Today it’s my pleasure to welcome Shannyn Schroeder to CABR 🙂
Find out more about Colin and Elizabeth in Shannyn’s contemporary romance, SOMETHING TO PROVE,
enter the Nook giveaway!
There are also two (2) excerpts for you to enjoy 🙂
Welcome to CABR Shannyn 🙂
Tell us about the inspiration behind SOMETHING TO PROVE
Thanks so much for hosting me today. Something to Prove is Colin O’Leary’s story. When I started the first book in the series, More Than This, Colin didn’t exist. At least not until Ryan O’Leary opened his office door and found himself looking at his older brother. In that moment, I knew Colin had a story to tell. He’d left his family after their dad died and now that he’s back, he feels the need to prove himself. Lucky for him, he finds a woman with similar goals.
What were your hero and heroine doing in the week before they met?
The week before she met Colin, Elizabeth Brannigan was working another job away from home. She travels for her father’s company, going in and restructuring failing businesses. A day or two before arriving in Chicago, she was conducting an audit of her father’s businesses and discovered a failing bar in Chicago that she wanted to check out.
Before meeting Elizabeth, Colin worked at O’Leary’s Pub as a bartender. He loves being part of his family’s business, but he’s looking to make his own mark.
Did you have to do any fun research at bars for this book? 🙂 What was that like?
No, I didn’t really do anything fun for this book. I tend to pay attention when I’m out and about looking at what different business do: how the employees dress, what kind of atmosphere is created and how it’s accomplished. I did watch episodes of Bar Rescue and similar shows. The research I did was boring online stuff like types of licenses for bars.
SOMETHING TO PROVE is part of the O’Learys series. Which # in the series is it and should the books be read in order?
STP is the third book in the series. Each of the books stands alone, so you can read them out of order. The characters overlap, so if you haven’t read More Than This, you miss Ryan and Quinn falling in love and in STP, they’re married with a baby on the way. I don’t think that’s spoilerish. The main characters from the first two books make minor appearances in this one, but the reader shouldn’t be lost. There are no overarching plot points between the books.
Which O’Leary family member will be featured next? Can you give us a snippet from it?
Moira’s book is next and will release in July 2014. CATCH YOUR BREATH was a blast to write. Moira falls for her childhood crush, Jimmy O’Malley, her neighbor and Liam’s friend.
Here is a snippet. In this scene, Jimmy O’Malley and his partner (they’re cops) have visited Moira at home. When the conversation is done, Jimmy notices that Moira didn’t lock her apartment door, so he sends his partner to the car. He lets himself into Moira’s apartment and scares her half to death. She screams and throws a jar of leg wax at him.
EXCERPT from CATCH YOUR BREATH (The O’Leary’s #4):
Moira’s heart lodged in her throat before recognition hit. Jimmy? What the hell? Air flooded into her lungs and her heart steadied, but her blood boiled. “What the hell are you doing in my house?”
“You didn’t lock your door.”
“I certainly didn’t leave it open either. There was no invitation to enter.” Her voice rose steadily and she jabbed a finger in his direction. “You had no business coming in. I should call and have you arrested.”
He raised a hand in defense. “When you closed the door, I listened for you to lock up and you didn’t. I turned the knob and let myself in.”
“You scared the shit out of me. What the hell is wrong with you?”
“Me scaring you is the least of your worries. What if I was a rapist or murderer? You’re making yourself an easy target. This building has zero security. It is like an invitation for some creep to come after you.” His voice stayed quiet and strong, and was somehow way more menacing than her screaming rant.
She took a step back and crossed her arms again. She suddenly realized that she wore nothing but her bathrobe, which was currently gaping. Tugging it closed and pulling the sash tighter, she stared at her feet.
Could she get more embarrassed?
Jimmy’s hand holding a jar filled her field of vision. Her wax. “I think you dropped this.”
Yes, her night just got more embarrassing. She curled her fingers around the jar and tucked it into the pocket of the robe. His feet nearly touched hers and she focused on his scuffed dress shoes in front of her bare toes.
They stood in silence and Moira noticed that they breathed in rhythm. He stood close enough that the heat from his body permeated the thin material of her robe. Holy shit. Jimmy O’Malley never go this close to her. If she leaned forward, she could rest her face on his chest.
She couldn’t look at him. It was bad enough that he scared her half to death, but now he’d seen her freak out while half naked, all while he was holding her leg wax. And she might actually die if he realized she was just fantasizing about him.
“Hey,” he said softly. Nothing else. He waited silently until her eyes met his.
She expected to see his usual ridicule, but instead, there was something else. Kindness?
“I didn’t mean to scare you.” He paused. “Well, I did, but only because I want you to understand how completely unsafe you are. I wouldn’t want something to happen to you.”
Her heart, which had been making its way back to its normal position, plummeted to her feet. Jimmy stood so close mere inches separating them. How many times over the years had she dreamed of being in this exact position? And he was here because he cared.
She leaned forward and was certain she’d seen the look on his face shift. His eyes darkened and she knew he wanted to kiss her. The knowledge sent tingles through her body.
He suddenly stepped back, turned, and walked to the door. Opening it, he said over his shoulder, “Make sure you lock up.”
Then he was gone.
