Monday, March 25, 2013

Today's Special - - Anna Randol

I'm so excited to welcome Anna Randol to The Romance Dish today.  I fell in love with Anna's writing, and especially her "out of the norm" characters when I read her wonderful Sins of a Virgin (first book in her Sinners Trio) last fall.  I've been waiting since then for the release of the second book in the trio, Sins of a Ruthless Rogue and, let me tell you, it was well worth the wait.  I snuggled up on the couch with Clayton and Olivia and read their story in one delicious gulp.   Anna was kind enough to recently answer some questions for me about herself and her Sinners Trio.  Please give her a warm welcome!  ~PJ

Welcome, Anna!  Congratulations on the release of the second book in your Sinners Trio. Please tell our readers about this series and what they can expect from Sins of a Ruthless Rogue.

My first novel, A Secret in Her Kiss, involved a beautiful British spy in the heart of Ottoman Empire. While I was writing that story, I began to wonder who my fictional British government would’ve sent on all the truly dangerous, heinous missions. The idea for the Sinners Trio was born. It follows a trio of former criminals (some guilty, some not) who are promised a pardon in exchange for honing their particular skills on behalf of the Crown. Once the war is over, they’re let go with little more than a pat on the back. Now, they have to decide which side of the law they really want to be on…

The idea for the characters of the Trio came to me much as they appear in the series, as a unified group, certain of who they are and what they want. Often, ideas for stories will come to me in the form of bits of scenes, but in this case, these three spies waltzed in as a group and demanded they all have happily-ever-afters.

Sins of a Ruthless Rogue is the second book in the series (although they all stand-alone). It follows the darker, more enigmatic spy, Clayton Campbell, also known as Chipher.

Here's a quick description: When Olivia Swift betrayed Clayton Campbell a decade ago, she never thought she’d see him again. Now working together to translate a cypher and uncover the mysterious exploits of a long-forgotten Russian spy ring, Clayton finds himself in grave danger. While his attraction to Olivia is undeniable, can he truly trust her with his life?

I really enjoyed Clayton and Olivia.  What one thing do you want readers to understand about these two? 

Clayton and Olivia don’t have an easy relationship in the beginning of this book, but that’s because they have real issues to overcome. They are both very damaged, and yet very in need of love. As a reader, it would always drive me crazy to see a plot where the problem could be solved with a simple conversation, so these two really have to work hard and dig deep to make the changes needed to recapture the love they had as children.  But once they do, it is a wonderful and unshakable thing!

I enjoy romances set in unusual locations.  What inspired you to set this story in Russia?

When I was in college, I had to chance to travel in Russia (In summer, unlike my poor hero and heroine). I fell in love with it. First, I was in Moscow, which is an incredible, beautiful city steeped in history and blood. Perhaps it is the remaining Soviet architecture, but there is definitely a somber tone to the city. Then I traveled to St. Petersburg which is much more European in feel. With its canals and arches, it sparkles in a way Moscow never could. And yet it is a city that endured just as much as Moscow. The differences and dichotomies between them continue to fascinate me. The country can be hard and forgiving and yet beautiful at the same time (which made it the perfect setting for this book).

Without giving away spoilers, what’s one scene you would never cut from this book?

There is a moment when Clayton and Olivia have just survived and attack, and they end up in a Russian sauna. At the end of the scene, there is a moment when Olivia rests her head on Clayton’s shoulder in a moment of shared comfort and exhaustion. For me this was the moment when I feel them fully become one as a couple. They still have plenty of issues left to resolve, but for the first time both of them truly wish to find a way to make things work.

This book has a rich cast of secondary characters.   One of my favorites is Princess Kate.  Any chance we’ll get a book for her and her missing husband?  Their story is one I really want to read!

I hope so. Kate definitely has a trip to Wales in her future and a husband who has some explaining to do… She might have a novella in the works, but we will cross our fingers and see!

Fingers crossed!

You write some wonderful heroines.  If you could step into the life of any romance heroine, who would you choose and why? 

I think I would pick Jessica Trent from Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase. She is strong, feisty and beautiful. (And I would love the chance to help poor, tortured Dain do a little healing…)

Jessica Trent is a favorite around here and I'm sure many of our readers would be happy to join you in helping Dain heal. ::grin::

We all have our favorite comfort reads around here.  What book (or author) do you turn to when you feel the need for some fictional comfort?

Strangely, I have never been one to re-read novels often. (Except Lord of Scoundrels which I already mentioned and The Admiral’s Bride by Suzanne Brockman.) For me, the most comforting thing is to dive into a new book.

Recently, I have been loving the books from some of my fellow authors over at The Dashing Duchesses blog (seriously, these ladies are a hoot on and off the page). I especially love Jennifer McQuinston’s What Happens in Scotland and The Dark Lady by Marie Claremont.

I adored What Happens in Scotland and Andrea has had great things to say about The Dark Lady.

What one thing would readers be surprised to learn about you?

I love to get pedicures. It is my one guilty, girly habit. And I have to have flowers or little jewels on them, too, so everyone knows I got my toes done… J

Right there with you, although I haven't gone the flowers and jewels route yet.  

Will you be attending any conferences this year where readers will have the opportunity to meet you?

I will be at the Literary Orange Conference in Irvine on April 6th as well as the RWA National Convention in Atlanta, Georgia in July.

Andrea and I will both be at RWA National in Atlanta.  We'll look forward to seeing you there! 

What’s next?

The final book in the series, Sins of a Wicked Princess, will be released in November. I am so excited about this one. Our favorite thief turned spy, Ian Maddox, more than meets his match when he climbs into the bedroom window of a deposed princess with plans of her own. Ian and Juliana were just so much fun to write, and my readers finally get to find out a bit more about the butler, Canterbury and his role in Ian’s past.

I am so looking forward to this one!  Thank you for answering my questions, Anna.  Do you have a question for our readers today?

What is your one guilty indulgence?

Readers, Avon has provided us with a copy of Sins of a Ruthless Rogue to give away to a randomly selected person who leaves a comment.  


  1. Love Anna's book and always love the cover of her book

  2. A wonderful post thank you.

    I actually try not to feel too guilty about it, but I love to re-read favorites. With all of the books on my lists I really should not do this as much as I do.

  3. One of my guilty pleasures is carrying novels with me. Like to my kids' soccer practice. Long wait in the doctor's office. Always, always on an airplane. I end up having very interesting conversations with strangers about books.

    Thanks Anna and PJ! I look forward to reading this.

  4. Sneaking more books into the house when my husband says I have to read the ones I already own. I can't do it. I'm addicted to buying books!

    Anna, I haven't read your books yet but your "sinner series" sounds like books I would enjoy. Best wishes for continued success! I don't believe I've read any romances set in Russia. I did read the suspense GORKY PARK a long time ago.

  5. Hi all my guilty indulgence is chocolate. Love Anna randol book:). Thx for the giveaway, aretha , arethazhen ATrocketmailDOTCOM

  6. Welcome, Anna! We're so happy to have you joining us today. I loved the interview and learning more about you and your books! I don't know if you remember, but we met at the Avon party at the RWA conference in Orlando in 2010. You were tell us about your debut and had us all excited. :)

    Okay, so my guilty indulgence... I guess I'll go with The Walking Dead. As a romance reader, it's "expected" that I'd love Downton Abbey (and I DO!), but I can't miss an episode of The Walking Dead. Lol. They actually film it the next town over from us and it's neat to see the local places on screen. :)

  7. Aaaah It's love I feel when I read Anna's books. Can't wait for the next installment. Thank God it's just around the corner!

  8. Books of course! :) I spend way too much on them... And gummies...

    Congrats on your book!

  9. My guilty indulgence is, of course, books. I'm totally addicted to them, and always go to bed early, so as I can snuggle down and read. I do have one other guilty indulgence this time of year, and that's Cadbury's mini eggs. I can't seem to get enough of them.

    Thanks for the chance to win a copy of "Sins of a Ruthless Rogue".

  10. Hi Anna! Welcome! I'm having so much fun reading your books! Sins of a Ruthless Rogue is all I could have hoped for and more.

  11. I'm afraid I've not read you as yet, but everything I hear makes them sound like something I would really enjoy. I love variety and trilogies are my favorite. As to guilty pleasures, it's my obsession with books. I love to be surrounded by them and buy more than I could read in this lifetime or the next!

  12. Books. Though I rarely feel guilty. ;-)

  13. My guilty indulgence is buying books for my eReader (a tablet)...because I can read anytime, anywhere, and no one needs to know what I'm doing with a tablet. I also spend more on books than I should, but it is my one indulgence and will last me a lifetime's worth of pleasure and relaxation. It is my "staycation" indulgence! I certainly do not intend to give it up... ever! I'm glad I got to "meet" you today, Anna, and am going shopping on Amazon right now for a book of yours!

  14. I love Anna's books! Thanks for sharing! Books, Chocolate and books! :)

  15. I cannot wait for Clayton's book and Ian's~! My guilty indulgence is eating ice cream but also buying books when I know I have a pile of TBR books on top of my drawer. Thank you so much for the interview.

  16. My one guilty indulgence is buying new books when I have way too many to read already. I just can't help myself, it's a sickness I tell ya.

  17. Books all the way! Your book sounds really good and I am sorry I have never read your work before but that will have to change.

  18. Congratulations to Anna for being an RT Nominee for Historical Romance of the year in 2012 for Sins of a Virgin!

    I first discovered Anna when I read A Most Naked Solution and immediately fell in love with Sophia and Camden's story! Her books are a must and the Sins series has been so much fun to read. I love a book that gives me that "take me away Calgon moment" and Anna does just that with her tantalizing stories.

    I must admit that my biggest indulgence is buying books and all my numerous filled books shelves attest to the fact! I even have them alphabetical by author so I can find Anna's book without having to search for them to be read just "one more time" - especially when I'm waiting to get her next great book in the Sins series - Sins of a Ruthless Rouge!

  19. I only get one guilty indulgence? I'll go with chocolate. But if I get an extra one, I'll add books to the list!

    I love the sound of the new book and totally agree on Jessica Trent. Thanks for visiting.

  20. Buying books!! I buy way too many! Your books sound really great and I love the covers.

  21. My guilty indulgence is following review blogs and finding new authors and books that I just have to read.
    You are a new to me author. This sounds like a series I am going to have to read.

  22. My guilty indulgence is reading when I should be doing housework. But, in my defense, the housework is never ending.

  23. It would have to be books.

  24. I can give you 3, books, chocolates and shoes :))