Giveaway Info: Prize is 2 eBook copies of “Zane’s Art” (1 each to 2 winners). Contest is tour-wide, open internationally and ends Jan 30. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Rafflecopter link is at the bottom of the post. Good Luck!!!
by Sara Daniel
Erotic Contemporary Romance
Published by Musa Publishing
Released on October 19, 2012
Heat Level: Steamy
Word Count: 9,500
Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009SZNKLO
Bookstrand – http://www.bookstrand.com/zanes-art
Smashwords – http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/246480
High school art teacher Julianne Truman’s last chance to save her beloved art department from budget cuts is to sell the old sketches that her former boyfriend—and now famous artist—Zane DeMonde drew for her. But is she prepared to let go of his artwork and the last traces of him in her life?
Desperate to save his artistic reputation from the exposure of his early works, Zane returns to the home town he wanted to forget. He accuses Julianne of profiting from his success and demands she take his art off the market and cancel the auction.
Their high school attraction flares back to life, forcing Julianne to choose between the students who count on her and the man she never stopped loving.
“Cancel the auction.”
Julianne Truman’s head snapped around at the hard male voice. The stapler fell from her hand and cracked open on the floor, as she caught sight of the extraordinary face that went with the voice. Her knees shook as she climbed down the ladder. She hadn’t faced Zane DeMonde in nearly fifteen years. At one time she’d believed he’d be part of every single day of her future.
“Zane, I didn’t expect you to come.” She stepped toward him. His black hair was a little shorter than the last time she’d seen him, but at shoulder length it was still far longer than most men’s. Gone were the black hoodie and ripped jeans of his youth. Now he wore chinos and a sharply pressed blue button-down shirt, open at the neck.
The dark storms in his cobalt blue eyes were exactly the same as the day he’d walked away from her.
“Cancel the auction. The sketches and painting are not for sale.”
She swallowed. “I own them. If I choose to sell them, that’s my business.” And it was breaking her heart to part with the only piece of him that she’d been able to hang onto all these years.
“When they have my name on them and you’re getting rich off me, it’s my business.”
Getting rich was so far from the truth Julianne would have laughed if her chest weren’t so tight. “It’s an honor to have you back in town.” At least her students would think so. Her brother would likely burst an artery. And she—well, she couldn’t even begin to process the mix of emotions she was feeling. “Do you have a minute to talk? I can explain what’s going on.”
“I know what’s going on.”
She hoped he couldn’t hear how hard her heart was hammering or sense how desperately she longed to wrap her arms around him and pick up where they left off fifteen years ago, as if he’d never left her.
“Then you know that the arts are at the bottom of the school district’s priority list. To have supplies for the classroom, to restore the school mural, to give my students a chance to explore different mediums, the art program needs an alternate source of funding.”
“You’re the Dentonville High art teacher?”
She couldn’t help feeling defensive at his derisive tone. “Yes, and I love my job.”
“Do you? Or have you never moved beyond your high school life?”
Wow, there is so much packed in this short story. High school sweethearts, an overprotective older brother, family loyalties, school funding for a lacking department, the art world, and a love that never faded. *sigh*
From the first word I read to the last word, I was lost—in a good way. 🙂 Sorry if that scared you. It was not meant to scare you in any way. Zane has a presence that is undeniable. From the first word out of his mouth, I was hooked. I understood his motivation from the get go from not letting Julianne sell his artwork. It was very personal and a part of him. His previous life that was private and that he wanted to keep private.
Julianne on the other hand, when she dropped the stapler, she knew that she wouldn’t let him go this time. She was older, had more confidence and wasn’t going to let old high school hierarchy keep her from her one true love. *sigh* I love that in second chances romance. I love it when the two characters decide upfront to themselves that. Of course, trying to convey that to the person is the fun part and keeping the outside influences at bay too. *can’t wait to read the sequel*
Julianne’s dedication to her students was a great thing for Zane to see and appreciate in the end. He didn’t believe her at first but after seeing her with one of her students, it become very clear to him what he had to do. *sigh* The ending was truly believable and completely sigh worthy.
