Feed Your Reader: Sexy, Affirming Contemporary Romance

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Before you can heal, you must accept that you’ve been broken…

When an accident leaves her with severe burns, Captain Eden Archer has one goal — to get back to full fitness and her duties at her United Nations job. Eden is not a joiner, but the Ruby Challenge — a four-day hike across Nevada’s Ruby Mountains — seems like a great way to boost her rehabilitation, and to prove herself ready and able to move on. She just has to get through the pre-challenge medical.

As a doctor in Accident and Emergency, Dan Barbour is used to dealing with people in pain, people in denial, and people who don’t much like doctors, but the prickly servicewoman who dismisses his medical skills awakens an interest that has long been dormant.

The Ruby Mountain hike is as much about the emotional challenge as the physical, and as Eden and Dan find themselves getting closer and closer, they both face enormous obstacles. Eden protects her heart with distance and reserve; Dan keeps everyone at bay by being wholly unavailable. But if they stay true to their old course, they will lose the one chance at a real connection, the one chance to really find someone to love.

A broken-hearted doctor and a reluctant patient should be a match made in heaven, but are Eden and Dan strong enough to find courage outside of their respective battlefields and expose their hearts?

“An emotionally unique novel that was a delight to read” – Wit & Wonder Books

“This book was full of such amazing people and the way that the author made such a connection was beautiful.”- Laurie, Goodreads

“I loved this book! It’s a great story of healing and love.” – Gina B, NetGalley

Exposed is now available from your favourite e-tailer!

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Exclusive Excerpt 2: Exposed

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Before you can heal, you must accept that you’ve been broken…

Eden dropped to the dew-dampened grass, tugging her long sleeves down to cover her frigid fingers.

Dan clicked away at the camera, the only sound disturbing the rural tranquillity. After a while, she forgot he was there, and she embraced the majesty of the view. When was the last time she’d simply sat and been mindful? Grateful that she hadn’t died that day, when others hadn’t been so fortunate? She pulled crisp, earthy air into her lungs, exhaling as she allowed her gaze to trace the jagged horizon, which was backlit by a sky streaked with orange and pink.

The movement of Dan repositioning the tripod for a different shot drew her back to a different kind of view, no less spectacular. Syrupy warmth spread through her veins, heating her limbs from the inside.

Lightweight cargo pants hugged his taut backside as he stooped over the tripod, and his wide shoulders bunched under his t-shirt as he lifted his hand to manually focus the lens. Who knew cameras like that still existed? The breeze lifted his hair, revealing the grey at his temples and the lines fanning out from the eye he scrunched closed while he concentrated.

He pressed a few buttons, turned a few dials and then joined her on the grass as the first rays of the day’s sun rose above the mountains.

She hesitated to break the silence she’d found. ‘Won’t you miss it?’ A whisper.

He shrugged, his eyes never leaving the display Mother Nature put on for them. ‘I don’t want to miss seeing it in person. He flashed her grin, ‘And I’ve set the automatic timer.’ He draped his arms over his bent knees, his hands clasped between them. ‘Shh, Archer. Just watch.’

She surprised herself by doing as she was told, although had it been an exam she’d have failed. For her, the splendour of the view was surpassed by the vision of Dan watching the sunrise with rapt attention. She couldn’t tear her eyes away.

Exposed is available for pre-order and releases October 4.

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Exclusive Excerpt 1: Exposed

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Before you can heal, you must accept that you’ve been broken…

Look, Eden—’

Eden masked a sigh and pointed to the surname embroidered above the pocket of her sweatshirt. ‘I prefer Archer.’ She kept her gaze averted as she located the earphone jack and fumbled it into her phone, a tricky manoeuver hindered by her left hand being concealed within the sleeve of her sweater.

Dan shifted in his seat, turning to face her. ‘Since I’m not going to be your doctor, I thought we could get to know each other.’

She made eye contact, refusing to blink away the burn from the sincerity that shone from his open face.

His smile widened. ‘You know, as we live near each other and will be spending quite a bit of time together over the next month.’ He shrugged, a move that made him seem boyish for a split second. ‘We could train together, support each other …’

At last her silence infected him, halting his pleasant and reasonable speech, every word of which scored her eardrums until she contemplated hurling herself from the moving bus. She was tempted. After all, what he offered made sense, and the army had taught her team building played a massive part in the success of challenges such as the one they’d undertaken. If Dan had been less appealing, perhaps she’d have jumped at the chance. But the stirring of her attraction to him meant she couldn’t go there.

 ‘Thank you. But I’m happy to train alone. I’m afraid I’m not really good company these days.’ The words tasted poisonous. The familiar rush of shame washed through her, purging any residual chemistry she felt towards this man. It was for the best.

She wasn’t strong enough to make new friends. Didn’t dare contemplate anything beyond friends. And Dan, she could tell, embodied exactly the kind of man she’d once coveted. She ignored the slight droop of his warm friendly smile and the dulling of his eyes.

Okay.’ His gaze flitted to the window of the now moving minibus, and he took another sip of coffee. She’d just reached for the second earbud when he said, ‘So what prompted you to volunteer for the challenge?’

Clearly she’d have to be more direct. ‘I’m on sick leave from my post. I hate being idle, and this is a great way to rebuild my fitness. Look, I’m not great with superficial conversation. I’m really only doing this to complete the challenge and resume my career.’ A moment’s hesitation gripped her, paralysing her vocal cords. He was simply being polite, friendly.

But she was determined to keep her objective simple. Complete the challenge, take her certificate from Scale and resume active service as soon as possible.

No distractions.

No complications.

No sexy doctor friends.

Exposed is available for pre-order and releases October 4.

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These shoes were made for walking…

by JC Harroway

Five Of The World’s Best Hiking Trails

My newest book, Exposed, features an endurance hike for injured servicemen and women in Nevada’s stunning Ruby Mountains. While researching a suitable location for the hike Dan and Eden undertake, I came across some of the world’s most stunning places to roam. It was difficult, but here are my favourite five.

  1. Queen Charlotte Track, New Zealand.

 photo credit: all-free-download.com

Living in New Zealand, a country abundant with exquisite scenery and off-the-beaten-track hiking spots, number one had to be Marlborough’s Queen Charlotte Track, which spans 45 miles of historic sites, secluded bays and coastal bush.

  1. Pacific Crest Trail, USA.

Photo Dangerous-dan on Flickr

This trail stretches from Mexico to Canada and hosts it all—deserts, mountains, lakes and forests—and spans over 2,600 miles.

  1. Lake Louise Tea House Challenge, Albert, Canada.

Photo Andrew Bowden on Flickr

A 14km loop that visits both Canadian Pacific Railway historic Tea Houses, that offers stunning views of the mountains and glaciers surrounding Lake Louise.

  1. Blue Mountains, Australia.

Photo Pascal Vuylsteker on Flickr.

Stunning rock formations, native wildlife and ancient rain forests, this hike has it all—waterfalls, a Grand Canyon and the impressive rocky Ruined Castle.

  1. Snowdon, Wales, UK.

Wales’ highest mountain, Snowdon sports many tracks to the peak, Yr Wyddfa in the native language. Glorious views on a clear day, sometimeas all the way to Ireland.

If you had to choose a stunning backdrop to not only push yourself, physically, but perhaps find love, where would it be?


32235Before you can heal, you must accept that you’ve been broken…

When an accident leaves her with severe burns, Captain Eden Archer has one goal — to get back to full fitness and her duties at her United Nations job. Eden is not a joiner, but the Ruby Challenge — a four-day hike across Nevada’s Ruby Mountains — seems like a great way to boost her rehabilitation, and to prove herself ready and able to move on. She just has to get through the pre-challenge medical.

As a doctor in Accident and Emergency, Dan Barbour is used to dealing with people in pain, people in denial, and people who don’t much like doctors, but the prickly servicewoman who dismisses his medical skills awakens an interest that has long been dormant.

The Ruby Mountain hike is as much about the emotional challenge as the physical, and as Eden and Dan find themselves getting closer and closer, they both face enormous obstacles. Eden protects her heart with distance and reserve; Dan keeps everyone at bay by being wholly unavailable. But if they stay true to their old course, they will lose the one chance at a real connection, the one chance to really find someone to love.

A broken-hearted doctor and a reluctant patient should be a match made in heaven, but are Eden and Dan strong enough to find courage outside of their respective battlefields and expose their hearts?

