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Saturday, June 22, 2013

Spotlight Saturday: Guest Post and Giveaway with Jordan McCollum, author of I, Spy

Hi, everyone!

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

We will be joined today by Jordan McCollum.

About Jordan:

An award-winning author, Jordan McCollum can’t resist a story where good defeats evil and true love conquers all. In her day job, she coerces people to do things they don’t want to, elicits information and generally manipulates the people she loves most—she’s a mom.

Jordan holds a degree in American Studies and Linguistics from Brigham Young University. When she catches a spare minute, her hobbies include reading, knitting and music. She lives with her husband and four children in Utah. 


Welcome to Darlene's Book Nook, Jordan!

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

Thanks so much for having me, Darlene!

The setting I didn't use (completely against my will)

Like it says on the back cover of my book, Canada really is the last place you'd expect to find an American spy—but the CIA does have a presence there. (No comment on how I know that.) (Okay, it was confirmed in the book Argo.) I knew it would make the perfect setting for a humorous spy novel.

I had the good fortune of visiting Ottawa when I was a teenager. Although we're from the US, my father worked for a Canadian company for 26 years, and he took me with him on a business trip. While he was in meetings, I had free rein of the capital. (Can you imagine letting a 15 year old wander free in DC in the late '90s?! Canada FTW!)

Since it was a business trip, the company treated us to some of the nicest things in town. One of those was a meal with Dad's co-workers (also visiting from his home office) at a restaurant called Merlot. It was located on the top floor of the downtown Holiday Inn—in a rotating restaurant. You can see the round, rotating part of the hotel here:

Ottawa Marriott
Photo by Peter Sawatzky via Flickr/Creative Commons

Our party spent most of the evening there. I took several (blurry) pictures of the sunset over the river—you can sort of see me in the reflection:

I knew when I wanted a romantic locale for my characters, Merlot was one of my top choices.

But . . .

The Holiday Inn was sold to the Marriott. The revolving restaurant closed in 2010, probably due to the cost of maintenance. Instead, they opened a politics-themed restaurant on the ground floor called Spin.


You've got a rotating restaurant in your building, and you shut it down and name the non-rotating replacement SPIN?

Way to spit in my face, Marriott.

Fortunately, the trip wasn't a total waste. (You know, aside from my dad's business.) I got to use a few other popular events and places in my novel, including the changing of the guard at Parliament Hill:

And the Château Laurier (which is now owned by the Fairmont chain), and the locks where the Rideau Canal meets the Ottawa River:

That's me with the bike ;) .

In fact, the Château, as locals called it, plays such a big role in my story that I had it featured on the cover:

Now, if only I could get back there. . . .

Thanks so much for joining us today, Jordan!

About the Book:

Canada is probably the last place you'd expect to find an American spy. But even idyllic Ottawa has its deadly secrets—and so does CIA operative Talia Reynolds. She can climb through ventilation shafts, blend in at the occasional diplomatic function, even scale buildings (small ones). But there’s one thing she can’t do: tell her aerospace engineer boyfriend Danny about her Top Secret occupation.

It worked for a year, keeping Danny in the dark, keeping him away from danger, keeping her secrets. And then Talia finally catches a hot case: Fyodor Timofeyev. Russian. Aerospace executive. Possible spy?

She can make this work, too—until Danny needs her at the same time her country does. And when Fyodor targets Danny? Suddenly her schedule isn't the only thing suffering. Now to save her secrets and her country, Talia must sacrifice the man she loves.

I, Spy is available through Amazon (paperback), Kindle, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords and direct from

More about I, Spy | Add I, Spy to your Goodreads to-read list!

Advance praise

The edge-of-my-seat undercover operations kept me turning pages, and just when I thought the story would go one way, plot twists sent it down another path. Thrilling, adventurous, and romantic, this book has it all for an Alias fan.
Jami Gold, award-winning author

Jordan McCollum’s debut novel is a delightful combination of mystery, action, and romance. Talia’s CIA training and almost OCD caution feed her quirky humor while exposing her very human fears and insecurities. Add in her boyfriend Danny, and it's enough to twist your heart.
Donna K. Weaver, author of A Change of Plans

Clever, suspenseful, and charged with political intrigue and romance, I, Spy is the perfect combination for a fun and captivating read!
Michelle Davidson Argyle, author of Monarch

Three lucky winners will win a copy of Jordan's Romantic Suspense novel, I, Spy!

Grand Prize (Canada/US): Paperback copy

2 Runner-up Prizes (Worldwide): Digital copy

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

The giveaway is open worldwide until 12:00 AM CST on June 29, 2013.


  1. Thanks again for having me, Darlene!

  2. Ottawa sounds cool and that whole Spin restaurant made me giggle! I Spy sounds like a fun read, thanks for sharing it and for the funny, informative post!


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