Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Guest Author and Giveaway!

LINK to participating blogs!

A Place for All Women
By Annabeth Leong

I'm here today to talk about Design and Scandal, a Rubenesque erotic romance that I wrote for Ellora's Cave's Curve Appeal series. I believe so passionately in the idea behind this series—our society desperately needs a broader understanding of what beauty is. It can't always be about being as thin and young as possible, and yet that's what's so often in magazines.

On the other hand, I'm bothered by anything that pits women against each other. As a feminist, I believe that all women ought to have a place at the table. I didn't want to write a book that lifted up curvy women at the expense of slim women—I don't think it needs to be like that.

Since this is an erotic romance, the most important relationship is between the heroine, Kahala Lin, and the hero, James Corwin (a delicious A-list movie star, by the way). A close second, however, is the relationship between Kahala and Madison Marin, a skinny blonde movie star who is Kahala's rival for the hero's affections.

At first, Kahala and Madison see each other as enemies. Kahala, who is a costume designer, isn't interested in designing clothes for someone with Madison's body type. Madison is incredulous and hurt that James might be interested in Kahala instead of her. I don't want to give away the plot, but as I was writing the book, I realized I wouldn't be satisfied if one of these women wound up as the "winner." Too often, this sort of thing becomes a zero sum game, and women turn against each other when they could be supporting each other.

The point is that the societal standards that hurt Kahala hurt Madison, too, and the only way out of that is for them to move beyond the artificial battle they're enacting and think about what each of them really wants.

Design and Scandal is first and foremost about the hot and enduring connection between Kahala and James. But it's also about Kahala and Madison, who begin as enemies and rivals and slowly learn to respect each other.


Annabeth Leong has written erotica of many flavors. She loves shoes, stockings, cooking and excellent bass lines. She always keeps a new e-book loaded on her phone and a paperback stashed in her purse, but her eyes are still bigger than her stomach whenever she visits a bookseller. She blogs at annabethleong.blogspot.com, and tweets @AnnabethLeong . Watch for her next contemporary erotic romance from Ellora's Cave, Heated Leather Lover.


Costume designer Kahala Lin didn't get into her line of work to make clothes for tiny models. She dreams of creating high-fashion masterpieces for BBWs such as herself. When she's hired to work on costumes for the science fiction movie Laser Sentinel, she passes up the opportunity to dress the film's heroine and ends up with the hardest job on set—pleasing the demanding and devastatingly handsome star, James Corwin.
James is one of Hollywood's best known actors, but he's in trouble when he's forced into working on this dud of a movie. James can't relax and enjoy the shoot on Hawaii's black sand beaches. He needs to prevent this film from becoming an embarrassment, starting with making sure he's not shot wearing nothing but spandex, a headdress and a ray gun. His collaboration with the new costume designer starts out promising, but soon he's so busy taking off her clothes that he's hardly thinking about what he'll wear at all. 

The press, however, discovers their relationship almost before it begins, and the resulting scandal threatens both their livelihoods and James' chances with Kahala.

A Romantica® contemporary erotic romance from Ellora’s Cave


Kahala wanted to present a smooth, confident image to Madison Marin, but by the time the actress’s private plane touched down in LA, she was shaking. She didn’t think she’d been followed or watched at the Honolulu airport but she couldn’t imagine a way to avoid it once she deplaned in California and made contact with the movie star.

She would be photographed, no question.

Kahala thought she’d made peace with that possibility when she decided to accept the invitation, but seconds from stepping out onto the tarmac, she wasn’t so sure. She handed her water glass to the flight attendant and collected the book she hadn’t been able to concentrate on reading.

She tugged at the dress she wore. One of her most recent creations, it took strong cues from the ideas she’d given Lawrence for Laser Sentinel. There was nothing retiring or shy about the garment. Color blocking laser-beam red with the black of volcanic rock and a bright, retro gold, any woman wearing it had to be willing to command attention. Kahala had put it on as a sort of dare to herself but now she doubted whether she could really live up to the dress’s bold promise.

Seeking comfort, she touched the kukui nut lei Lani had given her at the airport. Its polished brown surfaces provided nice accents to her dress and reminded her of home. They also symbolized protection and peace.

She hadn’t come this far to turn back now. Kahala rose to her feet and stepped out of the plane.

She recognized Madison Marin immediately, even though the actress had worn bulky clothes, a floppy hat and dark sunglasses. Kahala had considered a similar disguise but the thought of being photographed in a ridiculous getup bothered her even more than the idea of her image being captured in the first place. If she did end up having to endure more scrutiny, she wanted to look damn good in the pictures.

Kahala waved in Madison’s direction and the tiny woman ran to meet her, accompanied by two burly, black-suited bodyguards. They hesitated awkwardly for a moment when they actually got in range of each other but Kahala consciously kept her body language open. Madison came in for a quick hug that felt less uncomfortable than Kahala would have expected.

“We can talk in the car. I brought my best driver. He’s usually really good at losing the paparazzi.”

She and the bodyguards hustled Kahala to a black limousine with windows tinted almost the same color as its paint. By the time they arrived, Kahala had to focus all her effort on not panting or obviously displaying signs of the effort it had taken to keep up with them. She slid into the car across from Madison, patting her upper lip with a tissue as surreptitiously as she could.

Madison Marin, however, shamelessly pulled out a towel from behind the seat, yanked off her sunglasses and mopped at her face. Sweat poured down her cheeks and forehead, smearing her makeup and flattening her hair. The car began to move, faster than Kahala was used to and turning often and sharply.

“This 007 stuff always totally stresses me out,” Madison said.

Kahala stared for a moment, then snorted her amusement. “I always thought you Hollywood girls worked out for vanity, but now I see you really need to be able to run fast in LA.”

Buy Links:

All Romance eBooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-designandscandal-1303171-369.html?referrer=6bdb1f9160564c0525b41f36e51861a0

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EAV3RPK/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00EAV3RPK&linkCode=as2&tag=lucyfelt-20

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00EAV3RPK/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1634&creative=19450&creativeASIN=B00EAV3RPK&linkCode=as2&tag=lucyfelthouse-21

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/design-and-scandal-annabeth-leong/1116524070?ean=9781419947018

Ellora’s Cave: http://www.ellorascave.com/design-and-scandal.html

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/design-and-scandal


Check out the rafflecopters below for information on how to win one of my giveaways! For the all-digital giveaway, I'm offering a $5 gift card to Ellora's Cave, and digital downloads of two of my other EC titles. For the goodie bag, I've got some fun swag from EC's Romanticon 2013 (the physical prize is US only due to the cost of mailing—apologies to my international friends and fans). Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway


ingakaye said...

Humphrey Bogart is one of my favorite actors. He was good playing the hero and the bad guy.


ingakaye said...

France is a place I'd like to visit and it doesn't matter which part of the country. I think the movies and other art have done a good job of leading me to think of it as a romantic place.


Tory Richards said...

Boy, that's going back some! I liked him in The African Queen.

I'd like to go to Ireland some day.

Juli Hall said...

My Favorite actress is Julia Roberts

JoanneR said...

I would love to visit Spain.

Anne said...

Lord of the Rings, Return of the King is a great movie.

Romantic spot/ Probably any island with fine, clean sand and clean, clear, warm waters.

Here's one almost as old as Humphrey. I really liked Darrin McGavin (but not as a sexy actor, just one I always liked to see act)of A Christmas Story and before that The Nightstalker. I like lots of actress, but none come to mind as a must watch or above the pack.

Love how the cover model actually has some curve. I hate seeing thin models who are supposed to represent plus size women.

Elise Chase said...

I would like to visit Italy. My favorite actor is Sean Connery especially in The Rock

ladybirdrobi said...

