Interview with Susanna Carr, Author of A Deal with Benefits


[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.

[Susanna Carr] Story geek who reads everything from biographies to Tumblr feeds and expects a happily ever after in everything she sees.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about A Deal with Benefits?

[Susanna Carr] Ashley never thought that one night with Sebastian would have consequences–like Sebastian stealing her island home! Or kicking her out with as much sensitivity as she displayed when she kicked him out of her bed.

Ashley will do anything to get back to her home. That island has been her haven ever since a scandal destroyed her family. But can she agree to Sebastian’s terms and be his mistress for a month?

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?

[Susanna Carr] The story I had originally pitched to my editor was completely different than the final book. She saw the real story underneath it all. The heroine is hiding from her heritage and her true nature. Ashley’s mother was a mistress and her father was an unrepentant playboy. Ashley did everything in her power to avoid following her mother’s footsteps. How would Ashley handle it if the man she had fallen for made her his mistress? Once I decided on that, I knew Sebastian had to be the worst kind of playboy but also the only man she’d ever wanted.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Ashley?

[Susanna Carr] Passionate, naïve and guilty.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Sebastian had a theme song, what would it be?

[Susanna Carr] "Tonight (I’m Lovin’ You)" by Enrique Iglesias

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name one thing Ashley is never without.

[Susanna Carr] A smart mouth. She has a tendency to say something that will get in her into trouble.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things will you never find in Sebastian’s bedroom?

[Susanna Carr] You would never find anything sentimental in his room. There won’t be anything that offers a hint of his past or what is important to him because he is a very guarded man. You also wouldn’t find anything work-related. He’s focused and he compartmentalizes his life. His bedroom is for sex and sleeping.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is Ashley’s greatest regret?

[Susanna Carr] Her biggest regret is choosing a moment to tell the truth when she knew it was going to hurt someone. She didn’t anticipate the fallout.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?

[Susanna Carr] Vintage romance novels, music lyrics, Bollywood movies and mystery shows. Anything that tells a story!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?

[Susanna Carr] Laptop, noise-cancelling headphones and a mug of as-hot-as-the-center-of-the-sun black tea.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What was your biggest distraction while working on A Deal with Benefits?

[Susanna Carr] I would say that I’m first a romance reader and then a romance author. A lot of books from my favorite authors were coming out while I was writing A Deal with Benefits. Once I hit my word count for the day I would treat myself to a book on my to-be-read pile.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?

[Susanna Carr] I recently read a Harlequin Blaze that I really enjoyed. It was Back in Service by Isabel Sharpe. It was about two people who had suffered loss and were uncertain about the future.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?

[Susanna Carr] I was a reluctant reader until I was around ten or eleven years old. That was when a friend had brought her mother’s stash of romance novels to school and I picked up Anne Mather’s The Arrogant Duke. Once I read that Harlequin Presents I was hooked!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

[Susanna Carr] If I’m not reading romance novels or enjoying weekend trips with my family, I’m people-watching. If you see me in a coffeehouse staring off in the distance, I’m not daydreaming–I’m making up a whole history about a stranger who walked by and I’m including a back story about the old-fashioned hat he’s wearing.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Susanna Carr] Readers can find me on:




[Manga Maniac Cafe]  Thank you!

About the book:

Thirty days and thirty nights 

Ashley Jones has been sitting in Sebastian Cruz’s office. For hours. Behind the imposing wooden doors sits the man who stole her family’s island home. And she wants it back.

But the fight is knocked from her when Ashley recognizes him as the man she knows intimately—the man who betrayed her after their blissful night together. 

Sebastian has no intention of giving the island back, but he does want Ashley. He agrees to her deal, but has a few sub-clauses of his own. Specifically, a month at his beck and call—and in his bed!