Thursday, August 5, 2010

Swept Away

posted by Nancy

Today Avon debut author Katharine Ashe makes her first visit to the Lair. Katharine lives in the wonderfully warm Southeast with her husband, son, two dogs, and a garden she likes to call romantic rather than unkempt. A professor of European history, she has made her home in California, Italy, France, and the northern US. RT Book Reviews awarded her debut historical romance, SWEPT AWAY BY A KISS, a “TOP PICK!” review, calling it “a page-turner and a keeper.” Welcome, Katharine, and congratulations on your great review!

What inspired you to write this book?

Inspiration always begins for me with a perfectly matched hero and heroine. When I first came up with the idea for SWEPT AWAY BY A KISS, I was in graduate school. Voraciously devouring my favorite Regency romances to avoid writing my dissertation (g!), I invented a character on the edge of polite society: a young heiress traveling home to England after spending two years exiled in Boston by her father for scandalous behavior. At the time I also happened to be reading a friend’s dissertation on the French Caribbean as well as a giant tome on the history of the Jesuits. I took a bit of each and threw in a dangerous mission, and a dashing hero to match my spirited heroine was born!

Who are the hero and heroine, and how do they meet?

Upon the high seas, black-sheep nobleman Lord Steven Ashford plays a perilous game. By disguising himself as a French priest he hopes to ruin a powerful villain ensconced at the highest level of the British aristocracy. When pirates seize his ship, it brings him one step closer to his nemesis. But he doesn’t count on the fiery beauty imprisoned with him.

In desperate attempts to win the attention of her aloof father, during her first season in society Lady Valerie Monroe made a habit of luring inappropriate men into dalliances. On the way home after her long sojourn abroad, longing for acceptance amongst society and to finally be loved for who she really is, she vows to leave behind such childish wiles. Then fate throws her into the hands of pirates who imprison her with a breathtakingly handsome and mysterious Man of the Cloth. Valerie knows it must be divine punishment for her past sins.

What’s their biggest relationship issue?

Always a huntress before, Valerie has never been prey. Frightened--and confused by her desire for her fellow prisoner despite her commitment to changing--she determines to escape their pirate captors. Regretting what she must do, she revives her wicked ways in an attempt to beguile the priest into helping her at any cost. But she fears that this time she will be the one seduced... into losing her heart.

Steven’s noble mission binds him to a solitary life as no prison cell ever could. His work is dangerous, his destiny determined by much more than his desires. He cannot reveal himself to the tempting beauty any more than he can risk her safety with his intrigues. But her spirit is strong, her eyes and words beckon, and his resistance is crumbling fast.

What’s their biggest other problem?

When the pirate captain threatens Valerie’s life, she and Steven must work together to defeat him. But back in England Steven’s true enemy has discovered all. At a snow-bedecked Christmas gathering upon a country estate, Steven--now in the guise of an exquisitely elegant gentleman of fashion--struggles to keep Valerie safe from danger. But now Valerie knows his true identity and she wants him with everything in her. To help him defeat his foe, she must put aside the girl she once was and become the one woman worthy of winning the noble adventurer’s heart.

Can we have a peek inside the book?

Steven rose to his knees, forcing a calm to his movements he did not feel. He scanned the elaborate system of knots wrapped around her body.

“Where is your knife?”

“In my shoe.”

He moved to the clothing piled upon the chair, all save her shift. The madman tied a woman like an animal, yet folded her garments neatly for reuse. Steven drew the tiny weapon from the lining of the costly leather boot and turned back to the bed.

“This will not be of use upon most of the knots. They are too close to your skin.” Watching her pale face, he sat at the foot of the bed and grasped the rope stretching from her ankle to the post. He set the knife to it.

“No.” Her voice was rough. “Do not use it. Then he will know I have it.”

Steven regarded her steadily, a rush of sharp heat sweeping through him. Valerie’s body, clad in the sheerest fabric, tensed against the bindings. Color dusted her cheeks. She craved freedom, but from much more than these tethers. She would not allow this setback to cow her into submission or carelessness. Desire curled in Steven’s blood, mixing with respect and fresh anger.

He pushed aside the sensations. “I should have thought of that.”

“Why?” She scanned his clerical robe. “Are you accustomed to concealing knives from pirate captors?”

He lifted a brow and returned to his task. “I will break the glass on the lamp. It will appear I used that to cut the rope.”

“Clever,” she murmured. “Perhaps you are a dab hand at deception after all, despite your avowal the other day.”

Steven did not respond. He could not. He had told her he preferred the truth, but everything he let her believe about him was a lie.

He cut into the rope.

“It is a very small knife,” she finally said, quietly this time.

“It will do.”

“I never imagined it would be of any use, and now I have employed it twice in a single day.”

He felt her gaze upon his back as he worked, like a touch. The blade was thin but sharp. The rope snapped and Valerie curled up her leg, her bare skin brushing across linen. Ignoring his heightened pulse, Steven moved to the other side of the bed and set to the bonds attached to the foot-post there. In a minute, the sliced rope slipped through his hand. She drew her knees together.

“And for the rest?” she asked.

He turned to face her, unsurprised at the upward tilt of her chin. A brave woman, Valerie Monroe, and infinitely more seductive in her defiance than any man’s warped fantasies could render her with ropes and gags.

Steven studied the complex network of twists and loops and drew in a long breath.

“He has contrived a series of lynch knots. Not impossible to unravel, but each connected to the next, beginning at the top. This will take some time.”

“That’s all right. I have no other engagements this evening.”

Steven met her candid gaze. In the gathering twilight, her eyes glowed the color of storm-tossed waves. One slender, dark brow perched higher than the other. He allowed himself a muted grin.

“No names yet upon your dance card, my lady?”

“Not yet, although I still have hope.”

Oooh, terrific! What’s next for you?

CAPTUERD BY A ROGUE LORD, the second book in my debut trilogy from Avon, will be in bookstores April 2011. London society knows Lord Alex Savege as a devastatingly rakish earl. In his secret identity as the pirate captain Redstone, Alex seizes the yachts of spoiled nobles and donates the swag to charity. But years ago he began his double life with less than noble intentions. Now a lovely minx, Serena Carlyle, is determined to halt a band of smugglers. When she begs Redstone for help, will Alex finally become the real hero she desires?

For more information about Katharine and her books, visit her website.

Katharine is giving away one copy of SWEPT AWAY BY A KISS to a commenter, so tell us, what's your favorite first meeting between a hero and heroine? Your favorite rescue story? Your favorite tale of political or social intrigue?


Helen said...

Is he staying with me

Have Fun

Helen said...

Well he must have enjoyed the Tim Tams and wanted more LOL

Thank you so much Nancy for inviting Katharine along to meet us today. I have heard so many great things about this book I have ordered it and am awaiting the postman to deliver it so as I can dive into it whoo hoo, I do love stories set on the high seas LOL. Loved the excerpt.

One first meeting that comes to mind in is Anna Campbell's Captive Of Sin when Gideon first meets Charis in the stable she is hiding in what a true gentleman and then of course there is Christine Well's The Dangerous Duke when kate comes upon Max dangling a man over a balcony very good meetings.

Congrats on the release of Swept Away By A Kiss Katharine I look forward to reading it.

Have Fun

Blodeuedd said...

Fav first meeting, oh it has to be Bridget Jones meeting Mark Darcy for the first time, lol.

Rescue, nah can't think of a book there, there are so many.

As for political or social, drawing a blank again.

Good luck with the new realise!

Jane said...

Welcome Katharine,
Congrats on your debut release. A favorite first meeting is between Lydia and Vere from Loretta Chase's "The Last Hellion." He mistakenly believes she needs rescuing and ends up being punched by the heroine.

Congrats on the GR, Helen.

barb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
barb said...

congrats Helen on keeping GR he must like it downunder although it is cold at the moment LOL

Hi Katherine Your book looks like a good read and looking forward to reading it.

Kirsten said...

I really like the first meeting between Jane and Ethan in Celeste Bradley's The Rogue. She is hanging upside down in a tree when he stumbels upon her. It made me laugh.

Katharine Ashe said...

Good morning, ladies! Thank you, Nancy, for inviting me into the Lair. I'm so happy to be here!

Helen, thank you! There's definitely something wonderful about meetings in stables. I just love them, and I think I've got one in every book I've ever written! The opening of Liz Carlyle's A Woman of Virtue is a fabulous mistaken first impression stable scene.

Mistaken first impressions are really some of my favorites. Blodeuedd, that Bridget Jones's Diary meeting couldn't be more perfect. Hilarious and awful at the same time. Just like the Loretta Chase beginning you mentioned, Jane. The humor in a mistaken first impression can be so sexy too!

barb, thanks! I wouldn't mind some of that Aussie cold right now. It's going up to 100 degrees again today here. :)

Kirsten, I adore hoydenish heroines. I'll have to pick up a copy of The Rogue. :) I recently read Alissa Johnson's Tempting Fate. It has a wonderful heroine along those lines, too.

Miranda Neville said...

Hi Katharine
Had to stop by when I saw you were visiting the Banditas. The excerpt from Swept Away is yummy!

There are so many books with great first meetings. Talk of trees brings to mind Julia Quinn's Brighter than the Sun, a fave of mine, when he falls out of tree drunk, knocks her down and sprains his ankle.

Rescue: I'm drawing a blank on rescues though I always enjoy them, especially when the heroine does the rescuing. Too early in the morning.

Politics isn't a popular background for romances, a pity I think. Jenny Crusie had a great one. Is it called Strange Bedfellows?

Katharine Ashe said...

Thanks for stopping in, Miranda! Who knew so many romances begin with people in (or falling out of!) trees? :)

jo robertson said...

Hi, Katharine! Welcome to the Lair. Your debut book sounds deliciously intriguing.

Can you tell us more about the topic of your dissertation and how your educational studies have enhanced your writing?

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Oh, one of my favorite first meeting happens to be one of my favorite intrigue as well.
Collis Tremayne and Rose Lacey are the hero and heroine and she is a deadly little somebody. The book is The Charmer by Celeste Bradley. He could charm anyone but her.

I love to read just about any genre but I always lean toward the historical the most.

Oh, I just saw that Kirsten like The Liars Club series as well.

jo robertson said...

Ooops, forgot the question. I love the years surrounding the French Revolution. Of course, A TALE OF TWO CITIES would be high on my list, although not a romance.

Katharine Ashe said...

Hi, Jo. Thanks for welcoming me to the Lair today! Actually, my boyfriend's dissertation focused on the French Revolution, such a tumultuous, exciting time I couldn't resist drawing it directly into my Regencies! My own dissertation was on fourteenth and fifteenth-century Rome. :)

Yay for Celeste Bradley! Dianna, I'm with you in reading lots of different genres, but my favorites are historical romances too.

Louisa Cornell said...

Good on you, Helen. I'd stay for Tim Tams too !!

Hello, Katharine! I met you at the Literacy Signing at Nationals! My signed copy of your book is sitting on my desk beckoning to me, but I have to get this current manuscript in my agent's before I can read it! :( I am looking forward to it!

Everyone has named some of my favorite hero / heroine meets. Love the one in Captive of Sin and The Dangerous Duke. And Brighter Than the Sun is one of my absolute favorites.

For political intrigue you can't beat C.S. Harris's Sebastian St. Cyr series. Great political stuff in that series.

My favorite rescue story is actually about a heroine who rescues a hero - Flowers from the Storm by Laura Kinsale. I also like the rescue in her Prince of Midnight, though it is difficult to tell who is rescuing whom.

And Mary Blayney's two Kiss novels, especially Traitor's Kiss are great rescue stories with great first meetings.

Joanna Bourne's novels have great rescues in them too.

Melinda Leigh said...

Hi Katharine!

My favorite story of social intrigue (sort of) is The Neighbor by Lisa Gardner. So many secrets, so much suspense, so little page space. It's amazing she crammed it all in, along with a surprising and satisfying romance.

What a great blog. Thanks for introducing me to Romance Bandits.


