Join RNIC in welcoming author Holley Trent to the site! Today, Holley is introducing us to her novel, Teaching the Cowboy and doing a giveaway. If that’s not enough, she’s generously shared two free reads with us! Be sure to stop by the Free Reads page to sample her writing. But first, let’s get to know her.
Tell us about yourself.
I’m a Carolina girl gone west. I grew up in rural eastern North Carolina and lived in the state until 2011. Now I live in Colorado with my husband, two kids, and two cats. I earned a degree in English from the University of North Carolina. Though I studied classic literature in college, I prefer books to be like my chocolate: light and a little nutty. I write romances filed with irreverent humor and cast characters that look and act like the people I know in real life.
What is the most romantic gesture you’ve ever received?
When I was in high school, my boyfriend rode his bike all the way from town to my house. That was eighteen miles.
What type of music do you listen to?
I listen to a huge variety of things—I’ve got music ranging from Meatloaf (the singer) to Bruno Mars with some country thrown in for good measure.
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would that be?
I’ve always had a whim to live in Ireland. Don’t know why, given my fondness of the sun and blazing hot summers.
What is your favorite body part on a man?
Calves, assuming they’re not scrawny.
Finish this sentence: I’m addicted to…
Teriyaki Jack Links.
Why should readers consider buying your books?
There aren’t many writers mixing dark humor with romance, and I think quite a few of my books are sort of gateways to romance for readers who wouldn’t take a chance on the genre otherwise.
Is there such a thing as too much sex in a romance novel? Explain.
I think so. I don’t believe there’s a rule for number of sex scenes in a given word count, but some authors are better at transitioning into and out of sex than others. In their books, you look forward to each snippet of sensuality. You lose count of how many intimate scenes there are because they’re just so well crafted. Then there are books where the sex just seems dropped in and extraneous—as if the author was trying to fill some sort of quota. I get weary of the sex in those much more quickly.
Would any of your books make a good movie? Which actors/actresses do you see in the lead roles?
I do think Teaching the Cowboy would make a great movie. It’s got an epic cast and is structured sort of like a sitcom—it’s got a few interwoven plots and characters that breeze in and out of the story.
On your road to mega stardom, what types of interesting or odd jobs have you held?
I’ve been a concessionaire for a baseball team, a phone survey solicitor, scooped ice cream at Ben & Jerry’s, and was a team member at Old Navy for a while.
What can readers expect from you next?
My next contemporary romance will be out on March 3. Colleen’s Choice is the second book of the Emerald Springs Legacy continuity and features a very take-charge heroine who’s got some flaws most women can relate to. Then in May, I’ll have a new Den of Sin novella and also the next installment of the Sons of Gulielmus paranormal romance series: A Demon in Love.
A year in godforsaken Storafalt, Wyoming? No big deal…or so traveling tutor Veronica Silver tells herself. She needs hands-on experience with a special group of students to qualify for a grant, and her assigned passel of ranch kids are special cases, all right. Ronnie loves a challenge, but pitted against a small town’s far-too-active grapevine and a woeful lack of amenities, she worries she won’t be able to hack it.
With the education system in Storafalt sorely lacking, rancher John Lundstrom thought hiring a private tutor would ease some of his considerable stress. What he didn’t expect was a powerful mutual attraction with Ronnie or her steadfast refusal to let him properly court her. She’s on a one-year assignment and wants no entanglements when it’s time to go home to North Carolina.
An unplanned pregnancy and Ronnie’s ensuing deception spins the Lundstrom ranch into a major upheaval. John refuses to let Ronnie run away with his daughter, but he may be forced to compromise when her homesickness threatens to drive a wedge between the two lonely hearts once and for all.
“Johan Lundstrom,” he repeated. He chuckled and smiled broader when Ronnie raised a brow. “Junior. Most people call me John. I own the neighboring ranch.”
“Oh. Mr. Lundstrom, it is,” she wheezed.
They shook hands some more until Phil cleared his throat. “Yes, I’m Phil Oxendine, not that anyone asked or gives a damn. I did exactly fifty-five point five percent of the driving on this little Western adventure.” He made a little whoopdie-do gesture with his right hand.
“That much?” the young man with the glasses asked as a grin spread across his face. Apparently, he found Phil amusing. Ronnie worried about the kid.
She looked from Mr. Lundstrom to the young man beside him and back to Mr. Lundstrom again. Obviously his. He didn’t really look old enough to have an adult child, but everything from the angles of their jaws to the shapes of their dark blond eyebrows were the same. The young man was slightly smaller in frame but was probably still growing.
Some time while ogling him, she’d stopped shaking Mr. Lundstrom’s hand. He hadn’t let go of hers, though.
“Oh, my math’s not that great,” Phil said with a laugh. “Don’t need it in my profession. Ronnie has some weird genetic quirk that makes her squitchy if everything isn’t equal. She’d make a perfect socialist.”
“How’d you end up with that extra five point five percent?” the young man asked.
“Ronnie’s a shitty driver when under duress.”
She closed her eyes and dropped the rancher’s hand. “God.”
“All right, let’s not crowd the poor woman.” Becka to the rescue.
Ronnie sighed her relief.
“If she’s anything like me, after three days in a car with a man, she’s probably ready to self-destruct.” Becka turned around and pointed to two of her children. “Tina, Allen, ride around with ’em and show them where the staff housing is.”
Two teenagers tossed themselves into the backseat without another word. Becka put her head inside the back and warned, “Make sure you help unload the car, you hear me?”
“Yes, ma’am,” the kids said in unison before erupting into snickers.
Becka sighed and put her head in again. “I’m not playing with you two. You come right back so you can finish your work.” She pulled her head out and faced Ronnie. “You don’t have to worry about cooking for yourself tonight. It’ll probably be a while before you get settled in enough to hit the grocery store. Dinner’s at five, and if you forget I’ll send one of the kids to fetch you. Don’t worry about memorizing all these names just yet. You know, Wyoming has the smallest population of any state, and sometimes I feel like most of it is concentrated right here in Storafalt County. Don’t fret. You got a couple of days to settle in.”
She turned to John. “You come on over, too. Give Anna the night off.”
He crossed his arms over his chest and smirked. “You expecting me to say no?”
“I know how you are. Saying yes, then sending Landon over with your flimsy excuses later.”
He cut his gaze back to Ronnie. “Maybe I’ll be hungry tonight.”
Ronnie swallowed. Oh, Jesus.
Here’s the info on the giveaway!
Prize: An e-book copy of Teaching the Cowboy and $10 e-gift certificate to Amazon, Barnes and Noble, OR All Romance eBooks.
Eligibility: You must be a subscriber to the RNIC newsletter.
How to enter: Leave a comment answering the question-What was the last book you read with a cowboy hero?
Deadline to enter: March 9, 2014 at 11:59 pm EST. The winner will be announced, Monday, March 10, 2014.
Note: By participating in this contest, the winner has given permission to RNIC to share his/her name and email address with the person conducting the contest so they can forward the prize(s). Prizes opened to U.S. entrants only.
Where you can find Holley online:
Laurel Cremant is an opinionated author and reader of romance with a wicked sense of humor. RNIC was smart (or crazy) to bring her on as a blogger. In 2016 she took over the management of this site and relishes her new title of “Overlord of Awesome”