by Michelle Garren Flye
GENRE: contemporary romance
Carole Barnes once believed she would make her own way in Hollywood, but those days are long gone, leaving behind only a dark, slimy secret that Carole has never shared with anyone. Now she hides in the bright sunshine of the Crystal Coast of North Carolina. As far away as she can get from Hollywood. But what to do when Hollywood comes knocking in the form of a sexy movie star?
Connor Wallace has everything going for him—looks, talent, a successful career—but what he really wants is to perform magic on stage. His love of magic leads him back to his mentor Walt Bryson. At first, he’s pleased when Walt suggests his assistant Carole produce a documentary of his transformation from movie star to magician. He’s worked with Carole before—but the ambitious girl who had a crush on him is gone now, leaving a beautiful, withdrawn woman.
It’s the perfect arrangement. Carole knows she can make a success of the movie and Connor wants to work with her. But as they grow closer, Connor determines to find out her secret. Can love overcome the boundaries of fear? Or will Carole’s past return to plague them both?
She reached for a handful of popcorn and her hand brushed his. When she turned her head and met the gaze of the same pair of clear blue eyes as those on the screen, her heart skipped a beat and she froze. For an eternity of a half second, neither of them moved, then he slowly turned his hand over and folded his fingers over hers. “Is this okay?”
“Yes.” She breathed the single word, then added, “And no.”
“No?” He raised his eyebrows.
“I really want some popcorn.”
“And I still really want to kiss you.” His eyes flickered down to her lips. Then he sighed and released her hand. “I guess one of us should get what they want, huh?”
The Real Naked Truth About Romance
By Michelle Garren Flye
I’m often asked why I write romance. The truth is, I think I’ve always been a romantic. When I was a kid, I used to lay awake dreaming of happily ever afters, usually peopled with the characters of whatever book I was currently reading. I guess this was an early form of fan fiction. I toyed with other genres—scifi, horror, even a little literary. However, I actually remember the moment of clarity when I knew love is the only thing really worth writing about. So I try to write the best romances I can.
Over time, I’ve noticed changes in my chosen genre, a sort of ugly truth that nobody mentions. “Steamy” doesn’t mean the same thing in romance now that it used to—the envelope is getting pushed, but in the wrong direction. I don’t think romance ever really caught up to where women are now, even if the heroines of today’s books are doctors and lawyers just as often as they are housewives and princesses. There’s a vein of darkness running through many romances that’s probably always been there—a sort of glorification of the subjugation of women. If you strip away the trimmings of “strong heroines” who melt in the arms of their alpha heroes, you’ll find that darkness in so many of our romances.
With Becoming Magic, I’ve banned the alpha hero and the heroine who not only puts up with his dominance but likes it. I’ve resolved that my books will focus on heroes and heroines who strive to build something real together, because, really, that’s what love is about. And for those who think this can’t possibly be sexy, I challenge you to read what I write. There’s no S&M, no glorification of rape, no traditionally “macho” men. I’m stripping that away to reveal the real naked truth about love and romance.
And what is that truth? Simple. Two people who regard each other as equals are the only ones who can build a lasting relationship. But the battle to get there can be very, very sexy.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Michelle Garren Flye is an award-winning romance author of eleven novels and counting. Her short stories have been published by the romance anthology Foreign Affairs, Opium.com, SmokelongQuarterly.com and Flashquake.com, among others. She has served on the editorial staffs of Horror Library, Butcher Shop Quartet and Tattered Souls. Michelle has a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She is the mother of three and lives in North Carolina.
Blog: BREATHE: http://michellegflye.com
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