Chrys Fey Guest Post & 30 Seconds Spotlight

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When Officer Blake Herro agreed to go undercover in the Mob, he thought he understood the risks. But he’s made mistakes and now an innocent woman has become their target. He’s determined to protect her at all costs.

The Mob’s death threat turns Dr. Dani Hart’s life upside down, but there is one danger she doesn’t anticipate. As she’s dodging bullets, she’s falling in love with Blake. With danger all around them, will she and Blake survive and have a happy ending, or will the Mob make good on their threat?

Guest Post by Chrys Fey

My favorite kinds of heroines to write about (and read about) are what I like to call “Heroines of Steel.” These heroines are as tough as nails but show their vulnerability when life knocks them down. They never stay down long though. They can handle anything thrown at them, even if at the moment they doubt they can, and they care for the people they love in their own way. They are smart and usually funny. Dani Hart, the heroine in my novella, 30 Seconds, is a heroine of steel.

1. Dani is a doctor.

2. She speaks fluent Spanish.

3. She was born at a Kizz concert.

4. Rock is her favorite genre of music.

5. Horror movies are her favorite.

6. She ran track in college.

7. She has tattoos.

8. She can perform surgery.

9. She falls in love with a cop.

10. And she goes up against a Mob.

Excerpt

She panted with fear. What if they see the chest? What if we get caught? What if my breath stinks and I’m breathing right into Officer Hottie’s face? She shut her mouth and let oxygen flow through her nose.

Her eyesight slowly adjusted to the darkness and she could see Officer Herro’s silhouette. His head was turned and he was listening to the thuds of heavy boots getting louder; the intruders were coming their way.

Then the thunder of footsteps sounded right next to them. “There’s no one here, Red,” someone announced.

“Look for documents,” a man ordered, who Dani could only assume was Red. “I want the name of the person I’m going to kill.”

A moment later, there was a reply. “All the mail is addressed to a Dr. Hart.”

Hearing her name said aloud by one of the men who had ransacked her place made her want to gasp. Her mouth fell open and her breath was reversing into her lungs, but before she could make a sound, Officer Herro lowered his lips to hers, silencing her. Stunned, she could only lie beneath him with her eyes wide and her body tense. She couldn’t believe he was kissing her. She wanted to push him back, but knew if she did he might hit the inside of the chest, giving away their hiding place. That was when she realized he was kissing her so she wouldn’t gasp.

She let her body relax. After her initial shock faded, she was able to feel his lips. They were comforting and caused a reaction deep inside her. She couldn’t stop her lips from reacting to his. It was an innocent connection, a soft touch of lips. Until his hand slid from her shoulder to her neck and the kiss deepened into something else.

BOOK LINKS

The Wild Rose Press: http://www.wildrosepublishing.com/maincatalog_v151/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=5801

NOOK: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/30-seconds-chrys-fey/1120324958?ean=2940150711938

KOBO: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/30-seconds-1

Amazon US: http://amzn.com/B00N26EU9G

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00N26EU9G

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22591698-30-seconds

About the Author ~ Chrys Fey

Chrys

Chrys Fey is a lover of rock music just like Dani Hart in 30 Seconds. Whenever she’s writing at her desk, headphones are always emitting the sounds of her musical muses -especially that of her favorite band, 30 Seconds to Mars, the inspiration behind the title.

30 Seconds is her second eBook with The Wild Rose Press. Her debut, Hurricane Crimes, is also available on Amazon.

Discover her writing tips on her blog, and connect with her on Facebook. She loves to get to know her readers!

Facebook * Blog * Goodreads

Happy Reading,

Alison

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True Colors ~ Blog Tour, Guest Post & Giveaway

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True Colors

Cover Designer by Kate Strawbridge of Dwell Design & Press

Hosted by Mrs Potter’s Book Publicity Services

TRUE COLORS BLURB

Caitlyn Davis always cruised through life, not being the type to ruffle feathers or involve herself in high school drama…until a chance encounter with a strange, homeless man changes everything.

Suddenly, Caitlyn has the ability to see behind people’s masks. She discovers that her life isn’t as simple as she imagined and her high school is filled with secrets…some very sinister ones.

Unable to ignore her new gift, Caitlyn embarks on a mission to learn why one of her friends now appears terrified, but masks her fear behind a bright, smiling veneer. Will Caitlyn’s new ability lead her into hot water? Or is her new found vision a blessing that will expose her friends’ true colors?

Her quest will lead Caitlyn to lose friends, stand up for those in need, and even find love.

At Palisades High School every face tells a story…

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Guest Post by Melissa Pearl

Linking Worlds

In 2012 I wrote what I thought would be a stand alone novel – Betwixt. I never planned to incorporate any more than that, but readers seemed to adore Dale and wanted more. A year after it came out, I decided to publish two novellas to sandwich Betwixt and so The Betwixt Series was born. As I was nutting out these two short stories an idea sparked to life and I thought, “Wouldn’t it be fun to create a second world that Nicole and Dale could fit into.”

As I was writing Dale’s story – Before – this world grew and expanded and before I knew it, I was interacting with characters that play key roles in True Colors. This then led me to Dale and Nicole’s continuing story – Beyond. As I mapped that out, I thought, “Why don’t I set this up so that they could realistically appear in Caitlyn’s (MC from True Colors) world.”

I love the fact I don’t have to say goodbye to two of my favorite characters. They only have a cameo apperance in True Colors, but as I’ve mapped out the rest of the Masks Series, I can see them playing much bigger roles.

I’ve never thought to link story worlds before, but I’m so glad I did. All the interconnecting lines are so fantastic and it builds an even greater story for readers to enjoy. So, if you have read The Betwixt Series, be prepared – Nicole and Dale will be featuring in all four of the Masks books. I’m so glad you will get to see their continued journey through the eyes of Caitlyn and Eric.

 
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Excerpt

“So.” Dale leaned his elbows on the table. “Eric told me you got into some trouble last night over Liam Donovan?”
I nodded, still nervous that Eric had let some stranger know all about what I was doing.
“Look, I know it’s probably really uncomfortable for you talk to me about this.” His gentle eyes were filled with compassion. “But I asked to meet you because…well, I used to know Liam.”
Regret was evident. I tried to pull his mask away, to see more, but there wasn’t one. What I saw was exactly that.
I swallowed. “How’d you know him?”
Dale sighed and ran a hand over his scar. “I didn’t know him that well; I used to hang out with his brother.”
“Mason.”
“Yeah, he uh…” Dale glanced at Nicole. “He taught me how to drive.”
“He taught you more than that.” Nicole winked, making Dale blush. A sad smile washed over his face, his regret blatantly obvious.
He grimaced, his nose wrinkling, and eventually confessed, “I used to steal cars…with Mason. He taught me how.”
My lips parted and I sat forward. “When was this?”
“A few years back now.”
“Did you go to Burbank High?”
“No, I was at Glendale. But I did use to party a lot with Mason’s crowd.”
My eyebrows rose without meaning to. He definitely didn’t look like a hell raiser. This sweet guy in front of me? There was no way.
“I can see you’re skeptical, but…” He licked his bottom lip, struggling for words.
Nicole nudged his elbow with her own. “He’s learned his lesson the hard way.” There was some secret joke going between them. They obviously had nothing to hide from each other. He ran his hand up her back, squeezing the nape of her neck affectionately. She grinned at him.

