Heartbeat Series by Renee Lee Fisher – Spotlight and Giveway



This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions.
The author is giving away the winner’s choice of an autographed copy of Rock Notes, Love Notes, or Music Notes, plus a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card and Betsey Johnson Makeup Purse. (US/Canada only)

Madison Tierney’s a writer, whose husband, Thomas suddenly left her after 10 years; she is destroyed and now recently alone and divorced. She picks herself up slowly trying to restore her lost confidence and ability to love again. She follows her writing passion and ventures to follow a local band – Rolling Isaac’s and write about them, raw and real and how they follow their dreams. Her book is titled ROCK NOTES.

Her ex-husband wants to come back, and she is torn with what she had for ten years with him which was safe, comforting and a committed relationship. And now she is falling hard for the band singer – Max Rand (Madison calls him Rand), who is several years younger than her and every moment with him is intense and unpredictable.

Rand has tragically lost love in his life. He has no love left to give. He fills his time with many groupies and late nights. The story travels you to various concert venues, from a sexy piercing party to a New Years rocking eve. There are many interruptions and assumptions for this couple along their journey.

While Madison is writing ROCK NOTES, somewhere along the way she begins to write LOVE NOTES, which are personal secret love letters for Rand. Also Rand is always writing music with the hope of creating his first solo album. Both Madison and Rand appear to be able to write their feelings on paper effortlessly but have a hard time conveying them to one another. This story is about being so broken inside from having your heart ripped apart, to attempting to rebuild trust, follow your dreams and hopefully find love.

Will she return to the warm awaiting arms of her ex-husband who still is in love with her? Or will there be a new beginning for Madison and Rand? Can these two empty souls feel love again? Or will what ignites between them simply fade away after the concert lights dim?


Rand:

As our bodies joined as one, I felt more in that one moment than I have ever felt with anyone. I never wanted to leave your arms, your body, and our connection. I believe that you complete me, you were made for me. I struggled to keep my feelings at bay and not let you know but I am too emotionally involved with you and to know now that you are with me is beyond belief. Where we head from here together has unlimited paths. I know I will always have this need now to have you fulfill me as I know you can. I see you and just a glance across the room to you makes me want to have us running to the bedroom. Silently I ponder how to relay to you just how much Love I contain for you. Some days I feel like my heart is about to burst. Maddy xo

Madison and Rand’s love story continues as they move their relationship to a more passionate, intimate level…but again they are thrown some challenges. Will Madison and Rand be together and move forward or…backward? Read what comes their way to cause doubt in their minds. Just when everything is going fine, sometimes accidents occur.

Rand:

Oh, God, something horrible has happened. I only remember parts of it and they seem like snapshots that were taken so quickly…I need to feel you near me. I need to reach out and touch you and let you know I love you. Rand, I never felt so in love as I do when I am with you. Maddy xo

“What the hell are you talking about Madison? You have me at a complete loss here?” Rand

Madison must fully trust Rand to commit herself to him forever in marriage. Rand must make her see and feel what she truly means to him. This story will pull at your heart and make you tear as you turn the pages that may finally reveal Madison’s handwritten LOVE NOTES.

Will they get their Happily Ever After?


How will Madison and Rand keep their love and music playing?

Music Notes (Book Three of the Heartbeat Series)

Just when life seems to be going smooth, Madison receives news that leaves her speechless. She’s a writer that for the moment cannot form her words. Rand now is the one to continue their story…his story.

Music Notes will take you on the tour with Max Rand as his first Solo Album – Simply Mad is launched. Will his travel for several months put distance in their relationship? Can their love survive?

Rand will travel through his own journey of self discovery along the way. Just when Rand is at a high point in his life, a collapse . . . will bring one of them down…Rand? Madison?

One person will offer the ultimate sacrifice. See the songs that Rand has written, and where his inspiration comes from.

Follow this novel and see how it plays out.




Enjoy an excerpt:

Once my eyes closed, my thoughts turned to Rand, lost soul, lost love, so similar to me but then on stage he was so confident and sure of himself and his place in the world. That confidence was something that I lacked. He attacked the stage and all his charm and stunning looks dissolved those that set their eyes or minds on him. My mind kept trailing over and over about him.

His deep blue eyes, his messy dark hair that just swept over his shoulder, his towering height, his hidden inks. I could think of nothing but him.

I tensed for a moment when I felt someone hovering over me. I felt a breath and caught the scent of Rand fresh from a shower. I was lying on my side and I slightly opened my eyes. I knew I was seeing him, not dreaming. I could see him getting closer and I shut my eyes, remaining so very still. He reached down, took his curved fingers down my cheek, so slowly and tenderly and then he leaned in and kissed me on the forehead. Trailing his mouth down from my forehead he placed a soft kiss on the side of my neck and then moved upward to the tip of my shoulder and he lightly bit at my cami strap. I was so completely shocked and although I wanted to reach around and tell him I was awake, I couldn’t move. I had hopes that in the darkness he didn’t see me see peak out at him moments earlier. He then whispered, “Night Madison” and he tugged off my boots and pulled a light blanket over me.

When the sun appeared in the bedroom I awoke all nervous, I got up and went to the bathroom. I had to search my purse for items to make myself presentable. It had only been about four hours that I slept. I gathered my boots and put my sweater back on and went downstairs to find Rand already wide awake and in the kitchen making us some breakfast.

“I’m starving,” he said looking at me like he was ready to devour me. “Madison what are you hungry for?”

He made me hesitate to answer him, I was definitely hungry for him. “I think I could eat something.” My stomach was excited and jumping inside just from seeing him so relaxed and cooking.

“Your phone has been vibrating all morning.”

“What’s vibrating?” I was too focused on his body and didn’t hear his words.

“Your phone, you left it on the steps last night with your computer.”

“Oh, okay that’s what was vibrating.” I was still watching his body in motion, and was thinking of how I would like him to make me stir. He caught me staring at him and I looked away and then I remembered I had silenced my phone during their practice and then powered it up when we walked over to the house. I had to pull myself together so I went to retrieve my phone and I looked at all the missed messages, they were from Jillian. I hollered back, “Rand, I just need a few minutes to check my messages.” I went into his main front room and dialed her back.

“Where the hell are you?” Jillian yelled. She was so worried that I hadn’t called her and she stopped by my place having her own key and I was no where to be found. It took some effort to calm her but I told her briefly what had happened since the concert.

“Jillian can you take me to Philly today to get my car? I don’t want to put Rand out anymore. I’ll just see if he can bring me back to my house.”

“I’ll agree only on one condition, I want every single detail, don’t leave anything out, I want all of them!” I had to put my hand over the phone as she said this. She was so loud and I hoped Rand did not hear any of this.

“Hey, I should go, I don’t want to be rude, he is making me breakfast,” I whispered to her.

