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About Jena


I live in a small town in the North Island of New Zealand. My husband and I have a lifestyle block where we farm two beef cattle: a steer named Blackie, and a heifer named Jigsaw, whose photo is on the left. Plus we have three chickens that are as alike as identical triplets so have no names; unless they've misbehaved, or not laid any eggs! In those instances, I'll call them whatever derogatory name comes into my head! 

We have four children who are all married and have families of their own. Although we miss them all, we visit reasonably often.

Here on the west coast, the temperatures are mild and we usually have a good supply of rain - ideal for gardens which is perfect for me since I love flowers. It's inevitable that some photos of my garden will appear on this site and occasionally turn up on Facebook.


When I’m not writing, reading, or gardening, I can often be found on the pillion seat of my husband’s motorbike as we explore this very picturesque country of ours.

One of the hobbies that hubby and I love doing together is riding our motorbike. The photos below are all places we've visited on the bike. And yes, that's us in the top right photo.


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My Writing

For as long as I can remember I’ve loved reading. In fact at school it was probably my best subject. When I was about eight years old I wrote my first story, for a competition. Didn’t win a place mind you, but I did win a consolation prize of three books. Unfortunately with no further encouragement from my mother, I gave up writing


Until a few years ago when I decided to try writing travel articles. Even sold a few to newspapers.


Later, after taking a university paper in creative writing, I found that making up stories was more fun than writing factual accounts. Ever since then I’ve been writing fiction; mostly romance novels for adults. At the same time, I learned the craft through workshops, reading and attending the Romance Writers of New Zealand conferences. Now I write (almost) every day, trying to create the very best stories I possibly can for you, my reader.


I do hope you like them!


Apart from the excerpts from my books on the BOOKS page, you can sample my writing by visiting my Free Reads page and reading my short story: Honey.

My Favourite Books

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Contemporary Romance:

  • And Baby Makes Three, Molly O’Keefe

  • How to Resist a Heartbreaker, Louisa George

  • In Too Deep, Tracey Alvarez

  • Long Lost Father, Melissa James

  • A Reason to Remember, Leigh Duncan

  • Sara’s Son, Tara Taylor Quinn

  • Second-Chance Family, Karina Bliss

  • The Family Plan, Susan Gable

  • Dancing Away With My Heart, Kait Nolan

  • Wish, Kelly Hunter

Women’s Fiction:

  • Me Before You, Jojo Moyes

  • The Secret Keeper, Kate Morton​

  • Border Watch, Helen Young

Romantic Comedy:

  • Call Me Irresistible, Susan Elizabeth Phillips



  • Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen

  • Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte



  • Touching Midnight, Fiona Brand

  • Ripples on the Lake, Dawn Rotarangi


Young Adult Contemporary:

  • Pushing the Limits, Katie McGarry


Young Adult Paranormal:

  • Moonwind, Louise Lawrence

  • Fire Country, David Estes

Jena Petrie

Author of Heartwarming

Contemporary Romances