EtS Welcomes Sandy Nicks!

Today we will be chatting with Sandy Nicks, author of Circle of Eternity. She will be giving away a free copy of her book to one lucky commenter, so be sure to show her some love!

*****

Hi, Suzanne, thanks for having me! Today, I’ll be talking about what inspired the key elements of Circle of Eternity.

I fell in love with time travel romances many years ago. When I was a teenager, I even wrote anguished poems about lovers from different time periods. My mom watched a lot of movies set in medieval England, got me hooked, and made me want to live in a castle with a sexy knight – regardless if his armor was shiny : -)

The idea to use a Celtic cross to transport my characters back in time came from the beautiful Celtic cross necklace my mother had given to me many years ago. As I developed the plot, I decided to have the hero and heroine go back in time together, be sent on a quest in order to return to the present, and be forced to work together despite their internal and external conflicts.

The story then grew to include an old woman with mystical powers, a medieval couple who needed to be saved and reunited with their baby, and a mystery surrounding the hero’s mother. It sounded complicated while I was writing it, and I’m sure it sounds complicated now, but with the help of a great critique group, the story came together in a way that doesn’t confuse the reader.

The main setting takes place inside Brindlemoor Castle. I used descriptions from various castles I found online and in books I owned. The name came from a horse stable around the corner from where I used to live. The castle plays a major role in both the present and past. In the present, it’s where the hero and heroine meet, struggle in a forbidden room, and where their time traveling adventure begins. In the twelfth century, Brindlemoor Castle is where the medieval lovers are being held prisoner.

The action scenes were inspired by sword fights found in movies I love, and both the present day and twelfth century villains were modeled after actor Alan Rickman. I admit there are some dark scenes in the book, like when the hero is in the dungeon, but they were necessary in order to give the reader an authentic visual. And as much as I love to romanticize that time period, let’s face it, it was a pretty dirty place to live – especially when the hero and heroine are from the present and used to twenty-first century living. To help them cope though, I injected quite a bit of humor. I know when things are bad for me, if I don’t laugh, I’d cry…a lot.

I truly believe in the power of magic, the thrill of adventure, and that love and a sense of humor go hand-in-hand. For those of you who feel the same, you’ll find it all in Circle of Eternity!

I want to thank Suzanne again for having me! I’d also like to give a free e-book copy of Circle of Eternity to one lucky commenter who also answers this question: If you were zapped back in time, name one thing you’d bring with you.

Blurb:

After her husband dies in the arms of another woman, Samantha Brooks travels to England where the Earl of Brindlemoor has opened both his manor house and the ruins of Brindlemoor Castle to tourists. A mystery ensues when Samantha encounters Greyson Pierce and they’re transported back in time to the twelfth century – a time of danger and intrigue. The quest to right old wrongs also becomes a personal journey for the hero and heroine as they learn to overcome past betrayals and renew their capacity to trust and love again.

Excerpt:

Prologue

England, 1156

Enshrouded in opal mist, the elderly woman gazed up at the castle. Her chest weighed heavy. Soon death was to claim the two people she held closest to her heart.

Raising her arms, she whispered into the wind. “Through me, ye shall speak to my blood. Through my blood, shall your lives be saved.”

Her words drifted through the darkness and spiraled upward toward the room where the innocent girl remained locked away. Below, in the cold dungeon, the young woman’s lover lay imprisoned. Clutching her shawl to her body the old woman softly vowed, “Ye, too, through the blood of your own, shall be free.”

She smiled before slipping back into the dew-laden forest. Contentment filled her soul. Throughout eternity, the circle now formed, would remain unbroken.

Chapter One

England, Present Day

Brindlemoor Castle stole her breath. The early morning sun cast a golden band across the weathered walls, illuminating the workmanship from centuries past. Ivy crept up the foundation, as if to fortify its crumbling mortar, and spread upward over the ancient fortress.

Samantha Brooks gazed at the castle in awe. The travel brochure didn’t do it justice. The intricate details of such a magnificent structure could never be captured in a photograph. The stones were various shapes and colors, and it amazed her how the masons of long ago had built it without modern day tools.

Savoring the salty air that filled her lungs, Samantha inhaled, wishing this moment could last forever. The ocean waves washed softly, steadily against the rocks below the cliff, and although cracked and broken, Brindlemoor’s foundation proudly upheld the rich history of a time past.

For her, the trip here was about letting go of her history and the cornerstone to building a whole new life. She sighed. The image of having a policeman tell you that your husband had died in the bed of another woman wasn’t exactly a past worth preserving.

The distant voices of the other tourists provided a welcome distraction to the unpleasant turn her thoughts had taken. She knew she should rejoin them. Last night at the welcome reception the earl had stated he didn’t want any of them wandering around on their own. He had further added that if this rule was violated, the offender would be asked to vacate the premises.

She turned to go, but a tower window caught her attention. Captivated, she stared up at the corner of its ledge drawn to a shimmering light dancing atop the stone. She squinted to get a better look, but as quickly as it had appeared, it vanished.

She waited a few seconds to see if the light would reappear, but it didn’t. Maybe it was just the sun playing tricks on her, she reasoned. With her hands clasped behind her back, she took a step back. Her fingers brushed denim.

She jerked her hands in front of her and spun around. Her face flushed with heat as she looked up at the sandy-haired tour guide.

“I…I ’m sorry,” she stuttered. “I didn’t know you were behind me.”

“That much is obvious.”

Samantha almost laughed, but his smile stopped her short leaving her uncertain as to whether he was being sarcastic or sincere.

“I didn’t mean to bump into you,” she insisted, keeping her gaze from wandering down to the spot she had touched.

He cleared his throat and moved a hand to his mouth, but not quickly enough to cover the beginning of an amused grin. “That’s quite all right.”

Sarcasm. She prickled. His English accent sounded so eloquent, yet he obviously thought just like every other male. Of course it was “quite all right.” What man wouldn’t mind having a woman brush up against his crotch?

“The castle is beautiful,” she said, desperate to change the subject.

His eyes, the color of a Caribbean sea, and just as fathomless, softened for the briefest of instants. “It is beautiful, isn’t it?”

Sincere. She felt certain of it. “I can’t wait to see the inside,” she replied, relieved to have found some common ground with him.

“Which is why I came looking for you,” he said, all business again. “It’s time to move on with the tour.”

She curled her fingers into her palms. “The earl doesn’t need to know that I took a little walk by myself, does he?”

His gaze skimmed her body before returning to her face. “No, but I suggest you stay close for the remainder of the tour.”

Stay close? Stay close to whom? Him? Unnerved by his assessing glance, she stepped back.“Thank you. I’ll be right there.”

“Don’t be long.” He started to leave, but turned to face her one more time. “And do be careful where you walk. There are many unsafe places inside the castle.” He grinned suddenly. “And please, do handle our valuables with care.”


You can purchase Circle of Eternity in print or multiple e-book formats at:

AmazonB&N

Bio: Sandy Nicks lives near the Jersey Shore with her husband, 4 kids and 9 spoiled pets. She writes romantic comedy and time travel romance for Vanilla Heart Publishing. When she’s not writing, she loves going to the beach, reading, hanging out with the kids and taking her dogs to the reservoir.

To learn more about Sandy and her books, please visit: www.sandynicks.com , follow her on Twitter or contact her at: sandy@sandynicks.com

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Comments
11 Responses to “EtS Welcomes Sandy Nicks!”
  1. Very enjoyable novel, Sandy. It’s a nice touch having the inspiration for the cross come from your necklace.

    Malcolm

  2. Sandy Nicks says:

    Hi Malcolm – Thank you for stopping by. I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed the book 🙂

    I still wear the necklace – it’ has a very special place in my heart.

    Have a great day!

    Sandy

  3. Great interview, Sandy–funny, your time travel device was a Celtic Cross; I used a fairy stone (which is a cross-shaped crystal) in The Cabin! Great minds think alike, I guess.

    Smoky

  4. Sandy Nicks says:

    Thank you for stopping by, Smoky! I like the idea of the fairy stone – very cool 🙂

    Have a great day!

    Sandy

  5. Yadira A. says:

    Thanks for the excerpt Sandy! The cover really is great:) Time travel romance isn’t one I’ve read many books of, but I do love the idea and will be putting Circle of Eternity on my wishlist. The Celtic cross is really beautiful and it’s use in the storyline of this book sounds very interesting. If I were zapped back in time, I would bring a camera because I bet there are alot of things that have never been seen or documented of our history and it would be great to have proof of my encounters.

    yadkny@hotmail.com

  6. Sandy Nicks says:

    Hello Yadira! Thank you so much for stopping by and for your kind words. Time travel romances are fun. In this book, I send both the hero and heroine back in time together – so it’s like a contemporary set in the 12th century – LOL

    I like your answer – it would be amazing to capture pictures of things we’ve never seen and document them.

    Thanks again for stopping by 🙂 I appreciate it.

    Sandy

  7. An intriguing interview full mystery and fun. I’m here to give Sandy the deserved love Suzanne asked for at the beginning.

    If I were able to go back in time, I’d bring back two precious people gone before I was ready to let go.Sad but true, so I use a sense of humor and travel on- not backward…always forward.

    Thank you for this moment.

  8. Sandy Nicks says:

    Hi Charmaine –

    Thank you for stopping by today! It means so much that you came by to “show the love” 🙂

    I liked your answer, although it made me kind of sad – but good to know you’re looking forward. A good laugh always lightens the heart 🙂

    Have a great evening,
    Sandy

  9. Sandy Nicks says:

    I just want to say thank you again to Suzanne! I really enjoyed being here.

    Thank you to those who commented, too!

    I won’t be around for the rest of the night, but would like to extend the give-away until tomorrow. I’ll be stopping in throughout the day and then I’ll choose the winner 🙂

    Goodnight,
    Sandy

  10. Oh, you have such a lovely voice! Thank you for sharing a glimpse of your book with us:)

    Barbara~

  11. Sandy Nicks says:

    Thank you, Barbara! You made my day 🙂

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