J.D.R. Hawkins

One bullet can make a man a hero… or a casualty.

Archive for the tag “book”

Duchess Sale Blitz!

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He’s a powerful duke. She’s his uncle’s ward. They have forever been at war, until one night, one masquerade, and one kiss…

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Lara Ramsay is no stranger to scandal. As the orphaned daughter of a British colonel and his beloved Indian wife, whispers follow her everywhere. Not even the protection of the formidable Duke of Wolverton, a man she can’t stand, keeps the gossips at bay.
The audacious Lara has driven Tristan Wentworth, The Duke of Wolverton, to distraction since the day his uncle took her in—and he’s quite certain doing so is her favorite pastime. After catching her and his younger sister at a salacious masquerade, he’s had enough scandal and issues a marriage ultimatum: find a husband within six months or one will be chosen for her.
Unfortunately, no one in the ton appeals to her. Except, perhaps, the duke himself. The battle of wills has only just begun, and when Lara kisses him, their fate is sealed. Sometimes even the most proper duke needs to break the rules to win the heart of the woman he loves…

Book Links:
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Quotes from Dare to be a Duchess:

“Here, right at this moment, I’m giving you an ultimatum: Find someone from the ton to marry in the next six months or I will choose someone for you.” – Duke of Wolverton

“Well then the plan is simple, ‘Divide and Rule.’” – Lara Ramsay

“You’ll be surprised that a gentleman with the best intentions can behave like a rake when faced with temptation.” – Duke of Wolverton

“I think, Wolf, that you go on and on about my undesirability and my unattractiveness as a way to convince yourself more than me. The fact is that you kissed me because I am desirable and I am very attractive indeed.” – Lara Ramsay.

“You know very well that I’m accepted in the ton, albeit grudgingly, thanks only to you. No man wants to marry me, and I don’t want to marry any of those men.” – Lara Ramsay.

Read an Excerpt from Dare to be a Duchess:

Wolf crossed his arms and glared at Lara. Despite being at fault, she was as unrepentant as ever. Her absolute nonchalance drove him mad, always. 

“It is my concern. Getting into trouble is second nature to you, so I’d be lying if I said that it gave me any pleasure to be the one to help you out.” Wolf scowled at her. “Paxton is not a fool. He only has to think closely as to whose identity I would desperately want to protect and then remember your dark hair and he will come up with your name. You truly have no sense at all.”

“Well then you shouldn’t have bothered coming to my aid,” Lara retorted. “I could have handled the situation perfectly well by myself.” 

Wolf put his hands on his hips. “And how may I ask would you have done that?”

“I’ve heard that a well planted knee on a delicate part of a man’s anatomy would normally do the trick.”

His eyebrows shot up. “You’re crazy to think that you could have deterred Paxton that easily.”

Lara merely stared at him, her head held high, further fueling his temper. 

“What, nothing to say?” he snapped. “Which brings me back to my first question. What in the world are you doing here in this depraved place?” 

Lara continued to watch him with those deep blue eyes, her lips set in a mutinous line. Her lack of response irked him even more. 

“Answer me,” Wolf demanded, his tone sharp.

She met his gaze head on. “We had no inkling this place would be so bad. And nothing untoward has occurred, so stop shouting at me.”

 “Unbelievable,” he growled. “Do you know how bad this place can be for two innocent girls like yourselves? Behind their masks and costumes, the men here have only one thing on their minds when they look at you, and you, as usual, don’t care that you could be completely ruined if discovered, let alone taken advantage of, in this den of vice. You are wild and irresponsible and you give no thought to your actions or the consequences thereof. And you brought Anne here? Just because you don’t care about your reputation doesn’t mean you can play fast and loose with hers.”

Lara’s eyes blazed with fury. “Anne is not a child. She is a grown woman who has a mind of her own.” 

“And that is justification for you to come here?” Wolf countered.

“I, too, have a mind of my own,” she shot back. “And I do not appreciate you telling me what I can and cannot do.”

His nostrils flared. He was the Duke of Wolverton, one of the most powerful men in England. No one defied him. And yet this one woman stood against him at every turn. Why couldn’t she understand the potential danger for her or Anne here?

About the Author:
Sapna Bhog is an author from India who writes contemporary and historical romance novels. As a self-proclaimed die-hard romantic, her books are filled with swoon-worthy heroes and feisty heroines who clash all the time, but do get their happy ever after. Sapna has always surrounded herself with books and when she is not writing she is reading. Originally from Dubai, she now lives in Western India with her husband, kids and a Siberian Husky. Sapna gave up a successful IT career and took a foray into writing and has never looked back since. Her favorite pastimes are reading, writing, traveling and shopping—not necessarily in that order. She loves to hear from readers.

Sapna on the Web:
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Interview By Sara Louisa

I was recently interviewed by friend and fellow author, Sara Louisa about my books and writing process. Here is the post. I hope you enjoy it! Please check out her website at saralouisaauthor.com. Thank you for the interview, Sara!

Award Winning Author J.D.R Hawkins’ Interview!

Hello everyone and welcome to this week’s author interview!

I was absolutely thrilled to interview author J.D.R Hawkins, and get to know her better!

Hawkins began writing at an early age. Music inspired her to write song lyrics, which developed into poems. From there, she branched out into writing short stories, articles, children’s books, and eventually, novels. Hawkins has also written a non-fiction book!

I’m always interested in how fellow authors choose the names of their characters. For me, the name usually comes to mind straight away when starting a new project. Hawkins has an interesting way of finding her characters and putting a name to the person in mind! Hawkins says:

“I researched names in a baby name book, and chose the ones I felt would most closely fit my characters’ personalities.”

Writing the perfect scene is important to an author; we strive for that ‘wow’ factor, and we all have favourite types of scenes to tackle. I personally enjoy writing romantic scenes, and action sequences. Hawkins told me what her favourite scenes are to write, and why.

“I like writing scenes that have an eerie element to them. Mysterious happenings are always fun to write, as well as scenes that show friction between the characters. I enjoy writing dialogue, because it gives me the opportunity to reveal things about the characters and their backstories.”

Authors get their story ideas literally from anywhere, and everywhere: walking, driving, listening to music, or in complete silence. Hawkins says she gets her greatest ideas when it’s quiet in the early morning, or later at night. She says:

“It’s wonderful when an idea comes to me suddenly, but sometimes, it takes several days for an idea to come to fruition.”

J.D.R Hawkins writes about the civil war in her fantastic collection of novels, which I was quite excited to learn about! Canadian and American history is a huge passion of mine, which brought up my next question for Hawkins: Are these incredible novels based on true events?

“Since my novels are about the Civil War, there are many parts that are true. I have to write realistically and factually, or I will get called out by people who are very knowledgeable about this time in American history. Many of the characters are real as well, including Robert E. Lee, Abraham Lincoln, etc. My first novel, “A Beautiful Glittering Lie,” is based on the journal of a Confederate soldier.”

Hawkins’ answer was fasinating to me, because as a writer myself, I could just imagine the hours of research that would need to be done for such a project!

I always enjoy learning where fellow authors are from, and a little bit about their personal life. I learned in our interview that Hawkins is a retired postal carrier living in Colorado Springs, Colorado, with her husband. They have two sons, one daughter-in-law, and two grandsons.

Hawkins says:

“We also have three fur babies: two dachshunds and a Siamese cat. We love to travel and spend time with our family. My husband and I recently celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary.”

Happy 40th anniversary to you and your husband!

The fourth book in J.D.R. Hawkins’ Renegade Series is due to come out later this year. It is titled “Double-Edged Sword,” and takes up where the last novel, “A Rebel Among Us,” left off.

Huge thank you to J.D.R Hawkins! Congratulations on your up coming release!

You can find J.D.R Hawkins, her books, and information on her website and links! Check out her fantastic book trailer and live interview at: https://jdrhawkins.com/

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Website: http://jdrhawkins.com

Two More Awesome Reviews!

I recently received two more amazing reviews for my novel, A Beautiful Glittering Lie. Thank you, Paula and Kaye!

5.0 out of 5 stars 

Extremely interesting

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 3 September 2021

This was my first time reading any of this author’s work. My knowledge of American history would be fairly scanty but I did find this an excellent read and I will be recommending her books to friends and family, and look forward to more of her books in the future.

4.0 out of 5 stars 

good read

Reviewed in the United States on September 6, 2021

I have always been a fan of books revolving around the Civil War. This is no exception. Recommend without hesitation.

Awesome Review For A Beautiful Glittering Lie

I received another great review for my novel, A Beautiful Glittering Lie. This is the first book in the Renegade Series, which tells the heart-rending story of a family from North Alabama, and how the Civil War affects them. Thank you, Stephanie, for your flattering remarks in regard to my book!


Today I am cover crushing over A Beautiful Glittering Lie. I was thrilled when I first saw this book being awarded the B.R.A.G. Medallion. First I’d like to say I am an avid reader of history and I am deeply interested in the War Between the States. I have this book on my Kindle and I am looking forward to reading it. I am thinking about buying a print copy as well since I love the cover and fascinated with the premise. Isn’t the title marvelous too! My hats off to J.D.R. Hawkins for writing a story in the view of a confederate soldier and his family. 

Be sure to check out my website for B.R.A.G. Interviews and other great post here.

Stephanie M. Hopkins

ReleaseDayBlitz :: My Ruin (Bond of Brothers #1) by Sapna Bhog

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The bonds of family are unbreakable.

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From bestselling Author Sapna Bhog comes a new romance series of friendship, loyalty and betrayal.

He never expected to run into her…

SHAURYA RAJPOOT is a man of many secrets. A sudden meeting with Myra Gupta changes the course of his life. Bound by a vow to his family, Shaurya keeps her at a distance…until she shatters all the barriers between them. Staying away from her soon becomes impossible, resisting her…unimaginable. 

She wasn’t prepared for him…

After losing the only man she ever loved, MYRA GUPTA has gone through life barely living and merely surviving. But all that changes when she meets Shaurya Rajpoot. Fascinated and intrigued by him, Myra is drawn by his loyalty, silent strength and quiet reserve. She yearns to get to know him better. However his past, his family and their bitter history keeps getting in the way of them being together. 

But when the past collides with the present and secrets are revealed, will love be enough? Or will one lie—the biggest deception of all—destroy Shaurya and Myra forever?

Book Links:
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Meet Myra & Shaurya from ‘My Ruin’

Myra Gupta


28 yo Myra Gupta lost the man she loved more than four years ago. Post that traumatic ordeal, she’s focused all her energy into her work as the head legal counsel for a huge company. Her work requires her to move cities and she does so with the single aim to begin her life afresh and to move beyond the past. But a chance meeting with a stranger at the airport, changes her life. Suddenly, Shaurya Rajpoot is everywhere she is.

Very soon, Myra is battling feelings for the only man who can possibly help her overcome her past and fall in love again. 

Shaurya Rajpoot


A rising star in Dubai’s construction sector, Shaurya Rajpoot’s main goal in life is to protect his family from an old enemy. After being betrayed by the woman he loves, he never wanted anything permanent with another woman ever, until he bumps into Myra. She makes him feel again and soon Shaurya is fighting his growing attraction for the one woman who works for his family’s enemy. 

Including her in his life is hard, keeping her away even harder. But with his family’s history and his past in the way of their happily ever after, Shaurya has to decide if he can take a risk and confide in Myra about everything. 

About the Author:
Sapna Bhog is an author from India who writes contemporary and historical romance novels. As a self-proclaimed die-hard romantic, her books are filled with swoon-worthy heroes and feisty heroines who clash all the time, but do get their happy ever after. Sapna has always surrounded herself with books and when she is not writing she is reading. Originally from Dubai, she now lives in Western India with her husband, kids and a Siberian Husky. Sapna gave up a successful IT career and took a foray into writing and has never looked back since. Her favourite pastimes are reading, writing, traveling and shopping—not necessarily in that order. She loves to hear from readers.

Sapna on the Web:
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Book Blitz – The Breakthrough

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We all want happiness and success and keep chasing both throughout our lives. However, only 4-5 per cent of people in the entire world end up becoming successful and from among them less than 1 per cent become successful and happy. What is the secret power that propels these people to the top of the pyramid? What makes them who they are?

Author Megha Bajaj set out on a journey and visited different parts of the country and discovered 11 such individuals who were truly happy and successful. She realized that in a country of 1.3 billion people these individuals had one thing in common—they had the rare ability to turn an ordinary event into a significant one and then turn that into a ‘breakthrough’.

They seize the moment when there is nothing perceptible to seize; they look at the present and create a future; they realize that the Supreme Power is always there, only if one believes unfailingly, surrenders completely and works tirelessly. Meet Nitin, Asha, Arun, Chitra, Sandeep, Kanni, Uvaraj, Guru, Kavish, Mukesh, Praburam and Sushiil.

Even during the worst possible time the world has ever seen, the book will put you on the path to many wonderful things and a life full of contentment.

