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MERRY IN LOVE is out today! #NewRelease #Contemporary #Billionaire #Romance
Merry in Love (Billionaires in Love 5) by Nadia Lee

Dynamic and powerful, billionaire Daniel Aylster III wants to get rid of The Lloyds Development for mismanaging the construction of his latest hotel…until he meets its new CEO, Meredith Lloyd. It’s been ten years since he’s seen her, but his baby sister’s best friend has grown into an irresistible beauty.

A single mom determined to prove herself, Meredith refuses to let Daniel fire her company without giving her a chance to fix the problem first. Nothing is going to stop her from succeeding, not even her crazy attraction to Daniel.

Forced to work in close proximity, Daniel and Meredith realize they may have a saboteur in their midst. When their shadowy enemy makes a game-ending move, Meredith must reveal a devastating truth that could tear her family apart and cost her the only man she’s ever loved…

EBOOK


Life in September

The Boy & Me!

On the 1st of September, The Boy started kindergarten. He’s three, but kindergarten can start as early as three in Japan. W00t! Hero Material and I liked the teachers at the school and everything, so we’re very excited to enroll him there. A huge bonus is that it’s very close. About five or so minutes by bike. :)

After I broke my iPod earlier this year, I told myself I wouldn’t buy another. Guess what? I caved and bought a new one. Hero Material of course laughed at me. :sigh:

The big goals for this month are drafting The Billionaire’s Secret Wife (Vanessa Pryce and Justin Sterling — Kerri’s cousin from Reunited in Love) and seeing if I can wrap up the line edits for Merry in Love. It’s behind because of a couple of family crises we had in August. I’m still aiming to have the book out in mid- to late October though, by working under a much more compressed timeline.

Hearts on the Line CollectionThe first three books in the Hearts on the Line series are going to be bundled for a special collection in September. The collection (my first!) is available for pre-order right now if you want to grab a copy.

US
Amazon :: Apple

UK
Amazon :: Apple

Canada
Amazon :: Apple

Australia
Amazon :: Apple

New Zealand
Apple

Others
Google Play :: Kobo

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a great September!


Four Weeks Till Forever Giveaway

mail!Look what came in the mail today! :)

Of course you know what this means.

Open international. Void where prohibited. No purchase necessary. 5 winners. Good luck! :)


Merry in Love: Blurb & Excerpt

Finally…! :)

Merry in Love (Hearts on the Line Book 6) by Nadia LeeDynamic and powerful, billionaire Daniel Aylster III wants to get rid of The Lloyds Development for mismanaging the construction of his latest hotel…until he meets its new CEO, Meredith Lloyd. It’s been ten years since he’s seen her, but his baby sister’s best friend has grown into an irresistible beauty.

A single mom determined to prove herself, Meredith refuses to let Daniel fire her company without giving her a chance to fix the problem first. Nothing is going to stop her from succeeding, not even her crazy attraction to Daniel.

Forced to work in close proximity, Daniel and Meredith realize they may have a saboteur in their midst. When their shadowy enemy makes a game-ending move, Meredith must reveal a devastating truth that could tear her family apart and cost her the only man she’s ever loved…

[hr]

Uncorrected Excerpt

Daniel Matthew Aylster III walked through the barren field in the cemetery. The October air had unusually sharp teeth that bit through his coat—winter seemed overeager that year. But now that he was in northern Virginia again, he felt like he had to pay his respects.

Despite being outdoors, he felt a bit claustrophobic as the sky hung low, its clouds heavy and sullen. The evergreens added some color, and a man was raking leaves to keep the place tidy, but the dead probably didn’t care.

Daniel hadn’t been back since his sister’s burial. The memories of Judy still pained him, and he’d done his best to stay out of the country afterward.

Was there an afterlife? He’d like to believe so, and that Judy was happy…except he was a realist. This life was all there was. He wished there was something he could’ve done to make her happy, but that hadn’t happened. No, he’d been in Bali, while his sister had died in some hospital with no one but clinically professional people around her.

When Judy had died, the decision was made to bury her next to their mother in Virginia. Their father had ruined almost everything, but not this. Judy’s spirit—if it existed—was probably happy where she was, and Daniel had made sure her rest wouldn’t be disturbed by having their father next to her.

Their father was buried in Houston with his parents. It was his death that had brought Daniel back from Europe.

Daniel stood before the family graves. Judy had only been eighteen, so beautiful, so full of zest and mischief. He could still hear her laugh…and feel her tears. Their father had been an equal opportunist when it came to tormenting his children. Their stepmother had protected her own daughter by sending her to boarding school, but she’d kept Daniel and Judy in Houston to placate their father.

His hands clenched.

There was a fresh bouquet of flowers. Bright orange daisies and tiger lilies—Judy’s favorites. Guilt twisted in his gut. He’d never sent anything. It must have been their uncle Claude; he’d loved Judy as if she were his own daughter.

Daniel turned to go back to his car and bumped into a short, wiry man in his late fifties. “Sorry, sir,” Daniel said.

“Huh. You’re new.”

