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What to Read Wednesday

18 Jan

Welcome to What to Read Wednesday!  Thanks to everyone who keeps coming back…you’re all awesome!  And if you’re here for the first time…glad you found us!

Today we have another wonderful author.  Zee Monodee is not only a wonderful author, but an amazing person.  Can’t tell you how much I admire her.  Today Zee will be sharing information about herself, writing habits, deep dark secrets…lol…and her latest release with Noble Romance titled Calling Home from her Destiny’s Child Book series.

Congratulations on your new release Zee!  Not only am I excited to get my hands on your book, but I’m excited to have you share all the details with everyone visiting today! 

Hi Christine; hi everyone! It’s a pleasure and a total honor to be here today; real stoked :)

Can you tell today’s readers a bit about yourself?

Of course. I’m 28 years old, married for about a decade (yeah, I started early, lol!). I have an 8-year-old son, and a 12-year-old stepson. I’m from the gorgeous paradise island of Mauritius, in the southern Indian Ocean, and I am of Indian origin. But I guess everyone who’s read my bio knows this about me, so something you might not know…? I’m really short and tiny – barely 5″3 tall and I most often have to shop in children’s clothes sections. The best jeans I can get for my size are in the Boys section :) My maxi-dresses are half the time knee-length dresses for those ‘normal’ women whom I call Amazons though.

The picture you provided must be one of the beautiful views on your island :)  Looks gorgeous!  Now back to important matters.  lol  Board games or video games?

Depends on the mood and weather/time. My kids love video games – they can both spend their whole time on the Playstation, and they often rope me in to play with them. Still, I also love a good dose of board games like Monopoly – nothing quite beats spending a dark, dreary, & cold afternoon in winter than with a game of Monopoly.

I don’t believe you get dark, dreary and cold days on your island paradise!  What food or drink can’t you do without and why?

I’m not really a foodie. I actually can do without food – having to eat and prepare food is a total chore for me. Yes, I do get hungry, but enjoy eating? Not exactly. While I do like to pig out on junk fast food sometimes, there’s not something I really, really need to have. Unless you count soft drinks in there. I’m really good with needing to stick to a diet or so, but I cannot go for more than a week without a dose of soft drinks, preferably an ice-cold Mountain Dew. If not, then Pepsi will do. But I need that sugar rush. :)

Tell us a typical writing day for you.

I usually write when I know I will be able to have an uninterrupted few hours ahead of me. I can work around a lot of things – noise, bad posture, needing to write on my phone instead of the computer. But what I really cannot stomach is constant interruptions that totally kill the flow of a scene, and that’s a given when you have kids at home.

So I write when the kids are in school, during the day.

A typical writing day would look like this – drop my son at school before 8AM, come back home around 8.30 AM. I’ll log onto the net, check my email, update my profiles on FB & Twitter,  catch up with my friends, reply to urgent emails if I don’t get to clear my inbox right away. When 10 AM strikes, I close all windows and open the Word doc with the WIP or the current edits. I’ll then immerse myself into that until 1 PM, at which time I’ll break for lunch, and if I’m being good, my exercise routine. And then generally it’s 2.30 PM and I have to go out to go pick the hyenas. We get home around 3.30 PM, and then I duck into the kitchen to make dinner.

If I’m on a deadline, I’ll most often than not go back to the computer to write and/or edit in the evening, after 8 PM when the kids are in bed. Otherwise, I’ll be reading. I write during the day mostly.

What genres do you write?

Hmm… I basically write romance, but that can take different mantles. I have a romantic suspense/mystery-thriller/espionage series out; then I have another deep characterization/sweet romance series going. I started out my career writing Indian/Indo-Mauritian culture-based romantic women’s fiction (a mouthful, eh?) and that’s a genre I wish to come back to soon.

Did a particular author influence you?

It was after I read the epic cultural novel ‘A Suitable Boy’ by Vikram Seth that I decided to try my hand at writing, at the culture-based women’s fiction genre. I wanted to show the lives of modern Indian-origin women the way Vikram Seth put across the India of post-independence. My style of writing was lighter than his literary slant, but he was the biggest influence in the material I wanted to showcase and how to present it.

You have such an interesting writing history :)  Let’s play LUCKY SEVEN!  Pick seven words that describe your book.

Heartfelt. Sweet. Tugging. Laughter. Belonging. Old-fashioned. Genuine.

Tease us with a blurb of your latest release.

