Friday, January 29, 2010

Guest Author - - Jo Davis

Jo Davis was a public school teacher for sixteen years before leaving to pursue her dream of being a full-time writer. She writes romantic suspense and erotica for NAL, has been a finalist for the Colorado Romance Writers Award of Excellence, has won the HOLT Medallion Award of Merit, and has had one of her books optioned as a major motion picture. Check out her website for more information about Jo and her books.

Welcome to The Romance Dish, Jo!  We’re delighted to have you with us today.  HIDDEN FIRE (*love* that cover!), the third book in your Firefighters of Station Five series was recently released. Will you tell us a bit about the story?

Hello, ladies! I’m thrilled to be here at the Romance Dish! Thanks so much for inviting me. Without further ado…

Station Five’s bad boy, Julian Salvatore, has met his match in cool attorney Grace McKenna. When they first met in TRIAL BY FIRE, Jules fell for her and began his campaign to win her over. Grace, however, is well aware of his rep as a ladies’ man and isn’t willing to become a notch on his bedpost. She also senses that his behavior is a coping mechanism he uses to hide some very heavy baggage, and shies from becoming too involved with a man who needs to be “fixed”. But her heart has little say in the matter when all her preconceived notions about him are shattered one by one, and she gradually learns there’s a heart of gold beating underneath his unrepentant, sexy exterior. Before they can find happiness, however, the ghosts of his past must be put to rest…

Click here to read an excerpt from HIDDEN FIRE.

I fell in love with Jules. What woman doesn’t want to be *the one* to bring love and joy into a tormented romance hero’s life? Do you fall in love with your heroes? Is it hard to leave them behind once you’ve finished writing their stories?

Oh, yes, I definitely fall in love with my heroes! I especially fell for Julian, who had such a long way to go in healing emotionally. Saying goodbye to each one is always tough, which is part of the reason I love to write a series—I get to keep the guys around just a little longer. I hate goodbyes so much, I never type “The End” at the end of my manuscript before I turn it in! In my head I’m thinking, “But it’s not really the end, it’s only the beginning…”

I feel the same way!  I really hate saying goodbye to the characters of a much loved book.  I think that's why I'm such a fan of  the multi-book series. 

The villains in this book are particularly heinous. How difficult is it to write a villain? As the creator, are you able to detach yourself from their crimes or are you thrown into the maelstrom?

I love writing villains, and my friends will tell you that’s because I have a warped, evil mind! I throw myself into the role, really getting into their heads, and it’s sometimes a scary place to be. But I’m fascinated by the psychology of the criminal mind, what makes him or her tick. I don’t just wing it, though. I have research books at my fingertips to consult and make sure the villain I’m creating is exhibiting the appropriate behaviors for his or her type of criminal. My premise for the killers in HIDDEN FIRE began with a question: What if, very early on, one victim escaped the grisly fate intended for him, and never knew it?

While researching for the villains in HIDDEN FIRE, I learned that it’s not uncommon for killers to work in pairs or teams, and I read several case studies that gave me goosebumps. Chilling, huh? Fact is always more stunning than fiction.

Your villains sure gave me goosebumps!

What’s next for the men and women from Station Five?

Tommy Skyler, the station’s youngest firefighter, will get his story, LINE OF FIRE, on May 4!   Ex-football hero Tommy will work hard to win his lady love, Shea Ford, who happens to be Detective Shane Ford’s twin. (And yes, fans of Shane, he has a meaty role and you’ll get to know a more personal side of him!) My readers have also been waiting for Captain Sean Tanner to cause a major train wreck, and in Tommy’s story, lives are changed forever. On the suspense side of things, an old title pops into my head that says it all: Something Wicked This Way Comes. Tommy’s story propels us headlong into Sean’s story, RIDE THE FIRE, which will be released in December. The end of Tommy’s story reveals a shocker that gave my editor the chills, and blows out of the water something readers thought they knew. 

On top of that, the frightening thing is, what is coming to Sugarland can happen in any town, anywhere. Sean will have to put the past behind him once and for all if he hopes to avert evil and win the woman he loves… 

Click here to read an excerpt from LINE OF FIRE. 

Oh man, talk about a teaser!  I can't wait to get my hands on this book!  

Jo, you recently hinted (at Romance Bandits) that we might see a new series down the road starring some secondary characters from the Station Five books. Any news you care to share on that? I can’t be the only one who wants to know more about Tonio and Shane!

I don’t have any real news yet and can’t say too much about it, but I’m working on a new romantic suspense series proposal that will make my readers very happy should it be accepted by my publisher. The new series will be more gritty, while featuring those melt-your-panties heroes we love! All I can say is I very much hope to be able to give Detective Shane Ford’s and Anthony (Tonio) Salvatore’s stories to my readers.

We're hoping for the same thing!  

You also write erotic suspense thrillers. Your new SHADO Agency series premiers February 2, 2010 with I SPY A WICKED SIN which received 4 ½ stars from RT Magazine. Congratulations! What can we expect from the men of SHADO?

Thanks so much! I was thrilled with the RT review, and other early feedback I’ve received. The SHADO Agency series was created on this premise: James Bond meets Bourne Identity and goes erotic. I wanted to write a scorching erotic romantic suspense series involving sexy spies who encounter a host of dangerous and titillating situations, and who always get their man! Or woman. It’s a three-book series with an arch-villain who’s a major player throughout the three books, yet there’s a happily-ever-after at the end of each.

I SPY A WICKED SIN features hero Jude St. Laurent, who’s blind and suffering from huge holes in his memory. Worse, he has no clue he’s a former assassin who’s been blamed for the theft of a stolen weapon of mass destruction and is marked for death. And our heroine, fellow agent Lily Vale, has been sent to eliminate him… I hope my readers enjoy Jude’s story!  

Click here to read an excerpt from I SPY A WICKED SIN.

You certainly have been blessed with some lovely covers, Jo. *grin*  I'm looking forward to reading I SPY A WICKED SIN.  It sounds fascinating. 

Thanks so much for visiting with us today.  I'm sure our readers have questions for you but is there anything you'd like to ask them?

I’m curious to know if there’s a series out there that readers would love to devour, but isn’t being done right now. Answer this: I’d LOVE to read a series about _____, featuring heroes that are _____. Let your imagination run wild!

Jo has generously offered to send copies of HIDDEN FIRE and  I SPY A WICKED SIN to two lucky commenters, chosen at random.  Each of the winners will receive both books.



  1. Waving Hi to you Jo I gotta say I love your books you are an auto buy author for me I have Hidden Fire on the TBR pile and am soo looking forward to reading it and looking forward to Tommy's story.

    The new series sounds awesome and I will be getting it.

    Have Fun

  2. Congrats on the upcoming release, Jo. I'm excited about your new series. I love Shane and I do hope he'll eventually get his own book. I suck at this stuff, but here it goes. I’d LOVE to read a series about genies, featuring heroes that are about to get all their lustful wishes granted.

  3. These look awesome!

    I’d LOVE to read a series about kingdoms of old, featuring heroes that are chivalrous yet tortured knights ;) I'd never turn down a sexy fairytale.

    midnite dot fantasy @ gmail dot com

  4. Hey Jo! It is so wonderful to have you with us today. And let me just say, this is a *great* way to start the day *VBG*

    I haven't read Julian's story yet, but I can't wait until I have a free day to devour it from cover to cover!!!

  5. Good Morning!

    Helen, HIDDEN FIRE is *so* good! Hope you enjoy it!

    Jane, I'm with you on wanting a story for Shane. He's such great hero material, isn't he?

  6. Camille said, I’d LOVE to read a series about kingdoms of old, featuring heroes that are chivalrous yet tortured knights.

    YES! One of my favorites!

  7. Oh, Buffie, are you in for a treat. Julian is such a wonderful hero!

  8. Welcome Jo *waving maldy*, good to have you here!

    I have only just finished an important project for school and so I haven't come around to reading Hidden Fire yet, but I'll sure do when it's its turn (yes, I do keep a list which book to read next because there are sooo many books that're waiting even longer than HF! It's a shame, I know...)

    And what's that about a shocker at the end of LOF?? Do I really want to know this????

    I'd love to read a series about ... hmmmm ... I really have to think about this one. There's so much I want to read but of course, when it comes to naming a few things, I don't have a clue. Will check back later!

  9. Good Morning, PJ, Buffie, Gannon, and Andrea!! Thanks for having me here!

    Good Morning, Helen!
    Oh, thanks so much! You made my morning. :)

    I hope you enjoy the new series and Tommy's story, too!

  10. I'll be away from the computer for about four hours but I'll be back to play later!

  11. Good Morning Jane!

    Thanks so much, I'm excited, too! I sure hope I get to write Shane's story for you all. I get lots of mentions in emails asking for his book, so fingers crossed!

    LOVE the genie idea!!! That's fabulous!! I'll tell you all, I have a paranormal series idea dying to be written, so maybe one day... :)

  12. Good Morning!
    Love the Station Five books!! Was looking for a new read and now that I know this is out I will be purchasing today! Yeah!!! It sounds great and I can NOT wait to read the rest in the series. I might have to try out her erotic series too!
    Thaks for the great interview P.J. and JO!
    I would love to read a series about time traveled , featuring heroes who are flawed, strong-yet sensitive!

  13. Hi Camille,

    Ooh, I love knights! Especially if there's some sort of magical twist. There's just something about a handsome knight on a big horse with a big, er, sword... :)

  14. Good Morning Buffie! (waving madly)

    Thanks so much for inviting me today! It's so nice to sit here warm and cozy drinking my coffee, staying out of the cold, rainy weather and chatting with you guys!

    I hope you love Jules as much as I do! :)

  15. Hello and welcome, Jo! We're so glad to have you dishing with us today. Congrats on your recent releases! I've not read your Firefighters of Station Five books yet, but PJ, Gannon, and Buffie have all raved about them and told me that I *must* read them. :)

    As for your question: I’d LOVE to read a series about football players, featuring heroes that are ladies' men until they find the right woman.

  16. Good Morning PJ!

    Thanks so much, I'm glad you liked Julian's story!

    If you guys are wanting Shane's story now, just wait until you read LINE OF FIRE. He has a nice role in Tommy's story, and we get to know him much better. :)

  17. Hi Lisa K!

    I understand about the TBR pile...I have piles of books all over our house waiting to be read! I'm so busy writing I don't have a lot of reading time, so they're getting out of control. But I keep buying them! :)

    Oh, yes, I think you want to know the shocker! Just don't cheat and flip to the end. (I'm terrible about doing that!)

  18. Hi Cyndi!

    Thanks very much, I hope you enjoy both of the series! Those station five boys in particular will always hold a special place in my heart. :)

    I enjoy time travel, too. There isn't much of it around anymore, but my good friend Sandy Blair has a wonderful new story out right now in The Mammoth Book of Time Travel Romance. Great stuff!

  19. I would NEVER flip to the end! I just can't do that! I'd always feel like I missed something (which indeed I would - the middle of the book!).

    I'd love to read a series about the Middle Ages, featuring heroes who have "normal" jobs like smith or butcher (well, that's not very romantic but the first thing that came to mind!), not knights!

  20. Good Morning Andrea!
    Thanks for having me on the Dish today! If you try the firefighters, I hope you enjoy them. :)

    Ooh, football players! Love that idea! There are some contemp series with baseball players out there right now, but I don't think there are any featuring football. Hmmm...

  21. That's exactly what I was thinking, Jo. There are series about baseball and hockey, but I'd love to read about football! I mean, who wouldn't want to read about a tight end?! ;-)

  22. Congratulations on all your success Jo! Your latest books look great and I am not sure but I would pick a story about a school for troubled kids with heroes who are teachers because you don't see many teacher heroes.

  23. Hi Maureen,
    Thanks very much, I hope you enjoy the stories. :)

    That's so true, there aren't many teacher heroes. I was a teacher for many years, so I can testify that they don't get the credit they deserve!

  24. Congrats on the new release. I've been looking at the cover of I Spy a Wicked Sin for several days because it's so yummy. I'm just starting your firefighter series which was highly recommended on a group I belong to. I'd love to read a series about women firefighters. There seem to be alot of series now about the men but I would lke something about the women because there aren't as many of them and I imagine that things are somewhat different from their viewpoint.

