Naughty or Nice Winter Blog Tour


Welcome to my stop on this holiday Naughty or Nice Winter Blog Tour. While the tour features six lovely holiday book treats, my special guest today is Nana Malone, the author of Mistletoe Mantra, half of the Wrapped in Red story bundle with Sherelle Green’s White Hot Holiday.

wrapped in red by nana malone and sherelle greenMistletoe Mantra is a terrific little holiday story that puts together some tried-and-oh-so-true romance themes and wraps them up in a red Christmas bow. This is story where, as Nana says in her guest post below, nice guys do not finish last. Not only that, but this particular nice guy has been hiding a big streak of naughty from his best friend for years and year. Because while Nomi Adams has never figured out it, she has always been Lincoln Porter’s “little redheaded girl”. Just like Charlie Brown, Linc has loved Nomi from the day she walked into his life, and he has loved her from the shadows, while she and his sister (and Nomi’s best friend) grew up and got even more beautiful right before his eyes. What Nomi discovers when she returns home after years away, is that Lincoln has had his own moment of transformation, and that the shy little boy she remembers has been replaced by a very hot and incredibly thoughtful man with some big secrets of his own. Including a secret that Nomi has come home to expose.

Guest Post by Nana Malone on Good Guys and Nice Girls

Good girl, beep beep…

Talking about a good, good girl…and guy. Well, maybe that’s not exactly how the song goes. But in a book world full of superalphas, I want to talk about the nice guy for once and his nice girl.

No, this isn’t your mother’s Mary Sue, and nice guys don’t have to finish last.
Okay, I get it. Inked, with a constant 5 o’clock shadow, alpha males are sexy and hot. They say what they think. They’re a little bit dirty. They flout authority. Having one as your book boyfriend keeps you on the edge of your seat and your heart racing. Because you never know when you’ll be on a train and they’ll slip a hand under your skirt…or maybe those are just my book boyfriends. LOL.

And don’t even get me started on the bad girls. You know the ones. They hang with the boys, wear killer stilettos and don’t seem to own a pair of panties.

But let’s face it, ladies. In every romance you’ve ever read, the tatted playboy changes for the heroine. Because of her, he becomes a better person.

I personally love a nice guy. You know, the one who thinks to bring you something when he comes home from a trip. The one who will walk your dog when you’re running a fever. But these guys can be super-sexy, too.

Just because they know how to open a door doesn’t mean in the bedroom, they can’t turn it on. Yes, I’m talking about the closet bad boys. The ones who are just a little bit dirty. The ones we get to muss up.

Who: the good guy.
Why he’s good: because he’ll always be the hero.
Why women miss out on him: because we think he’s boring or too stable.
Why he’s sexy: because he knows what you need before you do, and he knows how to give it to you.
Dirty little secret: he’s good with his words…in bed as well as out…

Can we just talk about the original good guy for a moment? Mmmmm, Mr. Darcy. Sure, he had his issues, but at the core of it, you could bring him home to Mama. LOL. He was respectful, kind and nowhere near being a rogue. But when it counted…whoo, that man was sexy.

Some of my favorites in books include Brody Lawson from Love So Hot, Josh Hudson from Can’t Shake You and even in my own books—Beckett from Sultry in Stilettos, Caleb from Sassy in Stilettos and let’s not forget Lincoln from Wrapped in Red.

Now let’s talk about my good girls. Nothing wrong with being nice. Jennifer Lawrence is nice, but she’s also hilarious. The trick is, no one wants their besties to be too nice, right? Nice girls these days aren’t like the ones from years ago. They might have a designer addiction like Becky Bloomwood from the Shopaholic series and my own Jaya from Sexy in Stilettos and Nomi. She could just be hopeless like poor Bridget from Bridget Jones’s Diary, but even the nice girl can be hot. The trick is, she can’t be Mother Teresa.

It’s all about the flaws. No one wants that bestie who is just perfect at everything and saccharine-sweet to boot. What makes today’s nice girls oh so sexy? They’re funny. They keep sweaters in their ovens, have addictions to shoes, chocolate, lingerie and books. They drink, they swear and gasp! get a little naughty in the bedroom. No more goody-goody nice girls who aren’t any fun.

