Book Releases

Holding On (Colorado High Country #6) —
The Colorado High Country series returns with Conrad and Kenzie's story.

A hero barely holding on…

Harrison Conrad returned to Scarlet Springs from Nepal, the sole survivor of a freak accident on Mt. Everest. Shattered and grieving for his friends, he vows never to climb again and retreats into a bottle of whiskey—until Kenzie Morgan shows up at his door with a tiny puppy asking for his help. He’s the last person in the world she should ask to foster this little furball. He’s barely capable of managing his own life right now, let alone caring for a helpless, adorable, fluffy puppy. But Conrad has always had a thing for Kenzie with her bright smile and sweet curves. One look into her pleading blue eyes, and he can’t say no.

The woman who won’t let him fall…

Kenzie Morgan’s life went to the dogs years ago. A successful search dog trainer and kennel owner, she gets her fill of adventure volunteering for the Rocky Mountain Search & Rescue Team. The only thing missing from her busy life is love. It’s not easy finding Mr. Right in a small mountain town, especially when she’s unwilling to date climbers. She long ago swore never again to fall for a guy who might one day leave her for a rock. When Conrad returns from a climbing trip haunted by the catastrophe that killed his best friend, Kenzie can see he’s hurting and wants to help. She just might have the perfect way to bring him back to the world of the living. But friendship quickly turns into something more—and now she’s risking her heart to heal his.

In ebook and soon in print!

About Me

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I grew up in Colorado at the foot of the Rocky Mountains, then lived in Denmark and traveled throughout Europe before coming back to Colorado. I have two adult sons, whom I cherish. I started my writing career as a columnist and investigative reporter and eventually became the first woman editor of two different papers. Along the way, my team and I won numerous state and several national awards, including the National Journalism Award for Public Service. In 2011, I was awarded the Keeper of the Flame Lifetime Achievement Award for Journalism. Now I write historical romance and contemporary romantic suspense.


Seductive Musings

Thursday, November 14, 2013

STRIKING DISTANCE hits the USA Today list!

Things have been pretty crazy at Casa Clare. Let’s see...

I had a major book release, a MacKinnon’s Rangers Christmas novella deadline, and got a lot of really fabulous news. My sister, who is a dual US/Swedish citizen, arrived from Stockholm to celebrate my mother’s 70th birthday and spend Thanksgiving with us. And in the middle of all of this, my poor blog went without an update for a very long time.

Sorry about that!

I’ll start with the good news.

I learned the Unlawful Contact has been picked up by J’ai Lu and will finally be published in French. This comes as good news to my French readers, who’ve been waiting forever for the I-Team.

Also, BookPages, a national publication for librarians and booksellers, featured Striking Distance (I-Team 6) as Christie Ridgeway’s top romance pick for November. That was a huge honor.

Publishers Weekly featured Striking Distance in its article about the popularity of military romance. (I’d post a link, but unless you have a subscription, it wouldn’t do you any good.)

Close on the heels of that announcement, I found out that Striking Distance was nominated by the reviewers at RT Book Reviews for Best Romantic Suspense of 2013. RT had given Striking Distance a 4.5-star Top Pick review in its November edition, and I was thrilled to see the story in such fabulous company.

And then today, I learned that  Striking Distance made the USA Today Bestseller list!

As Javier would say, “¡Wepa!

I got the news from New York Times bestselling author and friend Thea Harrison, whose book Kinked, also made the list. She tweeted me, beating my editor and agent to the punch. Within seconds author superstar and friend Jill Shalvis, whose novel Rumor Has It hit both USA Today and the NYT, sent me the link. Then author/photographer Jenn LeBlanc, my bestie, posted on Facebook, and I knew it was real.

I was, of course, ecstatic. Squealing may or may not have occurred.

I immediately tried to call the two people who’ve done the most to support me — my sister, Michelle, and my younger son, Benjamin — but couldn’t get a hold of either of them. That’s exactly how it would work out, right? I had always imagined telling them to their faces. In the end, Benjamin, who is in Europe, saw it on Facebook before I could reach him. I did manage to tell my older son over the phone and then caught my sister later in the afternoon.

It means so much to me to hit the list with this novel. As most of you know, this story was very personal for me and took pretty much everything I had. It’s the first time I really explored the inner landscape of surviving trauma, in particular sexual assault. Sometimes we choose which stories we want to write, and sometimes those stories choose us. This was definitely the latter. It wasn’t easy to write, forcing me to dig deeper into myself than perhaps any other book I’ve written.

