Fix You – The Ideas Behind The Book

fix-you-banner-2

Only 5 days until FIX YOU releases in the US and Canada! Today I’m sharing some insights into what inspired the book, and whether there is ANY resemblance between me and Hanna (apart from the fact we’re both in love with Richard!)

What inspired you to write Fix You?

Every new year the family and I travel to the Cotswolds to spend a couple of days with friends in a beautiful cottage. In 2012 we were drinking champagne on New Year’s Eve and reminiscing about the millennium. That conversation led on to how things have changed (the rise of the internet, 9/11, social media etc) and it planted a little seed in my mind. From that seed grew Richard and Hanna’s story, a relationship that spanned a decade that has seen enormous change, and the rest is history—their history!

Are there any parts of the novel that have special personal significance to you? Have you ever been in a long-distance relationship?

I met my (now) husband at university (Nottingham—the one that Hanna attends) and in the *cough* few years that we’ve been together, we’ve had our fair share of travels and working in different parts of the country. In our twenties we spent two years apart which had its ups (I could watch Pride and Prejudice on TV without him moaning) and downs (frozen meals for one). This was back in the day before Facebook, texting and cheap phone calls. We even wrote each other letters. By the way, whatever happened to love letters? Sigh.

I think the other thing that I really enjoyed writing about was New York. I’ve had a love affair with that city since the first time I visited when I was 21. Since then I’ve been back about ten times, and still can’t get enough of it. Although at the start of the story Hanna really doesn’t enjoy travelling to see her father in Manhattan, I really enjoyed writing about the sights and sounds of the city

You have lots of details about world events and things happening at the time the book is set. Was it important to you that these were accurate?

I did a lot of research when writing the book. Some of it was really hard to read, such as survivors’ recollections of the aftermath of 9/11, but other parts were more light-hearted and fun. I drove my family mad with all the snippets of information I found (“Hey, remember when mobile phones used to look like bricks!”), but to me they were golden. One of my favourites was when I discovered that The Strokes were playing in the Mercury Lounge at the same time Hanna was visiting Richard in New York. I hadn’t planned it, but as soon as I read that, I knew it was meant to be.

Music features heavily in Fix You. Are you a music lover? How did you choose which songs and bands to include in the novel?

I have a big love of music, mostly thanks to my husband, who considers himself a bit of a muso. Pretty much every song in Fix You is on my iPod, and I played them incessantly when I was writing the book. My tastes aren’t quite as eclectic as Richard’s (I don’t run the gamut from the Prodigy to Puccini), but between my husband and me, we have around 800 albums.

I think my favourite bit about music in the book is where Hanna tries to explain to her mum about a band she’s been listening to. Although I don’t mention the band’s name, the fact they lose a grand and eventually find it behind the TV should be enough pointers to work out who I based it on. If you can’t guess, tweet me. I might give you some clues.

Do you have a favourite character in the novel? Are there any similarities between you and Hanna?

It’s a bit obvious, but I fell in love with Richard while I was writing the book. Between 1999 and 2012 we watch him grow up to be a strong, good man who does his best to keep everybody happy. He’s alpha without needing to dominate, and strong without needing to boast about it. My kind of guy!

As for Hanna, apart from the fact we’re brunettes and went to university in Nottingham, I don’t think there are many similarities between her and me. She’s a lot more impulsive than I am, and can be prone to making questionable decisions, but she’s also kind and loveable. While she’s not based on me, she’s definitely somebody I’d like to have as a friend. I think she’d liven up any party!

What was the biggest challenge of writing the novel?

As with many authors, it was probably time. I work, have a family, and am almost certainly the world’s greatest procrastinator. When the internet is on, I have the attention span of Dory in Finding Nemo. I find I have to switch off the router, make myself a vat full of coffee and hide in my bedroom with my laptop if I want to get anything done.

The other difficult thing was editing my original manuscript. It started out at a whopping 140,000 words (almost two books’ worth), and deciding what to keep and what to take out was very tricky. I hope I got it right!

Which romance authors do you most admire?

This is a hard question, mostly because I can read anything up to 3 books a week, so I tend to have a lot of favourite authors. In fact, I’ve just browsed through my kindle and it currently has 698 books on there, which is scary, not to mention expensive!

There are a few writers who are my ‘must reads’ anytime they bring out a book. They include Marian Keyes, Mhairi MacFarlane and Samantha Young. All of them manage to combine an emotional, compelling story with a lightness of writing and humour that is a joy to read. I love stories that have flawed characters who go on a journey toward self-discovery, and these three give me that in spades!

fix-you-teaser-6Pre-Order Fix You at these stores:

Kindle US  |  Kindle CA |  Nook  |  iBooks

Coming Soon: Google Play  |  Kobo  |  Kindle CA

Also available to buy here: Kindle UK  |  Kindle AU

Release Day – Fix You by Carrie Elks

 

Fix You
by Carrie Elks
fixyouFBheader3[2]
 
 
Fix You options-2 (1)
Release Date: 25th December 2014
Published by Corvus
Genre: Romance / Contemporary

 

~~SUMMARY~~

Fix You 3d

You’ve found the one, but what if life has other plans?

