Thursday, November 13, 2014

Today's Special - - Nancy Haviland


PJ here. I'm delighted to introduce you to debut author Nancy Haviland today. You know how much we love debut authors around here! Nancy's book, A Love of Vengeance is fresh, captivating and a story that I thoroughly enjoyed. 

Nancy is a single mother of three and a college graduate who worked as an administrative assistant in the commercial mortgage field, and then had the pleasure of being a stay-at-home mom before becoming a full-time author. She resides near Toronto, Ontario with her children and an arrogant kitty named Talbot.

Please give Nancy a warm welcome!




Welcome, Nancy! Congratulations on the release of A LOVE OF VENGEANCE. Please tell our readers what they can expect from this book.

It’s my absolute pleasure to be here, PJ! Thank you for having me. A Love of Vengeance is Gabriel Moretti’s story. Set in Seattle and New York, it takes the reader through this “retired” underboss’s struggle with choice; does he remain loyal to a man he loves and respects like no other, or does he make that one selfish decision that could have dire consequences and follow his heart? Eva’s dispirited air, her enthusiastic and powerful reaction to him, and her naivety about what’s really going on behind the scenes, adds to Gabriel’s plight, making her very difficult to resist. ;)

A LOVE OF VENGEANCE is the first book in your Wanted Men series. What inspired you to create a series of stories set within organized crime families?

The organized crime element has always drawn me in:  The Untouchables, Casino, Goodfellas, Eastern Promises, and of course, The Godfather; all favorites of mine. The arrogance, the ego, if you will, these men must have to demand such loyalty and respect from their families or organizations is enormous. And who better as an alpha hero (or would that be anti-hero?) than men who know who they are and offer no apology. Even those who cross that invisible line to protect and shelter those they love by any means they must. The strength of that connection, whether it’s to a brother or a woman, is fascinating to me. The protective instincts they possess and the strength with which they love their ladies is also a huge draw for me.

Speaking of their ladies, I cheered Eva as she gradually claimed her heritage, discovering her own strength, and place, within a male dominated world and fell in love with Gabriel right along with her. What do you want readers to understand about these two characters?

Yay! Girl power! I think they’re both trying to find their place in the world, as you pointed out with Eva. Gabriel has always known what was expected of him, to head his family, yet he turned his back on it. I think he feels the loss of his purpose, but wants something more. Now, he’s being drawn back in and he continues to fight it. But will the advantages to becoming king of the castle eventually outweigh the many disadvantages?

Eva, on the other hand, has never know her father’s world so it’s all new to her when the organized crime element comes to light. She’s torn. She knows what she should feel about the things Gabriel and her father are a part of, but does she? She’s left wondering what kind of person it makes her that she finds satisfaction in knowing her mother’s death has been avenged. Killing someone is simply killing someone. Or so she’d always thought. Now she sees there’s a gray area she’d never thought to acknowledge. After her initial shock wears off, will she and Gabriel come to see that she really is her father’s daughter? Are her feelings for Gabriel changing her view of what’s right and wrong? Accepting her new reality doesn’t come easy for Eva and I hope that comes across to the reader.

It certainly came across to me. While I expected suspense and violence in a crime family thriller, what surprised me were endearing – and sometimes poignant -moments of humor, tenderness, and vulnerability. In what ways were you  challenged during the process of writing this book? In what ways were you surprised?

The challenge in writing this particular book was how far to take Gabriel’s character from his past. Growing up as he did, there was no way he would find it easy to settle into the role of “some philanthropic, law-abiding, respectable businessman”, to use Gabriel’s words. ;) I didn’t want to make any of the male characters too soft considering who they are. It was surprising how much easier it became to write them once I made the decision to make them exactly who they’re supposed to be. They were either going to be organized crime associates or they weren’t. I couldn’t have them slapping wrists and pouting about wrong-doings, but I also didn’t want them killing and maiming all willy-nilly, either.

Eva was easier in that sense because up to a point, she’s just an average girl living an average, lonely, life. I was happy to put her together with her father, and even happier to give her Gabriel. Lucky she’s strong enough to handle them and her newfound family!

