Behind The Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Fifteen


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER FIFTEEN: SORRY

In Chapter Fourteen, Jay learns about his sister, Eleise, a product of a brief affair between his father and his fiancée’s mother. When we get to Chapter Fifteen, Jay meets his sister for the first time. Jay describes her as a dead ringer for Paula Patton. Did I choose Paula Patton on purpose? Yes, because in a perfect world, these books will become a TV show on STARZ and Paula Patton will play the role of Eleise Santiago.

Their conversation could’ve gone in a number of directions, but I decided to let them have a negative interaction. I chose this route because Jay wants to protect Carmen from this news as he fears it will end their engagement. His anger, his negative attitude, the cold shoulder he gives Eleise better supports him wanting to keep Eleise a secret than him welcoming her with open arms.

While I haven’t yet explored a relationship between these two characters (Jay and Eleise), I do hope to showcase it in a future book.

Behind the Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Fourteen


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER FOURTEEN: LEMONADE

Chapter Fourteen is called Lemonade because something stronger than tea was spilled. Here’s the backstory – Jay headed to San Juan, Puerto Rico, his birthplace, as Carmen needed space due to the miscarriage.

When he gets home, he finds evidence that someone other than his butler, Silvas, has been there. That person ends up being a new character by the name of Eleise Santiago, who is, drum roll, Jay’s sister. However, she’s not only Jay’s sister, she’s also Carmen’s sister as Eleise is the result of a brief affair between Jay’s father and Carmen’s mother.

Did I do this on purpose? Yes. It’s just one more thing to make the reader question if this wedding is going to happen and this thing is a big one. While Carmen and Jay do not have any biological relation, come December 25th, she may be marrying her sister’s brother.  

Behind the Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Thirteen


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER THIRTEEN: WIN AGAIN

TRIGGER WARNING: PREGNANCY-RELATED ISSUES

Aside from Casa de Sangre and the issue with conflict diamonds, the biggest brick on Jay’s shoulder is his criminal trial. The threat to his freedom was a conflict I wanted to resolve prior to the wedding. However, before I got readers there, I inserted another interruption.

Unfortunately, that interruption comes in the form of a miscarriage. This is Carmen’s second miscarriage in the series. I made the decision for the pregnancy to result in a miscarriage for several reasons. First, the announcement of the pregnancy had already played its role in the book. It was Christmas Day and what better gift to give your significant other than the announcement of new life? Two, throwing wrenches in the story keeps readers on their toes or at least in my opinion. Next, where I wanted to take the story, I didn’t need Carmen to be pregnant because then the storyline would become her trying to balance a new baby, wedding…it would be too much. Also, I felt that if the pregnancy resulted in a miscarriage, I could use it as something that could either bring her and Jay together or pull them further apart. If it pulled them further apart, it would leave readers guessing once again if this wedding was going to happen.

What did happen, though, which was revealed at the end of this chapter is that Jay was acquitted of all charges. So, what does this mean? Well, it means that if the wedding doesn’t happen, it won’t be because Jay is in prison.

Blurb Blitz Virtual Book Tour: Diamonds N’ Roses


Diamonds N’ Roses is going on tour! Check out all of the tour stops!

Remember to VISIT, LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE & ENTER THE GIVEAWAY!

August 29: The Key Of Love
August 30: Long and Short Reviews
August 30: FUONLYKNEW
August 31: Stormy Nights Reviewing & Bloggin’
August 31: Locks, Hooks and Books
September 1: Hope. Dreams. Life… Love
September 2: All the Ups and Downs
September 5: Momma Says: To Read or Not to Read
September 6: Fabulous and Brunette
September 7: Sandra’s Book Club
September 8: Westveil Publishing
September 9: Joanne Guidoccio
September 9: Wendi zwaduk – romance to make your heart race

#RazzleDazzle

Behind the Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Twelve


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER TWELVE: ANACONDA

I am so excited to talk about this chapter because it involves one of my favorite characters, Cesar. Cesar was introduced in Book Three: The Ace of Diamonds, and in each book, his role seems to get bigger. Hopefully, in his scenes, you can see how loyal Cesar is to Jay and the Santiago family as a whole.

In this chapter, Cesar has returned from Africa where he was doing some digging on Jay’s business partner. Now, this chapter is very important because this is the seasoning for the meat, you’re going to get in Book 6: The Diamond Tiara. I titled this chapter Anaconda because that’s what Jay’s business partner. He’s a snake, figuratively, of course, and he’s one of the biggest ones.

Also, I never wanted Jay to be a character who showed fear. He’s supposed to be able to take down anything and anybody. However, I did feel it was time to show some vulnerability. The vulnerability does come, then it disappears when Jay remembers a conversation he had with his mother. Over time, it comes back, specifically, in his conversation with Grendel. What also comes back? The one thing that should be his first priority: his wedding. Yes, there’s a lot going on, but I’m always going to circle back to the wedding.  

Behind the Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Eleven


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER ELEVEN: BUY A HEART

In Chapter 11, we are finally at King and Coco’s wedding. The chapter begins with the wedding party getting dressed. To be more specific, Jay is helping Malachi put on his cufflinks. Malachi does not have any biological relation to Jay but will be his stepson by marriage once he and Carmen tie the knot. So, why of all people is Jay helping Malachi? I could’ve easily put Kane as he is Malachi’s adopted father. Well, I wanted to show that over time, these two have formed a bond.

I also wanted to show that King and Jay had addressed and healed from their issues, which is why there is the scene in the church’s walkway. Then, what happens? Their conversation is interrupted by Gully, who announces there is a visitor. Yes, it is the return of Cesar. He enters into the book to complete an assignment for Jay. Jay is sending him to Sierra Leone to put eyes on his African business partner.

Once the assignment is given, Jay is ushered right back into the church for his eldest son’s wedding. The processional begins with Ed Sheeran’s, “Thinking Out Loud,” which is a song I heard for the first time at my sorority sister’s wedding. So, yes, that’s how this song made it into the book.

King’s wedding is an emotional time for Carmen because she remembers when her son was a troubled adolescent. She refers to him as her angel with broken wings, which is a phrase I got from a tweet singer Chris Brown’s mother, Joyce Hawkins, made about him.

Behind The Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Ten


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER TEN: FOUR DOOR AVENTADOR  

Although my book is set in a fictional city, it is still set in New York.

While there is mention of weather in the series, there has never been a snowstorm. Well, this chapter was the perfect place to put one.

For one, it’s Christmas Day, so why not have a white Christmas?

Two, Jay is trying to have a private conversation away from Carmen. And what screams private more than a person having a conversation on a balcony where there are remnants of a recent blizzard?

And of course, Carmen knows something up. However, since it’s Christmas, she doesn’t call him out. Jay does wear his thoughts on his face, so Carmen tries to get the truth out of him. Since it is Christmas Day, the conversation gets interrupted.

Speaking of Christmas, Jay gifts Carmen the blueprint for a brand-new mansion. Now this gift ties back to the previous chapter and shows how Jay is making strides in getting away from Casa de Sangre.

In this same chapter are two major announcements – one, Kane and Monifah are now married. I remember a reader once told me, when she read that part, she thought, well, everyone is getting married except Carmen and Jay (remember, King and Coco are getting married, too). Carmen also announces her pregnancy, and I placed that news here on purpose because I thought it was the perfect Christmas gift−new life. She also gifts Jay a Lambo, hence the name of the chapter.

While scoping out the Lambo, Carmen and Jay take a little walk down memory lane to the first time they met. Since they are getting married in this book, I thought it would be good to flashback to the beginning. Plus, you can’t know where you’re going if you don’t know where you’ve been.

Behind The Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Nine


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER NINE: ALL NIGHT

Some of my readers know, but I am a real foodie. Such a foodie that I have a separate Instagram page dedicated to food called Miss Black Foodie. So, what does this have to do with Diamonds N’ Roses or The Diamond Collection all together?

Well, I namedrop food in the series on purpose. So, in Chapter 9, what is Jay eating when he can’t sleep because the stress of Casa de Sangre, his parents, conflict diamonds, and his upcoming wedding are all weighing down on him? An Italian crème cake. And yes, I was eating an Italian crème cake around the time I wrote this chapter. The Italian crème cake mentioned in Chapter 9 was inspired by the Italian Crème Cake sold at Carswell Bakery in Rock Hill, SC. This bakery is now permanently closed.

Now, the Italian crème cake is not the focus of Chapter 9, but it’s really about how Jay is trying to escape his thoughts and can’t. These thoughts of Casa de Sangre and his parents are all just a build up to the climax of the book.

Behind The Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Eight


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER EIGHT: I LIED

They were divorced way before they received copies of the decree.  – Pg. 40

This line isn’t a literal statement as there is no way you can actually be divorced until its finalized. This line represents how Carmen felt her marriage to Kane was over way before any paperwork was filed, signed, etc. There was already a disconnect. However, Kane doesn’t necessarily share the same feelings. Hence, the first reason why this chapter is called I Lied. Kane only pretended to accept the fate of their marriage.

It is kind of weird for me to read this exchange between Carmen and Kane in Chapter 8, although I wrote it, because of what occurs in Books Six and Seven. If you have not read those books, the dynamic between these two characters is totally different.

This chapter is also called I Lied because it is discovered later in the chapter that Jay lied to Carmen about Casa de Sangre. Now Casa de Sangre is Jay’s childhood home. Casa de Sangre is Spanish for the House of Blood. The estate got its name because of all the murders that took place there during Jay’s childhood. While Jay didn’t actually lie about the estate being his childhood home, he omitted the information. Just like he omitted the information that he was the actual owner.

Will Carmen find out? Well, if you read the book, you know. If you haven’t, you gotta read the book to find out. 

Behind the Book (Diamonds N’ Roses): Chapter Seven


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER SEVEN: DADDY LESSONS

In the last entry of Behind the Book, I discussed how Carmen wanted King to mend his relationship with his father, Jay. The purpose of that conversation was to plant a seed in King’s mind.

When Chapter Seven rolls around, Jay has invited King to breakfast to try and fix their relationship. I did this on purpose to show the seed being watered. Both Carmen and Jay are on the same wavelength when it comes to their son. I chose the diner as the place to hold this conversation because of its significance to the series (this is the site where Carmen and Jay first met).

In this scene, King shares that his pain stems from his jealousy towards Jay’s relationship with his younger brother, Rakim. I planted this on purpose as a prelude to a future book. In Book 9 (tentatively titled: Diamond Princess), there is a storyline where King and Rakim, who are now both adults, are on the warpath. Their constant arguments, fights, and battles have a major effect on the rest of the family and even leads to a murder. After finishing Book Seven, I do not know if I will keep this as a storyline as it no longer fits the series.

In this scene, King also shares his original idea of having Kane serve as his best man. In response, Jay says, “I know all about the role Kane played in your life…I will never take away what he’s done for you. He was your father when I couldn’t be. What I will attack is his character. There’s nothing authentic about him. He’s like a bootleg…”

The, “he’s like a bootleg,” line came from a conversation I had with a former friend. He was sharing a conversation he had with his mother about an older woman who was like a mother to him. His mother told him, jokingly, “she’s not the real thing, she’s a bootleg.” I was writing this scene at the time and told him I was going to use it, which is how it made it into the book.

In conclusion, I wanted this scene to take place because I wanted King and Jay to be in a healthy place before Carmen and Jay tied the knot. I thought it was important to their love story that they were both on a good page with their firstborn.

