Friday, May 11, 2012

Welcome Guest Author Lillie Spencer #RomanticSuspense

Welcome guest author
Lillie Spencer
to the blog today!
See below for her giveaway!
Welcome, Lillie!  Please share a little about yourself, your genres, any other pen names you use.

Hi!  Thanks for having me!  My name is Lillie Spencer.  I like to joke that I am a mother, author, and wife - usually in that order.  My debut novel is a contemporary romantic suspense, but I also enjoy writing paranormal romance.

Awesome! So, tell us a little about your latest or release.

MANHUNT is a romantic suspense novel about a young woman, Nikki, who wakes up in the hospital with amnesia, only to be kidnapped by a handsome stranger named Michael who claims to be her first and only true love.  As she begins to remember more about their life together, she finds herself drawn to him, only to learn that he is wanted for the murder of her ex-boyfriend. 

At its heart, MANHUNT is a story about love, loss and redemption. 

Oh, interesting! Which character is your favorite and why?

Christian, Michael and Nikki's best friend.  Getting into his head was so much fun.  He has such a unique outlook on right and wrong, is irreverent and funny, but viciously loyal to those he loves.

He sounds great! Will there be any sequels or other books in the same series?

I have an outline sketched out, focusing on Christian's life and how he came to be the way he is. 

What was the hardest thing for you about writing this story?

I put the characters in this book through the emotional wringer quite a bit, and I felt oddly guilty about torturing them the way I did.  Sometimes it's easy to forget they're fictional characters.

LOL! What are you working on right now?

THE CIRCLE, a paranormal romance about a two thousand year old shapeshifting druid priest who has wandered the world alone, hiding from those who seek to destroy him, until he meets a woman whose love he can't deny, no matter how much he wants to.

Wow! Very cool! Have you incorporated actual events or people from your own life into your books?

No actual people or events, but from an emotional perspective, there are definitely pieces of me in this one, more so than anything else I've written. 

Is there a theme or message that runs through your work?

The good guy isn't always perfect, and the bad guy isn't always evil.  It's a thread I find myself weaving in almost everything I write, even when I don't intend to.  I am fascinated by what makes people who they are, what lurks underneath, and I think that fascination helps make my characters three-dimensional.

This is great! What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?

My background is actually wildlife biology.  I used to do raptor rehab and conservation research.  I also interned at a roadside zoo that didn't exactly follow strict procedures about animal handling.  I've been hugged by a real bear, groomed by a monkey, raced a panther and got crapped on by a komodo dragon.  It was amazing, and stupid, and the only thing I regret was I didn't get more pictures.

What an awesome set of experiences! Which romance book or series (or other genre, if you don’t write romance) do you wish you had written?

Anne Rice's Interview with a Vampire series, without a doubt.  I fell in love with Louis, Lestat and Armand, but more than that, the way she drew you in, made you feel as though you were actually there with them was breathtaking.

One of my all-time faves! Okay, now, just for fun:

Milk chocolate or dark chocolate?  Dark chocolate, definitely.  With a glass of red wine.

Salty or sweet?  Both.  I love the combination.  Not too long ago I made chocolate covered pretzels with hazelnuts on top -- yummy.

Bed or kitchen table?  Kitchen table, definitely!  ;)

Beach or mountains?  Hmmm... this is a tough one.  I'm going to say the mountains.  I live a mile and a half from the beach, so I'm probably spoiled and take it for granted.  But I grew up in West Virginia, and hiking through the mountains was as easy as taking a stroll through the park.  There's something almost spiritual about being in the middle of the woods on top of a mountain where the air is clean, the stars are bright and the world is absolutely silent except for the crickets and the owls.

Give or receive?  Receive. I'm selfish that way. I give as good as I get, but I want mine first.
Sometimes you have to forget it all to remember what really matters.

Michael Brennan's life and career come to an abrupt halt when he receives a phone call telling him the love of his life, Nikki Wright, is in the hospital after another attack by her ex-boyfriend Sebastian Cross. Rushing back to Hershey, PA, Michael turns up at Nikki's hospital bedside covered in Sebastian's blood and tells her they have to leave immediately. Though her injuries have induced amnesia, Nikki inherently feels she can trust this man with her life. Soon, they find themselves on the run from both their own troubled pasts and authorities hunting for Sebastian's killer. But with each new day and each touch drawing her further into Michael's embrace, Nikki remembers more about this fugitive she once loved, and who still loves her enough to risk everything to protect her and keep her safe.
Thanks for coming on the blog! Where can we find you on the web?


