Monday, June 18, 2007
Heaving Bosoms by Ashlyn Chase
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Ashlyn Chase has been a registered nurse for 20 years. During those years, she wrote articles for professional journals and a thesis, but eventually, thank goodness, discovered the joy and freedom of writing fiction.
Ashlyn considers herself lucky. Her degree in behavioral sciences is a combination of psychology and sociology, so she has worked with and studied people most of her life. She never has to write out exhaustive character sketches to understand her characters or predict how they will behave. That doesn't mean they don't surprise her. Sometimes they take her on grand unexpected journeys. For her, it gives "character driven novels" a whole new meaning.
Ashlyn has learned to go with the flow. To enjoy the journey is not only one of her writing goals, but also a challenge in life so she tries to follow where the story takes her. As such, she has lived in 17 different places over the years. At last, she's all settled down and comfy in New England.
Is there a grand design or do we decide our own fates? Perhaps if the powers-that-be have a plot, then they also give us the right to revise it. Ashlyn has certainly made detours on her path, but she thinks she's better for it. She's having fun at any rate and hopes that if she enjoys the journey, so will those around her—including her readers.
Visit her website at: www.ashlynchase.com
ABOUT THE BOOK:
What do tattooed butts, the Mafia, and a medical student have in common? Tonia Fuller!
Tonia, a blonde bombshell with a bust to make a Barbie doll weep, is a klutz. Wearing four-inch spike heels, and already top heavy, her center of gravity is elusive. When hunky medical student Raphael Beauchamp comes to her rescue twice, he thinks he knows why Tonia’s falling. It’s those ridiculous designer stilettos.
Tonia takes a tumble down some stairs, resulting in a nasty concussion. Since she’s new in Boston she has no one to stay with her. Raphael opts to look after this headstrong beauty rather than risk second impact syndrome, which can be fatal. Raphael discovers that Tonia’s the ex-wife of a Las Vegas mafia don. She has half an offshore bank account number tattooed on her butt, and someone’s after her. A normal person would don a pair of running shoes and get the hell out of Boston. But it’s too late for Raphael. Tonia’s not the only one who’s been falling.
“Don’t get up,” Mr. Tall, Dark and Dripping said. “You took a nasty spill and I’d better check you out before you try to stand.”
Tonia glanced at his uniform’s insignia and saw that he worked for Fleet Ambulance, then stared into his down-turned, brown eyes. He had a sad puppy look, as if filled with genuine concern for her safety. As lovely as that was, she was not about to lie on the ice, freezing her butt off, while this gorgeous guy “checked her out.”
“Thanks, but I’m all right. Really.”
“Please don’t move. I’m a medical student. You need to listen to what I’m telling you. You could have a hairline fracture of your spine. If you move you could cause more damage. Maybe even paralysis.”
Tonia sighed, flicked her blonde bangs out of her eyes and read his nametag out loud.
“Raphael Beauchamp. Paramedic.”
“Yeah. Well, I’m almost a doctor. I’m on spring break. I’ll graduate in a couple of months and be interning after that. What’s your name?”
“Tonia Fuller. The late Tonia Fuller. I’m ten minutes late already, so as nice as you are to offer, I don’t have time to let you examine me.”
“I was on my way to work too, but it looks like I’ve already got my hands full right here. I’m sure both of our bosses will understand why we’re late.”
Tonia noticed where his eyes had landed. Right where every man’s eyes landed. He was looking her square in the knockers. To his credit, he glanced away, whipped off his glove, reached for her wrist and checked her pulse.
“I’m fine,” she said. Her protest weakened as he held her wrist in his warm, take-charge fingers for several seconds. Even with freezing rain spattering her face she could feel heat rising to her cheeks.
“Your pulse is a little fast.”
There’s a big surprise. Her heart rate would be pounding if they had met in a coffee shop.
“Does anything hurt? Did you hit your head?”
“Everything hurts, especially my pride.”
“Stay put while I grab my cell phone and call an ambulance.”
“You must be joking. I don’t need an ambulance. I need to get to work before my boss docks my pay.”
“Who was that who just looked down at you and went inside?”
“My boss. He’s a lawyer and probably disappointed that we can’t sue God for the weather.”
“Your boss is a dick.”
She couldn’t help giggling. “You noticed that right off, did you?”
“Yeah. Now stay here and don’t move.”
“Okay, you win. But first, would you be a love and grab my other shoe before someone kicks it into the street?”
As soon as he had his back turned she pushed herself up, removed her remaining shoe and stood on freezing feet. At least she was vertical.
When he turned around and saw her standing there, he folded his arms and frowned at her. She mimicked his expression and posture, including one alligator shoe sticking out from under her crossed arms.
Shaking his head, he approached and handed her the shoe. “Why were you wearing those ridiculous high heels instead of something more practical on a day like this?”
“They’re not ridiculous, they’re Gucci.”
Raphael rolled his eyes.
She set both shoes on the sidewalk. Teetering slightly, she stepped into them. Raphael grabbed hold of her arm to steady her. Instead of letting go as soon as she had her balance, he walked her to the door.
“You know,” he said, “when I want to wear my spike heels, I listen to the weather forecast first.”
She laughed picturing this handsome hunk in spike heels. “Oh, really? Are they black vinyl to match your corset? I think I’ve seen you in the Combat Zone.”
Raphael smiled as he opened the door for her.
Oh and a cute smile too. Everything about this man got her blood pounding.
“Well, it was nice meeting you, Miss Fuller.” As he spoke his eyes drifted down to where she was, indeed, fuller than most.
Ordinarily she would have been annoyed from years of being gawked at, yet when he jerked his gaze back to her face quickly, she had to give him points for trying.
“Nice to meet you too, Mr. Paramedic. Thanks for your help.” Somehow, a handshake didn’t seem quite adequate. She looked into his warm caramel eyes and held his gaze a little longer than usual while she decided what to do. He didn’t move. He didn’t even blink.
Quick, before you chicken out. Tonia brushed his cheek with her lips, turned and ran into the building without looking back until she reached the elevator. He was writing a note against the glass. As the doors closed he turned the paper around. It said, “Get boots.”
1) Please tell us about your featured work, Heaving Bosoms.
This is one of my favorites. It won loads of contests and attracted the notice of one of the final judges, Raelene Gorlinsky, now my publisher! I’d call it chic-lit, except that the heroine isn’t snobby or bitchy. LOL. It’s about Tonia Fuller, ex-trophy wife of a Las Vegas mafia don. It’s about Raphael Beauchamp, a medical student who decides to take care of her after an accident. It’s about courage when the don’s mistress and right-hand man come searching for Tonia in Boston where she’d hope to start a new life.
2) Where did you get the idea of your top heavy but beautiful heroine?
I can give you three different answers. They’re all part of it. When I was a psychiatric nurse, I worked with two women ‘married to the mob’ as they say. One divorced her husband when he went to prison (as my heroine did) but she had to live the rest of life in hiding or wearing disguises. The other woman stayed married, despite horrible psychological and physical abuse when her beautiful face and body began to age. She felt safer on the locked unit. Can you imagine? I remember hugging and crying with her. I rarely did that.
The other two sources for my ideas came from friends. They’re both acknowledged in the front of the book. I’d love for readers to get the book and find out how ‘regular people’ contributed a piece and made it a comedy.
3) What do you like best about your hero?
Raphael is every medical student I knew when I was a nursing student. LOL. He’s obsessed with learning his craft and someday being a real-live hero. His someday comes sooner than he expected.
4) What sort of research did you have to do for this particular work?
None. I’d been to the Cayman Islands, Las Vegas and, of course, Boston—my home planet. LOL. I’ve spent time talking to mafia ‘members’ and mafia wives. I’ve been tattooed (but not where my heroine and the ex’s mistress were tattooed, heh heh,) and I’ve taken care of people with severe concussions. I’ve never written a book I didn’t have to research before—but what does it say about me that this is the one I didn’t have to research? Eek!
5) What are you working on now?
By the time this is published, I’ll have finished and submitted a novella that my editor was interested in. It’s called Demolishing Mr. Perfect and is about a hunky demolitions expert and a sperm bank nurse. Intrigued? Stay tuned! After that, I’ll be writing another comedy (of course. Comedy is what I do,) hopefully for Cerridwen. It’s called Love Potions #1 through #8. It’s about all the disastrous attempts before the famous, Love potion #9.
6) Where and when do you do your best writing?
I have a morning schedule. My dh and I rise early, have coffee, and watch the news. When he leaves for work, so do I. I commute all the way up a flight of stairs and get working around 6 am. By noon, I’m ready to do errands, laundry or whatever else needs to be done.
7) What’s your writing space look like?
One of the perks of ‘empty nest syndrome’ is gaining another room in your home! My daughter’s bedroom is now my office, but we keep a daybed in there if she ever wants to spend the night. I have my bookcases, a small bistro table, and plenty of hidden storage. I love the way it’s set up. I learned a bit about Feng Shui, and it feels warm, comfy and inviting. There’s even a tree in the corner! The only clutter is on my golden oak desk—and it’s a sign of needing to take a deep breath and simplify.
8) What’s your idea of a dream vacation?
What a great question! My husband had never taken a vacation before he met me. No kidding! Can you say workaholic? I got him into the habit of a regular yearly getaway, though. Now we love to visit new and interesting places different from what we’re used to. New Orleans, Las Vegas, and Maui come to mind as some of our favorite vacations. The ‘dream’ vacation for me would be New Zealand, Australia, New Caledonia and Figi. Of course, it would have to last a month or so to make it worth the jet lag! I’d dearly love to visit my Aussie author friends, Rebecca Williams and Maggie Nash.
9) Where can readers and fans find out more about you and your books?
I’m all over the web. LOL. Check out my website blog, MySpace, the League of Amazing Writers (a yahoo group I share with several awesome authors) Ellora’s cave chat loop, Cerridwen Press chat loop, and you’ll find me. Track me down! I love to hear from readers!
This was a fun read and a keeper. I am a big fan of regular people being put into extraordinary circumstances, and I am sure I laughed out loud more than a few times. The madcap style reminded of why I enjoy similar novels by Jennifer Crusie and Janet Evanovich. I look forward to more great reads from Ashlyn Chase.
Reviewer, Gwen Hayes,
Created for Romance Divas :: www.romancedivas.com
Heaving Bosoms is a fast paced jaunt into the life of a woman just trying to make a new life for herself. She is the perfect representation of a woman who has been placed under the thumb of a controlling man and is trying to reassert herself. Heaving Bosoms is a fantastic read that won't disappoint even the harshest of critics.
Reviewed by Debbie H., 4.5 out of 5 Quills, Gotta Write Network
Heaving Bosoms by Ashlyn Chase is a funny romantic tale…I enjoyed it immensely. It is a book meant to be read and shared, especially by those who enjoy witty dialogue and fast-paced plots. Reviewed by: Marlene, 4 Angels, Fallen Angel Reviews
Heaving Bosoms by Ashlyn Chase
Genre: Romance - Suspense/Romance - Comedy
$5.95 from Cerridwen Press
Purchase "Heaving Bosoms" by Ashlyn Chase HERE!!