Shira Anthony is here today to talk about her latest Dreamspun Cracky Fluff offering!
Also, cute giveaway is cute! See the deets below!
Thank you Boy Meets Boy Review, for hosting this stop on the Forgotten Paradise book tour! I’m offering up a fabulous December Diamonds Cupid merman ornament to one lucky winner in the US who comments on one of the blog tour posts, or a $10 Dreamspinner Press Gift Card for winners worldwide, so be sure to comment below by answering this question: What build is the sexiest on a man? Tall and thin? Muscular? Short and sexy?
For those readers who may not already know, Forgotten Paradise is my second entry in the Dreamspun Desires line of gay romances from Dreamspinner Press. Be sure to read to the bottom of the post for an excerpt from the book, as well as the Rafflecopter giveaway for the book tour.
Forgotten Paradise is an honest to goodness “category romance.” The term comes from the old tradition of publishing a certain number of books on a monthly basis in a certain category. You remember these. When I was a kid, they were the Harlequin and Silhouette romances that were shipped, 4 books a month, on subscription.
Part of the recipe for writing a classic romance is creating tension that builds like a crescendo up to the point where the main characters finally get together. We call these “slow burn” romances. There are different ways to create that tension, but one of my favorites is through the use of secondary characters. These can be antagonists, but they can also be characters our heroes rely upon when the going gets rough.
In Forgotten Paradise, the two main secondary characters are strong women (my favorite kind!). When Jonah awoke on a Punta Cana beach ten years before, Lorene, a native of the Dominican Republic, took him in and nursed him back to health. She’s tough and supportive, and she doesn’t put up with any of Jonah’s crap. He comes to love and respect her and her opinion, even when he doesn’t want to follow her advice.
The other secondary character who appears regularly throughout the novel is Adam Preston’s sister, Karen. She’s an attorney and works with Adam to run their family business. She’s the one who pushes Adam to take a well-deserved break in the Caribbean when things at the office threaten to overwhelm him. She is at Adam’s side through thick and thin and she’s fiercely loyal. She’s also sharp as a tack.
I hope you’ll enjoy the interactions of the main characters with their secondaries. I know I had a blast writing these relationships and these strong, supportive women who aren’t just in the novel for show—they help these two men through thick and thin.
I also hope you’ll enjoy meeting Adam, Jonah, Lorene, and Karen, and that you’ll be able to imagine the sand between your toes as you read Forgotten Paradise. I’ll leave you with the blurb and an excerpt from the book and, of course, the Rafflecopter. Be sure to leave your comment before entering! By the way, my favorite build for a man? Tall and not overly muscular. Good luck on the drawing! –Shira
When a megacompany threatens to take over his family-owned business, programming prodigy Adam Preston escapes the stress with a much-needed vacation in the Dominican Republic. There he meets attractive, intelligent, insightful Jonah James, a scuba dive instructor, and what starts as a holiday fling soon blossoms into much more.
But Jonah has a secret: ten years ago he woke up on an island beach with no idea how he got there… or even who he is. Their paradise may not be as perfect as it seems. When Jonah’s memories come crashing back like waves on the sand, will it be Adam clinging to the proverbial life raft, or will the two men find a safe harbor to ride out the storm?
WHILE HENRI washed down the patio, Jonah hung the last two wetsuits and sprayed down the rinsing bins. Small rivulets of sand and water streaked the painted concrete.
“I can finish,” Henri told him.
“Thanks.” Jonah walked over to the benches and retrieved his BC and regulator from a hook. “I owe you a drink.”
Henri laughed. “Good thing they’re free or you’d have to take out a loan.”
“Meet you at Giuseppe’s in an hour?” Jonah hung his gear inside the staff room.
“Not tonight. Got a date with Viola.” Henri stopped spraying for a moment and gestured toward the office. “It’s our six-month anniversary.”
“Six months? Impressive. So what’s for dinner?”
“Sushi,” Henri said. “At Yumi.”
“You’re taking her all the way to Punta Cana?” Jonah chuckled and slapped Henri on the back. “Must be love.”
“A man does as he does.” He winked and added, “I borrowed Torey’s car.”
“A man’s gotta do what he’s gotta do,” Jonah corrected. Henri’s English was damn good, so Jonah enjoyed teasing him the few times he made mistakes.
“So how about you?” Henri asked with a crooked grin.
“Me?” Jonah knew where Henri was going, but he wasn’t going to bite on that particular topic.
“You’ve been here a few weeks now. Met anyone interesting?”
Jonah shook his head. “If I had, I wouldn’t be telling you about it,” he teased.
“Fine. To be that way.”
“Be that way. Not ‘to be.’”
Henri laughed and headed over to the counter, where Viola was working on assignments for the next day’s dives. “The guests think I’m sexier when I get things wrong.”
Jonah pulled the elastic from his hair and ran a hand through his still-damp curls. He waved at Viola. “Have fun tonight!” He slipped on his sandals and headed down the path to the staff dormitories. He’d only made it to the towel-return shack when he noticed a man standing in the middle of the intersection of two paths, rubbing the bridge of his nose.
“Perfect,” the man muttered.
“Lost?” Jonah forced his gaze up from the dusting of reddish hair on the man’s nicely defined pecs.
He looked at Jonah with warm brown eyes. “That obvious?”
“Happens a lot,” Jonah reassured him. “Where’re you headed?”
“Dive shop. Although by now, it’s probably closed.” American, judging by the accent. East Coast. A hint of New Jersey but polished so it was barely noticeable.
Jonah glanced at his watch. “You have another ten minutes.” He pointed the way he’d just come. “It’s about a hundred feet that way. You can’t miss it.”
“No problem.” Jonah offered the man a reassuring smile. “Took me a few days to get my bearings.”
“My mother used to tell me I’d lose my way in a shower stall.”
Jonah chuckled. “That bad?”
The man nodded.
“I could think of worse places to get lost with you,” Jonah quipped, immediately regretting it. The man’s lean body was far too interesting, especially given the no-fraternization policy Jonah had signed when he was hired. Not that the hotel had ever fired someone for taking a guest to bed, but Jonah felt more comfortable following the rule. It made things easier. Celibacy was safer. Flirting was downright dangerous.
The man flushed. Even more interesting.
The man quickly regained his composure. “Do I know you?” he asked.
Jonah also got that a lot. “I’m sure I’d have remembered you,” he said truthfully. It wasn’t every day he met a redhead, let alone one this attractive.
“My mistake.” The man offered his hand. “Adam Preston.”
“Good to meet you, Adam.” Jonah shook Adam’s hand. Strong grip. Confident, but not overly so. “I’m Jonah. Jonah James.”
“I hope so.” Jonah watched as Adam headed toward the dive shop. No fraternization, he reminded himself with a sigh. Maybe it was time to rethink the celibacy gig.
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