Tag Archives: Romance

Guest Release–Martini Club 4

A four-book series by four authors set in the Roaring Twenties

MC4 New Banner

Blurb for Ruined by Alicia Dean:

After the Earl of Goodwin attempts to force himself on her, housemaid Eliza Gilbert flees England for New York, hoping to build a better life. But the land of opportunity proves as harsh as the London docks, and she finds herself in a situation more dreadful than the one she escaped.

When Vince Taggart’s childhood friend disappears, he heads to New York in search of her and meets Eliza, a woman with a less than honorable reputation. Inexplicably captivated, Vince can’t force himself to stay away, especially when he learns Eliza may be the key to finding his missing friend.

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Excerpt:

The next night at Oscar’s party, Eliza tried to put the missing girls out of her mind. The penthouse was filled with people; everyone seemed to be in an exceptionally good mood.

She moved across the room and chatted with Oscar’s guests. Her enthusiasm for the position had dimmed, but really, she’d overreacted at the Jubilee. Betty and her husband had been nice people. The music and dancing were incredible. She’d never seen people move like that. Other than some uncomfortable pawing, Betty had been right, Gregor hadn’t made a pass at her. She could do this. The money was fabulous, and employment was not easy to find—especially for a female immigrant.

She forced herself to relax and enjoy the party. She’d been here for three hours, and Oscar hadn’t asked her—correction, insisted—that she leave with anyone. Maybe this would be like the other nights and she could just mingle and drink and entertain guests—here, under Oscar’s roof. Tonight, she wore the last of her new gowns, a black, figure hugging knee-length with fringe along the hem that went down to her ankles. She felt daring…pretty, even. She’d have to go shopping if she didn’t want to start rotating the same dresses all over again. At least she had plenty of funds to buy new things. Oscar had been more than generous. His many moods confused her. He could scare the bloody daylights out of her one moment, then become kind and giving in the next.

Oscar and a tall man with thick, dark hair approached. “Eliza, my dear, I would like you to meet Thomas Killman.”

She took his hand. He was handsome, if a little fleshy. “How do you do.”

“Delighted, my dear.” He bent and placed a wet kiss on the back of her hand. She resisted the urge to rub the saliva off on her dress.

“I would like you to be Mr. Killman’s companion for the evening.”

Eliza smiled. At least she wouldn’t have to leave with this one. “Of course. It will be my pleasure.”

His brows lifted, and a broad smile broke over his face. “Indeed?”

Oscar took her arm and led her a few paces away, out of Mr. Killman’s earshot. “This is going to be a little different arrangement tonight. You’ll have to be extra nice to him.”

“I’m always nice, Oscar. I smile and I’m polite. I even let them kiss me if they want. I will be his escort for the entire evening. As late as he wants.”

“That’s fine. But he’s going to want more than an escort.” He narrowed his eyes. “More than a kiss.”

“More than a kiss?” Her heart thudded madly. “I—I don’t understand.”

“Eliza, please. You aren’t really that naïve, are you? You will have sex with him.”

The room spun and her ears rang. She must not have heard him correctly. “Wh—what did you say?” The words came out in a squeak from her strangled throat.

“I believe you know exactly what I said.”

The world dropped out from under her. She would not do something so, so depraved.

“No!” She’d meant to keep her voice low, but when heads turned her way, she realized she’d shouted the word.

All pretense of civility left Oscar’s features. He tightened his lips and gripped her arm. “You heard me. You’ll have to sleep with him. All the other girls do that sort of thing. You’ve just managed to avoid it so far. But he picked you.”

This was the reason she left England. Her mother warned her on her deathbed that once the Earl was gone, she needed to run. Lord Renwald would make her his whore. She’d run, but not far enough. She’d barely escaped the same thing Oscar was trying to make her.

*** Available now for Amazon pre-order for only 99¢ – Regular price will be $2.99 when the stories release on February 26!***

This book is part of a fun series I did in conjunction with three of my writer friends. We have been meeting for martinis at the Martini Lounge in Edmond, Oklahoma nearly every Friday for the past four years. From those get-togethers, we developed the idea to write a series centered around a Martini Club. Those stories are finally completed, and we’re pleased to present the Martini Club 4 series…

Rebellious by Amanda McCabe – Can an aristocratic lady melt the cold heart of a Russian gangster?

Ruined by Alicia Dean – She vowed she’d be no man’s doxy, but fate had other plans.

