Guest Post – The Worst Possible Guy by Nancy Northcott

Guest Post – The Worst Possible Guy by Nancy Northcott

Thank you for having me as a guest, Rae.

One of the things about writing romance that’s both fun and challenging is coming up with the right hero for a particular heroine and vice-versa. Some writers of series plan their lead couples before they write the opening to the first book. I generally prefer to let things develop organically, to see where the characters take me.

I had to pair up Griffin Dare, the hero of Renegade, because that was the first book in my Light Mage Wars series. His kickass heroine, Valeria Banning, was the Southeast Shire Reeve, or sheriff, while Griff was their most wanted fugitive. Griff had been taking covert action against the mages’ deadly enemies, the ghouls, so I gave him a group of friends who were his covert ops team. Each of them would be the hero or heroine of a subsequent book, but that was all the planning I did for them.

One of the members of the team introduced in Renegade was Natasha “Tasha” Murdock, a US Navy veteran who ran her own business as a building contractor and interior designer. Because my parents met while both were serving in the navy, I have a soft spot for that branch of the service. So I had to have a navy veteran. Since Tasha was a building contractor, I thought serving in the navy’s construction arm, the Seabees, would’ve been a good way for her to acquire those skills. I knew Tasha would be the heroine of the sixth book, but I didn’t yet have a title for it.

I also had no idea who her hero would be until I was writing the fifth book, Warrior, which features archaeologists Will Davis and Audra Grayson. The dark magic users known as ghouls were targeting their team, so a group of mages provided security. One of them was Carter Lockwood, who is a deputy shire reeve, the mage equivalent of a deputy US marshal.

Writing happily along, I had no idea what was about to happen. Then Carter entered the farmhouse Will and Audra’s team was using as a base. A moment later, Tasha walked out of the kitchen. Tasha saw Carter and stopped cold. He was equally stunned to see her. He was also delighted. Unfortunately, the delight was on his side only.  Here’s what happened:

Will opened the door, and the tall deputy reeve stepped in. Although raindrops glistened on his combat boots, his close-cut, chestnut hair was dry. He must’ve magically shielded himself from the rain.

“Days like this,” Carter said, his gray eyes gleaming with humor, “I wish I were a weather mage.”

“I wish you were, too,” Will replied as Carter and Griff exchanged handshakes and heys by way of greeting each other. “You want a cup of coffee before you tell us the news?”

“Coffee’d be great.”

They all started for the kitchen as the three women emerged, Val carrying a plate stacked with brownies.

About to ask Carter a question, Will happened to be looking at him. The expression on the deputy’s face went from shocked to delighted to wary to bland in a heartbeat.

What the—? Tracking Carter’s gaze, Will found it locked on Tasha, who’d gone pale and wide-eyed. Bright spots of red suddenly bloomed on her cheekbones.

Carter set his hands on his hips. “Hey, Red.” His easy tone belied the intent look in his eyes. “Good to see you again.”

“That’s Murdock to you, mister.” Despite the whipcrack in Tasha’s voice, it was higher than normal, and she was minutely trembling.

Will had never seen Tasha rattled, and he would bet Griff and Val hadn’t either. Val moved a half-step closer to Tasha, into her space. A clear move of support.

“What are you doing here?” Tasha demanded, glaring at Carter.

His expression hardened. “My job.”

The answer made her eyes flash, as though the words had some significance. Will eased between them on Carter’s left at the same time Griff was stepping forward on the right.

“Do we have a problem?” Will asked, glancing from Carter to Tasha.

“I don’t,” she snapped.

Carter shrugged. “No problem here.”

Yeah. And the Easter Bunny ate steak for breakfast.

~

This clicked for me, so I built Tasha and Carter’s story, the latest in the series, off of it. That involved figuring out why Tasha and Carter reacted the way they did. It also gave me the book’s title, Nemesis, because she saw him as her nemesis in the service.

In the excerpt above, Carter and Tasha obviously already knew each other. Her use of mister, a navy term my parents used, implied they’d served together.  It was also obvious that he’d been attracted to her and she had strong feelings of some kind about him. All that suited me. Navy regulations would’ve precluded a relationship while they served together, so mutual attraction would’ve left them both wondering what might’ve been.

But why was Tasha not nearly as happy to see him as he was to see her? I settled on the idea that she had done something well-intentioned but not strictly within regs that caused a political firestorm. If Carter was the one to uncover and report that, resulting in a blot on her record, it would’ve torpedoed any attraction on her part. Or so she would tell herself.

