How To Handle Negative Criticism by Loulou Harrington – Spotlight and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The authors will be awarding a $50 Etsy GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

How To Handle Negative Criticism
Hi there, everybody, I’m Loulou Harrington, and I want to thank Long and Short Reviews so much for hosting me today to celebrate the release of Happy Homicides 5: The Purrr-fect Crime. This is the first anthology I’ve been a part of, and the experience has been completely amazing.

I don’t normally write short fiction, but when I was invited to be part of an anthology of short mysteries that featured cats and was being released for Mother’s Day, I waved my hand in the air and yelled “Yes!” figuratively, of course. Then I had to figure out how to squash a book-length mystery idea down to fit and add a cat I don’t have in my current series. But that part turned out to be a breeze—a breeze and a challenge that I have enjoyed tremendously. And I now have the beginning of a new, second series that has two cats and is a spin-off of my first cozy mystery series.

Then just as I was taking a deep breath of relief and patting myself on the back, I realized we were doing a blog tour! My panic was short lived, however, because I almost immediately saw “How to Handle Negative Criticism” as a suggested topic for this post, and my hand went up again as I yelled “Yes!”

After years of writer’s critique groups (for whom I am eternally grateful) and dealing with a multitude of editors and proofreaders, I have learned to take criticism, good or bad, and make it my own. Learning from criticism is essential to a writer.

Sure, everyone wants to hear, “I loved your book, and I couldn’t put it down.” Personally, that’s my favorite response. And, as a writer, I need to know what I’m doing right. I need to know which characters you love, what relationships you want to know more about, what made you laugh, and what made you hungry (there’s a tearoom in my Myrtle Grove Garden Club series where murders are frequently discussed while brunch is being served.) I started adding recipes to the back of my books when readers kept saying how they could smell the food while they were reading.

But let’s be honest—it’s not the things we do right that we learn from the most. It’s the mistakes we make, the corners we shouldn’t have cut, and the “oops” we didn’t catch. And no matter how hard we try, there will always be the very nice lady who gave me a low rating because she really enjoyed my book but was disappointed because my heroine Jesse didn’t get together with the local sheriff by the end of the book. I know you can’t please everybody, but it’s a mystery, not a romance! And she said she liked it!

Then other people (critique group, brother-in-law of all people—go figure) admitted they were also getting impatient. So now I’m picking up the pace on Jesse and the sheriff. I’m also trying to work in more background on my characters even though I’m several books into the series and didn’t I already mention this in another book? I’m remembering to include the tearoom atmosphere and aromas because apparently people like feeling hungry. I’m striving to keep a balance between the people and the mystery (for me the mystery comes first, but for some of my readers, they want it all.)

And the negative criticism? I try not to think of it as negative. I listen to it. I analyze it. I try to find the kernel of truth in it, and I make tweaks to future books to give that one reader just a little more of what they felt was missing. I know you can’t please everyone all the time. But I write for my readers, and I care what they say. And when a reader leaves a review, whether it’s praise or criticism, I am grateful for it.

But the real payoff is that reader who shares her heart. The most wonderful critique I ever got was from a woman who said that it was the friendship between my characters that she liked the most. She explained that she was getting older and most of her friends were gone now. When she was feeling lonely, she thought of the laughter they had shared, but what she missed most were the hugs. When she read my book, she said she felt like she was with her friends again.

I can’t tell you what a review like that means to a writer except to say that it’s why we write. So, if I get the occasional reader who wants less about the people and more just plain mystery, I’m really sorry, but it’s not going to happen. My cozies will stay cozy, because there are people who need the hugs as well as the mystery, and I listen to my readers. All of them.

The purr-fect way to meet your new favorite author! This collection of traditional mysteries will be like catnip for feline-friendly readers. It’s paw-sitively the best Mother’s Day gift ever. Plus, you can email us to get a FREE Bonus File with recipes and holiday craft ideas. You’ll enjoy stories by these bestselling and award-winning authors: Joanna Campbell Slan, Linda Gordon Hengerer, David Bishop, LouLou Harrington, Neil Plakcy, Teresa Trent, Terry Ambrose, Amy Vansant, Randy Rawls, Christina Freeburn, Wendy Sand Eckel, and Karen Cantwell. For more information, go to www.HappyHomicides.com

Enjoy an Excerpt from THE NAMING OF CATS: A Rosalie Hart Mystery by Wendy Sand Eckel

Editor’s Note: The quaint little town of Cardigan on Maryland’s Eastern Shore seemed like the perfect spot for Rosalie Hart to open the Day Lily Café. A flat stretch of land between the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean, the Eastern Shore is home to crusty watermen, dug-in farmers, and people who are fiercely proud to call it home. Rosalie has enough on her plate running the restaurant. But when her Maine Coon uncovers a mystery, the cat has been let out of the bag.

“Your cat is up to something,” Tyler said as he walked into my kitchen. I set a steaming cup of coffee next to him and watched as he scrubbed his hands under the faucet.

“I think Sweeney Todd is happy to be outside.” I lifted my coffee mug and blew over the surface to cool it. “This is the first day it hasn’t rained in over a week.”

He dried his hands and turned to face me. “Thanks for the joe.”

Tyler Wells leased the farmland of my new home, Barclay Meadow. It wasn’t really my choice to move here. Three years ago, when my dear Aunt Charlotte bequeathed me this two-hundred-year-old house and the vast land surrounding it, I was happily immersed in my married life in Chevy Chase. But all that changed when my husband of over twenty years pronounced his love for a much younger and blonder version of me.

The sun streamed through the windows, warming the honey wood floors. Tyler and I had fallen into the habit of sharing a cup of coffee every morning before we started our days. I checked the clock. I would be leaving soon to go to the restaurant I recently opened, the Day Lily Café, currently serving breakfast and lunch five days a week in the sleepy little town of Cardigan.

Tyler brushed his sandy blond hair off his forehead. “Sweeney is digging pretty close to the vegetable gardens. You might want to stop him.”

“I’m on it.” I set my coffee down and headed outside.

My shoes squeaked on the grass as I rounded the house. A dense mist rose from the Cardigan River at the end of the sloping lawn. It was a beautiful spring morning on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.

I spotted Sweeney by an old Sycamore tree. Its trunk was gnarled and twisted looking like something out of Sleepy Hollow. He was digging furiously at the ground with his front paws.

My adopted Maine Coon cat was originally named Sweetie Pie. But on the first day I brought him home, he slaughtered four goldfinches in under an hour. That’s when Tyler suggested the name change. At the precise moment I started to disagree, Sweeney dropped a fifth lifeless bird on my peep-toe pump.

I knelt down next to him. He had dug so deep almost all nineteen pounds of him were immersed in the hole.

“Hey, what are you . . .” He swiped one paw with a particularly vigorous motion and a clump of dirt launched onto my black skirt. “Sweeney, for goodness sake.” He stopped digging and let out a long, guttural mmrrrow. He pushed back out of the hole and eyed me intently. My stomach tightened with dread. “What have you found, baby?”

About the Authors: Happy Homicides 5: The Purr-fect Crime authors include Joanna Campbell Slan, Linda Gordon Hengerer, LouLou Harrington, Neil Plakcy, Teresa Trent, Terry Ambrose, Amy Vansant, Randy Rawls, Christina Freeburn, Wendy Sand Eckel, and Karen Cantwell. For more information, go to www.HappyHomicides.com or visit us at Facebook. To read a free sample, get your copy of Happy Homicides 2: Crimes of the Heart here

Joanna Campbell Slan: RT Reviews has called Joanna Campbell Slan “one of mystery’s rising stars,” and it’s easy to see why. She’s the award-winning and national bestselling author of three mystery series. Her first series, the Kiki Lowenstein Mystery series, was an Agatha Award Finalist, and features ace scrapbooker Kiki Lowenstein. Previous to writing fiction, Joanna penned seven scrapbooking technique books and wrote for Creating Keepsakes, Memory Makers, and PaperKuts. She has taught scrapbooking online, on cruises, and in Europe, as well as here in the US.

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Linda Gordon Hengerer: Linda was a football widow during her first marriage, and she wrote American Football Basics (original title Football Basics) because she thought more women would enjoy football if they understood it. She is also interested in food and wine, and has written an easy guide to food and wine pairings.