Book Link:
Goodreads * Amazon.in * Amazon.com

Read this book:

  • If you want to find excitement in the ordinary;
  • To realize that you need to keep moving regardless of success or failure;
  • To ask yourself: When was the last time you did something for the first time;
  • To understand why each human being is a co-creator of his or her own destiny;
  • To find out why even the sky is not enough for your imagination;
  • To accept the fact that life will keep jumping at you and keep saying, ‘Surprise!’;
  • To learn how to get rid of desperation and let everything just happen;
  • To realize that results may be delayed, but never denied;
  • To discover that the answer to all your troubles lies within you;
  • To keep expanding your Life Mantra;
  • To keep learning.


The Breakthrough – Preview

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Times Now Feature: (Click on the photo to read the article)

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About the Author:

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Megha Bajaj is a Bestselling author of the book, The Breakthrough (Rupa). In the past, she has penned several acclaimed and award-winning books including Thank You, Cancer (Hay House), I Inspire (Jaico) and Happiness in the Age of Ambition (Rupa). She has written over a thousand articles for internationally acclaimed magazines and newspapers. Megha is a well-loved speaker and has been invited to premier institutes to share her insights. She was the youngest speaker at The World Confluence of Spirituality and Humanity for two consecutive years. Megha is also writing film scripts for prominent production houses and best knows herself as an ardent seeker.

Megha on the Web:
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Spotlight – Loving You

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Hamza Ali is ready to get married, fall in love and live happily ever after. The only problem is, he’s about to marry one woman but falls in love with another… So how will he find his happily ever after?
After watching his brother’s disastrous love marriage fall to pieces, Hamza decides that the only marriage for him is an arranged one. In Mahrukh, his family finds him the perfect bride. But while Mahrukh may be the perfect bride, it’s her divorced aunt Noorain who is the perfect woman for him.
Noorain Alam has never loved or been loved. Until the day her niece gets engaged to a man who is completely out of her reach and yet, he’s everything she never knew she wanted.
Blindsided by the strength of emotion they feel for each other, Noorain and Hamza find themselves in a battle for their happiness. But will love win? Or will family and duty stand in its way?

Book Links:
Goodreads * Amazon.in * Amazon.com

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Read an Excerpt from Loving You

The last thing Hamza Ali wanted, was to be late. But given the traffic and his own state of mind, he knew that it was a foregone conclusion. He just had to grit his teeth and bear it, even as he tamped down on the anxiety spiralling inside. 

His phone rang and he answered it on Bluetooth, knowing that Ammi was frantic with worry. 

‘I know, I know…’ he said in a placating manner. 

‘They’re already here!’ Ammi said in a loud whisper. 

‘I’m on my way, Ammi. I’ll be there in another fifteen minutes,’ he said. 

‘Fifteen minutes?’ Ammi yelped. ‘But…’ 

‘I’m driving. I’ll reach sooner if I’m not talking to you.’ Saying so, he disconnected the call and focused on reaching home. 

Today, of all days he had a presentation that ran late. He’d tried to explain to his boss that he needed to be home early but of course that hadn’t been possible. Kannan didn’t like to listen to excuses or anything personal when work was involved and Hamza knew better than to tell him the real reason he needed to be home early today. 

People were coming to see him. 

Yes. A girl’s family actually. He had told Ammi that he was ready for marriage and it would be a good idea if she started looking for potential brides for him. Ammi had been only too pleased to comply. 

His twin brother Hamdaan thought he was being an unnecessary martyr by opting for an arranged marriage. 

‘What would you know?’ Hamza snapped at him, annoyed. Hamdaan had a love marriage and then, when that fell through, he had an arranged marriage where he fell deeply in love with his wife Ghazal. 

This just convinced him that not everyone was cut out for a grand love affair and anyway, this was what his parents wanted. He wanted to give them that happiness. At the cost of your own, Hamdaan asked. 

‘What guarantee is there that a love marriage will be better?’ Hamza asked him. Hamdaan nodded. 

‘I know, but…’

‘And you did have an arranged marriage with Ghazal and you two seem to be just fine,’ he reminded him. 

‘Well, that’s because I got incredibly lucky,’ Hamdaan commented, a smile on his face as he thought of his wife probably. 

Hamza glanced at his face in the rear-view mirror at a traffic signal and sighed. There wasn’t going to be any time to even wash his face, let alone shower, if the girl’s family had already reached home. Ammi had been slightly put out when she heard that they wanted to vet him first, and if he was a good enough candidate, she and Ghazal Bhabhi could go and see the girl and take things forward. 