  25. Hi Maria!
    Thanks so much for the congrats! I love the cover of WICKED SIN, too. The art dept at NAL is top-notch!

    That's so cool about your group recommending the firefighters! yay! Give them a big thank you from me. :)

    Good point about female pt of view in firefighting. Unfortunately, there aren't many female firefighters. To find even one, much less two, in an entire department (in the field) is doing good. Few women can pass the field tests to join, which is too bad on one hand, but totally for the victims' safety on the other.

    Well! I didn't mean to spout research! Sorry 'bout that.

  26. Ps-- readers will get plenty of the female viewpoint from Eve Marshall in RIDE THE FIRE, coming in December! :)

  27. I'm new to this genre of books. I'm not sure if I even like them, but I'd like to try some out to see!
    Gee, I've got to watch who I say that to, LOL ("try some out"). Wouldn't want my comments to be taken the wrong way, LOL.
    Have a great day. Thanks for the post. (That doesn't sound right either....)

  28. Hi Laney4,
    Should you give the series a try, I hope you like them! I used to only read suspense, then I branched off into other genres. Now I read anything that catches me story-wise, which is why my TBR pile is so huge!

    Thanks for stopping by!

  29. Ok, I am going to gush, again, at your covers, esp. Hidden Fire, I recognize those lips, chin and chest anywhere, Paul Marron, WOOT!

    To answer your question, I would love to read about a part time history professor by day, adventurer/gun for hire by night, sort of Indiana Jones set in the contemporary age. But, as a twist, he could be a time-traveler as well, (hence the history professor stuff) because, I agree, not enough time travel lately!

    All the best for your releases, they look, wow, scorching!

  30. Wow, ladies your place is so very lovely! I am new here... Hope you don't mind!

    Hi Ms. Jo! Congrats on your books!! Your books sound awesome! Here is my answer to the question:
    I’d LOVE to read a series about -- a strong knit family of brothers who work together on their family ranch, featuring heroes that -- think they are doomed to love because of an old family curse!

  31. The books sounds really good!

    kalynnick At yahoo DOT com

  32. Hi Karyn,
    Great to chat with you again! Ooh, the model's name on the cover is Paul Marron? Must. Google. Now! :)

    I love your series idea! That's so cool, and very high concept! I think you should write that up... :)

    Thank you for the well wishes!

  33. Hello Cecile!
    Thanks for the congrats, and I hope you give the books a try. :)

    Oh, I love stories about brothers on a ranch, and the family curse would give it a cool magical twist! Super idea!

  34. Hi Kalynnick,
    Thank you! I hope you give them a try, and enjoy them. :)

    I appreciate you stopping by!

  35. Hi Jo!

    Your a new to me author but your books sound great. Firefighter and spies are very nice. And the covers are super sexy.

    As for series that aren't done ... I don't know. I always liked the idea of male librarians that are very hot and adventurous underneath. Kind of like that movie with Noah Wyle.

    Take care,

  36. Hi, Jo. Congratulations on your upcoming release.

    I love reading about super hunks, super heroes, super men (mega Alphas), but it would be nice to read about the average guy who works hard, but doesn't really do anything spectacular in the heroics department, etc. Hmmm, that may not be a very long book, huh?

    Okay, then...I like Karyn's Indiana Jones-type hero.

    Thanks for being here today.

  37. Hi Jo! We don't think you're "warped and evil" -- just a little warped. :)

    You know how much I love Julian's story, and "I Spy" is going to knock the socks off your readers.

  38. Hello,

    I'm a big fan of your firefighter series. I'm looking forward to Tommy & Sean's stories. Although, I'm a little "scared" after reading that teaser as to what is going to happen in Sugarland. Also, put me on the bandwagon for wanting to read Shane's story. He has intrigued me in the previous books.

    As for a series I want to see - a series featuring - smoke jumpers - although that might already be out there and I don't it.

  39. And a huge HI to PJ & Buffie! How're you ladies doing?

  40. Well, I should have said at the end of my comment:

    As for a series I want to see - a series featuring - smoke jumpers - although that might already be out there and I don't KNOW it.

    I forgot the word "Know", so hopefully the comment makes more sense, n ow.

