Sunday, June 1, 2014

Author Blog & Giveaway: Mostly Magic by Donna June Cooper

Mostly Magic
The Kindling Series
Book Two
Donna June Cooper

Publisher – Samhain
Publication date – June 3, 2014
Genre – Contemporary Paranormal Romance
Cover – by Kanaxa aka Nathalie Gray 



About the Book:
One terrifying premonition brings them together. Another will threaten their future.

Do dreams come true? Dr. Daniel Woodruff hopes they don't, because his dreams predict a devastating future for him, for those he loves—and for the planet.

His latest premonition, which blows a huge crater in his eroding sanity, holds a singular horror—the loss of a wife and unborn child. Yet another reason he can let no one into his chaotic life, least of all a perky, persistent investigative reporter he finds simultaneously frustrating and fascinating.

Mel Noblett leaves no stone unturned in her one-woman crusade to save the environment. When a whistleblower in Italy proves too frightened to talk, Mel turns to a fall-back lead, an extremely eccentric, beekeeping professor who might just make the trip worthwhile.

Despite their instant attraction, Mel is relieved when Daniel keeps her at arm’s length. After all, she has a secret of her own—one that makes her preternaturally good at her job. And, when Daniel’s terrifying visions prove cannily accurate and begin to revolve around Mel—it is a gift that could put her life in danger.

Warning: Reluctant seer of a bleak future meets petite force of nature who lights up the heart of his darkness. Where there’s smoke, there could be an unpredictable blaze of passion, but the rewards are oh, so sweet…


Samhain  |  Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo  |  iTunes

We are thrilled to bring you a guest post by Donna June. Enjoy~
There are two things that are essential to my writing process, one is music, the other is visuals—photos, maps, blueprints. And of course, for visuals, I use Pinterest.  I am continually pinning things, for already published books, for books under construction, and for books that are just wisps of idea.

For this book, Mostly Magic, there was such a rich cache of visual images to play with. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do! 

Settings

First, Florence, or Firenze, Italia. Talk about a rich cache. This is my very favorite city in all the world and all I can give you on my Pinterest board is a taste.  This particular taste is of the terrace at the top of the Hotel Loggiato dei Serviti that plays a key role in the book. I actually had a discussion with an editor who was familiar with Florence and didn't think you could see Il Duomo from that room. This is when the internet is your friend. As you can see, you really can see Il Duomo from that room.


Second, another rich source of visual images—Scarborough Renaissance Festival—which, although brief, plays a bit of a role in the book. I have spent many lovely hours at this particular faire. Great fun plus costumes and finger food! These lovely fairies were captured by Artist at Play wearing outfits just a tad skimpier than Mel's (the heroine's) usual garb when assisting her magician father. If you have never been to a Renaissance faire, give it a try. You might run into a prince!





Characters

And of course, the characters. Some readers prefer to picture the characters for themselves, which is why my Pinterest boards have warning screens so you don't have to see the characters if you don't want to. So, *WARNING*, if you don't want to see the characters as I visualize them in my head, you might want to skip this part.

As you can tell if you explore my Pinterest boards, there is no one individual who absolutely matches my visual of any of my Mostly Magic characters. I have to say though, that when I wrote Daniel Woodruff in the very first book of the series, I saw someone who looked a lot like Orlando Bloom in my head. Tall, lanky, long dark hair, and with what I call that "I-can-see-things-you-can't-see-and -I-don't-want-to" look. Yum.

 



Then there was Mel. I could never find really close to the Mel I had in my head. KaNaXa, the wonderful cover artist for Mostly Magic, gives us just a hint of Keira Knightley with intense blue eyes in her rendition of Mel. Another option is the irrepressible Jennifer Lawrence, whose hair and eyes and personality would come very close to our petite force-of-nature, Mel.

 




Origami, as you can probably tell from the cover, plays a key role in the book. (And yes, I know, it is such a funny and suggestive word!) Mel creates origami figures for her father's magic show and for relaxation. These little green fellows are her favorites for handing out at her father's magic shows, and for distracting adorable eccentric scientists. In addition, there is a You Tube link on my Pinterest board that shows you how to make a jumping frog out of a playing card, just as Mel does in the book.


As you can see, research for writing a romance can be fun and educational. I hope you enjoyed this little foray through the images in my head!


About the Author:
A transplanted mountain girl. As the granddaughter of a coal miner and the great-great-granddaughter of one of the Muscogee people, Donna was raised in the shadows of the Appalachian Mountains - in the beautiful hills of East Tennessee. After getting a couple of college degrees, she was lured away from her mountains by a gorgeous Italian guy, who married her and carried her off to Texas. (Texas, by comparison to her mountains, is very hot and very flat—a fact she points out often to whoever will listen.) Her vocations have included a little bit of everything, including a stint as an IRS tax auditor, a few years managing a bookstore, and a career in the corporate world writing technical courseware and documentation, but her avocation was always writing. She enjoys being walked by her Jack Russell Terrier (if you know Jack's, you understand), belly dancing (excellent exercise and lots of shiny costumes), reading (three books at once, at times), and travel (with family in Italy and England, who wouldn't?) But, like any child of the Appalachians, she doesn’t stay away from her mountains for long, and visits as often as she can.

Author Contacts:

Website |  Facebook |  Twitter | Pinterest

Tour Giveaway:
First Prize: A honeybee charm (or a $10 GC from Amazon) plus a copy of each book 
Two Second Place Prizes: e-copies of Mostly Magic and More than Magic.  
(Visitors can get extra points by tweeting about it, by adding the book on Goodreads, and/or by following me on Twitter and Facebook) 
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