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Saturday, September 10, 2011

What’s your favorite romance fantasy?


Whenever I imagine my dream vacation, it’s always a variation of the same scenario. Tropical island. Clear aquamarine waters lapping up onto long stretches of white sand. Palm trees leaning toward the shoreline. Brilliant tropical flowers. Endless sun. A gorgeous dark-haired man, with rippling muscles, wearing next to no clothes—






Whoa! Stop right there. Where did he come from? My husband is blond, and of course he’d be the star of my vacation fantasy.

Sorry about that, darling hub. My romance novel fantasy butted into my vacation dreams… Which is what happens to authors. I'm sometimes surprised to read back over my work and see themes and issues from my own life interlaced through my story. I didn't intend them, they just got there via my subconscious.







The tropical paradise thing, for example. In Home Is Where the Bark Is, Serena and Nick plan to honeymoon in Hawaii where Serena will pose in a swimming pool of chocolate for a commercial. Hmm. Don’t ask me where that particular fantasy comes from! Come to think of it, chocolate seems to sneak into everything I write...

My newest story The Castaway Bride has all the above tropical island wonders and, come to think of it, chocolate as well. The dark-haired fantasy lover? Well of course!

I so enjoyed writing Matt Slade. He’s succeeded in the business world against tough odds but he’s been betrayed by people he trusted. That’s made him cynical about love but there’s a wonderful chivalrous streak in his nature that keeps fighting its way to the surface—especially when runaway bride Cristy Walters is close by. He helps her escape from her cheating bridegroom only for them to end up shipwrecked on an uninhabited island. Cristy has her own issues—in particular she doesn’t trust lust—and boy does she have to struggle against her feelings for hot hunk Matt!

Is there a dog in The Castaway Bride? That’s one of the first questions people ask me. (My Berkley Sensation books, Love is a Four-Legged Word and Home Is Where the Bark Is, have lots of dogs in them.)

Yes and no. Matt is taking time out on his yacht. He’d love to have his beloved black Labrador Jake sailing with him, but Jake gets seasick and can’t be on board. Matt has to Skype his dog to keep in touch. So Jake is part of the story but never actually appears on the pages. Needless to say my heroine Cristy Walters finds Matt’s devotion to his dog endearing. Oh, and there’s a tame dragon lizard named Sam who plays a part in the plot.

But the focus of The Castaway Bride is purely on two people, both emotionally wounded in their own ways, finding passion and true love in a tropical island paradise. Alert: it’s a tad steamier than my doggy books.

The Castaway Bride is my first foray into the exciting world of indie publishing and is available only as an e-book at Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes & Noble and other e-book retailers. It’s on sale for the introductory price of $0.99c (that’s another thing I love—a bargain!) But I’m giving away a free copy to anyone who comments here over the weekend, via a coupon for Smashwords where you can download the book in a format to suit any e-reader or PC.


Do you have a fantasy vacation destination? A favorite romance scenario? I’d love to hear your comment. Be sure to leave your email address if you would like a free download of The Castaway Bride.

http://www.kandyshepherd.com

Photos courtesy of Tahiti Tourisme and Tourism Queensland.

31 comments:

chey said...

My fantasy vacation destination is Hawaii.

Sonali said...

Hi Kandy,

'The Castaway Bride' sounds like an amazing read.

A lot of people love there fantasy vacation to be on a tropical island with palm trees, sandy beaches and pina-colada's, some place like Hawaii, Tahiti or maybe Fiji but since i live in Fiji surrounded by such things, my fantasy vacation would be a trip to Europe.

Fiona Lowe said...

Kandy, I LOVE the photos and I'm so looking forward to this book. It's on my Kindle waiting for me to finish another book and that cover keeps tempting me to put the other book down!

My fantasy vacation is one where no one is asking me where something is, or if I can drive them to, or if I have seen their...
It includes no dishes and LOTS of reading with a handsome man bringing me all the food and drink I require and the occassional foot rub!

Kandy Shepherd said...

Hawaii is so beautiful isn't it Chey? I've only been there once when my cousin lived there and I'd love to go again. Hope you get there before too long!

Kandy Shepherd said...

Good point Sonali, when you live in a tropical paradise it wouldn't be your fantasy escape!
Europe--yes! You've made me want to go there too!

Vanessa Barneveld said...

I'm killing myself laughing over your hero Skyping his Labrador back home...mostly because I do the same with my cats when I'm away.

I have the Castaway Bride waiting impatiently on my e-reader. I can't wait to read it. That cover is gorgeous.

New York is always at the top of my fantasy vacation list. I know -- it's not at all beachy, but I'm not one of those people who goes on holidays to relax!

Kandy Shepherd said...

Hey Fiona, so lovely to see you here. We both have bride stories out at the moment, with brides wearing lovely dresses on our covers. Go brides!
I loved BOOMERANG BRIDE and the characters and community you portray in it. I hope we will be seeing more single title romances from you!
I'm with you on the freedom-from-responsibilities aspect of a dream vacation. That's half the appeal isn't it? Oh, and being warm. On our side of the world winter doesn't seem to want to go away...

Kandy Shepherd said...

