A Kiss is Just a Kiss—Or Is It? (Yay! Book Giveaway)


A kiss can be a comma, a question mark or an exclamation point. That’s basic spelling that every woman should know. ~Mistinguet

You might wonder why I have kisses on my mind today. The answer is simple and it has something to do with my new release Four Weddings and a Kiss.

There are four novellas in the collection, written by Mary Connealy, Robin Lee Hatcher, Debra Clopton and me. But it’s the fifth story in the book which explains the kiss in the title.

A young minister bemoans having to break up with the woman he loves. She’s simply not suited to be a preacher’s wife. I mean we’re talking a woman who (gasp) plays rounders and sides with the church next door. That’s not all she does; she has also has the nerve to laugh in church!



 I’ll let you find out how that particular story ends by reading the book, but   to get you in the right mood here are some fun facts about—what else?—kissing!




  • Did you know that kissing prevents wrinkles? It’s true. Kissing uses twenty-nine face muscles and all that exercise helps keep your skin firm and smooth.

  • Kissing for one minute burns 26 calories. Hitting the lips for an hour sounds like a whole lot more fun than hitting the gym.

  • The average woman kisses eighty men before she marries (Harrumph. Now they tell me.  I’m how many men short?).

  • On average, a person spends two weeks of their lives kissing. (I know I’ve spent at least the amount time writing about kissing. Hey, it’s harder than you think.)

  • Men who kiss their wives before going to work live on the average five years longer than men who leave slamming doors.

  • Is kissing learned or instinctual? No one really knows for sure.kiss3

  • The film with the most kisses was Don Juan (1926). John Barrymore and Mary Astor shared 127 kisses. Don’t believe me? Count them.

  • Kissing is good for the teeth. All that extra saliva. . . So if you want to save on dental bills, you now know what to do.

  • Kissing releases the same neurotransmitters in the brain as bungee jumping and parachuting. I’ll have to take their word for this because I’m a great believer in keeping my feet grounded.

  • We all know that Xs at the end of a written letter represents kisses. But did you also know that signing a telegram with the numbers 88 was how our ancestors showed love and kisses?


Tell us about your first kiss or a favorite movie kiss and you could win a copy of Four Weddings and a You-Know-What!  And don’t forget to enter the drawing below.  We’re giving away a mini iPad.  Just click the picture below.



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Western Movie Couples by Stacey Coverstone

Throughout movie history, sexual chemistry has made the screen sizzle and pop whenever the right two stars are cast together.  This chemistry, combined with realism and believability, makes for a romantic memory that will stay with the viewer long after the movie is over.

We all have our favorite romantic onscreen couples.  Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh carved their place in film history as the roguish Rhett Butler and Southern minx, Scarlett O’Hara.  In a contemporary cinema favorite, Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan revived old-fashioned romance in Sleepless in Seattle when their characters finally meet on top of the Empire State building.

 There are many examples of romantic couples in classic and contemporary movies, but what about in the western genre?  As a western romance author, I started thinking about the romantic relationships featured in my favorite western movies and realized there are many.   Here are my top ten most romantic couples found in western movies:

 10.  Alejandro Murrieta/Zorro (Antonio Banderas) and Elena Montero (Catherine Zeta-Jones) in The Mask of Zorro.  Most romantic scene: Zorro enters the barn and is surprised by Elena, who challenges him to a fencing duel while dressed in her underwear. They rip each other’s clothes as they battle wits with their swords.  He plants a big kiss on her and asks, “Do you surrender?”  “Never,” she answers.  When he slices her clothes and they fall off, they kiss again and Zorro leaves Elena in a love daze.


9.  Monte Walsh (Tom Selleck) and Martine (Isabella Rossellini) in Monte Walsh.  Most romantic scene:  Monte knocks on Martine’s door after being months away on the range. Her smile widens.  “You need a haircut,” she says.  “I didn’t want to waste any time,” he replies. While kissing her passionately, Monte sweeps Martine into his arms and carries her to the bed.

8.  Matthew Quigley (Tom Selleck) and Crazy Cora (Laura San Giacomo) in Quigley Down Under.   Most romantic scene: Matthew rides away on his horse, leaving Cora behind, and then stops at the top of the hill and looks back at her with his hand thrown over the saddle horn. You need to watch the movie to understand why this simple gesture represents romance of the purest kind.

 7.  Conn Conagher (Sam Elliott) and Evie Teale (Katherine Ross) in Conagher.  Most romantic scene: Evie walks through the swinging saloon doors to find Conn beat up.  “Mr. Conagher, I think you should come home now,” she says.  Showing her one of the notes he’s found stuck in tumbleweed, he asks if she wrote it.  “I was lonely,” she admits.  “I had to write someone.  There was no one.”  Conn replies, “There was, Evie.  There was me.” They kiss, and it’s the perfect Happy Ever After ending.

6.  Joseph Donnelly (Tom Cruise) and Shannon Christie (Nicole Kidman) in Far and Away.  Most romantic scene: Joseph and Shannon have been thrown out of the boarding house. It’s winter and they are walking the streets, starving.  They enter a grand house and pretend the home is theirs, they are married, and they love one another.  As the snow falls outside the window, they share their first kiss.

 5. John Dunbar (Kevin Costner) and Stands With Fist (Mary McDonnell) in Dances With Wolves.  Most romantic scene:  Stands With Fist boldly enters Dunbar’s tipi.  It’s dark, but the fire is glowing.  She stands in front of him and her deerskin dress slides off her shoulders and falls to the ground to reveal she is naked. No words are spoken as he takes her in his arms and lays her down.

 4.  Lewis Gates (Tom Berenger) and Lillian Sloan (Barbara Hershey) in The Last of the Dogmen.  Most romantic scene:  Lillian tells Lewis she’s staying with the tribe.  “What would you say to a goodbye kiss?” he asks.  She replies, “I’d say it’s about time.”  After he gives her a peck, she complains, “You call that a kiss?” and lays a big one on him. Lewis rides off on his horse, only to stop and gallop back. He jumps off his horse, grabs Lillian and kisses her passionately.

 3.  Sam Deeds (Chris Cooper) and Pilar (Elizabeth Pena) in Lone Star.  Most romantic scene: Pilar finds her childhood sweetheart, Sam, waiting for her outside in his car and tells him to follow her.  It’s late.  They go to her mother’s closed diner and slow dance in the dark to a Mexican song Pilar selects from the jukebox.  “The other day you asked why I came back,” Sam whispers to Pilar.  “I came back because you were here.”  Chris Cooper plays a man burning with desire for his woman, which is why this scene ranks #3 in my romantic picks.

2.  Johnny Gault (Tim Daly) and Rebecca Yoder (Naomi Watts) in The Outsider.  Most romantic scene:  Johnny rides up to the cabin on his horse to tell Rebecca the boys are already in the field.  “I know,” she says.  “I sent them there.”  She takes his hand and leads him inside to her bedroom.  This love scene is so beautiful, with him gently removing her cap and dress, and her taking off his gun belt and lightly touching the scars on his back. The fact that Johnny is a hardened gunfighter and Rebecca is the sweet member of a strict religious sect makes their forbidden love even more intoxicating.  Plus, Tim Daly is really hot in this role!

1.  Drover (Hugh Jackman) and Sarah Ashley (Nicole Kidman) in Australia. This romantic couple rates #1 for me because their chemistry sets the screen on fire from the moment they meet.  Most romantic scene:  There are so many romantic scenes between these actors in this movie, but one of my favorites is when Drover surprises Sarah by showing up at the ball, looking so handsome, clean-shaven and in a white dinner jacket, and they end up kissing in the rain.

 Who are your favorite romantic onscreen couples?

Stacy is giving away one ebook to one lucky commenter, winner’s choice of her novels which can be found at www.staceycoverstone.com  Stacey is an Honorable Mention Winner for 2010 Best Western Romance and a CAPA Nominee for 2010 Best Historical Romance.

