Tag Archive | Jillian Chantal

V: Venetian Masks #AtoZChallenge

Today, for ‘V’ in the A to Z Blog Challenge, Jillian Chantal takes sends us to an international world with a little suspense and a lot of love in her book, Venetian Masks.

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American oil painter Charlotte Bolling travels to Venice, Italy to study the architecture of the old city and paint. She meets Vincente Canaletto, an Italian man who owns a water taxi and gondola business. Charlotte ran away from home at age thirteen when her mother, who was a madam in a house of ill repute, offered Charlotte’s virginity to the highest bidder.

Vincente’s son was abducted and Vincente’s been on a quest to find him for years. When the boy is located by an investigator in Bangkok in a bordello, Charlotte insists on accompanying Vincente to the capital city in Thailand since she believes her own past will be invaluable in winning the child’s trust. They embark on a dangerous rescue mission in the back streets of that city.

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The next morning after having slept as if she were in a coma, Charlotte got up later than she’d planned. The jet lag had caught up to her and she overslept. She’d wanted to walk the city before dawn and get a feel for the morning light. She liked to observe and sketch for several days the areas she planned to capture on canvas. It helped to know when and where the sun rose and for Venice specifically, she wanted to know about what time the glints of morning sunlight would shimmer across the Grand Canal. That was the first thing she wanted to paint and she wanted to capture the exact right moment of sunrise.

She could hardly contain the excitement rising in her chest as she dressed for the day.

She tossed on a pair of khaki shorts and a blue shirt. She pulled her hair up in a knot and secured it with a large metal clip. She shoved some Euros and her room key in her pocket and slid on her shoes. Grabbing her sketchpad and a pack of charcoal pencils, she left her room and clattered down the stairs.

Once in the street, she turned left toward the coffee shop she’d seen on her trek across the city the day before with Guilia. She ordered a large black coffee to go along with a sugary cannoli. Breakfast had always been a grab it as you go affair for her even when she was a teen. She could count on less than one hand how many times she’d actually had a full sit-down morning meal in her life.

She took her little feast and went down to the harbor. She found a seat on the seawall and decided almost immediately that she needed to invest in one of the little stools that she’d seen other artists sitting on as they worked. She set her coffee down beside her on the concrete and studied the grouping of gondolas in front of her as she ate her cannoli.

When she swallowed the last bite, she sipped her coffee, then flipped open the sketchbook. Using the side of one of the pencils, she shaded an area that would become a few of the gondolas.

Engrossed in her work, she nearly leapt into the water when someone sat beside her and cleared his throat. As it was, her pencil skidded across the front of her drawing and left a mark.

She glared at the man beside her. “Look what you made me do.”

“Sorry. Surely you can fix it?”

“Surely that’s beside the point, isn’t it? It shouldn’t have happened in the first place. Why’d you have to sneak up on me anyway?”

“I wasn’t sneaking. I walked up like any other person. Can I help it if you’re so easily startled?” the water taxi driver from the day before swung his legs over the water.

“Aren’t you late for work? Or is today your day off?”

“Truth be known, I’m out here stalking former passengers to make sure they’re out of their rooms so I can go in and take all their property.” He winked.

“Oh good grief, you’re unbelievable.”

“Why? You’re the one who gave me the idea. A life of crime may be more lucrative than what I do now.”

“Do taxi drivers in Italy make very much?”

“Surely not as much as criminals, right?” 

 

You can buy Venetian Masks here.

C: Carver’s Fall

Welcome to the 2017 A to Z Blog Challenge. During the month of April, Chrys N. Jay shares snippets from friend’s books, and takes a peek at love.

Today, for ‘C’, Jillian Chantal stops by to share an excerpt from her romance, Carver’s Fall.

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Carver’s Fall
In 1924, Carver Fowler, a young man raised on his family’s farm in North Alabama, has long been in love with one of the girls who lives in town. Her name is Mallie Phillips. She’s never been interested in him as he seems too much like a farmer and she’s a town girl. On a dare, she asks Carver to be her date to the fall festival. When one of his friends is murdered and another young man is attacked, Carver becomes a suspect and Mallie learns he’s not a mere farm boy like she thought.
Excerpt:

Carver Fowler turned the pumpkin around and around to assess all angles. This was serious business.  The final product had to be perfect and the best side needed to face the front.

Once he was satisfied with his choice, he opened the drawer in the rickety old workbench that served him well in his workshop. He dug around for a nub of a pencil and then opened the next drawer over. He sighed in pleasure at the array of knives.  He loved all of his tools, but his knives made him the happiest. 

He carefully selected one with a wide blade and tested the edge with the tip of his index finger. A small drop of blood pooled on the side and he sucked it off. He wiped his hand on his dusty coveralls and set the knife down.

Carver picked up the pencil and drew on the side of the pumpkin. He then picked up the knife and started to cut.

A throat clearing startled him. The knife slipped and gouged the façade of his creation. He whirled around, thinking it was his younger brother. Ready to lay into the little brat for messing up his masterpiece, he stopped short when he saw who it was.

Leaning against the weathered wooden slats of the old barn that had been converted to a woodworking shop was none other than Mallie Phillips. The girl of his dreams. Of course, she didn’t know that. But what was she doing here?

Mallie wore a long blue faded cotton dress and a pair of old Mary Jane shoes. Her stockings were dusty like she’d walked a long way. She had one knee bent and her foot rested on the wall. “Whatcha doing, Carver?”

 “What are you doing is a better question? How’d you get way out here to my daddy’s farm? Lil city gal like you don’t have no business out here in the boonies.” Carver set the knife down and wiped his brow that suddenly seemed to be manufacturing an inordinate amount of sweat. Good God, I hope I don’t smell bad. He resisted the urge to sniff his armpits, but just barely.

“My brother Joseph had some business out this way and he brought me in the wagon.”

“Why?”

Mallie came over to the workbench and picked up the knife. She used it to point at the pumpkin. “Are you carving that for the contest down at the Fall Festival this weekend?”

“I am. I think I’ve got a good idea for a very spooky fella and I’m planning to win that jackpot.”

“A jackpot for a Jack-o-lantern.” She giggled. “I like the sound of that.” She handed him the knife. “Show me what ya got, Carver Fowler.” She batted her eyelashes at him and he was lost.

He could barely speak English she stood so close and smelled so good. Just like lemon verbena.  As she continued to stare at him, he found his voice. “I can’t carve with you standing here. I can’t handle an audience. You’ll have to wait to see it at the festival.”

“I like that too, Carver.”

“What?” Embarrassed as his voice came out in a squeak, he ducked his head.

She lifted his chin with her index finger until he was looking at her. “I like that Carver is carving. See how nice that sounds? Jackpot for jack-o-lantern and Carver is carving. You have to admit it’s kind of poetic.”

“I don’t know nothing about poetry, Mallie.” Carver pulled away from her.

You can find more on Jillian Chantal here:

Love is in the Air: Featured Author Jillian Chantal

cnj_coverLove is in the Air

Chrys N. Jay’s Newsletter                                                 August 7, 2015

Welcome to ‘Love is in the Air’. This week we’re talking with talented romance author Jillian Chantal.

To see each Friday’s newsletter, Love is in the Air, click to follow this blog.

Stay tuned for upcoming issues, released every Friday. Coming up are: August 14: Ines Saint, August 21: Sherry Gloag, and August 28: Jean Joachim.

Thanks for joining us, and may your week be filled with love!

Chrys N. Jay

New Releases

red wavesAudrey Brown is an intelligent Registered Nurse living in Surf City, USA, who puts her career ahead of her love life. That is until pro-surfer, Chad Slater, gets wheeled into her emergency room and shakes down her formidable walls. But can her sex life go from zero to 69 with an ex-husband seeking revenge for her sending him to prison?

Chad has just the right mix of sexual charisma and determination to make all of Audrey’s dreams come true. This upbeat story includes humorous undertones with nail-biting suspense and enough sexual heat to make you stay up all night reading. Readers’ romantic partners will find benefits, too!

Author Spotlight — Jillian Chantal

Jillian, you’ve been a prolific author since your first book, Solo Honeymoon, in 2010. I think I saw 26 books listed, plus a few anthologies. What was the siren song of romance writing for you?

I am a lawyer in the day job and the stress there can sometimes be overwhelming. On many occasions, I have tossed and turned and fretted over cases when the courthouse is closed. I have found that one way to shut that down is to focus on something more fun than legalities. I wrote for a long time for my own escape/pleasure. When I finally shared some short stories with friends, they all encouraged me to submit my work for publication. The first story I ever had chosen to be published by a real life editor was a Halloween tale called, “The Arm” – A story where the protagonist found a body part in the crisper drawer of her refrigerator.

In 2013, you had eleven romances published. What was it like getting that many out in one year? Did your family see you at all?