Nancy said...

Helen, congrats on the rooster! You're on sort of a rooster roll lately.

Glad you liked the interview. Isn't that excerpt great?

As it happens, I also love those two meetings you described. :-)

Nancy said...

Blodeuedd, Bridget and Mark did seem fated for disaster, didn't they? I loved that scene in the book and thought it translated very well in the film.

Nancy said...

Jane, The Last Hellion is a favorite in the Lair, but I have to confess that I haven't read it. That description sounds great, though!

Nancy said...

Hi, Barb--The cold Down Under sounds really appealing as we swelter here in the American South.

Nancy said...

Kirsten, the scene from The Rogue sounds intriguiging!

Nancy said...

Katharine, now that you mention it, it does seem that a fair number of meetings take place in stables. Hmm.

I have your book but, due to conference travel and the chaos of returning home, am just starting it. I did peek ahead, though, and it looks great. Can't wait to make legitimate progress through the pages!

Nancy said...

Miranda, I have to admit I haven't read the Julia Quinn you describe, but I'm so glad the hero's the one with the sprained ankle and not the heroine. I assume he learned not to combine drinking with climbing trees.

I'm not sure which Jenny Crusie that is. Maybe someone who knows will pop in, though.

Nancy said...

Good morning, Jo! It's so nice to have life settling down again here in the Lair, isn't it? Y'all did a great job keeping the home fires stoked while so many of us were away.

Nancy said...

Dianna, that meeting in The Rose sounds great! I read more historicals than contemporaries, too, but in my case it's part of the whole history geek thing.

Just BTW, own Susan Sey sold out of her fabulous contemporary debut, Money, Honey, at the literacy signing. How cool is that?

Delilah's Dish said...

One of my favorites, but I can't think of the novel or the author....I know, bad me, was one in which the heroine hired a man for the evening as a 30th birthday present.

And it was a historical romance novel. Turned out he was her publisher and he'd come on business, but since she never met him...mistaken identity indeed!

Rescue...when Wesley save Princess Buttercup's breasts...tee hee from Prince Humperdink and he can't move from the bed....oh how I love that!!!


Nancy said...

Katharine, Rome? I don't think I knew that. How interesting.

You know, Joan loves ancient Rome, and--no, Demetrius. You gladiators are NOT in Katharine's disssertation. Read what she said about the period--it's after you. No, we don't borrow things from guests. Go guard something, please.

Deb said...

Hey, Helen, have GR save some Tim Tams for us. Yum!

Katharine and Nancy, thanks for the great post and interview. You book is on my TBB list, Katharine, and I look forward to reading it.

I think it's fun for a hero and heroine to firt meet when they literally bump into each other. I just read a book where the hero and heroine both lost control of their horses and ended up in a pond. It was fun to read about them arguing while sopping wet and introducing themselves.

Nancy said...

Louisa, I agree that Sebastian St. Cyr is way up there. That first look at him, on the dueling ground, grabbed me hard, and he kept me. And his rescue of Kat later in the book is so dynamic--worthy of Batman! *g*

Those are great beginnings that you mentioned. Laura Kinsale is a classic, of course. I have to admit that I haven't read Mary Blayney, though she's on my list. Of course, I'm way behind. The Spymaster's Lady is waiting for me, too.

Deb said...

oops, first

Nancy said...

Melinda, thanks for stopping in!

Lisa Gardner is really amazing, isn't she? I've gotten to hear her speak a couple of times, and her ability to analyze the elements in a novel always impresses me.

Nancy said...

Delilah, we love The Princess Bride at our house. That's a great movie.

Don't worry about drawing a blank on titles--happens all the time around here. Both of those sound like fun.

Nancy said...

Deb, don't worry about the typo. It happens to me all the time, and it's comforting to see someone else do it. That pond scene sounds great!

Kim in Hawaii said...

Aloha, Katharine! Great meeting you at the Beau Monde Soiree and seeing you again at the awards ceremony.

Amanda Quick published several books with unusual ways the hero and heroine met - breaking into homes, tutor in disguise, and even the heroine calling in a favor from a lord sleeping in a coffin.