 

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Party Info:
https://www.facebook.com/events/468910383213992/

The True Colors Masquerade Ball is happening on February 16th to celebrate the release of True Colors. All party-goers will be entitled to purchase a copy of True Colors for only 99c. There will also be competitions, giveaways and guest appearances from other authors who will be unveiling their own secrets. So come and join in the fun and help us welcome True Colors into the world with style.

Giveaway Time!!!

Enter to win a paperback copy of True Colors!!

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Author Bio ~ Melissa Pearl

Melissa Pearl

Melissa Pearl was born in Auckland, New Zealand, but has spent much of her life abroad, living in countries such as Jordan, Cyprus and Pakistan… not to mention a nine month road trip around North America with her husband. “Best. Year. Ever!!” She now lives in China with her husband and two sons. She is a trained elementary teacher, but writing is her passion. Since becoming a full time mother she has had the opportunity to pursue this dream and her debut novel hit the internet in November 2011. Since then she has continued to produce a steady stream of books. Recently she signed with Evatopia Press and her first Evatopia book is coming out in February 2014 – True Colors, The Masks Series #1. She is very excited to be trying out new things this year while continuing to publish under her own name as well. She has six books planned for 2014 and is excited about writing each and every one of them.
“I am passionate about writing. It stirs a fire in my soul that I never knew I had. I want to be the best writer I can possibly be and transport my readers into another world where they can laugh, cry and fall in love.”

Social Links

Facebook Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/melissapearlauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MelissaPearlG
Blogs: http://melissapearl.blogspot.com/ and http://yalicious.blogspot.com/
Amazon Author Page: amazon.com/author/melissapearl
Goodreads Author Page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5314516.Melissa_Pearl
Smashwords Author Page: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/melissapearl
Newsletter subscription: http://eepurl.com/p3g8v
Website: http://www.melissapearlauthor.com
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/melissapearlg/

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Other Titles by Melissa Pearl

The Time Spirit Trilogy
Golden Blood – Black Blood – Pure Blood

The Betwixt Series
Betwixt – Before – Beyond

The Mica & Lexy Series
Forbidden Territory
Forbidden Waters (due for release: 2014)

The Masks Series
Book 2 (due for release: 2014)
Book 3 (due for release: 2014)
Book 4 (due for release: 2015)

I Know Lucy Series
I Know Lucy (due for release: 2014)
Set Me Free (due for release: 2014)

The Song Bird Series
Fever (due for release: June 2014)

Mrs Potter

Happy Reading,

Alison

Matt Archer: Bloodlines ~ Tour, Guest Post & Giveaway

 


Matt Archer Bloodlines

Date Published: 1/4/2014

YA Paranormal

When seventeen-year-old Matt Archer set out on his last mission in the Australian Outback, he thought it would be like every other hunt.

Not even close.

After only two days on the ground, his best friend is possessed, a long-lost family member has returned and hidden truths have come to the surface. Add in a coven of witches bent on bringing about the end of the world and, well, this trip has started to suck. Badly.

As his power and strength continue to grow, so does Matt’s concern that he’s becoming more and more like the creatures he’s been charged to hunt: a monster.

Faced with some of his biggest challenges to date, Matt has to decide what he needs to protect most—his family, his team…or himself.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Smashwords | iTunes/Apple Bookstore | GoodReads

Guest Post by Kendra C. Highley

Kendra’s Favorite Writing Tools

1. Music: I have a really hard time writing if I don’t have my playlist loaded up. Sometimes my characters refuse to show up until I assign them a few special songs.
2. Laptop: I’ve been typing since 9th grade, and it’s gotten to the point that I type faster than I write longhand. While I can write a story down, it’s much harder for me to keep up with the flow of words trying to claw their way out of my brain. Plus, I tend to edit a bit as I draft, so writing on a laptop gives me an advantage there, too.
3. Road Trips: I do some of my best writing in the car. I have a 30 minute commute to work, and I often work out scenes in my head while going to and from the office. I also like to visit the places I set my stories in, if it’s feasible. I mean, I’d love to go to Australia, but that may not be in the cards.
4. Multi-Round Critique: I’m really big into critique and beta reads. I go through three rounds of beta reads (all with different people!) and a formal editorial review with each manuscript. I want to make sure the work is resonating with lots of different people before publishing it.
5. Chocolate: It’s fuel, pure and simple. Some people need coffee to function—I need chocolate. Particularly dark chocolate. I have an unhealthy addiction to dark chocolate M&Ms. Hey, whatever works, right?
6. Write-cations: Sometimes getting away from it all is exactly what you need, especially when faced with big rewrites or a deadline. I try to go away one or two long weekends a year and write 12-14 hours per day. Last year I scrapped 9000 words and wrote 18,000 new words on Bloodlines during my write-cation. I’ve written on cruise ships, in hotel rooms during business trips and on airplanes. Like #3, traveling somewhere new just seems to wake up my muse. And speaking of muses….
7. Tinkerbell: I have a character named Tink in the Matt Archer series (I won’t spoil who that is for new readers), but in a way, she’s Matt’s muse…and so Tinkerbell has become mine. I have figurines, pins and a poster in my office to pay homage, hoping she’ll cooperate when I sit down to write!
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Thanks so much for sharing with us, Kendra!! ~ Alison

Excerpt

When I was fourteen, I picked up a knife and started a fight that was named mine long before I was born. When I was fifteen, I was forced into a war against creatures the rest of humankind should never know about—and they won’t if I have anything to do about it. When I was sixteen, I became a slave to my destiny, and the spirits who guided it. Now I’m seventeen, and the fault, a man once said, is not in our stars, but in ourselves. Or in my case, my blood. Which is why I was chosen. And why I have to fight.

My name is Matt Archer. And I am my father’s son.

* * *

“I’ll kill you! I’ll kill all of you and drink your blood!”

My best friend was in rare form this evening. Will had been ranting like that ever since he managed to spit out the bandana we’d gagged him with. No one felt like dealing with him, though, so we didn’t bother shoving the gag back in. Still, I felt responsible for his well-being, even if Will was possessed by a demon and not his usual happy asshat self. I grabbed an MRE—a hamburger patty for the entree—and ducked inside the command tent, one of the few left standing after last night’s monster attack. The interior smelled like sweat, piss and…burned bacon?

“Gross, dude,” I told not-Will. “You smell like a prison latrine.”

Not-Will spit at me. His face was pale in the dim light, but his eyes glowed a brilliant jade green. “You’ll beg for mercy before the end.”

“That’s getting really old. Why don’t you give your voice a rest, okay?” I held up the MRE.

“I’m guessing that even demons have to eat. You hungry?”

Not-Will shut up for a moment, but his muscles still strained against the towing cable keeping him tied to his cot. My best friend, at six-four and two-hundred-forty pounds, was pretty strong on his own. Add in a little dark magic, and he was like a tank with legs. It had taken three guys to tie him up, and the Humvee’s towing cable—one end still attached to the vehicle—had been the only thing hefty enough to keep not-Will chained.

“I would appreciate a meal,” he said in a formal, polite voice.

That wasn’t like the real Will, either.

“Okay. I’ll feed you and bring you some water, if only to keep your mouth full so you can’t scream at us for a while.”

I opened the MRE, discarding anything not-Will could use as a weapon if he got loose. Because his hands were tied behind his back, I had to feed him.

“Seriously, man, if you remember any of this after we exorcise you, you’ll never live it down,” I muttered as not-Will chomped up his food like a rabid dog.

“I’ll kill you soon, so none of that matters,” not-Will said, smiling and showing me bits of carrot in his teeth. In any other situation, I’d have laughed. This evening, I had too much on mind to find any of this funny. Badass Aunt Julie poked her head in the tent while I attempted to shovel applesauce into not-Will’s mouth. She wrinkled her nose at the stench. “Poor Will.”

“Hello, gorgeous.” Not-Will leered at my aunt, and his eyes roamed every part of her body. Even wearing desert print battle-dress uniform, Aunt Julie was gorgeous…and no one but my Uncle Mike had license to look at her that way. My fists clenched as he said, “Think I’ll keep you around a while after I’ve killed all the men. We could have a little fun.”

Aunt Julie gave not-Will a dangerous smile. The demon must not know who he was dealing with. “I’d like to see you try. I could kill you with a nail. Or a spoon.” Her smile faded into a scowl. “Or a tire-iron. I’m not picky.”

“Captain, did you need something?” I asked, not in the mood to break up a tent brawl. When in doubt, interrupt.

“Sorry,” she said, rubbing her eyes. “The major got worried so I came to check on you.”

I shrugged; Major Tannen—also known as my Uncle Mike and Aunt Julie’s husband—had reason to worry. Right now, it seemed like this day would never, ever end. I’d gotten most of the food into not-Will’s mouth and I was ready to escape. “Will, if you’re in there, kick that demon’s ass, okay? See you later.”

We’d barely cleared the tent before he started screaming threats again. Every muscle in my back tensed up. “Tell the major I’ll be at the other end of camp.” I jabbed a thumb at the command tent. “I don’t think I can handle listening to that anymore.”

Aunt Julie patted my shoulder. “We’ll fix it. Agent Archer thinks his contact with the local Nocturna Maura coven can help displace Will’s demon.”

Agent Archer…maybe if I called him that—instead of Dad—this whole situation would be a little less weird.

I doubted it, though. “I need some air.”

I stalked to the far end of camp and settled down facing west. The sun was beginning to set, and I needed its warmth and protection for as long as it lasted. Night would bring horrors, and I had to be prepared to fight them.

I reached into my left jacket pocket and pulled out the St. Christopher medal my girlfriend had given me more than a year ago. I turned it over and over in my hand. I missed Ella like crazy, and the medal gave me hope that I’d live to see another dawn.

Dad came striding out of the HQ tent and headed my direction. He didn’t see Uncle Mike step out behind him, his right arm bound up in a sling. Not-Will had dislocated Uncle Mike’s shoulder in addition to breaking my nose last night. Mike watched Dad’s progress with narrowed eyes. I let out a long breath. As if I didn’t have enough to deal with; now I was caught in a tug of war between the guy who fathered me and the man who raised me. My life could easily be a three-ring circus for all the chaos and drama going on around me.

“Tink, think you could, I don’t know, teleport me somewhere?”

No answer.

“Crap, now I’m missing you and Ella. How’s that for irony?”

Still nothing. Yeah, Tink was well and truly gone. Our knife-spirits had been banished somehow. Not-Will had told us his mistress had sent them away. As angry as I’d been with Tink when we left on this mission, the absence of her presence in my head left an echoing emptiness. And despair, too. How could we complete this operation without the spirits’ help? I had to get her back somehow, if not for me, for Will. I’d seen Tink save someone else from a demon possession—maybe she’d be able to help Will, too.

If only I could find her.

Giveaway Time!!!

Kendra is giving away a $25 Amazon Gift Card during the tour.
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About the Author ~ Kendra C. Highley

Kendra C. Highley lives in north Texas with her husband and two children. She also serves as staff to two self-important and high-powered cats. This, according to the cats, is her most important job. She believes chocolate is a basic human right, running a 10k is harder than it sounds, and that everyone should learn to drive a stick-shift. She loves monsters, vacations, baking and listening to bad electronica.

Website: http://www.kendrachighley.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/kchighley
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/KendraHighley
Blog: http://www.matt-archer.com

Happy Reading,

Alison

You Are Mine + Mine To Tarnish ~ Book Blitz & Guest Post

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Title: You Are Mine + Mine To Tarnish

Author: Janeal Falor

Release date: May 6th, 2013 and December 2nd, 2013

Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal/Fantasy

Tour: Irresistible Reads Book Tours

Book Description

Serena knows a few simple things. She will always be owned by a warlock. She will never have freedom. She will always do what her warlock wishes, regardless of how inane, frivolous, or cruel it is. And if she doesn’t follow the rules, she will be tarnished. Spelled to be bald, inked, and barren for the rest of her life—worth less than the shadow she casts.
Then her ownership is won by a barbarian from another country. With the uncertainty that comes from belonging to a new warlock, Serena questions if being tarnished is really worse than being owned by a barbarian, and tempts fate by breaking the rules. When he looks the other way instead of punishing her, she discovers a new world. The more she ventures into the forbidden, the more she learns of love and a freedom just out of reach. Serena longs for both. But in a society where women are only ever property, hoping for more could be deadly.

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Mine To Tarnish:

Katherine’s place is the same as any woman’s—on the shelf next to the dresses and bolts of cloth. When she’s sold to a warlock, life grows even bleaker. Her new owner is as old and rancid as he is cruel, driving her to do the unthinkable: run.
Nothing prepared her for being on her own. And she’s definitely unprepared for the warlocks hunting her down. But she must stay one step ahead because if caught, the best she can hope for is death.

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Guest Post by Janeal Falor

One part of writing I rarely talk about that is super fun, and sometimes a giant headache is naming characters. A name can have a big impact both on how readers feel and how I feel about a character. Often it means spending a lot of time on baby name websites. The process is similar to naming a child but with much less importance. And when a character I don’t have to consider my husband’s input.
Being married is incredibly fantastic! Except when your wonderfully amazing hottie husband wants to name one of your children … NIGEL. Ugh, yikes! It makes me think of an old British* guy who smokes cigars, not a cute little Falor baby.
Tangent: If your name happens to be Nigel or you love someone named Nigel–Sorry! I just can’t get that association out of my head. I’m sure most Nigels are great guys. Probably don’t even smoke cigars. Maybe if I actually had one in my life the random association would go away.
Anyhow, I vetoed that one quickly. Of course hubs fought me on it, but let’s face it: 9-months-pregnant lady vs. handsome, well-meaning but clueless daddy-to-be. No contest. At least not when said hubby is so sweet. 😉
Years later there I was writing MINE TO TARNISH with a smelly, old, Chardonian (not British) villain. He needed a name, but what? Oh, Nigel of course! Yes, I tease my husband about him naming my villain instead of our kid. Tee hee. Definitely the fun side of figuring out a character’s name.
*For the record. I love British people, for reals. Seriously, if you are one, you can come hang out and I’ll listen to your awesome accent all day long.

