Hiya guys! We have Shira Anthony popping in today with the tour for her upcoming release Swann’s Revenge, we have a brilliant guest post from Shira, a great excerpt and an awesome giveaway, so check out the post and leave a comment to enter the giveaway! <3 ~Pixie~
Can a swan make peace with his ugly duckling past?
Chubby geek Jimmy Zebulon’s heart broke the day his high school crush, Danny Parker, looked on as his teammates tormented Jimmy. Fifteen years later, Jimmy is long gone, and from his ashes has risen Graham Swann, a movie-star-handsome law firm owner. Graham thinks Jimmy and his past are long forgotten—until attorney Dan Parker shows up for his first day of work.
Getting injured playing college ball was the best thing that ever happened to Dan. It turned his future in a better direction and allowed him to emerge from the closet that trapped him.
Graham wants to believe his childhood dream can come true, but he can’t bring himself to tell Dan who he really is—and their pasts might ruin any chance for a happily ever after….
Pre-order: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Kobo | B&N | iTunes
Mashing Up the Tropes
by Shira Anthony
Thank you, MM Good Book Reviews, for hosting the first stop on the Swann’s Revenge Book Tour! I’m so happy to share my latest entry in the Dreamspun Desires line of romance-forward, tropey love stories from Dreamspinner Press. Be sure to read to the bottom of the post about how to enter to win a cool unisex leather heart bracelet to celebrate the book tour and read an excerpt from the story.
I grew up reading anything I could get my hands on, from sci fi written by Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov to the old Harlequin romances I found in the library and in piles of 5 cent books at garage sales. Later, when I could afford to buy new books, I had a subscription to the Silhouette line from Harlequin. They were longer and hotter than the traditional line, but I could still read one in a few hours.
Those books were my addiction. They made me feel good when I was slogging through final exams or breaking up with a boyfriend. They were fun, trope-filled, goodness. Better than TV.
Romances novels are as good as chocolate but with fewer calories.
When I started writing for the Dreamspun Desires line, I’d already published nearly 20 books with Dreamspinner Press. Sure, there were romantic tropes written into those stories, but none of those books focused on the tropes as much as the Desires line.
Writing romance tropes is a lot of fun.
You know the tropes: enemies to lovers, arranged marriages, secret babies, billionaires, amnesia, mistaken identity, cowboys, maids, playboys with hearts of gold, reunion… I could go on and on and on. The old Harlequins for the most part took on a single trope and created a formulaic book around it. Lots of fun with a sweet HEA.
What’s even more fun? Creating stories by combining tropes and turning tropes on their heads.
In First Comes Marriage, I combined the marriage of convenience trope with the billionaire and evil step-mother tropes and, I think, the outcome might surprise you. In Forgotten Paradise, I used the amnesia, tropical getaway, and billionaire tropes together. And in my latest, Swann’s Revenge, I combined the ugly-duckling trope with enemies to lovers, reunion, and hidden identity tropes to arrive at a sweet HEA that is all about character growth through the power of love. My favorite kind of love story.
Swann’s Revenge is about learning to move forward from the past and taking a chance on your heart’s desires. Graham Swann wants to forget about the times he was bullied for being the chubby, geeky, gay kid. But he can’t put the past behind him, so he lives his life without love. It’s safer that way. But when Dan Parker, the kid Graham crushed on in high school, reappears in his life, Graham’s well-practiced mask starts to crumble, and so do the walls around Graham’s heart.
To celebrate the release of Swann’s Revenge, I’m offering up a unisex double-heart leather bracelet to one lucky blog tour winner in the US and an ebook copy of First Comes Marriage or Forgotten Paradise to one winner outside the US. To enter, comment on this post and tell me your favorite romance trope. I’ll choose a winner after midnight on February 14th, Valentine’s Day. Good luck and happy reading! -Shira
“Terri tells me you’re from my neck of the woods,” Dan said and leaned back in his chair.
