What do we look for in fiction? As well as entertainment and escapism, I think we're also in search of enlightenment: we want to know who we are a little better, recognising ourselves in others' actions and reactions, perhaps subconsciously evaluating how we might have behaved in similar circumstances. In my humble opinion, there's little better than finding a fabulous historical novel to transport you to a familiar and yet wholly new time and place. That said, I'm a sucker for great contemporary fiction, especially if it has engaging characters, a compelling mystery, or a strong romantic thread pulling me along...but give me all of those elements, seamlessly interwoven under the same cover, and I'm pretty much in reading heaven. This is what I hope I encapsulate in my historical fiction writing.
Below is a snapshot of my romantic comedy novellas
Holly Ever After
A Christmas novella
Winner of the Romance Writers of New Zealand Koru Novella Award!
Here’s the festive scenario…
Tis the season to be jolly! But all Holly or Clyde want is some peace on Earth …
Burtonbridge School in the north of England might look and sound like a magical place to teach, but with Christmas fast approaching and work piling up, young Kiwi teacher Holly Hadaway is feeling out of place and out of her depth.
Clyde Hunter has dropped out of university to pursue his writing dreams. Being a member of the school ‘grounds and building maintenance’ team should be the sort of work that allows him headspace to think and be creative. But the festive season is proving testing, and one prickly teacher is about to puncture his solitary bubble when he’s tasked to fix the lock on her stationery storeroom door.
Maybe stationery storeroom is too grandiose a word. It’s more of a walk-in cupboard/closet. And when Holly and Clyde find themselves locked in together, it starts to feel uncomfortably tight.
This is the last thing they would ever wish for, but who knows, perhaps it’ll be the perfect Christmas present …
Find out who gets their Holly ever after...
Be My Valerie!
A Valentine's Day novella
Valerie Pickles is an aspiring author and a hopeless romantic: hopeless with a capital ‘H’ because her boyfriend has dumped her for the girl next-door – literally. With a severe case of writer’s block, she would do just about anything to escape the sound of their sex marathons through the thin adjoining wall of her bedroom – even become a chalet girl alongside her best friend, Gemma.
Leo Cloutier is a hard-nosed French businessman and serious workaholic: serious with a capital ‘S’ because he hasn’t got time to mess around. But he would do anything for the sister he adores, even agree to host her fiancé Josh’s stag party week at his luxury chalet … and besides, what better way to sabotage the relationship.
Méricoeur is an idyllic ski town nestled in the French Alps. Idyllic until Leo arrives accompanied by a stag party.
It’s only a week. What could possibly go wrong?
Except Valerie can’t ski and has rather limited survival skills, especially where Leo Cloutier is concerned; and Leo doesn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell when it comes to breaking all his resolutions and the sweet temptation that is Valerie.
Prepare yourself for some off-piste romance in Be My Valerie!