Today we’re featuring the lovely Chloe Blaque. She’s discussing being multicultural, the beauty of multicultural romance stories and who (or what) she’s still holding out for. She’s also doing a giveaway!
In My Multicultural World
Write what you know. It was my mentor’s advice. Before I knew it I was penning strong heroes and heroines of different cultures, races, and creeds. I was writing multicultural relationships before I knew it was a separate genre. My characters fell in love and fought for love-the quintessential romantic theme that every romance loving Caucasian, non-Caucasian, and Vampire can relate to. Multicultural or not, the concept is universal.
Every relationship I have ever been in has been multicultural. I’m biracial. African-American Irish-American to be exact. If my life were a novel, I’d be the caramel colored princess of New York City. And although I don’t ride horses on a Texas Ranch or have long flowing red hair that blows in Scottish winds, I have had a romance or two or…several. Black, White, European, Latin, Asian (I’m still hoping for the Vampire), I have done my share to unite the nations. And I can say with conviction that Caucasians and Vampires aren’t the only people having sex.
Don’t get me wrong, I grew up reading southern cowboys, Scottish lords, and the English Royal court. The heroines were young, ivory skinned virgins. The heroes were strong, wealthy, and white. I devoured those books, even as I found my own world getting more and more colorful. I fell for a southern black guy who dumped me for an Italian girl. My Puerto Rican ex-boyfriend first kicked it to me in Spanish (I had no idea what he was saying, but it sounded really good). The mother of my Filipino ex-boyfriend loved to curse under her breath in Tagalog. And I dated an English white guy who endured racial slurs just for walking me down the street. These were my mini romances. We were attracted to each other’s differences and found unexpected similarities.
In my new release, DOING LONDON, Josie, is a feisty New York-born Puerto Rican with a secret X-rated past. She transplants herself in London and attracts Marco, an Italian celebrity soccer player. They are from two different worlds. Josie grew up without a stable home while Marco had strong familial bonds. Marco has steadfast spiritual beliefs while Josie might set a church on fire just by walking over the threshold. You may question if they have anything in common. Oh, they do. They have passion, sensuality, and…well you’ll just have to read the book to find out.
I frown when I hear that Caucasian readers can’t relate to multicultural romance. Great storytelling transcends color. Throw in a culture clash, a foreign landscape, and people of different races and I’m drooling. The diversity of the characters are exciting, the countries exhilarating, and the cultures can be oh so sexy. I want you whispered in your ear in a foreign language is hot!
My stories are inspired by the diverse people I see on the street every day; successful men and women of varied backgrounds who search endlessly for love and happiness. People from all over the world are falling in love all over the world. Shouldn’t we write about it?
CHLOE BLAQUE writes non-fiction culture pieces by day and multicultural erotic romance by night. Her debut novel SURVIVAL OF THE FIERCEST was released by Loose-Id in 2014. Chloe travels a lot. Is slightly addicted to wine and coffee. And still plays video games for rainy day fun. She hopes to move to Paris one day. For now, she lives in New York City.
Go to Chloe’s Website at www.chloeblaque.com
Email Chloe at Lovechloeblaque@gmail.com
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DOING LONDON Blurb
Do You Like Doing it…?
It’s been five years since Josie Vasquez moved to London, changed her name, and left her X-rated L.A. life behind. She has it together now, thanks to two rules: stay out of trouble and don’t shag celebrities. Easy—until she meets Marco. Sinfully handsome and always in the tabloids, footballer Marco Verazi can have any woman he wants, and the sexy Italian wants Josie. Josie knows she should stay away, but he stirs a desire in her that she’s never felt before.
Marco doesn’t know about Josie’s past, or that her job selling goods on the “telly” for home shopping network QTV isn’t her first time on camera. Although Josie is tempted to break her rules and see what Marco has to offer, she knows they can’t be together—not unless she is willing to reveal a secret that could ruin her new life…and his.
Buy DOING LONDON here:
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Dark eyes were forgotten as I stepped off the QTV elevators with a smile and a wave for Jessica, our receptionist. “Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday…” I practiced my lingual exercises as I hurried to my dressing room, saying them over as I stashed my bag and picked up the program sheet that lay on the desk. Today’s segment was a “magic” dress—a piece of fabric that could be tied and worn 100 different ways.