Cheryl St.John: Those Marvelous Movie Kisses

It’s difficult to say exactly what creates an incredible onscreen kiss, but it has to be a combination of the chemistry between the actors, the tension that has led up to this point in the story—just like in a book—and the dialogue that accompanies the event. Everyone has his or her favorite movie kisses. Most popular in recent polls were the waterfall scene in The Last of the Mohicans, Twilight (honestly, I didn’t make it that far through the movie), Romeo and Juliet, Gone With the Wind, Katie and Hubbell (Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford) in The Way We Were, that famous upside down kiss in Spiderman, and Moira Kelly and D.B. Sweeney in The Cutting Edge.

Here are a few of mine:

notebook-3The Notebook – Ryan and Rachel in the rain

Allie: “Why didn’t you write me? Why? It wasn’t over for me, I waited for you for seven years. But now it’s too late.”
Noah: “I wrote you 365 letters. I wrote you everyday for a year.”
Allie: “You wrote me?”
Noah: “Yes. It wasn’t over, it still isn’t over.”

Allie McGraw and Ryan O’Neal in Love Story

“Look, Cavalleri, I know your game, and I’m tired of playing it. You are the supreme Radcliffe smart-a[lec]. The best. You can put down anything in pants. But verbal volleyball is not my idea of a relationship. And if that’s what you think it’s all about, why don’t you just go back to your music, and good luck. See, I think you’re scared. You put up a big glass wall to keep from getting hurt. But it also keeps you from getting touched. It’s a risk, isn’t it, Jenny? At least I had the guts to admit what I felt. Someday, you’re gonna have to come up with the courage to admit you care.”

They stop walking and Jenny says: “I care”


Angie Dickenson and John Wayne in Rio Bravo

Gorgeous young Angie says, “I’m glad we tried it a second time. It’s better when two people do it”

body-heatBody Heat – Man oh man did Kathleen Turner and William Hurt ever have chemistry in this flick. Whew! He breaks the bay window with a porch chair and finds the sultry femme fatale waiting for him on the stairs. Wowzer, what a kiss.

“You’re not too smart, are you? I like that in a man.”

the-terminatorLinda Hamilton and Michael Biehn in The Terminator

“I came across time for you, Sarah. I love you. I’ve always loved you.”

What could be more romantic, eh?

notting-hillWilliam and Anna (Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts) after the press conference in Notting Hill.

ditry-dancingPatrick Swayze and Jennifer Gray after dancing to I’ve Had the Time of My Life in Dirty Dancing

05_Flatbed_2 - AUGUSTPrincess Bride – Robin Wright and Carey Elwes

The narrator says to his grandson: “Since the invention of the kiss there have been five kisses that were rated the most passionate, the most pure. This one left them all behind.”

Robin Wright actually has two great movie kisses. Besides her Princess Buttercup masterpiece, she ran through the pool at the Washington Monument to kiss Tom Hanks in Forrest Gump.

jerry-mcguireTom Cruise and Renee Zellweger in Jerry McGuire

“I’m looking for my wife…If this is where it has to happen, then this is where it has to happen. I’m not letting you get rid of me. How about that?…Our company had a very good night. A very, very big night, but it wasn’t complete. It wasn’t nearly close to being in the same vicinity as complete, because I couldn’t share it with you. I couldn’t hear your voice, or laugh about it with you. I missed my wife. We live in a cynical world, a cynical world, and we work in a business of tough competitors. I love you. You complete me.” (Earlier they’d seen a deaf guy sign these words to his girl in an elevator.)

Dorothy tearfully interrupts: “Aw, shut up. Just shut up. You had me at hello. You had me at hello.”

To see an incredible listing of famous film kisses, you can check out this website.  http://www.filmsite.org/filmkisses1.html

I don’t even know how long this collection of film kisses is, because I couldn’t get through them all, but here’s the most extensive listing of movie kisses I’ve ever seen:

Did I mention your favorite or did you see it in the video?

Can you name five of the movies in this video montage?