Every now and then I like to feature authors you may not have had a chance to read yet. So today I'm bringing you five authors from my local RWA group who are starting a new connected series called Hard Men of the Rockies! I haven't had a chance to read these yet, but I had the ladies stop by and answer a few questions and they've been kind enough to offer us a giveaway!
To get a chance to win a book from each lady, sign up for their mailing list.
First, a quick peek at what the books are about...
RED LACE by Kym Roberts
He knocked on death’s door, but she refused to let him walk in…
Ty Beckinsale was a dead man…until an angel in red lace saved him and disappeared into the night. Tortured with memories but unable to pursue leads to determine her identity until after he recovers, Ty seeks the assistance of the experts at Achilles HeAl, a private physical rehab facility for the rich and famous. Or in his case, the infamous—an ex-Secret Service Agent hell-bent on avoiding the media. His road to recovery, however, leads him straight to the woman he can’t forget—a woman he vows to protect from a past he can’t leave behind.
Fear consumes her, drives her to build walls no one can penetrate…
Secrets and lies have driven Faith Artino to turn her business into a compound. She’s secure, safe and satisfied with life. Until Ty Beckinsale walks in and knocks down all her barriers with a chemistry she can’t deny. But her fear of betrayal stops her from seizing the moment and from taking what she wants more than anything else—a passion so strong, it can’t be destroyed.
A life-time sentence of loneliness awaits, unless Faith opens her door to the one man who’s stolen her heart.
TANGO & LACE by Misty Dietz
World renowned geoarcheologist Jackson Whiteside has come home to Colorado to care for his grandmother and teach at CSU…not to rekindle the passionate, but doomed love affair with gramma’s high-spirited neighbor whose memory has haunted him half-way across the globe. But the moment he sees his feisty, melodramatic ex, his cortisol levels spike. And he damn well knows he’s about to unearth more layers of their relationship…whether his neurotransmitters like it or not.
If there’s one thing dancer and dispatch operator Mya Castillo can do well, it’s Tango. But dancing with her feet is one thing…dancing with her heart is another. Especially when she has no choice but to accept her ex— the world’s most unintentionally sexy professor—as her stand-in partner for the biggest performance of her life.
Jack’s two-year scientific immersion has kept a tight lid on his right-brained proclivities, but his irritatingly illogical gut is telling him the attack on Mya’s dance partner jeopardizes more than just her dance studio. It bodes evil toward the woman he still loves beyond reason, so this is one dance he won’t sit out.
LEATHER & LACE by Brynley Bush
NFL bad boy Knox Beckinsale has made headlines one time too many. Injured, suspended from the Torpedoes, and needing to clean up his image—fast—he heads to Fort Collins to help his Grandma Rosie after her heart attack. No women. No parties. No trouble. Until he meets Leila Patton, who’s nothing but trouble with big blue eyes and a girl next door demeanor that does nothing to hide curves that could make a man forget his religion.
Knox Beckinsale is cocky, arrogant, and sexy as sin—everything unemployed journalist Leila isn’t looking for in a man. Which makes him absolutely perfect for banishing the memory of her former boyfriend who broke her heart—and fired her. But one night turns into another, and before long Leila realizes there’s more to Knox than just a pretty face and killer abs.
When secrets from Knox’s past surface, Leila is forced to choose between writing the story of a lifetime…or taking a chance on her own love story.
BEYOND LACE by Mia London
Colorado was the last place on earth he wanted to be.
Blake Strickland has a good life in Chicago. His first company sold for several million dollars, and he’s on his way to repeating that with his second. But when his grandmother has a heart attack, the return to his home town of Fort Collins, Colorado is unavoidable and unwelcome. It’s the place he’d fallen madly in love with an incredible woman—the same place Charlie ripped his heart right out of his chest.
Charlotte Brookfield put love behind her, or so she thought. Until he returned—to her town, in her bar, a thousand miles from his home. And looking sexy as hell with a chip on his shoulder so big, she knew, she was still his enemy.
Eight years apart has done nothing to ease their pain, and everything to ignite their passion. Can Blake build a firewall around his heart, or will Charlie leave an indelible imprint on his soul?
BLACKMAIL & LACE by Tracy A. Ward
Grayson Montgomery is on a mission and bad boy Adam Holder is on the top of her bucket list. When the successful defense attorney mistakes her for an old flame, Grayson doesn’t hesitate to use a misleading video to bring him to his knees and blackmails him into a trip he would never make. Duty-bound to a deathbed oath, Grayson doesn’t count on the intense attraction between them or how much she’s falling for the sexy bachelor.
