Tag: Darlene Panzera

Book Excerpt: TRUE COUNTRY HERO by Darlene Panzera

Eonly_9780062394729_CoverMONTANA HEARTS:  TRUE COUNTRY HERO by Darlene Panzera

Sweet Contemporary Romance / Released June 28th by Avon Impulse

Jace grinned as she walked away. The blond-haired, blue-eyed beauty was interested in him even if she didn’t give him her number. He could tell by the way her eyes widened and her lips parted when she gazed at him with that cautious yet yearning expression, which had several beats of his heart tripping all over each other.

He leaned his arms on the rail of the crowded rodeo arena as one of the bronco riders shot out of the gate. The noise level from the stands rose with cheers, applause, and whistles as the buckin’ cowboy struggled to remain saddled. But as impressive as the wrangler’s ride was, Jace found more pleasure watching Delaney.

She stood to the side of the announcer’s box, her camera raised to her eye and her hands twisting the round lens back and forth to make adjustments as she snapped photo after photo. Her friend Sammy Jo stood beside her, and despite the fact that both women’s attention was fixed on the excitement going on in front of them, their differences stood out like salt and pepper.

While Sammy Jo had hair almost as dark as his own, Delaney’s long tresses were a light blond, like a sweeping halo of sunshine. Sammy Jo certainly had the curves, but Delaney’s slim figure appeared more graceful when she moved, which he found more attractive. And while Sammy Jo posed confidently in front of the camera lens, giving the rider in the arena a thumbs-up, Delaney appeared more comfortable behind it.

He didn’t relish the media attention or ask to take pictures with every new woman he met but something curiously sweet about the camerawoman had tugged at him the moment he saw her. Maybe it was the attentive way she went about her work, as if she truly cared about the quality or was passionate about the subject matter. Jace had hoped it had been the latter. He pulled up the photo of the two of them together on his cell phone and glanced at the smile she’d flashed at the last second. He may have acted like an attention-seeking fool, but he didn’t regret it for one moment.

Not for that shot.

And if she wouldn’t give him her phone number, he’d find another way to get to know her better.

New Releases

WorthyHeart_rd1.inddA WORTHY HEART Courage to Dream Book 2 By Susan Anne Mason

Maggie Montgomery’s dream of seeing America has finally come true. While visiting Irish Meadows, Maggie meets an intriguing man whom she thinks is a stable hand. Only when her brother, Rylan, demands she stay away from Adam O’Leary does she learn he is Rylan’s brother-in-law, recently released from prison. Nonetheless, Maggie can’t seem to make her stubborn heart conform to her brother’s request. Adam O’Leary has never felt worthy of his place in the family. Now a free man, Adam’s only desire is to earn back his family’s trust. Falling in love with the newly arrived Maggie, however, was never in his plans. Despite everyone’s effort to keep them apart, the two develop a bond it seems nothing can break—but they soon discover the past isn’t easy to overcome.

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Interview with DARLENE PANZERA

11265360_847593291982867_3212371165505099763_oDarlene Panzera is a multi-published author of sweet, fun-loving romance. Her career launched with THE BET, included in bestselling author Debbie Macomber’s FAMILY AFFAIR. Her newest 3-book series, MONTANA HEARTS, debuts October 2015 from Avon Impulse, a division of HarperCollins. Darlene lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and three kids and says, “I love writing stories that inspire people to laugh, value relationships, and pursue their dreams.”

Tell us about your new release.

I write sweet, fun-loving romance. In MONTANA HEARTS: Her Weekend Wrangler, Eonly_9780062394682_Coverthree adult siblings are drawn back to their family’s guest ranch after their father is injured. Out of loyalty to their mother and beloved grandma, and also because their time away hasn’t been as rewarding as they’d hoped, Bree, Luke, and Delaney Collins must put aside past grievances and work together to salvage the home they had once been so eager to leave behind. Bree finds she must also set aside her differences with the handsome cowboy, Ryan Tanner, and convince him to lead the guests on mini roundups. But can she trust him with her heart?

