Summer Fire: Love When It’s Hot by Various Authors – Spotlight and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. One randomly drawn commenter will receive a $25 Amazon/BN Gift Card. The book is priced at only $0.99! Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

MediaKit_BookCover_SummerFire3D21 ALL NEW Contemporary Romance stories by NY Times, USA Today, and National Bestselling authors.

Love when it’s hot? So do we. Especially when we’re writing about gritty alphas, angsty bad boys, sizzling attraction, and unrequited passion. Turn the fan to oscillate and join us for this steamy, groundbreaking bundle of summer tales that are hot hot hot.

Included authors:
Gennita Low
Stacey Mosteller
R.J. Lewis
L. Wilder
Victoria Danann
Kym Grosso, Cat Miller, Mimi Barbour, Clarissa Wild, Teresa Gabelman, Linda Barlow, Helen Scott Taylor, Victoria James, Mona Risk
Patrice Wilton
Joan Reeves
Danielle Jamie
Terri Marie
Lorhainne Eckhart
Brandy L. Rivers
Nicole Blanchard

Enjoy an excerpt from “A Season in Gemini” by Victoria Danann

Garland pulled up in front of her building, grabbed the rolling suitcase with essential stuff, smiled at Max, the doorman, and gave him the car keys so that he could have the car parked in a two thousand dollars per month garage spot nearby. She might not use it again for weeks, or even months, but it was nice to know she could.

“I’m home!” She took a deep breath and called out to anyone who might be in the flat. Since it was Sunday that would probably be either her father or no one.

She walked the length of the kitchen and beyond to a small, but elegant and sunny breakfast room that overlooked Central Park and was rarely seen by anyone other than the two living St. Germaines and staff.

“I say, ‘I’m home!’”, she repeated as she flopped into a chair opposite where her dad was having coffee and reading the paper.

David St. Germaine looked over the top of the Wall Street Journal. “So I see.”

“Wow. Welcome home.”

He slid a section of the Sunday Times toward where she sat across the glass top table. “I second the ‘wow’.”

Before looking down at whatever he wanted her to see, she could tell that he was the farthest thing from happy. When she’d seen him two days before at graduation, he’d been delighted. He and his date for the day. Garland didn’t remember her name. There was no point. Her father rarely saw women more than once.

On the cusp of fifty, he was still handsome, with a little silver above his ears and a tan that never faded completely because he made a point of sailing twice a month, when weather and business permitted. He’d been referred to as ‘eligible bachelor’ in the, ahem, society pages more than once, but Garland doubted the veracity of that claim. Since her mother’s death, he hadn’t given anyone reason to think he was ‘eligible’.

Garland tore her eyes away from his scowl, not his most attractive expression, to look at the paper in front of her. The front and center color image was none other than herself wearing a short sparkly dress that had ridden far too high as she fell backwards spilling a colorful beverage when she went sprawling into the laps of laughing friends.

The headline read, “Germane Enterprises Princess Out on the Town. Daddy’s little girl lets her hair down and her skirt up.”

As she stared at the page, her father said, “Nice dress,” in a tone dripping with sarcasm.

Without looking up, she said quietly, “We were just having some fun. We just graduated…”

“How many times have I told you that what you do reflects on me? And, by extension, on Germane Enterprises?”

She met his glare. “Thousands.”

“That’s right! Thousands. You would think a girl capable of graduating Dartmouth summa cum laude would get it after mere dozens of times.”


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Friday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

