Friday, June 5, 2020

Interview & Excerpt ~ BEAUTY AND HER ONE-NIGHT BABY by Dani Collins

Beauty and Her One-Night Baby (Feuding Billionaire Brothers, #2)
by: Dani Collins
Series: Feuding Billionaire Brothers
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: June 1, 2020
Publisher: Harlequin Presents
Amazon | Paperback | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Goodreads

From irresistible beast in the bedroom…
to father of her child!

The first time Javiero Rodriguez sees CEO Scarlett Walker after their impassioned night together, she’s in labor with his baby! No matter how shocking the surprise, Javiero won’t let his son grow up in a broken home like he did.

Scarlett has worked hard for independence and she can’t accept empty vows. Yet the scars Javiero gained in a jaguar attack haven’t lessened the tycoon’s rugged appeal. Which means every day is a heated reminder of the pleasure they shared…and could share again!

USA TODAY Bestselling Author

Hi Dani. Welcome back to Read Your Writes Book Reviews. How are you?
Hi Kim, thanks for having me back. I’m thrilled to be here. I hope you and your readers are all staying well during this trying time.

Beauty and Her One-Night Baby is the second book in your duet series called the Feuding Billionaire Brothers, the first book being A Hidden Heir to Redeem Him. What can you tell me about this series?
When I first conceived of the duet, I knew I wanted it to be about two half-brothers who share a father and wind up in a rivalry. I wanted the father, Niko, to somehow know that each of his sons had a hidden heir. He leaves his fortune to the babies instead of his sons, which is how the men learn they have children. Spoiler alert: Niko was not a very nice dad.

I was surprised to realize that both A Hidden Heir to Redeem Him and Beauty and Her One-Night Baby are both second chance, surprise baby stories. I was also surprised by the connection between both of the couples. Did you set out to have this series be so closely intertwined?
Yes. And when I first pitched the duet to my editor, I was like, “Is it too weird if they both have newborns?” We worked out that one would have a toddler, the other a newborn.

Beauty and Her One-Night Baby released on June 1st, what can you tell me about that story?
Initially, I only foresaw it as Book Two in the brothers duet, but while I was still working on Val and Kiara’s story, my editor asked if I wanted to give book two a fairytale spin. In June, all the Presents/Modern titles will be fairytale-inspired. It actually worked out beautifully to add beastly scars (and bitterness) to Javiero.

Can you please tell me who Javiero Rodriguez and Scarlett Walker are?
Niko married Javiero’s mother despite knowing his mistress was pregnant with Val. He quickly got his wife pregnant. Javiero is the legitimate son, but Val was born first. Niko recognized his sons equally yet pitted them against one another. Javiero tried very hard to be the ‘good’ son, but when Val rejected Niko’s fortune, Niko turned on Javiero and left him to fend for himself.

Scarlett came from a very difficult family situation and wound up at Niko’s mercy, begging him to help her profligate father. By then, Niko’s sons were ignoring him. He admired her loyalty to her father so he hired her. She is still supporting her family and knew that as Niko’s protégé, she would ultimately be tasked with running his conglomerate so she stuck it out. It didn’t hurt that that threw her into Javiero’s orbit since she was fascinated by him.

Who is the Javiero that no one ever sees?
From an early age, Javiero was forced to take responsibility for the care of his family. It is such an intrinsic part of him that he goes into crisis when he realizes he misses the fact that Scarlett is suffering post-partum depression. He’s also still freshly scarred and it impacts his view of himself, not that he wants to be vain, but it’s a big step into accepting he will always look different.

When you start to read Beauty and Her One-Night Baby there’s a part of it that gives the impression Scarlett wanted to get pregnant, in order to have some of Nikolai’s money for herself. I mean she did go to see Javiero to inform him about what Nikolai planned to do with his will. Is this actually the case?
I had to be very careful here. Scarlett did want to inform Javiero. She didn’t plan to fall into bed with him, but when she later learned she might be pregnant, she didn’t take any steps. She wanted to let the universe balance the ledgers between the brothers and it did.

The two stories share similarities. But how are they different?
This was very hard for me! The heroes have very similar backstories and that core trope of a secret baby is hard to keep fresh, but having two men interpret a defining moment differently was fun to explore over two books. They each went in their own direction (with their own baggage) as a result.

The heroines are best friends, but very different. Kiara is an artist with a daughter. Scarlett is a dedicated businesswoman with a newborn son. Val insists on marriage while Scarlett holds off with Javiero. The heroine’s back stories bring different conflicts into their relationships, too.

Each romance stands alone, but reading both stories gives the full picture of how Val and Javiero settle their differences.

Why doesn’t Val or Javiero have their father’s last name?
Great question and I probably could have given Javiero Niko’s surname. Val is illegitimate so he has always used his mother’s surname. In Spain, it’s common for women to keep their own name. Javiero is very close with his maternal grandfather and pretty ticked at his father so he sticks with his mother’s family name.

I gather that both Val and Javiero are men who have chips on their shoulders and something to prove to the world and themselves. They both, in the beginning, seem to be hard, cold, jaded and cynical. This might be a difficult question to answer, but which one of them is really the caring one?
By the end, both! Ha. I would say that for most of his life, Javiero has been the most obviously caring one. He had a grandfather who mentored him and has relatives who were kind and loving, even if his parents were embittered and cold. He knows how to love, he’s just so angry with Scarlett, he can’t show it.

Val believes himself devoid of the ability to love, but one look at his daughter does him in. When he loves, he’s all in. I think that’s really endearing.

Do the two stories take place simultaneously?
They do!

When a reader finishes reading A Hidden Heir to Redeem Him and Beauty and Her One-Night Baby, what do you want and hope their final impression of these characters are?
As with all my books, I hope that the reader comes away with the sense that we’re all flawed and make mistakes in the moment, but people who are willing to grow and learn and try to do better are worthy of love.

Dani, thank you so much for answering my million questions.
It’s been my pleasure and my honor. Thanks for your interest in my Feuding Billionaire Brothers.

Scarlett dropped her phone with a clatter.

She had been trying to call Kiara. Now she was taking in the livid claw marks across Javiero’s face, each pocked on either side with the pinpricks of recently removed stitches. His dark brown hair was longer than she’d ever seen it, perhaps gelled back from the widow’s peak at some point this morning, but it was mussed and held a jagged part. He wore a black eye-patch like a pirate, its narrow band cutting a thin stripe across his temple and into his hair.

Maybe that’s why his features looked as though they had been set askew? His mouth was...not right. His upper lip was uneven and the claw marks drew lines through his unkempt stubble all the way down into his neck.

That was dangerously close to his jugular! Dear God, he had nearly been killed.

She grasped at the edge of the sink, trying to stay on her feet while she grew so lightheaded at the thought of him dying, she feared she would faint.

The ravages of his attack weren’t what made him look so forbidding and grim, though, she computed through her haze of panic and anguish. No. That contemptuous glare in his one eye was for her. For this.

He flicked another outraged glance at her middle.

“I thought we were meeting in the boardroom.” His voice sounded graveled. Damaged as well? Or was that simply his true feelings toward her now? Deadly and completely devoid of any of the sensual admiration she’d sometimes heard in his tone.

Not that he’d ever been particularly warm toward her. He’d been aloof, indifferent, irritated, impatient, explosively passionate. Generous in the giving of pleasure. Of compliments. Then cold as she left. Disapproving. Malevolent.

Damningly silent.

And now he was, what? Ignoring that she was as big as a barn?

Her arteries were on fire with straight adrenaline, her heart pounding and her brain spinning with the way she was having to switch gears so fast. Her eyes were hot and her throat tight. Everything in her wanted to scream, Help me, but she’d been in enough tight spots to know this was all on her. Everything was always on her. She fought to keep her head and get through the next minutes before she moved on to the next challenge.

Which was just a tiny trial called childbirth, but she would worry about that when she got to the hospital.

As the tingle of a fresh contraction began to pang in her lower back, she tightened her grip on the edge of the sink and gritted her teeth, trying to ignore the coming pain and hang on to what dregs of dignity she had left.

“I’m in labor,” she said tightly. “It’s yours.”

Fresh shock flickered over his scarred face and his gaze dropped to her middle again. “I’m supposed to believe that?”

“My water broke. It’s a textbook sign.”

“You know what I mean.” His aggressive stance didn’t soften, but a tiny shadow flickered in his eye as he watched her draw in a long breath.

She was trying to bear the growing intensity of her contractions without a grimace, but it wasn’t working.

“Is it my father’s?”

“No!” She should have expected that, she supposed. Pretty much everyone believed she was more than Niko’s long-suffering P.A. She closed her eyes, wincing in both physical and emotional anguish as the pain peaked. “I don’t have time for a lot of explanations.” She tried for calm when her voice was still tight from the fading contraction. “Whether you believe this baby is yours by my word or after a DNA test doesn’t matter.” It mattered. She hated that he was so skeptical of her. It ground what little self-esteem she possessed well into the dust.

Purchase Beauty and Her One-Night Baby from:

The Feuding Billionaire Brothers Series:

A Hidden Heir to Redeem Him ~ Review

A Hidden Heir to Redeem Him ~ Interview

📚 You can read my review of Beauty and Her Oe-Night Baby here. 📚

Beauty and Her One-Night Baby is also the second book in the Once Upon a Temptation series, a collection of books by eight authors inspired by fairytales.

The Once Upon a Temptation Series:
**All books release June 1, 2020**

Award-winning and USA Today Bestselling author Dani Collins thrives on giving readers emotional, compelling, heart-soaring romance with some laughter and heat thrown in, just like real life. Mostly she writes contemporary romance for Harlequin Presents and Tule’s Montana Born, but her backlist of fifty books also includes self-published erotic romance, romantic comedy, and even an epic medieval fantasy. When she’s not writing—just kidding, she’s always writing. Social distancing is her normal.

Places to find Dani Collins:


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