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    Back Forever

    The sequel to 'Bring Me Back', out now. “Poignant, bittersweet and satisfying, Back Forever sustains the plausible fantasy-to-reality charm of Bring Me Back.”-Manic Readers

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    Hiding in the Spotlight

    David got the chart topping success. His best friend got it all. “Hiding in the Spotlight is a fun, fast, and sexy read!”-Scandlicious Book Reviews

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    Bring Me Back

    Winner, Turquoise Morning Press Reader's Choice Award. "Fast-paced, sexy, and altogether irresistible. A flat-out fabulous read!"-NYTimes Bestselling Author Celia Rivenbark

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    Erotic Romance

    Published by Ellora's Cave.

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    Claire’s Diary

    The prequel to 'Bring Me Back'. Download the eBook for free!

Up to a little mischief on Rock ‘n’ Roll High School today, featuring an interview with the fictional Frank DeLuca, one of the heroes in Margaret Ethridge’s amazing book Paramour. (Yes, there’s more than one hero in Paramour, at least from where I’m sitting.) I was so excited when Margaret told me that this particular book was going to be part of a boxed set. I was even more excited to find out that Frank could do a post for my blog. Frank is one of my favorite romance guys of all time, the classic anti-hero, the guy you love and yet you aren’t completely sure why. You only know that part of you is pulling for him, part of you would like to figure out a way for him to get the girl, even if he has challenges that go far beyond the scope of a normal guy. FAR beyond. You’ll have to read the book to find out exactly what I mean. With seven books for .99, this boxed set is an incredible deal. Paramour alone is worth the price of admission!

Frank DeLuca

Warrenton High. I should have graduated in 1982, but I wasn’t exactly the, uh…studious type. I wanted to work, you know? Currently: Now? Now I do nothing but wait.

Band and/or song that reminds you the most of high school: Uh, that one about Bette Davis. All the girls were into that song. Never could figure it out.

Favorite piece of music memorabilia (poster, t-shirt, etc.) in high school: I took a girl to see Journey on the Escape tour. She wanted matching t-shirts. I wanted her. Amazing what a chick will do if you sing a little ‘Open Arms’ on the drive home.

Band that you hated that everyone else at school seemed to love: Oh, man. Aside from the screeching cat that sang the Bette Davis song? I swear ‘Endless Love’ followed me everywhere. Lionel Ritchie is so annoying.

Best show or concert you saw in high school: I didn’t really see any other concerts while I was in school, but I caught a few awesome shows after I ditched. Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Metallica. Even caught Bon Jovi, but I couldn’t hear most of it with all the chicks screaming.

Best high school make-out song: Ha! That’s easy. ‘Open Arms’ works like a friggin’ charm.

ENCHANTED-3d-MDFrank DeLuca is the not-of-this-world charmer from Margaret Ethridge’s Paramour, which you can get as part of the Enchanted Lover Boxed Set, Seven Novels of Mystical, Magical and Paranormal Romance, out now. It’s a fabulous deal, also featuring books from Maddie James, JC Warden, Cheryl Norman, Jan Scarborough, Cat Shaffer, and JM Kelley! If you want to learn more about Margaret Ethridge and her amazing books, be sure to visit margarethridge.com.

 

International superstar Audra North (that’s what I’m calling her…haven’t had a chance to run the nickname by her yet) has taken over RNRHS today, in celebration of her brand new release Composing Love, which is out now from Entangled Lovestruck. Be sure to check it out! Like all of my author pals, Audra has a fun spin on her high school memories and the ways they are linked to music. She brought up the Violent Femmes, a band that was a huge part of my high school existence. I remember very well the day my BFF Jane bought the Hallowed Ground vinyl. We took it home to her house and immediately slapped it onto the turntable. Her mother came in the room, innocently picked up the lyrics insert, and immediately broke out in tears. You know I wanted to say, “Aww, Jane’s Mom! It’s okay. We’re teenagers! We’re supposed to like weird, creepy stuff.” But I didn’t.

Audra North

Class of ’96!, Currently the author of contemporary romance and the occasional cyberpunk erotica

Band and/or song that reminds you the most of high school: Oh, gosh. There were so many songs that made my high school experience. But I’d have to say Jodeci’s “Lately”. There was so much angst over boys and friends and parents and pretty much everything in high school, and Lately captured those feelings. I listened to a lot of R&B, hip hop, and country music! I guess that was what my friends were into…plus, I grew up in Texas, so country is a requirement. I had the “Lately” single tape, which came in a green cardboard sleeve. The single tapes were a lot more popular back then. It was just before CDs really took over.

Favorite piece of music memorabilia (poster, t-shirt, etc.) in high school: I had the most awesome Violent Femmes T-shirt that I got at a B-52s concert. The Violent Femmes were opening for the B-52s that night, and it was the first time I’d heard them, but I loved “Blister in the Sun”, so I bought their T-shirt. I wore a black and white zipper-front dress with combat boots and rainbow-striped socks.

Band that you hated that everyone else at school seemed to love: My sister is three years older than I am, so her taste in music tended more to Morrissey and the Cocteau Twins. But I really couldn’t stand the Cocteau Twins’ music. We always fought over music in the car, but since she was usually the driver, she would win. I couldn’t wait to be old enough to drive.