“No I bet you’re his breakfast…but I’ll come get you at noon. You can tell me then how great this sexy man is.”

I didn’t get to comment, as she hung up too quickly. Rand flashed me a sexy smile when I returned to the kitchen, I wasn’t sure if he heard any of our conversation. I did look up at the high ceiling in his house and knew each word spoken echoed.

About the Author:

Renee Lee
Author that has the passion for putting her pen and ideas to paper. A pure romance junkie and she loves to tell stories. She was an English Major of LaSalle University and always wanted to be a writer. In the past years her books titled – From the Vine (a collection of writings/poems) and Cody and the Pumpkin Truck (a Childrens’ Book) were published. She has also written many other children’s stories, lyrics, articles and wedding ceremonies. Currently she is deep into her Heartbeat Series of Contemporary Romance Novels which are titled – ROCK NOTES, LOVE NOTES, MUSIC NOTES, FIRST BEAT, FIRST BASS and FIRST TASTE.

Also coming soon The Crossing Series I, II and III of The Knot Hole, The Passage and The Muse.

Renee resides in Eagleville, PA. with her husband Michael, of many years and her two cats – Nyah and Cody. She has a great support system of Love from her family and friends.

Renee BELIEVES you should follow your DREAMS and that -

The HAPPIEST of people don’t have the best of everything,
they simply make the best of everything.
Renee loves to travel, especially to St. Martin – Netherland Antilles. She enjoys meeting new people to inspire her and she will always write down a person’s name that is unique to use as a potential character in her future writings.

Website – www.reneeleefisher.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ReneeLeeFisherAuthor
Twitter – Twitter
Buy Rock Notes at Amazon, iTunes, Barnes and Noble, or All Romance eBooks.

Buy Love Notes at Amazon, iTunes, Barnes and Noble, or All Romance eBooks.

Buy Music Notes at Amazon, iTunes, Barnes and Noble, or All Romance eBooks.

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Magnolia Drive by Rochelle Alers -Spotlight

7_30 Magnolia-Drive-Blog-Tour

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by the publisher.

Rochelle has shared with us five questions she wishes she had been asked in interviews:

1. How did you come up with the plot for the first novel you attempted to write? How long did it take for you to complete it? If or when was it published?

2. You wrote a prequel for one family series and it was very well received. Will you ever write another prequel?

3. Why do you think it took so long for romance novels featuring African-Americans as lead characters to be accepted by publishers?

4. You’ve published many more romance titles than women’s fiction. Which do you prefer? And where do you see your writing career five years from now?

5. Of all of your published titles, which rank as your Top 5 favorite? Why?

7_30 Alers_MagnoliaDrive_MMAfter a painful divorce and failed acting career, Francine Tanner packs her things and moves back to her hometown of Sanctuary Cove. There, she will join her mother in the family business as a hairstylist at the Beauty Box. Putting her LA dreams behind her, all Francine wants is to focus on rebuilding her life.

Keaton Grace is an independent film writer and director looking for a great place to open his own studio. After happening upon the small-town, he buys an abandoned building and surrounding lands to start his company. But he doesn’t expect to bump into the beautiful Francine Tanner when he walks into the Beauty Box for a haircut and shave. Remembering her from a performance years ago in an off-Broadway show, he knows exactly what role she will play in his life.

Sparks fly between the two until Keaton reveals his plan-he wants Francine to star in his upcoming film. Tortured by her Hollywood past, she refuses to have anything to do with the film, even if it means letting go of their budding romance.

 

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About Rochelle Alers

Bestselling author, Rochelle Alers has nearly two million copies of her novels in print. She is also the recipient of numerous awards, including the Gold Pen Award, the Emma Award, Vivian Stephens Award for Excellence in Romance Writing, the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award and the Zora Neale Hurston Literary Award.

Website

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Authors I Own The Most Books From

Top_Ten_Tuesday

Today, our reviewer, Thornapple, has offered up her “Ten Authors I Own The Most Books From”. Welcome, Thornapple!

Thanks for having me! When I signed on to do this post, I thought I had a pretty good idea of who would make my top ten list. One thing I should explain is that I collect vintage paperbacks. So, I have some large collections of some of my all time favorite authors. I couldn’t decide if I should leave those out or include them. I decided to add a few of the collections but mostly these are authors I have on my kindle or have saved my favorite books by them. Some the authors that made the list was surprising to me. I had no idea I had that many books by some of these authors.

So, without further ado: Starting at number ten…

10) Martha Grimes. I have the entire Richard Jury Series!

09) Barbara Michaels. ( aka Elizabeth Peters) I have a huge Gothic collection and Barbara was one of the best, I also have a large collection of her Amelia Peabody novels written under the Elizabeth Peters name

08) Dick Francis. One of my favorite British Mystery Series. I don’t have all of his work, but I have most of them.

07) Christina Dodd. Now this was a surprise. Christiana has written quite a few historical romances, as well as paranormal and romantic suspense. I have saved quite a few of her historical novels. I do not have the infamous 3 armed cover–check that out-it’s legendary.

06) Stephen King. Okay, no surprises there except that I guess I haven’t actually saved many of his books.

05) Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. This is a collection and I’m still working on it, but I have quite a number of Sherlock Holmes books, some are in a very nice collectors volume my son got me for Christmas one year.

04) Julia Quinn. Another head scratcher. I didn’t know I had kept so many of these. Julia is, along with Eloisa James one of my favorite regency period authors.

03) Sherrilyn Kenyon. If you have not read Sherrilyn Kenyon you might not get it. But, trust me when I say this is one popular author. If you manage to keep all the books she has written and try really hard to keep them in mint condition, you might have a small fortune on your hands. One of the best in Paranormal Romance.

02) Rex Stout. Sort of a surprise to me. I have collected Nero Wolfe novels for awhile, but I has no idea my collection was so large. I am really pleased to see I had so many because unless you want to pay a fortune for them on Ebay, they are really hard to find.

And the winner is…Drumroll please… A tie!! I know, what a rip off. However I have to be honest and this may be a little anti climatic, and no surprise to most…

01) Nora Roberts/ J.D. Robb. I have nearly all of the Eve Dallas “In Death” series and many, many, many Nora Roberts novels. I have collected the older Nora Roberts and still have quite a few of her paperbacks but I mostly have these in digital because I love her stories but simply do not have room for a collection of her books. Nora is the queen of romance–she can write anything: contemporary, romantic suspense, paranormal, and even science fiction.

So, there you have it folks- the strangest top ten list in history!! What’s on your bookshelf?

Launch Day: Unstoppable by Shannon Richard – excerpt

7_29 Unstoppable-Launch-Day-Blitz

Oh God, who was she kidding? She’d never felt this way about any man before. Bennett was…well, infuriating to start with, but he was brave, smart, kind, funny, intense. There was nothing like having his full attention focused on her. He gave her way more than butterflies. It was like eagles were flapping around in her stomach whenever he was around. There were no flutters. They were freaking tidal waves.