Calling Home (A Destiny’s Child Book)

Forensic pathologist Margo Nolan is described by colleagues as a cold, unemotional man hiding inside a woman’s body. Clinical and rational, the ice queen persona is only a facade to protect herself after she has lost the one thing she has ever longed for: Emma, the daughter she brought up like her own.

When tragedy strikes in Emma’s life, Margo is the only one who can step in… to become the stand-in parent to the 11-year old! Clueless about children, family life and anything that should involve her heart, Margo is at a loss.

But she need not worry – sexy and easygoing, and much younger, village doctor Jamie Gillespie is here to help the heart-thawing process.

I’m already crushing on the village doc :)  Tell us two things about your hero that you admire?

Jamie is an incredibly patient man. He never lets his temper get the better of him; instead he thinks things through, sees things for what they really are, and he’ll gently steer people without ever bossing them around.

He is also a very mature person. Jamie shows that age is nothing but a number on paper, and that the true depth of a person doesn’t come by the number of years he/she has lived, but what’s inside the heart.

Your heroine?

Margo is resilient. That’s one of the things I like most about her. She makes do with what life throws at her; not always in the best manner, but her heart’s in the right place.

And another thing I like about Margo is that she is a social klutz, and though being thirty-six and an ace in her field of expertise, she is just a woman who still has a lot to learn about life. I like it that she has so much room to grow, that she’ll figure out some other things about life and love.

Where did your inspiration for this story come from?  And how did you come up with the title?

I’m a big fan of the CSI shows, and then there’s the British version called Silent Witness. This one is less flashy than the American CSIs; its focus is on an ongoing enquiry in every 2-part, 45-mins-each episode, with a big emphasis on the life of the three main characters, who are forensic pathologists.

The head of that lab is a professor of pathology named Leo Dalton, and there’s an episode where he mentions to his latest recruit, forensic anthropologist Nikki Alexander, that proof is what matters in their line of work.

This brought to my mind Gil Grissom from CSI: Las Vegas telling Catherine Willows the same thing in one of the first episodes of the show.

So if proof guides everything, how do you substantiate something intangible, like love? That’s the question that stayed in my mind, and then I also asked myself, what if this were the question a woman was left to ask? If everything in her life is cold, rational, and driven by proof, what happens when she needs to let love in? And what better way to poke that assumption than through a child?

That was the start of Calling Home, and the title came to me on a weird word play I indulged in. Both Margo and Jamie are medical doctors in there, and doctors call home to see patients, right? Add to it that Margo needs to learn about love and open her heart to the prospect of a family – Calling Home seemed like the perfect title to me :)

I’m a huge fan of CSI Las Vegas too…miss Gil Grisom.  Will you share an excerpt of Calling Home with us?

Of course! This is the opening scene from Chapter 1:

Emotion is something foreign; cold, rational facts and proof drive everything. Brain over heart, always.

Every forensic pathologist knew his or her work boiled down to that line of conduct, and Margo Nolan lived her life by the principles of her job. Emotion used to be an unfamiliar concept most of the time, except for the rare occasions when the pain would tear through her, when she was unable to tamp the suffering into submission. Pain, the sharp, visceral, abject torture that gripped her every time she thought of Emma, during all those years she was away from the daughter of her heart. Lately, pain sliced through her every time her gaze landed on the pretty girl, fast blossoming into a beautiful young woman.

How many years we’ve lost . . . . If only I’d sought her out . . . .

But she couldn’t—shouldn’t—think of that then. No—there were more pressing matters at hand.

Margo’s feet slowed in the lobby that also served as Dr. Gillespie’s waiting room. He was the only doctor in the little village, Camberry, just outside London in the county of Surrey, where Emma, and lately Margo, too, lived. Like most country doctors, he operated his practice from his house. Emma had been sick at school that day, and had been sent to see him.

Under Margo’s stilettos, the wood planks of the big Victorian manor didn’t even creak or groan—strange, as old houses always had a telltale creak or two in the parquet. Or maybe her step remained light enough not to evoke any sound from the dark surface, worn smooth from years of foot traffic in that very lobby. No place echoed the click-clack of high heels louder than a morgue. Margo had learned how to keep her tread soft under any circumstance. Despite the high-gleam polish on the wood, her feet didn’t skid on the glossy surface as she glided, more than walked, across the boards. Whiffs of beeswax and lemon wood polish tickled her nostrils—a completely different scent from the usual sterile tang and formaldehyde-permeated atmosphere at the morgue.

