Guest Post – Return to Drake Springs

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Now we’re going to get a closer look at a new feel-good series by Cheryl Norman – with a special insight into her hero.  And with this kind of plot I don’t know how you can resist him:

Popular cheerleader Iris Porter had no time for geeky Lance George in high school, but much has changed in nine years. Lance has matured into a handsome, successful veterinarian while Iris struggles to pay bills working part-time jobs. Can they finally find romance together? Or can the quintessential miser tolerate her freehearted, generous nature?

First up … Amy Sawyer, Editor—The Drake Springs Democrat, chats with Lance George, DVM

AS: Doctor George, what brings you to Drake Springs, Florida?

LG: What brings me back to Drake Springs, Florida? Until nine years ago, Drake Springs was my hometown.

AS: You left for college and veterinary school, and then what?

LG: I worked in Tallahassee with another veterinarian until I earned enough experience and capital to open my own practice. Drake Springs needs a vet and already has a vacant animal clinic property. Seems a good fit.

AS: So you plan to locate in the location where Doctor Hodges had her animal clinic?

LG: Right. It’s been vacant for three years, according to the realtor. I need to buy equipment and supplies and do a bit of work.

AS: I’ll bet you’re excited to reunite with old friends and family, right?

LG: (shrugging) I don’t have many friends from high school. As for family, my father and stepmother are busy with my younger sisters. It’ll be nice to reconnect with them.

AS: Foster County is a close-knit community. So why would you say you don’t have former classmates that you’re eager to catch up with?

LG: I was a nerd in high school, long before “geek” became “chic.” I kept to myself and focused on making good grades so I could earn a scholarship to college. It worked, although Pops—my father—helped me through veterinary school.

AS: Does your mother live in Foster County?

LG: My mother lives in another county. I visit her when I can.

AS: So she knows you’re back?

LG: Uh, not yet.

AS: No old girl friends to reunite with?

LG: Maybe one. But, no, I don’t think so. And I’m not telling you her name.

AS: One last question. Do you have any hobbies? Aside from working with animals, what do you do in your leisure time?

LG: I’m not sure you’d call it a hobby, but I enjoy cooking.

AS: Tell me more. I can think of few things more attractive than a guy in the kitchen.

LG: It started out as an economy move when I was a college student. Soon I discovered I enjoyed it. It saves money, but it’s also healthier. (winks) I like being in control.

AS: Well, readers, there you have it. After three years without a vet, Foster County soon will have the services of former Drake Springs resident, Doctor Lance George. No more driving into neighboring counties for vaccines and pet care. We look forward to your grand opening. And a note to the single ladies: Lance George may have been a geek in high school, but he’s grown into a handsome man, one who cooks, too.

*****

DrakesSprings-FINAL-MDReturn to Drake Springs

A Next Door Category Romance

Drake Springs, Book One

by Cheryl Norman

Blurb:

Lance George debates his decision to return to his hometown, but the price is right on the abandoned veterinary hospital he hopes to buy. He’s saved his money to open his practice by living frugally and purchasing wisely. There’s no room in his life for wasteful spending. His alcoholic mother squandered everything she had when he was growing up, leaving him with an obsessive motivation to achieve financial security.

Iris Porter is unaware that she broke Lance’s heart in high school. She’s too busy trying to earn a living in a tough economy. She hopes to reclaim her old job as a veterinary assistant when Lance reopens the town’s only animal clinic. Popular and friendly, Iris is known to be generous to a fault. When a friend’s baby is stricken with leukemia, she organizes fundraisers and enlists Lance’s help.

Lance’s feelings for Iris rekindle when he realizes how much she’s changed. The high school snob is at odds with the caring, sensitive woman who wants to help a family in need. But can he reconcile Iris’s generous spirit with his overpowering need for penny pinching?

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | IBOOKS | KOBO

SMASHWORDS | ALL ROMANCE EBOOKS

*****

Excerpt:

Lance George cruised into town in a fog of black insects and misgivings. He’d had good reason to leave home years ago. Was returning a mistake? He’d debated during the entire three-hour drive from Tallahassee and still questioned his decision. But he was here now. The moving company had his packed belongings ready to deliver. Inhaling a breath for courage, he slowed at the Welcome to Drake Springs sign.

Searching familiar landmarks, he recognized the Hurricane Lantern, a rustic restaurant located on Highway 471. To his left stood the stately Wilson home, vacant and for sale. Five blocks past the city limits sign, Highway 471 became Main Street. He passed the First Foster Bank and Boyd’s Diner, both still in business. A left turn here would take him to the high school, but he’d skip that detour down bad-memory lane.

The stoplight at Main Street turned red and he applied his brakes. A flash of purple grabbed his attention. Was that—? No, it couldn’t be. What were the odds he’d return to Drake Springs and immediately see the girl of his adolescent dreams? In the flesh—and what beautiful flesh—Iris Porter stepped into the crosswalk walking a bicycle to the opposite side of Main Street. It may have been nine years since he’d seen her, but with her blond curls sticking out the edges of a bicycle helmet, she looked as adorable as ever.

She turned her head and met his gaze but kept walking. She wouldn’t recognize him, and even if she did, why would she acknowledge him? She had deemed herself too good for him. He’d been a bookworm. A nerd. His limited circle of friends didn’t include babes and jocks. No reason to hope her opinion had changed.

She continued toward the courthouse. She hadn’t lost that subtle but alluring sway of hip that drew the attention of every male student standing in the halls at Foster County High—especially him. Instead of mounting her bicycle and riding, she chain-locked it to an oak tree.

“What’s your story, dear Iris?” He eased forward with the morning traffic while keeping her purple shorts and T-shirt in his peripheral vision. She still had her cheerleader’s legs and slender shape. If anything, she was thinner now. She disappeared inside the Foster County Courthouse. “Doing a title search? Paying your taxes? Filing for divorce?”

Iris’s rejection in high school had driven him to succeed and improve himself, so maybe he should thank her for stomping all over his heart. He continued his drive through town, leaving behind Iris Porter and all conjecture about her.

When he reached Ortega Street, he turned left and pulled into the parking lot of his destination. A business property that once housed Hodges Animal Clinic faced Main. Behind sat a modular home included with the business property. The lot looked weedy, abandoned, and neglected. No wonder it had such an attractive price tag. The realtor must have taken the online photos in winter, before the spring foliage filled in the blackjack oaks. Now shade cast most of the lot in darkness, forming a thick barrier against the hot Florida sun.

A middle-aged, heavyset woman stood in the gravel parking lot. He parked his Transit Connect beside her late model Buick. He’d recently purchased the economical business van in preparation for his new practice. It was small enough to serve as his personal vehicle, too. Unlike his mother, Lance did his research and made practical choices. Impulse buying got people in trouble.

“Doctor George?” The woman approached him with outstretched hand even before he’d fully exited his van. “I’m Barbara Sinclair.”

“Thank you for meeting me.” He shook her delicate manicured hand.

Everything about the woman looked professional, from her perfectly groomed, chestnut hair to her business attire. A few years and a few pounds ago, she was probably a real babe.

“I feel as if we’ve already met, from your e-mails. I believe this property will suit your needs.”

“It looks less cheerful than in the online photos.”

She winced. “Weeds grow quickly in Florida. The reduced price should more than make up for the little TLC the place needs.”

“Right.” He’d reserve judgment until he inspected the buildings. He locked his van, an action that earned him a bemused smile from Ms. Sinclair. She probably thought it overkill for a small town like Drake Springs, but she refrained from commenting. “Could you show me the office first? If it doesn’t suit, there’s no need to tour the house.”

“Exactly my thought. Follow me.”

He fell in step beside her. “What happened to Otis Gibbons? I thought he was the listing agent.”

“You know Otis?”

“I’m originally from Drake Springs, hence my interest in opening a practice here.”

She opened the door, stepped aside, and motioned him in. The faint odor of antiseptic mingled with the woman’s cologne as she moved past him. She’d been a bit generous with her atomizer. “Otis sold me the business when he was elected county commissioner. He didn’t want any question of conflict of interest.”

