Jane Austen Time Traveler by Rachel Dacus – Spotlight and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Rachel Dacus will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Lonely Regency romance writer travels to the future, meets her fans, dips into a pearly swimming pool, and falls for its owner. Can she ever go home again…

If Jane Austen’s novels had never ever existed, would we have rom-com movies and women’s fiction? But the young writer is discouraged by a publisher’s rejection and ready to give up writing. And an unwelcome marriage proposal she has rashly accepted spells her doom.

Someone must save history and Jane Austen! When a stranger calls and claims to be an interested publisher, a desperate Jane agrees to go with him to his office. That office turns out to be in the future. And it’s not an office, but a bookstore in southern California in 2024 where fans of Jane Austen gather every month to discuss her works.

Jane greets the Jane Austen Superfan Club, only to find that superfans can be super picky. Discouraged by their critiques, Jane wants different adventures. Even deadly, dangerous ones. And oh, yes! Romantic ones.

Her “publisher” had hoped to inspire Jane’s writing by showing her a book club devoted to her writing. But when she meets a tall, handsome superfan, Jane decides to chart her own course. She disappears with her new friend, and history may have to save itself …

Enjoy an exclusive excerpt from the book:

Jane sat up and looked out of the wall of glass. It overlooked the pool they had walked beside last night. Will was swimming with a most peculiar stroke, like a butterfly spreading its wings. He leapt from up the water and then disappeared under again, doing a stroke she had never seen, even at the seaside when the boys played in the ocean.

Jane lay still, contemplating the day and the swimmer.

She should get dressed and join him at the pool, to watch from nearer. Having only her new, silky outfit from last night, Jane wondered if she could wear it for another day. The idea of returning to the hotel and lacing up the layers of her old life returning made her shiver with dread.

Will had left George a message, Ubering their whereabouts, he had said. George would have to rest content with her absence for at least another morning.

Will’s rhythmic swimming mesmerized her as she listened to the sound of his hands and feet slapping the water. He changed to a smoother stroke, swimming quickly back and forth the length of the pool.

Jane dressed and joined him. The day’s warmth was beginning, so she was glad she had left off her jacket.

Will swam over to the side of the pool, dripping like the statues of Attic gods in fountains in Hyde Park.

“Did you sleep well?” he asked. When she nodded, he said, “I made breakfast for us, if you’re ready.”

“Breakfast would be wonderful.”

He swam to the far end of the pool, walked up the steps. Drying off with a blue towel, he wrapped it around his hips, which made Jane look up and around at the sky and gardens, anywhere but at the living statuary that was Will Fleming, a man who had kissed her last night.

RACHEL DACUS writes about history, love, family, and art — with a touch of magic. Rachel is the author of both prose and poetry. When she’s not writing or reading, she listens to music and walks through the beautiful San Francisco Bay Area, where she lives with her architect husband and a lively Silky Terrier. She blogs about books and the writing life.

Website: https://racheldacus.net/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Rachel_Dacus
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/racheldacusauthor/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RachelDacusAuthor

Buy Link:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Jane-Austen-Time-Traveler-Timegathering-ebook/dp/B0BDVXLXC1

Final Strike by Vanessa M. Knight – Exclusive Excerpt and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Vanessa M. Knight will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Julie Connolly thought she had perfected the art of emotional eating, but ever since she learned of her father’s passing, she’s taken it to new heights. The bastard has figured out how to destroy her life from the grave.

Her father’s proposal—abandon her son Cody, so someone else can raise him, or lose her inheritance. The outrageous condition doesn’t deserve a response but the lawyer her father hired demands an answer. Before she can tell the ambulance-chaser exactly where he can shove his demands, her worst fears come alive: Cody is kidnapped. Her only hope comes from Ben Mooring, a man she hates nearly as much as her father.

Though Ben Mooring lost his chance with Julie years ago, she and Cody still mean the world to him. He practically raised the kid for years when he was with Julie. When Cody goes missing, Ben drops everything to search for him. He might never win a spot in Julie’s life again, but he can’t rest while Cody is in danger and Julie needs him.

Julie and Ben join forces to find Cody, but they have to work quickly. If she doesn’t find him soon, she might lose her son forever.

Enjoy an Exclusive Excerpt

Julie stepped into the stomach-holding, never-to-be-seen-by-anyone panties. Safety in granny-panties. After pulling, prodding, and briefly writhing on her bed to get the waistband over her hips, she was appropriately sardined and ready for an outfit.