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Such a fun guest post, Janeal! So happy to have you! Love the covers on these! ~ Alison

Excerpt

The judge stands and looks, not at the Grand Chancellor like I’m expecting, but right at me. His eyes wide. “Dead.”
The masses let out a cry. Some fall to their seats. Dead? How can he be dead? He’s supposed to lord over me, not die. Can I really be free of him? My chest lightens.
Someone tugs on my arm. Cynthia. She forces me to drink the brew I avoided earlier. Then another. With shaking hands, she drinks one herself and helps me to my chair. Everything goes abnormally silent. The soothing concoction already sweeping through me. I grow distant from myself. The scene before me further away than ever.
The Envadi bends to the ground, his fingers swirling in the dirt. His lips move with words, but they don’t carry, even in the silence. Once they stop, he brushes the dirt off and stares straight at me. Even from my distant state, goosebumps raise on my arms.
“Citizens.” The Grand Chancellor’s voice draws my gaze. He stands, face void of expression. “We will all mourn the loss of Chancellor Thomas. He was a rising star, fated to leave his potential unfulfilled.” He pauses. “As our tournament rules dictate, Envadi Zade now becomes Master of all Chancellor Thomas had.” He holds his hand out to the Envadi. “Chancellor Zade.”
The Envadi is still watching me. He nods his head.
Suddenly, Father is yelling from the Grand Chancellor’s box. “You will not have her!”
The words take a moment to find me through the muffle my world has become. As the significance of his words take hold, the field becomes splotched with black. I blink a few times. The whole world darkens.

About the Author ~ Janeal Falor

Janeal
Amazon best selling author Janeal Falor lives in Utah with her husband and three children. In her non-writing time she teaches her kids to make silly faces, cooks whatever strikes her fancy, and attempts to cultivate a garden even when half the things she plants die. When it’s time for a break she can be found taking a scenic drive with her family or drinking hot chocolate!

Official Website: http://janealfalor.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JanealFalor
Irresistible Reads BT

Happy Reading,

Alison

Merch Girl Tour ~ Guest Post & Giveaway

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Title: Merch Girl

Author: Rebecca Lewis

Date of Publication: May 1, 2013

Genre: contemporary YA romance; music

Blurb:

Seventeen-year-old Lacey Kind doesn’t have the guts to talk to cute boys, isn’t a size two, and would rather stay home and listen to music than go to a party. But in the summer before her first year of college, she ends up thousands of miles away from home, in the back of a tour bus, underneath the half-naked body of the hottest teen rock star in the country.

When Lacey and her best friend Trina sneak into a Boston nightclub to see their favorite band, they not only get to watch their rock gods perform for the first time, but score a chance to meet the band too. Lacey’s heart races as she comes face-to-face with her idol, nineteen-year-old lead singer, Logan Shire.

The girls charm their way into being hired to sell merchandise on Lansdowne’s first summer tour. As “merch girls” Lacey and Trina quickly find themselves transported from their ordinary, suburban life to an exhilarating few months on the road. But they soon realize that life on the road isn’t always a smooth ride…

Guest Post by Rebecca Lewis

I Won’t Give Up On You…

“I Won’t Give Up On You” isn’t just the title of a Jason Mraz song, it’s the way I felt about my debut novel, Merch Girl. As a former merch girl and music lover, an idea popped into my head one day about two girls going on tour with their favorite band. I started drafting it in 2009, and because I work full time, I would try to bang out a few pages during nights and weekends.

Between working full-time, moving in with my fiancé, and planning a wedding, the draft of Merch Girl took quite some time to complete. By the time I finished it, edited it, read it again, edited again, sent to Beta readers, and edited again, I wasn’t ready to start querying literary agents until 2011.

I queried hundreds of agents. Many of them liked the concept, but said it wasn’t for them, or that YA contemporary was a tough category right now. At first I was upset by all of the rejections, but I knew it was a good story and that I wanted to share it with the public somehow. I queried Merch Girl from January 2011 until March 2012. After hearing “no” so many times…even in a polite way, I was frustrated, but knew I couldn’t give up.

I decided to test the waters with the public by posting the book for free on the story sharing site, Wattpad.com. And you know what? People liked it. They were clicking the little “vote” button and leaving comments after each chapter, saying things like “Please post another chapter!” and “Keep it up! Great writing!” It was encouraging to hear this from actual readers, who didn’t know me personally, wanting me to continue with my story.

After I published the entire novel on Wattpad, I decided to self-publish the book on Amazon. It was the best decision I ever made. To me, publishing my book is not about making money. I just want to share my story with the readers who will enjoy it. And I’m so glad that I never gave up on my publishing journey!
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Rebecca, thanks so much for sharing! What an encouragement for other writers coming up behind you. Merch Girl sounds great, and I hope to get my hands on it soon! ~ Alison

Excerpt

I rested my head on his shoulder and he caressed my hair. It felt so nice that I didn’t want to fall back asleep. I tried to keep my eyes open, but it was useless. I snuggled up close to him, and breathed in the mix of sweat and cologne on his body. He sang something quietly and I let his voice drift me back to sleep.

Giveaway Time!!!

Enter to win an ebook of Merch Girl. Ends 1/25

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About the Author ~ Rebecca Lewis

Rebecca Lewis is the author of the Young Adult novel, Merch Girl, and a lover of all things music! She’s been writing stories since middle school and penned her first fanfic about a semi-popular boyband in 1997. Her passion for music and writing brought her to Boston University, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Science from the College of Communication. During her college career, she interned for various record labels in Boston and New York City, sold merch for local bands, worked at record stores, and did a whole lot of grassroots marketing. She currently resides in Florida with her husband and puppy.

Blog: http://rebeccajlewis.wordpress.com/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/Rebecca_Writes
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rebecca-Lewis-Author/408824785861600
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/RebeccaLewis
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/rebeccalauthor

Happy Reading,

Alison

Amanda Weds a Good Man Tour & Guest Post

Amanda Weds

When Amanda Lambright, widowed with three daughters, marries Wyman Brubaker, a widower with five children, she envisions joining their two households into one big happy family. But it isn’t quite that easy…

Once she moves into Wyman’s home, tight quarters and Wyman’s reluctance to change cause friction. The older kids squabble. The little ones are in tears. Tiny Alice Ann isn’t speaking at all. Amanda and Wyman can’t find any privacy. And Amanda wonders if she’ll ever have a chance to pursue her pottery making.