  41. Good morning Dish Ladies and Jo!

    I have to confess that I've gotten the books Jo is talking about today. The Spy book is wayyyyyyy sexy and very suspenseful at the same time, y'all are going to love it!

    I learned the other day that Jo imagines Matt Damon for her Tommy character in Line Of Fire...and ohhhhhhhhhhh yeah, I can see him as Tommy, too! Y'all may find this is your favorite firefighter book, yet!

  42. Hi
    Congrats on your upcoming release Jo! ^^ All of your books sounds wonderful

    Answer this: I’d LOVE to read a series about men and women who are from the regency period and beyond featuring heroes that are tortured.

    Answer this: I’d LOVE to read a series about knights, featuring heroes that are rouges.

    Answer this: I’d LOVE to read a series about the poor , featuring heroes that are magistrates.

    ** I'm not feeling that creative right now. Bad day so far.

  43. JOOoh, football players! Love that idea! There are some contemp series with baseball players out there right now, but I don't think there are any featuring football. yes, there are, Susan Elizabeth Phillips has made a career off hers.

  44. Hi Jo! Congratulations on your upcoming release "I Spy a Wicked Sin". I love your firefighter series, and can't wait to read "Line of Fire". Especially after reading the excerpt you gave us. Thanks for having such a great series!

    I agree with Andrea I'd also love to read a book about football players, who are ladies men until they find the right woman. Got to love books that have athletes in it.

  45. Hi Kirsten,
    Thanks so much! I love my covers, and I adore firemen. If you give the books a try, I hope you enjoy them!

    Oh, yes, I love the quiet types who have to unleash their rrrooow factor later on! Like Vicki Lewis Thompson's Nerd series. I miss those heroes!

  46. Hi Deb!
    Thanks so much for the congrats!

    Wouldn't it be great to see a series on heroes with superpowers? I'm a big superhero fan. :)

  47. Hi Jennifer!
    I'm SO glad you're enjoying the firefighters! I love those guys. :) Don't worry about our heroes and Sugarland--all will not be lost! This is romance, after all, and we luv our HEA's. :)

    Smoke jumpers are cool! I've thought about writing about them, but it's been on the back burner...

  48. Hey, Tracy!
    Me? Warped? hehe... this CP knows me too well!

    Great to see you here!

  49. Hey Suz!

    As my other CP you're biased, but that's fine by me! I need all the positive reinforcment I can get! Like Ellen Degeneres and her patch that doses out approval. :)

    Yep, I can SO see Matt Damon as Tommy! He's got those all-American boy good looks! :)

  50. Hi Jedisakora!

    Great to see you here, and thanks for the congrats!

    Your series ideas sound good. I love knights, and I read a suspense once where the hero was a judge marked for assassination and it was great! Judges are powerful figures.

  51. ** yes, there are, Susan Elizabeth Phillips has made a career off hers.

    Suz, you're right! I haven't read those with the football heroes, so my bad. I've read some of her others, though, and they're super!

  52. Hi Amber!
    I'm so happy you're loving the firefighters! They are such a pleasure to write, I can't tell you. LINE OF FIRE was the easiest one so far to write...Tommy's story flowed very well for me. :)

  53. Your books are going onto my wish-list! Thanks for posting at RD!

    I’d LOVE to read a series about elves and fairies, featuring heroes that are strong and adventurous!


  54. Hi Jo! I'm popping in to say hello to everyone and a very special welcome to our first-timers. Thanks for stopping by today!

    What terrific ideas! I don't have time right now to respond to all of them (have to pick up kids from school) but I'll be back to chat a little later.

  55. Jane, you do *not* suck at this! I love your idea about genies and lustful wishes!

  56. Cyndi, definitely give Hidden Fire a try. I don't think you'll be disappointed!

  57. Andrea, have you not read the Chicago Stars series by Susan Elizabeth Phillips? Awesome books centered around the Chicago Stars pro football team.

  58. Hi Jessica!
    It's my pleasure to be here. :)

    I luv reading about elves and faeries, too, and there aren't nearly enough of those in romance, in my opinion!

  59. Hi PJ!
    Drive safe picking up the kiddos! Hope your weather is a lot nicer than the cold, rainy mess we have here! Ugh.

