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Can I Get Some Reality In My Romance?

Welcome author J.D. Brown! We are celebrating the new release of her second book, Trace of Passion.

Movies, TV shows, and fiction are entertaining because they stretch reality.
We’re willing to suspend belief for a while to go on an adventure in a place
where magic can happen, where the hero always gets the girl, where true,
unconditional love exists.

Wikipedia calls Love
at First Sight
“one of the most powerful tropes in Western
fiction”. Its popularity spans the ages, back to Classical Greek and Roman

How many of you believe in love at first sight in real life? Or in soul
mates? You might like to think it’s possible. You might even know someone who
seemed to find true love with the first person they ever dated. I know a couple
people like that. My uncle proposed to his wife on their second date. One of my
close friends from high school married a boy she met in kindergarten. They
remained close through the years despite him moving to a different country with
his family when he was young. They got married soon after she graduated and
have four beautiful daughters now. And my uncle? He and my aunt are still

So I know it’s possible. And I know we all love to believe it can be
possible for us too, even if only in a book.

But how realistic is it, really, for two strangers to meet and fall
instantly, deeply, and unconditionally in love to the point that they would
sacrifice themselves without question for the others’ happiness? We don’t
really think about it because fans of romance want to read about that kind of
devotion. But in truth, most of you probably put aside some amount of
believability to allow yourself to be satisfied by the hero and heroine’s
passion. Because really, you could think “Oh my god, that is so FAKE.
Real men don’t act like THAT. If this was a reality show, he’d probably only be
dating her for her money.
” But we don’t think like that when we read a
romance. Instead we think “Awww! I wish men really did THAT, that is so

Like the movie Titanic.
Woman watched that movie over and over when it first came out and it was all
because of Leo’s character. Meanwhile, our boyfriends and husbands wished ill
things on the movie’s producer.

In real life, most of us experience “lust” at first sight, which
sometimes then grows into passion. But it’s almost never perfect. It’s almost
always difficult. Sometimes it ends badly. Few times it ends really well.
Authors are often told to write what we know, to write believable stories with
believable characters and believable motivation. Which is what prompted this
post. As a romance writer, I have a difficult time making two strangers fall in
love. I don’t think it’s believable. It’s definitely not very realistic. And I
refuse to write a story that I don’t believe in. So, I make my characters work
on their relationship.
And you know what? It works for me. It’s like the novel The Notebook. Allie rejects
Noah over and over until he is forced to trick her into going out with him.
Allie didn’t instantly love Noah. He had to work for his chance with her, and
their relationship grew from there. Noah’s character scores points with the
audience for being so deliciously clever in his attempts. We even like it when
Noah and Allie fight because it’s real.

In my first erotic romance story, A Trace of Love, I poke fun at my
own beliefs in romance. Trace Curtis, the hero, is convinced his feelings for
Ophelia are true, but she doesn’t think it’s possible after only one night. The
story ends with Trace and his band leaving for their next gig and Ophelia’s
missed out on a second shot at love.

In the newly released sequel, A Trace of Passion, Trace is back in town and demands an explanation from the only
woman to ever reject him. What he thinks was payback is actually the cover for
a darker truth and neither Trace nor Ophelia are sure their love for one
another can survive Ophelia’s reality.

And now for a special treat! Excerpt from A Trace of Passion (book 2)

