Renee Conoulty: June 2017

Books

Friday, 30 June 2017

Diamond Sky by Annie Seaton

The Kimberley can be a haven for those who can stand the heat, but its isolated beauty can also be deadly, if you're not paying attention...

The remote Matsu diamond mine in the Kimberley is the perfect place for engineer Dru Porter to hide. Her insignificance in that vast and rugged landscape helps her feel invisible. And safe. Surely the terror she left behind in Dubai will never find her here.

Security specialist Connor Kirk knows from experience that beautiful women are capable of treachery. When he arrives at Matsu to investigate a diamond theft, he immediately suspects the reclusive but obviously capable Dru Porter. He knows she's hiding something.

As Connor's investigation deepens and Dru's past catches up with her, their instant, mutual dislike threatens to blind them to the true danger lurking in the mine, one which could leave them both at the mercy of the desert...
 



Hey! Here's my review.

Evocative descriptions, engaging characters and edge-of-your-seat suspense, this outback romance will keep you turning pages.

Diamond Sky is the third book in the Porter Sisters trilogy but can be read as a stand alone. I loved the descriptions of the fly in fly out lifestyle of a diamond mine worker and the vivid descriptions of the Kimberly region. It was the characters that really made the story, though. Dru was a fantastic strong heroine. I'm looking forward to reading more of Annie's books.


I reviewed a complimentary copy.

★★★★★

  • Where: provided by the publisher
  • Format: ebook

Thursday, 22 June 2017

All that Glitters by Tracy Krimmer


All That Glitters banner

This is my stop during the book blitz for All That Glitters by Tracy Krimmer. This book blitz is organized by Lola's Blog Tours. The book blitz runs from 19 till 25 June. See the tour schedule here.

All That GlittersAll That Glitters (All That #1)
By Tracy Krimmer
Genre: Contemporary Romance / Women’s Fiction
Age category: Adult
Release Date: summer 2017

Blurb:
Country-music star, Dory Walker, never wanted to come back to the small town of Sycamore Bay. But after her fairy-tale life is flipped upside down, and her marriage becomes a casualty, she has no choice.

Harris Malone is a man with few commitments. He keeps a low profile most days while he cares for his young daughter and helps run his dad’s hardware store.

But when he and Dory run into each other at the local gas station, all either can think about is the searing kiss they shared many years ago.

Can a woman who only wants to rekindle her career and a man who enjoys a no-strings attached lifestyle find everlasting love?

Hey! Here's my review.

 I loved this sweet small town romance. I'm not really into the "rock star romance" theme - I can't relate to all the fame and stardom but a country singer, fallen from grace, who crawled back home to the people she'd ditched on her way up - yep, loved it. And the single dad romance - swoon.
I think Stella, Dory's grandma, was my favourite character. She was down to earth and tough.
I can't wait to read the next book in the series and see where Dory goes from here.
I reviewed a complimentary copy.

★★★★★

  • Where: Lola's Blog Tours
  • Format: ebook

“Even though on the outside we glittered like gold, inside we were almost as black as coal. Sometimes the glitter people saw was only the shattered pieces reflecting among the broken glass.” Like quote on Goodreads

You can find All That Glitters on Goodreads

You can buy All That Glitters here.

Tracy KrimmerAbout the Author:
Tracy's love of writing began at nine years old. She wrote stories about aliens at school, machines that did homework for you, and penguins. Now she pens books and short stories about romance. She loves to read a great book, whether it be romance or science fiction, or any genre in between, or pop popcorn and catch up on her favorite TV shows or movies. She's been known to crush a candy or two as well. Her loves include fitness, reading, coffee, dogs, and naps (not in that order), and her dislikes are blue cheese, cold weather, and burpees.

You can find and contact Tracy here:
- Website
- Twitter
- Facebook
- Goodreads
- Amazon
- Bookbub
- Instagram
- Newsletter

Giveaway
There is a tour wide giveaway for the book blitz of All That Glitters. One winner will win a $10 Amazon gift card!

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:

banner Lola's Blog Tours

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Her Outback Cowboy by Annie Seaton

Hey Everyone!

I'd like to introduce you to Annie Seaton, who has just released Her Outback Cowboy.

Annie Seaton lives on the edge of the South Pacific Ocean on the east coast of Australia She is fulfilling her lifelong dream of writing and has been delighted to discover that readers love reading her stories as much as she loves writing them. Annie lives with her own hero of many years. Their two children are now grown up and married, and two beautiful grandchildren have arrived. Now they share their home with Toby, the naughtiest dog in the universe, and two white cats. When she is not writing she can be found in her garden or walking on the beach... or most likely on her deck overlooking the ocean, camera in hand as the sun sets. Each winter, Annie and her husband leave the beach to roam the remote areas of Australia for story ideas and research. In 2014 Annie was voted Author of the Year and in 2015 was voted Best Established Author in the AusRomToday.com Readers' Choice Awards. Readers can contact Annie through her website annieseaton.net or find her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.




Her Outback Cowboy by Annie Seaton

The last thing advertising art director Lucy Bellamy wants is to go home to the Outback, but duty to family calls. At least there’s one bonus—her first love, sexy cowboy neighbour, Garth Mackenzie, is there and the attraction between them is still explosive. But Lucy has no intention of getting stuck in this two-bit town and she counts down the days until she can go back to her real life.

After an engineering degree and working in the mines of Western Australia, Garth has returned to the Outback and is home to stay. His goal is to settle down, start a family, and work his beloved land with the girl he’s always loved. But if it comes to Lucy choosing between the glamour of the city or making a home with him in the Outback—he’d lose, hands down.


Find it online:
Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks | Goodreads | Amazon AU





Thursday, 15 June 2017

Wife, Mother, Woman by Renee Conoulty *Cover Reveal*

Hey Everyone!

I've been working on a little project and now it's time to show you. I've put together a collection of flash fiction about the everyday life of a military wife. I have incorporated some of the stories from #militarylife so that collection will become unavailable next week. If you haven't downloaded your free copy, now's your last chance. You can get it HERE.

Here's the cover of Wife, Mother, Woman.


Australian military wives army navy airforce milspouse milso


The everyday life of a military wife. 

This flash fiction collection takes you inside the lives of ten military affiliated women. Whether they serve the military or support those who do, they all face relatable problems. Making new friends, finding new jobs, solo parenting. Being wives, being mothers, being women.


Exclusive to Amazon
Available free on KU

Coming soon
June 28, 2017

Pre-order
Universal Amazon Link





Wednesday, 14 June 2017

The First Year by Genevieve Gannon

The first year of marriage is hard no matter what. Throw in jealous exes, high-pressure careers and two wildly different families, and the degree of difficulty goes up a few more notches. Determined to beat the odds, one couple comes up with a plan to keep their romance alive - but life has other ideas.

Saskia is an up-and-coming jewellery designer, waiting tables at a trendy cafe to keep her fledgling company afloat. Andrew is a corporate lawyer who wants to be known for more than his family's money. They're passionate about their work and each other, but with Andy's job in jeopardy and Saskia's jewellery label taking off, the pressure is taking its toll.

As life pulls them in different directions, the two of them are forced to decide: Just how important is their marriage? And how hard are they willing to work to protect it?



Hey! Here's my review.

The honeymoon is over... Genevieve gives us a sneak peek into how Saskia and Andy deal with the all-too-real day-to-day dramas of fitting together as a married couple. Lovey moments, funny moments, difficult moments and moments that were a bit too close to home. I really enjoyed this story and plan to read more from Genevieve.

★★★★

  • Where: NetGalley
  • Format: ebook

Monday, 12 June 2017

Run for the Hills by Carla Caruso

The Belshaw brothers are back in Balkissoch...

Bridie Porter is wearing her Vera Wang gown and veil in the back of her wedding limo when she receives a compromising text about her hotelier groom. Panicked, she tells the driver to keep going and she flees from Melbourne to the small town of Balkissoch in the Adelaide Hills. 

It’s the perfect pit-stop to hide from her ex and the press and to earn enough cash to stay out of sight. Unfortunately, the admin job she gets is for a wedding photography business and she’s had her fill of weddings lately. But it’s slim pickings on the work front in a town so teeny. And her new boss is strangely compelling...

After the rush and adrenaline of his job as an LA paparazzo, the last place Cody Belshaw wants to be is back in the small town where he grew up. But thanks to a clause in his father’s will that amounts to blackmail, Cody and his two brothers are stuck running a wedding business for at least a month. If there’s one thing that he’s learned in LA, however, it's to keep business and pleasure very, very separate. Which makes his new admin employee the definition of temptation.

Bridie is desperate to stay anonymous. Cody seeks out secrets for a living. As they delve into the world of brides, boutonnières and dogs-as-best-men, both Cody and Bridie will have to decide if this is a fling...or forever.



Hey! Here's my review.

A sweet romance novella about a runaway bride and a handsome photographer who both find what they're not looking for. I love Carla's writing style - easy to read and fun. I adore her sense of humour - calling the runaway bride "Bridie". The Aussie small town setting was picturesque and relatable. I'm looking forward to reading more from Carla.

★★★★★

  • Where: NetGalley
  • Format: ebook

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Need something fun to read?


Hey Everyone!

Do you love a light and fun read? From cosy mysteries to chick lit. A little humour and romance, too?

Over thirty authors, including me, are giving away books via Instafreebie. Head over to Joynell's website to find a short blurb and links to each of the books.

https://joynellschultz.com/promo/

Friday, 9 June 2017

Memories of May by Juliet Madison

They say that truth is stranger than fiction, but in Tarrin’s Bay, she’s about to find that love is stronger than time...

By day, single mother Olivia Chevalier runs the family’s bookstore and raises her nine-year-old daughter. By night, she escapes into a world of fiction where there is excitement, romance, and happy endings. 

Both of her roles are endlessly rewarding, but Olivia’s life has not been without challenges, hard work, and disappointment. So when enigmatic travel writer Joel Foster walks into her bookstore – and her life – with his mantras of trying new things and taking risks, Olivia knows that nothing will change. 

But when a family dilemma surfaces, Olivia is compelled to enroll in Joel’s writing course to tell the story of her grandmother’s life. With each new day and each new page, Olivia discovers secrets about her family and truths about herself, and finds herself yearning to rewrite the story she has planned and seek a life as intriguing as fiction.



Hey! Here's my review.

Memories of May is the fifth book in the Tarrin's Bay series but can be read as a stand alone. Olivia is a single mother who runs a bookstore previously owned by her grandmother, May. When Joel, the author of a popular memoir, comes to town to run a short writing course, Olivia decides to join it and write a memoir of her grandmother's life. May's memories of a long-ago romance unfold as Olivia steps outside her comfort zone and falls in love with Joel. 

As a fellow book lover and writer, I found Olivia very relatable. The romance was a slow burn, friends to lovers. The story was sweet and emotionally engaging. I first met Olivia in the previous novel, April's Glow, and was hoping to see more of her. I look forward to reading more in this series.

★★★★★

  • Where: NetGalley
  • Format: ebook

Monday, 5 June 2017

#MassiveBeachRead Giveaway!


Hey Everyone!

Hilary over at Feeling Beachie has put together an incredible giveaway with a total of 54 books (including a copy of Don't Mean a Thing) and $150 in gift cards! Whether your weather is a Northern Summer or Winter Down Under, you're in with a chance to win a book to warm your heart.

The prizes have been divided up into 14 book bundles and six $25 Amazon gift cards. For more details on each of the books and to enter the giveaways, head over to Feeling Beachie. There is a separate rafflecopter giveaway set up for each book bundle and for the gift cards. Good luck!


Threadbare: The Traveling Show by Alexandra DeMers

How do you piece together your life when the world is falling apart at the seams?