Amanda believes that family lies at the center of any well-lived Amish life. Can she find the wisdom to guide the reluctant members of her new extended family toward the love that will bind them together?

Guest Post by Naomi King

A GOOD MAN

You know that passage from Proverbs 31:10, “A good woman who can find? For her price is far above rubies?” Well, the same can be said for finding a good man! I know, because I married one more than 38 years ago—and without his support during my 20+ years as a writer I simply would not be writing these Amish stories today. Emotionally and financially, I have made it through some years when the soup would have been mighty thin (or nonexistent), had Neal not been willing to pay the bills so I could write. These days, writing two series for two different publishers—when Amish books are such a hit—are the frosting on the cake for me. AMANDA WEDS A GOOD MAN comes out on Neal’s birthday, and I would be remiss if I didn’t give him a little plug here, and a big birthday kiss!

As for my new book, AMANDA WEDS A GOOD MAN, it has an interesting story! Do you remember the TV series, The Brady Bunch?? It was a story about a gal with kids who married a guy with kids, back in the day when blended families were more the exception than the norm they are today. Of course, the episodes were funny and highly idealized, and the Brady Bunch solved their problems by the end of each weekly episode.

My editor and one of the reps who sells for my publisher, NAL approached me with this idea: you know Amish widows and widowers with kids remarry and combine their families, yet they hadn’t seen any books with this premise—would I want to write one? When someone hands you a fun idea like this, the answer is always yes. My challenge was that I was already two books into my At Home in Cedar Creek series, and I had readers clamoring for the day when Abby Lambright and James Graber finally get married! I could not let that story go untold.

So I had to figure out a way to work Amanda and Wyman’s story into the world I’d already created. Don’t be confused about the new series name One Big Happy Family, which is on the cover! The marketing department is calling this a “sub-series,” thinking it’s a new way to improve sales. I’m not so sure about that, as I’ve gotten lots of notes from readers who think I’ve abandoned my original Cedar Creek characters. Not so! But in order to write the “Brady Bunch” idea, I had to go along with the “sub series” idea.

I believe I’ve created a wonderful new family—Amanda is Sam Lambright’s cousin, so she’s related and lives in Bloomingdale—that adds more drama and interest to the folks you’ve come to know and love in this Cedar Creek series. Wyman Brubaker is indeed a Good Man, but it’s up to Amanda (and Abby!) to show him how he must change to create the big, happy family he and Amanda envision when they marry. It’s much more than just taking Amanda, her mother-in-law, and her three daughters into his home with his five kids—which becomes very crowded, and only has one bathroom! It takes a lot of adjusting and loving and seeing things from other family members’ perspectives—and a devastating storm, and a really cranky bishop—to bring the newly blended Brubaker family to a better place.

And I must admit that Wyman makes these changes more willingly than a lot of real-life Amish husbands might. He gives up a lot to make Amanda happy because, in the end, he believes that loving his wife well is akin to loving the Lord—no matter what his bishop tells him!

The Brubakers do live happily ever after—and they will appear again in EMMA BLOOMS AT LAST, which comes out in the fall of 2014! I’m writing this book right now, and I’m delighted that because Amanda’s family has come into this series, James’s sister Emma has found someone to love. So stay tuned!

And in the meantime, I wish you all a wonderful Thanksgiving and Christmas season with those you love. I’m truly thankful for readers who are willing to keep buying my books, trusting me to tell them stories that lift them up and warm their hearts.

About the Author ~ Naomi King

Naomi King

Drawing upon her experiences in Jamesport, the largest Old Order Amish community west of the Mississippi, longtime Missourian Naomi King writes of simpler times and a faith-based lifestyle in her new Home at Cedar Creek series. Like her series heroine, Abby Lambright, Naomi considers it her personal mission to be a listener—to heal broken hearts and wounded souls—and to share her hearth and home. Faith and family, farming and frugality are hallmarks of her lifestyle: like Abby, she made her wedding dress and the one her mom wore, too! She’s a deacon, a dedicated church musician and choir member, and when she’s not writing, she loves to travel, try new recipes, crochet, and sew. Naomi now lives in Minnesota with her husband and their border collie, Ramona.
http://www.naomikingauthor.com/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5163868.Naomi_King

Be watching for my review coming soon!

Happy Reading,

Alison

The Ark’s Cargo Tour & Guest Post

Ark's Cargo Front CoverTitle: The Ark’s Cargo
Author: William Buisch
Publisher: Trafford
Genre: Animal/Nature Memoir
Pages: 392

Purchase at Trafford

This memoir describes the challenges a young man faces in achieving his dream of becoming a veterinarian. Even a period of homelessness and limited resources do not interfere with his commitment to achieve success. And this is only the beginning! Soon he is faced with the challenges of working in the jungles of Panama, facing the ravages of a roaming black jaguar and the defenses of a native village against the entrance of man or beast. Then, how about Haiti, where the Tonton Macoute militias believe in instant justice, rarely valuing life, or Columbia, where the drug lords have absolute rule. As if that isn’t enough, consider working in the African continent, along the tales surrounding the first shipment of Charolais cattle to the United States or the many facets of working with the wild mustangs in Colorado. Each exciting adventure is told with suspense, drama, and humor! Enjoy!

Guest post by William Buisch

If you like romance, love, excitement, drama, adventure, exotic tales/tails and situational comedy, I have just the right book for you! And then with the ever present animalistic behavior and the discussion of male prowness while being, a bit bullish at times I am sure you will appreciate and love this collection of real life stories. Don’t be sheepish or cackle at the story line! But rather, enjoy the horsing around and the discriptions of unusual harems and the sexuality of a semen collection facility. All of this and more is included in the award winning book entitled, “The Ark’s Cargo: For the Love of Animals!

The memoir is about an International Veterinarian who worked in poverty stricken areas of the world including that of working in Haiti, the jungles of Panama, in Colombia in areas under the control of drug lords, in Mali, along the road to Timbuktu and in Kenya where the Maasi believe they own all of the cattle in the world.

The stories include efforts to improve the health and welfare of both wild and domesticated animals in order to improve the well being of the human populations living near by. While the episodes may get a little wild at times, each adventure doesn’t necessarily achieve the success hoped for. Nevertheless, the lessons learned and the relationships developed established long lasting effects of international trust and respect that will last for years to come!

Having worked with the Wild Mustangs in Colorado and Nevada may be the highlight for some. But facing the terror of a black jaguar, or being “attacked” by a Battalion of Troops, or facing a native with a shield and spear aimed at one’s heart; will often attract the attention of others. And then there is the matter of the ever “screwing” Screwworm Fly; the experience of shipping cattle in a school bus; or the experience of being an unseasoned seaman in the North Atlantic. All I can say is; this is only the beginning! And as such, do enjoy!!!

About the Author ~ William Buisch

Inspired by biblical passages and teachings, the author cherished his work as an international veterinarian. His passion for improving the health and welfare of domesticated and wild animals is most noteworthy. Working within diverse cultures, he observed vast health improvements in animals and, as a result, in people living nearby.
PUYB

Happy Reading,

Alison

Nothing Personal Tour & Guest Post

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Contemporary Romance

Date Published: 10/18/2013

The Kincaids Book #2

By the author of the bestselling Escape to New Zealand series–

When you wish upon a star . . .

