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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Top Five Musts for Books in the Romance Genre by Jo Kessel and Giveaway!

Now on tour with the fabulous TLC Book Tours...

Weak at the Knees
Jo Kessel

We got so busy living life that we forgot to live our dreams.

Danni Lewis has been playing it safe for twenty-six years, but her sheltered existence is making her feel old ahead of time. When a sudden death plunges her into a spiral of grief, she throws caution to the wind and runs away to France in search of a new beginning.

The moment ski instructor Olivier du Pape enters her shattered world, she falls hard, in more ways than one.

Their mutual desire is as powerful and seductive as the mountains around them. His dark gypsy looks and piercing blue eyes are irresistible.

Only she must resist, because he has a wife—and she’s made a pact to never get involved with a married man.

But how do you choose between keeping your word and being true to your soul?

Weak at the Knees is Jo Kessel's debut novel in the new adult contemporary romance genre—a story about love, loss, and relationships, set between London and the heart of the French Alps.
Buy the Book from: Amazon | CreateSpace

Things Every NA Romance Author Should Include in Their Novel

  1. A likable heroine. It’s vital the reader warms to the heroine otherwise they just won’t care what happens to her. You have to be sure she isn’t too full of herself or too annoying or too perfect—the reader must be able to relate to her. Danni in Weak at the Knees is flawed, with issues that need to be addressed, but hey, that’s what makes her human.
  2. A delectable love interest. The reader wants to fall in love and desire the lover along with the heroine. They need to find him attractive (or at least understand why she would find him attractive) so that they can empathize and want them to end up together.
  3. A happy ending. Even though life isn’t always like that, I think that’s how we want our fiction to be.
  4. A little bit of glamor. Most of us live more ordinary lives, so I think it’s nice if our romantic fiction can transport us to a different, more exciting place in some way. That’s why I picked the French Alps as the setting for this story. Not only is France such a romantic country, but I’ve also always found mountains to be so dramatically evocative and powerful—the sort of scenery that makes emotions run riot.
  5. A sticky situation. It would be boring if every story was just a case of boy meets girl and they live happily ever after. No, the heroine needs to suffer for her love. Circumstances need to get in her way and make it appear that she’ll never get what she wants. There have to be what appear to be insurmountable complications and mountains (excuse the pun) to climb. Preferably lots of them.

About the Author

Jo Kessel qualified as a lawyer before moving into journalism, working for the BBC and reporting and presenting for ITV on holiday, consumer and current affairs programs. She writes for several national newspapers in the UK including the Daily Mail, the Telegraph, the Guardian and the Express and was the anonymous author of the Independent’s hit column: Diary of a Primary School Mum.

When Jo was ten years old, she wrote a short story about losing a loved one. Her mother and big sister were so moved by the tale that it made them cry. Having reduced them to tears she vowed that the next time she wrote a story it would make them smile instead. Happily she succeeded and with this success grew an addiction for wanting to reach out and touch people with words. Jo lives in London with her husband and three children. She loves traveling and since becoming a mother anything even remotely sad makes her cry. She’s a sucker for a good romance and tearjerker movies are the worst. She’s that woman in the cinema, struggling to muffle audible wails as everyone else turns round to stare.

P.S. Jo’s pretty certain one of her daughters has inherited this gene.


Books à la Mode is giving away one copy of Weak at the Knees—winner's choice of paperback or digital—yay!! To enter, all you have to do is tell me:
What's something YOU consider essential to the romance genre? Add on to Jo's list by naming something (other than what she's already listed) that all romance novels should include.

Don't forget to include your email address in your comment so I know who to contact when I randomly select winner. Don't make me track you down!!!!
Please make your comment MEANINGFUL. Comments solely consisting of stock responses or irrelevant fluff like "Thanks for the giveaway!" will not be considered for entry. Jo and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

Additionally, Jo has been generous enough to sponsor a tour-wide giveaway for a bottle of French Châteauneuf-du-Pape! Châteauneuf-du-Pape is a gloriously rich (and expensive) red wine produced in the Rhone wine region in southeastern France. It is a wine that should be drunk to celebrate a special occasion. It's velvety, full-bodied and divine and features very strongly in the book. 

To enter this giveaway, please fill out this form. Keep in mind Jo will be selecting a winner; Books à la Mode is neither hosting nor sponsoring this giveaway. One entry per person, and must be 21 or older to be considered!

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the tour publicist and author—a huge thank you to TLC and Jo!
Giveaway ends October 22nd at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open internationally—woohoo! That means anyone in the world can enter. However, the print book and tour-wide wine are limited to US/CAN residents only. Readers from other countries may only enter for the book in electronic format.
Void where prohibited. Must be 21 years old or older in order to enter the wine giveaway.
Winners have 48 hours to claim their prize once they are chosen, or else their winnings will be forfeited.
Although I do randomly select winners, I am in no way responsible for prizes, nor for shipping and handling.
As a reminder, you do not have to follow my blog to enter, though it is always very much appreciated ❤
Good luck!