It’s 1945. The New American Republic may be done fighting their enemies overseas, but the war at home against Tall-Me, Cleo, and their army of patriots still rages on.

Times are hard, but Amandine Stewart refuses to give up hope. Her father killed in action and her mother imprisoned in the faraway city of Nieuwestad, Amandine embarks on a dangerous journey to reunite what’s left of her family. Her sunny disposition and skills as a seamstress get her a job with a traveling band of performers who are on their way to put on a show that may be their ticket out of poverty.

But when there is sunshine, something always lurks in the darkness. While Amandine and her friends prepare for an extraordinary performance in Nieuwestad, her every step is dogged by the treacherous NAR agent who arrested her mother. He’s as unpredictable as he is vain, but he makes two things perfectly clear: nothing but the occasional bloodstain shall sully his perfect uniform and nothing will stop him from completing his mission.

Join Amandine as she travels through the war-torn remnants of an alternate past where struggle, adventure, and romance dance to electro-swing beneath the stars.
 



Hey! Here's my review.

An alternate history romance adventure with a cast of fascinating characters. I loved the insight into life in a travelling show and the vivid descriptions brought the costumes to life. I could almost hear the electroswing music playing. The pacing was fast and the ending left me wanting more. I'm looking forward to reading more from Alexandra.

★★★★

  • Where: Author Invitation
  • Format: ebook

Friday, 2 June 2017

April's Glow by Juliet Madison

The heartwarming new Tarrin’s Bay novel from bestselling author Juliet Madison is all about moving on – in unexpected ways.

Distracting herself from a string of bad luck and a disastrous love life, bubbly April Vedora throws herself into her new business —April’s Glow, a candle store in seaside Tarrin’s Bay — the enchanting scents and colourful atmosphere provide a safe haven. But outside business hours she’s clueless about her personal life.

When a mysterious loner moves in next door, she can’t help but become intrigued, and ex-soldier Zac Masterson is equally fascinated by April. But both have sworn off relationships, and while April avoids her emotions by keeping busy and sociable, Zac hides away from the world — and his past.

As the pair chip away at each other’s facades and secrets are revealed, April fears that the man she is unwillingly falling for could represent everything she’s worked so hard to avoid. Or could they be just what the other needs?

They’ve shared their secrets over the back fence, but resolving the past is going to mean opening the doors to their hearts — and letting each other in.



Hey! Here's my review.

April's Glow is the fourth book in the Tarrin's Bay series but the first one I've read. It works well as a stand-alone novel but I'm intrigued to find out more about this delightful small town. 
I loved the dynamic between the heroine and hero - extrovert & introvert, both with scars that hadn't finished healing. I look forward to reading more in this series.



★★★★★

  • Where: Review copy
  • Format: ebook

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Writing Her Own Destiny & Dancing Through Life

Hey Everyone!

Back in October last year, in the lead-up to publishing Don't Mean a Thing, I emailed the two Australian military magazines I knew of and pitched them the idea of writing an article about me. 

The Top Ender magazine jumped on the idea and asked me to write the article. I dropped off a couple of paperbacks for them to give away to local readers just days before we moved interstate. The Top Ender is a tri-services (Army, Navy and Airforce) magazine that is delivered to all military members in the Darwin region. 


The Top Ender - December 2016 / January 2017
Writing her own destiny

Writing a book wasn’t one of those burning desires I’d had since childhood. I’m not a writer, I’m a reader. I love to read just about anything, but especially contemporary Australian fiction – the types of stories I can relate to.

I met my husband at a swing dancing class. I started swing dancing back in 2000 and I’ve been on the lookout for books about swing dancing ever since. When my husband joined the military, I kept an eye out for stories about military people – but most of the ones I found were alpha male romance novels set in the USA. When I found out we were posting to Darwin, I searched for stories about the Northern Territory – but most of those were historical or outback stories. Meanwhile, I read hundreds of other books instead.