Alec Kincaid has never met the obstacle he couldn’t overcome—or the woman who could resist him. And it’s not going to happen now, not with his star shining more brightly than ever in the high-stakes arena of San Francisco’s software industry.

Desiree Harlin doesn’t believe in fairy tales, and she doesn’t waste time wishing. She’s learned the hard way that dreams don’t come true. And with her reputation and hard-won security on the line, succumbing to temptation isn’t an option.

But things aren’t always what they seem. And even stars sometimes fall.

Guest Post

I Hated This Book! Or, Coping With Negative Reviews

by Rosalind James

To be honest, I thought this one would be easier. I should be able to dismiss the few I’ve received as outliers, or shrug and say, “can’t please everyone,” right? Alas, it’s not so easy. It’s like somebody telling you your baby is ugly. It still hurts. Here’s what I’ve found:

People love it or hate it for the same reasons. For example, “Just for Now” is a tender, funny story about family, without a lot of external drama. It is many readers’ favorite of my books. But other readers haven’t been crazy about it, for the same reason. Too much family, too much about the kids, not enough excitement. It’s personal taste.

An apropos quote. Bill Cosby said, “I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody.” It’s one thing to examine your negative reviews, or negative comments within positive reviews, for anything that is truly HELPFUL. Was the ending rushed? Do you have grammatical errors that need to be fixed? That’s helpful. That your book didn’t appeal to someone’s personal taste—not helpful.

Your mileage may vary. I’ve written seven books, and just in my little critique circle, everyone has a different favorite! My readers share the same diversity of opinion. When I think about my own favorite authors, I don’t love all their books equally. Some of them I don’t even care for very much. I’ve never been a huge fan of “Mansfield Park,” because Fanny Price is kind of a drip, isn’t she? And she and Edmund seem set to have a mighty virtuous and boring life. And yet I’ve read it at least three times, because Jane Austen writes so well.

It goes double for sex. Think people’s opinions differ about your heroine? Get reviewers going about the sex in your book! I’ve had people say, about the SAME BOOK:

“I loved . . . that the sex scenes weren’t so intense.”

“I found the sex scenes to be a little kinky for my taste.”

“Too much explicit sex.”

“Plenty of hot steamy sex.”

One reviewer thought that the hero putting his hand over the heroine’s mouth was BDSM (that would be the “hated it” category). Bottom line (so to speak), there is a huge variation in steam levels in contemporary romance. When your books are just getting known, people are finding out if they like the way you write, and in particular, the way you write sex. You are finding your audience. And that ain’t everybody.

The acid test. I realized, after wrestling with the “ping-pong ball” effect, where I’d think: “It’s good!” “No, wait, it’s bad!” “No, it’s good!” after every review, that the REAL question was, “Did I write the book I wanted to write?” And in all seven cases, I answered, “Yes, I did.” That is all I can do. And it’s all that matters. On to Book Eight.

****************************************************************

Alison here – thanks to Rosalind for sharing today! I REALLY enjoyed this guest post, because it shares so much of what I try to convey in my reviews. First, I always try to be absolutely polite in my reviews. I know someone poured a lot of themselves into it! Second, I try to politely point out any shortcomings: editing, no apparent conflict, undeveloped characters, etc. Then, of course, readers want my opinion, so I share what I liked and didn’t but always make sure to point out where it’s just my personal preference. That way, if one of my readers likes to read something that I’m not particularly into, they can see that. Also, I want to make sure that the author knows that it was no shortcoming on their behalf. It was still well-written – just not my thing. And that’s ok!! ~
Thanks again, Rosalind!!

Excerpt

She’d spooned up every bit of the rich broth, the chunks of beef and vegetables, had dipped a second and then a third piece of bread in olive oil. Alec had watched it all without comment, while dispatching his own dinner with an alacrity that confirmed to Desiree that he really hadn’t had dinner yet tonight.
And when they’d finished, he’d insisted, together with Giuseppe—of course the waiter’s name was Giuseppe, because this wasn’t romantic enough, the white tablecloth and the single red rose and the candle and the worn brick against her shoulder—he’d insisted that she order cannoli for dessert.
“Just one,” he coaxed. “If you don’t want it, you don’t have to eat a single bite. But I think you need to taste whipped cream tonight.”
“Don’t you think she needs some whipped cream?” he demanded of the waiter, who smiled back at him, sensing, Desiree thought through a satisfied haze of red wine, succulent beef, and way too much potent testosterone, a truly magnificent tip.
“Definitely, the signorina needs whipped cream,” Giuseppe agreed. “And we have the best.”
She wasn’t sure how you had better whipped cream than anyone else, but when the dessert arrived, she had to concede that this was the best.
Amaretto, one still-sane corner of her practical brain suggested, but that sensible voice was drowned out, oh so rapidly, by the sensation on her tongue, the silky smoothness of cream, the almond sweetness of the liqueur, the delicate drift of pastry and the deep dark pleasure of chocolate. And Alec, watching her as she allowed the rich concoction to drift between her lips, over her tongue, down her throat. Watching her, enjoying the sight of her enjoying herself, as if it were his tongue. His throat.
By the time he’d slapped a hand against the door of the cab that had again been waiting when they’d stepped out of the restaurant’s front door, leaped back onto the sidewalk and raised that same hand in farewell, she’d been so lost in fatigue, wine, and lust that she could only sit back against the scarred leather and thank heaven that she hadn’t actually kissed him. Or begged him.

About the Author ~ Rosalind James

Rosalind_web

Rosalind James is the author of the Kindle-bestselling “Escape to New Zealand” series (currently five titles strong), as well as the new U.S.-based “Kincaids” series. Her first book,”Just This Once,” has sold tens of thousands of copies in the year since it was published, eventually reaching #85 in the Amazon store. A marketing professional and publishing industry veteran, Rosalind has lived all over the United States and in a number of other countries, traveling with her civil engineer husband. Most recently, she spent several years in Australia and New Zealand, where she fell in love with the people, the landscape, and the culture of both countries. She loves trying new things in her writing, most recently the mystery and suspense in “Nothing Personal.”

Rosalind credits her rapid success to the fact that “lots of people would like to escape to New Zealand! I know I did!”

Website: http://www.rosalindjames.com

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

Twitter: @rosalindjames5

Happy Reading,

Alison

Good Faith by Liz Crowe Tour, Guest Post & Giveaway

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Blurb

Strong personalities—volatile marriages—stressful careers—conflicting goals—difficult children.

Contemporary challenges facing close-knit families form the crucible that forges a new generation.

Brandis, Gabriel, Blair and Lillian emerge from the entanglement of their parents’ longstanding emotional connections, but one’s star will burn brighter – and hotter – than the others.

With a personality that consumes everyone and everything in its path, Brandis Gordon struggles to maintain control as he ricochets between wild success and miserable failure. His life proves how even the strongest relationships can be strangled by the ties that bind.

