A little background on Debra…

Winner of Romantic Times Reviewer’s Career Achievement “Series Storyteller of the Year” award in 2006, Debra Salonen’s 26 titles for Harlequin Publishing have sold more than 2.3 million copies, worldwide.
A six-time nominee for RT’s Best Superromance of the Year award, Debra took home that honor in 2011.

Born and raised in Brookings, South Dakota. Youngest of five (much youngest). A Baby Boomer who married her high school sweetheart (our lockers were side-by-side). Mother of two, grandmother of three darling princesses, dog mother of 2.5 mutts.
– Graduate of South Dakota State University with a Master’s degree in Geography and History.
– Job history: taxi driver, flax seed counter, cartographer, rural mail carrier, substitute teacher, secretary/community liaison for Merced College’s Child Development Center, bookkeeper, journalist, author.
– First sale story: June, 1999, to Harlequin Superromance. Total number of books sold to Harlequin =27.
– Honors and awards: Romantic Times BOOKreviews, 2006 Series Storyteller of the Year. Winner: Best Superromance of 2010: Until He Met Rachel. Nominated for Desert Quill in 2008.
– First book published by Tule Press, summer 2014: Cowgirl Come Home. The Big Sky Mavericks series opens Aug. 2014 with: Nobody’s Cowboy.

Love at the Chocolate Shop Book….

MONTANA SECRET SANTA – Ad exec Krista Martin, while feeling more Grinch than elf, still jumps at the chance to co-chair Marietta’s Secret Santa Society. Why not? Especially since brilliant, attractive, and innovative tech wunderkind Jonah Andrews has agreed to help. He’s well connected and Krista’s hoping for some advice on rebooting her career.
Jonah knows Krista has a not-so-hidden agenda, but sparring with her over cocoa at their Secret Santa meetings is the most fun he’s had since returning to his old hometown. Krista may come across as all business, but Jonah’s positive he’s glimpsed a little girl inside her who wants to believe in Santa… and in love.

SWEET SUMMER’S KISS – A storybook kiss on New Year’s Eve at the Big Sky Mavericks Masked Ball in Marietta, Montana should have been the beginning of a grand romance for Gretchen Zabrinski and Daniel Andrews. But when Gretchen overhears a phone call from Daniel to his brother about what he really wants from a woman, she takes off…without leaving so much as a glass slipper behind.
Daniel wants a family. Gretchen will never be able to give him that. So why does fate keep throwing them together so cruelly? First, at a Copper Mountain Chocolate Shop Speed Dating event, then when he’s hired to open a new division at her PR firm. But competing, shoulder-to-shoulder, to sell the most exotic chocolate kisses for charity really is the last straw.
Is love a cosmic connection or a karmic joke? Sometimes, the answer reveals itself in a kiss—a sweet kiss shared beneath a warm Montana summer sky.



Let’s talk Chocolate. What’s your favorite kind and if all the Love at the Chocolate Shop authors got together – what would you bring as a dessert?

Dark chocolate
I would bring Cracked Earth, my favorite dark chocolate cake, along with whipped cream.
Here’s the recipe:

CHOCOLATE CRACKED EARTH (flourless chocolate cake) – (adapted from the foodnetwork.com/Tyler Florence)

1 pound bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces (I used 1(one) 8-oz package of semi-sweet chocolate and 2(two) 3-oz 70% dark chocolate candy bars…because I failed to read the recipe before I went shopping. But, this worked. Simply use less sugar–see below.)
1 stick unsalted butter
9 large eggs, separated
3/4 cup granulated sugar , plus 1 Tablespoon (I used 1/2 cup because of the candy bars.)
2 C heavy cream (I like to whip mine with 1/2 teaspoon sugar and a few drops of vanilla flavoring)
confectioners sugar for dusting (optional)
~Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter 9-inch springfoam pan.
~Put chocolate and butter into the top of double boiler and heat over about 1″ of simmering water until melted.
~Whisk egg yolks with the sugar in a mixing bowl until light yellow in color. Whisk a little of the chocolate mixture into the egg yolk mixture to temper the eggs. (This will keep the eggs from scrambling from the heat of the chocolate.) Then whisk in the rest of the chocolatemixture.
~Beat the egg whites in a mixing bowl until stiff peaks form and fold into the chocolate mixture.
~Pour into prepared pan and bake until cake is set and the top starts to crack.
~Test with a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake. It should come out with moist crumbs clinging to it.
~The recipe says: 20-25 minutes; mine took 35-40 minutes.
~Let stand 10 minutes, then remove sides of pan. The cake will sink slightly, but that’s okay.
~Whip cream.
~Dust with confectioners sugar (optional).
~Serve at room temperature.

How many books did you write in the series and who is your fav character?

I wrote two books, and I really struggle with picking a favorite character. I love each one equally when I’m writing their stories. But, looking back, I would say Jonah Andrews from Montana Secret Santa is my fave, because I have a soft spot in my heart for nerds. Plus, he’s a great dog dad and he was very supportive of his younger brother in Sweet Summer’s Kiss

If you could sit with Sage for an hour, what would you talk about?

Family. Hers is a very complex and interesting family dynamic. Now that she’s a mother, I wonder how she feels about her mother’s choices and how those choices impacted Sage and her sisters.

What did you love the most about writing in this series?

Marietta. I love this town, and I got to see it through four seasons, many holidays and the eyes of so many interesting characters. I love how the Love at the Chocolate Shop authors brought in familiar community members and introduced us to new characters. I really felt like I got to know Marietta better through this series.


Website: www.debrasalonen.com