Tag Archives: sweet romance

Promotion for the Proxy Bride Series

This month, the many authors are spreading the word about this historical romance series containing 71 stories that has been fantastically popular.

Click on the link below to view all the titles and their descriptions to find your next read.

https://heidimcgill822089357.wordpress.com/the-proxy-brides-series-promo/

I contributed two stories to the series, described below.

A Bride for Cody, book 42 (86 reviews)

Veteran Cody Sheffield went from surviving the Civil War to spending years building the Transcontinental Railroad. Finally, he finds solace on an uncle’s apple farm in southern California. A change in family circumstances demands he seek a bride.

Nurse Riona Gilbride pitched in to do her part when the war came to her hometown of Harpers Ferry. Years later, she’s still tending others when she realizes the time has come to care for herself, and she answers an ad in a matchmaking newsletter.

Expectations and temperaments clash. Soon, both Cody and Riona wonder if their decision to marry without meeting beforehand is a huge mistake.

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A Bride for Jordan, book 54 (85 reviews)

With a book deadline hanging over his head, Wyoming veterinarian Jordan Vardon needs a stenographer…fast. A contact made through a college friend puts him in touch with a lady from Chicago. A marriage-of-convenience is essential for propriety’s sake. He’s planning on a six-month commitment to get his book written and then file for annulment. What he didn’t count on is the attention the lovely Senta Volney attracts upon her arrival.

Tired of living where women have no legal rights, Senta jumps at the chance to use her shorthand and typing skills to help a Wyoming man write a book. Although she dislikes the idea of leaving her close-knot family, she yearns to live where she has the rights that go along with being an American citizen. A proxy marriage is expected due to the upcoming close working relationship. What surprises her is how well she gets along with Jordan. But he really should have mentioned his profession because she’s never been around animals. Can she adapt to the country life? Will Jordan have the heart to end their in-name-only arrangement?

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Guest Promotion–A Secret Santa Christmas by Lucinda Race

A Dickens Holiday Romance, book 7

Christmas just isn’t Holly’s thing but will a family secret help her find the true meaning of Christmas?

Holly Ivey needs a change. After sacrificing everything for the big city office, her career is over, frozen as firmly as Antarctica. At a loss of what to do next, her father suggests she relocate to the small town of Dickens and run her grandmother’s yarn shop. But Holly doesn’t know a knitting needle from a crochet hook. How is she going to run Ivey’s Knittery? Fueled by determination and sweet memories of her grandmother, Holly accepts the challenge and moves to the quaint town, even though she feels like a fish out of water. Even worse, the holidays are huge in Dickens and, despite her festive name, Christmas just isn’t Holly’s thing.

Gabriel Reyes is the Director of the Dickens Community Center and loves working with kids and the families in town. Every year he runs a toy drive but this year more families need help. Will the town’s Secret Santa step in to fill the town’s needs, and just who is the mysterious benefactor? When Gabriel meets the town’s newest shop owner, he begins to think the lovely Holly Ivey might be the girl to capture his heart. But only if he can help her find the Christmas spirit.

Will the magic of the Christmas season melt Holly’s heart before it’s time for her to leave Dickens and Gabe behind?

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EXCERPT

Leaning against the counter, he cast a quick look at her meager sandwich. “I was on my way to Dorrit’s Diner to pick up some lunch. Can I get you something?”

“That’s really nice of you but the peanut butter is just fine.” She wasn’t about to confess she hadn’t made time to go to the market and this was all that had been in Grammie’s cupboard. Well, that and a loaf of old bread in the freezer. It was better than nothing.

“It’s no trouble and Amy makes the best soups at this time of year. Trust me, they’re not to be missed.”

A cup of soup did sound a lot more appetizing than the pathetic sandwich drying out as they talked. A smile slipped from one side of her face to the other. Gabriel had a way of making it sound like the best idea of the day.

“You’ve talked me into it, but I don’t think I should close the shop.”

Gabriel glanced around and grinned. “I can see you’re slammed today.” With a twinkle in his eye, he winked. “Not to worry. I’ll pick up lunch, and then we can eat together if you’d like so you can get to know a little more about day-to-day life in Dickens. Chrissy mentioned you didn’t come around much, something about a big job in New York City.”

