Author Conversations with Shelly Ellis #KontrolReads

Lauren Gibbons is committing the ultimate family betrayal: abandoning the family tradition of seducing men for money, but nothing is worth the abuse she’s endured from her sugar daddy. Now a sous chef, Lauren is hoping to break from the past for good. And when she meets hot former NFL player Crisanto Weaver, she even lets herself imagine a future. But between her conniving relatives, her vengeful ex, a mountain of debt, and a whole lot of haters, can she escape her old life, and create something new?

Tell us what this book is about?

Can’t Stand the Heat is the first in a series about a scandalous family of women who live in the fictional town of Chesterton, Virginia. Each book focuses on one of the sisters, but they all have a reputation for being shameless — but refined — gold diggers. They even have an unwritten gold digging rulebook by which the family operates that has been passed down through generations.

 

Can’t Stand the Heat is about Lauren Gibbons, the youngest sister. Drama ensues when Lauren decides to abandon the Gibbons family tradition of seducing men for money. Her family sees it as the ultimate betrayal. But for Lauren, nothing is worth the abuse she’s endured from her sugar daddy. She becomes a sous chef in hopes of breaking from her past for good. She also meets hot former NFL star Crisanto Weaver and wonders if a new love might be on the horizon. But the small-town rumor mill in Chesterton—and her own sisters—aren’t ready for a new Lauren or her new life. Now faced with conniving relatives, a town full of haters, her vengeful ex, and a mountain of debt, Lauren begins to wonder if she can ever create something new.

 

Why did you choose to write this book?

I’ve written contemporary romances in the past, but I wanted to write a story that had more spice, humor, and complex characters. I also wanted to write a story with an underdog, someone readers would want to root for. In the Gibbons Gold Digger series, a lot of people hate the Gibbons sisters — and rightfully so, since most of the sisters wouldn’t hesitate to steal someone’s man if it could mean getting a new Birkin bag or a new car. But the sisters evolve as characters in the course of each novel thanks to their trials and misadventures. You see each woman change as person, and you want them to succeed in the end.

 

Tell us why your writing is unique?

I strive never to write “straight-forward” romance or women’s fiction. I try not to be cookie-cutter in my approach to stories. I want the reader to enjoy herself, even if she knows the hero and heroine are probably going to get together in the end. I also try to incorporate humor and emotion so that readers can get into the story.

 

What can we look forward to from you?

The second book in the series, The Player and the Game, is coming out Aug. 27. The third book is slated for summer of 2014, as of now. I’m working on a few other projects, but can’t disclose the details as of yet.

 

Find the author:

Twitter handle: @ellisromance

Website: www.shellyellisbooks.com

Tamika

Author of 13 novels as seen in Vibe Vixen, Essence, Uptown, and on BET and Centric .