Vanessa, I've always kept in touch by phone with my pets while I'm away--Skype adds a whole new dimension of animal communication! Glad to see you Skype your kitties too!
I was in New York in June for the Romance Writers of America convention and have to agree it is a marvelous vacation destination. I find it the ultimate city.

info said...

My favorite destination is Cancun

Kandy Shepherd said...

Info, I would so love to go to Cancun. I've seen so many movies set there and would love to see it for myself!

Selena Robins said...

Congrats on your new release, Kandy! I enjoyed your other work, so I know I'll enjoy this one as well.

My tropical fantasy is Hawaii, probably why I set my book there.

Love the cover of this book.

P.S. Please don't enter me in the draw, I'll hop on over to Smashwords and buy a copy.

Cheryl Leigh said...

Kandy, I'm so glad your wonderful Castaway Bride book is now out there for everyone to enjoy!

I laughed at Skyping pets. We do it too, but the dog never seems as excited as us, LOL.

I love tropical vacations, but I think my fantasy one would be to stay in a rambling, old English country house, filled with antiques and have gardens that go on forever.

Virginia said...

I have always wanted to visit Ireland and Scotland. Hawaii would be good also. Although i do visit those places in book.

lead[at]hotsheet[dot]com

Suzanne Brandyn said...

I lived my fantasy Kandy. I married in Hawaii in 2008 and it was the best fantasy, with romance and all the trimmings a girl could ever want. Oh and a perfect warm day, and long warm nights swimming, and sipping on cocktails... I lovvve their cocktails. :)

Kandy Shepherd said...

Hi Selena, so nice to see you here.
While you are hopping over to Smashwords to buy THE CASTAWAY BRIDE, I've just hopped over to Samhain and bought your romantic comedy WHAT A GIRL WANTS.
I was a bit e-book phobic when it was first published, now I'm a total convert! I can't wait to read it.
I didn't realize the book was set in Hawaii, all the more reason to enjoy it!

Kandy Shepherd said...

Hi Virgina, oh I so want to visit Ireland! I lived there when I was very young but it has never been the right time for a visit.
Of course you are right--part of the joy of reading books is visiting the places they are set in. I've read so many wonderful stories set in Ireland and Scotland and it makes me want to go there even more.
I hope you get to go there soon! And Hawaii too...

Kandy Shepherd said...

Hi Cheryl, yes the animals don't quite get the joy out of Skype than we do, do they? One friend says her dog goes behind the computer when her husband Skypes and whines when he doesn't find him there. So sweet and somehow sad!
I'm so with you and your fantasy about the rambling English house with the glorious garden--only I want to live there not just visit!
Thanks for calling by.

Kandy Shepherd said...

Suzanne, your wedding in Hawaii sounds like the ultimate fantasy come true. Divine! It must have been the most romantic day! The memory of it must make you want to be there right now.

Laurie G said...

My son just honeymooned in Italy. The Amalfi coastline looked so gorgeous. I want to go there!!

Sharon Archer said...

LOL on the skyping Labrador, Kandy! Every man and his dog is on the electronic media these days! ;) I can't wait to read Matt and Cristy's story... it's teetering on my e-TBR pile.

Kandy Shepherd said...

The Amalfi coast? Laurie, I would kill to go there! That is truly a fantasy destination--what an ideal place for a honeymoon. I hope you get to go there too!

Kandy Shepherd said...

Yep, dogs and cats are getting techo savvy, Sharon!
I'm more techno savvy too. Who would have thought even six months ago that I'd release an e-book?
Hope you enjoy Bride when it fights its way to the top of your e-TBR pile!

Cathleen Ross said...

I'm would love to go back to Port Douglas, lie around and do nothing. The opposite of my husband's idea of a holiday.
Best
Cathleen Ross

Michele L. said...

Hi Kandy,
My favorite vacation destination is Aruba. I would love to go there! The farthest south I have been is to Cayman Islands.

Kandy Shepherd said...

Hi Cathleen, yes, yes and yes to Port Douglas in far-north Queensland, Australia. Bliss!

Kandy Shepherd said...

Michele, Aruba seems to tick all the boxes--and then some--for a fantasy vacation . I'm adding it to my list of dream destinations!

SiNn said...

hands down i wanna go to Ireland for a vac its beautiful there

mortalsinn(AT)yahoo(DOT)com

Na said...

My dream vacation is in Scotland and Ireland. I have read so many books which have "taken" me there, but hopefully soon I want to make it a reality.
Cambonified {at} yahoo {dot} com

Desere said...

My dream vacation would definitely be Italy with the gorgeous scenery, fast cars ,stunning delicous food and fashion and not the mention the amazing art !

One day I know I ll get to go ! The castaway bride sounds incredible and I simply adore the title !

Desere
desere_steenberg@yahoo.com

Laurie G said...

OOPS I forgot my email address johns lake at usa dot con

Kandy Shepherd said...

Thank you all for your comments--they've made me long for exotic vacations all around the world!

To those of you who left your email address, I've sent a coupon for a free download of THE CASTAWAY BRIDE. I hope you enjoy it!

Kandy