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It was like stepping into a portal…

Date: 24th March 2023, Posted by mollie

Last week I spent three wonderful days of art and magic making and helped three women rediscover their passion, creativity and courage during my fun and fab fearless art retreat .

One of the ladies was visiting New Zealand from Australia. It was her first international trip in three years post Covid. I loved the feedback she gave me after our painting retreat.

“It was like stepping into a portal.”

To be held in a beautiful and safe Post Covid part of the world. The combination was important to me as my first International foray in 3 years.

My intention was also for a meaningful travel experience to learn something new as well as a holiday.

Cassandra offers an invitation to inspiration and then shows you how to make it happen. Informative and value packed workshops. Her tuition and intuition are totally on point.

This retreat furthered my mission to come into alignment with a more soul based life and artistic expression.

The studio itself is a portal to a world of active imagination and creativity.

The magical landscape, view and location are the icing on the cake.

Cannot wait to return and participate again.

I was excited to spend an extra day with Karen sightseeing. I took her over to the historic township of Russell, and we had lunch at the hotel where I set my short romance, Crazy For You (Passion Down Under Sassy Short Stories Book 8) 

Located on the waterfront of Russell in the Bay of Islands, The Duke has an elegant colonial facade and gazes romantically out to sea, harking back to an ancient era where manners ruled and life was simpler. The historical beauty has been lovingly restored from its seedy origins of refreshing rascals, reprobates and whores into one of the finest hotels and event venues in New Zealand.

As you’ll read in my story, the Duke Hotel has a gorgeous pink wall lined with photos of Queen Elizabeth and other historic memorabilia. My heroine, Liberty Lyons is a colour consultant who takes exception to the strange tint of pink, but is instantly smitten in a case of mistaken identity when she meets our billionaire hero. Here’s a wee excerpt

“Hell, fake it, ’til you make it, she mused, reminding herself of her mantra. Hadn’t that been how she’d overcome all the obstacles life had thrown at her?

“Sex On The Beach,” she said, barely registering the bartender as she glanced at her phone. His back was to her so that she only had the impression of a tall, well-built man with black hair curling tidily at the nape of his neck.

“Nothing,” she muttered, looking at the blank screen. “Not even an ‘I’m a sorry I hurt you’, text.”

Scusi?” the bartender said in a sultry Italian accent. 

She looked up and went stone-still as a shock of electricity fizzed through her heart. Heck, when did they start employing centre-folds?”

Many of love-stories contain art-inspired themes. Very often, the heroines have endured a heart-hurting breakup. Have you noticed? 

Books like:


Reader reviews

“I kept turning the pages”

Crazy For You, set in New Zealand, is a very quick read with lots of details and vivid imagery.  It’s a short contemporary romance and the story has a nice pace and flow as I kept turning the pages to see what would happen next.  This is Liberty’s story after she calls her wedding off the day before. We learn about her relationship with her ex and it sounds like she should have been running a long time ago.  The story takes place over a couple of days.  I liked how color played into the story since she’s The Colour Girl and I loved that she called it her superpower!  She and Alessandro, the owner of the boutique hotel she’s staying at, have chemistry when they first meet at the hotel.  They hit it off and it was love at first sight.  There is a happily ever after and I loved the epilogue that gave me the closure I look for. There are excerpts from some of the author’s other books at the end and several of them I haven’t read yet. It definitely left me wanting more.”

Inspired to read this fun and flirty love story?
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I hope you enjoyed a little peek into my world and the setting. Have a fun week!




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Mollie Mathews

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