Excerpt: The Crystal Crib
Sonja’s neck prickled as she approached the grand entrance to the hotel at Santa’s Magical Wonderland in Iceland and halted beneath a banner that read: live your dreams this christmas. Against a backdrop of snow-cloaked wooden lodges, shuttle carts shaped like white cats zipped along carrying smiling moms and dads with giggling kids. A cacophony of Christmas tunes blasted from the rides in the nearby theme park, lending the whole scene a manic out-of-this-world feel, as if a cartoon had come to life. 
Her instincts were usually accurate, but Sonja couldn’t spot anyone watching her—apart from two scruffy, black birds perched on a wire above the road. She squinted at them, a sense of unease wriggling up her spine. Perhaps she just felt guilty for coming here without telling her aunt. 
Rubbing her neck, she walked under the impressive ice-palace facade of the Magical Wonderland hotel and into the foyer. A familiar sense of isolation closed around her as she threaded her way between the happy family groups. Twin girls dashed past, holding a younger boy firmly by the hand, and she paused to watch them catch up with their mother and have a group cuddle. When she was younger she’d longed for a brother or sister, although she’d have been satisfied with just a mother or father. 
With a sigh, she ignored the people and concentrated on assessing the place with a travel professional’s eye. Despite the crowds, the hotel had a welcoming ambience. A huge Christmas tree hung with shiny decorations reached to the top of the glass-domed atrium, while the ice-palace theme gave the place a sense of fantasy. 
The resort staff wore green velvet outfits trimmed with white fur. A receptionist wearing the name badge frida looked up and smiled as Sonja approached the desk. 
“May I help you, madam?”
“I have an appointment with Vidar.” Using the Managing Director’s first name made Sonja cringe, but she’d been told this was how people addressed each other in Iceland because they didn’t have normal surnames.
Frida’s gaze sharpened with interest before she checked her computer screen. “You are Sonja?”
At her nod, the woman extended a hand, indicating she should come around the end of the reception desk to a door marked private. On impulse, Sonja grabbed a red and white button with the slogan live your dreams this christmas as she passed a display of resort freebies and dropped it in her pocket. She’d collected buttons when she was a little girl and still kept up the habit. Perhaps it would bring her luck when she met Vidar. Frida punched in a security number and held open the door. 
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Thursday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

A Midwinter Fantasy anthology, coming November 2010 in ebook and October 2011 trade paperback.
Helen Scott Taylor: The Crystal Crib.
My favorite part of writing fantasy novels is the research and world building. I enjoy researching the mythology and folk law on which I base the world I’m developing. I’ve used mainly Celtic mythology with a touch of Norse in my Magic Knot series. One of the most useful research books I have is The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Fairies by Anna Franklin. Another book on my reference shelf that I refer to regularly is The Element Encyclopedia of Magical Creatures. There is a series of Element Encyclopedias covering everything from witches to secret societies—well worth checking out of the library or purchasing if you are interested in the paranormal and supernatural. 
I love visiting places that I’m planning to use as settings. I combine research with vacations and my husband has got used to the fact that we always have to vacation somewhere that I plan to set a book. Before I wrote The Magic Knot, we visited Ireland; specifically the area near Dublin called the Wicklow Mountains. The area isn’t mountainous but high moorland. The area combines lush green tree-filled valleys with purple moorland. Unfortunately, when we visited the mist was so thick on the moorland that I could hardly see the road in front of our rental car.
My story in A Midwinter Fantasy is set mainly in Iceland among the Norse gods. I would have loved to visit the country but didn’t get the chance. The internet proved vital for research on both the Norse gods and the beautiful wild country in which they live.
Although I set my stories in a contemporary fantasy world, the characters often reside in historic houses. With the UK being so rich in heritage, I can’t resist blending a touch of history with the fantasy.
For information and to read excerpts go to

Wednesday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

A Midwinter Fantasy anthology, coming November 2010 in ebook and October 2011 trade paperback.
L.J. McDonald: The Worth of a Sylph
For years he has stood guard, cool and perfectly in control.  But in the heart of winter, when lives stand in the balance and evil makes its demands, who will rule the mighty Mace?
Part of the Sylph series that includes The Battle Sylph and The Shattered Sylph.
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Tuesday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

A Midwinter Fantasy anthology, coming November 2010 as ebook and October 2011 in trade paperback.
Leanna Renee Hieber: A Christmas Carroll
Award winning, bestselling author, actress and playwright Leanna Renee Hieber grew up in rural Ohio inventing ghost stories.  She graduated with a BFA in Theatre from Miami University, a focus in the Victorian Era and a scholarship to London. The Gothic, dramatic, historic, spiritual and paranormal are the forces behind her lyrical, atmospheric fiction.  While performing as a professional actress she adapted works of 19th Century literature for the stage. Her one-act plays such as Favorite Lady garnered national attention and continue to be produced around the country. Her novella Dark Nest won the 2009 Prism Award for excellence in Futuristic / Fantasy / Paranormal Romance. 
Her debut novel, The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker, first in her Strangely Beautiful series of ghostly, Gothic Victorian Fantasy novels, landed on Barnes & Noble’s mass market and overall Bestseller List. The book was named a favourite of 2009 by 14 genre book review blogs including Publishers Weekly’s Beyond Her Book and Smart Bitches/Dear Author’s book tournament and won two 2010 Prism Awards for Best Fantasy and Best First Book. The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker (Strangely Beautiful #2) and a novella in the series (Strangely Beautiful #2.5) included in A Midwinter Fantasy continue the series slated for four books. The option rights have been sold for adaptation of The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker into musical theatre production. Development team includes Tony Award winning talent that brought shows like Memphis, Wicked, Tarzan and more to the Broadway stage.  
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Monday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