‘That’s how everyone does it these days,’ the broker aunty informed Ammi. The broker aunty who brought the rishta was a fascinating specimen, with her smartphone full of biodatas and photos of potential brides and bridegrooms. Hamza had looked at her paraphernalia, eyes wide that day when she wanted to ‘see’ him before finding the right rishta. 

‘First they see the boy and if he’s good, then you can see the girl. That way, the girl is not unnecessarily exposed, na?’ she asked, moving the paan she’d been chewing, around inside her mouth. 

‘Fine, Arifa Apa. Whatever you say,’ Ammi said. 

Now, he felt the slightest bit of apprehension inside when he wondered about this stranger who could possibly become a part of his life soon. But he had wanted this, right? In fact, he had gone on to convince Hamdaan to get married again so that it would clear the way for him to get married. 

His phone rang again. 

‘Ammi,’ he groaned out aloud but then saw that it wasn’t his mother but it was Ghazal. 

‘Yes, Bhabhi,’ he answered as the car moved forward in the traffic finally. It felt odd, calling her Bhabhi since she was so much younger than him but it added to the decorum and formality in their relationship, which was something he liked. 

‘How far away from home are you?’ she asked softly.

‘Around ten minutes, tops,’ he said. 

‘Okay, so don’t park in front of the house. Park behind, and I’ll be waiting near the kitchen door. You can hop inside from there and freshen up in your room, Hamza Bhai,’ she said. 

‘Oh. Oh thank god!’ he muttered, feeling slightly better. 

‘Don’t thank me yet. Ammi is having kittens and puppies and she won’t rest easy until you’re here,’ Ghazal said. 

‘You hold her off, Bhabhi!’ he said as he stepped down on the accelerator to reach home as soon as he could. 

Twenty minutes later, he emerged from his room, his face still shiny with water droplets. He took the towel from Ghazal gratefully and scrubbed his face and she winced. 

‘It’s your face. Not a dirty vessel and Scotch Brite,’ she admonished him as she took the towel from his hands. 

Ammi didn’t know that he was back home yet and she looked at him surprised when she came out from the kitchen, just as he was tucking his shirt inside properly. He had barely had a chance to look at himself in the mirror and he was worried about making the wrong sort of impression but Ghazal assured him that he looked fine. 

‘When did you…where were…’ she trailed off. 

‘Ask Bhabhi,’ he said with a smile as he kissed his mother soundly on her cheek. She did some nazar utarofy thing for him and smiled at Ghazal, even as she put her hand on her chest. 

‘Go now,’ she said. Nodding, he walked into the living room where Hamdaan and Abba were speaking to the men who had come to see him. 

‘Sorry, I’m a bit late,’ Hamza said as he walked up and shook hands with the three men who stood up when they saw him. 

The men looked from Hamdaan to him and one of them smiled. ‘Amazing how much you two look alike,’ he said. 

Hamza nodded and then, his father indicated that he should sit down on the sofa. The men all sat down and they started talking. 

The mad pounding in his chest finally eased down enough and he almost relaxed until he remembered why he was here. 

The middle-aged man in the centre, wearing the white shirt with black stripes, left untucked was apparently the bride’s father. He wore a namaz topi on his head and he had a beard. Hamza smiled at him as he spoke, but he was instantly curious about the girl’s family and what sort of person she was. 

He also didn’t know her name yet. A droplet of sweat trickled down his back in a straight line when he realised the enormity of what he was getting into. He didn’t even know the name of the girl he was willing to marry, let alone what she looked like. And somehow, he felt that if he asked her name, it would put him and his family on the back foot. He should have asked Ghazal, he realised. 

‘Have some tea,’ one of the men offered to him and he nodded. He leaned forward and picked up a tea cup and his gaze met his brother’s, who lifted an eyebrow sardonically. 

The two of them were connected intrinsically, as they were twins and there were times when they could have a complete non-verbal exchange between them and no one would be the wiser. 

You asked for this.

Hamza nodded slightly and he looked up at his brother defiantly. Yeah. So what?

Just wondering if you know what you’re getting into.

Shut up. 

Hamdaan hid his smile as he sipped his tea and mentally, Hamza flipped him off but responded to the questions being asked of him. 

When the ordeal was finally over, the three men got up and shook hands with him once more. They shook hands with Hamdaan and the bride’s father even hugged Abba as they left. 

