Exclusive Excerpt: Diving Into Trouble by Shona Husk

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A submarine, a one-night-stand, and a forbidden workplace romance…


This was turning from potential hook-up into a possible date rather too quickly. He wanted to scrabble around and find something to grab onto as the ground shifted and tilted, yet a date would be nice. He hadn’t been on a real date in a while. But even as he smiled and watched the play of light on her cheek and lips, he knew it wouldn’t last.

They’d break up before he sailed. That’s what he did; the long-distance thing never worked out. He’d seen too many failed relationships on the boat. Joining the navy had scuttled his dating life and reduced it down to mini relationships of three months tops. He’d pretty much resigned himself to not having a serious relationship until he rejoined civvie street.

His looming decision raised its head. He was running out of time. He had to sign on for another two years or get out. He’d stayed in last time, and started seriously saving, putting away money for when he got out. This time he wasn’t so sure he wanted to do another two years, nor was he sure about being a civilian again since it hadn’t gone so well the first time. But when Rainy looked at him she wasn’t seeing a sailor, she was seeing a cook. Because he’d told a half-truth. He liked the idea of testing out being a civilian again.

She released her glass and turned her hand so their fingers touched. Her skin was cool and dewy and her touch sent a shiver along his skin.

And what happens after the pizza?’ It was possibly the wrong question to ask, but since she was the one putting out the suggestion he wanted to know how far she was willing to go.

She stood and for a heartbeat he thought he’d gone too far, then she walked around the table and sat next to him. ‘That depends on two things.’

Two?’ His heart was beating harder than it should be, echoing the beat of the music.

Firstly, do you remember my name?’

Of course he did. ‘Rainy. Your eyes are like the sky on a rainy day.’ A beautiful soft blue-grey. He wanted to take that back as soon as the words had fallen off his tongue. It was too obvious and too much of a pick-up line.

She laughed and shook her head. ‘I’ve heard that so many times before.’

Yet she leaned closer. Close enough that he caught the faint scent of perfume. Something like spring flowers. He hadn’t expected that, for some reason he’d expected her to smell like grease and fuel. Then her hand landed on his knee, and there was a definite glint in her eyes.

That was when he realised he wasn’t the one doing the picking up. Rainy was.

He swallowed as a rush of pure lust shot through his blood.

That was sexy. As his jeans tightened around his groin, he was hoping he passed whatever the next thing was. ‘And two is?’ He was sure his voice was a little rougher, like he’d spent the night drinking and singing karaoke.

How well do you kiss?’


31643Kurt Garland is at a crossroads: sign for another two years as a submariner or leave and rejoin civilian life. With only weeks to make up his mind, he’s torn between the financial stability and mateship of life in the Navy, and the freedom and balance outside of the military. With big life decisions on the line, Kurt needs space to think, so a one-night-stand with a sexy stranger is all he can commit to. Until his sexy stranger shows up on his submarine…

Getting accepted into the Submarine Corps was an enormous career goal for Rainy Miller, and she has no intention of screwing it up. A Marine Technician for the last eight years in the surface fleet, Rainy craves the new challenges of a submariner. With her training complete, she’s about to join a boat for the first time, and her career relies on a good impression. When her one night stand shows up in the galley, she has to shut it down, walk away, pretend it never happened. But all submariners know that secrets don’t stay secret for long on a sub

Preorder now: Amazon AU, Amazon US, Amazon UK, Nook, Kobo, Google, iBooks, Booktopia

Friday Five: Fiona Greene

1d65948065817365d620cd57a5257f0dAuthor: Fiona Greene
First published with Escape: November 2014
Favourite romance trope: Returning home/the one that got away
Ideal hero: Sexy, strong and funny
Ideal heroine: Confident, capable and kind
Latest book: Home for Christmas

What began your romance writing career? Why do you write romance?

It was the eighties, and having discovered a box of Mills and Boons in my new stepmother’s house, I was instantly hooked. They all had exotic, foreign settings (lots of Betty Neels) and it wasn’t till I spent my first pay buying more romance that I discovered there was such a thing as Australian romance. Better still – Queensland romance. That’s when the dream was born.

This photo was taken in 2015 on a tour of the State Library’s Queensland Romance Author collection – a treasured experience, with so many familiar names and books.

Fiona Green

I’m drawn to romance because no matter what, there are compelling characters, places I may never travel to and a happy for now/happy ever after.

How did your latest book come to life? What was your eureka moment?

Writing Home for Christmas I had two very different critiques, and I credit them both with causing eureka moments:

  1. Theme = Family. This single statement, written exactly like it is here allowed me to take Layla and Tate’s story from a Christmas short story to a published work.
  2. I’m bored with this story, you should work on something else. I was gutted to hear this, a lone voice in a sea of “this is good”. Should I give up? Start something new? I pulled the story from my critique group, worked on it solo, and (eureka moment) learnt to trust my instinct about what it needed. In hindsight, it was the wrong book for that reader.

What do you do when you’re stuck with a scene?

When I’m stuck, truly stuck, I take the point of view character, and flip their usual reaction to the situation they find themselves in, sending them one hundred and eighty degrees in the other direction. Then I change point of view and show the other character in the scene trying to figure it out. Chances are, what you write will end up in the bin, but the characters should at least be talking to each other, and sometimes characters surprise you with what happens next.

What’s the thing about writing that surprised you the most?

Writing is seen as a solo pursuit, but I’ve found the comradery in both my critique group and the wider romance community make it anything but. Knowledge and experience of what works and what doesn’t is shared, and there is always someone who will support you as you work through your “apprenticeship”. The friends I’ve made through writing are some of my closest, and I treasure each and every one of them.

What do you do when you’re not writing? Any secret hobbies?

When I’m not writing, I split my time between my day job (in health) and an owner builder project on a rural block that will never be finished (or so it seems). I don’t have any secret hobbies, but my favourite escape is generally a run. Headphones and mobile free, I set off on a journey, and while my feet might be pounding the pavement in suburbia, my head will be deep in wherever my latest story is set.

In 2017, I’m doing an A-Z run of Brisbane – finding a different suburb to run in starting with the next letter of the alphabet. Next up: “E”.


22581What began as an impersonal-but-cheerful holiday gift for a soldier far from home becomes so much more…

Sergeant Tate McAuliffe, stationed in Afghanistan, opens his Christmas care package from Australia and is stunned by both its contents and the sender.

Fun-loving Christmas tree designer Layla Preston is a breath of fresh air for loner Tate. Although they’ve never met, their email friendship quickly develops and their feelings for each other deepen. But Layla knows the heartache that loving a soldier can bring and when Tate is injured, her deep-seated fear drives them apart. With their relationship in tatters, can Layla and Tate work through their differences, so Layla can welcome Tate home for Christmas?

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Feed Your Reader: Military RomSus for Dog Lovers

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A taut debut novel about a wounded soldier, a courageous doctor, and a dog in desperate need of a rescue

Soldier, surgeon, traitor, dog…

When Sergeant Nate Calloway is carried into the field hospital with no memory of how he got there or where the other members of his unit are,  Australian army surgeon, Captain Beth Harper cares only about repairing his broken body. But it’s clear that something went terribly wrong on the other side of the wire, and as Nate slowly recovers, he becomes more and more anxious to return to duty, go back into the field, and rescue his friends, his unit, and the bomb detection dog that he loves.

The only way Nate can be released to active duty is if a doctor agrees to accompany him, and Beth surprises everyone by volunteering. Her role is to monitor Nate and take him right back to hospital the instant that his health deteriorates enough to put their rescue operation at risk. But as she stays close, she finds herself inexplicably drawn to his courage, his determination, and his commitment to his fellow soldiers.

Instead of a straightforward recovery, however, Nate and Beth soon realise they’ve stumbled on a tangled web of deceit and danger, and the enemy is no longer outside the wire. He is one of their own, a traitor, and he has them in his scope.

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