Sunday, 23 March 2008

'Hibiscus Bay' by Debby Allen

' Hibiscus Bay' by Debby Allen available from The Wild Rose Press

'Exhilarating sex with an Arabian millionaire is the last thing Ashleigh Brennan expects after an illicit affair with her boss leaves her unemployed and without dignity. She vows never to be misled by first impressions again—until she meets wealthy, handsome Remmao Kamal. He’s full of passion and eastern promise—but for how long?
It’s hard to believe that this wealthy bachelor isn’t married, but his playboy lifestyle aboard his yacht has had its repercussions. After a succession of harbor pickups, his misjudgement of a lover’s intention put his life at risk. Since then, he has been determined to put his womanising days behind him—until Ashleigh walks into his life.
Their sexual attraction is immediate and the temptation for Remmao to break his vow of harbor celibacy is as strong as Ashleigh’s desire to protect her heart. But will a one-night stand with no commitments be enough for them?'

'If blue skies, hunky foreign guys and glistening seas float your boat, then you'll love this romp on the beach romance that will leave you searching for your 'passport to paradise!'

Visit Debby at
or at 'Romance ebooks'

Excerpt from 'Hibiscus Bay' by Debby Allen

Excerpt from ’Hibiscus Bay’ by Debby Allen
Here is an excerpt from ’Hibiscus Bay’ by Debby Allen available from The Wild Rose Press

"Remmao, I…" she interrupted, but words failed her. She knew what she wanted to say, but to say I love you would sound ridiculous.
He noticed her discomfort and, gently withdrawing from her, he picked up their clothes and carried her into the sea. It was soothing upon their scorched skin and cooling on the sensitised surfaces of their bodies.
"What were you going to say to me?" he asked her.
"I…I’m going to miss you," Ashleigh suddenly whispered. Remmao frowned, but before he could speak, she halted him. "All of this," she smiled, gesturing to the bay with its surround of hibiscus flowers, "and everything you have shown me will forever have a special place in my heart. I don’t know how to thank you."
"You do not have to thank me," he gasped. "I did not do it as a favour. I did it because I wanted to."
"You did it out of habit," Ashleigh corrected, averting her eyes.
Remmao held her chin and turned her face toward him. "Is this what all the tears are about? Because you thought I did this out of habit?" Remmao shook his head. "All this has not been because of habit."
"It’s what you do." Ashleigh shrugged.
"What I did! How do I know that you are not reliving the feeling of a man’s urgency? You know that I am crazy for you!"
"Are, are you?" she stammered.
"Like it is killing me," he whispered.
Ashleigh looked back at the bay. "You have made all my dreams come true, Remmao…except for one."
He took hold of her face and frowned.
"I cannot keep you." She shrugged, then released herself from his arms and stepped away, dressing herself beneath the water.
"You do not believe that I am crazy for you?" he insisted.
"What has happened between us is all so sudden, all too…you’ve done this many times before. It’s easier for you to say goodbye."
"Wake up to reality, Remmao," she pleaded. "Soon, you won’t even remember me. I will just be a memory…like all those other girls you…"
"No!" he intervened. "We will see each other again. We have to!"
"When? How will I find you when you spend most of your time cruising or…or in harbours?"
"You will not find me," he murmured. "I do not know where I will be from one day to the next."
"But I will find you," he gently reassured her.
She let the waves silently roll over her shoulders before beginning her swim back to the yacht.
"Ashleigh!" Remmao shouted after her. But he couldn’t stop her. Although her stroke was strong against the incoming waves, she was beginning to struggle to keep the pace. Remmao could see exhaustion setting in but, as much as he shouted after her, she continued to swim with all her strength.
"Ashleigh, slow down. You will lose your energy too fast." But she continued to struggle, choking on seawater as she continually sank and then swam again.
"For goodness sake!" Remmao growled as he hauled her into his arms.
"Let me go!" she fought, but gave up the fight more quickly than she had anticipated. Swimming back with her in his arms, Remmao helped her on board.
She marched off to his bedroom and the change of clothes she had brought. He followed her in pursuit.’

Reviews for Hibiscus Bay by Debby Allen

'Hibiscus Bay'
March 11, 2008
REVIEWED BY: Cocktail Reviews
SCORE: Four and a half glasses of Champagne!
Author: Debby Allen
Publisher: Wild Rose Press

Ashleigh is on a Mediterranean holiday with her friend Laura. She’s intending to use the break to get over a failed office romance with her boss – a married man. When Laura spots an expensive yacht at a local harbour, Ashleigh only has eyes for the hot guy on board. But while her friend urges her to enjoy a holiday romance, Ashleigh is afraid of being hurt again.
Remmao is half Egyptian, half Arab, a wealthy playboy who used to have a woman in every port until a bad experience left him emotionally damaged and extremely cautious. But Ashleigh intrigues him – he’s never had to chase a woman before, and he’s determined to track her down.
While both are ready for a physical relationship, their emotions keep getting in the way. Only by learning to let go of the past and trusting one another will they find a future together.
This was a great novella-length read. I loved the underplayed humour, such as Ashleigh’s embarrassment at being caught ogling Remmao on his yacht. In this scene, she’s going to great lengths to pretend she wasn’t looking at him. In the process, her sunglasses fall off and he tries to give them back to her:
“I, no, it’s ok, they’re not expensive,” she stammered stupidly. He shrugged. “Well, I am sure there are litter bins around if you wanted to dispose of them.”
“I don’t! I mean, I wasn’t throwing them away. They fell off my head.”
I also enjoyed Ashleigh’s first proper conversation with him. It’s cute and breathless, and I liked the sly dig at the romance novel genre of ‘every Egyptian/Arab is a prince’.
Ashleigh is a strong character. I like the fact that she doesn’t hide or sugar-coat the truth of what she did in the past – she admits she was in the wrong with her affair. You can really feel her anger and guilt – and her fear of being hurt so easily again.
Remmao is a true romance hero, but with a modern slant. He’s open about his feelings, and while he encourages Ashleigh to forgive herself and move on, he continues to hold onto his own secret – a lesson he learned a year ago and which still haunts him.
Like a short version of a M&B/Harlequin title, Hibiscus Bay delivers on all fronts with an exotic locale, wealthy foreign hunk, a good dose of angst, enjoyable love scenes and a HEA. Formulaic? Yes, of course. But that’s why I love them so much. I’d recommend this to any fan of the genre.

'Hibiscus Bay'
REVIEWED BY: Simply Romance Reviews
AUTHOR: Debby Allen

I can honestly say, while reading Hibiscus Bay, I was touched by the beautiful twist of fate for Ashleigh and Remmao. This is the kind of romance we all dream of. Ashleigh's main goal on her vacation was to erase the last three years of her past relationship with Richard (ex-lover/ex-boss and married). She never expected fate to intervene and send her the love she has always dreamed of having. Remmao (dashing and sexy) never had much time for true lasting relationships since he consistently sails around the world. Suddenly, he is locking eyes with Ashleigh after her sunglasses fall onto the deck of his yacht and its' kismet!! Throughout the story, Ashleigh and Remmao find themselves freeing all the emotional pain from the past and learning once again the meaning of trust, promises and love. Debby Allen captured so many heartwarming emotions of both her characters. The story inspires the reader to wish for Hibiscus Bay and a pair of sunglasses.......wonderful job Debby!! ~ Reviewed by Mireille