‘Satisfied?’ Hamdaan turned to him as soon as the men departed. 

‘Yes,’ Hamza said, rolling his eyes. Abba returned just then before the two of them could get into an argument. 

‘They’ve asked us to come and see the girl tomorrow,’ Abba announced, a smile on his face. ‘Your Ammi and Ghazal will be going.’

Hamza’s heart pounded again. It was finally happening. 

‘What’s her name?’ he asked and Hamdaan gave a short laugh. 

‘Not one person back in college would have believed you to be capable of this,’ he said. 

‘Of what? And you wouldn’t know since you didn’t study with me,’ Hamza retorted. 

‘Her name is Mahrukh,’ Ghazal said softly as she came into the living room. Hamdaan beamed at her as she went and sat down beside him. One of the girls who worked in the house followed her and she collected the tea cups and deposited them on the tray. 

‘Like Shahrukh?’ Hamza asked sceptically. 

Ammi chuckled. ‘No. Mahrukh is a girl’s name. It means someone who looks like the moon.’

‘It’s a beautiful name,’ Ghazal assured him. 

And what of the girl, he wondered. Was she beautiful too? 


About the Author:

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Andaleeb Wajid is the author of 27 published novels and she writes across different genres such as romance, YA and horror. Her horror novel It Waits was shortlisted at Mami Word to Screen 2017 and her Young Adult series, The Tamanna Trilogy has been optioned for screen by a reputed production house. Andaleeb’s novel When She Went Away was shortlisted for The Hindu Young World Prize in 2017. Andaleeb is a hybrid author who has self-published more than 10 novels in the past two years.

Andaleeb on the Web:
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Spotlight – Midnight’s Star

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Visually impaired author and current flavour of the Indian literary scene, Dev Arya, has not just triumphed against the odds in his life, he’s annihilated them. He’s got fame, fortune and floozies in abundance. And yet, he’s lonely.

Cafe owner and only child to her differently abled father, Avni Desai is broke, heartbroken and a true survivor. But no matter how hard she hustles, she’s still struggling to stay afloat.

And then, one day, Dev walks into her cafe… and everything changes for both of them. From excellent tiramisu to earshattering singing, from dramatic friends to accident prone sexcapades, they embark on the ride of a lifetime. 

Will it all be worth it though? Will two broken souls find a way to heal each other? Or do the fractures go so deep that there is no way for either of them to find the love they so deeply crave and yet can’t seem to have?

Book Link:
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Read an Excerpt from Midnight’s Star

The bell tinkled again and a pretty young girl in a peach salwar kameez walked in. She went straight to the hottie by the window.

“Dev?” she asked.

“Nisha, I presume?” He smiled up at her.

My breath caught. My God, the man was lethal. Peach salwar looked similarly dazzled. She fumbled for the chair in front of her and sat down like her legs had given out. I didn’t blame her. That smile must have leveled everyone in the vicinity.

Checking that Diana and Sehar had things under control with the drink on the floor fiasco, I walked up to the hottie’s table and held out a menu to the girl.

“Would you both care to order?”

She took the menu and held it out to him. “Would you like to choose first?”

Hottie just looked back at her, his hands folded in front of him. “I’m afraid you’ll have to read it out to me. Unless,” he tilted his perfect profile in my direction. “You have a Braille menu?”

“I’m sorry.” I flushed. “We don’t but I can read the menu out to you if you require?”

“A Braille menu?” Peach Salwar frowned. “Why do we need that?”

My pen froze over my order pad. I darted a cautious look between the two. Hotties lips tightened.

“Your family didn’t tell you?” he asked.

“Tell me what?”

Okay. Peach Salwar was a little dumb. I started to slowly back away.

Hottie pulled his dark glasses off and looked at her. “That I’m blind.”

He had ink dark eyes framed by the most gorgeous thicket of eyelashes. This man’s looks would have made angels weep in heaven.

I wanted to weep. I wasn’t entirely sure why but the tears were filling quite rapidly in my own normal, average looking eyes.

“Blind?” Peach Salwar breathed. “You’re blind.”

If his lips tightened anymore, they would disappear from view completely. All around us, the café was silent. It seemed even the air held its breath.

He slipped the dark glasses on and held up his very snazzy looking cane. “Even if your family didn’t tell you, surely you didn’t miss my accessories?” The bitter note had something twinging in my heart.