Margo stopped at the doorway that led into the anteroom to the doctor’s office. Her gaze lingered on Emma, asleep on a high-backed, plush sofa. In slumber, the girl’s dainty features still showed the sweetness of childhood. So very much the likeness of the chubby-cheeked cherub with corkscrew, auburn curls Margo had had to leave seven years ago—

Don’t!

Today she was back with Emma, trying her damndest to bridge the gap between ages four and eleven, the time she hadn’t been there for the girl. Not by choice—

Stop!

Margo straightened when a dark, looming shadow crept up on the tween. All her senses shot on high alert; she bristled, and her hands closed into fists.

The man, tall and imposing in the semi-darkness, bent and placed a hand on Emma’s forehead.

Who on Earth is he? And why is he touching her?

“What do you think you’re doing?” Margo crossed the distance to stand between her daughter and the stranger. She shouldered him aside, before folding her body protectively over the top of the armchair.

Her gaze raked over him, taking in the faded, threadbare-at-the-knees jeans, the hint of a dark T-shirt under the baggy, slate-grey jumper with a hoodie that obscured his face.

Who is this hooligan? What’s he doing here? Emma’s grandmother had come to Camberry because the countryside appeared safer for a growing girl than bustling London. Nevertheless, here was some man, alone in a room with her daughter.

He gave a soft grunt. “Checking if her fever’s gone down.”

Yeah, right!

Margo drew closer to Emma, her protective instincts shooting sky-high. If anyone ever touched her daughter to harm her . . . . Finally, she understood how women murdered in cold blood when their children were hurt, how they showed no remorse afterward.

As she leaned over the prone girl, her gaze shot back to the man. She steeled her spine, tensed her arms and shoulders, and glared at him. Seasoned police officers knew not to mess with her when she stood like that, and criminals always thought twice before bullshitting her when she gave them the narrowed look. Let him try to take her on—he had another think coming if he believed he’d get away scot-free today. “And how’s that any of your concern?”

He sighed.

Sighed. She couldn’t stop her eyes from widening with surprise, before she frowned again.

Good grief! What have perverts come to, nowadays?

“As her physician, that’s my job, don’t you think?” His low voice flowed, smooth and composed, reminiscent of police officers trying to calm a hysterical victim.

Damn you. She frowned so hard, her forehead hurt. Margo blinked to ward off the shard of pain that lanced behind her left eye. Nice try. Who did he think he was?

“Where’s Dr. Gillespie?” she asked.

“I am Dr. Gillespie. And you are?”

She snorted, at the calm confidence and at the unashamed allegation. Which one won her contempt more? No way was he the “good ol’ doctor.” She had met the bear of a man with the soft voice and bedside manner a couple of weeks ago, when she came to settle here. Dr. Gordon Gillespie had looked a far cry from the lean, intense young man before her. The old man had also come out clear on the background check she had a police contact run on him, and on anyone else involved in Emma’s life here.

And to think the man here had fallen through a hole in her security net? No, she refused to contemplate that.

But, questions first; accusations later, when she had proof. The logic of her profession came like second nature to her.

“Stop the act. You are not he.” She threw a glance around the room. “Where’s Helen? Why is Emma alone here?”

“Helen just left for home. It was past time she made it back to her own children.”

His tone conveyed cold reproach. Margo bristled. She was late, she knew it. But she’d been detained by a string of autopsies today. And no one had bothered to tell her Emma had been hurt during football practise. The lab staff had ascribed Helen’s call to a prankster—Dr. Nolan had no life, let alone a daughter.

“You are Ms. Milburn, I presume.”

“Nolan. Dr. Nolan.” She corrected him by reflex—no one addressed her by any other name.

Did his jaw tense? He moved, and the hooded cap slid off his head, to reveal his sharp, angular features and messy dark hair, no longer shadowing the dark brown depths of his deep-set eyes.

Dangerous. The rational whisper danced inside her head.

“Who the hell are you?” Tingles of awareness and peril skittered up her spine, like the time when she was on a crime location, and the killer managed to sneak up behind her. Trusting her gut that day—those shivers—kept her alive, when she didn’t hesitate to look like a chicken, and called the chief inspector into the room with her.

The moment here was one such instance too, urging her to call for backup. She felt her hand itch, where it lay against her trouser pocket. All she needed to do was grab her cell phone and call all her acquaintances in the police—in short, the whole London Metropolitan force.

“I told you. I am Dr. Gillespie, the one treating your daughter for that bad tackle.”

She snorted. “I have met the man.”

He rolled his eyes and sighed. “You met my uncle. He’s away, and I’m filling in for him.”

