Tag: Hope Tarr

Guest Review: Claimed by the Rogue by Hope Tarr

Posted March 9, 2015 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Review: Claimed by the Rogue by Hope TarrReviewer: Tracy
Claimed by the Rogue by Hope Tarr
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Publication Date: March 3rd 2015
Format: eARC
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He crossed an ocean to find her. His secret could prevent him from claiming her heart. Claimed, Book 1 When Robert Bellamy signed on with the East India Company and set sail for Calcutta, Lady Phoebe Tremont took his promise to heart. Their separation would be but brief; in six months he would send for her. Six years later, believing her love to be drowned at sea, Phoebe hides her tears behind a disguise at a masked ball to celebrate her engagement to a dashing French aristocrat. It is there she encounters a handsome guest costumed as a rogue of the sea-a pirate. When he drops his mask, she finds herself looking into a dead man's eyes. A ghost's eyes. Robert's eyes. Through hardship and degradation, Robert never lost his resolve to return home to England a rich man. Now a successful ship's captain, there is one prize left to reclaim-Phoebe. But the demure debutante he left behind has grown into a dazzling, decidedly self-determined woman. Nor is Robert the callow youth who set sail in search of adventure. Yet the one thing that could win her heart is the very dark truth his pride warns him never to reveal... Warning: This book contains steamy sex, some violence-and a hero so swoon-worthy you'll find yourself seduced into staying up into the wee hours turning pages.

Tracy’s review of Claimed by the Rogue by Hope Tarr

Robert is so excited to be back in England. He’s had a rough six years and the only thing he can think of doing is getting back to the woman he loves, Phoebe Tremont. When he arrives at her house, however, it’s to find a party going on and he soon finds out that it’s Phoebe’s engagement party. He’s not thrilled, to say the least.

When Phoebe sees Robert she thinks she’s hallucinating or dreaming. She was told that Robert had been killed when his ship sank and she’s mourned him for years. Now that he’s back she’s not sure how she feels. She’s supposed to marry her French aristocrat, Aristide, but she still loves Robert. Unfortunately Robert shrugs off his absence and getting no word to her as no big deal and Phoebe doesn’t take that well. As much as she loves Robert she feels like he’s played with her feelings and she’s done with him, or is she? Robert’s making it impossible to forget him and the more he tries the weaker Phoebe gets in her resolve.

This was a sweet love story that had mostly to do with broken trust between two people who loved each other deeply. Robert, being a man, couldn’t come out and tell her the truth about what had happened to him while he had been away as he was ashamed of what had happened and that he felt less than a man. He was afraid that Phoebe would see it that way as well so he didn’t tell her the truth and it caused a huge rift. He was determined to get her to trust him again and to win her back but I have to say that some of the ways he tried were so ridiculous I can’t even believe he tried them!

Phoebe was a sweet girl but I really wanted her to break off her engagement to Aristide the minute that Robert got back. She didn’t and it tortured Robert horribly. He’d been through so much (although she had no idea about that) and I just wanted her to treat him well, which she didn’t until the truth came out. Despite that I thought it was a good love story and was told well. I was engaged throughout and was definitely satisfied with the HEA at the end.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5


The title is available from Samhain Publishing, Ltd.. You can buy it here or here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


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#DFRAT Guest Author (+ a Giveaway): Hope Tarr

Posted June 22, 2012 by Holly in Features, Promotions | 16 Comments

Please join us in welcoming Hope Tarr to Book Binge. She’s here to discuss the brave, new digital book world.


Hail Brave New Digital Book World
By Hope Tarr

When my Victorian-set romance, Tempting, first released as a mass market single title with a major New York publisher, I thought my publishing career was made. But despite receiving stellar reviews, including a RT BOOK Reviewers’ Choice nomination for Best Innovative Historical Romance, the book’s sales failed to meet publisher expectations. Ultimately I received a letter informing me that Tempting was being taken out of print and any remaining stock would be destroyed. With the publisher’s reversion of rights letter in hand, Tempting was once more mine to do with what I would. Standing in my home office, I slipped the letter into a folder in my file cabinet and asked myself, “Now what?”

Flash forward a decade. I re-released Tempting as an e-book in February 2012 in time for Valentine’s Day. The turnaround process took me slightly under two months. Although the book had been professionally edited for its original print release in the early 2000’s, publishers then didn’t provide authors with electronic versions of the typeset manuscript or even the galleys. Working from the print edition, my most recent Word document files, and a decade of experience as a published author, I gently rewrote the book, shaving off 5,000 words.