“I can’t,” she quavered. “I can’t do this.”

What was this exactly?

“I can’t marry a handicapped person.”

Oh. It was that.

The man didn’t move. All around us, people stared, nobody dared make a noise.

Finally, he nodded. “I understand.”

Wordlessly, Peach Salwar stood up, shoved her chair aside and ran from the café like he was going to keep her there by force.

“Wow,” Diana breathed from behind me. “That was crazier than one of my scripts.”

It had been a really long day. My feet hurt. My head hurt. My heart hurt.

And yet…

I walked up to where he sat all alone staring at the table in front of him. He either heard my footsteps or sensed my presence because without looking up, he said, “I don’t think I’ll be ordering anything. I’m sorry.”

“My tiramisu is exceptional.” I righted the chair Peach Salwar had toppled in her hurry to leave and sat down in it. “Would you like to share one with me? On the house?”

“Feeling sorry for me, are you?” His smile was bitter and seemed to echo the pain in my heart.

“You and me both,” I said, frankly. “I’ve had a bad day too.”

“I doubt whatever happened to you is half as humiliating as this just was.”

“My boyfriend of five years and partner in this café just got engaged to someone else. I found out on Instagram.”

His head whipped up. I knew he couldn’t see and yet, that gaze seemed to look right through me.

“Okay. You win. But I want my own tiramisu. I don’t like to share.”

About the Author:

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Shilpa Suraj wears many hats – corporate drone, homemaker, mother to a fabulous toddler and author.

An avid reader with an overactive imagination, Shilpa has weaved stories in her head since she was a child. Her previous stints at Google, in an ad agency and as an entrepreneur provide colour to her present day stories, both fiction and non-fiction.

Contact the Author:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram * Newsletter Graphical user interface

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Book Tour – The Maharaja’s Fake Fiancee

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A scandal-averse Maharaja.
A free-spirited actress.
What do you get when throw them together and add a fake engagement to the mix?
Depending on whom you ask, you either get a match made-in-heaven or a royal disaster.

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Nivy Sharma knows exactly what she needs – the freedom to be herself and follow her passion. Guess what she doesn’t need? A tailor-made husband.
When her meddlesome mother tries to throw her into the arms of a mom-approved suitor, Nivy runs the other way.
Right into the arms of the man who shattered her heart.
His Highness Veerendra Singh can recognise a pain-in-the-ass when he sees it. Especially when it falls into his arms.
Even if said pain-in-the-ass has legs that go on forever and lush lips that just beg to be kissed, Veer vows to run the other way. As he did once before…
But, when the marriage-minded princess of Tejpur sets her sights on him, Veer runs back into Nivy’s arms to propose a fake engagement.
When ‘fake’ starts to feel very real, Nivy and Veer have to decide what is important… long-held prejudices or the chance for a life with the only person they’ve ever loved.

Will this be their second chance at love or will their broken past ruin their hope for a shared future? 

Book Links:
Goodreads * Amazon.in * Amazon.com

Read an Excerpt from The Maharaja’s Fake Fiancée

NIVY


There was a soft knock at the door, and Munshi Ji entered, with a trolley containing three cups, a big pot of black coffee, milk, sugar and a huge plate of chunky chocolate chip cookies. 

He served us our coffee and just then, Veer walked in. 

“Pour me a cup too, Munshi Ji,” he ordered. 

I avoided Jessie’s amused gaze and smiled at Veer. He smiled back at me. We kept smiling at each other until we were pelted with bits of chocolate chip cookies. 

As one, we turned to glare at Jessie who was doubled over with laughter. 

“Would you miss your sister if I pushed her out of the window?” I asked with narrowed eyes. 

“Not at all,” replied Veer, promptly. 

Jessie ignored my threat and smiled innocently at Veer. 

“Veer, do you have any plans for dinner?” 

He shrugged. 

“No. Why?” 

“Because Anika wanted to dine with you guys today. Just you, her and Nivy.” 

I choked on a cookie crumb. 

“What! Why?” I yelped, while Veer stared at Jessie in horror. 

“She wants to get to know you better. I think she just wants to mess with Nivy, though. Have fun,” she said, sweetly. 

“I’m not hungry,” I announced. 

“You will be, by dinner time,” she replied. 

“Not if I go on a fast. Don’t you royals have all sorts of weird customs? I’m sure we can find some obscure text that says that the Maharaja’s fake fiancée can’t eat anything until she does some sort of penance,” I said, grasping for straws. 