“Oh.” His explanation killed the wind in her sails. Some of the pent-up tension left her body, and she winced at the weary ache that settled in her stiff muscles. Looking him over, she knew he didn’t lie. Nothing in his body language betrayed him, and his eyes didn’t dart left or right when he spoke to her, focused directly on her face. She’d watched enough interrogations to pick up body language cues.

Still not a hundred percent convinced, she squinted, and hoped the harsh planes of his face, the pointed chin and nose, and shaggy dark locks, would clue her in about him. After a moment, when she realized she rudely stared, she gave up. Corpses clued her in on their deaths—and lives—while living beings were almost an alien race.

He wasn’t lying, that was a given. Her suspicions allayed a little, and she relaxed her shoulders, before drawing to her full height to stand straight.

So he is the doctor. Margo stroked a wayward dark curl from Emma’s forehead. “She isn’t running a fever.”

He crossed his arms, strong hands coming to rest on his jumper sleeves. Tension left him, too, and his body slackened into a casual pose. He rested one hip against the side of the high-backed sofa. “Not anymore. Seems she fell and grazed her shin yesterday. Left untreated, the wound got infected.”

Oh, Em. Why didn’t you say anything?

Because Margo wasn’t around—that’s why.

Margo hung her head. She was on call 24/7. Men thrived in her line of work. Women, not so much. The demands on the pathologist’s private life were all consuming. There existed no place to fit a child or a semblance of family life. What would she do with a daughter?

Three weeks ago, she received the call that had changed her life. Ednah Milburn, Emma’s maternal grandmother, was dying, and Margo was the next in line to become Emma’s guardian. What happened to Cora?—Emma’s mother and Margo’s estranged best friend—she had asked . . . only to be informed that Cora had died five years earlier. Margo was not prepared for the next revelation, either—that Cora had named Margo as Emma’s guardian, were anything to happen to her. But Emma’s grandmother, Ednah, had concealed the will, and taken the little girl in, leaving Cambridge to start a new life in Camberry, Surrey, where no one knew them. The lawyer brought Margo up to speed on the phone. Ednah had suffered a stroke and wouldn’t survive beyond the next forty-eight hours.

Margo had rushed to the hospital, for the first time in her life leaving an autopsy halfway through, to find her baby girl, grown into a tall, beautiful, auburn-haired tween. Emma had taken one look at her in that sterile hospital corridor, and rushed into her arms.

They hadn’t looked back . . . . But, right then, Margo knew she hadn’t looked forward, either. How would she accommodate a child in her life? The sleeping girl before her needed a mother . . . .

Emma whimpered. Margo shushed her with a soothing caress on her forehead. Nothing should distress her little girl.

“Mummy.”

The word was soft, groggy, full of trust and the conviction that “mummy” would make everything all right.

“I’m here, luv.” The phrase barely made it past the lump in Margo’s throat. Mummy had been Emma’s first word, spoken to her, and not to Cora, Emma’s birth mother. Cora, who had gallivanted around like a flitting butterfly, content to leave her baby girl in Margo’s care at home, in the tiny flat they shared near the Cambridge university campus. Between studying for her many exams and looking after Emma, Margo’s life was complete. And she also had Harry in her world—

Don’t think of Harry.

She forced her mind to return to the present.

Even after all these years, Emma still thought of her as her “other Mum”. Should she be grateful and embrace the title, or be scared out of her wits at the terrible job she’d most certainly do as a mother? She recalled how panicked she’d been at Emma’s first bout with colic, at three months. Cora wasn’t home again, and Margo had rushed the baby to Casualty at two a.m., only to be told that first-time mums had a right to panic but that she had nothing to worry about, colic being a standard baby ailment.

“Ms. Nolan?”

Margo tore her misting eyes from the tween and blinked. “I beg your pardon?”

“She’ll be okay.”

“Yes.” She bit her lip. “Yes, she will.”

She’d make sure of that. Seven years ago, Emma had been torn from her care, and from her world. Fate had given her another chance, one she wouldn’t relinquish without a fight.

Margo took a deep breath, her gaze going from the doctor to Emma and back again. “What do we do from here on?”

He straightened to his full height and uncrossed his arms; he let them fall to his sides. From her position on the arm of the sofa, she had to crane her neck to look at him. Easily six-four tall, with wide shoulders in perfect proportion to his big stature.

Margo’s mouth went dry and she gulped. He surely was a man who had a daunting physical presence. The skitters of unease flittered over her spine again, and she wondered who would come to save her from him.

Get a grip!

“Come to the desk. Emma will be fine for a few minutes.”