She didn’t feel that he was baiting her, but did she need to explain why she was here now? “Well…” She shifted from one foot to the other and glanced at the floor. “It was time for a change.”

He gave her a sympathetic smile. “Anything you absolutely can’t stand?”

Gabriel had changed the topic back to soup. She quirked her lips. “I like to keep the roof of my mouth unharmed so take it easy with spicy foods. Other than that, I’m game for anything.”

He tapped the top of the counter. “I’ll be back in a while. Anything else you think you might want or need?”

With a shake of her head, she said no, and then she pulled a twenty-dollar bill from her wallet. “Since you’re flying, I’m buying.”

He held up his hand and pushed the bill back toward her. “I’ve got it this time. You can get it another day. Consider it a welcome to the neighborhood gesture. It’s a small-town thing.”

Without letting on that she thought he was right, there might be a next time, she decided to have a little fun with him. “What makes you think we’ll eat lunch together again?”

“I’m a great lunch partner and working in a shop all day without stimulating conversation for something other than yarn might grind on you.”

He had nailed that one. Especially when nary a customer had come in so far today. “Okay, you got me on that point.”

After a quick, “See you in a while,” he sauntered out the door and she watched him. He was one good-looking man and at least this part of her change was looking up, not that she wanted to date, but that man made her heart beat quicker.

Thirty minutes later Gabriel walked in with a white paper bag looped over his arm and balancing a cardboard cupholder. “Sorry it took longer than I thought. Dorrit’s was busier than normal. A tour bus stopped off for lunch which is good for her business and any others nearby if the driver lets them poke around a bit.”

Her eyes grew wide and she perked up with the sound of potential shoppers. “Do you think they’ll find me?”

“Maybe, if they have time. But maybe in some small way it’s good you’re having a quiet first day. Let you get your feet wet before you have a lot of customers popping in.”

She could feel her shoulders sag. “At least one customer would be nice for today. Just to remind myself this is a viable business.”

He had set out cups of what smelled like chili, a bag of corn bread, and pats of butter on the counter. Handing her a spoon, he said, “I ordered the mild version. I hope you enjoy it.”

“Hold on. I have another stool in the back.” She hurried into the other room and using a paper towel, she wiped off the seat of the stool before returning to the front. “Here you go.”

“Thanks.” He dipped his spoon in and sighed. “This is good.” He watched her as she did the same. “Am I right?”

She rolled her eyes back for dramatic effect and his hearty laugh filled the shop. “This is delicious. You can make lunch suggestions any day if you keep this up.”

“Anytime.” They ate for a minute and he put his spoon down and buttered a piece of the corn bread. “Amy’s been running the business for over thirty-five years; she took over from her parents and everything is homemade.”

“That’s good to know.” She ate a little more. “Tell me about Dickens. Have you lived here long?”

“I moved to town two years ago for the director position at the center. Prior to this I lived in a suburb of Chicago and was an AD for a community center there.”

“A small town like Dickens is a little different than Chi-town.”

He gave a half nod. “The same could be said for you. NYC and Dickens don’t exactly have the same vibe.”

“My grandmother was from here; do you have family close by?”

“If you call close Puerto Rico via Miami, then sure.” He scraped the bottom of his chili cup.

“It sounds like we’re both on our own in small-town USA.” She thought of her parents still in New York, living their jet-set life as if nothing unpleasant had happened to Holly.

“Then maybe we need to stick together.” He held out his hand to her. “Want to be partners?”

Award-winning and best-selling author Lucinda Race is a lifelong fan of fiction. As a young girl, she spent hours reading mystery and romance novels and getting lost in the fun and hope they represent. While her friends dreamed of becoming doctors and engineers, her dreams were to become a writer—a novelist.

As life twisted and turned, she found herself writing nonfiction but longed to turn to her true passion. After developing the storyline for the McKenna Family Romance series, it was time to start living her dream. Her fingers practically fly over computer keys she weaves stories about with mystery and happily ever afters.