A Midwinter Fantasy anthology, coming November 2010 in ebook and October 2011 trade paperback.
You have ventured through the wardrobe and down the rabbit hole. You’ve beheld the Fading Lands and glimpsed the ivory spires of Minas Tirith. A star now rises over three other kingdoms, and over three heroic couples, all deep in winter’s thrall:
Visit Leanna Renee Hieber’s Strangely Beautiful Victorian London, “strange in its happenings and mood and beautiful in its romance and language.” –Booklist
Haunted though these soot-stained urban alleys may be, a lonely headmistress and a gallant vicar shall here reap the season’s blessings.
Travel to Meridian and Sylph Valley, L.J. McDonald’s “mesmerizing, magical world [readers] won’t want to leave.” –Library Journal
Immensely powerful creatures called battle sylphs vie for dominance here, while fulfilling every wish of their queens. But what woman shall rule the mighty Mace?
Discover Helen Scott Taylor’s land of The Magic Knot, which is “wonderfully creative and lusciously sexy.” –The Chicago Tribune 
In the frosty North, in the ice palace of Valhalla, Sonja’s life depends upon unraveling the mystery of the Crystal Crib—and upon winning the love of Odin’s son.

Friday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

In the Magic Knot Fairies world, each fairy embodies the qualities of one of the elements. The leprechauns and Cornish piskies are Earth elementals, the Welsh Tylwyth Teg are Air elementals, and the noble old blood Tuatha Dé Danaan can be either Fire, Air, or Water. This gives them their powers, strengths, and weaknesses.

In the second book in the series, The Phoenix Charm, the heroine Cordelia is half Cornish pisky and half water nymph. It is the water nymph qualities inherited from her mother that have manifested, making her a water elemental. The sensual water nymph allure that attracts males has so far caused her nothing but trouble. When she reached puberty, her grandmother bound the power by covering the energy centers on Cordelia’s body with Celtic symbols. But the water nymph energies are also the source of her healing power so she has never reached her full potential.

The hero of the story, Michael, is an Earth elemental. He is a storyteller and has the gift of glamour, which makes him attractive, and silver tongue, which makes his words persuasive. As the story progresses he discovers a greater power he has inherited from his father, and he gains more control over the energy he channels from the Earth.

We all exhibit characteristics of the four elements, but we tend to favor one. Here is a brief description of the elements’ qualities.

Earth is the mother, the element of birth and renewal. Earth elementals are steady, grounded, and generous, with their feet firmly on the ground. Confident and steadfast, Earth elementals have an instinct for survival, which makes them excellent protectors.

Air elementals are intelligent with great imagination, and can be very persuasive. They are good at conceiving new ideas and seeing changes coming. They have an affinity to music. They may ‘have their heads in the clouds’ and be difficult to pin down. Their spiritual beauty is reflected in the intricate formation of snowflakes.

Water elementals are the nurturers, the calm center that supports loved ones to help them conquer problems. Sensual, graceful, and often very beautiful, Water elementals have strong emotions, and love deeply.

Fire elementals embody passion, enthusiasm, and desire. They are quick and bright, but often emotionally volatile. Forceful and highly opinionated, Fire elementals think they know best. They are considered to be ‘hot blooded’.

To find out which element you are, go to my website and take my elements quiz.

Thursday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

I’m a great lover of all things Celtic. As I live in England, I’m surrounded by ancient ruins and other Celtic memorabilia. So I’m in the ideal place to indulge my interest.

Two of the most beautiful aspects of Celtic heritage are the intricate symbols and designs. When I visited Ireland, I took a tour around an ancient monastery and graveyard. The place was magical, full of beautifully decorated Celtic crosses. We also have Celtic crosses on Dartmoor in South West England a few miles from where I live.

The shape of the Celtic Knot gave me the fundamental idea on which my Magic Knot Fairies fantasy world is based. In my series, The Magic Knot is a magical pendant similar to a Celtic Knot possessed by every person with fairy blood. The three linked rings symbolise mind, body, and spirit. Lovers give their Magic Knot into the safekeeping of their soul mate—the ultimate demonstration of trust and commitment that binds them together in mind, body, and spirit for life.

Celtic symbols also gave me story ideas in the second book, The Phoenix Charm. My heroine is a water nymph. She has a sensual allure that her family were ashamed of, so they made her hide her natural gift by binding it with Celtic symbols painted on her skin. My heroine Cordelia has six Celtic symbols drawn on her back and mirrored on her front. These cover the energy centers of her body (also known as chakras in traditional Indian medicine).

The Celtic symbol of the maze traditionally marks the entrance to the Underworld, so this appears in the book marking the entrance to the Welsh Fairy King’s domain, as in Welsh Celtic mythology, he is also King of the Underworld.

My favorite piece of jewelry is a Celtic cross set with abalone shell that I bought when I visited Ireland to research my first book. I’m convinced the cross brings me luck.

To find out more about my contemporary fantasy series and to read excerpts, please visit

Wednesday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

My favorite part of writing fantasy or paranormal stories is the world building, layering on the details that bring a fantasy world to life in my mind as clearly as a real place. I based the fantasy world of my Magic Knot Fairies series on Celtic mythology and have used areas rich in Celtic myth and legend to set my stories.

I had the pleasure of visiting Dublin and the Wicklow Mountains in Ireland for research for The Magic Knot. For The Phoenix Charm, the second book in my Magic Knot Fairies series, I chose the small country called Wales in the United Kingdom as the setting for much of the story. Like most of Britain, Wales has a rich heritage of Celtic myth and legend.

All the pantheons of ancient gods—the Romans, Greeks, Norse and Celtic—contain a god who rules over the Underworld. In the myths of Wales, the Underworld is controlled by the Welsh Fairy King, Gwyn ap Nudd. He rules the Tylwyth Teg who are tall blond-haired fairies with a habit of stealing away mortal children.

In The Phoenix Charm, the Tylwyth Teg are my villains who trap my hero Michael O’Connor’s little nephew. He has to travel to Wales to recover the child and in the process comes face to face with a strange fairy king who is not what he seems.

In the third book of the series, The Ruby Kiss, due out at the end of 2010, my hero and heroine get tangled up in the machinations of the Seelie and Unseelie Scottish Fairy Courts. This summer I spent two weeks visiting castles and other historic sites in Scotland to do research for the story. Research is always a good excuse for travel!

For more information on my books and to read excerpts visit

Tuesday Spotlight: Helen Scott Taylor

I have two Shih Tzu dogs and a burmilla cat who are a vital and much loved part of my family. I am so pet focused that I love novels containing animals. Furry creatures often feature in contemporary romance novels. Some paranormal romances also contain pets in the story, and in shape-shifter paranormals, the fur belongs to the main characters. (I have to admit my favorite shape shifters are big cats. I’m writing a novella at the moment with a fire elemental, black panther shape shifter djinn as the hero.)

I especially love animals in books if there is some kind of magical twist. I believe I have a special spiritual connection with my cat; that she was destined to be mine. In my latest book, The Phoenix Charm, my heroine, who is a fairy witch, has a cat familiar that she is bonded with at the level of mind and spirit. The cat, Tamsy, is an important character in the story. I loved writing her because she reminds me so much of my own cat.

The concept that the type of animal we identify with reveals something of our personality is embodied in many cultures. For me, the peculiar wisdom of animals gives a peek into a mysterious world that exists outside of our understanding. We think we know what goes on in their world, but we see everything through the lens of our human understanding and values. The rules of nature are both harsh and pure, a conflict that is elemental, but honest in its brutal demands. This has an almost paranormal quality that lends itself perfectly to the paranormal romance genre.

The Phoenix Charm is just out. To read a two chapter excerpt or for more information on my work go to