I was delighted to read that Vincente and Maksim will have books out next year. What about Alek (she asked, hopefully)? Are you able to give us any information about the next two stories?

Oh! I’m so happy you asked about the others. My poor, tormented Alekzander is indeed the hero in book four. By the time he’s seen Gabriel, Vincente, and Maksim find the kind of love he cruelly pushed away, he’s more than ready to lure Sacha back into his life. But what he finds when he unearths his Russian beauty makes the regret he’s lived with for the past fourteen months pale in comparison to what he suffers then. Will Sacha believe him when he finally reveals the truth about that devastating night? Will she forgive his callous treatment of her? She has to wonder if she even has a choice in the matter.

Book five I can’t speak of because it would be considered a blatant spoiler for A Love of Vengeance. I’m trying to give hints but am disregarding each even as I think of them because they’ll give too much away. SorryL  

(PJ again. If this means the character I think it means, I can't wait to see how you pull it off!)

Book six gives the Pakhan, Vasily Tarasov, his turn in the spotlight. His second chance at love is similar in flavor to the famous star-crossed-lovers in Romeo and Juliet—but the adult version. From what Vasily has witnessed within his family over the last while, he’s convinced you don’t choose who you fall in love with. His own heart’s choice proves that beyond a shadow of a doubt. But that doesn’t mean Anastasya will be an easy target. Especially when she learns who Vasily is.

We love our comfort reads around here. To what authors do you turn when you need a break from the demands of real life?

Me too! And I’m finally getting used to my Kindle, but still prefer to turn an actual page. I favor paranormal romance during reading time and my all-time favorite author would be the uber-talented Gena Showalter. I love me some Lords of the Underworld! Second to Gena would be J.R. Ward and the Black Dagger Brotherhood. Those vampires are superb examples of the alpha male in my eyes. Cynthia Eden, Maya Banks, Julie Garwood, and Kelly Armstrong also have places of honor on my bookshelves.

This is my favorite time of year. I love the change of colors, cooler nights, fall fruits and veggies and football.  What’s your favorite season? What qualities make it your favorite?

I’d have to agree with your choice. Autumn it is. When the humidity of summer finally leaves and the crisp air of fall arrives I happily pull out my sweaters and wooly socks and take my heavy mugs down from the top shelf of my cupboard. Flavored teas and hot chocolate become my drink of choice on those cool nights spent writing until the early hours. I just wish my kids wouldn’t kick up such a fuss when I drag them away from the electronics and out for our nature walks. Rest assured, they love it once we’re on the path. J

Where can readers find more information about your book and connect with you online?

http://amazon.com/author/nancyhaviland is the go-to for A Love of Vengeance and the books that will follow in the Wanted Men series. 

To connect with me, which I love, my website is: http://www.nancyhaviland.com I’ll be there updating quite regularly with fun facts, news, and information. 

Facebook is always open on my browser to distract me: http://www.facebook.com/nancyhavilandauthor 

On Pinterest I have individual boards dedicated to each book with pictures of my muses, where I see them living, what they wear, drive, ride, etc: http://www.pinterest.com/nancy_haviland  

And lastly, Twitter, for random thoughts and much support for my fellow Montlake authors: http://twitter.com/Nancy_Haviland  

Please don’t hesitate to drop me a line, even if only to say hello. J

Thank you so much for visiting with us today, Nancy. Would you like to ask our readers a question?

Thank you, PJ! It’s been a pleasure. There is something I’ve wanted to know for some time, and now that I have the chance to ask actual readers I’ll take it. Is a Prologue at the beginning of a book something you like, or don’t? Most of my books begin with one, because characters always have a past, and I was curious if readers would just as soon have the information from the Prologue written into the story as memories rather than having it played out “in real time” to set the stage before chapter one. 

Thanks again, PJ, and all of you romance peeps for any insight! Have a wonderful autumn and enjoy a pumpkin spiced latte for me! xxoo

Montlake Romance has graciously offered a digital copy of A Love of Vengeance to FIVE randomly chosen people who leave a comment on today's post.