Ultimately I wrote something that I, as a survivor of childhood sexual assault, physical violence, and PTSD know to be real — while doing my best to give both Laura and Javier all the love and happiness they deserve.

I feel incredibly grateful to have had the chance—and to have had so much support along the way.

Thanks to my sister, Michelle, and my son Benjamin, for their encouragement, weeks of handholding and long hours of listening me bounce the story off them.

Thank you to Arlene and Beatrice Rios and Wilson Cruz for the 15 months they spent working with me to help me get the Puerto Rican aspect of Javier’s character right. Any time they swear in their mother tongue, they will think of me.

Thank you to Officer Bryan Bartnes of the Loveland Police Department for his help in understanding explosives, the work of EOD teams, and the way authorities investigate bombings. Is it wrong that I was amused by people’s nervous glances as we talked about how to blow stuff up?

Thanks to Diane Grimaldi Whiting for walking me through the world of broadcast journalism. I’ve been interviewed on television, but I’ve never been on the other side of the camera. She helped me understand how a studio operates, essential information for a key scene in the story.

My heartfelt thanks to the active-duty SEAL who spent time between work-ups and deployments helping me understand the work and life of a special operator. His input and perspective over a period of almost two years were so essential to Javier’s part of the story. How he found time to answer all my questions and read the manuscript, I don’t know. But I am so very grateful both for his help and his service. I dedicate the book to him and feel honored to know he has a copy.

And, of course, a huge weepy thank you to the wonderful members of the I-Team Facebook group and all of my fabulous reader friends who have sent emails, posted on Facebook and tweeted to let me know how much Laura and Javier’s story mean to them. You make it all worthwhile!

I celebrated this evening by watching Raylan Givens get into trouble in Justified and enjoying some European chocolate with my dear sister — truly precious time for me.

As for that novella...

I hope to have a sweet MacKinnon’s Rangers Christmas story ready for you by the day before Thanksgiving. But more on that in my next post.


Pamela, this is all so hard-earned and well-deserved. I'm thrilled for you1 And I got a little misty reading about it.

Lori said...

Huge congrats! And what a lovely post. It's driving me mad seeing Striking Distance staring at me from my Kindle carousel. This weekend. I will. No matter what.

Leslie said...

What an exciting dayand time for you!
I loved reading it on my Nook and being able to look up the literal translations of the curses on the Urban dictionary. They were so creatve. Calling someone a single pubic hair is more demeaning than a glassbowl.

I don't ever write to writers, but I follow your blog as I love to know when new books are coming out, and after this I thought I would just write to say 'good onya". You write amazing books, and deserve all the success you're having. I'm looking forward to Striking Distance very much - reading it shortly.

PS - I just finished Kinked and loved every single word. Thea is a superstar as well.

Anonymous said...

*happy dance happy daaaance*

De nada! Un placer. I still am bummed that we forgot to teach you how to use "mamao". At least now you know how to say "puñeta!"

Thank you, Norah! You are such a wonderful friend! I can't thank you enough for all the support you've given me through the years. You ROCK! <3

Thanks so much, Lori! I hope you get time to read the story this weekend — and I hope you enjoy it. I recommend having some tissues handy. :-)

Hi, Leslie — What a fun thing to be able to do on an ereader. I've got a Kindle, but I don't know how most of its features work. I'm so glad you enjoyed the story. The Puerto Rican profanity was a blast.

Hi, Vickie — I am grateful and humbled that you took time to post. Thank you! I appreciate the good wishes. Thea Harrison is a fabulous person in addition to being an amazing writer. I hope you enjoy STRIKING DISTANCE, too!

Thank you, Jenn, bestie and fellow coffee fiend! I miss you!!!!!

Arlene, I'm going to have to find a way to work "mamao" into a Javier scene in a later book! :-)

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Favorite Writing Quotes

"I am an artist. I am here to live out loud."
—Emile Zola

"I am tomorrow, or some future day, what I establish today. I am today what I established yesterday or some previous day."
—James Joyce

"Let other pens dwell on guilt and misery."
—Jane Austen

"Writers are those for whom writing is more difficult that it is for others."
—Ernest Hemingway

"When I write, I feel like an armless, legless man with a crayon in his mouth."
—Kurt Vonnegut

"The ability of writers to imagine what is not the self, to familiarize the strange and mystify the familiar is the test of their power."
—Toni Morrison

"No tears in the author, no tears in the reader."
—Robert Frost.

"I'm a writer. I give the truth scope."
—the character of Chaucer in
A Knight's Tale