My dear writing friend Jennifer Wilck has been a visitor to my blog many times and each time she brings me another fabulous book that I can’t put down! Her newest, released today(!) is A HEART RESTRAINED the 3rd book in her Scarred Hearts series from the Wild Rose Press ( love my WRP sistahs!!) I was lucky enough to read this one prior to publication and I loveloveloved it! You can read my review here after you listen to Jenn tell you a little about the journey to the book’s publication below.
Jenn…take it away.
A Heart Restrained released today. It’s the third book in my Scarred Hearts series but can be read as a standalone. What does that mean? Well, it means that each book can be read on its own, without the reader having to read the previous books. There are no cliffhangers, and anything that happened before that might be vital to the reader’s understanding is explained.
Now, you might think that lets me off the hook, but I think standalone books within a series are harder to write than books that must be read in a specific order. Hear me out.
As an author, I want to hook the reader. I want to hook them so deeply that they can’t live without reading all my books. Devouring them. But I also want to constantly attract new readers. And I understand that time, money, and life prevent readers from following a specific order. If you’ve never read my books, but A Heart Restrained sounds interesting, I want you to buy it and read it immediately. If I force you to read the first in the series, you might get distracted before you get to book three. So, I need to make sure each story I write is complete in and of itself.
When I developed the Scarred Hearts series, I wanted it to be about a group of guys, best friends, who were wealthy but cared about others. They use their money for good. So, I wrote one book for each hero. Damaged heroes are my favorite trope to read and write, so each hero is damaged in some way. Each heroine is the perfect match for the hero, even if he or she doesn’t know it yet. And each philanthropic cause is one that is near and dear to the characters’ hearts and becomes a way to throw them together. If you only choose one of the books to read, you’ll have a complete story. The hero and heroine will get their happily ever after.
But there will also be bits and pieces from previous books. For example, the hero and heroine from book one makes an appearance in books two and three, and loyal readers will get to see how their relationship plays out. The heroine in book two offers advice to the heroine in book three. Does it cause new readers to get lost? No, I believe my readers are smart enough to follow along. I hope seeing characters that are clearly from a previous book might get them to want to read that book, too. And I hope that loyal readers get warm fuzzies from seeing an old favorite pop up again.
Giving those little glimpses is hard for the writer. How much is too much or not enough? What color was their hair again? What types of speech patterns and behaviors did they have? Trying to keep everything straight can be difficult. It’s why we create what we call a “bible” where we list characters, locations, jobs, etc. Anything that will remind us of the world we’ve created so we can revisit it and hopefully not change anything essential mid-stride.
So, if you’ve read my Scarred Hearts series so far, A Heart Restrained is Caleb’s story. Simon and Meg, and Ted and Abby all make appearances. After all, they’re all friends, and life is nothing without your friends.
And if you haven’t read my Scarred Hearts series yet, welcome! I hope you fall in love with Caleb and Fiona. And I hope you love them so much that you want to check out their friends’ stories.
Let me know what you think about reading a series. I love to hear from readers!
Caleb Zeno, a wealthy and successful media mogul, refuses to allow emotions into any aspect of his life, especially his entertainment corporation. When his company’s lifestyle website runs into competition from a small boutique company, the most logical solution is to buy out his rival.
Fiona Hamilton’s lifestyle website succeeds due to her loving and caring treatment of her clients, who have become like family to her. She has no desire to sell to anyone, much less a tattooed, muscled, automaton.
At odds professionally, Caleb and Fiona come together as a favor for Caleb’s sister. Sparks fly and sexual chemistry abounds. But Caleb can’t let go of his abusive past and be the man Fiona needs, and she is unwilling to risk independence and financial security for anything less than a perfect happily ever after. Can they put their differences aside to find a viral kind of love?
“Wouldn’t you enjoy this more if it were in English?”
She paused and shifted so she faced him, one leg bent under her, the other dangling off the edge. “Absolutely not! Telenovelas are so much more emotional than American TV.”
“Why don’t you at least research online to find a plot summary?”
“I’m happy with the way things are,” she said. “I don’t need to hear the words to feel the story.”
She smiled through her tears and wiped her cheeks. “I know.”
Staring at her, his heart rate increased, and he tamped the panic her tears caused. At first, he thought pain caused her tears, but her rapt attention to the screen made him realize otherwise.
Why would she want to do this to herself? And how could she enjoy a show she couldn’t understand?
He should leave, before she recognized his complete lack of comprehension. But her rapt attention to the screen fascinated him. She was smart—his business dealings with her had proven it. Yet she focused as if she understood her show.
She stared at the TV screen, but he couldn’t take his gaze off her. Her skin, despite its bruising, was luminous. Her lips were parted, and she gripped the edges of the sofa cushions until her knuckles turned white. This close to her, heat radiated from her body. He could hear a faint sigh.
If she were this passionate about a television show, how passionate would she be if he kissed her?
Universal Link: https://books2read.com/u/3k2G5n
is an award-winning contemporary romance author for readers who are passionate about love, laughter, and happily ever after. Known for writing both Jewish and non-Jewish romances, her books feature damaged heroes, sassy and independent heroines, witty banter and hot chemistry. Jennifer’s ability to transport the reader into the scene, create characters the reader will fall in love with, and evoke a roller coaster of emotions, will hook you from the first page. You can find her books at all major online retailers in a variety of formats.
Jennifer started telling herself stories as a little girl when she couldn’t fall asleep at night. Pretty soon, her head was filled with these stories and the characters that populated them. Even as an adult, she thinks about the characters and stories at night before she falls asleep or walking the dog. Eventually, she started writing them down. Her favorite stories to write are those with smart, sassy, independent heroines; handsome, strong and slightly vulnerable heroes; and her stories always end with happily ever after.
In the real world, she’s the mother of two amazing daughters and wife of one of the smartest men she knows. She believes humor is the only way to get through the day and does not believe in sharing her chocolate.
You can connect with Jennifer here:
** PEGGY HERE – Jenn thanks so much for being here today. As I said, I loved this book. Congratulations on another winner!
You can read my review for A HEART RESTRAINED here: AHR
And don’t miss the other books in the SCARRED HEARTS series
A Reckless Heart (Scarred Hearts Book 1)
Meg Thurgood, former society girl, took the blame for her friend and paid a steep price. Now all she wants is solitude and a chance to rebuild her life. She thinks she’s found that in an isolated house she rents from a mysterious stranger.Simon McAlter has hidden in his house on the coast of Maine since a fire left him scarred. A successful landscape architect who conducts his business and teaches his classes remotely, he’s lost his inspiration and is trying to pretend he’s not lonely. Simon’s new neighbor is more than he bargained for. When he learns Meg’s secret, will he retreat into the shadows or will he learn to see past the surface and trust in Meg’s love?
Unlock My Heart (Scarred Hearts Book 2)
Abby Marlow, computer security expert, lands a job at the best IT security firm in the country. Her sole focus is financial independence so she never has to rely on others again, especially a man. But why does her boss make her wires short circuit?
Ted Endicott, CEO and founder of the IT security firm, is hard of hearing. Although an expert in his field, he’s still uncomfortable admitting his hearing problem to clients or employees. So why is he willing to accept Abby’s help?
As Ted and Abby work together, barriers fall away, and the lines blur between colleagues and lovers. But a security glitch in a client’s system shows one of Ted’s employees is the hacker, and all signs point to Abby. Can they get past the suspicion and find a future together?