Please welcome author Louise Rose-Innes, who will hereafter find me stowing away in her luggage because she knows of places like this.
MOZAMBIQUE – THE PERFECT DESTINATION FOR A ROMANCE
Not many people know about the islands off the coast of Mozambique. Perhaps it’s got something to do with its location (east of the southern African continent) or its history of civil war, but now, in peace times, Mozambique is emerging as one of the best African destinations for beach holidays.
Long, palm-fringed beaches with sand so fine that it squeaks underfoot, remarkable deltas, shady mangrove forests and freshwater lagoons; tropical islands surrounded by turquoise waters, where iridescent fish swim amongst pristine coral. This is the coastline and islands of Mozambique.
There are two archipelagos off the coast of Mozambique: Bazaruto Archipelago and Quirimbas Archipelago. My novel, THE NEW YEAR RESOLUTION, is set on Medjumbe, part of the Quirimbas Archipelago. Situated north of the town of Pemba, the Quirimbas Archipelago consists of about 12 major islands and 20 smaller, coralline outcrops. Most of these are isolated and largely unexplored. Medjumbe is one of the few islands that have been turned into luxury island resorts. Still, getting there is difficult. You have to fly from Pemba or sail by yacht in waters often frequented by pirates.
It’s a destination only a privileged few can afford – and so it makes the perfect setting for THE NEW YEAR RESOLUTION.
A BIT ABOUT THE NEW YEAR RESOLUTION
Last year, divorcee Nicole had only one New Year’s Resolution – to have a date for this New Years Eve – but with no strings attached. One thing she knows for sure is that she isn’t ready for anything more complicated than a casual date.
So when eco-tycoon and international jetsetter, Ryan Jackson begs her to accompany him to a tropical island for a week, in order to impress his benefactor, Nicole categorically refuses. He’s way too hot and she’s way too vulnerable. Not a good idea.
Yet Ryan won’t take no for an answer. It’s for a good cause. She would only have to pretend to be his lover. It’s a luxury island resort with all expenses paid. How can she refuse?
Under the tropical sun, things heat up and their pretence goes out the window. Nicole gets cold feet. She’s not ready for this kind of affair. It’s doubtful she ever will be.
But have they come too far? Distancing herself from Ryan will cause him to lose the funding he so desperately needs for his eco-project, but staying with him means she’ll lose something far more valuable… her heart. And that’s a risk Nicole is simply not willing to take.
EXCERPT FROM THE NEW YEAR RESOLUTION
“Do you want to dance?” asked Ryan suddenly, as Nicole leant back in her chair, a small smile playing on her lips. She looked serenely beautiful, with her blonde hair piled up in a loose bun with tendrils falling around her face. For the first time he noticed the elegant line of her neck and shoulders, and the smoothness of her honey-coloured skin, adorned with a simple diamante necklace. He really couldn’t have found a more suitable date if he’d hand-picked her himself. She oozed elegance and intelligence. Now all he had to do was convince Vincent that she was around to stay and hopefully the mining magnet would agree to finance his latest project.
Ryan saw Vincent smile approvingly as he led Nicole onto the dance floor. The band was playing popular cover versions, easy to dance to. Ryan liked music but he wasn’t a natural dancer. Like most men he lacked rhythm, but in this instance he was willing to make an exception. Whatever it took to secure the deal….
Nicole danced in a manner that was both enticing and admirable. She moved almost instinctively, oblivious to what other people thought of her. Ryan could see she was enjoying herself and he was glad. If this deal went through he owed her – big time.
As she sang along to the track, her cheeks flushed and her pale blue eyes sparkling with delight, Ryan felt a twinge of guilt. Vincent was right. She was a nice girl. He wondered how she’d react when he told her this was it, that he wouldn’t be seeing her again.
Nicole caught his eye and smiled. “I love this song. It reminds me of my university days in Cape Town.”
As she twirled around in front of him, Ryan caught the floral whiff of Allure, by Chanel. It suited her. He fought the urge to move closer. Her enjoyment was contagious. For a brief moment he wished he could relax and live in the moment like she was doing, but this project was too important. It would be too easy to grab her hand, whirl her around the dance floor and laugh along with her, but that would be dangerous. It could lead to complications.
So he reined himself in and smiled politely, watching her lose herself in the music.
Romance Novelist @LouiseRoseInnes
Author @ LouiseRoseInnes.com
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