With reluctance, Margo peeled her arms from where they were propped on the armchair’s back.

Be on your guard, her brain screamed.

“I’m Jamie Gillespie. We haven’t been properly introduced.” He stood on the other side of the wide oak table, and didn’t extend his hand.

She hitched her arms to her sides and nodded. “Margo Nolan.”

At the desk, she settled into a chair opposite him. “How is she faring? I mean, really. Please don’t hide anything from me.”

If he heard the worry and panic in her voice, she didn’t care. They were talking about Emma, about her little girl.

“Not too bad. Just, like I told you, the wound on her leg got infected. She developed a fever, and a dizzy spell on the pitch meant she fell and twisted her ankle.”

“But, she’ll be okay?” Never mind that she was herself a medical doctor. Facts and logic had left, to create a wide berth for emotion to play havoc with her mind.

Jamie chuckled. “No need to be so worried. She’ll be good as new in a few days. The fever’s come down but . . . .” He paused. “You didn’t notice she had a high temperature this morning?”

Margo glanced away from his intent eyes, then returned her gaze to his face. Cursed be the good manners her mother had instilled in her, namely, to always look squarely at a person when addressing him. “I wasn’t with her today. I had to stay overnight at work.”

He clenched his jaw; his nostrils flared slightly.

He probably thought she was one of these career-minded mothers whose only claim to motherhood was to carry a child in her womb for nine months.

And that was not even applicable to her.

“Listen,” she said, then thought better of trying to explain the technicalities of her incompetent, so far, journey into parenthood. Why did she care what he thought of her as a mother? “Can I take her home?”

His thick brows furrowed. “Yes. Just make sure the fever doesn’t come back; five hundred milligrams of paracetamol every four to six hours should do the trick. I’ll see her again for the sprain in two days. If there’s anything, don’t hesitate to call me.”

“Will do.” Margo stood. Her gaze fell on the sleeping Emma. How would she get her home? Paracetamol and painkillers had probably knocked the girl out.

“Is your car outside?” Jamie asked.

She nodded. “I parked in front of the porch.”

“I’ll carry her, if you want.”

She acquiesced with a nod and a sigh of relief, grateful for his help. Emma wasn’t a big girl; still, the tween’s weight wouldn’t be easy for her to manage all the way into the car. Doing autopsies day in, day out didn’t build strong arm muscles.

Jamie scooped Emma up in his arms as if she weighed no more than a feather pillow.

Men. She shook her head. Nature blessed them with physical strength. Many abused that God-given privilege too, as she saw too often in her line of work.

Margo followed in the doctor’s footsteps as he delicately carried Emma out, then settled the sleeping girl into the back seat of her Audi Q5. He clicked her seat belt into place just as Margo reached in from the other side of the car to take over the task.

Their shoulders bumped and their heads came up at the same time. Mere inches separated them, and Margo made the mistake of looking into his face.

Bathed in the soft radiance of the porch lamp that spilled in through the back windshield, his features were an arresting play of light and shadows. Suddenly seeing him so up close that she could make out the errant eyelash that had fallen on his cheekbone, she froze. Her outer shell remained immobile, while inside, a storm of uncalled-for heat and yearning warred for possession of her brain and senses.

That’s a living, breathing man—a handsome, sexy creature in his own right. The red-hot memo wanted to sizzle its way all through her, but she couldn’t—wouldn’t—allow it.

Jamie Gillespie was definitely a hunk, and at first glance, not a day over thirty.

Latching onto him would be like cradle robbing. She was way over the big three-o, a few years shy of forty. She dreaded that prospect more than turning thirty, because with forty came peri-menopause; with it, hot flashes, followed by menopause, when many women went mental. Because she faced a dwindling biological clock with every year that passed, the minute she saw a man as desirable, she immediately viewed him as a baby-making machine, even though that had been less and less important over the last few years.

To see Jamie as sexy meant she could clearly picture herself making babies with him. A hot flash crept up her cheeks and stung her skin. She couldn’t—shouldn’t—picture him as anything but the local doctor. Men younger than thirty had a raging libido—Stop it!

She was further gone than she’d thought. Sex was not a possibility right then, especially not with Emma in her life. She had her child; the biological clock could go to hell in a hand basket. Let another pregnancy-craving young woman sink her teeth into the handsome Jamie.

But if she could sink her teeth into the flesh of his butt cheeks, run her tongue over the ridges of what she was sure were rock-hard pecs and abs—

Margo pinched herself hard and stifled the yelp of pain that tore her from her X-rated fantasies. A younger man was so not right for her . . . .

In the closed confines of the car interior, she blinked, and the fierce flutter of her eyelids shattered the paralysis that held her body prisoner. She moved and her hand brushed against his sleeve.

Soft, warm, yielding. Fine merino lamb’s wool—that was no punk-grunge clothing.

All the more perilous.

“Thank you.” She mumbled the words, and wondered if anything but a garbled sound came out of her mouth. Then she ducked out of the car before he could reply.

She slid into the driver’s seat and waited, without looking back, for him to close the passenger door. Once she heard the soft thump, Margo hightailed out of there, as if the hounds of hell pursued her.

In a way, they were. These hounds were those of desire and longing, to Margo, the most terrifying of all.

***End of excerpt***

Love it!  I’m already drawn to your characters.  What is the best part of the writing process for you?

Coming up with new characters. I love the process of getting to know them, to have them develop in my mind like fully-formed people; learn to know them like I would a new friend. Sometimes they surprise me, and that’s another thrill in the ride.

The worst?

Edits, especially the first brush-through you have to do just after finishing the draft in full. There’s no longer the rush of finishing the story, of uncovering what happens next. You already know how it ends, and sometimes, at this point, you’ve been with this story for weeks so you’re kinda sick of it already. And you have to look at the nitty-gritty stuff now – grammar, your crutch words, etc. That’s one of the steps I really, really dislike in writing.

Out of all the stories you’ve written, either published or not, what character did you bond with the most and why?

That would have to be Amelia Jamison from my first release, Walking The Edge (Corpus Brides: Book One), a romantic suspense/espionage thriller.

The thing is, Amelia has amnesia. She doesn’t remember her past, doesn’t know what’s happened to her and why she is where she is when the story starts.

When I started writing this story, I knew as much about Amelia as what she did too, which was basically what her ‘husband’ Peter told her. But something about Peter and his story rang fake, fabricated, and that knowledge jarred with me as it did with Amelia. That’s when she starts on the quest that takes her from London to Marseille, in France, to discover her true identity and what she feels Peter doesn’t want her to figure out.

Amelia’s quest became mine – every step she took, every discovery she made, I made it right along with her. The journey to find her forgotten memory was one I took too, with her, through her, as her even. She uncovered herself, and I as the author uncovered who she was at the same time. In a way, I was living her life, so to speak – that’s why there’s this connection between me and her.

What’s the best advice you received on your journey to publication?

Stay true to yourself.

Ultimately, at the end of the day, you have to be able to look yourself in the mirror and not be ashamed of who and what you are, of what you’re doing, of what you’re writing. I wrote under pen names before, and these made me not have to look myself in the eye in the mirror. But when I did look, I found out I couldn’t look myself in the eye. What I was doing, well, I wasn’t proud of myself. In short, I wasn’t being true to myself.

So I broke from that and started on the path where I could hold my head high and be proud to say what I do and how I do it. I ditched the pen names, became ‘me’ even in writing, and that has been the most liberating thing I’ve ever done.  :) I wish others would heed this message too – you can only be good as long as you’re being true to yourself. That’s the only way your fulfillment and happiness will come about.

Wonderful advice :)Will you give us a sneak peek into what you are or will be working on next?

Sure! I’m currently penning the next book in the Destiny’s Child series. That series is about a child that destiny brings into the lives to an unlikely couple – the couple might have biological ties with the child or not, and it will be their job to create a family unit and find love in the process.

The next book in the series is called Glory Days, and takes place in the ritzy and glamorous world of London’s elite; it’s the story of Swedish shipping magnate Stellan Elriksen and bestselling crime novelist Kelsey Clegg. The world thinks they don’t know each other, but they’re wrong! Stellan & Kelsey were teenage lovers, before Kelsey ran away one day and Stellan was left mourning the end of his first love affair.

Kelsey hid a secret though – she was pregnant with Stellan’s child. Coming from the wrong side of the tracks, she did what she thought best – she gave the baby up for adoption.

Fast-forward to now, nineteen years later. Kelsey knocks on Stellan’s door, asking for his help. It turns out their daughter, at 18, has just had a premature baby, and didn’t survive the birth. It’s now up to Kelsey and Stellan to fight for the baby’s custody, together.

But how can they put their differences aside, especially when Stellan finds out he has a daughter, whom he’ll never know now? Kelsey lied, and those lies cost him his child. Will he ever be able to forgive Kelsey, and can they now work together to bring up their granddaughter together?

And finally Zee, where can we find you and your books?

I’m all across the Internet  :) Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads – you can find me on there as Zee Monodee and friend/follow me.

My blog is http://zeemonodee.blogspot.com/ Here you’ll find all my books and the links to grab them from their respective publisher’s website.

Hugs to you Zee…so glad you visited and good luck with your release and your future releases.  :)

Thanks for having me over today, Christine! It’s been a lot of fun :)

 
 

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57 responses to “What to Read Wednesday

  1. Tereasa

    January 18, 2012 at 11:51 pm

    Totally hooked, Zee! Calling Home excerpt is awesome! Love your description of character development, too. It’s fun to ‘meet’ the stars of our stories and flesh them out.
    Good wishes!
    Tere

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 12:21 am

      Hi Tere, glad you dropped in! I loved her excerpt too…really hooked me :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 3:30 am

      Hi Tereasa!
      Nice to meet you, and so glad you enjoyed the excerpt :) And yes, I just love to meet new characters – it’s a total rush! Thanks for coming over & for the comment xoxo

       
  2. Jennifer Lowery~Author

    January 19, 2012 at 12:05 am

    Wonderful interview, ladies! Zee, congrats on the new release and I’m adding this one to my TBR list! Thanks for sharing!

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 12:21 am

      Love seeing you Jennifer! Zee’s book is on my TBR list too…love her characters :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 3:31 am

      Thanks Jennifer! I hope you enjoy the book :) *hugs*

       
  3. Lia Davis

    January 19, 2012 at 12:10 am

    Great interview! Congrats on the new release, Zee!

     
  4. Sharon

    January 19, 2012 at 1:42 am

    Jamie sounds amazing! Great interview.

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:23 am

      Thanks for coming by Sharon :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 3:33 am

      Lol Sharon – he totally is! I was inspired by the yummy Jared Padalecki of Supernatural to portray him physically. :) Thanks for coming by & the comment :) Hugs

       
  5. Nikki Barrett

    January 19, 2012 at 1:56 am

    What a great interview….How fun to see the two of you together here today, Zee and Christine. I wish you much success, Zee!

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:24 am

      Hi Nikki, thanks for coming by. It was wonderful to get to sit down for a chat with Zee :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 3:34 am

      Lol Nikki! It’s total fun to be around Christine, a blast! :)
      And thank you, sweetie! XOXO

       
  6. Calisa Rhose

    January 19, 2012 at 2:10 am

    Great interview ladies! It’s nice to meet you Zee!! Good luck with your books. This one sounds interesting. I’m a huge CSI fan, too.

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:24 am

      YAY for CSI! Thanks for coming by and commenting Calisa :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 3:34 am

      Thanks Calisa – nice to meet you too! Oh, another CSI fan – yummy! :)

       
  7. Ally Broadfield

    January 19, 2012 at 2:39 am

    Very interesting interview. A Suitable Boy is still one of my favorite books, so I love that it inspired you to write. I really enjoy reading books set in the UK, and I’ve added Calling Home to my TBR list. So many books, so little time!

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 3:21 am

      Feel your pain Ally….I have a huge tbr file too and it’s hard to fit in reading, writing and everyday life into only 24 hours :) Thanks for dropping in!

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 3:36 am

      Oh, thank you Ally! I hope you enjoy the book. Lol, don’t mention the ever growing TBR – mine is a train wreck waiting to happen :)

      And “A Suitable Boy” is a book that totally stays with you, innit? I read it about a decade ago, and it still has as much impact on me today as it did then.

      xoxo

       
  8. Zee Monodee

    January 19, 2012 at 3:38 am

    Ok, and finally I get to say this – thanks again for having me over today, Christine! It’s been wonderful to answer your questions, and then to come over here and see the blog hopping and thriving so much! Awesome :) XOXO

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 5:22 am

      Zee, I’m thrilled to have you here! Loved your answers and love learning more about your writing process :) xoxox and HUGS to you :)

       
  9. D'Ann Linscott-Dunham

    January 19, 2012 at 3:47 am

    Hi, Zee!
    haven’t seen you for awhile! Your book sounds great, right up my alley!

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:38 pm

      So glad you dropped by D’Ann…Zee’s book does sounds great doesn’t it?

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:13 pm

      Hey D’Ann! Lol, I’ve been the regular headless chicken since the year started. Who said that work dwindles when your kids grow up? My workload sure didn’t – in fact, it doubled! :)
      Glad you like the story’s idea – I hope you get a chance to check it out sometime :)
      Big hugs!

