Aleah Barley is the author of Too Hot to Handle, a smokin’ release from Entangled Publishing. Aleah recently dropped by the virtual offices for a chat, so keep reading to see what she has to say about her new book. After the interview, enter for your chance to win a digital copy of Too Hot To Handle!
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.
[Aleah Barley] I’m a humorous (I hope) writer with a grumpy cat. I like cheese.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about Too Hot To Handle?
[Aleah Barley] Too Hot to Handle is a quick paced book about a spunky woman, a studly guy, and some sexy cars. I think the tagline says it best: ‘He stole her heart, she stole his car.’
Oh, yeah, there’s also a decades old mystery, some car chases, and an arsonist to heat things up.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?
[Aleah Barley] I wanted to write a noir mystery. That didn’t work, but it did start me thinking about a reserved, studly, detective hero and the woman who could match him step for step.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Honey?
[Aleah Barley] Smart, funny, and sarcastic. (‘and’ doesn’t count, right?)
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are three things Jack would never have in his bathroom?
[Aleah Barley] Soap shaped like seashells (I’ve never understood those), candles (unless Honey put them there), and a television (I’ve REALLY never understood that). Of course, there are a lot of other things he probably wouldn’t have either, including overpowering aftershave (he naturally smells like sweat, soap, and sex) and a pink elephant.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is Honey’s single most prized possession?
[Aleah Barley] Before or after the events of Too Hot to Handle? Before, it’s probably her auto shop. She’s worked hard to build her own business, fixing cars in a rough part of town. Afterwards… Well, that would be telling. Suffice it to say, that when Jack gives it to her it doesn’t just symbolize everything they’ve been through together it also represents the love they share. Sexy, classic, and unique.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?
[Aleah Barley] Terry Pratchett, Robert B Parker, and Jennifer Crusie. I like anything fast paced and hilarious. I’m open to suggestions.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?
[Aleah Barley] I need my computer (I couldn’t live without my computer), but occasionally I make do with yellow legal pads and fun pens (I’m always trying out new pens, if you know a type of pen I should try then put it in the comments section). I definitely need coffee. If you could hook me up an IV of French Roast then I’d be in heaven.
I also need my cat to get off my computer. He likes the heat the motor gives off, he likes sitting in front of me so I can pet him, and he loves YouTube videos. If you know a way to distract a giant, moody, Maine Coone mix than please let me know.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?
[Aleah Barley] Middlemarch. I was packing up my bedroom to move to Detroit and my sister tossed it at me. Believe me, if you ever get hit by a hard cover copy of Middlemarch it’ll knock your socks off too.
But, seriously, I was re-reading Carl Hiaasen’s ‘Native Tongue’ (You have a dirty mind, it’s not about that!) the other night and I was like "wow, this is really good." Also Beth Ciotta’s ‘Into the Wild.’ I love jungle romances.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?
[Aleah Barley] When I was in second grade my teacher made us keep a list of all the books we read, and my mother and Colin’s mother got into a little competition about whose kid was reading more. He cheated (his mother let him double count books he’d already read while my mother only let me count new books), but I still won. I’m not sure which of the hundreds of books I read that year it was (Nancy Drew mysteries, Redwall books, The Chronicles of Narnia, etc.) but I’m sure it was one of them.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
[Aleah Barley] I like to go to the beach. I love the beach. I adore sand. So–of course–I live in the midwest. I hear that there are good beaches in Michigan, but I haven’t been to any of them yet.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?
I also answer to skywriting.
I always tell people about the skywriting thing, and no one ever does it. I’m looking forward to the day I glance out my window and see my name written in the clouds.
And, be sure to check out ‘Too Hot to Handle’ at http://www.entangledpublishing.com/too-hot-to-handle/
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!
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She was playing with fire…
Honey Moore has made a pledge: no more stealing cars and no more lusting after Jack Ogden. But when an arsonist torches her house and chases her all over Los Angeles, she’s forced to throw herself on Jack’s mercy. No one will look for a convicted felon in an LAPD detective’s apartment, right?
Jack doesn’t need a woman like Honey in his life. She might be sexy, but trouble follows her everywhere. But it’s hard to walk away from someone who lives at full throttle—and even harder to keep her safe. Now he’ll have to sacrifice everything to protect Honey from the arsonist determined to kill her.