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Nominations For The 2014 Romantic Novelists’ Association Awards

RONAThe annual shortlist for the RoNA awards were revealed and I am delighted to see that some of my recent favourite books are amongst the nominees.

The five category winners competing for the Romantic Novel of the Year are drawn from 30 finalists’ books; six each from the five categories – Contemporary Romantic Novel, Epic Romantic Novel, Historical Romantic Novel, Romantic Comedy Novel and Young Adult Romantic Novel.

The Category Shortlists
Listed in alphabetical order

The Contemporary Romantic Novel category is for mainstream romantic novels set post-1960 and includes genres such as chick lit, paranormal and romantic suspense.

Helen Chandler, Two for Joy, Hodder & Stoughton
Susan Elliot Wright, The Things We Never Said, Simon & Schuster
Veronica Henry, A Night On The Orient Express, Orion
Lisa J Hobman, Bridge Over The Atlantic, 5 Prince Publishing
Lisa Jewell, Before I Met You, Arrow
Pippa Wright, The Foster Husband, Pan

The Epic Romantic Novel category contains serious issues or themes, including gritty, multi-generational stories.

Jessica Blair, The Road Beneath Me, Piatkus
Mary Fitzgerald, The Love Of A Lifetime, Arrow
Emma Fraser, When Dawn Breaks, Sphere
Kate Lord Brown, The Perfume Garden, Atlantic (Corvus)
Jennifer McVeigh, The Fever Tree, Penguin
Lucinda Riley, The Midnight Rose, Pan

The Historical Romantic Novel category is for novels set in a period before 1960.

Charlotte Betts, The Painter’s Apprentice, Piatkus
Christina Courtenay, The Gilded Fan, Choc Lit
Liz Harris, A Bargain Struck, Choc Lit
Joanna Hickson, The Agincourt Bride, Harper Collins
Carol McGrath, The Handfasted Wife, Accent Press
Annie Murray, The Women Of Lilac Street, Pan

The Romantic Comedy Novel is for consistently humorous or amusing novels.

Jenny Colgan, Christmas At The Cupcake Café, Little, Brown
Jenny Colgan, The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris, Little, Brown
Margaret James, The Wedding Diary, Choc Lit
Milly Johnson, It’s Raining Men, Simon and Schuster
Ali McNamara, Step Back In Time, Little, Brown
Fiona Walker, The Summer Wedding, Sphere

The Young Adult Romantic Novel features protagonists who are teenagers or young adults.

Liz Bankes, Irresistible, Piccadilly Press
Christina Courtney, New England Rocks, Choc Lit
Alex Gutteridge, Last Chance Angel, Templar Publishing.
Imogen Howson, Linked, Quercus
Marie-Louise Jensen, Smuggler’s Kiss, Oxford University Press
Beth Reekles, The Kissing Booth, Corgi

RoNA Rose Award – the finalists do not contest the Romantic Novel of the Year Award – recognises the best in category/series and shorter romance that focus on developing a love affair between the hero and heroine.

Louise Allen, Forbidden Jewel of India, Harlequin Mills & Boon
Caroline Anderson, Snowed in with the Billionaire, Harlequin Mills & Boon
Liz Fielding, Anything But Vanilla, Harlequin Mills & Boon
Joanna Fulford, His Lady of Castlemora, Harlequin Mills & Boon
Kate Hardy, Bound by a Baby, Harlequin Mills & Boon
Kate Hardy, Her Real Family Christmas, Harlequin Mills & Boon

The 2014 RNA Awards will be announced and presented by Darcey Bussell on 17th March in the Reading and Writing Room of the Gladstone Library in London. Good luck and best wishes to all the authors nominated.

Step Back In Time By Ali McNamara

Step Back In Time‘Step Back In Time’ is the latest by Ali McNamara.

When single career girl Jo-Jo steps onto a zebra crossing and gets hit by a car, she finds herself in 1963. The fashion, the music, her job, even her love life, everything is different. And then it happens three more times, and Jo-Jo finds herself living a completely new life in the 1970’s, 1980’s and 1990’s. The only people she can reply on are Harry and Ellie, two companions from 2013, and George, the owner of a second-hand book store. If she’s ever to return from her travels, Jo-Jo must work out why she’s jumping through time like this. And if she does make it back, will her old life ever be the same again?

‘Step Back In Time’ is most definitely the three F’s – Fabulous, Fun and Fresh as we join Jo-Jo on her time travelling adventure where every decade has a new adventure and every line is a Beatles song.

The story is seen through the eyes of Jo-Jo, a young accountant, who likes to be in control of everything around her, but one day she has an unfortunate incident with a time travelling zebra crossing and finds herself stranded in 1963. Lost in 1963, she and her friends are all different versions of themselves, dealing with issues and dramas. But just as Jo-Jo finds herself adapting to each decade with the aid of her guardian friend George and his mysterious ways, she finds herself travelling through the decades, whilst helping strangers and discovering herself along the way.

This story is an addictive one that has an original twist to it. Lost in each decade, Jo-Jo wonders why she is able to time travel, but whilst travelling, she finds people like herself, who helps her realise that there is more to life, than numbers and maybe The Beatles had the right idea and indeed all you need is love. A charming book from the very start with bubbly characters, like Ellie, Jo-Jo’s friend, the ambitious journalist in one decade to the obsessed Take That fan, there was rarely a quiet moment when she was about, handsome Harry who makes Jo-Jo’s heart flutter in every decade and the gentle and wise George who provided a calming presence when things got a bit to heated for Jo-Jo.

With a beautifully illustrated cover, ‘Step Back In Time’ is an exciting and refreshing adventure of a book, with vibrant fashions, an ecletic array of music and a particularly lovely Beatles theme to it, I couldn’t put the book down!

You can buy Step Back in Time from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

90’s Crushes With Ali McNamara

I am delighted to be part of the blog tour for the release of Ali McNamara’s new book ‘Step Back in Time’ and as part of the tour, I am featuring the 90’s and more specifically crushes of the 90’s.

I would love for others to tell me who made their hearts beat a little bit faster in the 90’s. And to start the ball rolling, I am going to step forward and admitt my embarrassing crush of the 90’s.

Well when I say embarrassing, I mean my actions and not the actual crush. When I was younger, I loved Shane Lynch from Boyzone, so much so that I sent him a card but this wasn’t just any type of card, this card was special.

One summer my mum went away to Knock, (a religious place in Ireland) and whilst she was there, she asked me did I want anything and I asked if she could get me a Mass Bouquet for Shane for his upcoming birthday. This meant that one day, Shane’s name would be read out and prayed for in mass. A friend had somehow managed to acquire the addresses of Boyzone members, so I posted the card off with my best intentions expecting to hear nothing.

But then a few weeks later, I received an envelope which had my own writing on the front of it and when I opened it, I discovered a signed card from Shane, thanking me for the mass! To say I was one delighted teenager would be an understatement, even though my friends laughed at what I did, a lot of them did admit that they were jealous.

Shane Lynch CardAs I look back at this, I cringe with embarrassment but also marvel at the unique idea.

And now as I slink off into a corner and recover from my embarrassment, Ali is now going to step forward and admit who got her heart thumping in the 90’s.

In the 90’s I was very busy getting married and having babies… But that didn’t stop me enjoying the odd handsome face on my TV or movie screen!Sam Beckett

I think my biggest crush was on a TV character called Sam Beckett, from the TV show Quantum Leap.

Sam was kind hearted, brave and utterly gorgeous, and even though I watched this show with my (at the time) new husband, it didn’t stop me enjoying the delights of Mr Beckett every week!

Quantum Leap is one of the reasons I’ve always wanted to write a feel good time-travel story myself. It has just the right amount of humour, history and drama in it to be the perfect time-travel programme, that and a certain handsome hero…
😉

Handwritten Girl Takes Part In Ali McNamara’s Book Tour

I am delighted and excited to announce that I will be taking part in the Ali McNamara blog tour for the release of her new book, ‘Step Back In Time’. Check out Handwritten Girl on Wednesday 13th November, where Ali will reveal her crush in the 90’s and I will reveal mine. Anyone else feeling brave, please step forward and reveal their teenage loves, it’s all about the name and shame!

Time Travelling Tour

Ali McNamara Reveals Cover To Her Book – Step Back In Time

Step Back In TimeAli McNamara has finally released the cover to her latest book,’Step Back In Time’ and it’s a lovely brightly illustration of four girls crossing a zebra crossing dressed in clothes spanning through the decades

The story of ‘Step Back In Time’ is about –

How many lifetimes would you travel to find a love that lasts for ever?

When single career girl Jo-Jo steps onto a zebra crossing and gets hit by a car, she awakes to find herself in 1963. The fashion, the music, her job, even her romantic life: everything is different. And then it happens three more times, and Jo-Jo finds herself living a completely new life in the 1970s, 80s and 90s. The only people she can rely on are Harry and Ellie, two companions from 2013, and George, the owner of a second-hand record store.

If she’s ever to return from her travels, Jo-Jo must work out why she’s jumping through time like this. And if she does make it back, will her old life ever be the same again?

I am looking forward to the release of this book as I loved ‘From Notting Hill to New York . . . Actually’ and I am particularly loving the cover to this book. Very, very eye-catching, indeed.

You can pre-order Step Back in Time on Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 7th November 2013.