“Right.” He shut the door against a swarm of love bugs. Those inescapable black insects that frustrated Floridians every May and September seemed especially thick this spring.

“It may be a bit warm. I turned up the air conditioning about thirty minutes ago when I opened the building.”

“Feels comfortable.”

“The air conditioner is fairly new. Four years old, I’d say.”

The office was a converted Florida Cracker style house, with porches and a breezeway. The reception area was in the former living room. A pass-through with added counter separated the public area from the office. A few animal carriers sat along one wall of the former dining room. “How many exam rooms?”

“Three. The hall gives access both from the reception area and the operating room. There’s also a bathroom.”

“Hmm.” The equipment was gone, probably sold by Doctor Hodges’s estate after her death. Stainless steel tables, gleaming as if recently polished, dominated each examination room. “How long did you say this had been vacant?”

“About three years, but Otis has kept the power connected. He also hired a cleaning service to make regular visits.”

Too bad Otis hadn’t arranged for lawn service as well. “That’s been costly for Otis.”

“Frankly, he expected the property to sell quickly. It’s an attractive location, and Drake Springs is growing. But even Florida wasn’t immune to an economic recession.”

She led him around to the operating room, at one time the house’s kitchen. A door led back to the dining room/office, where the receptionist’s desk and file cabinets now stood. The rear of the house had a utility room, still equipped with a clothes washer and dryer. One wall held stacked cages. A breezeway led to fenced pens outside. He would have preferred more kennel room, but this could work.

“Well, Doctor George, what do you think?” She closed the back door and walked down the steps. “Want to see the residence?”

“Yes, I do.” He followed her past the fenced pens to the back door of the doublewide mobile home. “Where do people take their animals for medical care since this clinic closed?”

“Right now they’re driving twenty-five or thirty miles, to Lake City or up to Georgia. Trust me, this town will welcome you with open arms.”

He was counting on it. He’d saved a tidy sum of money and had qualified for a loan, but he needed equipment, supplies, and utility deposits. He wanted to make this property work, because it’s all he could afford.

The blue painted metal roofing on the home matched the roofing on the clinic. He’d guess the modular home to be less than ten years old, although the roof made it look newer.

“Is the roof new?”

“About four years old.” She unlocked the back door of the residence and led him inside. “Doc Hodges made several improvements before opening her practice.”

Not a fan of modular housing, he examined each room with skepticism. The floor plan was surprisingly open and pleasant, with vaulted ceilings and plenty of windows. A large great room separated two bedrooms and a bath from the owner’s suite and kitchen. The walls were painted or paneled, rather than the patterned wallboard he’d seen on older mobile homes. “Doctor Hodges lived here?”

“Yes. It was convenient, especially for emergencies with animals staying overnight.” She opened the blinds, revealing two windows overlooking the front porch and the front yard’s large crepe myrtle tree, just beginning to bloom. “Her mother sold all the furniture but not the appliances. Of course, if you prefer to live elsewhere, you could rent it out.”

He gave a noncommittal murmur, but he’d be nuts to live anywhere else. Living near the clinic made economic sense. He wouldn’t spend more than he needed to. The bedrooms were roomy enough, especially the owner’s suite with its own bathroom and walk-in closet.

“Cable and high-speed internet are available here, too.”

“Good.” He didn’t need television, but internet was vital to his business. “Immediate possession?” The sooner, the better, because he had no home. His mother had lost their house years ago, and Pops had no room to spare.

“Yes. Considering the amount of your down payment, you’ll have no trouble qualifying for the loan assumption. As soon as we can schedule the closing, you can hang out your open-for-business sign.”

“Well.” He chuckled. “It’s not that simple. I need equipment, for starters. And staff. You know any experienced veterinarian assistants?”

She led him into the kitchen. The appliances looked new. Doctor Hodges hadn’t been one to cook as far as he could tell. But Doc George enjoyed cooking. And he could make the most of this spacious, well-appointed kitchen.

“I know of one. She worked for Doc Hodges but lost her job, of course, when her boss died. She might welcome the opportunity to interview with you.”

“Thanks. First, let’s write the contract.” He followed her outside to the long front porch, additional construction to the original modular home, probably one of Doc Hodges’s improvements. It faced Ortega, a residential street with tidy, modest homes and mature shade trees. Empty except for a wooden swing, the porch could be a cozy retreat at the end of the day, assuming he wasn’t too busy to stop and relax.

Ms. Sinclair removed a ballpoint pen and business card from her purse. She wrote on the blank side of the card. “Here’s the name of the vet assistant when you get ready to hire your staff. You can probably find her at Miller’s IGA Market on Desoto, where she’s been working part time.”

He stuffed the card in his shirt pocket. “Thanks.”

They walked around to the front of the business via the sidewalk, which returned them to the gravel parking lot. “Let me get my brief case and I’ll meet you inside.”

Jittery with nerves, he went inside the building and paced the reception area. This was it. He was about to gamble—no, not gamble—invest his savings into his own practice. He’d have to start out conservatively, at least until he knew how many patients he’d have. One experienced assistant would be a good idea. He could hire more staff as his practice grew. He fished the business card from his pocket and flipped it over to read the name. His hand trembled. The card flew from his fingers.

He stooped to pick it up and read the name again. And smiled.

Iris Porter.

*****

IMG_0251Author Info:

Cheryl Norman grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, and earned a BA in English at Georgia State University in Atlanta. After a career in the telecommunications industry, she turned to fiction writing and won the 2003 EPPIE award for her contemporary romance, Last Resort.  Her debut with Medallion Press, Restore My Heart, led to a mention in Publisher’s Weekly as one of ten new romance authors to watch. Running Scared, a romantic suspense set in Jacksonville, Florida, and Washington D.C., received a Perfect 10 from Romance Reviews Today. Reviewer Harriet Klausner calls her writing “Mindful of Linda Howard.” She currently writes the Drake Springs series romance novels for Turquoise Morning Press.

Her passion for cooking and healthful eating led her to write four cookbooks and an award-winning blog, The Hasty Tasty Meals Kitchen (hastytastymeals.com). She also offers writers grammar help via her Grammar Cop blog, newsletter articles, and workshops.

In addition to writing fiction and cookbooks, Cheryl works with other breast cancer survivors to raise awareness about early detection and treatment of the disease.

Visit Cheryl at her Web site: http://cherylnorman.com, Twitter: http://twitter.com/cherylnorman and Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/cherinorman

Books by Cheryl Norman (Amazon):

RETURN TO DRAKE SPRINGS (Book 1: Drake Springs Next Door series from Turquoise Morning Press)

RUNNING OUT OF TIME (Turquoise Morning Press)

REBUILD MY WORLD (Turquoise Morning Press)

RECLAIM MY LIFE (Medallion Press)

RESTORE MY HEART (Medallion Press)

RUNNING SCARED (Medallion Press)

ROMANCE ON ROUTE 66 Anthology (Highland Press)

Short fiction by Cheryl Norman:

Coming soon: Hometown Blessings (Highland Press’s Christmas Blessings anthology)

The Christmas Prayer (Highland Press’s The Heart of Christmas anthology)

Veiled Threat (Turquoise Morning Press’s The Wedding Day Collection)

Twilight Time (Highland Press-Romance on Route 66)

Bad Moon Rising (Highland Press-Romance on Route 66)

*****

Giveaway:

signed copies of

the original Drake Springs novels,

RECLAIM MY LIFE and REBUILD MY WORLD

(US only)

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/c7458f4348/

*****

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Return to Drake Springs Tour Banner

Spotlight – MacAlister’s Hope

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We’re starting the morning with a special treat – a hero in a kilt … ah, Scottish Historical Romances are some of my favorites!

*****

MacAlisters Hope - CoverMACALISTER’S HOPE

A KILMARTIN GLEN NOVELLA

by LAURIN WITTIG

SCOTTISH HISTORICAL ROMANCE

OCTOBER 21, 2014

Blurb:

Kieron MacAlister has always loved Fia MacLachlan, a wee fey lass he met years ago who, with her sweet smile and surprising insight, changed his life. When he comes face-to-face with the beautiful woman she’s grown into, can he convince her to change her life, too?

AMAZON KINDLE US – http://goo.gl/6HKNHh

AMAZON KINDLE CA – http://goo.gl/Fpr8vx

GOODREADS – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23247011-macalister-s-hope?from_search=true

*****

Excerpt:

“Fia can go with you,” Elena said.

Fia’s breath hitched. “Nay, I am needed here, at least until after the bairn is born and you are recovered.”

Elena took her hand and gave it a squeeze. “I shall be fine. The midwife can look after me.”

Fia wanted to shake her head, but she nodded instead, swallowing all of her arguments for why she should stay. ’Twas her duty to do as the chief and the lady required. “I will go.”

“Do you share the Lamont gift?” Tavish snapped, jerking Fia’s attention back to the two men who stood closest to her and spoke for their clan.

“Nay,” Fia answered with a lift of her chin, “but I am well trained as a healer.”

“Fia is expert with herbs, far more than I am,” Elena said. “She has a canny way of knowing which will best serve those she treats, such as I have never seen before.”

Elena reached out and pulled Fia close, wrapping her arm over Fia’s shoulder in a gesture that had always made Fia feel safe, while at the same time Elena skewered first Tavish, then the other man, with that same motherly glare that made even grown men cower. “She is more than capable of tending your chief in his illness.”

Elena’s words of praise eased some of Fia’s concern over leaving her foster mother when the bairn could come at any time.

“Aye, I will do all that I can for your chief, but I have one condition.”

Elena tightened her grip and Symon turned to face her, irritation and concern filling his eyes. Fia wiggled free of Elena’s grip and took her hand again. She smiled at Symon, knowing he could not glower at her when she did that, and indeed his gaze softened.

“I will need to return to Kilmartin within a ten day. If you cannot promise me that, then I will not go with you.” She took a deep breath, unused to going against Symon or Elena’s wishes, but she hoped this was enough of a compromise to keep everyone happy. Fia could feel the knots in her shoulders loosening now that she had set her own requirements on the deal.

“But she does not have your gift.” The words came out as a growl from between Tavish’s gritted teeth.

Fia could see the man next to him tense, as if ready to do battle, though he had not so much as gestured toward his dirk or his sword. That was when she noticed that he held something in his hand, rolling it in his palm as if he calmed himself with it. She looked up at his face carefully for the first time and realized he was familiar to her, though she could not remember from where she might know him. There was something about his eyes…nay, she could not place him.

Elena tilted her head and smiled, glancing at Fia and drawing Fia’s attention back to the conversation.

“Nay, she does not have the Lamont gift,” Elena agreed, “but she is very talented in her own way, and you do not have a choice. Fia can go with you to tend your chief—your father—” she added pointedly, “and be returned here within a ten day, or you can leave here with a tincture that may or may not be what your father requires.”

Tavish started to respond, when the other man simultaneously reached out and gripped his shoulder, as if to stop him from speaking, and dropped the thing in his hand. Fia watched as a perfectly round, milky stone rolled to rest near Elena’s feet. Fia scooped it up, for Elena could not even bend over these days. She dusted the pretty stone off on her skirt, then held it out for the man but he did not take it from her.

“Do you think you can heal him, Fia?” he asked, saying her name as if he, too, remembered her, though she still could not remember why she knew him.

She looked at Tavish, holding the stone out for him to take as his companion did not seem interested in it anymore. “I do not ken,” she said, needing to be truthful with him and herself, “but I will do my best.” The palest pink whispered along the milky white ribbons within the stone, surprising her even as she heard the other man let out his breath. “But you must promise to have me back here before Elena’s time,” she said, though her eyes were still on the stone that was once again milky white, “whether your father is better or not.”

Elena plucked the stone from Fia’s hand and held it up to the pale sunlight, gazing into it with a bemused look upon her face.

“I believe she can heal him,” Elena said, still gazing into the stone, while pink once more whispered through it. Fia gasped. Elena looked at her for a moment and quirked an eyebrow as if asking if Fia had seen what Elena had. Elena lowered her hand and held the stone out to its owner with a mysterious sort of smile playing over her lips. “’Tis a beautiful stone. It reminds me of a tale I once heard about the Cailleach Bheur, the mother of winter, and a frozen tear that held the truth of her heartache. You should not be so uncareful with it.”

“Aye, my lady,” he said quietly. “I have heard that story, too.” He swallowed and smiled.

“I am afraid I have a bad habit of fiddling with it and dropping it betimes,” he added, tucking the stone into a pouch at his belt. “Fia’s skills will be most appreciated.”
Tavish sucked in a loud breath.

“She will do as she says,” the other man said to him, “I am sure of it.”

Tavish said nothing for a long moment, then nodded. “Very well. If we cannot have the skill of Lady Elena, we will take Fia with us to tend my da.”

Fia and the other man winced at Tavish’s less than grateful tone.

“And return me in a ten day.” Fia narrowed her eyes and pressed her lips together. She had no intention of budging from Elena’s side without this assurance.

“We promise,” the other man said when Tavish did not.

*****

MacAlisters Hop - Author PhotoAuthor Info:

Laurin Wittig writes Kindle Top 10 bestselling and award-winning Scottish medieval romances. She has been obsessed with her Scottish heritage since her first visit to Scotland when she was eleven years old, and was thrilled, years later, to discover Scottish romances. Since then she has had the good fortune to bring her own Highland stories to readers around the world.

AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE – http://www.amazon.com/Laurin-Wittig/e/B001HCW85K/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1413134838&sr=8-2-ent

WEBSITE / BLOG – http://laurinwittig.com/

FACEBOOK – https://www.facebook.com/LaurinWittigAuthor

TWITTER – https://twitter.com/LaurinWittig

PINTEREST – http://www.pinterest.com/laurinwittig/

GOODREADS – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/459627.Laurin_Wittig

*****

Giveaway:

$25 Amazon Gift Card

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/00a4671620/

*****

MacAlisters Hope - Banner

Spotlight – Snow in July

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I love this one – a mix of historical romance and paranormal.  And we’ve got a sneak peek that totally has me hooked!

*****

Snow in July - Book CoverSnow in July

by Kim Iverson Headlee

Young Adult Paranormal Historical Romance

Released July 2014

386 pages/94K words

Pendragon Cove Press

Cover by Natasha Brown

Blurb:

Sir Robert Alain de Bellencombre has been granted what every man wants: a rich English estate in exchange for his valiant service at the Battle of Hastings. To claim this reward, the Norman knight must wed the estate’s Saxon heiress.

Most men would leap at such an opportunity, but for Alain, who broke his vow to his dying mother by failing to protect his youngest brother in battle, it means facing more easily broken vows. But when rumors of rampant thievery, dangerous beasts, and sorcery plaguing a neighboring estate reach his ears, nothing will make him shirk duty to king and country when people’s lives stand at risk. He assumes the guise of a squire to scout the land, its problems, and its lady.

Lady Kendra of Edgarburh has been granted what no woman wants: a forced marriage to an enemy who may be kith or kin to the man who murdered her beloved brother. Compounding her anguish is her failure to awaken the miraculous healing gift bequeathed by their late mother in time to save his life. Although with his dying breath, he made her promise to seek happiness above all, Kendra vows that she shall find neither comfort nor love in the arms of a Norman…unless it snows in July.

Alain is smitten by Lady Kendra from the first moment of their meeting; Kendra feels the forbidden allure of the handsome and courtly Norman “squire.” But a growing evil overshadows everyone, invoking dark forces and ensnaring Kendra in a plot to overthrow the king Alain is oath-bound to serve. Kendra and Alain face a battle unlike any other as their honor, their love, their lives, and even their very souls lie in the balance.

AMAZON KINDLE US – http://goo.gl/d4p7UA

AMAZON KINDLE CA – http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00L6K50V2

AMAZON KINDLE UK – http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00L6K50V2

AMAZON PAPERBACK – http://www.amazon.com/dp/0990505502

BARNES & NOBLES NOOK – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/snow-in-july-kim-headlee/1119853202?ean=2940149693818&itm=1&usri=2940149693818

BARNES & NOBLES PAPERBACK – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/snow-in-july-kim-headlee/1119853202?ean=9780990505501

SMASHWORDS – https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/450831

ITUNES – https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id892162990

GOODREADS – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22398941-snow-in-july

SHELFARI – http://www.shelfari.com/books/37731943/Snow-in-July

*****

Excerpt:

FIFTEEN THOUSAND MEN and horses writhed across the valley below, appearing as toys in a children’s game.

Many might consider war a game, but Sir Robert Alain de Bellencombre, knight of Normandy bound to the service of Duke William and commander of a unit in the cavalry reserves, did not number among their ranks.

Edward the Confessor, King of England via his Saxon father but Norman by his mother, was dead. This battle, raging near the coastal hamlet called Hastings, would decide the right of one man to wear the English crown: William the Norman, acknowledged by Pope Alexander to be Edward’s lawful successor; or Harold the Saxon, brother of Edward’s wife, the man alleged to be Edward’s deathbed choice.

Stroking his war horse’s glossy charcoal neck to calm her, Alain pondered Harold’s claim. It had to be true. This many men would not sacrifice their lives for a lie. Yet the vast majority of Harold’s supporters were Saxons harboring no wish to bear the Norman yoke. Perhaps such men might be desperate enough to fight for a lie that promised to restore Saxon rule.

A trumpet blared. He signaled his men forward, couched his lance, and spurred Chou to send her careening into the melee.

Harold’s shield wall, which had seemed impregnable, began to crumble under the onslaught of Alain’s unit, hastened by the desertion of men who no doubt decided they weren’t quite so willing to die. Their lord stood exposed just long enough for a Norman archer to sight his mark. Harold fell, screaming and clutching an arrow that protruded from one eye.

Harold’s supporters closed ranks around him, blocking Alain’s view and giving him more than enough to do as the Saxons redoubled their efforts to guard their lord’s body.

A familiar whirl of colors caught Alain’s attention. The saffron leopard prowling on a green field—Étienne! A Saxon knight, with a blue arm and fist blazing defiance across his gray shield, bore down upon Étienne with leveled lance. Étienne tumbled from his horse. He scrambled to his feet and retrieved his sword, putting it to good use on the Saxons surrounding him, although the knight who’d unhorsed him had already ridden in search of other targets.

Lance long since discarded and sword now rising and falling with fatal precision, Alain surged to reach his brother’s side. Protection of her youngest son had been their dying mother’s wish, and he had sworn on his own life to keep Étienne safe.

Before he could close the distance, another Saxon knight fought past Étienne’s guard to thrust a war-knife into his throat. Through the visor the knight’s eyes gleamed with startling, fathomless malice. Alain could only watch in stunned disbelief as he laid his hand upon Étienne’s chest for a few moments. Uttering a soul-freezing howl, the Saxon yanked out his seax and disappeared into the press with Étienne’s shield, denying Alain vengeance.

Shame and grief rent his heart asunder.

He had failed the two he loved most; failed them so utterly that he could never beg their forgiveness in this lifetime.

Pain slammed into his shoulder, toppling him from the saddle. Étienne’s body broke his fall. He tried to roll clear, but a spear through his chest pinned him to Étienne. His gut convulsed, and bile burned his throat. Blinding agony killed his struggle to free himself. Death’s stench invaded his nostrils.

He closed his eyes and waited for his final journey to begin.

*****

Author Info:

Kim Headlee lives on a farm in southwestern Virginia with her family, cats, goats, and assorted wildlife. People & creatures come and go, but the cave and the 250-year-old house ruins — the latter having been occupied as recently as the mid-20th century — seem to be sticking around for a while yet.

Kim is a Seattle native (when she used to live in the Metro DC area, she loved telling people she was from “the other Washington”) and a direct descendent of 20th -century Russian nobility. Her grandmother was a childhood friend of the  doomed Grand Duchess Anastasia, and the romantic yet tragic story of how Lydia escaped Communist Russia with the aid of her American husband will most certainly one day fuel one of Kim’s novels. Another novel in the queue will involve her husband’s ancestor, the 7th-century proto-Viking king of the Swedish colony in Russia.

For the time being, however, Kim has plenty of work to do in creating her projected 8-book Arthurian series, The Dragon’s Dove Chronicles, and other novels under her new imprint, Pendragon Cove Press. She also writes romantic historical fiction under the pseudonym “Kimberly Iverson.”

AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE – http://www.amazon.com/Kim-Headlee/e/B001KE2LK2

WEBSITE / BLOG – http://kimiversonheadlee.blogspot.com/

FACEBOOK – https://www.facebook.com/KimIversonHeadlee

TWITTER – https://twitter.com/KimHeadlee

GOOGLE+ – https://plus.google.com/+KimHeadlee

PINTEREST – http://www.pinterest.com/kimheadlee/

GOODREADS – http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/845537.Kim_Headlee

SHELFARI – http://www.shelfari.com/o1514267737

LINKEDIN – http://www.linkedin.com/in/kimheadlee/

YOUTUBE CHANNEL – http://www.youtube.com/user/gyanhumara

Video Interview – http://youtu.be/DV5iKrEIROk

*****

 Giveaway:

10 eBook Copies of Snow in July

10 note cards from the author

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/9944253c88/

AND

5 paperback copies

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/107246-snow-in-july

*****

Snow in July - Tour Banner

Spotlight – Rocky Mountain Romance

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We’ve seen some of Vivian Arend’s other series – with All Fired Up and One Sexy Ride - but this is the first time I’ve gotten to share her oh-so-popular Six Pack Ranch series.  If they are anything like what we’ve seen so far it is going to be a sizzling hot treat!

*****

RockyMountainRomanceRocky Mountain Romance

by Vivian Arend

Contemporary Romance

Releasing October 21, 2014

Blurb:

Second chances are the sweetest—and the hottest.

It took a spectacularly embarrassing break-up to knock Steve Moonshine Coleman off his lazy butt. In the ten months since that night, he’s changed his ways. Now that Melody’s back in town, it’s time for this sweet-talking cowboy to convince her to get back in the saddle with him.

A return to her veterinary position in Rocky Mountain House was always in the cards for Melody Langley. Getting back together with Steve? Never part of the plan. He had lots of potential but zero ambition, and there’s no way she’ll accept anything less than a man who can keep up with her, in and out of bed.

But the new-and-improved cowboy is impossible to resist, so Melody issues a challenge. Three months to prove he’s reformed. Three months of Steve orchestrating one sexual indulgence after another–‪wicked distractions from the old boys’ club Melody faces at work and Steve’s growing responsibilities.

He’s got one shot to prove with more than words what’s in his heart and soul.

Check it out at Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22914333-rocky-mountain-romance

Or Buy it at:

Amazon – http://bit.ly/AmazonRockyMt

Barnes and Noble – http://bit.ly/BNRockyMt

Kobo – http://bit.ly/KoboRockyMt

iBooks – http://bit.ly/AppleRockyMt

*****

RMRTeaser1

*****

Excerpt:

Melody went with Steve willingly, around the side of the barn to where his truck and a horse trailer waited. He helped her into the driver side and she slid into the middle seat, checking her watch to make sure she didn’t get too far behind schedule. No way did she want another repeat of her hellish Monday.

“I’ve got thirty minutes tops, otherwise I need to phone the clinic and let them know I’ll be late.”

“You won’t be late,” he promised.

They rattled down a short side road but instead of turning toward the highway, Steve took them along a back trail that led through the trees into a clearing at the side of wide-open ranch land. Nothing lay before them but miles of low rolling hills. To the west, the Rocky Mountains rose above to the sky, the craggy peaks decorated with a tiny dusting of white in the highest cracks and crannies. The tree line broke off to expose granite greys and flashes of white quartz.