Looking forward to reading your new book!

Nancy said...

Hi, Kim--I'm glad I got to meet you at the literacy signing. One of the things I enjoy about Amanda Quick is her knack for creating quirky couples.

PJ said...

Hi Katharine! I'm reading your book right now and loving it. It was a pleasure to meet you at the literacy and publisher signings last week.

Many of my favorite "first meets" have already been mentioned. The one in Brighter than the Sun is so good!

I just finished reading an arc of a terrific September release where the heroine and hero first meet when he rides down the aisle of a church on his fiery stallion and steals her away from his enemy before she says "I do."

catslady said...

I've heard such good things about this book and really enjoyed the excerpt and the cover is just gorgeous. I wish I could remember names and titles but I'm hopeless when it comes to that.

Janga said...

I can definitely relate to reading romance to avoid working on a dissertation. It's not coincidence that I discovered so many of my favorite authors while I was avoiding completing mine. :)

Susan Elizabeth Phillips does great meet scenes. The most memorable may be in Natural Born Charmer when Blue Bailey, trudging down the road in a beaver costume, meets Dean Robillard,the Chicago Stars hunky quarterback.

One of my favorite rescue scenes is also a meet scene--Sara Fielding saving the life of Derek Craven in Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas.

And for intrigue, I love Tracy Grant's Charles and Mélanie Fraser books: Secrets of a Lady and Beneath a Silent Moon.

Katharine Ashe said...

Hi, Louisa! It was lovely meeting you at the signing, and I just adored your badge pins. :) Best of luck with finishing up the manuscript for your agent. Always a very nervy and simultaneously satisfying time, I know! The books you mentioned are all wonderful!

Melinda, shame upon me but I still haven't read a Lisa Gardner novel! Should I begin with The Neighbor do you think? I do love suspense, though. Lately I've been loving Roxanne St. Claire's Bullet Catcher series.

Nancy said...

PJ, I envy you these ARCs! That sounds like a fabulous opening.

I've loved looking at the photos you and the other Dishers took at National.

Isn't there a poem that has something like that in it--is it Lochinvar by Sir Walter Scott? Or am I totally confused/

Nancy said...

Catslady, no sweat on not remembering the titles. I frequently go blank when confronted by a question about books. :-)

Nancy said...

Janga, these all sound like great choices, though I'm sorry to say I haven't read any except the SEP.

What was your dissertation about?

Katharine Ashe said...

Hi, Nancy. Thanks so much! Things do get crazy at National Conference time. I didn't even get my book club selection for this week read over the week, and it was a page-turner thriller according to all reports. ;)

Congratulations to Susan for selling out at the Literacy Autographing!!

Nancy said...

Katharine--Bullet Catchers? The "boom girls" in the Lair might like those. Can you give us a nutshell description?

Katharine Ashe said...

Marquita, fabulous case of mistaken identity with that one! Oh and I adore it when Wesley's lying there all vulnerable yet he's so incredibly confident. Perfect moment, but that movie is just chock full of them. :)

Katharine Ashe said...

Nancy, I wouldn't mind lending something to Demetrius. But... my dissertation? Is he sure? Or was he thinking of something else. ;)

Deb, I'd love to read that one. I wonder where they are--in London or the country? How fun! What's the title? Thanks so much for putting me on your TBR pile! :)

Katharine Ashe said...

Wow, Nancy, Joanna Bourne's The Spymaster's Lady is simply superb. They rescue each other in the first brilliant scene, then "rescue" starts to take on an entirely different slant for the remainder of the book. Wonderful writing!

Katharine Ashe said...

Kim, it was terrific meeting you in Orlando! Thanks for the chance to win Miranda's books at the soiree. Happily, I have them already, so I passed them on to a lovely new acquaintance, Irene, who started them that very night. :) Hi, Irene, if you're out there!

Katharine Ashe said...

Hi, PJ. I'm so glad you're enjoying my book! It was terrific meeting you at the signing last week. Oh please please please tell us the name of the book/ARC you're reading. That's my kind of hero--yum! The third book in my trilogy (out next year) begins with the hero riding up and sweeping the heroine onto his white charger to rescue her from some very nasty fellows. Sigh! (If I may say so myself.) ;)

Katharine Ashe said...

Thank you, catslady! I'm hopeless with titles unless I've read a book more than once then talked about it with friends. I'm even worse with movie titles. :)

Janga, what fabulous books you've mentioned. What did you write your dissertation on? The pressure of years of hard work on the dissertation (while living in abject poverty and TA-ing and working 20 hours a week at a cafe to pay the heating bill!) made reading and writing romance my perfect escape. I couldn't have gotten through grad school without it. :)

Katharine Ashe said...

Nancy, the Bullet Catchers are the cream of the elite in bodyguards. They work for a secret organization, for a lot of money, and never for rich celebrities. Most of them have former military experience and they take on only serious cases. The head of the organization is a woman, which I just love, but most of the bullet catchers are men, all-male, gorgeous, and really hot. St. Claire writes fast-paced, incredibly sexy, and wonderfully smart romance. I just adore these books.

Katharine Ashe said...

Ooo, here's what Roxanne's site says about the Bullet Catchers: "Trained to protect. Able to kill. Willing to die. And drop-dead gorgeous." Yumlicious!

Janga said...

Nancy and Katharine, my disseration bears the title "Stubborn Sounds:Younger Poets of the Contemporary South." Strangely enough much of the background research I did on Southern culture has proved useful in many ways, including my romance writing.

Katharine Ashe said...

Oo, Janga, I'm writing a poet hero right now. Do you have any favorites from the eighteenth century you'd recommend, English or otherwise?

PJ said...

Katharine, it's The Devil Wears Plaid by Teresa Medeiros and it's fabulous. Medeiros at her very best!

PJ said...

Katharine, I adore the Bullet Catchers! Nancy, you really need to read this series. It's fabulous!

Donna MacMeans said...

Katharine - welcome to the lair and congratulations on your debut! The excerpt is hot and your cover - fabulous!

Can't think of a good rescue first meet, but if it involves humor - I'm there! Love your premise. Nothing like a little heat under the collar.

Congrats Helen on the rooster nabbing!

Nancy said...

Janga, that sounds interesting. I'm a history geek and know very little about poetry, but Southern culture always interests me.

Nancy said...

Katharine, the Bullet Catchers sound like they're right up an alley (or "street," as our British bandita, Anna Sugden, would say) many of us here love. More for the TBR pile, along with the other fabulous books people have mentioned today. *sigh*

Nancy said...

Donna wrote: Nothing like a little heat under the collar.

Or a good pun on a rainy day. *g*

Glad you were able to overcome Blogger's vagaries and post!

Janga said...

I know more about 17th century and 19th century poets than I do about 18th century. There's Alexander Pope, of course, but except for his wit, I can't imagine he'd be useful. The most interesting English poets of the
18th Century poets were all mad. I've always found William Blake and his visions and early privileging of imagination over reason a fascinating figure. He spans 18th-19th centuries. Poor Christopher Smart, who wrote songs for the popular theater as well, interests me too, but his religious mania and years in insane asylums make him unlikely hero material. John Clare also ended up in an asylum.

The German Goethe with his family conflicts, love affairs, interests in translation, and other wide interests may offer more scope for mining heroic character.

Buffie said...

Hey Katharine!! I have heard so many wonderful things about this book and I can't wait to get my hands on a copy.

I'm sitting here shaking my head wondering how in the world did I need see you at RWA10!! Crazy! I hate I missed that chance!!

One of my favorite first meetings is between Connor and Brenna in THE WEDDING by Julie Garwood. It's fabulous!!

Katharine Ashe said...

Teresa Medeiros is simply marvelous. Thanks, PJ!

Hi, Donna. I love your latest cover too! Thanks for welcoming me to the Lair today. :) Btw, that particular scene gets hotter yet... ;)

Katharine Ashe said...

Janga, thank you! It does seem that poets of that era tended toward madness, doesn't it? Hm... Very interesting... Will have to keep this in mind while writing this hero. :) Can anybody think of a mad hero or heroine--I mean, a character that others in the story think is mad but who isn't actually?

Buffie, I would have loved to meet you in Orlando. It was an absolutely crazy conference for me running from one fun event to the next. I slowed down only for one afternoon with the amazing volunteers running agent/editor pitches, and the courageous, talented women giving those pitches. But even that time flew by, just like the rest of the conference! We will simply have to meet next year. :)

I am so excited about all the new books now poised to go into my TBR pile from everybody recs today!!

Nancy said...

Janga, I'd bet reading about all these people was fascinating.

Nancy said...

Buffie, you know Julie Garwood is huge around here, but I admit to not having read that one.

Nancy said...

Katharine, I tried to comment, and then the draft comment vanished. So I'm trying again--it may show up twice!

The most famous "mad" hero is probably Hamlet. Anna Campbell wrote a wonderful one in Untouched, her second fabulous Regency Noir.

The hero was labeled mad by his guardian, who was holding him prisoner so as to enjoy sole use of his fortune. The heroine was kidnapped for his, er, convenience, but he helped her escape, she rescued him, and of course they fell in love.

Pat Cochran said...

Hi, Katherine and Nancy,

I love "mistaken identity" meetings. One such is found in Nancy Warren's Going After Adam. Gretchen is a P.I., on the trail of a cheating spouse. She ids Adam, who is on the run from hit men, as that spouse.They end up
on the same team, joining forces in more ways than one!

Pat Cochran

Melinda Leigh said...


I wouldn't recommend starting with The Neighbor. You should really read Say Goodbye first, but that one is a sleep-with-the-lights-on book, even for me. And I'm tough to scare.

Try The Perfect Husband, which was her breakout book, and a great read as well.

Melinda Leigh said...


I wouldn't recommend starting with The Neighbor. You should really read Say Goodbye first, but that one is a sleep-with-the-lights-on book, even for me. And I'm tough to scare.

Try The Perfect Husband, which was her breakout book, and a great read as well.

Kirsten said...

Hi Katharine! Popping by to say that your excerpt and plans for the series sound fabulous. Those who have traveled deep within the Lair (and under my bed, peeking inside those boxes of mss that will never see the light of day) will know that I am a HUGE sucker for the gentleman pirate! Yum!

Speaking of which, I love the classic meet up between Georgie and James ("the brick wall") Mallory -- she's dressed as a boy, he has to come to her rescue. Love it.

Katharine Ashe said...

Oh, Nancy, that Anna Campbell sounds wonderful. A "mad" hero and a double rescue -- terrific!

Hi, Pat. Great choice for a mistaken identity meeting!

Thanks for the rec, Melinda. The pile is growing growing growing! :)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hi Katherine! I'm just popping in quickly to say's a run like a crazy-woman day for me. Grins. I didn't want to let the day get away from me though without saying WELCOME TO THE LAIR!


Helen, congrats on nabbing the rascally chooookie.

Buffie said...

Buffie, you know Julie Garwood is huge around here, but I admit to not having read that one.

Really, Nancy? Wow! You need to find a copy of THE WEDDING and devour it in one setting. It was the book that started it all for me. Julie pulled me in so fast I didn't know what was happening and then I fell in love with romance novels. I read it every year and still love it.

Nancy said...

Pat, Going After Adam sounds like a lot of fun!

Nancy said...

Melinda, I think it takes a lot of skill to write a "sleep with the lights on" book. That one sounds scary.

Nancy said...

Kirsten, I also have a weakness for pirates.

Nancy said...

Jeanne, good luck with the running! Come back later if you can. :-)

Didja note the Bullet Catchers comments? You haven't read those and neglected to mention them to you fellow explosives fans, have you?

Nancy said...

Buffie, I've heard other people say that about The Wedding. It often appears on "favorites" lists here. I really need to get a copy.

Cybercliper said...

For me it would be Christine Feehan's Dark Desire when Shea rescues Jacques. The question that always hounded me was if faced with the same situation - a severely injured being unlike any I've ever seen - terrifying and dangerous, has even struck out while I tried to help - could I render aid or give in to my own fear and run. That decision that could possibly change the course of history or the fate of a being, things that make you go hmmm....