  60. PJ -- No, I've not read SEP before, but something tells me I need to change that! Thanks!

  61. PJ -- No, I've not read SEP before, but something tells me I need to change that! Thanks!

  62. Andrea--You soooo need to read the SEP Chicago Star series. Great reads!!!! She has some truly memorable lines and scenes in her books.

  63. Andrea says I mean, who wouldn't want to read about a tight end?! ;-)


  64. Jo, I really like the name of Eve's story RIDE THE FIRE! All kinds of images are racing through my mind right now :-)

  65. Tracy (waving madly!!) So glad you stopped by today!!! Sure do miss chatting with you!

  66. Hi Maureen! I like the idea of a teacher hero. I think I've read some categories with teacher heroes. I know I've read many with teacher heroines.

  67. your other CP, you know I'm not the least bit biased. NOthing but the bald truth from us! Sometimes painfully truthful! :)

    Dish ladies, thanks for popping over to the Romance Bandits to say hi to Vicki Lewis Thompson today. (returned self promotion here, hehehe)

  68. Maria, you're just starting the Firefighters of Station Five series? You have lots of yummy reading ahead!

  69. Laney, I hope you enjoy the series. It's fun to try something new sometimes.

  70. Drew, thanks for the info on Paul Marron! Verrrry nice!

    Love your idea of the Indiana Jones type character.

  71. Hi Cecile! I'm so glad you found us. Please visit (and post) as often as you want!

    a strong knit family of brothers who work together on their family ranch, featuring heroes that -- think they are doomed to love because of an old family curse!

    Now this is a series that I would definitely read!

  72. Hi Tracy! It's great to see you here. (Tracy writes wonderful westerns.) Do you have anything scheduled for release this year?

  73. Jessica, have you read Esri Rose? She writes about elves.

  74. Suz, it's a great day at the Dish and in the Lair!

  75. Jo, thank you so much for visiting with us today. I'm so excited about the upcoming books from both of your series!

    Keep the comments coming, folks. I'll pop back in later to catch up with our evening visitors.

  76. Hi, Jo! Sorry I'm so late to the party. I was out all day running errands making sure I accomplished everything before this evening. It's snowing and we could get up to 14 inches!

    Those boys from Station 5 will sure turn up the heat! And my hubby will, too! LOL

    I'll take more time travels and medieval knights. Sounds dreamy.

  77. Hi Buffie!

    **Jo, I really like the name of Eve's story RIDE THE FIRE! All kinds of images are racing through my mind right now :-)

    Caught that double entendre, did ya?! hehe :)

  78. Hey Gannon!

    No problem, I understand about those errands and things that keep us busy! My dad had double knee replacement surgery 11 days ago, and that has kept me distracted quite a bit.

    BRRR on your snow! Sounds like it's time for a fire and a spiked hot drink of some sort! :)

  79. Both series sound great! Can't wait to read them!

  80. Jo, I hope your father is doing better.

    I'm next to a cozy fire now...drink coming up next. :)

  81. hot books congrats and the great revews, 4/12 stars from rt whoo

    love firman heroes
    cant wiat
    please count me in


  82. Hi Chey,
    Thanks so much! Hope you enjoy them. :)

  83. Hi Kim H,
    Thanks, I'm so happy about the review!

    And firemen rock! :)

  84. Jo, I hope your dad is doing well following his surgery. My neighbor had the double replacement in Sept. They're doing so many wonderful things with replacements these days.

  85. I would love to read a series about soccer players featuring players that have played in the Olympics and the World Cup. I love soccer and I don't know that I've ever seen a romance book about them.

    seriousreader at live dot com

  86. I would love to read more about the days before Brothels were outlawed in the West. What was it like to run a Brothel in San Francisco during the days of the Gold Rush? How many of the women working in them found happiness? I think it would be fun to read a series of novels with a more modern (explicit) approach.....and happy endings too, of course!

    Congrats on the new release!!!

  87. Hi there,

    How about a series which has the same central occurence but each book with a different hero and a different viewpoint.

    For example all based on 9/11 but with different people and different stories all related to it ? Could be from various countries to lead the stories to various locations as well.


  88. I would love to read a series about tennis players with heroes that get to travel all over the world and meet a lot of different people.