A Love of Vengeance
By Nancy Haviland
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Release Date: November 11, 2014


Once the most feared member of an Italian Mafia crime family, Gabriel Moretti returns to New York at the request of his mentor, Russian crime boss Vasily Tarasov. Vasily needs someone he can trust in Seattle to protect his estranged daughter, Eva Jacobs, while he avenges the murder of the young woman’s mother. Gabriel is unstoppable in a fight, whether he’s using fists, blades, or bullets; but innocent, onyx-haired Eva may just be the most dangerous—and beautiful—thing he’s come up against.

Intense sparks fly between the two, tempting Gabriel to mix business with pleasure while in the Emerald City. But once word gets around that Gabriel has shown up in New York, Stefano—his vengeful brother and the de facto head of the family—decides that Eva is the key to ending the feud between them…permanently.

In this pulse-pounding romantic thriller set against the backdrop of New York City’s storied underworld, loyalties will be tested, secrets will be told, and mob justice will be served.


35 comments:

  1. Lovely to meet you here today Nancy. A wonderful interview thank you.

    I like a prologue to give me real time info. Though I don't mind the information as memories sometimes.

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  2. Thanks for your input, Mary. I'm the same. I'll take either as long as the information is in there. Thanks for joining us today:)

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  3. Hi Nancy! Welcome and many thanks for taking the time to give such thoughtful answers to my many questions. As you could no doubt tell, I really enjoyed this book. My tastes don't normally run in the organized crime direction but you crafted a story that refused to let me walk away and multi-layers characters who burrowed their way into my heart.

    Can't wait for Book #2!

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  4. Hi PJ! Again, thank you for having me today, it's wonderful to be here. And thank you for your kind words. With A Love of Vengeance being my first publication, I was understandably anxious about how it would be received, so hearing you, and others, are enjoying it is marvelous! Quite surreal, if I'm being honest.

    I hope book two is as enjoyable for you!

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  5. I don't mind prologue, Nancy. I think it depends on the story as to how best the backstory is presented. If it's information I as a reader needs before I start chapter one, then sure, give me that prologue.

    A belated Happy Book Birthday! :-)

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Sandra! I agree with you on the way the backstory is presented. Some prologues are very necessary, in my opinion, while others bore me to tears. I think Nancy's prologue/flashback is well written and does a great job of setting the stage for the story.

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  6. Thank you, Sandra:) I agree on presentation. I've waffled between doing flashback scenes or just working information into thoughts. My editor and I went with working the information into thoughts on this book. But in my current WIP I'm waffling again because I'd like give two POV to the same scene (when the couple met for the first time). Yet another discussion to have with my very talented developmental editor, I suppose! Thanks for dropping by:)

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  7. Hi Nancy, I love to read. I am always looking for new authors and/or books. You are a new author to me and I would love to read one of your books. :)

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    1. Hi Rebecca! Hope you give A LOVE OF VENGEANCE a try. I enjoy discovering new authors and following along as they build a series.

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  8. Hello Rebecca! I've been a reader of romance since I was a possibly-too-young 12-13 years-old. I cut my teeth on Diana Palmer and Suzanne Simms, and as much as I love my favorite authors, I welcome new ones with just as much enthusiasm. Happy reading and thanks for coming by! :)

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  9. Sounds wonderful and I'm always happy to hear about new authors. I enjoy prologues. I'll take any extra information the author wants to give me!

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    1. I'll take any extra information the author wants to give me!

      LOL! Me too, catslady! That likely explains why I'm an unabashedly enthusiastic fan of epilogues. ;-)

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  10. That's good to hear, Catslady! Your name is great. I have a long-haired kitty name Talbot. He's cuddly and sweet for a cat. He thinks he's quite something, but he's always reminded me more of the dogs I grew up with than the snooty cats people talk about. Thanks for your thoughts! :)

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  11. When I see an epilogue at the end of a book I also get stars in my eyes, PJ! :)

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    1. LOL! Isn't that funny? It's like a special bonus prize that I wasn't expecting that makes me giddy with joy. I'm a huge fan of Sarah MacLean's Rules of Scoundrels series. The last book in the quartet comes out the end of the month and she's offered an exclusive "interview" with the four scoundrels to anyone who pre-orders the book. I've already read an advanced copy but you better believe I've not only pre-ordered that baby for myself but gifted copies to a couple friends too so we'll all get the extra content! :)

