Saturday, May 5, 2012

Guest Blog & Giveaway: Babette James

Reading Lark After Dark would like to welcome author Babette James to the Dark Nest today.

Thanks so much for letting me visit here today and share a little about my debut novel, Clear As Day, a sweetly scorching contemporary romance about two friends with benefits facing the fears and uncertainties of their changing relationship. I loved writing Clear As Day, it’s been a story of my heart in many ways, so seeing this story published is a dream come true. Receiving the 4 1/2 star scorcher review from Romantic Times and being able to hold my book in my hands have been truly thrilling moments.

I’ve been asked occasionally, why a heroine who is commitment-shy? I didn’t set out to write a commitment-shy heroine, but it was fascinating to see Kay’s story unfold as I wrote Clear As Day.

Kay Browning is an artist, specializing in watercolors, and to those around her, a happy free-spirit. However, she’s seen enough of the hurt and dark turmoil love and marriage has caused in her own dysfunctional family and the world around her to know those are not for her and she manages the pain she carries from her past and hides it from everyone. Her childhood experiences and adult observations of relationships have left her very cautious, thoughtful, and nearly OCD exacting, and she believes love is only true in fairytales. Friendship is all she will allow. She believes she is content with the quiet, organized life she’s made for herself: a satisfying job, a comfortable home, the freedom to travel her beloved desert lands and paint as she wants in solitude, and the peaceful, friends-with-benefits relationship with Nate.

Nate is a photographer whose wanderlust keeps him traveling about the globe most of the year, and that very absence has helped make him the one man who’s been able to get past Kay’s wary heart. However, despite his happy-go-lucky ways, wanderlust, impulsive decision-making, and years of traveling, Nate longs for commitment and settling down. Coming from a close, loving family, Nate believes love is forever and Kay is his forever.

So, of course, Kay and Nate painfully discover, despite those years of close friendship, just how much they didn’t know about each other and had assumed. Nate’s faced with just how hard loving can be and Kay finds denying love doesn’t keep it from happening to her.

Kay now must choose: be ruled by her past and security of habit and keep herself walled off from emotional entanglement and potential pain or open herself to trust in Nate and his love and deliberately set out on an unanticipated new future where the outcome is not in her sole control. They now needed to learn to really talk and listen to one another, take risks, and truly trust, if their friendship was to survive and love they’d always shared have a future.

Come fall in love at the river. I hope you enjoy Nate and Kay’s journey to love as much as I have.

Sometimes falling in love with “the one” isn’t as clear as we’d like it to be and sometimes it hits us like lighting. 

Do you have a favorite memory of when you knew you were in love? Babette will be giving away a set of Romance Trading Cards to one lucky commenter. Please leave your E-mail address with your comment.

Clear As Day
By Babette James
Genre: Contemporary Romance
What’s a girl to do when her summer lover wants forever?
Haunted by dark memories of her parents’ volatile marriage, artist Kay Browning keeps her heart locked behind a free-spirit facade and contents herself with the comfortable affair she has every summer with easygoing photographer Nate Quinn.

The only trouble with her plan? This summer Nate’s come to Lake Mohave to claim the lover he can’t let go. He’s done with the endless traveling and settling for temporary homes and temporary loves. Kay’s always been more than just a vacation fling, and now he must convince this woman, who sees love as a course to certain heartbreak, to take that leap of faith and learn how safe love with the right man can be.

Excerpt from Clear as Day: 
“Kay!” That male voice was not her imagination.
“Oh, shit!” She twisted and dropped into the water, sinking neck-deep.
Mother always said, among other things, that a lady never goes skinny-dipping and must always wear a proper hat. Kay was only half skinny-dipping, but she fervently wished she’d worn something a bit more substantial than a baseball cap and the bottom half of the quintessential teeny-weenie yellow polka-dot bikini.
Shit, oh, shit, oh, shit. She so hated when Mother was right.
Okay, time to find out who’d just gotten an eyeful. The guy had called her name, so she should know him. Oh boy, if she’d flashed old George…
She wiped water from her face, sucked in a breath against her pounding heart, and peeked around.
She must be sun-dazed. Nate? With a beard? Hair curling over his ears? No way.
Just because a familiar slouchy fishing hat topped those unruly, sun-bleached blond curls and just because this guy possessed the same deep-water tan and footloose taste in clothes as Nate with his electric blue Hawaiian shirt, bright orange swim trunks, and beat-up deck shoes didn’t mean—
“Hey, babe. Now that I’ve finally caught your attention, how about a hug from my girl?” He opened his arms. “Am I coming in after you or are you coming out?” Only Nate’s voice held that mellow timbre like chocolate for her ears.
“Nate! What…” Giddy delight flushed over Kay, clearing her shock. She dashed from the water and into strong arms, a wonderful hug, and a better kiss that launched her mind into a blissed-out whirl of oh, yes and why?
The oh, yes won out until the need to breathe forced them apart.
Nate gave her a long look, his usually easy gray eyes holding a new, simmering heat.
Wow. Whoa.

About the Author:
Babette James writes contemporary and fantasy romance and loves reading nail-biting tales with a satisfying happily ever after. When not dreaming up stories, she enjoys playing with new bread recipes and dabbling with paints. Babette is a member of New Jersey Romance Writers, where she has served on the Board. She is also a Pro member of Romance Writers of America, and the Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal, Celtic Hearts, and ESPAN Chapters of RWA, Liberty States Fiction Writers, and Romance Divas. As a teacher, she loves encouraging new readers and writers as they discover their growing abilities. Her class cheers when it’s time for their spelling test! Born in New Jersey and raised in Southern California, she’s had a life-long love of the desert and going down the shore. Babette now lives in New Jersey with her wonderfully patient husband and three extremely spoiled cats.
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  1. Happy Saturday everyone! Glad to be here today.

    1. We loved having you! Stop by again any time. :)

  2. Your story sounds good! Years ago, I was having ice cream with my boyfriend, and he said some4thing that cracked me up... I looked at him, and suddenly felt this enormous wave of love for him, that's when I knew I loved him!


  3. Hi, Robin, thanks! That's such a sweet memory.

  4. Robin is the winner of the set of Romance Trading Cards!


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