Sunday, September 12, 2010
Falling in Love - Christina Hollis
I like to start my stories with a bang. The opening of a novel should take you out of the everyday to a place where anything might happen. In my next release for Harlequin Mills and Boon, The Italian’s Blushing Gardener, Kira is almost literally swept away by a whirlwind. She thinks her perfect world is going to be wrecked by the empire building of the businessman next door. The Italian’s Blushing Gardener begins when Stefano’s helicopter drops in unannounced. When Kira goes to challenge him, he mistakes her for the agent who was due to meet him for the property viewing...
“Turning her head, she strained to hear any sounds of life. Only the quiet rustle of air through pine trees and the constant sniper fire of genista seeds disturbed the peace. Then as she listened, she heard something that might have been footsteps. It was only one tiny sound...she looked around, but there was no one.
Then two strong hands slipped around her waist, and in one smooth movement she was drawn into an inescapable embrace.
‘We meet at last, Miss Barrett!’ A deep, delicious Italian voice purred in perfect English. ‘I have been searching for you. I felt sure you would be waiting for me at Bella Terra’s front door?’
His teasing words reverberated into the curve of Kira’s neck. She froze, shrinking from the whisper of warm breath against her skin. The movement only drew her closer to his hard, masculine body. He was holding her so perfectly, she could barely breathe.
‘When we spoke on the phone you said you were looking forward to meeting me. Remind me- exactly where did you want to have dinner tonight?’ There was a soft, low chuckle in his voice as he murmured, pulling her around to ravish her with a kiss.
Before he could make contact, Kira burst from his grasp with reflexes that astonished them both.
‘I’m not Amanda Barrett, and I’m not very happy!’ She confronted him, breathing fast. ‘Please keep your hands to yourself!’
The visitor recoiled instantly, but he was far too professional to give his horror free rein. Instead, his features became a mask. With a slow, careful dip of his head, he addressed her gravely. ‘Scusi, Signora.’”
Copyright Harlequin Mills and Boon Limited, 2010
Determined to fight him every inch of the way, Kira finds herself torn between her fears and her feelings. Meanwhile, Stefano is shaken out of his complacency. He wants an escape from the hectic world of business. He doesn’t expect trouble from his only neighbour - but that’s exactly what he gets!
Of all the novels you have read, which has the best opening - one that really draws you into the story?
The Italian’s Blushing Gardener is released in the UK in November, and in North America in the new year. In the meantime, it’s available for pre-order from Amazon.com, and you can drop by my website http://www.christinahollis.com to find out how you can win a signed copy.
Posted by Lee Hyat at 1:54 AM