       
  10. Tabitha

    January 19, 2012 at 4:31 am

    Wow! Zee sweety your story sound awesome. She is so going to lose her heart to that young doc. But I’m not surprised that your story is amazing. As one of your crit partner I have always know you would do great. Congrats! Hugs girlie!

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:39 pm

      Hey Tabitha…glad to see you here :) Zee’s writing is awesome for sure…so looking forward to reading her book :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:15 pm

      Awww, thank you, honey! You’re too sweet! :) And lol – yes, Margo is waging a lost battle where the young doctor is concerned.
      Big huge hugs! Love ya, girl!

       
  11. Sheri Fredricks

    January 19, 2012 at 4:33 am

    Hi Zee! Hi Christine! *waves*

    I loved that excerpt, especially the line about career-minded mothers who’s claim to motherhood… That made me smile.
    I also have 2 boys and have to write while my spawn are at school. Juggling writing time with family time and my husband’s business isn’t easy. But who ever said life and writing would be?

    Great interview. I always learn something new.

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:40 pm

      Isn’t that the truth Sheri…just when you think you know someone…you read an interview and learn something new :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:16 pm

      Lol, gals! I’m amazed I still have something ‘new’ to say after all these years :)
      And yes, wherever do we find the time??? But then too, take writing out of our lives and we’d be nothing, so I say, ‘bring it on!”
      Big hugs, Sheri girl!!

       
  12. David/KevaD

    January 19, 2012 at 4:33 am

    Thoroughly enjoyed learning more about you, Zee.
    Wonderful excerpt. I guess I’m just going to have to read more of your books.

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:40 pm

      Hi David, thanks for dropping by my blog and learning more about Zee!

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:19 pm

      Thank you, David! So nice to see you here – glad you could drop by :) xoxo

       
  13. Neecy

    January 19, 2012 at 4:34 am

    Zee this book sounds like my kind of story. Thanks, Christine for bringing another great author to my attention.
    Neecy

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:40 pm

      Denice, you’re awesome…thanks for coming by!

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:20 pm

      Thank you, Neecy! Lovely to meet you, and your words are so nice :)
      I hope you get to check out the book, and maybe let me know what you thought… Hugs!

       
  14. saukra

    January 19, 2012 at 4:46 am

    Fabulous interview. Loved the questions and answers.
    Zee, your excerpt was amazing–drew me right in.
    Here’s wishing you much success!!!

     
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm

      *grin* Thanks saukra! So glad you enjoyed the excerpt. I love these characters and hoped to do them justice (but I need readers to let me know if I’ve managed that :) ) xoxo

       
  15. Brenda

    January 19, 2012 at 4:47 am

    LOL, don’t know why it used my alias, but just know Saukra is me–Brenda!

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:41 pm

      hehehe…hey Brenda…glad you liked the interview :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:22 pm

      Lol, I replied the other comment before seeing this one – my bad! Hi Brenda *mad mad mad wave!*

       
  16. Natalie G. Owens

    January 19, 2012 at 5:56 am

    What a fabulous interview! Well done both of you, Christine and Zee. And the excerpt of Calling Home… it brought back memories of my first read. Such an amazing story, with masterful, deep characterization! And let me not get started about the yummy Jamie….:D.

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:41 pm

      lol…Jamie does sound yummy! Glad you stopped by Natalie :)

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm

      Lol Nat! So happy you could come over. Hmm, the excerpt – good ol’ memories, innit? And Jamie *swoon* LOL
      Big hugs, sis! Love ya!

       
  17. jerridrennen

    January 19, 2012 at 7:25 am

    I think we were in a critique group together.

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 19, 2012 at 2:42 pm

      Hi Jerri..glad you dropped by!

       
    • Zee Monodee

      January 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm

      Jerri! Yes, we were! OMG, long time no hear – how are you doing? We so need to catch up again :)
      Glad you stopped over today *hugs*

       
  18. Julia Phillips Smith

    January 19, 2012 at 8:16 am

    Loved the interview, Zee and Christine!

     
  19. Callie Hutton

    January 19, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    Good interview, ladies. The book sounds great. Best of luck with it.

     
  20. Zee Monodee

    January 19, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    Thanks Callie! Glad you could drop by :)

     
  21. myrahmcilvain

    January 22, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    Christine, you find the most interesting authors to interview. Zee’s book sounds so inviting.

     
    • ChristineWarner

      January 23, 2012 at 1:46 am

      Thank you for the lovely compliment Myra! I’ve been lucky to know some amazing writers!

       

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