Spotlight & Giveaway: Surrendering All But Her Heart by Melanie Milburne

Posted November 5th, 2012 by in Blog, Spotlight, _Harlequin Romances / 28 comments

Please Join me in Welcoming back Harlequin Presents and Medical author Melanie Milburne to HJ!

Melanie Welcome,  for all of my readers who may not be familiar with your work, could you tell us a bit about yourself and your work?

I’m an award winning, best selling romance author for Harlequin Mills and Boon in London. I write for both Presents and Medicals. I live in Tasmania with my husband who is a surgeon. We both have big careers so it is a real juggle at times!

What was the first romance novel you read that made an impression on you?

My first Harlequin was An Apple in Eden by Kay Thorpe. I was swept away by the Italian hero and the sheer romance of it. But then I discovered Mary Stewart, in particular, Nine Coaches Waiting and This Rough Magic. Those books really nailed it for me. I’ve been an avid romance fan ever since.

Tell us about your writing process. What comes first, characters or story?

 The characters usually come first to me although on the last couple of books I’ve started with a story idea and found the characters to suit the story. I think it’s a very intuitive thing, really, so it’s hard to know if the story propels the characters or visa versa.

From all your published books which of your characters would you most/least like to invite for dinner and why?

 I would most like to meet Lucas Banning from an upcoming Medical – Their Most Forbidden Fling.  He’s deep, he’s wounded and he’s desperately lonely – until Molly comes along! I love complicated, tortured heroes.

 If Hollywood made a movie about your life who would you like to see play the lead role as you? Why?

 Maybe Natalie Portman as we have the same colour hair… well, let’s just say my hair used to be that colour!

If you could be someone else for a day, from anytime in history, who would you be and why?

 I would like to be my maternal or paternal great- grandmothers for a day. It would be fascinating to compare their lives with mine.

 Let’s Talk about your newest release Surrendering All But Her Heart

What sparked the idea for the book Surrendering All But Her Heart?

 That is the magic of storytelling, sometimes you don’t really know where the idea came from – it was just there. I’d been thinking about doing a redemption plot for a while. I wanted to explore the issue of forgiving yourself for the unforgivable, or being released from a lifetime of guilt via a revelation or realization.

If you had to sum up Surrendering All But Her Heart what would you say?

This is a story about a young woman who was wrongfully blamed for the death of her baby brother when she was seven years old, and the man who loved her enough to finally unlock her tragic secret.

If you had to pick your favorite scene in Surrendering All But Her Heart what would it be?

 I think it’s the one where Natalie finally tells Angelo about her brother Liam. She’s expecting blame and condemnation but instead he gives her comfort and understanding. True hero material!

I also like the scene where Angelo discovers Natalie’s fear of flying. It’s the beginning of him getting to know the real Natalie, not just who she pretends to be. 

Who would play Natalie Armitage and Angelo Bellandini in the movie version of your book and why?

Natalie Portman would be Natalie, not just because of her name but she was the person I had in mind when I wrote the book. I had a photograph of her from a magazine pinned near my computer. Angelo would be a younger version of George Clooney or maybe Antonio Banderas.

What else are you working on? What can we expect in the future?

 I’m working on my 49th book, which is book one of a Presents trilogy.

Raffaele Caffarelli is a man who has the money to buy anything he wants meets Poppy Silverton, a feisty young woman who will not be bought.

It’s a David and Goliath battle and while not as dark and tragic as Natalie and Angelo’s story, it definitely has plenty of emotion. It’s a fast-paced sexy banter between two total opposites. I love enemies to lovers stories.

Melanie Thanks for the Fab interview!


Giveaway: Melanie will be giving away a  signed hard copy of Surrendering All But Her Heart plus a Medical title- Dr Chandler’s Sleeping Beauty to one lucky winner.

To Enter Giveaway: Please complete the Rafflecopter form below and post a comment to this Q: What is the worst thing about keeping a secret? Who would you trust with your most painful secret?

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Excerpt from Surrendering All But Her Heart– Melanie Milburne©

Natalie opened her eyes and found Angelo’s dark, thoughtful gaze trained on her. She had some vague memory of what had passed during the night but it was like looking at something through a cloudy, opaque film. ‘I hope I didn’t keep you awake,’ she said. ‘I’m not a very good sleeper.’

‘You’re certainly very restless,’ he said. ‘I don’t remember you being like that when we were together before.’

She focussed her gaze on the white cotton sheet that was pulled up to her chest. ‘I sleep much better in the winter.’

‘I can see why you choose to live in Scotland.’

She felt a reluctant smile tug at her mouth. ‘Maybe I should move to Antarctica or the North Pole.’

‘Maybe you should talk to someone about your dreams.’

She got off the bed and snatched up a bathrobe to cover her nightwear. ‘Maybe you should mind your own business,’ she said, tying the waist strap with unnecessary force.

He got off the bed and came to stand where she was standing. ‘Don’t push me away, Natalie,’ he said. ‘Can’t you see I’m trying to help you?’

‘I don’t need your help. I was perfectly fine until you came along and stuffed everything up. You with your stupid plans for revenge. Who are you to sort out my life? You don’t know a thing about my life. You just think you can manipulate a few things to suit you. Go ahead. See if I care.’

She flung herself away, huddling into herself like a porcupine faced with a predator. But her prickly spines felt like they were pointing the wrong way. She felt every savage poke of them into her sensitive soul.

‘Why are you being so antagonistic?’ he asked. ‘What’s happened to make you like this?’

Natalie squeezed her eyes shut as she fought for control. ‘I don’t need you to psychoanalyze me, Angelo. I don’t need you to fix me. I was fine until you barged into my life.’

‘You’re not fine,’ he said. ‘You’re far from fine. I want to help you.’

She kept her back turned on him. ‘You don’t need me to complicate your life. You can have anyone. You don’t need me.’

‘I do need you,’ he said. ‘And you need me.’



28 Responses to “Spotlight & Giveaway: Surrendering All But Her Heart by Melanie Milburne”

  1. Belinda

    I like the title of the book. I’ve never read anything by this author, but would like to. Thanks for giveaway.

  2. Suzanne

    A secret can weigh heavy on the heart, depending what it is- if serious I would confide in my priest.

  3. Aline

    The worst thing about keeping a secret is how to act naturally in front of the person whom you keeping your secrets from. Well, I think I couldn’t trust anybody with my most painful secrets, though. Usually, I just pray so I think only God knows about them 🙂

  4. Leanna H

    The worst thing about keeping a secret is tgat it can eat away at you. I would probably tell my worst secret to my sister in law because she does not judge.

  5. Ann S.

    I read Enemies at the Alter and I really enjoyed it. Would love to read these. Thanks for the giveaway. Secrets are terrible, they don’t always turn on you right away, but they do catch up with you. I would trust my best friend, she and I have been through a lot together.

  6. Brenda Rumsey

    Good secrets are best when you can share them…you just can’t be as happy without someone to share it with. If it was a bad secret, I would only trust it to my God.

  7. Lilian S

    Hi Melanie, thank you for the giveaway.
    The worst thing for keeping secret is there will be a new lie to cover the secret.

  8. Yazmin Rangel

    The worst thing about keeping a secret are the lies that it covers. And the consequences that it may bring. It could be the anger from the person/people the secret was kept from, or even the hurt that it may cause others.

    I don’t think there is anyone I would trust with a most painful secret, in any case the one I trust with my secrets is my pillow. It won’t betray me or my secret because of a misunderstanding or any other reason like a person could.

  9. Tiffany K

    The worst thing about keeping a secret is having to keep one in the first place. You are going to have to lie at one point or another, and there is no sense in that all lies do is cause trouble. As someone who is recently out of her teens I can say that they cause more problems than they would if they were not kept in the first place.

    If my dad were still alive I’d trust him with my most painful secrets, but since he isn’t here there is no one I would trust with them.

  10. Pauline Eade

    The worst part of keeping a secret is having to think before you open your mouth and having to tell lies to enable keeping the secret.
    I would trust nobody with a painful secret

  11. Mary Preston

    I actually don’t have any trouble keeping secrets. I’m rather a private person myself, so people know I will respect a confidence.

    I would trust My Mother & sisters. Family!!

  12. Melanie Milburne

    Hi everyone,
    It’s been interesting reading all of your comments. I’m good at keeping secrets but I hate it when people tell me them. It puts an extra pressure on me that I could do without. I value honesty so telling lies to keep a secret in place is particularly compromising. I heard it said that one lie needs twenty more to keep it in place. I think that’s very true.
    Tiffany, I’m so sorry you don’t have your Dad anymore. I am sure he is watching over you.

  13. Chris Mead

    I know that I can always tell my sister my deepest, darkest, secrets and she will never tell. I am terrible at keeping secrets, I always want to tell my sister or my boyfriend. I will keep a secret if I have to but I would rather not be in the position to do so.

  14. Rebe

    Depends on the secret – if it’s a happy secret, it’s difficult to keep from telling everyone the good news or giving away something. If it’s not a happy one, then it’s hard to deal with the fallout of keeping that secret, feelings of guilt or telling lies. I definitely prefer the first type!

  15. Tawnya Bentley

    The worst thing is if it is about someone I love, and I know that others I love have a right to know also. I was recently put in this position and when it all came out they weren’t mad at that person, they were mad at me because I kept it a secret. I trust my kids, more then anyone else!

  16. Michele H

    I think the worst thing about keeping a secret would be the guilt. I trust my husband more than anyone else and know I could tell him anything instead of having to live with a secret.

  17. Joanne B

    The worst thing about a secret is all the lies you have to tell to keep it covered up. That can really weigh on a person.

  18. Melanie Milburne

    Hi Rebe,
    I love happy secrets too. I have no problem keeping those!
    Tawyna, I have been in that unfortunate situation too. It’s very stressful. You just can’t win.

  19. Melanie Milburne

    Hi Leanna,
    I envy you having a sister-in-law who doesn’t judge. Having anyone in your life who doesn’t judge would be a bonus! We are all so quick to make judgements and they are often wrong.
    And Chris, lucky you having a sister you are so close to.

  20. Olga

    I’m very private person and my secrets stay with me! The worst thing about keeping them to yourself is you can’t unburden them, sometimes they sit heavily on your heart!

  21. Shadow

    I dont tell me secrets. There mine. I dont trust easily. And i hate keeping secrets for others. Especially having to lie to keep that secret. In books, i love secrets, the drama, the plot, etc. But in life, i could do without them

  22. Arely Z.

    The worst thing about keeping a secret is the fact that you have to keep it from other people–especially people important to you.
    I would trust one of my very close friends with my most painful secret. She is the only one I could trust with this kind of secret, so it’s nice I have someone I know I can trust with something of that magnitude!

  23. Lisa Hutson

    Often, the worst part about keeping a secret is not being sure you are really helping the person trusting you.
    And I would say that most any time, I would be very confident about entrusting a painful secret with my husband.

  24. nurmawati djuhawan

    i trust my bff to keep my secret…
    sometimes it’s hadr no to tell anyone about anything…but i keep try….

  25. amel armeliana

    I hate keeping secrets. I don’t like secret. So I trust my secrets to my closest friends. But even though I can’t keep my own secret, my friend’s secret safe with me :))

    Thanks for this giveaway

  26. eli yanti

    Hi Melanie,

    Actually it’s uncomfortable to keep secret, but something there is a secret that we have to keep it if we have no choice and the worst thing from keeping secret is like carrying a burden

  27. Melanie Milburne

    Hi everyone,
    Yes, secrets are burdens at times. I once organised a surprise trip for my husband and I had to tell so many lies to him to get him to think it was just an ordinary week! I could barely look him in the eye by the end of it. I really don’t know how people do it for years on end.

    But personal heartache, like Natalie in my book was going through, is different. Sometimes it’s just too hard to talk to people about stuff you just know they could never understand. I think finding safe people to share your heart with is important. You can’t tell everyone in your circle, but most of us have a select few who are true friends.

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