Moira stood frozen in place for a second.
“Now, Moira.” He yelled from the other side of the door.
She scrambled to the door, flipped the deadbolt, and collapsed against the wood. What the hell just happened? Moira closed her eyes and replayed the scene in her mind. When she’d first come out of her bedroom, all she saw was a hulk of a man standing in her hall.
Thinking back now, she should’ve recognized him immediately. Jimmy had a way of standing, and he had this air around him that was a constant buzz of motion, but he never moved. He hadn’t been threatening, just leaning against the corner of the wall. And she had to go and throw wax at him.
But what happened after, now that she could work past the embarrassment, she hadn’t imagined. She could still feel the warmth of his body even though they hadn’t actually touched. And while she would never claim to be an expert on all men, and certainly not one on Jimmy O’Malley, she knew a lusty look when she was on the receiving end.
That was no one-way lust.
Moira pushed off the door feeling lighter than she had in a long time. Jimmy O’Malley almost kissed her. She didn’t know how or why it happened now, but she knew she wanted to be in that position again.
Will you be attending any events/book signings this year? I’m organizing a Girls Night Out with other Chicago romance authors who also use Chicago as a setting. We did it last year for Valentine’s Day and it was a blast. We’re hoping to make it happen Sunday, March 30, but keep an eye on my web site for details. (Other authors may include Julie James, Julie Ann Walker, Beth Kery, Jennifer Stevenson, Kate Meader, and Adrienne Giordano)I will be signing at Chicago Spring Fling, which is my RWA chapter’s conference on April 26.
I will be at RT this year, but I’m not currently on the list for signing. I’m on the wait list, whatever that means, but I will be at Kensington’s party.
Two ambitious people team up to prove themselves to their families—and find there may be more to their partnership than just business…
Elizabeth Brannigan is determined to show her father she’s capable of running the family business. Saving his struggling Chicago bar seems like the perfect project. But she’ll need a little help dealing with the rough crowd. Who better to assist her than the handsome co-owner of a thriving Irish pub? Of course, with so much work to do, there are bound to be a few late nights…
Colin O’Leary’s father passed away before he could prove to him that he wasn’t a screw-up. Now he wants to show his brother he’s responsible enough to own a bar of his own—and Elizabeth may be able to help him. But when their professional aspirations clash, tempers—and passions—flare. Are they mature enough to mix business with pleasure—or will they have to choose between the two?
EXCERPT from SOMETHING TO PROVE:
Elizabeth and Colin have spent the morning making plans for their bar. It’s been rough and they’ve butted heads multiple times. Elizabeth attempts to smooth things over.
Maybe she’d invite Colin to lunch. She had to be able to work with him. He hadn’t done anything to make her think he wasn’t trustworthy. He’d done nothing wrong. In fact, he’d come up with some good ideas.
She grabbed her purse and headed back into the bar. He stiffened at the sight of her. Oh, yeah, this was going well. “We missed lunch. I thought maybe you might want to grab something to eat before we have to meet with people.”
His shoulders relaxed and his mouth quirked. “Is that an invitation?”
“Yes. I’m sorry I snapped at you.”
What else did he want? She raised her brows, waiting for an explanation.
“No ‘thank you’?”
“Why should I thank you for doing your job?”
He walked around the bar and stood much too close for her comfort. “I think you owe me a thank-you for rescuing you from the biker.”
She rolled her eyes. “You did not rescue me. I handled myself fine.”
His smile broadened. “From where I stood, he was about to handle you.”
“I didn’t ask for your help.”
“What would you have done if I wasn’t here?”
She debated telling him that the door wouldn’t have been open. The clientele of this establishment made her uneasy, but she wasn’t about to give him that fuel. “I would’ve called the police.”
“Wrong choice. You need me more than you thought, Legs.” He walked past her toward the door.
“What did you call me?”
“Legs.” He tilted his head and his gaze ran down the length of her. “As in you’re all leg.”
“My name is Elizabeth.”
He smiled, and her heart jumped. A smile should not have that effect.
He continued, oblivious to her condition. “Anyway, if you’d made that call to the cops, he would’ve gone into a rage. You have to be able to read people.”
“That’s why I hired you. So we’re back to you just doing your job and no thanks are necessary.” She turned to the door with her car keys in hand. His laugh echoed in the empty bar behind her and she couldn’t hold her smile back.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Shannyn Schroeder is a former English teacher, who now works as a part-time editor while raising her three kids.
Even though she wrote from high school through college (mostly poetry), she’d never considered a career as an author. Writing fell by the wayside as she focused her energy on creating lesson plans and new and fabulous ways to torment her teen students. One group in particular dubbed her “The Torture Master,” a title she carried into motherhood.
After the birth of baby number two, Shannyn resigned from teaching and fell in love with reading romance novels. She read so many books so quickly that her husband teased, “If you’re going to read so many damn books, why don’t you just write one?”
So she did.
That first book is safely buried on her hard drive, but the process set Shannyn on the path to where she is today – agented with her debut ebook published, MORE THAN THIS (The O’Leary’s #1), by Kensington in January 2013.
She is recovering from her Diet Coke addiction, fears putting her foot in her mouth on social media, and has a renewed appreciation for the bad girls of the world.
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