Was it really that many in one year? Wow. I’m floored. I didn’t realize that. *runs back to check records* – Wow, yeah, but I can explain that! LOL.  Some of those are shorter tales. I did a few what they called “weekend reads” for one of my publishers, SCP, and those don’t really take much time to get drafted. Less than a week. The books that were full length had been written and contracted over a period of time and all somehow lined up to release quickly together so yes, I had family time. LOL. One of my kids was in grad school in the UK at that time and also got married in October of that year. The other was in high school so they didn’t really need mom quite so much. My husband has numerous hobbies that keep him busy as well so we muddled along, seeing each other at dinner and weekends. HAHAHA.

I spent time doing blog tours for the books and that was time consuming but also a lot of fun. Interacting on Facebook and Twitter are things I enjoy so that was not a burden at all.

You have several holiday romances: Thanks for Giving (Thanksgiving), All I Want for Christmas is a One Night Stand (Christmas), and Fireworks for Katerina (4th of July). Do you find writing for a holiday theme is any different than your other works?

Not really. I write what appeals to me at the time and knowing the market is about six months (with some publishers) out, I try to write the holiday stories when it’s not that time of year; however, sometimes the mood hits when it’s that time of year. For instance, I wrote Thanks for Giving at Thanksgiving one year and it came out the next year. Carver’s Fall is also a holiday book – it’s set at Halloween. I wrote that in the early fall one year and it came out in the spring of the next year. LOL- Not quite the right time to market it but there you go. I absolutely love to write holiday stories. They are so uplifting and make me smile. And they are kind of easier as they give you ready-made scene descriptions, don’t they? Like pumpkins, brisk air and leaves in fall; snowmen, Christmas trees, crunchy frost, and reindeer at Christmas; and hot dogs, lakeside and fireworks at 4th of July.

Tequila Mockingbird, released in 2014, was a RONE Award Finalist. What was that experience like?

I was super excited to learn about the nomination. Funny thing, the list came out and a friend emailed me. I went over to the site to check it out and saw another Jillian’s name and wrote my friend back to laugh at her joking around with me. She insisted I go back and look again as she swore it wasn’t a joke. I was so flummoxed by it that I had to look like four times before I saw my name. LOL.  So, when I got the email from the magazine, I was thrilled to know it was real. I’m in some good company in the suspense category so I’m just reveling in being nominated. We will see in September who the winner is and I can’t wait to celebrate no matter who wins. This story is a great adventure and my editor said in a comment, “best pet ever” about the hero’s pet. That made me giggle because I quite liked Buttercup myself.

I believe you have several works soon to be released. If Witches Were Horses, and Flight Risk. Can you share any details about when these, or any other soon to be released books, will be available?

Flight Risk actually came out last summer. It is set in the 1950s just before the space race heated up.

If Witches Were Horses just came out in June. It’s a young adult novel and written under another name to prevent the wrong kind of crossover – some of my books are spicier than others and I didn’t want a teen to pick up the wrong one. The protagonist in this one is super fun to write. She’s a stream of consciousness kind of girl and I never know what she will say and do next. My editor for this series says she worries about what goes on in my mind since I have come up with some crazy hurdles for this gal to jump through. LOL – sounds like a compliment to me!

There is nothing much in the pipeline right now for me. I have recently withdrawn a submission of a short Valentine’s Day story since the minimum word count of the publisher has changed. I have three novel length stories I am polishing to submit so hopefully, soon, I will be able to announce something new on the horizon. I do have one thing slated to come out in the next six months. I am in another anthology releasing in January, 2016 – it’s called “Once Upon a True Love’s Kiss” and my story is called “Milady and her Spy” – it’s a regency boxed set with eleven authors.

If you had to pick one favorite story from your many books, which one would it be? And why?

Oh man. What a toughie. I love so many of the heroes in my stories it’s almost impossible to choose. I am all about the hero.  LOL – One of my first stories published was Redemption for Devil– it’s an epic story set in 1920 that goes from Ireland to New York, to Chicago and even the Arctic Circle. I woke up one day and this voice said, “I’m Liam Cormac and you’re going to tell my story”- the thing practically wrote itself – like taking dictation- so for that reason, I would choose it.

As to my more recent work, I think my writing has improved so much since Redemption for the Devil came out, I’d have to say my newer favorite would be Tequila Mockingbird. I had the title in my head for a long time bur no story to go with it. I finally found that story and it was inspired in part by a trip to Puerto Vallarta with my sister and in part by a colleague who always wears his hair in a ponytail. I always wondered (but never asked-lol) if he takes it down to make love. And thus, a story was born.

You’re one of the featured authors in the anthology Beaux, Ballrooms, and Battles: A Celebration of Waterloo that was released a few months ago. What is it like being a part of an anthology?

It was a lot of fun. I was thrilled to be asked. We all wrote a short romance story featuring the Battle of Waterloo for the 200th anniversary of the battle. They were professionally edited and we each had a job in the process. It was nice to have a number of people working on the same goal together.

Which story in the anthology is yours? What is it about?

It’s called Jeremiah’s Charge.  Here is a cover quote: “Jeremiah’s Charge is a daring and dashing devotion to duty and honor that will astound you!” ~ Bestselling Author Katherine Bone

Here’s a blurb from Jeremiah’s Charge:

A chance encounter during the battle of Quatre Bras changes Captain Jeremiah Denby’s life forever. A member of Wellington’s staff, he fulfills his duties to king and country through the surrender of Boney at Waterloo but then must decide how to reconcile his new life with his old.

Emmaline Rothesay has a battle of her own to fight. To her Lady mother’s dismay, Emmaline has had her eye on Captain Denby as a potential suitor. Now that his changed circumstances after Waterloo could cause a scandal, Lady Rothesay is even more set against any relationship her daughter desires with the man. Emmaline finds herself at war with her mother and maybe even the captain himself.

Is there anything else you’d like to add:

Thanks for interviewing me. It was awesome and some of the questions really made me think. That’s the best kind of interview, isn’t it?

Jillian Chantal is multi-published in the romance genre. She’s a lawyer by day and writer, amateur photographer and history buff by night. Jillian lives on the beautiful gulf coast of Florida and loves her little slice of paradise. But not too much to enjoy world-wide travel every chance she gets. After all, a writer and photographer needs new and exciting places to go and capture in order to stay fresh, right? And there’s nothing quite like seeing historical places in person, is there?

Jillian loves to hear from readers. She can be found at her website www.JillianChantal.com, Facebook http://www.facebook.com/jillian.chantal, or Twitter https://twitter.com/JillianChantal

Jillian’s books are available at http://www.amazon.com/Jillian-Chantal

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/jillian-chantal?store=allproducts&keyword=jillian+chantal

https://www.allromanceebooks.com

Full Length:

Doctor, Lover, Baronet

Hot Pursuit

Moon Dance

Redemption for the Devil

Sebastian’s Salvation

Solo Honeymoon

Surf Bride

Tequila Mockingbird

Venetian Masks

Series: Long:

The Gambler (Book One, the Gambler’s Inheritance)

The Gambler’s Brother (Book Two, the Gambler’s Inheritance)

The Gambler’s Daughter (Book Three, the Gambler’s Inheritance)

Christmas on St. Charles Ave (free Christmas story, the Gambler’s Inheritance)

Series: Short:

It Only Takes a Minute (Book One, the Minute Series)

The Second Minute (Book Two, the Minute Series)

Some Minutes Last a Lifetime (Book Three, the Minute Series)

Shorts:

All I Want for Christmas is a One-Night Stand

Carver’s Fall

Enchanted Edinburgh

Fireworks for Katerina

Flight Risk

Surf Break

Thanks for Giving

The Layover (free)

The Season of the Witch

The Tainted Keitre

The Size of the Scandal

Young Adult by S. F. Chancellor;

Thirteenth Gate

Here There Be Witches

If Witches were Horses

Tuesday Tales

Tuesday TalesWant some fun, sexy, romantic story snippets to read? Every Tuesday – there are new tales for your enjoyment!

Check out TUESDAY TALES, where a group of authors write scenes to their new Works in Progress, writing to a word or picture prompt.

You’ll get anywhere from 8 – 15 links to stories in progress. The genres vary. Most are romance, but there’s quite an assortment of stories going on.

hands in heartSpice it Up

Give your lover a dozen roses – with a twist. Give eleven red roses and one white rose. Attach a note that reads: “In every bunch there’s one who stands out – and you are that one.”

Identify that one pivotal even that brought the two of you together. Celebrate that event every year.

Practice even-day/odd-day romance. On even days it’s your turn to be romantic. On odd days, it’s your partner’s turn.

Remove all the paper strips (that say ‘Kisses’ on them) from a couple hundred Hershey’s Kisses. Fill a jewelry box with them. Wrap it up and present to your partner. Write a certificate explaining that the slips are coupons redeemable for one kiss each. (Just a note – if they’re a chocolate lover…don’t you dare toss those chocolates away. You’d better have those ready to hand over also!)

Make a giant greeting card out of a big cardboard box, like a refrigerator box.