All this gave me an old conflict that would start them off on uneasy footing, but that wasn’t enough to drive the story. Holding grudges is not sympathetic. Since Carter was, however reluctantly, bound by duty to act as he did and Tasha knew she was skating the regs and thus in the wrong, she wouldn’t come across very well if she couldn’t get past that. So I needed more.

Tasha and her twin brother, Nate, grew up in a rundown trailer with parents who’d had a shotgun wedding and resented their children and each other because of it. Tasha reacted by running wild. She acquired a very bad reputation, including a scandalous criminal charge.

Carter, on the other hand, comes from a wealthy and socially prominent family. His dad was their town’s mayor, and his mom serves in the US House of Representatives. Tasha believes they would be appalled by her history and not want Carter anywhere near her. She also believes that knowing the truth would shatter his good opinion of her, and she wants to avoid that pain.

But she also wants him. And he wants her. In the service, she was attracted to his leadership skills and his kindness. He admired her perseverance and courage. Of course each of them also found the other hot. The regs that kept them apart no longer matter, and the sizzling attraction burns as strongly as ever.

Unfortunately, the chance she and Carter might actually have something important ramps up Tasha’s fears about her past. She thinks he’s the worst possible guy for her and she can’t bring him anything but disappointment. Can she overcome her own self-doubt and open up to this man who yearns for her? Or will she drive him away to protect him?

We all know romance is about the journey rather than the destination, so I’m sure you know the answers to those questions. I hope you have as much fun going along on Tasha and Carter’s bumpy road through Nemesis as I did.

GET YOUR COPIES HERE

Nemesis: Amazon ~ Universal
Renegade: Amazon ~ Universal

Nancy Northcott’s childhood ambition was to grow up and become Wonder Woman.  Around fourth grade, she realized it was too late to acquire Amazon genes, but she still loved comic books, mysteries, science fiction, fantasy, history, and romance. A sucker for fast action and wrenching emotion, Nancy combines the romance and high stakes (and sometimes the magic) she loves in the books she writes.

 She’s the author of the Light Mage Wars/Protectors paranormal romances, the Lethal Webs and Arachnid Files romantic suspense series, and the historical fantasy trilogy, The Boar King’s Honor. With author Jeanne Adams, she co-writes the Outcast Station space opera series.

 

Nancy’s Social Media links;

www.nancynorthcott.com

Twitter: @NancyNorthcott

Facebook ~ Goodreads

 

The Deathbrew Affair by Nancy Northcott

The Deathbrew Affair is the first book in Nancy Northcott’s The Lethal Web series and its a page turner with non-stop action that delivers a thrilling plot, great one-liners, a slow burn romance that delivers in spades, and an ending that satisfies any reader. Well…we always want more and lucky for us dear readers, there are at least two more headed our way.

Katherine “Casey” Billings is a sassy, kick-ass heroine who isn’t too fond of plans, doesn’t care what other people think, and will do anything for those she considers family or friend. When she’s set on an assignment to assimilate in a world that is vastly different that the one she grew up in, will she blend in or stand out? If unexpected feelings can be set aside, she might survive. Be sure to tell that to her heart or Casey just might compromise everything she’s set out to accomplish. Oh I just love a romantic suspense!

Lord “Jack” Bainbridge, is a man who gets what he wants, most of the time. Working for MI5 his latest assignment requires him to have a partner. The plan is simple, assume a new identity and infiltrate to expose the source. On paper it all sounds simple, however, his new partner is driving him crazy and if he doesn’t get a grip on his feelings he might discover that his heart isn’t made of stone. Can he complete the mission before his actions become real? Will they stop a global threat in time?

One-click this must read and enjoy a thrilling opening sequence, spot-on details that pull you into a vivid world of family expectations, spies, and what promises to be a global adventure. Are you ready to cozy up in your favorite chair? At 433 pages, this page-turner is one that proves why Nancy is must read romance. The details in this book allow the story to unfold in my head like an action movie with a well built world, sharp dialogue, witty characters, and the perfect amount of sexual tension.

Put on a pot of coffee, spice a little eggnog, or a make a plate of sweets. This book will satisfy any lover of romantic suspense and put Nancy Northcott on your autobuy list!  At a price of $4.99 you get 433 pages of action, romance, and great writing. Still need convincing? Check out the excerpt below and then one-click.

2 JalepenosThis two peppers spicy latte has just enough to make you tingle and is it’s for mature readers 18+.I received this ARC from the author for a fair and honest review.

Read an excerpt of Chapter One here.

Get your copy here:

About the Author:

Nancy Northcott’s childhood ambition was to grow up and become Wonder Woman. Around fourth grade, she realized it was too late to acquire Amazon genes, but she still loved comic books, mysteries, science fiction, fantasy, history, and romance. A sucker for fast action and wrenching emotion, Nancy combines the romance and high stakes (and sometimes the magic) she loves in the books she writes.

She’s the author of the Light Mage Wars/Protectors paranormal romances, the Lethal Webs and Arachnid Files romantic suspense series, and the historical fantasy trilogy, The Boar King’s Honor. With author Jeanne Adams, she co-writes the Outcast Station space opera series.

 

 

Nancy’s Social Media links;

www.nancynorthcott.com
Twitter: @NancyNorthcott
Facebook: https://facebook.com/nancynorthcottauthor
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3468806.Nancy_Northcott

Guest Post Author Jeanne Adams

Guest Post Author Jeanne Adams

Today I’ve got Jeanne Adams to share a little bit about her recent release Outcast Station. Thanks for stopping by Jeanne and sharing the whole latte with us!

Hi Rae! I’m excited to join you. I got a frappacino though…it’s hot today! I appreciate you giving a shout-out to my new release, Welcome to Outcast Station though, because I know you really prefer romance to straight science fiction.

While Outcast Station is a departure from my Romantic Suspense and Paranormal Romance roots, it was great fun to create this fast-paced space adventure. The stories will continue with Christmas on Outcast Station, out later this year. There will eventually be love interest, but for right now….adventure is the key!

Joining me in this fun endeavor is my Romance Bandits pal, Nancy Northcott. Both my story and Nancy’s are thrillers with strong protagonists that harken back to the golden era of Science Fiction. In fact, Nancy and I were thrilled when reviewers compared Welcome to Outcast Station to Robert Heinlein’s best and the works of Jack McDevitt.

If you like science fiction with strong leads, and a diverse cast, then you may want to join us out in space on Outcast Station. While decidedly NOT ROMANCE, these stories are nevertheless worth the read!

WELCOME TO OUTCAST STATION

The Accidental Plague by Jeanne Adams
Outcast Station is a backwater, but for BVax Scientist Ravinisha Trentham, any posting is better than washing dishes. Ravi is top in her graduating class, but only Outcast would hire a McKeonite. Someone on station wants her dead, but when a plague breaks out, Ravi may be their only hope. If the murderer gets to her first, everyone will die.

The New Badge by Nancy Northcott

Deputy Marshal Hank Tremaine crosses the wrong person and lands at Outcast Station, the armpit of Terran space. His hostile boss promptly assigns him to a backcountry murder. Solving it will help redeem his reputation and get him posted somewhere more civilized. But failing to find the killer will bury his career once and for all.

www.JeanneAdams.com

www.NancyNorthcott.com

a Rafflecopter giveaway

To get your copy click here:

Update for Nancy Northcott and Jeanne Adams Winter Extravaganza Post

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Winter Extravaganza

Dear followers and readers who have attempted to comment in the past few days. I have left the giveaways open for another day due to a blog error that prevented many of you from commenting. The problem has been fixed and I want to allow time for those who wanted to comment to do so.

All contests for Day7 with Nancy Northcott and Day 8 with Jeanne Adams will stay open till tomorrow, July 19 at 2PM.

You must comment on these pages to be entered to win.

ICYMI: Winter Extravaganza Day 7

ICYMI: Winter Extravaganza Day 8

Thank you for your understanding and good luck to all 🙂

Happy Reading!

Winter Extravaganza Day 7: Nancy Northcott

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Winter Extravaganza

****** Congratulations to the winner of the Day 7 Giveaway  ******

Bube you have won the signed copies of Light Mage Wars set of Sentinel plus Warrior. (International).

Bube you have 24 hours to comment or a new name will be drawn.

**************************************************************************

It’s time to meet A Warrior, an Archaeologist and a whole lot of unexplained occurrences make this paranormal romance a must read from Nancy Northcott.

Then dive into a novella that has a whole lot of chemistry to make this one fantastic sexy paranormal way to start the series!

Either way you decide to read Nancy’s books they are perfect as a standalone too.

Happy Reading!

 

Warrior_FINAL_3

Warrior by Nancy Northcott is a colorful and magical tale with on sexy mage, a determined archaeologist and a lot of heat! Audra Grayson is deep in the Okefenokee Swamp hoping to keep her career alive. When her team discovers a metal object in the middle of a Native American dig site they fear someone is out to sabotage them.  When she seeks out some help Will Davis, a famous archaeologist and Mage, shows up. For Will, working with the Mundanes (non-magic using folk) can be challenging but he’s determined to help her find out how the metal object appeared at a site where none should be.

A mysterious fire and magic permeating in the air send Will’s senses on overdrive. Is dark magic at work? It’s when a bronze axe is discovered that Audra’s team starts scrambling and Will’s interest is now heightened. How did it get here? For Audra the presence of a hunky man at her site creates a challenging work environment and results in an unfortunate Ghoul attack.

Is there enough trust between Will and Audra that they can confide in each other? There is fear that someone close to Audra is betraying her. Audra’s hiding something that could damage the results of her dig. Afraid to confide in anyone she’s unable to discuss her unexplained visions and the dark shadows that are surrounding her. Will she reach out to Will and let him help? Is she prepared for him to discover her secret?

Once again the dig site is attacked and destroyed. Audra fears that the park rangers will accuse her team of vandalism. With her reputation on the line and concern for her team and Will, she has to make a decision. Can she confide in Will completely? What will they do when they discover someone they both trusted has betrayed them?

Will offers a solution but is it enough? Eventually Audra decides to act when the presence yet again of the shadows come for her for what she hopes is the last time. After all this time will she find out what has left a shadow over everything?

Ghouls, Mages, secret powerful artifacts and sizzling chemistry make this another intense story. Thank you Nancy! I received this ARC from the author for an honest review and am super excited that I did!  I am so happy that I did- I look forward to the next installment of the Light Mage Series soon.

Excerpt:

 

“What?” Will asked, putting his phone away. “Have I grown an extra head?”

Audra smiled to show she didn’t care about his choices. “It’s not my business. Sorry I couldn’t help overhearing.”

“What’s not your business?” He strolled closer, smiling slightly. “This is honesty hour, babe. If you’ve got a question, ask it.”

Audra hesitated, but his friendly smile encouraged her to go ahead. Maybe she was imagining that hint of danger in the depths of his eyes.

“Well, if we’re being honest, I’d rather you not call me babe.” Or sugar or hon or any other name he called the women he flirted with and probably went to bed with, and, again, so not her business. “It’s not an image I find professional.”

“Fair enough. Okay.”

“Okay? Just like that?”

Will shrugged. “Why not? It isn’t as though I don’t know your name.”

Audra bit her lip. She had no right to criticize anything about his social life.

“If there’s something else,” he added, raising an eyebrow, “spit it out and let’s go.” The glint in his eyes dared her.

That glint jabbed her like a needle. “I apologize for overhearing, but I couldn’t help it.” When he nodded, she continued, “Your business is your business, but I noticed…”

Will said nothing, just watched her with that little smile and that dangerous expression. Audra steeled her spine.

“I just wondered whether you always turn on the charm when you’re trying to divert a woman.”

“Sometimes. It usually works.”

“Based on these two phone calls, it seems to, though Denise Larrabee is smart and tenacious. Whoever you were talking to a minute ago also seemed to back down when you flirted with her.”

“Flirting is an ancient human custom,” Will responded. “Do you have a problem with it?”

“No, of course not.” Audra wheeled in exasperation. “I shouldn’t have brought it up, but it’s just hard to believe they let you get away with it.”

She turned back, only to find Will less than a hand span away, still with that cocky smile.

“So you’d be impervious?” he asked softly.

Yes. Of course. No hot guy would distract her from a goal she cared about. But some primitive instinct warned her not to say so. Audra picked a point over his shoulder and stared at it. Anything was better than looking at him.

“There’s no good answer to that. Just forget I mentioned it and–”

Will used two fingers to tip her chin up. Her eyes met his, and the words died in her throat. His cocky look faded into a searching, intent one. Then he leaned down and kissed her.

A flash of heat blanked Audra’s brain. The world spun, and she reached for the nearest solid anchor–Will. He cupped her cheek as his free arm slid around her waist, steadying her and tugging her gently against him. The full body contact generated another brain-blinding flare.

Will’s mouth was warm and soft on hers. Tantalizing. Demanding.

Audra made a small sound in her throat, or maybe Will did. It seemed to restore a measure of sanity. She pulled back, breaking the kiss.

He lifted his head, and his eyes were dazed for an instant before they darkened with consternation. Releasing her, he took a step back.

Audra fought to level her breathing. As kisses went, that had been a mild one, yet her blood raced and her heart pounded. What would a serious kiss with him be like?

Not that they had any business kissing at all.

“Damn.” Will sounded slightly breathless, something she wasn’t too big a person to relish just a bit.