New Jersey native turned Florida resident, Linda moved to Vero Beach in 1996. She writes the Beach Tea Shop Mysteries, a cozy mystery series set in an area suspiciously like Vero Beach.

Amazon Author Page
LouLou Harrington: Writer, traveler, and nature enthusiast Loulou Harrington is the author of the Myrtle Grove Garden Club mystery series. Originally a native of northwest Arkansas, Loulou now resides in the Tulsa area and spends frequent weekends wandering among the lakes and foothills of northeastern Oklahoma, the setting of her cozy series and an area she hopes her readers will enjoy as much as she does.

Beginning her career as a romance novelist, she published nine contemporary romances with Harlequin, writing as Ada Steward, before succumbing to the lure of her first love: the mystery novel.

First discovering Nancy Drew as a child and continuing with Miss Marple and Travis McGee as an adult, Loulou learned to appreciate the puzzle and suspense of the mystery combined with the familiar characters and settings of the recurring series. So while she still believes that into each life a little romance should fall, she has come to the opinion that it should trip over at least one dead body along the way.

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Neil Plakcy: Neil Plakcy is the author of the Mahu Investigations, mysteries which take place in Hawaii. They are: Mahu, Mahu Surfer, Mahu Fire, Mahu Vice, Mahu Blood, Mahu Men, Zero Break, Natural Predators and Children of Noah.

His M/M romance novels are GayLife.com, Mi Amor, Love on Site, Love on the Web, Love on Stage, Love on the Pitch, and the Have Body, Will Guard series: Three Wrong Turns in the Desert, Dancing with the Tide, Teach Me Tonight, Olives for the Stranger, The Noblest Vengeance and Finding Freddie Venus.

He has also written the golden retriever mysteries In Dog We Trust, The Kingdom of Dog, Dog Helps Those, Dog Bless You, Whom Dog Hath Joined and Dog Have Mercy.

He is co-editor of Paws & Reflect: A Special Bond Between Man and Dog (Alyson Books, 2006) and editor of many gay erotica anthologies. A journalist, book reviewer and college professor, he is also a frequent contributor to gay anthologies.

Mahu Books
Teresa Trent: Teresa Trent writes cozy mysteries that take place in small towns in Texas. She was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee but with her father in the military, didn’t stay for long. She’s lived all over, but likes to call three states her favorite homes. Colorado, Illinois and of course, Texas. Being a fan of the Andy Griffith Show and Murder She Wrote she loves creating quirky small towns and colorful characters. She decided to feature a character with Down syndrome in the Pecan Bayou series because after giving birth to her own son with DS, she discovered there were very few people like him in the world of cozy mysteries. If you’re wondering which book to start with in the Pecan Bayou Series, start with #1 A Dash of Murder. Many of Teresa’s mysteries occur before or during a holiday and A Dash of Murder is her Halloween book.

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Terry Ambrose: Terry Ambrose started out skip tracing and collecting money from deadbeats and quickly learned that liars come from all walks of life. He never actually stole a car, but sometimes hired big guys with tow trucks and a penchant for working in the dark when “negotiations” failed.

A resident of Southern California, he loves spending time in Hawaii, especially on the Garden Island of Kauai, where he invents lies for others to read. His years of chasing deadbeats taught him many valuable life lessons including—always keep your car in the garage.

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Amy Vansant: Amy specializes in fun, comedic reads about accident prone, easily distracted women with questionable taste in men. So, autobiographies, mostly.

Amy is the former East Coast Editor of SURFER Magazine but the urge to drive up and down the coast interviewing surfers has long since left her. Currently, she is a nerd and Labradoodle mommy who works at home with her goofy husband.

She loves interacting with fans when the dog isn’t laying on top of her, so stop by her blog or Twitter and say hi!

Website | Twitter | Facebook
Randy Rawls: I’m Randy Rawls, author of mysteries and thrillers. I grew up in northeastern North Carolina, then did a career in the Army. I’ve been an avid reader all my life and have tried to incorporate what I learned from the best into my writing. While I live in South Florida, my heart resides in Texas. I’d love to hear from you at RandyRawls@att.net.

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Christina Freeburn: Reading has been a part of Christina’s life since she can remember and soon developed into a love of writing.

Read about her writing process, her hobbies, and the heroines she believes are a self-rescue princess at her blog The Self-Rescue Princess.

Website | Facebook, Twitter, or Blog
Wendy Sand Eckel: Degrees in criminology and social work, followed by years of clinical practice, helped WENDY SAND ECKEL explore her fascination with how relationships impact motivation, desire, and inhibition. Combined with her passion for words and meaning, writing mystery is a dream realized. She lives in Maryland where she enjoys family and friends, two cats, and living near the Chesapeake Bay.

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Karen Cantwell: Karen’s novel, Take the Monkeys and Run was a semi-finalist in the 2009 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest (under the original title of Monkeys in My Trees)and has gone on to be a Kindle bestseller on Amazon. She has written three more books in the Barbara Marr Murder Mystery Series: Citizen Insane, Silenced by the Yams, and Saturday Night Cleaver.

When she’s not writing, Karen loves gardening and spending time with her family. She is currently working on the release of Keep Me Ghosted, the first book in the new Sophie Rhodes Ghostly Romance Series, as well as beginning the draft of Kiss Me, Tate, part of the upcoming Barbara Marr spin-off, Love in Rustic Woods Series.

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The authors are supplying a bonus gift for readers. They can receive it by sending an email to HH4Bonus@joannaslan.com

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The Naughty List by multiple authors

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The Naughty List by multiple authors
Publisher: Red Moon Romance
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Holiday, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (201 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/F, Fetish
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Thistledown

Six holiday romances, from sexy to sweet, prove that love is better on the Naughty List.

A Christmas Maggie by Tiffany Reisz
All Daniel wanted for Christmas was to spoil his new girlfriend, Anya, make love under the tree, and ignore all his old heartaches. But the ghosts of Christmas past aren’t so easily forgotten especially when Maggie, his late wife, shows up to remind him why the past should stay in the past and why his Christmases-future could be the best of his life if he can finally let himself live and love in this Christmas present. (A Christmas Maggie is the final story in the Daniel trio [from the Original Sinners series] beginning with The Gift and followed by Daniel Part Two.)

Christmassy by Alexa Piper
When taotien Valerion and witchling Cora get together sparks fly. But on the way to visit Cora’s family for Christmas, they encounter a supernatural predator that will not only test their individual powers and abilities, but also their connection to one another.

My Midnight Cowboy by Pumpkin Spice
If chocolate is the way to a man’s heart, then pastry chef Lucy Baker has the recipe for success. But will her culinary skills melt the most hard-hearted bachelor in Wyoming? A chance encounter on a New Year’s Eve flight leaves two strangers to discover unbound pleasure and a hunger for sexual discovery.

In the Doghouse by Elizabeth Black
Nicky and Angela had just begun to add a little kink to their lives when, caught up in the influence of his dudebros he forgot their anniversary and broke Angela’s heart. Angela wants Nicky’s strong arms around her again, but first she wants him to fight for her. Can one night, a paddle and some restraints bridge the gap between them?

Winter’s Daughter by Doug Blakeslee
A child of the Fae—bound to winter and a promise given to her chosen mate. She must claim him before time runs out and all she loves in the world falls to ruin. A child of mortals—forgotten and discarded by the world, then torn from the most amazing woman he’s ever met. Trapped in the sort of fae-tale that rarely ends in happily ever after, are they strong enough to defy the odds and find love?

Stealing Time by Wendy Sparrow
As Father Time’s son, Zeit must sacrifice a mortal’s lifetime to the Fates each New Year’s Eve. Last year—inexplicably, really—he made an 11:59 substitution. The Fates are pissed and they’re after his mortal Hannah. With the year ending, he ought to figure out why he’d saved her—and why he keeps doing it. Following an unlucky year, Hannah needs a week’s holiday in a lodge to unwind. What she gets is near-death experiences and a sexy immortal who can’t avoid kissing her, but might have to kill her. After all, even Zeit can’t hold back time indefinitely.

