The Landowner’s Secret for $1.99!

The Landowner's Secret Sonya Heaney Summer of Love Promotion

Just a reminder that my book, The Landowner’s Secret, is on sale for $1.99 on Amazon Kindle for the rest of this month, and from other retailers until the 1st of March!

Read the first two chapters.

New South Wales, 1885

When Alice Ryan wakes to find thugs surrounding her cottage, on the hunt for her no-good brother, she escapes into the surrounding bush.

It is wealthy landowner Robert Farrer who finds her the next morning, dishevelled, injured, and utterly unwilling to share what she knows. With criminals on the loose and rumours that reckless bushrangers have returned to the area, Robert is determined to keep Alice out of danger, and insists on taking her into his home-despite the scandal it may cause. Convincing her to stay on with him for her own safety, however, is going to take some work.

What Robert doesn’t expect is his growing attraction to the forthright, unruly woman staying in his home. Before either of them can settle into their odd new situation, their home and wellbeing come under threat and they will need to trust each other to survive. But they are both keeping secrets, secrets that have the potential to ruin their burgeoning love, their livelihood … and their lives.

Have a Little Faith in Me by Sonia Hartl

Have a Little Faith in Me by Sonia Hartl

“Saved!” meets To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before in this laugh-out-loud romantic comedy that takes a meaningful look at consent and what it means to give it.

When CeCe’s born-again ex-boyfriend dumps her after they have sex, she follows him to Jesus camp in order to win him back. Problem: She knows nothing about Jesus. But her best friend Paul does. He accompanies CeCe to camp, and the plan—God’s or CeCe’s—goes immediately awry when her ex shows up with a new girlfriend, a True Believer at that.

Scrambling to save face, CeCe ropes Paul into faking a relationship. But as deceptions stack up, she questions whether her ex is really the nice guy he seemed. And what about her strange new feelings for Paul—is this love, lust, or an illusion born of heartbreak? To figure it out, she’ll have to confront the reasons she chased her ex to camp in the first place, including the truth about the night she lost her virginity.

Have a Little Faith in Me by Sonia Hartl

Over the Christmas break I took a bunch of books with me on holiday, but—instead of the Regency romance I was planning on finishing—I ended up reading this young adult book about a couple of non-Christian teens who go to church camp with ulterior motives.

I actually bought the much-hyped Have a Little Faith in Me because of the author’s first name (I’m shallow like that), but while it’s not a perfect book, I’m very glad I read it.

YA fiction has turned on its head since the Twilight days, when misogyny and slut shaming was so often the norm, and the female and sex-positive themes in a book set in the unlikeliest of places was a wonderful surprise. I was a little worried about how it would play out, but the way the heroine and her Christian cabinmates bonded and stuck up for each other was fantastic.

The story plays out as most readers will expect from the outset, but it’s the journey the heroine and her best friend go on together to reach that happy ending that makes it worth the effort. There were some hilarious bits—“If you don’t have any condoms with you, I have, like, a billion in my cabin.” (This at a Christian camp!)—and there were some nice emotional moments.

I had a couple of issues:

While it’s true many teens these days have serious discussions about consent etc., there were times the characters acted more like adults would want them to act than like real teens. Everyone (except the “baddies”) was a little bit too responsible all of the time.

I also don’t believe that all the kids at the state’s most conservative Christian camp would have such progressive, sex positive views. Thanks to the politics of the last few years, the whole world has been exposed to the misogyny and bigotry behind the evangelical Christian movement, and these kids all acted like extremely progressive left-leaning activists. It would have been nice to have some more conflicts of values to make it a bit more realistic.

Despite those issues I raced through this book and enjoyed it a lot. I’m sure I’ll read it again.

Book Feature: The Perfect Wife by Katherine Scholes

Note: I am featuring some of the review books I’ve had for a while, but run out of time to do a review for. That’s not to say I’m not going to read them; it’s just that I’ve fallen behind, and think the authors deserve an appearance here!

the perfect wife by katherine scholes

The Perfect Wife by Katherine Scholes

Kitty Hamilton arrives in Tanganyika with high hopes for her new life. An exciting adventure halfway across the world could be just what she and Theo need to recover from the scandal that almost tore them apart.

She is determined to play the role of the perfect wife, but her dreams soon begin to unravel. Theo is distracted with his important British government post, and while Kitty had imagined doing valuable work of her own, she finds that choosing the right frock to wear to the club is the biggest challenge of her day.

In this wild and foreign land, where very different powers prevail, the head can’t always rule the heart. As old wounds resurface and new passions ignite, Kitty and Theo confront emotions that push them beyond the boundaries of all that they know and believe in.

The Perfect Wife is a breathtaking story about the struggle between duty and desire, jealousy and love, commitment and freedom. And the need to follow the call of your heart, wherever it may lead you…

Summer of Love Promotion

SUMMER OF LOVE_1080X1080 - The Landowner's Secret Sonya Heaney Summer of Love Promotion

I mentioned a few days ago that my book, The Landowner’s Secret, is on sale for $1.99 for the months of January and February, but what I didn’t mention was that the promotion is part of a bigger sale across Harlequin and Mills and Boon titles.

The sitewide promotion is open to readers in Australia and New Zealand and can be found on romance.com.au.

My book can also be purchased from Amazon Kindle for the same price until the end of this month.

 

 

The Week: 6th – 12th January

Another week of extreme heat, bushfires and smoke. I’m guessing this is our new normal in Australia now …

ukrainian-christmas

Merry Christmas – again. Ukrainians celebrated on Monday and Tuesday, according to the old calendar. It was a weird one this year. How do you celebrate when your entire region burns?

The Landowner’s Secret for $1.99!