He ran a hand over his face. “That should not have happened. It was my fault.”

“To be fair, I didn’t exactly push you away. But you’re right that it was inappropriate.”

Mind-bending, body-flaming, and marvelous but totally inappropriate.

Audra summoned the most casual voice she could. “It was also a sneaky way to win an argument. Anyway, like I said, I can’t believe they let you get away with it.”

Will gaped at her for a second before he grinned. “Well, that shows me. You win, Dr. Grayson.”

(** re-posted from 12/5/14)

*************

 

Sentinel_Final_

 

Sentinel: A Light Mage Wars Novella by Nancy Northcott is a seamless story with on sexy mage, a talented artist with a secret and some fantastic chemistry!  Rick Moore, a Mage reporter has been desperately trying to find out the truth surrounding his father’s death and refute the accusation that he was involved in dark magic. In order to get the support to uncover his family scandal from the web magazine he works for, he must first find out what happened to one of the most wanted fugitives in the Mage world, artist Caroline Dare’s brother.

Fighting ghouls and an unintended intoxicating attraction only deepens the connection between them. What will Caro do when she discovers the real story he’s after? Will he loose her forever? Rick needs to get the inside scoop on Caro’s brother Griffin Dare, but at the rate Rick’s going that could be lethal.

When Rick’s boss betrays him, in the most unforgiveable way by publishing damaging information with Rick’s name attached to it, everything changes. It now paints Rick as a callous, uncaring and media driven journalist out for blood. Caro is left questioning his feelings and intentions towards her.

Too much is at stake for Caro, with the publication of personal information can she trust Rick? Are they both being set up? Or was he just interested in her for “the story?”

With nothing left to lose, Rick seeks out help from an unexpected source. He must now have faith in the Mage judicial system, and pray that the truth will be exposed.

When I read stories I usually have a pretty good idea of how they will end but this time….whoa!!!! Dear readers you must read this book now! I gasped at the ending! I’m so grateful that no one was home as I screamed a bit loud! Absolutely superb Nancy! Well done!  I received this ARC from the author for an honest review and am super excited that I did!  I am so happy that I did- it was the perfect book to read on a crisp winter day!

(** re-posted from 12/3/14)

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BIO:

Nancy Northcott’s childhood ambition was to grow up and become Wonder Woman.  Around fourth grade, she realized it was too late to acquire Amazon genes, but she still loved comic books, science fiction, fantasy and YA romance.  A sucker for fast action and wrenching emotion, Nancy combines the romance and high stakes she loves in the books she writes. 

Her debut novel, Renegade, received a starred review from Library Journal.  The reviewer called it “genre writing at its best.”  Nancy is a three-time RWA Golden Heart finalist and has won the Maggie, the Molly, the Emerald City Opener, and Put Your Heart in a Book.

Married since 1987, Nancy and her husband have one son, a bossy dog, and a house full of books.

********* Nancy Northcott Giveaway **********

For a chance to win a paperback of her Light Mage Wars set:  Sentinel plus Warrior.

Tell us the name and/or author of the first comic book, science fiction or fantasy story you read.

(International)


Contest ends 7/17/16 at 2 PM EST. Winners will be randomly selected AND must comment on this blog post.

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter (@RaeLatte) the blog (button on homepageand my FB page (Books I Love A Latte ) to keep up to date on everything.

If the winners do not comment within 24 hours a new name will be drawn. Don’t miss out!

Good luck to all!

Must Read, Must Pre-Order and Must Gift. It’s never too early to start shopping for the holidays :) while the prices are hot!

Looking for a few must read books for the weekend? These are books I’ve either read or are on my to be read list.  Life is short. Support an author. Download a book. Discover a new favorite or dive-in to an old faithful 🙂

If the book was featured on the blog I’ve linked the review to the title. Just click on the book name and you’ll be able to read my review.

Happy Reading & Happy Shopping

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(Review Post 1, Review Post 2, Review Post 3, Review Post 4, Review Post 5, Review Post 6, Review Post 7,

Crossfire Series by Sylvia Day

Maiden Lane by Elizabeth Hoyt (Historical Romance)- prices vary per book

Westen Series by Suzanne Ferrell (Suspense/Action Romance) – prices vary per book

Heart of the Cougar Series by Terry Spear

The Light Mage Wars Series by Nancy Northcott (Book 1, Book 2)
The Protector Series by Nancy Northcott

Thunder Mountain Brothers by Vicki Lewis Thompson
The Nerd Series by Vicki Lewis Thompson