I’m thrilled to have Aurelia B Rowl on my blog. Today she is celebrating the release of her debut book, Christmas is Cancelled. In keeping with my nosey self, I’ve picked her brains about her favourite things about the holiday season.
Read on to find out more about her fabulous debut with a teaser to get your juices flowing.
What is your favourite thing about the holiday season?
I love the magic of Christmas and the light that shines in my children’s eyes (not to mention relying on Santa to get them to behave as end-of-term tiredness kicks in). And I love all things sparkly – and twinkly – so I’m in my element.
Are you like me and shop for all your gifts on Christmas Eve, or are you a bit more organised?
I am usually fairly organised, but this year it has all gone to pot and even now, I still have the majority of my shopping to do. Definitely nearing panic stations!
I hear ya! I'm doing mine tomorrow :) What kind of tree do you prefer?
I do love real trees, but not the needles sticking in my feet or remembering to water it. I stick to my lovely bushy artificial tree, in fact, in my entire life I’ve only ever had one real tree at home.
Do you do all your own baking from scratch, or do you prefer to pick up something from M&S? (I love all the goodies they have this time of year!)
I don’t really have to do baking over Christmas as we’re not Christmas cake or pudding eaters, and it’s much easier to buy vegetarian mince pies than mess about making my own. Plus the big day is spent with my lovely in-laws, and I get to relax.
Do you prefer a big family Christmas or a quiet day with your nearest and dearest?
My sister lives too far away for me to visit easily, what with the entourage we have to drag along, but I do love the big family Christmas. I am very much looking forward to spending the day with my husband’s family as usual, even though I generally end up as the designated driver.
What’s your favourite thing about Christmas morning?
Seeing my children’s excited little faces when they discover that Father Christmas has been. You can’t beat it!
What gave you the idea for Christmas is Cancelled?
I stared at the blank screen long enough for the ideas to start forming, thinking about what would make a really terrible start to Christmas. Once I had my opening scene, and my main characters, it all fell into place.
Can you sum it up in thirty words?
Nope, is thirty-two okay? LOL <Definitely!
Could Tilly's day get any worse? Even Christmas had been cancelled! Will Dean, her knight in shining armor, succumb to temptation as he endeavors to make Christmas better for both of them?
Dean sounds gorgeous. What’s your favourite quality about him?
He has every right to be bitter, twisted, and plain old miserable. Instead, he remains upbeat, most of the time at least, and strives to be the best he can be.
Is Tilly the kind of person you could be friends with, and why?
Yes, I do think I could be friends with Tilly; underneath her composed, almost dull, façade is a girl with a spark, and a lot of repressed energy that I would have to make it my mission to unleash.
Now for the fun bit.
Eggnog or wine? Wine – medium white if you’re offering J
Turkey or chicken? Neither – I’ve been vegetarian for over 20 years.
Chocolate cake or berries? Did somebody say chocolate? No question!!
Santa hat or paper crowns? It just has to be the ridiculous paper crown out of the cracker that doesn’t seem to fit anybody.
Dr Who or Eastenders? Neither – I’m really not much of a TV viewer but am partial to Christmas movies.
I'm a bit of a geek, so prefer Dr Who. It's all I watch Christmas day :)
I'm a bit of a geek, so prefer Dr Who. It's all I watch Christmas day :)
Now for a little more about Christmas is Cancelled and a juicy excerpt. Isn’t the cover fab?
Matilda 'Tilly' Carter didn't think her day could get any worse, but even Christmas had just been cancelled.
The one girl Dean Watson has sworn never to have—never even expected to see again—just flared back into his life and into his home—his sanctuary—like she belonged there. Christmas would certainly be more bearable with Tilly around though…
As the chinks in Dean's armor appear, Tilly seizes the chance to win her knight once and for all. She's not about to take no for answer—not this time—but Dean must resist, even as his heart rebels and temptation threatens to undermine his resolve.
Win or lose? Love or honor? Which will Dean choose? Assuming he gets a choice…
Tears welled in her eyes, clouding her vision. She turned and wandered blindly toward the exit as the first tear escaped, forging a track down her cheek for the rest to follow. Tilly took in a lungful of air and then another. Having made a spectacle of herself once already, she really didn't want to be the cause of yet another scene.
The crowds swarmed around her, with students and family members heading home for the holidays only adding to the usual rush-hour melee of commuters. They jostled past, threatening to swallow her whole, as they rushed en mass in the opposite direction, using their briefcases and suitcases as a battering ram.
It was suffocating. She had to get out of there. Breaking into a run, broken heel or not, she raced through the doors and out into the biting December chill. Her waterlogged eyes struggled to adjust to the dark, dreary sky after the bright station lights, but she didn't dare slow down, desperate to escape the throng of festivities and merriment.
Carol singers assembled outside burst into a jovial rendition of "We Wish You a Merry Christmas," full of joy and happiness. Didn't they know Christmas had just been cancelled?
"Ooof!" Tilly smacked her shin against the edge of a low bench, too dark to see as she tried to dodge the growing audience. She ended up sprawled across the bench, dropping the handle of her suitcase with a loud clatter.
At least the pain shooting down her leg gave her an excuse to be crying. Unfortunately, it meant she had to stop running too. Not good. Whenever things got too tough, too intimate, or too confrontational, you could rely on her to make a run for it. Running away was what she did best...
A tall figure loomed in the edge of her vision, something vaguely familiar about the man's loping gait. In an effort to see him more clearly, she wiped her eyes with the back of her hands, then cringed inwardly at the black streaks now etched all over them. Great. She could add impersonating a panda to her day from hell as well then.
The mascara stung her eyes, rendering her unable to focus properly. She blinked furiously as the man strode past her, talking into a mobile phone in a deep voice that resonated throughout her body and made the fine hairs on the back of her neck stand on end. A surge of adrenaline rushed to her legs, numbing the pain as her subconscious told her to run. Now!
The cloaked figure stopped mid-stride as if he'd heard her gasp. "Mike, I've gotta go," he barked into the phone, hanging up instantly. He backtracked until he was standing right in front of her, his tone changing from a growl to one of surprise. "Basmati?"
Great. She hadn't heard the nickname for years—nine years, four months and...sixteen days, to be exact—and even then, only one person had ever actually used it. She screwed her eyes tightly shut, shaking her head from side to side. No. No way. There was absolutely no way this could be happening to her. Not now. Not today of all days... Talk about kicking a girl when she was down.
Buy link: Breathless Press
About the Author
Aurelia B Rowl is a contemporary romance author but you can also find her masquerading as Allie A Burrow, her raunchier alter-ego.
She lives on the edge of the Peak District in the UK with her very understanding husband and their two fantastic children aged 5 and 3, along with their mad rescue mutt who doesn’t mind being used as a sounding post and source of inspiration. They are all used to her getting too caught up with her latest writing project... or five!... and she is guiltily counting down the months until she has both kids at school full-time.
To find out more about Aurelia, or to check out what projects she's working on right now, you can visit her website www.aureliabrowl.com
You can also find her hanging out on:
Blog – blogspot.aureliabrowl.com
Facebook – www.facebook.com/aurelia.b.rowl
Twitter – @AureliaBRowl
Google+ – +AureliaBRowl
Pinterest – www.pinterest.com/aureliabrowl
Goodreads – www.goodreads.com/aureliabrowl
Thank you for coming by my blog today, Aurelia. I wish you all the best with your debut!