What led you to write this book?

Before writing THE CUPCAKE DIARIES series, I had written a book about a horse ranch titled, BET YOU’LL Bet You'll Marry MeMARRY ME. I really wanted to get back to writing about a ranch with horses because I love the rustic atmosphere and love horses. (I have a black and white paint named J-R.) So I sat down and sketched out a three book proposal for the Montana Hearts series with each title focusing on one of the three siblings.

Did you have an interesting experience in the research of this book?

I do! My husband and daughter accompanied me on a road trip to Bozeman, Montana where I attended a writer’s conference that took us on different field trips around the area. We visited the historic Sacajawea Hotel, the local air and rescue helicopter team, and a cowboy rodeo where they shot salt pellets from their guns to pop balloons on poles. We also hiked up to the big white ‘M’ on the hillside at the crack of dawn and visited the nearby Three Forks Saddlery where I bought a new saddle pad. In fact, I base my fictional two block town of Fox Creek in Montana Hearts on the town of Three Forks because I fell in love with the area.

Which is more important characters or setting?

Definitely the characters. My stories focus on relationships, not only between the hero and heroine, but between all of the other people they come into contact as well.

Do you people watch for character inspiration?

Yes, guilty! I was in a restaurant the other day and couldn’t help but overhear a guy telling a girl at the table next to me, , “You’re making a bigger deal out of this than it is.” I saw her hurt expression and my heart went out to her as I realized what was really going on. The guy was being insensitive and wasn’t recognizing her emotions and the fact it was a big deal to her. He proceeded to ignore her and they ate the rest of the meal in silence.

What do you do when you are not writing?

I love spending time with my family, hanging out at the barn with my horse J-R, rooting for the Seattle Seahawks, crafts, photography, camping, hiking, skiing, and swimming at the lake. I’m also a big fan of taking off on spontaneous day trips to the beach or up into the mountains. I gain some of my most creative ideas while on these trips.

Do you have a reoccurring theme to your books?

I love underdogs who find the resolve they need to persevere. I also write about families and mending relationships. I tell people, “I love writing stories that inspire people to laugh, value relationships, and pursue their dreams.”

MontanaHeartsSweetTalkinWhat’s next for you?

MONTANA HEARTS: Sweet Talkin’ Cowboy releases December 15th 2015, and Book 3 in the series releases May of 2016.

Excerpt MONTANA HEARTS: Her Weekend Wrangler:

Bree stayed a few more minutes to watch the couples sway in time to the music, then spun around to search for the three CEO’s and collided straight into a hard, chiseled chest. A soothing warmth spread over her entire body as she glanced up into Ryan’s handsome face and gasped. “You’re here.”

“I wouldn’t miss it.”

She leaned to the side and glanced at the three men behind him. “And you brought your brothers!”

“Yeah, they’re the reason I’m late. They didn’t want to come but I knew how much it meant to you, and why,” he said, giving her a mischievous grin. “So I had to negotiate a deal to get them here.”

Bree smiled because of the way his mouth twitched when he grinned, because of the excitement in his eyes when he looked at her, and because of the way his dark navy blue dress shirt and jeans clung to his splendid physique. Whoa, girl! Remember to keep it casual. Recollecting her thoughts, she met his gaze and asked, “What kind of deal?”

Ryan placed a hand on either side of her waist, his touch firm and…pleasantly possessive. “I had to trade them my earnings from working your ranch so they can buy a set of new tires for their quad.”

He did that for her?

“Which means,” he continued, flashing her another pulse-kicking grin, “I’m a little short on money and I’d be willing to be your weekend wrangler for the rest of the summer, if you’ll have me.”

Stunned, Bree sucked in her breath and stared at him, unable to speak, unable to process exactly what this would mean for her family, unable to think of anything except that Ryan Tanner was absolutely, undeniably, the very, very best! With a little hop, she squealed, unable to hold back her delight, and with her heart taking the lead, she impulsively flung her arms around his neck and…kissed him.

Darlene Panzera interview

Darlene Panzera SMALLDARLENE PANZERA is the author of “sweet, fun-loving romance”.  Her latest release, SPRINKLED WITH KISSES, is the fifth in her Cupcake Diaries series. Born in New Jersey, she is a resident of the Pacific Northwest where her stories take place.

Q:  Tell us about your new release.

THE CUPCAKE DIARIES: SPRINKLED WITH KISSES is a sweet, fun-loving beach read. Stacey McIntyre is a cousin to the original three women who started Creative Cupcakes. As she manages a mobile cupcake stand in Cannon Beach, Oregon, she dreams of sunshine, warm sand, and a safe place to stay. Instead, she fearfully learns the area was once flooded by a tsunami, her cupcakes are attacked by a flock of seagulls, and she becomes rivals with Dave Wright, the handsome owner of an ice cream truck bent on stealing away her sales. Now…not only does she have to help Creative Cupcakes win the state cupcake competition, but she has to find a way to convince Mr. Wright that working together can lead to sweeter rewards.

Q:  With so many books on the market, many of them involving food, what makes yours stand out?

My books are not the typical “foodie.” They are not a baking ‘How-To.’ Each novella in the series includes a cupcake recipe in the back pages, but these stories focus on the characters and what they have to overcome to reach their dreams. They are humorous, light-hearted, and fluffy, but underneath there is a deeper layer of real emotion and a focus on core family values.

Q:  Do you read the same genre you write?

I read a wide variety of genres, but I do keep coming back to romances that feature fun witty banter between the hero and heroine. I love to see how each of them will respond next and how they will fall in love.

Q:  What books have most influenced your life?

The Bible for my life values, the Trixie Beldon young adult mysteries for fun and hooks, Judith McNaught novels for deep emotion and witty banter, Debbie Macomber series for small town family relationships, and all how-to-write books by Donald Maass. I try to incorporate all of these into my own writing.

Q:  Have you had an interesting experience in the research of one of your books?

In SPRINKLED WITH KISSES (Book 5), my heroine, Stacey, carries an emergency backpack because she is a tornado survivor and fears natural disasters. I didn’t know when I placed the setting in Cannon Beach that they’d once had an earthquake triggered tsunami in 1964 with  27 ft. waves that took out the main bridge north of town and flooded the area. This happened to be perfect for the storyline. During research, I found that the town has a tsunami warning system broadcast over the town – one that sounds like an obnoxiously loud, tormented cow mooing. You can listen at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E52UHuPsytY

This is the test sound, if the tsunami threat were real this would be replaced with a loud siren. I thought – what fun? What if my heroine did not know this? I quickly wrote the unique mooing cow noise into the story and I think it is one of the funniest scenes.

Q: What is the one question you wish an interviewer would ask you?

 I’d like to be asked, ‘How did you come up with your sub-titles for Sweet on YouRecipe for LoveTaste of Romance, Spoonful of Christmas, and Sprinkled with Kisses? So I can tell my readers a secret: each sub-title consists of three words, the first having to do with baking such as ‘Sweet,’ ‘Recipe,’ ‘Taste,’ ‘Spoonful,’ and ‘Sprinkled.’ But if you put the last word of the first three titles of the series together it spells: You Love Romance!

 Q:  Which character would you like to be friends with in RL?

 I would like to be friends with all of the main characters in THE CUPCAKE DIARIES. Although each one is unique, I think I can connect with each of them in some way, they each contain a small piece of me. And one of the main themes of the stories is friendship. They all have different personalities, strengths, and hang-ups like the rest of us, but it is their unfailing bond that invites me in story after story and makes me wish I could sit down in their kitchen and eat cupcakes with them.