I was reviewing the product notes when my program manager flew in. “Thank God you’re here,” she said, practically breathless. A crumpled piece of fabric dangled from her hands. “Magic my arse.” She held up what I assumed was the dress. “No one can get this thing to tie and stay on the models. And before you say anything, yes, you have to wear one too.”
“Good morning, Margot,” I said.
Her graying dark hair was frazzled. This woman needed to calm down. This wasn’t an emergency. Try having sex in a pirate outfit on a sinking barge. That’s an emergency.
I dug in my bag and pulled out a roll of fashion tape. “Here, try this on the models. Now, where is mine so I can practice tying?”
“They are on the display table outside the studio. Take your pick of colors. There is a lovely red color, or a hot-pink one…”
“No pink,” I shot back.
I walked back into the dressing room with a royal-blue rectangle of fabric dangling from my hand. I ducked behind the changing screen and stripped down to my bra and panties, and then I frowned at the dress instructions. Sketches instead of written directions were on the tag. A few of the dress looks were easy, if you wanted to look like you were on the beach, but for—I checked the price—eighty pounds? Bugger off, as Ruby would say. The dress should tie itself for that amount. Now this thing really needed to look good.
I wrapped myself in the fabric and came out from behind the screen. The look I chose was the knee-length strapless bandage dress, where each strip of fabric was wrapped horizontally one on top of the other—like a mummy.
“Well?” I posed.
Margot’s long face scrunched. “It’s not too bad. The camera will hide most of the folds. Turn around.”
“Yeah, those ties aren’t pretty. Make sure you don’t turn around on camera.”
“Okay. Let’s pin the ties and tape me into this thing.”
Thirty minutes later, I was pinned and taped and smiling wide for the camera under the studio lights. Behind me, five models wearing different colors and styles posed as I held my mic up to the designer of the “Magic” dress, a small Indian woman who demonstrated how to take two of the dresses and make a two-piece top and skirt.
“Whoa. You look stunning, Nina,” I said into the mic. “Isn’t that fantastic, ladies?” The studio audience nodded and gave a few bored claps. Whatever. They were only there to see Quinn Charles, QTV’s reigning star and number-one douche. Quinn had been the face of QTV for over thirty years and was the only one with celebrity guests during his segment.
Yesterday, Daniel Craig showed up to plug his next James Bond movie and endorse the limited-edition line of 007 Omega timepieces. The whole studio went apeshit when Daniel walked in. I, however, had locked myself in the bathroom. I’d met 007 years ago at a random afterparty in Vegas. We’d had a moment. He probably wouldn’t recognize me, but still.
“Well, Nina, I’m told you have a surprise for our viewers today.”
“Yes, I do.” Nina pulled out an array of printed georgette scarves and displayed them over her chubby arm. “A gift with purchase.”
“What?” My eyebrows went up in fake surprise. “A dress you can wear 100 different ways and a matching scarf for just 120 pounds? Doesn’t get any better than that.”
The weak applause said otherwise.
“Here, let me give you this one,” Nina said, smiling for the audience. The floral pattern reminded me of my grandmother’s bathroom wallpaper. Abuela loved roses. I leaned forward, striking a pose for the camera close up.
And then snap.
My pins came undone and a furious unraveling began down my back. Frozen, I searched for Margot, who was frowning at me. Then her eyes widened when a piece of fabric dropped and dangled at my waist. She gave me the cut signal.
“Let’s take a look at the models one more time. Don’t they look lovely?” I said with a smile.
Another hand signal from the pit came up, and I was off camera, but my mic was still live. Holding the loosening top of my dress, I started to backpedal off the stage. A confused Nina began to stutter.
“Nina, why don’t you tell our viewers again about the quality and the versatility of this fabric.”
Tossing my mic to a PA, I turned and ran offstage, my arms like vise grips over my front as the bandages gaped and slid down, showing the skin of my stomach and hips through the slits. I heard my name and was vaguely aware that Margot was running after me in the dark studio.
Then thwack. I ran into someone.
I heard a grunt followed by a quick, “Mi dispiace.” I’m sorry. And a hard chest covered in white was inches from my nose. I looked up. Oh God. Dark eyes with one raised slashing eyebrow were looking quizzically at me.
“The café,” I said, stunned.
“The breasts,” he whispered.
What? I snapped my head down and was relieved to see that my boobs were still covered, but just barely. I skirted around the Italian stallion’s big body, toward my dressing room.