“You shower first while I unload the car, then I’ll redress your bandages,” Michael instructed. Nikki nodded, and Michael closed the door behind him. She began slowly stripping in front of the mirror, truly looking at herself for the first time. Nikki touched each scrape, each blackened bruise, each swollen red abra­sion. She set her jaw, straightened her back and met her reflection in the eye.
She did not cry.
She had some trouble unwrapping the tape from around her ribs, and considered asking Michael to cut it off. But, no, she was too self-conscious, even though the thought of his hands on her skin sent a little thrill through her. He had said they weren’t together, but had been at one point. Nikki had no idea about the specifics of their relationship. Had she slept with him? Had she slept with anyone? Those were questions she was sure he wouldn’t answer, even if she weren’t too embarrassed to ask. She forced them to the back of her mind as she stepped into the tub, wishing they had bought some flip flops so she wouldn’t have to touch the tub with her feet, and scrubbed her torso, unable to bend enough to clean her legs.
Her modesty was short-lived, however, when a huge spider lowered itself from the ceiling in front of her face. Nikki screamed and Michael came barging in, panicked.
“Nikki! Are you all right?”
The spider had made its way to the bottom of the tub, forcing Nikki to cower in the corner, trapped by the eight-legged beast. She pointed at the wretched creature with a shaky hand. Michael lifted his leg into the tub and stomped on it, making an exceptionally satisfying squishy sound. His clothes already soaked, he kicked his shoes off and climbed in the shower, taking a shaking Nikki in his arms, tucking her head into the crook of his neck and holding her to him while rubbing his hand up and down her back comfortingly.
“Shhhh, Nikki, it’s okay.”
She didn’t move. Something about her forehead against his neck felt famil­iar, and in a good way. A very good way.
“I don’t like spiders,” she mumbled against his collarbone.
His chuckle rumbled throughout his chest.
“No, you don’t. You never did, especially not after…” Michael let his sen­tence die off, leaving Nikki curious about what he was hiding from her this time. He pulled back and kissed her forehead. “Let’s get you cleaned up. It’s been a long day and you need your rest.”
Lillie is giving away an ebook (pdf, mobi, or epub format) of Manhunt to one commenter who leaves their email address. Open to international. Contest will run through midnight EST Monday, May 14. Winner will be chosen by Good luck!
Thanks so much for reading everyone! Now, please leave Lillie some debut novel love!


flchen1 said...

Wow--it's great to "meet" you, Lillie! Thanks for giving us an intro to you and to your debut, Manhunt! That sounds awesome! I love the premise, and can't wait to read it to see how things unfold for Michael and Nikki!

And I'm impressed and intrigued by your wildlife background! Especially since we're heading to the zoo for a fieldtrip in a couple days for the youngest's class ;) I can't imagine meeting some of those animals up close and personal!

Do you think you'd incorporate some of your experiences there into a future book(s)?

f dot chen at comcast dot net

divavixenqueen said...

Very nice interview. Congratulations on your book.
Your definetely a new author to me,
but you'll definetly be on my TBR list.
Whose your favorite author?

Joanne said...

Nice interview. Thanks for sharing. This book sounds intriguing. Does Nikki get her memory back? Do Nikki and Michael find out who killer Sebastian? Do they get their HEA? Does Nikki remember why she doesn't like spiders? So many questions. I'll have to pick the book up find the answers.

Laura Kaye said...

Thanks for all the great comments and questions for Lillie everyone!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lillie said...

flichen1 - Nice to meet you too! To answer your question, yes! In the book I'm writing now the heroine is a wildlife rehabilitation specialist/animal protection lobbyist. She shares a real-life experience with me - she's been bitten by a donkey. He was a real ass. ;)

divavixenqueen - Thank you! As to your question, that's a tough one! I go through phases. Right now, I'm hooked on a YA book series called "The Ranger's Apprentice" by John Flanagan that I originally bought for my son. Similar to the Harry Potter series, both his characters and his writing have matured throughout the series in a way I am in awe of.

Joanne - Thank you so much! I can't wait to hear your thoughts once you've read it. :)

*yadkny* said...

CONGRATs Lillie on your debut release! It sounds really really good!! Where did the idea for this story come from? I've heard my brothers playing a game called Manhunt, but it doesn't sound anything like this:)

Lillie said...

Yadkny - Thank you! I've never heard of a game called Manhunt, but I'm definitely going to look it up. :) I honestly couldn't tell you where I got the idea for this book, and that's true of almost everything I write. It just kind of pops in my head and gets stuck until I write it out of my system.

Aurian said...

The debut book sounds good, I really like some romantic suspense between my paranormals.

But about the paranormal book you are working on, that sounds like Kevin Hearne's Iron Druid books a lot. Did you read those? And if so, where is your book different?

Lillie said...

Hi Aurian! I hadn't heard of that series, so I ran over to Amazon and downloaded the first chapter. I'll definitely read the rest when I'm done writing mine ~ it looks hysterical! :)

It's completely different from mine, though. I have no other supernatural creatures - no fairies, werewolves, vampires, etc. My hero is alone in the world outside of those trying to kill him, and is more serious, darker, maybe even a little broken. He only shapeshifts once every 30 years, and only into another human form.

I can't wait to hear your thoughts on MANHUNT, and if you're interested in more teasers on THE CIRCLE, follow me on facebook. :)

Mux Shaf said...

Enter me :)
I'd love to win your giveaway <3
Who was your inspiration in writing the book :)

karla said...

Wow Lillie...wonderful interview. I love finding new authors. I remember reading my first Laura Kaye book and doing the yippee skippee, I was so excited! I love the book description of Manhunt and the excerpt, the excitement builds again, I look forward reading it! Congratulations and good luck!!


Lillie said...

Hi Mux! My sister inspired me in writing this book. Every time I got frustrated or started to feel like I was overindulging a fantasy by writing, she would keep me going, tell me how great she thought it was and that I needed to finish the book if for no other reason than so she knew how it ended. She also kept me honest - she was my second toughest critic, after me, and if something was weak, she called me on it. I'm blessed to have a sister like her. :)

Hi Karla! Can I just say your comment made my day! I can't wait to hear what you think of MANHUNT!

Vanessa N. said...

This one sounds really good.

crystalg123 said...

Congrats on the release, looking forward to reading!

Laura Kaye said...

And the winner is...Crystalg123!


And thanks to everyone for leaving some debut release comment love for Lillie!