Elise K. Ackers
I am a romantic suspense and contemporary romance writer, and avid reader of both genres. I also enjoy reading and writing young and new adult fiction.
A lot which can be said for writing which can be said for reading. Sometimes there is a story which seizes the imagination – it scales to the top of the to-be-read pile or hijacks your work in progress, and it settles itself in the forefront of your mind until it’s said its piece. I love when that happens.
My to-be-read pile is rather harrowing, and it grows every week now that I am active on social media sites which constantly bring new titles to my attention. It’s all rather civilised – if I discovered one title before another, the first title is typically read first. But I’ve have a lot of queue jumpers, lately.
The most recent read to elbow its way to the front was Kristen Higgins’s The Best Man. I saw the cover, liked that enough to read the blurb, and then made a point of buying myself a copy. It was initially placed at the bottom of the pile of books on my bedside table, but that very night it was dragged from the bottom and opened.
At the time that I began reading The Best Man, I was going through a personal issue, and I was finding it difficult to connect with any of my books. But Higgins’ leading lady had been through far more than I had, and perhaps my misery wanted company. Perhaps I wanted to lose myself in a world where someone else’s loss eclipsed my own.
Prior to starting The Best Man, I had attempted and discarded eight books.
This is all the long way of saying that I am drawn to books I can empathise with. I am often drawn to strong, sarcastic characters who challenge themselves to do a typical thing an atypical way. I love a good family drama, and sometimes, I’m drawn to books full of heartache.
My young and new adult reads stir the inner child in me. They take me back to a time when I was convinced of magic and destiny, and ever on the lookout for both. At the moment I am writing my first new adult book, the first in a series of three, but for now I journey into the Nevernever with Julie Kagawa’s iron fey, and into Shannon Hale’s enchanting Kildenree and Bayern. I love meeting characters who are changing their world, fighting for their future and falling in love, if not for the first time, but possibly the last.
I will never grow out of young or new adult books.
At this point in my life I can’t read horror – I get too scared and try to read through a gap between my fingers. But I always read romance. I don’t care if the protagonists are on another world, if they’re an unlikely match or professional enemies – whatever the set-up, I read books for these relationships.
Every book I open must have romantic elements. That, above all else, is what I like to read, and what I will always write.
Three different words I would use to describe myself are:
My latest release with Destiny Romance, Ask Me To Stay: A Homeland Book, is the first in a series of rural contemporary fiction. It’s about reputation, obligation, forgiveness and love; about two brothers who are strangers because of a long-standing secret; and an old flame which gets a second chance to burn bright. It is set in a small country town in New South Wales, Australia, it’s a novella full-to-bursting with complex, wonderful characters and there are, of course, romantic elements.
The second and third books in the series will be published later this year; they continue the romance arc established in the first, and give the reader the chance to linger just a little longer in these characters’ lives.
Did I mention I love a good series?
Ask Me To Stay Blurb:Genre: Contemporary/rural, with romantic elements
When family tragedy brings bad boy Ethan Foster home, he doesn't expect a warm welcome. In the small town of Hinterdown reputation is everything - and Ethan's was ruined long ago. Nobody wants him around, particularly not Sam O'Hara, the girl he left behind.
There's still a powerful spark between them, but Sam is afraid to risk her heart again. And Ethan is hiding a secret that will have repercussions for his whole family. Will the townspeople ever forgive him? More importantly, will those he loves the most find it in their hearts to take him back?
This tender tale of love and redemption is the first in a brilliant new series by Elise K. Ackers, author of Small Town Storm and the bestselling The Man Plan.
Ask Me To Stay Excerpt:
Ethan nudged Rowan and the boy nodded to indicate he was ready to leave. The kid looked glum, which was to be expected considering his loss, but also surprisingly dishevelled. His hair was greasy, his neck dirty. Sam frowned, thinking on it. ‘See you,’ she said. ‘Bye kids.’
Nina blew her a noisy kiss, checked her brother, then blew another on his behalf.
Sam made a show of catching them.
A dozen metres along the footpath Sam turned. They made a pretty picture, walking together down the main street of the town. Neenz clung to Ethan, fiercely possessive of a man she had realised belonged to her in some way. Ro walked alongside, perpetually shy yet keeping close all the same. It would have been easy for them to adopt their father’s hostility towards their uncle, but somehow the bitterness hadn’t touched them. Perhaps they didn’t have the capacity to carry one more emotion in their tiny bodies. Grief was heavy enough.
Sam watched as Ethan looked across the street, slowed and stopped.
The mechanics’ shop stood as it always had, crowding the intersection with cars and bikes. A sign, to Sam’s mind shaped like a squashed diamond, turned slowly clockwise and showcased the Foster name. Sparks tumbled from one of the open garage doors, brilliant and mesmerising. The concrete driveways were stained with rubber and grease, the door handles with automobile grime. Dean had a monopoly on the market – there wasn’t a garage within one hundred kilometres, but he kept his prices reasonable and his staff were good with their hands and accountable for their work.
Sam looked back at Ethan, the absent co-owner of Foster’s Garage, and wondered what he saw.
Elise K. Ackers is from Melbourne, Australia. She writes contemporary romance and romantic suspense and is published with Destiny Romance and Escape Publishing. Elise is an animal foster carer, a magnet for unusual accidents and an enthusiastic couch commentator. Ask Me To Stay: A Homeland Book is her fourth book. The second title in the Homeland series will be available in July 2013.