She whipped open the door to her closet, and a black-hooded battering ram came at her. Her arms flailed. She grabbed for their arm, but her fingers slid off the black cotton jacket.

Down. Down she went. Whoever it was left the closet and moved toward the sliding glass door.

No. Julie grabbed the intruder’s left leg with one hand. Not enough. She clamped on with both hands, and her body banged against her dresser. Everything on top of her dresser fell to the floor. Bottles slapped against the wood and shattered. Her fabric jewelry box slammed into her shoulder. Julie flinched, and the intruder pulled away. She kicked her legs to get closer.

Yank. The body dropped to the floor with a groan. A deep groan.

The criminal’s right leg barely missed Julie’s face, skinning her neck. She pulled back as that right leg tried another pass. Dammit.

“Stop!” Julie gasped, struggling to roll her half-naked body over both legs and pin them down. The criminal’s shoe caught on the thigh-band of her Spanx. The bad guy jerked like a landed fish, and Julie finally angled her body over their legs, pushing them to the floor.

Another groan.

The bad guy wiggled. Julie held on. Her breathing erratic. Her heart beating out of her chest. “Why. Are. You. Here?”

About the Author: Who is Vanessa M. Knight? Well, I’m an author. Wow. After years and years of wanting to use those words, that is fun to say. It’s almost as fun as supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. Did I spell that right?

I write contemporary romantic suspense.

I live in Chicagoland with my family and menagerie of four-legged friends. In my mind, these lovely animals do everything as they should. I’m the alpha, keeping peace and harmony amongst my humble servants. In real life, they own me. I’m the maid, here for their feeding pleasure. Well, that and to clean up their messes.

When not catering to the needs of adorably-furry faces, I slug through the nine to five grind and head home so I can write. Of course, that’s after I make dinner and clean the house and all the other tasks that go into family life. So really, I work, cater to animals and my family… and then, if I don’t fall face first into bed, I write. I love putting my characters into crazy situations and watching how they react. I hope you love reading about them.

I love to hear from fans.

Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Amazon Author Page | Website

Buy the book at Amazon, iBooks, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords

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LASR Anniversary Scavenger Hunt: Sinner’s Opera by Linda Nightingale

Thanks for joining us on our 12th anniversary scavenger hunt! There are two ways to enter to win and it’s easy to play– first read the blurb below, then answer the question on the first Rafflecopter. You might win a $100 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC. Follow and visit authors social media pages on the second rafflecopter and you’re entered to win another $100 Amazon/BN GC!

Morgan D’Arcy is an English lord, a classical pianist, and a vampire. He has everything except what he desires most—Isabeau. As the Angel Gabriel he’s steered her life and career choice, preparing her to become Lady D’Arcy.

Many forces oppose Morgan’s daring plan—not the least of which is Vampyre law. Isabeau Gervase is a brilliant geneticist. Though she no longer believes in angels, she sees a ticket to a Nobel Prize in Gabriel’s secrets—secrets that have led her to a startling conclusion. Gabriel isn’t human, and she fully intends to identify the species she named the Angel Genome. Morgan is ready to come back into Isabeau’s life, but this time as a man not an angel. Will he outsmart his enemies, protect his beloved and escape death himself? For the first time in eternity, the clock is ticking.

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The book will be available on October 7.

Scavenger Hunt:

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A Very MC Picnic by Sam Crescent

A Very MC Picnic by Sam Crescent
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short story (93 pages)
Heat Level: Sweet
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Fern

In a one-off special, six of Sam Crescent’s MCs come together in a family picnic that would be normal if it were for anyone else, but for The Skulls, Chaos Bleeds, Trojans MC, Dirty Fuckers MC, and Saints and Sinners MC, it is anything but.

By invitation only, the Billionaire Bikers MC wish for you to join them at a set location, to bring your family, your children, to enjoy a day of fun with no harm to come to anyone, providing all people can play nice.
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This is just a bit of fun. It features past and future couples, and though it should be read if you love any of the MC books above, it is not necessary to do so. If you want to see more of Angel and Lash, Devil and Lexie, Duke and Holly, Simon and Tabitha, Pie and Lindsey, then this story is for you.

This might just be one of the most unusual picnics ever to have occurred. Five different MC groups – with their women and children – all in the one large, grassy area. Would they come together and listen, or will this end in a blood bath?

I’ve found in the past that MC stories are quite hit and miss with me. I was deeply intrigued, however, by the thought of such a large number of different MC clubs not only coming together, but bringing their families for what would presumably be a greater cause. There were a bunch of interesting characters – many of them intense, alpha males – and a whole lot of stuff happening pretty much all at once. I really commend the author on juggling it all and writing it in such a way I could keep most of what was occurring straight.

