Thursday, February 25, 2016

Ooh La La! Romance and Armchair travel to France with Annie West

Do you love the idea of travel but maybe don't get to do too much of it? One of the things I adored about reading Harlequin Presents stories right from the beginning was the opportunity for some vicarious travelling to gorgeous exotic places, usually far from my home town. Now I write those stories and part of the joy is setting them all over the globe, some near my home on the east coast of Australia and some on other continents! Linked to the joy of writing those stories is the pleasure of researching them. I research using internet, books, documentaries, people who live there or who have visited in person and, yes, sometimes I get to travel for research too. This new release, A VOW TO SECURE HIS LEGACY is about a woman who's led all her life being cautious but who decides, when she faces the possibility of a lethal illness, to travel the globe, crossing items off her bucket list. Her first stop is Paris - which I can totally understand.
The story begins in Paris then moves elsewhere but I thought I'd share some of my research photos of that fabulous city. After all, it's where Imogen and Thierry fall for each other in what they believe will be a short term fling, but ends up being the love affair of a lifetime.
As you can see by the photo below, some research just needs to be savoured! I'm enjoying my first Kir Royale on French soil, just a couple of blocks from the River Seine.
Which looks like this:
One of the things Imogen wants to do is take an evening cruise through the centre of Paris. Here's a photo I took on one of those trips. I have far too many shots of the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame but the carved faces on this bridge really fascinated me, as they did Imogen.
She also wanted to drive a sports car around the Arc de Triomphe - a space notorious for its huge roundabout which has no lanes marked! I spent a long time on top of the Arc de Triomphe, not just admiring the distant view, but mesmerised by the traffic which alternated between free flowing and absolutely manic.

Then there are the shops (so many and so varied) and the sometimes whimsical displays.
And since Imogen was on the trip of a lifetime, she splurged on a stay in one of the famous luxury hotels. Here I am, researching, outside the Ritz.
And I'll leave you with one of my favourite views of the city - from the roof level of Notre Dame Cathedral.
If you want a closer look at the photos, just click on them. I hope you've enjoyed this sneak peak into a couple of the places that inspired A VOW TO SECURE HIS LEGACY. If you want to grab a copy it's available in all the usual places including:
If you want to find out more about the book or sign up to receive exclusive snippets and giveaways associated with my books, you can do that at my website.
What's your favourite way of armchair travelling? Reading fiction? Hearing about friends' travel? Watching TV documentaries? Travel books? Where have you armchair travelled recently? I'd love some recommendations.


franca poli said...

Hello Annie, beautiful images!
I like to watch television documentaries and read travel books. I especially like the books that speak of Australia and New Zealand, the US, and some European and Arab nations.
Lately my travels in an armchair concern London, Paris, and Australia.

Franca Poli

Jan Vanengen said...

Hi Annie, great photos of Paris all mine are from travels books, movies and shows from Telly. One mustn't forget the reading of books like your that take us to these amazing places. Have some great treasures from all over the place given to me buy family. Paris and the Eiffel Tower was one of my daughter's favourite places. I have seen every angle of the tower. Jan.

jcp said...

I like traveling to Holland via Betty Neels

Anna Campbell said...

Annie, lovely to see the pictures of some of the places that inspired your wonderful story - I think A Vow to Secure His Legacy is one of your best. And ooh, la, la, Thierry is a gorgeous hero. I remember the scene in the bateau-mouche - I've been to Paris a couple of times but I've never done a boat trip. Clearly I need to.

Annie West said...

Franca, for some reason I can't reply direct to your comment. I love armchair travelling too. What a coincidence you've been reading about Australia and Paris lately - just where Vow is set! Some of the TV documentaries are terrific, aren't they?

Annie West said...

Jan, one of the things I particularly enjoyed about reading my first romances was that I got to travel to lots of fascinating places. That reading inspired some of my later travel and there are still places I've read about that I'm longing to visit.

Annie West said...

Hi jcp - that was Betty Neels' specialty, wasn't it? Enjoy yourself!

Annie West said...

Anna, there's something nice about the view from water. I've found the same on the lake where I live and elsewhere - it's a different perspective. Plus you get to sit and relax, just soaking it all up.

So glad you enjoyed 'A Vow to Secure His Legacy' so much! :)

franca poli said...

Oh yes Annie!!