Thursday, June 6, 2013

Rhonda Carver is Guesting with Us

Today, we are honored to have our Guest: Rhonda Lee Carver!

One question that hits me like a ton of bricks is, “Why did you choose the genre romance?” Sure, it may seem innocent and I’ve been asked it enough that I expect it, but it doesn’t mean I have to answer. Why does this question bother me so much? Because I feel like I’m really being asked, “Why choose romance when there are so many more respectful genres?” Maybe I’m a bit paranoid or tense—maybe even out of my mind a little, but I have my reasons.  Since I published, back in 2010, I’ve recognized the fact that I’m treated differently by people. I’ve lost friends, I get the “stink eye,” I’ve even been asked, “Why don’t you write children’s books?”  That’s like me asking a politician…why don’t you not give an opinion?
Let me put your panic to rest, I don’t write romance because I’m getting too much sex, OR, not enough. My sex life is fine, well, it’s actually great! I’m not out to “practice” my fantasies on everyone, and especially your husbands and boyfriends. I’m not devil’s spawn, in fact, if I say so myself, I’ve got a huge heart. Too big at times, because I tend to get hurt quicker than most. And if I have an opinion or idea and you blame my eccentric thought on, “You’re just looking for an idea for a story…” you’ll probably piss me off. Because if you make a statement like this, then you have no clue how my mind, or any writer’s mind for that matter, works.
If you’ve read my books, and I hope you have, you’ll see that I’m all over the board when it comes to heat level. Some of my works are spicy, and some are mildly hot, and then there are those that are considered erotic.  Why is this you wonder? My characters and storylines choose me. If I begin to tell my characters, “Okay, we’re at twenty-seven pages and now it’s time to get naked and perform”  I’ll lose the creativity backing my words.  For instance, in my newest work, in the polishing stage, I had to write in a whole new scene because my heroine, Lila, decided she wanted to give Duke oral sex.  The new scene was inspired when I heard “pre-cum” and I saw an image of Lila and Duke.  You’ll have to read Second Ride Cowboy when it releases *soon* to find out how hot the scene is.
I’m proud of being a writer. It’s hard work. In the day and age where everyone wants to write a book, I say, “Go for it!” But understand, it’s NOT about writing a book and calling yourself an author. It runs far deeper than a label. It’s about connecting with readers, and even more, it’s about writing from the soul. I’ll never give up my pen, rather my keyboard, to satisfy a world where sometimes romance writers are snubbed and unappreciated. And sure, one day I’ll probably write a children’s book, but not because some narrow-minded, sex-fearing person suggested me too. In the meantime…I’m off to smutland where I have characters who want to get rolling in bringing your hot fantasies alive.

Suffering from years of hopeless romantic notions with sexy, sassy heroines and bad-ass heroes taking residence in her mind, Rhonda decided to write, bringing the stories alive. She has published an array of spicy love stories. Her specialty is men who love to get their hands dirty.
When Rhonda isn’t crafting edge-of-your-seat, sizzling novels, you will find her with her children, watching soccer, watching a breathtaking movie, traveling to exotic places, doing (or trying) yoga, and finding new ways to keep life interesting.
Rhonda thrives on making her readers happy. She believes life can be a challenge, but reading is a place where fantasy comes to life. Everyone deserves romance—one page at a time…

When Holly comes back to her hometown, the last thing she wants is to connect with her old flame, Liam, who is now Chief of Police. When someone in town wants Holly gone, Liam vows to protect her. One thing leads to another, and soon Holly finds herself full of craving for a man in uniform. Resisting the burning desire becomes torture, and neither is strong enough to deny the temptation. Wrapped in a cloak of heat and passion, things begin to unfold.

Holly has a reputation for being a “bad girl.” Is it all in rumor, or does it hold a sliver of truth? Liam swears he’ll never forgive her for breaking his heart years ago, yet he’ll do anything to keep her safe. Soon he finds something far more dangerous than murder and suspense…he realizes he is still in love with Holly. Can he trust her?

Holly can have it all—delicious man, lovely home and a stable future for only a small price…she must let go of the past. Is loving Liam enough?

Excerpt: Sin With Cuffs
Holly Young drove into Raven, Ohio and forced herself to continue toward the past. “Small town, USA. Here I come.”
Flipping off the AC, she rolled down the window. The cool breeze swept through her hair. Picking up the Styrofoam cup from the holder, she sipped the remains of the drink she’d bought sixty miles ago. She needed a stiffer beverage than sweet tea, but she doubted a bottle of liquor could soothe her nerves.
Taking a stroll back to her roots wasn’t by choice. Nonetheless, she was here now and returning to New York anytime soon just wasn’t in the cards. She’d quit her waitressing job, sold anything of value and headed to the heartland.
 Five and dime stores lined Main Street. She passed Miller’s Pharmacy, Steeple Chase bookstore and her favorite, Sammi’s Toy store, where her grandma bought Holly’s first doll. People sat on corner benches and waved to everyone passing. The stop sign she’d hit during her driving test still hadn’t been replaced. She smiled.
Glancing in her rearview mirror, a Police SUV rode her bumper. She turned left in an effort to lose it, but the vehicle followed. As any good citizen would do, she checked her speed. She stayed at twenty and crossed her fingers.
No luck. The police lights came on.
Obviously, nothing in town had changed and she was still being pulled over. This time it wasn’t justified. Who bothered with someone going five miles above the speed limit?
Holly pulled over and turned off the engine. Anxiously tapping her fingernail against the steering wheel, she sighed and gathered the documents from her glove box. Booted footsteps sounded on the driver’s side. She looked up but the bright sun blinded her. “I wasn’t doing anything worth getting stopped--”
“Step on out of the vehicle, ma’am.”
“Unbelievable! I’ve been in this town less than five minutes and I’m already being harassed,” she complained as she opened her door and slid out. She tented her hand over her eyes in an effort to block the sun, ready to ask what the problem was, when all logical thought vanished. He wasn’t just any uniformed man. This was six feet, two-hundred pounds of sex appeal, with eyes the color of molten chocolate…and the greatest memory she had of this town. “Liam Ryan.” The name fell from her lips like a feather in the breeze.
His gaze held hers. Seconds passed while she waited on his response. There were no signs of surprise in his expression and yet her heart beat wildly with a mixture of shock and excitement. “Five minutes without getting into trouble is a record for you,” he finally said.
Wrapping her arms around her waist, she hoped to steady the butterflies in her stomach. “Yeah, and I had a partner in crime back in the day, remember?”
 “Times change,” he said in a slow drawl.
“I see that.” She dropped her gaze over his broad chest and lean hips. “They’ll let anyone wear a uniform these days, yet you don’t look half bad wearing a gun.” She smiled and gave her hair a saucy toss.
His eyes slanted and his mouth thinned. “What have the good people of this town done to deserve your presence?”
The harshness to his tone set Holly on edge. Was he playing a hard ass? “Don’t act stupid, Liam. You know I’m here for my grandma’s funeral.” The sun’s heat grew stronger and the awkward exchange wasn’t helping. She felt the sweat bead on her upper lip and her hair grew sticky as they continued to stand in the hot sun. She lifted it up and made a messy bun, fully aware that his gaze lingered a little longer than necessary on her neck.
“It’s interesting how people show up when someone is placed inside a casket but have no desire to visit when they are alive,” he said. His scowl made him look dangerous.
Yet, Holly knew too much about him. He was one of the kindest men she’d ever met.
“Thanks for the warm welcome,” she droned with a shake of her head.
“You have no reason to be here now. I’m sure once your grandma’s will is read, you’ll disappear like you did ten years ago.”
She clenched her hands into tight fists. “Not that it’s any of your business, but I have things to do and I have no desire to stand in the middle of downtown Raven working through your bitterness. Have I broken the law?”
He took sunglasses from his front pocket and slid them on.
Trying to keep me from the windows to your soul, Liam?
“Would you like to see my driver’s license? Registration? My letter of apology for breaking your heart?” she said.
The corners of his mouth dropped. “Don’t flatter yourself, Holly. You leaving here was the best thing that ever happened to me. I wouldn’t be Chief of Police if you’d stayed. I’d probably be stuck in a rut. You were like poison in my blood.”


  1. Sin With Cuffs sounds like something I am gonna have to read! :)

    1. I hope you enjoy it! I look forward to hearing your thoughts :)

  2. Nice post, enjoyed reading the excerpt. sounded really good. Wish Rhonda all the best with it. Nice cover too
    I love reading romance, it takes me away from every day life. Takes me places i didnt know i wanted to go. So carry on Ladies we love what you do