“I think dinner with Anika is penance enough,” said Jessie, with a laugh. 

That girl was enjoying my misery far too much. I snarled under my breath as I tried to think of a way out. 

“Alright. I’d like to borrow the Devgarh sword please,” I begged. 

Veer shook his head. 

“While I’d love to see you swing it at Anika, you can’t. It’s too heavy. Your delicate arms wouldn’t even be able to lift it off the wall,” he said regretfully. 

“Can I pay you to swing it on my behalf?” 

“A true Rajput doesn’t raise his hand to a woman, even if he’s convinced that said woman is actually a chudail in disguise,” he said softly. 

Something went melty in the region of my heart, but I ignored it stoutly. 

“Umm, if you guys could stop making sheep eyes at each other, I have a solution,” suggested the pain in our collective asses. 

“And you let me go on and on about the Devgarh sword?” I snapped at her. 

“It was funny,” she said with an uncaring shrug. 

Veer held me back as I lunged at his sister. 

“What solution, Jess?” he asked, running a soothing hand down my back. 

I allowed him to lead me to the bay window, and we sat down together. I acted as if I couldn’t feel his hand holding mine. 

Jessie stared at our joined hands pointedly for a second and then started talking. 

“You could take Nivy out for dinner,” she suggested. 

◆◆◆ 

VEER 


“Done,” he replied. 

Jessie stood up with a squeal. 

Veer refused to analyse why he’d agreed so promptly. He was just trying to keep Nivy out of Anika’s way. It had nothing to do with the fact that he wanted to spend as much time as he could with this maddening girl before she went back to Mumbai and forgot all about him. And it had absolutely nothing to do with how right her hand felt wrapped around his. 

“Veer, I’m not sure this is such a great idea,” Nivy whispered. 

“It’s better than spending time with Anika,” he whispered back. 

“But…” 

“It’s not a real date, just a pretend one. Think of it as two friends sharing a meal,” he said, with his fingers crossed behind his back. 

“Fine,” she conceded. 

Jessie clapped her hands. 

“I’ll make all the arrangements. You guys just go and have fun,” she said, skipping out of the room. 

“Jessie, wait,” he called, but his sister had already left. 

Veer turned to Nivy in confusion. 

“Why is she making arrangements for our date?” 

“Date? I thought it was just two friends sharing a meal?” she asked with her arms crossed over her chest. 

Veer grinned at the sceptical look on her face. 

“Of course, it is,” he said as innocently as he could. 

She looked so adorable when she scrunched her nose disbelievingly that he was tempted to kiss the tip of it. Of course, if he did give in to that impulse, she’d punch him in his nose, so he finished his coffee in one gulp and set the cup down. 

“Ring the bell when you want all this to be cleared,” he said and left the room before he did something stupid.

Meet the Author:

Alisha Kay is a Delhi based writer, who writes romances set in India.

She doesn’t hold with the concept of damsel-in-distress, which is why her heroines are spunky women with a sharp tongue and the ability to rescue themselves. Her heroes are hot men who are woke enough to find that independence irresistible. 

The Maharaja’s Fake Fiancée is Alisha’s first book.
Instagram * Twitter

Cover Reveal – Midnight’s Star

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Visually impaired author and current flavour of the Indian literary scene, Dev Arya, has not just triumphed against the odds in his life, he’s annihilated them. He’s got fame, fortune and floozies in abundance. And yet, he’s lonely.

Cafe owner and only child to her differently abled father, Avni Desai is broke, heartbroken and a true survivor. But no matter how hard she hustles, she’s still struggling to stay afloat.

And then, one day, Dev walks into her cafe… and everything changes for both of them. From excellent tiramisu to earshattering singing, from dramatic friends to accident prone sexcapades, they embark on the ride of a lifetime. 

Will it all be worth it though? Will two broken souls find a way to heal each other? Or do the fractures go so deep that there is no way for either of them to find the love they so deeply crave and yet can’t seem to have?

Book Link:
Goodreads

Releasing on 28th May!

About the Author:

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Shilpa Suraj wears many hats – corporate drone, homemaker, mother to a fabulous toddler and author.

An avid reader with an overactive imagination, Shilpa has weaved stories in her head since she was a child. Her previous stints at Google, in an ad agency and as an entrepreneur provide colour to her present day stories, both fiction and non-fiction.

Contact the Author:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram * Newsletter

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