news

April 16, 2014

Vanished is named Christy finalist!

I just received word that Book 1 in my Private Justice series, Vanished, has been named a finalist for the prestigious Christy award. I’m honored to be in the company of such an amazing group of authors. You can see the full list of finalists HERE. The winners will be announced in June in Atlanta, and I’ll be on hand! Vanished is also up for a Retailers Choice award, so I’m doubly excited.

Vanished

March 20, 2014

Publishers Weekly gives One Perfect Spring Stellar Review

I always wait with bated breath when I know Publishers Weekly is going to review one of my books, so I let out a great sigh of relief—and went to Starbucks to celebrate!—after I read this prestigious publication’s review of my May contemporary romance/women’s fiction novel, One Perfect Spring. The whole thing was wonderful, but I loved the last line best. Here’s what it said: “Hannon’s multithread plot is woven beautifully together to create a tapestry that will enchant romantics of all ages.” Yea! If you’d like to read the whole thing, click HERE.

February 22, 2014

Polish-Language Rights Sold for One Perfect Spring

Even though the U.S. edition of my next long contemporary romance/women’s fiction novel won’t be out until May, the Polish-language rights have just been sold. The book will be available in Poland later this year. With just nine weeks until the U.S. release, I’m getting very excited. Debbie Macomber, #1 New York Times bestselling author, had this to say about the book: “I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. Irene Hannon is one great storyteller.” Hope Lethal Legacy Releases in Germanyeveryone else agrees!

January 29, 2014

Lethal Legacy Releases in Germany

The German-language edition of Book 3 in my Guardians of Justice series, Lethal Legacy, has just been released overseas. I’m thrilled that this book, which was a Christy finalist and won the HOLT medallion, is reaching a global audience. It’s always fun to see how publishers outside the U.S. envision the cover, too!

December 14, 2013

Trapped Still on Bestseller Lists!

I just saw the December CBA and ECPA bestseller Trapped lists, and Trapped is # 10 and # 11, respectively. What a fabulous Christmas present—and all because of you, my readers. I give thanks for you every day…and at this most holy and beautiful time of year, I wish you a season of blessings, hearts filled with hope, and the warmth of love that adds joy and sparkle to life. May your 2014 overflow with happiness and health.

October 27, 2013

Debbie Macomber Endorsement

Number 1 New York Times bestseller Debbie Macomber, author of the Cedar Cover series (basis One Perfect Springfor the Hallmark channel series starring Andie MacDowell), has read and endorsed my next contemporary romance/women’s fiction novel, One Perfect Spring! Here’s what Debbie had to say about the book, which will release in May 2014: “I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. Irene Hannon is talented, smart and one great story teller." And here’s a synopsis: Claire Summers is a determined, independent single mother who is doing her best to make lemonade out of the lemons life has handed her. Keith Watson is a results-oriented workaholic with no time for a social life. As the executive assistant to a local philanthropic businessman, he's used to fielding requests for donations. But when a letter from Claire's eleven-year-old daughter reaches his desk, everything changes. The girl isn't asking for money, but for help finding the long-lost son of an elderly neighbor. As Keith digs reluctantly into this complicated assignment, he has no idea how intertwined his life and Claire's will become—nor how one little girl's kindhearted request will touch so many lives and reap so many blessings.

October 1, 2013

Two Books on Bestseller List!

For the first time ever, I have two books on the bestseller list at the same time! Both Trapped (September release)and Vanished (January release) made the cut for the October CBA fiction list, coming in at #8 and #9, respectively. Trapped also continues to get great reviews. Booklist recently weighed in, saying, “Hannon once again demonstrates her mastery at crafting spine-tingling romantic thrillers that, without graphic violence and language, utterly enthrall readers.” It doesn’t get much better than that!

Trapped Vanished

September 22, 2013

A Summer of Singing

Once again, I managed to squeeze in some on-stage time this summer, participating in a production of “Music Man” that benefitted a faith-based youth sports program. I’ve been doing theater since my childhood days of backyard shows, and I still get a thrill whenever I step into the spotlight. My maternal grandparents were both active in amateur vaudeville during their younger years, and I can still remember my grandfather sitting at the piano and singing late in his life. Must be in the DNA!

August 18, 2013

Two More Books Translated

Very soon, the German-language version of Book 2 in my Guardians of Justice suspense series—DEADLY PURSUIT—will be showing up in bookstores overseas. And this fall, the Polish translation of my first longer women’s fiction/contemporary romance, THAT CERTAN SUMMER, will be available. Foreign publishers redesign covers to appeal to readers in their countries, and they are usually quite different than their American counterparts. Here’s a side-by-side comparison of these two books.

