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Booktoberfest Highlight

Outback Dreams
by Rachael Johns

Faith and Monty are both looking for love...but they’re looking in the wrong direction. Faith Forrester is at a crossroads read more...

Order Outback Dreams or any of the books in the Harlequin Booktoberfest Showcase below to go into the draw to win one of six Rural Romance Prize Packs valued at $120!

Prize Pack Includes: Outback Dreams by Rachael Johns, Driftwood by Mandy Magro, Nobody But Him by Victoria Purman and Right as Rain by Tricia Stringer (Published 1st of December).
Buy any book in this showcase to go in the draw to win the prize pack above

Harlequin - Booktoberfest Showcase

Harlequin Books: Blog

Books are my Besties

By Victoria Purman, author of Nobody But Him

When I was a young girl, my best friend was Nancy Drew .

I read every book from the local library – in order – and loved her smarts, her confidence and her bravado. It was so cool that she was a redhead (like me) and that she had two of the most loyal best friends in the whole world. And then there was Ned, the guy she left mysteriously hanging during all her adventures. Nancy was way too busy and important to need a relationship with Ned and, when I was ten, this made perfect sense. Boys, who cares, right?

My next imaginary best friend was Scout from To Kill a Mockingbird. But to tell the truth, I didn’t want to be her best friend. I wanted her Dad Atticus Finch to be MY Dad. So brave. So honourable. So heroic.

My next best friend was Gone With The Wind’s Scarlett O’Hara. Although I thought she was kind of a you-know-what-that-starts-with-a-B and I really wanted her third husband, Rhett Butler. “You should be kissed – and often – by someone who knows how.” Oh my.

Sense a theme right there? You could say that I fell in love with romance when I was a teenager. And I’ve never fallen out of it.

Sure, I flirted with others, I’ll admit. The serious ones who broke my heart. The detectives who worked too hard and drank too much but managed to solve crimes by the final chapter. The rambling, obtuse ones who I just wanted to slap. The others who wanted to Teach Me Something. And some I was forced to hang out with to get my degree.

These days, I have a whole host of new best friends – although most have never met me – and if they did would probably run away in sheer horror at the thought.

Nora Roberts. Sarah Mayberry. Rachael Johns (although I have met her and she didn’t run away!) Kristan Higgins. Jill Shalvis. Jennifer Cruisie. Pamela Clare. Maggie Alderson. Helene Young (she didn’t run away either!) and Bronwyn Parry.

So many besties! And the sheer joy of reading is that there are not only authors whose books you’ll fall in love with but there’s a strong chance you’ll fall in love with their characters, too.

Now, I’m lucky enough to write books of my own. And the best thing about that is that I get to create strong, confident and brave characters – just like Nancy Drew – who have the best friends in the whole world and who always get the guy. There isn’t a better job in the world, in my book.

Click here to order Nobody But Him from Booktopia, Australia’s Local Bookstore

Five Writers I Want To Be When I Grow Up

By Rachael Johns

As a romance writer and an English teacher, books are my LIFE. So I have many favourites and many writers I admire. Aside from writing, reading is pretty much the thing I like to do more than anything in the world for so many reasons. Reading is relaxing and therapeutic; it takes me away from the real world and lets me indulge in fantasies (yes, sexy farmers for example), and having books around means I'm NEVER bored. My only disappointment when it comes to books and reading is that I'll never have enough time to read all the books I want to. Yes, this is a very sad fact.

I have a number of must buy authors – some I've even been lucky enough to meet – and I’d like to share with you my Top Five Writers I want to be when I grow up.

1. Marian Keyes – she’s funny in person and on paper. I love her quirky characters and her delicious humour. (fave book – Last Chance Saloon)

2. Helen Fielding – she created one of my all time favourite books Bridget Jones’ Diary, a book that has been read and loved by women all around the world.

3. J K Rowling – I’m a HUGE Harry Potter fan. I read them all when they came out and continue to re-live their fabulousness now as I read them with my boys. Her imagination is awesome and I just wish Hogwarts was real!

4. Kristan Higgins – her books are pure delight to read. Gorgeous heroes and heroines you just want to wrap your arms around and console for their embarrassing moments. And she’s also funny and witty in person. I met her earlier this year at the Romance Readers Convention and wanted to kidnap her. (fave book – Too Good To Be True)

5. Sophie Kinsella, Lisa Jewell, Cathy Kelly, Liane Moriarty, Nora Roberts, Dorothy Koomson and Linda Howard – okay, I cheated and listed more than five but these authors all inspire me to write better every time I read one of their books!

Click here to order Outback Dreams from Booktopia, Australia’s Local Bookstore