Liz Crowe - Real Life Romance
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Romance for Real Life - The Next Flavor of Romance
by Liz Crowe
Ask Liz Crowe what she writes and she doesn’t shy away from the “r” word, “romance.” Get her going and she might even say “erotic romance.” But, whatever her answer is, she’s quick to clarify, “I write romance… for real life.”
What is “Romance for Real Life?” That’s the question everyone is asking. The person they should ask is Liz Crowe, the apparent groundbreaker of this new category of romantic fiction. “It’s not your traditional romance book. My characters are real. They have flaws, quirks, and a multi-layered histories that motivate them. They could be your best friend. Or the girl in your office that drives you crazy. “Maybe my readers even sees a little of themselves in my characters. Whoever you see, you will identify with the characters and their lives.” Liz claims.
No, these are not traditional romance novels. You won’t find any fairytale endings or flowery prose in Liz’s books. “I can hear the masses now. ‘What’s wrong with the fairytale?’ My answer? Nothing. I like all kinds of books from Dickens to King; from the Bard to JR Ward. I read it all. But I write what I know and I don’t know anyone who has lived an actual fairytale. The prince sweeps her off her feet and they get married and… then what? What is their life then? Unless you’re royalty, it’s probably not a house full of staff waiting to do your bidding. It’s more likely that my readers are professionals or professionals who may or may not be parents. They have bills to pay and families and obligations. They have frustrations and things that they’re stubborn about. They also have their strengths and hobbies and things at which they excel. Everyone does. Everyone has all of those things meshed into one package that makes them unique. That’s what I write. Each of my characters is that unique package.”
The flowery prose? Liz laughs, “Nope. You won't find that either. I write for today’s adult. I take some of my phrases from people I know. I use explicit words. My romance is sexy. I don’t shy away from that.”
Is this the new model of romance? “I’m not intending to re-write the romance genre. There’s always going to be a place for romance and fairytales and happily ever after's. At the end of the day, if a reader puts down my book and says, ‘Wow, I will never forget those characters. That could’ve been me,’ I’ve done my job. I haven’t written the fantastical romance, I’ve written a book in my genre. Romance for real life.”
Stewart Realty Series: "Life in the House Lane"
Love is an easy word to use, a hard one to demonstrate, and sometimes impossible to trust.
The Stewart Realty series is a sweeping epic, encompassing over ten years in the lives of two people who know how to love with their bodies, how to please and get pleasure, to control and be controlled. When it comes to the deeper meaning of the one word they both need however, their strong personalities get in the way. While their physical connection sizzles they continue to disappoint one another emotionally.
Jack Gordon has it all--money, success, a string of women—but sustains a deep longing for something more. When he thinks he finds it with Sara Jane Thornton, his world is never the same again. Sara releases his natural Dom, a side of him he'd thought buried out of frustration and unhappiness. Sara learns a true submissive must trust implicitly, something she cannot associate with him, no matter how many times she tries, and he fails.
With a rich cast of secondary characters, including a young man who presents a near-perfect foil to Jack's intensity, and who falls hard for Sara; the Stewart Realty series is a romantic saga with an emphasis on contemporary life and love, with a healthy dose of white-hot eroticism. Modern, busy, driven characters living lives of purpose and real-time stress, seek the ever-elusive and highly coveted combination --a friend, lover and trusted advisor who will be there for the long haul.
Floor Time (Stewart Realty Book 1) (JERR 5-star rated):
Jack Gordon is Ann Arbor's most delectable bachelor. At age thirty-five, he's made millions as a top-selling Ann Arbor real estate broker and has the right connections to close a deal by any means necessary. With his rugged good looks and compelling personality, he has a virtual black book most men would kill for and he uses it often, never settling for one woman for very long.
While his D/s past remains buried, exactly where he wants it, an undercurrent of boredom and dissatisfaction runs through his life now. A disastrous experience years earlier made him swear off the whole scene, but the more Jack suppresses his natural Dom, the more his frustration grows.
Sara Thornton, a rookie in the real estate game, has fast-tracked herself to the top of the Ann Arbor market. Her life reflects a disciplined and focused routine, exactly the way she wants it. However, as her career takes off, the fulfillment she seeks remains inexplicably out of reach. The one thing she knows for sure, she will not join the Jack Gordon groupies in her company, no matter how tempting that might seem.
A chance encounter, then a difficult transaction, throw Jack and Sara together and the sparks fly high and hot and often. Forced to confront the compulsions that gain momentum with each sizzling encounter, their relationship seems to spiral out of control until Jack finally admits what he needs, and shows Sara what she's been missing.
Sweat Equity (Stewart Realty Book 2) (JERR Gold Star Award Winner):
Jack Gordon thought he’d finally made it. He had a wildly successful career, money in the bank and even returned to his life as Dom, putting an end to a string of unfulfilling sexual encounters. Now that he's made the ultimate commitment to Sara Thornton, he believes all is right in their world. However, a series of misunderstandings and a dose of self-fulfilling prophesy bring his perfectly crafted house of cards tumbling down around him, forcing him to confront lingering misgivings about marriage and trust. Could those be the only two things he can never achieve?
Sara struggles with her intense need for Jack and her desire for less volatility in her busy life, two goals which appear to be mutually exclusive. Although willing to put in the time and emotional effort to make their relationship work, she finds it futile and frustrating, littered with clashes thanks to near-identical personalities and temperaments. Given Sara’s history, easing back into the comfortable status quo becomes easier than fighting a war with the one person who should be her safe haven. But will the easier choice satisfy her the way only Jack can? Is her "war" one that comes from without or within?
Buffeted by circumstance, temptation and distraction, Jack and Sara’s tenuous relationship crumbles, sparking a continuous quest for the ever elusive: trust, love and acceptance. By the time they rebuild a foundation for renewal, fate has other plans. This leaves them both reeling, once again questioning their destiny.
Closing Costs (Stewart Realty Book 3) (JERR 5-star rated):
Love conquers all? Not likely, according to Sara Thornton. She's spent eight years coming to terms with the new parameters of her life while resigning herself to the idea that “happily ever afters” are best left to fairytales. Sales manager for her successful real estate office and juggling an added element of responsibility she never thought she'd face, Sara continues to struggle with the men in her life. Love, for her, has only meant hurt, broken trust and anger; all of which she’s completely banished from her life, so she claims.
Jack Gordon has come a long way since his early days of obsession with Sara. As the general manager of Stewart Realty, his own level of responsibility for the well-being of others has ramped up. He’s even honed his caretaking skills, now that he has someone who loves him unconditionally.
Continuing to invest effort and rebuild their relationship, he and Sara grow close as friends. Despite this, his ultimate question remains unanswered; the one he keeps asking, no matter how many times she says no. Sara isn't prepared for the keen focus of his need--to have her back, once and for all. Her stubborn resistance nearly rips both lives apart.
The third installment to the Stewart Realty series, Closing Costs brings Jack and Sara truly full circle. Proving that the heat of lust and obsession; the need for control and to be mastered in many areas of life can lead to love —surprising you when you least expect it – if you will only allow it.
Essence of Time (Stewart Realty Book 4):
For years, Rob Frietag has resisted anything resembling a true emotional connection, preferring instead to explore life, and his own desires, without committing to anyone for very long. The reason remains known only to a few, among them Jack Gordon, his college cohort in female conquests, and life-long friend. At thirty-seven, while he is close to achieving his career goal, head chef at a five-star restaurant in Chicago, he is still very much alone.
After an intensely emotional relationship with Suzanne Baxter in Ann Arbor, Blake's heart is left shattered. Completely broken by what he believes was his one true love, he arrives at a Chicago food and beer festival, prepared to drink his sorrow away. When the two men meet, their lives change forever. But time is of the essence. When Rob acknowledges his true feelings, he will stop at nothing to keep them together, including finding a surrogate mother for the child Blake so desperately wants.
Lila Warren is recovering from a nasty divorce, needs cash and believes carrying their baby will fulfill her in ways marriage never did. None of them could suspect that the connection they share would provide the final emotional key to their life-long puzzle.
When Rob’s secret is revealed, time becomes the one luxury they don't have, setting in motion a chain of events that destroys the fragile illusion of happiness for them, and everyone who loves them.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Microbrewery owner, multi-published author, beer blogger and journalist, mom of three teenagers, and soccer fan, Liz brings years of experience in sales and fund raising, an eight-year stint as an ex-pat trailing spouse, and making her way in a world of men (i.e. the beer industry) to her life and work as erotic romance author. When she isn't sweating inventory and sales figures for the brewery, she can be found writing, editing or sweating promotional efforts for her latest publications.
Otherwise, look for her doing pounds of laundry for her athletic children, watching La Liga on the Fox Soccer Channel, or trying to figure out what to order in for dinner. Liz loves her Foo Fighters Pandora station, and watching reruns of Deadwood, when there aren't any decent sports on the telly. Her beer blog www.a2beerwench.com is nationally recognized for its insider-yet-outsider views on the craft beer industry. Don’t ask her for anything “like” a Budweiser or risk painful injury.
Liz Crowe's books are set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch, in Istanbul, and in high-powered real estate offices.
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