Welcome a new voice in the New Adult genre: Jessica Peterson
About the Author:
Jessica Peterson began reading romance to escape the decidedly unromantic awkwardness of her teenage years. Having found solace in the likes of Mr. Darcy, Jamie Fraser (OMG love the gingers!), and Edward Cullen, it wasn’t long before she began creating tall, dark and handsome heroes of her own. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with her husband, Mr. Peterson, and her smelly Goldendoodle Martha Bean.
Welcome to Jessica Peterson!
Jessica was kind enough to answer a few questions about herself and her writing.
Tell us a little about yourself, Jessica
Hi there! My name is Jessica Peterson, and I love travel, red-headed heroes (Prince Harry/Sam Heughen/Jamie Frasier, I’m looking at you), and coffee. I’m a little addicted to caffeine these days. Launching your first indie series is such a thrill—and a lot of work! I live in North Carolina with my smelly Goldendoodle puppy, Martha Bean, and my husband, Mr. Peterson. I was pretty awkward—and very introverted—growing up, so I read a lot. A lot. I think I was about fifteen when I got bitten by the romance bug. I haven’t looked back since!
You are an established author in the Historical Romance genre, but new to New Adult Romance. Can you tell us a little about what motivated you to try something different?
I got my start in romance writing historicals—think a sassy take on Jane Austen—but it wasn’t long before I was swept up in all things New Adult. I devoured Kristin Callihan, Jennifer Armentrout, and of course E.L. James. I love how intense New Adult can be; how it can suck you in from page one and give you all the feels. I’ve always wanted to write a book based on my own study abroad experience in Madrid (more than ten years ago!), and I figured such a story would fit nicely into the New Adult genre.
Spanish Lessons is about an American college student studying abroad and finding romance, of course. Did you ever study abroad?
Yes! And it was one of the most magical experiences of my life. I studied abroad for a semester in Madrid when I was a junior in college. So much of SPANISH LESSONS is based on my trials and tribulations there. The first chapter is pretty much my experience verbatim after landing in Madrid that first time. I don’t know if I’ve ever been more nervous or felt more lost. But it ended up being a fantastic experience. I would recommend studying abroad to anyone! It will change your life in ways you can’t imagine.
Do you have any quirky writing habits?
When I dreamed of being a writer, I used to think it was this super romantic profession. You know, scribbling in a dogeared Moleskin on the side of the Seine in Paris on a gorgeous spring day, a la Ernest Hemingway in A MOVEABLE FEAST. Unfortunately, the reality of writing is much more…mundane. I’m someone who thrives on routine, so Monday through Friday you’ll find me at my computer (usually by 7AM), typing away.
My favorite scenes to write are kissing and/or sex scenes. I know some authors hate them, but I freaking LOVE them. When I was writing the steamy bits for SPANISH LESSONS, I listened to Justin Bieber and The Weeknd on repeat. Needed some moody to tunes to get in that headspace, so to speak!
Is there any particular author or book that inspired you?
Oh my goodness, where to even begin? I read a little bit of everything, but for the STUDY ABROAD series specifically, I’d have to say ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS was a big inspiration, along with Cora Carmack’s LOSING IT. I also found myself thinking a lot about Tessa Dare, and how her sex scenes are about so much more than the actual sex. I also revisited Hemingway’s novels that are set in Spain, and I read a decent bit of poetry, too—mostly Pablo Neruda.
Thanks for having me, and happy reading!
Thank you, Jessica for dropping by!
Excerpt from SPANISH LESSONS, copyright 2016 by Jessica Peterson
I don’t have time to think or catch my breath. Rafa keeps kissing me, and the kiss keeps getting better. Deeper. My head spins as I try to keep up with him. He’s slow and fast and insistent and soft, all at once. I lose myself in him, my mind a blessed blank. He’s just as good a kisser as I thought he’d be.
Better, even. There is something incredibly sexy about the way he moves. He’s confident without being overbearing. Yes, the kiss is his, but that means I’m his focus. He lavishes me with attention and care, his tongue working to open me to him, and I open, willingly, wildly.
This is how everyone dreams of being kissed. With abandon. With feeling. I grasp his forearms, my fingers digging into his bare skin as I hold on for dear life.
There is nothing safe about Rafa. Not the way he looks at me or the way he dances or how I feel when he touches me. Definitely nothing safe about the way he kisses me.
But I feel safe with him anyway. Safe to be myself. Safe to kiss him back without worrying about what happens next.
I feel safe because we’ll probably never see—much less kiss—each other again. He’s way out of my league. And I don’t want to fall for a guy I’ll just have to leave in a few months. I don’t want to get hurt again. I can’t bear it.
This is just a kiss, I tell myself.
It’s just one kiss that he won’t remember, that I will try to forget.
Still. There’s this rush between my skin and bones that whispers to me, telling me this is no ordinary kiss.
That nothing will be the same after this kiss.
Spanish Lessons was a sweetly, romantic story of an American student, Vivian, who is studying abroad with her best friend. On the night she arrives in Spain, she meets Rafa, a sex Spaniard and there is an instant attraction between them. The exchange numbers, but Viv is disappointed when he doesn’t contact her. As she starts classes, she needs a tutor. Her director sets her up with a tutor who turns out to be…Rafa. Sparks fly, but Viv has reservations and there are, of course, complications standing in the way of their happiness.
Jessica Peterson is a new voice in the New Adult genre, but has a solid background writing historical romances. I was impressed with the writing. Her words flowed easily, the characters were likable (or lovable in Rafa’s case) but believable, with real flaws and real worries. There is the perfect amount of steamy romance.
A swoonworthy hero, a lovable heroine and a quirky cast of characters make this a must buy read.
Don’t forget to add this to your Goodreads shelf!
You can purchase the book here: