The Return By A.L. Parks

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Wine and Romance

I’m A.L. Parks, and I have published two books, and working on a third to be released this summer (fingers crossed). The first two are contemporary romances, and the third will be my first foray into romantic suspense. So, since I am a new author, and many of you may not have heard of me, let alone my books, I was trying to come up with a more creative way to introduce you to them…and this is what I came up with. I love to read…and I love wine.

Wine that goes best with my books:

Bereaved bride Abby Clark is tortured by visions of the fatal crash that took her fiancé on their wedding day. She succumbs to a dark existence where loneliness, sadness and nightmares dwell; until handsome, brooding Bryce Holden walks through the door of her favorite coffee shop, wearing the same cloak of despair and grief. Abby discovers in Bryce someone who understands love and loss, and soon their close friendship grows into a deep love. But ghosts make strange bedfellows, and Abby is forced to battle the tormenting images that continue to haunt her, and confront the ethereal presence of a beloved wife to protect her future with Bryce.

My wine choice: Malbec
Malbec is known for it’s black appearance. It goes well with Strangers, which deals with devastating loss and grief. Strangers is the journey of Abby and Bryce as they navigate the turbulent waters of moving on, forming a deep friendship, and eventually falling in love. They are in very dark places when they meet, and find comfort in their mutual grief. Much like the Malbec, which is deep and dark but then turns sweeter after its tasted – Abby and Bryce find that life does not have to be spent in darkness. Taking second chances and moving on can result in the unexpected.

The Return:
Eve Carlisle had a singular purpose - sell the rustic house nestled in the Colorado ski resort town.

Tortured by her husband’s betrayal, the beautiful divorcee refused to give her heart to another man. But Jake had been a happy surprise, with his mesmerizing blue eyes, warm smile, strong but gentle nature – as well as being incredibly sexy.

She had convinced herself the relationship with Jake was nothing more than a fling. After all, she had a life in Newport, with society friends and a lucrative career as a family court judge. Still, Jake had a definitive hold over her, and she was finding it hard to think clearly where he was concerned.

The demons of prior failed marriages haunt them both, and threaten to end things just as they are beginning. When Jake tells Eve he is falling in love with her, Eve refuses to believe it can last. Returning to Newport, the hollowness of her existence exposed, she must confront her fears before she loses Jake forever.

My Wine Choice: Moscato

In most cases Moscato is a sweet, dessert wine. The Return is the first book in the Return To Me series, where Eve returns to Colorado to sell her vacation home following the break-up of her marriage. She meets the sweet, sexy yet rugged Jake, and, despite her best efforts, falls in love with him. It is a very sweet story about second chances, but deals with the very real issues surrounding trust and fear that linger following divorce, and how they can affect future relationships.

This is a work-in-progress about a woman trying to escape her abusive husband and helped by an unexpected hero. When Chloe finally decides to leave, she enlists the help of a man whose criminal activities can provide her with escape. Helping Chloe reminds Gage of past failures he refuses to repeat. But disappearing without a trace proves harder than either anticipated. And falling in love was never part of the equation. Chloe’s sadistic husband, however, has no intention of letting the couple go quietly into the night.

My Wine Choice: Budweiser

This is absolutely NOT a wine type of book. So grab a cold one, pop the top, and don’t be afraid to guzzle while reading this book. This is a gritty, blue-collar read that delves into abuse and control at the hands of a loved one. It is not sweet, it has not bouquet, and does not awaken the senses the longer it sits on the tongue. It is cold, but as the relationship between Gage and Chloe grows, the story becomes refreshing. You do not have to stick with Bud – feel free to substitute any beer, as long as it is not a microbrew with hints of chocolate and raspberries.

I have had fun introducing my books. My characters tend to have more life experiences, and are seeking second chances. They are not typical romances, but highlight slices of life not addressed in mainstream romance today. I hope I have piqued your interest enough to check out Strangers and The Return. And watch for Redemption this summer. Thanks so much for letting me take over the blog today…I had a great time!

Two lucky readers who comment on my blog will be randomly selected to win an e-copy of one of my books. Good luck!