Monday, July 17, 2017
My first post for Upbeat Authors is regarding all the stuff we accumulate in our houses. I have been in the process of getting rid of stuff for several years. Some times I wonder where does it all come from? I think the best rule of thumb is in the meme quote. If you have stuff in your house that is not useful or that you don't particularly love, get rid of it. The less you have, the less stress you have and less stuff to clean or to try to store.
And if you are like me, once you store it, you forget you've got it. Sometimes, it is hard to let go of things but as time has passed, I have realized that hanging onto things for sentimental reasons or because "I might use it someday" is futile. With less stuff, you can downsize, live on less and enjoy your space more.
So let's all start planning our yard sales!
Sunday, July 16, 2017
Heroic Rogue Series - Heroes who fight to protect their country from Napoleon's controlling hand...and men who won't give up on the women who have captured their hearts.
"Pretending You're Mine" (previously published as Take My Heart) - Portraying her twin is the only way Mercedes Maxwell can get close to her sister's husband to learn his secrets. William Braxton is confused about the sudden change in his wife, and yet, now he'd drawn to her like never before. Can they fall in love with numerous secrets between them? http://a.co/9899GMP
"After the Loving" (previously published as Falling in Love Again) - Marcus Thorne / Captain Hawk is determined to capture Napoleon's spies, even if one is so very lovely and seductive. Isabelle Stanhope gives her heart to her captor, even if she's forced to marry a man she doesn't love. Can they fight against fate's rules? http://a.co/4A2MMbm
"Wonderland by Night" - Nobody must know that Lady Emiline Lucia's uncle is Napoleon Bonaparte. She must protect herself against those who hate France's emperor. Gabriel Lawrence hides his identity as a spy. How can he protect them both if a spy against the crown is always one step ahead...and wants Gabe dead? http://a.co/9Rx7QI9
"Worth Fighting For" - Lindsay Lennox, youngest daughter of Turkey's governor, will do anything to meet and kiss a man...even sneak aboard a ship that is sailing to England. Captain Barry Braxton is heading home to take over his dying father's place, co-partnering with his uncle (William Braxton). Will the lovely stowaway stop his plans? http://a.co/hu8dWdQ
Excerpt from Pretending You’re Mine –
Thundering hooves of a horse bore down upon them. Mercedes switched her attention to the man on the steed. The small crowd parted, and the man atop the animal dismounted. His horse had whipped up a cloud of dust in the dingy alley and she waved her hand in front of her face to keep from sneezing. The sight of the rider left her speechless and a bit weak at the knees.
His rugged appearance shocked her, his strength evident in his muscled arms and legs. Rather than the fancy clothes of the English gentry, the beige shirt and brown leather vest of a farmer’s attire stretched taut across his wide chest, and the black material of his trousers molded to his legs and fit snugly into his black knee-boots. But this man was no farmer. That much appeared evident by the way he carried himself as he strode toward her, his step too confident, too graceful.
When he neared and Mercedes gazed upon his face, her breath caught in her throat. The sun had turned his skin a light brown, and the sureness of his jaw bespoke authority. Chestnut hair tousled by the wind framed his head, and she had a sudden urge to swipe the unruly locks off his forehead.
He was quite handsome, if she dared admit, and he literally made her lungs stop working. Never had that happened to her from just admiring a man. Looking into his fiery hazel eyes, she swallowed hard.
He stopped mere inches away, towering over both Mercedes and the soldier like a dark cloud of doom. She leaned her head back to take in his height.
The handsome man met the soldier’s stare. “Sir, will you kindly remove your hands from my wife?”
Her jaw dropped. Wife?
GIVEAWAY – leave a comment on this blog with your name and email, and you’ll be entered into a drawing to receive a free book of your choice! (I have 42 to choose from) – www.mariehiggins.com
Marie Higgins is a best-selling, multi-published author of Christian and sweet romance novels; from refined bad-boy heroes who make your heart melt to the feisty heroines who somehow manage to love them regardless of their faults. She’s been with a Christian publisher since 2010. Between those and her others, she’s published over 40 heartwarming, on-the-edge-of-your-seat stories and broadened her readership by writing mystery/suspense, humor, time-travel, paranormal, along with her love for historical romances. Her readers have dubbed her "Queen of Tease", because of all her twists and turns and unexpected endings.
Visit her website / blog to discover more about her – www.mariehiggins.com
Find her on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/marie.higgins.7543
And Twitter – https://twitter.com/mariehigginsXOX
Monday, July 10, 2017
Linda is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card. Enter the Rafflecopter at the end of the blog post to subscribe to her email list for five chances to win!
Thanks so much for hosting me today!
My most recent release is a Western romance set in the California Gold Country, specifically Grass Valley, 1868. My husband and I visited the area some years ago and I fell in love with it. Grass Valley was especially interesting to me because of the large Cornish population in the 19th century. This area had deep gold veins that couldn’t be panned. Cornish miners were encouraged to come because of their experience in the tin mines of Cornwall, which were petering out. To this day, the Cornish pasty is a local treat, and the city still celebrates a Cornish Christmas.
A shorter, sexier version of this story was previously published by Amber Quill Press. When I got the rights back, I realized I now had the opportunity to tell the tale as I’d originally intended, as a sensual romance. It was fun to revisit Lily and King’s world and spend time with them again. They are two of my favorite characters. I hope readers will agree.
Lily and the Gambler is on sale for the summer for 99 cents!
Lily & the Gambler
By Linda McLaughlin
Sensual Western Historical Romance
Respectability is in the eye of the beholder. Or so Lily Penhallow hopes when she assumes the guise of the widow Albright. She has learned the price of flaunting convention and is determined to obey society's rules from now on. After her lover, Nigel Albright, was killed in a duel over a card game, Lily dons widow’s weeds and travels to Grass Valley, California where she plans to marry the man her uncle works for, a respectable mine owner named Hugh Ogilvie. Then, on the riverboat from San Francisco, she meets Creighton 'King' Callaway, a professional gambler, just the kind of man she should avoid.
King believes that since life is a gamble, there's no point in planning for the future. You have to trust Lady Luck. After meeting Lily, King knows he has found his Queen of Hearts. But can he convince her to pass up a sober businessman for a foot-loose card sharp?
Only Lady Luck knows for sure...
(Previously published in a shortened version by Amber Quill Press)
On sale for 99 cents at:
Amazon Kindle US: https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B01MYMEKMD/
Coming Soon to Other Retailers
Lily smiled at him. “That was quite a trick. Do you tell fortunes, too?”
“As a matter of fact, I do. Is the lady interested?”
“Perhaps,” she said, aware he was flirting with her again and annoyed with herself because she was enjoying it. “There should be a deck of cards here somewhere.”
“No cards required. Just let me see your palm.”
Unable to stop herself, Lily stripped off her gloves and let him take her hand. He held it in his left hand, and with his right index finger, traced the lines on her palm. Shivers ran up her arm at each caressing touch. His scent, a mixture of bay rum, male musk, and a faint hint of tobacco, overwhelmed her.
“What do you see?” she asked, her voice suddenly breathless.
“Health and long life.”
“What, no handsome stranger?” she joked.
He raised his head and stared into her eyes. “Oh, yes, I see romance ahead for you. With a dark haired fellow. But he isn’t a stranger.”
For what seemed an age, she stared into his green-gold eyes while her pulse quickened and warmth stole through her veins. It would be so easy to surrender to the feelings he evoked.
“I also see a fork in the road ahead,” he added softly. “You have a decision to make. A very important decision.”
She snatched her hand away, knowing she couldn’t afford to be distracted by him. It wasn’t as if he had made her any promises. “I think you need to practice your fortune-telling skills, Mr. Callaway.”
He chuckled. “There’s something else I’d like to practice.” Cupping her chin, he stared at her, his eyes full of half promises. “Oh, hell, I may get my face slapped for this, but…” His hand moved to the back of her neck as he lowered his head and captured her lips in a kiss that stole her breath away.
For a moment, she closed her eyes and gave herself up to the kiss. Then a door slammed somewhere in the house, reminding her of where they were. She pushed him away. “How dare you?” she hissed.
He gave her a lazy grin. “What’s that old saying? Nothing ventured, nothing gained?”
“I think you’d best be going.”
He paused at front door, turned and held her gaze for a moment, then left.
She sighed and leaned against the doorjamb. What had she been thinking to let him kiss her, however briefly?
Linda McLaughlin grew up with a love of books and history, so it's only natural she prefers writing historical romance. She loves transporting her readers into the past where her characters learn that, in the journey of life, love is the sweetest reward. Linda also writes steamy to erotic romance under the name Lyndi Lamont, and is one half of the writing team of Lyn O'Farrell. A native of Pittsburgh, PA. she now lives in Southern California.
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Friday, July 7, 2017
Thursday, July 6, 2017
“Smart romance with an ‘Indiana Jones’ feel.”
“Like Nancy Drew for grown-ups.”
A legendary treasure hunt in the dramatic – and deadly – New Mexico desert....
The lost Victorio Peak treasure is the greatest of treasure-hunting legends, filled with riches from a heretic Spanish priest’s gold mine, bandits, and an Apache Chief.
Erin, a shy history professor, uncovers a clue that may pinpoint the lost cave. She’s ready for adventure, but when a hit and run driver nearly kills her, she knows she’s not the only one after the treasure. And is Drew, the handsome helicopter pilot who found her bleeding in a ditch, a hero or an enemy?
Erin heads into the New Mexico wilderness with her brainy best friend Camie and a feisty orange cat, Tiger. The wilderness holds its own dangers, from wild animals to sudden storms. Meanwhile, dangerous men are on Erin’s trail, determined to snatch the treasure from her grasp. How far will Erin go to find the treasure and discover what she’s really made of? And will Drew be there to help her in the end?
“The story has it all—action, romance, danger, intrigue, lost treasure, not to mention a sizzling relationship....”
“The action never stopped .... It was adventure and romance at its best.”
“I couldn’t put this book down. You’ll love it.”
This book was originally published under the title Rattled.
Fans of Mary Stewart, Barbara Michaels, and Terry Odell will enjoy these stories of love in the wild, from an award-winning author.
The Mad Monk’s Treasure Excerpt:
Among all the legends, all the fact and fiction, one story stood out. The Victorio Peak legend had it all. A Franciscan priest and a swindler. Torture, murder, a government cover-up. Where was the truth, among all the stories? Erin wanted to find out. Over time, and with Camie’s encouragement, she’d started to take the treasure hunt more seriously. It wasn’t so much for the treasure itself, which would most likely belong to the government or the landowners. But it would make her reputation, open up new job opportunities – change her life in ways she hardly dared dream.
She touched the book gently. The pages were falling out; she didn’t want to risk carrying it around. Instead, Erin snapped a picture of the petroglyphs with her phone. That would be enough to show Camie for now.
The timing was perfect; she just had to turn in grades and field a few tearful last-minute requests for extensions, and she’d be done for the semester. What better way to spend the summer, than hunting for buried treasure?
Erin shook her head. Who would’ve thought that she, the quiet, studious girl who’d spent her entire adult life in academia in one way or another, would be planning such an adventure?
Erin wheeled the bike around the front of her house and mounted. At the corner, she paused and looked both ways. The long frontage road was dangerously narrow, with a cement wall on one side and a ditch on the other. Fortunately, traffic was normally light, and at this time of day the road lay empty. Erin pushed off, still grinning from her find. She rode on the right side, by the ditch, instead of facing traffic, because it was too frightening to ride alongside the wall when a car passed.
She’d gone a block when she heard the hum of a car engine as it pulled out from a side street behind her. She rode along the very edge of the pavement, even though the car would have plenty of room to pass her without oncoming traffic.
Erin glanced over her shoulder. The black SUV twenty feet behind her hadn’t bothered to pull out into the road at all. Jerk. When would drivers learn to share the road with bicyclists? Erin pulled onto the two-foot wide gravel strip between the pavement and the ditch. She couldn’t stop without risking a skid, but she slowed so the SUV could pass.
The engine roared. Erin glanced back again.
Black metal bore down on her. Her heart lurched and the bike wobbled. This guy was crazy! She whipped her gaze forward, rose up in the seat, and pumped the pedals with all her power, skimming along inches from the ditch. He was just trying to scare her. She’d get his license plate and—
She felt the bumper hit her back tire. The bike seemed to leap into the air, and she went flying. The dried mud and weeds of the ditch seemed to rise up to meet her.
She didn’t even have time to scream.
Get the book free at these ebook retailers:
Kris Bock writes novels of suspense and romance with outdoor adventures and Southwestern landscapes. Whispers in the Dark features archaeology and intrigue among ancient Southwest ruins. In Counterfeits, stolen Rembrandt paintings bring danger to a small New Mexico town. What We Found is a mystery with strong romantic elements about a young woman who finds a murder victim in the woods.
The Southwest Treasure Hunters novels follow strong characters hunting for long-lost treasures in the dramatic and deadly southwestern desert. Each stands alone.
Read excerpts at www.krisbock.com or visit her Amazon page. Sign up for Kris Bock newsletter for announcements of new books, sales, and more.
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Tuesday, July 4, 2017
I hope everyone has had a wonderful July 4th holiday and that you are enjoying the summer. Here in the South, July ushers in deep summer when the heat and humidity becomes oppressive. It's a great time to stay indoors and write!
The winner of the autographed copy of One Week in Your Arms is Alice Moore Bash.
Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Here's a super easy dessert to make for dinner!
1 stick of softened butter
1 1/2 cup sugar
Mix together. I use my mixer on low.
In separate bowl, mix 3 eggs. Then add to sugar and butter. Combine.
Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar, 1 tsp. vanilla and one can of coconut.
Pour in ready-to-bake pie crust. Cook at 350 until firm.
Escape into the past with a romantic historical adventure
set in the French Quarter in 1814!
Available in print or ebook Amazon