Lucinda lives with her two little dogs, a miniature long hair dachshund and a shitzu mix rescue, in the rolling hills of western Massachusetts. When she’s not at her day job, she’s immersed in her fictional worlds. And if she’s not writing mystery, suspense and romance novels, she’s reading everything she can get her hands on.

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Guest Promotion: Christmas in the Air by Josie Riviera

What if you told your innermost secrets to a guy you assumed you’d never see again?

Penelope Reid meets an elusive, handsome stranger on a plane trip. Along the way, she confesses her problems and fears, her unrealized goals, while she believes the man is only half-listening. She is a single mother, readjusting after a difficult divorce, and raising a challenging twelve-year-old son.

Months later, she comes into direct contact with Jacob Williams, the new pediatrician in town, and the man she met on the plane.

Will he use his knowledge of her life to embarrass her, or pursue her?

Note: on sale for 99cents through the end of December

Universal buy link

EXCERPT

Prologue:

Penelope Reid sat glued to her seat.

Breathe in. There’s nothing to be nervous about. Flying in an airplane is routine for many businesspeople.

And she, unfortunately, was a businessperson.

She attempted to smile at the flight attendant who walked past, before resuming her pep talk to herself.

Virginia to Hilton Head Island is a short flight.

She considered texting her brother, Lincoln, with a ‘mission accomplished’ message, though he wouldn’t get the message until she had cell service again. He’d encouraged her to take the flight to secure a toy shop location. She’d complied, albeit reluctantly, though she’d been successful with the negotiations and closed on the deal. Nonetheless, when she finally arrived home, she intended to wring his neck. He knew how much she dreaded flying.

She cut a glance at her handsome seatmate’s profile. She’d admired the angle of his face—his sharp jawline and straight nose—throughout most of the flight. Framed by the afternoon sunlight streaming in the window, he seemed relaxed. Of course, he seemed relaxed because he was sleeping. In fact, he’d slept almost non-stop.

She coughed and nudged him. She needed someone to talk to and take her mind off the flight. She’d already breezed through every magazine in the seat pocket.

“Hmm?” He took off his aviator sunglasses and turned toward her. His eyes were a deep shade of brown, warm and mesmerizing, rimmed with black eyelashes. “Have we arrived?”

“Hardly.”

He peered out the window. “Cloudy day.”

“The weather forecaster called for rain.”

“He was probably right.”

She was probably right,” Penelope corrected.

He grinned. “Touché.”

Penelope sat up straighter. “Before you fell asleep, we were discussing our jobs.”

“Were we?”

“We were about to.” Her seatbelt tightened as she leaned toward him. “I’ve managed a toy shop business ever since I was a teenager.”

“Sounds fun.”

“I hate it.”

His dark eyebrows curved upward. “Why?”

“Do you want the truth?”

“By all means.” He flashed her a positively magnetic smile.

Her heart stilled. Here sat a good-looking man who had listened to her rattle on about her life whenever he opened his eyes. At least, she assumed he listened. She’d held him captive because he couldn’t escape. They were seated next to each other in first class. Still, she’d begun to assume they were friends, and he was an attentive guy.

At his assessing gaze, a flush warmed her cheeks. “I’m bored with my job. I want to create, not manage.”

“Create what?”

“Let’s call it a midlife crisis.”

“Let’s.” Another smile. “Do you have another job lined up?”

“No.”

“Is your job difficult?” His tone lowered. Thick, wavy hair fell across his forehead, and he pushed back the strands with his hand. His features were a bit weathered, his jawline and cheekbones prominent. A rugged man who apparently spent time outdoors if appearances were any indication.

The thump of attraction in her chest surprised her. She hadn’t felt an interest in any guy since her divorce.

Josie Riviera is a USA TODAY bestselling author of contemporary, inspirational, and historical sweet romances that read like Hallmark movies. She lives in the Charlotte, NC, area with her wonderfully supportive husband. They share their home with an adorable shih tzu, who constantly needs grooming, and live in an old house forever needing renovations.

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RELEASE DAY for Aebleskiver by Annika

Annika Nilsdatter juggles her new manager position at the Riverside Bakery owned by her best friend, Glynna, and being courted by Erich von Griswald, son of the town’s most prominent banker. A friend, the object of her young affections from her growing-up years, arrives in town. Suddenly, she is being flattered by the attentions of two handsome men to the detriment of the business. Guilt plagues her, but, just for a little while, she wants to feel special.

