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Tag Archives: Love Sabre

Nardia Sheriff, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. I’m Kayelle Allen, author and owner of this blog. Happy to have you here! Please tell us about your book and Australia, where the story is set.

Five places you should NEVER visit in Australia

Nardia Sheriff
Imagine packing up your life, selling all of your worldly possessions and leaving reality behind to travel. Well, I did it for real.
Having recently returned home from an epic 14-month trip around Australia, you could say perhaps I’m somewhat qualified to give advice about the best places to visit in Australia.
I could give you a list of hundreds of awesome places we discovered, but to keep it interesting, I’m going tell you about the top 5 places in Australia that you should NEVER visit, should you ever happen to find yourself in the land down under.
Here we go…

You should never visit…a pub or bar without being willing to shout a round.

Now Australia has a pretty hearty reputation for being laid back, friendly and happy to partake in an alcoholic beverage or two (or ten), so it really shouldn’t come as any surprise to find out that you should NEVER go to a pub or a bar without being willing to shout (pay for) a round of drinks for your mates. It’s how it’s done.

You should never visit… A BBQ (or any gathering for that matter) without bringing your sense of humour.

As a culture, we’re pretty hilarious…or so our reputation holds. Aussies enjoy a dry sense of humour, peppered with a healthy dose of self-deprecation. There’s also a fair bit of swearing, and a love of ‘taking the piss’ out of our guests…on purpose. So, with that in mind, you should NEVER go to a BBQ without a broad set of shoulders and the ability to laugh at yourself. It’s all in good fun.

You should never visit…the tourist traps and think you’ve seen the real Australia.
Now don’t get me wrong, the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House are striking. Uluru is actually a profound experience, and Cairns truly is a lush and tropical paradise, but I can assure you that Australia is sooooo much more. Many people don’t realise that Australia is the same size as the USA.

So NEVER assume that all the tried and true tourist traps is all there is to Australia. If you want to see the real beauty of Australia, then here are pictures of my top 5.

Linger a little longer, spend time exploring some of the more remote and lesser-known places. I promise you, you won’t regret it.

You should never visit…Starbucks

Okay, this one is sure to fire people up, and I mean no offence, as I’m sure there are many fans, but Starbucks (from an Aussie perspective), isn’t coffee. It may be the closest thing the USA has to real coffee, but Australia has literally thousands of better options. Whether you’re in Victoria or metro New South Wales, even Queensland and more rarely South Australia, you will find awesome coffee. You should NEVER spend all your hard-earned travel money on coffee from Starbucks when the little café around the corner will deliver a much better brew.

You should never visit…a beach, waterhole or lake without taking a pair of bathers.

We have some of the most stunning waterways in the world. All right, I’ll concede that some of them are crocodile infested, and for six months of the year parts are filled with venomous jellyfish, but hey, we do put up signs to give you a heads up. Which means you should NEVER pass up the opportunity for a swim (when it’s safe, of course), and ALWAYS pack your bathers.

Now you are prepared for your trip to Australia.

Love Sabre Anthology

Genre Contemporary Anthology
Book heat level (based on movie ratings): R

Posing as a pole dancer to find her sister, Kelsey finds herself drawn to one of the club’s security henchmen, Tank, and learns he can help her, if only she learns to trust him.

Where to buy Love Sabre

Publisher Boroughs Publishing Group

Nardia Sheriff Social Media

Nardia Sheriff writes rural romantic suspense and contemporary fiction, and enjoys creating stories featuring reversed gender roles. Her story in the upcoming Love Sabre anthology is set in Sydney’s underworld.
Love Sabre website


Megan Jane Colville shares Aussie Animals #Koala @meganjanewrites #RLFblog #Romance #Anthology Megan Jane Colville, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. I’m Kayelle Allen, author and owner of this blog. Happy to have you here! Please share your insight about animals in Australia.

