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Sunday, December 6, 2009

GetToKnowTheBook: Author Aasiyah Qamar/ Nolwynn Ardennes:Light My World-Storms in a Shot Glass

At the time of writing Light My World, the story that showcased the life, trials and tribulations of Diya Hemant, I didn’t know I would soon be writing the story of Jane Smithers in Storms in a Shot Glass. Different women, different outlooks on life, different goals, different aspirations where love was concerned…
Did these two have anything in common, other than they both sprang from my imagination and wrote their stories through my pen?

It’s a question I often wondered about, and one I always wanted to have answered. Through a strange twist of Fate, both books were to come out at a few months’ interval, thus pitching me with both characters at around the same time. Lo and behold, there was some common ground between Diya and Jane! Read on through the encounter that took place at a secluded café in London when I had my two heroines meet.

“Damn it, I’m so sorry I’m late,” Diya chimed as she breezed through the light-filled, airy interior of the café in a posh end of Knightsbridge.
All eyes turn to her, and Jane watched as the men cannot take their eyes off the tiny woman who resembles a life-size doll. She sure was pretty, yet what caught everyone’s attention when Diya was around was the aura of bubbly confidence that shone through and which was obvious in her sprightly step.

“How long have I kept you waiting? Not too long, I hope,” Diya continued as she reached the table where Jane sat and plunged into a seated position in the vacant chair. Her gaze quickly scanned her companion – Jane Smithers wasn’t what at all like she’d expected her to be. From the posh, cultured accent, she’d have ventured Jane had to be a boring old spinster in starched knickers. Yet, the woman across the table appeared to be in her late twenties and there was a startling, arresting quality about her, mostly apparent in her poised, regal bearing and in the artfully structured planes of her face.

A waiter appeared as if by magic, and Diya placed her order. Latte with full cream milk and extra whipped cream.
She watched as Jane eyed her with a raised eyebrow. Her gaze fell to the dainty teacup on the table. Clear, gold-coloured tea with wafts of steam slowly rising in swirling whirls – she’d bet there was no ounce of sugar in the cup.
Oh, well, to each her own, she mused as she allowed her gaze to roam over the surroundings and glance through the clear windows, catching on a glimpse of Harrod’s which was just around the corner. Diya sighed. “You’re one lucky gal, you know, to be living here everyday.”

Jane gave a soft chuckle. “I thought you lived in a tropical paradise. At least, that’s what I gathered Mauritius was supposed to be.”
Diya leaned forward and as usual not giving a tiff about etiquette and all the oh-so-proper manners, placed her right elbow on the table and her chin in the cupped palm of her hand.
“It actually is all that,” she paused, “as well as a hotbed of gossip with a gaggle of aunts who want nothing more than to turn your life into their next rabidly-avidly-cliché-ed Indian soap opera.”
At this Jane had to laugh. “Take out the Indian bit and you get what the people here want to make of your life too.”
“So life is all about battling this barrage of conventions and never-ending talk, innit? Wherever you are, it’s the same.”
“You could say that,” Jane concurred.

The waiter came by at that moment with Diya’s latte, and she raised her eyes to acknowledge his presence as she offered her thanks. Watching as he smiled and then turned and left, she looked at Jane. “He’s pretty, isn’t he?”
Jane was tempted to grimace, and she caught herself just in time. By God, that girl was definitely young if she called a lad pretty. And though she didn’t want to burst the bubble, there was just this much an older gal could take when she saw someone younger than her run head first into a terrible situation. “Diya, if I’m not mistaken, that’s eye makeup he’s wearing.”

“Good grief! You think? Urghh.” Diya had no qualms about grimacing outwardly though, and she scrunched her face into a really strange-looking rictus. “Which just goes to prove – men are a worthless loss of our precious time.”
Jane nearly choked on the sip of ginger tea she’d taken. Oh no, she hadn’t missed the spite in the younger girl’s words, and this made her curious. Usually, it took a very specific something – or someone – to bring such antagonism towards the other gender. “Say that again?”

“No, not all men. British men are!”
To say that Jane was intrigued would be an understatement, and though she didn’t know Diya that much, she sensed there was a certain affinity between them, kind of like kindred spirits meeting. So she jumped in with her very specific question. “What has that British man done to you?”
“Other than make my life hell, nothing!”

There was something brewing here. Though Jane tried her best to smooth all rough edges, she loved a good girl-chat like any other chick. “And who would that devil be?”
“Trent Garrison. My very obnoxious, very rude, and very caveman-and-oaf-like neighbour.”

Trouble in paradise. When a woman was that vehement about a man, it usually meant she was either totally right, or so totally gobsmacked by the man-in-question’s good points she just had to remind herself how much of a bad match he potentially was. You love him, she was about to say, but bit her tongue before the words escaped her. Unless Diya saw this truth for herself, nothing and no one would convince her there could be much, much more where she and this oaf was concerned.
“Come on,” Diya said, startling Jane out of her thought. “Surely you agree with me British men are total morons.”

You don’t know the half of it. This time, she could do nothing to stop the grimace from perturbing her features.
“Aha! I knew it. You have an oaf in your life too,” Diya exclaimed. At least something juicy to crack the shell of perfection around the classy and totally professional-looking Jane. “Come on, out with it. Who’s he?”
Jane sighed. What was the point in trying to deflect the question? “Michael Rinaldi.”
“He’s Italian? No wonder then. I bet he’s a real bossy Alpha.”
“He’s a real bossy Alpha all right but he’s British. It’s his grandfather who was the original Italian.”

“So you’re close. That a love-hate relationship you have or what?”
Talk of a prying little git. But however much she resented the invasion of privacy, there was something about Diya Hemant that simply made you not able to dislike or hate her. “No, we’re not close. In fact, I don’t know him really.”
“Then how come you can trace his family tree back to Italy?” Diya asked before she took a sip of her quickly-going-cold latte.

“It’s,” Jane paused and sighed, “complicated. I work for his father.”
“You got that bit right,” the girl answered her in her forthright manner. “Talk of a situation. What is it about him that’s gotten your knickers in a twist though?”
Jane sighed again, and this time she swore the air came up right from her toes and all through her body. “I’m pregnant.”
At this Diya placed her cup so forcefully down that thick white foam sloshed over the rim and danced down the heavy porcelain. “Goodness, girl. Talk of a predicament. He knows? I mean, you told him?”

“Yes.” How much did she tell this girl who fast seemed to be becoming the kind of bosom girlfriend to whom you spoke of just about anything? “He’s not the father.”
Diya frowned, and relegating the cup of coffee to the sidelines, leaned with both her forearms on the table towards Jane. “He isn’t?”

Jane shook her head. “And it’s not what you think. I’m not playing him. He knows who got me up the duff and how it happened, and he doesn’t care. He just asked, what if it were mine?” She paused and took a deep breath. “I’m two months along, Diya, and you know when I met Michael for the first time ever in my existence?”
Diya shook her head, hanging on to her new friend’s every word. “When?”
“Two days ago.”

The thoughts and explanations ran through Diya’s head, and try as she might, she couldn’t imagine herself in Jane’s shoes. “You, girl, are in a mighty pickle.”
Jane gave a small snort. “You think I’m the only one? What about you and your oaf?”
Both women remained silent for long seconds, with one question they were sure, flashing like bright neon lights at the forefront of their minds.
How would they ever get out of their respective pickle?

To find out, come grab a copy of Light My World, which released on October 2, 2009, and see the bumpy and eventful ride Fate has planned for Diya, and how Trent Garrison the ‘oaf’ will be thrown in at every turn and corner. And to know how Jane will work herself out of her predicament with her bossy Alpha Italo-Briton aka Michael Rinaldi,, mark your calendars for January 8, 2010, when Storms in a Shot Glass will be released!

Light My World by Aasiyah Qamar:
Life's good until it throws you the one curve you never wanted or expected.
At twenty-four, Diya Hemant faces the prospect dreaded by every modern Indo-Mauritian girl – an arranged marriage to not end up an old maid. But for vivacious and live-life-in-the-fast-track Diya, giving in to her mother’s antiquated morals was never an option. Hearth, home and children weren’t part of her plan for the short-term, even if she’d love to find her Mr. Right.
Widower Trent Garrison has already been there and done that, and has no plan to go down that road again. He has to ride the straight and steady for the sake of his sons, and nothing will divert him. Marriage, attachment, and love are not in the cards for him, not ever.
Neither can afford a U-turn. But they can't dodge it either.

Genre - Multicultural Romance/AngloIndian
Length - Novel
Heat Level - Sweet

Buy Link: (Kindle edition)

Storms in a Shot Glass by Nolwynn Ardennes:
A little bump is about to cause a lot of ripples.
Personal Assistant Jane Smithers needs a baby as much as she needs the immature boss, bitchy mother and lunatic Russian models cohabiting peacelessly around her. What she also doesn’t need is a man who pops out of nowhere, intent on taking over her accidental pregnancy.
Cold logic and hard facts rule the world of millionaire corporate lawyer Michael Rinaldi. Until he meets Jane, and the insignificant-looking woman plunges him head first into the churning waters of tempestuous emotion and hot-blooded impulse.
Unlikely feelings crop up at the same time relentless gossip escalates. Both realize their respective world has irredeemably changed. The question is - will they be able to live with this reality?

Genre - Contemporary Romance
Length - Novel
Heat Level - Sweet

Buy Link:


  1. Very intriguing!
    Congrats to you! Much success!

  2. Z - That was great! I've often thought about doing that. Perhaps when I get something published, I'll have the opportunity.

  3. Aasiyah/Nolwynn,

    Excellent post. What a wonderful way to showcase both your heroines. Great job!


  4. Hey ladies!

    So glad you liked it!

    Carole - I'm gonna have to start calling you my trooper! Thanks for the endless support. Glad it intrigued you.

    Miss Popular - It's a daunting prospect to try such an interview but so much fun too when you get the ball rolling. I'm sure you'll be pubbed very soon and we'll get to see your characters being showcased this way!

    Liena - I had lots of fun putting these two women in the same setting and watching them interact. I hope I got to show them to the readers here in a good light too.

    Thanks for the comments, love ya!!


  5. What a fresh idea to come up with, Z. To have your heroines meet and get to know one another. Very intriguing. I loved Light My World, and now I'm dying to read Storms in a Shot Glass.

  6. Thanks Sandy. This idea was always at the back of my mind, like, if these women were real, I was sure they'd be friends.

    Glad you liked Light My World, I hope you'll enjoy Storms in a Shot Glass the same way or even more!


  7. Storms in a Shotglass sure sounds good and I hope to be able to get it and read it. I am new here but hope that changes soon. Merry Christmas

  8. Hi Susan

    My belated thanks for your lovely words!

    Storms in a Shot Glass was a fun project to write, and I hope people will have fun reading it. The book comes out in 2 days actually, and this has me really excited!

    Thanks for dropping by and for your comment!