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Nancy said: Didja note the Bullet Catchers comments? You haven't read those and neglected to mention them to you fellow explosives fans, have you?

Ummmmm.....ooops? *shamefaced* Sorry!

Katharine Ashe said...

Hi, Kirsten. Thanks so much! I'm so excited about this series. I am simply dying to tell everybody today about the first meeting scene of book 2, Captured by a Rogue Lord, in which the hero is a bona fide gentleman pirate. I told my sister (at the beach with me right now) the question about first meetings that Nancy asked, and she immediately said "Captured!" Fabulous to have that loyalty :) but I'm nearly bursting with it! Gotta love a pirate. ;)

I would love to see what's in those boxes under your bed--so many riches of the imagination beneath a single piece of furniture. And so many more yet to be revealed!

Katharine Ashe said...

Thanks for the welcome, Jeanne! :)

Cybercliper, I adore stories that move me deep inside to question and wonder. The more I feel, and the more confused I am about whether I could have the courage or determination the characters display, the more I love a book. I haven't read Dark Desire, but I'll have to now!

Nancy said...

Cybercliper wrote: a severely injured being unlike any I've ever seen - terrifying and dangerous

Isn't this the dilemma in the Aesop tale of Androcles and the Lion? Or am I confused? Either way, what a cool prospect for a story!

Nancy said...

Jeanne, I suspected . . .

Sarah Simas said...

HI Katharine!!

I just adored this post! It was wonderful to get such full bodied tasty teaser of SWEPT AWAY BY A KISS!

My all-time favorite meeting scene is from Johanna Lindsey's GENTLE ROGUE. I love the dramatic irony of Georgina disguised as a cabin boy. *sigh* I don't know how many times I've read that book! Julie Garwood's CASTLES is one my favs for political intrigue.

Rescue??? Probably Julie Garwood's RANSOM. Brodick is the ultimate hero!!*double sigh* lol

What a fun question! :)

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Woot! Susan, how often does an author sell out at the RWA? I am totally impressed.

Katharine Ashe said...

Hi, Sarah. It's wonderful to see you here! Julie Garwood's stories really are superb, aren't they? Sigh indeed! And Johanna Lindsey is one of my favorites. So many fabulous books... so many nights to happily ignore sleep for reading!

I'm signing out for the day, ladies. Thank you, Nancy, and your lovely fellow Bandits for welcoming me so kindly to the Lair. It's been great fun!

:) Katharine

Virginia said...

Congrats on the rooster Helen, have fun with him!

Hi Katharine, congrats on your new release! I have been seeing this book around and it sounds fabulous! I would love to read it!

Nancy said...

Hi, Sarah--Julie Garwood has lots of fans here, and Johanna Lindsey is a classic, too. I just wish I had read all these wonderful books.

Nancy said...

Katharine, glad you could join us!

Nancy said...

Virginia, I hope you enjoy the book. I know I'm going to!

Laurie said...

First Meeting: Jillian Hunter's

Rescue- Cherry Adair's Playing For Keeps

Political and Rescue - Elizabeth Thorton's Strangers at Dawn

Laurie said...

OOPS Jillian Hunter's book title is The Love Affair of an English Lord. The first meeting occurs when Chloe Boscastle is banished to the country for a scandal. Chloe awakens to find her neighbor, Dominick hiding and wounded in her closet after someone tries to kill him!

Margay said...

I can't think of any right now, but this book looks like it would foot the bill! Mistaken identity plots are always good.

Free Your Creative Mind! said...

Hi Katherine!

Can't wait to read your book!


misskallie2000 said...

I am telling my age here but the meeting of Rhett Butler to Scarlett O'Hara in Gone With The Wind. I read this book many times and enjoyed every time. The meeting of Priscilla and Elvis when we first found out about them was sweet. Of course the courtship was a bit unusual with her living with him and his house full of his buddies.
I love your story line and know Swept Away will be a hit..
Thanks for stopping by to chat.

misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com