Native Animals That Won’t Kill You Down Under

Megan Jane Colville
Australia has a vast variety of native animals, and yes, it’s true we have many that can kill you, but encounters with them aren’t common. Don’t be put off by the venomous and scary variety; Australia has some of the most unique and gorgeous native wildlife that won’t kill you. Here are eight of my favourites:
Koalas are the quintessential Australian symbol. Contrary to many people’s belief koalas are not bears but marsupials. They eat eucalyptus leaves exclusively and like to spend their time living in these trees. With their big fluffy ears and their 18-22 hour a day sleeping habit, they are the ultimate in cuddly. Don’t let their fur fool you though; their claws are definitely not to be messed with and they should never be approached in the wild. That being said, koalas aren’t the easiest to spot in the wild and are often only noticeable as grey bumps against the pale bark of their gum tree homes.
Kangaroos and wallabies
Kangaroos and wallabies give koalas a run for their money as the most recognisable native Australian animal. Also marsupials, they fall into the macropod family. Kangaroos are identifiable by their large size, long tails and red or grey colour, whereas, wallabies are smaller in size and tend to have darker fur.
While kangaroos can be seen lazing in any available shade in the open plains of outback Australia, it’s the wallaby that is more commonly seen closer to towns and often in the backyards of everyday Aussies.
The galah – our romantics – is a distinctive type of Australian cockatoo (or parrot) identifiable by their rose-pink coloured chest, lighter head, grey wings and markings. Female galahs can be distinguished from their male counterparts by their lighter coloured eyes. Galahs are known to bond for life, raise their young together and only re-partner upon the death of their mate. Galahs congregate in flocks and are a frequent seen throughout Australia. They make an impressive sight foraging in grass and roosting on branches. They aren’t the most intelligent birds, and they make a highly raucous noise, especially when flying overhead.
Echidna and platypus
The echidna and platypus are monotremes, the only two mammals in the world that lay their own eggs rather than giving birth to live young. Unique, they are rarely sighted in the wild and it is a privilege if you see them in their natural habitat. Similar to a hedgehog, the echidna is covered in spines with stout little legs and an elongated snout they use to eat ants. While their spines make them look quite formidable they are shy animals and are known to curl into a tight ball when threatened.
The platypus is a land and water based animal with a streamlined body, a bill like a duck and tail like a beaver. Platypus have unique electro-receptors in their bills they use to detect the muscular contractions of their prey. Female platypus create long burrows to lay their eggs and then curl their body around the eggs to keep them warm until they hatch. For some extraordinary video footage of a platypus in the wild check out this video:
Often described as the happiest animal in the world, the quokka is a smaller relative of the kangaroo in the macropod family. Around the size of a domestic cat, the quokka is primarily found on small islands off the coast of western Australia. Quokkas live in dense vegetation, forage for plants and doze during the day. They have little fear of humans and a quick Internet search will show some pretty awesome selfies taken with these happy little creatures.
Wombats are marsupials that can grow upwards of 40 inches long with short stubby legs. They have incredible strength and large claws they use to create intricate burrow systems. They are unique to other marsupials by their backward facing pouch, which prevents dirt filling their pouch while burrowing. They are slow moving animals and can occasionally be seen waddling across plains.

Love Sabre

Genre Contemporary Anthology

Book heat level (based on movie ratings): Various, my story – R

Phoenix had a hellish childhood. As a teenager, she was placed in a foster home that seemed like heaven, until the worst thing that could happen – did. Her biggest regret when she fled in the night, leaving behind the only man she’d ever loved, her Liam.

Where to buy Love Sabre

Publisher Boroughs Publishing Group
Barnes and Noble

Megan Jane Colville Social Media

Megan Jane Colville loves stories. And words. And how such simple words can create such wondrous stories. Books have always held the dearest place in Megan’s heart, and her earliest memories are those from myth, legend and fairytale. However, above all, Megan loves love and has the privilege of witnessing the miracle of love firsthand as a midwife.
After many years working in hospitals Megan allowed her passion for the written word and her dream of combining her two loves to guide her to complete a Master of Arts degree in writing, editing and publishing with an emphasis on romance fiction. Since completing her degree, she has been dividing her days (and nights) between delivering babies and crafting stories.
Personal website
Love Sabre website

Image credits Echidna – Jacob Dyer (, Quokka – Natilie Su (

Rachael Howlett Queen of the Dessert @that_rachael #RLFblog #Contemporary #Romance #AnthologyRachael Howlett, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. I’m Kayelle Allen, author and owner of this blog. Happy to have you here! Please share your goodies with our readers.

Sweet Degustation

By Rachael Howlett
I’m no Queen of the Desert, but with my royal sweet tooth, I’m a Queen of the Dessert.
The term ‘dessert’ applies to many sweet foods such as biscuit, cake, ice cream, pie, and pudding; the common factor being they’re traditionally served at the end of a meal. But, who said a dessert can’t be first, second or all your meal? No one!
I’ve had a life-long love affair with these five iconic Australian desserts:
First course
Ask an Australian to name their favourite biscuit and 99.8% of the time it’s the Tim Tam. This delicious chocolate-coated biscuit is such a culinary icon that it’s hard to believe Tim Tams only arrived on Australian shelves in 1964. And what’s not to love about a layer of smooth cream sandwiched between two biscuits? Don’t believe me? Look how fast Hugh Jackman convinced Oprah.
In that clip, Nicole Kidman mentions the Tim Tam Slam. This is one of the BEST things about eating these biscuits.
Bite off opposite corners of the Tim Tam and submerge one end in a hot drink (usually coffee or tea).
Think of the chocolate biscuit as a straw and use it to suck up the liquid.
With the interior biscuit softened and the outer coating melting, the trick to becoming a Slam Master is eating the Tim Tam before it explodes into your cup.
Second courseRachael Howlett Queen of the Dessert @that_rachael #RLFblog #Contemporary #Romance #Anthology
Like a Berliner but only better, the Hot Jam Doughnut is a delicious deep, fried crispy doughnut—fluffy inside with oozing thick strawberry jam. Dusted with sugar and usually served in a white paper bag, this doughnut should be eaten hot and fresh, and straight from a hot jam doughnut van.
One of the most famous places in Melbourne to eat a doughnut is at the Queen Victoria Market, where the American Doughnut Kitchen has been operating since the 1950s. Although, the popularity of this hot jammy dessert means you can find a van at most outdoors events. Look for the queues of people standing around with a bag of steaming doughnuts warming their hands.
Top tip—always check your face after you finish. It’s likely you’ll need to wipe sugar off the tip of nose after diving face-first into the bag.
Third course
No one really knows exactly how the Lamington came about other than its link to Lord Lamington, a Governor of Queensland in the late 19th century. However, its place in the hearts and mouths of Australians is firmly ingrained through ‘Lamington drives’—where schools and charity groups fundraise by selling lamingtons by the half dozen.
Traditionally, a Lamington consists of sponge cake squares dipped in chocolate and rolled in desiccated coconut (see this classic recipe from Margaret Fulton in Vogue Australia). Other variations include raspberry jam or cream spread in the middle.
Lamingtons are so well loved that we even have a day dedicated to celebrating cake. National Lamington Day is 21 July.
Fourth course
In Australia, we like to scream for a Golden Gaytime ice cream. Think toffee and vanilla flavoured ice cream, dipped in chocolate and then coated in crushed biscuits. Modern versions include a Sanga (or ‘sandwich’), Pina Colada and the Unicorn.
But maybe you’d like a Golden Gaytime doughnut, fried bao or even a burger? Restaurants and cafes have developed their own twist on the classic.
I’ve taken one for the team trying the house-made Gaytime at the Ripponlea Food and Wine Store.
Whichever way you eat it, follow Street’s slogan and eat one with a friend because It’s hard to have a Gaytime on your own.
Rachael Howlett Queen of the Dessert @that_rachael #RLFblog #Contemporary #Romance #AnthologyFifth course
Named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova who toured in the late 1920s, this quintessential Australian dessert isn’t without its controversy—chiefly that our neighbours across the sea (New Zealand) also claim to have invented this dish.
But in the spirit of sharing (as we have with the success of Crowded House, Jane Campion and Russell Crowe), the Pavlova is an Australasian dessert made from a base layer of meringue, followed by generous amounts of cream, and topped with seasonal fruit (mostly a mix of berries, passionfruit and kiwi fruit).
Summer parties never seem to start until someone brings out a Pav.


Love Sabre Anthology

Genre Contemporary Anthology
Book heat level (based on movie ratings): Various (this story – G)
The Fates have found a new way to get people together, and seek to nudge Hayley Montgomery into the path of her dreamy new work colleague, Magnus Jones. Flummoxed by their encounter, Haley must find it in herself to reach for what she wants and fulfill her destiny.

Where to buy Love Sabre

Publisher Boroughs Publishing Group

Rachael Howlett Social Media

Rachael Howlett writes contemporary women’s fiction with a healthy dose of humour, love and adventure. Passionate about books, travel and pop culture, Rachael has had roles as an editor, arts reviewer, and Scottish castle underling. Currently she works in The Thick Of It of Utopia while she writes her first romantic comedy novel. She lives in Melbourne because she loves coffee, comedy and winter.
Facebook https://


Tanya Kean, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. I’m Kayelle Allen, author and owner of this blog. Happy to have you here! I’ll turn the blog over to you for the day.

Romance, Aussie Style, by Tanya Kean

When you think of romance do you think of hunky men with ripped abs, sexy smiles and come-to-bed eyes? I know I do. And when I think of Aussie heartthrobs, Chris Hemsworth, Hugh Jackman, Heath Ledger, and Sam Worthington immediately come to mind. The quintessential Aussie romantic hero. The bronzed, blue-eyed, athletic, surfer boy next door.

Keeping it Real

There’s a fine line between cheesy and romantic. Aussie guys get this and are the masters of understated romantic gestures, bordering on non-existent. You would never see an Aussie guy jumping on a couch declaring his undying love for you. If he did, you would question his sanity and run a mile in the other direction.
Australian men don’t give a damn about what they’re supposed to do when it comes to showing their love. They’re more than happy to surprise you with flowers, but not on Valentine’s Day (too cliché), and will murmur sweet heartfelt words of love in your ear (during the game’s half time break). Sure, Aussie blokes might lack some airs and graces, but at least women always know where they stand.
Australian men are friendly and open, no matter whose company they’re in. They will strike up a conversation with just about anyone, whether it’s a stranger on the street or a major celebrity. They have a low tolerance for pomposity.
If a woman is fun loving, chilled and genuine that’s pretty much all that matters. Aussie guys are adventurous by nature. They also tend to have a relaxed sense of humor, which makes them exciting, as well as fun to be around. They love to laugh and don’t tend to take life’s hardships too seriously; they simply enjoy life.

So, does the stereotype really exist?

Of course it does. Those blue eyed, buff, hotties are everywhere. Beaches, offices, pubs and bars. Australian women might love a French accent, or an Italian fawning over them, but when it comes to settling down with the man of your dreams give me an honest, down-to-earth man every time. Those men won’t be more into themselves than you, they will treat you like the princess you deserve to be, and, they are super-hot as well.
How romantic, and I have the evidence to prove it. This image is of my wedding day December 1995. Yes, that is my very own crazy, fun-loving Aussie husband dressed as a panda!

Love Sabre

Genre Contemporary Anthology
Book heat level (based on movie ratings): My story – PG
When Amy runs into the office shy-guy at a Renaissance Faire, she is amazed to find a sexy hunk beneath his tunic. And while she has no interest in falling in love, she can’t help but adore the man who really is a knight in shining armour.

Where to buy Love Sabre

Publisher Boroughs Publishing Group

Tanya Kean Social Media

Tanya Kean writes historical romance filled with smart, passionate, unconventional heroines who are the feminists of their time. Writing about ordinary woman doing extraordinary things, she shines the spotlight on the forgotten women of history. She has self-published several short stories and novellas, and is featured in various anthologies. Tanya is currently completing her Regency trilogy, and has commenced work on her multi-layered romance set in Australia during the swinging sixties, a time of sexual revolution that changed women forever.
She lives in Brisbane with her husband, two wild teenage daughters and an ever-changing assortment of animals. A restless spirit, she is constantly planning her next travel destination and if she wasn’t a writer, she would spend her days travelling the world as a tour guide.
Although her stories are aimed at empowering women, she is a romantic at heart so there is always a happily ever after for her characters.

Image credits: couple wedding photo by the author


Let’s welcome Melanie Coles to Romance Lives Forever. I’m Kayelle Allen, author and owner of this blog. Take it away, Melanie.

Know Your Lingo or How to Speak Aussie by Melanie Coles
When planning a trip to any foreign country, it’s important to have a basic grasp of the local dialect, even if the primary language is English. So, for those of you planning a trip Down Under (and let’s face it, after seeing how we breed ’em down here – ahem, Chris Hemsworth – why wouldn’t you?) I’ve put together this guide comparing some US terms to their Aussie counterparts, to ensure you can mix it with the locals.
Trunk – Boot
Your suitcases always go in the ‘boot’, unless you are travelling via zoo elephant, which is the only place you’ll find a trunk in Oz.
Pick-up truck – Ute
Outback boys will almost always get around town in a ‘Ute’, (short for Utility). Trucks are reserved for furniture removers, long-haul transportation or kids’ sandboxes.
Grill – Barbie
When your Aussie mate invites you around for a barbie, rest assured it’s nothing kinky or weird (no plastic blonde dolls in sight!). Instead, grab your six-pack of beer and head on over to enjoy an outdoor feast, cooked on the barbeque.
Drugstore – Pharmacy or Chemist
Asking an Aussie where the drugstore is will get you some very odd looks, and telling someone you need to buy drugs might land you in jail, especially if they are an undercover cop. Unless you’re a doctor, ‘drugs’ in Australia refers to illicit ones like cocaine or ice. So, if you need some aspirin for that nagging headache, ask someone to direct you to the nearest pharmacy or chemist. It’s much less risky.
Bathing suit – togs/budgie smugglers
When you hit the beach at Byron Bay or Bondi, be sure to wear your togs or budgie smugglers. If you’re swimming in a suit, you’ve probably had one-too-many beers at your mate’s wedding.
Thong – G-string
In Australia, a ‘thong’ refers to one half of a pair of flip-flops. Ladies, for your own comfort, be sure you don’t confuse the two.
Fanny – backside/butt/arse (ass)
Guys – referring to a woman’s fanny will earn you two tight slaps, as we use ‘fanny’ to describe her…ummm, front bottom. You’ve been warned.
Root – Barrack
Don’t ever, EVER ask an Aussie who they root for. It’s a slang word for having sex. Here, we barrack for our sports teams.
For more Aussie translations, you can check out Hollywood star Margot Robbie’s helpful YouTube tutorial here:

Love Sabre Anthology

Genre Contemporary Anthology
Book heat level (based on movie ratings): R (this story – G)
Leia Morgan helped Dan Oslo make his tech company a success only to be cheated out of her share. Years later, he’s one of the judges at an important tech competition, where Leia intends to redeem her reputation, and Dan intends to redeem himself.

Where to buy Love Sabre

Publisher Boroughs Publishing Group

Melanie Coles Social Media

Melanie has always loved stories. While most kids at school spent their lunchtimes climbing tyre walls or playing kiss-chasey, she could always be found in the library with either her nose in a book, a pen in her hand or her head in the clouds. She wrote countless stories throughout her school life, only to lose her mojo sometime after high school. Thankfully she rediscovered it in the dead of night some twenty years later. Now she juggles writing with family life and her job as an Executive Assistant. A hopeless romantic, she is addicted to chocolate and happy-ever-afters, cowboy stories, and *may* have an obsession with Jane Austen novels.
Melanie lives in the foothills of the Dandenong Ranges in Melbourne, Australia with her musician husband, two sports-crazed sons, two guinea pigs, and a ginger cat named Jack.

Images Credit: Flip-flops by the author. Truck – Jeremy (Sydney, Australia, Ford Falcon XG GL Ute) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons.

Let’s welcome Kristine Charles to Romance Lives Forever. I’m Kayelle Allen, author and owner of this blog. Take it away, Kristine.

The Truth About Aussies

By Kristine Charles

We’re known for being pretty sporty here Down Under, and it’s fair to say we punch above our weight in many sports on the international stage. It’s been a hardship but, while procrastinating on all the other things that I should be writing by trawling the interwebs for photos of hot sports peeps, I’ve given some thought as to why:

Aussies do it without padding

Unlike the players in American football… Aussie footballers don’t wear the equivalent of their body weight in padding.

In fact – in three of our four main Aussie football codes, the blokes (and girls – check out don’t wear pads at all and deliberately barrel into each other at speed in order to stop each other from scoring. They all play in shorts and Australian Rules players generally wear jumpers without sleeves (which is excellent for those who love arm-candy… #justsaying).

Aussies do it faster

Aussies also do it faster and, while you may think that’s a bad thing, trust me, in this case it isn’t.

Games of rugby league and rugby union and Aussie rules run for 80 minutes, while soccer runs for 90 minutes (plus stoppage time). Then it’s game over. Done. I love the NFL but seriously, three to four hours to play sixty minutes of actual game… I’d like my day back please.

Aussies don’t take themselves too seriously

We Aussies do like to have a good laugh: see exhibit A – recent photo of Kurtley Beale with Prince William taken after a game while Kurtley was, of course, wearing only his ‘budgie smugglers.’ See also exhibit B – Nick Cummins a.k.a The Honey Badger. His interviews go off like a tree full of galahs (Check out his Twitter, and you can find an article on interpretation here).

Aussie men make fluorescent pink look good

Then there’s Mat Ryan – who is the goalie for the Socceroos (Aussie soccer team). His gear is usually fluorescent pink, occasionally royal purple, and, believe me, he makes those colours look GOOD. He’s tall, has big hands (for saving goals, of course), and he loves his mum. He also has one of the best sets of ‘v’ muscles I’ve ever seen. Don’t believe me? Check the photo on this article. Or check out @matyryan on Instagram (you may want to get a drink first, maybe go to the loo – you might be there a while.)

Retired now, Mick Ennis played for my Cronulla Sharks and helped win us a (veeery long-time coming) premiership in 2016. He’s also a hot cheeky jackass (as a player he was one of those guys everyone loved to hate). Check out these pics on Tumblr.

So, it’s clear we Aussies breed our sportsmen gorgeous, tough, fast and funny. Which is why they’re often inspiration for romance heroes, and why one in particular – Michael Ennis – was the inspiration for Michael in my short story (A Mutual Thing) in the Love Sabre Anthology out now.

Love Sabre Anthology

Genre Contemporary

Book heat level (based on movie ratings): R

Michael and Caroline had the hots for each other in high school, but they never acted on their feelings. Twenty years later they get the chance, and this time nothing is holding them back.

Where to buy Love Sabre

Publisher Boroughs Publishing Group


Kristine Charles Social Media

Winner of the Inaugural Romance Writers of Australia Spicy Bites sexy short story competition, Kristine loves telling sexy tales, exploring relationships between complex women and the strong men who love them, then working out how much pain to inflict before giving her characters their HEA (or, at least, their HFN). She’s also a non-practicing lawyer who now works in human resources, and writes and reads to escape into other worlds where coffee (and red wine) is abundant, designer shoes and handbags are cheap, chocolate has no calories and men always put the toilet seat down.
Website http://

Image credits
Kurtley Beale with Prince William, the Daily Mail
Footballers courtesy of Pixabay.


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