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    2. That sounds like a real treat for Sarah's readers--I'll be looking into the series now! There's nothing like that extra glimpse into your favorite character's lives. In the same vein, I love when an author comes out with Christmas stories centering around the characters we love. Those are always so much fun to read! :)

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  12. I love prologues (and epilogues). I'm not the reason they made up that rule. But you do get bonus points if you make the prologue hard to figure out...or possibly a scene from later in the story...or from the villain's POV first...and then turn the page and we're in the middle of the story, wondering when that's going to come out! Compelling. I love writing that is compelling. You can title it whatever headliner you want...prologue, chapter 1, whatever.

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    1. Great points, MsHellion. I'm afraid there isn't much intrigue in my prologues when I use them, just information. In A Love of Vengeance we decided to do Chapter 1 (Seven weeks earlier) because the time between then and present day wasn't that long. Either would have worked in this case. Thanks for commenting:)

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  13. Hi Nancy

    I'm a big fan of prologues as a way of setting the scene. In a suspense novel for example, a preview glimpse of the dastardly deed, be it murder or something even worse, is excellent before letting the detection work commence.

    Mafia type crime seems a great backdrop for romantic suspense, with the strong family connections and the way that feuds can expand over generations. I'm looking forward to sampling your work. :)

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    1. You're correct in saying the options for strife are plentiful in mafia type crime series. And I'll admit I touch on most available to me, some decades in the making! Thanks for popping in, Quantum :)

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  14. Congratulations on the new release. It's not often that the hero is also the villain.

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    1. Thanks, Kim! At times my main men toe that fine line, but that's where that lovely gray area that exists in life comes in. Even bad boys deserve a HEA, and I very much enjoy giving them one! Thanks for your input :)

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  15. Definitely like prologues! and epilogues :) I'm a glutton for whatever the author will give me! Congrats to Nancy on the new release!

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    1. I'm beginning to see a pattern here; the more information, the better! Thanks, Erin, I'm glad you stopped by. :)

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  16. I like them both ways! I enjoy the prologues and love epilogues. The book sounds great.

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    1. Me too! Especially if that epilogue fast forwards some months and a baby shows up! Thanks, Martha. Lovely to connect with all you fellow romance fans. :)

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  17. sounds like something I would enjoy reading too

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    1. Well, Joanne, going by your last name alone, I would have to agree! ;) Vincente is one of Gabriel's best friends, and the main character in book. He's been one of my favorites to write thus far. I hope you get to meet him. :)

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    2. I just noticed "#2" was missing from my above post. Book #2 is Vincente's story. :)

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  18. Yes, if written well
    How many books will be in the series?

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    1. Thanks for your input, bn100. As of now, the next two in the series are already with my publisher, and I'm currently finishing up books 4, 5, and 6. After these, I have stories in mind for the majority of the main characters but writing their stories will depend on how well the series is received. :)

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  19. Thanks for visiting with us today, Nancy. Can't wait to see all of your Wanted Men find their happy ever after!

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    1. Thanks for having me yesterday, PJ. I had a great time! :)

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  20. Congratulations on the release of A LOVE OF VENGEANCE. I hope it is doing well.
    I appreciate authors including prologues. In most cases they are a quick set up that gets the reader ready for the story and characters to be developed. Not every story needs one. Often it is a major event that happened which doesn't need to be explored, but which somehow responsible in part for the story that will follow. Taking time during the story for memories to explain or set up things doesn't always work. Often the major event happened before the characters would have any memory of it or even be part of it.

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  21. That's very true. In a case where the character wasn't directly involved in the action a prologue seems almost necessary. Unless the information is given through conversation or by another POV, of course. But the more I think on it, my preference is for a real-time scene. :) I suppose we'll just have to content ourselves with accepting there are many ways to inform the reader of what they need to know. I appreciate everyone's opinion and am happy to now know a prologue isn't the hated thing I'd always gotten the impression it was. Thanks for popping in, librarypat! :)

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