London, 31st December 1999

At a party to toast the new millennium, Hanna meets Richard. He is a gorgeous, wealthy New Yorker. She is a self-assured, beautiful Londoner with no interest in clean-cut American men. They are from different worlds and have nothing in common… except for their instant – and mutual – attraction to one another.

As the clocks chime midnight it is a new year and the beginning of a wonderful romance.

New York, 12th May 2012

Hanna, the girl who broke Richard’s heart, walks into his Wall Street office – and back into his life – to reveal an explosive secret.

He was sure they were meant to be together forever, but she broke his heart so completely the last time, can he find a way to let her mend the pieces?

Warm, witty and a perfect piece of modern romance, Fix You is a love story to melt your heart.

 

Carrie Elks Author Headshot

~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

Carrie Elks lives near London, England and writes contemporary romance with a dash of intrigue. At the age of twenty-one she left college with a political science degree, a healthy overdraft and a soon-to-be husband. She loves to travel and meet new people, and has lived in the USA and Switzerland as well as the UK. When she isn’t reading or writing, she can usually be found baking, drinking wine or working out how to combine the two.

~~CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR~~

 

Praise for Fix You
“Fix You is a love story about overcoming hardships and facing consequences of your mistakes; a love story that will touch your heart and stay with you forever. A must-read!.” 
 – Lucia, Reading is my Breathing Blog

Coming Down New Release, Giveaways and more!

I’m delighted to share my latest release with you. Read on to find out where to buy Coming Down, what it’s about and to enter a super duper giveaway!

Coming Down Banner 1
buy from amazon
ibookstore
image
Synopsis
Twenty-eight-year-old Beth Lawrence finally has her life back on track. A job she loves, a wealthy husband and a beautiful home are a far cry from the tragedy that struck when she was nineteen. But now that her past seems firmly behind her, an old flame walks back into her life. Bringing back painful memories of a time she’s worked hard to forget, reviving a passion she tried to bury years before.
Niall Joseph is an up-and-coming artist, recently returned from success in America. Volunteering to teach in an inner-city drug clinic, the last person he expects to see is the girl who broke his heart nine years earlier. Working closely together allows their old wounds to heal, forging a deeper connection between them. One that slowly starts to burn.
As she becomes tangled up with a neglected child and her drug-addict mother, Beth finds herself drawn to Niall. But neither of them can anticipate how hard it is to tread the thin line between friendship and desire.
Excerpt

“What’s your name?”
“Beth.”
“Are you a student here?”
His question makes me roll my eyes. I’ve been following him and his friends around like a devoted puppy for the best part of my first year. Not that he’s ever noticed. He’s always too busy. Painting. Smoking. Looking beautiful. He’s good at all these things. I know, I’ve studied him like he’s my favourite subject.
“Art History,” I say.
“One of the thinkers.” He gives me a smile. It’s wicked and dirty and makes me want to lick his lips. “Do you paint?”
“No.”
“Shame. Do you model?”
I blush at this one. “No.”
“You should. Come and model for me. I want to paint you.” His words slur but his voice is still seductive and lyrical. Somewhere, far beneath my high, I know he’s spinning me a line.
I bite, nonetheless.
“I’m not pretty enough.”
“Yes you are.”
“Or interesting enough.”
He pulls me closer, his erection digging into my hip. “Yes you are.”
My heart starts to hammer against my chest. This is Niall Joseph holding me. I made Niall Joseph get hard. I don’t think about the drugs or the rain or the fact he’s ignored me all year. I’m too worked up for that.
“I want to kiss you.” He murmurs it softly. Then he presses his lips to my forehead. My skin feels like it’s burning. Hot and fevered. This time, the rain does nothing to cool it down.
“Okay.” I’m almost breathless. He drags his mouth down to my jaw, peppering my skin with kisses.
“You fucking taste like rain, too.”

giveaway

 

Click the picture to win some of these fabulous goodies!

Coming Down prize

 

Review – Missionary Position by Daisy Prescott

 

Missionary PositionRDL

 

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00071]Sex? Absolutely
Love? Not my thing.
I didn’t do love or butterflies, but I loved him.
I was screwed, and not in a good way.

Selah Elmore is a smart, independent woman who knows exactly who she is and what she wants. She loves her life being a professor and popular pirate erotica author. However, when she leaves the Pacific Northwest to spend six mont
hs studying sculpture in West Africa, she learns she doesn’t know a thing about love.

Cocky, suit-wearing Gerhard charms her during a stopover in Amsterdam, but dashing, adventurous Kai sweeps her off her feet in Ghana.

Sparks fly on three continents when perpetually single Selah discovers there’s more to love and life than she ever imagined

amazon buy

image

 

cooltext1310418041

 

If you’ve read any Daisy Prescott books, you’ll know her writing is a refreshing change from the plethora of New and Young Adult books out there. Her stories are about women who are mature, comfortable in their own skins, and able to stand on their own two feet. Career-focused, they don’t wait for a man to define them. Love, for them is the icing on top of a complex, layered cake.

(And if you haven’t read any Daisy Prescott books, what are you waiting for? Geoducks are for Lovers and Ready to Fall are available now from all good booksellers.)

Selah Elmore isn’t the shy and retiring type. She’s a woman who takes control of her life, her career and her sexuality. Having long since decided that a relationship isn’t for her, it doesn’t stop her from having the occasional dalliance and one night stand.

All that seems to change when she meets Gerhard, a Dutch businessman who is totally not her type. Yet, somehow, they click.

Fast forward a few weeks, and Selah is working at a museum in Ghana as part of a year in Africa. ‘Adopted’ by the owner of the hotel she stays in, she soon makes an eclectic group of friends who—in spite of their different backgrounds—look after each other in the sweetest of ways.

And then she meets Kai…

I don’t want to give too much away about the story by telling you how the romance plays out. Suffice it to say it is sweet and sexy, a journey for both Selah and Kai. During the struggles they face, they learn that no man is an island. Each has to learn that a relationship requires both give and take.

I loved that Selah was refreshingly strong. She was a heroine who took no nonsense, was occasionally abrasive, but still had a soft, sweet core.  If you’re looking for an innocent, Mary-Jane ingénue, you’re in the wrong place. Selah doesn’t have time for that sort of nonsense!

As for Kai, well, he was just dreamy. Masculine and strong, he was a great foil to Selah’s brashness. And as the story went on, we learned that he, too, had a softer side. One that made me pretty much want to swoon!

It wasn’t only the characters who made me fall in love with this book. The locations that Selah visits are so vividly described that I felt I was right there with them. Stories of African food and drink, of trips to see monkeys and elephants, of beautiful scenery that took my breath away—were like a third character in this relationship.

Although set in the same world as Geoducks and Ready to Fall, with many shared characters, Missionary Position can be read as a stand alone romance. There are no cliff hangers, just a beautiful love story you’ll want to read over and over again.

Five beautiful stars.

gold-stars_zps9723be0b

 

Daisy Prescott Bio:
Before writing bestselling contemporary adult romances, I dreamed of being an author while doing a lot of other things. Antiques dealer, baker, blue ribbon pie-maker, Daisy Prescott bwfangirl, freelance writer, gardener, pet mom and wife are a few of the other titles I’ve acquired over the years.
Born and raised in San Diego, I currently lives in a real life Stars Hollow in the Boston suburbs with my husband, our dog Hubbell, and an imaginary house goat.
Missionary Position is a spin-off from my first novel, Geoducks Are for Lovers. Like my second novel, Ready to Fall, it can be read as a standalone contemporary romance/romantic comedy.
Twitter | Facebook | Author Goodreads | Missionary Position Goodreads | Pinterest | Instagram | Google+
Enter Daisy’s Giveaway!!!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Review – Cursed be the Wicked by J.R. Richardson

cooltext1310418041
Cursed be the Wicked final

Cooper Shaw lives his life under a pen name and enjoys the anonymity it provides during his journeys across the globe as a seasoned writer for a travel magazine. When his job lands him in his hometown of Salem, Massachusetts to cover the famous Festival of the Dead, he soon realizes that he can’t stay invisible forever as he faces ghosts from a past he’s been trying to forget ever since he left.

The city holds nothing but bad memories for Coop until he meets a quirky young woman with an old soul and curious insights by the name of Finnley Pierce. While she acts as his tour guide through a town he thought he knew, Finn helps him unearth the truth of his childhood and might even begin to open up his heart.

By unraveling the mystery of his father’s murder, Coop may finally accept who he is, where he came from, and perhaps even realize what he wants for his future.

cooltext1310419007

When I was a child I loved reading stories about journeys. In Lord of the Rings I was Frodo’s constant companion, and I clung onto Lucy Penvensie’s coat tails when she made her epic journey through Narnia in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. Luckily for me, some things never change, and when I picked up Cursed be the Wicked by J. R. Richardson, I was delighted that it took me on such an enjoyable and exciting ride.

Ostensibly a paranormal romance, Cursed is the story of Cooper Shaw, a travel writer who floats from assignment to assignment. He seems to live an easy, yet solitary life, but all isn’t as it seems. In the first part of the story we learn that Coop escaped from his childhood home in Salem, Massachusetts under a dark cloud of suspicion. Let down by both his parents, he walked away and never looked back, severing any ties he might have had. When circumstances compel him to return to Salem, his plan is to stay for as short a time as possible, finishing up his article and cleaning up a personal issue at the same time.

But then he meets Finn. A quirky receptionist in the B&B he is staying in, she soon turns out to be more than she appears, and before he knows it, Coop has a companion to help him through his painful days in his childhood town. What follows is a journey into his past, where he has to reconcile his memories with the truth he’s now being told.

To classify this book as a simple love story would be doing it a disservice. In fact, it’s a tale of personal growth, of confronting demons, both perceived and real. It is a story of redemption and love. The characters are so beautifully drawn that by the end of the book I not only felt like I knew them, but wanted to stay with them, even as the story drew to an end. In addition to this, the story line was well plotted and gripping enough to keep me reading on my sofa on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Needless to say, I finished the book in less than a day.

Cursed be the Wicked deserves five beautifully written, well-plotted stars.

gold-stars_zps9723be0b

amazon buy

Book Review – Beatless by Amber L. Johnson

cooltext1310418041

Mallory Durham has been left behind and it is making her feel less like an adult and more like an afterthought. Divorce, sickness, educational aspirations being shattered, and her Aunt Sam moving into her home, have made Mal’s life nearly unrecognizable to her.

When Tucker Scott re-enters her life along with his band, will they offer what she needs to once again find her voice and self confidence or will it strip her of it even more?

Told through the dual voices of Mallory as she navigates her new world, and Aunt Sam’s letters to her niece, Beatless tells the story of two women at very different points in their life, fighting the same battles; proving that no matter what age a person is, there are always lessons to be learned.

cooltext1310419007

There are some writers who are so talented that their stories are effortless to read. Amber L. Johnson is one of those authors. As a writer myself, I know that effortless takes a lot of work, no matter how much of a non-sequitur that might seem. Her words flow gently but they pack a punch, hitting you right in the gut when you expect it least. That’s one of the many things I truly enjoyed about Beatless. It’s a story that is narrated so well that I was almost lulled into a false sense of security, yet before I knew it, I was reading with tears in my eyes and an ache in my heart. And I LOVE that.

First things first – a little about the characters. It’s narrated in first person, past tense, by the heroine, Mal. Left behind at community college while all her friends head away, she’s lost at first, trying to keep her head up when circumstances want to pull her under. Her father has left the family, and her mum is working away and leaves Mal behind in the care of her Aunt Sam. For the first few chapters you feel Mal’s bewilderment as she tries to carve herself out a life from the little that remains. It resonates so well, because I think we can all remember being a teenager, wondering where we fit, whether we’re the only ones feeling that way. Amber captures that mood so vividly it made me have all the feelings!

Under the encouragement of her aunt, Mal gets a job and meets a boy. And what a boy! Tucker is the perfect hero; devoted to his disabled sister, and trying to become the man he wants to be. Like Mal, he dreams of getting away, but he also knows that his family keeps him where he his; he shares the care of his sister with his father, and they both need him.

As Mal and Tucker become friends, confidantes and finally lovers, their story is so poignant it’s almost like you’re spying on something so intimate and raw. Right at the moment when everything feels like it’s finally coming together, something happens that brings their world tumbling around their feet. Oh my, does it hurt.

The story itself is perfect. It’s an emotional journey for Mal, Tucker and Sam, without the plot feeling forced. There are times when they make the wrong choices, treat people the wrong way, but that only serves to make it more real and truthful. Though I can’t give away the ending, it was juicy enough to make my eyes water, and sweet enough to melt my heart.

I’ve no hesitation in labelling this a five star read. So go buy, read, devour and enjoy. Amber has a full schedule of releases ahead and I’m looking forward to every single one of them!

gold-stars_zps9723be0b

cooltext1280659852

amazon buy

smashwords

707f4-goodreads-badge-add-plus-d700d4d3e3c0b346066731ac07b7fe47



About the Author

Amber is a full time mom, full time wife, is employed full time, and writes when she can. She believes in Happily Ever Afters that occur every day – despite the obstacles that real life serves up on a regular basis. Or perhaps they’re sweeter
simply because of them. She always has 2 rubber bands on her wrist, a song in her head, and too much creamer in her coffee cup that reads ‘Cocoa’ – because she’s a rebel. If she’s not at her desk, with her boys, or behind the computer, she’s supporting live music with her arms raised above her head and eyes closed, waiting for the drop.  

Connect with Amber

Twitter: @WhereIsJakeRyan
Facebook author page: Amber L. Johnson Author

Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway