Get into Bed with Kelsey Browning (Author Interview)

Kelsey Browning - HeadshotKeira: What’s the best way to keep a secret… secret?

Kelsey Browning: Hmm…this is a hard one for me because I’m pretty much an unfiltered, open book. LOL. But I think the best way to keep a secret is to realize what’s at stake for the person who has the secret. And the other way would be never to tell another single person. A secret is hard to contain once even one other person knows. :)

Keira: What would make you break a promise to keep a secret?

Kelsey: If the secret could hurt either the person keeping the secret or hurt someone very close to me.

Keira: Eden Durant, your heroine in Problems in Paradise (Texas Nights), also has secrets, that have her starting over. What does she feel are the best and worst things about starting over?

Kelsey: The best and worst for Eden is probably the same thing—that no one really knows the real her. It keeps her “safe,” but it also keeps her from getting too close to anyone. Keeps her from having the relationship that—deep down—she craves.

Keira: Have you ever started over in your life? What did you find the best and worst about starting fresh?

Kelsey: Oh boy, have I. My family “started over” when we left Texas to move overseas to Doha, Qatar (a small country just off Saudi Arabia). The best was experiencing a new adventure and leaving behind so many of the expectations about the way we were supposed to live our life. The worst was being without family and friends from home. It was tough being half a world away from so many of the people we love.

Keira: Name three not-so-secret-secrets she might only tell the hero, Beck.

Kelsey: All the restaurants where she worked between California and Texas. Why she dresses like a color-blind toddler. :) How she really feels about sex.

Keira: Ladies love a man in uniform – how did Beck get his?

Kelsey: Deputies (including the Chief Deputy, Beck Childress) serve at the pleasure of the sheriff. Beck was hired by the current Crockett County sheriff when he moved home to Shelbyville after leaving a career on Wall Street.

Keira: Beck is also running for election. When and why did he decide to do that?

Kelsey: Let’s just say if you read the first scene in Problems in Paradise (Texas Nights), you’ll know the answer to that. ;)

Keira: How do you define love? What makes it real and work?

Kelsey: You like to ask the easy questions, huh? LOL I think love—at least romantic love—is a combination of attraction, respect, and trust. Other than that, it’s a mystery. As far as making it work for the long term, I think the trust and respect are critical. And learning how to be a good listener—something I’m still learning after 20 years of marriage—is a biggie.

Keira: Is it ever okay to keep a secret from a spouse or loved one?

Kelsey: Yow – you’re on a roll today! A big, ugly secret? No. A surprise party? Yes.

Keira: Now for the hardest question. ;) What are you working on next?

Kelsey: I’m working on a new Texas-set contemporary series and book two in The Granny Series!

Problems In Paradise Cover - FinalBook Summary:

Eden Durant hasn’t always been Eden Durant. She’s made a fresh start in Shelbyville, Texas, far from her mother’s notoriety. Running the Paradise Garden Café is as much excitement as Eden wants—or it was, until she meets Beck Childress. Although he’s the one man who could expose her past, she’s willing to open up enough to see if he might be her future.

Chief Deputy Childress is determined to get to know the real Eden, when he isn’t busy cleaning up after the sheriff and running in the election to replace him. When several men fall sick after eating in Eden’s café, he investigates even as her mysterious past raises both his suspicions and his protective instincts.

As their relationship heats up, so do the pressures of Beck’s campaign. When Eden’s secrets are revealed, jeopardizing his dream of becoming sheriff, he’ll need to choose: serve and protect the town he loves or the woman who makes it home.

Buy: Problems in Paradise (Texas Nights)

Author Bio: Kelsey Browning writes sass kickin’ love stories and cozy Southern mysteries. Originally from a Texas town smaller than the ones she writes about, Kelsey has also lived in the Middle East and Los Angeles, proving she’s either adventurous or downright nuts. These days, she hangs out in northeast Georgia with Tech Guy, Smarty Boy, and Bad Dog. She’s currently at work on the next book in her Texas Nights series and The Granny Series.

Connect with Kelsey: Email / Website / Newsletter / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest

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Review: Skinny Bitch in Love by Kim Barnouin

skinny bitch in loveReviewed by Patsy F.

The “skinny bitch” is a typical, young, independent, confident woman. She is capable, caring and compassionate. She holds her “dream job” at a very high end vegan restaurant as sous chef and in the first chapter, she is tricked and not only loses her estimable position but loses the respect and reputation she had worked so hard to attain.

She has determination and a best friend. She finds a way to start over, but a hot, sexy, rich businessman has plans for his own restaurant, only he is a carnivore. Their complicated relationship begins, but the differences in their tastes causes tension in their personal lives as well as their professions.

Review: This book is very relatable. Right from the very beginning, this book grabs your interest. It is written in a modern vocabulary that is easy to read and fun too! I highly recommend this book for the beach, or to tote around in your purse. I enjoyed it very much. The end is gratifying and proves that friendship, business and love do mix.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: Skinny Bitch in Love

Get into Bed with Louisa Edwards (Author Interview)

KEIRAJust One Taste: A con-artist cook and a super brainy scientist, how did you come up with that?

LOUISA: I’d always pictured Wes as a chef with a shady background, and I wanted to write a character who addressed the fact that there are actually professional chefs who get their start in prison kitchens.  And I’ve always been interested in the science behind food, so a book featuring aphrodisiacs seemed like the perfect opportunity to research the secrets of culinary chemistry!

KEIRA:  The School of Experience shaped Wes’ character the most.  What changed him the most?  And the heroine has a dysfunctional family too. What influenced her the most to get her where she’s at now?

LOUISA: When Wes was a teenager, he and his father pulled a con that got Wes picked up by the cops.  He wound up in a halfway house for juvenile offenders, abandoned by his dad, and it turned out to be the best thing that could’ve happened.  The house mother there showed him he didn’t have to be like his father, and introduced him to cooking, which put Wes on the path to a better life.

Rosemary’s parents are both highly intelligent and intensely ambitious, so the pressure they put on her was a big inducement to achieve academically.  Essentially, it was the only way to make them proud and gain their approval—and I think there was a bit of Rosemary that worked so hard to graduate and go to college early in order to escape the unhappy house where she grew up, essentially alone.

KEIRA:  Yummy food and drinks appear consistently throughout Just One Taste and on the back of some of the cutest promotional items that came with your book.  Did you sample all the recipes that went into the stories?  What’s your favorite?

LOUISA: I did more than sample those recipes, I dreamed them up, developed them, and tested them!  It sounds like a lot of work, and I guess it is—but luckily, it’s work I adore doing.  I had a great time with each and every recipe, but probably the “Miranda” cocktail from Can’t Stand The Heat was the most fun.  My sister and I tested many, many, many versions of it and laughed until we could hardly breathe!

KEIRA:  What’s your favorite meal to cook/eat for two?  As a family?

LOUISA: Well, my family is only two at the moment, so that’s always what I’m cooking for!  My go-to dinner, especially this time of year, is a roast chicken with root vegetables.  So simple and delicious.

KEIRA:  Have you ever sat at the chef’s table in the kitchen of a restaurant?  What was it like?

LOUISA: I love sitting at the chef’s table!  It’s different in every restaurant, because every professional kitchen reflects the mood and style of the restaurant and the chef.  One of my favorites is at Lola, Michael Symon’s flagship in Cleveland—the chef’s table is situated right at the corner of the busy open kitchen.  You’re sitting there sipping a cocktail and eating your fabulous food, about twelve inches from the chef doing the pan-fried Brussels sprouts.  It’s awesome!  The best chef’s table experiences are when the cooks have time to talk to you about what they’re doing.

KEIRA:  On your website it says you started cooking your way through Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking. How’s that going for you?  Any particular success or disasters you want to share?

LOUISA: I wasn’t nearly as dedicated about that project as Julie Powell (of Julie & Julia fame) was, but I’ve done all right.  One of my favorites from the book is Suprêmes de Volailles à l’Écossaise—literally, chicken breasts in the Scottish manner—in fact, chicken breasts steamed with cream, port, and diced aromatic vegetables.  I highly recommend it—it’s a total wow recipe, much less complicated than it sounds!

KEIRA:  I particularly loved Wes’ picnic in Central Park and where it lead after . . .  *g* What do you think makes up a great lovemaking scene?

LOUISA: Just like in life, I think lovemaking in books is infinitely better when the emotions of the participants are engaged.  The best love scenes advance the plot and help the characters to discover new depths to their connection and their attraction to one another.  And for me, personally, I prefer not to write the same old, same old settings and positions and situations.  So Central Park was perfect!

KEIRA:   What’s up next for readers from your culinary romances?

LOUISA: I’m hard at work on my next three books, the Hot trilogy! Starting in August 2011, look for Too Hot to Touch, Some Like it Hot, and Hot Under Pressure—a brand new series following the lives, loves, and kitchen adventures of a team of talented chefs battling it out in a high-stakes culinary competition.

Too Hot to Touch introduces us to the Lunden brothers and the crew at their family’s West Village restaurant.  The elder brother, Max, has spent the last few years traveling the world learning exotic cooking techniques and trying to forget his past.  But when his family needs him to enter the Best American Chef competition, he returns home and finds himself face to face with one of the reasons he left—gorgeous girl-next-door Juliet Cavanaugh.  Only Jules is all grown up and running Max’s family’s restaurant kitchen!

Sparks fly between these two from page one, and I can’t wait for readers to meet them. The Hot trilogy is set in the same world as the Market trilogy, so expect some familiar faces to crop up . . .

For news and updates on things like free reads, excerpts, new releases, giveaways and more, sign up for my newsletter!  You can also find me on Facebook at my Louisa Edwards Fan Page . . . or on my website. I’m also on Twitter.