This naughty list has something to please every reader.

Anthologies are sometimes a tough read when you have to consider each story, good or bad, into your overall rating for the collection.

Okay. So every writer has a voice and every voice will not be for everyone. That said, I found some of the stories in this anthology more polished than others. In A Christmas Maggie, Tiffany Reisz tells a tale very much to the tune of A Christmas Carol where a Dom learns to appreciate the sub in his life. The ghost of his now deceased wife shows him things that he isn’t prepared for but it is an awakening. The sexy scenes in this one curled my toes in typical Tiffany Reisz style and I couldn’t get enough. Awesome story with a couple of tear jerking moments.

Christmassy was harder to read. I felt like I couldn’t connect with any of the characters and was quickly annoyed by the feeling I had missed something. Like in the middle of a series when you just don’t know what the heck is going on. I stopped reading mid-way when I couldn’t find anything to keep me in the story.

My Midnight Cowboy was stunning and I think my favorite story from the anthology. Pumpkin Spice is a new author for me-partly because of the name. It put me off a bit. But no more. I’m hooked. Her style was absolutely electrifying and I am going to get every book she has. The sensual nature of her sex scenes, the buildup of emotion. Holy wow. Fan girl swoon. Loved it and want more. I hope this book gets released as a series because it would rock the house.

In the Doghouse was an odd story with twerking snowmen and a suddenly dominant next door neighbor. I have to admit it left me a little disjointed. When Nicky stops paying attention to his girl, she retaliates-but it just doesn’t seem believable. Her reaction was odd and even with the cool Domme scenes I could not get into this story.

Winter’s Daughter was another strange plotbunny. This one centers around a boy and a girl in a ski lodge. The girl is apparently a fairy from another dimension who is battling her sisters for the right to be happy. In this case it involves a random guy at a ski lodge, a key card (mysteriously she had one) and a lot of extracurricular activities. Nothing seemed to fit here. Not the sudden key card from a woman from another dimension to the back and forth between the characters. There was sex but it left me wanting more.

Stealing Time was a great story. It grabbed my attention at the start and didn’t let go. The sexy tension between the reaper and the girl he is supposed to kill put me on pins and needles. Excellent holiday story that would do well as a longer novel or series of novellas. Great premise and I couldn’t help but want to know more about what happens to these wonderful characters.

Overall, the anthology was a 4/5 for me due to the mixed quality of the stories. Such strong presences by Reisz, Spice and Sparrow made it worth the read and will no doubt have me coming back for more from these authors.
If you want a fun holiday mix, give these stories a try.

Three Unknown Facts about Hero/Heroine from the Dark Pursuit Anthology

10_20 Dark PursuitLong and Short Reviews welcomes the authors of the Dark Pursuit anthology as they share three unknown facts about their hero/heroine. Enter the Rafflecopter at the end of the post to win a $100 Amazon gift card.

JESSICA JARMAN
Tempted to Death

1. Luca is gifted with languages. He’s fluent in Spanish, English, Portuguese, French, Russian, and has enough knowledge of Arabic, Mandarin Chinese and Japanese to muddle along, if need be.

2. Oliver loves to read—anything and everything. And hates that he needs reading glasses.

3. Tara hates working out, and only does it because she has to.

Months ago, Tara Wilcox ran away from Luca Castell and Oliver Gordon. She’d fallen hard for the pair of hunters and feared their growing feelings for her. But what truly terrified her was the possibility that they’d discover what she really is. That she’s the very thing they hunted.

Luca and Oliver are partners, in every sense of the word, and their lives are spent running toward danger. Falling for Tara was the biggest risk they’d ever taken, and her vanishing without a word gutted them.

But, she’s back, desperate for their help in hunting a vicious para creature. Despite the risks—to their lives and their hearts—reigniting the love they’d had is simple. But nothing is simple when, faced with an impossible choice, Tara reveals her true nature.

Now that Luca and Oliver know the truth, Tara has another choice to make—run again or trust that their love is strong enough to look beyond the monster she fears they’ll see.

About the Author: Jessica Jarman is an author, blogger and rather obsessive fangirl. Having grown up in Upper Michigan and currently living in Minnesota, she’s a Midwestern girl through and through. And wouldn’t have it any other way.

When Jessica’s not working to get words on the page, she passes the time with her amazing husband and four children, attempting to be crafty (and failing miserably), squeeing uncontrollably over her favorite shows or curling up with a good book.

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BRONWYN GREEN
Rising Blood

1. Harper had considered a career in theatre, but when she joined the police academy cadets to study for a role, she changed her major to criminal justice.

2. Elliot is actually on the domestic side and likes to relax by cooking and is considering planting a garden.

3. Harper binge watches a lot of Netflix and is unapologetically watching season four of The Gilmore Girls.

Vampire hunter, Harper Yovanoff, is not happy. Ever since her former partner vanished, she’d been content to work alone. Unfortunately, her boss doesn’t feel the same way. Harper’s been assigned a new partner—a new partner who’s an utter pain in her ass. Elliot Zielin is panty-meltingly gorgeous, but he’s also reckless, not to mention, insufferably arrogant. If he’s not careful, the vampires will be the least of his worries.

Elliot knows he should play nice with his new partner, but he can’t resist poking the bear—the tiny, angry bear who’s so freaking beautiful, she makes him ache for things he shouldn’t want. Despite the fact that Harper has a stake with his name on it, he keeps pushing.

When a powerful vampire begins actively stalking and turning hunters, Harper and Elliot are forced to work more closely together than ever in an effort to save their own. With tempers and adrenaline high, letting off a little steam goes way too far, and they both end up in a place they never expected. The threat against them increases and fighting their growing feelings for one another becomes impossible. But if they can’t stop the sire hell-bent on their destruction, all the love in the world won’t save them from becoming the very thing they hunt.

About the Author: Bronwyn Green is an author, blogger and compulsive crafter. She lives Michigan with her husband, two children and three somewhat psychotic cats. When not frantically writing, she can be found helping in her youngest son’s classroom or binge-watching Netflix while working on her latest craft project.

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PAIGE PRINCE
Next Lifetime

1. Caitlin takes up a new hobby every time Lucas is reborn. In 1930, she took up needlepoint. In 1958, she learned ballroom dancing. In 1986, she went to culinary school. She doesn’t like to be bored.

2. Lucas unwinds by watching reruns of NCIS. He has a huge crush on Abby.

3. Caitlin smells like vanilla and lavender because of the shampoo she makes, herself.

Born a witch, Sarah, the daughter of the town’s only judge, keeps her gift and her love of William, a lowly farmhand a closely guarded secret. Their plans for a life together come to a grisly end when Bastian, one of the world’s most feared and evil vampires, finds out about her power and decides to add another prize to his collection.

A hundred years later, William has been reborn as Lucas Dagan, the most powerful vampire hunter the Order of St. Marcellus has in its ranks. He has no memory of his past with Sarah. But, Sarah, now known as Caitlin, remembers. Worse, she’s now the very thing Lucas has sworn to exterminate from the earth. Any chance they might have had at happiness has been crushed.

But Bastian has returned with far more sinister plans. Duty and passion collide when Caitlin and Lucas are forced to fight together to save the world. But will determination and remembered love be enough? Because if Bastian has his way, there won’t be a Next Lifetime for anyone.

About the Author: Author Paige Prince has been writing since she was 7 years old when she first picked up a pen to write out her fantasy of being Joe McIntyre’s girlfriend (she was 7, cut her some slack). Since then, she’s discovered that there are more fun things to write about than just holding hands and going to the movies.

Paige hails from a small suburb of Houston, Texas. She’s married to the man of her dreams and they have one beautiful little girl who is the light of their lives, two very lazy dachshunds, and one adventurous cat.

You can find Paige avoiding work on Facebook, or chatting up her friends on Twitter.

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KRIS NORRIS
Grave Measures

1. Daniel actually loves watching Casper, the Friendly Ghost and uses old episodes as a way of detoxing from work. He also is eagerly waiting for an episode of Scooby Do where the ghost is real.

2. Arrynn doesn’t have a zombie apocalypse plan because she firmly believes the coming ‘end of days’ will be a mass uprising of spirits. Though she has stockpiled several barrels of salt.

3. Daniel spends a week every year hunting for Bigfoot, after seeing the legendary creature when he was only five.

Not all souls go quietly.

After the brutal murder of his girlfriend thrusts Daniel Cartwright into the world of the supernatural, he’s finally adjusted to the reality that monsters are real. And not all souls cross over on their own. He’d thought banishing her spirit would bring him peace—allow him to move on. That is until her ghost returns—angrier than ever and hell bent on finally completing her mission. She wants Daniel to join her…and she’s not taking no for an answer.

Arrynn Baker has spent the past two years watching Daniel flourish into one of Threshold’s best hunters. Decisive, highly skilled—she’s proud to be his partner. There’s just one small issue… She’s fallen for the man. Hard. While she’s not opposed to taking him as a lover, she’s not convinced he feels the same—not with the distance he seems to maintain. The emotional walls he never steps beyond. Besides, mixing business with pleasure rarely ends well.

When a grisly new killing rocks both their worlds, lines get crossed, and Daniel knows he’s got a choice to make. Either be content with one night with Arrynn, or man up and jump in. But if he wants a future with the woman of his dreams, he needs to deal with his past, once and for all. Even if the solution takes grave measures.

About the Author: Author, cover artist, single mother, slave to chaos—Kris Norris a jack-of-all trades who’s constantly looking for her ever elusive clone.

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Prize is $100 Amazon gift card. Contest runs from 10/7 through 10/27. Winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter at 10pm CST on 10/27. If a valid email address is not provided, the winner will forfeit their prize and another winner will be chosen.

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Favorite Meals from the Authors of ACCIDENTAL VALENTINE: Guest Blog and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour sponsored by Roane Publishing. A randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter will receive a paperback copy of Accidental Valentine and a $10 Amazon Gift Card. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

The authors of this anthology have agreed to share their two favorite meals for us.

Claire Gillian: I love to go a Mongolian Grill type restaurant where you assemble your own fresh ingredients and the chefs stir fry it on this massive grill while you wait. I don’t have to cook or clean up, always a plus, and it’s fairly healthy eating with no hidden MSG or excessive oils or other fats. After that I really enjoy making my yearly Thanksgiving spread, with a roasted turkey, yeast rolls made from scratch and slathered with creamy butter, an array of root and green vegetables and something sinfully decadent for dessert. Yum! I’m hungry now!

Katrina Sizemore: My favorite meals are homemade meatballs with spaghetti, and steak.

Jaylee Austin: Favorite meals are any dish I didn’t have to prepare. Cooking is the least favorite activity I like to do. If I never have to prepare another meal I’d be on top of the world. Two favorite dishes are my fresh cranberries with brandy, coconut sugar, orange juice or peel and nuts. Yummy! And Chicken tortilla soup.

S.L. Hughson: My most favorite meals are all about the gravy. Top choice: buttermilk biscuits slathered with sausage gravy. Close second: chicken fried steak, mashed potatoes – both drowned beneath country gravy – and green beans. I eat like a Southern girl, don’t I?

Wendy Sparrow: Eggplant Parmesan made by someone else. Food that I don’t have to agonize over getting right—and I never can seem to with eggplant—is the best sort of food. Then, of course Key Lime pie for dessert. Nothing makes me happy like good Key Lime pie.

2_24 AccidentalValentine_CvrGuiding Hearts by Claire Gillian: Is a lonely woman’s GPS sentient or is her subconscious taking her by the hand to help heal a scarred heart?

When Jemma Ernst’s GPS malfunctions and sends her to the home of handsome and engaging Gabriel Nash, she writes it off as a fluke. But she can’t seem to reprogram him out of her thoughts nor her GPS.

Better Latte Than Never by Katrina Sizemore: Single and cold on Valentine’s Day, Hailey Merritt is not looking forward to working all day at the coffee shop while everyone around her is cheery with romance and she’s stuck trying to figure out her next step in life.

But, when a special bouquet arrives for her from a secret admirer, she decides to reserve judgment on this holiday and find whomever sent the flowers.

Maybe Cupid has a plan to make this her favorite Valentine’s Day ever.

Dream Architect by S.L. Hughson: Taylor and Sons Custom Design keeps ASHLIN TAYLOR at arm’s length from her dream job. If only she were a son, she could follow her architectural dream. In the Taylor creed, girls get married and boys have careers. DYLAN CUTRIGHT focuses on finishing college and landing an architectural engineering job in a large firm. Minus emotional ties.

After their accidental encounter, their attraction is amplified during their work interaction. Unlike her family, Dylan encourages Ashlin to pursue her dream by enrolling in college. He even argues her case with Uncle Mike. All of this support confuses Ashlin because when she moves closer to him, he rebuffs her for reasons she can only speculate about.

Valentine’s Day might be the perfect opportunity for Ashlin to make him notice her. They are working together – alone – on the most romantic day of the year. Dylan builds her dream of career, but will he ever lower his walls and become more than just the man IN her dreams?

One Hot Angel by Jaylee Austin: Oblivious to Tiffany Jenkins in three short weeks her life will end—unless she makes the perfect choice. Will she chose revenge and expose her ex-husband? Or chose love and surrender her heart to the only man who can save her?

Rock My Bones by Wendy Sparrow: Jared has been eyeing the sexy mural painter from inside the museum’s paleontology lab, but she’s way out of his league. He can’t let her paint that obviously misplaced fern, though…even if it means initiating contact.

You could call her a paleontology groupie, but Shay Meyers is interested in a more modern specimen. An adult male Homo Sapien to be exact—one who needs to be dragged out of his lab for a practical course in mating rituals. If she’s lucky, this will be the Valentine’s Day she rocks his bones.

Buy the book at  Roane Publishing, Createspace, Amazon, Amazon (UK)Bookstrand, Smashwords, or Barnes & Noble.

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Lasso Lovin’ Anthology by Various Authors

 

LASSO
Lasso Lovin’ Anthology by Various Authors
Publisher: Totally Bound
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (190 Pages)
Other: M/M/F, Ménage, Anal Sex/Play, Toys
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Reviewed by Foxglove

Voted BoM by LASR Readers 2013 copy

‘Forever Changed’ by Jambrea Jo Jones

Sometimes two just isn’t enough…

Thomas Grey was on leave from the military to be at his mother’s side when she died. Her last request would forever change his life. She wanted him to go see the father he never knew.

Abigail Sommers and Eric Riley work on a ranch owned by Thomas Grey’s father. They are an on again/off again couple who can’t seem to make it work.

The attraction between the three is off the charts, but can they make three work when two wasn’t cutting it?

‘Fortune’s Way’ by Jenna Byrnes

Two men and one woman, thrown together by business, discover they have much more than that in common. But will it be enough to overcome the obstacles they face?

The Double-F-Ranch has been in Dean Fortune’s family for generations. Selling some of the best Appaloosa horses in California, the ranch was lucrative before the economy took a tumble. Searching for answers, Dean and his father look for ways to keep the family business profitable. Unfortunately, they have very different ideas about how to do that.

Miranda McCabe is a ruthless, sought-after business consultant from Los Angeles. Hired by Dean’s father to turn the ranch around financially, Miranda struggles with her own issues. She’s there to work, but can’t stop thinking about the owner’s sexy son, even if they didn’t get off to the smoothest start. She also manages to ruffle the feathers of Kyle Reese, Dean’s ranch foreman. Though judging from the looks that pass between the two men, she wonders if he might be more than just the ‘hired help’.

While Miranda devises a plan to save the ranch, Dean and Kyle put their own plot into action in hopes of saving both the ranch…and Miranda.

‘Tying One On’ by Wendi Zwaduk

She’s the mistake they can’t live without.

Steve Reynolds and Ronan Boyd are happy in their relationship. They own and operate the Circle B Ranch and are very much in love. Both men dated the same woman before they began their own love story. She’s their best friend. But there’s something missing. Would the woman from their past want to be their third?

Trista Connolly knows her place with Steve and Ronan—she’s their friend. She wants to move on with her life after breaking up with her current boyfriend. But she’s still in love with Steve and Ronan. Tylerville isn’t a big city and everyone knows everyone else’s business. She keeps her horse safe at their ranch, but can she keep her heart protected as well?

Things are about to heat up and fast—times three!

Reader Advisory: This book contains voyerism, anal sex and M/M contact.

‘Claiming the Cowboys’ by Alysha Ellis

Two cowboys. One woman to rope ‘em and ride ‘em!

Two cowboys enjoying a passionate bout of sex in the living room is the last thing Sophie expects to see when she arrives to inspect the homestead she inherited from her grandparents. Outraged by what they believe to be trespass, the men insist the prosperous horse stud is theirs.

The confrontation catapults Sophie into a torrid sexual adventure. The only way for her to win is to round up her cowboys and ride ‘em.

Reader Advisory: This book contains M/M sex scenes.

‘Hard Luck Ranch’ by Nan Comargue

When his best friend Wesley orders up a mail order bride, Everett leaves Hard Luck Ranch for good. Or so he thinks…until he realises that there may be room in their marriage for one more.

Emma came out West to marry a man she’s never met but she’s already fallen in love with Wesley through their letters. Life at his home, Hard Luck Ranch, is far better than she ever imagined with a loving husband and a prosperous farm. The only hiccup in her plans for the future is Wes’ best friend, the local sheriff Everett Montgomery, who may share more than a boyhood with her husband.

Everett is trying to drown his misery over his friend’s marriage with shots at the local saloon and sex with the local madam’s brother, Kenneth. But Ken isn’t Wes, the man Everett has loved since he was old enough to know what love was. While Everett loses himself in his heartache, he stays away from the ranch. But he doesn’t expect Emma to come out to find him—nor does he realise that she’s guessed his secret.

Emma loves her husband dearly and she wants him to be happy, even if it means sharing him with Everett. But will the sexy lawman be willing to accept her as part of the bargain?

‘Dust and Desire’ by Demelza Hart

When your best friend already gives you the pleasure you crave, can anyone better it? But tough lives call for tough decisions.

Chase Truman is a man under pressure. He’s got a five thousand acre ranch to manage, he’s lost Blue Ridge mountain, and he can’t find himself a woman. But when he stumbles upon Riff Felton, the man who stole Blue Ridge from him, and finds himself held with a gun against his head, he doesn’t resist. His relationship with Riff goes way back, and soon Chase and Riff are making up for lost time, soothing each other’s pain in the way they love. But something’s missing. Chase wants more and thinks he’ll find it in the right lady. Luckily for him, a breakdown on the railroad is about to deliver Miss Adeline Monroe into his hands, a headstrong, wealthy young woman from Boston with a very modern attitude. But is there room for two in Chase’s life?

Reader Advisory: This book contains anal sex and the use of sex toys.

Cowboys are hot, no matter what the era. In this anthology, there are six steamy, sexy stories of cowboys finding the right mix for their ‘happy ever after’ with that significant pair of partners that completes the circle. Love is love, whether it is modern day, or early western, and these stories focus on the connections between two men and one woman that makes life complete for all three. All six stories have compelling characters, intriguing locations, and even some history between the characters in some way. There are some laughs, some tears and lots of man to man romance, man to woman passion and man to woman to man hotness.

Forever Changed by Jambrea Jo Jones. Tom honors his mother’s dying wish, going to meet the father he never knew. What he gets is so much more when he meets Abi and Eric, and has an immediate connection to them both. Discovering that he doesn’t actually hate the man who is his father, and that his mother had been in contact with him, is a pleasant surprise for Tom and his father Dan, but it is Eric and Abi who make Tom not want to leave for good. Will Tom accept what is being offered, by his father as well as by Abi and Eric?

Fortune’s Way by Jenna Byrnes. When Dean Fortune’s father moved away from the ranch, Dean left his not so dream career as a race car driver, and discovered the life on a horse breeding ranch was much more satisfying to him. Didn’t hurt that the foreman he hired was gorgeous and hot, and they became lovers soon after. When Dean’s father wants to turn the working ranch into a guest ranch, Dean and Kyle have to convince the consultant that is coming to advise something less invasive. When the consultant arrives, she is not what they expected, and Dean falls for her just as quickly as he fell for Kyle. Will these three find a way to save the ranch, and their unique relationship, without anyone being left behind?

Tying One On by Wendi Zwaduk. Trista introduced Ronan and Steve, and knew they were perfect for each other. After all, she’d dated, and loved both of them. Ronan and Steve love each other, but they both agree there is still something missing from the relationship, and they are determined to fix it…with Trista as their ‘third’. They both love her, and will do whatever it takes to convince her of it. Can these two hot cowboys convince their former girlfriend to take a chance on them both, together?

Claiming the Cowboys by Alysha Ellis. The last thing Sophie expected when she entered the farmhouse she had inherited was two hot cowboys making love on the couch of her living room. Hamish Maguire and Jackson Blake run a horse stud on the property, and have been leasing it from her grandmother for some time, but Sophie had no idea about it. When she realizes that they are there legitimately, she turns to leave, but the hot vet convinces her to stay the night, as it is too far to drive with night falling. Can these two cowboys convince Sophie to stay and take a chance on both of them, or will she go back to her boring and lonely life in Sydney?

Hard Luck Ranch by Nan Comargue. It’s a long way from New York to Desert Rose, Texas. Emma has come to join her husband, a man she has never met, except through letters. Wesley Miller wants a wife, someone to share his life with, while his best friend Everett Montgomery doesn’t understand the need Wes has. When Emma meets Wes and Everett, she knows there is something off, but she likes her life as Wes’ wife, until she realizes what is missing…Everett. Wes and Everett share a passion for each other, and Emma is determined to bring the two men back together, to bring pleasure to all three of them. Can this unconventional relationship flourish in this Texas small town?

Dust and Desire by Demelza Hart. Traveling from Boston to Albuquerque by train is an adventure for Adeline Monroe. At just eighteen, she is going to visit her aunt and decide what to do with her life. Her father recently passed away, making her a very rich young woman, and she wants to experience life while she is young. When the train breaks down in the middle of the West Texas desert, the passengers and crew are rescued by Chase Truman, son of the man who owns the property the train is passing through. Adeline is immediately attracted to Chase, and he to her. But Chase also has a secret, Riff Felton, a former ranch hand, and Chase’s former lover. While out touring the ranch, Chase and Adeline discover Riff up in the cabin on the ridge, and Chase goes to confront Riff, with passionate results. When Chase discovers Adeline’s adventurous side, he believes that he and Riff and Adeline could have something special, if he can just convince her to stay on the ranch and become his wife. Can these three come to terms with life in turn of the century West Texas?

Whether it is modern American cowboys, wild west early American pioneer spirited romantics, or Australian stockmen, the passion of two men loving each other and the special woman brave enough to love them both is a hot and passionate reading experience, and these six authors bring romance out in their own special way. If hot ménage is your desire, this one is highly recommended. Very hot, very romantic, and lots of fun as well.

Want Ten Books for 99 Cents?

Here’s a chance to buy ten full-length novels for $0.99— not each, but total!  Keep on reading 🙂

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SUMMER HEAT BOX SET 10 SPICY NOVELS! 

99 CENTS!

 

For a limited time, you can buy the Summer Heat box set, which includes 10 novels from Crimson Romance’s Spicy line! Not short stories, not novellas…but novels. Look below for a few select blurbs and excerpts

 

BOX SET BLURB: When the summer sun beats down on the beach, Crimson Romance turns up the sizzle between the pages. From hot bikers to powerful venture capitalists and those oh-so-sexy military men in—and out—of uniform, these ten books put the spotlight on the heroes who make us melt. It’s a collection of our steamiest stories by these rising stars:

 

The Wicked Bad—Karyn Gerrard

Infamous—Irene Preston

Prelude to a Seduction—Lotchie Burton

Inventing Sin—Alicia Thorne

His Fantasy Maid—Susan Blexrud

Island Pursuits—Heather Rodney-Diaz

Dangerous Love—Lilou DuPont

Her New Worst Enemy—Christy McKellen

Blitzkrieg Love—Livia Olteano

As If You Never Left Me—Katriena Knights


BUY LINKS


AMAZON/AMAZON UK/AMAZON CANADA

CRIMSON ROMANCE/ADAMS MEDIA STORE

 


Here are a few select excerpts:


The Wicked Bad by Karyn Gerrard

 

1159340Blurb:  Dark and brooding, Nick Crocetti is a bad boy in looks and demeanor. Veronica Barnes needs a new start, and Nick is a complication she doesn’t need.

Can they break down the barriers of past heartbreak, or is Veronica just a good girl who longs to rub against “the wicked bad”?

 

Excerpt:  She followed him toward the beach. The shoreline wasn’t very big, but private, as you couldn’t see the road or much else from their vantage point. Wonder how many other women he brought here, she thought cynically.

 

He spread the blanket and assisted her in sitting down. Again, the touch of his hand made her face flush as well as parts further south. Nick sat next to her with one leg bent and he rested his arm on the top of his knee. They sat quietly and gazed out over the water. The waves caressed the sand with a serene almost hypnotic sound.

 

“I saw you talking to that wuss, Jake Spooner, as I left the other day. I can imagine what he said about me,” Nick said in a voice so soft, she hardly recognized it as his.

 

Veronica cleared her throat uncomfortably.

 

Nick laughed. “I see. Go on, amuse me, what did he say?”

 

“Um, he said you were in prison—” she began.

 

“Jail. Not prison,” he retorted.

 

“There’s a difference?”

 

“You’ve got the cop for a brother, you tell me,” Nick snapped. He shook his head, more gently he said, “Sorry. It’s a touchy subject. City jail, for assault and destruction of property. Prison usually means a state or federal beef. Mine was local and a long time ago. I did my time and it’s over. I don’t like talking about it.”

“He called you a thug and said you deal drugs among other things.” She shouldn’t be telling him this, but the words tumbled out of her.

 

“Really? And still you went out with me? Are you some thrill seeker, one of those good girls eager to rub up against some wicked bad? Is that why you’re here? I’ll be as bad as you want, just say the word.”

His voice grew tight and edgy. Barely restrained anger simmered below the surface, she could hear it.

 

“I’m just telling you what Jake said, you asked.”

 

Nick stared at her for several moments. “Yeah. I did. Sorry. I haven’t been out on a date in awhile.”

 

“You haven’t been with any women…”

 

“Oh, I didn’t say I haven’t been with women, just haven’t been on a date.” The right corner of his mouth twitched in what Veronica supposed was amusement.

 

Karyn Gerrard 

WEBSITE/FACEBOOK/TWITTER/PINTEREST

 

 

Infamous by Irene Preston

 

Blurb:

Infamous_300Jessica Sinclair is Hollywood’s favorite wild-child, so what’s she doing burning cookies and playing house in the ‘burbs?  Conservative soccer dad Morgan Riley can’t figure it out but he’s happy to have her home and heating things up in his bed.  Then Jessica finds herself back in the tabloids…with Morgan’s teenage daughter right next to her.

 

Excerpt:

In the elevator, he fumbled for the room key that would allow them access to the suites on the top floors. His hands felt big and awkward as they swiped the key through the reader. If you stripped me naked on the hors d’oeuvres table. . . .Christ. She always had a way of knocking him off balance, of peeling away every last bit of self control. She had thrown the words out so casually, and as soon as she said them he had pictured doing just that—imagined shoving aside the crudités and shrimp cocktail and spreading her out like his own personal feast.

 

The doors closed and she was in his arms. He pushed her against the elevator wall, his tongue thrusting urgently into her mouth. She wound around him, humming incoherent words of encouragement. They weren’t nearly close enough. She tilted her head back, inviting his tongue deeper. He was drowning in the taste of her when he felt her hands slide down between them. His body jerked.

 

They were still in the elevator. He was damned if he was going to make love in a public elevator. He managed to wrest her hands away from him and anchored them above her head with one of his own.

 

Not here.” Could she hear the desperation in his voice?

 

Irene Preston

  www.IrenePreston.com

FACEBOOK/TWITTER

 

 

His Fantasy Maid  by Susan Blexrud

 

Blurb: 

 

His-Fantasy-MaidOn the eve of Jake Sinclair’s bachelor party, his best man surprises him with a fantasy maid named Amy. Clad in a bikini, she cleans his house and jump starts his heart. She’s beautiful, smart, and compassionate. Why is a woman like this working as a fantasy maid? A few days later, with thoughts still distracted by the enigmatic Amy, Jake crashes his car and wakes in the hospital emergency room where his fantasy maid is now wearing scrubs and wielding a stethoscope. Is she an hallucination, or is his fantasy maid a doctor?

 

Excerpt:

 

If I believed the adage, “you are what you do,” my self-concept would be in the toilet, so to speak.  I clean houses in a bikini or French maid get-up, client’s choice, which contributes little to making the world a better

place.  As a result, my adage is, “you are what you become,” because I’m becoming a doctor.

 

But today, I’m Amy Maitland, fantasy maid.

 

My best friend and fellow medical resident, Ellen, knows about my undercover life working for Fantasy Maids, but she’s the only one.  If word got out at the College of Medicine, I’d be the laughingstock of the University of Central Florida.  My five brothers know I work as a housemaid, which they respect as good, honest labor, but they don’t know the fantasy aspect.  Protective (and controlling) men that they are, they’d lock me up.

 

That being said, it’s not the worst job in the world.  I’ve been a fantasy maid for almost two years, and so far, none of my clients has tried to assault me. But it’s always a possibility, considering Florida’s propensity for perverts.  The company (i.e. Rex, the owner, and a part-time secretary) arms us with pepper spray and an emergency hotline number (Rex’s cell phone), and they screen the customers to make sure no one’s a registered sex offender.  They also arrange our appointments, and Rex is good about following up…within four or five days…to make sure we survived the gig.

 

Susan Blexrud

 www.susanblexrud.com 

FACEBOOK/TWITTER

 

Her New Worst Enemy  by Christy McKellen

 

Blurb:

16209694Six months ago Ellie Holdsworthy’s life was all planned out – kids, wedding, happy ever after – until her boyfriend dumped her for another woman. Now her best friend, Penny – an heiress to as mall fortune – looks set to run off with a gold-digger and Ellie is determined to save her from certain doom. Unfortunately, the only person who can help is the one person she’d rather not ask…

 

Little does Ellie know, persuading her brother’s best friend – commitment phobic, playboy businessman, Gideon DeLancy- to hold an intervention at his beautiful Georgian manor would be the easy part. Keeping her hands off him is a whole other matter.

 

Excerpt:

Gideon grasped her wrists and pulled them behind her body, pushing her breasts forwards even more. He held both wrists captive with one hand and pressed his body closer to her, trapping them. She gasped as his erection pushed against the top of her buttocks.

 

“See how much you turn me on,” he whispered again into her ear, his eyes not leaving hers in the reflection. Blood pounded between her legs causing a hard ache of need, and she pushed her buttocks against him, loving the feeling of his obvious arousal for her. As she stared back at the mirror she was amazed to see how different she looked now. Her breasts were high and full pushed forward and with her pelvis tipped back, her stomach seemed flatter and tighter. For the first time in a very long time she looked at her body, really looked at it, and liked what she saw.

“You see,” he said, kissing along the top of her shoulder. “Gorgeous.”

He released his hold on her captured wrists and ran his fingers across where her collar bones pushed against her flesh, to the dip of her neck, then skimmed down over her breasts, down her stomach to the top of her jeans. He pulled the buttons roughly open and slipped his hands inside, under her panties, before pushing them down over her legs.

“Step out of them,” he murmured, and she did as she was told. She was now standing naked in front of a mirror. In front of Gideon. “Bend forward and put your hands against the mirror,”he said.

“What?” Her voice was shaky and light with arousal.

“Just do it, Ellie,” he said, kicking her clothes away from them.

 

About Christy:

 

B.K. (Before Kids) Christy worked as a Video and Radio Producer in London and Nottingham. After a decade of dealing with nappies,tantrums and endless questions from toddlers, she’s come out the other side and moved into the wonderful world of literature. She now spends her time writing flirty, sexy romance with a kick (her dream job!).

