Nov 11, 2018

Sunday Smooch with Clare Connelly

Welcome to another LoveCats DownUnder Sunday Smooch!

Today we have a smooch from Clare Connelly but first 

... the winner of last week's Sunday Smooch Giveaway is Katrina Whittaker

Can you please contact Barbara Wallace to receive your copy of Their Christmas Miracle.

And now for today's Sunday Smooch from Bound by their Christmas Baby (yes! more festive reading, lovecats, merry meow!). 

From under the mistletoe... down the aisle!

When brooding bachelor Gabe Aranmtini learns the innocent beauty he shared a steamy festive night with is the daughter of his business rival, he's furious. The following Christmas, Abby returns with shocking news--she's had his child! Gave knows he must marry Abby to legitimise his son. But can this be a marriage in name only, or will their red-hot chemistry take over?

Feel the heat in this festive secret baby romance!

Hi Lovecats!

Bound By Their Christmas Baby is one of my most angsty novels yet - and that's saying something! Gabe Arantini is a seriously troubled, self-made billionaire tycoon who - having been betrayed by my heroine Abby once before isn't likely to fall under her spell again! But a three month old baby is reason to bring her into his life - as his wife! Set in the stunning Italian alps castle he calls home, this scene happens shortly after Gabe, gloriously brooding Gabe, has spotted Abbie traipsing through the pine plantation, with his gardener Hughie. They're on the hunt for a perfect Christmas tree - it's all completely innocent - but jealousy makes no distinction and Gabe finds himself more jealous than the fires of hades are hot.

In this scene, we see him grappling with what he wants and, having kept Abby at arm's length for half of the book, and told himself he can control this desire, he's finally being burned alive by its intensity...

‘You actually think sleeping with a member of our household staff is appropriate?’
‘He’s not “our” household staff, he’s yours,’ she snapped.
‘An unimportant distinction.’
‘And I’m not sleeping with him,’ she denied hotly. ‘I like him, okay? He’s nice to me and we speak the same language. He’s the only other person I’ve actually been able to talk to since I moved to Italy. He’s nice to me, unlike a certain other someone I could mention and, newsflash, Gabe, it’s refreshing to spend time with someone who doesn’t look at me like I’m dirt on the sole of their shoe.’
He glared at her, his expression darker, if possible. ‘I don’t care that he’s nice to you,’ Gabe snapped. ‘He’s off-limits. I don’t want to see you talking to him again.’
She made a scoffing sound. ‘You can’t click your fingers and just forbid me from having a friend.’
‘No? But I can fire him,’ Gabe responded, taking another step towards her, his expression mutinous.
‘Don’t you dare.’ Abby pushed at his chest but he caught her hands, holding them in place, and when her eyes met his now, sparks of another variety flew, like their own localised fireworks display, erupting between their chests.
‘Don’t you tell me what I can and can’t do. I’m not going to have you carrying on with whoever you decide you want…’
‘Oh, grow up,’ she said, pushing at his chest again. He pulled her hands down, holding them by her side, his breath heavy. ‘I’m not sleeping with your gardener. I’m not sleeping with anyone! I haven’t slept with anyone since you, so you can just go to hell with all your stupid accusations.’
Gabe’s expression shifted momentarily and then it was fiercely intense and, before Abby knew what was happening, he was kissing her.
No, it wasn’t a kiss, it was so much more. It was a mark of utter, unquestionable possession. It was a raging, desperate connection. His lips mashed to hers, his tongue slid inside her mouth and she made a noise of surprise and then surrender, low in her throat, her hands pulling free of his grip and reaching under his shirt, connecting with his bare chest, skin she remembered so intimately.
It had been over a year since they’d done this and yet it felt as if no time had passed. Or was it that they—this—existed outside the bounds of time and space?
‘You won’t be with anyone else,’ he grunted, ripping his shirt over his head so she could marvel at his naked chest. He crushed her to him, kissing her desperately once more, his hands lifting to her hair and tangling in its length. It was still cold from her time in the snow and perhaps that reminded him of what they’d been fighting about, because he made another darkly guttural noise before stepping out of his trousers and pants so that he was completely naked.
‘You are mine,’ he said, pushing her shirt off, his expression deadly serious.
‘I’m not yours,’ she snapped. ‘How can I be? You don’t even speak to me. You don’t look at me. I’m not yours.’
‘I’m looking at you now.’ 

Oh, yes, he's looking at her alright! I have three Christmas books out this December - I'll be popping giveaways up from the others as we get closer to Christmas. I am a die-hard Christmas lover (speaking of Die Hard, I watched it tonight...). Our tree went up today, carols played, birds chirped, happiness is! I'm BIG on Christmas traditions - are you?? What are your favourites? I want the off-beat ones... I'll start. Every year my kids and I make around a dozen gingerbread houses! A DOZEN. We're like an edible dwelling production line... it's yummy work, I'll tell you. What about you?

Clare Connelly writes romance that will set your soul on fire. She is the best-selling author of more than fifty indie romance novels and in August 2017 published her debut novel for Harlequin Presents, and also writes for Harlequin Dare. She reads and writes romance voraciously, and lives in a small bungalow by the sea with her lovely husband, two small children and a hard-working team of MacBooks.

Come back next Sunday, when the winner of today's giveaway will be announced and a smooch will be posted!

Smooch Graphic by WebWeaver


  1. Hi Clare

    Oh I am so looking forward to this book and I am so far behind in my reading at the moment I love your stories :)

    I love Christmas as well I make my own Christmas Cake and Pudding and it is a tradition that anyone at home while I am making has to have a stir and make a wish this started with my Nanna when I was very young, and my grandkids love if they are there. Our tree normally goes up on December 1st and I love playing Christmas Carols and I totally agree Die Hard is a Christmas movie along with Home Alone :)

    Have Fun


    1. That sounds so very special - what a great way to each fold a little love into the christmas dinner! AND YES! Home Alone! I had forgotten about it!

  2. I host a get together a few weeks before Christmas for friends and family members I wont see on Christmas day -- each person gets a gift handed out by one of the children from Santa's sack------LynW

    1. That's just lovely - yes, it's so nice to see as many people as you can at Christmas but it does take a special effort!

  3. Well, now...looks as if the sparks are going to fly between Gabe and Abbie! What fun. :-)

    Gosh! I'm so not ready for Christmas, Clare. But you've reminded me that I must make a Christmas cake next weekend. I swear it's Mr Douglas's favourite thing about Christmas. ;-) Love the sound of those gingerbread houses you and the kids make -- wanna make an extra one? ;-)

  4. I'm intrigued, Clare. What happens to the 12 ginger bread houses.

    We don't have any really unusual Christmas traditions but we do all open one present on Christmas Eve.

  5. I LOVE CHRISTMAS TOO!! I tend to shop all year round. Makes the shopping a lot more fun.

  6. We don't have any traditions. We tried and failed each year to start one. This year it's to make some festive biscuits. I'm trying to find a good cinnamon biscuit recipe. Mine always seem dry. Fingers crossed. Not this year.

  7. Clare, definitely and angsty story. Such energy between that pair!

    I really need to get a move on. Like Michelle I have a cake to bake. Now I'm thinking of gingerbread houses. I haven't made one in a while. So much to prepare for!

  8. When kids were young, we'd take turns hosting a family Christmas in mid November, before everyone's lives got so busy. We were instructed to buy a $10 item for each of our kids, wrap it, label it, and take it to the host's home. Mommy would take kid(s) into the house while Daddy would take present out to the garage or elsewhere, dropping it inside Santa's sack. We had all gone in on a Santa suit, complete with plastic boot pieces and glasses for down the nose, and often the host Daddy or a good friend would distribute the presents to the kids.
    Now that our kids are grown up, we just have the family Christmas, usually in mid November still. The next generation is starting to have kids, so perhaps the tradition will be resumed by them....