Sara Downing – I Let You Fall
Sara lives in Worcestershire with her husband, three almost grown-up children, a Labrador and a cat. Before she had children, she was a Chartered Accountant, but always knew her dream career lay elsewhere. She started writing in 2009 and hasn’t since yearned to return to the world of accountancy. Sara writes across several genres, including romance. More recently she has become fascinated with the supernatural, and her latest novel, I Let You Fall, combines these two genres.
She commented, ‘I am absolutely over the moon to be shortlisted! I shrieked with delight when I first saw the email, and had to pinch myself that this was real! It’s such an honour to be chosen, as I know that the standard is so high. Thank you so much to the reader-judges who loved my book.’
I LET YOU FALL (Publisher: Quilla Books (TCK Publishing)
A woman in a coma looks on as her body lies inert and useless. Then she meets a man who teaches her that being out-of-body means to live and to love, and that perhaps the half-life she is caught in is more romantic than her real life ever was.
Molly James – Skip to the End
Newton Abbot author, Molly James, has been shortlisted in the Fantasy Romantic Novel Award category with her novel, Skip to the End, for the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s (RNA) annual Romantic Novel Awards for 2023. The awards celebrate excellence in romantic fiction in all its forms.
A former pop and travel magazine journalist, Molly is the author of 12 escapist novels whisking readers to dream destinations from Costa Rica to Capri. Excited to take her writing in a new direction, Molly now brings a twist of magical realism to her happy-heart romcoms. She lives in Devon and relishes searching out new nooks for her laptop and latte, whether it’s a booth at a historic pub, a tree-shaded bench at Dartington Hall or the library at Agatha Christie’s honeymoon hotel in Torquay. She is always happy to look up from the keyboard to greet a passing pup and is very much looking forward to meeting her next dog soulmate.
She commented, ‘First I blinked in disbelief then I whooped with delight at being shortlisted for the RNA’s Fantasy Romantic Novel Award! Skip To The End took years of wrangling but the characters really kept me going and I can almost see them pogoing in a group hug in response to this exciting news! Even heroine Amy with her powers of premonition didn’t see this accolade coming! Such a heart-soaring honour! There’s always such a special, buzzy atmosphere at the awards ceremony for the Romantic Novelists’ Association – all these devoted authors, publishers and literary agents gathering together to celebrate their deep love of romantic storytelling! It’s a privilege just to be in the same room with all that talent so to be shortlisted for an award is beyond thrilling! I attended in 2020 and was lucky enough to dance cheek-to-cheek with nominee Anton Du Beke but winning the Fantasy Romantic Novel award would put me in even more of a spin!’
SKIP TO THE END (Publisher: Quercus)
Amy Daniels has a gift – the first time she kisses a man she gets a clear vision of how their relationship will end. But when wedding champagne blurs encounters with three potential suitors she must play detective to figure out which one is her longed-for happy ending!
Sarah Lotz – Impossible
Shropshire author, Sarah Lotz, has been shortlisted in the Fantasy Romantic Novel Award category with her novel, Impossible, for the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s annual Romantic Novel Awards for 2023. The awards celebrate excellence in romantic fiction in all its forms.
Sarah is a screenwriter and award-winning novelist whose previous work has been translated into over twenty languages. She lives on the Welsh borders with her family and far too many rescue dogs. She commented, ‘It’s a huge honour and privilege – I still can’t quite believe it!’
IMPOSSIBLE (Publisher: HarperCollins)
A speculative romcom with an out-of-this-world twist … The paths of Nick, a grumpy failed novelist, and Bee, a cheerful workaholic designer, cross over a misdirected email. Their connection is instant, electric, and will end up changing both of their lives — in multiple universes.
Everina Maxwell – Ocean’s Echo
DeFiore & Company author, Everina Maxwell, has been shortlisted in the Fantasy Romantic Novel Award category with her novel, Ocean’s Echo, for the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s annual Romantic Novel Awards for 2023. The awards celebrate excellence in romantic fiction in all its forms.
Everina is the author of queer romantic space operas Ocean’s Echo and Winter’s Orbit. She was lucky enough to grow up near a library that stocked Lois McMaster Bujold, Anne McCaffrey and Terry Pratchett, so spent all her spare time devouring science fiction and doorstopper fantasy, with her family’s Georgette Heyer collection always a reliable friend when the library books ran out. She lives and works in Yorkshire.
She commented, ‘I am delighted to be shortlisted for the RNA award – as a UK queer author, it means a lot to see queer SFF nominated.’
OCEAN’S ECHO (Publisher: Orbit UK)
A queer chaos/order pairing in a space opera setting. A disaster socialite on a technologically advanced planet fails to hide his mindreading powers and is conscripted into the military, where he’s supposed to mind-bond with someone who can control him. But the lieutenant assigned to him is just as unwilling, so they fake it.