Today we have the blog tour stop for Blackmailing the Bad Girl by Nina Croft! Check it out and grab your copy today!
About Blackmailing the Bad Girl:Cynical CEO, Nik Masterton, believes he’s finally met a woman who isn’t interested in his money…until she vanishes with a hefty amount of it. He’s been searching for her ever since and has finally found her doing a stint in Holloway prison for stealing...from someone else. Clearly, he’s just one of many. Now she’s coming out, and it’s time for a little payback. After two years in prison, Summer Delaney is determined she’s never going back. While she had good reasons for doing what she did, it’s time to move on to a new life and earn an honest living. Unfortunately, there’s a glitch in her plan, and he’s waiting at the gate as she comes out. Nik isn’t above using blackmail to make Summer work for him until he decides just how he’ll get his revenge. But this time they’re both determined to keep their distance. Right until the inconvenient attraction explodes between them...
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Nature or Nurture
My Cutting Loose series follows the stories of three very different women, Regan, Summer, and Darcy, who had one thing in common; they all went to prison. They shared a cell together, became friends, relied on one another, and when they were released, they all made a pact that they were never going back to prison. They would look out for each other. Help each other stay on the straight and narrow.
When I put the proposal for my Cutting Loose series to my editor at Entangled, she said she loved the idea but I had to make sure that my bad girl heroines would be sympathetic. That people would be rooting for them to get their happy ever after endings.
Which meant I had to give them backgrounds that would explain how they ended up in prison but still make people believe they were worth redemption. So were my bad girls really bad and undeserving of their happy endings? Or had they just been turned from the straight and narrow by circumstances beyond their control.
I got to thinking—did they have a choice? Do any of us? Or are we pre-destined from birth to be good or bad, or more likely somewhere in between?
I’ve always been fascinated by the idea of nature versus nurture. How much of what we are as adults is determined by our genetic makeup at the time of conception and how much is determined by external influences such as our environment and upbringing.
Are serial killers a catastrophe inevitable from the moment they are born? Or without some sort of external catalyst would that potential for evil remain dormant? We read about terrorists who have been radicalized, but were the seeds already there? Would the same process of radicalization fail on someone with a different genetic makeup?
Two people with the same upbringing can turn out very different. We can see the truth of that all around us—I have three sisters, we had the same upbringing, but we’re totally different.
Conversely, two people who are genetically identical, but raised separately, can show remarkable similarities. Many studies have been carried out on cases of identical twins who were separated at an early age. One of the most famous examples was that of Jim Lewis and Jim Springer, identical twins separated at only 4 weeks. When they finally met at the age of 39 they had a lot of similarities; both bit their nails, smoked the same cigarettes, drove the same type of car, and even holidayed on the same beach in Florida.
Which suggests to me that maybe nature is the stronger determiner.
This month, book 2 in my Cutting Loose series releases; Blackmailing the Bad Girl. Summer Delaney, despite being the bad girl of the title, is actually one of the nicest heroines I’ve written. She’s a total sweetie who did bad things for good reasons. By “nature,” she’s a good girl, but by “nurture,” she’s become a bad one.
Maybe the main difference is that those traits we’re born with in our genetic makeup are with us to stay (though may remain dormant). While those that evolve through circumstances, can be changed—if you want to change enough, and maybe if, like Summer, you have a handsome billionaire to provide an incentive.
What do you think? What determines a person’s character: nature or nurture?
About Nina Croft:Growing up in the cold, wet, north of England, Nina Croft spent a lot of time dreaming of faraway sunnier places and ponies. When she discovered both, along with a whole load of other things, could be found between the covers of a book, her life changed forever. Later, she headed south, picked up the perfect husband along the way, and together they volunteered to work in Africa. There they discovered a love of exotic places and a dislike of 9-5 work. Afterward they spent a number of years travelling (whenever possible) intermingled with working (whenever necessary.) Eventually they stumbled upon a remote area in the mountains of southern Spain and the small almond farm they now call home. Nina spends her days reading, writing and riding her mare, Gencianna, under the blue Spanish skies—sunshine and ponies. She reckons this is proof that dreams really can come true if you want them enough.
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