Exposed is available for pre-order now!

iBooks, Booktopia, Nook, Kobo, Google, Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon Aus

Feed Your Reader: Hollywood Glamour and Unexpected Romance

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Some choices are easy. Some choices are hard. And some choices will break our hearts…

When jaded movie director, Tyler Wentworth meets Mallory Hughes on the set of his latest movie, he immediately notices two things: she’s too sweet and she’s somehow familiar. But he has no time for mysteries – as long as she can do her job and continue to keep her notorious starlet out of trouble, she can keep her secrets.

Mallory knows exactly who Tyler is, the young man she had a huge crush on has grown to a Hollywood heavy-weight. But the last thing she wants is to be associated with the shy, awkward girl she was then. She’s here professionally, managing her troubled sister who has the talent to be the biggest star on screen, but a turbulent past. This is Bobbie’s last and best shot, and Mallory will do nothing to jeopardise it.

But as the filming begins, Mallory not only finds herself drawn more deeply to this grown-up Tyler, but that her attraction is more than reciprocated and she can’t help herself from indulging in all of her girlish fantasies. However, when their pasts catch up, she is going to have to choose between the sister she’s devoted her life to and the man who’s won her heart.

NOW AVAILABLE


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The harder you fight, the harder you fall when Opposites Attract…

Lingerie for Felons – Ros Baxter

If there’s one universal truth, it’s this: You’re always wearing your worst underwear when you land in trouble. She is determined to make a difference in the world; he is all about the bottom line. But sometimes Mr Wrong just needs to time to find the right path.

Funny, touching, emotional and political, Lingerie for Felons is Bridget Jones meets An Inconvenient Truth, a contemporary romance about doing the right thing, finding the right person, and always thinking through your underwear choices.

Rescue Nights – Nina Hamilton

English surgeon Andrew Wentworth left behind a successful career and a failed engagement to join the Cairns Rescue Helicopter team, but it’s not shaping up to be the rejuvenating working holiday he expected.

Rescue paramedic Kate Spears is used to proving herself in a man’s world, so informing the handsome surgeon that all his orders now come from her is deliciously satisfying. But she soon finds that Andrew cannot only take everything she throws at him, he keeps coming back for more.

Opposites attract in this medical romantic suspense set in the high adrenalin world of the Cairns Rescue Helicopter team.

This is Now – Maggie Gilbert

A gritty, urban New Adult Cinderella story where the princess can do her own rescuing — she just needs someone to believe in her.

Sister to car thieves, ex-girlfriend to a drug dealer, high school dropout, no-hoper and loser — Jess is on the sidelines, watching her life become one epic fail.

Then she meets Sebastien, a gifted cellist from a very different walk of life. Sebastien is clean and strong and talented. He seems to think she can do anything, and Jess, despite her fears and the secrets she hides, is starting to believe him.

But just as Jess dares to hope, the secrets in her past and the lies in her present catch up with her. All seems lost and she has to make a choice. Between past and future. Between home and hope. Between now and never. And this is now.

THREE FULL-LENGTH NOVELS; ONE FANTASTIC PRICE. AVAILABLE NOW

Eight Things that Inspired JC Harroway to Write ‘Devoted’

by JC Harroway

Writing Devoted, book three in the Recovery Series was lots of fun and, in places, heart wrenching. The story between jaded movie director Tyler Wentworth and young talent manager, Mallory Hughes, is a story of love, grief and the roles sometimes thrust upon us.

Like most stories, Devoted required a certain amount of research. Here are some of the story’s main inspirations.

  • Canada

One of the most stunning countries in the world, Canada has settings galore to tempt a writer. But it was the country’s burgeoning film industry that drew me here. My hero, Tyler Wentworth, is a movie director who’s returned to his native Canada to shoot his most personal film yet. And what better backdrop for the opening scene than the iconic, Toronto.

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  • Tall, Dark and Handsome

Fortunately for us writers the internet is awash with…visual inspiration. Here’s mine for sexy, haunted Tyler. You’re welcome…

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  • Vintage Glamour

My heroine, Mallory Hughes was such fun to create. One of the best things I love about her is her sense of style, one Tyler describes as ‘Old Hollywood glamour’.

Think pencil skirts, fitted cardigans and vintage Mary Jane’s—the perfect heroine to throw a jaded movie director hero off balance.

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  • Film Premieres

One of the best things about writing the Hollywood trope is the glamour and sparkle of a red carpet event. Without giving too much of the ending away…let’s just say, what girl could resist?