Reckless by Kathy L Wheeler – Lady Margaret turned Lady Bootlegger.

Runaway by Krysta Scott – Can she prove her innocence before more than her dreams are destroyed?

Find all four at this link

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Left to Right: Krysta Scott, Amanda McCabe, Kathy L Wheeler, Alicia Dean

Contact info:

www.AliciaDean.com

Twitter: @Alicia_Dean_
Martini Club 4 FB page:  https://www.facebook.com/martiniclub4

Guest Promotion–Lady Of The Night by M.J. Schiller

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Blurb ~

Can she betray the man she loves to save him?

An explosion rips Darius away from Maggie. Everyone believes him to be dead, but in her heart she knows it’s not true.

Will he betray The Order to make his way back to her?

Darius’s captor wants information about Council members.  Will duty win out over love?

Will he betray his best friend for the woman he loves?

Orion has learned to keep his distance from Maggie, but when circumstances throw them together in a very intimate way, how can he be expected to remain a loyal friend to Darius?

Excerpt ~

He entered a hallway lined with doors on either side. About halfway up a patch of light on the polished wood stretched from one of the doorways and then became slimmer and slimmer, disappearing as the door slid shut. He picked up his pace, but footsteps approached from a side hallway. Ducking into a doorway, he flattened himself against the cold metal, his heart racing. The footsteps echoed loudly on the flooring, but soon became more distant. Daring to stick his head out, he got a glimpse of the back of someone turning onto another corridor. He estimated the spot where he thought the light shone on the floor, then strode to the door, took a deep breath, and punched the keypad.

He was horrorstruck when the door opened. Maggie knelt at the foot of a brass bed facing it with her arms spread wide, electro-cuffed to the bedposts. The ape called Mic brought a whip crashing down on her back. Orion jumped at the sharp crack, wincing. He rushed forward and grabbed the slaver’s arm as he pulled it back for another blow. He ripped the whip from the meaty fist and threw it across the room where it knocked over a lamp. Mic whirled in a rage but was laid low by a single punch to his jaw. He staggered backward into the bed and slid slowly, almost comically, to the floor.

“Maggie.”

He hurried to her side, kneeling and laying his hands on her bare arms. “I’m so sorry.” He peered over her shoulder to see her exposed lower back and the welt already rising there.

“I’m okay.” She leaned to peer around the side of the bed at Mic’s prone figure. “Wow. I guess it is true. The bigger they are, the harder they do fall.” The corners of her lips turned up, but her eyes watered.

He smiled back, relieved she was safe. For the moment anyhow. He ran his hands along her arms to the electro-cuffs and deactivated them. They fell from her wrists, and she grabbed the bars of the bed to help her to her feet. She sucked in her breath through her teeth, then halted, appearing to gather herself for a few seconds. “I’ve got an idea about how I can get into the slave quarters.”

BUY LINK

Amazon

MJ Schiller

M.J. Schiller, lunch lady/romance-romantic suspense writer, is the mother of a twenty-year-old and three eighteen-year-olds. That’s right, triplets! So having recently taught four children to drive, she likes to escape by pretending to be a rock star at karaoke. However, a record label is out of the question.

Web Contacts ~

Website: www.mjschillerauthor.blogspot.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/MJ-Schiller-Romance-Author/286382241460365?ref=hl

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/mjschiller/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/mjschiller

Tumblr: http://mjschilz.tumblr.com/

Instagram: http://instagram.com/mjschiller

Google + : https://plus.google.com/u/0/110797684036386240402/posts

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6479377.M_J_Schiller

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/M.J.-Schiller/e/B009JOQFQQ/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

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Guest Interview–Nicki Greenwood

Today I’m pleased to have an author who is also published by The Wild Rose Press, Nicki Greenwood.

Tell us a bit about you and your background.

My writing career began a lot like most authors’ did: I was never without a book or a pen in my hand. Stories were my life. Things really took off when I discovered the Central New York Romance Writers. In between two fabulous years as an editor and a sideline as a web designer, I have since published five books and counting. I have a day job, but my first love will always be the power of the pen (or, these days, the keyboard). I’m still rarely without a book.

Do you start a new story with the plot or characters first?

Usually, it’s the plot. Once in a great and very welcome while, a character will start talking to me, and refuse to stop until I write down what he says. Those are the best kind of stories, and the easiest to write!

Is your writing style planned or freestyle?

I used to “pants” it entirely. If I knew the ending, it wasn’t worth writing the story. These days, I’ve had to work out a balance between plotting and pantsing. I keep the plot deliberately vague so that I leave myself room for surprises, but there’s a general idea of where the whole circus is going.

Can you share a tip about what you do when you get stuck in creating a story?

I’ve discovered that, even five-plus books in, I’m always going to hate my first draft. No matter what I do, I’m just not going to be happy with what goes into that initial round of writing, and it’s hard, slow going. The key is just to keep getting those words on the page, even if I think they’re terrible. Most of the time, the words are better than I think, and I need to remember that I can make them better when it’s time to revise. (That’s where I have my real fun!)

Do you use visual aids (storyboards, Pinterest, collages) when plotting or writing?

I generally pick an actor or actress that resembles my hero/heroine, and that sets a mental image in my head from which I can build a personality. I use Pinterest as a “visual aid” for my novels, where people can “see” inside my books and find locations, professions, or special items highlighted in the stories (see the link for my Pinterest page).

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BLURB for Flashpoint:

Faith Markham knows her place in life—paranormal expert and world-traveling archaeologist. She also knows she’ll never fall in love again. How can she, when the only man she’s ever wanted is a long-dead Viking warrior? She has resigned herself to loneliness, but fate has other ideas.

Hakon Ivarsson has had enough of women. His ex-wife left his life in ruins, and only Australia’s Blue Mountains can soothe his empty soul. When Faith shows up needing a trail guide, he regards her with instant suspicion. This enigmatic beauty pulls at him in ways he can’t explain. Trusting her is out of the question, but protecting her is absolute.

When they stumble on an artifact-smuggling ring, led by a man poised to bend the world’s paranormal power to his own terrible purposes, they must join forces. Will it tear them apart, or has fate finally delivered a second chance?

2nd Place, 2006 Golden Pen Contest

EXCERPT:

Just who was guiding who?

Hakon growled and pulled his own backpack from the Land Rover, locked the vehicle, then stalked down the trail after her.

It took him all of two seconds to decide he should have been the one walking in front. Faith strode ahead of him, dodging ruts and potholes with sure feet. Her hips swayed with each step in a compelling rhythm that drove his body into a riot. He imagined drawing her back against him, kissing that spot behind her ear where tendrils of golden hair had fallen loose….

She stopped dead and turned around with wide eyes. Damn, had he said something out loud? He thought he’d seen a flash in her eyes just before they saw the truck. There it was again, though before, he could have sworn her eyes had been silver…

“Aren’t you supposed to be in front of me?” she asked.

Desire and doubt vanished. “I would have been, if you hadn’t bolted off in the first place.” He stepped around her and went on without pausing. “Next time, let me go first. Clear?”

“Get up on the wrong side of the bed?”

He didn’t bother telling her he hadn’t slept at all. Her presence had echoed through the walls of the inn like a resonating bell, one moment consuming him with the need to go to her, and the next, driving him away in a fit of resentment.

She was money. His ticket to freedom, nothing more.

Maybe if he kept telling himself that, he might start to believe it.

BUY LINKS

The Wild Rose Press

Barnes & Noble

Amazon

Nicki Greenwood graduated SUNY Morrisville with a degree in Natural Resources. She found her passion in writing stories of romanticnickibiolg-s adventure, and combines that with her love of the environment. Her works have won several awards, including the Rebecca Eddy Memorial Contest. Her first book, Earth, debuted in 2010 through The Wild Rose Press. Her latest book is Flashpoint.

Nicki lives in upstate New York with her husband, son, and assorted pets. When she’s not writing, she enjoys the arts, gardening, interior decorating, and trips to the local Renaissance Faire.

WEB CONTACTS

Website: http://www.nickigreenwood.com

Blog: http://nickigreenwood.blogspot.com/

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

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Nicki.Greenwood.Author

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/nickigreenwood

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/greenwood0798/

 

Guest promotion–A Very Merry Superhero Wedding by Kitty Bucholtz

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BLURB

Tori Lewis can hardly wait for her Christmas Eve wedding to handsome Joe Clarke. Joe expected to be a happy superhero bachelor for years to come, but he is determined to marry Tori, the woman he saved on Halloween. But she doesn’t know who he really is. How can he explain his life to a woman who doesn’t believe in superheroes? Meanwhile, the city is going through a Christmastime crime spree. Will it all come together without ruining the perfect Christmas wedding?

