Guest Blog Goodness–Tess Delacour

Please help me welcome Tess Delacour to the blog!!

Most writers I’ve known say that writing is invigorating; while some say that it’s their therapy. How does your writing serve you? Do you express your life through the story or does the theme come from your vision?
Writing is therapy for me.  It’s a healthy way to release emotion.   We all have to self-censor.  You can’t run around spewing every thought that floats through your head, but you can write it down.  Some of it makes it into the books and some gets discarded, but it all gets set free.

There is a bit of me in every one of my characters, good and bad.  It’s kind of like a Horcrux.  Pieces and parts of a writer live on in their books long after they are gone, keeping them alive.  That’s how I look at it.

Who or what inspired you to write?
Pride and Prejudice was the first romance novel I ever read.  The book was assigned in a high school English class and I was immediately hooked on Jane Austen.  It was the first time I became obsessed with a book.  I reread it over and over, and sought out all the movies and mini-series available.  I had been writing poems and short stories all along, but that book changed the direction of my writing.  I wanted to create worlds, to draw readers in and make them feel connected to a cast of wonderful characters.  Jane did that for me.  All her books make me want to jump inside the pages and be a part of the story, and that’s the impact I want to have on my audience.  Reading Austen drew me to other romance authors and I’ve been on this path ever since.  Other strong influences are Daphne DuMaurier and the Bronte sisters.  There are many wonderful modern authors who have inspired me as well.  In particular, Jill Shalvis, Erin McCarthy and Christy Craig have had an impact.  I love a good, sexy, funny story, and these ladies do it well.

What are your five “desert island” books?
SAS Survival Guide by John Wiseman — I am a practical girl at heart.  If I’m dehydrated, starved and half-dead, reading five page-turners isn’t really happening.  I’ll go for one practical book to keep me alive and four fantastic reads to make living worthwhile.
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen — Of course, by now you know I have a Jane problem and this book would need to be on the island.
Outlander by Diana Gabaldon – This is a book I can read over and over again, and get something new every time.  The complex characters and historical detail keep me coming back.
The Complete Works of William Shakespeare – Okay, okay, I know this is cheating but it’s my island and in my defense it is a single book.  Will’s plays would keep me happy for the rest of my days on an island.  Of course, my favs are the HEAs Much Ado About Nothing and Taming of the Shrew, but I am sure I would find the time to read the tragedies as well.
The Princess Bride by William Goldman – This book has everything!  And isn’t a gorgeous pirate what every woman stranded on a desert island needs?

What is the best way a reader can express their gratitude for the experience they had reading your work?
The best way a reader can express gratitude is to leave an honest review of my book.  Reviews are what lead new readers to a work and they are invaluable.  It’s like tipping your waitress at a restaurant.  The reviews are tips for an author.

Have you done all the things in your book with your partner? That’s what I want to know 🙂
Many of my intimate scenes are drawn from reality or things I would like to experience.  As women I think sometimes we have trouble voicing our fantasies to our lovers.  My husband had never read a romance novel until my books.  I asked him if he was going to be embarrassed for people to read them due to the spicy content and he said, “Nope.  They’ll just be jealous.”  By the way, if you can get your significant other to read a romance novel you will be amazed at the results.  Try it.  😉

Website: www.tessdelacour.complayitagaindan
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The moment Detective Daniel Murphy waltzes into The Dubliner Irish Pub, he knows it is going to be a good night. Music, beer, and sex are the three best reasons for living in his opinion. The first two were satisfied upon entry and the third looks promising if the singer on the stage is cooperative. Little does he know that the woman he’s about to meet, the very one he’s been admiring, will change his life forever. She’s picked up a nasty stalker and Dan is the cop assigned to her case. Lucky him.

Assistant District Attorney Kate Shaw’s first encounter with Detective Murphy consists of him ogling her backside and bossing her around. Not a stellar start. She’s carrying a boatload of childhood baggage from a youth spent in foster care and believes she is unable to make an emotional connection with the opposite sex. Men are more trouble than they’re worth and life with her music, work, and cat are plenty to satisfy.

They attempt to work together to nail Kate’s stalker but the bad guy has other ideas. Can Dan protect Kate from the threat and convince her they are for keeps? He’s a man who gets what he wants. In this case that’s the bad guy as well as the girl.

Chapter 1

Detective Daniel Murphy walked from his car to The Dubliner Irish Pub, the sounds of a band spilled out the doors of the brick building. He loved that sound, it reminded him of his dad, and Guinness. One of his favorite reasons for living was music. Well, music and beer and…sex. Not necessarily in that order. He stepped into the pub and cast a wide net with his eyes. It was a cop thing. Taking in every person in the place, scanning the area, checking for potential problems. Habit.

He was surprised to see his younger brother Ryan at a table in the back corner with a bunch of friends he recognized from the DA’s office. His brother was an Assistant District Attorney and this pub was near the courthouse, apparently an ADA hangout. He made his way over to their table. “Hey Ryan, how’s it going?”

“It goes well, what are you doing here all by your lonesome?” Ryan asked.

“I’m working a case, and meeting someone here for an interview.”

“Well Danny, set your big ass down and take a load off until your interview shows up.”

Just then the band started again with “Hard Times,” one of his favorite songs. He looked up and gazed at the small, elevated stage and then he heard her voice. His eyes landed on the singer, and holy hell he couldn’t look away. She was gorgeous. Average height around five-feet-four inches, but nothing else about her was average. She was wearing a blue, long sleeved T-shirt, black jeans, and low-heeled black leather boots. The simple clothes could not hide her abundant curves. She had an amazing rack and a butt to match, his favorite combination. Voluptuous. Blonde, shoulder length hair framed a heart shaped face. Piercing blue eyes lit with pleasure as she belted out the tune. She was playing an acoustic guitar that looked to be a Gibson. Nice. A husky, deep voice poured from her body. Her voice reminded him of the late Eva Cassidy. It was unsettling hearing such a big voice from such a small frame. He closed his eyes and let the music flow over him.

Ryan started chuckling. “The drool does not become you.” The other guys at the table snickered. “Dream on Danny, she’s out of your league.”

“You have no idea what’s in my league. Do you know her?”

“Yeah, that’s Kate Shaw. She’s an ADA in the child abuse section, hard as nails and a real ball breaker, great lawyer though.”

“Aww, shit. That’s my interview.”

Dan scrubbed his hand over his five o’clock shadow. “She said to meet her here. I didn’t know she was performing.”

Ryan was still laughing at his big brother. “The band is Guilty As Charged. They’re a bunch of lawyers who perform here a couple times a month.”

“I’ve heard of them, but have never seen them play. They’re pretty good.” They had finished “Hard Times” and the woman was singing a Norah Jones song now. He couldn’t take his eyes off her.

Okay, time to put on his cop face and behave like the professional he was. No mixing business and pleasure. Being a grown up sucked.

It was approaching ten o’clock and that was the time she had told him to meet her.

As the song ended the band announced they were taking a break and would return shortly. She had given him a description of herself so he could find her when he arrived. A description that only included the basics of hair color, height, and what she’d be wearing, but that was sorely lacking in the luscious details department. Crap, get it together, Dan. Professional. Serious. Detective.

He approached the stage as she was bending over to pick up a water bottle. Jaysus, that was a fine ass. She caught him ogling her assets out of the corner of her eye, stood, and turned to face him. Busted. Setting her guitar on its stand she gave him the evil eye.

“Can I help you with something?” she said in a deadpan voice.


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