Where the Lotus Flowers Grow by MK Schiller – Spotlight and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The authors will be awarding digital copies of all books on tour to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

9_29-3_where-the-lotus-flowers-growEven in darkness, love can bloom…

Heir to a multinational hotel empire, Liam Montgomery thinks business is everything—until he goes undercover to check out their locations throughout Asia. As cosmopolitan as Liam is, from the bright lights of Mumbai to the tranquil beaches of Goa to the bustling streets of New York, he’s never met anyone like lovely Mary Costa. He can’t understand why this delicate, educated woman works as a maid. Or how she is reigniting his long-buried desire to be an artist. They are apart in so many ways—especially in the things Mary won’t tell him. But more and more, Liam can’t imagine his life without her…

Mary knows this unexpected desire for Liam must end. It’s true that his gentleness and sense of fun inspires her and makes her hopeful for the first time in her life. But she has a grim promise she feels compelled to keep—and painful experiences she fears he could never understand. And with secrets soon reaching out to separate them for good, can they dare risk a future together if it means confronting the scars of the past?

Enjoy an Excerpt:

I focused on the shining figure standing next to the fountain. It looked like every ray in the sun was pointing at her and reflecting off her at the same time. That was until I realized that her long white skirt and scarf had tiny mirrors patched into the embroidery. She moved with grace despite the large pot balanced on her hip. She placed the pot on the ground. From within, she took many small silver bowls. Ten, to be exact. I counted as she placed them around the fountain, occasionally swiping the tiny broken stones gathered on its ridge. The strike of a match against the box cut through the air as if even the birds had decided to be silent out of respect for her. She lit each bowl. Who lit candles in the daylight? Was it some type of religious ceremony?

When she was done, she fell to her knees in front of the fountain and removed her scarf. Her hair cascaded in dark waves. A soft echoing music filled the air, the melody haunting. She looked toward the sky.

Whatever she prayed for, I wanted her to have it.

Her gaze drew back to the fountain.

“What’s so interesting?” I asked, as if she could answer me. I didn’t know what was so interesting for me either. I blamed it on a combination of sleep deprivation, curiosity, and bad bourbon.

Whatever it was, I couldn’t look away.

About the Author: 9_29-3_mk-schiller-smallM.K. Schiller is a hopeless romantic in a hopelessly pragmatic world. In the dark of night, she sits by the warm glow of her computer monitor, reading or writing, usually with some tasty Italian…the food that is! She started imagining stories in her head at a very young age. In fact, she got so good at it that friends asked her to create plots featuring them as the heroine and the object of their affection as the hero. She hopes you enjoy her stories and find The Happily Ever After in every endeavor. M.K. Schiller loves hearing from readers.

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Dalir’s Salvation by Nina Crespo – Spotlight and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Nina will be awarding a digital copy of Dalir’s Salvation to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

To be with the man of her dreams, she’ll have to face her worst nightmares…

Ari is looking to live a normal life. But after she hits her head, normal is no longer an option. A mysterious, rugged man appears, whom only she can see… each night he fulfills her fantasies and leaves her begging for more. She’s sure he’s a figment of her imagination—until she finds out the hard way that he’s all too real. Now, to truly be with him, Ari will have to embrace the parts of herself she’s been desperately keeping at bay.

Dalir’s been burned by love before, yet he can’t resist Ari’s beauty and charm. And all it takes is one kiss to spark nights of passion. But there’s danger on the horizon that only Dalir and his friends in the band Thane’s Redemption can deal with. And the longer he stays with Ari, the greater the peril to them both. Will the two of them be strong enough to fight for their newfound love—and their lives?

Enjoy an excerpt:

Colby jogged up the stairs wearing tennis shoes, shorts, and a sweatstained T-shirt. His damp blond hair clung to his forehead. “Wouldn’t go down there if I were you. They’re moving furniture out of the sunroom.”

“For what?”

“They’re changing the back wall into a built-in bookcase.” Why couldn’t they just read the damn books instead of turning everything fucking upside down? “Where’s Thane and Reid?”

“They made themselves scarce early this morning along with Mace and West.”

Of course they had. Thane and Reid had led the team to stop rebellions, disasters, even a super virus from destroying humankind, but they couldn’t control their fiancées. The flush spreading over him and supernatural energy expanded in equal proportions.

A buzz emitted from the light switch.

“Whoa. Chill.” Colby raised his hands. “You’ll fry the circuits again. No electricity will only prolong the agony. Just do like the rest of us and leave.”