Contains some spoilers from book 1, and contains some light graphic content.
Trace exited the bathroom smelling of mouth rinse. He had the
decency to put his jeans on before he sat on the couch. God, please put your
shirt on too before I do something stupid.
She wanted to ask why he slept
on her couch, but she knew questions would only prolong his stay and lead to
Trace nodded at her mug. “Aren’t you going to offer me some
“That’s not very hospitable. I carried you up two flights of
stairs and stayed on your couch to make sure you didn’t have a concussion or
choke on your own vomit.”
Ophelia narrowed her gaze. “I didn’t vomit.”
“But you could have.”
“Get out of my apartment, Trace.”
“Well now you’re just being rude.”
She pressed her fingers to her temple and sipped the coffee.
This cannot be happening.
“Trace, I don’t have time, I have to go to work in an hour.”
“So go to work,” he shrugged. “I’ll be here when you get
Her jaw dropped. “You wouldn’t…you can’t…don’t you have band
practice or something you have to do?”
He grinned and leaned back while spreading his arms over the
back of the couch. “They won’t miss me for a day.”
Ophelia gulped the last sip of coffee while weighing her
options. She moved to the breakfast bar near the mounted telephone and slammed
the cup against the counter. “All right, I get it.
You’re pissed that I gave you a fake phone number last year.
But if you don’t take a hint and leave now, I’ll call the cops, Trace.
I’m not kidding.”
He stood and cocked his brow. “And tell them what, exactly?
That I helped you into bed after you passed out drunk? That I stayed on the couch
to make sure you’d be okay?”
She bit her lip and glanced at the floor. “Trace, you’re
seriously freaking me out.”
“All I want, Ophelia, are answers. Honest answers.”
Tears welled in her eyes. She blinked them way and tried to
draw up courage that wasn’t there. “Jesus Christ, do you ask every woman why
they slept with you?”
Trace pursed his lips. He sat on the edge of the couch and
ran all ten fingers through his hair.
She saw the agitated wrinkle in his brow before the black
curls fell over his eyes again. “I didn’t mean to scare you, okay? I only
wanted to confront you last night. Call you a bitch or something like that,” he
scoffed. “But now I feel like a dick. I owe you an apology, Ophelia. I’m sorry
I hurt your feelings when you asked me to the Sadie Hawkins’s Day dance.”
Ophelia raised her brow. “The…the what?”
“You know, the dance you asked me to. I shouldn’t have told
you to grow a pair of breasts in front of the whole cafeteria. But damn it
Ophelia, you didn’t have to rip my heart out.”
“Wait,” she stood there blinking. She remembered that day
and was pretty sure he had used the word tits. It stung, but when she
thought about Trace, she always remembered the good things. His smile or the
little tunes he played at lunch despite the rule against musical instruments
being in the cafeteria. “Trace…that was eleven years ago. You really think I’m
the type to hold a grudge over something so juvenile?”
Trace wet his lips. “You mean you weren’t trying to get
revenge for that?”
“No. Jesus!”
“Then…why did you sleep with me?”
Ophelia rolled her eyes. This was tiring. “Trace, I think
your melodramatic song lyrics went to your head. It was just a one-night screw.
As for why I did it, I don’t know, maybe just because you’re you.
You’re…you know…famous and rich and incredibly sexy.” And why am I inflating
his already huge ego? “Why do my reasons have to be any different from
any other woman’s?”
“Because…because I fell in love with you that night. That’s
never happened before.” He glanced at her. “Believe me, I know what a screw
feels like and that was not just a screw.” He stood and Ophelia couldn’t help
but watch his torso muscles flex in the movement. “And I don’t think it was
just sex for you either because you wouldn’t have run away.” She swallowed hard
as he slowly stepped toward her. “You wouldn’t have given me a fake number and
gone through so much trouble to avoid me last night.” He took two more steps. Her
hand slid across the counter looking for anything to hold on to. The closer he
came the dizzier she got. “You wouldn’t have been mad to see me on your couch
this morning.” He whispered as he stepped up to her, his nose mere inches from
hers. Ophelia gasped, her hand landing on the phone. She clutched it to her chest.
He pried it from her grip and tossed it on the couch behind them. “You are mad
because you love me too.” His hands rose to cup her face. “What I can’t figure
out, Ophelia, is why you’re so afraid to admit you love me.”
His lips pressed hot against hers. She tried to resist, but
her body defied her. Her back arched off the wall, pushing her breast against
the planes of his chest as his hands came around her waist. She couldn’t lie to
herself; she missed the feel of him, the heat of his skin burning trails
wherever they touched. And yes, she thought of him every single day for the
past eleven months, twenty-four days, six hours and elven minutes. Still, she
had hoped to fool Trace. What were they doing? If he thought she had ripped his
heart out last year, repeating the experience would truly crush him.
She whimpered between him and the wall. “Trace…”
His whole body pressed against hers, his breath hot against
her cheek. “Don’t say anything and for God’s sake, don’t fight me anymore,
Ophelia.” He sealed her lips with his and gripped her tighter around the waist.
She cursed under her breath as her body melted against him. Her hands flew
around his neck and tangled in his black curls. Her eyes closed tight as their
tongues glided against each other in furious passion.