Deadly Pursuit Germany
Deadly Pursuit
That Certain Summer Poland
That Certain Summer

July 29, 2013

That Certain Summer Hits Another Bestseller List!

Branching into a new genre is always a bit nerve-wracking, so watching the reaction to my first long contemporary romance/women’s fiction novel has had an edge-of-the-seat quality. I was thrilled when That Certain Summer hit one of the top two Christian fiction bestseller lists in July (ECPA)—and now it’s just appeared on the other one (CBA), coming in at #12. THANK YOU to all the readers who made this happen. I am very, very grateful. If you’d like to see the full list, click here.

July 11, 2013

That Certain Summer Trailer Debuts

It’s a bit after the release date, but you might still enjoy watching this short trailer about my latest bestseller, That Certain Summer, which was filmed in my garden. If you have a few minutes, I hope you’ll take a look! Click here to view!

That Certain Summer -- Irene HannonJuly 2, 2013

That Certain Summer hits Bestseller List

I’m thrilled and grateful to announce that my first long contemporary romance/women’s fiction novel, That Certain Summer, has made the July ECPA bestseller list, the Christian fiction equivalent of the NY Times or USA Today list. Click here if you’d like to see the full list.

June 26, 2013

Just Returned from ICRS

I’ve just spent three very busy days taking part in the International Christian Retailer Show, held this year in St. Louis. Booksellers and retailers came together from around the world to meet with vendors, including many publishers. Highlights for me included the Christy Awards dinner (Lethal Legacy didn’t win, but I did receive a beautiful Award of Excellence medallion), a book signing at my publisher’s booth (with a line that stretched all the way around the corner!), and a lovely lunch with my editor and marketing rep, where we discussed some exciting plans for future books! The photos show me signing at the Baker Publishing booth and celebrating with my editor, Jennifer Leep, after the Christy Awards dinner.

Christy Awards Signing at the Baker Publishing booth

June 24, 2013

Seaside Reunion Named Carol Award Finalist

I’m thrilled to announce that Book 1 in my Starfish Bay series, Seaside Reunion, has been named a finalist for the Carol Award, given each year by American Christian Fiction Writers. The winners will be announced in September at a gala dinner during the organization’s annual national conference.

Lethal Legacy   Finding Home

June 10, 2013

Lethal Legacy Wins HOLT Medallion

Last night was amazing. First I got a call that Book 3 in my Guardians of Justice series, Lethal Legacy, won the HOLT Medallion in the Long Inspirational Romance category. This is the second time I’ve won a HOLT, and I was thrilled! Then, fifteen minutes later, I got another call that Finding Home, one of my Love Inspired contemporary romances, had been a finalist in the HOLT’s Short Inspirational Romance category! All in all, an eventful evening!

Lethal Legacy HOLT Medallion Finding Home

April 19, 2013

The Cristy AwardNCRA FinalistLethal Legacy Nominated for Two Prestigious Awards

This has been an amazing day! First thing this morning, I had an email from my publisher sharing the exciting news that Lethal Legacy, Book 3 in my Guardians of Justice series, has been nominated for a Christy Award in the Contemporary Romance category. The Christy is one of the premiere awards in Christian fiction, and I’m beyond thrilled to be among the nominees! Later in the day, I received another exciting email, this one informing me that the book has been nominated for the National Readers’ Choice Award in the Inspirational category (which I won last year with Book 1 in the Guardians series, Fatal Judgment). To be nominated a second year in a row is amazing. The Christy Awards will be given in June, the National Readers’ Choice in July, so please keep your fingers crossed!

April 12, 2013Certin Summer

That Certain Summer Receives Stellar PW Review

I’ve been waiting with bated breath ever since I heard that Publishers Weekly was planning to review That Certain Summer. Even though I’ve been writing short romances for many years, long contemporary romance/women’s fiction is a new genre for me…and you just never know how that will be received. Well, I’m doing a bit of happy dancing today because the review is in—and I couldn’t have asked for a better one. Here’s my favorite line: “The lives of these endearing characters intertwine over a summer and undergo change as Hannon has readers rooting for each one of them in this uplifting story about love and redemption.” To read the full review, click here. I hope you’ll give this one a try!

 

March 28, 2013

Polish-language Rights Sell for That Certain Summer

Foreign-language rights have been sold for many of my novels—including German, French, Italian, Dutch, and Afrikaans—but this usually happens after the U.S. version has been published. The interest in my June contemporary romance/women’s fiction novel, however, has already heated up overseas. I’m excited to announce that Polish-language rights have just been sold for That Certain Summer. Poland is a new market for me, and it will be fun to see the reaction to the book!

 

March 2, 2013Trapped

Trapped Cover Just Released

I’m excited to share with you the cover for Trapped, Book 2 in my Private Justice series. It hit the media yesterday—always an exciting moment for an author! Here’s a quick synopsis of the story: When librarian Laura Griffin’s sixteen-year-old sister disappears on a frigid February day, leaving only a brief note behind, Laura resolves to do whatever it takes to track down the runaway teen. That includes recruiting ATF agent turned PI James “Dev” Devlin to help—but the deeper he digs, the more he begins to suspect that something sinister is at work in the girl’s disappearance. And the closer he gets to uncovering the truth, the clearer it becomes that the situation isn’t just dangerous—it’s deadly. If you’d like to preorder, just click here.

 

February 9, 2013German-Language Edition of Fatal Judgment

German-Language Edition of Fatal Judgment releases
It’s always fun to see the covers that publishers from other countries create for my books. My first suspense-book series—Heroes of Quantico—was very well received in Germany, so my publisher there is now releasing the Guardians of Justice series. Fatal Judgment came out in January, and I’ve heard good things so far. Thought you’d enjoy a peek at what German readers are seeing on the shelf in their book stores!

 

February 2, 2013

Vanished Hits FOUR Bestseller Lists!
Whenever I have a new book release, I always hold my breath until the monthly bestseller lists come out. I’ve been very blessed with my previous six suspense titles. All have made the ECPA and CBA bestseller lists, which are the Christian market equivalent of the New York Times and USA Today lists for the general market. Well, Vanished has gone above and beyond! Yes, it made both the ECPA and CBA lists for February. It's also #5 for the month on the Publishers Weekly list of bestselling paperbacks in Christian publishing—all the more remarkable because that list includes both fiction and nonfiction. And finally, it was the #2 bestselling fiction title for Lifeway Christian stores during January. That puts me right between Jonathan Cahn (The Harbinger) at #1 and Francine Rivers (Redeeming Love) at #3. Wow, wow, wow! What a great start to this year!

 

January 9, 2013

Amazon Editors Name Vanished Top Ten Romance!
Vanished, which was released January 1, has just been named by Amazon editors as one of the Best Books of the Month and a Top Ten Romance release for January, joining books by many New York Times bestsellers, including Danielle Steel and Janet Evanovich. For the full list, click here. 

 

January 8, 2013

Vanished Trailer Debuts on YouTube
I’m excited to share with you my first-ever book trailer, for Vanished. The novel released January 1, and already I’m hearing from readers who have finished it. If you haven’t yet gotten a copy, I hope this short video will convince you to give it a try! Click to view.

 

December 10, 2012An Early Christmas Present

An Early Christmas Present
I just got an advance copy of my January 1 release, and wow! Photos don’t do the cover justice; it’s printed on silver paper, which makes the rainy scene glisten. Plus…drum roll, please…this is the first time both my name and the title are embossed! I’m SO excited about launching this new series, which features three ex-law enforcement operatives who’ve formed a private investigation firm. Suffice it to say they handle some very interesting cases. Reviews so far have been uniformly excellent, including this from the New York Journal of Books: “A riveting storyline…one of those addictive books that once started, compels you to shut out the world till you reach the very last page.” Can’t ask for better than that—and what a nice Christmas present!

 

November 7, 2012

New Contract for Contemporary Romances!Certin Summer
I’m pleased to announce that I’ve signed a contract for contemporary romances with my suspense publisher. I’ve been writing category-length romance for years (shorter mass-market paperbacks) for Love Inspired, but these will be larger, trade-sized books, like my suspense novels. I’m very excited about the first book, That Certain Summer, which will be out in June. It’s an uplifting story about two very different sisters, an unexpected homecoming, and one unforgettable summer. If you like Karen Kingsbury or Debbie Macomber, I think you’ll like this book. I’ll be posting more information about it on my site early next year, but in the meantime, here’s a preview of the cover. And of course, I’ll also continue to write suspense! Watch for Vanished in January.