Once I’d massaged the manuscript into its best possible shape, I hired a graphic designer to do a beautiful new cover as well as to format the manuscript for digital release across platforms. Setting up my publisher accounts for Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) Program, Barnes & Noble’s PubIt!, Smashwords, ARe etc. and then uploading the content (book file, reviews, links etc.) to each site was time-consuming but not especially difficult.

Once the book went live, I began a mini blog tour, sent the book file to reviewers who were amenable and made the usual social networking shout outs. What I didn’t do was run a single paid advertisement, nor did I bother with bookmarks, postcards, or other promotional items. I’d done all those things before and they hadn’t helped. This time, I vowed, it was Tempting’s turn to make me money.

The first month’s sales were tepid, and I began to think my experiment with self-publishing might remain just that. I got busy with other projects, so busy I scarcely remembered to check my sales on my various publisher accounts. And then my sales ranking on Kindle shot up—and up. Before I knew it, Tempting had landed solidly on the Kindle Top 100. It was also performing well in the Amazon Store’s Historical Romance section—print, digital and audio formats combined.

As I write this post, Tempting has remained on the Kindle Top 100 for eight consecutive weeks and continues to rank in the top one-thousand for Historical Romances overall.

That’s not just my good news. It’s our good news because Tempting isn’t an isolated Happily Ever After self-publishing story. My book is just one chapter in a much bigger story: a paradigm shift in publishing.

In the old print model, the first month of sale was absolutely critical. “Velocity of sales” was the big buzz word, the rule-of-thumb being that sales’ performance in the first month of launch, which reflected shipments but not yet returns by the big box chain retailers, represented a book’s peak. That peak or lack thereof predicted the relative robustness of subsequent months’ sales. If your book didn’t strike strong straight out of the gate, the overwhelming odds were that it wasn’t going to. Based on that first month, you were deemed either a winner or a loser—and you could expect those sales numbers to follow you into your foreseeable publishing future.
But in the current digital-first model, time can be an author’s friend. It is our friend. The longer an e-book is out on offer, the more time it has to find its audience and gain traction—and the better its chances for success over time.

As always, there are caveats to consider. The book has to be good—and really good would be better. Price point also counts. Cheap is in and nearly everyone is looking for value. Initially I chafed at issuing Tempting—a single-title previously published by one of the Big Six—for a piddling 99 cents but, putting pride aside, not even I can argue with the bottom line. It’s working. Selling thousands of units at 99 cents earns me more than selling hundreds at $2.99 or higher.

But I would be irresponsible if I ended without addressing the proverbial elephant in the room. The majority of those seeing substantial self-publishing success are established authors. Established authors have a readership, a following, a track record. In a market flooded with product, the consumer will almost always reach for the brand. That isn’t to say that you may not be the next Amanda Hocking—you may well be—but even Hocking put in the sweat equity to first build her fan base.

But sweating to make each and every book our personal best comes naturally to working writers. Between bleeding our hearts onto the (no longer necessarily printed) page, it’s what we do. Because whether our books release in print or digital or both, as self-published or published with an indie publisher or a member of New York’s Big Six, as overnight successes or long-term labors of love, we know something that non-authors don’t.

Even on a bad day, being a published author and sharing your stories with others, the World, is the toughest job you’ll ever 100 percent love.

Hope Tarr is the award-winning author of fifteen historical and contemporary romances including Tempting. Hope is also a co-founder and current principal of Lady Jane’s Salon™, New York City’s first and only monthly romance reading series, now in its fourth year with four satellites nationwide. Visit Hope online at www.HopeTarr.com as well as on Facebook and Twitter.

Many thanks to Hope Tarr for stopping by today to share her e-publishing story with us. If you haven’t read any of her books, you should stop by her website and check out her backlist. It’s a pretty impressive backlist.

Hope is giving away a book from her backlist. Comment for a chance to win.

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#DFRAT Guest Review: Tempting by Hope Tarr

Posted June 22, 2012 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Tracy’s review of Tempting by Hope Tarr

Set in Victorian England, TEMPTING is the story of aspiring Member of Parliament, Simon Belleville, and Christine Tremayne, a former dairymaid whom dire circumstances have landed in the attic of a Covent Garden brothel. As Simon soon discovers, polishing this roughly hewn diamond into a gem of a lady is no small feat, especially with the opposing political party sniffing for scandal. In helping Christine, Simon knows he is putting his hard-won reputation and a lifetime’s ambition at risk. Little does he suspect that his biggest risk is losing his heart.

Simon Belville is an emotionally tortured man. Coming from forced humble beginnings he is bound and determined to make himself a member of Parliament. On his rise to the top he is head of vice and goes about cleaning out the brothels. He comes across Christine Tremayne in an attic and something about her speaks to him. Knowing himself for a fool he tells everyone that she is his cousin and takes her under his wing. he soon realizes that she’s more than a handful and sends her off to his friend, and former mistress, Margot, who runs a ladies academy.

After three months Simon is summoned and told that an offer has been made for Christine – to be a mistress. Simon is incensed as he wants no one to have Christine. He takes her off to his home in the country and teaches her himself. But having her close doesn’t help with the resolve he’d made to stay away from the dairymaid. Soon, though, they are so close that the next step is inevitable. Before anything can happen however, a ghost from Christine’s past shows up and turns Simon and Christine’s world on end.

On the surface this is a very good retelling of the Pygmalion story. Though Christine is a dairymaid and not a flower girl the story just works. There are so many different levels and intricacies in the story that were unexpected that I really enjoyed the many layers it offered.

Simon was raised in the worst part of London. His father who was the son of an Earl defied his father and married a Jewish housemaid. After he passed Simon, his mother and sister struggled horribly. After a horrible incident with Simon and his sister being attacked Simon felt completely guilty and responsible for his sisters emotion escape in to her own mind. He wanted to make something of himself and locked all emotion away so that he couldn’t be hurt again – by anyone.

For Christine her life had been relatively good until her father passed away and their dairy got passed to one of her cousins. He was a complete bastard and she ended up running away with her siblings. She hid them away and went to London to find work. She got herself into a bad situation and was damned near starved to death when Simon found her. Almost from the start Christine saw Simon as her Dark Angel.. She knew that she would never be more to him because of her social status but that didn’t stop her from dreaming. I loved that she knew who she was when it came down to it. She thought she could put up with being someone else for Simon’s sake but when push came to shove she just wanted to be loved for who she was inside – not who the world saw on the outside.

On top of the romance here we had a bit of Margot’s story, some of the story from Simon’s past concerning his grandfather, and we also get to meet Simon’s step-father and his sister Rebecca. These various stories were kind of on the side but all related to Simon so they just fit. I didn’t feel like any of it was extraneous or filler.

Overall I thought this was a lovely romance. I loved seeing Simon come out of his emotional cave and start to live the life he should have been living all those years – one filled with joy, love and laughter. Tempting is definitely worth reading.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place

This book is available from That Book, Inc. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

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What I Read Last Week

Posted June 18, 2012 by Tracy in Features | 5 Comments

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. It was hotter than hell here but I managed to stay in a lot in the various places I went so that was good. Father’s Day was nice – my hubby was a homebody but hey, that’s what he wanted. 🙂
DFAT is still going strong! I managed to read 6 DFRAT books last week – woohoo! Go me. lol 
Here is the schedule for all of the blogs involved in the Digital First Read-A-Thon for this week:
Monday, June 18th
Alina Adams Book Binge
Nancy Cassidy  RR@H Novel Thoughts
Charlie Cochrane The Book Reading Gals
HelenKay Dimon Book Binge
Liz Strange RR@H Novel Thoughts
Tuesday, June 19th
Ruthie Knox Book Binge
Larry Benjamin RR@H Novel Thoughts
Lillian Grant The Book Reading Gals
Mary Hughes Tracy’s Place

