Chatting with Christy Reece/NO CHANCE giveaway

    Today is Feb. 22.

    Do you know what that means? Do you?

    It means that tomorrow is Tuesday, Feb. 23, the release date for No Chance, the latest release from talented romantic suspense author Christy Reece.

    Here's the cover blurb:


    Skylar James told a lie to the man she married, and eight years later she still bitterly regrets the deception. Unknown to Skylar, her husband, Gabe Maddox, now lives in the dangerous shadows of elite operatives who rescue victims. When Skylar tries to save a na├»ve young beauty, kidnappers come after her. For Gabe, Skylar had been his last shot at trust and love. But news of her disappearance battens down his anger and launches him into action. Saving Skylar is Gabe’s only chance for peace and his last chance for happiness.

    The book got 4-1/2 stars and a rave review from Romantic Times, as well as a starred review from Publisher's Weekly. Wowsa!

    Christy is a new discovery for me. Her books came to my attention in part because she and I have seem to have a significant overlap in readers, and they can’t quit raving about her. But that’s just fine with me. I love finding a new author, because that means I can look forward to a new trove of books I’ve never read before. It also means that I’m able to connect with a colleague and talk about writing in a way that only writers can.

    Because I want to share her and her books with all of you, I decided to get in touch with Christy a few weeks back and interview her. Some of you have already read her romantic suspense series. For those of you who haven’t, you’re in for a treat.

    Christy will be popping in today to answer your questions. And she’ll be giving away TWO COPIES of No Chance to readers who post today. But if you don't win, don't worry. The book comes out tomorrow!

    Pamela Clare: Tell us a bit about your background and how you ended up writing romance.

    Christy Reece: Pamela, thank you for allowing me to come here and visit. I adore your books and cannot wait until March 2 for NAKED EDGE!

    PC: Oh, you’re so sweet to say that! I’m excited, too!

    CR: Okay, about me…I’m a southern girl…born and raised in Alabama. Grew up reading everything I could get my hands on. True story: I was grounded once from reading. I didn’t want to do my schoolwork…just wanted to read!

    I graduated from the University of Memphis with a degree in Social Work and did what every college graduate does who has no clue what she wants to do. I took the first job I was offered. And there I stayed…for eighteen years at an insurance company. It was a great company and a good job, but I realized I had no passion or love for my career. It was a job, nothing more. Yes, it only took me eighteen years to figure that out!

    After much soul searching, prayer and discussions with my husband, I left my job without any clear idea what I would do. I just knew there had to be more. While I pondered my future, I read voraciously. My former career had prevented me from reading as much as I wanted.

    I’ve read various genres through the years, but kept coming back to romance. I love the optimism, the passion…the beauty of falling in love. Characters and story lines have always run through my mind. Occasionally I would write a chapter or two, but had never tried to finish anything. In 2001, I issued myself a challenge: Complete a full manuscript. And in May 2002, I achieved that goal. One of the best feelings in the entire world! And it created an obsession. Once I got started, I didn’t want to stop.

    PC: It’s not easy to walk away from a career and start over, so kudos to you for having the courage. Life is too short to spending it doing things you don't find rewarding. What drew you to romantic suspense as opposed to historical or paranormal romance?

    CR: Romantic suspense has always been my preferred reading choice. I love historical and some paranormal, but romantic suspense just seems to be a natural fit for me. The television dramas I watch are suspenseful, the movies I enjoy usually have an element of suspense. Heart wrenching emotion blended with the blazing passion of two people falling in love combined with the thrill of danger — my idea of a perfect read!

    PC: That sounds good to me, too! Are all of your titles part of the same series? Tell us a little about them.

    CR: Yes, all six books are a part of the Last Chance Rescue series. Each book is a stand-alone title and one or both of the main characters are employed by LCR. Every storyline involves a rescue and while the hero and heroine are working toward saving victims, they’re falling in love. Or in the case of NO CHANCE, falling back in love.

    PC: What inspired the Last Chance Rescue Enterprises, the organization around which your books center?

    CR: It began with a wish. We had a high profile disappearance of a young girl here in Alabama and I so wanted an organization like Last Chance Rescue to exist. Thus, LCR was born: Highly trained mercenaries with one priority and purpose, to rescue victims. With worldwide connections and a phenomenal success rate, LCR operatives find and rescue victims when all other avenues have been tried and failed. They do whatever it takes, no matter the cost, to rescue the innocent.