EXCERPT

TWO things always surprised Joe Clarke in December: the weather, and the people of Double Bay.

Some years the snow would start falling by Halloween. Thanksgiving would be a day to have a plan B in case you couldn’t make it to Grandma’s house due to blowing and drifting snow. And Christmas would be both beautiful and frustrating with every outing marred by icy roads and fresh piles of snow to clear off the car.

Other years, like this year, there were a few snow showers, but hardly any of the snow stuck to the ground. The ski slopes were covered with machine-made snow. Shopping and traveling were a breeze.

And tracking potential home invaders proved more difficult.

Ah, yes, the wonderful citizens of Double Bay constantly surprised him. The young man he tracked now — that is, that his alter ego Superhero X tracked — really put the “dumb” in dumbed down. Not only was he peeking in windows in the fading light of the afternoon rather than waiting for the full dark that would fall over the city by dinnertime, but he wasn’t paying attention to the security signs.

This particular yard sported a bold red and white sign near the front door — MGV Security. The sign wasn’t hidden by snow either. What, did the guy think it was a Christmas decoration? Superhero X shook his head and waited. When the young man took out a pocket knife and pried the screen off one of the windows, Superhero X moved closer and cleared his throat.

The man jumped and dropped his knife. His eyes widened as he looked up — way up — into the superhero’s face. “Oh! I-I-I was just…I mean, I…I live here…”

X raised his eyebrows skeptically. “What’s your address?”

“It’s, uh, let me think, I just moved here and…” The man looked around the yard and at the other houses nearby, searching for a helpful clue.

Taking a long black zip tie from a pocket of his super suit, X gestured. “Hands.”

The man sighed heavily and sagged against the siding. “You’re not going to call the cops, are you?” He held out his hands. “I didn’t take anything.”

X tied the man’s hands, then pressed a button on the wrist of his suit. “Superhero X to dispatch,” he said. He gave the address, dispatch assured him that a police car would be there soon, then he marched the would-be Christmas thief to the sidewalk.

Pressing another button, he winced at the time. He’d have to hurry home to change after the police picked up the wannabe burglar. His fiancée, Tori Lewis, would be waiting for him — that is, for Joe — to pick her up from her last day at work. He didn’t live far from here since this was his regular patrol neighborhood, but he still wanted to hurry.

Superhero X kept his facial expression impassive, but on the inside he could feel a grin. In five days, on Christmas Eve, he would finally marry the girl he rescued Halloween night. He could hardly wait.

Afraid a smile would break through and spoil his stern superhero expression, he brought his mind back around to work. He pressed a different button on his wrist and recorded a message with the time, the date, and the address of the house that had been broken into. Someone at MGV Security would get the information and call the homeowner to make a report.

“Someone” who was not Joe Clarke. MGV Security was a real security firm, but it was also Joe’s cover job. A cover job from which he was technically on vacation for the next two weeks. Owned and operated by Joe’s friend and fellow superhero Mickey Valient, a.k.a. Tick Tock, MGV provided professional security services to all of its clients, but there were also more…discreet…services they provided the city.

A snowball whizzed overhead.

Superhero X turned to look down the sidewalk. Two boys around eight or ten years old stood frozen in their snow suits, mouths gaping. They’d collected what little snow was on their lawn and made a half dozen little snowballs, piled at their feet. X smiled and gave them a little salute. They whooped and jumped up and down. X grinned. He loved his job.

A Double Bay police car pulled up to the curb. Time to finish up work for the day and hightail it over to get his girl.

***

TORI Lewis felt butterflies square-dancing in her stomach. In a few minutes, she’d be off work to finish planning her wedding — and then she’d be away on her honeymoon. It almost didn’t seem real.

For the last ten years or so, she had lived a quiet, semi-solitary life. Her mother Dixie and older sister Lexie were living proof that women in her family didn’t make good choices when it came to men. Dixie’s marriage to Tori’s biological father had ended so badly that Dixie was still angry about it nearly twenty-five years later, even though her second marriage to Danny Lewis was filled with love and respect. Lexie had finally turned her life around a few years ago and found a “good” man to share it with. Then he broke it off and left when he found out she was pregnant. With those examples always on her mind, Tori had been afraid to chance the heartbreak and disaster she was sure would accompany a profession of love.

Until now.

BUY LINKS

Amazon

Smashwords

Kitty Bucholtz Author Photo2 small

Kitty Bucholtz grew up forty miles east of Traverse City, Michigan—a town that is a smaller but surprisingly similar version of Double Bay, Michigan, the setting of this book. As far as she knows, there are no super villains in Traverse City, but they have super pie.

WEB CONTACTS

Website

Goodreads

Facebook

Twitter name is @KittyBucholtz

Guest release–Of Love and Vengeance by Louise Lyndon

COVER Of Love and Vengeance

BLURB:

Forced to marry Lord Aymon to ensure her nephews survival, English Lady Laila vows undying hatred for the Norman she holds responsible for so many deaths. Discovering Aymon has committed an act of treason gives her the chance to seek vengeance he deserves.  But will Laila really let Aymon die once she learns the truth?

A hardened Norman warrior, Lord Aymon has lived through atrocities no man ever should. With the invasion of England over, all he wants is a quiet life and a wife who will give him heirs and obey his every command. Instead, he finds himself wed to feisty and outspoken Laila. But when she learns the truth of his treasonous act, can Aymon count on her to keep his secret?

EXCERPT:

Laila heard them long before she saw them. Their angry, frenzied shouts and thunderous roars filled her ears. With her hands tied securely behind her, she was dragged up the lane toward Tyburn Gallows, where she was to be hanged for a crime she did not commit. The mob sounded blood thirsty. Large. Frightening.

There was no sign of Aymon. Or Hugh. Had they left her alone to die?

Her chin trembled and her nails dug into her palms.

She suddenly fell to her knees and screamed until she tasted blood at the back of her throat. She kicked out and tried to crawl free as her hair was almost torn from the roots as she was pulled up and shoved along the lane.

Her eyes burned with her tears.

“I am innocent!” Laila screamed.

They came around a corner, and that’s when she saw them. There must have been a least two thousand men, women, and children, hungry for her blood. And when they saw her, they erupted into a wild fever of roars and cries for a slow and painful death. Their thirst had been piqued, and now it must be sated.

Laila was shoved into the center of the clearing.

She glanced wildly around in a desperate search for Aymon’s towering, bulky frame. She could not see him.

But what she could see was the Tyburn Tree. The gallows she was to be hanged from. The executioner, hooded, stood beside the tree as he waited patiently for her. Laila’s mouth suddenly went dry.

BUY LINKS:

Amazon US http://ow.ly/FT0wg

Amazon UK http://ow.ly/FT0CD

Amazon AU http://ow.ly/FT0GP

The Wild Rose Press http://ow.ly/FT0oK

Kobo http://ow.ly/FT0K8

All Romance eBooks http://ow.ly/FT0O6

Book Strand http://ow.ly/FT0Ra

Louise

Louise grew up in Australia before moving to England, where for sixteen years she soaked up the vibrancy of London and the medieval history of England. She has since returned to Australia. In 2013 Louise won first prize in the Crested Butte Sandy Writing Contest – Historical Romance Category –for her story, The Promise, which has since been retitled as, Of Love & Vengeance. When not writing, she can be found crawling under barbed wire and hoisting herself over twelve foot walls!

WEB CONTACTS:

EMAIL  
WEBSITE
  
BLOG
 
FACEBOOK
  
TWITTER 

GOODREADS 

ARC giveaway–Light A Candle for the Beast

Roane Publishing is giving away three eARCs of 

Light a Candle for the Beast!


Light a Candle for the Beast
by Echo Shea

 

Genre: Paranormal Romance

 

 

Release Date: November 26, 2014

 


If you’ve ever been caught in a riptide, pulled down into the water, then you know me. Or, more accurately, what I’m like when I’m angry.

Delia was beautiful, smart, and kind. He wasn’t. He said he loved her, but he didn’t know what love was. He was manipulative and cruel—more than a thief. A beast.

All she wanted was a rose… 

These are the words on my sister’s grave. Her sadness, her obsession, forever a reminder I didn’t–couldn’t save her.

I’m not vindictive or cruel. I’m simply as the river–my memory is winding and my reach is long. I watched him steal her beauty, her essence. Watched him become a beast. He thought he’d get away with it, thought he’d go free.

I lay a rose upon my sister’s grave.

Light a candle for the beast.


Roane Publishing is giving away THREE ARC copies to three lucky winners!


You don’t even have to be a blogger.


If you are willing to leave an honest review between the dates of November 26th and December 10th, you are eligible to enter.

How? Simply fill out the form!

You have until Midnight of November 15th when three winners will be chosen by random drawing.



Thanks so much & best of luck!

Guest Interview–Sharon McGregor

Welcome today to Sharon McGregor, an author with Prism Book Group.

Tell us a bit about you and your background.

I ‘m a prairie transplant to the West Coast, trying to run away from winter.  I  am moving this month to the warmest spot I can find and still live in Canada- on Vancouver Island, where I will be a block away from the beach. I grew up on a quarter-section farm on the prairies and attended a one-room country school of the sort where  Maggie has come to teach  in Autumn Dreams. Unlike Maggie, I have always loved horses.

What are your hobbies away from the computer?

I’m a history buff. My favourite period is the time of the Plantagenets. I want to do some travelling if I can ever get away and I plan a trip to the UK with friends next year. I like watching my grandchildren with their sports.  Any time I spend with animals is time well spent. I love horses, dogs, and my cat Zoey as well as any others that cross my path.

Do you start a new story with the plot or characters first?

I would say the two main characters first. Some of the other characters just show up as the plot develops.  In Autumn Dreams, I wanted to start with a teacher of the sort my aunts were when I was young. Then Maggie just walked in and said, “This is my story.”

Is your writing style planned or freestyle?

I do about sixty percent planned and the rest freestyle.  I don’t feel comfortable without a structure to work within. Then I often change things as I go and the outline goes out the window. An outline is sort-of like your reserve parachute-it’s comforting to know it’s there even if you don’t use it.

Have you traveled to any locations that appear in your books?

I lived the location. Maggie was just a little before my time but close enough that the farm, the people the school and the families all seem to be familiar on a personal level.

Can you share a tip about what you do when you get stuck in creating a story?

The first thing I try is take the dogs for a long walk.  That usually clears my head and I find on my feet is the best way to think.  Second best is my Lazy boy, but sometimes I goof that one up and doze off.  If I am stuck for too long, I set the story aside for a couple of days and tackle something else-maybe a short story or plotting another book.  Then some little thing hits you and you’re back on track with your work.

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Blurb:

Autumn Dreams takes place on the prairies in the late 1940s.

Maggie arrives at her new teaching job, to board with a family she’s prepared to like. What she isn’t prepared for is her landlady’s brother Marshall who seems to hate her on sight. She is captivated by Ellen’s six year old daughter Emma who is having identity problems when faced with the arrival of a new baby. Then Ellen goes into labour in the middle of a storm and Maggie must face her fears to help. Along the way she helps a family grow closer together but what about her hopes for the future? Can she get past the wall Marshall has set up and does she really have a future here amongst the people she has grown to care for?

BUY LINKS

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

From a 5-star review:

This charming story weaves little touches of 1940s history with romance and endearment. The story is so well written, with delicate description, a great storyline and believable characters. The heroine, Maggie, not only has to adjust to a new life and job, but overcome her fear of horses and find romance along the way, a true inspiration to us all.

Sharon McGregor

 

Excerpt:

Maggie stood in the barn doorway watching for a moment as Marshall threw forkfuls of soiled straw onto the stoneboat.  It was a warm day and his shirt hung on a wooden peg on the wall.  Maggie wasn’t used to seeing a man’s naked torso.  When her father came home from the hardware store, he might take off his jacket and loosen his tie but that was as casual as he got.  She watched in admiration as each muscle moved and realigned when Marshall lifted. She could feel an unfamiliar warmth in her own body as she watched.  She knew from the way his shoulders tightened that he was aware of her presence.

“Ellen says supper will be ready in a half hour,” she said.

“I figured.”  He stopped briefly and stood, fork in hand, one foot resting on its shoulder, a slight smile pulling the right side of his mouth upward.  “Is there more?”

“You used to live here, right?”

“It was our family farm.”

“Your parents aren’t still living?”

“No.”  He pointed through the open north door to a hillside. “My father was cultivating that hillside when the tractor wheel hit a large rock and threw it off balance.  The tractor rolled over on him. He was dead before help came.  Mom died a year later.  Farm life isn’t all baby calves and collecting eggs, you know.  It’s a hard life.”

“Why didn’t you stay on the farm?’

