If you follow this blog regularly, you know that I’m a bit of a football fan. Okay, more than ‘a bit’. It stands to reason that this is my favorite time of they year–those few weeks before the opening kick-off when we’re all still in the hunt for the NCAA championship or the Lombardi Trophy. But there’s more to football than just watching the game or listening to the marching band. There’s food. Tailgate food, specifically.
Next week, the fourth book in my Out of Bounds series, Sleeping with the Enemy, will hit e-readers and bookshelves. To publicize it, I created fun recipe cards that double as book marks. The recipe we put on the back is a great football snack whether you’re tailgating or camping out in front of your big screen. Since I can’t send you all a bookmark, here’s the next best thing:
Here’s the scoop on Sleeping with the Enemy:
Dot-com millionaire Jay McManus is discovering that owning a pro football team like the Baltimore Blaze isn’t easy. An anonymous blogger is out to destroy his reputation, and now his team is being sued by its own cheerleaders. If Jay’s not careful, he could lose big—and not just financially.
Bridgett Janik’s brother may play for the Baltimore Blaze, but she’s not thrilled to be defending Jay McManus, the man who broke her heart. It’s bad enough she has to mingle with Jay during games, but working beside her former lover may be too much for her body—and her heart—to resist.
Jay’s determined not to let Bridgett slip away from him a second time. But, as the two follow the mysterious blogger’s trail, secrets—both past and present—are revealed, and Jay and Bridgett must decide if their relationship can be something more than just sleeping with the enemy.
Get your copies here:
Best of luck to your team this season!!
Much of this business is spent in our writing caves–unless you’re a frequent best seller and then you write in the cozy confines of your beach house. So I love it when I get to meet other members of the writing tribe. Today I’d like to introduce you to author, Maria Geraci. She was kind enough to drop by and answer a few questions about her latest release That Thing You Do (coming Tuesday, April 28th). I had the opportunity to read this one ahead of time and if you’re fans of Kristan Higgins’ Blue Heron series, you’re going to LOVE Whispering Bay.
First, let’s meet Maria:
Maria Geraci was born in Havana, Cuba, and raised on Florida’s Space Coast. Her love of books started with the classic, Little Women (a book she read so often growing up, she could probably quote). She writes contemporary romance and women’s fiction with a happy ending. The Portland Book Review called her novel, The Boyfriend of the Month Club, “immensely sexy, immensely satisfying and humorous.” Her fourth novel, A Girl Like You, was nominated for Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA ® award. Her current addictions include watching the STARZ adaption of OUTLANDER to drool over Sam Heughan, hitting the beach on the weekends, and searching for the perfect key lime pie recipe (but not the kind they served on Dexter).
Tracy: Where can readers find you?
Maria: They can find me on my website http://www.mariageraci.com or at Facebook (I’m addicted!) at https://www.facebook.com/MariaGeraciBooks
Or on Pinterest (another site I love) https://www.pinterest.com/mariageraci/
Of course, if you really want to find me, you can come down to north Florida and search the beaches. If it’s warm and sunny, I’ll be there!
Tracy: If someone wrote a book about you, what would the title be and why?
Maria: I’m totally going to rip this off from Mary Kay Andrews, who gave a great talk at the Washington Romance Writers Retreat this past weekend, but I’d say, LATE BLOOMER. Simply because I didn’t start writing until I hit 40 and then all those repressed stories just started coming out.
What are 5 things readers should know about you?
1. I hate mayonnaise (no really).
2. I’m a huge Survivor fan.
3. I cry every time I hear Over The Rainbow (best song ever!)
4. I must have some form of chocolate every day (yes, it’s an addiction).
5. Squirrels give me the creeps (you do know they’re just rats with cute tails, right?).
What is the significance to the title THAT THING YOU DO?
There’s a little bit of a sixties theme going on in the book, and I love the movie That Thing You Do, starring Tom Hanks, about a sixties band. Plus, there’s the play on words that I thought went well with the storyline.
Please share a few random facts about THAT THING YOU DO.
It’s set in the imaginary town of Whispering Bay, Florida, which I modeled after Port St. Joe, a small town in the Florida panhandle.
I actually downloaded the same ghost detector app on to my smart phone that Tom and Allie use in the book. It was great fun, and for a while there, I was obsessed with finding ghosts everywhere!
Ha! Ha! I wondered about that ap! I’m not sure I want to know if there are any ghosts in the room with me, though. 😉
Who would you cast in the role of your characters if your book were optioned for a movie?
That’s easy. Taylor Kinney in the role of Tom Donalan and Mandy Moore as Allie Grant. I have a Pinterest board with all my main characters. It’s so easy to envision them once I put a “face” to them.
If you could have given your characters one piece of advice before the opening pages of the book, what would it be and why?
Don’t hold grudges. Tom and Allie (my hero and heroine) both must overcome their past in order to build a future together. Easier said than done, sometimes!
What are you currently working on? What other releases do you have planned for 2015?
I have 2 more books in this series coming out this spring. THEN HE KISSED ME comes out May 19 and THAT MAN OF MINE on June 9. I’m currently working on a 4th novel in the series which will probably come out in winter of 2016.
Thanks for stopping by Women Unplugged today, Maria. Maria’s throwing a big party on Facebook on Tuesday, April 28th. Drop by and chat with us. There will be PRIZES! In the meantime, Maria is giving away a digital copy of THAT THING YOU DO. Just comment below by Friday, May 1. Here’s Maria’s question:
THAT THING YOU DO is a book about second chances. People seem to really love reunion stories. How about you? What do you like best them about them?
Allie Grant doesn’t believe in second chances. She does, however, believe in the power of a permanent paycheck. So when a tipster reports that the soon-to-be demolished senior center in her hometown is haunted, Allie hightails it to Whispering Bay to get the scoop that could secure her dream job at Florida! magazine. What she finds, though, is far scarier than any ghost. Cue her ex-boyfriend, sexy construction foreman Tom Donalan.
When Tom catches Allie poking around his construction site, he quickly realizes his former high school flame is just as feisty as ever. And, heaven help him, her irresistible, mile-high legs still take his breath away. But Tom isn’t about to delay the building’s demolition because of a silly ghost story.
With neither of the stubborn exes backing down from their opposing positions, sparks fly. And, underneath the surface, the fire of their old attraction burns as hot as ever. When strange things start happening with increasing frequency around town, even a tough skeptic like Tom is tested. The question is, can Allie and Tom stop fighting long enough to get to the bottom of Whispering Bay’s ghost problem—and the more important matter of mending their broken hearts?
I remember a summer day ten years ago when my sports fanatic son declined going to the pool with his friends so he could watch the final stage of the Tour de France. He was fixated on his new idol, Lance Armstrong. So fixated, in fact, that immediately after Armstrong won, my son begged me to take him to the Discovery Channel Store so he could spend a hundred dollars of his lawn mowing money on a replica of the yellow jersey Armstrong wore during much of the Tour de France that year.
This was a very big deal because, not only has my son always been a sports nut, but he loves his money, too. So it took a lot for him to part with his hard earned cash. But his father and I let him do it because we believed at the time that Lance Armstrong was a pretty worthy role model for a twelve-year-old boy. Little did we know.
Now here’s the funny (or sad, depending upon your perspective) part: Armstrong’s fall from grace didn’t traumatize my son as much as I would have thought. By that time, my teenager had already been jaded to the duplicity of the world of professional sports. Everybody does it has become a catch phrase that really angers me. Too many Millennials and Gen-Xers (or Y’s or whatever they are) adopt the phrase as a mantra.
Sure, the list of role models who turn out to be more human than super hero is long: Alex Rodriquez, Ryan Braun, Michael Phelps, Tiger Woods, Shaun White and Hope Solo, to name a few. But there have to be some role models out there, right? Surely the Kardashians aren’t who we want our children looking up to? And I’m not even going to suggest they should look up to elected officials who refuse to lead.
And then there’s Brian Williams. I have to admit this one is a lot harder to swallow than some of the others. He’s a likeable guy in a business that I was once a part of. Because I still consider myself a journalist, the offense of “misrepresenting the facts” really sticks in my craw. I’m not saying we should hold journalists in esteem higher than others–hello Steve Kroft and Dan Rather, not to mention an entire cable news channel–but, hey, we just can’t go making things up. Well, unless you write fiction like I do, but that’s not the business Brian Williams was in. At least not yet, anyway.
This whole mess has left with me a sense of melancholy, especially as a parent. Who are kids supposed to look up to these days? My motives are purely selfish here. It’s a lot of pressure to be the only role-model for your child–especially since they think you’re dumber than dirt for a majority of their life. Of course, we could all go around adopting the philosophy of Dr. Greg House from TV’s House and submit to the tenet that “everybody lies”.
I don’t want to be a cynic, though. I want to believe in the good within people. That’s why I write romance, because I want to read a happily ever after. I want role models who are worthy. And not just for my kids.
But I also subscribe to the notion that we are all human. We all make mistakes. It’s how we move on after those mistakes that shows our character. So no, A-Rod, a hand written “I’m sorry” isn’t going to cut it with me. And Lance, having your girlfriend lie for you is just unmanly. It’s left to you, Brian. Please don’t let me down.
I’m almost done with my fourth Out of Bounds book, Sleeping with the Enemy, phew! I should be back to my regular blogging schedule next month. Thanks so much to those of you who’ve sent me notes of encouragement. It means a lot! Writing is harder than it looks and I’ve certainly learned that this fall. Of course, I would have helped myself out had a I started with more than a title and a paragraph as a book proposal. 😉 This Christmas, I’m gifting my agent a year of I-told-you-so’s.
But, while I finish this book this weekend, I didn’t want you all to miss a Black Friday deal: My holiday novella is on sale today for .99. One reviewer called it “sweet as a holiday dessert without the calories.” But, it does have a Navy Seal so expect some heat, too. 😉 Grab it today to enjoy after you shop.
Happy holidays everyone!