3 More Things About Vows & A Vengeful Groom

4. The Setting, Bondi.

Although born and raised on the other side of the country, Ric Perrini has carved his niche in Australia’s largest city. His Sydney home is high on the clifftop above Bondi Beach, with a view of sunrise over the Pacific Ocean…although Ric is more likely to be throwing himself into the morning surf than kicking back to watch the dawn.

Swimming laps of the serene Miramare pool was a poor substitute for pounding through the Bondi surf. That was Ric’s exercise of preference. Pitting himself against the unpredictability of the ocean’s surge and pull every morning set him up for the volatility he faced at the rockface of business. He relished that challenge, in the water and in the workplace. Pity it had taken him this long, through too many dead-end disappointments, to realise he needed it in his woman as well.

Bondi is believed to be an aboriginal word meaning the sound of breaking waves. A fitting name, given the suburb is best known for its famous surf beach. Bondi is also popular for the coastal walk that winds above and below cliff tops from the south end of Bondi Beach past Tamarama and on to Bronte. This is where Kim goes to blow away the cobwebs and sort out her thoughts, except she becomes (slightly) distracted by a house she spies on the clifftop…

“When I left home, it was to do the Bronte walk. That’s all.”
“And this—” Ric gestured between them with his fingers “—was a spur of the moment impulse? Alternate exercise? What, exactly?”

Speaking of exercise, Bondi is also famous as the end point of the annual City-to-Surf run, for open water swims, The Festival of the Winds kite festival, and as a Christmas-New Year gathering point for overseas visitors (especially backpackers.)

5.  Sydney Festival.

Sydney is a popular venue in January – remember this is mid-summer down under. All the schools are out and Sydney becomes a magnet for holidaymakers. The celebrations begin on New Year’s Eve when stunning fireworks displays bring more than a million locals and tourists to harbourside vantage points to watch the show and see in the New Year. The Sydney Festival program fills three weeks right in the middle of the month with concerts and theatre and visual arts events. Representing Blackstone Diamonds, Ric and Kim attend a glittering reception for a visiting dance company…

“Do you want to go to this party?”
“Not particularly.”
His voice was as casual and deliberate as the drift of his fingertips to the sensitive skin beneath her earlobe. Kimberley shivered deep inside. “We could stay home.” She leaned back into the solid wall of black dinner suit. “I’ve never made love in a quarter million dollars worth of diamonds.”
“We will rectify that,” he promised, and his mouth replaced his hands, trailing a string of delicate kisses to her hairline. “After we’ve let the world know you’re going home with me.”

6. The Bling.

Private jets, flash cars, beachside real estate, designer gowns, jewellery: research for this book was a window-shopping adventure of the highest order. And ever so much fun. Perrini drives a blue Maserati:

The coupe was all sleek blue style and eye-catching looks on the outside, with an engine that purred deceptively until provoked.

Pretty much like Perrini, really. ♥♥♥

Although Kim has too many serious concerns to enjoy her shopping, she does need to reacquaint herself with the Blackstone Jewellery business. Manager of the flagship store, Jessica Cotter, inspires her choices for the upcoming festival reception when Kim visits the store.

Jessica returned a minute later with the necklace, which was made up of three broad strands of pavé-set diamonds finished with golden drops of South Sea pearls. “This—” she said, holding it up to Kimberley’s throat “—would look fabulous with your dramatic colouring. With your hair up, a plain strapless gown. White or silver, I think. See?”

And that combination of designer gown and diamonds inspired the cover art. 

There we have it. Six things you might enjoy while reading Vows & A Vengeful Groom. I hope you have as much fun with them as I did, and that you’ll join the discussion on…one of my favourite topics…shopping. Do you love to bag a bargain in real life? Or are you a fantasy shopper, who adores flipping through magazines and scouring websites for beautiful things that you would never dream of buying?

Don’t forget, every comment this week goes in the draw for a three-pack of Desires by down-under authors, and I will also include a little touch of bling in the form of phone/purse jewellery.

Vows Cover

Vows & A Vengeful Groom is now available in North American bookstores and on-line from Amazon and Barnes & Noble and as an e-Book from eHarlequin, Fictionwise or wherever you buy your eBooks.

It will be available in Australia and New Zealand in February 08.


32 Responses to “3 More Things About Vows & A Vengeful Groom”

  1. Patricia Cochran Says:

    I’m not very particular about my shopping. I mostly shop when I absolutely
    have to, such as now when I have lost 47 pounds and I’ve gotten smaller
    than any of the smallest sizes in my closet! Shopping for family and friends
    before Christmas would probably be the most enjoyable session of the
    year for me.

    Patricia Cochran

  2. Joanne Graves Says:

    I have to say I don’t like shopping at all. If I have to get a specific thing I’m okay but going out shopping makes me a little nuts. My mother and daughter love looking at stuff. But I love shopping for pressies at christmas. That is fun. And yes to the catalogues, I do that all the time. Flick through them and dream. Never thought of it as fantasy shopping but that’s exactly what it is – if I had the money I’d buy…..!!
    Bron, love the Bondi bits. My brother and sister have lived in the Eastern Suburbs on and off for years so I’ve spent some time along the Eastern beaches – Bronte (my brother was a surf life saver at Bronte for years ), Clovelly, and of course Bondi. Vaucluse is the suburb right along from Bondi, from memory, you go through if you’re driving down to the Gap and Watsons Bay. Just stunning views of the bridge and the opera house.
    Looking forward very much to the book with all those familiar settings.
    Great blog.

  3. Another wonderful book from Australia! I’ve always loved your books, perhaps because you are so far away from Finland and everything seems so exotic!
    About shopping, I think I like more to do fantasy shopping, all those wonderful catalogues! In real life the sizes and the colors are all wrong…

  4. I enjoy shopping for real bargains and deals. It makes the effort worthwhile and then I am pleased about the outing. I rarely fanstasy shop except when I do browse through items I would never realistically consider for myself as practical.

  5. I am more a fantasy shopper. Checking out all my wants in catalogues and online, but when I going shopping it’s with a list and it’s getting those things. In and out. Sometimes I’ll pick up a bargain if it’s an item that I need.
    Congrats on the weight lose Patricia.

  6. When I shop for a specific item that I want, it has to be something I must buy for an occasion. Otherwise I don’t normally bother shopping since it is sometimes a wasted venture. But If I am lucky enough to discover a real find during this process, great! I am rewarded.

  7. Patricia, congratulations on the weight loss. What an awesome achievement. You must have worked SO hard and I hope you do reward yourself with something new and gorgeous. If you’re still losing and afraid it won’t fit long, make it an accessory. Jewelry, a scarf, shoes, a purse. Or, better still, a book!

  8. Hi, Joanne! You. Don’t. Like. Shopping??? I am shocked. But since you love the magazines as I do, you have redeemed yrself. *g*

    Re the eastern suburbs: I also lived there when I worked in Sydney (a lonnnngggg time ago.) I had a place a couple of blocks from Bronte beach and loved it. My sister lived at Coogee for a while, too. And I love eating at Watson’s Bay. A lovely part of the world and hope you enjoy its appearance in VOWS.

  9. Hi Eva. Now, you see, we think Finland is exotic! And, I imagine, VERY cold at this time of year.

    Ruth, that’s what I do. The glossy magazines and the fantasy shopping is for my books, the characters who can afford. Me, I would never dream of owning such luxuries. Not practical in my life, at all!

    Pearl, you sound very practical with your shopping. To me it is an entertainment as well. I love to window shop and to walk through gorgeous stores, just looking.

  10. Hi Bronwyn, I’m shocked too that there’s actually someone doesn’t like shopping. I think shopping is the magic recipe for girls to feel better about life. When I was younger and I’d be sad for any reason I used to go books shopping. Now I became a normal girl _thank God_and I’d go clothes shopping (and books shopping);)

    I can’t remember that I’ve gone into a real bargain before. when buying anything to wear I usually need convincing and thinking though every now and then I might get caught by something right away.. at first sight and buy it. but I enjoy mostly going out shopping even if I wasn’t buying I’d like to know what’s going on out there:)

  11. I have mixed feelings about shopping. Generally, I can’t take it. Piles of clothes are like a form of torture. I have no patience, and never find anything good. It’s discouraging when a friend finds and claims a fabulous top in the rack I just browsed. However, I do enjoy fantasy shopping. Mostly online – in cyber world, I can afford all the shoes on Piperlime I want, as well as clothes from any and all up and coming designers. 😉

  12. JSL you’re so right! My friend can always pick what might look okay on me even when I’ve just looked at the very same thing. Sadly, she lives too far away to accompany me and I always end up with something not quite right or the wrong colour. And with the advent of middle-aged spread, something too damn tight!
    I had a lovely dinner at Watsons Bay at that restaurant on the sand a few years ago. Always remembered the view of the city, like it floated on the water. For once, I was the quietest in the party as I couldn’t take my eyes off the view.
    Great post, Bron. You’ve really whet my appetite for more…

  13. When I shop I use the time efficiently, but if I am fortunate enough to come across a real deal that is appealing whilst broswing then I am so pleased about the outing. I get more out of it in everyway since my objective is fulfilled and I have more than I bargained for.

  14. All the mention of beaches (Bondi, Bronte, Clovelly, Coogee) brings back many a memory for me. My girlfriends and I used to spend a lot of time at the beaches on the weekend when I was a teenager. Used to love watching those surfies. Dreamy sigh.

    As for shopping, I’d rather shop for books than anything else. Of course, if I had plenty of money I think I’d like shopping at some place that doesn’t have bargains. *g*

  15. Ah, Sydney. I adore Sydney. One of my best times there was staying with a friend in Rose Bay. And I love shopping in Sydney. Generally, I don’t love shopping at all, unless (as some of you have suggested) someone is with me who has an eye for what suits me best. I always pick lots of things off the racks but by the time I start to work through them in the changing rooms…ugh! 😉

    Maxine, I’m with you on the book shopping but find I do a lot of that online these days and that’s fun too, comparing prices and authors in the online venues (and so much cheaper than driving around the place…mind you, if I was a Hammond or a Blackstone then I could get someone to drive me and the price of petrol wouldn’t be an issue, would it?)

  16. I just saw that Bron’s book is #9 on the Waldies top 10 bestseller list for series romance this past week.

    You go, girl!

  17. I am so happy I ordered the book and had it waiting for when I was in the States for our vacation.

    What a great start to the series. Has me wanting more.

  18. Pearl, Joanne – !!!!! Shopping – love it! Seriously love it. There’s nothing better than strolling through Westfields with a caramelatte in one hand, flicking through the sale racks 😀 (although I’m more of a chain-store girl than a boutique chick). It’s more of a want than a need, as I do have enough clothes but am always interested in a new top or cardi in my favorite colors (blue, pink, lime, black…) But my weakness is bags – and Ebay is the devil’s work .

    Patricia – WTG on that weight loss! And the bonus is you can buy a whole new wardrobe LOL.

    Mona – with the internet, there’s no book I have to wait for now . Amazon, BN, Powells…

    Bron – you rock on the Waldies!

  19. Hey Mona my fellow shopaholic. Retail therapy works magic for me, and clothes and books (especially books!) and amongst my favourite therapies.

    JSL, you might need an expert — like Mona or Paula or I — to help. 🙂 On-line shopping is fun (the fantasy kind) and convenient (the real kind.)
    You and Jan bring up a very good point — the shopping buddy. Find the right one and you have the added joy of great company. I recall a day spent shopping in New Orleans after RWAmerica conference in 2001 with Kiwi authors Fiona Brand and Frances Housden. We had a great day. Frances is the queen of shopping and has the best eye for shops we would have walked right by.

  20. Maxine, not having to check the price tags would be lovely, yes? 🙂 I have just returned home from several days down the coast and although my teenage nieces will deny it, they were definitely checking out the surfers. So cute (my nieces, covertly checking out cute guys.)

    Yvonne, Rose Bay is a beautiful part of Sydney, isn’t it? Not sure if I mentioned that Kimberley and Sonya take a shopping expedition to nearby Double Bay. Luckily they don’t have to check price tags!

  21. Thanks Maxine and Paula. It’s always nice to see your book on the bestsellers’ list.

    Ann, so glad you enjoyed VOWS & A VENGEFUL GROOM and I know you’ll love the rest of the series, too.

    Paula, is the bags fetish a Gemini thing??? Have just returned from a short holiday and the only thing I bought — yes, a bag. Red. Lovely. And a bargain. (I’m also a fan of the caramel latte. Perhaps we really are twins. :-))

  22. Did Paula mention Ebay? *g* Aah, now that’s the place I do love to shop for a bargain. And I know that Bron is an Ebay addict too, because she recently bought some Lucy Walker books from there, which led me to buying some older M&B books by one of my favourite authors, Violet Winspear.

    Don’t get me started. *g*

  23. Shopping is always an option when you need a lift but I love walking outside and try to shop in the open air areas which is uplifting as well as inspiring. Love your books which always provide me with days of fun and pleasure.

  24. Bron, you say Sonya and Kimberley take a shopping trip to Double Bay?? That’s handy, cos in my book, Sonya buys a….in Double Bay.
    A what?
    Can’t say. My lips are sealed.
    Congrats on the Waldies!

  25. Bags are definitely a Gem thing, Bron 😀 I have a bargain red handbag too, and the last one I bought was a carry-on lime-green leather satchel… soooo gorgeous!

    Anne – I love open-air markets! You definitely need to visit Sydney’s Rocks markets on Sundays – heaps of quirky, fun gifts, plus really elegant art and sculptures.

    Jan – you big tease 🙂 But after a hard day shopping Sonya and Kimberley should visit Double Bay’s Angsana Spa… http://www.angsanaspa.com/dayspas/doublebay/index.htm

  26. Bargains are very appealing to me… I never buy anything that is not on sale! Though now, I have not gone shopping for about 5 months!!

  27. I also am a bargain hunter… and I hate going through Vogue… I am always green of envy when I see all the jewellery and designer labels… that I will never be able to buy!

  28. Shopping is an enjoyment for me since I spend that precious time with my mother whose generosity and taste is the ultimate. Since I am at school and work as well this is our special time together which is lovely. We shop leisurely and are careful with our selections. We love finding unique items which are rare and out of the ordinary.

  29. Jan, you know I have no patience. Arrggghhh.

    Paula, LOVE the sound of your lime-green satchel. Will be looking out for it in SF!

    Lily, no shopping in 5 months? You are a saint!

    Diane, I also enjoy shopping with my mum. Lovely that you can enjoy together.

  30. And now for the winner of my prize pack…


    Congratulations, J. Email me with your address. And thanks to everyone who popped in this past week to talk shopping and settings with us.

  31. Congratulations, JSL!!! Bron gives the best pressies.
    In fact, I just opened the notebook I took on the train yesterday and looked over the notes I made, and was transported into ‘Sensuality.’
    Bron gave me a pen a year or so back that gives off the loveliest scent, not sure what it is, myrrh or something sweet yet earthy. I guess I thought the scent was in the pen itself but it is actually in the ink and I can smell it so clearly now, a day after I wrote with it.

  32. cass bowman Says:

    Wonderful blogs – I’m not sure if I’m doing the right thing here but it’s great to read all the comments etc

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