Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Get Lost Under Deep Cover!

Leslie Jones has been an IT geek, a graphics designer, and an Army intelligence officer. She’s lived in Alaska, Korea, Belgium, Germany, and other exotic locations (including New Jersey). She is a wife, mother, and full-time writer, and splits her time between Scottsdale, Arizona and Cincinnati, Ohio. Her books can be found at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and HarperCollins Publishers.

On a secret assignment for MI-5, British SAS soldier Trevor Carswell is deep undercover with The Philosophy of Bedlam, a home-grown anarchist group responsible for several museum bombings. He's on the brink of unearthing their motives when Scotland Yard foils their latest attack. Desperate to escape, the Bedlamites take civilian hostages — among them, a woman Trevor never expected to see again.

American political analyst Shelby Gibson is stunned when she recognizes Trevor, her one-time lover, brandishing a shotgun in the lobby of the August Museum of Modern Art. He's the last man she'd ever trust, but Trevor is no criminal, and he may be her only hope of getting out of the building alive.

With the woman he once loved in serious danger, Trevor will risk everything to get Shelby to safety, even if it means blowing his cover. As they search for the truth behind the bombings, Shelby and Trevor expose the powerful, desperate man pulling the anarchists' strings... and the half-century-old secret he'll kill to keep quiet.

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ALEXA: Is writing or story-telling easier for you?
LESLIE: Writing, definitely! I have a T-shirt that says, “I Write Better Than I Talk” for a reason. The truth is, I’m not very good at telling stories or jokes. I forget words and stumble, and there’s no backspace. Ugh!

ALEXA: Do you write while listening to music? If so what kind?
LESLIE: Absolutely! When I’m writing action scenes, I listen to Rhapsody of Fire or Thomas Bergeron. For other scenes, I listen to Blackmoor’s Night, Loreena McKennitt, and other soothing New Age music. I tend to listen to music with a pleasant beat where I don’t have to pay attention to the lyrics, which can be distracting.

ALEXA: What drew you to write in the genre(s) you do?
LESLIE: Like a lot of authors, I write what I enjoy reading. I love romantic suspense, especially those with military heroes and heroines. I love strong women and alpha males. And, of course, a happily ever after!

ALEXA: What was the first story you remember writing?
LESLIE: When I was 11 years old, I was hooked on the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mysteries. My first completed manuscript was a Hardy Boys-esque story about a man searching for his long-lost daughter. The manuscript was 49 pages long, and it was really, really bad. I hope I’ve learned something since then!

ALEXA: Can you tell us about a real-life hero you’ve met?
LESLIE: My real-life hero has always been my husband Kim. He’s the most honorable man I’ve ever met, with a keen understanding of military tactics and strategy. He believes in the West Point motto of “Duty, Honor, Country.” His courage awes me every day. Kim served his country for 11 years in various places around the world, to include the cavalry unit stationed in the Fulda Gap before the wall fell between East and West Germany. The mission of the unit was to delay the attack if the East Germans invaded West Germany - basically, a die-in-place mission designed to give the rest of our military time to react. He was also the commander of the intelligence unit in Belgium responsible for the BENELUX (Belgium, The Netherlands, and Luxembourg) and Western Germany.

ALEXA: What does it mean to love someone?
LESLIE: That’s a tough one. For me, love is about liking, respect, loyalty, acceptance, and a keen desire to make your partner happy. I’ve found, though, that my soulmate can’t be happy if I’m not, so I work hard to walk the path to joy. This allows him to relax and enjoy his own journey, and we meet in the middle to share our lives.

ALEXA: What’s your favorite movie of all time?
LESLIE: Hands down, The Princess Bride. It has fencing, fighting, torture, revenge. Giants, monsters, chases, and escapes. True love. Miracles. How can you beat that? The book is also wonderful. You haven’t lived until your husband reads it to you in bed at night, doing the voices and making it come alive.

ALEXA: Benedict Cumberbatch or Chris Pine?
LESLIE: Benedict Cumberbatch all the way! The man’s sheer presence and charisma leap out of the screen. And let’s not forget the allure of those fantastic cheekbones! I love the scene in Sherlock when Mrs. Hudson has been threatened and Sherlock subdues the men, then takes two steps to kneel in front of her and take her hands. It’s clear she’s precious to him - he throws the man who hurt her out of a window!

ALEXA: What’s the first book you remember reading?
LESLIE: I read voraciously as a kid. I was big into the Nancy Drew series, though. She was a strong female lead who kicked butt - what’s not to like for a little girl?

ALEXA: What’s your favorite kind of story to get lost in?
LESLIE: I love romances. I read other stories, of course, but watching two people fall in love holds a special place in my heart. And I love a man in uniform.

ALEXA: What’s your favorite kid joke?
LESLIE: How do you catch a unique rabbit? U nique up on it. Silly, I know, but it makes me giggle.


My husband Kim, knowing how stressed I was at the time, put together a Relaxation box for me. It contained bubble bath, scented candles, tiny bottles of rum, and small cans of coke. He ran the jet tub for me, making sure it was nice and hot, and brought me a book to read while I sipped rum and coke in the bubble bath.

ALEXA: What's up next for you?
LESLIE: Next up is Duty & Honor Book 4, tentatively titled Not for Fame or Glory, about a former hacker who now works for the FBI. It doesn’t have a cover yet.
 ALEXA: Finally, Leslie, got a question you'd like to ask your fans?
LESLIE: Who’s your favorite storybook hero? Heroine? Why?

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