It’s been such a long, miserable winter in England this year, I began to think Spring would never arrive. Then all of a sudden the snow turned to sleet, then rain. The clocks went forward, so we wake in darkness but get the benefit of an extra hour’s daylight each evening. And then I got the news that The Count of Castelfino will be published as a Presents Extra title in July this year, and the author copies of my latest Modern Romance for Harlequin Mills and Boon, The French Aristocrat’s Baby, arrived. Better still, they weren’t alone! May 2010 also sees the re-issue of my very first Modern Romance, The Italian Billionaire’s Virgin, as part of a three-in-one volume with two of my favourite authors, Melanie Milburne and Trish Morey. Seeing those titles on the shelves around the time of my birthday will be an extra special present!
Here’s a taster from The French Aristocrat’s Baby:
Struggling chef Gwen flew to France to fulfil her dreams - she’d rather work herself into the ground than return to her smothering family. But all her determination can’t help her resist the intense gaze of Count Etienne Moreau...
‘You’ve come to apologise?’ she ventured.
That wiped the smile off his face. He grazed his lower lip with his teeth.
‘No...what for?’ He questioned. mystified.
Gwen was already crimson. She hardened her features. He mustn’t guess she was thinking about the way his muscles bunched beneath the fine gold skin of his chest. Fidgeting with embarrassment, she blew a stray curl of hair back from her brow with a gust of hot breath.
‘You know very well what for, Etienne Moreau.’
He gazed at her, shaking his head. ‘No, I don’t.’
She stared back. HIs ebony eyes looked so steady and honest she found it impossible to believe he was goading her. And yet she was being forced into saying things that made her blood boil with embarrassment.
She glared up at him malevolently. ‘You tried to buy me. You reduced me to the level of a bowl of bouillabaisse! You asked me to be your mistress!’ She hissed.
To her total amazement, his response was a confiding chuckle.
‘What’s the matter with that? As far as I’m concerned, that is one of the greatest compliments a man can pay a woman.’
‘Well, it comes pretty low on my agenda, I can tell you.’ Gwen snapped. The day was already warm, and she was getting hotter by the second.
Etienne managed to stop smiling, but could not hide the relish in his eyes. ‘That isn’t how it felt to me, last night,’ he murmured.
Copyright Harlequin Mills and Boon Limited, 2010.
I once considered becoming a chef like my heroine Gwen, but decided against it. That job comes complete with calories - it’s safer to write about cooking than indulge in it. I’m still in denial over the Shrove Tuesday pancakes, not to mention all those recent Easter eggs and Hot Cross buns. I shall have to start bounding around like the local lambs to work it all off!
What’s your favourite spring treat?
Christina Hollis is holidaying in the UK this Spring. Given the weather there recently, quick changes between bikini and Polar wear will give her plenty of exercise...