Best show or concert you saw in high school: Definitely that B-52s concert. Fred Schneider danced under a strobe light and it was the first time I’d seen something like that. It looked so wild! Really fun, though. I never saw them in concert, but I also loved Depeche Mode. I would go clubbing on Sixth Street in Austin with friends and I’d use a fake ID—I hope twenty years is long enough that I won’t get in trouble for admitting that!—and the clubs loved to play Tainted Love.

Best high school make-out song: Anything by Aaliyah! I don’t know why, but she was often singing in the background when I was with my boyfriend.

Composing_Love_500-RGBAudra North’s latest contemporary romance, Composing Love, is out now. You can learn more about Audra at audranorth.com.

RamonesToday’s RNRHS post (#79, by the way…I wonder if I’ll make it all the way to #100?!) is from fellow romance author Amy Jo Cousins. I don’t usually play favorites when it comes to these posts, but this one is just way too adorable for words. I think we can all relate to the ways in which a crush changed our world view, whether it was new music or old movies or some funky cuisine that we totally pretended to be familiar with while we scanned the menu for anything that looked even REMOTELY normal. My biggest leap for love in high school was deciding I would be preppy. It lasted three weeks, sophomore year. My crush was a year ahead of me and so unattainable, but I was sure that if I just started wearing penny loafers with argyle socks, sweater vests and button-down oxford shirts, that he would have no choice but to fall in love with me. Didn’t happen, that girlfriend of his wasn’t going anywhere, but he and I did become friends and realized we liked a lot of the same music. Romance thwarted, I returned to my Midwestern semi-rebellion of wearing torn jeans, Chucks, and winged eyeliner. My friends were so happy to have me back on Planet Earth.

 

Amy Jo Cousins

Glenbard West, Glen Ellyn, IL, Class of ‘89, Currently: Joan Wilder-ing

Band and/or song that reminds you the most of high school: Man, I’d love to say something hip like Sinead O’Connor or Naked Raygun (both of whom I thought were weird when I was in high school…she was bald, which perplexed and scared me), but I just wasn’t that cool. If I am completely honest, I had quite a thing for musical theater and film. Especially bad musical theater and film. As in, I can still sing all of “Cool Rider” from Grease 2, because my best friend and I watched that movie about a hundred times freshman year. Also, I can do most of the songs from The Chorus Line, particularly “Let Me Dance for You” and “Dance: Ten; Looks: Three,” aka the tits and ass song. It’s funny that I didn’t think about this when writing When the Lights Go Down, because the conversations about high school/college plays could have been way more fun. “If he’s cool enough, he can burn me through and through, whoa yeah!”

Band that you hated that everyone else at school seemed to love: Bon Jovi, Bon Jovi, Bon Jovi! I spent a couple of years working in a karaoke bar in my early 30’s and have since been converted by the awesome performers who belted out Bon Jovi nonstop on contest nights (not to mention, Jon Bon Jovi was totally hot when he had that part on Ally McBeal), but I was not a fan in high school. My best friend was a full-on Bon Jovi groupie, so I’m not sure I ever said this out loud before now, but Slippery When Wet? Bored me to tears.

Best show or concert you saw in high school: I had a crush on this one boy all through high school. Okay, I actually forgot about him for most of sophomore year, but then my brother started his freshman year when I was a junior and he joined the gymnastic team. My old crush competed on that team too, and let me tell you…put a guy in a spandex tank top and some skintight pants and whooee! I was back in love. So, via a bit of hallway eavesdropping, I learned that my crush was a huge Jethro Tull fan. Of course, I became a huge Jethro Tull fan too. What a coincidence! (Turns out I still am. Jethro Tull is effing awesome. Locomotive Breath! Aqualung!) This was the late 80’s, mind you, so we were already late by almost two decades for the height of the band’s popularity. In any case, when they toured my senior year, I got a ticket and a whole group of us, including my crush, went to the concert together. It was at Alpine Valley, an outdoor concert venue just across the border in Wisconsin. I sat on my blanket and tried both not to stare at the albino gentleman right in front of me and not to get a contact buzz from the clouds of pot smoke. I was successful at the task requiring manners.

Favorite piece of music memorabilia (poster, t-shirt, etc.) in high school: That same crush of mine was also a fan of The Ramones. Having impressed him with my coincidental Jethro Tull passion, when he found out I’d never heard of The Ramones, he made me a cassette tape of their songs. Even someone as desperately uncool as I was in high school couldn’t help but recognize that “I Wanna Be Sedated,” “Blitzkrieg Bop,” and “Sheena Is a Punk Rocker” were classics. Think I still have that tape in a drawer somewhere.

Best high school make-out song: I really dove into the kissing thing in college, being a shy and retiring sort in high school. But I did make out with a super sweet guy named Dwayne, because he played “She’s Like the Wind” from Dirty Dancing for me. Dwayne taught me how to drive stick (NOT a metaphor!) during the brief time we dated, a gift for which I will be forever thankful.

WhenTheLightsGoDown (2)Amy Jo Cousins writes contemporary romance and erotica about smart people finding their own best kind of smexy. She lives in Chicago with her son, where she tweets too much, sometimes runs really far, and waits for the Cubs to win the World Series. Her latest, When the Lights Go Down, is out now. Visit amyjocousins.com for further info!