Brandis and Gabe Frietag are as close as any brothers, bound by both loyalty and fierce rivalry. The strength of their ultimate alliance is tested time and again by Brandis’ choices.

Companions from birth, Blair Frietag and Lillian Robinson share loner tendencies, but come to rely on each other through adolescence. As they mature, both are forced to confront their feelings for the men they knew as boys.

Somewhere between the tangle of good memories and bad, independence and addiction, optimism and despair, the intertwined destinies of the new generation finally collide, leaving some stronger, others broken, but none unscathed.

As a chronicle of three families navigating the minefields of teen years into the turbulence of young adulthood, Good Faith holds up a literary mirror to contemporary life with joys and temptations unflinchingly reflected. Its fresh, real-life voice portrays the sheer volatility of human nature, complete with the hopes, dreams, and unexpected setbacks of marriage, parenthood and “coming of age.”

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Guest Post by Liz Crowe

Liz’s Top 5 Tips for Creative Sanity

5. Sweat the big stuff first: Think “big picture” not “daily grind.” This is useful for plotting your next novel as well as handling potential professional jealousy that comes with strolling through the social networks attempting to find more readers. Your efforts are part of a larger whole, just like every sentence you write is part of the bigger plot.

4. One Reader At a Time: Start with your mom, your best friend, your exercise buddy and work outward from there. No author STARTED with a million fans.

3. Over-communicate about your craft. Under-communicate about your personal life. Trust me on this one. Readers are less concerned about why you may NOT be writing “their” next book than how you are coming along on it. And this leaves you wide open for hangers-on who may have to be shed down the road and who will be nasty and resentful because you “let them in” to your “life.” This is for your personal safety as well. Photos of your kids, your house, your spouse and all of those things should be very carefully considered before posting.

2. Don’t forget that the balance between actual creation (that is to say: “writing a book”) and making a living doing so (that is to say: “promoting yourself”) is delicate. Don’t let it tip too far to one side or another unless of course you are so wealthy you don’t care who buys your books. On of my favorite authors of a genre I don’t even really like that much is Harlan Coben. He said it best: “If you say, ‘I write only for myself, I don’t care if anyone reads it,’ that’s therapy, not writing.”

1. Never, ever, ever, ever, ever (for any reason at all) engage with negative people. They are all around you, seeking to rip you down as you claw your way up. The are as unavoidable as zits on a teenager. This means “negative reviewers” online, or semi-literate “friends” on facebook looking to stick a fork in your mojo and give it a scramble. Ignore, avoid, have fans or agents or assistants run interference for you if possible and only allow positive reviews to be sent or pointed out to you. Frankly, “reviews” are best avoided altogether but I don’t take my own advice on that. Sometimes I need that boost.

Good Faith stack

Excerpt

That morning his father had roused him from a sound sleep. He’d blinked, confused, by the angle of the sunlight. He rarely slept much past eight since he usually had some sort of training or the other.
“Let’s go son. Time for lunch.”
Brandis had dragged himself up, his limbs feeling like they weighed a thousand pounds each. His brain buzzed with a strange sort of energy, his typical state, and not at all welcome considering it normally didn’t hit him until later in the day. The conversation his father began as soon as they were seated at their usual diner did not help.
“So, listen, Brandis. These girls…Katie’s friends from college….”
Brandis sipped his ice water, waiting for his father to finish the thought. His heart pounded, and his face flushed hot with embarrassment.
Jack sighed, as if exasperated that Brandis didn’t pick up the thread on his own, leaving him to carry on with the awkwardness about to ensue. Then he leveled his gaze, his face open, not angry or judgmental. “I think that you may be in for some…I mean, they’re…shit.”
“If you are gonna tell me where babies come from again,” Brandis said, after deciding to ease his father’s obvious distress. He cocked an eyebrow and half a smile. Jack seemed to relax somewhat as Brandis continued. “Don’t bother. I already know.”
He flashed his brightest smile up at the middle-aged woman who stood at their table, coffee pot in hand. She blinked rapidly at him, and at that precise moment, Brandis got his first flash of…something…about his power. Up until now he’d merely been “Brandis the trouble maker, the causer of strife.” Suddenly, he felt strong, amazingly so, stronger than even the man sitting across from him, a taller, older version of himself. His body tingled all over, as he tested the smile out again on the woman, making her slop some coffee out onto the table. His father frowned, but then chuckled as the woman walked away after they gave their orders.
“Son,” he said, leaning back and cradling the coffee mug to his chest. “Your adventure has only just begun.”
“Huh?” Brandis picked up his cup but didn’t drink any. He hated coffee, but had ordered it in a burst of need to be more like Jack. As he sipped the bitter stuff, he was transported back years before when he and his dad would spend every single Saturday morning together, eating breakfast at this very diner. He had adored the man, he remembered distinctly. His chest hurt at the simplicity of their relationship then. He looked away from Jack’s deep blue, knowing gaze.
The subject changed of its own accord, and Brandis let it. Although part of him wanted to ask for advice, a much bigger part would not allow the words past his lips.
They ate, discussing the upcoming football season and Brandis’ part in it. The recruiting company Jack had contracted last year to video his every move would start up with the first game. He’d made varsity again, technically as backup quarterback to a senior boy. Brandis didn’t see this as a setback and had every intention of starting under center by the second or third game.
Finally, when they pushed their empty plates back and sat looking at each other, Brandis felt more comfortable in his father’s presence than he had been in a long time. Jack said, “I am pretty sure at least one of those girls sleeping in the basement is determined to change the status of your virginity for you probably as soon as tonight.”
Brandis choked on the last sip of lukewarm coffee. His face burned, and his body tingled again. “I’m…it’s…uh….” He clutched the napkin in his lap unable to meet his father’s eyes.
“No need to say anything. Let’s just say your mother is an astute reader of female intent. While I was busy admiring your sister’s friend’s ass, she apparently read the girl’s mind or something.” Brandis’ face flushed even hotter.
He resisted the urge to protest, to proclaim his innocence of such things. Because he wanted it back—those mornings between them, father and son, man and boy, not this awkward, man and almost-man bullshit. Because while the thought of one of his sister’s college friends popping his cherry remained a pleasant fantasy, it also made him feel older than he wanted to be right then.
“So, I bought a box of condoms this morning,” Jack went on. “Put some downstairs in the side table drawer and the rest in your room. Use them please.” He sipped the last of his coffee, looked as if he were about to get up, then leaned forward, touching Brandis’ wrist. “Have fun. Don’t be an asshole to women. Let every experience teach you…something. Because you are nothing as a man if you don’t learn from every woman you…love.” Jack looked out the window onto the nearly empty parking lot. Then he turned back, tightened his grip on his son’s arm. “God, you are so…young.” His face fell a moment, then he perked up again, his eyes twinkling. “Okay, so, your mother told me to tell you not to let them corrupt you. But all I’m gonna say is this: always wear protection, no matter what, no matter how much you don’t want to. And don’t let your mom catch you in the act. I’ll handle her otherwise.”
Then he let go, stood and smiled, draping a friendly arm around Brandis’ shoulders as they exited the restaurant.
“You really didn’t tell me you were admiring Katie’s friend’s ass, did you, Dad?”
“No, son. I most certainly did not. You obviously misheard me.” Jack winked as he stood by the passenger’s side of his classic Corvette convertible and tossed the keys to Brandis. “Remember what I told you. Don’t ride my clutch.”