Book Review: Phoenix’s Ascent by Winter Austin…Goddess Fish Review Tour- June 28 – July 26


June 28: The Faerie Review

June 28: Christa Reads and Writes

July 12: The Avid Reader

July 12: Our Town Book Reviews

July 19: Harlie’s Books

July 19: Simply Vogue

July 26: Fabulous and Brunette

July 26: Gina Rae Mitchell

Winter Austin will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

FOLLOW the TOUR and COMMENT! The more you COMMENT, the GREATER YOUR CHANCES at WINNING!

Enter to win a $10 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway

GENRE:   Romantic Suspense/Military Thriller

A maniac developing a fantastical drug wants one more thing to finalize the project—a test subject who fits all the parameters. But that test subject is as elusive as her namesake.

Ex-SAS operative Mitch Edwards has been on the run since the moment he was framed for treason by someone in the British government. But he’s never forgotten the flamboyant and seductive CIA operative with the tongue of a thousand languages. In a bar in Cancun, Mexico, Mitch comes face to face with her once more, and with her comes the full force of her enemies.

Reinstated Hera Force linguist and assassin, Nadia Roth, code named Phoenix, has no memory of Mitch Edwards, or of their affair before her team’s disastrous mission. Her traumatic brain injury is tricky that way. But something about this man sets her on fire and tickles the back of her mind. Her Hera teammates remember him, so why can’t she?

Mitch partners up with Hera, with the sole intent of locating those hell-bent on killing him and all who are associated with him. Yet more is at stake than their lives. A traitor hides among their ranks, one who has been revealing all their secrets to an enemy determined to procure this special drug and Nadia for his scheme.

Hera goes into operation mode, doing what they were created to do, but someone is watching, and the team finds themselves trapped behind enemy lines with no way out.


Will Nadia ever remember the man she once loved, or will they perish with the secret between them?

I was browsing a book blog and stumbled across the cover and synopsis for Phoenix’s Ascent. Although the book is not a part of the typical genre I read, the synopsis captured my interest. For one, the book cover depicted the main female character, Nadia Roth, a/k/a Phoenix, as a woman who knows how to kick ass. That was right up my alley as I love strong female leads. Then, I saw the words CIA operative. Those two things together made this book a MUST READ for me.

Phoenix’s Ascent is the second book in the Hera Force series. I did not read the first book, Mockingbird’s Cry, but it wasn’t necessary (Side Note – I have since purchased the first book because of how much I enjoyed this one). The author provides enough information and backstory that I could follow along without a problem.

The author serves up a story filled with relatable characters, vibrant dialogue, great action scenes, and unexpected plot twists. The author also has vast knowledge of the military and its operations, which is evident throughout the story.

While the book lives up to its genre – romantic suspense, I loved how this was also a story of friendship. In addition to Nadia, the Hera Force team consists of Lincoln, Jo, and Jade. They each have their own strengths (as well as weaknesses), which they use as a collective to take down those who threaten their team, and of course, the world.

Nadia’s love interest in the book is Mitch Edwards, an ex-SAS operative, who has his own problems and concerns. What makes their relationship intriguing and one to root for is the fact that they are two people who fell back from each other only to be brought back together by chance. Their relationship reminds me of the popular quote, ‘if you love something, let it go, if it comes back to you, it’s yours.’ Nadia is thrusted back into his life unexpectedly, which awakens the love and desire they had buried deep within.

I give this book 5 STARS. To be honest, I couldn’t think of one single reason why it should be rated anything less.     

Eighteen months in Cancún, he’d seen the cartel violence escalate at a rate that made his time fighting in the Afghan war look like a Sunday stroll through Kensington Gardens. Despite it all, exiled SAS operative Mitchell Edwards stayed on. Where else was a man framed for treason supposed to hide out?

