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Saturday, July 4, 2009

Saturday Spotlight - Christy French

Happy July 4th Everyone!

Today I'd like to welcome back author, Christy French with her book, The Bodyguard and the Showdog.
Born and raised in the South, award winning, internationally published author and poet Christy Tillery French loves to write about quirky Southern women and has published six books to date: Chasing Horses, Wayne's Dead, Chasing Demons, The Bodyguard, The Bodyguard and the Show Dog, (Book 2 of the Bodyguard Series), and The Bodyguard and the Rock Star (Book 3 of the Bodyguard Series) and her latest, Chasing Secrets. More information about Christy and her writing can be found at http://www.christytilleryfrench.com/ or www.authorsden.com/christytfrench

Blurb: Protection specialist Natasha Chamberlain is self-employed and happily involved with her former boss, Jonce Striker. Natasha's first case centers around Chumley, a champion show dog. The squat Pug has been sent a death threat regarding his participation in an upcoming event.

Although Natasha sees little danger in protecting a canine, she discovers that isn't the case when she ends up in the emergency room several times. As the suspect list grows, Natasha finds it increasingly difficult to balance her new business with her increasing love for Striker.

Likewise, Striker sees the investigation growing wackier and more dangerous by the day. His time is spent between trying to convince Natasha the bodyguard business is too dangerous for her and deciding how he can persuade her to marry him.

Will Natasha find the culprit before it's too late? Will Striker find a way into Natasha's heart? This romantic comedy will have readers turning pages to find the answers.


Natasha leaned back in her chair, feet propped on the desk, lost in reliving the prior night's marathon with Striker. She was working herself into a fever and knew if she didn't stop, she'd be calling him within the next half-hour, finding some excuse to see him, using him to put out the fire. She had just gotten to the really good part, where Striker finally quit playing around and got down to serious business, when bright yellow light burst into her office, conquering the inner fluorescent murk.

Startled, Natasha tilted back and crashed to the floor, her legs in the air. "Ope!" she grunted, staring at the ceiling, thinking that was what she got for buying second-hand office furniture.

As awkward as a turtle on its back, she struggled to untangle from the chair. Aware of warm, moist air tickling her ear, she turned her head. Something wet and slimy rubbed across her lips, and she drew away with a "Phhtt." A small dog watched her, panting a smile. Was there a merry glimmer in the animal's eyes? Was it laughing at her? Her gaze followed the dog's leash to the person attached to the other end. Natasha rolled off the chair and lunged to her feet.

"Can I help you?"

"Oh, my dear, are you all right?" an elderly woman said, one hand over her heart.

"I'm fine. I'm afraid I just overbalanced." Natasha snuck a glance at the dog. He was laughing at her! Talk about humiliating. After wrestling the chair into an upright position, she cleared her throat and repeated, "Can I help you?"

"Oh, dear, I hope so."

Natasha extended her hand, offering as warm a smile as she could manage under the circumstances. "I'm Natasha Chamberlain."

The woman transferred the leash to her left hand and gave Natasha a delicate handshake. "So pleased to meet you, Ms. Chamberlain. I'm Myrtle Galbreath."

Natasha stooped over to pat the dog's head but avoided looking into its eyes. She straightened and gestured toward one of the chairs beyond her desk. "Please."

Myrtle took slow, measured steps in that direction, the dog waddling along beside her, and gingerly sank into the seat. Seeing its mistress had collapsed, the pooch did likewise, emitting a small grunt when he landed.

Natasha lowered herself into her chair with caution. "Cute dog."

Myrtle's face brightened. "Thank you, dear. I think so."

Natasha regarded the small, wrinkled face staring lovingly into his mistress's beaming one. "What breed is he? Pug?"

"Yes, dear, Chumley's a Pug," Myrtle said, returning the dog's affectionate gaze.

Natasha nodded. This was the first of the breed she had ever seen up close.

Myrtle returned her attention to Natasha. "Are you, per chance, a dog lover, dear?"

"Oh, yes. I love dogs."

"Do you own any?"

"Well, my best friend Roger and I have a Weimaraner we share." Natasha eyed Chumley, thinking Brutus could eat him for lunch. "And my..." She paused, unsure how to refer to Striker. Boyfriend? He was more than that and definitely not a boy. Special other? That didn't fit either; it sounded too generic. She noticed Myrtle seemed confused by her hesitancy, so said, "My life mate and I have been talking about getting a dog together."

Myrtle gave her a concerned look. "Oh, my. That's a big commitment. I hope you're ready to take that step."

Wait a minute. They were only talking about a dog here, not a kid or anything. Commitment? Yikes! Natasha hadn't thought of it like that. She chased those thoughts away.

"What can I do for you, Ms. Galbreath?"

"Well, I saw your ad in our community newspaper."


"And it says you offer private protection services."

"That's right."

"My attorney tells me that would mean something along the lines of a bodyguard."


"Well, I'm in need of one, I'm afraid."

Natasha tamped down the bubble of excitement threatening to overtake her. Oh, boy, here it was, her first client! She couldn't wait to tell Striker. Well, maybe not. He didn't want her to be a bodyguard. Not because his investigative firm provided private security and she would be competing with him, but because he thought it was too dangerous. Especially for Natasha, particularly after her first stint as bodyguard for her best friend, Roger. But that was another story. However, guarding an elderly lady shouldn't be dangerous in any — hold it, back up. What did it matter, how he felt about it? This was her life, not his.”

"Ms. Chamberlain?"

"Oh. I'm sorry, my mind kind of wandered. Please, call me Natasha."

The older woman gave her a matronly smile. "And you must call me Myrtle."

"You're in need of a bodyguard? Might I ask the reason you would need one, Ms. Galbreath ”excuse me, Myrtle?"

"Oh, my dear, it's not for me. It's for Chumley." Myrtle gave Natasha a look, as if she must be crazy if she thought Myrtle needed someone to guard her body.

Natasha tried not to let her disappointment show. Of course, her first official job as a protection specialist would be to guard a dog. Striker would get a kick out of this one; she'd never hear the end of it.

"Chumley's in danger?"

"Yes, dear, extreme danger."

"What kind of danger is he in?"

"Well, I'm afraid he's received a threatening letter."

Natasha's sympathetic look betrayed her inner concern she just might have a nut case on her hands.

Hope you enjoyed this edition of Saturday Spotlight!
Have a BLESSED & Safe July 4th weekend!


Betty Dravis said...

Hi, Pamela,

Wow! You couldn't have picked a finer author to spotlight! Christy is my very favorite romantic comedy writer. I enjoyed both of her series and fell in love with her feisty heroine NATASHA right from the start.

THE BODYGUARD AND THE SHOW DOG is one of her most thrilling works, but it would be hard to choose between that, THE BODYGUARD and THE BODYGUARD AND THE ROCK STAR.

I understand she has another in this series coming soon. I can't wait!

Great spotlight story, Pamela. Keep 'em coming.

Fondly - Betty Dravis

Christy Tillery French said...

Thanks, Betty. I appreciate your kind comments so very much.


Sylvia Dickey Smith said...

I agree with Betty! Plus, Christy is a very generous person who is always willing to help other authors!

Donna B said...

Sounds great! Nothing like a touch of humor to make a story irresistible.

Christy Tillery French said...

Oh, thanks Sylvia. We're all in this together! Donna, I strive to add a touch of humor to all my books and it's nice to know others appreciate it.


Caitlyn Hunter said...

I agree with Betty, I would be hard-pressed to choose a favorite in Christy's Bodyguard series! I am anxiously awaiting the next one. IMO, Christy's books offer just the right combination of romance, suspense, and humor to make them all keepers.

Can't wait to get my hands on The Bodyguard and the Snitch!


Christy Tillery French said...

Thanks, Caitlyn! Your comments are always appreciated.


Maggie Bishop said...

It was so good to visit and view Natasha again in THE BODYGUARD AND THE SHOW DOG. Christy's easy way with comedy is a welcome relief from the hard core crime stories. Keep Natasha stories coming!

Christy Tillery French said...

Oh, thanks so much, Maggie. She's a fun character to write.


Mary Ricksen said...

Great Blog Pamela! Love dogs and I love stories that feature them too!