hero, Under Cover of Dark

Mark Johnson, hero, Under Cover of Dark

Lily Bennetti, heroine, Under Cover of Dark

Lily Bennetti, heroine, Under Cover of Dark


 

Setting: Clare Valley, winery restaurant.


Scene: Matt Mahoney and Mark Johnson meet at the bar. Shake hands and start chatting.

Matt: Hi, I’m Matt Mahoney. Yonder is Andie, my wife. Is that your wife she’s talking with?

Mark (grins widely): Mark Johnson, good to meet you. Yes, that’s my Lily. We’re on honeymoon.

Matt (grins back): Now there’s a wee coincidence. So are we. Andie didn’t want to leave Australia when I suggested visiting Ireland. Even Hawaii didn’t tempt her. Actually, I don’t think she wanted to leave the house.

Mark: So, how did you meet the love of your life?

Matt: I was at a charity function, you know the sort—black tie and glitter—and Andie finagled a waitressing job so she could meet me. You know the woman deliberately doused me in champagne to get my attention?

Mark (chuckles): That’s one way of doing it. I met Lily under somewhat sadder circumstances, unfortunately. I’m a detective, and I met her while working on a murder investigation. It seems like a lifetime ago now we’re here enjoying the Clare Valley sunshine together.

Matt: Glad you worked out she was the right woman for you even under those circumstances. Andie called me ‘Wrong Matt’ when we met. I called her ‘Trouble’ without knowing how true it was! I should have read the signs—red hair and a firebrand to boot. When that woman puts her mind to achieving something you’d better grab your hard hat and boots because there is nought you can do but go along for the ride.

Mark: I hear you, mate, nothing quite like a strong-willed woman to keep a man on his toes. Lily’s one tough lady. She might be as beautiful as the flower she’s named after, but there’s nothing delicate about her. She’s the bravest woman I know.

Matt: Tough situations do that. What do you do now your murder investigation is over?

Mark: Lily and I volunteer at the Tiny Watt’s Teenage Rehabilitation Centre. We help kids involved in street gangs and drugs. Our weekends are spent teaching the kids life skills or getting them involved in sports or artistic activities to keep them off the streets. What do you do for fun?

Matt: I own a development company and work on heritage restoration. Andie was running The Shelter on a shoestring. It’s protected housing for women and children in crisis and she’d been trying to meet with me to talk about it. I bought the building from her dad without knowing of her work. You could say we clashed over ownership but now we manage the centre in a new location out Williamstown way.

Mark: That’s the best-looking pair of women I’ve seen.

Matt: Aye, and we’re two of the luckiest men alive. Andie’s like a morn in Spring. She’s beautiful both inside and out. She gifts me with her love and she’s helped me find peace. If not for her, I would still be blaming myself for my brother’s death. Of course, I still tease her by calling her ‘Trouble’ sometimes. Do I love making up to her after that!

Mark: Sounds like Lily and Andie will get along just fine. How would I describe Lily…beautiful, brave, strong. When I met her, she was going through a difficult time. All I wanted was to hold her and make her problems and fears go away. The more determined I was to save her, the more determined she was to handle everything herself. It took some persuading but she came around in the end.

Matt: My greatest fear is failing Andie in some way. I cannot imagine a life without her in it. What’s yours?

Mark: My greatest fear would be losing Lily and her son Luke. They’re everything to me. We’ve been through so much together and I want to spend the rest of our lives together making them both happy.

I’ve never lied to Lily. Her late husband was a miserable scoundrel who lied and scammed his way through life. She deserves so much better than that. I’ve vowed to always tell her the truth, no matter what the consequences. Have you ever lied to Andie?

Matt (rubs the back of his neck): I’m ashamed to admit that I have, though in my defence it was more a lie by omission. I told her my mother would only come to Australia if she thought I was engaged to be married. Andie has such a soft heart she agreed to help me. Andie can’t lie to save herself. Our parents believed her because, in spite of everything, she fell in love with me.

Mark (takes a sip of his wine before he answers):The lengths we go to for our ladies, hey? I was happy being a bachelor, watching my mates take the plunge. I convinced myself I was married to my job. It takes a special woman to put up with a cop’s hours.

Matt: Between you and me, bro, I’m one heck of a convert. Before I met Andie, I thought men who married were just suckers for a pretty face. That woman has shown me how wrong I was. Thank goodness! Do you believe in love?

Mark: Yeah, I’m a convert too. I never thought I’d meet the woman who could sweep my feet out from under me. Lily did that and more.

Matt: I’d do anything for Andie. Our next step is moving house. The hard part won’t be Andie’s clothes, that’s for sure. Tools now, that’s another matter. She’s got more tools than most men I know. We have to build a shed as soon as we move to house her new hobby. As for me, I may have to put some of the paintings I’ve collected into storage for a while. Leave room for Andie’s creations. She discovered the Sunday craft markets and she’s begun making decorative things out of wood. Driftwood, the old tree stump we pulled up from our new property, recycled pieces of furniture… Lovely, they are, but big, if you know what I mean. Maybe I’ll build her a gallery to show off her work.

Mark: Lily and I have bought a property up in the Perth Hills close to the rehab centre. Lily’s discovered she has a green thumb and is replanting the gardens at the centre for our friends TJ and Scott. I’m building her a greenhouse to propagate her plants in and a studio where she can paint her scenic canvases. My challenge will be being a father to a teenager I’m only just getting to know. Thank God Luke is a good kid but he’s had a rough time of it, so I have my work cut out for me.

Matt: Good luck with building your relationship. Children are precious.

(They drink their wine. Gales of laughter burst from their spouses and they lean against the bar observing the two women. Mark lightens the mood)

Mark: What is your favourite memory of Andie?

Matt: My first memory of Andie is probably R-rated! But begorra if that woman doesn’t make a man want to sharpen a few tools and put on a hard hat. When we met, she tipped her tray of champagne over me. Accident or not she got my attention. I squatted beside her to pick up a champagne flute and damn, if that woman didn’t present me with the best view. Yeah, I’m a bottom-man through and through, and Andie’s is a peach.

Mark (leans back to admire Lily’s bottom): Oh yes. Lily’s is just perfect. Everything about her is perfect. My strongest memory of her is in the interview room down at the station. She looked like an angel, despite the mess she was in. I never want to see her looking that haunted again, though. Look at her now—isn’t she beautiful with that halo of golden hair and angelic smile? She does have a mischievous side and I do love it when she’s a little naughty. Ah, it looks like they’re coming over. Would you like to join us for dinner?

Matt: I don’t think we’ll be separating our ladies before bedtime! Thanks, love to. Wouldn’t we, Andie?


Want more?

21767One building, two would-be owners and a family feud that spans several generations: all relationships have their problems.

Andrea de Villiers can’t lie to save herself. But when developer, Matt Mahoney, buys the building she and a friend have established as a safe house in the Melbourne CBD, she decides that protecting The Shelter is more important than her aching heart. She will confront Mr Mahoney, and she will emerge victorious. There are no other options.

But Matt has other plans for Andie, and she soon finds herself ensnared in a web of well-meaning lies and benevolent deceit. To protect the building and the families that depend on her, Andie agrees to play the part of Matt’s fiancée, and play it convincingly.

But lies soon bleed into truth, and what was once a deception starts to feel all too real. Can Andie accomplish her goals and protect The Shelter, without losing her heart to the charming Irish developer?


21769New Australian romantic suspense follows Under the Hood, about a Western Australian drug gang, the teenagers they recruit, and the cop who wants to bring them down.

When Mark Johnson delves deeper into his investigation into the murder of Tiny Watts, and the involvement of a teenage gang with sleazy lawyer Gino Bennetti and his drug world ties, the last thing he expects is to be interviewing Gino’s widow, a woman in a world of trouble.

When her husband is shot and killed, it is both a relief and a disaster. Lily has her son to protect and secrets that run deeper than the scars she bears. Mark Johnson is the last person she wants uncovering those secrets, especially the truth about her son Luke’s involvement in Tiny Watts’s murder.

As the investigation continues and Lily’s wounds begin to heal, she finds the detective easy to trust and the friendship between them blossoms into more. But the secret Lily holds places everyone in very real danger. When it is finally revealed, Lily will lose everything: her son, the man she’s grown to love, her freedom and her life.

A blog infiltration we didn’t see coming…

naughtyninjaI bet you weren’t aware that lurking deep within the internet bowels of Escape Publishing five non-assuming, seemingly mild-mannered Escape artists live a double life.

A life of international mystery and intrigue, stealth and Danger! So dangerous that the first letter of the word requires capitalisation.

That’s right. When we’re not tapping away furiously at our keyboards in the pursuit of romance excellence, we’re engaging in…naughtiness. That is, writing about lurv and all the naughty fun things that can crop up in love and the bedroom.

Our naughtiness is all designed to introduce a little bit of extra vim, verve and fun to our promotion efforts. Promotion can be hard work, but making sure we get a laugh out of it and doing it as a team who support one another’s efforts makes it that much easier.

And then there’s the added creativity generated by all for our author brains pulling together in a tandem effort, like a team of eager but easily distracted huskies tied to a giant, mutant sled. Whether it’s articles, round robin stories, prizes or podcasts, we pitch in together to come up with ideas, and the discussions around the ideas are often hilarious. Plus, everyone brings different resources to the group, so we all benefit from one another’s expertise and networks.

So, who are these mysterious Naughty Ninjas?

There’s co-founder and erotic romancer Rhyll ‘The Lady’ Biest, author of Unrestrained, which is expected to be released by Escape on November 1, 2014.

rhyll biest

Contemporary romancer Sandra ‘Cookieface’ Antonelli, author of A Basic Renovation, For Your Eyes Only and Driving in Neutral, which is expected to be released by Escape on September 1, 2014.

sandra antonelli
Erotic romancer, Cate ‘The Man Eater’ Ellink, author of The Virginity Mission and Deep Diving, which is expected to be released by Escape on August 26, 2014.

cate ellink Contemporary romancer, Lily ‘ Beanie Queen’ Malone, author of His Brand of Beautiful.

LIly maloneMagical Realism romancer, Sarah ‘Sizzing Yoga Pants’ Belle, author of Hindsight and Miss Spelled, which is expected to be released by Escape on September 1, 2014.

Sarah belleTwenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, these authors are ninja-ing, so if you’re in the mood for a bit of fun, a bit of naughtiness and a whole lotta romance writer crazy sauce, check us out at http://www.naughtyninjas.net. Or even better, subscribe to our monthly newsletter and be in the running to score all sorts of ninja booty, as well as being the first to see our regular round-robin stories set in Coffeelandia – the speed dating capital of E-romance!

Inspiration Behind the Story – Jacquie Underdown

FINDING LOVE IN DARKNESS

8880You may ask how an idea for a romance novel can spring from gloom? Well, let me tell you.

When you become a mother or father, I believe you enter a special kind of club. A club for people who have learned how deep love can be—where you implicitly, unequivocally love another person so much that you alter your entire existence just to protect and nourish them. You would kill for this other person and know that your soul would endlessly bleed if they were to die. Having children gives one an expanse of empathy unlike any ever experienced before, because you know now what you have to lose.

After I became a mother for the first time, with all my new-found emotion and perspective, I watched a graphic show about Chinese orphanages and Dying Rooms—rooms where babies are placed in cots in dark, empty rooms and left alone for the sole purpose of dying. This show told of so many orphaned babies (mainly girls) who were dumped in underfunded orphanages. Children were not given any physical or emotional nourishment, no love, no hope. Instead, they were placed beside each other, in long wooden seats, a horizontal timber bar to support their back and a timber bar across their lap to lock them in. Lacking any mental stimulation or physical contact, the babies just rocked back and forth in these seats for hours on end, every single day. The children were so used to having no one come to them and offer comfort or motherly affection that they no longer even cried. They just rocked and rocked.

After watching this I sobbed until I could barely breathe. I couldn’t even tell my husband why I was upset because each time I tried, I would cry again. I have never forgotten these images and I never will.

So, as tragic as this reality is, this is where my inspiration for my first novel, The Paler Shade of Autumn, sprouted. Story lines were threaded; compassionate characters, who experience the darkness of life so they can love even harder, were spun. And from this gloom sprang forth a beautiful, happy ever after.


 

Autumn Leone travels to India to find answers about her unique ability to see into other’s minds. But instead of answers she finds love. It takes one night of passion to fall for Jet Stark, whom fate had sent her half way around the world to meet. But, too soon, Autumn is to fly back to Australia and out of his life.

When Autumn bumps into Jet back in Australia after five long years apart, it’s difficult to dispute fate’s intention in crossing their paths not only once, but twice. Autumn knows it is a risk to fall for an old fling, especially because Jet now happens to be rich, her new boss, and involved with another woman.

But a connection like theirs proves impossible to sever.

Reunited with the only man she has ever truly loved, Autumn thinks their relationship is flawless. But she fails to see that Jet is hiding secrets from his past. Secrets, which threaten to fracture not only their love for one another, and her career, but also her relationship with her family.

Will the truth about her gift and their unbelievable history be revealed in time before Autumn loses all she cares about? And will the truth be enough to mend old wounds?  

Inspiration Behind the Story: Robyn Rychards

She may not need a knight in shining armour to save her, but that doesn’t mean she’s going to look a gift knight in the visor…

20378I love reading romance, whether contemporary or historical, and if I can have it with suspense and intrigue, all the better. My number one fave for years has been the Harlequin Cherish/Romance line and my dream has long been to write for that line. When I read Melissa James’ The Sheikh’s Destiny, Her Knight in Shining Armour flickered to life. It had the suspense/adventure aspect that I longed for and was from my favourite line. Then my basic writing motivator switched on. Since a Harlequin Romance with suspense was hard to come by, I’ll write one. I have always wanted suspense in the Romance line and thanks to Melissa, I knew it was doable.

Enter my first hurdle. Did I have the writing skills for suspense? I have a heck of a time figuring out mysteries when I read them or watch them, how was I going to write one?

The next hurdle followed closely behind: Melissa’s story was set in a part of the world where there’s a lot of strife. Perfect setting for a suspense story. However, I know nothing about such places and was already taking on enough trying my hand at writing more than romance. What situation would have two people on the run from an enemy in the United States?

This led me to hurdle number three. I know nothing about law enforcement or military, so the type of heroes I’m familiar with in the Harlequin Intrigue line wouldn’t work. What scenario puts the heroine on the run and how would she be rescued by a hero who isn’t a professional rescuer? Then I saw Sleeping With the Enemy. Now I had an idea of what might work.

Lots of thinking, lots of rejected ideas, but I kept coming back to a heroine on the run from an abusive husband. However, going with this idea gave me another hurdle. I didn’t want the heroine to still be married. It complicated the relationship with the hero as well, as to how to get her out of the marriage. Once I resolved that in my head—which included changing some of what I had already started writing—I had yet another hurdle. I know nothing about abusive relationships.

BUT that was something I could handle. I know people and I have a library card. I educated myself as best I could and faced the first hurdle again which was now my last hurdle. Could I write suspense?

Having read a lot of suspense, I decided to just go with my gut—I am a pantser after all. The story wouldn’t leave me alone. It had to be written and if I sucked at writing suspense, well, at least I’d know for sure, the story would be out of my head, and I could move on. Now it’s up to you to decide if I can do romantic suspense. If so, I may just take on a Gothic—a la Victoria Holt of course—next.