The Landowner's Secret Sonya Heaney Summer of Love Promotion

Regency is NOT Victorian – which is NOT Edwardian!

godey-april-1861daydresses18611860svictorianfashion

Rereading Favourites

Books HD

The Landowner’s Secret for $1.99!

My book, The Landowner’s Secret, is on sale for $1.99 until the 1st of March!

Purchase links HERE:

The Landowner's Secret Sonya Heaney Summer of Love Promotion

Read the first two chapters.

New South Wales, 1885

When Alice Ryan wakes to find thugs surrounding her cottage, on the hunt for her no-good brother, she escapes into the surrounding bush.

It is wealthy landowner Robert Farrer who finds her the next morning, dishevelled, injured, and utterly unwilling to share what she knows. With criminals on the loose and rumours that reckless bushrangers have returned to the area, Robert is determined to keep Alice out of danger, and insists on taking her into his home-despite the scandal it may cause. Convincing her to stay on with him for her own safety, however, is going to take some work.

What Robert doesn’t expect is his growing attraction to the forthright, unruly woman staying in his home. Before either of them can settle into their odd new situation, their home and wellbeing come under threat and they will need to trust each other to survive. But they are both keeping secrets, secrets that have the potential to ruin their burgeoning love, their livelihood … and their lives.

Rereading Favourites

Books HD

I’ve been noticing something for a while now, and I get the impression I’m not the only one who does this:

When I reread, so often the titles I pick up I rated three or four stars on Goodreads, rather than the best-written books I’ve read.

Maybe I didn’t particularly love the main characters, but I loved the angst-filled storyline. Or maybe some of the dialogue is so smart or so funny, but the plot is a mess. Or maybe there’re a couple of scenes I love to pieces, even if the rest of the book fell short.

It’s across every genre: romance, and not romance. Historical fiction, paranormal and urban fantasy, suspense, contemporaries.

I wish I could remember where, but a while ago I read an article that said there’s such thing as a “five star book”, and such thing as a “great read”, and that they often don’t match up.

Luckily, they often DO. I have a favourites shelf on Goodreads with over a hundred books on it.

However, sometimes an author can write a book I otherwise dislike, but I just keep on picking it back up to reread because they’ve captured something like nobody else has managed to.

Weird.

Regency is NOT Victorian – which is NOT Edwardian!

Santos-Dumont_flight_around_the_Eiffel_TowerSanto Dumont circles the Eiffel Tower on 13 July 1901 in Dirigible No. 5 Paris 1901 airship zeppelin edwardian era.jpg

Paris in 1901 – a time of photography and airships.

All right, I’ve had it. If I see one more book or television show or movie about the Tudors or Marie Antoinette or World War One labelled as a “Regency romance”, I’m going to scream!

Even if you use a slightly extended version of the term “Regency” to describe historical romance books (say, 1800 to 1830), I think it should be made illegal to call stories set a full century before or after the era “Regency romances”.

A popular author’s new historical romance series is allegedly set in the early 1900s, and yet it’s being labelled “Regency” by readers and publishers alike, and fails to include any of the massive changes that happened in the world in those ninety years between one era and the other. I’m seeing this so often in historical fiction that it’s driving me bonkers!

Here’s how it works:

Regency era:

1811-1820

Jane Austen, skinny dresses, Napoleon, and a man too mentally unstable to rule on the British throne.

Mailcoach England 1827

Transport in 1827

First_electric_tram-_Siemens_1881_in_LichterfeldeFirst electric tram- Siemens 1881 in Lichterfelde

Transport in the 1880s

Victorian era:

1837-1901

Trains, photographs, telegrams, telephones, big sleeves and even bigger skirts, Christian morals hiding dirty lifestyles, and a short, (allegedly) grumpy lady on the British throne.

Flatiron_Building_under_construction_II,_New_York_City,_1902Flatiron Building (at the time still called the Fuller Building) in early stage of construction, Fifth Avenue and Broadway, New York City. edwardian era

New York City in 1902

Edwardian era:

1901-1910

Cars, airships, early feature films, and a large, sickly man on the British throne.

Labelling an Edwardian book set nearly a century after Jane Austen died as Regency is like setting a book in 2019 and including the first Academy Awards (with Emil Jannings – born 135 years ago – winning best actor), Stalin’s purges, the birth of Audrey Hepburn and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and the death of Wyatt Earp. Oh, and while we’re at it, we might as well include the Wall Street Crash and the beginning of the Great Depression, and pretend the internet doesn’t exist. In 2019.

Absurd? Yes. So please, please stop it. The past is a little more complicated – and interesting – than that.

New Contract – Signed!

It seems the Harlequin team is in a hurry to get things done before the holidays hit. I was told to expect a six-week wait for my contract to arrive. Instead, I received it two days after I signed the deal!

It’s always a good feeling when – after so much work – you get to sign something with such a great publisher’s name on it.

What a great Christmas present. 🙂

Harlequin Australia The Artist's Secret Sonya Heaney Contract 20th December 2019

Cover Love for Christmas

I love this cover so much. It’s so wintry and Christmassy and festive, especially considering that it’s summer here in Australia!

The Christmas Promise by Sue Moorcroft

The Christmas Promise by Sue Moorcroft

For Ava Bliss, it’s going to be a Christmas to remember …

On a snowy December evening, Sam Jermyn steps into the life of bespoke hat maker Ava. Sparks fly, and not necessarily the good ones.

Times are tough for Ava – she’s struggling to make ends meet, her ex-boyfriend is a bully, and worst of all, it’s nearly Christmas.

So when Sam commissions Ava to make a hat for someone special, she makes a promise that will change her life. She just doesn’t know it yet…

Curl up with this gorgeous, festive read – the perfect treat for fans of Katie Fforde, Carole Matthews and Trisha Ashley.