DARING SUMMER: A ROMANTIC SUSPENSE NOVEL by ELYSE DOUGLAS BOOK REVIEW

DARING SUMMER

BY ELYSE DOUGLAS

A hot summer beach—
A marriage gone wrong—
Daring eyes and daring love, betrayed by a secret passion.

Kim feels trapped in a loveless marriage to a jealous, wealthy older man. He blames her for crippling him in an auto accident that he himself caused. Kim strives to make the marriage work, despite her husband’s blame, verbal abuse, and bitterness. When she meets a wickedly handsome man on the beach, she fights not to want him, not to want a new life and not to fall in love.

But Derek is seductive and irresistible—a former soldier who has recently come to town to start a landscaping business. Kim falls hard for him, as he does to her. Although Kim wants a divorce, her husband finds out about their affair and devises a plot to destroy them both. They must struggle to survive a web of lies, deceit and dangerous passion.

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BOOK REVIEW

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of DARING SUMMER by ELYSE DOUGLAS. The opinions expressed here are entirely my own. Many thanks to VIRTUAL AUTHOR BOOK TOURS for the advance copy!

 It was truly a pleasure to sit and read DARING SUMMER by ELYSE DOUGLAS! I was fully invested in the “who-dun-it” of this book by the time I had read the full blurb! I just couldn’t wait to read it and see what the pages held in store!

The characters were incredibly well-developed. With the descriptions of their physical characteristics and their behavior, a very vivid picture of each of them grew as each chapter sped by!

DARING SUMMER is an incredibly fast-paced book with a plot that whipped this reader into a fury as Ben Maxell showed his true colors early on! Things move quickly from the first chapter as the authors take us on the daring journey through the sand dunes of Scorpio Beach during this brilliantly crafted book!  

I very highly recommend DARING SUMMER for anyone that enjoys a great romantic suspense novel!

I give DARING SUMMER by ELYSE DOUGLAS five gleaming gold stars!

Please tell us your story as a husband/wife writing team.  How did you meet, how did you discover you could write as a team, etc.

A:  We met at the Greenhouse Theatre in New York, a theatre dedicated to nurturing writers, directors and actors.  We were both writers, but I was also working as an actress in the soap opera Guiding Light

After a night of working at the theater, Doug asked me if I wanted to go to a party that some of his friends were throwing to celebrate the production of his new play, and I said, “Why not?”  We have been together since, more than twenty years… But whose counting?

When writing novels, we work together in a variety of ways.  It depends on the plot and characters.  We start with plot, structure, tone, then characters.  We write maybe 10,000 or 20,000 words.  If by then the story doesn’t smell right, we drop it and move on.  We have begun and dropped at least five books over the years, two were completed.  C’est la vie!

What draws you to this genre? 
A: In the romantic suspense genre, characters are often struggling with inner demons that drive them to action.  At least the better ones do.  It’s not just a sexy attraction, but what lies beneath the dialogue and the plot that strips away the protective layers that allows the characters to truly fall in love.

How long did it take you to write this book from concept to fruition?

A: We made several attempts at Daring Summer before we were happy with it.  We completed a draft a couple of years ago and then set it aside, returning to it twice more before finally completing it.  So, from start to finish, over two years.

How important do you believe having a good editor is for the success of your book?

A: A good editor is mandatory—a must for every writer.  I know of no writer who doesn’t need a professional editor to point out the cracks in the plot, the errant grammar and the pretzel sentences.

What is your usual writing routine?

A: I write 6-7 days a week at least four hours a day.

Do you find it difficult to juggle your time between marketing your current book and writing your next book?

A: Marketing is a challenge, but it is an essential part of writing.  Without it, nobody will find and read your book. 

What do you do when you are not writing? 

A: Read, walk, take vacations and go to fun restaurants.

Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you?

A: Whenever I hear that question this quote comes to mind and I laugh.

“No man/woman but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.”

– Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)

What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

A: Entertained, uplifted and wanting more.

Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support?

A: Brian DeFiore, agent and editor, who taught me the absolute necessity of having a good editor. 

Praise ‘Other Side of Summer’ by Elyse Douglas

“5 stars, another great, emotional read from this author!! I was hooked the minute I started reading it. Be warned you will need a box of tissues to read. I really love this author!”- Melissa Mendoza, Anne & Melissa’s Book Love

“I found this to be a satisfying, well developed warm and enriching read. It gave me a lot to think about. I will recommend it to readers of both genders, age high school and up, who like substance in their novels.”-Laura Reading, Laura’s Interests

“The book is more than just a contemporary romance – it’s a family saga, a book about the bonds of family, about love (not just between partners but between parents and children), about life and the choices we make. It’s heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. The writing is hauntingly beautiful, and the author has a talent for crafting believable characters. An excellent book, and I look forward to reading more by this author.”- Majanka, I Heart Reading

“Great story, I give it five stars.  I thought the book was wonderful and emotional, and I loved the writing style and how the words flowed.  I was happy to fantasize about being there to watch the story unfold.  I loved this story; took me back to my young beach days.”-Diana’s Book Reviews

The Summer Diary Book Tour

The Summer Diary

by Elyse Douglas

 

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ROOM WITH BOOKS encourages our readers to follow the tour and comment.

 

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About the Book

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After her best friend and husband are killed in an airplane crash, a young woman finds her best friend’s diary and learns that she was secretly in love with another man, a soldier.  Determined to find the secret lover, Keri sets off on a journey and discovers the key to her destiny.

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Excerpt

Seconds later, the tension returned.  She saw Big Pete, and a tall younger man emerge from around the back of the house and start toward her.  His dogs, Brownie and Tippie Toe, were right behind.  She steadied herself with effort, and combed back her hair with stiff fingers.

Under the bold yellow sunshine, Ryan seemed to approach in slow motion, in easy unhurried strides.  The playful wind scattered his long, sandy-blond hair, and he pushed a hand through it and removed his sunglasses, squinting her a look as he slowly closed the distance.  He wore a sleeveless blue T-shirt, denim cut-off shorts and faded black Keds sneakers.  He had considerable breadth of shoulder, a wide chest and gleaming muscled arms that suggested an athlete in the prime of his career.

This was not the same man Keri had seen in the photograph at Sally’s house.  There was a force about this fully present Ryan—an elegant masculinity that completely pushed Keri off balance.  This big tanned man standing before her had impact, he captivated, impressed; he aroused intrepid desires.  Keri felt a warm animal response. There were little tremors in her legs, her chest, her fingers.

Ryan stopped, standing five feet away from her, staring, waiting.  He had a noble hero face, all sharp lines, a sharp jaw, a strong muscular neck.

Keri’s thoughts stalled.  She saw his intense sea-gray eyes probing her, checking her out.  His expression was a blank page.

Big Pete spoke up.  “Keri, this is Ryan.  Ryan… Keri.”

Keri had the urge to leave.  She had the urge to run.  She’d never felt so ill at ease.  Her façade of indifference melted away whenever she looked at Ryan.  He was a magnetic wonder, whose reserve and mystery further amplified his attraction.

 

About the Author

AuthorPhoto_TheSummerDiary

Elyse Douglas is the pen name for the married writing team Elyse Parmentier and Douglas Pennington. Elyse grew up near the sea, roaming the beaches, reading and writing stories and poetry, receiving a Degree in English Literature.  She has enjoyed careers as an English teacher, an actress and a speech-language pathologist.  She and her husband, Douglas Pennington, have completed five novels: The Other Side of Summer, Christmas for Juliet, Wanting Rita, Christmas Ever After, The Christmas Town and The Christmas Diary.

Douglas grew up in a family where music and astrology were second and third languages.  He attended the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music and played the piano professionally for many years. His two detective books include Death is Lookin’ for ELVIS and Death is a TAPDANCER.  His great, great grandfather lived to be 132 years old, and was the oldest man in the world when he died in 1928.

Connect with the Author

www.elysedouglas.com

https://twitter.com/douglaselyse

http://www.amazon.com/Elyse-Douglas/e/B0080S51TE/

 

 

Giveaway

Elyse Douglas will be awarding a $50 Amazon/B&N gift card to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.

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The Summer Diary Book Blitz

the summer diary review blitz

Book Blitz

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Book Title: The Summer Diary
Author: Elyse Douglas
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: May 7, 2015
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

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Book Blurb

After her best friend and her husband are killed in a private airplane crash, Keri finds some of her friend’s personal effects, one of which is a diary. When Keri reads it, she discovers her friend had been secretly in love with another man, a soldier. Keri knew nothing about the relationship, even though she and her friend were as close as sisters.

Determined to find the secret lover, Keri sets off on a journey and discovers the key to her destiny.

excerpt

And Ryan. Who was he, and what had happened to him? Did he survive the last mission? Did he try to get in touch with Sophia after he returned to the United States? Her head dropped in despair as she realized again: she’d never known the real Sophia. Perhaps Ryan had. Perhaps Ryan had seen something tender beneath the bravura and the façade of self-confidence and control.

Keri reached down and splashed water on her forearms. Maybe her friends and family had been too close to Sophia to glimpse the nuanced, the vulnerable, the painful truth. Maybe Keri’s and Sophia’s friends had seen only a dazzling shadow of her, while Ryan had seen the true, enchanted image—the real Sophia.

Keri stared at a flock of seagulls gliding through the sunset sky. Sophia obviously had a talent for guarding and hiding her real self from the world. But if she’d been touched by love, maybe that love had opened her up to new vistas of feeling she’d never experienced before, vistas she hadn’t even known existed inside her. Real love can do that, can’t it? Keri had never personally experienced it, but she believed it could happen.

Maybe in that one, short summer, Ryan had gotten closer to Sophia than anyone else ever had. Maybe he could help Keri see the true Sophia. Maybe Ryan’s insight could help Keri slough off her disappointment and anger and hurt. Maybe he could tell Keri things about Sophia that would help her understand and forgive her friend.

Keri stopped, hovering on the edge of an absurd thought. Should she try to find Ryan? The thought gave her a sudden electric thrill. She stared down into the sand, seeing the eroded ruins of an old sandcastle that had been punished by the hostile tide.

“Ryan,” she said aloud, the sound instantly swallowed up by the beat of waves striking the beach.

Keri circled the space, gently kicking at the sand castle, mentally kicking at “what ifs.” What if he’d been killed? What if he’d moved away? What if he was married and didn’t want to remember Sophia? What if Sophia hadn’t revealed the whole truth about the relationship because there was some awful truth about him?

And how could she possibly ever locate Ryan without a last name? Sophia had never once mentioned it.

In an instant, Keri knew the decision had already been made: She had to find a way to track down and speak to this man. She whirled and marched back across the beach to where she’d left her chair and the diary. There had to be clues in the diary—had to be phrases that could help her find Ryan. At the very least, she could discover what had happened to him.

A half hour later, Keri slid behind the wheel of her blue Ford Focus and drove to the nearest Starbucks. She ordered a café latte and a scone and found a seat near the plate glass window that looked out onto Main Street. It was nearly 8:20 and, as daylight faded, the streetlight globes flickered on, spreading amber light onto the sidewalks. Keri opened her laptop, reached for her phone and called her friend Mitchell. He was smart. He’d know how to find Ryan.

Book Trailer

Meet the Author

Elyse Douglas is the pen name for the married writing team Elyse Parmentier and Douglas Pennington. Elyse grew up near the sea, roaming the beaches, reading and writing stories and poetry, receiving a Degree in English Literature. She has enjoyed careers as an English teacher, an actress and a speech-language pathologist.

She and her husband, Douglas Pennington, have completed seven novels: The Other Side of Summer, Christmas for Juliet, Wanting Rita, Christmas Ever After, The Christmas Town, The Summer Diary and The Christmas Diary.

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The Other Side of Summer Book Blitz

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Book Blitz

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Book Title: The Other Side of Summer
Author: Elyse Douglas
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: May 14, 2015
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

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Book Blurb

Joanna Halloran, a best selling writer and astrologer, lives in a beach house overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. After a violent storm, she roams the beach, glances seaward and spots a man clinging to a piece of wreckage, being tossed helplessly. She dives in and pulls him to safety. Robert Zachary Harrison is from a wealthy, political family. As he slowly recovers from a private plane crash, he and Joanna fall in love and spend passionate and secluded weeks together. But because of family duty, Robert departs, not knowing Joanna is pregnant.

Twenty five years later, Senator Robert Harrison is running for President of the United States. In the midst of a contentious presidential campaign, Joanna’s daughter, who has a passion to expose secrets, seeks revenge on her father she has never met.

She meets and falls in love with her father’s adopted son. As secrets emerge, Joanna and Robert meet again and confront the past and present. Robert confesses a secret that Joanna had never known. Now, on the world stage, they struggle to keep their families and careers from destruction.

excerpt

Joanna was placid, but inwardly blazing with desire. She opened the refrigerator door and reached for an open bottle of Sauvignon Blanc. She poured half a glass and drank liberally, to cool her parched throat and heated emotions.

Moments later, she was outside on the deck, glancing about. She finished the glass of wine and inhaled. With an intensity she’d accumulated since entering the house, she left the glass on the table and started off across the walkway, toward the staircase that led down to the beach.

Robert suddenly appeared, cresting the stairs, slightly winded. He stopped abruptly when he saw her. She stood breathless. Their eyes met. They heard the sea surging and loud.

Joanna’s sun-glazed appeal captured him.

Joanna saw his eyes light up on her as he approached. It was the expression she’d hoped for.

He lifted his arms toward the sky. “What a fantastic day. A day for gods and goddesses.”

She removed her sunglasses, looking at him with the flashing eyes of a new love. “So it is.”

She looked down at his blue swimming trunks, his bare hairy chest. His body was trim and firm, anchored with assertion into the earth. “Does the suit fit?”

He tugged at the elastic band. “Well enough.”

His blue eyes widened. “Crashed into the sea—the source of all life—reborn from the sea, a better man.”

She smiled a little. “So poetic.”

“Not bad for an old fighter pilot.”

“I got the clothes.”

He looked at her with clear, expectant eyes. “Shall I model them for you?”

She held the smile. Her expression was of someone who has just discovered a brand new passion.

There was a conspiratorial aspect to the moment, as they shifted positions and realized their growing commitment to the illegal yearnings of the heart.

“… Of course…”

 

Back at the house, Joanna removed the pants and shirts from the bags and handed them to Robert. They didn’t speak. When Robert left the living room to try on the clothes, Joanna sat, stood and paced with the adolescent body language of desire and nerves.

Robert emerged, feigning a playful, rakish charm, and their eyes danced and their faces grew flush. He stood in olive green Khakis and a yellow polo shirt, and for a moment, Joanna allowed herself to think that she and Robert would fall in love and grow old together. It was a thought she’d never had before; not this exceptional and private thought—not even with her first husband.

When Robert approached and leaned toward her, intimately, she grew in height. “Joanna…I don’t want to go just yet. I don’t want to call them…They’re out there—way out there—somewhere. I don’t want to go back. Not now.”

Joanna’s lips parted, as their private passion expanded. “Then don’t go back. Don’t ever go back.”

Joanna’s muscles softened. She leaned against the door of her heart and it opened, releasing the blazing light of desire that she’d tried to smother. She could already feel Robert’s breath on her. She could hear his voice in her ear, calling her name in the night. She could feel his hands exploring her, finding her, delighting her.

It was clear, in that little doorway of light, that she’d always wanted him. She would reach for him and close the door behind them.

His face moved close to hers. She felt his warm breath. She felt the raw sexual power of him, silently reaching for her. His lips lightly brushed hers. She shivered. She ached for him. Her eyes went vague and unfocused and she closed them, feeling the sting of tears when his tongue slipped between her lips and probed her mouth.

She traced his cheekbones with her hand, touched his hair and ears, fading from consciousness to a rising ecstasy. He broke the kiss gently, and reached for her hand.

They touched, kissed and scattered clothes through the house as they fumbled their way toward his room—toward the teenage bed. By the time Joanna had released her bra, and stood proudly naked, she was stammering with passion, kissing him and running her hands through his wiry chest, caressing his shoulders, pressing him into her.

Book Trailer

Meet the Author

Elyse Douglas bio

Elyse Douglas is the pen name for the married writing team Elyse Parmentier and Douglas Pennington. Elyse grew up near the sea, roaming the beaches, reading and writing stories and poetry, receiving a degree in English Literature. She has enjoyed careers as an English teacher, an actress and a speech-language pathologist.

Douglas has been a musician, a graphic designer and an equity trader.
Elyse Douglas, have completed seven novels: The Summer Diary, Christmas for Juliet, Wanting Rita, Christmas Ever After, The Christmas Town, The Christmas Diary and The Other Side of Summer.

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