So not fair, Danielle. Whew! This book sounds hot and I can’t wait to read more about Trace and Ophelia. No. She shouldn’t fight him anymore.


Author Bio
Danielle Ravencraft graduated from the International Academy of Design and Technology with a Bachelor Degree in Fine Arts. She currently lives in Wisconsin with her two Pomeranians. Growing up in the suburbs of Chicago, her writing is influenced by the multicultural urban society of her youth which she continues to visit each summer. Danielle enjoys writing sensual romance exclusively for a female audience. She also writes mainstream paranormal romance and urban fantasy under the nameJ. D. Brown.
Contact Danielle Ravencraft vial email at
You can also follow Danielle Ravencraft around the web via:

Order Trace of Love here.
Order Trace of Passion here.

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. Welcome, Danielle. So glad to see you here. I've had my decaf, and hoping your morning is stellar. We've already had about 50 views on the site, learning about you and your wonderful books.

  2. Great to see Danielle under that gorgeous Jimmy Thomas Banner. I love both A Trace of Love and A Trace of Passion. Go Trace Go. Lol. I look forward to having them over at my place (Charlene Blogs) tomorrow for a character interview! So fun! Danielle, you really make these characters come alive. 🙂

    Isn't it true we tend to accept all that love at first sight stuff when we read a romance? I want to believe it's possible and our hearts grasp the possibility.

    Great post!


  3. Charlene, I so agree with you. I love a book where you suspend disbelief, whether it is from the world building, or the characters you wish you could spend the rest of your life with, or the story itself. Danielle scores on all fronts.

    Nice to see you, my friend.

  4. Hey ladies…nice post Danielle! I know what you mean about writing what you know in love…being married as long as I have, there have been a lot of real life/love experiences.

    Yes, I married an alpha…it was deep and passionate right away…we split up for a week and both of us tried to date others…it was the worst time of my life (I still remember sitting in my mother's bedroom in the dark staring out her window to see if my boyfriend drove by).

    AND – I would be damned if I was the first to break the break-up (LOL)

    Anyhoo…I believe in love at first site, but like you've mentioned…any relationship is work in progress. It's those really rocky moments in a relationship that tests the withstandability, and if it remains standing, it's all the stronger for it and definitely worthy of a lifetime.

    I do live in a fantasy world…ask my husband. LOL

  5. Good evening, ladies.

    Wow look at all these comments! I'm touched! Thank you all so much for the kind words. I'm sorry I'm getting such a late start today. My internet was down (today of all day, of course) and I just got it back.

    But I'm here now and will (hopefully) be here the rest of the day. 🙂

    Sharon, thanks so much for hosting me. *hugs*

  6. Kay Dee, I love your romance with your husband! So inspiring. Sharon's too! I actually come from a family of divorced women. They're all remarried now, but I suspect it's for the security. I fear I'm doomed to only have a romance like yours in the books I write and read. LOL. (Bitter much? LOL)

  7. Thanks so much for everyone showing up today. Thanks to Danielle for some much-needed inspiration. Hmmm….Maybe I could write UF…Very fun, my friend.

    I salute my icewater to you. "Nite. Come back tomorrow and hear all about Cornerstone Deep and talented author Charlene Wilson!

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