Sara Flynn – Lessons In Romance

Hi friends!

Welcome to the 5th Annual Read-A-Romance Month!

While I read romance all year long, August is the month we celebrate this awesome genre! Come back every day to read all three “Power of Romance” posts. Check out the full calendar of authors here. You can also find links to the last four years’ posts from the boxes in the sidebar, and if you’d like, you can follow RARM on Facebook.

Happy August!

#LoveRomance #ThePowerOfRomance

The Relief of Finding Romance

I came from a challenging childhood. Abuse of all kinds was rampant. My yardstick of what to expect from a man was extremely low.

If a man said he loved me, didn’t hit me too often, didn’t chase me around the living room wielding an axe or a butcher knife, I was trained that I should be grateful that he saw something worth loving in me.

Then I had children. First, a beautiful daughter with brown eyes, with flecks of green. Then, a baby boy whose brown eyes were so dark they almost looked black. And they would look at me, their faces tilting toward me, like buttercups to the sun.

I would watch them sleep, their thick, dark lashes fanning across their flushed, plump cheeks, so innocent, so trusting. Trusting me to create a home of safety for them. One filled with peace and kindness.

The weight of that responsibility sometimes felt crushing.

When I read the newspapers in the mornings, the world seemed such an unforgiving place, full of meanness and cruelty and vice. The bad news was overwhelming, and more often than not I wanted to go back to bed and pull the covers over my head.

I didn’t, of course. I was a mother. My children didn’t ask to be born, and it was my responsibility to be there for them.

Quite by accident, while I was in an airport enroute to or from a movie location, I stumbled across an Amanda Quick romance novel, Mistress.

Well, what a relief.

I stopped reading the newspaper daily and started reading romance novels instead—romance novels with strong, opinionated heroines, with men who valued them, not in spite of, but because of the women’s strength and uniqueness.

In the beginning, I was especially partial to romantic suspense, I think because bad things would happen, but love and kindness would always triumph! I could relate. Now I’ve branched out and also enjoy other romance genres.

Romance novels taught me that it was okay to expect more from a relationship. They helped get me started on the journey to my own personal Happy-Ever-After, and my children brought me the rest of the way. In protecting and defending them, I learned how to protect and defend myself, how to stand strong, how to say no and how to leave a challenging marriage.

Some people say that romance novels give women unrealistic expectations of what life has to offer them.

I disagree.

I think romance novels educate women like me. Let us know we have a right to be treated with respect and love. We have a right to be an equal voice in a relationship. We have a right to enjoy our bodies and the act of making love. We are given the tools, a yardstick with which to evaluate the men we decide to allow into our lives.

This, to me, is the true power of romance novels. And it gives me great joy to add my voice to the vast array of romance novels out there, available to be savored and enjoyed.


Sara recommends:

Clearly, I recommend Jayne Ann Krentz/Amanda Quick/Jayne Castle

Jayne has a zillion books that have been on the New York Times bestseller list, and I’ve read them all.    –    @ Amazon


I also enjoy Eloisa James, especially her, Desperate Duchesses, Essex Sisters and Fairy Tales Series.   –   @Amazon


Sherry Thomas’s The Fitzhugh Series is wonderful.   –    @Amazon


Sarah MacLean’s The Rules of Scoundrels Series is a great group of reads.   –   @Amazon


And, of course, I love Lisa Kleypas, her contemporaries and historicals. I’m especially fond of her Bow Street Series.    –   @Amazon


I also recommend L.M. Montgomery’s The Blue Castle. (I know this is six authors, but I couldn’t resist!)


Questions for the Author:

Tell us about a moment when you felt or were aware of the power of romance.

I attended the RT Booklovers Conference for the first time this spring. It was a revelation. The entire hotel was filled to the brim with romance readers, romance writers, romance audio artists, cover models. I loved the joie de vive, how we all were loud and proud about our affection for all things romance. One of my favorite memories was the Smart Bitches Trashy Novels session. ( It was like a noisy slumber party with gummy bears and a room stuffed to the gills with passionate romance readers, all of us calling out the titles of our favorite books and why we loved them. So many genres I never even knew existed. And, oh my, how everyone’s face glowed when they spoke about the books they loved.

