by Hope Tarr
It’s the flaw that makes the masterpiece and a fictional romance hero is no exception. Even so called perfect diamonds have at least one flaw. I’ll take a diamond-in-the-rough over a too smooth, too polished, too shiny stone any day.
OPERATION CINDERELLA, the launch to my Suddenly Cinderella Series for Entangled Publishing, is in no danger of perfection—not even close.
A Texas-born sociologist turned conservative news media pundit, Ross is unrepentantly old-fashioned, with fixed—dare I say rigid—ideas of how male-female relationships should roll. And he is stubborn, as stubborn as they come. When he comes across an article advocating teen birth control in his teenage daughter’s room—“Forget the Fairytale, Teen Sex is Fact not Fiction”—he makes the magazine the target of his on air “Ross’s Rant.” Before long On Top Magazine has lost a major advertizing account, and its features editor, Macie Graham is precariously close to losing her job.
But Macie is a survivor—and a scrapper. Out for blood, she scents a story, a behind-the-scenes exposé on the sexy Texan that promises to be as juicy as a rare cooked steak. When the opportunity presents itself, she launches “Operation Cinderella,” going undercover as Ross’s live-in housekeeper. Doing so means making a Cinderella transformation in reverse, from hip Manhattan goth girl to sweet, old-school “Martha Jane.”
And that’s when the fun really starts.
In the course of digging for dirt on Ross, Macie discovers more than a few things about her “employer.” Ross is for sure old-fashioned and stubborn, but he is also unfailingly kind and loving, courteous and compassionate, honest and honorable. And his old-fashioned ways aren’t all bad. Actually some of them are pretty darned…nice. ((smiles)) Take for instance this snippet of Ross putting his um…foot down.
“I’m taking you home, home to my bed. And once we’re there I’m going to make love to you my way, the old-fashioned way—slow, thorough, and all through the night.”
OPERATION CINDERELLA as well as the other books in the series, all of which feature my cast of gloriously flawed heroes and heroines. In A CINDERELLA CHRISTMAS CAROL, the in-series winter holiday novella, Macie’s Scrooge-like boss, Starr, receives a surprise gift on Christmas Eve: a pair of vintage Saks red slippers. Trying on the shoes may just give Starr a turn at Christmas Happily Ever After with sexy Art Director, Matt Landry—assuming she’ll take the plunge and change her attitude on both Happily Ever After and the holiday.
In Book #2, PROJECT CINDERELLA (March 2013), Ross’s ex-wife, famous fashion photographer Francesca St. James gets considerably more than she bargained for when she leaves New York for Los Angeles to join the cast of a newly launched reality TV show as a fashion coach. “Project Cinderella” aims to remake fashion frogs into styling Cinderella princes and princesses. Contestant Gregory Knickerbocker is a geek with a heart of gold, easily the program’s “least likely to succeed” as a finalist. Fortunately Francesca loves nothing more than a challenge and serving as Greg’s “fashion fairy godmother” promises to be that and then some. Can a pair of vintage Saks Fifth Avenue red slippers help her look beyond Greg’s center-parted hair and ubiquitous gray hoodies to the Prince Charming that lies beneath?
Suddenly Cinderella will conclude with THE CINDERELLA CAPER (June 2013). Plus-size personal chef, Stefanie Stephanopolis is one of DC’s most sought after personal chefs. Cooking gourmet in-home meals for couples is her specialty—only Stef is eating her meals solo. Convinced by her diet-obsessed stepmother and stepsisters that she’s fat, Stef hides her pretty face beneath glasses and messy bangs and her sexy curves beneath baggy sweaters and “mom” jeans. Accepting an exclusive two-month contract as the personal chef for visiting Greek tycoon, Nicholai, catapults Stef far beyond her kitchen—and her comfort zone. Can the surprise arrival of a pair of vintage red shoes help her to see the princess-perfect vision that Nick does?
Thanks so much for having me, Stella! Wishing everyone a holiday season brimming with fairytale dreams-come-true…
OPERATION CINDERELLA, the launch to her new Suddenly Cinderella Series of contemporary fairytale-themed romances. Hope is also a co-founder and current principal of Lady Jane’s Salon™, New York City’s first and so far only monthly romance fiction reading series now with satellites in four other U.S. cities.
Book #1 in the Suddenly Cinderella seriesManhattan magazine editor Macie Graham always gets her story—and she’ll do anything to uncover the dirt on famous radio personality Ross Mannon. After he smears her article on his show, nearly costing Macie her job, she devises a plan to masquerade as a modern-day Cinderella and get her revenge on the infuriating Texan.
All Ross wants is a woman with old-fashioned values to be his housekeeper and role model for his troubled teenage daughter. When the perfect woman shows up, Ross is relieved—until he finds himself drawn to his gorgeous, red-stiletto-wearing new employee. “Martha Jane” is opinionated and sexy, and Ross is intrigued…and more than a little turned on.
Macie thought Operation Cinderella was foolproof, but Ross, with his rugged good looks and southern charm, proves to be as perfect behind-the-scenes as he does in public. But when she finally uncovers a secret that could destroy Ross’s reputation, she faces losing her job or losing the fairy-tale ending she didn’t even know she wanted.