I will admit I struggled a bit to remember each different character because there were a lot of them in quite a rush. This difficulty of mine was almost certainly in part because I’ve read very few – if any – of the individual books related to these characters and their MC’s. Readers who have followed along with the clubs likely will have a whole wealth of knowledge and back-story that I didn’t and find this caper far richer for it. But I have to say this certainly stands well alone as its own story. The plot was clear and the characters were all well introduced – there were just a *lot* of them in a short space of time. I strongly feel though that readers who haven’t followed the other clubs shouldn’t be put off by starting here at the large picnic.

There is no sex and not even really any romance – most of the members attending were in long term, committed relationships and the point of them all being there was representing their club, not starting a fling. Indeed, I was actually most interested in some of the teenaged children – they really stole the show for me and I’d definitely pick up any books related to the continuation of their stories.

With a good amount of plot, loads of characters and a really good weave of everything being drawn together this was a very different but quite enjoyable story. I think it would be a good introduction to readers who haven’t had much experience with MC stories (while there are intense moments it’s not graphic, or very violent) and could be a good way to get a taste of what MC stories can be like.

Common Enemy by Sandra Dailey

Common Enemy by Sandra Dailey
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press, Inc
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (273 Pages)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Sorrel

Jordan Holbrook is the single mother of a five-year-old daughter. She’s just inherited her grandmother’s house in South Florida where she’s hiding from an abusive ex-husband who’s been released from prison early. A new man in her life isn’t part of her plans.

Connor McCrae is a handyman who lives out of his van. He walked away from a privileged life and loving family after being badly scarred in a vicious attack. He doesn’t believe a woman’s love is in the cards for him.

They are brought together by a rundown house, a mutual attraction, and a common enemy: Bobby Ray Butler, who is cutting a path of murder and mayhem through south Florida in his quest for vengeance against his ex-wife.
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A classic mystery where the past is bent on revenge!

I think there are some who would say that the classic mystery would be where the male lead would be the handsome guy who would save the day at the end of the novel (with a Happily Ever After). I’d agree with those people too. However, classic mystery I think varies between different people’s opinion.

Here’s the general idea of this story. The male lead is an injured lawyer who have been running or trying to come to terms with his life after an injury. He drifts from town to town doing odd jobs for people. So when another odd job lands him with a beautiful woman and her daughter, they connect. All the old wounds start healing. Relationships are forged and strengthened. In the end it was surprising that justice was served but the road to find it wasn’t easy for them.

When I started reading this book it was simple. It caught my eye and kept me interested throughout to the end of the book. But what I disliked most of all was how fast everything was moving in the beginning. I like fast-paced books but this was smoking. It took me some time to wrap my head around it. I kept going back every couple of pages to make sure I didn’t misread or skip a page.

That said, the book also gives insight on how grief works and affects the whole family. The author did not let me get bored. Something was always happening. Questions kept rising in my head while reading, to answer it I had to read the coming pages. By the time those questions are answered I had a new set of questions at the ready. And then–Ta-da–I had finished the book.

This is a perfect book for readers looking for injured hero and heroines and how they help each other learn to live again.

Always A Groomsman by M. Durango

Always A Groomsman by M. Durango
Publisher: Torquere Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (17 pgs)
Other: M/M
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Fern
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Doug’s happy to stand up at his best friend’s wedding, even if it reminds him that he’s no closer to finding his own partner. After a missing flower delivery, a fire, and a mad dash around town to find alternatives that don’t come from a convenience store, Doug discovers that he might not be single for much longer.

Doug feels like he’s going to his friends’ weddings almost every weekend. Now that same-sex marriage is legalized all his “committed” gay friends are having ceremonies and his social life has become a crazy round of wedding after wedding. Ten years ago when all his straight friends had tied the knot he’d not been jealous. Back then marriage wasn’t something he could have. Now that it was open to gay people, he felt the loss much harder. Thankfully, for the current wedding Doug has Garth as the other best man. Having been friends for a long time, they can handle pretty much anything together – and Garth is tired of waiting for Doug to come to his senses.

This is a really fun, lighthearted short story. Full of near-disasters it struck a chord with me, having been through the craziness of “wedding season” myself. Readers who like a slow progression with their characters should find this satisfying. I enjoyed getting to know Doug and Garth, and liked how they clearly were good friends who worked well together. I was a little disappointed that there was no sex, but the happy ending still left me with a smile.