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  • Ice Hockey

Tyler is a huge hockey fan and supports the Maple Leafs. And of course the Hockey Hall of Fame provided the perfect venue for date with a woman who, in his opinion, supported the wrong team.

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  • Native French Speakers

I’m a bit of a sucker when it comes to the French language—I could literally listen to it all day, even though I understand only a few basic words. So, of course, Tyler, just like around twenty percent of Canadians had to be bilingual.

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  • Sisterly Love

Mallory and Bobbie’s bond is strong, but flawed. But the undeniable fact remains: the sisterly relationship is unique and unbreakable. Celebrating sisters everywhere.

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  • Dirty Talk

Tyler uses the chemistry between himself and introverted and inexperienced Mallory to help her find her voice and take control. And he does it in the bedroom, leading to some pretty heated scenes…

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Devoted releases on July 4 and is available for pre-order now. Read on for the blurb!

31644 (2)

Some choices are easy. Some choices are hard. And some choices will break our hearts…

When jaded movie director, Tyler Wentworth meets Mallory Hughes on the set of his latest movie, he immediately notices two things: she’s too sweet and she’s somehow familiar. But he has no time for mysteries – as long as she can do her job and continue to keep her notorious starlet out of trouble, she can keep her secrets.

Mallory knows exactly who Tyler is, the young man she had a huge crush on has grown to a Hollywood heavy-weight. But the last thing she wants is to be associated with the shy, awkward girl she was then. She’s here professionally, managing her troubled sister who has the talent to be the biggest star on screen, but a turbulent past. This is Bobbie’s last and best shot, and Mallory will do nothing to jeopardise it.

But as the filming begins, Mallory not only finds herself drawn more deeply to this grown-up Tyler, but that her attraction is more than reciprocated and she can’t help herself from indulging in all of her girlish fantasies. However, when their pasts catch up, she is going to have to choose between the sister she’s devoted her life to and the man who’s won her heart.

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Exclusive Excerpt: Devoted by JC Harroway

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Some choices are easy. Some choices are hard. And some choices will break our hearts…


’I didn’t expect to see you here so early this morning—isn’t there someone else who could fetch Bobbie’s coffee?’ It irked him she would forgo her own caffeine hit for Bobbie. If he had to fetch his own coffee, his pampered starlet surely could too.

Her lips tightened, and she pushed her glasses to the bridge of her nose. ‘I don’t mind. She’s my sister.’ There it was—fiercely protective with the ferocity of a mama bear protecting a cub. Putting herself second.

‘Well, she’s lucky to have your … devotion.’ He had his reservations about Bobbie Lawrence. He’d been forced to work with her, accepting the studio’s assurances that her drug and alcohol problems were in the past.

Mallory glanced at him. ‘We’re very close and it’s my job to smooth the way for her on this movie in any way I can.’

His gut tightened. He rarely second-guessed his gut these days, experience proving he never got it wrong. Apart from that one time. And the price had been devastating. ‘Is that right?’ Perhaps he was wrong about the alluring Mallory Hughes. Perhaps she acted better than her famous sister. Perhaps that tentative kiss last night was part of the act. ‘Any way?’

‘Of course.’ A confused crinkle formed between her brows and he had the insane urge to reach out a touch it, to smooth the crease from her porcelain skin.

They’d reached the back of the trailer housing wardrobe and make-up. Mallory looked up at him, her eyes wary. Her lips parted, releasing rapid breaths that whitened the air between them.

His groin stirred, tempering the black turn of his thoughts. ‘Does that include kissing the director so he won’t notice when she falls off the wagon?’ He allowed his stare to linger on the fine bones of her face, her high cheekbones, her pert nose, her delicate jaw, finishing back at her eyes, which were now sparking with indignation.

‘No.’ Her feet spread, a fighting stance. ‘My sister is firmly on the wagon, and I did that all for myself.’ She squared up to him, her chin jutting forward and her shoulders back.

Lust flared, a kick in the gut, and he dropped his gaze to the lush curve of her full mouth, his memory of it pressed to his last night too fleeting. ‘Why?’ He wanted another taste of her but he’d never allow himself to be played again. No matter how intriguing, how alluring or how ingenious this woman was.

Her half laugh was as bitter as his suspicious mind. ‘Let’s just say I was living out an ancient crush.’

She didn’t look happy about it. ‘You have a crush on me?’ Well that smacked him between the eyes—a riveting conundrum indeed. Heat raced down his spine, pooling in his groin.

Colour rushed up her neck from the fur collar of her coat. ‘Had. Long ago. And I’m over it.’

Leaning above her, he reached one hand behind her shoulder to the door handle of the trailer. She held her footing, arching her back so her upper body maintained distance from his and their eye contact held—a challenge.

Wide eyes and panting breaths. Diminutive and defensive all in one delicious package. Something primal and urgent shifted inside him.

His hand closed around the icy metal door handle, and he glanced down at her full mouth once more, recalling her hesitant kiss. ‘Shame.’ 

Pre-order now

The story of my book: Recovery

by JC Harroway

Inspiration is a funny thing. It comes in many guises.

For many writers, a story starts with a spark—an elusive flash of magical inspiration that starts a chain reaction, a cascade of creative impulses. For others, their characters talk to them, waking them at night, demanding to be set free, immortalised on the page.

Into this imagination cauldron, throw a handful of ‘write what you know’, add a sprinkle of creative juice and…voila! You have a story.

This was the process for my first contemporary romance novel, Recovery. I’d spent months ignoring the heroine character in my head, fearing I couldn’t do her justice, when a local news item on the New Zealand evening news added the spark!

A BIG Hollywood name was in town, sadly making the news for negative reasons. But now my curiosity was pricked. Why was he here? What had brought him to the South Island? What was he doing in remote rural NZ?

The answer, of course—New Zealand’s buoyant film industry.

The screen industry revenue nets the NZ economy over three billion dollars a year. But this star wasn’t here to make a hairy-footed fantasy blockbuster.

And this got me to thinking about the NZ film industry and how a tiny, rural community could attract filmmakers seeking stunning locations for their films and the Hollywood A-listers starring in them.

Back to my story. Enter, stage left, our hero—Nathan Banks.

recoveryblogNow I had a heroine with a story to tell and a hero in the right place at the right time. And so Recovery was conceived. The story of a young British doctor, Sophia King—working in the stunning New Zealand town of Queenstown—who is called to treat famous Hollywood heartthrob, Nathan Banks.

Of course, where there’s fame there are paparazzi, globetrotting and glamour, a combination that’s enough to send our heroine running for those quintessentially New Zealand, movie-set-worthy hills. But who doesn’t want to meet an insanely attractive and charming movie star?


Recovery

She can’t help but want him. But neither can his millions of fans.

The Endorphin Rush

by JC Harroway (originally published here)

Why do I read romance?

According to Thomas Stewart’s article for The Richest, I am not alone in my love for this genre. The romance/erotica fiction business is a $1.44-billion-dollar industry and is top of the list, beating crime, horror and fantasy.

So what is it that draws the predominantly (but not exclusively) female readership to romance novels?

It’s too simplistic to dismiss the whole genre as ‘mummy porn’. Romance novels range from incredibly sweet to explicit and includes the popular new adult and young adult subgenres.

And if women simply wanted porn, wouldn’t they just read or watch porn?

My own theory, not an original one by the way, is that many women, myself included, are drawn by the endorphin rush that comes when they get lost in a love story with a happy ever after (or an emotionally satisfying ending).

Endorphins, according to the Wikipedia, are a group of endogenous (i.e. produced in the body) opioid neuropeptides (hormones produced by the brain that inhibit the transmission of pain signals and produce a sense of euphoria). In short, they are your own legal and free source of narcotics!

It’s the same high experienced by athletes, yogis and chocolate lovers, and can also be induced by moderate levels of alcohol, a good massage and an orgasm.

Reading a great book, or watching a great movie, sucks us into the story. We get lost, becoming so invested in the outcomes of the characters, that when the boy gets the girl or the girl staves off dragons to save the boy, we experience a rush of chemicals so strong the following occurs in our bodies:

  • Pain sensations are blocked, or reduced
  • Our limbic system (part of the brain concerned with emotion) lights up giving us a rush of pleasure
  • Sleep improves
  • Our appetite is reduced
  • The negative effects of stress lessen
  • Our immune system is boosted
  • Blood pressure drops
  • Memory improves.

Wow. All that from a romance novel with a HEA—sign me up!

No wonder I’m addicted.


recovery

She can’t help but want him. But neither can his millions of fans.