Friday, December 14, 2012

#HolidayLove Blog Hop - The Holidays in Mauritius!

Hey beautiful people!

Awesome to be getting a chance to take part in yet another of Carrie Ann's lovely hops, and one about Holiday Love, too!

There are 200+ of us telling us about the holidays and romance in this hop. Goodies galore to be won at every stop, and don't forget - there's a chance to win the Grand Prizes by commenting at every stop. The more you comment, the better your chances. And look at this lineup - pretty swish, innit?

1st Grand Prize: A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet
2nd Grand Prize: A $200 Amazon or B&N Gift Card
3rd Grand Prize: A Swag Pack that contains paperbacks, ebooks, 50+ bookmarks, cover flats, magnets, pens, coffee cozies, and more!

So, what is it about holidays, and romance?

I don't do Christmas, not the celebration per se, but I do indulge in the holiday season. At this time of the year, in the southern hemisphere where Mauritius is located, the full of summer is blazing. So you're more likely to see everyone spilling out of their houses and hitting the numerous beaches on the island. Not to mention that the kids are on summer break, so the holidays become a prone time to spend treasured moments with your family.

There's a bash - usually a barbeque! - just about every weekend, family members taking the relay each week to host lunch or dinner. The kids all get to meet, and madness is magnified. :)

And that, to me, is what holidays are about. Ties, affection, love, a feeling of belonging while you let go of your day-to-day concerns and bask in a casual moment when you look at what really matters, and no longer sweat the small stuff.

Romance, too, in this time, is that to me - the notion of family, of ties, of finding a place to belong. Any romance that brings people together - the more unlikely the mix, the better - is a sure-fire bet for me to sit down with during the holiday season.

In fact, I started writing one such story two holiday seasons ago, in 2010. The idea came to me about a cold, reserved, and uptight forensic pathologist who suddenly lands custody of an 11-yr-old tween... which totally throws her orderly world and locked heart into a tailspin. The notion of family, of belonging, is alien to this woman, Margo Nolan, and Emma, the girl she must now care for, tests the frozen limits of her heart at every moment. Between cuddly moments and tantrums worthy of the most demanding diva, Emma rocks the life Margo had resigned herself to live. And when the handsome, very sexy, and much younger village doctor, Jamie Gillespie, starts to poke his nose into their affairs, things get even more complicated for Margo, because suddenly, the woman she had buried at the heart of her starts to batten down the hatches, eager to be heard, and given a chance at love...

I titled this story Calling Home - and it came out last year in December. To celebrate this anniversary, and to comfort the idea of holiday love, I am offering a download copy of this novel to a lucky commenter today.

Very different are my Corpus Brides heroine-centric espionage/romantic suspense series, or my 1NightStand offerings, but somehow, some way, family and ties play a big, big role in all my stories. I hope you'll deign take a chance on some of my books. *grin*

Tell me - what does Holiday Love spell out to you?

Leave a comment (and don't forget your email address! We can't add you to the prize draws otherwise) and let me know!

And don't forget to check the other 200+ participants on this hop - I'm certain they'll appreciate a visit. This is the link where you can find them all.

Thank you for taking some of your precious time to drop by!

From Mauritius with love,


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Battle of the Sexes Playlist: in the current Pop Music scene, who wins - Girls, or Boys?

Hey peeps!

Ages since I last posted on a Tuesday, innit? Then with all my writing projects lately, I have barely had a minute to pop on here for longer than to put an interview doc or a guest post on. Last week, I even had to veg out and thus, missed a whole week's posting here. Apologies... and I hope the posts from today onwards will help with getting back into your good books. (Okay, a girl can dream, right? *wink*)

So, ye all know I'm hooked on Brit Pop. I even did a post a while back featuring Brit Pop tunes - I remember there were Adele and James Blunt on there. My fave spot to get my music fix is the UK Top 40 charts. Sales of Top Singles for the week in the UK. Music come and go really fast in there (though Gangnam Style has been in the Top 10 for like forever by now, lol! Seriously, who can resist that track?)

Anyhow, a few songs have hit me lately, and many come from a renaissance of girl bands. I'm from the Spice Girls era; so yes, I love girl bands. Totally moved beyond boys bands, because these kids are jail bait and I like my men a little more rugged. Still, doesn't mean their music is unpalatable (most of the time...)

Got me thinking - currently, who does it better? Girls, or boys?

Why don't you join me, and let me know your opinion? To do this, check out some vids of the tracks that have stayed with me and made it into my playlist lately. 2 from girl bands, 2 from boy bands (and/or boy groups)

First one to start the showdown - Something New by Girls Aloud! Peppy and gets you moving!

Second one - DNA from Little Mix. Powerful vocals from these girls, and the style is good, too.

Now on to the lads - Chasing The Sun by The Wanted. Those of you with kids might recognize this one as being on the soundtrack of Ice Age 4. Good beat and rhythm.

And, finally, of the Black-Eyed Peas joins the band named as The Script for the very 80s-sounding Hall of Fame.

What's your verdict? Who does it better in today's pop - girls, or boys?

From Mauritius with love,