Despite the short length I felt the author spent most of the book showing us the more humorous side to weddings and the near-misses we all experience. I enjoyed watched Garth run interference with the two grooms and found Doug’s story-telling voice fun and sharp. A wonderful book when you don’t have much time and want something quick yet satisfying.

Author Interview and Giveaway: Mary Behre

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Mary Behre, whose debut novel Spirited, the first book in the Tidewater Series, was released last week. May will be giving away an autographed copy of SpiritedSpirited, the main character Jules is a product of the foster care system. She lost her two younger sisters in it more than a decade earlier. She’s determined to find them and reunite their family.

Mary has just turned in the second book in the series, Guarded, about Jules’s second sister, Shelley who is a telepathic Dr. Dolittle. She’s also a vet who’s on a mission to solve the mystery of missing animals from a local zoo. When she’s implicated in the murder of zoo’s groundskeeper, she turns to an old friend, a cop named Dev from Tidewater. She’s also writing the proposal for book 3, currently untitled.

“What books or authors have most influenced your own writing?” I asked.

“The authors that most influenced my writing are pretty diverse. Dr. Seuss was the first author I adored. He made me love the written word and believe in happily ever after. (Horton Hatches the Egg still sits on my bookshelf.) Agatha Christie gave me a love of mysteries. Stephen King taught me that we’re only limited by our drive and imagination. And Suzanne Brockmann introduced me to modern romance novels.”

It’s not surprising that Suzanne Brockmann is on her list of favorite authors. Mary has several author she adores for different reasons.

“Suzanne Brockmann can spin a suspense that will cause you to lose sleep in your desperation to finish the book,” she explained. “Valerie Bowman writes the wittiest banter I’ve read in years. Her racy regencies are always on my must buy list. And Lynsay Sands writes the best vampire stories I’ve read. Her books have it all humor, sexy vampires, a good mystery, and great storytelling.”

I asked Mary which came first for her–plot or characters–and she told me neither one.

“I usually see a scene first. And it’s not always in the beginning of the book. With SPIRITED, I saw the bedroom window scene first, so I wondered what kind of woman would dress like that and why would she sneak into a stranger’s bedroom. The story grew from there.”

Mary treats her writing career like a regular job–working Monday through Friday, 9-5.

“I try to keep most weekends free to spend with my children and husband,” she said. “However, when I’m on deadline, I’ve been known to write for fourteen hours a day for weeks at a time. Then I sleep for a week after.”

For every book she’s written, Mary has something unique to the story herself. For Spirited, she has a toy purple platypus, and for the second book, Guarded, she has a toy ferret. When she’s writing, the toys go with her–especially on writing retreats.

She is usually surprised at who the villain of the story is–she thinks she knows, and she’s consistently wrong. However, by the time she reaches the end of the first draft, the real villain has surfaced and Mary knows that her revisions are going to be intense.

Many of Mary’s characters are police officers or former police officers, so she likes to attend the Writers Police Academy in North CArolina.

“It’s the busiest conference I’ve ever attended and worth every minute of lost sleep. There’s so much to learn and do, that attending once isn’t enough. I’ve already been twice and plan to go again<" she said. "For the paranormal aspects, I read everything from Hugh Lofting’s Dr. Doolittle to Edgar Cayce’s Auras and Colors.”

“What are the best and worst pieces of writing advice you ever received?” I asked.

“The best piece of writing advice came from my critique partner after my sister died of breast cancer in 2012 and I was struggling to find the will to write again. ‘Cancer took so much from you. Don’t let it take your writing too,'” she said. “The worst piece of writing advice came from a craft book. I should have realized when I got it for a $1 that it probably wasn’t reliable, but I young and new to the craft. Anyway, the book said to NEVER use dialogue.  Now, I’d already written my first manuscript and it was riddled with that pesky stuff. So I went through and re-wrote the entire thing, sans talking. Yikes! Bad, bad advice.”

“What are your favorite TV shows?” I wondered.

“Ooh, I like this question. Do the shows need to be current? Let’s see. Quantum Leap, Castle, Medium. Ghost Whisperer, Psych, Grimm, How I Met Your Mother, and Friends. Luckily, not all are the air anymore, otherwise, I’d never get any writing done. But for the ones that are still on, let’s just say, I love my DVR,” she said with a smile.

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

“‘Never give up. Never surrender.’ No seriously. I loved that line from Galaxy Quest. I live by that rule. There a few times in my life when I gave up on my dreams…for a few days but the urge to write is always there. If you want to write, do it. Study craft books, take workshops, join the right critique group. (If you join one and it isn’t working for you, find another.) And one more secret…read the bestsellers and see what sets them apart.”

About the Author: 3_11 Mary_Behre_Author_Photo_330_dpiMary Behre is the lone female in a house full of males and the undisputed queen of her domain. She even has the glittery tiara to prove it. She loves stories with humor, ghosts, mysteries and above all else, a good romance. When not writing, she enjoys reading, gluten-free baking, and hanging out at the beach with the most important men in her life, her family.

Her debut paranormal romance, SPIRITED (Tidewater Novel #1) was an award-winning manuscript before it sold to Berkley Sensation. The Tidewater Series is mix of humor, suspense, and a psychic love-connection. The first three stories are about three sisters searching for love, each other, and a way to live with their psychic abilities. In each book, they’re caught up in mysteries that only their unique gifts can help solve.

Mary is represented by the fabulous Nalini Akolekar of Spencerhill Associates.

http://MaryBehreBooks.com ~ Facebook ~ Twitter

3_11 Spirited_300_dpiShe’s running from who she is…

All Jules Scott wants is to live a normal, quiet life–preferably one that doesn’t include ghosts. Jules’s ability for communicating with the dead has brought her nothing but trouble. Despite her best efforts, needy spirits always find her and draw her into their otherworldly drama. When one implicates her in a series of deadly crimes, she may need to entrust her secrets to the person least likely to believe her…

He’ll do whatever it takes to catch her.

Detective Seth English can’t get distracted from the big case he’s working on, not even by his alluring new neighbor. He doesn’t believe that Jules had anything to do with the string of robberies-turned-murders that he’s investigating, but when she keeps showing up in all the wrong places, his gut tells him she knows more than she’s letting on. To solve his case, he’ll need to expose what the sexy redhead is hiding–no matter how impossible the truth may be…

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Long and Short Reviews welcomes Dakota Madison, who is with us today promoting her newest release Fire on Ice. Leave a comment for a chance to win a digital copy of her other new release After Alex Died.

As Dakota Madison, she’s written seven books, also writing fiction and non-fiction books under her legal name. Her pen name came from the names of her beautiful bloodhouns,  Dakota and Madison.

“I feel like picking a favorite book is like picking a favorite child (although I have to admit I don’t have children). In my case, maybe it’s like picking a favorite bloodhound, nearly impossible. With that said, I think I have the greatest emotional connection to BE GOOD and AFTER ALEX DIED,” she said.

Even though Fire on Ice is about a hocky player, Dakota doesn’t really know that much about hocky. However, her husband was born and raised in Canada and is a hocky fanatic, so he helped her with parts of the book. She also had a beta reader who was a huge hockey fan.

“I hope with the help of my husband and my beta reader, the story feels authentic. Of course, it’s a romance novel, so it’s about love not hockey but I still thought it was important to be as true to the sport as was necessary.”

Dakota participated in National Novel Writing Month last November and, since then, has written a novel a month. She’s currently writing the third book in her Matchplay series, called Final Play, and she’s also working on the second book in the Fire on Ice series called The Playmaker.

She works full-time as a university professor, so it’s difficult to find the time to write everything she would like to write. She gets up around 4:30 every morning and writes for several hours before she has to get ready for work.

“When I have time, I also write at night. I like to write for a few hours more on the weekends, although I have to admit to often participating in writing binges many weekends!” she told me. “I have so many ideas floating around in my head with only a limited amount of free time to write all of them. I often wonder what my productivity would be like if I wrote full time.”

Dakota learned to read when she was four years old, and she fell in love with books.  As a child, when people asked her what she wanted to do when she grew up, she always told them she wanted to be a writer.

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

“I think it’s every important to establish a writing habit and to write every day, even if it’s just a few paragraphs. Always finish what you start. Don’t ever leave a project half completed. I would also recommend completing a project before you start editing it because the creative process and the editing process are completely different. If you’re being judgmental of the work too early, it could stifle the creative process.”

Dakota writes until her goal for the day is met–even if the writing’s not good.

“I think it’s important to write, even if it’s not good. I give myself permission to write poorly because I know it can always be fixed later. It’s just important to get words on the page during the creative process,” she explained.

Writing is good, to Dakota, if she becomes emotionally involved with the characters and they feel real to her.  And, her all-time favorite character is Lisabeth Salander from the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series.

“She’s such an intriguing character: strong, smart and tough. It saddens me that the author of the series, Stieg Larsson, died at such a young age. I think his work is brilliant. Although, I don’t think the writing has to be brilliant for readers to get caught up in the story,” she told me. “There are some technically ‘great’ writers who are not great storytellers and I don’t believe that can be classified as good writing. It’s not good to me, anyway! I prefer a compelling story over beautiful words that lack substance.”

Dakota always seem to construct her characters first, then come up with situations that will challenge them and in which they can grow.

“I think for some genres (like romance), it works well. If I was writing mysteries or thrillers I may be more inclined to think in terms of plot but I have yet to write in those genres,” she said.

Some of the authors that have inspired her to start writing contemporary, and predominantly New Adult, romance were Colleen Hoover (Slammed, Hopeless), Jamie McGuire (Beautiful Disaster) and Tammara Webber (Easy).

“Those three authors completely changed my perception of the romance genre and I felt like I could write romance novels that were not just about sex but also tackled other series subjects,” she explained.

“What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?” I wondered.

“I love to read, which I think it true of most writers. I try to read a few books a week although it isn’t always possible with my intense writing schedule. I also love watching movies. I enjoy spending time with my husband and our bloodhounds. I also like to travel. I’ve been to nearly every US state and 13 foreign countries.”

Finally, I asked, “If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?”

“I wrote a kid’s book called The Incredibly Awesome Adventure of Puggie Liddell (under my legal name). It’s about siblings who travel through time. I had the characters meet Nikola Tesla because I find him absolutely fascinating and I want to meet him myself. I would ask him about his inventions and I’d want to know more about his death ray machine!”

About the Author: 8_16 Karen_200_SmileDakota Madison has been writing since she learned to read and fell in love with books. When she’s not at her computer creating spicy new romances, Dakota is traveling to exotic locales or spending time with her husband and their bloodhounds.

Blog: http://12novels12months.tumblr.com/ 

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

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/DakotaMadison


8_16 Fire on Ice Front SmallHe’s Fire on Ice and she’s afraid to get burned again…

After Taylor Thompson’s heart was completely shattered by her high school’s most popular jock, she vowed never to date another athlete. She keeps that promise through her first three years of college. But after a chance meeting with a star hockey player, the charming and irresistible Kian Kavanagh, Taylor’s carefully constructed walls are in serious danger of being burned down by Mr. Fire on Ice.

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Buy the book at  Amazon or Smashwords.

Author Interview: Amelia Grey

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Amelia Grey, whose latest book The Rogue Steals a Bride is out this month.  

The Rogue Steals A Bride is the sixth and final book in the Rogues’ Dynasty Series. The main character that binds the six books together is Sir Randolph Gibson, a wily old gentleman who is a best friend to the heroes of the first three books. When Amelia’s editor asked if she could continue the Rogues Dynasty for three more books, she decided to make Sir Randolph the enemy of the rogues in the last three books.

“Sir Randolph is the guardian of the heroine in this story and his story come full circle, too, in a dramatic conclusion to The Rogue Steals A Bride,” Amelia told me. “I hope my readers approve of the ending.”

Romance books have always been Amelia’s favorite books to read.

“When my husband’s job took us to Connecticut, my children had just started grade school. I was a stay at home mom. While the kids were at school, I needed something to fill my time. I didn’t want to get a job outside the home so one day I decided to write a romance book,” she explained. “I joined a local writers group and learned there were workshops on writing being held in New York City. I took the train into the city and took classes on how to plot, bring characters to life, create drama, do transitions, and many other things you need to know to write a successful book. I sold my first book to Warner Books in 1990. ”

Before becoming Amelia Grey, the author wrote ten books as Gloria Dale Skinner and three as Charla Cameron, all of which were set in America.

“When I wanted to move to England and start writing Regency stories, my editor suggested I take a new name, a more English sounding name so after much thought I came up with Amelia Gray. And my editor said let’s spell Grey the way the British do, not the American way so I became Amelia Grey and have been for eleven books now,” she said.

One of Amelia’s favorite authors of Regency romance is Amanda Quick. She’s read all of Amanda’s books and enjoyed them.

” The things I like most about her books are the snappy dialogue, fast pace storytelling, and intelligent heroines. I try to have all three of those things in my books, too,” she said.

Amelia’s tone is always light and humorous. She doesn’t write dark stories or deal with heavy subject matter. In each of her books, she tries to put the hero and heroine into a fun or quirky situation and have them have to find a way to work themselves out of it.

“For example, in The Rogue Steals A Bride, Matson and Sophia both have darn good reasons why they shouldn’t be together but in order to keep the book light-hearted and in my style of writing, I put a wily little boy-thief between Matson and Sophia to cause fun and trouble,” she told me.

“How many books have you written?” I asked.

“I’m happy to say The Rogue Steals A Bride is my twenty-fifth published book. I’m so excited about it. It has a gorgeous cover, too.”

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“That is difficult. I love every book I write. If I didn’t love the story and characters I would put it aside and keep working until I came up with a story and characters I loved.  If I don’t love them, I can’t make you love them. I do have some books that have more meaning for me than others because of the story. For instance, my book Ransom, written as Gloria Dale Skinner, is the good sister/bad sister story. I have four sisters and I put a little of all four of my sisters in that book. I especially enjoyed A Marquis To Marry because the heroine had been married before and wasn’t new to love or love making so that was different for me and an enjoyable book to write. And lastly, A Little Mischief was simply fun for me from the first page because I had a dead body go missing and then show up again later in the book and then go missing again!”

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

“The best advice I can give is what has worked for me. Write what you love to read. There are some natural storytellers who sell the first book they write but that wasn’t me and if it’s not you, there is help. The good thing is that what you don’t have in natural ability you can learn as a skill. Join a writers group and make friends so you can discuss your plots and characters or talk about the business with them. Take writing courses. Write a little at least five days a week so you will get into the habit of thinking about your book. Once you get the book written, send it to an agent or editor.”

About the Author:   New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Amelia Grey’s awards include the Booksellers Best, Aspen Gold, and the Golden Quill. Writing as Gloria Dale Skinner, she won the coveted Romantic Times Award for Love and Laughter and the prestigious Maggie Award.  Her books have sold to many countries in Europe, Indonesia, Russia, and most recently to Japan. Several of her books have also been featured in Doubleday and Rhapsody Book Clubs. Amelia read her first romance book when she was thirteen and has been a devoted reader of love stories ever since. She is the author of twenty-five books. Happily married to her high school sweetheart for over thirty-five years, Amelia lives in Northwest Florida.

She loves to hear from readers! Please email her at ameliagrey@comcast.net, follow her at Facebook.com/ameliagreybooks, or visit her website at ameliagrey.com

7_2 Amelia Grey book coverMatson Brentwood has finally met the woman of his dreams. The lovely, red-haired Sophia Hart heats his blood like no other lady.  Her alluring countenance has stopped him dead in his tracks. But no matter how attracted he is to her, he can’t give into his desire to possess her in every way because she is the ward of the man he’s sworn to hate.

Newly arrived in London, Miss Sophia Hart is looking for a husband—for herself and for one of her twin spinster aunts who has decided she wants a man. Sophia agrees to help her aunt by allowing older gentlemen to call on her and then come up with ways to make sure her aunt spends more time with the gentleman than Sophia does.

But there’s more than just an unwanted guardian and a long list of beaus standing between Sophia and Matson.  Sophia can’t give into the maddening charms of the darkly handsome and intriguing Matson. She must deny her love for him and pay her debt to her father for costing him the love of his life.






INTERVIEW and giveaway: Susan Mac Nicol

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Susan Mac Nicol, who is offering two copies of the first book of her Starlight trilogy, Cassandra by Starlight, for giveaway. Just leave a comment on this interview along with which format you would like (pdf, epub or mobi format).
Susan has been writing since she was about ten years old and still has some of the material from that time. But she’s been writing seriously for publication since she started writing Cassandra by Starlight in February 2012. She ended up with a trilogy to finish Cassie and Bennett’s story. She has also written five other full-length novels and is waiting for publication dates.

Even though she’s a relative newbie as far as writing goes, she’s a voracious reader and has been reading since she was old enough to hold a book.

“I know what I look for in a good read and I would like that to reflect in my writing as well,” she said. “The elements I’d look for are a well established story line, a realistic and gripping plot, wonderful characters who feel as if they can walk into my living room and simply interact, and a well edited manuscript that has been proof read and polished so that it reads easily on the eyes. There’s nothing worse that constantly picking up grammatical and spelling mistakes as you read. It distracts the reader from the story.”

Susan told me she’s always been able to write the first line of her manuscript, sometimes without even really knowing what she’s writing about, and then letting it flow to a natural conclusion.

“I have no idea when I start what’s going to happen,” she admitted. “I have a basic plot – boy meets girl, they develop the relationship, things happen along the way, characters are drawn in and the finally, there’s an ending which always has to be a happy one. I’m not one for cliff hangers or deep, dark broody endings which may or may not be happy. I’m an incurable romantic.”