“I mean the cakes,” I heard him shout after me, but I bolted into the dressing room and slammed the door.
What the hell was he doing here? It didn’t matter; I had to get it together. I ran to the mirror. My dress had unraveled even more to reveal my torso and the top of my panties. Amazing, on the first day of my promotion.
Reaching behind my back, I tried to wrestle the fabric back into place, but it was too stretched out to stay. Fuck my life.
Margot barreled through the door, took one look at me, and started laughing hysterically.
“Um… This isn’t funny,” I said to her reflection.
With a sigh, she sat down at the desk, stripped off her mic, and slapped down her program notes. “Dear God, I haven’t laughed like that in ages.” She doubled over with more giggles, and I shifted to stare at her, deadpan and sulking.
“If you are finished getting your rocks off, you can help me rewrap this stupid thing.”
“Don’t bother,” she said after another giggle. “We cut the segment short. Those hideous things sold out in the first 30 minutes.”
“Really? Good thing we don’t take returns.” I gave Margot the full frontal view of my shredded dress. Margot laughed again, and I joined her. “When Nina pulled out those scarves, I thought I was going to lose it.” I tugged off the blue bandages and stood in my strapless bra and panties. “And where do you find these studio audiences. They are like bumps on logs.”
“That’s them excited, darling. We’re British.”
“Hand me my skirt and top, please?”
“Fuck me, look at the body on you: toned and tight as a drum. What’s your secret?”
About %50,000 worth of plastic surgery. “You know, I work out.” I shrugged and stepped behind the changing screen, thinking of how to change the subject. Now that I was fully dressed in sewn clothes and I hadn’t fully botched my first afternoon slot, my mind wandered to other things. “So isn’t that Marco Verazi, the Italian footballer, out there?”
“Gorgeous, isn’t he?”
Yes. “I suppose…if you…ya know…like that sort. Is he starting a line of footballs or something?”
“Think he has those already. This is a line of cleats for the Kick Cancer organization. They organize football tournaments for kids with cancer and survivors to help raise money.”
I was impressed, and my eyebrows shot up. “Hot, famous, and socially conscious? Unheard of.”
“Yeah, after thirty years of marriage, I’d just be happy with hot.” Margot smirked. She handed me another set of program notes. “Quinn is gearing up for the next slot with the cleats, and then you are up with a fashion jewelry segment. Let’s keep the wardrobe malfunctions to a minimum.”
We were interrupted by a knock on the door. I answered it and, speak of the devil, Quinn stood in his designer suit looking orange and waxy. His fake tanner and stage makeup clashed as usual. I stood almost five-eight in my heels and looked down slightly on his five-six stature.
“Hey, Quinn.” I didn’t invite him in. He only ever talked to me to boast or gloat.
“Just checking in. Heard you had a little hiccup on stage.”
My gaze shifted to Fiona, Quinn’s program manager, standing off to the side. Tall and dark-blonde, she was pretty but mousy and constantly had that clipboard hugged to her chest. Like always, her eyes were searching the floor.
“I just wanted to make sure I didn’t need to clean anything up. Give a pep talk to the audience, that type of thing.”
“Eat me, Quinn.”
“Gladly, luv. But you know I’m taken,” Quinn said too loud. He threw me a sneer and strolled off.
Margot scoffed. I rolled my eyes.
Quinn, at fifty something, which he claimed was forty something, was still under the impression that no one knew he was gay—like Miami roller-skating in hot pants gay. I had worked with so many gay male costars playing straight that I’d spotted him immediately. Quinn’s beard was some twenty-year-old bikini model who I assumed was being paid to play along. I couldn’t figure out if he was keeping silent for himself, for the network, or both.
Before I closed the door, Marco stepped into my field of vision and grinned. “So, you don’t work at the café?”
Those dark eyes were so close that my brain skipped.
“No.” I gulped. My fingers itched to skim over the tattoos on his arms. Without the counter in between us, I could tell that his upper body was cut to perfection. I expected his lower body was even more powerful. My skin heated and my heart thumped, a sensation I hadn’t felt in literally years—attraction. No directors, no grips, no script, just pure sexual magnetism between a man and a woman.
“I like your cakes,” he said. I wondered if he was being cheeky, the word “cakes” a euphemism for butt cheeks in the States.
“Grazie,” I said, trying to keep my gaze from roaming all over his body. His smile was dazzling.
“You spoke Italian at the café. It’s pretty good.”
“It’s probably because of my Spanish.”
“Ahhhh. But you’re American, si?” he said as his gaze searched my face.
“Yes. Puerto Rican, actually,” I said, gripping the door a little harder. He filled the doorway, blocking out everything else but him.
A production assistant shouted for Marco. They were starting his segment. He whipped his head toward the PA and then turned back to me, his eyes intense. “I will see you later, yes?”
See him later? The audacity of this guy. To assume that just because he was a celebrity, and smoking hot, that I would sleep with him. And he’s engaged.
“I’m not interested,” I said firmly. All I needed was a whiff of a scandal, and boom. Life over.
His brow furrowed. “In the kids or me?”
Kids? What kids?
The PA called for him again, and he leaned toward me. His cologne smelled amazing. “I will see you tonight,” Marco said and walked off.
Um…no, he wouldn’t. I slammed the door.
“Are you daft?” Margot shouted.
I jumped, forgetting for a second that anyone else was there.
She went on. “The hottest man I have ever seen wants to have at you, and you say no?”
My mind raced with what to say. Excuse. I needed an excuse other than being a former porn star and avoiding celebrities and the publicity they bring.
“He’s not that hot,” I said with an unconvincing shrug.
Margot shook her head, and after a long pause, she sighed and closed her eyes. Then her gaze snapped up. “Joey, I’ve been meaning to tell you… I know… I know about you.”
There was seriousness in her voice that made my body freeze. I looked at her from the corner of my eye, and she nodded. “Yeah. I know. And it’s okay. Really. You don’t need to hide it.”
She knows. She knows. She knows. Blood pumped in my ears. “How? I mean… I didn’t tell anyone.”
“Well, it’s obvious, isn’t it? You never date, you never talk about men, and at Jessica’s hen party, you practically turned down every guy that came up to you.”
Last year, Margot had organized an office bachelorette party for our receptionist at the divey pub down the street. To be fair, every guy who came up to me was about sixty years old.
“But… Who else knows?”
“Everyone I expect.”
Everyone? Honestly, I almost passed out. I took in a huge breath, but once I let it out, I realized that this was a good thing. If everyone knew, then I didn’t have anything to worry about. “You know, I’m so relieved,” I said, letting my shoulders slump a bit. I’d had no idea how tense I was, but the fact that I didn’t have to hide anymore made me feel almost giddy. I could be myself, and it was okay. “Why didn’t you ever tell me you knew?”
“Well, what was I going to say? ‘Hey love, I know you like girls.’”
“Yeah, if you weren’t a lesbian, and I said that, it would have been very embarrassing. So I just waited until the right time to talk about it.”
Unbelievable. I punched a hand on my cocked hip. “Margot, I’m not a lesbian.” I’d definitely had my share of on-camera one-on-ones, but that was it. Girls weren’t my thing.
I chuckled at the utter disbelief on Margot’s face. I swear she blinked for a full minute. Then she spoke. “Are you sure? I’ve seen you looking at me.”
I frowned, trying to figure out what the hell Margot was talking about. “What the hell are you—”
“I’m married,” Margot continued, her face breaking. Now she was just fucking with me. “And he’s an ugly bastard, but I love ’im.”
“You’re a nutter, Margot. I’m not a lesbian. And I don’t want you.”
Margot’s neck jerked back. “Then what were you so relieved about?”
“Um…I just… I haven’t dated a guy in a long time. I’ve been…hurt. It feels good to talk about it. Ya know, helps to get over it.” There, that sounded plausible.
Margot nodded slowly, as if what I was saying made sense. “Then ease back in with mister Italian sausage.”
“Yeah. No,” I said, turning slowly toward the desk to avoid any more comments. Quickly, I grabbed her program notes and waved them in the air. “I need time to study this.”
Margot shrugged and loped toward the door, turning to me before she was fully outside. “I’m a great shag, you know.” She winked.
I chuckled and rolled my eyes. “There is no doubt in my mind.”
Margot gave me a curt nod and closed the door behind her.
I stared blankly at the notes, wondering if I was going to be able to pull off this secret forever.
Copyright © Chloe Blaque
To enter the Chloe’s giveaway, for a digital copy of DOING LONDON enter below (via Rafflecopter):
Giveaway is ONE DAY only (5/13)