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Saturday, February 4, 2012

Spotlight Saturday: Guest Post and Giveaway with Marie Astor, author of Lucky Charm

Hi, everyone!

Welcome to another edition of Spotlight Sunday at Darlene's Book Nook, where we feature authors and their books!

We will be joined today by Marie Astor.

About Marie:

Marie Astor is a die-hard romantic who wholeheartedly believes in true love, which is why she writes in the contemporary romance genre.

Marie is the author of contemporary romance novels, On the Rim of Love, Lucky Charm, A Chance Encounter and Other Stories, and a short story collection

To find out more about Marie and her upcoming book events, you can connect with her at the social media links below:

Welcome to Darlene's Book Nook, Marie!

Marie has written a guest post, so I will now turn the floor over to her!

What’s in a place? Or the most romantic place in the world
by Marie Astor

When it comes to naming the most romantic place in the world, opinions vary widely: some will cite Paris, while others will argue for Prague or Budapest, and others for the quaint streets of Greenwich Village or charming alleys of Central Park in New York. Yet, others will scoff at all of these places, opting for the open spaces of Colorado or Wyoming. My personal favorites include a mix of the above: as much as I love cobble-stoned streets and old-world architecture, I think that nature can be equally romantic: Harriman State Park, New York and Yellowstone, Wyoming are my favorites. When it comes to cities, I am partial to New York, and having visited Paris, I have to say that this beautiful city has a special place in my heart.

I could go on for hundreds of pages trying to come up with an exhaustive list, but that is not the point that I’m trying to make in this blog; rather, it is that, in my humble opinion, it is not the place that defines its romance, but one’s state of mind – you could be in the most romantic place in the world, but if your heart is not in the right place, the surroundings will be wasted on you.

In my contemporary romance novel, Lucky Charm, the main heroine, Annabel is getting over a broken engagement when she embarks on a trip to Paris with her best friend. At first, the charms of Paris are lost on her, as every romantic spot reminds her of being single in one of the world’s most romantic cities. But as Annabel comes to terms with her break-up and starts to explore the wonderful city of Paris, the trip becomes more interesting - yes, she does meet a love interest, if that’s what you’re guessing.

Now, I’m not saying that in order to enjoy a trip to a romantic destination one necessarily has to be in love - what I’m saying is that it is up to us to keep our minds open to possibilities and find romance in everyday life, and for that, one does not have to leave one’s home. A walk down one’s street can be romantic, and a drink at the local pub can turn into a myriad of possibilities.

I would like to conclude this post by wishing everyone to keep their hearts open to romance and their minds open to possibilities, and to those who have already found their soul mates to remember of ways to find romance in everyday life.

Thanks so much for joining us today, Marie! 

More About Lucky Charm: 


Twenty-eight-year old Annabel Green is about to tie the knot with her college love, an aspiring author Jeremy Blake, but her plans for an ideal wedding are rudely interrupted when she catches Jeremy kissing his gorgeous book agent.

Shell-shocked by Jeremy’s betrayal, Annabel retreats into the quiet routine of TV dinners and solitary evenings. It is then that Annabel’s best friend, fashion designer Lilly Clayton, sets herself on a mission to draw Annabel out of her shell. In an attempt to persuade Annabel to keep an open mind on dating, Lilly takes Annabel for a stunning makeover, but after Annabel passes on a date with a dashing entrepreneur, Lilly decides that more drastic measures are needed. Lilly invites Annabel to see a palm reader who gives Annabel a lucky charm that is supposed to help her find true love.

Will Annabel find love again, or is her broken heart beyond mending so that even magic won’t help her?

Here is a brief excerpt from Lucky Charm to whet your appetite:

     The wheat-blond back of the man’s head looked unmistakably like Jeremy’s, and the bleached blond updo of his female companion belonged to none other than Jeremy’s book agent, Athena Christy - a statuesque blond whose credentials were as powerful as her looks. The two sat together at a small table - the kind that every New York café with sidewalk space puts out at the slightest sign of warm weather.

      Annabel told herself that there was nothing for her to be worried about – there was nothing wrong with an author having a meal with his book agent. She was about to walk over and say hello, but the sight of Athena putting her arm on Jeremy’s shoulder, stopped her dead.

     Her heart pounding like a sledgehammer, Annabel j-walked across the street and slipped into the grocery shop next to the café, quickly ducking beneath the row of flowers that stood in the shop’s window. From her cover up she peered at the table on the sidewalk, hoping that she had been mistaken, but the way Jeremy and Athena leaned into each other, like a couple, along with the sight of Jeremy’s hand on Athena’s thigh left no room for excuses.

     A waiter approached their table with a bottle of Veuve Clicquot. He uncorked the bottle and poured the golden, sparkling liquid into Athena’s and Jeremy’s glasses. The champagne fizzed, and Athena threw her head back in delight, clapping her hands. They are celebrating, Annabel thought bitterly, perhaps Athena had finally cinched the deal on Jeremy’s book – a book that I had waited for him to write all these years. Jeremy finished his champagne and moved his chair closer to Athena’s. He whispered something into her ear, and she smiled, turning her face toward his; then, their lips met in a kiss that seemed to last an eternity.

     Watching Jeremy and Athena together, Annabel felt as though her heart was being pierced with a million of glass shards, and yet, she remained transfixed in her makeshift hideaway. Part of her yearned to confront them, to unleash the hurt and betrayal that was churning inside her, but she knew that she did not have the guts to walk up to them. She longed for Jeremy to see her, for him to cower in shame for his betrayal, but instead she was the one cowering in her ridiculous hideaway.

     “Can I help you?” An alarmed voice sounded behind her.

     She turned around and saw the store clerk eyeing her suspiciously.

     “No. I didn’t find what I was looking for.” Annabel stormed outside, quickly turning in the opposite direction of the café where Jeremy continued swooning over Athena.

Book Trailer:


One lucky winner will receive this Teardrop Amethyst Sterling Silver Necklace!

To enter the giveaway, you must complete the Rafflecopter entry form below.

This giveaway open to Canada/US participants only, and it will close on Saturday, February 11th at 12:01 AM EST.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Hi Darlene,

    Thank you for hosting me today!


  2. I loved this post. We should all believe in true love. Great writing.

  3. Hi Donna,
    Thank you for your comment - I couldn't agree more!


  4. Wonderful web site. Plenty of useful info here. I'm sending it to several pals ans also sharing in delicious. And obviously, thanks to your effort!
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  5. I am very happy for once I was going through my wall on facebook and saw a post about this. This book sounds really good, and I just love the pink on the cover. Thank you so much for sharing!


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