Wednesday, June 20th
Annie Nicholas Book Binge
Eugenia O’Neill Book Binge
Cathy Perkins RR@H Novel Thoughts
Phoebe Conn The Book Reading Gals
Barbara Meyers Tracy’s Place
Thursday, June 21st
Lynne Connelly RR@H Novel Thoughts
Julie Rowe Book Binge
Born of Empire by Simon Brown Giveaway Book Binge
Georgie Lee RR@H Novel Thoughts
Desiree Holt The Book Reading Gals
Kay Keppler Tracy’s Place
Friday, June 22nd
Veronica Scott RR@H Novel Thoughts
Renee Wildes The Book Reading Gals
Mari Carr Tracy’s Place
Hope Tarr Book Binge
Saturday, June 23rd
Jessica Scott Book Binge
Anne Hope The Book Reading Gals
Cathleen Ross Tracy’s Place
Sunday, June 24th
A. Catherine Noon and Rachel Wilder Book Binge
Serenity Woods Tracy’s Place
Lots of great authors to read about and lots of giveaways as well!
On to what I read this week:
I started off the week with Tempting by Hope Tarr. This story is Hope’s take on Pygmalion. In this case an aspiring member of Parliament, Simon, finds a woman in the attic of a brothel and ends up taking her home with him and trying to make her speech and dress suitable enough to find her a position as a governess or lady’s maid. Life, of course, doesn’t turn out the way he planned and he ends up falling in love with Christine and all the angst that brings to the story. It was a very good book and one I’d recommend it. 4.25 out of 5 (read for Book Binge)
Next was His Heart’s Obsession by Alex Beecroft. This was the story of Robert who is in love with his shipmate and friend, Hal. Hal, however, is in love with his straight captain, William. Robert professes his love but with Hal so gone over William it’s a battle to prove his feelings for Hal. This was a good m/m story that I very much enjoyed. You can read my full review here. 4 out of 5
Next was About Last Night by Ruthie Knox. This story is about an American woman who is living in England. She is all sewn up and proper as she feels she should be since her life prior to that had been a complete mess – as far as she’s concerned. She meets banker Nev who is much more than what he seems on the surface and learns a whole lot about herself while falling in love with him. It was a really good book – fun and funny and it just hit all the right buttons with me. Definitely worth the read. 4.5 out of 5 (read for Book Binge)
Next up was Black Wolf by Jade Buchanan. This book had Adam, a tabby cat shifter, who left home and is working at a bar when he meets his mate, Marcus – a wolf. He is in trouble with his landlord though who wants to have more from Adam than his money and isn’t afraid to knock him around to make him see his point of view. The story has Marcus and Adam dealing with the situation as well as falling in love. It was very short but pretty darned cute. 3.25 out of 5
After that was the next book in the Wolf Creek series by Jade Buchanan, Duck Fart.. Bailey is a friend of Adam’s (from book 1). He actually followed Adam because he wanted to tell Adam how he felt about him. He’s shocked when he finds Adam mated. He’s confused but horny and ends up going home with a mallard shifter named Drake. Drake is nuts and funny but uses humor as a shield. He is a kinky little thing though and ends up putting a cock cage on Bailey and then can’t find the key. Enter Keith who is a cousin to Marcus (book 1) so he knows about shifter. Keith gets Bailey out of his predicament and the three end up spending the weekend together. There’s a whole lot more going on in this story but I don’t want to tell all. It was very good and I really liked it. 4 out of 5
Thief of Shadows by Elizabeth Hoyt was next and it was Oh So Good. I’ll post my review for the book later this week.
Next was Somebody Like You by Candis Terry. This is book 3 in The Sugar Shack trilogy and a good one as well. I’ll post this review this week as well so keep your eyes open.
Last on the list was Hearts of Darkness by Kira Brady. I know it doesn’t come out until August but I just couldn’t help myself. This is Kira’s first novel and well worth the read. The story is about dragon shifters who are trying to open a gate to hell so they can take over the world. The Kivati who are shifters who have pledged to protect humans from the dragon shifters (a completely separate shifter race). Kayla goes to Seattle after the death of her sister and finds a world she had no idea existed. She meets wolf shifter Hart and she thinks he’s helping her complete a mission for the Kivati when he’s actually working for his boss the dragon shifter. It’s a story about love and loss and betrayal. It’s written so well and there are so many different intricacies in the story that it just caught me and didn’t let go. I’ll post a review of this one when it gets nearer release time but keep it on your radar. 4.25 out of 5
My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:

Happy Reading!

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Bound to Please by Hope Tarr: On the Road Again

Posted May 2, 2009 by Tracy in Reviews | 13 Comments

Do you remember this book? I read it at the beginning of April and had this to say about it:

And last but not least a category that Barbara sent me -just cuz…isn’t she sweet? Thanks again Barbara! It was called Bound to Please by Hope Tarr and it was really cute. A young girl and boy meet at a fair one day when she’s 14 and he’s 12. He falls immediately for her and she’s pretty taken with him. They do a blood pledge that neither will marry another. Now it’s 10 years later and the girl, Brianna, is now Laird of her clan and the boy, Ewan, has been captured for crimes that his twin brother supposedly commited. But Briana just wants a baby by Ewan to end the blood feud..at least that’s what she’s telling herself. But when these two come together they realized that those innocent feeling they had 10 years earlier haven’t faded at all and were only growing stronger. I very much enjoyed the story (I had no idea that there were Blaze historicals – have I been living in a bubble? I thought they were all contemporaries) and will definitely be checking out some other books by this author.

The book had originally been sent to me by Barbara (thank you, sweetie) but then I found out from Amy that she had sent it to Barbara. With a hint from Amy I decided to start sending it around. So I then sent it to Renee (who had this to say about it) and she sent it to Katie. Right now Katie has it and from what she says she’s enjoying it as well. However Katie doesn’t know where to send it next and I’d hate for its travels to be over.

The question: Would you like to be next on the list to receive the book? Are you willing to then send it on after you’re done reading it? Email me at redneyrae AT ca DOT rr DOT com if you’re interested!

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