“You’re still here.”

“Not for long. I’m on recon duty.”

At least someone was getting some real work done. “Do you have a lead on Kell?”

“Possibly. The police in New Jersey are looking for a slasher. The victims’ wounds may have been caused by a sword.”

Knots tightened in Dalir’s gut. Since his escape, Kell had killed a woman scientist, kidnapped Lauren, and tortured Reid. Those were the incidents they knew about. Was he responsible for these murders, too?

About the Author: Nina Crespo lives in Florida where she indulges in her favorite passions — the beach, kick boxing, a good glass of wine, date night with her own real-life hero and dancing. Her lifelong addiction to romance began in her teens while on a “borrowing spree” in her older sister’s bedroom where she discovered her first romance novel. Curiosity about people and places, including what’s beyond the stars, fuels her writer’s imagination. This wellspring of inspiration allows Nina to create sensual contemporary stories and steamy paranormal tales, which she hopes will feed your own addiction for love, romance, and happily ever after. Current must haves include cupcakes with frosting and lots of sprinkles, and red wine chocolate blends.

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Red Hot Suspense by Various Authors- only $0.99 – Spotlight and Giveaway

#RedHotSuspense

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Your Sixteen new book boyfriends are HERE to save you from the same-old, same-old.

Just when you thought the house was quiet, they’ll show up—dressed in black leather or a well-tailored suit—to throw you on the back of a bike or into an Aston Martin and speed you away just as the bullets start to fly. And when the danger is over, then they’ll throw you onto a bed or against a tree, because they’re as passionate as they are brave.

16 Top-Selling Novels! Over 3000 pages of romantic thrillers, mysteries, and suspense!

Stock up for your kids-went-back-to-school reading with this one great box set! 16 sizzling, suspenseful, thrilling romance novels that will make your pulse race!

These great books are just the things to add some spice to your life. Try great new authors, and add 16 new books to your TBR pile. Some are suspenseful, some are thrilling, but all are Red Hot!

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Get your copy NOW!

 Buy the set at Amazon, iBooks , Barnes & Noble, Google, or Kobo

This sizzling set includes the following red hot stories:

Jo Raven ~ Storm ~ Drop-dead gorgeous, kind, and hot in bed, Storm may not be what he seems. Who is the real Storm, and what is he hiding? Raylin had better find out before the bullets begin to fly.

Lacey Silks ~ Perfectly Seduced ~ Trusting a mouth-watering hunk who has lied to you is not easy. Especially when you have a fifty-million dollar target on your back, and he’s the only one who can help you.

Meli Raine ~ Finding Allie ~ Forced to work for her criminal stepfather, Allie desperately wants to escape. When rival Chase protects her during a bar brawl, can she be saved by this forbidden attraction?

Beverly Preston ~ Surviving Broken ~ After escaping Italy and the hands of her abuser, JC Mathews returns to Malibu to recover. The last thing she expects to find is a large, gorgeous intruder swimming naked in her pool.

Blair Babylon ~ Billionaires in Disguise: Rae ~ When Type-A personality Rae slips up and loses her scholarship, she’s desperate for a job to pay her tuition. Salvation comes in the form of tall, tantalizing Wulf—a BDSM club owner who’s prepared to show Rae just how good it is to be bad….

Olivia Rigal & Ava Catori ~ Flirting with Danger ~ Isabella had plans, big ones for her future. Instead she was thrust into the arms of a stranger. Gin, consumed with ambition, never imagined that his lust for Isabella would be his downfall.

JC Andrijeski ~ Black As Night (Quentin Black Mystery #2) ~ Profiler Miri Fox flies to Bangkok where her sexy employer, Quentin Black, hunts a murderer. Soon after she arrives, Miri herself becomes the hunted.

Daizie Draper ~ The Dirtiest Things ~ Although able to hold her own against gun-toting maniacs, a bounty hunter fears her righteous fury for the former BFF and lover who abandoned her and broke her heart is no match for dormant lust and affection when said idiot crashes back into her life and begs for her help.

Sarah M. Cradit ~ St. Charles at Dusk ~ Set amidst the lush and vibrant backdrop of New Orleans, this is the story of Oz and Adrienne. Of forbidden love, and startling heartbreak.

Olivia Hardin ~ Justice for All ~ Van’s had his eye on Kay since she walked into his classroom. But someone else is watching her too, and that person might not only derail her career but threaten her life

Felicia Tatum ~ Anxious Hearts ~ One passionate night changes Daphne and Zander’s lives forever.

