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My Harlequin Italian publisher HARMONY is turning 30!

I was very excited when my Italian editor, Alessandra Bazardi, asked me to record a special Happy 30th Birthday to Harmony to my Italian readers.

All of my Spice books have been translated into Italian, so this was really cool.

Here is my video! I hope you enjoy it.

Happy 30th Birthday to Harmony Italy (Harlequin) from Jina

Best,
Jina

(PS — the Italian titles follow the names of my novels:)

The Blonde Samurai “She embraced the way of the warrior. Two swords. Two loves.” Bionda Samurai

Jina Bacarr is also the author of The Blonde Geisha Passioni di una Geisha

Cleopatra’s Perfume Il Profumo del peccato

Naughty Paris Trasgressione Scarlatta

Spies, Lies & Naked Thighs Bionda Vendetta

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ROSSOFUOCO“Fire Red” with ROSE M.J., BACARR JINA, ANDERSEN SUSAN — 3 books in 1 from Harlequin Italy, http://www.eharmony.it/, including my book, Naughty Paris.

My Harlequin Spice time travel about 1889 Paris, “Naughty Paris,” is being re-released in Italy as part of a not-to-be-missed 3-book Special Edition along with novels by M.J. Rose and Susan Andersen.

After being jilted by her fiancé, Autumn Maguire uses her nonrefundable honeymoon tickets to exploreParison her own. Eager to experience the true bohemian lifestyle, she answers an ad for an artist’s model. When she exchanges her clothes for the artist’s lush red cloak, something strange happens…a feeling of intense sensual reawakening overcomes her. Suddenly lightning strikes and through the power of black magic she’s thrust back into…

…the nineteenth century where the scandalous painter Paul Borquet is insisting she become his Titian-haired muse. Between everyone’s strange clothing, the claustrophobic Parisian streets and the overpowering pull of sexual desire, Autumn can’t process…just where the heck is she and how did she get here? And frankly, with Paul’s expert caresses imprinted on her body, does she really care about going back to present day?

Click here to read an excerpt of “Naughty Paris.” (also available as an eBook)

I hope you enjoy my video!

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by Evelyn Q. Darling
Romance Reporter At Large

How well do you know your hero? Is he tall, dark and handsome? Okay, so you don’t want a cookie-cutter hero, but have you really thought about what questions to ask him?

(When you can take your eyes away from his sexy grin among other parts of his anatomy.)

This reporter recently interviewed heroines for a romance gig and got some very interesting answers.

Now, it’s your hero’s turn. Ready, ladies? Start your engines…

Here are my 5 Job Tips for a great romance novel hero interview:

1. Don’t ask him to take off his shirt. Tempting, yes, as you check out his muscular arms, but this is a sexist attitude that will get you nowhere. (But oh the fun you’ll have trying!)

2. Schedule the interview in a locale where you’ll both feel comfortable. Not in a sports bar where he can eyeball the basketball scores and the waitresses with the deep cleavage. Forget tea shops that serve lemon dainties, unless you’re writing a regency and you want to see if he exudes the proper Mr. Darcy-isms.

3. Ask him to show you his…wheels. Yes, I said, wheels. Is he a Harley guy? Jaguar? Or does he drive an old pickup? Does he keep half his “stuff” in his car? Or is he a neatnik? You can tell a lot about a man by his…wheels.

4. What’s his day job? Or if he’s into night work (and what hard-working vampire isn’t?), you’ll want to make sure he’s a good match for your heroine. If she’s a lawyer, a police detective can make her life hectic; if she runs a cake and bake shop, how about interviewing a land developer who wants to tear down her vintage cottage shop? And let’s not forget the city gal who’s just aching to meet up with a real cowboy. Just make sure he can ride…a horse.

5. And finally, don’t ask him if he’s a good kisser. Tell him to show you.

Evelyn is the alter-ego of Jina Bacarr, The Blonde Samurai: “She embraced the way of the warrior. Two swords. Two loves.”

Jina is also the author of The Blonde Geisha ,Cleopatra’s Perfume, Naughty Paris, Tokyo Rendezvous, a Spice Brief, and Spies, Lies & Naked Thighs

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by Evelyn Q. Darling
Romance Reporter At Large

Is your romance novel heroine qualified for the job?

Did you interview her before you started writing? I don’t mean where she went to school, what her favorite color is, etc. but whether or not she’s qualified for the job as a romance novel heroine.

For example, does she have the skills needed to perform her job: Can she shoot a Glock if you’re writing an FBI agent? Lace up a corset if she’s interviewing for the job as a Victorian lady’s maid? 

Or she may be overqualified for the job. For example, she can type faster than you or she has aspirations to leave the romance novel field and get a literary gig.

How long has she been out of work?

Romance novel jobs are hard to get and if it’s been decades since she slipped between the pages of a novel, you might want to reconsider. On the other hand, experience between the sheets is important for every romance heroine.

A typical interview could go like this:

Miss Jones, I’m writing a novel that takes place during the Regency Period. Are you a fan of Jane Austen?

Miss Jones: Jane who? I’m so into Lady Gaga. Love her sunglasses.

Next…

Miss Smith, my next novel is about an FBI agent who’s very physically active to catch the bad guys. Can you drop and do twenty?

Miss Smith: the only thing I dropped was twenty pounds to get this interview.

Let’s try again.

Miss von Rittenhaus, I need a romance novel heroine who sleeps all day and bites all night. Can you list your qualifications to be the vamp queen in my new urban fantasy novel?

Miss von Rittenhaus: Honey, I can snooze and cruise with the best of them. I’ve hit every vamp bar from here to Tampa and let me tell you, no one gets her fangs on better than Lulu.

When can you start?

Miss von Rittenhaus: Tonight. As soon as the sun goes down. (Pause). You haven’t mentioned a benefits package.

What do you mean?

Miss von Rittenhaus: Do I get overtime pay for all this night work? And how about a 401K? I’m not getting any younger and in this economy a girl, I mean vamp, has to look out for herself. What about my e-rights? And health benefits? What if I chip a fang and I have to see a dentist between chapters?

Jeez…Romance heroines…you can’t write with them and you can’t write without them.

This is Evelyn Q. Darling. Till next time when we’ll interview the romance novel hero and see if he’s up for the job.

 Evelyn is the alter-ego of Jina Bacarr, The Blonde Samurai: “She embraced the way of the warrior. Two swords. Two loves.”

Jina is also the author of The Blonde Geisha ,Cleopatra’s Perfume, Naughty Paris, Tokyo Rendezvous, a Spice Brief, and Spies, Lies & Naked Thighs

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by Evelyn Q. Darling
Romance Reporter At Large

This reporter was dashing here and there yesterday from one errand to another when disaster struck at my local market. You can’t lug around a big ole purse and not expect the inevitable not to happen.

The strap broke.

Out went my entire life, spread across the dirty linoleum like a social networking nightmare. Notes, lipsticks, coins, cell phone…everything fell out. Junk I haven’t seen for months (years?) went flying from one end of the floor to the other. You’d think someone had just broken a piñata the way the clerks came running to my assistance.

Which made me wonder: what does a contemporary romance heroine carry in her purse?

Or to take it a one step further: what three things can’t she live without?

This reporter says a cell phone, credit card and lipstick.

And if you’re writing erotic, condoms.

But remember, we said only three items. Makes it more difficult. Here’s the deal: You can’t eliminate the condoms–safe sex rocks!–so if you were writing a contemporary erotic romance, what item would you eliminate–the cell phone, the credit card or the lipstick?

And why?

Think about it. Then read my answer below.

================

This reporter would keep the cell phone and credit card and eliminate the lipstick, then I would use the credit card to buy a new, red-hot lipstick!

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By Evelyn Q. Darling
Romance Reporter At Large

February is National Snack Food Month. From greasy potato chips to chocolaty M&M’s, we all love snacks, which makes this reporter wonder: What does a romance heroine snack on between the sheets?

(I know what you’re thinking, but this reporter is not going there.)

You can’t ignore it. Snackin’ is a way of life in the 21st century with snack sales going over the $60 billion mark annually. Yes, that was B as in billion. (Who eats all those Doritos anyway?)

So this reporter was wondering (while she was snacking on peanut butter cookies), what heroines in various romance genres might be inclined to snack on. Think about it: what you give your heroine to snack on today would be different than in the Victorian era.

Crumpets (soft and spongy) dripping with honey were all the rage back in the late 19th century, served with afternoon tea and milk, while a hip modern heroine might snack on a vanilla yogurt parfait topped with granola. (Victorian heroines didn’t worry about calorie overload. They could always cinch in their corset an extra inch or two. A modern heroine doesn’t have that luxury.)

Or if your heroine is a vampire, blood oranges.

How ‘bout a zombie heroine? Zilch, nada. (What do zombies eat anyway?)

If you’re writing a romantic comedy, why not have your heroine throw caution to the wind and indulge in tortilla chips with spicy salsa or gourmet popcorn with real butter.

If your heroine’s a gun-packin’ mama, how ‘bout Snickers and black licorice sticks for fast, on-the-go snacks that she can sink her teeth into while she chasing after the bad guys.

Steampunk? You must have black tea for that British feel, then add red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting for a touch of fantasy.

And finally, erotic. (You thought I forgot?) Bananas, baby. Big, long, juicy bananas.

Need I say more?

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Welcome to A Naughty Christmas Carol, a holiday story video told with pictures and words.

The idea for the story came from the heroine in my Harlequin Spice novel, The Blonde Samurai, nominated for a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award. The Blonde Samurai is the story of Katie O’Roarke, an Irish American heiress who goes to Victorian London to wed a British lord.

It’s 1873 and Katie O’Roarke is headed to Japan as a virgin bride after marrying Lord Carlton. There she falls in love with a handsome samurai, but not before she spent a Season in London, far from the woods of her Pennsylvania home. As Lady Carlton, she was privy to the comings and goings of the British aristocracy and their fascinating and often incorrigible mores.

Here is one such story she heard whispered in Mayfair drawing rooms, a holiday tale called A Naughty Christmas Carol.    

In Episode 1, we meet Sir Harry,” though that is not his real name, as a young man. It’s Christmas Eve and he’s being very disagreeable with Lady Florentine, the gentlewoman who loves him, and his mistress, Nellie Rose, a fine lass whose mum is sick, as he makes his way to Madame Moiret’s bawdy establishment on York Street…

Join me next week for EPISODE 2 of: 

“A NAUGHTY CHRISTMAS CAROL”

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