Now available as a box set

“Beach and Beyond” Box set Romantic Suspense

“Crumbs to Caviar” (Book one)
Shona and her husband take time to recover at their beachside holiday home after the accident that shattered their world. But what should have been a fresh start for the young couple begins a chain of events that will turn their lives upside down. Shona is forced to face the ghosts of her past with tragic consequences.

An ocean away, Blake Coleman lives the celebrity lifestyle. Numerous women pass through his life. But Blake has no interest in committing again. Caring for his disabled brother and his corporate empire his life is full, yet empty.

A twisted tale of a life shattered by betrayal and dangerous obsession, beachside holidays and a love that could change it all.

“The Cost of Caviar” (Book two)
Building a new life beside magnificent Teal Lake should have been easy. After all, Shona McGuire wasn’t asking for much. A return to the ordinary life, security for her son and a man to love. But when tragedy strikes, and a stranger seeking solitude arrives at the lake, everything is thrown into turmoil.

“The Cost of Caviar” continues the story of Shona McGuire and Blake Coleman started in “Crumbs to Caviar”.

This bundle contains both Book one and Book two of the “Beach and Beyond” series. “Crumbs to Caviar” and “The Cost of Caviar” are also available individually on Kindle.

The author of this book resides in New Zealand. If you are a reader from the United States, the spelling of some words may differ slightly from what is familiar to you. A glossary at the back of the book provides insight in to the New Zealand terms.

Good coffee and burnt muffins


New Zealand Tui, native to New Zealand. Seen here in one of its favourite places the Kowhai tree.

As the title suggests my latest attempt at being awarded the title of domestic goddess has failed, and it has failed spectacularly.  But as we washed down blackened berries with strong caffeine this page has been steered in to a logical format.    Welcome to my new look blog.

I would like to share a few of the images that have been included in previous posts.  I hope you enjoy these glimpses of New Zealand through the eyes of some of my talented friends.

If you have been following my blog you will know a friend has recently been diagnosed with bone cancer.  I am happy to say that he is in good spirits and an auction was held yesterday.  It has raised considerable funds towards his treatment.  Great to see so many generous people  donating and bidding.  Mike is a wonderful man, and for another three weeks we will continue to donate proceeds from The Quilt, Unravelled to his on-going treatment..

If you would like a chance of winning a free copy of The Quilt, Unravelled please click on this link.  The competition is running for a further 10 days and is open to readers from all eligible countries.

If you would like to download a copy of The Quilt, Unravelled or purchase it as a paperback please click on this link.  All proceeds will help Mike Shaffer battle bone cancer.

The Quilt, Unravelled


Auckland City, New Zealand.


Waiheke Island, North Island, New Zealand. Home of The Quilt, Unravelled.

Adrienne 555

The spectacular South Island, New Zealand. Photo Des Clegg.


Missed out on the last Giveaway?  Another copy of The Quilt, Unravelled is available.  Click on the link for a chance to win.  Open to all eligible countries

Tragedy brings them together.  The past drives them apart.  Their choices change the future.  An epic story of love against the odds.

For one month all proceeds from The Quilt, Unravelled (both Kindle and paperback) will help a wonderful man battle bone cancer.

The Quilt, Unravelled

The Quilt, Unravelled


A little advanced news.  Another Goodreads giveaway will start on the 30th of January.  Enter and have a chance of winning a copy of this novel.  Open to all eligible countries.

I would like to share with you the latest review of The Quilt, Unravelled.  5 stars and the description below is beautifully written!


A single thread is fragile, as is life. But as more threads are woven together, the fabric strengthens. Now those individual threads may represent major themes of the human condition–both good and bad: the fragility of health, betrayal of family, careers terminated, sociopathic cruelty — or, on the other hand, there’s the kindness of strangers, selfless loyalty, a purpose driven life, the damp muzzle of loving dog, natures splendor and the possibility of true love. All these threads come together in bold colors and powerful strands in Rochelle Carlton’s compelling novel “The Quilt: Unraveled” to render vividly life’s harsh realities in a story that is both personal and intimate. This multi-generation family saga is immense in scope (and intense); but the author finds balance by placing the majority of the action in New Zealand (such a refreshing change from typical book backdrops). By the end, I found I cared profoundly about the characters Ms. Carlton had created, and that is the essence of what a good story is all about. I’m now waiting on her next book!

Review by author Mark Fine The Zebra Affaire

The Quilt, Unravelled

The Quilt, Unravelled


The New Zealand summer is turning on a show for Auckland’s Anniversary day.  Auckland is nestled between harbours.  A narrow neck of land, with leafy, sprawling suburbs accommodating over 30% of the countries total population.  Today we celebrate, many of us on the water and a few, myself included,  mowing lawns, working on the new novel and feeding horses.

Excerpt from The Quilt, Unravelled.

The soft hint of daybreak sent a milky glow across the water’s surface. They stopped to watch the river turn into a scarlet ribbon and the first shards of light break through the leaves and cast dapples on the damp grass. Paul poured another cup of rich bitter coffee from his flask and skipped the flat stones across the water’s surface for Jess to chase.

Jess jumped on to the back of the quad, refreshed by a cool drink from the mountain-fed river. They picked their way through a stand of untouched native bush protected years ago from stock by a secure fence. Tiny fantails darted in and out of the canopy above, catching small insects and dancing to a chorus of tuis and woodpigeons.

They opened a gate, and turned away from the river that had now doubled in width, after a branch flowing through the Kean property had joined its progression. A rainbow trout erupted from the crystal clear water leaving behind a circle of ripples.

Steep hills rose in front of them forming a tapestry of large, orderly paddocks divided by neat, wire fencing. The pasture was covered in a lacework of sheep tracks worn away over the years by thousands of hooves. At the top Paul hesitated to admire the soft folds of countryside that formed creases enveloping the network of rivers below. Small pockets of stubborn morning fog hung like cotton wool in the deep gullies. The Quilt, Unravelled. Tragedy brings them together.  The past drives them apart.  Their choices change the future.  An epic story of love against the odds.


Auckland City, New Zealand. Sky tower.


Auckland City, New Zealand.


Happy Anniversary Day, Auckland City.


Informative, uplifting and easy to read.  This entry does not fall in to any of those categories.  Let me explain.

We all have them.  Those friends that are in need and those causes that rip at your heartstrings.  They touch your life, and when the shock has worn off we are left, perhaps not voicing it, but thankful that it wasn’t us.

This is my situation right now.  A wonderful young man, a great friend to my daughter, and one of those rare people that really brighten the lives of those that meet them is fighting a battle.  Mike Shaffer has just been diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma stage 3. (Bone marrow cancer). He requires treatment and he requires it now.  This is where I come in to it.   This is where, with your help we can make a difference to one person’s life.  The life of their partner Traci, their family and their network of friends.

For one month all of the proceeds from The Quilt, Unravelled will go directly to Mike.  Even a small contribution will help him fight this disease.  Yes you can also help.  Click the buy now on either kindle or paperback, share the link and you, just one individual, can really make a difference.

Cancer affects us all.  A relative, a friend, a mother that was taken before I had the chance to know her.  This dreadful disease has been part of my life,  it is possibly part of yours, and it  forms an important piece in the intricate story of The Quilt, Unravelled.


Help me help Mike. Every purchase helps and you get a new book to read!


I would like to tell you about something important, something our family has been involved in, and something that is pivotal in the story of Paul Clarke and his family.

If you have read  my previous posts you will know I live in New Zealand.  To be precise Auckland City, which is located in the boringly named North Island.  My country consists of two main islands, and numerous smaller islands which all sit smugly in large bodies of water separating  us from our neighbours .   Chances are, if you were to walk in any given direction, you would eventually find  yourself either on the shores of  the Pacific Ocean or the Tasman Sea.

Therein lies the problem.  We love the water. We compete in numerous water related sports, fish in it, ski on it, surf in it and swim in it.  But often we are complacent when it comes to our preparation and safety.  Our populations is comprised of many intelligent, sensible individuals, and, well, quite frankly some that are not so sensible or intelligent!

Take the day the nameless member of our family found a group of ill prepared, drunk  fishermen hanging on to a buoy. In front of them  the hull of their tiny boat disappeared to its watery grave.   The circumstances were not that unusual.  What made this particular rescue stand out?  The individuals were hugging their fuel can and sucking nervously on cigarettes, while they clutched  the slippery surface of their plastic island.

Another rescue that comes to mind involved  tourists.  They were visiting our shores and armed with a high powered launch. They had   “beached” on an isolated island  as the sun sunk over the horizon.  Coastguard were greeted by raucous laughter, and a broken English request for a map and directions to enable them to walk home.   To the best of my knowledge only one human has succeeded in walking on water.

Many of the incidents the nameless member of my family experienced in Coastguard were neither  amusing, nor had positive outcomes.  Coastguard New Zealand is  a volunteer organization, and their crews are located throughout New Zealand.  In no way does that mean they are unprofessional.  Their training is long and extensive, and the  rescue boats are equipped with an impressive amount of medical, and safety gear to cope with most on water emergencies.


Maraetai 1. This crew works close to Waiheke Island, home of The Quilt, Unravelled.

The Quilt, Unravelled by Rochelle Carlton.  Available on Kindle and paperback.

When home is no longer between these walls.

Jean plugged in the jug. She didn’t actually feel like a cup of tea, but she did need a distraction, she needed to clear her mind before she started this next chapter in the life of the Clarke family.

 She walked slowly over to the quilt. It spread lazily over the back of her plush and comfortable lounge suite offering silent inspiration and motivation. Her fingers ran along the square that told the story of Twin Pines in pictures. Like many of the more complicated parts of the quilt she had located small individual illustrations and carefully stitched them into place to tell the story. Was this an easier task than committing pen to paper? Ultimately what would prove less painful?

She knew there would be chapters other members of her family would have to write. Stories that were too raw and too personal for her to take the liberty of translating. Memories they may not want to share in detail with you the reader and they alone should be given that option.

A small taste of this moving family saga and thought-provoking romance.

The Quilt, Unravelled will be on sale for a limited time soon.  Check back for details!   Below Waiheke Island, one of the settings for The Quilt, Unravelled.


The Quilt, Unravelled. Prologue

Years had passed since she had hand sewn that first little square. It was a memoir of the family’s pioneering spirit. It depicted the struggles, deceptions, the loss and the heartbreak. It told the story of an unprecedented love born through horrific circumstances. Of a passion that could not be denied.  But was it strong enough to heal the jagged scars, survive adversity and restore lost trust? Would her only son find contentment and peace by shaking off the expectations of others and discovering a road he truly wanted to travel? Would his love be resilient enough to endure unimaginable loss so that he did not have to travel that road alone?

She settled back against the old chair that was well worn into the shape of her body. Yes, life has many unexpected twists and turns. Along the way you can choose to learn from the mistakes of those that went before. Or you can carry their load like a heavy smothering quilt until that weight becomes impossible to bare.

Again, Jean reached over to lovingly finger the soft material. A life and history told in detailed pictures. Pictures that she intended to pass down to future generations. An illustration of where they came from and what went before. What helped to mould them into the people they would be. Perhaps it would be a small part of the jigsaw that would guide and tether their path to a better future.

Would she have been wiser to translate the well-worn diaries and her family’s reluctantly unlocked memories into a book, into the simple written word? Again, the wrinkled brown paper bag features crumpled to form a smile. Yes, maybe, and perhaps one day she would. But that would have to wait until she had sewn the last little squares into the quilt.

She sighed and looked towards the carefully arranged pile of remaining fabrics. The ones that illustrated reclining mermaids, fine wine, small dogs and stark paw prints that led to no-where in the sand.

I hope you have enjoyed the final portion of the prologue.  This book is currently available at a reduced price on both Amazon UK and  The Quilt, Unravelled is a romantic story about a young couple thrown together by tragedy and a pioneering  family hoping to find closure.

The Quilt Unravelled.

Jean Clarke shuffled uncomfortably under the heavy weight of the patchwork quilt. Her eyes strained and her arthritic fingers struggled to complete a tiny delicate stitch in the latest segment of her ornate work.

She moved the bulky soft mass aside pausing to gently touch a neat square segment. It depicted a pretty rural farming scene similar in landscape to the King Country area of New Zealand. It was here that she had experienced the foundation of her life and it was here that she had become a member of the complicated Clarke family. A family haunted by tragedy and hardened by struggle.

She smiled, her lined face crinkled into the texture and appearance of a well-used brown paper bag. Oh, how her life could have been different. It could have been a safe and secure walk through varying shades of beige.

Her fingers travelled to another patch. This time it represented a chapter she had attached reluctantly to the fabric diary of their life. Two giant pine trees stood stark and symbolic. She felt the familiar crawl pass along her spine and run in tiny goose bumps down her arms.

Jean was born into security, a place where one day of routine was followed by another. Where the future was mapped out and predictable and where life was accepted just the way it was, like morning after night. How things had changed when she had married into the Clarke family! A roller coaster chased by a turbulent past, embedded in the rich soil of the New Zealand High Country. A family plagued by the anger, blood and the tragedy of those that went before. A family that she ultimately hoped would be healed as the questions were answered and the burden could be shed by the younger generation.

I hope you have enjoyed a taste of the prologue.  Currently available on Amazon at .99c