Alison Foster ~ Magnificent Ruin ~ His eyes are full of ruin. I try to escape Tomas Keller, but with each step I slip ever deeper into his mystery. I can’t look away. He’s magnificent.

Violet Vaughn ~ Lease on Love ~ Lori reinvents herself as a ski instructor to move on from an abusive past, but Lucas isn’t done with her yet.

Annie Winters ~ The Vigilante’s Lover ~ Mia’s sexy letters to a prisoner was a crazy dare that spiced up her small-town life. It was fun. Thrilling. Harmless. Until he escaped.

Gina Robinson ~ The Spy Who Left Me ~ If only her heart didn’t react to her ex so traitorously. If only acknowledging that they even know each other wouldn’t get them both killed…

Natasha Boyd ~ Deep Blue Eternity ~ While in hiding, Livvy has to contend with a sexy, bearded, reclusive stranger who seems to be hiding something that has to do with Livvy’s past. Can she trust him to protect her? Why does she get the feeling Tom is protecting Livvy from himself… A first place Chatelaine Award winner for a Romantic Fiction 2015.

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A Highlander’s Christmas Kiss by Paula Quinn – Spotlight and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by the publisher. Enter the Rafflecopter at the end of the post for a chance to win a copy of the book.

9_27-paula-quinn-christmas-kissA STRANGER’S SMILE
Christmas may be coming to Linavar, but Temperance Menzie is far from joyful. Grief-stricken over the death of her father at the hands of the Black Riders, she almost didn’t see the wounded stranger in the woods. And now she’s determined to give this braw, brooding Highlander the help she couldn’t give her father. But there’s a secret lurking in the depths of his blue-gray eyes. And Temperance won’t rest until she uncovers it . . .

A LOVER’S KISS
A killer for hire. It’s the last thing Cailean Grant ever thought he’d become, but being part of the Black Riders was his only way to survive. Now, his guilt grows day by day, along with his desire for the beautiful, brave lass nursing him back to health. As Christmas, the season of miracles, draws near and the truth of his identity threatens to come out, Cailean must risk the only thing he has left to lose – his heart.

Enjoy an excerpt:

She stopped walking and pulled on his hand to stop him as well. “Who am I to you?”

What? What had he said? He realized quickly enough, scowled, and then smiled, giving in to what his heart was telling him. “Ye are—” He paused, not truly sure what to say. He hadn’t wanted to care for her, but he did. He’d let her in, but how could he have denied her entrance? She’d been through much, thanks to him, and yet she still smiled, she still sang, she still had compassion to help him heal.

He began again, reaching for her. He pulled her closer and wrapped his arms around her plaid- encased body, shielding her from the wind. “Ye are my candle in the dark.” He stopped again to take her in. He smiled. “I’m better at puttin’ a quill to m’ words than I am at speakin’ them.”

Her wide, beautiful eyes glittered like the snow dusting the braes. He wanted to lose himself there in the expectant hope that lit her gaze.

“You’re doing just fine,” she assured him softly. “Continue, please.”

He shoved aside everything on his mind but her. What was left scared the hell out him. “I canna—”

She waited in silence while he fought his demon for her. Her hope began to fade to disappointment.

It made him smile to think her hope was to be with him and she was waiting to hear him tell her.

“I canna take my gaze from ye, lass. No matter what I’m doin’, m’ eyes find their way back to yer rich dark hair fallin’ over yer flawless jaw, the relaxed curl of your bottom lip that tempts my legs to bring me to wherever ye are. I lay awake at night imaginin’ yer soft inhalations of breath. They fill my heart with something other than mortar and fury. I want to bring ye to me but I’m unworthy of yer dreams. Still, I want to be in them, as ye are in mine.”

“You see?” she said breathlessly. “Just fine.” She closed her eyes and parted her lips when he dipped his head to hers.

He moved his mouth over hers, basking in the intimacy of kissing her, capturing her short, eager breaths. His senses came alive and he used each one of them to fill himself with her. She tasted like passion and innocence. When he slipped his tongue over hers, she opened her arms and coiled them around his neck, covering them both in his plaid. He listened to her heart beating like ancient drums. Or was it his own heart he was hearing? He withdrew a hairbreadth so he could look at her again. The sight of her dreamy-eyed and wanting more nearly drove him mad. He brushed his nose across her temple to her hair, drinking in the scent of her, like the familiar fragrance of peat and pine. “Ye’re bringin’ me back to life, lass.”