Yeah, getting over Bennett was going to be way easier said than done.

Mel headed toward the supply closet at the back of her classroom where she locked up her purse in a filing cabinet. She grabbed the key and unlocked the top drawer, pulled out her purse, and slammed the drawer shut. When she turned around Bennett was standing in the doorway. Filling it completely. Mel stopped short and stared at him. His eyes were focused on her, the determination in them making all of the thoughts vacate her brain.

“I can’t leave you alone.” He came into the room and shut the door behind him. “And I’m not playing games.” He crossed the small space. “Or at least I’m not trying to.” He shook his head. “I think about you all the time.” He stopped in front of her, took the purse out of her hands, and put it on top of the filing cabinet. Then he reached up and touched her cheek. His fingers fanned out as he pushed his hand to the back of her head and tilted her face up.

Holy hell, what is happening?

She looked into his eyes, and her knees went just a little bit weak. She reached back and planted her hands against the wall, trying to find some balance, something to keep her upright, because she really didn’t want to miss this.

“Because I am interested in you, Mel.” He cupped her face with his other hand and ran his thumb across her lower lip. “Very interested.” He leaned forward and pressed his mouth to hers.

The kiss was soft and gentle at first, just his lips against hers. He took another step into her, pushing her back. When she hit the wall she gasped, and Bennett took advantage of her open mouth. He sucked her bottom lip into his mouth, and she couldn’t stop the moan that escaped her throat.

She plastered herself up against him, against every inch of his hard body. Her arms wound around his shoulders; her hands skittered up the back of his head. She opened her mouth further and his tongue touched hers. Bennett groaned as their tongues began a thorough exploration of each other’s mouths.

His hands were at the back of her head, his fingers deftly pulling out the pins that held up her bun. And then he was unwinding her hair, his hands plunging deep into her unruly curls.

“I’ve wanted to do this for so long,” he said against her mouth. “These curls of yours drive me out of my mind.”

“What stopped you?” She nipped at his lower lip.

“Pure stupidity,” he said, as he claimed her mouth again.

Holy cow, can this man kiss. I feel it everywhere, and do I mean everywhere! He had her toes curling in her shoes, all manner of body parts tingling where they were pushed up against his, and his hands were magic in her hair. One of his hands drifted down to her side. He touched her hip for a second before his hand slid to the small of her back. He held her to him, but really, she wasn’t going anywhere.

“Mel,” a voice called out from her classroom. “Are you here?”

There were only a few things that could bring Mel back to reality with the snap of a finger. The sound of her little brother’s voice was definitely one of them.

“Oh crap, it’s Hamilton,” Mel gasped, pulling back. Bennett’s hand was behind her head, and it prevented her from hitting the wall. “I’ll be right out!” she answered Hamilton, unable to completely cover up the breathy edge to her voice.

Bennett nodded. He let go of her reluctantly, and took a step back. “You’re going to have to give me a minute before I can go out there,” he said, clearing his throat uncomfortably.

“Oh,” she said, nodding. “Um, okay.”

Actually, she was going to need a minute, too. She knew her hair was everywhere, and she had a feeling Bennett’s scruffy jaw had left its fair share of marks on her face. Not to mention her thoroughly swollen lips.

Soooo worth it.

7_29 unstoppable Richard_Unstoppable_MMSome things you don’t dare let go . . .
Melanie O’Bryan knows life is too short to be afraid of taking chances. And former Air Force sergeant Bennett Hart is certainly worth taking a chance on. He’s agreed to help her students with a school project, but she’s hoping the handsome handyman will offer her a whole lot more. Yet despite his heated glances and teasing touches, Mel senses there’s something holding him back . . . Bennett Hart is grateful to be alive and back home in Mirabelle, Florida. Peaceful and uncomplicated-that’s all he’s looking for. Until a spunky, sexy-as-hell teacher turns his life upside down. After one smoldering kiss, Bennett feels like he’s falling without a parachute. But with memories of his past threatening to resurface, he’ll have to decide whether to keep playing it safe, or take the biggest risk of all.

 

About the Author:  7_29 unstoppable Richard_author photoShannon Richard grew up in the Florida Panhandle as the baby sister of two overly protective but loving brothers. She was raised by a more than somewhat eccentric mother, a self-proclaimed vocabularist who showed her how to get lost in a book and a father who passed on his love for coffee and really loud music. She graduated from Florida State University with a BA in English Literature and still lives in Tallahassee where she battles everyday life with writing, reading, and a rant every once in a while. Okay, so the rants might happen on a regular basis. She’s still waiting for her Southern, scruffy, Mr. Darcy, and in the meantime writes love stories to indulge her overactive imagination. Oh, and she’s a pretty big fan of the whimsy.

 

Shannon’s social media

http://shannonrichard.net/

http://facebook.com/ShannonNRichard

@shan_richard

 

Buy Links

B&N: http://bit.ly/1qEc0Y5
BAM: http://bit.ly/1nCFCl1
IndieBound: http://bit.ly/1pgVMQT
Amazon: http://amzn.to/1riD3UR

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Five Things We’d Never Guess about Lauren Layne – Guest Blog and Giveaway

7_29 Only-with-You-Blog-Tour

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by the publisher. Enter to win a copy of ONLY WITH YOU by Lauren Layne.

Five Things We’d never guess about you (fun, weird, interesting)
(1) I’m a total sci-fi geek. Star Wars is my favorite, but I’m also pretty into Star Trek. I have a total crush on Spock.

(2) I hate getting my hair done. For years. I cut it myself. I’d take kitchen sheers and cut off the end of my ponytail when the ends got scraggly.

(3) My favorite vacation spot is Las Vegas … except I don’t gamble!

(4) Winter is my favorite season; summer is my least!

(5) Since graduating from college, I’ve never lived in the same place for more than 2 years, and I love it that way! I’m ready to move after the 18 month mark …

7_29 Layne_Only With You_MMGetting mistaken for a prostitute is not part of Sophie Dalton’s life plan. Not that Sophie even has a life plan. She’s perfectly happy being everyone’s favorite party girl. But then a Las Vegas bachelorette party goes awry, and an uptight businessman gives Sophie a new label: hooker.

Unfortunately, what happens in Vegas doesn’t always stay there. When the same jerk who mistook her for a prostitute shows up as Sophie’s new boss and her perfect sister’s new boyfriend, Sophie’s carefree existence is turned upside down. Grayson Wyatt may have infiltrated family dinners and her professional world, but Sophie’s not about to let a judgmental prude anywhere near her personal life.

As Gray’s icy stares give way to quiet smiles, Sophie realizes that the one man she’s been so desperate to get away from just might be the one she wants to keep around forever.