I’m an art geek so I never was lost when they were talking about the different mediums and methods. To the casual reader, it won’t be lost on you either. This book is listed as erotic but after reading it, I found it to be more spicy than erotic but that’s all subjective. It was not graphic at all but highly sensual and emotional.
Please don’t be afraid to read a short story. This story had everything that a romance reader wants in a book. Believable characters, a great storyline, teen angst (yep, it’s there even when you are forced back to face your past), and a writing style that flowed. Before I knew it, the story was over and I wanted to keep reading. 🙂
Welcome Sara Daniel! Please start off by telling us a little about yourself.
Thanks so much for having me here today. I write contemporary and paranormal romance for Musa Publishing, contemporary erotic romance for Decadent Publishing and contemporary romance for Entangled Publishing (Bliss Imprint). I simply love to write romance and happily ever after.
Is Zane’s Art a single title, or part of a series?
Zane’s Art is part of Musa Publishing’s Finally Ever After short story, second chance at love series. All books in the series are independent and stand-alone. Zane’s Art, however, does have a sequel. Wyatt’s Guilt follows the story of Wyatt, who first makes his appearance in Zane’s Art as the heroine’s brother.
What were your inspirations for the story?
I grew up in a small town, and I love using a small town setting for my books. My high school class reunion was coming up at the same time Musa Publishing created this line. My imagination got right to work and immediately gave me the perfect story.
Please share your setting for Zane’s Art. Have you ever lived or visited there? If so, what did you like most?
My setting in a fictional small town in central Illinois, population 1,463. I grew up in a town of a similar size and location. As a fiction writer, I adore how everyone knows a little too much about everyone else’s business and isn’t afraid to talk about it.
When did the writing bug first bite?
I’ve been writing since 5th grade. My first “book” was actually a play because that way I only had to write the dialogue, which was the only part I wanted to write anyway! By junior high, I needed a way to fit in all the emotions and motivations, and I started writing novels.
Who are you favorite authors, book/series?
My all-time favorite hero is Kenny Karmody from Suzanne Brockmann’s Out of Control. That mix of sweet, vulnerable, tough, fearless, and irreverent made me fall head-over-heels in love. Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ First Lady is probably my all-time favorite book because every single character captivated me on every single page. When I finished that book for the first time, I turned to page one and immediately started reading it again.
If you could have an author roundtable discussion with any authors, who would you invite?
Wow, there are so many authors who have amazing ideas and experience that I could learn from. I think I’d like to assemble a roundtable of authors who have really been able to harness the power of the internet and digital publishing—J.A. Konrath, Amanda Hocking, E.L. James, Marie Force, and Barbara Freethy, to name a few.
Do you have any hobbies or special things you like to do in your spare time?
I like to go for long walks and hikes. I get a lot of good ideas when I’m alone with my thoughts. I have three school-age children, so most of my non-writing time is spent being a mom, but I will confess to a huge obsession with NASCAR!
What’s the strangest thing you’ve heard or seen?
Last month I was walking down the sidewalk in my hometown with my mother. A total stranger proceeded to stop her full-size van in the middle of the street and ask us to open the passenger door and move her boxed frozen turkey from the floor onto the passenger seat. She explained that she was 87 years old and had just had hip surgery, so she couldn’t pick it up from the floor. But she was apparently cleared to drive!
Sara Daniel writes what she loves to read—irresistible romance and captivating small-town drama. She writes to entertain and to give people hope and a belief that everything can and will turn out happily ever after. On the personal side, Sara is a frazzled chauffeur, chef, personal assistant and slave to her children. She’s crazy about country music and the drama of NASCAR. She has her own happily-ever-after romance with her hero husband. In addition to Zane’s Art, she is also the author of Construction Beauty Queen, The Wiccan Haus: Psychic Lies, The Wiccan Haus: A Man Worth Fighting For, Mr. Forever, More Than a Fantasy, and Wyatt’s Guilt (sequel to Zane’s Art).
Connect with Sara Daniel: