Debut Authors Bash: Author Interview with Adult Contemporary Romance Author Rissa Brahm

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Screen Shot 2016-05-24 at 4.00.37 PMContemporary romance writer Rissa Brahm grew up in New York and has since lived in all four corners of the United States, and beyond. The beautiful paradise of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico—the core setting of her hot & heartfelt debut series, Paradise South—is Rissa’s most recent and beloved home.
After two decades of working in the rigid—and sometimes blurry—world of finance, she’s taken hold of her truest dream, writing hot and heartfelt stories full time.
When not chained-by-choice to her MacBook, she is embarking on outdoor adventures with her husband and little girl, laughing to tears with a good rom com, eating amazing Indian food with something chocolate for dessert; reading good, hot scorchers in bed; biking, long walks, and yoga; zoning out to killer music from across the decades and the globe; and getting lost only to discover a new exciting route home again. You can connect with Rissa on Facebook, Twitter or by email anytime by heading to

Can you tell us about your debut, Tempting Isabel, in 40 words or less?

Sure! He tempts her; she tempts fate… Twenty-five-year-old Puerto Vallarta native Isabel, a fatally cursed wedding planner, fights falling for the charmed American millionaire, Zack James. It all goes south from there.

What was your favorite scene to write?

The last scene of the story was my favorite to write. Not only because it was the end—after months and months of revisions!—and not just because it was my just-right ending—after too many wrong endings to admit too! It stands out because it was the most moving scene to write. And to read back over! A real roller coaster of emotion; I tear-up every time I read it.

What was the hardest scene to edit out?

The most difficult scene to pull…an emotional backstory bit between Isabel and her sister, Celeste. The story is better for it, but the sisterly connection and their common grief over the loss of their mother, it always got me. But it didn’t move the story forward, so away it went.

Do you have a favorite quote from the book?

“Because, screw fate! I’ll get you by getting mine. She pressed her foot to the gas and flew down the cliffside byway to her meetings, tempting fate the entire way, just on goddamn principle.”

How many books will be in the Paradise South series?

My debut series consists of five full-length novels and one novelette (a collection of epilogues, one for each of the Paradise South stories.) Book #3 (Catching Preeya) releases July 8th and books #4 (Satisfying Ali) and #5 (Freeing Kyla) release later this year.

Are you currently working on anything else?

I have two more revisions to go on Satisfying Ali and I’m midway through Freeing Kyla. And then, last month, the central idea for my next series came to me in a dream—I cannot wait to dive into it! Hot and heartfelt in a totally unique setting with more outstanding characters…but that’s all I can tell you right now. (Secrets are not kept well by me, though. I will spill something soon enough, I can’t help it!)

What is Isabel’s favorite thing about Zack?

Isabel loves his nervous goofiness juxtaposing his magazine-model exterior and high-class air. She sees his humility, his grounded sense of family, never before seen by others.

What is Zack’s favorite thing about Isabel?

From the very first, Zack spotted and fell for Isabel’s confidence amidst her graceful clumsiness. No other woman in the world had run from Zack James, while Isabel attempts to escape his magnetism several times over. And she’s bright, ballsy, and takes no shit—she teaches him a thing or two, which at first enrages him, but soon makes him see her for the “perfect-match” that she is.

What theme song would you give Tempting Isabel?

For certain, Meghan Trainor and John Legend’s “Like I’m Gonna Lose You”

Do each of the books in the Paradise South series feature different characters?

Each book features a different cast of characters except for one carryover role from another Paradise South story.

Will previous characters crossover into the other books?

And yes, there are a few surprise cameo appearances 😉 throughout the series.

What has been your favorite debut of 2016 or what 2016 debut are you most anticipating?

I really enjoyed Amanda Heger’s Without Borders. Sweet, hot, multicultural and international—I totally dig that mix!

What is the best book you’ve read recently?

A recent contemporary romance that I really enjoyed…Too Much Temptation by Lori Foster—Hot, heavy and deep, for sure. Read it, you’ll see what I mean 😉 And one nonfiction must-read IMHO, Come As You Are by Dr. Emily Nagoski. It was a perspective changer—a life changer, really. Sex positivity to a new level, grounded in science. I wish every woman—and man!—would read it. Better sex, better lives all around!

Tempting Isabel - Ebook Small

Luck. Lust. Love.

Wedding planner Isabel Ruiz is cursed. Her hometown of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico agrees, considering her tragic track record. Alone and loveless, she creates fairy tale weddings for others. Her only distraction? The occasional and anonymous fling. But to avoid further tragedy, her rule, one–night–only, is never broken…

Until Zack.

Self-made millionaire, the charmed Zackary James, is in town for his kid brother’s wedding, when a sudden spell of depression hits. Not even his two female companions hold any interest. Burned out by his fast and luxurious lifestyle? Stress? Genetics? No answers surface in his empty scotch glass.

Then he crashes into Isabel.

She humbles and captivates him, reigniting his thirst for life. To his delight—and her dismay—they share a sensual connection over one mind-bending night. And now Zack must have her—to complete him. And Isabel must escape him—to save him.

A game of chase-catch-repeat builds to lust-turned-love. For Isabel, it’s fate’s cruelest joke. But Zack just won’t quit, positive he’s the cure to her curse. Can he convince her to risk everything with him? Or will everything go south…in paradise.

HEA Ending.

**Mature Content Warning** 17+ for language, explicit sex, and adult situations.

Buy Links: Tempting Isabel:
Taking Jana:
Catching Preeya (Pre-Order, out 7.8.16):