30 July 2013

Undercover lovers

Last week we had a feel good, real life love story. However, I'm mean. This week we're going to balance that out with something more gritty, less happily ever after.

This less than heart warming story is about women who fell in love with undercover police officers, while they were undercover. The full article is about four women, in particular Charlotte.

Charlotte 22, was a fringe member of an animal rights movement when she met Bob. They started dating and he encouraged her to get more involved, as he himself was doing. Bob was Charlotte's first serious boyfriend and fell she fell in love. Within a few months the pair were established in the radical protest movement, Bob had also effectively moved in with Charlotte.

Except Bob wasn't really Bob at all.

Bob was really Robert Lambert a member of a top-secret unit of the London police. He'd joined the police at 25, within three years he was a member of special branch, from there he was recruited into the Special Demonstration Squad. It was while he was a member of this squad that he met Charlotte.

One of the hardest things for undercover officers is turning up with no friends or family to vouch for them, Bob had Charlotte. Five days a week he spent his time with Charlotte and working to get deeper into the protest movement  The other two days he spent with his wife and children.

That's right, this man already had a wife, and a life outside the one he was living with Charlotte. Of course, that's not a surprise, undercover officers have a separate life, the surprise to me was the wife and children. Soon those were not his only children - he went on to have son with Charlotte.

Eighteen months after the birth of his son, 'Bob' instigated the breakdown of his relationship with Charlotte. He was ready to move on, to Karen who thought she had found Mr Right. Eventually Bob told both women (he was still seeing Charlotte and his son) that he was escaping the authorities by running to Spain. In reality his time undercover was over, he was being promoted.

I can't see this story as anything less than the betrayal of a wife, and the absentee fatherhood of her children, the unnecessary heartbreak of two other women (& in Charlotte's case phycological trauma when she eventually discovered how she'd been used), and the cruel abandonment of a son.

So, unlike late week, this is not a story with a happy ending.

To balance out the trauma of that story I'm going to let you leave with some sunshine, lollypops & rainbows (The Sound of Music was sure that would be the cure).

23 July 2013

Marrying his forgotten sweetheart

As a romance writer I love real life stories which tug the heart strings. I was mooching around on the guardian when I came across a story about a woman who married her childhood sweetheart after he lost  his memory.

Jane was surprised when Kevin rang her out of the blue. Surprised because 8 years earlier she'd been dumped because he decided he'd rather play football and hang out with his mates. The 14 year old Jane had been heartbroken (in I'm sure classic teenage fashion). Now she was sure the call was a joke. What could he possibly want? Something else bothered her, he sounded completely different.

Kevin had been in a motorcycle accident, suffered a brain injury and as a result lost his memory. His doctors had suggested he reconnect with people from his past and try to trigger those lost memories. On Friends Reunited he'd spotted her name and decided to call her. Now he needed to know if he was right, did she know him? Could she, would she, help him try to recover his memories?

A sensible woman, Jane called his mum to check the facts. It was true. She decided to help him.

During their trips to old haunts, and talking about the past, Jane discovered the new man Kevin had become. What's more she like him. He wasn't the boy with surfer-style hair. He was a man who had suffered and fought to overcome.

One day they visited the place they'd first kissed as teenagers. It was here Kevin asked if he could kiss her again. She was delighted. That kiss was the start of a wonderful new relationship for them both.

Although I'm sure like any relationship this one still has it's ups and downs, when it comes to the story telling aspect it has a perfect ending. Kevin's moods stabilised and he regained his memories. They married and had twins. Together they are making wonderful new memories.

It's not everyday life gives us a happy ending :) Hope you enjoyed this one. 

14 July 2013

New Cover! Embraced by Fire

I've got wonderful news to share with you - Wild Rose Press has contracted my latest book :)
And I've got my new cover to share with you.
I don't yet have a release date, but I'll let you know as soon as I do.

My new cover for EMBRACED BY FIRE.

A secret agent working undercover as a fire-eater,
this man is as dangerous as the fire with which he plays.

As some of you noted I originally forgot to add any succulent details about the story.
So here's the blurb as requested:

          The last thing Ryu McKay needs on a mission to expose a black market information ring is a simmering attraction to his boss. Not only is he undercover, he needs to keep his shape-shifter identity a secret. Despite his desire, he dare not act on his attraction.

          For Kait, excitement and that one special man exist only in her dreams.  However, everything changes when Ryu walks into her office looking for a job as a fire-eater.  Now she wants nothing more than to turn her dreams into reality.

          Kait’s attraction to Ryu grows, but can it survive the secrets he's hiding?  Like the fire with which he plays, this man is dangerous.

09 July 2013

Food Art Death

No, you didn't read that wrong. Food, art & death - what could they all have in common. Food & art - sure, any great chef will tell you food is art. Food & death - sure, any great poisoner will tell you food can lead to death. Come to think of it, a lot of doctors will tell you the same thing. But all three together...

Tasha Marks, a food historian makes edible art. The piece that caught my attention was a chocolate skull. There you have it, food, art & death.

Not that she limits herself to death, she makes marzipan bees and frankincense sweets, ambergris lozenge and...  well you get the idea. Ms Marks runs a boutique food company called Animal Vegetable Mineral.

She talks about using food as art as combining the silly with the cerebral. To see more about her food adventure check out the BBC interview with her.

02 July 2013

Dumb ways to die - parody

Last week I posted the winner of the Cannes Lions award for best TV advertising campaign in the world (winner: Melbourne's Metro Trains safety message).

This week, how can we ignore them, some parodies :)

Dumb way to die (in video games)

Dumb way to die (in movies)

Despite posting these, I find it's the original I like best :)