Pick of the Month January 2012 + Interview & Giveaway!

daremeThe beginning of 2012 turned out to be a great one for me reading wise though it didn’t initially start out that way. Two books which had received rave reviews from reviewers and readers alike, I found the books lacking the spark that jump starts my reading juices.

And then things started looking up, though I was a bit worried since the end of the month was looming nearer and nearer and I hadn’t read a book that I could choose as my Pick of the Month read for January.

My savior came in the form of Dare Me by Lexxie Couper, a book that hit the e-book stands just yesterday. A story that rocked my very world with a seriously, sinfully sexy Australian hero (did I mention the sexy part?), and a heroine who matched him very well in EVERY SINGLE way!

Since I didn’t have much time to do the Q&A, I almost skipped that part, but at the last minute decided to contact Lexxie who was wonderful enough to squeeze my questions in and help the post go live on time. Thank you so much Lexxie!

So, here goes.

MBR: Since I didn’t read book 1 in the series (Triple Dare), I must have most definitely missed out on the urge to do some serious arse kicking after Rob reveals he has brain cancer. What made you end the book on that note, leaving the reader practically squirming with the need to know what happens next?

LC: (SPOILERS *grin*) I originally planned for Rob to die. I’d planned this bittersweet epilogue that saw Anne and Joseph be thinking about Rob as they planned their next big “kick-life-in-the-butt” adventure holiday. However, three things stopped me. One, my editor (who demanded Rob’s story even as I was writing Triple Dare), Jess Dee (who threatened my with death if I did, in fact, let Rob die) and three, Rob himself. By the time I got to the epilogue he was whispering all sorts of things in my ear I just couldn’t ignore. I must say, I am sorry for making people wait twelve months to get Rob’s story. I hope it’s been worth the wait for everyone 🙂

MBR: As I mentioned earlier in the post, Rob has that seriously sexy thing going for him that just made me want to hum in pleasure just by his mere presence alone. How did you come up with his character in the first place and is he based on any real life character that you know?

LC: LOL Yeah, there is something special about Robert Thorton, isn’t there. Rob is a collection of men I know (all Aussies, of course *grin*) but he also took on a life of his own as I was writing him. Quite often during Triple Dare he would do something I totally wasn’t expecting and be damned if I could stop him (I tried once, and had to delete an entire chapter). What I was really hoping to do with Rob (and Joseph) was capture the sardonic cheekiness of most of the Australian guys I know and love. 🙂

MBR: As much as I found Rob swoon-worthy, I loved Emily. Her no nonsense attitude and her giving nature just won me over right from the start. Did Emily come out on paper as you exactly wanted her to, or did she completely surprise you with the way she turned out in the end?

LC: I had great difficulty with Emily…right up to the point Rob stumbled after their first kiss. I couldn’t get in her headspace for quite some time, but from that point, BAM! Emily surged forward, with all her no-nonsensesness, serious compassion and medical mind-set. From then onwards, she pretty much wrote herself. Of course, she also took charge quite often of her own actions to the point I wanted to scream at her when she got up and walked away from him in his home (you know the point I’m talking about? I mean, how could she do that?? Argh!!!)

MBR: In Dare Me, you tackled with an issue that is rarely discussed in romance novels. The line that might be crossed over in doctor-patient care, something few acknowledge or talk about. I think you handled the conflict quite well and because of it, the book’s emotional impact was that much more. As a writer, do you always constantly challenge yourself to writing about situations that aren’t easy for the hero or heroine to get out from?

LC: Thank you so much. I must admit, I was quite nervous about how readers would react to a hero recovering from brain cancer, and a heroine who has difficulty separating her professional side from her heart. I do challenge myself, but not always by design. Even when I try to write something light, funny and flippant it will often turn into something so much more. Those times I ask myself and/or critique partners what the hell I’m doing. I’m 100% convinced Rhian Cahill, Jess Dee and Mari Carr are sick of hearing me wonder what’s going on in my brain. Having said that, there are very few of my characters that have had an easy backstory and even fewer of my books that let the characters off easy. I’ve complained often to Rhian, Jess and Mari that I’m not deep enough to write the stories I seem to somehow end up writing. They tell me to shut up and just keep working. *grin*

MBR: I see that you write a wide variety of genres. What’s next from Lexxie Couper for 2012?

LC: Oh Lordy. 2012 is insane for me. Next month I have How to Love Your Dragon, a story about a re-incarnated druid who is now a Sydney veterinarian and the dragon-shifter police officer who pulls him over for speeding. Then in April, Love’s Rhythm, which sees Nick Blackthorne, the world’s biggest rock star return to his small home town and the only woman he’s ever loved, a woman who’s heart he destroyed fifteen years ago, only to discover a secret that will change everything. Then there’s the next Party Games book, Twister, followed by Sunset Heat which tells the story of a love-triangle between an Australian, a Brit and an American. Then there’s Suspicious Ways (my first ever non-erotic romance) in September, then Dark Embrace, the first sequel to Death, The Vamp and his Brother in November. All of them feature some very sexy, very cheeky, very very naughty Aussie heroes. Oh, and in amongst all that there are two more dragon-shifter books to be written, five more Deadly Daemon books and four more Stimulated books, not to mention the series I’m co-writing with Mari Carr about two Australian cowboys (who we call “stockmen” Down Under) and the women who finally rope them 😉 Seriously, I think my muse must has a caffeine drip inserted. 🙂

GIVEAWAY!!! GIVEAWAY!!!

Lexxie Couper is giving away TWO copies of BOTH books in the series which means you get a copy of Triple Dare and Dare Me as well. How awesome is she?

So the giveaway rules, as usual:

  1. Open a page of the current book that you are reading. (If you are not reading a book at the moment, open a page of the book that’s nearest to you.) And give me 3 sentences from the page you open up. Please do not forget to mention the book title and author as well. And tell me whether you like what you have read so far!
  2. Leave a valid e-mail address for a way to contact you in case you are the winner!
  3. Help spread the word about the giveaway! Tweet and earn 5 extra entries (use the hashtag #MBRPickofTheMonthGiveaway), recommend this post on Facebook & earn 5 extra entries. And don’t forget to mention in your comment whether you have tweeted or recommended the post on Facebook to get your extra entries.
  4. Like my page on Facebook to gain 5 extra more entries. If you are already a member of my page, just state so and you would gain your 5 extra entries.
  5. Giveaway begins at 00:00 hours February 1, 2012 and will end at 00:00 hours Maldivian time on the February 3, 2012. Winners will be contacted soon after and announced here on my blog!

So come on over & enter!

2 Comments

  1. Reading Never Love a Highlander by Maya Banks. Here are the 3 lines:

    You were his most trusted man, a man he sent into service to his brother so that Caelen would have someone he trusted close by. Don’t betray that trust, Gannon. I and my babe are counting on you to help us save my husband.

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  2. I just started reading The Edge of Night by Jill Sorenson.
    “For an indeterminable period, Noah stood guard over the body. He knew he should try to analyze clues and search for motives, but his mind was reeling. He also felt unsteady on his feet. The best he could manage was to stay put and not compromise the scene.”
    I love all of her books and this one looks like a keeper again!

    Thank you for the giveaway!
    I haven’t read a book by Lexxie Couper yet but always hear Pearl gushing about her books on twitter. 🙂

    Tweeted here: https://twitter.com/#!/_ClaudiaGC/status/165058022056542208

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