The Latina Book Club congratulates New York Times Bestselling Author Julie Leto on her new book, TOO HOT TO TOUCH, which will be released tomorrow, August 23. Run, do not walk, to your nearest bookstore for this book; then go home and enjoy.
A: The heroes of this series are fictionalized descendents of Joaquin Murrieta, who was the bandit upon which the story of Zorro was based. Even before Antonio Banderas took up the cape and sword, I've been enraptured by this character! The skill, the finesse, the underlying sense of justice...it's just too romantic for a girl like me to ignore. In my stories, the brothers have inherited a ring that supposedly helps bring out their inner bandits. Of course, the women they meet don't hurt, either. The series is sexy and romantic and adventurous and fun...everything in keeping with that swashbuckling Latin lover.
Q: Congratulations on being part of Blaze’s 10th Anniversary Collector’s Edition. When did you start reading romances? When did you start wanting to write one? What do you like best about series romances?
A: Thank you! I started reading romance novels when I was 14 and a freshman in high school. My best friend took them from her older sister and we read them voraciously. It was that very same friend who suggested, years later when we were graduating from college that we try to write a romance novel together. We actually wrote two, but neither was published. She decided to stop writing, but I didn't. I kept writing and sold SEDUCING SULLIVAN, my first published novel, about ten years later. The best thing about writing series romance, especially for Harlequin, is the distribution. My stories are sold all over the world and are translated into so many different languages. For readers, I think the best part is that they are like concentrated bursts of romance. They're short, but they are intense. (Although I think people would be surprised by how short some of their hardcover fiction really is...there isn't that much of a difference sometimes!)
Q: Who were/are your favorite romance writers? Your favorite Latino writers?
A: My favorite romance writers are so varied and many. For historicals, my new favorite is Tessa Dare. She writes charming, sexy historical romances set during the Regency period. For romantic thrillers, I love Leslie Parrish. She just grabs your stomach--and your heart--and holds them captive for 400+ pages. For young adult books, I love Diana Peterfreund. Her books are so smart. As for Latino writers, I have to go with Caridad Ferrer and Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez. You can't go wrong with either of them, no matter what they are writing.
Q: What is happening with your Marisela Morales “Dirty” series?
A: I'm so glad you asked this question! Just a month ago, I was able to resecure the rights to the Marisela series, meaning that the original publisher, Pocket (Simon & Schuster) has returned the rights to publish the books to me. I'm in the process right now of repackaging DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS and DIRTY LITTLE LIES for digital re-release! I hope to have them available for the Kindle, the Nook and other digital readers, by October. If the first two books find an audience, I'm going to write the third book, TALK DIRTY TO ME, which I have always wanted to do. I'm even having the cover designed in hopes that this happens!
Q: What are You reading now?
A: I just finished reading Tessa Dare's upcoming historical, A NIGHT TO SURRENDER. It was fabulous! It comes out next month. I'm not sure what I'm going to read next, but it will likely be Louisa Edwards's new book, TOO HOT TO TOUCH, which so happens to also be the title of my new book. We call ourselves Title Twins. :-) Her books are based on chefs...and I'm a serious foodie. I love her sexy contemporaries, even if they do make me hungry. I also want to read THE HUNGER GAMES. I feel like I'm the only person in the universe who hasn't read the book yet!♥
Visit Julie at http://www.julieleto.com/. Also, friend her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter.