Category Archives: Q and A

What Goes on Tour — Plus a Q&A with Author Claire Boston

what goes on tourWhat Goes on Tour
by Claire Boston
Published by Momentum
Genre: romance, chick lit 
Thanks to the publisher for the preview
4 / 5

Chick lit gets a bad rap sometimes as being a genre promulgating unrealistic fantasies. This is true to some extent; it’s certainly true of bad chick lit.

Good, well-written chick lit, though, is fun. It’s delightful, entertaining, escapist fun that makes you feel happy, if not the giddiness that accompanies love and romance.

Fortunately, What Goes on Tour is good chick lit. This is a fun, sweet read, although you might need to keep a tissue handy because it will provoke a tear or two.

Libby Myles is an almost-successful writer of a book series geared toward kids. She has her loyal followers, but she is by no means J.K. Rowling. At least not yet.

While on a book tour in her native Australia, she appears on a chat show. Nervous, she is convinced that one false word will cost her sales. As she sits nervously in the green room, she sees one of her fellow guests, an American rock star named Kent Downer. They barely acknowledge each other, but when the lights go out in the studio, Libby realizes that Kent is having a panic attack. She holds his hand, and soothingly strokes his arm, grounding him against a surge of anxiety.

Kent is grateful, but before he can thank her, Libby leaves. When he returns to his hotel suite, he’s greeted by his ten-year-old niece Kate, who turns out to be a big fan of Libby’s books. He agrees to take her to Libby’s signing the next day, but she hardly recognizes him. Gone is Kent Downer, rock star; in front of her stands Adrian Hart, a nice uncle.

Once Libby gets past Kent being the stage persona Adrian adopts, she finds herself enjoying getting to know him and Kate. When Adrian needs a new nanny to watch Kate during his Australian tour, he hires Kate.

Of course you can see where this is headed, but don’t let that stop you from the read. There are considerable obstacles for Libby and Adrian, and each will need to confront a family history that has caused them more harm than either cares to acknowledge.

Claire Boston’s writing style is sincere and heartfelt. Libby and Adrian are impossible to dislike, although I will say that Kate is almost too spunky to be true. Libby and Adrian, though, are interesting and engaging. I enjoyed reading about Libby’s writing and publishing process, and Adrian’s rock star scenes are fun too. It’s easy to see how he seeks refuge in Kent Downer, just as Libby does with her writing. Pretending, whether it’s as a rock star or within a fictional tale, oftentimes is preferable to reality. Especially Libby and Adrian’s realities.

The romance moves slowly and cautiously, with Kate’s presence ever controlling what Adrian and Libby decide to do and how they decide to behave. There are other considerations – neither trusts love, and neither trusts the motivations of others. As Boston unfolds it, though, the romance is sweet and gentle, and exactly what you hope Libby and Adrian will experience together.

Good chick lit makes you care about the characters, and it keeps you caring with a good story. What Goes on Tour is good chick lit.

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It is my honor to include an interview with Claire Boston. Keep reading to learn more about her, but be forewarned: this may include a few spoilers.

Q&A with Claire Boston

What research did you have to do for Adrian’s storyline? Do you have experience in the music business, or did you have to research what it would be like for him?
I did quite a bit of research for this story. Luckily the members of the Romance Writers of Australia are a varied and knowledgeable bunch. Sometimes I posted questions to the email loop and there would be a few people who would answer me. I got some of the details about the music industry from there and also detail about climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge. I also emailed a few people to get information. I emailed a lawyer in Texas to find out about child custody and I contacted an Australian talk show to get details about what happens back stage. In all cases, people were so helpful and it helped me build a more realistic story.

Adrian’s explanation for how he conceived of Kent was interesting, as was his need to differentiate between the two. Do you think celebrities in general compartmentalize themselves like that? What about writers? Do you have to put on your “writer face” as opposed to the real person?
I think everyone compartmentalizes themselves to some extent. The way you behave at work isn’t necessarily the way you behave at home. There are different expectations from each location. At work you’re expected to be professional, business-like and have a certain amount of grooming but at home you can sit around in board shorts and bathers and no one cares.

For me, I don’t think I have a “writer face” – it’s pretty much what you see is what you get. Although in saying that, I am a little bit more careful about what I say on Twitter, Facebook and in blogs because you never know how people might interpret the things you write. I have the same issue at work. I’m always getting in trouble with the emails I write because people read more into them than I mean.

Both Adrian and Libby came from dysfunctional families. While Adrian’s abuse was physical, Libby’s was just as harmful and deliberate. How much of that personal history of theirs factored into their success as a couple? Did you ever intend for one of them to be from a more stable family, or did you think that only by sharing such instability could they be together?
I knew from the outset that Adrian came from a dysfunctional family but I wasn’t sure how dysfunctional it was until I delved a bit deeper into the story. For Libby, I didn’t expect her to come from the emotionally neglectful family she came from and it was a bit of a surprise when I discovered that was at the root of some of Libby’s issues. In the end I think it worked because they had some idea where they were both coming from, but it wasn’t a conscious decision.

There is some social commentary in the book regarding the public’s obsession with celebrity and our willingness to believe anything salacious over the more mundane reality. Why do you think we would rather think that Adrian fired Emily because of a new love interest rather than the truth?
I never meant What Goes on Tour to be a social commentary about the public’s obsession with celebrity but I can see how it can be interpreted that way. I think the idea of Adrian firing Emily because of a new love interest is more salacious and buys into that expectation that rock stars have a different woman on their arm every week. It’s not as interesting to think Adrian might have fired Emily because of her actions because it goes against the public expectation that rock stars are promiscuous.

Quite a bit of the novel deals with appearance versus reality (the appearance of Kent versus the reality of Adrian, the appearance of Libby “masterminding” Kate’s press conference versus her horror and concern), and it’s difficult for any of the characters to see reality on their own. Each of them needs some sort of help from another character. Was this an intentional decision, or did you use it primarily as a plot device?
It wasn’t an intentional decision but I do think that sometimes it’s difficult to see all sides of an issue by yourself. I’ve noticed people have a tendency to jump to the most negative conclusion instead of giving people the benefit of the doubt and so I think it’s good to point out other options. I like my husband’s take on drivers who speed past you on the freeway, and weave in and out of traffic dangerously. He always says, “Maybe the driver is busting for the toilet.” Sometimes it’s nicer to give people the benefit of the doubt – in my experience it’s definitely less stressful.

Libby gives Kate some advice regarding writing novels. What advice would you give any prospective writers?
Make sure you write. Don’t spend your time talking about wanting to be a writer, make some time to write as often as you can and preferably on a regular basis. I get up at 5.30am to do an hour’s writing before work because that way I get my writing time when the house is quiet. Find something that works for you whether it be on the bus or train on the way to work, at 10pm when the house has gone to bed, or on your lunch break. Just make sure you write.

Then when you’ve written something, put it aside. I was told time is the best editor and it’s true. Put your novel aside and work on the next one. When you’ve finished that one, go back to the original novel and you’ll see all the things you couldn’t see when you first finished it.

Will we ever see Adrian and Libby again, perhaps as supporting characters in George’s story?
I’m not sure. I’ve had some ideas about writing George’s story and maybe Piper’s as well but there’s nothing definite yet.

Who are some of your literary influences?
As a child I was a massive Enid Blyton fan and as I grew older, Nora Roberts became my favourite author.

You share with us Libby’s moment when she realizes that she can be a full-time writer. What was that moment like for you? Libby doesn’t have anyone to share it with, which made me sad for her. With whom did you share your news?
It hasn’t happened yet! I work full time and write before work and on weekends. When I first got the news that my book was going to be published I think I may have screamed and done a happy dance before ringing my husband at work. I left a slightly garbled message on his mobile for him to call me and then decided I couldn’t wait for him to check his messages and called the ward (he’s a nurse). It was the first time I’d called the ward and I told the lady who answered to get him to call me back as soon as he could. By the time he had a chance to call he was sure something bad had happened and was relieved when he heard my news.

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Meet Dawn Kirby!


Welcome Dawn Kirby!

Guess what! Dawn Kirby, author of Secrets, was kind enough to stop by and answer a few questions. Secrets is the first of a planned series focused on vampires, humans and werewolves, and, more importantly, families. 
Dawn describes herself as a “typical mom running around after her children, catering to her husband’s needs, acting as a taxi driver, and gourmet chef. Then by night she falls into a world filled with shirtless werewolves, lethal vampires, and dangerous adventures.” Way to go, Dawn!  
What books inspire you the most and why?

I guess I only have one answer for that question. They all do. I don’t really have a specific genre I prefer to read over another. They all have a little something to offer. Whether it be historical, educational, or make believe they can all take you to another time and place. It’s fascinating to me how easy it is to forget where you are and fall, head first into whatever world the author has created. Those worlds, their words and experiences is where I find inspiration.

Describe your writing ritual. After you spend your day catering to your family, how do you get yourself into the mindset to write?

It doesn’t take much really. After everybody is settled and fed, I sit in my little corner of the couch, Cold can of Coke beside me, turn on my laptop and try to let all the daytime stress go. It usually doesn’t take long to pick up where I left off the day before. In no time at all, I’m lost to the real world.

If you could win an Olympics gold medal for any event, winter or summer, which would you choose and why?

Oh goodness…I’m not sure. I guess if I had to pick it would be in archery. There’s just something about the skill required that has always appealed to me. (I think archery is kind of badass, Dawn, so I agree with you there. I might go for fencing, though, because a little sword play sounds kind of fun, doesn’t it?)

What is a talent you wish you had?

Like Leah, I wish I could sense who people really are. Being able to surround myself with truly wonderful, genuine friends would save a lot of heartache in the long run.

What is your favorite junk food?

Hot Tamales, the little red candies. They are pure cinnamon heaven! Unfortunately I enjoy them so much, it’s really easy to lose track of how many I’ve actually had.

If you fell in love with a vampire, would you want him to change you into one?

I don’t think I would. Living forever is way too long. 

Now that you know more about Dawn Kirby, go support her by buying your very own copy of Secrets (available on Amazon.com). It’s entertaining, and it isn’t your typical vampires and werewolves tale. We love authors, and we love books, so GO!

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Dirty Little Secret #53

Welcome to Dirty Little Secret, a weekly meme hosted by Under the Covers. Every Thursday we get to know other bloggers and our readers more intimately by asking them a question hoping to reveal their dirty little secrets. We hope that you will all join us!

To participate in the meme all you need to do is:
1. Be a follower of Under the Covers.

2. Create a post in your blog taking the meme image (code above) and copy instructions.

3. Answer the question we propose! This can be done in any way you like, post a video, write a post etc.

4. Then add your link below.
Non-bloggers: We want to hear from you as well!!! Let us know your answer in the comments!


We hope you join us and let us know your Dirty Little Secrets!

This week’s question: 

What book would you recommend to to heat up your summer!

I’ve got this one. The book you need to read to heat up your summer is Bared to You, by Sylvia Day. This book is HOT, people. It’s an erotic romance, and is the first of a planned trilogy. You will see some similarities to my boy Christian Grey, but I think Bared to You has hotter sex scenes.

Read it with the air conditioning cranked and a cold beverage nearby, because you will get HOT.

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Sexy Snippets: Circle of Danger by Carla Swafford


Hey, kids! it’s time for another meme from Reading Between the Wines. This time, your assignment – if you choose to accept it – is to turn to a random page in the book you currently are reading and post a sexy paragraph or two, so other participants can add the book to their TBR list if they like. Then add your post to the linky below so everyone can follow along. Have a sexy good time!
I’m reading Circle of Danger, by Carla Swafford, which evidently is a follow-up to Circle of Desire, a book I have not read. I don’t feel like I need to read it to understand Circle of Danger, which, quite frankly, I can’t figure out if I like or not. But it has some hotness, so without further ado:

“No! Again. Please!”

So he sank back into her warmth and pushed her knees toward her shoulders as he hammered into her. She screamed and climaxed again.

Hell! She felt so good. He had to let go. Please let it happen this time.

No matter how he positioned her, his need grew with no relief. He didn’t care. Her satisfaction only mattered. Her hands pushed beneath his jeans and travelled over his hips, stroking scars he’d never thought were erogenous until now.

“More,” she pleaded. 

Uh, yeah. She’s under some kind of drug that makes her crave sexy times, and he’s able to scratch her itch, but not to his own completion.

If you know what I mean.

Like I said … so far, I feel like the premise is just ridiculously silly, but the thriller part – can they catch the bad guy – is keeping me going. The headboard rockin’ isn’t bad, but I’m hoping the hero can, you know, release.

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18 & Over Blogger Follow #33: (Cat)Fight Club!


18 & Over Blogger Follow is a weekly feature that begins on Fridaysand runs through the weekend, hosted by Crystal fromReading Between the Wines. This is a Friday blog hop with theobjective to find and visit other book blogs that share the same interest as you, namely books geared towards the 18 & over crowd,and make some new friends!

How to join in:
-You should run a book blog that features and reviews mostly adult reads, some Y.A.’s are okay but 18 & over adult reads should be your majority.
-Make a separate post for the 18 & Over Book Blogger Follow on your blog.
-Copy the html for the button above and place it at the top of your post.
-List & answer the ‘Question of the Week.’
-Place your name and blog title in the linky below and the url for a direct link to your post
-Visit the other blogs on the list and say ‘Hi!’ Following each blog is not mandatory but I know it is always appreciated, and if someone comments saying they’re a new follower it’s polite to follow back. J It’s always nice to spread the 18 & Over Book Blogging love!
-Contact me (readingbetweenthewines10 at gmail dot com) with any questions!

