Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Favorite Ways to Unwind

Highest Stakes

By: Emery Lee
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Price: $15.99
Publication Date: April 2010


When Captain Robert Devington returns home from war, this hero's only thought is to win the girl he has loved since first spied her riding hell-for-leather across the Doncaster heath.

In a desperate scheme to win her, he proposes an outrageous racing wager, a wager for love. The horse race, a nail-biter, sets the plot in motion.

In a shocking twist of fate, he loses his love, the life he knew, and his country, but with the passage of time comes the opportunity for retribution.

In the end, the good ultimately triumph, the wicked get their just deserts, and the not-quite-so-wicked are given the chance for redemption. Love, of course, conquers all.

I'm please to welcome Debut author, Emery Lee, Over Coffee. I was curious how she relaxed, especially after a long day of writing. Her answer surprised me.

  • What are some of your favorite ways to unwind after writing?

My Twitter response would be: With a steaming cup of Twinings Lady Grey!

My expanded answer might be something altogether different:
While I have several hobbies I greatly enjoy: reading, riding my horse, and even playing the Celtic harp, I can’t say that I ever need to unwind after writing as writing is how I unwind!

My literary adventure first began nearly three years ago as a badly needed outlet for pent up creative energy. At the time, I was in a very stressful job under a boss who allowed me little freedom or opportunity to exercise creative thinking. It was this frustration in my professional life which initially drove me to explore writing, though I never dreamed it would ever come to fruition.

I have always enjoyed a great book to the point that I might easily have ignored the world collapsing about my head while buried in one, but this absorption magnified tenfold once I found my story in The Highest Stakes and began writing.

Writing for me is such a fantastic sensation—to create, to paint with words the pictures you see in your mind’s eye, to imagine characters and breathe life into them, to instilling in them the thoughts and emotions that emanate from your own soul.

I have never experienced in any other activity the powerful sensations that I discovered in writing.

Time ceases to exist.

Reality fades to black.

The universe becomes my own creation, one that I can mold and shape to my will.

All things imaginable become possible.

Writing for me has become the most liberating experience I can ever describe.
Now, would you care for one lump or two?

  • To readers and writers: How do you unwind?

We have 2 copies of The Highest Stakes to award to 2 people who comment today. US and Canada only. Be sure to leave me a way to contact you.


A bit of Background:

  • All thoroughbred horses in the world to this very day can trace their blood back to three specific Arabian stallions imported to England in the early part of the 18th century. Against this backdrop comes a painstakingly researched novel with breathtaking scenes of real races, real horses, glimpses of the men who cared for them, and the tensions of those who owned and controlled them.

  • In 18th century England and Colonial Virginia, when high-spirited stallions filled the stables of the lords of the land and fortunes were won and lost on the outcome of a race, a love story unfolds between a young woman for whom her uncle's horses are her only friends and the young man who teaches her everything about their care and racing. When she's forced into marriage, his only hope of winning her back is to race his horse to reclaim all that was stolen from him—his land, his dignity, and his love.

Read a Chapter Excerpt

Reviews of High Stakes

~ # ~ # ~ # ~

Emery Lee is a life-long equestrienne, a history buff, and a born romantic. Combine the three and you have the essence of her debut novel: a tale of love, war, politics, and horseracing. A member of Romance Writers of America, she lives with her husband, sons, and two horses in upstate South Carolina.

For more information, please visit


~Sia McKye~ said...

Welcome Emery. You're my kinda lady!

I have three horses, my beloved,Sassy, and Arbian out of Banagold and Classic Symphony, my riding hack, Doctari, quarter horse, and Sweet Tea, a Morgan/Arabian.

Many moons ago, my mom managed an estate in Maryland that raised Thoroughbreds for Fox hunting and racing. Quite an operation. For one, that was the first time I ever heard of scheduling all the mares to breed at a certain time. The use of lights and whatnot to bring them all in at the same time. Quite an operation. Wow. Records were Sacrosanct.

The racing world is an unique place among horse breeders.

VA said...

Unwinding? Depends on the day. An average day requires a nice cup of tea and/or snipping flowers from the garden. A more challenging day, a glass of wine. Those days, a bit stiffer drink, it matches the muscles in my neck.

I am in wonder of people who have horses. This of course comes from one who has no pets, so something that large seems...fantastical.

Off to read the excerpt. Btw Sia, who stole the fine one's tartan?

Emery Lee said...

Thank you Sia and VA for this opportunity to share my personal musings, as well as my debut novel THE HIGHEST STAKES. I hope you both "enjoy the ride!"
Best regards- Emery Lee

Kat Sheridan said...

Oh, this book sounds wonderful! And I love that you unwind by writing! I so related to the stressful, uncreative job. Boy, do I! And writing was the same thing for me. A way to redirect my energies, and create the world I'd like to inhabit, with people I'd like to know, instead of a noisy office and crabby co-workers and unreasonable clients (some of whom became victims in my writing! LOL!)

Wishing you every success with this book!

~Sia McKye~ said...

Emery, as I mentioned I like the way you wrote your story against the backdrop of the exciting world of horse racing. Man, some of the studs from that era are phenomenal.

Sorry I've been an absent hostess. My son has been really ill. Hospitals freak me out to begin with, but with him there, sheesh. Anyway, he's much better now, just badly dehydrated with a nasty virus.

I'm curious, what can we expect from you next? Are you going to give us another story within this world?

Sun Singer said...

Writing is drugs already, but to unwind further at the end of the day, red wine is nice.

Emery Lee said...

Hi Sia-
Sorry for my delayed response, I was "off-line" over the weekend. I actually have a "spin-off" novel in progress for Sourcebooks. It is entitiled FORTUNE'S SON. I hope you will look for it late in 2011.
Thanks again for having me!

Emery Lee