Swirling margarita glasses in hot, soapy water, he kept an eye on the open doorway, nodding at the comings and goings of the patrons. A breeze off the sea rippled through the grass roof. The salty, sweet air buffeted his damp face, cooling him. The sea beckoned, tempting him to come and play.

Later. After his shift. A swim in his little alcove sounded marvelous.

Mitch set the sanitized glasses on a drying rack. He raked his fingers through his blonde hair—it still took some getting used to having his hair this long—and flipped the curled strands out of his eyes. Looking and feeling more like Robinson Crusoe than Mitch Edwards. Snorting, he grabbed another handful of bar glasses and plunged them into the hot water. That he wasn’t stranded on a deserted island in the middle of the bloody sea was a better outcome compared to his fictional counterpart.

Shadows passed over the bamboo shades, dampening the late afternoon sun that bounced off the pristine sandy beach. Three men entered the bar and paused inches inside the doorway. The lead man wore a cream-colored blazer over a brilliant blue shirt, and khaki slacks. The two flanking him wore similar styled clothing, the exception being the noticeable bulges under their blazers. Lead man pulled his sunglasses from his eyes and did a quick sweep of the bar. Seemingly satisfied by whatever he did or didn’t see, he pointed at the two with him. They stepped past, and did a circular walk around the bar. Their predatory motions put Mitch at attention.

Bodyguards.

Mitch’s little, insignificant bar had attracted unwanted visitors. His quick initial assessment turned scrutinizing. These were not casual visitors, not with those bulges. No. Mitch’s blood ran cold. These three had to be cartel. What the hell were they doing here? They tended to avoid the tourists’ haunting hours, preferring to do their dirty work in the black of night.

The dapper dressed man strolled up to the bar. “El camarero, Modelo Especial, por favor.”

Giving him a curt nod, Mitch moved to the fridge. From the corner of his eye, he spotted three more men enter the bar, sporting similar bulges under their jackets to the other two, who were now stationed on opposite sides of the bar. Tension coiled through Mitch’s muscles. The place was half-full of patrons. He didn’t need or want a turf war to go down with innocents caught in the crossfire.

He retrieved the asked-for beer. The fridge door slapped shut behind him as he returned to the dapper dressed man. Mitch cranked off the metal top and held out the beer.

http://tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Austin_Winter/phoenixs-ascent.htm

http://tirpub.com/waustin

Winter Austin perpetually answers the question: “were you born in the winter?” with a flat “nope,” but believe her, there is a story behind her name. A lifelong Mid-West gal with strong ties to the agriculture world, Winter grew up listening to the captivating stories told by relatives around a table or a campfire. As a published author, she learned her glass half-empty personality makes for a perfect suspense/thriller writer. Taking her ability to verbally spin a vivid and detailed story, Winter translated that into writing deadly romantic suspense, mysteries, and thrillers. When she’s not slaving away at the computer, you can find Winter supporting her daughter in cattle shows, seeing her three sons off into the wide-wide world, loving on her fur babies, prodding her teacher husband, and nagging at her flock of hens to stay in the coop or the dogs will get them. She is the author of ten novels, with more on the way.

Find Winter on:

Website – https://www.winteraustin.com

Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/author.winteraustin

Twitter – https://twitter.com/WinterAustin

Instagram – http://www.instagram.com/iasuspensewriter/

Pinterest – http://www.pinterest.com/winteraustin/

Goodreads – http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6880807.Winter_Austin

Behind the Book: Diamonds N’ Roses (Chapter Six)


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER SIX: HOLD UP

This chapter is a perfect example of how there are only good moments in the series, and not good days. The good news of the chapter is Carmen learning that her divorce from Kane is final. While this puts a smile on her face, the smile is temporary. King strolls in her office with the announcement that Kane, his stepfather, will be the best man at his upcoming nuptials.

If you’ve made it to this book in the series, then the drama and turmoil between Jay (King’s birth father) and Kane is well-known. I won’t go into all that, but to sum it up, it’s just an old-fashioned love triangle with Carmen smack dab in the middle.

