by Linda K. Hopkins
Genre: Clean Paranormal Romance
Handsome, alluring, and a little dangerous, Melissa Hewitt's boss can barely manage to acknowledge her. But there is something about Leander Garrett that makes him impossible to ignore. He is not the only thing plaguing Melissa’s thoughts, however; a huge panther, as black as night, pursues her relentlessly through her dreams.
As winter turns into spring, Leander’s chilly demeanor begins to thaw, but danger prowls through the mountains, and Lee has a secret that lurks beneath his elegant clothes and rippling physique. Something that compels him to reject what he desires the most.
Can he learn to see the good in himself and finally allow his heart to love, and be loved in return?
˃˃˃ An engrossing and captivating tale of romance, Moondance will keep you enthralled to the very last page.
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A crashing sound came from the trees, and then, suddenly, a flash of black rushed through the air, slamming into the cougar and sending it flying. She stumbled back as a huge black cat, bigger by far than the cougar, fought her attacker. Her mouth went dry as she realized it was a panther – just like the one from her dreams. Tan and black blurred together as snarls and growls ripped through the air. Blood spurted over the dirt; the cougar yelped but met the panther with bared teeth. The black cat didn’t even pause as it lunged for the cougar’s throat, ripping open the side of its neck. The cougar stumbled to the ground, then rose and fled.
The panther watched as the cougar disappeared between the trees, then slowly turned its bright green gaze on Melissa. She stared back, frozen with fear, as the creature looked at her. It glanced at her arm, bloody and dirty, and she stepped backward, holding the injured limb to her chest as she gripped the stick. The cat followed her movement, then with a flick of its tail turned and vanished through the trees.
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I have lived on three different continents – Africa, Europe (or that little island to the west, known as England, to be more specific) and North America.
What are some of your pet peeves?
Living in Canada means that we have snow on the ground for a good portion of the year. One of my pet peeves is the way people park when snow covers the lines in the parking lot. Yep, I know – very silly, but so many more cars could fit in there if people just parked properly! My kids (two teenagers) think it’s hilarious – they cannot help making jokes as soon as I drive into those shudder-inducing lots!
Where were you born/grew up at?
I was born in Durban, South Africa, but grew up in the gold city of Johannesburg. I now live in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains in Calgary, Canada.
If you knew you'd die tomorrow, how would you spend your last day?
I would spend my last day with those I love most, creating the most spectacular memories.
Who is your hero and why?
JK Rowling. I love how she wrote her first Harry Potter book when she had nothing to her name and was living in her car. And then when she did make it big, she gave away so much, she lost her billionaire status!
What kind of world ruler would you be?
Much better than the leaders of today! (Okay, that’s rather arrogant! But I would put the well-being of others ahead of my own need/desire for power.)
What do you do to unwind and relax?
I love to read, so whenever I have a spare moment, chances are my nose is buried in a book.
How to find time to write as a parent?
My children are teens, which definitely makes things a lot easier! I write from the time they go to school until they arrive home in the afternoon. My kids love that I am an author, and are always giving me ideas for my books – some of them are quite good, too!
Describe yourself in 5 words or less!
Author, publisher, marketer, mother, woman!
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’ve always been a writer. As a kid, I’d write plays and get the neighborhood kids to act them out with me. I also wrote poems and stories, which I’d share with my family. Later, I wrote for church and school newsletters, and in the years spent in business (prior to making writing a full time career), there has been some element of writing. In 2014 I published my first book, taking the step from writer to author.
What other books have you published?
The Dragon Archives series, set in the middle ages, is about dragon shapeshifters. The last book in the series will be released in June 2018. In December I released The Dragon Archives Coloring Book.
Which of your novels can you imagine made into a movie?
Actually, all of them!
When characters become more than imaginary
Hang out with authors enough, and you will begin to notice something interesting – they will often talk about their characters as though they are real people, not just fictional characters in a story they have dreamed up! Are authors crazy? My teenage daughter would answer with a resounding ‘yes,’ and maybe we are, just a little! Of course, writing a story means you spend many hours with your characters, exploring who they are, what makes them tick, their strengths and their weaknesses. They become part of your life, at least for the time you are immersed in their stories. But when characters start talking to their creators, things really become interesting! There are many authors who will tell you that the character demanded a different role to what the author had originally envisioned; in fact, some characters can become downright insistent! And it isn’t just the main characters! No, often it is the minor characters – those originally intended to have a supporting role – who can become the most obnoxious, insisting on playing a larger part. And I have learned over the years that it’s actually a good idea to listen to your characters, because chances are they are right, and the story is better for it when you listen to these voices in your head!
So who was it in Moondance that demanded more attention? That would be Caleb, Lee’s younger brother. He was not satisfied with just being on the sidelines, but insisted that he needed to be there for Lee when things went sideways. As it turned out, he was there not just for Lee, but for Melissa as well, and without Caleb, the story would just not be complete.
Why I Write Paranormal Romance
When I released my first book, Bound by a Dragon, back in 2014, it was with some nervousness that I presented it to my friends and family. And that nervousness was well-founded – as I had anticipated, the reactions I received ranged from surprised to horrified that I would write something so ‘trivial’ as a paranormal romance!
So why do I write what I write? From the time I was a young girl, books and stories have been my means of escaping the real world. Fairies and hobbits have led to me fantastic new worlds where anything is possible, and even the most insignificant person can become someone special. And the unique mix of ordinary and extraordinary that is found in paranormal fiction adds a dimension that makes the unreal seem even more possible. Of course, some of the first paranormal tales came from Marvel and DC Comics, and they taught us that the only limits to paranormal tales is the author’s own imagination. Throw some romance into the mix and you have the perfect elements to create an enticing, engaging and unforgettable tale of overcoming adversity, reaching potential and finding love.
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