Adam Holder loves women, but he loves success even more. He would never jeopardize his career, until a case of mistaken identity makes him look guilty of a crime he’d never commit. Not willing to take a chance with his future, Adam submits to the blackmail of a beautiful woman while plotting his revenge…but when their sparks of passion ignite, Adam forgets his thoughts of retaliation and risks it all to win Grayson’s heart.
Preorder BLACKMAIL & LACE: Amazon
Question: Who decided on the theme of the series? How was it decided?
KYM: We wanted something to reflect on the reader conference we were planning to attend in Colorado, and since I have an obsession with a certain Rock, I was all in for The Hard Men of the Rockies. ;)
MISTY: Exactly! Plus we thought a family-theme built around gramma sounded like a hoot.
TRACY: The theme was set, and the rest of us just fell in line :-).
Q. What was the most fun in working with 4 other authors on this series?
A. KYM: Our texts. OMG, they were hilarious and X-rated. Definitely not something we could allow our kids to read to us while we drove. ;)
BRYNLEY: It was also fun seeing my characters in the other books. Knox, the hero in Leather & Lace, is the little brother of Ty, the hero in Red Lace. I remember being amazed at how well Kym nailed Knox when she sent me an excerpt from Red Lace that included him.
TRACY: The constant support from my fellow authors was also an added bonus. I just recently went through a cross-country move after living in Dallas for 20 years (and in the same neighborhood for 16). I knew collaborating on this project would be a major incentive to stay focused on my writing. The Chick Swagger girls were exactly the kick in the pants I needed!
Q. What’s it like writing in the same world with 4 other authors?
A. BRYNLEY: Chaotic, but totally fun. I'm used to making unilateral decisions for my books and characters, but in the Hard Men of the Rockies series, all of the books take place in the same house and with the same grandma, so we had to make sure we communicated and got our facts straight across all of the books. If one author had Grandma Rosie driving a red Jeep, we all had to make sure we did the same. And when I gave Rosie a cat, I had to make sure none of the other cousins were allergic to cats. J
MIA: I was the last author to join the group, and initially I was overwhelmed with the facts to keep track of—the who, what, where, when, and with whom? The first thing I did was construct a spreadsheet with some facts we could all refer to. I think I helped, especially when we had some overlap of characters in each other’s books.
Q. What fun/interesting research did you do for your book?
A. KYM: I based my Ty, on the strengths of the alphas I met while working a task force with the Secret Service.
MISTY: I enjoyed learning more about Tango dancing - I danced a little bit of it when I was a Zumba instructor. But most of what I used in the book came from watching a lot of YouTube videos on technique as well as the heart and soul of what Tango is.
BRYNLEY: Knox in Leather & Lace is an NFL player, so I to look at lots of hot football players in tight pants in the course of my football research...But I did it for my readers! I'm selfless like that. I also had to make sure I deleted my search history, which included topics such as "how much is a sex tape worth" and "extortion 101."
TRACY: Because Grayson, the female protag in Blackmail & Lace, is on a mission to fulfill a deathbed promise and complete the bucket list she inherited from her dead sister, I had to tap into my adventurous side. Tomorrow is guaranteed to none. I had to think about some of the things I wanted to do/accomplish before I die. Researching the Inca Trail and diving the dangerous underwater caves of Jacob's Well were just a couple of the adventures I skimmed the surface of. It really made me wish this was a full length book, rather than novella!
MIA: For me, I’ve been to Colorado only once. I needed to brush up on the topography, climate, the university, all that. CSU fans will see truth in Beyond Lace. Also, I learned about rock-climbing as that is Blake’s favorite pastime (maybe second favorite).
Q. What was the biggest challenge in collaborating with 4 other authors?
A. MISTY: Making sure the details of the house were consistent as well as the timing in the Christmas epilogue scene.
BRYNLEY: Trying to get everyone's approval and input on everything when we all had our own deadlines, schedules, life, etc. I'm pretty sure I was the slacker. I owe everyone drinks.
TRACY: Time! Everyone works at a different pace and I was always the one lagging behind. :-)
Q. Do you see doing more series like this in the future? Why or why not?
A. MIA: Definitely. I love the collaboration and idea-sharing. Plus I think the readers will love to see the characters they “know” weave in and out of each other’s books.
KYM: That was our goal when we started last year. This is the second series by Chick Swagger. We hope to make it an annual event, and who knows we may expand our releases to coincide with different reader conferences throughout the country!
MISTY: Making a series collide with a reader event is a lot of fun and generates a lot of synergy at the event’s book signing. Would definitely do it again.
TRACY: I would love to. Maybe next time we'll rent a cabin somewhere and meet for a week to knock out our first drafts. That would be so much fun!
More about this series and the authors—Brynley Bush, Kym Roberts, Mia London, Misty Dietz, Tracy Ward—can be found on www.ChickSwagger.com.