“When did you first consider yourself a writer?” I wondered.

“I truly thought I was a writer when I started Cassandra by Starlight. It was a story that I had a passion for, with a story that was very close to my heart. I knew I was a writer when I finished it because I immediately started another one, unable to stop until their story was finished.”

She wrote all three of the Starlight Trilogy books to the music of Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds album.

“I played it over and over again, put some of the songs in the book and one of them ‘If I Had a Gun’ is Cassie and Bennett’s song. Other than that, when I write I listen ad nauseum to Kasbian, Foo Fighters, Muse, Incubus, The Killers and White Lies. And lots of Eminem.”

Susan has found the internet and Google to be wonderful tools in her research for most of her books, from female on male rape, schizophrenia, celebrity stalkers, serial killers, gay sex, cults, BDSM, sex positions, gay rights and various aspects of psychology.

“I like to search the live forums and get involved in real conversations with real people,” she said. “As all my books are set in London and the surrounding counties, I’m fortunate enough to actually be able to go to the places I quote and make sure that I get it right. So for the Starlight Series, I went to Trafalgar Square, Westminster, and the Dutch pub, De Hems, in Soho, which is a main watering hold for my characters. For my upcoming paranormal series, Double Alchemy I went to Hampstead Heath, which is a large part of where the book is based, Manningtree, Mistley and pats of my home county of Essex. I take photos when I get there so I have a visual record of where I’ve been and these shots can then be used on social networks like Pinterest.

“But I’ve also been fortunate to have friends who have helped too. For my book Saving Alexandria which deals with a woman with some deep seated psychological problems due to sexual abuse in a cult, I was fortunate enough to have an online buddy who is a psychologist. She read my book, sense checked my characters and their reactions and psychologies and pronounced it ‘very believable and realistic.” I have a gay friend, an author, who is currently reading my detective thriller, Born Human to sense check my male sex scenes. He’s my beta reader too. So all of this contributes to my research as I have a passion to ensure that my stories are factually correct.”

The writing of Cassandra by Starlight, and the research she did for it, has led to her involvement in the issue of female on male rape.

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“What is something that you absolutely can’t live without?” I wondered.

“Uhhm, this is going to sound so terribly sad but it’s the truth. I have a Galaxy Note smart phone and it’s my lifeline to the world. I am very seldom off this phone and in fact my husband calls it my boyfriend as he says I’m on it more than I am him. He said if it vibrated too I wouldn’t need him. I haven’t had the heart to tell him there’s an app you can get which does just that. It might destroy him altogether.”

About the Author: 4_16 INTERVIEW SueSue Mac Nicol was born in Leeds, Yorkshire, in the United Kingdom. At the age of eight, her family moved to Johannesburg, South Africa where she stayed for nearly thirty years before arriving back in the UK in December 2000.

Sue works full time in the field of regulatory compliance. But she still finds time to work until the small hours of the night doing what she loves best – writing. Since her first novel, Cassandra by Starlight, was penned, Sue has since written the other two books in her Starlight trilogy, four other novels and two short stories as well as a screen play. Her passion is keeping herself busy creating worlds and characters for her readers to enjoy.

Sue is a member of Romance Writers of America and Romantic Novelists Association in the UK. She lives in the rural village of Bocking, in Essex, with her family.

Her plan is to keep writing as long as her muse sits upon her shoulder. Her dream is to one day get that big old house in the English countryside overlooking a river, where she can write all day and continue to indulge her passion for telling stories.

Find Sue online at

Twitter – @SusanMacnicol7
Cassandra by Starlight Facebook page
Book trailer 

4_16 INTERVIEW Cassandra by Starlight CVR_3_resizedA London woman is swept off her feet into the glamorous yet surprisingly dangerous world of an up-and-coming star of stage and screen.

Unconventional though she may be, Cassandra Wallace leads the life of an average Londoner, from blind dates to rush hour traffic. Then, along comes Bennett Saville. Sensitive, charming, erudite, the up-and-coming actor is like the hero of a romantic movie. He counteracts the tragedy that brought them together, and from the tips of his Armani loafers to that scorching hot kiss he seems absolutely perfect. Only, he’s ten years younger and from the upper class, and those emerald eyes beget dangerous secrets. The world is a stage, full of hungry leading ladies, and how long can any fairy tale last before a villain appears? Yet, on Bennett’s arm each new day is an adventure, and a true romance will always find its happy ending.