Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Romantic Road by Blair McDowell ♥ Book Tour & GIVEAWAY ♥ (Romantic Suspense)

When Lacy Telchev buries her husband she finds herself in treacherous waters. Igor, much older than Lacy, had secrets. Suddenly Lacy is being chased across Europe by men who believe she can lead them to those secrets. Evading her pursuers with the aid of a chance acquaintance, the handsome and mysterious Max Petersen, Lacy travels across Germany, Austria and Hungary, to a shattering discovery in Budapest.

Along the way, she meets three women from Igor's past. As Igor's story unfolds through them, Lacy is less and less certain who her husband really was. Who can Lacy trust? Will she survive to find out?
Her head was pounding. Aspirin. Surely she must have some aspirin in her purse. She rummaged through it to no avail. Maybe Max had some.

When she opened her room door, he was leaning against the wall. In one hand he had a small glass filled with a clear liquid. He handed it to her. “Drink,” he said. “Think of it as medicine.”

She looked from Max to the shot glass, back to Max.

“You have a headache?” he asked.

Numbly Lacy nodded, the very action hurting. “Drink.”

She took the proffered glass and swallowed the fiery alcohol in one gulp that left her gasping for breath.

When she stopped sputtering, she asked, “What on earth was that?”

“Schnapps. Just sit down for a moment and let it do its work.” He led her to an ancient carved wooden bench placed along the wall of the large center room. “You had quite a bit to drink at lunch time.”

As she revived, it began to come back. Lunch. Apple fritters and mulled wine. And after lunch…

“What happened after lunch?” she asked, afraid of the answer.

“You mean you don’t remember?” He sounded hurt, as if he couldn’t believe what he was hearing. “How could you not remember?” He leaned into her and kissed her insinuatingly.

Lacy pushed him away and put her head in her hands. “No. Oh, no.”

Max took her hands away from her face and looked into her eyes, dead serious. “Nothing happened between us after lunch, Lacy. There are rules about that sort of thing. I promise you when…that is…if we make love, it will not be when you’ve had too much to drink.”

“You beast.” Lacy pummeled him with her fists. “You let me think …”

“Feeling better now?” he asked, laughing, catching her hands in his and holding them.

Lacy realized indeed she did feel better. She felt fine.
Romantic Road is a book that has been in the making for many years. The mix in it of fact and fiction is, I hope, seamless, but there is indeed a great deal of fact in it. The scene in which my heroine, Lacy, first tastes the wonderful drink called gluhwein in a charming small inn in Rothenberg on the Romantische Strasse in Germany took little imagination. I was there. I drank the hot, cinnamon, spiced, and sugared wine. Like Lacy, I had NO idea how strong it was. I had one glass, then two, then a third accompanied by the melt-in-your-mouth apple fritters that are a specialty of the region. And like Lacy I had to spend the afternoon sleeping it off. Unfortunately, unlike Lacy, I had no handsome young man to offer me schnapps for my hangover, or to kiss it away!
I love to travel. I spend the spring and summer running a bed and breakfast with a friend on Canada’s scenic west coast. Then when the leaves begin to turn, we take all the money we’ve made over the summer, get out our carry-on suitcases and my computer case and we’re ready to go. In the last few years we’ve traveled to Germany, Portugal, Austria, Hungary and Italy. To Australia and to the islands of the South Pacific. And, when winter comes, we retreat to my second home on a tiny Caribbean island. We’ve traveled by boat, train, rental car and plane. And everyplace we go my little notebook is with me. And each evening I put my experiences on my laptop. Sometimes I write them as blogs, other times they just go into a file, “book ideas”.
Places suggest stories to me. I can never visit a beautiful or historic locale without my imagination going on overdrive. I feel sometimes I don’t really create the stories. The stories are already there in those magical places. I just tell them.
        
 
Blair McDowell wrote her first short story when she was eleven and has never ceased writing since, although only recently has she been able to return to her first love, writing fiction. During her early years, she taught in universities in the United States, Canada and Australia, and wrote several highly successful books in her field.

Her research has taken her to many interesting places. She has lived in Europe, Australia, the United States and the Caribbean and Canada, and spent considerable time in still other places, Iceland, the Far East, and the Torres Strait Islands off the coast of New Guinea. Now she travels for pleasure. Portugal, Greece and Italy are favorite haunts.

Her books are set in places she knows and loves and are peopled with characters drawn from her experiences of those places. The Memory of Roses takes readers to the Greek Island of Corfu, where a young woman finds her future while searching for her father's past. In Delighting in Your Company, the reader is transported to a small island in the Caribbean, with a heroine who finds herself in the unenviable position of falling in love with a ghost. The setting for Sonata is the city of Vancouver, with its vibrant multicultural population and its rich musical life, and the heroine is a musician who finds herself in unexpected danger.

In her most recent release, Romantic Road, Lacy Telchev, is pursued along Germany’s famous Romantische Strausse as she follows clues left by her late husband in order to solve a mystery that she doesn’t understand, while being chased by dangerous and cunning adversaries.

She hopes her readers will enjoy reading these books as much as she enjoyed writing them.

Blair is a member of the Romance Writers of America, Romance Writers of America (Greater Vancouver Chapter), the Romance Writers of America (Women's Fiction), and The Writers’ Union of Canada.
      
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12 comments :

  1. How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning? Do you have any name choosing resources you recommend?

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    1. Mai--I choose the names of my characters very carefully. The name has to suit the character as I envision him or her. Once I settle on the ethnicity of the character, unless a name pops into my head (which it sometimes does) I go on Google and enter "Boys names, Russian ( or Irish or Scottish or Greek). Sometimes in the early stages of a new story, I change the principal character's several times before I'm satisfied that it fits. Occasionally a name just seems to fit from the moment it occurs to me. This was the case with Igor Telchev in Romantic Road. It just seemed right.

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  2. Thanks so much for hosting Romantic Road. I hope your readers enjoy learning the 'fun facts' about Romantic Road. I thoroughly enjoyed writing about it.

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  3. Sounds fascinating, Blair! Wishing you all the best with your new release! :)

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    1. Thanks so much, Mary! I hope you get a chance to read Romantic Road. And good luck with the Gift Card prize!

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  4. I enjoyed reading the Fun Facts.

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    1. The 'Fun Facts' were fun for me too, Rita. Thanks for letting me know.

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  5. This looks like exciting book!

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  6. Thanks! I love writing Romantic Suspense. I'm very much a planner, but sometimes my stories take a twist that even I am not expecting. That happened in Romantic Road.
    Blair

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  7. This sounds like an exciting read. I liked the fun facts and I enjoyed reading the excerpt. Blessings & Thanks to All.

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  8. Enjoyed the fun facts thanks for sharing!

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