Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Temptation Tuesday :: Winter

As mid-winter hits Melbourne with a vengeance, PHS editor Ally Blake gives you the low down on why winter is so tempting…

I was a winter baby. My poor mother had me in a small country town hospital in the dead of winter. I can’t even imagine how rough that must have been. Well, so rough I was too weeks late. I knew better! But ever since I poked my little nose out of the bunny rug and saw the weak winter light I’ve had a soft spot for the season.

In fact, one of the first ever newspaper interviews I did I was asked what makes my home town of Melbourne a romantic city. My answer? Winter.

The season

Unlike many parts of Australia, in Melbourne we experience all four seasons. Spring is simply sublime, it‘s stinking hot in summer, autumn the leaves are just amazing. I believe the city never looks better than it does in Melbourne, with its grey gothic architecture, glistening river, and craggy leafless trees.

There’s something about walking the city streets in winter that makes a person want to breathe deep. Is it the beautiful scent of pine on the air? Is it a clean slate? Death and rebirth around the corner. A time for new beginnings. The moment when you hit the shortest day of the year, knowing that as the days get longer spring and summer are just around the corner…

The fashion

Is unbeatable. I could watch the Devil Wears Prada every day for the rest of time, the story is great, the acting fun, but it’s the clothes that makes it so watchable. Winter clothes, all. All that black. Those hats, and knee high boots, and jackets of every which kind, and the rich smooth thick draping fabrics. Tights, scarves, hats, gloves. The chance to wear red lipstick and dark eyes during the day.

Winter fashion is elegant, it’s colorful, you don’t have the worries body issue that come accompanied with tank tops and short shorts come summer ;).

The movies

Think Dr Zhivago.

The food

Roast anything. Hot chocolate. Toasted marshmallows.

The snuggling

Shoulder to shoulder to stave off the winter wind at the footy.

Out for dinner in the city he sees you shiver and takes off his jacket to lay it over your shoulders.

In a cabin at the snow, snuggled under the same blanket in front of an open fire while outside the world is blanketed is white. The first footprints of the morning belong to the both of you.

I'd say eighty percent of the books I've written have been set in winter. You summer lovers can keep your bikinis, and flies and sunburn, and sweat ;). For my money there is truly no more romantic time of year.

Ally's latest book, THE MAGNATE'S INDECENT PROPOSAL is out now in Australia and New Zealand as a Sexy Sensation.

You can grab an early bird copy online now from either eHarlequin.com.au or for those of you in the UK from millsandboon.co.uk! And across the pond in North America this will be Ally's very first Harlequin Presents release in September.

Check out an excerpt from the book here...


  1. I'm all for toasted sandwiches, open fires and mulled wine but less keen on sleet, sludgy snow and fog. Besides which, my fellow July birthday girl, come over here and you'd be a summer baby!

  2. Or here, Ally, where we finally got to turn off the air conditioning for the first time in two weeks. I love winter, too, Ally. But shoveling snow and chipping ice gets old after about the first ten snowstorms or so!

  3. I'm with you, Ally. Winter in Australia can't be beat - clear, blue skies, the scent of wattle carried on cold air and the sparkle of dew in the mornings. Divine.

  4. Hmmmmmmm that sounds awfully like an English spring to me! Minus the 'wattle', of course.