Shadow Dance is now live on Amazon
Writing and rewriting this book has been a really steep learning curve for me.
I've worked with an independent editor and learnt so much.
The biggest thing I've learned is that although it's easy to pen a quick moving yarn...it's the spit and polish and attention to detail that turns that first rough draft into a memorable book.
For example in high summer....who would have a fire going in the evening??
It is these sort of inconsistencies that annoy a reader...an annoyed reader won't come back to read another book by that author.
Shadow Dance was Highly Commended—2011 Clendon Award—run in conjunction with Romance Writer's of New Zealand.
"I read this entry in one sitting—I couldn't put it down."—Judge's comment.
ExcerptThe sense of familiarity intensified.
She knew she'd never met him, but also knew she should know who he was. As she picked up the tweezers, she heard his footsteps in the hall.
Her heart picked up a pace, the involuntary reaction irritated her beyond reason. He walked through the door, stooping slightly so his head missed the lintel, and halted mid-step when he saw her tending Zach's injury.
"I told you I didn't need that." She glanced at the tin in his hand.
Ignoring her protest, he laid it on the table and flicked it open. The glossy green contrasted sharply with the scarred wood. "Two pairs of hands are better than one."
His good natured comment had Jenna grinding her teeth in frustration. Boy, does this guy love himself—or what?
He produced a penlight and shone it on the cut. The splinter glittered in the pinpoint beam. This did as little to soothe her temper as his satisfied smile.
Who the heck was he? His air of casual elegance exuded wealth and privilege. Those charcoal slacks and cream shirt never came off any ready-to-wear peg.
At five three, her head barely reached his shoulder. A quick glance at him through her lashes had her inhaling a shaken breath. The heady spice of pine, sea and warm, healthy male stirred an instinctive feminine appreciation.
A reaction as annoying as it was unexpected.
Inhaling a shaken breath, she squashed it flat.
Never again would she allow a good looking guy, no matter how hot, to derail her plans.
Once, she'd allowed a life-long friendship and loneliness to blind her to the obvious—and now she was a single mother of twins.
"Doesn't that make it easier to see?" The deep rumble of the stranger's voice added to her unsettled irritation.
"Some." On that grudging admission, she caught the splinter with the tweezers and deftly removed it.
Zach wriggled and curled his toes, whimpering, "Ouchie."
"Mama kiss it better." She lifted his foot and kissed it. "Hush, sweetheart. Finish your raisins."
"Is that all of it? Does it need stitches?"
Jenna stopped swabbing the cut and gaped up at him. Was he for real? "It's a splinter for cripes sake, not a cut artery."
"Any injury to a child is serious."
She selected a plaster from the packet in the first aid box and covered the tiny cut on Zach's foot, lifted him down from the table and watched as he ran to join his sister not even favoring the foot. "I take it you have a dozen kids?"
A dull flush crept up under his tan. "Since when has being concerned for a child's safety been a crime?"
Anger had her sucking in a sharp breath. "Who the heck do you think are you?"
Her unwelcome visitor put his hands in his trouser pockets, pulled out a cell phone and two shotgun cartridges.
Suddenly wary, Jenna's gaze winged upwards. Apprehension spiked as she saw his lips thin to a grim line. His grey eyes were as hard as polished steel.
"Gabriel Callahan. And by rights I should call the cops, have you arrested and hauled off to jail."