Levka Maksimillian, an undercover Pinkerton agent, is surprised to run into Annika in the town where he’s been assigned a case. At least, he’s in disguise so she didn’t recognize him. But when he’s injured, he has to rely on his good friend’s sister to nurse him back to health. Levka doesn’t want to put Annika in danger, but he has to heal fast. His role in hunting down the head of a theft operation is essential. Will the need for secrecy and their close proximity create a false attraction or a lasting love?

FREE in kindle unlimited

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Release day for Pecan Blossoms and Photographs

Today is release day for my contemporary novella that is part of The Orchard Brides multi-author series.

A decade ago, Romeo Fabrizio and Darcie Montague were the high school “it” couple. They had their futures planned until an injury ended his football career, and they went their separate ways. Six year later, sports photographer Darcie returns home. When they are thrown together in planning the town’s pecan festival, sparks fly but can they overcome the hurt from the fractured relationship?

FREE in KU

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Baking blog post

Today I shared some of the research that went into writing my latest novella, Ginger Cake by Glynna, book 7 in the Old Timey Holiday Kitchen multi-author series.

Check out the post on SweetAmericanaSweethearts blog here

Baker Glynna Shaughnessy wants to bolster sales for her struggling bakery almost as much as she wants to revive her drab personal life. A baking competition in commemoration of the city’s incorporation offers a chance at making the shop’s name known…until she’s accused of cheating. According to the competition’s sponsor—a roguish man who sets her heart aflutter—Glynna can only remain a contestant if she invents a brand-new recipe…something she’s never done before.

Hotel manager Ritter Anton has six months to boost patronage at his grandfather’s Anton Grand Hotel. He accomplished success with the family’s Cheyenne hotel and he’ll succeed here then move to the next. The baking contest he invented sparks controversy with the entry of a baker who others claim has an unfair advantage. Ready to reject her, he can’t say no when the auburn-haired beauty pleads her case. How will he remain neutral as a judge when all he can think about is Glynna?

Amazon

 

Release day for Sweet Inspiration

Dependable Cadence Wills yearns for excitement. The owner of a yarn business, she is pulled in every direction by her demanding family. Haunting dulcimer notes draw her to a practice session where she spies an intriguing stranger.

Musician Rafe Frasco is a rover, bouncing between musical competitions. Interest ignites at his first glance at a woman enthralled by his music, who he learns has a heart big enough to encompass everyone within her reach.

A fantastic opportunity for Rafe presents Cadence with a dilemma—is she strong enough to negotiate the business deal that will take him away…maybe forever?

BUY LINKS

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EXCERPT

Unmarried and approaching thirty in a small town branded her as ready and willing to meet every unattached man who set foot inside the city limits. A sigh escaped. Like last week when Espe called Trent Sullivan over to their table at El Tres Amigos and then suddenly remembered an important errand, leaving them together. What Espe hadn’t known was Cadence and Trent already had been set up on blind dates—twice—by other well-meaning friends.

Nothing had clicked on those occasions either. Cadence craved someone with a mysterious past like in her beloved romantic suspense novels. A dark, shadowy figure who knew how to excite a woman with a molten look or a lingering touch. A man who fought to hide his pain and almost succeeded. Not someone like Trent—a guy whose high-school accomplishments she could probably recite.

Sweet plaintive notes of a stringed instrument floated on the breeze. Cadence stopped, straining to recognize the tune. A person didn’t grow up surrounded by folk music without knowing just about every ballad that could be plucked.

But this one eluded her. The twanging strings cried with a soulful sadness that grabbed her by the throat. Her thoughts were washed in loneliness, and she turned toward the sound, past the Heritage Herb Garden. A part of Cadence that couldn’t resist helping others had to see who was expressing such need.

She lifted the hem of her long skirt and hurried toward the haunting sound, as if the notes pulled her feet along the path. The compulsion to know who played added speed to her steps. Abreast of the groundhog pottery kiln, she slowed and peered toward the outdoor stage.

On the platform, several musicians were gathered—some unpacking instruments, others adjusting microphones. Off to one side, a dark-haired man sat in a straight-backed chair, one foot braced on a scratched case. He leaned forward and strummed a dulcimer, the light wood instrument cradled on denim-covered thighs.

Cadence stood a dozen feet away and studied the talented player. His too-long hair was tied back, his shoulders were broad inside his western-cut shirt, and his legs were long and lean. Scuffed boots, faded jeans and a worn Harley-Davidson tee-shirt composed his attire. Definitely more attractive than her own outfit. Even from this distance, she spotted a posture that meant the man had an attitude…or was mysterious. A thrill ran over her skin.

Who was this guy? He’d definitely swagger when he walked. Yummy. At the thought, she stepped closer, wanting nothing between her and the performance.

Long fingers picked the strings in a heated crescendo—note on teasing note, twang on shivery twang, strum on driving strum. He ended the song with a flourish, right hand arcing upward as the last note hung on the early morning air.

How did he know exactly how she felt on nights when everyone in Mountain View either had a date or was home curled next to a spouse? The isolation of being solo at the drive-in or enduring the knowing smile of a sympathetic waitress. His song wrapped all those feelings tight around her heart and squeezed. She inhaled, and the backs of her eyes stung.

Hadn’t she learned her lesson about musicians from the way Dale deserted her when his band got the chance to go on the road? Three years running, and he hadn’t yet steered the tour bus through his hometown.

The stranger laid a hand over the strings, rolled his shoulders, and lifted his head. Piercing brown eyes scanned the area, surveying the other musicians, and his gaze locked with hers. For a suspended moment, his gaze roved along her length, widened, and then returned to her face.

Under his scrutiny, she shifted her feet and tugged at the sides of her skirt. Her period costume didn’t exactly show off her figure to its best. Not that the fact should matter, but she couldn’t look away and chose to ignore the warning bells ringing in her head.

Guest Release Promotion–Love Leads the Way by Margot Johnson

TAGLINE

She coaches him in team leadership, but do they both need lessons in love?

BLURB

Single mom Tessa Shore runs a successful leadership program at work and supports a mother with dementia. She can handle any challenge in her jam-packed schedule as long as nothing spins out of control…especially her feelings.

Engineer Mark Delaney is an expert on pipelines at the same company, but his interpersonal skills need a makeover. Advancing to an executive job requires enrollment in a leadership course he doesn’t think he needs.

When their professional and personal issues entangle, life at the office gets a lot more complicated. Romance is impossible…or is it?

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EXCERPT

Pacing around Crescent Park in moonlight trimmed with stars, Mark breathed fresh air and slowed his erratic heartbeats from the shock of Tessa’s invitation. Apparently, the woman who directed the class with the precision of an air-traffic controller could flex…at least, a little. She wanted to spend extra time with him, and he couldn’t refuse.

“I didn’t think we’d bump into other participants at this late hour.” She hugged tighter her windbreaker against the cool breeze. “We won’t mix business and pleasure. I’m strictly off duty, and so are you.”

“Okay, Tessa, whatever you say.” Zipping higher his jacket, he strode and sniffed moisture riding the wind. Guilt tiptoed around his collar, and he couldn’t escape the feeling this outing was a bad idea. He should avoid her, except in class, yet he accepted her invitation. But why did she break her own rule and contact him?

“If I can’t discuss work, can I ask you a personal question?” He admired her profile with pert nose tipped to the sky, breathing the fresh night air.

“I guess so since I’m the woman who persuades everyone else to dish.” She laughed and brushed a curl from her cheek.

Streetlights alternated with a full moon to light the pathway. Their footsteps crunched on gravel, and their murmured voices broke the peaceful silence.

“Ready.” She tucked her hands in her jacket pockets.

“Is Mr. Shore waiting at home?” He winced at his forward question. No sense beating around the bush. He shouldn’t pine for someone else’s wife.

Margot is the author of sweet romances Love Leads the Way and Love Takes Flight. She left an HR leadership role for the fun writing life. Her characters love dogs, and her loyal, old golden retriever, Sophie, is the inspiration for the adorable dogs in her books.

 

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