Karen Stivali Guest Post: Friends to Lovers

A big thanks to Karen Stivali for stopping by today to talk about her latest book Moments of Fate.

Friends-to-lovers is my favorite trope because, to me, it never gets old. Part of my fondness for this type of story stems from the fact that this is the path every significant relationship in my life has taken. I can count on one hand the number of “first dates” I’ve had with people I wasn’t friends with first and I can tell you that not one of those led to anything serious. It’s the people I shared a deep bond of friendship with first who went on to become more-than-friends. While that’s not a guarantee that things will work out—there are no guarantees in any real life relationship, which is why I love the guaranteed HEA of romance novels so much—it does guarantee a relationship based on mutual caring and all the levels of relating and familiarity that are a natural part of any strong friendship.

The reason I never tire of writing stories about couples who take this path to love is that the friendship adds another dimension to the relationship. In some cases it’s two people who’ve been friends for a really long time and finally realize their feelings go deeper than that. In others the attraction or longing has been there from the moment you met, but instead of acting on it right away the focus is on the friendly bonding so that by the time romance enters the picture it’s like a long-awaited prize. And, of course, there are all the variations in between where one person realizes way before the other, or both deny the attraction out of fear of rejection or of losing the friendship if things head south.

I love the added depth and complication, the intensity of the emotions, and the twisty journey as the two people make their way to discovering that there’s more to their relationship.

In MOMENT OF FATE Bryan and Oliver become friends first, in a most unusual way, because the way they meet causes both of them to reveal their darkest secrets to one another, even though it’s the last thing either of them intended to do. That shared intimate knowledge of one another created an instant bond between them, and allowed them to embark on a friendship that’s unlike either of them has ever known. Out of that bond their feelings for one another grow as they become closer and realize the things they’ve both been missing in their lives.

Watching the individual characters grow as individuals as a result of their relationship is one of my favorite things about writing romance because I think that’s such an important thing that people you’re close with bring into your life. Bryan and Oliver’s friendship, attraction and eventual love teaches them about themselves as much as it teaches them about each other and they’re both stronger as a result of the experience. To me, that’s the beauty of a good relationship. It’s not that the other person completes you—we’re all complete and whole on our own—but the other person makes you a stronger, better version of you. What could be more beautiful than that?

Title: Moment Of Fate (Moments In Time #5)
Author: Karen Stivali
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: February 24th 2017
Genre(s): Contemporary
Page Count: 244 pages
Reviewed by: Lili, Natosha and Renee
Rating: 5+ stars out of 5

Bryan Dane’s been living the dream—photography student by day, up-and-coming rocker by night. His summer goals are to earn his last few credits, graduate from NYU, spend as much time in the recording studio as possible, and survive the next few months without sex so he can complete his yearlong goal of self-imposed celibacy. Everything is on track, until he meets Oliver Newcastle.

For years Oliver planned a marriage of convenience with his high school BFF, but now that she’s fallen in love for real, with someone else, it’s no longer convenient. So Oliver came out to his family, quit his job, and left small-town New England for NYC, an intensive summer study program, and a chance to find his own happiness.

From the moment they meet the sexual tension between Bryan and Oliver sizzles. But Bryan wants no part of a relationship, and Oliver wants to sew his wild oats—he just isn’t sure how. Oliver seeks Bryan’s help navigating the NYC gay scene, which throws them together in increasingly more sexual situations until they can no longer deny they’re hot for each other. Bryan is desperate to keep things simple, but fate might have other plans.

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Moments in Time Series

About the Author

Karen Stivali is a prolific writer, compulsive baker and chocoholic with a penchant for books, movies, and fictional British men. She’s also the multiple award-winning author of contemporary and erotic romances. She writes novels about love…like real life, only hotter.

Karen’s lifelong fascination with people has led her to careers ranging from hand-drawn animator, to party planner, to marriage and family counselor, but writing has always been her passion. Karen enjoys nothing more than following her characters on their journey toward love. Whether the couples are m/f or m/m, it’s guaranteed that Karen’s novels are filled with food, friendship, love, and smoking hot sex—all the best things in life.

When Karen isn’t writing (and often when she is), she can be found on Twitter attempting witty banter and detailing the antics of her fruit-loving cat, BadKitteh. She loves to hear from readers (and other writers), so don’t hesitate to contact/follow/like her at:

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