Tell us about an object that has powerful memories for you.

My mother, who recently passed away, gave me my grandmother’s engagement ring. I wear it every day, and I feel her love and presence with me.

Tell us about a word that has power for you.

One of my favorite words has always been the word cozy, and it’s been a lifelong goal to create and relish the luxury of a cozy life.

There was a man in my past, with whom I was passionately in love. My heart broke a little when he informed me that cozy was his least favorite word in the English dictionary. For him the word meant suffocation, lack of air, loss of freedom, musty old ladies and tea. “No,” I said, feeling quite desperate. “It means a warm house and tasty food in your belly, and love and laughter, and safety and comfort and money coming in to pay the bills!”

“Bah,” he said. “I hate the word.” To my much younger self, hearing that was like a blow to the belly, as if the essence of me was what he hated.

Now, my beloved husband, Don, he loves the word cozy! And we are heading toward our seventeenth year of happy-ever-after.

Tell us about a powerful book you read this year (or one that’s so powerful you’ve never forgotten it).

Things touch us for different reasons. What I flashed to when I read this question was Lorraine Heath’s When The Marquess Falls (A Hellions of Havisham Novella). I read it on the plane to the RT Convention and found myself crying. The reason this novella sprang to mind is because I disliked Marquess of Marsden in the previous novels, quite strongly, actually. I didn’t like the way he talked to his son or his son’s fiancée. I felt he shared inappropriately. I almost didn’t purchase the novella because it was from his POV, but I needed something to read to take my mind off the fact that I was in a plane hurling through space.

So to find myself, not only caring about the Marquess, but crying over his loss was a weird sort of happiness after I had dismissed him. I loved being surprised. Love it when such a surprise happens in life, or in books.

Tell us about a person who’s had a powerful influence on your life.

My acting teacher, Peggy Feury, changed my life. She saw something in me and believed in me, and gradually I began to see something in myself. She passed away in 1984, and I still miss her.

Main Drawing:

Sara is generously giving away a copy of SOLACE ISLAND to one lucky reader (winner’s choice, e-book or paper).  To enter, leave a comment below by 11:59 pm PST Sept 3, 2017. (US only)

She’ll be giving away more copies as part of the US bundles,  plus she’s sponsoring the tote & cup giveaway (more info. below)

There are many more drawings too—including international book bundles! See the bottom of the post for more information.


She may be best known for her acclaimed Golden Globe-winning lead performance in the movie “Agnes of God,” but Meg Tilly is taking on an exciting new persona these days, as debut romance novelist Sara Flynn.

After successfully publishing six standout young adult and literary women’s fiction novels, the Canadian American actress/author decided to write the kind of books she loves to read—romance novels. Her first romance, SOLACE ISLAND, debuted at the 2017 RT Booklovers’ Convention in Atlanta, where Meg, as Sara Flynn, co-emceed the popular romance fan convention’s awards ceremony.

Set on an island in the Pacific Northwest, SOLACE ISLAND tells the suspenseful story of a woman, dumped by her business partner/fiancé during her bachelorette party, who discovers a rewarding new career, romance and threats on her life in an idyllic vacation community. Two more Sara Flynn romances set on Solace Island will follow.

At the age of 14, the multi-talented Tilly started dance lessons and developed into a gifted ballet dancer. After she danced in the movie “Fame,” a serious back injury forced her to give up ballet, and she turned her creative energy to acting. Moving to Los Angeles and studying with renowned acting teacher Peggy Fuery, she subsequently landed television roles and then her first film, “Tex,” opposite Matt Dillon. Shortly thereafter she booked the role of Chloe in “The Big Chill.” Then came her performance in the title role of “Agnes of God.” Tilly’s portrayal of a novitiate nun who confesses her involvement in a virginal conception, opposite Jane Fonda and Anne Bancroft, garnered that Golden Globe Award and an Academy Award nomination.  Other film credits include “Valmont,” “The Two Jakes,” “Leaving Normal” “Masquerade” and “Body Snatchers.”

In 1994, Tilly decided to take a break from acting to focus on raising her children. She continued to study and grow as a writer. SINGING SONGS (Penguin/Dutton, a Barnes & Noble Great New Writers Selection 1994) was her first novel, followed by another adult novel, GEMMA (St. Martin’s Press).  Her first YA novel, PORCUPINE (Tundra Books), was shortlisted for a BC Book Prize, The Canadian Libraries Association Best Children’s Book 2008, Foreword Magazine Book of the Year, Ontario Library Best Bets 2008 and was a finalist for the Sheila A Egoff Children’s Literature Prize. Next came FIRST TIME (Orca), a 2009 Golden Eagle Award Nominee, a 2009 YALSA Quick Picks and 2010 CCBC Best Books. Her fifth novel, A TASTE OF HEAVEN (Puffin Books) was shortlisted for the 2014 Libris Young Reader Book of the Year, a 2014 Diamond Willow Award and won the 2014/15 Chocolate Lilly Award. BEHIND THE SCENES (Puffin) was published in 2014

Tilly has sold screenplays to MGM/UA, Sony Pictures, NBC, Kidro Productions and ATO Pictures.

When her youngest child went off to college, Tilly decided to dip her toe back into the acting world. She landed the role of Lorna Corbett in the popular Canadian “Bomb Girls” series (2012-2014), which won the Gracie Award for Best TV Drama.

Tilly has been seen most recently opposite Brad Pitt in the 2017 Netflix feature film “War Machine.”  Directed by David Michod, the film is a satire of America’s war with Afghanistan and the people running the military campaign.  Tilly plays the role of the almost-too-patient wife of the General (Pitt).

Tilly has three grown children and resides with her husband in the Pacific Northwest. She is currently at work writing that second Solace Island novel.

Learn more:     |    Facebook     |     Twitter @SaraFlynRomance


Buy Sara’s books:

availableon-amazon       availableon-nook    availableon-kobo

*Please note that the Amazon button, most cover images and many text links connect to a Read-A-Romance Month affiliate portal. Thanks so much for your help & support!


#LoveRomance   #The PowerofRomance    #ReadARomance


Each RARM post will have one main drawing each day (posted above). Authors are also contributing to weekly (US only) bundles, which will be drawn at the end of the week. Each bundle will consist of at least five books and the amount of bundles will depend on the amount of books the authors contribute.

(Sara is contributing to the US and sponsoring the cup/tote giveaway.)

To enter to win these bundles, send an email to with “Bundles” in the signature line. (1 entry per email address per week)

International friends!

Rather than individual drawings off posts, this year we’ll do sets of books, 3+, depending on how many authors contribute. To enter, send an email to with “International” in the signature line. (1 entry per email address per week)

Week 4 contests are Aug 25 through Aug. 31

For the 5th Annual Read-A-Romance Month, many of the contributing authors  are supporting an extra-special drawing – high quality tote bags and mugs printed with a fun, pro-romance image (see below).

Read-A-Romance Month, through the generous support of many of the authors, is giving away at least 30 mug & tote combos.

Plus, at least two lucky winners will win a Read-A-Romance Month “Month of Books” Mega Bundle, consisting of 31 books!

To enter these exciting drawings,  send an email to (US only, apologies to international friends – though keep an eye out later in the month.

(US only, apologies to international friends – though keep an eye out later in the month. I may include an international cup/tote combo.)

You will not be automatically added to a newsletter, and I promise not to sell or give your email addresses to anyone. I do reserve the right to send you an invitation to sign up for my newsletter, which will also have opportunities to win more prizes and great romance reading tips!



Check out all three great posts everyday in August at  Or you can find the posts on the RARM Facebook page.  Also consider joining the Read-A-Romance Book Club page, where we discuss romance of all kinds and will have drawings and events throughout the year.

#LoveRomance  #HappyReading  #ReadARomance