Who: the good girl.
Why she’s good: because she’s fun and loveable, and everyone wants to be her bestie.
Why men miss out on her: because they think she’s too good and no fun.
Why she’s sexy: because she’s quirky and will try anything once.
Dirty little secret: she loves to role play…

So come on, who’s your favorite book nice guy and nice girl?

All About Nana:
nana maloneUSA Today Bestselling Author, Nana Malone’s love of all things romance and adventure started with a tattered romantic suspense she borrowed from her cousin on a sultry summer afternoon in Ghana at a precocious thirteen. She’s been in love with kick butt heroines ever since.With her overactive imagination, and channeling her inner Buffy, it was only a matter a time before she started creating her own characters. Waiting for her chance at a job as a ninja assassin, Nana, meantime works out her drama, passion and sass with fictional characters every bit as sassy and kick butt as she thinks she is.

Nana is the author of three series. The Love Match Series includes sassy contemporary romances: Game, Set, Match and Mismatch. The In Stilettos Series includes ultra-sexy and fun multicultural romantic comedies, Sexy in Stilettos, Sultry in Stilettos and Sassy in Stilettos . The Protectors series includes dark and sexy superhero romances, Betrayed (A Reluctant Protector Prequel), Reluctant Protector and Forsaken Protector.

The books in her series have been on multiple Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble best seller lists as well as the iTunes Breakout Books list and most notably the USA Today Bestseller list.

Until that ninja job comes through, you’ll find Nana working hard on additional books for her series as well as other fun, sassy romances for characters that won’t leave her alone. And if she’s not working or hiding in the closet reading, she’s acting out scenes for her husband, daughter and puppy in sunny San Diego.

Contact Nana at:


One grand prize winner will receive:
1 print copy of The Harder You Fall by Gena Showalter, White Wedding Christmas by Andrea Laurence, A Cowboy Under the Mistletoe by Vicki Lewis Thompson, Wrapped in Red by Nana Malone and Sherelle Green
1 eBook copy of A Copper Ridge Christmas by Maisey Yates and Under the Spotlight by Kate Willoughby
100,000 Harlequin MyRewards points
2 Harlequin Classics limited edition notebooks
1 Brenda Jackson Westmoreland limited edition notebook

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Interview with Author Nana Malone on Superheroes in Romance

I’d like to welcome Nana Malone to Reading Reality today to tell us a bit about her thrilling (and deliciously sexy) superhero romance series, The Protectors. The first book, Reluctant Protector, is available free, so there’s no excuse not to dive right into Nana’s world of genetic experiments, brave escapes, and superhero rescues. Once you’re thoroughly hooked, Forsaken Protector (see review) will take you for another wild adventure.

But first, let’s see what Nana has to say about her writing, and her inspirations for this world of superpowers and super-villains.

Marlene: Welcome, Nana! Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Could you give us a picture of your non-writing life?

Nana: Oh I’m just your average Ghanaian/American girl who lives in sunny San Diego with an American husband who thinks my family is crazy.  My Big Fat Greek Wedding has nothing on us.  In my infinite spare time, I chase around my two year old trying to tame her wild mane of hair, try and corral my spunky Scottie and occasionally let my hubby pamper me.

Marlene: Reluctant Protector and Forsaken Protector are both well, superhero love stories. (Very cool, by the way!) What inspired you to write the series?

Nana: When I started thinking about doing a superhero romance, it was back when Heroes was on.  I kept thinking about all the places they could have gone with that story and didn’t.  Then when I started watching Alphas, I kept thinking about ways to evolve the superhero lexicon.  I wanted something that was believable for the modern world.  Like this could happen to you or your neighbors best friend.  But I also wanted it to be dark and explore the darker side of what happens when you have all this power and no one to relate to.

Marlene: Do you think that genetic engineering will be capable of creating “super soldiers” like Symone and Garrett sometime in the near future, or even in our lifetimes?

Nana: We’re already getting there.  I don’t know how many of you were watching the Olympics, but they had a world class runner competing with prosthetic legs.  The advances science and technology are making are huge.  I think if not in our generation then in my daughter’s for sure.

Marlene: In Forsaken Protector, Garrett is the only person that Symone is able to touch because of her powers. It almost feels like he’s her “fated mate”. Is that concept a part of the Protectors series, or is it a coincidence?  

Nana: Well, I don’t believe in coincidence.  I think we all have paths to travel and every decision we make helps us get there.  I also think there are different paths that can be taken to get there. For Symone and Garrett if they didn’t met when they did, I think they would have eventually met.  As for her not being able to touch anyone but him.  I think it has a lot to do with letting your guard down around someone.  Your real guard where someone sees the real you.  We don’t do that often as human beings.  Makes us entirely too vulnerable.  I think when Cassie and Symone found their partners in Seth and Garrett, they were at the point in their lives that they needed to be a little vulnerable to survive.  That’s kind of the running theme through out the books.

Marlene: Do you plan everything or just let the story flow?

Nana: I have a rough outline for the first draft, then a more detailed one after that to assist in plugging holes etc for my first round of edits.

Marlene: Do your characters ever want to take over the story?

Nana: All the time and I let them sometimes.  I can be very stubborn.

Marlene: Who first introduced you to the love of reading?

Nana: My parents.  I was reading at an early age and I have these faint memories of being in Ghana and being surrounded by books.  Either at home or at my grandparents’ place.

Marlene: Who influenced your decision to become a writer?

Nana: Helen Fielding 🙂 It wasn’t until I read her book with her style of humor and wit that I had the courage to do it myself.


Marlene: What book would you recommend that everyone should read, and why that book?

Nana: Yeesh, books are intensely personal.  All dependent on life experience and what your path is. But my favorite for triumphing against adversity is Kaffir Boy by Mark Matherbane.


Marlene: Can you share some info about your upcoming projects? Will there be a sequel to Forsaken Protector? Please?

Nana: Oh yes, there will be additional books in the Protectors series.  Next up is a fun contemporary called Sultry in Stilettos, then the next Protectors book, Wounded Protector.  After that will be another contemporary novella that’s the sequel to Game, Set, Match.  Next year we’ll be seeing more of the Protectors.   That series is meant to be 12 books.

Marlene: Now can you tell us 3 reasons why people should read your books?

Nana: They’re fun escapism.  IF you love intense love stories, then they are for you.  And if you like it steamy, then I’m your gal! Plus who doesn’t love a superhero.

Marlene: Coffee or Tea?

Nana: I’m not really a hot drinks person 🙂

Nana, I think you made my day when you said there are meant to be 12 Protectors books. That is definitely something to look forward to! But part of me is still back at the Heroes/Alphas mashup thing. That’s my kind of concept.

Thanks so much for answering all my questions. I can’t wait to find out what the next chapter is in your superhero saga. Who is wounded and who is their protector? Write fast, pretty please?

Review: Forsaken Protector by Nana Malone

Forsaken Protector is more superhero romance than paranormal romance, with a little bit (maybe a lot) of science fiction by way of genetic manipulation thrown in for very good measure. And it so works.

Gentech Labs has been shut down for a year when Forsaken Protector begins. (For that story, get Reluctant Protector. It’s good and it’s free!) But the young men and women that Peter Reeser used in his genetic experiments have been altered for life, against their wills and without their permission. They just have to live with the powerful, unpredictable and sometimes awful results.

Symone Jackson received one of the more awful results. Enhanced strength and speed, the ability to heal herself, and one nasty side-effect. Anyone she touches gets an electric shock. A potentially lethal electric jolt. Sort of like one of the X-Men, Storm, but with way less control over her powers. Symone can’t touch anyone without barriers. No hugs, no kisses, no lovers. She can’t lose control. Ever.

Symone is being watched. Garrett Hunter has a mission to capture the computer hacker/terrorist Symone Jackson. Only problem is that none of his target’s behavior matches that of a terrorist. She works at a youth center, counseling teens to stay off the streets, she feeds stray cats, she goes to the library. But when she stops a gang of street-toughs from assaulting a girl, Garrett knows for certain he’s been lied to. Terrorists don’t stop would-be rapists. And no one else besides his unit is supposed to have the same kind of powers that he has. Powers that he’s just watched Symone demonstrate in no uncertain terms.

Among his powers, Garrett is an empath. He hates liars. And his mission just went totally pear-shaped.

Garrett knows about the genetic experimentation. He went to Symcore Industries and asked to be part of a new military program. His career in the military was ending, and not by his choice; he was in the beginning stages of ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease. The “super soldier” program didn’t just cure him; it made him stronger, faster, and gave him X-Men-type powers like empathy. But he’d been told that his unit was the first group in the experiment. Now he knew something was off. He just wondered how much.

