Jun 24, 2015

Special Guest: Christina Phillips

Please help me welcome a friend of the Cats to the blog today, Christina Phillips! Christina is here to talk about her new book Hold Me Until Midnight which has just come out with Entangled Brazen. It sounds like all kinds of fun, and I'm off now to download a copy of my very own. But first, a sneak peek at her new book: 

Hold Me Until Midnight (The Grayson Brothers, Book 1)

Every good girl loves a very bad boy… 

Scarlett Ashford needs a date for her father’s wedding. Only she doesn’t just need a guy in a suit—she needs a bodyguard. The only problem is that Jackson Grayson is big and gorgeous and way too sexy. So much so that Scarlett’s tempted to let this hot bad boy ruin her oh-so-good reputation…

Jackson doesn’t do relationships and he certainly doesn’t sleep with clients. Yet he can’t fight their inconvenient attraction, or how badly he wants Scarlett’s warm and wicked curves against his body. He wants her. Now. Even if it’s just for one night, and even if walking away the next morning isn’t as easy as he thought.

Besides, one hot and incredibly intense night between a bad boy and a pampered princess could never turn into something real…could it?

1. Hi Christina! You're known for your sexy historicals (have I told you how much I loved Forbidden?), but now you're releasing your first category romance. Was it a big jump to change the type of books you're writing or did it come naturally?

Thanks so much Rachel! I'm thrilled you enjoyed Forbidden :-) It's funny because when I first started writing, I wrote short category romances aimed for Mills and Boon, so in a way I've come full circle. On 1st April last year I was approached by Escape Publishing to see if I'd be interested in contributing to their Secret Confessions: Sydney Housewives continuity. I definitely was, and I had so much fun writing Willow. So that got me back into writing sexy contemporary romance, and from there I was contracted for three books with Entangled Publishing's Brazen imprint. I also wrote a contemporary novella about a hot sheikh, which is part of the boxed set with Cathleen Ross and Mel Teshco, Taken by the Sheikh. However I do still love my historicals and am in the process of claiming the rights back on those books and will republish them as soon as I possibly can!

2. The hero of Hold Me Until Midnight, Jackson, is one of three brothers - I love a series of books about brothers! Tell us a bit about the Grayson men.

The Grayson brothers survived a horrific childhood with their brutal father, and as a teen Jackson became a street fighter, involved in illegal gambling so he could help out his family. None of the brothers believe in love or happily-ever-after, and although they now own a successful bodyguard and security business the legacy of their past haunts each of them. It's only when they each find their heroine that they can face what happened when they were young teens and finally come to terms with the traumatic event that shaped their lives.

Photo: Gage Skidmore via wikipedia
3. Most of us know about your love of Clive Owen and Henry Cavill from following you online. Did you have anyone in mind when you wrote Jackson?

Ah yes, my darling Clive and Henry! It's funny but I never really have a particular actor in mind when I'm writing my heroes. Although to my surprise as soon as Scarlett saw Jackson she had very definite ideas of who he reminded her of! A dark haired Thor as portrayed by Chris Hemsworth (I think it was the biceps that did it...) 

4. Scarlett hires bodyguard Jackson to protect her at her father's wedding - I love that premise. Do you have any favourite movies about bodyguards?

One of my favourite bodyguard movies (and love stories as it happens) is the original Terminator movie when Kyle Reese is sent back in time to protect Sarah Connor - even though he knows it's a one way trip and the chances of him surviving are grim. But he's been in love with a photo of Sarah for a long time, and is willing to risk everything to save her *happy sigh*

5. Can you give us a sneak peek into the book?

Well, I thought it would be fun to show the moment when Scarlett first sees Jackson!
   Scarlett stood, and then forgot how to breathe.

   The man before her, taking up more space than any mortal had any right to, was over six feet tall, with muscles filling out his black tee to the point of indecency. 

   He looks like Thor.

   Her mouth dried as she dragged her fascinated gaze up from his biceps. Don’t think about his biceps. She focused on his stubble-darkened jaw instead, but that didn’t help. She’d never gone for the unshaven look before, but to hell with that.  

   Stop staring at him. 

   Good advice. A shame she couldn’t follow it.

   The gossip at work hadn’t done him justice. He was so right for her purposes it was unnerving.

   “I’ll leave you to it then,” the girl said. Scarlett had completely forgotten about her. She tried to ignore Jackson’s messy black hair, which brushed his collar. And failed.

   Thor’s body. Loki’s hair. Could it get any better?

   “Yeah. Thanks, Ella.”

   Yes, it could. Even his voice dripped with sin. Dark and dangerous with a hint of deadly menace. Darts of pleasure stirred in places she’d almost forgotten she had.

   How was that even possible? They hadn’t even touched, and she was more turned on than she’d been in ages. 

   The click of the shutting door cut through her lustful thoughts.
Pull yourself together.  She was here on business.  Jackson Grayson would never take her seriously if all she could do was drool over him.

6. Hey, I'm hooked already! Thanks for sharing. Now, what was the last great book you read?

I can't answer this question! I've been reading so many great books lately :-) I'm on a bit of binge of Entangled books at the moment! 

7. What are you reading now?

I'm just about to start Joan Kilby's Turning the Tables, her second Brazen which was released the same day as mine. Can't wait! 

Thanks so much for having me on LoveCats today, Rachel!

Thanks for visiting, Christina! If you want to grab a copy of Hold Me Till Midnight, here are some places to do it: iBooks       Amazon       Amazon UK       Amazon Ca       Nook       Google Books       Kobo       Angus & Robertson

Good news is that Jackson is the middle brother. Youngest brother Cooper's book is coming in September 2015 and eldest brother Alex's HEA in January 2016. If you want to connect with Christina, have a look at these places: WebsiteFacebookTwitterGoodreads, or Sign up to receive notification of when her next book is released.

And since we've been talking about stories with bodyguards, I'm curious - does anyone else have a favourite book or movie with a bodyguard? I think I'm in the mood to read and watch some!


  1. What a great interview! I actually enjoyed "The Bodyguard" with Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston, great story.
    Christina, your book sounds awesome!! =)

    1. Mel (who is masquerading as Cathleen for some reason only Blogger understands), The Bodyguard would have been my pick too! I even own a copy on DVD and pull it out every so often. Happy sigh.

    2. LOL, Mel, I'm still giggling at the thought of you somehow being Cathleen! How funny :-) I love The Bodyguard too, and watch it at least once every year! Love the music...

    3. Hi Rachel, thanks so much for having me on LoveCats today!

    4. You're totally welcome, Christina - I love chatting with you!

  2. Hi Christina

    Love the sound of this one :-) :-) congrats on the release

    I love The Bodyguard as well and I know I have read books about bodyguards but I can't think of titles at the moment

    Have Fun

    1. Helen, I'm looking forward to it too! And another fan of The Bodyguard - yay! :)

    2. Thanks so much for the congrats, Helen :-)

      As much as I love the movie, I must admit Kevin Costner doesn't really do much for me... I think Clive Owen would've been perfect in that role :D

    3. Christina, I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "Kevin Costner doesn't really do much for me"? This does not make sense. I loved him young in Bull Durham and No Way Out, and older in The Upside of Anger. Even as Henry Cavill / Clark Kent's stepfather.

    4. Hmm, we'll have to agree to disagree on this one, Rachel :-) Although I must admit he wasn't bad as Henry's stepfather!! I'd forgotten about that. I love watching Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves but mostly because of Alan Rickman rather than Kevin!

  3. Loving the sound of that hero, Christina!

    I love the bodyguard trope. The whole to serve and protect and never ever touch, never cross that line etc. So sexy! I'm excited to say that after 50 books I've finally written one too!