This week’s question:
Fight Club! Heroine v. Heroine. Pick your two favorite
kick-ass book heroines and pit them against each other.
Who would win?
In this corner, the unlikely kick-ass heroine Elizabeth Bennet, from Pride and Prejudice. Elizabeth may not literally kick your ass with her hands or feet, but her wit and intelligence will leave you so discombobulated that you won’t realize that you’ve lost until it’s too late. She put a beat down on Lady Catherine de Bourgh and on Miss Bingley, two formidable opponents. She also snared Mr. Darcy. <Insert heavy sigh here> Even more importantly, Mr. Darcy loved her for who she was, imperfections and all, and, unlike a lot of women, Elizabeth did not change to get the man. She changed when she wanted and how she wanted. 
And in this corner, Eponine, the kicking-assiest character EVER, from Les Misérables. I know some may think that Eponine is weak – she pines for a man who will never love her, and she helps him with his assignations with the woman he does love – but to me, Eponine is a total kick-ass. SHE determines how she will live. SHE determines how she will die. She loves Marius, and even though he does return her love, she chooses how she will deal with it. 
I realize these are not traditional kick-ass heroines in the Katniss Everdeen vein, but they both kick lots of ass. I don’t know which one would win, but whichever one does, it will be on her terms. 
Who are your kick-ass heroines, and which one would win in a fight?

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Dirty Little Secret

The fine folks at Under the Covers host a weekly meme all about the stuff we don’t want you to know. 
To participate in the meme, all you need to do is:
  1. Be a follower of Under the Covers
  2. Create a post in your blog taking the image above and copying the instructions
  3. Answer the question we propose! This can be done in any way you like – post a video, write a post, etc.
  4. Then add your link below.
Non-bloggers: we want to hear from you as well! Let us know your answer in the comments.
We hope you join and let us know your Dirty Little Secrets!

This week’s question: 

With the upcoming release of MAGIC MIKE where some of the hottest guys strip nekkid and shake their ummmm assets, we want to know YOUR fantasy cast! 


If you could choose six of the hottest stars to shake their moneymakers for you, which guys would it be? 



Six hot guys? Well, then. 
We shall begin with my Spiritual Fiancé, Bruce Springsteen. Minus that awful soul patch, which I do not like. Bruce, my darling, my pretend boyfriend since I was fourteen. Please shave that thing off your chin. Or better yet, let me do it. He is 62-years-old and can “perform” for nearly four hours. All that intense focus he normally puts on the guitar and the audience placed squarely on YOU and making YOU happy. Girls. Need I say more?
Next on the docket is Clive Owen, who looks all sweary and forceful – in a good way. And those eyes. Oh, Clive Owen. CLIVE OWEN. You are delicious.


Number three: Michael Fassbender. And I haven’t even seen the movie where he reveals his naughty bits. I mean Michael Fassbender as Mr. Rochester. Like Clive Owen, he’s another Brit who appears very sweary and forceful – as if he’d grab you by the hair, throw you on the bed, and make you scream for more.
Number four: Alex O’Loughlin. The Moonlight Alex O’Loughlin, with the shaggy hair, not the Hawaii 5-0 Alex O’Loughlin with the short hair. Longer hair, please. The sort you can grab onto, if you know what I mean.
Number five: Riggins. I mean, Taylor Kitsch. Again, Taylor with the longer, Riggins-esque hair. And slightly sweaty. And not wearing a shirt.
And last, but certainly not least, Brendan Shanahan. For those of you who follow hockey, Brendan played on the Detroit Red Wings – a team I do not love, by the way – and won a few Stanley Cups with them. He works for the NHL now and enforces discipline. Maybe I’ve read too much Fifty Shades stuff lately, but enforcing discipline? Please, Brendan Shanahan. PLEASE. 
So there you go. Six I’d love to see buck nekkid and ready to go. And by “ready,” I think you all know what I’m talking about. If you don’t, bless your heart.

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18 & Over Blogger Follow #32

A little Friday hotness for you …

Crystal, from Reading Between the Wines, asks us this 18 & Over question today:
If you could go anywhere in the world,where would you go for a “readication”?
For a “readication,” all I need is a comfy bed with high thread count sheets and good pillows, and reliable room service. Since I plan on ever leaving the room, it doesn’t matter where I am. In fact, the less stimulating a locale the better, because I don’t want to be tempted to forego the reading portion of the festivities.
No beach for me – the sweating, the sand, all that gloomy sunshine. Just a big, luxuriant bed with prompt room service that delivers good food. And a mini fridge, because I’m not paying for the minibar.
What about you?

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