Giveaway Time!!!

GRAND PRIZE: Nook Simple Touch loaded with the Stewart Realty series and the first 3 Black Jack Gentlemen books.

FIRST PRIZE: Signed set of Stewart Realty series (including Good Faith) SECOND PRIZE: A Stewart Realty Zazzle swag pack PLUS a Wolverine State Brewing Co. t-shirt and pint glass THIRD PRIZE: Signed set of the first three Black Jack Gentlemen books.

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About Liz Crowe

LizCrowe

Amazon best-selling author, beer blogger and beer marketing expert, mom of three, and soccer fan, Liz lives in the great Midwest, in a major college town. She has decades of experience in sales and fund raising, plus an eight-year stint as a three-continent, ex-pat trailing spouse. While working as a successful Realtor, Liz made the leap into writing novels about the same time she agreed to take on marketing and sales for the Wolverine State Brewing Company.

Most days find her sweating inventory and sales figures for the brewery, unless she’s writing, editing or sweating promotional efforts for her latest publications.

Her early forays into the publishing world led to a groundbreaking fiction subgenre, “Romance for Real Life,” which has gained thousands of fans and followers interested less in the “HEA” and more in the “WHA” (“What Happens After?”). More recently she is garnering even more fans across genres with her latest novels, which are more character-driven fiction, while remaining very much “real life.”

With stories set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch, in successful real estate offices and many times in exotic locales like Istanbul, Turkey, her books are unique and told with a fresh voice. The Liz Crowe backlist has something for any reader seeking complex storylines with humor and complete casts of characters that will delight, frustrate, and linger in the imagination long after the book is finished.

If you are in the Ann Arbor area, be sure and stop into the Wolverine State Brewing Co. Tap Room—but don’t ask her for anything “like” a Bud Light, or risk serious injury.

http://www.lizcrowe.com
http://www.brewingpasssion.com
http://www.a2beerwench.com
http://www.facebook.com/lizcroweauthor
http://www.twitter.com/beerwencha2
https://www.facebook.com/groups/Lizcrowefans/
http://www.facebook.com/groups/romanceforreallife

Happy Reading,

Alison

The Christmas Wish Tour & Guest Post

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The Christmas Wish

Title: The Christmas Wish (Heart of Montana #1.5)

Author: Katy Regnery

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Publication Date: October 27, 2013

Publisher: Boroughs Publishing Group

Cover Designed By: Kim Killion

Event organized by: Literati Author Services, Inc.

~ Synopsis ~

Waitress Tess Branson has earned a bad reputation, and the nickname “Fast Tessie,” as result of her poor judgment where men are concerned. Tess learned from a young age that men – of all ages – were interested in one thing from her and one thing only. But all Tess ever really wanted was to connect with someone special – to mean something to someone. Lucas Flynn, the short order cook at the restaurant where Tess works, has just been released on parole. He’s trying to get his life back on track, but can’t help noticing the pretty waitress who treats him kindly, despite his past. At Lucas’s urging, Tess makes a wish on a star, but they’ll have to rely on the magic of Christmas to help it come true.

The Christmas Wish is a novella and can be read as a standalone.

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Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes

Guest Post by Katy Regnery

Name the top five tunes you have on your (Music) Ipod, etc.

Such a fun question…I’m going to pop over to iTunes and look up the five songs that have been re-played the most often in a repeat mode, and I’ll try to remember what I wrote when I played them! Here goes:

Just Give Me a Reason (P!nk) – 302 plays
I had no idea this was my most played song (for my shortest book, no less!) This is the song I played over and over and over again for three days as I wrote “The Christmas Wish”! A little over 20 hours of this song. (Wow!) I remember very clearly listening to it as I wrote Tess and Lucas’s story – I especially liked the words We’re not broken, just bent, and we can learn to love again. That’s sort of the whole thrust of “The Christmas Wish” so it’s no wonder the song resonated so deeply.

Morning Has Broken (Hanan Harchol) – 243 plays
This one doesn’t surprise me – it’s a really beautiful, guitar rendering of the Cat Steven’s hit (which is really an old Scottish hymn. The hero of my current WIP, Playing for Love, which is a re-work of an old manuscript, is a guitar player and he plays Morning Has Broken to cajole the heroine out of a bad mood. I tried to listen for the musician’s fingers moving up and down the strings so I could describe Zach playing like that.

Box of Stones (Benjamin Francis Leftwich) – 166 plays
I heard this song a couple of months ago on a Lifetime Movie special about two Amish kids who find forbidden love with one another. At the time, I was in the middle of writing Paul Johansson’s story, Meeting Miss Mystic, Heart of Montana #4. And there’s such a poignancy in the music, and such a sweet poignancy in Paul. He’s definitely a beta hero – he’s kind and thoughtful and really in touch with his feelings. This song really feels like Paul.

Cannonball (Brandi Carlile) – 154 plays
This is another Meeting Miss Mystic song and one I really love. It begins I was born when I met you, now I’m dying to forget you. In Meeting Miss Mystic, Paul and Zoe meet on-line and Zoe has misrepresented herself terribly, so when they finally meet, she knows who he is, but he doesn’t recognize her. There’s such a sadness in the song which really mirrored Zoe’s own sadness.

When the Night Comes (Dan Auerbach) – 91 plays
Oh, man. This song. I almost tremble when I think about this one. This was my sex-writing song for It’s You: Origins, which is my first of a two-set paranormal series out in the Spring of 2014. The characters are so incredibly intense and their chemistry blows my mind. They’re fated to be together, even though they waited twenty years to find each other…I mean, they’re inevitable. No matter how they might fight their attraction and connection, it doesn’t matter. They must be together. Which is part of what makes their story so sexy and the primary feeling I get from the song – inevitability and surrender.

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About the Author

Katy

KATY REGNERY, winner of several regional RWA contests, has always loved telling a good story and credits her mother with making funny, heartwarming tales come alive throughout her childhood. A lifelong devotee of all romance writing from Edwardian to present-day, it was just a matter of time before Katy tried her hand at writing a love story of her own.

As it turned out, one love story turned into a series of five Heart of Montana romances, following the love lives of the Yellowstone-based Lindstrom siblings. In addition to small-town contemporary romance, Katy is presently writing a paranormal romance that takes place in northern New England and the forests north of Quebec.

Speaking of forests, Katy lives in the relative-wilds of northern Fairfield County, Connecticut where her writing room looks out at the woods and her husband, two young children and two dogs create just enough cheerful chaos to remind her that the very best love stories of all are the messy and unexpected ones.

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Happy Reading,

Alison