It’s my pleasure to welcome the awesome SARAH MORGAN to CABR 🙂
Find out more about SLEIGH BELLS IN THE SNOW, book #1 in her new HQN series, the O’Neil Brothers
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Welcome to my blog Sarah. 🙂
It’s great to be here! Thanks for inviting me Sasha!
What is SLEIGH BELLS IN THE SNOW about?
My heroine Kayla hates Christmas. It’s a very difficult time of year for her and her ideal Christmas is to escape from it all. She’s a public relations expert so when Jackson O’Neil, a businessman who is trying to save his the family business, offers her the chance to spend the week in Vermont in a secluded log cabin in a snowy forest, she thinks it will be perfect. Things don’t turn out the way she planned!
This is a fish out of water story and I had so much fun watching city-girl Kayla struggle with the challenges of rural Vermont. Most of all I had fun watching her handle the O’Neil family. Especially sexy Jackson.
What inspired SBITS?
I’ve always loved writing winter books and the Christmas stories I wrote for Medical Romance and Harlequin Presents have been reader favourites, so when HQN gave me the chance to write a mainstream contemporary romance it made sense to make it a holiday book.
I wanted to incorporate all the elements I enjoy most in a story; a hot hero, a sparky heroine, a beautiful winter setting and a big complicated family (and a dog!). I had so much fun with it.
Tell us about your favourite moment in the book.
I have lots of favourite moments, but one of the earliest is when Kayla first arrives in Vermont and we have the first hint that she’s out of her depth.
He saw her before she saw him, striding purposefully through the airport, her shiny blond hair drawn into a ponytail that swung across her neck and drew glances from the men around her. She wore a long cashmere coat in a pale shade of caramel that brushed the tops of soft leather boots the color of dark chocolate. Over her shoulder was her laptop bag, and behind her she dragged a medium-sized suitcase.
Walking through the crush of tourists in their colorful ski jackets, she stood out like a gazelle in a shopping mall.
Eyeing the cashmere coat, Jackson hoped she’d packed something suitable in that suitcase.
Kayla Green might be an expert in integrated marketing, but she clearly knew sweet nothing about dressing for Vermont in December.
Seeing him, she lifted her hand in acknowledgment.
And then she smiled and the smile was sweet and genuine, as if she were really excited to be here.
It kicked at his ribs and lower. Heat shot through him. Every thought in his brain went up in smoke. Gripped by raw lust, he strode to meet her, reminding himself he had enough complications in his life without adding another one. “You were lucky. The flight after yours is grounded in Newark.” Surprised his voice sounded even vaguely normal, he reached for her case but she gripped it tightly.
“I can manage, thanks.”
“Right.” Jackson decided the case would give her something to hang on to once those soft leather boots hit the snow outside and sent her spinning to the ground. “Then let’s get going.”
“I appreciate you meeting me.” She was brisk and businesslike and he wondered how long she’d keep that up once she met his family. They had a way of sucking the professional from a person.
“You’re welcome. As a matter of interest, did you pack any winter gear in those bags?”
She glanced down at herself. “Exhibit A. Warm coat. Boots. Scarf. What am I missing?”
He thought about pointing out she might be missing fingers and toes if she didn’t find herself a few more layers, but decided she had brain enough to work it out for herself soon enough. She was dressed for Manhattan not Mount Mansfield.
“You look great.” Truthfully she looked better than great. “You might need to add some thicker layers. The snow is pretty deep at the moment. We had a big storm a few days ago and another is forecast.”
“Oh, I’m sorry. What a nuisance.”
Her comment confirmed everything he already suspected about her relationship with snow. “We’re a winter sports resort, Kayla. Snow is good. In fact it’s essential.”
“Of course it is.” Her gaze didn’t shift from his. “I knew that. I just meant, what a nuisance I didn’t bring my other boots.”
“You own a pair that doesn’t have a four-inch heel?” He tried not to look at her legs and then decided what the hell. He hadn’t seen anything that good in Vermont in a long time, and he was going to make the most of it.
“Actually, no. But it will be fine. I’m developing a public relations strategy for you, not skiing downhill.”
He refrained from pointing out she was going to be skiing downhill the moment those heels touched the ice.
4) Did you struggle at all while writing this book or was it smooth sailing? 🙂
Every book is different, but this one was the smoothest I’d had in a while. Maybe because I’d been longing to write a longer book for so long, or perhaps because I fell in love with the setting and the characters right away, it was pure pleasure to write. Also I wrote it over the winter and it was a cozy writing experience, filling a book with log fires, hot chocolate, hot tubs (and hot men!).
SBITS billed as book 1 in a holiday series. How many books will there be and is each one set around a different holiday?
There will be three books and the first and last (brother Tyler’s story) will be set around Christmas. The second book, Suddenly Last Summer, is a summer story.
Who would play Kayla and Jackson in a movie?
Diane Kruger would make a perfect Kayla and I’d probably have Henry Cavill as Jackson (but he’d have to wear blue contact lenses.)
Would you prefer a TV or big screen movie?
I think Sleigh Bells would be perfect for the big screen because the Vermont scenery is so beautiful and the mountain and forest shots would be breathtaking. And I can’t say it would be a struggle to see hot, sexy Jackson magnified!
Thanks for stopping by CABR 🙂
Thanks so much for having me! It was so great being here.
Once upon a time, Christmas was Kayla Green’s favorite time of year. Now all the workaholic wants for Christmas is for it to be over—as fast as possible! So when duty calls her to snowy Vermont to close a deal with a new client, Kayla is grateful for an excuse to avoid the holidays for another year.
Jackson O’Neil left a thriving business behind to return home and salvage his family’s resort—it’s in his blood, and he can’t let it fail. Now that he’s got marketing whiz Kayla Green working with him to put Snow Crystal on the map, success is on the horizon. The fact they strike enough sparks off each other to power all the Christmas lights in Vermont is just an added bonus.
Kayla might be an expert at her job, but she’s out of her depth with Jackson—he makes her crave the happy-ever-after she once dreamed of, and it’s terrifying. As the snowflakes continue to swirl, will the woman who doesn’t believe in the magic of Christmas finally fall under its spell?
USA Today bestselling author Sarah Morgan writes hot, happy contemporary romance and her trademark humour and sensuality have gained her fans across the globe. Described as ‘a magician with words’ by RT Book Reviews, she has sold over 11 million copies of her books.
She has been nominated three years in succession for the prestigious RITA© Award from the Romance Writers of America and won the award twice; in 2012 for her book‘Doukakis’s Apprentice’ and 2013 for ‘A Night of No Return’. She also won the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award in 2012 and has made numerous appearances in their ‘Top Pick’ slot.
As a child Sarah dreamed of being a writer and although she took a few interesting detours along the way, she is now living that dream.
Sarah lives near London with her husband and children, and when she isn’t reading or writing she loves being outdoors, preferably on vacation so she can forget the house needs tidying.
To find out more about Sarah’s books, read extracts and generally find out more about her, check out her website
CONTACT THE AUTHOR:
Seven of Sarah Morgan’s backlist titles will be on sale for $1.99 from October 20 – November 30, 2013:
Lost the Desert Warrior |
Invitation to Sin |
Once a Ferrara Wife |
Sold to the Enemy |
Woman in a Sheikh’s World |
A Night of No Return |
The Forbidden Ferrara |