October 15, 2012

Publishers Weekly Praises Vanished!
Vanished, Book 1 in my Private Justice series, won’t be released until January 1, but Publishers Weekly just issued its review—and what a review it is! If you’d like to read the whole thing, here’s the link: http://www.publishersweekly.com/978-0-8007-2123-7. But I’ll share the conclusion with you here. “Hannon’s intricately developed characters struggle with complex moral issues, bringing into question whether the ends ever do justify the means. An engaging, satisfying tale that will no doubt leave readers anxiously anticipating the next installment.” I’ve also been privy to an advance peek at the review from the New York Journal of Books. That won’t be made public until December 1, but I’ll share two words here to give you a hint about what it says: “addictive” and “riveting.” What a great way to start the week!

September 1, 2012

Lethal Legacy Is #5 on Bestseller List!
I’m thrilled to report that Lethal Legacy, Book 3 in my Guardians of Justice series, has just debuted at #5 on the September ECPA bestseller list! Karen Kingsbury is #2, so I’m in great company. If you’d like to see the other authors in the top twenty, here’s the link: http://christianbookexpo.com/bestseller/fiction.php?id=0912

August 23, 2012

Yes, I’m Still Singing and Dancing!
Several recent interviewers have been interested in my musical theater work. (Here’s one example) A number of readers have also asked if I’m still active in theater. The answer is a resounding yes—when my writing schedule permits. As a matter of fact, I just performed in a musical revue last weekend called “Some Enchanted Evening,” which showcasedthe wonderful songs of Rodgers and Hammerstein. I was thrilled to be featured in several numbers, including a couple of solos. It was a lot of hard work and the cast put in long hours,but proceeds benefitted a faith-based youth sports program, so it was time well spent!

July 30, 2012

Fatal Judgment Wins National Readers Choice Award!
I’m thrilled to announce that Book 1 in my Guardians of Justice series, Fatal Judgment, has won a National Readers Choice award! The award was presented during a lovely brunch at the annual Romance Writers of America conference, this year held in Anaheim, Calif. One tiny glitch—the engraver forgot to put the winners’ names on the awards, so I don’t yet have it in hand. But I’ll be watching the mail!

July 18, 2012

Deadly Pursuit Wins Retailers Choice Award!
More great news on the awards front! Book 2 in my Guardians of Justice series, Deadly Pursuit, has won the Retailers Choice award from Christian Retailing magazine in the contemporary romance category. Retailers judge books based on the impact they had on staff and customers, including their ability to speak to people’s hearts and evoke emotion. The awards were presented at the International Christian Retailing Show in Orlando, Fla.

July 16, 2012

Deadly Pursuit Is Carol Award Finalist!
I’m thrilled to announce that Book 2 in my Guardians of Justice series, Deadly Pursuit, has just been named one of three Carol Award finalists in the romantic suspense category by American Christian Fiction Writers. The winner will be announced at the ACFW national conference in Dallas in September. Cross your fingers!

June 28, 2012

Sneak Preview of VanishedVanished
I just got the okay to release the cover of the first book in my Private Justice series, debuting in January with Vanished. Ta da! It’s a brand new look, and I’d love to hear what you think. The cover will be printed on a silver-coated paper, so it should shimmer a bit and the rain should glisten. I can’t wait to see the real thing! My Private Justice series focuses on three former law enforcement operatives—a homicide detective, undercover ATF agent and Secret Service agent—who join forces to form a private investigation firm. My PIs were college roommate and share an Irish heritage, so that makes for some fun along with the suspense. In Vanished, reporter Moira Harrison is new on the job in St. Louis, but she’s no rookie to investigative reporting. She knows how to dig for answers and get results. But when she hits a pedestrian on a rainy night in a wooded area—only to have both the victim and the good Samaritan who stopped to assist disappear—she turns to P.I. Cal Burke, an ex-homicide detective, to help her sort out the puzzle. Cal is more than a little skeptical of her story, especially since the police have dismissed it. But as clues begin to surface, bringing them closer to answers, the danger mounts. Because someone doesn’t want this mystery solved—and will stop at nothing to protect a shocking secret that will destroy a life built on lies. I’ll be posting an excerpt later this summer, so stay tuned!

June 21, 2012

Starred Review from Library Journal!
Fabulous news wafted my way while I was on vacation. Lethal Legacy, the final book in my Guardians of Justice series, earned my first starred review from Library Journal. The Journal had this to say: “Compelling characters and edge-of-your-seat action make this a winning finale to two-time RITA Award winner Hannon’s ‘Guardians of Justice’ series (Deadly Pursuit; Fatal Judgment). While this tale of romantic suspense is a sure bet for fans, it can also be read as a stand-alone and should garner new readers.” Needless to say, that was a highlight of the vacation!

