Permalink to An A for SNOW-KISSED & Double Recommended Read from Dear Author

An A for SNOW-KISSED & Double Recommended Read from Dear Author

I’m extremely honored to have SNOW-KISSED awarded a rare and coveted A from Dear Author and be given a double Recommended Read.

Willa, who gave it the A, says this:

“Even amidst the angst there are playful and funny moments and tender sharing and — after all miss, this is Florand — wonderful food.

And most of all, there’s romance at its strongest and most powerful, as Kai discovers how intensely Kurt loves her and how real that love is. Snow-Kissed is obviously about grief and loss and their effects on the spirit, and it’s a beautifully done, insightful portrayal. But at its deepest heart it’s about love, the true, devoted, thick and thin kind of love — not uncritical, slavish adoration, which passes for it in a lot of romance, but love that is honest and clear-sighted, sometimes angry, yet unconditional.”

Snow-Kissed-DA recommend

Several other lovely reviews came in yesterday and the day before, and I want to say a huge thank you to those reviewers who have put so much time and thought into articulating their reaction to this story, which I know is not always an easy one. (It’s not for me either!)

Sarah from YA Librarian Tales says:

“There are a thousand reasons I anticipate reading a Laura Florand story but perhaps the biggest reason is that she is a phenomenal storyteller. Her characters are people I like and can sympathize with. Their world shares the emotions of my world. While Snow-Kissed does not have the romantic Parisian influences of Florand’s Chocolate series, this is not a lack on any part. Instead, I became swept away in a world of snow, of hard memories and of possible new beginnings. I have always found winter and snow very romantic and there is no doubt that Laura Florand knows how to play on that image. Basically folks, I loved this story. It is not a comical, funny romance so do not read it yet if that is what you are in the mood for. Read it when you are looking for a love story that makes you ache for the two characters. You will be well rewarded by the time they find each other again.”

Dabney at The Passionate Reader calls SNOW-KISSED “beautifully and sensitively written”.

And Laurie’s Laudanum decided to do a generous GIVEAWAY of 5 e-copies of the book on her blog. Go comment to enter! She says this: “SNOW-KISSED is a novella, but its emotional impact is staggering, almost a tangible thing…This is storytelling at its most basic form, borrowing from raw, human emotion to weave a satisfyingly hopeful story.”

Aaand Ruthie Knox just recommended it on her blog.

There have been a rush of things to deal with this week and it is hard to keep up, but I just want everyone to know I am very, very grateful for the praise this book has received and appreciate it so much. It’s a difficult one for me to talk about, but I am honored by the reaction it has received.

Permalink to Giveaway! Stephanie Doyle

Giveaway! Stephanie Doyle

Yay! Giveaway again! So if you missed out on the arcs yesterday, NEVER FEAR! It’s just an excuse to try a new great author. Today’s giveaway is thanks to the generous Stephanie Doyle, (who has the best author photo, I’m just saying) and whose writing attracted my notice sometime early this spring from discussions on blogs and Twitter. I was just really amazed by the courage of her writing–her characters have been the hard places. If they had cancer, then they really had cancer: you feel it in them, and in the way they deal with the world, and in the way they fight to come back from it. It makes her love stories all that more powerful. She has the third book in this series coming out October 1, so I emailed her about how I have been doing my “what got me hooked on this writer” giveaways, meaning her first book One Final Step . Well, she went ahead and offered not only the first book I read by her (below), but TWO SETS of ALL THREE of this series, which includes, then, advanced copies of the last one, FOR THE FIRST TIME. Just like or comment to enter, and we’ll draw two names Thursday!
For the First Time

Permalink to ARCs are here! CHOCOLATE HEART and ROSE IN WINTER (No Place Like Home)

ARCs are here! CHOCOLATE HEART and ROSE IN WINTER (No Place Like Home)

Interesting in reviewing these books?  ARCs are here! For THE CHOCOLATE HEART and NO PLACE LIKE HOME (the Christmas anthology with my ROSE IN WINTER in it, an entry into the Vie en Roses series). I’ve got some of these set aside for long-time reviewers, but I also wanted to offer some to new readers/reviewers, too.

So what are ARCs? They are “advanced reading copies” of a book, and say so on the book. They are early editions and probably contain typos that will not be in the final version in stores. (For example, when I was proofing HEART, every single foreign phrase had gotten squooshed into one word by their type-setting process & I had to go back and fix those. So that squooshed foreign phrase will show up squooshed in the arc. Squooshed is a technical term.) They are for reviewers, but my problem is, I never managed to distribute all mine correctly (most official reviewers have other ways of getting advanced copies, there’s a whole system set up). So around about CHOCOLATE ROSE & CHOCOLATE TOUCH I decided I wanted to just focus on regular readers.

Because all those reviews on Amazon and BN and Goodreads are super important, in fact, and you can do that, too.

So if you are someone who would enjoy reviewing a book on Amazon or would love to get an advanced look at these books and try it, let me know! I’m going to give away FIVE copies of THE CHOCOLATE HEART and THREE copies of NO PLACE LIKE HOME to interested “reader reviewers”. You can comment here or send me an email privately at laura AT lauraflorand DOT com, as you prefer, to be entered into the drawing. Let me know if you’re interested in both or only one of the two, too.

