Friday, January 30, 2009

Winners Coming Soon!

I got hit with a big project for the day job, so I'm a bit behind on my winners post -- sorry about that! Rest assured, it's on its way.

In the meantime, I'm celebrating The Devil Inside's accomplishment this week. TDI hit the Samhain bestseller list on its second day of release! Thanks to everyone who bought a copy. I really appreciate it, and hope you enjoy it.

Happy weekend, everyone!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Book BIN Tuesday Two -- The Devil Inside

It’ll take more than one go-round to win this rodeo of the heart…

Thirteen years after her father was killed in a rodeo accident, Samantha Quincannon is facing her worst nightmare. An EMT, she has avoided rodeo duty like the plague. Now her career depends on her ability to face down her fear.

Cody Shaw hasn’t seen Sam since the night of her father’s accident, and their reunion is anything but typical. So is her reaction when a bull ride gone wrong lands him, broke and bleeding, in her reluctant care. And, until he’s well enough to travel, in her bed. He knows he’s far from a model patient, but would it kill Sam not to act like she’d rather climb on a bull herself than have him underfoot?
One thing hasn’t changed—their off-the-charts sexual tension. They both put up a good fight, but soon the heat burns through their resistance.

Even as Sam fights to protect her heart from the one danger she didn’t see coming, something else becomes clear. Rodeo is in Cody’s blood, and nothing, not even Sam, can make him quit taking crazy risks.

It’s up to Sam to decide if she’s ready to put on her big-girl boots—and ride.

Warning: Lots of hot, sweaty, down-and-dirty lovin’. Cowgirl up!

Woo-hoo! It's here! The Devil Inside is now on sale at My Bookstore and More, so head on over and Buy It Now!

Book BIN Tuesday One -- Private Property

Jodi Tyler has loved and lost too many times to believe in happily ever after. That's what makes her no-strings affair with her boss so perfect—his power in bed matches his respect for her independence. Still, when he surprises her with a ménage for her birthday, her secret thrill wars with a nagging thought: Why would he so casually share her with another man?

Even though Mark Rodriguez holds Jodi at arm's length from his heart, her self-confidence is a turn-on he can't resist. Inviting old college buddy and future business partner Sam into their bed for one night was supposed to set free her wildest fantasy. Instead he finds the tables turned, forced to watch while Sam brings her to the height of ecstasy.
Now, Mark's not so sure he wants to share his treasure…
My thoughts: Love the cover, love the story blurb! What fun to share a release date with Leah. So why not head over to Samhain and Buy It Now -- and toss The Devil Inside in your cart at the same time? :)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Character Chat, and A First Review!

Just a quick note to let you know that Cody is going to be hanging out on the Samhain Cafe at 1 pm Eastern today, ready to share some secrets about The Devil Inside. (Poor guy is getting bored with being on bedrest!) There'll be a contest, so be sure to head over if you've got the time.

And I just got my first review for The Devil Inside, from Ciar Cullen. I'm absolutely thrilled -- it's a great review, and I'm so glad she liked the book. Here's a peek:

"This is the comfort food of romance–and it hit me at just the right moment. The news on the economy is awful, work is stressful, writing is giving me hives, yada yada. The cure? For two nights, Kate Davies. Escapism, for sure, but not brain-dead escapism. Not American Idol escapism. I bought this story and the characters. "

Read more here. She's also giving away a copy of one of my backlist e-books, so be sure to comment!

Hope to see you on the cafe,

MTA Monday -- Meet Leah Braemel

NAME: Leah Braemel



TITLE OF FIRST BOOK: Private Property

RELEASE DATE: January 27, 2009

FAVORITE WRITING STORY/SAYING/MEMORY: My favorite writing memory is getting that first email from Angela James saying she wanted to buy Private Property. I did what my husband calls “The Price is Right” bounce for a couple minutes, ran down to tell my sons and bounced with them for a while, then phoned my critique partner for almost an hour. I was so excited I couldn’t sit down and roamed the house the whole time we talked.

FAVORITE NON-WRITING STORY/SAYING/MEMORY: Oh, wow, this is tough. Believe it or not, my favorite memory is probably a day that my husband and I took our sons to Sand Banks Provincial Park on the shores of Lake Ontario to go swimming in the afternoon, and then went to Fort Henry in Kingston Ontario and watched their Sunset Retreat in the evening. Why it’s special is that it was warm and sunny, and everyone was happy and having fun. Plus watching the 19th century battle with the cannons and rifles echoing off the ramparts reminded me of when I’d watched it as a child. I can’t remember a day when I was so relaxed.

