Hi guys, today I am very happy to welcome Em Woods to Joyfully Jay. Em is here to tell us more about her new book, A Christmas Carol, and to share an excerpt.  Welcome Em!

Hello! Em Woods here…I hope everyone is enjoying the holidays so far. I know here with my crew it’s a hectic, hectic time. Parties, dinners, school, work, etc. Add in shopping with the crazies (I think I might go online this year? Hmm…) and you’ve got a recipe for disaster. LOL

So, rambling aside, I’ve been invited here to chat up my newest release coming this Monday – A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens and myself. Yep, he’s billed on the cover as well. This is for Total-E-Bound’s Clandestine Classics line where the original text is left alone (it is hard to improve on a great story) and I work my magic to create the romantic erotic story line.

I think it bears repeating – over and over – that A Christmas Carol is a truly inspiring story. I try to read it every year and I have to confess that my bookshelf pride and joy is a 1908 copy I stumbled onto at a garage sale a few years ago. However, each time I join Dickens on his journey, I wondered at the reasons behind Scrooge’s behaviour.

What would drive someone who obviously had family to act so awful as to drive everyone away, and keep them away? To me, those reasons could be just as fascinating as the delightful story Mr. Dickens told. Before I wrote a word of the additional storyline, I fiddled around with those reasons. Was it Marley? Was it the fiancé? Should the story be about the loss of a woman? A man? A family?

Or were there deeper social and personal issues to Scrooge’s behaviour? Maybe it was Marley…or maybe Marley was a contributor. I love the way A Christmas Carol turned out, with Marley and Scrooge and a new character, Alex, who I think you will love as well.

Wanna take a peek at A Christmas Carol? Here’s an excerpt just for you…

The room held no differences. The same curtains hung round the bed. The same furniture sat round the room. A fire died slowly, pitifully—a harsh death to be certain—in that marble fireplace. The wind howled its rage as rain pounded the panes of glass within the window.

Scrooge huddled under a quilt, a book’s cold pages the only company as he strained his ears for a sign of his lover’s return. Much too late the distant, lowly scrape of the front entryway preceded heavy footsteps on the stairs leading to the second floor. The chamber door swept open to reveal one wet Jacob Marley, his hair dishevelled, his cheeks ruddy, his eyes wide.

Marley crossed the room without a look to spare for Scrooge and sank to the mattress, discarding his sopping shoes and drenched hosiery. Scrooge kept quiet as he stared at the pages of the book he held, unseeing of the scripted words of his most favoured story. He waited, impatiently—for his trusted willpower failed him with the disregard shown thus far—for Marley to reveal where he had been these last few hours, yet Scrooge found himself unwilling to ask.

“I should just be out with it, should I not?” Marley tucked his hands behind his head as he lay back on the bed, muscular legs sprawled out, eyes on Scrooge.

“If you would rather.”

“I would not. But this conversation will not be easy, Eb.” Marley used Scrooge’s nickname, his tone wistful, twisting Scrooge’s heart and causing him to give leniency for the cloak of mystery cast upon the day by Marley’s untimely departure that afternoon.

“Have you found a woman who suits you?” Scrooge turned a page in his book, feigning boredom. “Have you tired of me after these past several years?”

“Never.” Marley sat up, his lips pinched, his jaw flexing as he held back the words that would have followed.

Scrooge stared at him over the edge of his book before slowly lowering it to his lap, then to the table beside his chair, knocking his cup of tea. “What is it then? Has the devil taken off with your tongue?”

“I am ill.”


Blurb

Love at first sight is a beautiful thing, but sometimes, true love waits a lifetime to shine…and then needs a little help from the Three Ghosts of Christmas.

As a young man, Ebenezer Scrooge felt the sharp pain of loss and resolved to protect his heart from all others, taking solace in his gold and silver. Years of discarding his own emotions, and those of anyone around him, has turned Scrooge cold.

When deceased lover and partner Jacob Marley pays miserly Scrooge a late night visit, pride and disbelief buoy Scrooge’s courage. As the fabled Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet-to-Come arrive to show Scrooge the error of his ways, they also give him brief glimpses of a love so strong it has stood the test of time.

In an inspiring tale of change, a deep-seated need flares to life, leaving Scrooge without a doubt that love and family are what really matter at Christmas.

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