The man had a voice that reminded Daniel of old leather. Daniel looked at him. Gray hair puffed around a faded Redskins cap like cotton candy, and he wore dusty coveralls and carried landscaping tools. “Excuse me?” Daniel said.

“It’s always the woman who visits,” the man said, leaning on his rake and watching Daniel curiously.

A woman? Daniel couldn’t think of any woman who might have visited. “You are…?”

“Ted. The groundskeeper. Been working here since my thirties.” He sniffled. “It’s always the same woman who comes by every month. Thought it was a mother who’d lost her baby, except that’s no baby there.” He gestured at Judy’s grave, then sniffled again. “You best get going. There’s a storm coming. I can feel it in my bones.”

* * *

Meredith Lloyd placed her hands over the seat belt buckle as the private jet hit the runway. Her entire body tensed, twitchy as a sprinter at the starting line. As soon as the plane stopped, she jumped to her feet.

“Eager to see your son?” the cabin attendant teased.

“Yes. It’s been so long.”

Meredith gathered her purse and laptop bag, stuffed with extra paperwork, as the attendant opened the door. The air in northern Virginia was colder than that in Houston. Meredith pulled her coat closer as she hurried down the steps.

She hated the days away from her son Eric, but she couldn’t move him to Houston either. He loved his school and his friends, not to mention his favorite uncle had moved to the area. He’d be crushed if she took him to a new city.

She would never do that to her son.

Her gaze zeroed in on the waiting champagne-colored Mercedes. The driver, Nancy Elgerton, gave her a wide grin. Now there was a lovely sight. With a responding grin, Meredith broke into a trot—

“Merry.”

—and stumbled, her heavy laptop bag unbalancing her further. A pair of strong, masculine hands righted her before she pitched head-first into the asphalt.

“Wasn’t expecting me?”

She looked up at the unforgettable face of Daniel. Tall and muscular, with the same shade of brown hair that her late best friend Judy had had, he was the only one who called her Merry. His sharp blue eyes seem to know her innermost secrets as he stared down at her. Her mouth dried, and her heart pounded, pumping so much blood into her head. Don’t panic. Maybe he doesn’t know everythingyet.

“What are you doing here?” she finally managed.

“Helping myself to some of your time, since you won’t see me any other way.”

Huh? She blinked a few times to clear her thoughts as sweat filmed her back. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“Really.” His voice was drier than the sub-Saharan desert.

Suddenly realizing he still had his hands on her, she pulled back and hefted the laptop bag. “If you want to see me, make an appointment.”

“Tomorrow morning at nine.”

“But it’s Saturday.” She and Eric had started a new tradition of going over to her mother’s for brunch.

Something like relief mingled with contempt and condescension crossed Daniel’s handsome face. “Too precious to get out of bed before noon on the weekend? How do you plan to fix The Lloyds Development?”

She sucked in a breath. Her family business was struggling at the moment, but it was low of him to question her abilities like this. “That’s unfair.”

“Then meet me at nine tomorrow. I don’t have the time or inclination to play your game.”

Just like that her entire body went cold. He couldn’t know, could he? She stood stiffly, making sure there was enough distance between them. “Fine. Send me the location.”

“Your number?”

“What?”

“Your number. I’m not dealing with your worthless assistant anymore.”

She rattled off her cell phone number. He didn’t have to be nasty about her assistant when it was probably just a miscommunication. This was one of the busiest times of the year for Meredith. “Happy?”

“For now. We’ll talk more tomorrow.” He walked away and disappeared into his limo. It pulled away in a stately fashion.

Nancy got to her just as her knees buckled. “Are you all right?” Nancy asked.

Meredith stared back at her, numb and unable to comprehend. Her heart thundered like a galloping Arabian, and she fought to take in air.

“I’m so sorry I didn’t try to stop him from talking to you. I thought you knew him.”

The deep anxiety in Nancy’s voice snapped Meredith out of it. This was Nancy’s first month as her driver, and she really needed this job. Meredith’s over-protective brothers had thought it was ridiculous of her to hire a mother with no chauffeuring experience. If she were a betting woman, she’d wager a million bucks that her “nothing’s too good for my family” brother Gavin had already hired somebody to spy on Nancy’s performance. Meredith wasn’t going to let Nancy and her four teenage sons suffer over her brothers’ over-the-top concern.

Meredith forced a smile. “I’m fine. He’s a brother of an old friend.” Somebody she’d never thought to see again. Ten years ago, the notion had left her joyless. Now that he was back in her life, she could feel dread unfurling in her belly.

Eyes searching, Nancy inclined her head and stared. The look probably worked well on her kids. Even Meredith wanted to squirm under the gaze.

“Come on. Let’s go,” Meredith said, clearing her throat. “I’m anxious to see my son.”

She had to hold him in her arms.

[hr]

Release Date: October 2014

Pre-Order @ Apple

Other retailer links coming soon.

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Tentative Release Schedule

Merry in Love (Hearts on the Line Book 6) by Nadia LeeI’ve received several emails and messages from people asking me about the release schedule for my next books. So here it is!