My current television heartthrob is David Boreanaz I've followed him ever since I discovered him playing Angel/Angelus on Buffy the vampire Slayer and now he plays agent Booth on Bones. As for a romantic place I want to visit I don't know however I have always wanted to visit Scotland or Ireland to hopefully see men in kilts and visit the highlands that I've read about in many romance novels.


felicia sidoma said...

One of my all fav actress is Natalie Portman. She so good on the Black Swan. Not only is she a Great actress and Can take on so many roles. She also has a high IQ. She said that if she was not acting she would have been a scientist. Has I think several college degrees.

felicia sidoma said...

I think Alaska would be romantic. To be cuddling up to a great man with a roaring fire. I sip of liquor to warm the insides from the cold. Having one of the best times in my and my man's life. Yay!!

Christine Merritt said...

My favorite movie - The Fifth Element

Not a romance but humor, action and love in the end...

Christine Merritt said...

My favorite actor Chris Hemsworth - his looks, his voice and his stage presence… Yum!

Christine Merritt said...

A romantic vacation spot - I've been to Paris and it was wonderful. I'd love to vacation in Greece!

Robin Vandiver said...

George Clooney and the Bahamas!

Annabeth Leong said...

Thanks so much for hosting me today, Tory!

And to the rest of you, what a fantastic list of responses! You've made this really fun!

I love Humphrey Bogart as well--To Have and Have Not is one of my all-time favorite movies. I've never heard of Darrin McGavin. I'll have to introduce myself!

David Boreanaz is super delicious--heartily agreed! And the same to Chris Hemsworth and George Clooney. I talked at home about Chris Hemsworth a bit too much, and my husband started going to gym all the time! (I didn't actually mind).

I'm also glad that people are giving the ladies some love--Natalie Portman and Julia Roberts are both incredibly talented.

I loved The Fifth Element, but thought I was the only one who still remembered it!

I also love your list of destinations--they'd make an excellent world tour.

Thanks so much to all of you.

Also, I appreciate the kind words about the cover. I, too, was pleased to see an image of an actually plus-sized woman.


Melanie M said...

I'd like to visit Paris or Ireland.

Tory Richards said...

Any time Annabeth, it was my pleasure!

Romance Reader Enthusiast said...

It's actually a revisit. I would love to go back to Montego Bay Jamaica. It's a beautiful place and the water is so clear. But I wouldn't want to stay at an all inclusive. The last time I was there I had the chance to stay in someone's villa. I had a cook, butler, and maid. Now that's romantic.

Pommawolf Emeraldwolfeyes said...

Good evening Tori!
Thank you for the invitation to the blog hop. I so miss having the time and fun following any of them.
Annabeth...I love your attitude that it shouldn't matter a woman looks like and we should support one another...it is not contest.
Thank you for being a part of the blog hop!
Wishing you all the best..and continued success!

pomma @akwolf.com

Gaele said...

Favorite movie- Oh It would have to be Harvey with Jimmy Stewart...

Location? Venice. Again.It smells better now than it did when I first went there

Kai said...

Favorite movie: My Best Friend's Wedding

Romantic place: Paris (so I have heard).

melissa crisp said...

I love "How to lose a guy in 10 days"
leighannecrisp at yahoo dot com

kimmyl said...

Paris is definitely a city for romance!
Thanks for a great post and awesome giveaway!!!!!
kac_030 at yahoo dot com

bethany 72 said...

favorite Actor Robert Pattinson I would love to visit Ireland.


bulky said...

A romantic place I would like to visit would be the Bahamas! I think that would be awesome!

bulky said...

A romantic place I would like to visit would be the Bahamas! I think that would be awesome!

bulky said...

I always liked Richard Gere and in the female category , I watch everything with Julia Roberts in it!

Book Attict said...

I love Joe Manganiello -- and fave romantic sopt it definitely Malaysia!

Thanks for the amazing giveaway!
elizabeth @ bookattict . com (subscribed)

tori whitaker said...

this is an awesome giveaway!!! i would love to go to spain.. along with allot of other places.