For bloggers–feel free to contact me as well. Usually I can get you authorized through Netgalley or we’ll figure out something! :)

I hope you enjoy these books! They’re coming to stores Nov 26 and Dec 3. (Back to back!)

the chocolate heart florand

Permalink to Behind-the-Scenes Chocolate Research

Behind-the-Scenes Chocolate Research

People have been emailing me trying to find the behind-the-scenes chocolate research on my site, since it’s not easy to keep track of, if you weren’t here when an original blog post was made. So I’ve organized things into one main page with links to either Pinterest or blog posts.

So if you want to see the research that went into all the Amour et Chocolat books (including even some glimpses of The Chocolate Heart and The Chocolate Temptation), start here.

And have fun! :)

Laurent Jeannin Chocolate Heart

Permalink to Chocolate Thief $1.99!

Chocolate Thief $1.99!

The Chocolate Thief ebook is currently on sale for $1.99 on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iTunes. Start the series!

Here’s a little chocolate to go with it, for the winner of our last giveaway, Debbie W. Yours are on their way, Debbie! No, I swear I didn’t eat them all. No, really. Trust me.

From Chocolats du CaliBressan. It's all about the Buddha! :)

From Chocolats du CaliBressan. It’s all about the Buddha! :)

Permalink to Snow-Kissed is #1 Amazon Short Story, THANK YOU!

Snow-Kissed is #1 Amazon Short Story, THANK YOU!

A huge, huge thank you to readers who helped make SNOW-KISSED the #1 bestselling short on Amazon.

And as a bonus, I got the Japanese editions of KISS THE BRIDE last night. (Remember that one? It just came out in July in Japan, but was released last May here.) I can’t get over how cute these are. They’re like half the size of SNOW-KISSED (see it under them?), but with *three* stories that long. It’s like long ago in the history of Japanese (and Chinese, I suppose) writing, they decided they would rather save on paper and up their use of brainpower instead. (Because you have to memorize so many more symbols, but they say more in less space.) Either that or they’re cutting out all my favorite scenes in the translation, hmm… Does anyone read Japanese? Did you ever live or travel in Japan? Did you love how tiny books like these are, too?

Kiss the Bride Japanese editionMy daughter hauled out all her information from her first grade unit on Japan last year and started teaching me words (Ototo-san, etc.) and how to bow correctly. (“No, Mommy! You’re an adult. You don’t bow like that to me, I’m a child!”)

Permalink to Readers discuss SNOW-KISSED

Readers discuss SNOW-KISSED

A little excerpt from the discussion of Snow-Kissed today on the Fiction Vixen blog, quoted with permission from reader Mzcue. I just thought this was so beautifully articulated and really got at what I was trying to do with the story.

Snow-Kissed is indeed a lot more than simply a great romance. Its internal arc moves with deft authenticity through the hurdles associated with profound loss: grief, forgiveness, redemption and the courage to surmount all and move ahead. It also highlights the role that our own self-imposed blinders play in distancing ourselves from those best able to help us heal. I particularly admired how thoughtfully the story laid out the internal dialog of Kurt, the anguished husband, yearning so keenly to restore his relationship with Kai.

But prospective readers should not let the subject matter mislead them from anticipating the luscious heat that characterizes Ms. Florand’s novels. Sex is a key aspect of the couple’s path back toward one another, and it’s torrid. Few contemporary romance authors bring as much originality and emotion to their lovers’ sex lives as this. Steamy and moving is a passage in which Kurt’s anger suffuses his lovemaking. It’s a pivotal moment, and hours later, I was still feeling aftershocks.”

snow-kissed florand

Permalink to SNOW-KISSED interview (to answer all the why’s!)

SNOW-KISSED interview (to answer all the why’s!)

I’m over on Fiction Vixen today with an interview on SNOW-KISSED, which seems to be generating more talk than everything else I’ve written, already. So I’m answering some questions people have had about it, and a big thanks to Sophia and Jen of Fiction Vixen for the opportunity to do so.

snow-kissed florand

Permalink to Snow-Kissed Snippet for the Day

Snow-Kissed Snippet for the Day

I want to say a huge thank you to Ruthie Knox for this beautiful praise of Snow-Kissed“Gorgeous, brave, heart-breakingly beautiful, and written with astonishing insights into grief.”

(Quoted with her permission from her review on Goodreads.) Knowing that it speaks to such an incredible author means so much.

Your Snow-Kissed snippet for the day:

She tried to stir when he settled his arm over her shoulders. “Kurt, I don’t think this is a good idea.”

Oh, because you think I think it’s a good idea? It’s suicidal. But he said, “I don’t mean to be rude, Kai, but it’s way the fuck better than your last one.”

Which was probably the wrong thing to say on his part, too, but she shut up, and they sipped hot chocolate and watched the snow. He hadn’t really meant to shut her up; he was pretty sure he would like for her to talk to him, if she was in a place where she could talk without screaming again. But—her body felt so damn warm against his. Why risk it moving away?

He let it soak into him, the warmth of her, the scent of her hair, like rain at last on parched earth. Oh, thank God, thank God, thank God . . .

And underneath the relief, the soul of a grown man who wanted to curl himself into a fetal ball in a dark place and whimper as torturers grabbed at him and hauled him away: Oh, God, please don’t let it hurt as much as last time.

snow-kissed florandAvailable now.

Permalink to Chocolate giveaway in thanks for SNOW-KISSED support

Chocolate giveaway in thanks for SNOW-KISSED support

We’re doing a little chocolate giveaway over on Facebook in thanks for all the support for the surprise SNOW-KISSED release. I hate to force the people who hate FB onto it, but this one is a bit complicated. (We’re having fun voting on some different chocolatier recommendations.) Still, you are welcome to join us! Just want to say thank you for all the support of it these first few days of its release.