    PC: What a wonderful wish! We all read about so many horrible things happening. How much better the world would be if LCR were real! What would you say your heroes have in common? Your heroines?

    CR: Most of my heroes and heroines have been tortured or hurt in some way. LCR is composed almost entirely of damaged people who, having been in the midst of hell, have an extra incentive to rescue others from their hell. My heroes are strong, compassionate, stubborn, courageous and often very arrogant. When it comes to the women they love, they’re protective, passionate and totally devoted for life.

    My heroines are a blend of kick-ass heroism, delicate femininity, spines of steel and touching vulnerability.

    PC: Your books are very sensual. Do you find writing sex scenes to be fun or hard work?

    CR: It depends upon the characters. I find it very hard to write a love scene if I don’t know the characters and what makes them vulnerable. I see each love scene as an advancement of the story and the developing relationship. The hero and heroine may not be in love with each other yet, but subconsciously they recognize their mate. I love revealing who the characters are within the framework of a love scene. So, yes and yes. They are fun and they are hard work!

    PC: You put that so beautifully! The sex scenes can’t just be about sex. They have to further the relationship and the story. You’ve been compared to Cherry Adair, a name familiar to any fan of romantic suspense. That must have been a thrill.

    CR: An incredible compliment, but also very daunting. She’s a wonderful writer and that kind of praise, though most welcomed, is always scary. The reader might expect an exact replica and be disappointed when they realize there are differences. But it is a tremendous honor to have that comparison made.

    PC: You are one prolific writer! Your first romantic suspense, RESCUE ME was released in April 2009. Now, on Feb. 23, your fourth book, NO CHANCE, is about to hit bookstores. To put it in perspective, I’ve been writing romantic suspense since 2005, and my fourth RS title will be out ten days *after* yours. By the end of this year, you’ll have six romantic suspense titles on the shelves. That’s amazing! How do you stay inspired and productive?

    CR: Contracts and deadlines are my inspiration. As long as my publisher asks me to write, and I’m able to, that’s what I want to do. Having discovered the career later in life than some, I want to write as many as possible!

    Also, my readers inspire me. Receiving emails from them is one of the wonderful rewards of being a published author. To know that I’ve entertained someone…taken them away from their worries or problems for a while is both inspiring and humbling.

    PC: Your upcoming release, NO CHANCE, will be out tomorrow. (Everyone plan to hit the bookstore!) Tell us about it.

    CR: NO CHANCE is a reunion romance, which is one of my favorite themes. Gabe Maddox and Skylar James met when they were young, fell in love and rashly married. Days later, they were torn apart. Eight years pass and though they’re still married, they haven’t seen each other in all that time. When a young friend of Skylar’s goes missing, she goes searching for her and ends up abducted. Gabe is an operative for Last Chance Rescue and he’s the one assigned to rescue Skylar. Putting aside the anger and pain he still feels, he embarks on her rescue.

    There are a lot of surprises and secrets within the story. I love reading books where the story goes in a direction I never anticipated. I try to do that in my own writing.

    PC: It sounds wonderful! My copy has shipped, so I’ll be reading it soon. Do you have a favorite book? Is there one that was more difficult to write than the others?

    CR: Like every author, I’ve loved every book I’ve written. However, if I absolutely had to choose a favorite, it would have to be RESCUE ME, which was the first book in the series. Not only was it my first published book, I found my author’s voice while I was writing it. So many of those pages in that book are me discovering myself as a writer.

    Though none were easy, one book in each trilogy has been more difficult than the other two. In my first trilogy, that book was RUN TO ME. My heroine went through some horrendous events, I put a secondary character through hell, and my villain was off the charts evil. By the time I finished, I was physically exhausted. In my upcoming trilogy, SECOND CHANCE was the most difficult. Both main characters are tortured in their own way, my villain is sick and twisted and some of the secondary characters are just plain mean, with few redeeming qualities. By the time that one was finished, I was emotionally drained.

    PC: What are you working on now?

    CR: I’m working on a new Last Chance Rescue trilogy, scheduled to be released spring/summer 2011. Each book will have characters who were secondary characters in this year’s trilogy. Haven’t announced the titles yet, but I’m working on the synopses and the ideas are percolating!

    PC: Thanks for taking the time to chat with us today! And best of luck with the release of NO CHANCE!

    OK, everyone, now you get your chance to ask Christy whatever you want to ask her. She’ll be checking back throughout the day to answer as she can. And two of you will win a copy of NO CHANCE, which sounds like it’s going to be a scrumptious read.

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