COMFORT FOOD: Marmite on toast with a cup of tea. (It’s an acquired taste, believe me)

COMFORT READ: Depending on how I’m feeling, Julia Quinn’s The Duke and I, JR Ward’s Lover Eternal (Rhage’s story), or Patricia Brigg’s Moon Called.

YOUR PERFECT DAY: Any day that has someone else doing the housework and it doesn’t snow outside? Oh, and to top it off, why don’t we throw in the mailman bringing a contract for my newest book along with a big fat royalty cheque from my last one!

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON NOW?: In December I signed a contract for a sequel to Private Property called Personal Protection, which follows the secondary character Sam Watson. It’ll be coming out in May 2009. Personal Protection is the start of a new series following Sam’s bodyguard and security firm, Hauberk Protection. So I’m desperately working on the next in the series – talk about pressure! When I get stuck on that story, or if I just need a break, I have two paranormal (shapeshifter) stories in the works that I’m hoping to finish and submit later this year.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Devil Inside -- What's up with that title?

This is the book that named itself.

No, really.

When I submitted the partial to my editor, it was under the name "Untitled Rodeo Book" because to be honest, I suck at titles. It was only two chapters long at the time, anyway, so I figured that I had time to flail around for a title idea before it ended up on the schedule.

Instead, Angie sent the contact back to me for The Devil Inside.

Perfect! It was the name of the bull that Cody rides in the opening chapter. What a great name for the book.

But when I e-mailed her back, saying so, she said she thought that had been the title all along.

So if she didn't choose the title, and I didn't, obviously the book itself picked it out. And since the main characters both are dealing with some serious baggage, it works on a couple of different levels as well.

In the end, a fictional bull named after a song by INXS in a toss-away attempt at mimicking the names of real rodeo bulls ended up inspiring a title that fits the book perfectly.

Who woulda thought? :)

Today's question -- what's your favorite book title?

Friday, January 23, 2009

Blog Party -- A Tip of the (Cowboy) Hat

My husband is a big fan of westerns.

Not the romances, the movies.

So when it came time to write The Devil Inside, I knew I wanted to include a couple of Western-movie references, just for fun.

Example one: Sam Quincannon borrows her last name from the classic John Ford/John Wayne Western, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon.

Example two: Cody's middle name, Ringo, comes from two of my personal favorites. The first, Stagecoach, is another John Ford/John Wayne collaboration, this time from the best year of movies ever, 1939. The Ringo Kid is the name of John Wayne's character, and it made him a star.

But just now, I slipped and called the character Johnny Ringo. That, my husband reminded me, was a character in Tombstone. So really, it's a name that fits both classic Westerns and more modern interpretations.

Question of the Day: Have you ever noticed an "in-joke" in a book -- a reference to a movie, another book, or a song? If so, what was it?

Blog Party -- Why Rodeo?

I didn't grow up with the rodeo. Oh, I think my family got tickets to the rodeo maybe once when I was growing up, but it wasn't a typical event for us. And though I loved riding horses (even went to "horse camp" one summer), we never owned horses or any livestock, for that matter.

But then I got married. And my hubby's family does the rodeo. Every year. In a big way.

So every Labor Day weekend, we schlep halfway across the state to the rodeo. There are cousins and aunts and uncles and grandparents and friends and...the list goes on. It's like a family reunion, but with horses and bulls in the background.

And I love it.

We have a great time, hanging out together, while someone always writes down the stats for each ride, and the cousins try to get the attention of the rodeo clowns, and I take surreptitious photos of the cowboys (for research purposes, of course). I pull the cowboy hat out of storage and wear it with pride.

So I've wanted to write a book set at the rodeo for quite a while now. And a few years ago, a story caught my attention. Some of the long-time attendees from our group were talking about the year a rider went down on the "suicide run" and ended up getting killed. My heart ached for the family of that rider, who may have been there to see it happen, as the participants in this race were usually locals.

And that's how Sam Quincannon came into being.

As for Cody, well, I think it was the abundance of Wranglers that inspired his character. ;)

I didn't grow up with the rodeo, but my kids are, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Blog Party -- Excerpt One!

It wouldn't be a blog party without a sneak peek at the upcoming release, now would it? So without further ado, here's the very first look at The Devil Inside...

Cody woke to darkness.
Where the hell was he?
“Are you awake?” A cool hand smoothed the hair back from his forehead.
“Unfortunately,” he muttered, which made her laugh softly.
Her. Her who? Damn, he’d been on the road for a long time, but forgetting the woman he was with…
That was bad. Even for him.
The room, what he could see of it, was unfamiliar. Not surprising, considering how many days he spent on the circuit each year. But this wasn’t a hotel room.
And he couldn’t place the woman standing next to the bed.
It didn’t help that his brain felt stuffed with cotton, and the room kept wavering in and out of focus.
“Pain pretty bad?” She leaned over him, straightening the sheets. He knew that scent. Why didn’t he recognize the woman?
Okay, start with the basics. It was night. The shadows in the room were deep and quiet. And his mystery woman, the one now checking the bandage on his arm—holy hell, how had that happened?—was wearing a nightgown.
The light from the hallway spilled into the darkened room, putting her face in shadows but turning her virginal white gown almost transparent. She probably thought the long-sleeved garment was modest, but with the light behind it, Cody could see every curve of her body.
His groin tightened, an instinctive response to this woman. He did know her. Or at least his body did, if his instant hard-on was a clue. Gritting his teeth, he searched his fogged, noncompliant brain. Why couldn’t he place her?
“Hang on,” she said, turning toward the nightstand. The light through the thin fabric outlined one taut nipple.
Hell. He was clinging by his fingertips here.
She held out a couple of pills in one hand and a glass of water in the other. “It’s time for your next dose,” she said, helping him to a semi-upright position. As she leaned over him, her chest brushed against his arm. He tightened his jaw for reasons other than the pain coursing through him.
She tipped the pills into his palm, but he shook his head.
“I’m okay.” He hoped she couldn’t see the sheen of sweat on his brow that proved he was a liar.
She pursed her lips, obviously not fooled. She set the medicine down on the nightstand, within easy reach. “Your call.”
He closed his eyes, willing the room to stop swimming.
She sat down next to him, careful not to jostle the bed. Lifted one eyelid, then the other, which was kind of weird. “What year is it?”
“How about the president? Do you know who’s president now?”
There was that scent again, something sweet and fresh, like fresh-baked vanilla cookies. God, she smelled good. He captured her hand with his and tugged gently. “Stop asking foolish questions and come back to bed.”
She didn’t move. She didn’t say a word. But her tension level spiked off the charts.
“What is it?” He rubbed his thumb over her knuckles. “Come on, baby.”
“I’m not your baby, Cody.” She tugged her hand from his and stood. “And I haven’t been in your bed for thirteen years.”
Thirteen years? He stared at her.
“Not that you were particularly happy to find me there. Booted me right quick. You were pretty insistent on that.”
He’d kicked her out of bed? Was he insane?
“You have no idea who I am, do you?” She shook her head. “Do you remember getting thrown off the bull? The ambulance ride? Hospital? Anything?”
“I’m a little confused,” he admitted.
“Please tell me you remember signing the release papers…”
He probably looked like a deer caught in headlights.
“Crap.” She crossed her arms over her chest. “I knew I should have stayed away. The rodeo is nothing but trouble.” She glared at him. “And that goes double for you, Cody Ringo Shaw.”
Oh, shit. Nobody knew his middle name except family and… “Sam?” No wonder she sounded familiar, looked familiar.
Hell, even smelled familiar.
“Got it in one,” she said dryly. “You’re good.”
Cody struggled to sit up, gasping as pain hit him from all over. Damn, he was in worse shape than he thought.
“Sam, I’m sorry.”
She shrugged. “Forget it.”
“Why am I—”
She cut him off. “Rodeo accident. You’re on bed rest for the next seventy-two hours. After that, who knows?”
Bed rest? “Here?”
“Yep.” Sarcasm lurked behind the terse reply. “Lucky me.”
Shoulders set, she stalked out of the room.
Lucky? Cody fell back against his pillows. It seemed his luck had just run out.
(c) 2009 Kate Davies, Samhain Publishing

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Introducing The Devil Inside

So what's all the fuss about?

The streamers, the balloons, the party favors? The cowboys whipping up margaritas behind the bar? (Yummy!)

Well, it's just six days until The Devil Inside is released at Samhain. (Woot and huzzah!)

