One of My Favorite Places to Go on Vacation by Julia Talbot – Guest Blog

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Julia Talbot, author of Sparkle and Shine, which is newly re-released by Dreamspinner Press.

One of my favorite places to go on vacation

Hey y’all! I’m Julia Talbot, and I’m here to combine one of my favorite places to go on vacation with shouting out my latest release at Dreamspinner. Sparkle and Shine is one of my favorites, and Dreamspinner Press is being kind enough to release it for me again!

Evan and Brooks are rodeo cowboys in the story, trying to find their way with the rodeo, a little girl, and a friends to lovers situation.

So, I decided to tell y’all about Las Vegas.

Now, the average American probably doesn’t think rodeo when they think about Las Vegas. Rhinestones and neon, casinos and mobsters; that’s what we associate with that town. Buffets and steak houses, if you’re old school, celebrity chefs and designer clothes if you’re hip. (I haven’t been hip since the 90s, I’m afraid).

But when I think of Vegas, I think of three things. The PBR (professional bullriders) finals in October. The National Finals Rodeo in December. And country music concerts.

I’ve been to the PBR finals 5 times. I’ve seen Tim McGraw twice in Vegas. I’ve never been to the National Finals because, well, someone has to die for you to get good seats, and it comes right before Christmas, but someday I plan to go.

I love Vegas. I love the glitz and glamour of the strip. I love the weird themed hotels, though I have to admit, it’s gotten fancier over the years, less individual and kitschy. The first time I went, I was just going with friends, and I stayed at the Luxor, which back then had a scale replica of King Tut’s tomb, and an Imax ride Egyptian Adventure. I think there’s a Mexican restaurant now where the tomb used to be…

I’ve seen an exhibit of the Titanic, the wax museum, a collection of Liberace’s costumes (talk about rhinestones! Google him, y’all) and a PBR bar with a bucking machine inside it. We’ve watched rodeo cowboys play poker, and being the uber fans we are, we made $5.00 last three hours on a nickel slot so we could stalk them. We’ve taken weird little trains from one end of the strip to the others, listened to hundreds of languages, and people watched until we couldn’t take anymore. We’ve eaten at the Border Grille, at Chef Ramsey’s place in Caesar’s, and had steak frittes at the Paris. We’ve walked the strip for miles, even when the wife had the flu, and we’ve seen a bazillion shows, from Cirque de Soleil to Absinthe to concerts.

In short, there’s an awful lot to see, even if you don’t like rodeo, but really, how can you not love cowboys?


All that glitters is not gold. No-frills cowboy Evan learned that lesson the hard way while married to a rodeo princess, a relationship that was all flash and no substance. At least Evan held on to his daughter, Cheyenne, and his best friend, Brooks, when the sparkle wore off and things fell apart. Life could be a lot worse.

But it could also be better… if Evan and Brooks took a step beyond friendship. Just as they start to explore their feelings, Evan’s ex-wife sticks her nose in to sabotage them. Suddenly everything is up in the air, and they have difficult choices to make about the rodeo, Cheyenne, and the romance they both want so badly to pursue.

First edition published by Torquere Press, November 2007

About the Author: Stories that leave a mark. Julia Talbot loves romance across all the genders and genres, and loves to write about people working to see past the skin they’re in to love what lies beneath. Julia Talbot lives in the great mountain and high desert Southwest, where there is hot and cold running rodeo, cowboys, and everything from meat and potatoes to the best Tex-Mex. A full time author, Julia has been published by Dreamspinner and Changeling Press among many others. She believes that everyone deserves a happy ending, so she writes about love without limits, where boys love boys, girls love girls, and boys and girls get together to get wild, especially when her crazy paranormal characters are involved. She also writes BDSM and erotic romance as Minerva Howe. “The mountains are calling, and I must go”

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Buy the book at Dreamspinner Press.


Top Five Reasons I Write Werewolves

Hey, y’all!

This is my first time here at the Whipped Cream Guest Blog, and I was reading through some of the great authors’ blog posts here, trying to figure out what the heck to write about.

Finally, I just decided to go with simple. My name is Julia Talbot, and I write paranormals… Okay, really I write romance and erotic romance, and I write m/m, m/m/f and traditional romance. I’ve done historical, contemporary, a lot of spanking (woo, hot) and some romantic suspense.

I always come back to those paranormal romances, though. I blame it on the werewolves.

So, why do I write them? What is it about the guys who run under the moon that I love so much? They don’t sparkle, they don’t slink around in capes, and they don’t fly, so what’s the mystique?

5- The duality — I love the idea of two creatures in one body. As a writer, there’s something absolutely fascinating about the conflict between man and wolf, between the civilized and primitive. Every thought, emotion and action is ruled by not one but two creatures.

4- The animal instinct — Werewolves get to act outside of the norms of human society. They aren’t bound by the rules and regulations we hold ourselves to, because they have a whole different instinct to answer to. I love exploring the pack structure, which even a lone wolf carries with him (or her) instinctively.

3- The physical — Werewolves can have crazy hair and eye color and no one cries foul! This gives me glee

2- The Alpha bits — Who doesn’t love the growly, alpha male? Yeah, I know, some folks love the geeky boy or girl with glasses. So do I. They get to be the Betas in a werewolf story, and the chest-beating, howling at the moon Alpha gets to do bad, bad things to them… Yum.

1 – Biting — I try not to be shallow. I really do. I can’t help it. I love biting.

I love the possessiveness of it. I love the heat and the desperation that drives one werewolf to bite another in the heat of passion. I love the instinctive fight back when a beta male or a female isn’t sure they want to be marked. I love it all.

So, now that you know why I write it, I hope you’ll check out some of my werewolf stories. My latest is a book called Cereus: The Building, out from Torquere Press. It’s m/m, and I share the spotlight with my fellow writers Sean Michael and BA Tortuga. It’s a fun, spanky read about a resort for all the things that go bump in the night. You can find it here:

You can also find it on Amazon and All Romance Ebooks.

If you like m/m/f, check out my Changeling Press Series, Mystic U, which is all about a paranormal college!

Thanks for hanging out with me today, y’all! It’s been a blast.



Julia Talbot has been assimilated by Texas, where there is hot and cold running rodeo, cowboys, and smoked brisket. A full time author, Julia has been published by Torquere Press, Suspect Thoughts, Pretty Things Press, and Changeling Press. She can most often be found in coffee shops and restaurants, scribbling in her notebook and entertaining other diners with her mutterings. Find her on the web at