Mae is also my favourite writer in the universe when it comes to sexy reads. I’m not much of an erotic fiction fan, I must confess. I’ve read a couple that friends of mine wrote, and they were both lovely books but I just don’t feel enough of a connection with the genre to hunt out many more erotic fiction books. And this is why I love Mae’s writing so much – she skirts that romance/erotica fine line, landing on the romance side by a whisker so I’m never out of my comfort zone with her stories, but boy oh boy are they sexy and they’re GREAT fun to read! Mae’s writing is always warm, always emotional and always clever and full of sass. She’s the thinking woman’s go-to for sexy reading!
Like many of my colleagues, I have a reading list a mile long so I often read one book by an author and move on to give my attention to the next one. But in less than two years, I’ve read three Mae Wood books. When she releases one, I drop whatever I’m reading to read it the second it lands in my Kindle. And I’m not the only one. Mae is self-published and she has a large reader fan group with such a fierce loyalty to her, I haven’t seen anything like it before. How she’s managed to achieve that while raising a toddler, having a baby and working a demanding day job, I just can’t grasp. I’m in awe!
Mae’s three book series, Pig & Barley, set in Memphis, is up for grabs on my Facebook page this week. She has signed and sent me all three books so don’t miss out on your chance to win! In the meantime, I hope you enjoy the feature on the most recent book in the series (and my favourite of the three), PLUS ONE and I hope you like learning more about the very beautiful inside and out, Mae Wood.
If you can stand the heat, there's a lickable single dad in the kitchen.
1 part tatted-up single dad restauranteur
1 part effervescent younger wine rep
Spice generously with sexual tension
Combine at a foodie conference
Serve steaming hot
At not-quite forty and with his son in his last year of high school, Bert's going to be dining alone.
His restaurant's wine rep has a few ideas on how he might sate all of his appetites.
He hasn't been buying what she's been selling, but she’s only in Memphis for a few months before moving back home to California…and he is only mortal.
Besides, it's not like he's going to fall in love for the first time in his life or anything crazy like that, right?
Plus One is a steamy standalone novel.
Aussies, you can download it here: https://www.amazon.com.au/d/Plus-One-Pig-Barley-Book-ebook/B01N5R2Z3N/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1490719558&sr=8-1&keywords=plus+one+mae
Sexy, sassy, warm, smart - the qualities I've come to expect from Mae Wood's writing. Plus One is hands down the best book in the Pig and Barley series so far. Bert and Drennan are an instantly likeable pair who had me invested in them from the opening pages. Their story is sweet and romantic and hot and steamy. It's a light easy read as are the other books in this series, Wood's style is the perfect antidote for busy stressful lives. The sex scenes dotted throughout the book are perfect. They're real and gritty and oh so sexy, but it's the sentimental love language between Bert and Drennan that's the real drawcard here - the tattoo time and date meanings, the 'overendo', when the son is home for breakfast, the bit with Mississippi – all clutch at the heart. A gorgeous, gorgeous novel.
A while ago I decided that I needed to give up the fear that I couldn't write "great literature" and write what I want. And I want romance. I want heroines who are brave. Brave enough to be themselves and brave enough to fall in love. I want men who are strong and kind.
When do I write? I do have a full time job. I write while my child plays in the tub or watches "Peppa Pig" or some other cartoon before bedtime. It's my hour.
I also like gardening (with dubious success) and more than the occasional glass of wine.
So, what do you want to know about me? Drop me an email, ask questions, and I'll respond.
Check out my blend of chick-lit and contemporary romance at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PP6ZTA0
An interview with Mae Wood:
Can you tell us briefly about your book?
Bert Forsythe’s almost forty, a single dad, and his son is about to leave for university. He’s not looking for a serious girlfriend or to get married again. But when he gives in to dating the wine rep who calls on his restaurant, he finds himself in love for the first time.
What do you love the most about the main character in your book?
By nature, Bert is devoted to those he loves. He married his college girlfriend and committed to being a dad at age 22, sacrificing his own dreams to do what he knew to be right. When they divorced, he and Amy worked hard on co-parenting. His son is the center of his world and he doesn’t regret that.
Is it part of a series or is it a stand-alone novel?
Plus One is a stand-alone novel. It’s about Bert Forsythe, a single dad who owns Pig & Barley, a restaurant in Memphis, Tennessee, with his childhood best friend Trip Brannon. Trip’s story is in Risking Ruin and Borrowing Trouble. I wrote Plus One so that readers can jump into Bert’s story without having to know Trip’s and vice versa.
Where is the novel set and why did you choose to set it there?
I was tired of reading women’s fiction set in New York, Chicago, London, or California. There’s a big world out there! So I thought about smaller cities I know and love and Memphis tops the list. It has a rich cultural history with music and food, and, mainly thanks to Elvis, isn’t unknown. I felt like Memphis was calling for a love story. Other contenders were New Orleans, Nashville, and Atlanta, but I’m glad I picked Memphis. It’s always been a place I consider to be home.
Tell us about your favorite scene in your book.
We Americans celebrate Thanksgiving, which is a random Thursday in November when we spend the day with family and friends and eat ourselves silly. Bert gets strong armed by his three sisters to bring his new girlfriend Drennan over to join the family. His sisters show him no mercy over him having a proper girlfriend and it’s when Bert really begins to open up his heart to Drennan.
What song would you pick to go with your book?
I have a playlist for Plus One! Check it out on Spotify!
If you could be one of your characters, which one would you choose?
I’d be Marisa’s best friend, Erica., who is in Risking Ruin and Borrowing Trouble. She’s an artist and a mom and a wife and she takes life on with gusto. While Marisa can be wary about personal decisions, her life long friend is her counterbalance and encourages her to jump in with both feet.
Is there anything in your book based on real life experiences or are they purely all from your imagination?
Bert popped into my head when two of my husband’s friends married for the second time to younger women. I wanted to write the love story that happens the second go round for him and the first go round for her, when she finds herself not just marrying a man but a family.
What is the best piece of writing advice you have received?
There are no bad first drafts. There are no good first drafts. The magic is in the work. And, trust me, it is work.
How do you make the time to write?
I have two small children and practice law on a weird schedule. I cut out TV (I make exceptions for good things like ‘Victoria’ and ‘The Americans’) and when I have days off from lawyering, I still treat those days as work days. That means I will write from 9-5.
What is it about the genre you write that appeals to you so much?
I’ll use someone else’s words to answer this one:
“I concede that a bad romantic novel is embarrassing and indefensible. So is a bad so-called realistic novel. (And it is usually pretentious into the bargain which is insufferable.) But a good romantic novel is a heart-warming thing which strikes a responsive chord in those who are happy and offers a certain lifting of the spirits to those who are not.”
― Mary Burchell (1904-1986, who helped 29 Jews to escape from the Nazis, funded mainly by her writing.)
What made you want to become an author?
I’ve been a writer since I was small. My parents even put me on a plane to an intensive creative writing summer camp in my teens. I don’t think anything made me want to become an author. I became an author when I put on my big girl panties and decided to publish one of my stories.
How do you usually communicate with your readers/fans?
Facebook! My readers have become dear friends and we have a Facebook group where we hang out. Come join us! https://www.facebook.com/groups/pigandbarley/
What is your favourite motivational phrase or quote?
When I was a baby lawyer, an older partner shared a Mark Twain line with me — “Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.” I’ve applied it to lawyering and writing and everything in life. Dread is a joy killer and I want to be able to focus on the joy.
What’s one quirky thing about you that you can share with our book club readers that you have never made public before?
I like to mix M&Ms in with a bowl of warm buttered and salted popcorn. The M&Ms get a little melty inside their crisp shells.
What did you want to be when you were a kid?
Airplane pilot. I wanted to see the world. I’m a lawyer, not a pilot, but I travelled a ton in my 20s and am thankful I’ve been able to see a bit of the world and I’m looking forward to my kids becoming a bit older so we can go exploring as a family.
What would you do with five million dollars if you won it?
Easy. I’m a planner. I’d put away the amount for taxes, pay off my house note, and buy that treadmill I’ve been wanting. No fun, you say? Sorry. I guess you won’t get invited to my massive 40th birthday party in the Seychelles because I’m flying my favorite people in for that shindig.