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About Lauren Layne

Lauren Layne writes contemporary romance for Grand Central Publishing (Forever) and Random House(Loveswept).

After dabbling in an e-commerce career in Seattle and Southern California, Lauren moved to New York City where she now writes full time.

Lauren graduated from Santa Clara University with B.S. in Political Science that she has yet to put to good use. She lives with her husband and plus-sized pomeranian in a tiny Manhattan studio.

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The Longest Night by Kara Braden – a guest blog and giveaway

Welcome Kara Braden to Long and Short Reviews. The publisher is giving one randomly drawn commenter a print copy of The Longest Night (US/Canada only).

A Guest Blog by Kara Braden

The Longest Night is a story of love in isolation. It’s a pretty simple premise: Take two single people, add the rustic romance of a snowy cabin in the woods, stir in a little bit of a mystery behind in heroine’s past, and you’ve got a recipe for romance. Right?

Not so fast! This isn’t the story of love at first sight. The hero and heroine, Ian and Cecily, start out as polite strangers.

As far as Ian is concerned, there’s no rustic romance in his isolated cabin. Instead, it’s a prison, a way to keep him away from the temptation to abuse painkillers so he can get back to his high-stress, adrenaline-charged job as a Manhattan criminal attorney.

The heroine, Cecily has zero interest in any romance, even one with a handsome, intelligent, successful man like Ian. And if Ian’s substance abuse problems aren’t enough, Cecily has her own demons, driving her to live in isolation for the last seven years.

So how did I, as the writer, get them to their happily ever after? What’s the secret to their success?

I let them find their own way.

Some people think there are two types of writers: plotters, who create detailed outlines before setting down even one word of the actual plot, and pantsers, who write by the seat of their pants, making up the story as they go.

I’m a pantser. I create deeply detailed characters with rich personalities and backstories. Then I set up a scenario — in this case, isolation in Cecily’s cabin — and let them tell me how their relationship comes about.

Each step the characters take is logical, realistic, and entirely appropriate. Every emotion, every misunderstanding, every moment of passion is organic, not scripted. The story builds, step-by-step, sometimes one step forward and two steps back. At no point did I twist the story to match an outline or force the characters to act in a way that contradicts what they’d be feeling or thinking at that moment. I didn’t have a formula with milestones for each chapter.

Instead, I listened to the characters and let them fall in love the way they wanted. And in the end, I believe I’ve created a love story that I hope you’ll find rich and rewarding to read.

About the Author:

 photo credit Stephanie Cole

photo credit Stephanie Cole

Kara Braden makes her debut in modern romance with a story of love in isolation. She believes that engaging, romantic fantasy can be found everywhere in the world, even in the most unlikely places. With the support of her wonderful husband, cats, and dogs, she writes from her home office outside Phoenix, Arizona, where she spends her time hiding from the sunlight and heat.

Author Website: http://karabraden.com/

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KaraBraden @KaraBraden

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/KaraBraden/

Tumblr: http://karabraden.tumblr.com/

Buy Links: Amazon , Barnes & Noble , Books A Million , Hastings , IndieBound , Indigo , iTunes , Kobo

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Ava Bleu

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Ava Bleu whose newest book Glorious Sunset, an edgy inspirational romance releases August 26.

She’s currently working on another edgy inspirational that centers on a heroine who is at the height of a nervous breakdown. It’s also a romantic comedy.

Ava said with a smile, “Hey, if a breakdown can’t inspire comedy, what can?”

Ava has been writing for fun since she was old enough to hold a pencil. She began writing for a purpose when she found herself working a job that she was less-than-enthusiastic about.

“I wondered if there was a possibility of earning a living from doing what I love. That was about 15 years ago. I am not yet earning a living doing what I love,” she admitted, “but I find it makes the days working that nine-to-five a little more bearable.”

Ava thinks that the most important thing in any novel is strong characterization.

“You can get away with wicked unrealistic storylines if the reader likes and believes in the characters enough. Look at my novel about a time-traveling king granting wishes to save his soul. A reader could think that’s ridiculous or a reader could think that’s fantastic. I’m putting my money on my strong hero and his ability to persuade people to think it’s fantastic,” she said.

She always starts off with the plot for her book, but as the characters develop–the story changes.

“I haven’t written one book that didn’t deviate drastically from my original plan,” she explained. “The characters and their development really lead the story for me. I try to go with it because once you feel their voices taking over it’s like a zen moment.”

Ava told me that her dogs have taken over her office and made it their room.

“Occasionally they’ll let me use the PC but only if I allow them to play with my toes or risk getting one chewed off if I’m wearing slippers and they think my foot is a chew toy. I now write like a vagabond, carting my laptop with me to wherever I can find space,” she said. “I feel like Dr. David Banner (a.k.a.,the Hulk), always moving throughout the house, always with that sad music following me until I camp in a new location … and the dogs find me and my toes again. They don’t understand the concept of ‘mommy needs her toes’ or ‘yuck’.”

“What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?” I asked.

“Is wine a quirk or a magic elixir?”

“Probably a magic elixer. What about your most embarrassing moment?”

“This is really one of those stories that is much more interesting with a bottle of tequila next to a roaring fireplace, but here goes.

“I fell down the stairs at a mega-church. It was my first visit and I had raised my hand thinking I was praising God, turns out I was volunteering to come down and be saved. I’m all for saving, but that wasn’t my intent. I distinctly remember thinking ‘what a crock, this place is a racket…’ and just like that, foot slipped and I took an epic tumble. If you’ve ever been in a mega church you know how long those staircases are. It was like I was in the middle of a Carol Burnett skit – I just kept rolling and sliding and showing my goodies. And all the way I could hear people gasping and
‘oh no-ing’. When I stopped I was fuzzy and I remember being helped up. To the waiting doctor or nurse, you ask? No, to the back room to be saved. Call me crazy, but I was concerned with my brain matter and just how much of my privates had been seen by the congregation (and hoping the whole thing wasn’t broadcast on that jumbo-tron screen at the front). Not to mention the rug burn, scrapes and bruises—thankfully, nothing broken.

“I decided if they cared so little about my physical well-being they couldn’t really be trusted with my spiritual well-being.”

If you have read Ava’s first romance, The Diva of Peddler’s Creek, you may have noticed that she loves food. She’s always looking for the best, and right now she thinks that’s probably a dish called Chicken Oscar. I don’t know if this is the recipe she uses, but it sounds yummy. Don’t feed her souse meat, however!

“I had it when I was three and have still not forgotten the horror,”she assured me.

No matter how much she likes food, she doesn’t want it to touch on the plate.

“If I have a hot dog on a plate, please make sure that potato salad doesn’t touch the edge of my bun,” she said. “On second thought, I’ll get my own food, it’s safer that way.”

“Have you ever eaten a crayon?” I asked.

“Absolutely. Isn’t that the rite of passage for the honor of starting kindergarten?”

“Well, I don’t remember eating crayons (though I’m sure I did), but I do remember eating that paste that smelled like spearmint.”

“Ebook or print?” I wondered. “And why?”

“Ebooks are here to stay and I’m glad because I believe a lot of people are reading that normally would not because of it. But my personal choice is print all the way, baby! For me, reading is an experience, the memories live in the sense of touch, the smell of the paper, the sound of the pages turning … all those things combine to transport you to a different space. It just feels like when you’re on a device, the device and handling it kind of steal the attention away a little.”

Finally, I asked, “What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?”

“If you’re considering writing for a living, don’t waste years wondering if you’re good enough to be in the game. Doubt will eat up valuable time and, in truth, the only way to find out if it is for you is to do it and put yourself out there. Rest assured, the industry will let you know if you suck. You’ll either decide it’s worth the pain and neurosis or you’ll decide you’d rather do other things with your life. I’m kind of fond of the neurosis at this point. Why, if I didn’t send out every manuscript thinking the industry was out to personally destroy my brilliant, creative voice, I would never try so hard to do better. I suspect that’s the sickness that separates the normal people from the writers.”

7_28 Glorious-Sunset-front-final[1]African King Taka Olufemi has traveled over four hundred years to find the woman who holds the soul of his murdered queen and he’s a little cranky. With a ruby brooch as his vessel, the former king is forced to grant wishes to ungrateful mortals hoping to one day find, and win, the heart of his lost love.

But it will take more than good looks, superior intelligence and an impressive pedigree to earn the love of Violet Jackson. The ambitious interior designer doesn’t remember Taka or their history. Love—with its inevitable heartbreak chaser—has no place in Violet’s immediate life plan. All the handsome “genie” can do for her is pony up on the three wishes he’s promised and try not to be a pain while he’s at it.

While the arrogant king is praying for his submissive queen and the faithless object of his affection isn’t praying at all, guardian angel, Aniweto, is praying for them both. With Ani’s help, Taka and Violet’s epic love will be rekindled and this royal couple-behaving-badly will finally earn their happily-ever-after through the grace of the Almighty.

About the Author: 7_28 croppedpicava[1]Ava Bleu lives and loves in the Midwest, countering bitter winters with smooth jazz and tasty edibles. A book-lover, author, artist and photographer, Ava believes creativity in any form is worth celebrating. She can be found in bookstores and the public library camped next to the cookbooks and/or on the town keeping an eye out for hero-material.

Ava Bleu ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

Ten Things You Might Not Know About Traci Borum – Guest Blog and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by the publisher – Red Adept Publishing. Enter the Rafflecopter at the end of this post for some cool swag!

Ten Things People Might Not Know About Me
by Traci Borum

1. I don’t have a weakness for chocolate, like most people. My weakness is donuts. I could probably eat six glazed donuts in one sitting, if I didn’t stop myself.

2. When I was seventeen years old, I sang a solo in front of twenty thousand people at Reunion Arena (in Dallas, Texas). It was the prize for winning a solo contest at an earlier church youth camp.

3. Every time I start brainstorming my characters, I have to “cast” them. I have to picture a very specific actor or actress in my mind as I write, or else the characters’ faces become a big blob to me and I can’t “see” them. The same is true when I’m reading a book. I have to “cast” the characters to see them clearly enough. Does that make me weird??

4. There are eleven teachers on my mother’s side of the family. I guess teaching is in my genes.

5. I could sit and watch British sitcoms or mini-series all day long. I don’t have enough time, but if I did, I would. I never get tired of those accents, I guess. Or the period dramas. Another time, another place…

6. In my twenties, I moved eight different times in a nine-year period. Exhausting. I don’t recommend it.

7. My 92-year-old grandmother, Della, was the main inspiration for the “Joy” character in Painting the Moon. For my birthday, she surprised me with an oil painting of the fictional Cotswold village where the book takes place. That painting became the top header of my author website.

8. I love teaching Shakespeare to college students—seeing their eyes glaze over when I first mention The Bard, then watching them, class-by-class, scene-by-scene, get excited about the characters and involved in the plots.

9. I have wide, eclectic tastes in music: jazz and big band, Eighties hair bands, classical, British pop, a little country, Irish instrumental, and indie/coffeehouse.

10. My journey to publication was a long and rough road. But I’m grateful I didn’t get published in my twenties when I first started experimenting with novels. Over the years, I’ve had time to study other writers, hone my craft, attend writers’ conferences, meet other writers, and write, write, write. And edit. There’s no quick-and-easy substitute for that.

8_1 Painting-the-Moon-800 Cover reveal and PromotionalWhen Noelle Cooke inherits a quaint English cottage and an art gallery from her famous Aunt Joy, she welcomes a departure from her San Diego routine. But the lure of the Cotswolds, combined with a locked cottage room and a revealing journal, entice her to stay and discover more, including a way to save the gallery from financial ruin. And that means remaining in England. When her childhood sweetheart, Adam Spencer, begins work on a restoration project in Noelle’s village, their friendship blossoms. But as her feelings for Adam deepen, she struggles with memories of what might have been and yearns for a future once thought lost. Faced with a life-altering revelation Aunt Joy took to her grave and a wrenching choice regarding the man she loves, Noelle could lose far more than her heart.

Enjoy this excerpt:

The moment she saw the letter, she knew. The London postmark gave it away.

Noelle set down her keys and coffee, deciding to abandon the rest of her Saturday errands. She needed to take this letter to the ocean. She couldn’t read it here, standing over junk mail and bills.

She kicked off her sandals and walked down the steps of her beach house, grateful for San Diego’s mild weather even in mid-October. And grateful she wouldn’t have to walk far, with the ocean practically at her doorstep.

When she picked her usual spot at the water’s edge and sat down, the foamy water crept toward her toes like long, greedy fingers then slinked back again. Noelle always sought the ocean during troubling moments—craved the sea air on her face, the tinge of salt on her tongue, the comforting swoosh of powerful waves. But sometimes, even the sea couldn’t keep her from feeling hollow. Stranded and alone.
She’d already torn the envelope’s seal on her way down the steps. Opening the letter, she noticed the date, wondering why the news had taken two whole weeks to reach her.

Dear Ms. Cooke,
We regret to inform you of the unfortunate passing of Ms. Joy Valentine.

Great Aunt Joy had died alone in that cottage.

Noelle stared deep into the ocean as tears stung her eyes. Everything had gone quiet: the crash of waves, even the faint tapping of a neighbor’s roof being re-shingled two doors down. All silent.
In the dull gray sky above the ocean, Noelle could see almost slideshow-like, vivid images of her great aunt. Her thin-lipped, lopsided smile; wiry, gray hair secured by a pencil into a makeshift bun; deep wrinkles around her mouth and eyes from decades of smoking. And next, flashes of summers spent in England with her and Gram—white-haired and soft-spoken, the opposite of her sister. Those women had taught Noelle to paint, to enjoy literature, to savor life. Her surrogate mothers, she always called them. Now both gone, the end of an era.

Noelle shivered and wished she’d brought a sweater. It always seemed colder at the water’s edge. Brushing away a tear, she returned to the letter, skimming for more detail. She stopped at this:

As Ms. Valentine’s only living relative, you have hereby been named executor and sole heir of the estate. Please contact our office for further details.

Sole heir. Noelle considered what that might entail. Her aunt’s modest cottage nestled in a village in the Cotswolds, Chilton Crosse. And the art gallery! Noelle hadn’t stepped inside in fourteen years, since she was seventeen. If she concentrated, she could still smell the pungent turpentine and old, musty wood that greeted her when she opened the door. The back room had served as a working gallery, where artists set up and painted while visitors wandered quietly, gazing at masterpieces-in-progress. Occasionally, Aunt Joy even participated. But that was before her sudden retreat into obscurity. Noelle recalled the scandal of that winter, a decade ago, with perfect clarity. Online articles screamed out the embarrassing headlines: Famous Cotswold Artist Has Monster Meltdown; Storms out of Art Show.

No one ever knew what happened, never discovered the trigger that had caused Aunt Joy’s breakdown and subsequent retreat into reclusiveness. Noelle had tried to call her, write her, but the dozens of letters went unanswered. She didn’t know whether her aunt had even received them, or whether Joy had tired of all the probing questions: “Are you okay? I’m worried… why won’t you return my calls?” Joy finally sent one brief letter to Noelle, assuring her she was fine, but that she wanted—needed—to be left alone. She asked that Noelle respect her wishes and her privacy. And so she had.

Restless, Noelle rose and brushed the sand off her jeans. She needed to go inside, make a cup of tea, and banish the chill.

She headed back to the house with the letter, thinking about Joy’s funeral, wondering if it had been a media circus, with paparazzi descending on the unimposing village to fill the inches in their columns the next day. Or perhaps the church was almost empty, her aunt a forgotten figure even in her own community. In either case, Noelle wished she’d been there. And more than that, she wished she’d made contact with her aunt before she died. Just one more time.

She maneuvered her way toward the kitchen through the maze of stacked-up boxes—surely, her roommate, Casey, would retrieve them next week after the honeymoon. But something caught Noelle’s eye. The painting above the mantel, one that had been there for years, one she’d strolled past a thousand times.
Now, though, she couldn’t look at anything else. She drew closer and clicked on a nearby light to study the painting’s detail. One of Aunt Joy’s creations, given to Noelle on her fourteenth birthday—a seaside painting of England’s Cornwall coast. She touched the edge of the frame and peered at the canvas. A white-blond little girl stood at the cliffs, staring into the ocean and holding a broad-brimmed hat, its ribbon floating in the wind. Noelle could almost hear the bluish-gray water crash against the rocks as she looked beyond the little girl, into the endless sea.

Joy explained it that day, as a teenaged Noelle tore the gold wrapping paper. “The little girl in the painting, that’s you on your very first visit to us. I think you were five. I knew how frightened you were, being in England with virtual strangers. But the moment we took you to the sea, to Cornwall, you responded. You seemed calm, at home. And I wanted to paint you that way. To freeze you in time.”

Noelle took a few steps back to sit on the couch, to wish herself into the painting. To those summers spent in England, where everything remained safe, intact.

Not that she didn’t appreciate her life now. But lately, she’d become… stilted. Uneasy. An unfulfilling job, a stagnant social life, where she only played a role of herself, a pretend version. But those precious English summers centered her, brought out her genuine self. And she craved that again more than ever.

* * * *

On Monday morning, Noelle brushed out her honey-blond bangs and gave them a spray, planning what to say to the lawyer, Mr. Lester. She needed to phone his office before work, over a quick breakfast. Last night before bed, she’d done the math in her head, taking time zones into account. 8:00 a.m. San Diego equaled 4:00 p.m. London.

She stood in the kitchen with her back against the countertop and slathered cream cheese onto a bagel. Knowing that Casey was married, truly gone, gave the house a specific emptiness. Especially since Noelle hadn’t found a roommate to replace her yet.

She took a bite and dialed the number of the London firm. She thought she’d have to wait a few rings, but on the very first one, a thin male voice answered, “Hello?”

Nearly choking on the bagel scraping down her throat, she swallowed and tried to respond. “I’d like to speak with Mr. Lester.”

“This is he.”

She took a fast sip of orange juice, cleared her throat, and said, “I’m Noelle Cooke. I received a letter from your firm on Saturday. About my aunt passing away. Joy Valentine?”

“Oh, yes. Noelle.” He stretched out all the vowels. Everything sounded better wrapped in a British accent. “Thank you for responding so promptly.”

He issued condolences and apologized for not contacting Noelle sooner, explaining his first notification went to an old address, then they got down to business.

“As you’re aware, your aunt has left you her entire estate. This includes the properties of Primrose Cottage as well as the Artist’s Gallery.”

“I’m still in a bit of shock over all this.”

“Yes, quite. There are decisions to be made. The gallery is… how do I put this delicately? Financially unstable.”

“Oh. I had no idea.”

“Miss Cooke, these matters would actually be best discussed in person. I know it’s asking much, but might you be able to travel to England? My office is in London, but I have an early business meeting in Bath, near Chilton Crosse, day after tomorrow. You could stay at your aunt’s—or rather, your cottage. The curator could also meet with you to discuss the gallery.”

The idea of seeing the cottage and gallery was thrilling. She assumed no one but Joy had stepped inside those cottage doors in the past decade. Perhaps its contents might offer hints about her aunt’s reclusive period.

“I could meet with you there on my way back to London,” Mr. Lester continued. “There are many papers to sign and—”

“And decisions to be made.”

“Indeed. Urgently, in fact.”

In this Age of Technology, they could still handle the details if she stayed in California. Email, phone, FedEx, fax—back and forth, back and forth. But doing so might stretch things out to weeks, and Mr. Lester indicated they didn’t have weeks. The debt collectors might pounce soon. If she did travel to England, they could manage things in a few days. Plus, she could use that time to sort through the contents of the cottage—old family heirlooms, dishware, or valuables she wanted to keep.

Dan, her boss, would balk about her leaving with such short notice, but too bad. She would remind him that she had vacation time and sick leave, lots of it. Surely, she deserved time for a personal emergency. Noelle could work the rest of the day then leave for England late tonight, with Desha covering her workload and meetings until Thursday. Dan couldn’t say no.

“Yes. I can do that,” she told Mr. Lester decisively. “Let me make some arrangements and get back to you.”

“Excellent.”

“Oh, one more thing. The letter never mentioned. How did my aunt pass away?”

“It was a stroke that took her. Instantly, from what I heard.”

She hadn’t suffered.

The moment she hung up with Mr. Lester, Noelle remembered she would have to postpone the interview tomorrow with John Hill Advertising. She had worked so hard the last two months, polishing her resume, searching online listings for new job openings, scheduling secret interviews during lunch hours or after work. Nothing had panned out yet, but she had been particularly hopeful about tomorrow, a second interview with the senior manager. John Hill represented salvation, her escape from a job and a company she had once loved. But everything had soured drastically when Dan took over last year. The office politics, the backbiting, the pointless meetings and toxic environment. Enough was enough.

She took another bite and peered out the window. She loved it here—seagulls, beaches, the steady shush of the ocean. But the house, even the gorgeous beach view, had lately become redundant.

Can a “seven-year itch” apply to someone’s whole life?

8_1 Traci Borum Profile Pic 2Traci Borum is a writing teacher and native Texan. She’s also an avid reader of women’s fiction, most especially Elin Hilderbrand and Rosamunde Pilcher novels. Since the age of 12, she’s written poetry, short stories, magazine articles, and novels.

Traci also adores all things British. She even owns a British dog (Corgi) and is completely addicted to Masterpiece Theater-must be all those dreamy accents! Aside from having big dreams of getting a book published, it’s the little things that make her the happiest: deep talks with friends, a strong cup of hot chocolate, a hearty game of fetch with her Corgi, and puffy white Texas clouds always reminding her to “look up, slow down, enjoy your life.”

Website ~ Goodreads

Buy the book at Amazon.

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Uriel’s Fall by Loralie Hall – Spotlight and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Loralie will be awarding $10 Amazon Gift Card to a randomly drawn winner via the rafflecopter at the end of this post. Please click on the banner to see the other stops on this tour.

NOTE: This book is on sale for $0.99 through August 8, 2014.

Ronnie has the job any entry-level angel or demon would sell their soul for—she’s a retrieval analyst for the largest search engine in the world. Ubiquity is a joint initiative between heaven and hell. Because what better way to track all of humanity’s secrets, both good and bad, than direct access to their web browsing habits.

She might appreciate the position a little more if a) she could remember anything about her life before she started working at Ubiquity, b) the damn voice in her head would just shut up already, and c) her boss wasn’t a complete dickhead.

As she searches for solutions to the first two issues, and hopes the third will work itself out in performance reviews, she uncovers more petty backstabbing than an episode of Real Housewives, and a conspiracy as old as Lucifer’s descent from heaven. On top of all that, if she forgets the cover sheet on her TPS report one more time, she’s absolutely going on final written warning.

Now Ronnie’s struggling to keep her sanity and job, while stopping the voice in her head from stealing her life. She almost misses the boredom of data analysis at Ubiquity. Almost.

Enjoy an excerpt:

I straightened my clothes the best I could. Maybe I shouldn’t have fallen asleep in my clubbing outfit. Then again, I wasn’t sure I cared. I wasn’t exposing myself to the world, which was a good compromise for me. My breath caught in my throat when I yanked open the door. Nope, definitely not missionaries. But Michael looked incredible in a T-shirt and shorts.

Sorry, what? Too busy drooling.

Great. I thought she hated him.

Yeah, about that.

I wasn’t in the mood for her. My smile fell out on its own. “Hey.”

“Am I interrupting something?” He nodded at my outfit.

“Nah.…” The false bravado slipped away. It felt too cliché to say, “What, this old thing?” Besides, I kind of liked being honest with Michael. “I forgot to change before I fell asleep.”

“Did I wake you, then?”

“I also forgot to change when I woke up.” Too many more nights of missed sleep and I’d be forgetting a lot more. Maybe that was how I’d lost my memory. Had I done this before? Had the voice been there before I lost my memory?

You keep asking yourself circular questions. Let me take over for a while.

Nope. Not interested. Michael still stared at me, brow furrowed. I did a quick check of myself. Skirt wasn’t riding too high. Did I have mascara smeared across my face? “Is something wrong?”

He shook his head. “No. Just waiting to see whether you’re going to try and eviscerate me or just brush me off.”

Oh, that. He really did think I was insane. Or, considering the number of ways our encounters had started and ended, maybe he was just bored with something as basic as me in a mini skirt.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Loralie Hall is a full time corporate geek and a fuller time writer. Her spouse is her muse and their cats are very much their children. When they’re not spending way too much time gaming, they’re making the world more good by vanquishing one fictional evil at a time.

Find Loralie Hall Online

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

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/aszreal

Blog: http://blog.apathyshero.com

Website: http://urielsfall.com

Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00L3WESHU

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/uriels-fall-loralie-hall/1119720777?ean=2940046001648

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/uriels-fall-ubiquity-book-1/id888043741?mt=11

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/446644?ref=LoralieHall

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/uriel-s-fall-ubiquity-book-1

 

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Cheating Justice by Misty Evans and Adrienne Giordano – Spotlight and Giveaway

This post is part of a  blog tour for CHEATING JUSTICE by Misty Evans and Adrienne Giordano. The authors are giving away  a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card and a Justice Team Series Swag Bag–enter via the Rafflecopter below the post.

Misty and Adrienne are also hosting a week-long Facebook Party on the Justice Team Series page which will include several giveaways each day! Details will be announced on page as they are available.

 

 

7_25 book cover~ The second novel in the exciting and bestselling Justice Team romantic suspense series!! ~

 

While investigating a government cover-up, former FBI agent Mitch Monroe is framed for murder. A wanted man, Mitch has no choice but to stay off the grid, and he needs Special Agent Caroline Foster—the FBI’s top sniper and a woman who wants nothing to do with him—to clear his name.

 

After sharing a single night of simmering passion with Mitch a year ago, Caroline hasn’t been able to get him out of her head. Or her heart. He’s jeopardized her job once…helping him now could end her career. But a friend has been murdered, and no matter how Caroline feels about Mitch, he’s not the killer. She needs answers, and she needs Mitch Monroe out of her life once and for all.

 

On the run and with no one to turn to, Mitch and Caroline can’t fight the reigniting passion between them. She’ll lose her career if she proves Mitch is innocent…he’ll lose his life if she doesn’t.

 
Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Kobo.

Enjoy an excerpt:

“I always said you had the best ass in the FBI.”

Her body froze. Eleven months, five days and—she did the math—twelve hours had passed since she’d heard that voice. The one she’d thought about time and again after his last brief visit to her apartment, and she still managed to be equal parts pissed off, concerned and flat-out heartbroken. That voice could only belong to one person. Thus the remark about her ass and—wow—she always knew he had a set of stones, but this was too much even for Mitch Monroe. The man she’d spent all these months trying to forget. Months of burying herself in cases, months of begging her boss for every available opportunity to keep her mind occupied, months of a busy life that didn’t allow for downtime.

Or thoughts of Mitch.

Without turning, she picked up her weapon. “Well, look what the cat dragged in. A girl puts her career on the line for you and you don’t call, you don’t write, nothing. To say the least, your technique needs work.”

And then he laughed. She’d waited months to hit him with that line and he laughed. Classic Mitch. She closed her eyes and—forget that he was a federal fugitive now wanted for murder—she’d kill him herself and be done with the whole affair.

Mitch, a murderer? She couldn’t believe it. No matter what the White House was spinning about Kemp Rodgers’ death, Mitch wouldn’t kill his friend.

Then, again, she’d been Mitch’s friend once…

Finally, she turned, bracing herself for whatever disguise might greet her, but found none. Brave.

As usual.

She took in his long brown hair pulled back in a low ponytail, his dark eyes and ripped jeans, and shook her head. “You’re insane for coming here.”

He shrugged. “It’s a private range. Not like I walked into Quantico.”

It wasn’t enough that he’d almost destroyed her career when he’d first started working The Lion case, now he wanted to have a second go at it. He was a fugitive wanted for murder and she was an FBI agent. She should arrest him.

Yet, she stood waiting for him to say something that would make a damned difference. I’m sorry? I didn’t do it? Anything that would erase the idea that he could have murdered his friend.

She set her rifle on the table behind her, slid the bolt open. Not loaded. She knew it wasn’t, but she checked anyway. Always.

Mitch shuffled behind her.

Too bad. He could wait like she’d waited for him all these months.

Her canvas carry case sat on the bench seat. Like many people, she preferred canvas over hard plastic because the softer material didn’t make the rifle sweat. She dug through the case for her lens covers, popped them on, set the rifle into the case—bolt upward—and zipped it.

She’d clean the rifle later. For her, keeping a weapon in top working order meant cleaning it after every use. Even if only one shot had been fired, her weapons got cleaned. Every time.

She sensed Mitch moving closer, stirring the air around her, upsetting the energy, letting her know he was near. He had that way about him. Sometimes good, sometimes not.

“I need your help.”

Of course he did. Should have known. Radio silence for eleven months and now he wanted her help. “I should shoot you and dump your body in the Reflecting Pool.”

“Yeah, you should.”

She spun and—crack!—smacked him, sending his head sideways and making her hand sting. She’d never physically attacked anyone before and she couldn’t say it felt right or just, but unleashing it felt good. To let him know he’d hurt her. “We were friends. I helped you and you disregarded me.”

Disregarded you?” Mitch slid a hand over his cheek. “I’ve stayed away and I’m sorry. But what, Caroline? You want to do lunch or hit the shooting range with me? A guy wanted for assaulting your boss and now a federal fugitive?” Gently, he knocked on her head. “Think about it. I was protecting you.”

She didn’t need his protection. “I’m mad at you.”

“Atta girl.”

God, he was annoying. “You had a good reason to take a swing at Donaldson when he threatened you during The Lion case, but honest to God, Mitch, I think he should have swung back and ended it right there instead of trying to throw you in jail. But you should have manned up and never run from the charges, so whatever this is, I can’t help you.”

“Tommy Nusco.”

“You murdered him, too?”

Surprisingly, he blanched. “I didn’t kill anyone. I need to know what went down with Tommy.”

Oh, please. He really had lost his mind if he thought she’d touch that subject. That involved ATF and the State of New Mexico and she wasn’t about to step into that snake pit. “You better worry about what went down with Kemp Rodgers and why the White House is after you. Turn yourself in, Mitch.”

“Kemp told me the White House is buzzing about Executive Privilege being invoked on Tommy’s case. A few hours later, he’s dead. Put two and two together, Caroline. There’s a cover-up in the works and what happened to Tommy is at the heart of it.”

She faced him, still hating that he stood a good six inches taller and managed to make her feel small. She folded her arms and stepped forward, got right into his space. “No.”

“Whatever they’re concocting about Tommy is bullshit.”

“I don’t know that.”

“Yeah, you do. When we all worked together, we hung out. You knew him.”

“Not that well.”

He rolled his eyes in that typical I’m-Mitch-Monroe-and-I’m-bored way of his. “He was not dirty. Whatever he was doing, the government is letting a dead agent take the heat. Why not? He’s dead anyway. Doesn’t matter that he was a decorated officer. The government obviouslyneeds to clean up a mess and—” he inched closer, tilted his head and stared right into her eyes “—I know all about how the government cleans up a mess.”

Back away. She should, but that would play into what he wanted. He wanted to control this conversation. His looming presence used to be enough that she’d give him that control.

Not this time.

She tilted her head the opposite direction, eased out a half-smile. “Mitch?”

“Yes?”

“Screw you.”

She turned her back to him and scooped up her rifle case. Right now, she needed to walk away and not let him talk her into something that would wreck her career.

About the Authors

 

Misty Evans:    7_25 Misty Evans PhotoUSA Today bestselling Author Misty Evans has published over twenty novels and writes romantic suspense, urban fantasy, and paranormal romance. As a writing coach, she helps other authors bring their books – and their dreams of being published – to life.

The books in her Super Agent series have won a CataNetwork Reviewers’ Choice Award, CAPA nominations, the New England Reader’s Choice Bean Pot Award for Best Romantic Suspense in 2010 and the ACRA Heart of Excellence Reader’s Choice Award for Best Romantic Suspense in 2011.

Her Witches Anonymous series was dubbed a Fallen Angel Reviews Recommended Read. The Super Agent Series, Witches Anonymous Series, and the Kali Sweet Series have been on multiple Amazon Kindle bestsellers lists. Her culinary romantic mystery, THE SECRET INGREDIENT, and the first book in her Deadly series, DEADLY PURSUIT, are both USA TODAY bestsellers.

Misty likes her coffee black, her conspiracy stories juicy, and her wicked characters dressed in couture. When not reading or writing, she enjoys music, movies, and hanging out with her husband, twin sons, and two spoiled puppies.

 

Connect with Misty: Website / Newsletter / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads / Pinterest

 

***

 

Adrienne Giordano:  7_25 Adrienne Giordano HeadshotUSA Today bestselling author Adrienne Giordano writes romantic suspense and mystery.  She is a Jersey girl at heart, but now lives in the Midwest with her workaholic husband, sports obsessed son and Buddy the Wheaten Terrorist (Terrier). She is a co-founder of Romance University blog and Lady Jane’s Salon-Naperville, a reading series dedicated to romantic fiction.

 

Connect with Adrienne: Website / Newsletter / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads / Street Team

 

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