After anti-terrorist agent Jason DesJardin survived the explosion that killed Emily Holmes's father, he went deep undercover. Guilt and his dark past kept him from returning for her. When Emily discovers ties between the old bombing and the terrorists, she finagles an assignment to Jason's next mission. The balance of world power drops into her inexperienced hands, and she is forced to play a dangerous game of seduction with Mosel Reinhardt, the notorious international arms dealer. Is Reinhardt peddling the nanotech chip technology, or are Emily's instincts about him correct?
The mission heats up when Jason finds he can't resist Emily—agency computer genius gone femme fatale—any more than Mosel can. After years of waiting to have her again, the tables turn. Jason is unwilling to share her now, but will he be able to watch her seduce Mosel in order to find her father's killer? Would she stop if he asked her?
5 CHERRIES: "The very first chapt er grabbed my emotions and put them through the ringer because of the very intense writing and subject matter. Ms. Marchat certainly started this book off with an attention snagging set up and I couldn't stop reading. The author also set up the reader with knowing who the bad guy is but nothing prepares the reader for just how diabolical things get. The emotional connections were forged early on in the story so a reader feels connected to the characters which makes for what happens more poignant, more stark and effective. I liked the build up between the hero, Jason and the heroine, Emily. It was actually brewing for many years so it's not a sudden thing but it's very well played out and when they finally catapult into physical love it was explosive. But the author had a bit of a twist up her sleeve that I didn't expect. It upped the ante on the internal conflict scales and Ms. Marchat certainly knew how to capitalize on the angst. And it ended up bein g the beginning of a very twisted and suspenseful romance riding on the back of one well told and intricate external conflict. Emily grows up fast during the course of the story. She loses her innocent view of the world despite being intellectually informed about things; living them made the greatest impact. She turns into a very solid leading lady and shows her backbone and fortitude. She also gets to explore her sensual self but the results could be her undoing. Jason was a leader from the get go but in this story his old pain and personal fears come back to haunt him. He's fighting not only the bad guys but himself. He is a complicated personality and I liked how the author lets a reader in on his thoughts when the story is told from his point of view. Then again, I appreciated getting the other side of the coin from Emily as well. Ms. Marchat plotted out their growth individually and as a couple well and it kept my attention. Interestingly enough, the bad guys get a bit of their point of view told in this story which surprised me. It was an interesting touch and made the stakes that much higher. I agreed with Emily, that even someone who is really bad has some good qualities, sometimes they're even hard to resist. What an astonishing dilemma. Other secondary characters filled out the story with well balanced personalities that benefited and showcased the hero and heroine. As for the external conflict, Ms. Marchat wrote an engrossing spy tale of suspense peppered with thwarted sensual tension that kept me flipping the pages. Across a Crowded Room is a gripping tale of intrigue and suspense with tons of sensual teases and excitement to keep readers flipping pages at a furious pace. It has a satisfying happily ever after between characters I really connected to. I had a great time reading this story because I never knew where it was going to go and how justice would ultimately be served. Romantic suspense readers are going to get wha t they are looking for when they dive into Ms. Marchat's well told tale. I'm so glad I read it." -- Xeranthemum, Whipped Cream Reviews
5 TEA CUPS: "Across the Crowded Room is a suspenseful thriller that will keep you at the edge of your seat and not wanting to let go until you are done with the story. Between the seduction that Emily is scheming with trying to get Jason interested in her, as a woman and not as a sister, then you have her seducing a notorious international arms dealer. There is so much sexual tension just pouring from Emily and Jason but neither of them state their true feeling but then Jason sees how Emily and Mosel hit it off and he hits the roof with jealousy. Jason had a traumatic childhood when they lived with their foster parent's. After one crazy, painful night an angel came to his rescue and the past was never talked about again. He followed his adoptive dad's career and become a very prominent anti-terrorist agent that an agenda of his own when his adoptive dad was