It was an amazing view, and she was glad it was something she got to see every day of her life.

She was still staring in admiration when Steve parked the truck and jerked open the door.

Melody followed him out, but couldn’t see any signs of an animal that needed attention.

“Do you want me to be a veterinary to the squirrels?” she teased.

He whirled, catching her under the hips and pulling her against his body so he could kiss her fiercely. Her back pressed against the cold metal of the horse trailer as his overheated body met hers.

“You’re driving me crazy,” he confessed when he finally let her breathe. “I’ve been aching to touch you since the weekend. I need to be inside you.”

Melody didn’t have the words to protest, especially not when he put his lips to her neck and sucked. A flash of heat went from his mouth through her entire system, and she clutched his shoulders.

She was in motion again, this time her feet on the ground as his hands scrambled at her belt buckle. “I want you right now,” he demanded.

The clock was ticking, but his hands were doing incredible things even as Melody tried to make the right decision.

“Oh, God. Here? You’re not serious, Steve, right out in the open—?”

He shoved her jeans down to her ankles. He stripped off his shirt, dropping it on top of the wheel guard of the trailer while she stood, pants around her ankles, admiring the broad bands of muscles on his torso.

Then she was on top of his shirt, her knees spread wide as he pulled her forward to his eager mouth. Her ankles were trapped together by her pants, but Steve didn’t seem to care.

Melody shoved her hands into his hair to catch her balance, but there was no catching her breath as he ate greedily. His tongue danced over her clit until she was gasping, the sound loud in contrast to the wind in the trees behind them. Everything that had to be done that day vanished as her world closed on this time, this place.

*****

RMRTeaser2

*****

VivianArendAuthor Info:

Vivian Arend in one word: Adventurous. In a sentence: Willing to try just about anything once. That wide-eyed attitude has taken her around North America, through parts of Europe, and into Central and South America, often with no running water.

Her optimistic outlook meant when challenged to write a book, she gave it a shot, and discovered creating worlds to play in was nearly as addictive as traveling the real one. Now a New York Times and USA bestselling author of over 40 novels and short stories in both contemporary and paranormal genres, Vivian continues to explore, write and otherwise keep herself well entertained.

Website: http://www.vivianarend.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VivianArend

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VivianArend

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2932249.Vivian_Arend

*****

RMRTeaser3

*****

Giveaway:

Get the Six Pack Ranch series digital backlist!

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/07c2363f43

Spotlight – The Ryan Chronicles

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Here’s a special treat for those who like paranormal romances – Books 1, 2 and 3 in The Ryan Chronicles Trilogy , complete with a sneak peek from book 1!

*****

Ryan Chronicles 3DThe Ryan Chronicles Trilogy

The Ryan Chronicles Books 1,2,3

by J.E. Taylor

Genre: Paranormal Romance / Paranormal Suspense

Publisher: JET-Fueled Fiction / Novel Concept Publishing, LLC

Date of Publication: 10-17-14

ASIN: B00N078SEA

Cover Artist: Cora Graphics

Blurb:

The Ryan Chronicles – Book One:  Saving Grace

When CJ Ryan’s girlfriend decides life is less complicated without him, CJ travels a destructive path into despair, walking the line between what’s right and what feels good. But what feels good is a dangerous slope to travel, especially when Lucifer wages war for his soul.

One wrong step and CJ could fall into the devil’s trap, becoming no better than the demons he battles.

The Ryan Chronicles – Book Two: Raven Heart

CJ Ryan still can’t remember a thing about his past, but he is determined to have a future with Valerie. Despite his lack of memory, he finds himself ensnared in the cutthroat world of entertainment whether he wants it or not. The push into the spotlight shines a harsh glare on his family and brings with it a plague of horrors that drag him to the edge.

With the darkness of the past threatening, CJ turns to his brother looking for answers, but when an enemy with a psychotic history re-enters their lives, it will take more than just his memory to save them.

The Ryan Chronicles – Book Three: Trinity’s Wrath

CJ Ryan’s life seems to have fallen into place, and while the backdrop of his Hawaiian honeymoon provides the perfect healing elixir, the guilt of sentencing his father to an eternity of torture at Lucifer’s hands starts to intrude on his happily-ever-after.

When he and Valerie return from Hawaii, a note from the king of hell greets him, outlining in sickening detail his plans for CJ and those he holds dearest.

With everyone he loves on Lucifer’s hit list, CJ must start living up to the bargain he made in Heaven, but every one of Hell’s gates he closes is one less portal available for his father’s escape.

Available at Amazon

*****

Excerpt from book 1:

She smiled and I felt a need stir inside me, and it had nothing to do with my heart, or soul, for that matter.

“You really let a demon tie you up?” Dimples appeared in her cheeks and mine bloomed with heat.

I shifted, focusing back on the darkness beyond the glass, suddenly uncomfortable and unable to look at her. I swear my face must be the shade of a bright red kickball. “I wasn’t exactly myself,” I said without looking at her.

She chuckled.

The kind of chuckle that was meant as a turn on and I slid my gaze to her. “You like your men tied up?” I raised an eyebrow. It was her turn to blush and she grinned, shrugging and looking back outside. Before I could explore more of this conversation, she took a step back, dragging me with her.

There must have been a dozen pale creatures slinking across the back yard. I gave her hand that gripped my upper arm a gentle pat and she turned her frightened gaze to me.

“They won’t get through.” My voice held confidence, but deep inside, I was trembling just as much as she was. Damian, Steve, and I had wiped out more than this at the cove, but that was three of us and of course Paradise Cove probably had a lot to do with it.

We both focused on the approaching horde and without much thought, I slung my arm around Valerie’s shoulder and pulled her close. It was time to concentrate on the deadly quality of the wall I put up. I wasn’t sure of how much sizzle to put into it.

“I want to see them burn,” Valerie said, answering my silent contemplation and a chill ran up my spine.

She had every right to hate these creatures as much as demons and I concentrated, glaring at the approaching danger. Saliva ran from their lips and their teeth gleamed in the moonlight.

My heart pounded in my chest, sending throbbing vibrations through my skin. The harder my heart beat, the hungrier the approaching vampires looked.

“Just a few more feet,” I muttered, focusing on the entire perimeter of the house because I wasn’t as much of an idiot as they thought. This wasn’t the only line of assault. Still, when they advanced, I took a cautious step backwards, pulling Valerie with me. The power inside me grew and I couldn’t tell whether it was the adrenaline or the power raking across my skin like a hundred finely manicured nails. The sensation grew, moving from the land of pleasure into the world of discomfort and I gritted my teeth.

“Come on, you motherfuckers,” I growled, loud enough for their acute hearing to pick up.

I moved Valerie behind me and positioned myself in a fighting stance, waving them in with my leading hand. The results were memorable.

They all launched towards the glass slider and the moment they hit my invisible barrier each vampire burst into a ball of flame. The roar of fire drowned out their screams, but I heard them and the dark part of my soul reveled in it.

Valerie let out a high pitched laugh and I glanced back at her, smiling.

She met my gaze with a measure of awe. “The only one I ever saw do something that impressive was Michael.”

Being compared to an archangel was humbling and I glanced outside at the black dust spinning on the wind. “I’m not an angel.”

“Oh, I gathered that,” she said and stepped away.

I turned towards her. “What do you mean by that?”

“You’re more recent activities?”

I shoved my hands into my pockets and stared at the floor, shamed by the fact she was privy to my more decadent actions. Instead of apologizing, I lifted my gaze to hers, studying the memories of her past, especially the times after the more traumatic events. Naomi was right about one thing. The girl never freaked out. Ever.

And therein lay the challenge.

I let a grin slowly surface and narrowed my eyes, stepping closer. “So, you want to try out some of those ‘activities’ with me?”

She laughed. The kind of laugh that bruised a man’s ego and when she went into the gale realm, I crossed my arms, my good humor turning sourer by the second.

*****

Author Info:

J.E. Taylor is a writer, a publisher, an editor, a manuscript formatter, a mother, a wife and a business analyst, not necessarily in that order. She first sat down to seriously write in February of 2007 after her daughter asked:

“Mom, if you could do anything, what would you do?”

From that moment on, she hasn’t looked back and now her writing résumé includes more than a dozen published novels along with several short stories on the virtual shelves including a few within eXcessica anthologies.

In addition to being co-owner of Novel Concept Publishing , Ms. Taylor also moonlights as a Senior Editor of Allegory an online venue for Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror. She has been known to edit a book or two and also offers her services judging writing contests for various Romance Writers Association chapters.

She lives in Connecticut with her husband and two children and during the summer months enjoys her weekends on the shore in southern Maine.

Visit her at www.jetaylor75.com and sign up for her newsletter for early previews of her upcoming books, release announcements, and special opportunities for free swag!

Sign up for Ms. Taylor’s newsletter at http://eepurl.com/P6UPX

And as always, please consider leaving an honest review!

http://jetaylor75.blogspot.com/

http://www.facebook.com/pages/JETaylor/

https://twitter.com/JETaylor75

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3153969.J_E_Taylor

http://www.amazon.com/J.E.-Taylor/e/B003FER8M6/

Books by J.E. Taylor

The Ryan Chronicles Series:

Saving Grace

Raven Heart

Trinity’s Wrath (10/17/2014)

The Ryan Chronicles Trilogy (10/17/2014)

Night Hawk Series:

Night Hawk

Tigress

Trinity Rising

Night Hawk Trilogy

Steve Williams Series:

Dark Reckoning

Vengeance

Hunting Season

Georgia Reign

Crystal Illusions

Saving Face

The Steve Williams Series (all six books in a box e-book set)

The Death Chronicles Series:

Don’t Fear the Reaper

Highway to Hell

Knocking on Heaven’s Door

The Death Chronicles Trilogy

The Games Series:

Survival Games

Mind Games

End Game

The Games Trilogy

Other titles:

Steam – Anthology

Glimpses – Anthology

Messiah

Short Stories by J.E. Taylor

Miami Heat

Mile High

Office Games

The Raising

The Seduction of Sir Galahad

Armageddon

Harvest Moon

Abyss

Grayson House

Nightmares

The Understudy

*****

Check out the other participating sites by clicking on the banner below!

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Spotlight – Lady Catherine’s Secret

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Now we get the first look at the newest book by Sheridan Jeane … I love this cover!

*****

Lady Catherine's Secret CoverLady Catherine’s Secret

Secrets and Seduction, #2

By Sheridan Jeane

Publication Date: December 1, 2014

Genres: Historical Romance

Pre-order Link:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1qX5pSr

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1Cnqs70

Blurb:

London, 1853.

Despite Lady Catherine’s love of fencing, she needs to stop pretending to be a boy and fraternizing with men…but not until after the fencing tournament! Her mother plans to marry her off by the end of the season, so this will be her last chance to enjoy her freedom. When she impulsively puts her reputation at risk to save the life of a dashing competitor, all seems lost when he sees through her disguise, but he vows never to reveal her secret. Thank goodness for gentlemanly honor!

Daniel, Marquess of Huntley, wants to overcome the rumors of his father’s madness so that he can be embraced by London society. His plan is to marry the most proper woman who will have him, and then raise stable, respectable children. He certainly isn’t interested in some hoyden with a penchant for masquerading as a boy and flaunting society’s rules. In fact, he’d prefer to keep his distance.

When an obsessed suitor discovers Catherine’s secret and threatens blackmail, the only path out of social ruin is marriage. But what kind of protection does matrimony provide when a vengeful suitor is plotting the ultimate revenge?

*****

Sheridan JeaneAuthor Info:

Sheridan Jeane writes exciting and emotion-packed historical romances set in the Victorian Era that confront issues of trust and conformity.

With the advent of the industrial age, life was changing. Many people tried to hold on to the old ways of life while others embraced the new opportunities open to them. Join Sheridan as she explores the clash between the old and the new. Sheridan has always loved books, history, and stories about amazing people who blaze new trails.

Despite naming their daughter Sheridan because they thought it might someday look great on the cover of a book, Sheridan’s parents urged her in a more practical direction for college. Sheridan earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science with a minor in English.

Website: http://sheridan-jeane.strikingly.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SheridanJeane

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SheridanJeane

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/photo/author/8120594.Sheridan_Jeane

Media Contact:

IndieSage PR

www.indiesage.com

*****

Giveaway:

Lady Catherine's Secret CR Giveaway

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/5440a354219/

Spotlight – Cafe in the Park

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And now a delicious mixture of sizzle and paranormal in Elodie Parkes’s Cafe in the Park.

*****

Cafe in the Park - Book CoverCafé in the Park

by Elodie Parkes

GENRE – Contemporary Erotic Paranormal romance

PUBLICATION DATE – September 9, 2014

PUBLISHER – Siren Publishing

COVER ARTIST – Elodie Parkes

Blurb:

When Emily joins a dating agency, she never expects to meet someone like Chris. Everything she ever hoped for in a man, he’s special in more ways than one. Their intense attraction to each other is fueled by their shared loneliness. Will Emily find out his shocking secret when someone from his past comes back to haunt him?

How can love blossom, when someone is trying to tear them apart?

BUY & TBR LINKS

AMAZON KINDLE US – http://goo.gl/aOWjAh

AMAZON KINDLE UK – http://goo.gl/rVdZjy

GOODREADS – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23152546-cafe-in-the-park

*****

Excerpt:

The next day after work, she kicked off her high-heeled shoes at the front door and padded along to her study to check the date matching mailbox on the website. There was one reply.

“Meet me for coffee Thursday lunchtime. I’ll wait at the front of Café in the Park at one o’clock. I’m tall, dark haired, and will be wearing black.”

Emily took off the jacket of her business suit and read the message again. Café in the Park was easy to get to from her workplace. She hadn’t too much time to worry over the meeting, since today was Wednesday. She only had to cut down an adjacent street to meet the large square of the city park. There was a pond and a big bistro café there. Lots of workers went to eat their lunch at the café or sit on the benches that lined the path through the park…so a safe enough assignation.

As she ate her evening meal, she daydreamed about the meeting, hoping the man would be attractive, intelligent, kind, and sexy.

The next day, even though she’d promised herself she wouldn’t fuss, she put on her shortest work skirt and highest heels, and instead of the tan stockings she ordinarily wore, she chose black. As she drove to work, a flutter of anticipation grew in her stomach.

The morning dragged. She began to get cold feet, but then, ten minutes before one o’clock, she put her computer to sleep, picked up her jacket from the back of her desk chair, and left her office. Emily told the receptionist she was going out for a sandwich. As she strode down the street and detoured to the park, nervousness took over. Her heart beat a little faster. By the time she approached the café, she was shaking.

There was no one outside it that matched the description in the message. Two young men in white shirts and tan chinos passed her and went into the café. Three women all in business dress talking and laughing together, waited for a fourth to join them, and then went into the café. Emily took a deep breath to steady her nerves and walked right up to the café entrance. She stood around for a few moments trying not to feel self-conscious, but it got the better of her. She retreated to a bench seat on the path a little way off from the door to the café.

At one fifteen, she slipped her cell phone into her jacket pocket after checking the time, and stood. She walked to hang around outside the café entrance for another five minutes, but then feeling foolish, she went back to work.

She detoured into the staff kitchen and got coffee to take back to her desk. As she sat down in her desk chair, she couldn’t help a sigh of disappointment escaping. That afternoon sadness crept over her. At the end of the working day as she traveled home, she realized just how much she’d hoped to meet a man who might love her. A fresh wave of foolishness flowed over her as she acknowledged hurt at being lured to the meeting only for no one to show up.

She almost cancelled her membership of the matching service and especially her attendance at the speed-dating event the next evening, but then a little flame of hope sprang up. I’ll try for a little longer.

©Elodie Parkes 2014 Siren Publishing All Rights Reserved

*****

Author Info:

Elodie Parkes is a British author writing romance, erotic, contemporary, and often with a twist of mystery, paranormal or suspense. Her books are always steamy — cool stories and hot love scenes.

Elodie lives in Canterbury with her two dogs. She works in an antique emporium by day and writes at night, loving the cloak of silent darkness that descends on the rural countryside around her home.

Elodie writes for, Hot Ink Press, Moon Rose Publishing, Eternal Press, Secret Cravings, Evernight, and Siren Publishing.

She has also released titles as an individual indie author.

FOLLOW LINKS

BLOG – http://elodieparkes.blogspot.co.uk/

TUMBLR – http://melodyelodie.tumblr.com/

FACEBOOK – http://www.facebook.com/ElodieParkes

TWITTER – https://twitter.com/ElodieParkes

GOOGLE+ – https://plus.google.com/114681167004175190514/posts

PINTEREST – http://www.pinterest.com/melodyelodie/

YOUTUBE – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHsKf5cy0pl7QcMmWcYluaA/videos

AMAZON – http://www.amazon.com/Elodie-Parkes/e/B00AHBYPO4

AMAZON UK – http://www.amazon.co.uk/Elodie-Parkes/e/B00AHBYPO4

SMASHWORDS – https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/ElodieP

BARNES & NOBLES – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/elodie-parkes

ALL ROMANCE – https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-thelasttime-1213476-356.html

BOOK STRAND – http://www.bookstrand.com/elodie-parkes

EVERYNIGHT PUBLISHING – http://www.evernightpublishing.com/elodie-parkes/

ROMANCE REVIEWS – http://erotic.theromancereviews.com/mypageprofile.php?location=EllieP

MANIC READERS – http://www.manicreaders.com/ElodieParkes/

*****

Giveaway:

One $10 or £10 Amazon Gift card

Five eCopies of Elodie’s latest release from Hot Ink Press, Love at First Sigh, for kindle and gifted from Amazon a duo of contemporary erotic romance for 18+ readers

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/9944253c93/

*****

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Spotlight – Howls ‘N Bites

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I’ve got a couple of fun paranormal box sets for you guys … complete with a fantastic preorder price and a great contest!

*****

EVER-AFTER-SERES-3D-SMALLFall into the Ever After Series, a paranormal romance box set, by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author A.C. James. It’s only available for 99 cents during preorders—Get your copy before the price goes up to $4.99!

Eternal Ever After – Book 1

His past holds a secret that becomes her nightmare.

Arie Cush has a secret that he thought he’d left behind. When his past follows him to Chicago he must protect someone that reminds him of all the painful memories he’s tried so hard to forget. But when every touch from her sets his heart and body on fire–he finds it hard to maintain his aloof façade.

Holly Ellis has secrets of her own. An encounter with the handsome stranger who frequents her coffee shop reveals a vampire with baggage. Even though it might be more than she bargained for, she can’t resist the one person who understands her. But her life is in danger and a supernatural threat could reveal the underground world of vampires to humankind in this Gothic Cinderella re-telling.

Fallen Ever After – Book 2

He can’t lose her when danger strikes again.

Arie Cush wanted Holly from the very first moment he met her. A night at the Hellfire Club (HFC) is filled with old friends and new danger. The long-standing feud between the faeries that run the Chicago Crew and a lethal toxin puts Holly and other fledgling vampires in danger. Can they stop a vampire-fae war that’s been brewing for nearly a century?

Beyond Ever After – Book 3

The half-demon unleashed a force that can tear them apart.

On the night, Daeveena, a half-fey, half-demon walked out of the Hellfire Club, she left a tide of destruction, but everyone figured that was the end of it. No one imagined that she would steal something so valuable. Can Arie discover who is harboring her before he loses everything?

As a special BONUS readers get Winter Promises: An Ever After Christmas Story that takes place between book one and book two!

Amazon ~ B&N ~ GooglePlay ~ iBooks ~ Kobo ~ ARe

CryWolfSeries3D-SmallCry Wolf Series by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Sarah Mäkelä, will make you howl for more. Get four incredible books for 99 cents. It won’t stay that way for long. So preorder your copy today!

The Witch Who Cried Wolf – Book 1

New Adult Paranormal Romance

Be careful what you wish for…

A potion gone wrong: Mia Brooks is a reluctant witch, with powers that she tries to hold in check. But when her magic gets mixed up, supernatural forces are unleashed and suddenly she’s being pursued by werewolves—that she didn’t even realize existed…

Hidden emotions: Ethan Parker, Mia’s brother’s best friend, is home from deployment for the holidays. Mia’s not only hiding from werewolves, she’s trying to keep her feelings for Ethan secret; it would be a disaster if he knew she’s been nursing a long-time crush…

The power of love: things take a terrifying turn when Mia and Ethan are attacked by a werewolf. Ethan is amazed when Mia reveals her paranormal prowess as she tries to shield them from danger. But can she really protect them from the darkness that lurks? And how can he tell her that, for ages, he’s been denying what he really wants? Mia…

Cold Moon Rising – Book 2

New Adult Paranormal Romance

Passions flare when the cold moon rises…

Kelly: a normal college girl, who knows what she wants—to survive her final exams, and find someone to share her life with. Studying with Jacob is becoming too hot to handle; she’s falling for him, but he’s going too fast…

Jacob: a not-so-typical frat guy, who hides a secret—he’s a werewolf. Whenever the moon is high, he’s driven to shed his human form and satisfy his powerful desires. He craves Kelly, but she’s pushing him away…

Fallout: Jacob can smell Kelly’s arousal, but she insists she doesn’t want sex. A wolf can only take so much before his natural instincts win out. When the tension between them explodes, Jacob has no choice but to walk…

Kidnapped! Kelly is abducted by evil scientists who’ve mistaken her for a female werecat and, despite their differences, Jacob has to try and find her. But it’s a race against time and the lunar tides. The scientists have taken Kelly to their lab and turned her into a shapeshifter for real. The full moon is rising, and soon neither Kelly nor Jacob will be able to control their inner beasts. Who knows what the consequences will be when they are consumed by unquenchable animal lust…

The Wolf Who Played With Fire – Book 3

Some magic can’t be unspun…

Meddling in magic…
If Mia Brooks could turn back time, it would be to when she used her fledgling magic to craft a potion for an injured werewolf. It nearly killed the Pack Alpha, and now the lives of her witch mentor, Jessa, and her soldier boyfriend, Ethan Parker, have been changed forever. Jessa is in hospital after a vicious werewolf attack. And, Ethan, having being bitten, is becoming a werewolf himself.

A wolf at the door…
Mia can’t turn back time, but she can try to make things right with the two people she cares about most. She’s keeping Jessa’s shop, Eternally Magick, open, and she’s there for Ethan as his inner wolf grows. But, by the next full moon, his transformation will be complete. Can she really be the mate of a half-man-half-wolf, living within the law of the Pack?

Under his spell…
Struggling to contain his new lupine senses, Ethan goes missing on active duty. When Mia realizes her werewolf lover has been abducted, she knows must harness every magic power she possesses to get him safely back…

Amazon ~ B&N ~ GooglePlay ~ iBooks ~ Kobo ~ ARe

*****

 Giveaway:

Grand Prize — One $50 Giftcard

5 e-book copies of Breathe by A.C. James (Contemporary Dark Erotica Story)

5 e-book copies of Jungle Heat by Sarah Mäkelä

2 audiobook copies of Eternal Ever After by A.C. James

2 audiobook copies of Cold Moon Rising by Sarah Mäkelä

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/3707964e5/

*****

Author Info:

acjamescolor3withframeA.C. James

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author A.C. James writes paranormal romance and erotica, includingEternal Ever After which was featured in the bestselling Spice Box anthology. She pounds out sexy scenes at her keyboard where romance is laced with horror in hot stories of vampires and bad boy werewolves. Her stories feature strong heroines and alpha heroes, with plenty of action, twists, and turns that will keep you turning pages.

A.C. resides in northeast Pennsylvania where she entertains her husband with her imaginative yarns and quirky sense of humor. She spends her time drinking large vats of coffee while taming two toddlers by day and writing by night. Recovering video game beta tester and tech geek who grew-up going to cons and watching SmackDown. There’s probably some cosplay pictures around somewhere of her dressed up as Bloodberry from Saber Marionette J. Just don’t tell anyone.

Connect With A.C.

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/ApQ7z
Website: http://www.acjames.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ac.james.9
Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/AC-James/129228540578101
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ACJamesauthor
GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/acjames

sarahmakelaSarah Mäkelä

Sarah Mäkelä loves her fiction dark, magical, and passionate. She is a paranormal romance author, but she’s written all over the romance spectrum with cyberpunk, sci-fi, fantasy, urban fantasy…even a sweet contemporary romance!

A life-long paranormal fan, she still sleeps with a night light. In her spare time, she reads sexy books, watches scary movies (and Ghost Adventures), and plays computer games with her husband. When she gets the chance, she loves traveling the world too.

Connect With Sarah

Website: http://www.sarahmakela.com
Newsletter: http://www.sarahmakela.com/contact.html#newsletter
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/sarahmakela
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/authorsarahmakela
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/sarahmakela
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/sarahmakela

*****

HowlsNBites-Book-Blitz

Guest Post – The Love Match

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Y’all I’m so happy that I get to share with you the lovely Lily Maxton.  I even got a sneak peek at her new book The Love Match which you guys have got to read. (To help you out, Amazon is selling all three books in the series for 99 cents each… get them now!)

*****

*What do you like best about writing romances?

I just love romance in general—the growing attraction, the sexual tension, the point where these aspects cross over into love and respect, the unique chemistry and dynamic between two people. It’s fun for me to read about or watch in a movie, and I like writing about it, too. And the best part is always the happily ever after. It feels really good to uplift people.

*What is your favorite romantic story (movie/book, fact/fiction)?

I’ll go with historical romance for this. As You Desire by Connie Brockway is probably my all time favorite historical romance novel. Brockway just did everything perfectly. And Harry. Oh Harry. There is no better romance hero than Harry Braxton.  Sometimes it takes a little convincing to believe that the hero has truly fallen in love, but in As You Desire, you don’t need convincing. You just know. Everything he does practically screams his love for the heroine. It’s such a lush and romantic story.

*If you could be any romantic character, who would it be and why?

This might not be very original, but I think I’d be Elizabeth Bennet in Pride and Prejudice since she’s such a great, strong, witty heroine. And of course, she wins Mr. Darcy’s love and becomes the mistress of Pemberly. Not bad at all (particularly if Mr. Darcy looks anything like Colin Firth in the miniseries).  I get that answer a lot … but it would be my answer too because who wouldn’t want to be with Colin Firth’s Darcy???

*Which of your characters/books was the most fun to write?

Don’t make me choose! Ok, of my currently published works, I’ll pick Anne from The Wager. Anne is like the complete opposite of me—outspoken, a bit reckless, a bit of a tomboy. I think it’s always entertaining to write a heroine with a bold personality. But I have a soft spot for all my characters, and I’ve had a lot of fun with everything so far.

*If you weren’t a writer and could be anything you want, what would it be?

I’ll say an artist/painter. I have no natural ability in that area, but I love art, so it would be awesome if I did.

*****

23257806

The Love Match

A Sisters of Scandal Novella

Lily Maxton

Blurb:

Hampshire, 1818

To her family, Olivia Middleton is a problem of the most vexing sort. With her eldest two sisters married off, Olivia is now the target of her mother’s matrimonial scheming. Shy and somewhat plain, Olivia prefers the thrill of a gothic novel to the hunt for a husband. And as far as her family is concerned, something must be done… But Olivia has no interest in the men paraded before her.

Only the charming and infuriating Mr. William Cross (a rake in the making, and certainly not a suitable husband) holds the slightest fascination for her…

After watching his father die of a broken heart, William has sworn never to wed for a love match. Yet he’s intrigued by the bookish Olivia. And though he tried, staying away from her turns out to be impossible. But a scandalous liaison lands them both on the marriage block, William is shocked when Olivia refuses to wed for anything less than love – propriety be damned.

Now William must do the unthinkable… learn to love his reluctant fiancee.

**Get a sneak peek and find out how to buy it at Entangled**

*****

Review:

This is my first “Sisters of Scandal” book and that worked out just fine.  There are some allusions to what happened in the previous stories, and the sisters and their husbands make a small appearance, but I don’t think that it impacted this one in any way.  I’m assuming that you would have seen at least Olivia and her parents before but Maxton fleshes out the characters well, despite being only about 75 pages, so I don’t know that it will hurt not having that background.

William and Olivia see thru each other pretty much right away.  She knows that beneath the charming and flirtatious mask that he shows the work, William is hiding the real man.  And he quickly realizes that while everyone else sees a dull and unusual woman, there is something quite engaging about Olivia.  Their shared love of literature gives them a little extra connection but it is the fact that they see so much more than the rest of the world that truly brings them together.

Because it is short we don’t get a lot of the falling in love part of their story – we get the meet-cute and all of the interactions that bring them together, then we get the aftermath.  We do get just enough though to get a good understanding of how they end up where they do … and how they end up going the way that they must.

I have to say that the ending is one of my favorites.  While William might have come to the realization of his feeling a bit abruptly, readers and those closest to him know what is coming.  And they way that he goes about winning back Olivia’s heart is just about perfect.

*****

Author Info:

Lily Maxton grew up in the Midwest, reading, writing, and daydreaming amidst cornfields. After graduating with a degree in English, she decided to put her natural inclinations to good use and embark on a career as a writer.

When she’s not working on a new story, she likes to tour old houses, add to her tea stash, and think of reasons to avoid housework.

Find her at http://lilymaxton.com or on Goodreads

Book Review – Alex

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I’ve got another review today – and I want to wish a happy book day to Sawyer Bennett’s Alex!

*****

cover50199-mediumHockey star Alexander Crossman has a reputation as a cold-hearted player on and off the rink. Pushed into the sport by an alcoholic father, Alex isn’t afraid to give fans the proverbial middle finger, relishing his role as the MVP they love to hate. Management, however, isn’t so amused. Now Alex has a choice: fix his public image through community service or ride the bench. But Alex refuses to be molded into the Carolina Cold Fury poster boy . . . not even by a tempting redhead with killer curves.
 
As a social worker, Sutton Price is accustomed to difficult people—like Alex, who’s been assigned to help her create a drug-abuse awareness program for at-risk youth as part of the team’s effort to clean up his image. What she doesn’t expect is the arrogant smirk from his perfect lips to stir her most heated fantasies. But Sutton isn’t one to cross professional boundaries—and besides, Alex doesn’t do relationships . . . or does he? The more she sees behind Alex’s bad-boy façade, the more Sutton craves the man she uncovers.

I love the bad-boy turned good story line and Alex definitely delivers … I just wish that he’d gotten just a little more professional help in fighting his demons.  He does have some on-the-side help from Sutton.  She is a professional and deals every day with a lot of the issues that Alex experiences, but he’s had many years of trouble built up and I think that he needs a little more help than what she’s able to give him.  I do like how she makes him take another look at so many things – hockey, people, life … he’s lived in a cold ball of hate for so long that it is a beautiful thing to watch it change.  Just a little bit of follow up with an impartial someone dedicated to helping him would have made the story.

And it’s important to remember that the book is called Alex for a reason.  It’s all about him and that is perfectly fine.  We do get both Sutton and Alex’s POV throughout but it is his growth that is the centerpiece of the story.  He’s troubled and difficult and beautiful underneath.  Buried under all of that negativity and pain, there is someone who can be so much more – a leader and a giver – he just needed a way out and Bennett gives him a great one.

If you are looking for a hard read with a great ending, then Alex is for you.  It isn’t all roses and sunshine, but it is definitely worth taking the journey with him as he learns to let go of so many bad things and let the good things in.

*****

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*****

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