Fallen, an urban fantasy romance by Claire Delacroix

Fallen, the first of my Prometheus Project series of urban fantasy romances (set in a dystopian future and featuring fallen angel heroes) has gone off to be formatted. Phew! it’s also formatted for print now, and the print edition is waiting on its cover.

Having these books re-edited has proven to be quite the adventure. My editor found far more than I anticipated, so we’ve been working on the entire trilogy at once. On the upside, though, I’m much happier with the book. There have been some changes and corrections, plus there’s bonus content in this edition. I should be able to give you buy links for Fallen soon.

And tomorrow, I’ll work on finalizing Guardian!

The Dragon Legion Collection – Digital Edition

The Dragon Legion Collection, including all three Dragon Legion novellas and #9 in the Dragonfire series of paranormal romances, by Deborah CookeThe Dragon Legion Collection is now available in a digital edition, as well as a trade paperback edition. All three of the Dragon Legion novellas are included, and this volume is Dragonfire #9.

They will sacrifice anything to regain the loves they’ve lost…

When the Dragon Legion take custody of the darkfire crystal, Drake and his fellow dragon shifters fear that the sorcery trapped in the stone is bent on destroying them. In Kiss of Danger, Alexander defends his wife and son from a vicious killer who has followed him through time. In Kiss of Darkness, Damien enters the realm of the dead to fix an old mistake, but loses his shifting abilities. In Kiss of Destiny, Thad believes he can secure the future of all the dragon shifters known as the Pyr, if only he can win the heart of the elusive woman who sparks his firestorm. Will the darkfire demand all they have to give, or is the unpredictable magic giving these dragon warriors a second chance?

This collection contains all three Dragon Legion novellas, as well as an excerpt from Serpent’s Kiss (the next Dragonfire novel), a cast of characters and a Dragonfire glossary.

Linky goodness right here:
Apple – US
All Romance eBooks
Barnes & Noble
Trade Paperback

Covers for Double Trouble

Once upon a time, I wrote a contemporary romance, in first person, about a woman who had tons of attitude and a lot of secrets. She also had a twin sister, and when her sister left her husband and kids, the heroine of my story found herself stepping into the void her sister left. She rationalized this as “helping out”, but the truth was never simple with Maralys, particularly when it came to her sister’s husband, James. I loved writing Double Trouble because I loved how tough and vulnerable both Maralys and James were.

My editor loved the book, too, which was exciting. Yet it was extremely difficult to decide upon a cover for it. While it was a romance, the story defied many expectations of romance readers. It was different, although it still ended with an HEA (and no, Maralys is not a nasty or ignoble character. Trust me on that and read the whole book before you decide.) We spent hours on the phone, bouncing around ideas. We really wanted to get it right, but couldn’t decide upon a strategy.

This was the first cover for Double Trouble. None of us were really over-the-moon about it (not even the artist), but in the absence of any other ideas, this is how the book went out in its original mass market edition. It was matte paper, with shiny shells. (There is a shell in the book. Not this kind, but the image does tie in to the story.)

Double Trouble, second in the Coxwell series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke (writing as Claire Cross), out of print mass market edition

The book didn’t exactly take the world by storm: the title “didn’t perform”, as they say in publishing circles. My editor and I still loved the story, but sales numbers determine a great deal in publishing. Claire Cross went to sleep for a while after that.

A few years later, Berkley launched Sensation, a trade paperback program, and my editor wanted to give both Third Time Lucky and Double Trouble another shot at the market. They were both republished in trade paperback editions, with new “chick-lit” covers. The cover artist was very popular at the time – these illustrations were done by Masaki Ryo, so the books were given a great second shot. This look really captured the playful tone of the books, and the trade paperback format itself indicated that they were different. Here’s the one for Double Trouble:Double Trouble, #2 in the Coxwell series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke (writing as Claire Cross)Yup, that’s Maralys. She really does have chartreuse boots and a suitcase figures in the story. We had some nice reviews from the first time out to promote the book, which was good. The second time out, the two books did well enough to justify Claire Cross reviving to write the third and fourth books in the Coxwell Series.

In the meantime, some foreign rights to Double Trouble had been sold. Here’s the Danish edition. To me, it looks like a Harlequin Super Romance, which doesn’t evoke the tone of the book well, but might work in the Dutch market. (Authors generally aren’t involved at all in foreign editions of books. We find out when it’s over and done, IF we get copies of the finished book in the mail. Otherwise, we find out when there’s a payment posted to a royalty statement. We’re talking years after it’s all over and done.)

Double Trouble, second of the Coxwell series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke (writing as Claire Cross), Dutch editionAnd here’s the Brazilian edition, which I really like. The approach was very different, more photographic, but captured Maralys’ tendency to provoke James very well:

Double Trouble, second in the Coxwell series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke (writing as Claire Cross), Brazilian editionThere also was an Estonian edition, but I don’t have a copy of it. (In fact, I found out about the Estonian edition on Goodreads, when I was updating my covers. See my note about foreign editions, above.)

Last year, when it came time to repackage and republish the Coxwell Series, I had the same issue that my editor and I faced in 2000 and again in 2005. How should the books be packaged, so that readers knew what to expect? I kept coming back to the Brazilian cover for Double Trouble. I thought it was too dark, but I liked the core idea. After a lot of discussion with Kim Killion, my fave cover designer, we ended up with the current cover.

Double Trouble, book #2 in The Coxwells Series, by Deborah Cooke

In fact, she did all four Coxwell covers, so that they’re clearly a linked series. This is new for this series and pretty exciting. I’m probably biased (!) but I think the new cover for Double Trouble is just about perfect. What do you think?

A New Collaboration

Finally, I can tell you about this collaboration! It’s been in the works for a few busy weeks.

Five Unforgettable Knights, a digital boxed set of five medieval romances, available for a limited time and at a special priceFive Unforgettable Knights is a digital boxed set including five full length medieval romances, that will be available for a limited time, and at a special price. Included are:

The MacKinnon’s Bride by Tanya Anne CrosbyThe Beauty Bride by Claire Delacroix
A Whisper of Rosemary by Colleen Gleason
My Warrior by Glynnis Campbell
The Devil of Kilmartin by Laurin Wittig

There’s a reader contest, a Facebook page and a website which includes more information about all five books and all five authors. The boxed set goes on sale September 23, and is available for pre-order at Amazon, right here.

It’s $4.99 now, and will be $4.99 until September 29. After that, it will be $8.99.