He picked up the fork again.  “Do you always ask so many questions?  If you want to make yourself useful, grab a fork.”  His eyes travelled over her from head to toe sending a shiver down her back. “On second thought, you’d better not.  Those shoes weren’t made for shovelling manure.  Wouldn’t want to soil them.”  He turned dismissively back to his work.

She flushed as she felt her anger rise at his off-handedness.

She marched past him skirting the flailing fork handle. She knew she’d seen a pair of rubber boots earlier by the corner stall. She pushed her feet out of her shoes and into the boots.  A little big but they’d do. She reached for a fork hanging on the barn wall aware of his stillness as he watched her.

“Not that one; that’s a hay fork. Take the one next to it.”

She lifted the shorter heavier manure fork and tentatively shoved it into a pile of damp, smelly straw. As she lifted, most of it fell off but she managed to fling some of it onto the stoneboat. The second forkful went better. Marshall had turned his back but she knew by the way his shoulders moved that he was laughing at her.

I’ll show you she thought. She closed her nose to the stench and wondered if you ever got used to the smell of manure. ‘Oh Dora, if you could only see me now.”

///

Maggie bit the side of her lip and plunged in, partly because she wanted answers and partly just to say something to cover her confusion. “So why didn’t you stay on the farm?  Don’t sons usually take over?”

He gave her an amused look. “You never give up with your questions, do you? Well, let’s see if I can satisfy that curiosity bug of yours.” He leaned back in his chair balancing it on the rear two legs and closed his eyes for a moment. “When our parents died, Ellen was already married to Ray and I was turning eighteen.  That was when the war came.  Ray couldn’t join up; he’s always had weak lungs.  That’s why he keeps getting those bouts of pneumonia.  But I was young and idealistic so I enlisted.  Ray and Ellen moved in and ran the farm.  When the war finally ended I was restless like so many others and I wandered around the country for a bit before coming back to Timber.  Ray and Ellen had put so much into the place and I wasn’t really anxious to become a farmer, so they bought out my share.  I started the lumberyard with a friend and here we are.”  He bounced the chair back to an upright position with a bang.  “Does that answer all your questions?”

“All but one.”

He stood and set his cup down as if to show he’s given her all the time he would allot her and said “What might that one be?”

“Why do you dislike me?”

He gave her a long slow look. “Yes, I can see where you’re one of those people who needs to have everyone like them.”

She flushed and was about to protest when he moved closer and said, “The short answer is I don’t dislike you.” He put one arm around her shoulder turning her to face him and leaned down to kiss her, gently at first and then with a ferocity that shook loose all her feelings for this intriguing man and replaced them with sensations she had never felt before.  Warmth swept through her very essence. Just as she felt she was going to fall over the edge of a cliff he released her, swung around so quickly she couldn’t see his expression and walked out the door.

Bio:

Sharon McGregor is a west coast transplant from the Canadian prairies. Her imagination and story weaving got its start when she was an only child living on a farm. She’s moved on from cowgirl dreams to romance and mystery, but hasn’t lost her love for horses.
In spite of her eternal quest to escape the cold, she does spend time at ice rinks watching her grandchildren figure skate and play hockey.
When she can summon up the nerve to get on a plane she likes to visit with her son and grandchildren who are still knee deep in the prairies.
Sharon loves endings with happy resolutions which is why she enjoys writing romance.

Web Links:

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Twitter name: @sharonmcgr

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Goodreads

Release Day–Spooktacular Seductions

Happy Book Birthday Spooktacular Seductions!

Genre: Romance Anthology
Release Date: October 31, 2014
Publisher: Roane Publishing

 

Falling in love can be terrifying.

 

Eight tales of spooky romance brought to you just in time for Halloween.

Bewitching Gypsy by Linda Carroll-Bradd
Garden of Souls by Michelle Ziegler
If This Be Madness by Echo Shea
Encantado by Havva Murat
Do You Believe in Ghosts by Anne Higa
Ghost of a Chance by Lily Carlyle
Where Angels Tread by Christy Thomas
Spooky Hollow Café by Lisa A. Adams

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Tour Schedule

Book Blitz & tour-wide giveaway: paperback copy of Spooktacular Seductions and a $10 Amazon gift card!


Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code.  No purchase necessary, but you must be 18 or older to enter. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter, and announced on the widget. Winner well be notified by emailed and have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Roane Publishing’s marketing department.