Lies and deceit, murder and mayhem…what else can you expect in Sin City?
Former protective services officer, Sgt. Martin Ames, is five weeks short of medical retirement from the Vegas PD when he lands one last case: spoiled English heiress, Lady Tamlyn Bradshaw, whose bodyguard is hospitalized with suspected food poisoning.
Tamlyn is on holiday, her first without her father and his ever present bodyguards. She wants to have fun, not spend the time stuck in a hotel room with a disabled cop, even if he is tall, dark and disturbingly handsome.
When food poisoning becomes murder, passions and tempers flare as Martin attempts to keep Tamlyn safe from the assailant who gains everything on her death.
Clare Revell, it’s my pleasure to welcome you to International Christian Fiction Writers today.
CLARE: Thank you. It’s lovely to be here on yet another side of a different pond :)
Please tell us how long you’ve been writing.
CLARE: Since I was five. I used to rewrite fairy stories – usually Red Riding Hood, so my penchant with real villains began a long time ago. Then I turned to fanfic, Blake’s Seven, Star Trek, Stargate SG1. Then I added my own characters to those stories and from there launched into my own plots.
You have an amazing publishing career with Pelican Book Group. How many books have you published with them?
CLARE: My first book was published in 2010. Since then I have 20 published with another 18 contracted and 3 with them in hope (wow… I hadn’t actually added them up until now…)
That is a huge accomplishment! Well done!
Now, you’ve been known to work on more than one manuscript at a time. How do you manage that and not get your characters muddled?
CLARE: I cast each book and print off a photo of hero and heroine. So it’s really like watching several different TV shows and not getting them muddled up. EG Eastenders, The Bill, Casualty, Star Trek.
Earlier this year, you published the final book in a seven book series of the Monday to Sunday’s Child offering readers a romantic suspense for every day of the week. Currently you’re writing on a twelve book contract for 2015. You are one ‘series’ of a lady :)
Please tell us a briefly about these series, and any others you are working on.
CLARE: The Monday’s Child series is summed up in the poem I wrote, with help. Each line is the tag line for that particular book. They cover witness protection, serial killers, and several exciting rescues with the RNLI. The latter I had a blast researching. Saturday’s Child is based on real life events and was incredibly difficult to write.
Monday’s Child must hide for protection,
Tuesday’s Child tenders direction
Wednesday’s Child grieves for his soul
Thursday’s Child chases the whole
Friday's Child is a man obsessed
Saturday’s Child might be possessed
And Sunday’s Child on life’s seas is tossed
Awaiting the Lifeboat that rescues the lost.
Carnations in January shake the foundations
Violets in February are an aid to salvation
Daffodils in March bring betrayal and loss
Sweet peas in April consume all the dross
Lily of the Valley in May brings danger untold
Roses in June show hope in a heart filled with gold
Water lilies in July a town will submerge
Gladioli in August love from the ash will emerge
Forget-me-nots in September are on the front line of fear
Marigolds in October will test her career
Chrysanthemums in November show the burden of choice
Holly in December lets a broken family rejoice
These I’m having fun with. Not all villains are men with guns as my tsunami and erupting volcano show. Nicola did an amazing job with the covers – and used my cast list to perfection.
It all sounds very exciting and a lot of hard work. But there’s another series from Pelican Book Group that has me, and readers, excited—that’s the Passport to Romance series released earlier this year from White Rose Publishing, a Pelican Book Group imprint. Your book, Vegas Vacation, releases tomorrow. Having just released Helsinki Sunrise myself, I know how excited you must be.
What inspired Martin and Tamlyn’s story and the location of Las Vegas?
CLARE: My visit to Vegas to stay with a friend in 2005 had a lot to do with it. We did the trip around the Vegas monopoly board that Tamlyn wants to do. We went to Mount Charleston, the Bellagio. It’s an amazing city. It just got me thinking it’d be fun to base a story there and this was the result. It sat on my hard drive for several years after completion and was rewritten several times. I told Lisa, my editor, about a sword fighting scene I’d written set in Vegas and sent it to her. She suggested a passport to romance submission but there wasn’t a prompt for it. She gave me three prompts – funnily enough all in the book anyway. That sword fight ended up being edited out but it’s been saved for another story.
Before we say goodbye, do you have any plans to take your readers to more exotic locations with Passport to Romance?
CLARE: I submitted one set in Wales back in August, so we’ll just have to see what happens.
Clare, thank you so much for being my guest today. It has been really interesting getting to know more about you and your new release.
Vegas Vacation can be purchased from tomorrow at Pelican Book Group (half price release day special), Amazon, Christianbook.com, and Barnes & Noble.
View the Passport to Romance Book Trailer.
For one lucky reader, Clare is giving away a copy of Vegas Vacation (in eBook format only). All you have to do to be eligible for the draw is leave a comment with your email address before October 24. Winners will be announced in the Sunday Edition of October 26.
And just to tempt you to purchase Vegas Vacation, here’s a small extract:
“Martin, you’re the only person in the department with the security clearances and the experience to do this.”
“I haven’t worked protective services for over three years and for good reason. I’m five weeks from early retirement, and I don’t want to spend them running around after a spoiled heiress.”
“Did I ask what you wanted? This woman’s father is royalty and I just got off the phone with him—”
Tamlyn cringed in her seat, her cheeks burning. This was a bad idea. She’d go back to the hotel and trust God to protect her. No one knew who she was; she was just one more tourist in a city of thousands.
The angry voice continued its tirade in the office. “Royalty? In that case, I’m sure she can afford a replacement bodyguard. Even better…ask the British Embassy to provide one. My days of babysitting people are over.”
“Unless you want to be fired five weeks before your retirement date, your assignment for the next three weeks is to be Lady Bradshaw’s bodyguard. There’s the door. She’s by your desk waiting for you.”
The door flung open, and Tamlyn glanced down. She focused her gaze on her fingernails. Maybe she could just pretend she hadn’t heard.
Heavy steps crossed the room as muted conversations started up again. They stopped by the desk. “Lady Bradshaw, I presume?”
She looked up into the most intense, glittering pair of blue eyes she’d ever seen. His hair was pulled back in a long black ponytail, and he leaned on a cane. They had to be kidding. A disabled cop? His navy blue shirt and tie at least gave an appearance of professionalism. Although the gun holster on his shoulder made her shiver.
She stood, grateful he couldn’t read her mind, because she was already regretting that first thought about his gorgeous eyes. She held out a hand. “I am. You must be Sgt. Ames.”
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Marion Ueckermann’s passion for writing was sparked in 2001 when she moved to Ireland with her husband and two sons. Since then she has published devotional articles and stories in Winners, The One Year Devotional of Joy and Laughter (Tyndale House Publishers), Chicken Soup for the Soul: Miraculous Messages from Heaven, and her debut novelette, Helsinki Sunrise (White Rose Publishing, a Pelican Book Group imprint, Passport to Romance series). Her second Passport to Romance, Oslo Overtures, will be published in 2015.
Marion blogs for International Christian Fiction Writers and Beauty for Ashes. She belongs to Christian Writers of South Africa and American Christian Fiction Writers. She lives in Pretoria East, South Africa in an empty nest with her husband and their crazy black Scottie, Wally.
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Watch the Helsinki Sunrise book trailer on YouTube
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