And Symcore had his kid brother, Michael. Their family has a history of the disease. Garrett went into the program, not just to save himself, but also in the hope that Symcore could find a cure for Michael before the disease got him, too. But Garrett knows that if there is one lie, there are usually more. He has to talk with Symone, and find out if anything he was told is the truth.

And as soon as they try to communicate. all hell break loose. He knows she’s telling the truth. He can feel it. And Symone knows that he’s been altered, just like she has. And that the experiments are still going on.

And one more thing. Whatever form the power has taken in Garrett, Symone can touch him. All over. And isn’t that a complication she didn’t need when a whole set of super-soldiers is chasing after her.

Except now she has one on her side. If she can bring herself to trust him. If she can afford to let herself care.

And if Garrett’s former buddies don’t get them both killed before they can get to safety. If there is any safety left.

Escape Rating B+: Think of Nana Malone’s Protectors series as the X-Men with romance instead of philosophy, and you’ve got a good picture. Or maybe Lora Leigh’s Breed series, substituting superpowers for shapeshifting. Or mix well and stir.

But definitely those two things tossed together to make a delicious (and hot and steamy) story. The genetic experiment gets superpowers, and the kids were unwilling lab rats, and tortured. That’s from Reluctant Protector. Peter Reeser was a psychopath/sociopath, a couple of other ‘paths, but brilliant.

Anytime you have a military contractor looking to make super-soldiers, something always gets out of control, and that’s where Symcore comes in. Garrett signs up willingly, but it doesn’t end there. And that whole “need to know” covers a lot of sins. Once he starts asking questions, he gets burned.

There’s a bit of the “fated mate” trope hinted at. I’m not sure whether they are, or it just feels like it. Whether anyone from the program could have helped Symone figure out how to control her powers, or whether it had to be Garrett. Maybe we’ll find out in later stories.

Overall, both books in the series have been tremendous fun.

What’s On My (Mostly Virtual) Nightstand? AKA The Sunday Post 8-5-12

Looking at the calendar, it’s pretty clear that the break is over. Three tours this week AND three next week.

Oh, and I’m going to a family reunion over the weekend. Can I schedule or what?

Lucky for me, my friend Cryselle from Cryselle’s Bookshelf will be guest reviewing on Friday! Thank you, Cryselle!

But between now and Friday, what’s going on?

Monday’s Ebook Review Central features Dreamspinner’s June titles. This was the month they released their Time is Eternity Daily Dose collection of short stories, novellettes and novellas. Let’s just say it felt like eternity compiling the review list with all the added titles. You’ll see tomorrow.

Tuesday I’ll be interview Sheri Fredrick’s about her contemporary fantasy Remedy Maker, as well as reviewing this fun new book. Her Remedy Maker, Rhycious, is a centaur with PTSD after a century-long war against the wood-nymphs. One of the cooler things about this story is that the mythological creatures live in real-world Pennsylvania, in Amish country.

Wednesday is the day that Laurie Frankel will be giving away a copy of her new book, Goodbye for Now, in conjunction with an interview and a review of that absolutely fascinating story. I’m still trying to find the right words to describe the story. It’s a love story for the 21st century, absolutely. What happens when a geek decides that he doesn’t want to let go?

Thursday’s guest is Nana Malone. She’ll be at Reading Reality to talk about Forsaken Protector, the second book in her Protectors series. (The first book, Reluctant Protector, is available free for Kindle, check it out!) These read like superhero romances to me, and they’re fun!

And if this week isn’t awesome enough, there’s next week to look forward to!

Jane Kindred will be here early next week to talk about her wicked angels and protective demons series, The House of Arkhangel’sk. The first book in the series, The Fallen Queen, was amazing and intense, and the second book, The Midnight Court, promises more of the same. Along with convoluted angelic court politics and demonic love. Reviews will be posted with the interview. Yum!

Speaking of yummy, I couldn’t resist Adrienne Giordano’s Relentless Pursuit when it popped up on NetGalley. I’ve read the entire Private Protectors series, and I’ve loved every single one of them, so a new one is a real treat. If you like romantic suspense of the security-agency persuasion, give Giordano’s series a try. Start with Man Law. (Not thrilled with the title, but the book was terrific!)

That should be enough for one week. Or even two. But it’s not. The next Robin Owens Celta book, Heart Secret will be out on August 7. Yep. Already pre-ordered.