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Thursday, March 3, 2016

Traveller by Abigail Drake: Interview & Giveaway

Abigail Drake

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Date of Publication: February 26, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-5092-0569-1 Paperback
ISBN: 978-1-5092-0570-7 Digital

Number of pages: 250
Word Count: 80,000

Cover Artist: Debbie Taylor

Book Description:

Former Junior Miss Kentucky Emerson Shaw won pageants using martial arts as her talent and Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War” as her guide, but a painful secret leads her to the University of York, and puts her in the path of tattooed and pierced bad boy, Michael Nightingale.

Michael is a Traveller, part of an ancient line of mercenary gypsies who protect the world from vicious monsters called the Moktar. When Emerson gets attacked, she has no choice but accept Michael’s offer of protection or face certain death.

Traveller society, full of outdated rules and ridiculous superstitions, isn’t a good fit for the headstrong Emerson. Traveller women aren’t allowed to fight. Traveller women aren’t allowed to win. Traveller women aren’t allowed to leave. But Emerson will do what she must, even if it means losing the one person who matters most.


“Who are you and what do you want from me?”
I took a deep breath. It probably wouldn’t be a good start to tell him he occupied my every waking thought and most of my dreams, too. I decided to go with a more conventional approach.
“You’re here every morning, and I thought I’d say hello.” I stuck out my hand. “Emerson Jane Shaw.”
He surprised me by reaching for my extended hand and holding it firmly. His hand, large, warm and rough, had cuts and bruises all over the knuckles. He had faint bruises on his face, too, and some small wounds still in the process of healing. He’d been in some kind of fight recently.
It didn’t surprise me. He had the look of a warrior about him, the lean strength and watchful eyes of a predator, and he was lethal. Sun Tzu would have seen it, too. He would have recruited him without a moment’s hesitation.
“Michael Nightingale.” He stared at me with those hypnotic eyes as he continued to hold my hand, using it to pull me nearer to him.
“I know. Mrs. Burke told me.” I couldn’t focus on what I was saying while he touched me, not that I’d done such a great job up until now with my witty repartee.            
He tilted his head to one side, studying me the way a lion studies a gazelle before he eats it. His face was only inches away from mine.
 “Do you like to flirt with danger, Emerson Jane Shaw?”
“Not usually, but today I can make an exception.”
The touch of his hand sent an electric current through my body that made my heart speed up and my brain slow down. He was intoxicating. I almost had to fan myself.
Abruptly, Michael let go of me and stood up, shoving his books into his backpack. I stood up, too.
“What’s wrong?”
Michael glared at me, threw some bills on the table and stomped out of the shop. Like an idiot, I grabbed my backpack and followed him.
He walked quickly through The Shambles, dodging pedestrians and umbrellas with ease. I wasn’t quite as lucky. The rain poured down, filling the street with puddles. Michael wore combat boots and jeans. I had on a useless pair of flats and no jacket. It only took seconds for me to be soaked to the skin and miserable. In minutes, I looked like a little blonde drowned rat.
I’m pretty fast, even in slippery shoes, and I was motivated. I kept him in my sights until he reached a side street at the end of The Shambles that led down a narrow lane. I was only half a block away when he turned and looked at me, his eyes locking with mine, and disappeared.
He hadn’t walked away. He hadn’t moved. He’d been there one second, and gone the next. Running as fast as I could, I reached the spot where I’d last seen him and looked down the lane and on either side of the street. My ribbon flew out of my hair, blowing away in the wind as I slid on the wet cobblestones and nearly fell. I skidded to a halt, realizing I hadn’t been fast enough. It was a dead end, and he was gone.

Author Bio

Abigail Drake has spent her life traveling the world, and collecting stories wherever she visited. She majored in Japanese and International Economics in college and worked in import/export and as an ESL teacher before she committed herself full time to writing. She writes in several romance genres, and her books are quirky, light, fun, and sexy. Abigail is a trekkie, a book hoarder, the master of the Nespresso machine, a red wine addict, and the mother of three boys (probably the main reason for her red wine addiction). A puppy named Capone is the most recent addition to her family, and she blogs about him as a way of maintaining what little sanity she has left.

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Please welcome Traveller author Abigail Drake to Diane’s Book Blog. 

What is your favorite part of the story, Traveller? 

Traveller is the story of Emerson, a former Junior Miss Kentucky who goes to England on a study abroad trip. She isn’t a typical beauty queen. She won pageants using martial arts as her talent, and she loves reading the works of Chinese military philosopher Sun Tzu. When she meets tattooed bad boy Michael Nightingale, she falls for him instantly, even though they are complete opposites. At first, she needs his protection, but soon she ends up fighting her own battles.

I love the way Emerson stands up to Michael. The way she doesn’t let his toughness and attitude intimidate her. She’s small, but she’s mighty, and she’s also very brave.

If you were stranded on a desert island which of your characters do you want by your side?

Um, Michael Nightingale. He’s tough, smart, and resourceful. And he isn’t bad to look at either!

If you could be best friends with one of your characters, who would it be?

I love both Lucinda and Poppy, Emerson’s friends in the book. Lucinda is that slightly wild girl we all sort of secretly admire. She doesn’t care what others think of her, and she’s very open. About everything. Even her project to “shag” someone from each of the seven continents (Antarctica has proven to be rather tricky). Poppy is sweet, loyal, and funky. I love her crazy clothing and the artsy side of her personality. Part of me wants to give each of them their own books. I think they deserve it.

What books have most influenced your life?

This is such a hard question, because I’m a complete book-a-holic. When I was little, I’d walk to the library every Saturday and spend half my day there. I have such happy memories of that time – wandering through the aisles, choosing book after book, lugging them all home, repeating the process the next week. 

Since I think the books people read as children influence them forever, I’ll talk about the first book that really changed my life. “A Wrinkle in Time” by Madeleine L’Engle was something I read over and over again. It made me think I wanted to be a physicist (until I realized physics involved math, and I suck at math), but it also opened up my mind to so many possibilities. It made me extremely passionate about science fiction, turned me into the total nerd I am today, and also inspired me to start writing. And there was just a touch of romance in that book, too. Calvin O’Keefe was my first book boyfriend!

What is your typical day like?  

I usually wake around 6 a.m. and feed the dog (a black Labrador retriever named Capone). After that, I stumble toward the coffee machine to make a giant pot of really strong coffee. It’s a medical necessity. I require large doses of caffeine just to function. When my husband isn’t travelling, he makes it for me - one of the reasons we’ve stayed married so long. 

As I drink my coffee, I write a post for Capone’s Facebook page (yes, my dog has a FB page – please don’t judge me). It’s called Capone the Wonder Dog, and he has followers from all over the world, which is kind of crazy.

Once I send my teenagers off to school, silence and peace descends on the house. I give myself half an hour to catch up on email and other things that need to be done (like answering Capone’s fan mail), and then the writing begins. I try to write for a solid block of time every morning. Some days I’m more successful than others, but my goal is to write the whole time the kids are in school.

When they come home, the house gets noisier. If I have edits due, I’ll stick on my headphones and listen to some zen music as I work. Evenings are harder for me, because it’s not my peak concentration time. 

Before bed, I try to make time to read just for pleasure. After writing all day, I’m mentally exhausted, but I love a good romance. There is nothing like curling up with a book – the perfect end to a long day.


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