So I'm throwing a party, right here on the blog. Those of you who've been around for a while know the drill -- any comment made during the week before the release date is an entry in my drawing. And I've got some fabulous prizes this time around, too! So comment early, and comment often. (Don't miss yesterday's blog post -- comments there count as well.)

Well, since the party is in celebration of The Devil Inside, it seems like a good time to post a little info on the book. Here it is:

It’ll take more than one go-round to win this rodeo of the heart…

Thirteen years after her father was killed in a rodeo accident, Samantha Quincannon is facing her worst nightmare. An EMT, she has avoided rodeo duty like the plague. Now her career depends on her ability to face down her fear.
Cody Shaw hasn’t seen Sam since the night of her father’s accident, and their reunion is anything but typical. So is her reaction when a bull ride gone wrong lands him, broke and bleeding, in her reluctant care. And, until he’s well enough to travel, in her bed. He knows he’s far from a model patient, but would it kill Sam not to act like she’d rather climb on a bull herself than have him underfoot?
One thing hasn’t changed—their off-the-charts sexual tension. They both put up a good fight, but soon the heat burns through their resistance.
Even as Sam fights to protect her heart from the one danger she didn’t see coming, something else becomes clear. Rodeo is in Cody’s blood, and nothing, not even Sam, can make him quit taking crazy risks.
It’s up to Sam to decide if she’s ready to put on her big-girl boots—and ride.
Warning: Lots of hot, sweaty, down-and-dirty lovin’. Cowgirl up!
This is my first western-themed romance, though I love reading them. So today's question is, what romance theme(s) and subgenre(s) do you like best?

Monday, January 19, 2009

It's Party Time Again!

I hope you've got your party hats on and the champagne cooling -- because today starts Blog Party 2009!

Yes, in just one short week The Devil Inside will be available at Samhain Publishing. Yee-haw!

I'm so excited about this book. It was a labor of love -- and sweat, and tears, and...

See, it started out as a novella. But my lovely editor had some specific--and very helpful--suggestions on my first round of edits. So after much writing and revising, it's now almost 15K words longer. And much deeper, more emotional, and (I think) an all-around better book.

A book I'm proud of. A book I can't wait for y'all to get a peek at. A book that's coming out January 27.

So to celebrate, I'm throwing the Mother of All Blog Parties. Stay tuned to this station for excerpts, insider sneak peaks, background info, and hot cowboys. As always, everyone who posts is entered into a drawing to win excellent prizes. Each comment is good for one entry. So the more you post, the more chances you have to win!

And that starts with this post. So my first question is -- what book are you most looking forward to right now? (And no, you don't have to say TDI. *grin*)

In fact, I'll start. MY "can't-wait" book is actually coming out the same day as mine. The subject of quite a big kerfuffle on the intertubes, it's Suz Brockmann's Dark of Night. I haven't been strong enough to avoid the spoilers (bad Kate! Bad!), but they haven't dimmed my anticipation.

I'll probably celebrate my own release by heading to the nearest bookstore -- half an hour's drive away -- to pick up a copy.

Okay, your turn. What book are you tapping your fingers impatiently for while you count down the days?

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Hero Material Deux

The pilot who landed the US Airways jetliner on the Hudson River after the plane was damaged, reportedly by a flock of birds. He landed it safely. In the river. And everyone survived.

"Sully" Sullenberger, you also rock.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Hero Material

Looking for a good guy to base your next romance novel hero on? Check out Myron Rolle.

Florida State safety Myron Rolle will study at Oxford instead of entering this year's NFL draft.

Rolle won a Rhodes scholarship in November and plans to seek a one-year master's degree in medical anthropology, The New York Times reported Monday in an entry on its college football blog.

Giving up a chance at the NFL draft so he can study at Oxford? Dude, that rocks. He also got his undergrad degree in two and a half years, and has been working on cancer research this year. He plans to enter the NFL draft in 2010, after he's finished his master's degree.

You go, Myron.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Book BIN Tuesday -- Asmodeus

Being an aspiring witch is daunting business…

When Brianna Claxton accidentally summons a demon, she is forced to face her mistake head-on. That becomes problematic when her mistake comes in the form of a hot, ancient demon named Asmodeus who refuses to go back to the hell from which she summoned him.