In Chapter Six, there are two different dynamics going on. Carmen has officially broken ties from Kane while King is set on maintaining his. It is King’s right to choose who he wants as his best man, but Carmen also feels it’s right to share with him what the outcome could be. Carmen expresses her opinion because she wants King to heal his relationship with Jay not dig the grave any deeper. Carmen feels that Jay would be disturbed and upset over the decision because once again, he is being robbed of a special moment with his son. King doesn’t express to Carmen his reason for the decision, but Carmen believes it’s to get back at Jay for whatever issues they have.

All I wanted for this scene was for Carmen to plant a seed in King’s mind. Whether it is watered and grows, well, that’s a discussion for the next entry of Behind the Book.

Behind The Book: Diamonds N’ Roses (Chapter Five)


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER FIVE: ONLY

There are two major things to dig into when it comes to Chapter Five. The first is mother/daughter relationships. The action and dialogue between Carmen and her mother, Patricia, show how their relationship is strained. Patricia has no filter as she takes shots at not only Carmen’s parenting (because her oldest son has impregnated his teenage girlfriend), but also at Carmen’s illegitimate children with Jay (Rakim and Nyla).

This torn relationship between mother and daughter is becoming a generational curse as Carmen isn’t in the best place with her oldest daughter, Kristian. While not heavily discussed in this book, the animosity between the two stems from Carmen’s affair with Jay (Kristian blames both her mother and Jay for breaking up the family). However, Carmen still remains Mama Bear and is worried about her daughter’s safety as she took an impromptu trip to Georgia to see Victor Fontaine.

This leads me to the second thing I want to dig into…

When I wrote this book back in 2016, I believed Victor Fontaine was going to be a character that would be heavily present in the rest of the collection. This is the reason I had him pop up in this book. I thought he would be a good love interest for Kristian as he was her knight in shining armor in Book 4, Black Diamonds, during her kidnapping. Even in this chapter, he comes to her rescue when she has a night terror. I wanted readers to become familiar with seeing him.

I can honestly say as I type this that I am torn on what to do with his character. For one, Kristian has another love interest, Dijuan Harrison, who was heavily present in Book Two, Diamonds are Forever. I feel like he needs to make a grand return and Book Eight: Diamond Life, would be a good place. If he comes back, Victor has to come back, too, but I don’t want another love triangle. I feel like I have enough of that with Carmen, Jay, and Kane.

Oh well, I’ll have it figured out by next year.

Behind The Book: Diamonds N’ Roses (Chapter Four)


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven).

CHAPTER FOUR: THE CRYING GAME

This chapter opens with a family dinner in which Carmen and Jay’s son, King, announces his plans to marry his girlfriend, Coco. While the marriage plans were revealed in a previous chapter, King and Coco are hesitant to announce their pregnancy due to their fear of how Coco’s mother, Maya, will react. While they dance around the topic, Maya has already figured out that her daughter is pregnant (the biggest clue is that they are trying to have a shotgun wedding).

Maya shares her thoughts on the pregnancy in a one on one conversation with Carmen. Her reaction isn’t positive because I wanted her to have a similar reaction to the one Carmen’s mother (Patricia) had when she learned Carmen was pregnant with King. This is an example of history repeating itself. Like Patricia was with Jay, Maya disapproves of the pregnancy because of King’s past and run-ins with the law. Another example of history repeating itself, is that just like Carmen, King is also having his first child in his early twenties.

The pregnancy and pending nuptials are only more toppings to distract Carmen and Jay from planning their wedding. With a year to go until their wedding date, more drama can only be on the rise.