May 26, 2012

Family Fiction Honor
I was excited to learn that Family Fiction magazine readers have named me among their top five favorite suspense authors. I’m in great company, because the list also includes Terri Blackstock, Ted Dekker, Ronie Kendig and Steven James.

April 20, 2012

Another Award Final!
Just heard that Book 2 in my Guardians of Justice series, Fatal Judgment, has been named a finalist for the National Readers’ Choice Award in the inspirational category. Winners will be announced in July.

April 11, 2012

Deadly Pursuit & Fatal Judgment final in Retailers Choice Awards
The 2012 awards season is off and running, and I just learned that both of my 2011 suspense novels have been chosen as finalists for Retailers Choice awards, which are sponsored by Christian Retailing magazine. Deadly Pursuit finaled in the contemporary romance category, along with books by Chris Fabry/Gary Chapman and Cindy Woodsmall. Fatal Judgment finaled in the mystery/suspense category. Steven James, Joel C. Rosenberg and Terri Blackstock are the other finalists in that category. Finalist books are chosen by a nationwide retailer vote based on the impact the books have had with staff and customers. For a full list of finalists, see http://www.retailerschoiceawards.com/.

 

March 26, 2012Deadly Pursuit

Deadly Pursuit is a RITA® finalist!
Talk about a great way to start a Monday! I just got a call informing me that Book 2 in my Guardians of Justice series, Deadly Pursuit, has been named a finalist for the prestigious RITA award—the “Oscar” of romantic fiction. I’m thrilled! Last year I won my second RITA, for In Harm’s Way, so I’m crossing my fingers for a win with this series, too. This year’s winners will be announced at a black-tie awards ceremony in Los Angeles in July, so please send good thoughts my way!

 

March 11, 2012

Speaking Engagement in St. Louis—You’re Invited!
If you’re planning to be in the St. Louis area on Thursday, March 22, please consider stopping by the Kirkwood Public Library’s spring tea party. Wonderful desserts will be served at 1:30—and I’m the guest speaker! Most of my speaking engagements are for private groups or organizations, so this is a great opportunity for me to meet readers in this area. The event is free, but reservations are required. To sign up, call 314-821-5770, ext. 1012. Hope to see you there!


February 3, 2012In Harm's Way India

Heroes of Quantico Series Goes to India!
Foreign rights have been sold for many of my novels, but now my Heroes of Quantico series has been picked up by a publisher in a brand-new part of the world for me—India. Under the licensing agreement, the book will be sold in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal. When a book is reprinted outside the United States, the new publisher redesigns the cover to appeal to readers in its markets, so here’s my Indian publisher’s version of the third book in the series, RITA-award-winning In Harm’s Way.

December 17, 2011

Free Copy of Seaside Reunion on Goodreads
My next contemporary romance, Seaside Reunion, releases January 1 (though it will start showing up in stores on December 20), so if you’re feeling lucky, check out the giveaway on Goodreads here. The promo ends December 28.

November 16, 2011

Deadly Pursuit Makes Booklist’s Top 10 for 2011
I’m thrilled to announce that Booklist magazine has chosen Book 2 in my Guardians of Justice series, Deadly Pursuit, as one of the top 10 inspirational fiction titles for 2011. I am honored to join the ranks of such esteemed authors as Jerry Jenkins, Janette Oke, and Lynn Austin, whose books also made the list this year. Booklist, which the New York Times calls “an acquisitions bible for public and school librarians nationwide,” is the review journal of the American Library Association. It reviews more than 7,500 books each year.

November 1, 2011

Lethal Legacy Cover PreviewLethal Legacy
The cover for Book 3 in my Guardians of Justice series, Lethal Legacy, is now final and I’m exited to share it with all of you. So many people have said they’re looking forward to Cole’s story—and I am, too! Last I heard, the book will be released in August 2012. I’ll be publishing an excerpt on my website early next year, but in the meantime, here’s a synopsis: The police say her father’s death was suicide. Kelly Warren says it was murder--and she has new evidence she believes proves it. Detective Cole Taylor doesn't put much credence in her claim, and nothing in his case review suggests foul play. But when Kelly ends up in the emergency room with a suspicious life-threatening medical condition, the incident strikes him as more than coincidental. Digging deeper, he discovers a startling secret that links her to a long-ago crime. Is history repeating itself? And does someone want Kelly silenced?

October 28, 2011

Cover Girl at Last!Franke Magazine
My RITA®-award winner, In Harm’s Way (Book 3 in my Heroes of Quantico series), has been translated into German, and my German publisher told me some months ago I would be featured in its magazine this fall. After I responded to the interview questions, however, I more or less forgot about it. Well…I just got an e-copy of the magazine (which is also published in print form), and much to my amazement I made the cover! I must admit, seeing my face on the front of a magazine was a bit of a rush. Even though it’s in German, I wanted to share my excitement with all of you!

October 11, 2011

Deadly Pursuit Hits Bestseller Lists!
I’m thrilled to report that Deadly Pursuit, Book 2 in my Guardians of Justice series, has hit both the ECPA and CBA bestseller lists, coming in at #7 and #8, respectively. It also landed in the top 50 of all books sold (fiction and nonfiction) on the ECPA list. I was also excited to see Book 1 in the series, Fatal Judgment, make a return appearance on the CBA list, coming in at #20. It’s a very exciting thing for an author to see a book reappear on a list nine months after its release!

September 25, 2011

Carol Award Winner!
Breaking news! Last night, at the American Christian Fiction Writers national conference in St. Louis, A Father for Zach won a prestigious Carol Award. The awards were presented at a gala dinner attended by nearly 700 publishing industry professionals, including authors, editors, agents and publishers. I hope to have more photos to post in a couple of days, but here’s one taken at the end of the evening featuring my fellow finalists Linda Goodnight (on the left) and Ruth Logan Herne (on the right). Peeking in between Linda and me is my Love Inspired editor, Melissa Endlich. It was a VERY exciting evening!

Carol awards

 

August 29, 2011

In Harm’s Way Goes to GermanyGerman Cover
It’s always fun to see how publishers outside the United States envision my book covers. I thought you might enjoy a peek at the German-language edition of my RITA®-award-winner, In Harm’s Way, which will be released in November. Sometimes titles are translated directly, but in this case the publisher changed the title to one it thought would have more appeal in the German market—Dolls Don’t Lie. As  you can see, the Raggedy Ann doll that was a minor element on my original cover now plays a much more prominent role!

July 19, 2011

A Father for Zach Named Carol Award Finalist
Just days back from New York with my RITA award for In Harm’s Way, I learned that Book 4 in my Nantucket-based Lighthouse Lane series is one of three finalists in the short contemporary romance category for the Carol award, given annually by American Christian Fiction Writers. This is the first time I’ve entered that contest, so I’m especially thrilled that A Father for Zach caught the eye of the judges. But it’s up against books by the wonderful Linda Goodnight and the powerhouse newcomer Ruth Logan Herne, so who knows how things will go? I’ll find out in September at ACFW’s annual conference! In the meantime, I’m basking in the glow from my shiny RITA®—and still trying to believe it’s real!

July 4, 2011

More Pix From RITA Awards Ceremony!
I don’t want to bore you, but I’ve got some more pix from my big night that I wanted to share. These were taken as I accepted the RITA® Award for In Harm’s Way.Here’s what I said: “Eight years ago, here in New York, in a hotel ballroom much like this one, at the RWA conference, and wearing this same dress—not that I’m superstitious or anything!—I won my first RITA. So history can repeat itself—and it’s every bit as sweet the second time around! If I tried to thank everyone who’s helped me along the way in my writing journey, I’d far exceed my allotted time. So I’ll just thank my father, who instilled in me a love of creative writing by telling me a different version of The Three Little Pigs bedtime story every single night. Finally, I’ve always considered writing, like any other talent, to be a gift. And while I can claim credit for honing that gift, the real honor for this award tonight belongs to the giver. Thank you.”

Irene accepting a RITA
Irene on the podium

July 3, 2011

Irene wins a RITA

In Harm’s Way Wins RITA® Award!
I’m thrilled to announce that the third romantic suspense novel in my bestselling Heroes of Quantico series won the romance-fiction equivalent of the Oscar in a NYC black-tie ceremony Friday night, July 1. More than 2,000 authors and publishing-industry professionals attended the event, which was emceed by Princess Diaries author Meg Cabot. Over 1,000 entries were judged in 12 categories; In Harm’s Way took the 2011 honors in the Inspirational Romance division. This was my fifth time as a finalist and my second win—and it was every bit as sweet the second time around! My good friend and fellow author, Debra Irene and Debra CloptonClopton (and her romance-hero-handsome husband!), took me out to celebrate afterward. Yesterday, I came home to find a huge banner on the front of the garage and a bouquet of flowers—all courtesy of my husband—plus, he took me out to dinner. (He’s romance-hero-handsome, too, by theIrene in the Driveway way!) I don’t usually run lots of pictures in this space, but this event deserves a few. That’s me, right after the award ceremony ended, holding my RITA; me and the gorgeous Debra Clopton, celebrating; and me in front of the banner my husband had waiting for me when we pulled in the driveway. What an incredible time it’s been!