 

When Robyn was young she always enjoyed reading, but it wasn’t until her Grandmother gave her her first Harlequin Romance that she fell in love with it. At the age of fourteen Robyn didn’t have the funds to feed her romance addiction, so she started writing them. Writing romance is in Robyn’s blood and she’s happy to be able to share her stories with the world, as well as be part of the Harlequin family. Robyn was raised in Boulder, Colorado, USA and lives in a neighbouring town not far from where Her Man From Shilo takes place. Though four kids have kept her too busy to write for a long time, she is thrilled to be able to dive back into it, now that they are all in school. She hopes you enjoy reading her story as much as she enjoyed writing it!

7 Steps to Getting Pitch Perfect

We’re heading into conference season, and that means fun, friends, and general frivolity with other people who get it.

It also means opportunities, potential, and possibilities. One of the main attractions for both established and emerging writers is the close mingling that happens between industry professionals and authors – the chance to chat, maybe catch an ear or two. And one of the great ways to do this is via pitching.

All conferences run their pitching program in a different way, and most should have clear explanations for what is expected of you should you want to pitch, and what you can expect from your session.

In terms of what can make your pitch perfect, well, here’s a few thoughts that might help help you with the polishing.

Also, gratuitous Pitch Perfect picture, because relevance.

Also, gratuitous Pitch Perfect picture, because relevance.

  • Use your time wisely
    Generally, your pitch is going to run between 5 and 15 minutes long, with the majority being on the shorter end of the scale. This is good. This gives you the chance to be all ninja-sniper-pitch, get in, get out, get the most out of your time. But if you’re going to only have a short period of time, you’re going to want to make sure that you use it wisely. Pitch sessions run to a stop-watch, and you won’t be given extra time. So be aware of how long you have, how fast you speak, what information you want to impart, and make sure you practise.
  •  Do your research
    Whether you’re going with a scattergun approach or a laser-focused sniper shot, you want to make sure that you know who you’re talking to, and why they’re interested in you. Not all publishers are accepting the same thing, not all want the same thing, not all are open to the same thing. So at the very least you should check the submissions page of every editor/publisher that you’re talking to, and read the bios/checklists they’ve provided to the conference. Editors/Publishers are asked to provide what they are looking for and what they are not interested in, and that information is freely available to attendees. So if you sit in front of someone and pitch something they can’t take, they know that you haven’t bothered to get to know the publisher, and you’ve taken the space from someone who genuinely may have had something that could have sold.
  • Be a match-maker
    This ties into both 2 and 4, but it’s so important that I’ve given it its own number. If you have more than one manuscript to pitch, then you should definitely be prepared to pitch them all in the same session, but you should make sure that you’re pitching them in the order that is most relevant to the editor/publisher you’re pitching to. If you’ve got a SF, a rural, and a contemporary, and you know that one publisher is actively looking for SF while another is not, then tailor your approach to the publisher. Pitch the SF first to one, while shelving it to the end at the other. This boosts your chances of success, as you’ll be pitching the right manuscript to the right person. If an editor isn’t interested, they can always pass, and that’s when you can wow them with your next pitch.
  • Be prepared
    This is a great opportunity to impress an editor or publisher, and you don’t want to blow it by sitting in front of them and having nothing to say (or, worse, saying too much and never talking about your story!). You’re a writer – so use those skills to create a tagline, a short, snappy summary that’s going to interest and entice, and one or two comparisons to centre your style or story. Make sure that you know what you are looking for, and that you have any questions you might want answered by the editor/publisher at the ready. Don’t be afraid to write things down if you think you might forget. If you have business cards, bring them along, and don’t forget to grab a card from the editor/publisher. Practise in front of the mirror, your family, your critique group – anyone that can give you honest feedback. The more prepared you are, the calmer you’re going to feel, and the more you’re going to get out of your session.
  • Mind your buts
    One of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever heard for speaking to editors/publishers about your book is to lead with the ‘but’. When describing the general plot of your story, the interest doesn’t lie in the ‘and’s. It lies in the ‘but’s. By focusing on the buts, you’re also focusing on the crises of the story, the high notes and the downfalls. It’s a great way to put your story into focus, make sure you keep it short and timely, and build interest at the same time. For example:

Jenny is a small town girl with big city dreams. She has it all planned out – university in Sydney, a top-notch apprenticeship, and a meteoric rise through the ranks to a top-level position at a top tier architecture firm.