killed. After three years being away from the person he had feelings for and his family he set a mis sion that included, Emily. Jason never thought anything about the mission and what he had requested from her in order to find her father's killer. From the moment Jason saw his sweet little angel walk in with Mosel, he was a goner. The one thing that came to mind at that moment was eat your heart out you piece of crap. After what he did to Emily, walk out on her not only after one passionate encounter but to walk out on her after her father died that was what he deserved. Emily did wonders on him after that and she played right into the game of seduction. After that Jason could not watch anymore the seduction of Emily with Mosel but it was his idea. I loved Across the Crowded Room, even though it had me in tears in some parts because of how Jason treated Emily. This book will keep you interested until the very end. I love that this book is a series because I am very interested in a couple of characters that I would like to see what becomes of them. I highly recommend th is book to anyone it is one that I would read once again." -- Monica, Happily Ever After Reviews
I write under two not so very different names. My romantic suspense novels are under Elizabeth Marchat and my erotica is under the name Eliza March. I've been writing professionally for over seven years and love working at making every story better than the last. My first novel was published in 2009 by Siren Publishing, and that same year I also had a release with The Wild Rose Press. Drum roll please...a total of nine books or novellas are presently available under my pseudonyms with either of those publishers.
One of my greatest pleasures is working with other authors. I belong to several professional writers' groups here in Florida. My husband of almost 45 years is my most enthusiastic supporter and my youngest daughter's cat thinks my computer is the perfect place to nap. I write daily (mainly to keep the cat off the keyboard) and enjoy reading and plotting with several of my author friends.
An Interview with Elizabeth Marchat
By Megan Garbe for The Romance Studio
MG: Elizabeth, thank you for talking with us at TRS. Across a Crowded Room is
an intense, suspenseful romance. Where did you get the idea for this story?
EM: I was taking a creative writing course and we were supposed to write a scene. I thought of the ballroom scene in this and as the characters developed so did their story.
MG: What do you like best about Emily and why will readers relate to her?
EM: Emily was a very weak character when I first wrote her, but to be fair,
she was young. What I like best about her is her growth arc. Not just as a
person but as a woman. She endures so much loss as a young woman but never
gives up on her friends and family.
MG: What do you like best about Jason and why will readers love him?
EM: LOL He's annoyingly selfless. He's a born hero -- to a fault. I
especially like the way he finally finds out he doesn't have to save
everyone; sometimes people can take care of themselves and him.
MG: What sort of research did you do for this work?
EM: The CIA has a wonderful website for international searches. I lived
abroad and have visited most of the places I wrote about in this story, so
the description is pretty accurate.
MG: What else do you have in store for lucky readers?
EM: I'm working on the follow up stories to Across a Crowded Room. I'd like to say more but everything I can think of is a SPOILER. I also write erotic romance as Eliza March and freelance edit.
MG: What draws today's readers to the romance genre in your opinion?
EM: I believe it's the same thing that drew me. I love a story I know will
end with a happily ever after. The characters work their way through
conflicts, if not exactly like ones we've experienced ourselves, at least
through the emotions of those kinds of conflicts, and they overcome them.
MG: What's a day in the life of Elizabeth Marchat like?
EM: I get up and make coffee, ride my stationary bike and think about
whatever story I'm writing, and then check emails, etc. before I head
upstairs to work. I am often distracted by family, friends, animals, and
phone calls as well as the need to social network and promote. Before I go
to sleep, I take a few minutes to read. Sometimes if it's a really good
book, those few minutes drag out to hours.
MG: What are you reading at the moment?
EM: Honestly, I'm reading a couple of books I'm editing for a few friends.
They're quite good and I got caught up in the stories -- which is a good
thing. Now I have to go back and actually do the work. LOL
MG: What is one of your all time favorite books?
EM:All the Queen's Men by Linda Howard. If I recall one book that
influenced my writing I'd say that was the one. But I'm a huge fan of all
books by Kresley Cole, Karen Marie Moning, and Nora Roberts.