He kissed her again, barely holding back the passion raging inside him to be released.

About the Author:9_27-paula-quinn  New York Times bestselling author Paula Quinn lives in New York with her three beautiful children, three over-protective chihuahuas, and a loud umbrella cockatoo. She loves to read romance and science fiction and has been writing since she was eleven. She loves all things medieval, but it is her love for Scotland that pulls at her heartstrings.

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Top Five Christmas Memories by Olivia Miles – Guest Blog and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Enter the Rafflecopter at the end of the post to win a copy of the book.

Olivia Miles shares with us her top five Christmas memories:

First Christmas with my Dogs – They were both still puppies, and I was living in an apartment in the city that actually had a fireplace. I went out and bought them each a stocking and filled it with treats and toys specific to their very individual personalities and traits. My one dog refused to miss out on any of the excitement of the day, and by about six in the evening, we noticed that he was falling asleep standing up and almost falling over…

Baby’s First Christmas – It was so special to pick out a Christmas dress for my daughter and help her unwrap toys. Christmas became fun again, and from that day forward, I feel like I am reliving it with a child’s enthusiasm.

The first time we brought my daughter to see Santa – Now this was not the happy experience one might think. The very first time was at the mall, and she just stared at me with tears welling in her eyes and her lower lip jutted out and I felt so horrible, I pulled her off and didn’t buy the photo, which I’ve been kicking myself about ever since. A few weeks later, Santa made a visit to a playgroup we attended and let’s just say the tantrum she threw was photographed, and the look on Santa’s face almost trumps my daughter’s horror.

The Christmas I burned all the food – We ended up having to order pizza. There was still wine, and the dessert was saved, and better yet….less dishes! Merry Christmas to me!

The Christmas I had to call Santa – As an incentive to motivate my then toddler’s behavior, I fell back on that age old “Santa is watching.” I can’t remember what she did, but there was the time she acted up so badly (which shocks me, as she really was always such a good girl!) that I had to make a “phone call” to Santa. Well, my daughter went ballistic and I was barely able to keep it together as I said into the disconnected phone, “Hello Santa? This is Avery’s mommy…” Someday she will laugh about this. Or try it on her own kids!

9_26-miles_christmascomestomainstreet_mmThe fifth and final novel in Olivia Miles contemporary romance Briar Creek series!

The mistletoe is out, and the gloves are off . . .

‘Tis the worst season to be single, but Kara Hastings won’t let a little Christmas funk spoil the festive season. Sure, running her own bakery is a little harder than she expected, but she can handle it. And she’ll prove it to a certain infuriatingly handsome, bossy Big City guy. She may be sugar and spice, but she can kick his butt twice.

Nate Griffin is in Briar Creek only for the holidays, and he refuses to fall for the whole “small town, candy cane-scented Christmas Wonderland” thing. He’s more interested in the fresh-faced cookie chef who always knows exactly how to get under his skin. So when Nate challenges Kara in the town’s big holiday contest, it’s not just the competition that starts to heat up. If he’s not careful, Kara won’t just melt his icy resolve against a small-town Christmas . . . she’ll melt his heart too.

About the Author:9_26-olivia-milesHaving grown up in New England, Olivia Miles attended McGill University in Montreal, Quebec before settling in Chicago where she lives with her husband, their daughter, and two ridiculously pampered pups.

When she is not chasing after her little ones, she is hard at work creating feisty heroines and alpha heroes with a heart. A city girl with a fondness for small-town charm, Olivia enjoys highlighting both ways of life in her stories.

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Hope Ramsay’s Top Five Christmas Memories – Guest Blog and Giveaway

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

Enjoy Hope Ramsay’s top five Christmas memories:

Christmas is my favorite time of year. It’s almost hard to pare it down to just five memories, but here goes.

1. The Christmas I was a freshman in college, all I wanted was a stereo for my dorm room – a very expensive item in the days before iPods or even portable cassette players. I was told in no uncertain terms that I was insane if I thought I would get any such thing. So I put it out of my mind on Christmas morning when the family gathered in the living room and gifts were handed out. My brothers started handing out gifts and everyone was having a wonderful time, except me. Because I didn’t get anything to open. Everyone just ignored me for the longest time, until there weren’t any more presents under the tree. And then Mom and Dad came into the room with a big box that had been hiding. Of course it was the stereo. My parents and my older brothers pooled their resources to get me just one present that year. But it was one I’ll never forget.

2. My First Christmas as a wife. We were celebrating with my husband’s family. The first year I wasn’t home for Christmas. We rented cabin up in the mountains of Georgia, trimmed a tree on Christmas eve, and the Georgia Good Ol’ Boy and I slept on a pull out sofa underneath the Christmas lights. It was magical.

3. The Christmas when my older brother brought home a 19 foot tree. My parents had soaring cathedral ceilings in their living room and my brother decided that we needed more than the usual 8 foot tree. That tree was enormous and took me right back to my childhood when an 8 foot tree seemed very tall.

4. The Christmas we decided to eat out at a very swanky restaurant. I made a beautiful Christmas dress for my daughter, who was four at the time, with a black velvet bodice and a red plaid skirt. I had some left over fabric, so I made my seven year old son a matching plaid vest. I remember walking into the restaurant’s dining room with my adorable kids and having everyone turn, look, and go awww.

5. The last Christmas my mother was alive. She was ill that year, and we knew it was the last one together. In fact, she became very ill late on Christmas Day and ended up in the hospital for her last stay. But for a moment, on Christmas Eve, everything was perfect and we were all together for one last time.

9_27-hope-ramsay_achristmasbride_mmA brand new contemporary romance series from USA Today bestselling author Hope Ramsay centered on a small-town wedding chapel!

A season of hope…’Tis the season in Shenandoah Falls and the first time Willow Peterson has been home in years. But she’s determined to fulfill the wishes of her recently deceased best friend and restore Eagle Hill Manor to its former glory—all in time to host the perfect holiday wedding. She just has to get the owner of the historic inn to hire her. Unfortunately, that means dealing with Scrooge himself…

After the death of his wife, David Lyndon has a bah-humbug approach to Christmas. But as December counts down and the wedding planning is in full swing, it’s harder and harder to stay immune to the charms of Willow, especially when he sees how much joy she brings his eight-year-old daughter. After a simple kiss under the mistletoe turns into something more, David is hoping he can turn the magic of the holiday season into the love of a lifetime.

About the Author:9_27-hope-ramsay-credit-wess-brownHope Ramsay is a USA Today bestselling author of heartwarming contemporary romances. Her books have won critical acclaim and publishing awards. She is married to a good ol’ Georgia boy who resembles every single one of her Southern heroes. She has two grown children and a couple of demanding lap cats. She lives in Virginia where, when she’s not writing, she’s knitting or playing her forty-year-old Martin guitar.

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Sins that Haunt by Lucy Farago – Spotlight and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Lucy will be awarding a digital copy of Sins that Haunt to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

sins-that-hauntThe glitz and glamour of Las Vegas hide a multitude of sins. And in Lucy Farago’s show-stopping series, a lawyer and an FBI agent take a walk on the seedy side, where greed breeds a deadly desperation…

Civil attorney Shannon Joyce walks the line of law and order, but she learned from day one how to put up a good front—thanks to her con man father. Thirteen years ago, she left the east coast and her life of crime behind. Her high school sweetheart, Noah, was collateral damage, but some things can’t be helped. But now there’s no escape when her past comes roaring down the Strip—in the oh-so-tempting form of the man she left behind…

Special Agent Noah Monroe has Shannon exactly where he wants her—in the back of his car in handcuffs. Her grifter father has been murdered, and the FBI needs Shannon to keep one of his scams in play to bag the big bad guy who was financing him. Once again a pawn in someone’s else game, Shannon will have to trust her instincts to survive both the peril threatening her—and the passion Noah reignites…

Enjoy an Excerpt:

They eventually stopped at the last place she’d expected. The airport. Noah got out of the car and got in the backseat with her.

“What’s going on?” She should be sitting in an interrogation room, not visitors’ parking at the airport. “Is my father really dead?”

May God have mercy on her soul, but she hoped so.

Noah nodded once.

“How did he die?”

He lifted a dark eyebrow.

“Cut it out. You know damn well I didn’t kill him.” She didn’t lie, not anymore. “Am I glad he’s gone to a far worse place?” She shrugged. He’d not only screwed up her life but countless others’. His victims were in the thousands, if not more. “But when I left him, he was alive.” Not very happy but alive.

“When would that be?” he asked.

She considered telling him to go take a swim in shark-infested waters, then thought better of it. She had nothing to hide. “Two days ago.”

“What did the two of you discuss?”

“The weather,” she said. Jerk. No way would she admit to her father extorting money from her. Thirteen years ago she’d have told Noah everything. Thirteen years ago he hadn’t been a special agent assigned to a task force that could put her behind bars.

“Shannon, even if you and I didn’t know you hated the guy, the only time he ever talked to you was to coerce you into one of his schemes. So what was it this time?”

About the Author:lucy-faragoLucy Farago knows there is nothing like a happy sigh at the end of a good book. With the encouragement of her loving husband, she wrote her first manuscript. An unpublished historical, it sits in a file on her computer, there to remind her how much fun she had learning the craft and becoming part of an industry whose books make you believe anything is possible. A big fan of Agatha Christie, she set out to write her first romantic suspense novel. Thrilled to be a published author, Lucy also teaches yoga, enjoys cooking, and saying what other people are thinking. In her fantasy world, her beautiful Siberian husky, Loki, doesn’t shed and her three kids clean up after themselves. Alas, that fantasy will never see fruition.

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The Truth She Knew by J. A. Owenby – Spotlight and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. J.A. Owenby will be awarding a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

mediakit_bookcover_thetruthsheknew Mama didn’t want me. In fact, she would’ve traded my soul back for someone different if God would’ve let her, but he didn’t, so she was stuck with me.

For eighteen-year-old Lacey, life at home is a rollercoaster. She doesn’t think she’ll ever be good enough to truly deserve Mama’s love.

But when Lacey enters college and meets Walker, everything starts to change. Suddenly, Lacey is face to face with the realization that maybe what she’s always seen as normal really isn’t. Her entire life—and everything she’s ever believed about herself and her family—is abruptly hanging in midair.

Lacey is left facing two paths, and she has to make a choice. The first means walking away from everything she’s ever known. The other means never really knowing the truth.

The Truth She Knew offers an honest and powerful glimpse into mental illness, the meaning of true love, and the psychological waltz that a daughter dances as she endures her mother’s unpredictable emotions, manipulation, and abuse.

Enjoy an Excerpt:

Mama didn’t want me. In fact, she would’ve traded my soul back for someone different if God would’ve let her, but he didn’t, so she was stuck with me. She reminded me of this on a consistent basis, and as hard as I tried, I couldn’t change her mind. Finally, I had to make a choice: her or me.

My heels clicked against the cold tile floor of the hospital and my heart fluttered as I searched the room numbers.

I rubbed my clammy hands against my jeans as I saw the ladies’ restroom and hurried toward it. I needed a minute before I reached her room. I pushed the door open and scanned the bathroom for anyone else. It was empty.

My purse landed with a thud on the bathroom counter. I turned the cold water on, splashed it on my cheeks, and wiped my face with a paper towel.

“Breathe,” I muttered. “She can’t hurt you anymore. You’re grown.”

My pep talk wasn’t working. Fear was gnawing at my stomach.

I reached into my bag, grabbed my powder compact, and touched up my makeup. My green eyes shone brighter against the redness left from my tears. I ran a brush through my long, blond hair and dabbed a hint of gloss on my lips, more out of habit than need.

“Let’s do this, Lacey. Suck it up,” I said to my reflection. I released a slow, deep breath and headed out of the restroom and down the hall toward the ICU.

About the Author: J.A. Owenby lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband and two cats.

She’s a published author of six short stories, and she is currently working on her second full-length novel. She also runs her own business as a professional resume writer and interview coach—she helps people find jobs they love.

J.A. is an avid reader of thrillers, romance, new adult, and young adult novels. She loves music, movies, and good wine. And call her crazy, but she loves the rainy Pacific Northwest; she gets her best story ideas while listening to the rain pattering against the windows in front of the fireplace.

You can follow the progress of her upcoming novel on Facebook and on Twitter.

Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

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The Sweetheart Racket by Cheryl Ann Smith & One Week in Your Arms by Patricia Preston – Guest Blog and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour and is organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Cheryl and Patricia will be awarding digital copies of both books on tour to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

the-sweetheart-racketThey used to be on the sidelines. Now they’re out in the field…

Two years ago, Taryn Hall was a pro football cheerleader—until she left her lecherous boss with a bloody nose and a faceful of Mace. Now she’s part of a different kind of squad. An elderly billionaire named Irving has hired and trained Taryn and her two best friends to work as private investigators…

Taryn loves the job, though it sometimes involves boring stakeouts, dog bites—and listening to Irving talk about his golf shoes. Then tattooed, steely-eyed, straight-up gorgeous undercover DEA agent Rick Silva walks into the office and shakes things up…

Rick needs help finding the con artist who’s taken his lonely mother for all she was worth. With multiple aliases and multiple victims, it will be a challenge to track down the coldhearted gigolo. And Rick insists on accompanying Taryn on the hunt, working closely, day and night.

This could be dangerous. And the case might be kind of risky, too…

*****
one-week-in-your-arms_blueIT STARTED WITH A FLING…

Six years ago, ambitious med student Marla Grant gave into temptation with a gorgeous man. Now a busy doctor and a loving single mom, the only thing that matters to Marla more than her adorable daughter is the Lafayette Falls Community Clinic. When its funding is threatened, Marla is determined to find out why—until she learns the person responsible is none other than the powerful, persuasive man of her long-ago fling and the unsuspecting father of her child…

Carson Blackwell has never forgotten bright, beautiful Marla. When he discovers that she runs the clinic his grandmother’s foundation funds, it’s the perfect chance to put an end to his ongoing infatuation—and use his leverage to cement a new business deal. He needs a fake girlfriend for one week in Hawaii, and Marla is just the woman for the job. It’s a win-win situation, until they realize the attraction between them isn’t feigned, and the heat has never died down. Only the secrets they’re both keeping stand in the way of a future together—and a love that could last a lifetime.

Enjoy an Excerpt from The Sweetheart Racket:

“I need a PI.”

She was just tired enough to make a sassy comment about his good fortune of stumbling into a PI firm, but profit margins danced fresh in her mind. Why chase off a perfectly good client with a smart comment?

“Come to my office.” The stranger followed her. She was convinced he was checking out her butt. Or maybe it was just wishful thinking. She hadn’t had a date in ages, and was beginning to feel a bit withered. Either way, she needed to keep her mind on business and not how good he looked in his jeans.

He settled into a chair before her desk and looked around the space. He had a strong jaw, a semi-straight nose, and a small scar that dissected his right brow.

“What can I do for you, Mr.—?”

“Silva. Rick Silva.”

“Yes, ah, Mr. Silva. What brings you to Brash ?” Despite a professional outward demeanor, it proved difficult to concentrate on anything but his gorgeous gray eyes. They were a stark contrast to his dark brown hair and tanned face.

The man was all alpha male. She’d be shocked if he’d ever eaten a bean sprout on purpose or ordered a vanilla mocha latte with lite whip and cinnamon sprinkles.

Add the tattoos peeking out from beneath his t-shirt sleeves and she wondered if he’d done time.

“I’m searching for someone. His name is Teddy Brinkman.”

His voice had gone hard. There was danger in his expression. A chill trilled through her. She leaned forward and knitted her fingers, forcing herself not to show fear. “Are you going to kill him?”

Silva’s eyes widened at her bluntness. “And if I did?”

Damn. She’d hoped for a new client, not a murderer looking for an accomplice. “Then I can’t help you.” She stood. “We are not in the business of playing intermediaries to murder. You’ll have to find him on your own.”

And she’d have to call the cops ASAP.

About the Authors:

cheryl-ann-smithCheryl Ann Smith became hooked on romance at age fourteen when she stayed up all night to read The Flame and The Flower by Kathleen Woodiwiss. Her own writing journey happened much later, when one afternoon she ran out of books and decided to write her own. Previously, she has published five sexy Regency novels and one novella with Berkley in her School for Brides series.

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patricia-prestonPatricia Preston is a Southern author whose dream come true would be living in the French Quarter. Besides writing, she loves music, history, taking road trips, and anything containing chocolate. Having fun is her objective when it comes to storytelling and she hopes her readers will find her amusing, feel-good romances entertaining.

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Writing Ideas – Where do they come from? by M. Kate Quinn – Guest Blog and Giveaway

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Writing Ideas – Where do they come from?

I’m often asked where I get ideas for my stories. The answer is both simple and complicated – life. The ideas come from life.

I’d venture to say that writers tend to be people watchers. We can’t help it. We look for the story in everything and in every place. The beach, the grocery store, the park, the mall, when visiting someone in the hospital, even at a funeral. Story ideas abound in these places.

For me, it starts something like this: In an elevator going up to the top floor in a medical building a woman is riding along with me in the cab. Her arms are folded and her mouth is pulled into a straight line. I ask myself why. Is she late? Is she angry? Nervous? The door opens and a man in a lab coat steps in and pushes the button for the top floor. I think his stab of the button was a bit heavy handed. Is he cranky? Why? Is it just that everybody’s in such a frenzied rush these days? The man and woman exchange a glance at each other and she quickly turns away. Ah, I think. And the magic two words float into my head: What if?

What if they know each other? What if they’re lovers? Why the standoffishness? Maybe he cheated on her, or she him. Or, what if they had gone out on a date and he was supposed to call her the next day and didn’t? And, if that was the case, why didn’t he call?

And so it goes. While I sit on a leather arm chair in my doctor’s office waiting for my annual exam my mind is building a story about a couple in an elevator, bit by bit, idea by idea.

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Why has no place in what the heart knows for sure.

On the eve of their wedding Victoria Gliden and fiancé Owen Walker call it quits. He accuses her of not being able to get over her deadbeat father’s vanishing act when she was a child and she and her cold feet run and don’t look back.

An interior designer, Victoria, has an important meeting on Cancun that could garner her a promotion and the plan was to incorporate her presentation with the honeymoon cruise that’s journeying to the island. Since she’s sure Owen is on his way to Portland to escape the aftermath of their ruined wedding, Victoria takes the honeymoon cruise anyway. Only Owen has the same idea and they’re stuck with each other for six days, five nights.

Tony Gliden, Victoria’s father, dies in a freak accident and is sent back to earth disguised as a crotchety old man with the mission to convince his daughter to believe in love. So, he, too boards the ship.

At sea, destiny takes a detour when Victoria befriends the quirky old man with kind eyes and together they join forces with a quartet of unabashed women in their fifties who drink pink martinis and flirt with the wait staff but are wiser than they look. While trying to dodge Owen, Victoria’s new acquaintances help her face old wounds and confront new fears.

Most of all, Victoria and Owen both realize it all boils down to one word—why?

By journey’s end will two broken hearts get their answer?

Enjoy an Excerpt:

Words spilled from Owen’s lips before he had the chance to think. “I don’t know, Vic, maybe on some level I was meant to be here on this ship.”

She didn’t respond, kept her tooth locked down on that lip. But, her eyes were windows to some distant place he longed for. So, he and his glass of vodka let more words tumble free. “Sometimes I still can’t believe you really did this.” He gulped his drink in an effort to shut himself up, but it was fuel to his fire. “That you did this to us.”

“Don’t.” Victoria grabbed the fancy clutch that she’d squeezed into a misshapen blob of sparkly fabric.

“You know what?” He couldn’t stop and suddenly he didn’t want to. “It’s just too bad you’re so ridiculously afraid of veering off that rigid path you’ve carved out for yourself. That’s got to be a tough trek, Victoria. You must be exhausted.”

She stood up from the bar stool, chin held high, eyes swimming.

“You’re leaving.” It wasn’t a question. Owen knew the answer too well.

“Um, yes, I uh, promised my friends that I’d meet them.”

“Well, I guess I’ll see you back at the suite then, huh?” Pent-up energy raced around in him banishing every urge he had to stroke her hair, pull her to him, make them right again. His tone was caustic and it felt good and lousy both.

For each millisecond that he held her gaze, Victoria squirmed, her hands wringing that now pretty ugly evening bag, that tooth all but drawing blood as it pressed the pink flesh of her lower lip. She broke the stare and darted away as though she were being chased.

Owen’s heart squeezed like a fist had wrapped itself around the muscle. A tear pricked his eye. Victoria could run all she wanted, but for the first time in almost two days something finally made sense. She loves me.

About the Author:mediakit_authorphoto_victoriaatseaBorn to a feisty Italian mother and a gentle blue-eyed Irishman, I was given the name “Marykate,” inspired by Maureen O’Hara’s character in the movie, The Quiet Man, an old-time favorite love story that co-starred John Wayne. With a grandmother Catherine and an Aunt Mary the name was an obvious choice.

I’ve been writing stories all my life. There’s an old Macy’s box in my attic filled with my writings from childhood, now smudgy-looking pages produced on my portable Olivetti Underwood typewriter, an eighth-grade gift from my Grandmother Catherine.

I am a recent First Place winner of a short story contest sponsored by Reader’s Digest Magazine and write a column entitled “Boomer Humor” that appears monthly in my neighborhood newspaper.

My husband and I are our own love story. We have a slap-happy middle-aged second marriage with a combined total of six grown children, one delightful granddaughter, another precious little baby on the way and one ridiculously spoiled, amazingly handsome cat named Sammy.

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