 

Christy McKellen Website  

Facebook   Twitter

 

Timeless Escapes – “In Her Dreams” by Emma Kaye – Guest Blog and Giveaway

VBT Timeless Escapes Banner copy

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The authors will be awarding the following prizes during the tour:

First prize – $50 gift certificate plus ebook Timeless Keepsakes by Ruth A. Casie, Lita Harris, Emma Kaye, Nicole S. Patrick, Julie Rowe

Second prize – $25 gift certificate plus 3 ebooks 1) Molly Gets Her Man by Julie Rowe 2) Knight of Runes by Ruth A. Casie 3) Timeless Keepsakes by Ruth A. Casie, Lita Harris, Emma Kaye, Nicole S. Patrick, Julie Rowe

Third prize – 3 ebooks 1) Love at Christmas by Lita Harris 2) Time for Love by Emma Kaye 3) Timeless Keepsakes by Ruth A. Casie, Lita Harris, Emma Kaye, Nicole S. Patrick, Julie Rowe

Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour. Remember, the more you comment the better your chances.

Ten Things You Might Not Know About Emma Kaye

1. My first job was mucking out stalls. Not much fun. My second was at a retail store where I ended up with more spandex/lycra than any teenager should be allowed to own. (And really, one spandex outfit would have been too many.)

2. I have a motorcycle license but haven’t had much chance to ride since my kids were born. I’m looking forward to getting back to it this summer.

3. I’m taking the Max Challenge (a workout and nutrition program) and I’m slowly, but surely, losing weight. More importantly, I feel stronger and have had a more positive outlook on just about everything since I began.

4. I’ve participated in two 5k runs. The second one only a month ago. I finished both, but wasn’t able to run the entire course. I really want to do a mud run and plan to find one to do this summer.

5. I obsess over finding mistakes in my books before they’re ready to print, so I have a hard time looking through them after they’re published. I’m afraid of finding typos.

6. I’m a big fan of the TV show, Supernatural. The actor Misha Collins, who plays an angel in the show, inspired my hero from In Her Dreams. Jensen Ackles, who plays one of the main characters, inspired my hero from Granting Her Wish, my short story from the first Timeless Tales anthology. 🙂 (No I’m not obsessed, why do you ask?)

7. When I was a kid, I had a tendency to get sick whenever we went on vacation. I have been sick in Hawaii, the Swiss Alps and camping in New York State, among other places.

8. I took my scuba diving test in the Virgin Islands while on vacation with my family. Thankfully, I did not get sick while there.

9. My family wasn’t big on passing down cultural traditions. I feel like a failure whenever my kids have to complete their heritage projects for school.

10. I can’t stand not having a pet because the house feels too quiet without them. I currently have a dog and a cat who keep the house lively when the kids are in school.

MEDIA KIT EscapesCvr_RGB_FullSize_r1Escape to the Virgin Islands where the bonds of marriage are renewed, friends become lovers, and new love is given a chance to thrive.

Ruth A. Casie ~ Second Chance by the Sea Married for ten years, she and her husband have grown apart. When they go back to the Virgin Islands for a family funeral, they find their marriage was never registered. Will an impending disaster be the final straw that breaks them up or will it rekindle their love and send them back to the altar for a second chance?

Lita Harris ~ Chasing Fireflies Soured on love by a recent breakup, a travel agent with a fear of flying and open water takes a trip to the U.S Virgin Islands. She meets a boat captain who challenges her fears. Will she survive her breakup and find happiness in the arms of another man?

Emma Kaye ~ In Her Dreams When an author escapes to the Virgin Islands to work on her latest book, she’s swept back in time to Regency England and must decide whether the love she finds with an English lord is real or only in her dreams.

Nicole S. Patrick ~ Poseidon’s Strength A beloved hero’s death leads his sister and his best friend, who have never seen eye-to-eye, to discover that helping family can be their happy medium, and possibly lead them to uncover a love that’s meant to be.

Julie Rowe ~ A Pirate’s Vacation A doctor grieving the death of her husband, buys a B&B in the Virgin Islands in need of a lot of fixing. Her old flame arrives to help with repairs, but will she let him heal her shattered heart?

About the Author: MEDIA KIT MONDAY EmmaKayeEmma Kaye is married to her high school sweetheart and has two beautiful kids that she spends an insane amount of time driving around central New Jersey. Before ballet classes and tennis entered her life, she decided to try writing one of those romances she loved to read and discovered a new passion. She has been writing ever since. Add in a playful puppy and an extremely patient cat and she’s living her own happily ever after while making her characters work hard to reach theirs.

For more information on Emma, please visit her online at www.emma-kaye.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/emmakayewrites, or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/emmakayewrites.

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Silver Presents: Love is Love by Various Authors

LOVE
Silver Presents: Love is Love by Various Authors
Publisher: Silver Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Historical, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (616 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/M, Anal Play, Fetish, Toys, Spanking
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Hydrangea

Love comes in all shapes and sizes. Love does not conform to any one narrow definition. Love between two men is as poignant and true as love between a man and a woman. Love is love.

Never too Late by Chris Quinton
I liked this book because it reminded me to live every day and to love every day. Stuart lost his love, and thought that he was going to die. He was physically ill and heartbroken. Tom loves Stuart, but after Stuart’s second chance at love he is still not ready for a second chance at love. Age difference also plays a part in Stuart’s decision.

Chosen by Pelaam This is a nice dark Gothic tale. I actually wanted the Vampire Dragomir to get his love. When his love is not ready to embrace the life a vampire, he gets used as a pawn to destroy Dragomir. I really liked the Vampire world that Pelaam created, and I want to go back. Alexandru is innocent and young, which is the case for many vampire victims. However the attraction and love that Alexandru feels proves that he is not a victim at all. I liked the dark and frightening aspect of this story! I cannot wait for sequels, or a longer look into Pelaam’s imagination.

Smoke Break by Allison Cassatta What would you do if you saw an attractive man enjoying himself? I know what I would do! That is what Daryl does when he sees Charlie after their brief encounter. This is a hot, steamy, short and arousing story! You’ll need a cold shower after this one.

Watching for Love by Sara York
This is a sexy look into Mac, a man who cannot stop watching the man he loves: Ryan. He is afraid to talk to him, so he uses voyeurism as his only release. Ryan is not afraid and finally decides to call Mac on his behavior. Ryan uses dominance to teach Mac a lesson, and the lesson he learns is that he loves Ryan even more than he thought. If you fantasize about voyeurism, and brief dominance, then you will love this story.

Far from Home by Serena Yates
I think that two men who want to be left alone make the perfect match! When Luca gets rejected from his family for being gay he has no choice but to live alone. On his adventure he finds a wounded dog. The dog’s owner finds him just in time to accuse him of hurting the dog. After a trip to the Vet, and after Jonathan realizes that he was wrong in his assumption there is an apology. Along with Jonathan apologizing he offers Luca to spend the night. Luca falls for Jonathan’s plan, and a night turns into a lifetime of true love.

Lord Godiva’s Pony Training by S.A. Garcia
Would you help your lover live out his fantasy? Matt’s lover does when he comes home early to catch Matt engaging in Pony Play. This older couple definitely loves each other enough to live out each other’s fantasies. Matt made a great story teller and was indeed funny. There were a few times I found myself laughing and smiling. I learned something, love a good fantasy and laughed all at the same time!

A Return to Normalcy by Anel Viz
This is a story about a man that cares about everyone else but himself. He still eats dinner with his wife once a week while having a bipolar lover. This only confuses the family members more, especially his son. It is only after Patrick learns to take care of himself that the people in his life do as well. This leads to a happy coexistence for all of them. I liked the story and would not mind hearing more about the other characters.

Solitude Disrupted by Andy Slayde and Ali Wilde I didn’t know what to expect with 2 different authors. What I found was the touching story of how Heath opens up Quinn’s heart. Quinn is a shut in, and does not want to deal with anybody, especially not Heath. However as Heath uses his determination on Quinn a bond is made. They decide to let each other be and to live with each other. Before that truce can happen there is a lot of arguing and power plays, in and out of the bed. If I was stuck in Paradise with a hot man, I would find reasons to argue and make up too!