I decided to do something with all these books I was reading and started a book review blog, HeySaidRenee. Through writing reviews, I met lots of authors online. I discovered that authors are people. Real people, who often write after their kids have gone to bed. People like me. Maybe I could write a book? Maybe I could write the book I wanted to read?

So I did.

I sat down at my computer one day, three years after I’d moved to Darwin. Hubby was away and our two kids were asleep. The house was quiet but my mind was busy. I didn’t start at the beginning; I started with the scene that was in my head. The next day, I wrote the scene that followed. The day after, I wrote the scene that came before. Then I wrote a whole bunch of stuff that has been since cut out of the book (it’s not always smooth sailing) but I might share it in a prequel one day. I wrote about Macie, a woman who joined the military later in life. I wrote about her moving to Darwin. I wrote about her taking up swing dancing to make friends. I wrote about her falling in love (but that’s not all smooth sailing either).

I wrote the first third of the book within a month, but with all my work and family commitments, I couldn’t sustain that pace so took another six months to finish my first draft. I shared my story with my critique partner, whom I met through the Romance Writer’s of Australia. I spent the next six months tweaking and polishing (and filling the huge plot hole my mum found). I’ve discovered that I’m a reader and a writer.

I chose to publish with Kindred Ink Press, a small publisher, so I could have the benefits of no upfront costs, lots of input into the publishing decisions and could work within my timeframe of publishing my Darwin story before I left Darwin. My romantic comedy, It Don’t Mean a Thing, was published in November, the week before we posted out, and is available in ebook format wherever you can buy ebooks. Some signed paperbacks are available at Viva la Body in Cavanaugh Street. Unsigned copies are available via Amazon.

I also have a collection of flash fiction called #militarylife that I’m giving to my newsletter subscribers. You can find links to purchase my novel and to subscribe to my newsletter on my blog. 

***

The other magazine, Defence Family Matters, also took me up on my offer and asked Graham Oram to interview me. We emailed back and forth a few times and I got my Dad to take some photos for the article. Dad, a retired professional photographer, was rapt to see his byline. Our favourite photo was the one at the top of this post, which happened to be the first one we took of 21. The magazine went with number 10. Defence Family Matters is an Australia wide tri-services magazine given to all military families.

Dancing Through Life

Renee Conoulty had no idea that her husband’s change of career would take her in a whole new direction too.
Renee and Luke were already married and had two children when Luke enquired into joining the RAAF.
It was an adventure the couple spoke about in great detail before embarking on.
“(We agreed Luke could join) so long as I didn’t have to pass the physical fitness test every year, iron any uniforms or get yelled at,” Renee said.

The family’s first posting was to Darwin—not Renee’s first choice of locations.
“I didn’t like hot weather, but Darwin it was,” she said.

“I researched the area as much as I could; joined military partner groups on Facebook; looked up the touristy things to do; and found out where I could continue my hobbies.”

Renee’s hobbies were swing dancing—which was how she met her husband—and reading.
She quickly found “a fabulous group” of swing dancers in Darwin who warmly welcomed her into their group.

Renee also looked into joining a book club there but with Luke away frequently, and two small children to look after, found it difficult to get to meetings.

The solution was to join an online book club—that’s when things took off.

“After connecting with several Australian authors online . . . I decided to have a go at writing my own book,” she said.

“I’d looked for contemporary stories set in Darwin and novels about the Australian military but hadn’t found many.

“For years, I’d searched for stories about swing dancing but they were scarce too—so there was my idea!”

The end result was Don’t Mean a Thing—a fictional story about 30-year-old introvert, Macie Harman, who joined the military, posted to Darwin and took up swing dancing to make friends.

“I decided she would have to meet a man, fall in love and live happily ever after—but not that easily of course,” Renee said.

“The characters aren’t based on particular people, but I do see a lot of myself in the main character.

“My hopes for my novel is that it gives Australian military women a story they can relate to; introduces some of the struggles of military life to non-military people; and inspires everyone to take up swing dancing so that I have more people to dance with.”