Mind you, this is tentative because things can change — Amazon or Apple might take longer than expected to approve a book, or maybe some other aspect of production took too much time (editing, formatting, etc. — I have 3 editors working with me, and it’s not easy to juggle everyone’s schedules, even though they’re all super awesome.)

October 17-24 — Merry in Love

December 12-15 — Iain Pryce’s book (title: TBA)

mid to late January 2015 — Vanessa Pryce’s book (title: TBA)

My goal is to have those three released before my vacation early February. (Yes, I’ll be posting pictures! :D )

If you want to know when the above titles are out, be sure to sign up for my new release alert!


My Publishing Journey

journeyI’ve been debating for awhile about whether to write about this topic. It seems a bit…pretentious to write about my journey. OTOH, a lot people have expressed an interest, so I figured I’d go ahead and put it out there. :)

I quit my corporate job in 2004 to write. The job paid well, and it was interesting work (up to a point) but it simply wasn’t good for me mentally. (I was basically an ax-man for a large corporation—paid to go in and lay people off.) My parents were horrified, of course. Mom told me, quote, “You’re too smart to be a writer.”

In 2004 publishing was all about NY deals because there was no viable ebook market, not the way there is now. I think there were publishers like Elora’s Cave that sold PDF copies, but super-sexy erotic romance wasn’t something I could write well and consistently, and I wanted a NY print deal very badly. So I tried for something that I thought New York would want.

I spent years writing category romance and later switched to urban fantasy. I did it not because I enjoyed reading urban fantasy—I’d never read in the genre—but because somebody who was mentoring me said it would be a great thing for me to write because (a) I live in Japan and I’m “surrounded by manga”, and (b) urban fantasy was hot at the time. In retrospect I think it was a mistake, and I think a bad mentor can really derail and damage your career trajectory, esp. when you’re new and don’t have much confidence.

Regardless, despite all that I actually got a really good agent with my urban fantasy manuscript. Unfortunately, it was 2008 (Lehman Brother went BOOM that year), and the ms didn’t sell. I had a lot of good rejections, but NYC didn’t know how to market the book and no one wanted to take chances at the time.

Afterward, I floundered for a while because I really wanted to get that NY deal but didn’t know what to write. I felt adrift and lost, and even though I hate to say this, watching my writing friends get NY deals didn’t help. I was happy for them—they had worked so hard—but at the same time I sort of felt sorry for myself. (Self-pity is a terrible foundation for success, or even a clear direction in life. But it’s one thing to know this intellectually, and quite another not to let it get to you emotionally.)

In 2010 I got married; in 2011, our baby was born. Then in 2012, I had this really bad crisis-of-self where I wondered what I was doing with my life. Money was tight, and we wanted to move, but finding a good place wasn’t easy, and both my husband and I were sick for nine full months out of 2012.

Then I decided I was just going to write what I wanted to write and see where things went. Yes, a NY print contract with a decent advance would have been super sweet, but I couldn’t live my entire life waiting for someone else’s approval, especially when I didn’t need said approval to pursue my dream.

Besides, I had inked two e-publishing deals along the way, with two different and fairly well-respected publishers, and honestly speaking neither one worked out particularly well. I made humiliatingly small sums of money from both, and I felt very apologetic to my husband, who was super supportive, and my little boy who, within a month or two of his birth, I had to start putting aside for several hours a day so I could work on edits from the second publisher.

Since I had also published a novel (Vengeful in Love) on my own, and had made far more money with it by uploading it to Amazon and other platforms myself, I decided to write a sequel using a couple of the supporting characters as the leads. So in the midst of buying a place of our own in 2012 and moving in early 2013, I started to write a contemporary romance novel, which became Reunited in Love. I’m not a particularly fast writer, so I sat on that manuscript and wrote another, which was Redemption in Love. Then I wrote another (Sweet in Love), storing them all up and making plans for two more books as well. I did this specifically so that I could create a series using characters that were related in some way, stories that were somewhat inter-connected, and release them back-to-back very quickly. I had heard from so many people that readers really like this, so I wanted to try it.

Let me tell you, it was not easy to write multiple books without knowing how readers were going to react to the stories. 2013 was a very difficult year—more so than 2012—because after the move, I had to micromanage (for six months!) a general contractor in America who was doing a very bad job on some house repairs there, and deal with my insurance adjuster (who thankfully was more professional). I think I lost about 20-30 pounds that year from stress.

It wasn’t until December 27, 2013 that I officially launched the Hearts on the Line series. I privately dubbed the event “Nadia’s career reboot,” but I honestly had no idea what I was going to do if it bombed. I was so worried and anxious that I made myself sick on the Reunited in Love launch day and ended up in a hospital getting an IV to rehydrate my body and having multiple blood samples drawn for testing.

Thankfully the series took off in early February, and I’m so grateful for all the people who took a chance on me. I had hoped and dreamed for almost ten years that I would have a writing career, and now it finally seems to be working. I’m humbled and touched by the support I’ve received from my fans, fellow writers, family and friends.