Leap of Faith by Lexi Ander
A bachelor party gone wrong changes everything for Ben. It is only after he finds himself that he can let Dawson love him, like he thought his previous fiancé did.

Clean Monday by A.J. Llewellyn and D.J. Manly
When you are at the end of your rope, and no one cares about you, what do you do? Aleczander decides there is nothing left for him. So he jumps off the Golden Gate Bridge. Only he survives, and discovers that people do care. Especially about him. He realizes that there are support groups. Then he finds Tommy. I believe in life. Death is never the answer and this book proves that point beautifully.

My Unintended by Faith Ashlin
The grass is not always greener on the other side. This book to me was about sibling rivalry. Noah is living with Greg.  However, when his parents change their will to leave their house to his sister with kids, he starts to think that he is missing something. It is only after he realizes that he is giving up more by leaving Greg does he learn what he truly wants.

Roadside Rescue by Nicole Dennis
I would love to be rescued by a strange sexy man who invited me back to his house! Especially if he is a Deputy! He must have handcuffs! This story was fun to read and the ending of this one alone was worth buying this whole book!

Unmasked by Patricia Logan
This story had everything, sexy men, BDSM, love and trust. Byron becomes Anthony’s slave, and he likes it. This story was written in a very steamy way! If you like reading about sex, than you will love this story.

Checkmate! By SammyJo Hunt
I liked this story because I liked the idea of using chess as a sex game. I also enjoyed thinking about a hot lifeguard and how willing I would be to trap my king for my opponent. Chess is a mental game, and when the author mixed it with great sex scenes I was hooked.

Overall I am giving this book a 4 because I didn’t like that very few people accepted their gay loved ones. I thought that this would be a better book if a few of the stories started with happy beginnings, too.

Year’s End: 14 Tales of Holiday Horror by Various (edited by J. Alan Hartman)

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Year’s End: 14 Tales of Holiday Horror by Various (edited by J. Alan Hartman)
Publisher: Untreed Reads
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Paranormal, Suspense/Mystery, Holiday, Contemporary, Historical, Horror
Length: Short Story (99 pages)
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

The countdown has begun, but the only thing striking at midnight will be terror…

New Year’s Eve isn’t all champagne and confetti. For some, it’s filled with regrets, the changing of the day dragging them kicking and screaming into a year for which they aren’t prepared. This year, some people will be screaming, but they may not make it to the New Year at all.

Join 14 horror authors as they reveal the dark side of our end-of-year celebrations. This anthology of a holiday gone horrifyingly wrong contains stories by James S. Dorr, Richard Godwin, Nicky Peacock, John Stewart Wynne, Steve Shrott, Leah Givens, George Seaton, Kathryn Ohnaka, Jeremy K. Tyler, Betsy Miller, Byron Barton, Steve Bartholomew, Ali Maloney and Foxglove Lee.

What could possibly be frightening about one year ending and another beginning? Everything.

All fourteen of these stories have truly creepy premises, from characters reluctantly participating in time-honoured traditions that usher in the new year to secret wishes that unfortunately come true. Some authors do a better job of introducing readers to the horrors of their worlds than did others but even the additions that I found less entertaining included scenes that surprised or scared me.

“Appointment in Time,” for example, built up the tension so slowly there was little relief to be found when I figured out what James S. Dorr was doing to the Englishman narrator who detailed his participation in an old New Year’s tradition. The clues were a little too easy to piece together but I still shivered when my prediction of how it would end came to pass. This tendency to reveal crucial information too early on was repeated in “Doll,” in which a businessman buys an antique doll for his ill sister, and “Deadly Secrets,” in which a man visits a mysterious business in order to gain the self control necessary to keep his New Year’s resolutions.

My favourite entries include “The Story of Myrtle Roadie,” in which an eccentric old woman living in a small town in the 1880s is accused of ritually murdering children every December 31, and “Trigger,” in which a fireworks display in a former wildlife sanctuary takes a wild turn. Year’s End is worth buying for the twists and turns in these two stories alone as both kept me guessing until the final sentences. For some reason the strongest entries were concentrated in the first half of the book with the exception of “Token Lesbians.” The idea of a teenage girl, her girlfriend and her sister experiencing the things Stefani runs into on the subway and at the club was a funny and unexpected way to end this collection.

Reading Year’s End: 14 Tales of Holiday Horror is a great way to say adieu to 2012 and kick off 2013 with a shudder. Remember, New Year’s Eve is only 11 months away and who knows what awaits us then!

Just Vamps Anthology

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Just Vamps by Thayer King, Robin Badillo, Naomi Clark, Annalynne Russo, Melissa Hosack, Hennessee Andrews, Vanessa Devereaux, Rebecca Brochu, Lani Rhea, Doris O’Connor, Jean Maxwell, Misty Burke, Ella Grey
Publisher: Evernight Publisher
Length: Full Length (299 pages)
Genre: Paranormal, Contemporary
Other: M/F, ménage, M/F/M, M/F/F, spanking, BDSM, anal sex, forced seduction
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Bittersweet

Blood, sex, and love.

You shouldn’t always run away from things that go bump in the night…

Evernight presents thirteen erotic vampire tales to sink your teeth into. Follow the moon’s glow through the shadows and let these delicious immortal alphas show you just how satisfying eternal life can be.

Just Vamps is a delightful anthology, worth reading at any time during the year if vampires are your thing. It is an enjoyable 13-author piece of work with stories for all sort of romance readers, from those than enjoy action to those that prefer to laugh to those that like their romance simple and without complications.

Well written and quite hot, Just Vamps made me laugh, cry out in surprise and squirm in my chair more than once. As occurs with most anthologies, some stories are better than others but overall the book is a good read for any vampire lover.

Chatting with a Vampire by Thayer King: This story was nice and sweet with a rushed end, but it still managed to bring a smile to my face.

Blood for Blood by Robin Badillo: One of my favorites from the lot, this story had an intense romance between its main characters and an action packed backstory to boot. I would have enjoyed reading a stand-alone book with these characters and vampire clans.

Soul Reunion by Naomi Clark: A sizzling example about how love between three people can be real and eternal.

Blood Bond by Annalynne Russo: Although this story was smoldering hot (a ménage between two best friends and a vamp) I found it lacked actual romance and there was little chemistry between the characters.

Haunted by Melissa Hosack: Another one of my favorites! The chemistry between Liam and Kyla was present from the start and I kept cheering for them to find their HEA. Unfortunately, there was one problem in this story and that was the character named Cassidy. Included as a third partner for Liam and Kyla, I didn’t quite feel  the love between him and Kyla and found him a nuisance that kept getting in the way of the real romance between the witch and the vampire. I had the impression that the author had only included him to make the story a ménage and thus more interesting. Nonetheless, Haunted was fun and hot and had some great dialogue.

Once Upon a Fantasy by Hennessee Andrews: Who hasn’t dreamt about a fantasy man becoming real? A bold, surprising and sexy story.

Fly by Night
by Vanessa Devereaux: This story started out great: intrigue, a sister rivalry, a mysterious man. Unfortunately, little by little it deflated. The dialogue became stilted and the connection between the main characters forced.

Fangs for the Memory by Rebecca Brochu: When it began, I thought it was going to be the traditional girl meets vamp in a bar, but the author pleasantly surprised me with a more traditional, albeit hot story. I must admit, however, that Dashiell did come on a little too strong for my taste.

Eternally Theirs by Lani Rhea: Hot, hot, hot, from the very beginning. Very well described and tantalizing, this ménage story could easily have a book all for itself, if for no other reason just to discover why Melissa had three incredibly sexy vamps all for herself. The plot was well constructed and the sex incredibly hot between the coven of five.

Living the Dream by Doris O’Connor: The title of this story says it all. A male-female- male ménage with hot sex and a lovely back story to boot. A pleasure to read.

The Last Hallow’s Eve by Jean Maxwell: Ms. Maxwell manages to make this story scary at the same time as sexy and heart warming.

13 Raven Road by Misty Burke: This story builds up nicely, explodes with some awesome and fun sex, and ends with a much calmer note making it a nice read.

The Red Dress by Ella Grey: A cute, well-written story with heart-warming characters, end the anthology with an “awww” note.