Thoughts of revenge have kept him sane…

Asmodeus is leader of the Rebel Watchers, angels who fell from grace out of lust for human women. He had been subjected to the Abyss, tortured in a virtual Hell in Heaven, until the careless mistake of a human witch released him from the fires. Now faced with temptations of the flesh by the sexy witch who summoned him, he tries convincing himself that embarking on a relationship with Brianna would be a mistake of biblical proportions.

Two lives hang in the balance…

Just when things start heating up, four Death Angels give her a mission: Use her powers to kill him…or face the Abyss herself. Gaining his trust is the key—except the closer she gets, the more he reveals the man he is, not the demon she thought him to be.
Sounds yummy, doesn't it? Why not head over to Samhain and Buy It Now?

Dodged a bullet...

Whew! The rivers flooded, but not nearly as badly as anticipated, so we stayed high and dry. I'll post pictures once I download them.

The two days of emptying the basement now seem like child's play compared to the time needed to re-stock it. Of course, since I can actually see the basement floor, it's time to sweep and mop and reorganize, so that's not helping. :)

How was your weekend?

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Oh, dear Lord, Not Again...

Long-time readers of my blog may remember the postings a year ago December about the floods that hit my area. Well, it's happening again.

Record rains following record snowfalls plus saturated ground equals massive, record-shattering flooding on all the local rivers, and for the first time in anyone's memory, my neighborhood is at risk.

Seriously. The house is almost 100 years old, and there are no signs of flooding ever.

It's part of why we bought the darn place -- no evidence of flooding, and a block from one of the designated emergency shelters.

Well, today they sandbagged the elementary school and informed us that it would most likely NOT be an emergency shelter this time around. Oh, and move everything to higher ground.

Then they shut down the freeway (like last year), only then spreading the word that they recommended evacuation from the area. Gee, thanks for the suggestion. If you'd mentioned it earlier, I would have stopped dithering and headed to my folks' house an hour and a half away.

So we're here, everything off the basement floor, irreplaceable items moved to the third floor, waiting for something we sincerely hope won't happen.

For now, we're dry. But just in case, I'm unplugging the computer and taking it upstairs. I'll be back on when I can, with updates. And in the meantime, keep your fingers crossed, okay?

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Kate's Current Movie Crush - Van Johnson

Van Johnson as Andrew Larkin, In The Good Old Summertime.

It's a silly name for the movie, since it takes place almost entirely at Christmas. In fact, it's one of my favorite Christmas movies, one I always forget about until I run into it on TV during the holiday season.

If you haven't watched it before, you really should. It's a musical remake of The Shop Around the Corner, and it stars a sparkling Judy Garland and my current movie star crush, Van Johnson.

Now, Van Johnson isn't one of those heart-stopping sexy leading men from the film industry heyday, like Errol Flynn, Tyrone Power or Clark Gable. He's more the boy-next-door, with the quirky smile and floppy hair, who you always end up rooting for to get the girl. Think James Stewart (who played the same role in The Shop Around the Corner) or Tom Hanks (ditto, in You've Got Mail).

So if you've seen either of those movies, you know the basic plot of In The Good Old Summertime. Boy meets girl, they fight and fuss, all the while not knowing that the other is their secret pen-pal. I love watching Van Johnson's progression from sparring partner to hidden crush, as he realizes that the ideal woman of his post-office-box romance is really the spunky, frustrating Veronica Fisher. Van Johnson and Judy Garland were friends in real life, and their comfort and delight in working with each other is evident in the easy, enjoyable interplay between them.

But the reason I've got this huge, movie star crush on Van Johnson right now is the last scene of the movie. He's teasing her about her "fiance", making up increasingly horrible things about this fictional man of her dreams (he's bald! He's fat! He's unemployed!), all the while interspersing it with coded statements of how he really feels about her. The little glances, the way he holds back when what he really wants is to sweep her into his arms -- sigh!

And when he sits down next to her, he can't keep his hands to himself. He touches her hair, puts his arm around her, toys with her lacy collar, even presses kisses to her temple while she all but pants with repressed sexual tension. It's one of the hottest scenes I've watched for a long time, and the farthest they finally go is a fade-to-black chaste kiss.

I've tried to find the scene on YouTube, but all I can find is the musical numbers from the movie. So you really should go rent it now. You can find it on Netflix, or, if you're a Comcast customer, it's a free On Demand movie via TCM.

Here's the TCM trailer, for a quick taste...

So, who's your current movie star crush?