Love & Writing, Reading Romance

“I have a proposal for you…”

Dylan and Sadie’s story is out today!

A Proposal Worth Millions Quote

A Proposal Worth Millions was a real labour of love, and it’s such a relief to have it out on virtual and real bookshelves across the UK, North America and Australia this week. And even more so to have RT reviews say such lovely things about it as this:

Pembroke is a master at the romance genre, hitting all the right notes. She shows that dreams can come true and everything happens for a reason.

RT Reviews, 4 stars

The Idea…

I first knew I wanted to write this book within about twelve hours of arriving in Turkey. (The Daughter and I had to crash out and sleep off some of the overnight flight sleeps first. I am not at my most creative on no sleep.) The more I saw of the town of Kusadasi, and the surrounding landscape – not to mention the incredible ruins at Ephesus! – the more determined I became to set a book there. I mean, just look at the library at Celsus! How could this not feature in a story?

Library of Celsus
The Library of Celsus at Ephesus

We were holidaying with some very tolerant friends, who put up with me wanting to know everything about everywhere, and the Daughter wanting to watch Labyrinth on repeat for the entire week. (The memories of that holiday will forever be tied up with images of David Bowie’s trousers for me.) In the evenings, over dinner, I’d make them help me come up with possible plots and characters to include in my hypothetical book.

But then we returned to cold and rainy Britain and, well, the story got shoved to the back of the idea pile while I worked my way through the stack of books I already had contracted.

Flight Home
The Flight Home

The Writing…

It was a whole eighteen months before I got around to writing my Turkish story. And by that point, things had changed a little. I was nearly five months pregnant and still suffering from hideous morning (or, all day) sickness that medication barely touched. Just looking at the computer screen made me feel queasy. I battled through the first three chapters lying flat on my back on the sofa, closing my eyes every few sentences to let the nausea pass.

And then I sent the sample chapters and synopsis to my editor who said, in the kindest, politest way possible, that it sucked. (She used better words. But I totally knew what she meant.)

Luckily, my editor is not the sort to tell you the problem and abandon you to fix it on your own.

“I’ve got an idea,” she said. “But I’m not sure you’re going to like it. It would involve quite a lot of rewriting…”

Which, since what I’d written sucked, could only be a good thing. Plus, I had a feeling I knew where she was going with this.

“Are you thinking what I’m thinking?” I asked.

“They need to already know each other,” we said, more or less in unison. And I laughed hysterically with relief.

I’d been trying to make this story something it wasn’t. When I look at it now I can’t imagine it was ever anything but a reunion story. And I’m so glad my editor told me my book sucked. (This is not often the case.)

Anyway, after hashing out my new direction, I surrendered to the story. I re-wrote the whole thing in record time – and got the lightest edits I’ve ever had on a book. Which was a huge relief, as I was basically getting ready to drop by this point!

Ladies Beach
Ladies’ Beach, Kusadasi

The finished book…

I’m really proud of this book. Not just because of the writing-through-miserable-sickness thing, or even the finally-writing-the-book-I-dreamt-of thing, but because I really felt the story pulsing through me as I wrote it. It means a lot to me, and I hope readers will connect with it too.

Here’s what it’s about:

A Proposal Worth Millions“I have a proposal for you…” 

Sadie Sullivan is determined to make her dreams of running a luxurious hotel in Turkey a reality. Then her secret crush, Dylan Jacobs, arrives with an irresistible business proposal, and the chemistry she’s long tried to ignore suddenly feels very real…

Dylan’s impulsive lifestyle sets alarm bells ringing for single mom Sadie, but soon she realizes it’s up to her to show this playboy he’s capable of commitment. Especially when she admits to herself that all her hopes for the future include Dylan—and in a very different role than business partner!



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