Graham met Dan’s gaze. The urge to shift in his seat passed as he reasserted control. “Oh? Where would that be?” He made it his practice never to divulge too much about himself. Even Terri, whom he’d met when they were both taking prep classes for the Tennessee bar examination, only knew so much. The past was best forgotten.
“Carletonville. My folks still live out there.” Dan chuckled. “They still go to all the football games at Merrill High.”
Graham pretended the name hadn’t made his stomach drop into his feet. The back of his neck felt cold and clammy. “How nice,” he said evenly. “Did you play?”
“I did. But that was a long time ago,” Dan said with a sigh and shake of his head. “A different lifetime”
“I see.” Graham glanced at his watch. He needed to end this interview soon or he’d lose his composure.
Fortunately, Dan got the message and stood. “I’m probably keeping you from something. I’m sure we’ll have more time to chat later.”
“I’ll have my assistant set up a few hours for us to go over strategy tomorrow morning.” Graham smiled and added, “Good to have you aboard.”
Graham watched Dan leave, all the while struggling to keep his discomfort from showing. Dan closed the door behind him and Graham let out a long breath. How had he missed it before?
The Invincible Danny Parker. North Carolina All- State Quarterback of the Year. Full ride at Carolina. NCAA All-America Quarterback. A shoo-in for the pros until he tore his ACL in his senior year and had to quit the game.
Graham thought he’d forgotten what it felt like to sit in the mud as half the football team looked on and laughed, but he’d been wrong. All his memories came barreling back, and with them the pain and humiliation of fifteen years before.
The day after, he’d quit the band. When his mother remarried in June, they moved to Memphis and he took his stepfather’s name. He grew nearly eight inches his senior year. He put high school and the chubby kid behind him. In college, he learned he didn’t have asthma at all—he’d been allergic to the mold in the Carletonville apartment where he and his mother lived. He started to exercise. His roommate taught him to play racquetball and he started running regularly. He got into shape and learned to imitate the way the popular students dressed. He was accepted into a great law school and never looked back.
Fifteen years before, Jimmy Zebulon, the chubby kid with a face covered in zits, left Carletonville and never returned. Jimmy had moved on with his life. He’d banished the memories and the shame. He’d been absolutely fine.
Shira Anthony was a professional opera singer in her last incarnation, performing roles in such operas as Tosca, i Pagliacci, and La Traviata, among others. She’s given up TV for evenings spent with her laptop, and she never goes anywhere without a pile of unread M/M romance on her Kindle. You can hear Shira singing “Vissi d’arte” from Puccini’s Tosca by clicking here: Shira’s Singing
Shira loves a great happily-ever-after and never writes a story without one. She’s happy to write what her muse tells her, whether it’s fantasy, sci fi, paranormal, or contemporary romance. She particularly loves writing series, because she thinks of her characters as old friends and she wants to visit them even after their stories are told.
In real life, Shira sang professionally for 14 years, and she currently works as a public sector attorney advocating for children. She’s happy to have made writing her second full-time job, even if it means she rarely has time to watch TV or go to the movies. Shira writes about the things she knows and loves, whether it’s music and musicians, the ocean, or the places she’s lived or traveled to. She spent her middle school years living in France, and tries to visit as often as she can.
Shira and her husband spend as many weekends as they can aboard their 35′ catamaran sailboat, Land’s Zen, at the Carolina Coast. Not only has sailing inspired her to write about pirates and mermen, her sailboat is her favorite place to write. And although the only mermen she’s found to date are in her own imagination, she keeps a sharp lookout for them when she’s on the water.
Win a unisex double-heart leather bracelet to one lucky blog tour winner in the US!
Win an ebook copy of First Comes Marriage or Forgotten Paradise to one winner outside the US!
To enter, comment on this post and tell Shira Anthony your favorite romance trope.
Shira Anthony will choose a winner after midnight on February 14th, Valentine’s Day.