What I’m Reading: Phoenix’s Ascent by Winter Austin…Goddess Fish Review Tour- June 28 – July 26


June 28: The Faerie Review

June 28: Christa Reads and Writes

July 12: The Avid Reader

July 12: Our Town Book Reviews

July 19: Harlie’s Books

July 19: Simply Vogue

July 26: Fabulous and Brunette

July 26: Gina Rae Mitchell

Winter Austin will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

FOLLOW the TOUR and COMMENT! The more you COMMENT, the GREATER YOUR CHANCES at WINNING!

Enter to win a $10 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway

GENRE:   Romantic Suspense/Military Thriller

A maniac developing a fantastical drug wants one more thing to finalize the project—a test subject who fits all the parameters. But that test subject is as elusive as her namesake.

Ex-SAS operative Mitch Edwards has been on the run since the moment he was framed for treason by someone in the British government. But he’s never forgotten the flamboyant and seductive CIA operative with the tongue of a thousand languages. In a bar in Cancun, Mexico, Mitch comes face to face with her once more, and with her comes the full force of her enemies.

Reinstated Hera Force linguist and assassin, Nadia Roth, code named Phoenix, has no memory of Mitch Edwards, or of their affair before her team’s disastrous mission. Her traumatic brain injury is tricky that way. But something about this man sets her on fire and tickles the back of her mind. Her Hera teammates remember him, so why can’t she?

Mitch partners up with Hera, with the sole intent of locating those hell-bent on killing him and all who are associated with him. Yet more is at stake than their lives. A traitor hides among their ranks, one who has been revealing all their secrets to an enemy determined to procure this special drug and Nadia for his scheme.

Hera goes into operation mode, doing what they were created to do, but someone is watching, and the team finds themselves trapped behind enemy lines with no way out.


Will Nadia ever remember the man she once loved, or will they perish with the secret between them?

Eighteen months in Cancún, he’d seen the cartel violence escalate at a rate that made his time fighting in the Afghan war look like a Sunday stroll through Kensington Gardens. Despite it all, exiled SAS operative Mitchell Edwards stayed on. Where else was a man framed for treason supposed to hide out?

Swirling margarita glasses in hot, soapy water, he kept an eye on the open doorway, nodding at the comings and goings of the patrons. A breeze off the sea rippled through the grass roof. The salty, sweet air buffeted his damp face, cooling him. The sea beckoned, tempting him to come and play.

Later. After his shift. A swim in his little alcove sounded marvelous.

Mitch set the sanitized glasses on a drying rack. He raked his fingers through his blonde hair—it still took some getting used to having his hair this long—and flipped the curled strands out of his eyes. Looking and feeling more like Robinson Crusoe than Mitch Edwards. Snorting, he grabbed another handful of bar glasses and plunged them into the hot water. That he wasn’t stranded on a deserted island in the middle of the bloody sea was a better outcome compared to his fictional counterpart.

Shadows passed over the bamboo shades, dampening the late afternoon sun that bounced off the pristine sandy beach. Three men entered the bar and paused inches inside the doorway. The lead man wore a cream-colored blazer over a brilliant blue shirt, and khaki slacks. The two flanking him wore similar styled clothing, the exception being the noticeable bulges under their blazers. Lead man pulled his sunglasses from his eyes and did a quick sweep of the bar. Seemingly satisfied by whatever he did or didn’t see, he pointed at the two with him. They stepped past, and did a circular walk around the bar. Their predatory motions put Mitch at attention.

Bodyguards.

Mitch’s little, insignificant bar had attracted unwanted visitors. His quick initial assessment turned scrutinizing. These were not casual visitors, not with those bulges. No. Mitch’s blood ran cold. These three had to be cartel. What the hell were they doing here? They tended to avoid the tourists’ haunting hours, preferring to do their dirty work in the black of night.

The dapper dressed man strolled up to the bar. “El camarero, Modelo Especial, por favor.”

Giving him a curt nod, Mitch moved to the fridge. From the corner of his eye, he spotted three more men enter the bar, sporting similar bulges under their jackets to the other two, who were now stationed on opposite sides of the bar. Tension coiled through Mitch’s muscles. The place was half-full of patrons. He didn’t need or want a turf war to go down with innocents caught in the crossfire.

He retrieved the asked-for beer. The fridge door slapped shut behind him as he returned to the dapper dressed man. Mitch cranked off the metal top and held out the beer.

http://tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Austin_Winter/phoenixs-ascent.htm

http://tirpub.com/waustin

Winter Austin perpetually answers the question: “were you born in the winter?” with a flat “nope,” but believe her, there is a story behind her name. A lifelong Mid-West gal with strong ties to the agriculture world, Winter grew up listening to the captivating stories told by relatives around a table or a campfire. As a published author, she learned her glass half-empty personality makes for a perfect suspense/thriller writer. Taking her ability to verbally spin a vivid and detailed story, Winter translated that into writing deadly romantic suspense, mysteries, and thrillers. When she’s not slaving away at the computer, you can find Winter supporting her daughter in cattle shows, seeing her three sons off into the wide-wide world, loving on her fur babies, prodding her teacher husband, and nagging at her flock of hens to stay in the coop or the dogs will get them. She is the author of ten novels, with more on the way.

Find Winter on:

Website – https://www.winteraustin.com

Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/author.winteraustin

Twitter – https://twitter.com/WinterAustin

Instagram – http://www.instagram.com/iasuspensewriter/

Pinterest – http://www.pinterest.com/winteraustin/

Goodreads – http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6880807.Winter_Austin

Behind The Book: Diamonds N’ Roses (Chapter Three)


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

Other Available Titles in The Diamond Collection: Diamonds in the Rough, Diamonds are Forever, The Ace of Diamonds, Black Diamonds, The Diamond Tiara (Part Six) and Dirty Red Diamonds (Part Seven)

At the time I was writing this book, I had two friends who were looking to create an event planning company. I added them to the book as the characters, Veronica Freeman and Patience Nelson, because Carmen needed event planners for her wedding. In fact, DreamGirlz, as named in the book, was going to be the name of their company.

This particular chapter was entitled, “Want Some More,” because more drama was brewing. The relationship between Jay and his eldest son, King, which has always been rocky, was taking another plunge. Kane also hints to Carmen in this chapter that he still has a soft spot for her when he asks for “one more night,” before their divorce is final.

Behind The Book: Diamonds N’ Roses (Chapter Two)


Behind the Book is a series in which I give you a behind the scenes look at one of the latest installments of The Diamond Collection. For this round, I will be focusing on Diamonds N’ Roses: Part Five of The Diamond Collection.

Diamonds N’ Roses was released on December 25, 2016 and is available at the following online retailers: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-A-Million.

CHAPTER TWO: ALL THINGS GO

In this chapter, readers learn that Chapter One was a nightmare. Well, parts of it was. Some of it did actually happen.

In Chapter Two, readers are introduced to the two main plot points of the book. The first is Story A, which is the planning of Carmen and Jay’s wedding. The second is Story B, which is Jay being introduced to the issue of conflict diamonds (or blood diamonds).

Story B conflicts with Story A because it distracts Jay from the main task at hand – the planning of his wedding. This chapter shows the start of the breakdown in some of Jay’s relationships. First, with his fiancée, Carmen, as he misses their first planning session. Then, with his business partner in Africa and his best friend/ right-hand, Malik Washington.

Of course, it wouldn’t be The Diamond Collection if there wasn’t a sea of other conflicts occurring at the same time (i.e. Coco’s pregnancy, Kristian’s disappearance). I planted this stuff on purpose as I wanted readers to question if the wedding between Carmen and Jay was even going to happen with all the drama surrounding them. Hence why the chapter is named, “All Things Go.” The title of the chapter as well as many more in the book come from the tracklisting of Nicki Minaj’s The Pinkprint album. This album stayed on repeat while I was writing the book, which is why I named the chapters after most of the songs.