BUT
the death of her mother puts a nail in the coffin of her dreams. Her dad is incapable of functioning from grief, and someone has to look after the family hardware store. It looks like Jenny’s dream are just so much road dust.

BUT
when the house up the street finally sells, the town is thrown into a tizzy. Some big name architect has bought the property and plans to turn it into a glitzy tree-change resort. As the local hardware store, Jenny sees an opportunity for both some financial stability and making a connection and maybe put her life back on track.

BUT
a catastrophic first encounter means that the architect, Clive, is never going to look at Jenny as anything more than a disaster, let alone a potential employee … or girlfriend.

  • Don’t be too nervous
    Easier said than done, but remember this key fact: editors/publishers are in the business of buying books, and they are actively looking for new titles. That means that you have something they want. So they’re just as interested in meeting you as you are them.
  • Submit
    You would be astonished at the number of authors who get full or partial requests and never actually submit. You’ve got to be in it to win it, and that means taking that big next step and actually hitting the ‘send’ button. Do it. The absolute worst that can happen is someone will say ‘no’. But if you never hit ‘send’, then you’re saying ‘no’ to yourself. Give yourself the opportunity to take that risk. You never know – it might be a ‘yes’!
sing it, baby

sing it, baby

Happy 4th of July!

july4thHappy Independence Day to all of our American readers and friends, and special fireworks go to our American Escape Artists:

18880Beth Fred!

19223Carly Drake!

21488JM Bray!

19228Katherine Givens!

19569MA Grant!

18615Nell Carson!

20378Robyn Rychards!

19726Sarah Daltry!

19913Scarlett Dawn!

19720Sunny Cole!

19222Tara Chevrestt!

19911Nicole Flockton! (Nicole is an Aussie living in the US)

Apple pie for everyone!

Brr…it’s cold in here – Must be some July Releases in the atmosphere!

Guaranteed to generate some heat on those long, cold, winter nights :)

21489From best-selling author Amy Andrews comes a fabulous, funny, flirty new single-title romance about putting pleasure before business, and the risks we all need to take when we find someone worth risking everything for.


21471Lisa Ireland takes a city girl country in her debut novel: when a smooth-talking, sophisticated city girl comes striding into town on her stiletto heels, local grazier Luke is the last person who wants to notice…


21473Escape releases its first short story anthology this month, an erotic collection with a spirited twist from Elizabeth Dunk. Follow the journey of four remarkable women — Luisa, Anna, Cara, and Jan — and the four spirits that set them on a new path to sexual freedom and boundless pleasure.


21474From Escape Publishing’s Queen of historical Australian romance, Téa Cooper,  comes an adventurous new story about a privileged member of Australian’s colonial squattocracy, a bushranger, and a very special horse.


21470Discover beautiful South Africa (and a very handsome set of brothers!) in this sweet, heart-warming Cinderella story about a blogger, a billionaire, and one chance meeting.


21488The second in the fresh, exciting, romantic fantasy Shroud trilogy takes up where Tearing the Shroud leaves off — with the lives, the loves, and the mythical world beyond the veil (also 80s music).


21472NM Harris makes her debut with Escape this month with a sizzling, sexy, surprisingly sweet short story about a special anniversary. Traditionally, leather is an anniversary gift. One couple is about to take that in a very non-traditional way…

Happy Canada Day!

canadadayHappy Canada day wishes to all our Canadian readers, and a special shout-out to our Canadian Escape Artists:

21184Auralee Wallace!

19723Darlene Fredette!

20835Daniel De Lorne! (who’s actually an Aussie, but currently living in Canada, so gets the love too!)

Maple syrup and pancakes for everyone!