    My favourite bodyguard couple comes from TV. CJ and Simon (played by smoking hot silver fox, Mark Harmon) from West Wing. Their storyline ran over quite a few eps and seethed with URST. And how it ended.... oh i can't even think about it! But I'm off to watch that season now (again!) :-)

    1. Oh, Amy! I don't think I've ever recovered from that story line on West Wing. They should have kept Simon around for a whole lot longer - loved, loved him with CJ!

      Hey, what's the title of your bodyguard book? Is it out yet? Enquiring minds need to know. :)

    2. They shuld have at least kept him around til they'd done the wild thang anyway :-)

      My book is called The Colonel's Daughter and is also out with Entangled in their Indulgence line as part of the Men of the Zodiac series. Seth/Dean is Scorpio.

    3. Ack! Sorry, its out in August!

    4. Yes! Poor CJ...

      Oooh, will keep an eye out for Scorpio boy in August!

    5. Ack, I've never watched West Wing! (hides under desk) I absolutely love URST even before I knew what it meant (Moonlighting?) And Amy I saw your new cover the other day. OMG *fans self* it's smoking hot!

    6. WW is crack Christina! Be warned :-)
      With you on URST - Moonlighting is a classic example!

  4. Hi, Christina! Love the sound (and title) of Hold Me Until Midnight! :-)

    Oh, and sharing your Clive Owen, uh, appreciation (and Scarlett's admiration for Thor). I do, however, have an even bigger appreciation for Aragorn -- so while he's not exactly a bodyguard, he's definitely a protector...and definitely my favourite.

    1. Michelle, Aragorn is the perfect protector. He pretty much went along with the Fellowship to protect the hobits. Random note: did you know I based Simon, the hero in Cover Story on Viggo M?

    2. Oh Michelle, I so agree about Aragon! And he's definitely a bodyguard/protector so totally fits here :-)

      Yay, I'm so glad you like the title of HMUM. Had a lot of, uh, fun coming up with that one :-)

  5. Waving, Christina! Lovely to have you to visit - especially when you bring your gorgeous hunky bodyguard hero! Hold Me Until Midnight sounds like a sizzling read with that fabulous chemistry between Scarlet and Jackson!

    Oh, and I loved the Kylie and Sarah love story in Terminator!

    I can think of a bodyguard movie that I thought was terrific - not a romance though - and that's Guarding Tess. I thought Nicholas Cage and Shirley MacLaine characters were wonderful as they slowing learned to respect each other.

    1. Sharon, I haven't seen Guarding Tess. Looks like I should add it to the list!

    2. Hi, Sharon! It's lovely to be here :-) I haven't seen Guarding Tess either, will need to track it down!

  6. Oooh, I do love a good bodyguard story because of the protector thing, because of forbidden thing and all that seething sexten. I'm so glad I now have, not one, but two to indulge in. Thanks, Christina and Amy!

    I have a movie: Someone To Watch Over Me with Tom Berenger at his brooding best. An older one, not sure if it stands the test of time, but I remember loving it at the time.

    Annie West's Defying Her Desert Duty is fabulous and I'm also a bit keen on Suzanne Brockmann's Bodyguard. Amongst others. I'd forgotten how much I love this trope so thanks again for giving me some new bodyguards to hunt down!

    1. Bron, I haven't seen Someone To Watch Over Me but I do love a brooding protector type, so I'll hunt down a copy.

      I think Suzanne Brockman's books are a bit too suspense-y for me, but Annie West's book sounds perfect! I remember the cover for that one and thinking it sounded great. Must grab a copy!

    2. Rach, I'm sure you'll love Annie's. Princess and the bodyguard gives an extra layer of forbidden. Plus it's Annie!

    3. Bronwyn, I always love the extra layer of forbidden :-) Someone To Watch Over Me rings a bell, I'm not sure if I might've seen it ages ago - will have to double check!