 

June 6, 2011

Daphne du Maurier award finalist!
I’ve been on the road, so I’m a bit late announcing this—but Book 3 in my Heroes of Quantico series, In Harm’s Way, has been named a finalist for the prestigious Daphne du Maurier award. I’m absolutely thrilled! I won this award last year for Book 1 in the series, Against All Odds (and Book 2, An Eye For An Eye, was also a finalist), so I’m not expecting lightning to strike twice. However, I’m delighted that all three books in my debut romantic suspense series were Daphne finalists. The winner will be announced at Romance Writers of America’s national conference in New York City later this month. In Harm’s Way is also up for a RITA® award—the “Oscar” of romantic fiction, and that winner will be announced at the conference as well. It will be an exciting few days!

April 28, 2011

New Contracts
The past few weeks have been exciting as I’ve been discussing future books with both of my publishers. I’m happy to report that I’ve signed a four-book contract for more suspense books with Revell. The first three will be a series tentatively titled Private Justice that focuses on former law-enforcement operatives who’ve banded together to form a private investigation firm. The fourth book will either be the beginning of a new series or a standalone novel. I’ve also agreed to write a new three-book contemporary romance series for Love Inspired. It’s called Starfish Bay and is set on the northern California coast. The first book, Seaside Reunion, will be out in January 2012. So be watching for lots more books from me in the future!

March 24, 2011

RITA® finalist!
I’m thrilled to announce that I just got “The Call.” Book 3 in my Heroes of Quantico series, In Harm’s Way, has just been named a finalist for the coveted RITA award—the “Oscar” of romantic fiction. I’m thrilled! This is my fifth nomination, and I took home the golden statuette in 2003. This year’s winners will be announced at a black-tie awards ceremony in New York in June (at the very place I won my first RITA!), so please keep your fingers crossed!

March 1, 2011

Upcoming Appearance in St. Louis
I love to interact with readers, and I always schedule a number of speaking engagements each year. Most, however, are for private clubs and organizations. But on March 24 at 7 p.m. I’ll be doing a talk about my career and writing, including a Q&A session, at the Maplewood Public Library. So if you’re in the St. Louis area, please stop by. I’d love to meet you!

February 21, 2011

Cover Preview!Deadly Pursuit
The cover for Deadly Pursuit, Book 2 in my Guardians of Justice series, is now final, and I’m delighted to be able to share it first with you, my readers! Here’s a quick synopsis of this story: As a social worker with the Division of Family Services, Alison Taylor has a passion for protecting children and seeing that justice is served on their behalf. But now it seems she needs protecting. Someone is making harassing phone calls and sending her bizarre “gifts.” When her tormentor’s attentions take a violent turn, she calls in reinforcements. Her brother, Cole, comes to her aid, along with his new partner and former Navy SEAL Detective Mitch Morgan. As her relentless stalker turns up the heat and the danger intensifies, Mitch takes a personal interest in the case. Because protecting Alison has become more than a job; his future depends on keeping her safe. Please watch for Deadly Pursuit, coming in September!

February 10, 2011

Fatal Judgment Hits Two Bestseller Lists!
It’s now official—Fatal Judgment, Book 1 in my Guardians of Justice series, has hit both the ECPA and CBA bestseller lists! In the world of Christian fiction, these are the equivalent of the NY Times and USA Today lists. Needless to say, I’m thrilled! The book is number nine on the ECPA list and number six on the CBA list. All three books in my Heroes of Quantico series made both lists as well, so the new series is off to a great start. Thank you to all the readers who made this fabulous showing possible!

January 11, 2011
The Heart Remembers

Harlequin Heartwarming Reissue
This month, Harlequin is introducing a program featuring reissues of older books from many of its lines. One of my early Steeple Hill books, It Had To Be You, was selected for this new “Heartwarming” collection. All books are being renamed and edited to fit the guidelines of the new program. In my case, I toned down the specific faith content. But the story and values it represents remain unchanged. I did have the opportunity to “clean up” my writing—a great blessing, since I like to think my work has improved over the years! The books are being offered as part of Harlequin’s direct-to-consumer program, but they’ll also be available in many retail stores. Please watch for the new version of It Had To Be You, renamed The Heart Remembers, on store shelves in April.

December 17, 2010
German, Eye for an Eye

German Edition of An Eye For An Eye
My entire Heroes of Quantico series is being published in German, and I’ve just seen the cover for Book 2, An Eye For An Eye, which will be out in May. My German publisher tells me that readers are loving the series, which is always great news. I think it’s fun to see how art departments in other countries envision my book covers, so I thought I’d share this one with you! Rights for the series have also been sold in India, so I’ll pass those covers along as well when I see them. In the meantime Merry Christmas to one and all!

November 22, 2010

Magazine Feature Interview
Now that the release of Fatal Judgment is drawing close, the media buzz is growing. Check out this fabulous feature interview in Family Fiction magazine. The book is featured on the cover (at the bottom), on the table of contents page, and on pages 34-35. Click here for the online version. To page through the magazine, just click on the top outside corner of the page.

November 11, 2010

New Interview
With the release of Fatal Judgment—Book 1 in my Guardians of Justice series—just weeks away, the publicity blitz is beginning. If you’d like to read one of my first interviews for this novel, click over to christianbook.com. Here’s the link.

November 9, 2010

Reviewers’ Choice Award Nomination
I’ve just learned that A Father for Zach, Book 4 in my Nantucket-based Lighthouse Lane series, has been nominated for a 2010 Reviewers’ Choice award by Romantic Times BOOKreviews magazine. Always a nice way to start the day!

November 1, 2010

Coming to an Airport Bookstore Near You…
My suspense publisher has informed me that my next novel, Fatal Judgment, will be in many airports bookstores—face out!—in January. I’m told it will be in Hudson News stores and many HMS Host airport locations, including Simply Books, Authors Bookstore and Riverbend Books. So if you’re traveling, take a look. And if you spot it, I’d love to hear where!

October 19, 2010

And the Title Is…
Many readers are surprised to discover that an author’s working title is often not the final title for a book. In fact, some authors don’t even bother to choose a working title because more often than not titles are changed by the publisher’s marketing people. With my upcoming Guardians of Justice series, my publisher did keep my title for Book 1: Fatal Judgment. That book will be released in January. We’ve just finished the titling process for Book 2, which will be released in the fall of 2011. My working title was Silent Stalker. My publisher chose Deadly Pursuit, which I love! I hope you do, too. Cover design is underway, and I’ll give you a sneak peek as soon as I can.

September 27, 2010

New Life For It Had To Be You
Over the summer I was asked by Harlequin to participate in its new Wholesome Romance Program, which will debut in January.  Harlequin selected twenty previously published books from across all of its many lines and is re-tooling them to meet the “wholesome content” guidelines of this new program. Of course, many Steeple Hill books are a natural fit for this new line. The overt faith content will be toned down, as the new line is geared to a wider audience than Steeple Hill books, but other than that there will be few changes. My 1999 book, It Had To Be You, will be reprinted under a new name—The Heart Remembers. The book will be available through Harlequin’s direct-to-consumer program in February and at Walmart in April.

September 12, 2010

Suspense Books Go Audio!
I’m thrilled to announce that all three of my Heroes of Quantico novels (Against All Odds, An Eye For An Eye and In Harm’s Way), as well as the first book in my upcoming Guardians of Justice series (Fatal Judgment) are being made into audio books. The books will be released on tape and CD over the next few months, beginning in January with Fatal Judgment and In Harm’s Way. They are being produced by Recorded Books LLC, which has also done audio books for authors such as Nora Roberts, Debbie Macomber and Karen Kingsbury, so I’m in great company! These are unabridged versions, so the price point is fairly high, but they would be great additions to public libraries. So for all the readers who’ve asked about audio books, please let your library know they’ll soon be available!

August 25, 2010

pic1Anything Goes
As my bio indicates, I love performing in musical theatre. I’ve had a number of readers ask if I still do stage work, given my busy writing schedule, and the answer is a resounding YES!—when time permits. I was very fortunate this summer to have the opportunity to play the leading role in a production of “Anything Goes,” the classic Cole Porter musical filled with wonderful songs like “You’re the Top,” “I Get a Kick Out of You,” “Friendship” and, of course, the title song. The performances benefited the Catholic Youth Apostolate, which sponsors numerous worthwhile programs for teens. So not only did I have fun singing and tap dancing and acting, it was all for a good cause! Here are a couple of fun pictures from the show, which we performed last weekend.

pic2rotatingquotes