Two Family Home Author by Sarah Title – Cover Reveal

 

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Title:
 Two Family Home
Author: Sarah Title
Publisher: Lyrical Press

Lindsey Alford moved to Willow Springs, Kentucky, to prove to all doubters (mostly her parents) that she’s all grown up. Something her neighbor Walker Smith never questioned—those short shorts of hers!

Put a cute single girl with an overactive imagination next door to a reclusive hot guy, add in a decadent blue velvet sofa, a locked garage and a nursing home full of busybodies, and trouble is bound to pop up. Literally, in the form of an adorably naughty stray pup with a longing for two people to lick and a home all his own.

Love isn’t complex…it’s a duplex!

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Two Family Home is available at Amazon

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PUYB Meet the Author

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Sarah Title

By day, Sarah Title is a (sort of) mild-mannered librarian in West Virginia, and by night, she writes funny, steamy, comfort reads.  Sarah holds a B.A. in English from Vassar College and an M.L.S. from Indiana University.  Her first book, Kentucky Home, was released by eKensington in April 2013.  The follow-up novella, “Kentucky Christmas,” came out, surprisingly, the following December.  She also contributed to the anthology, Delicious, with Lori Foster and Lucy Monroe.

Her newest book, Home Sweet Home, was released by eKensington in April 2014.

Sarah is represented by Louise Fury with the Bent Agency.

Praise for Sarah Title’s work:

“Quite a sexy book.”  —USAToday.com on Kentucky Home

“The funny, down-to-earth characters who fill the pages are wonderfully sympathetic and their chemistry is delightful, but it is the added dose of magic featured in each story that lends this book its unique charm. With subtle flair, Foster, Monroe and Title walk the narrow border between genres to great success.”  —RT Book Reviews on Delicious (4 stars)

“I hope there are many more from this author.”  —My mom, in her Amazon review of Kentucky Home

For More Information
Visit Sarah’s website.
Connect with Sarah on Facebook  and Twitter.

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Review From Here

Literal Exposure

I’m Shelf-ish

Bent Over Bookwords

The Literature Exchange

Inkslinger’s Opus

The Revolving Bookshelf

The Book Czar

All Inclusive Retort

Carpe Librum

Lover of Literature

Voodoo Princess

Charles Reads

Confessions of a Reader

3 Partners in Shopping

My Life. One Story at a Time

Carti Cu Colti

The Dark Phantom

The Literary Nook

The Warlord’s Wife by Sandra Lake – Review 5 stars

A stunning historical romance from debut author Sandra Lake transports readers to 12th century Sweden, where a powerful Viking lord will discover a fierce heart cannot be taken by mere force.

Lida was married to the love of her life for just two months when she became a widow. Pregnant and disowned by her late husband’s family for suspected infidelity, she was forced to return to her family in shame. Eight years later, uninterested in the prospect of finding another husband, she finds herself the unwilling object of a marriage contract with a powerful warlord. In a day, she is wed, bed, and put on a ship headed for Tronscar; an unknown icy stone and steel fortress.
Jarl Magnus is pleased to have taken a strong wife who, however stubborn she may be, will surely produce sons. However, he is less pleased with his wife’s additional baggage—a young daughter. But despite himself, Magnus falls for the daughter just as hard as the mother, and Lida’s heart is warmed to see the cold, serious Jarl move surprisingly fast into the role of stepfather.
When enemies attack Tronscar, Jarl Magnus’s nerves of steel waver, as the warrior fears his love for Lida will weaken him. But when his family is threatened, he’ll go to war to protect them, discovering along the way that they have the strength to protect themselves.

Purchase on Amazon

My Review – 

For a first time author, Sandra Lake hit this one out of the ball park. I thought the writing was excellent and I enjoyed the story-line immensely.

The female lead was well-written, demure but strong. The male lead was a viking and was depicted as such. I’ve long had an obsession with vikings and I was enthralled with the character.

As in most viking stories, the viking sees what he wants and is quite determined to have it, and have it his way. They soon find out that things do not always go as planned and this story was no exception. He soon finds himself falling in love with his new wife’s little girl and he has absolutely no idea what to do with his new-found adoration.

The story would not be complete without a villain or two and their characters did not disappoint. You just couldn’t help but not like them. And, along with the villains, there were an assortment of other loyal men you can’t help but love as well.

I thought the story had all the elements I look for in a Viking story. There was viking meets girl and wonders why girl isn’t grateful to have him. There was a plot for revenge. There was love and romance and lots of men learning to understand women!

There were a number of errors in the book, but I think the copy I received was not fully edited. They were not that big of a distraction, it’s just that my eyes catch them. I think that anyone who loves a good viking story will love this book.

- 5 stars -

 

Sandra Lake was born somewhere in the wilds of Sweden. Surrounded by shirtless, blond men, she learned to sail, swing a sword and skin a bear when she was only three– wait no, that sounds more like Davy Crockett

The real Sandra was raised in rural Canada. She married her childhood sweetheart (who is blond and on occasion shirtless). They are currently living happily-ever-after along with their kids and unruly husky in eastern Canada.

My Life. One Story at a Time. is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small fee is earned when purchases are made at Amazon through the link above. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. 

If You Believe by Mya O’Malley

 

Sometimes love only comes once in a lifetime. For some lucky people, it is possible to love again.
Melody and Jack had shared an unforgettable love story that abruptly came to an end. Melody, left picking up the pieces, finds herself alone years later, with no hope or desire to date again. With the holiday season approaching, Melody finds it particularly difficult to get Jack out of her thoughts.
Jack isn’t sure if he’s an angel or a ghost, but his mind is set on one thing only, finding a new love for Melody by Christmas Eve at midnight. Easier said than done, with many obstacles to tackle, Jack underestimates how difficult the task is. With conflicting emotions, Jack takes it upon himself to find a man for a woman he still loves.
With the clock ticking as the holidays approach, this charming story of finding love the second time around will have you laughing and crying, but ultimately, it will have you believing in true love.

Review – I’ll be reviewing this book in the near future. 

Buy on Amazon

Mya O’Malley was born and raised in the suburbs of New York City, where she currently lives with her husband, daughter and three step-daughters. The family also consists of two boxers; Destiny and Dolce and a ragdoll cat named Colby. Mya earned an undergraduate degree in special education and a graduate degree in reading and literacy. She works as a special education teacher and enjoys making a difference in the lives of her students.
Mya’s passion is writing; she has been creating stories and poetry since she was a child. Mya spends her free time reading just about anything she can get her hands on. She is a romantic at heart and loves to create stories with unforgettable characters. Mya likes to travel; she has visited several Caribbean Islands, Mexico and Costa Rica. Mya is currently working on her fifth novel.

Devon’s Choice by Catherine Bennett

Devon's Choice (1)

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devon's choiceDevon‘s Choice

Life holds no surprises for Devon Murphy. Her life consists of keeping tabs on her aging Irish father, working part time at a coffee shop, and building her online graphics design business. Devon’s only tricky situation is a shallow relationship with the pampered and affluent Michael Turner, who sees her as just another woman to conquer.

Following his father’s death, Brandon’s only goal is to expand the family business and live life on his own terms. That is, until he walks into the coffee shop one snowy evening and meets the enchanting, red-haired barista behind the counter. But can Devon and Brandon’s attraction for each other be strong enough to help erase their deepest disappointments and renew their faith in God?

Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Kobo * Smashwords

Review – I’ll be reviewing this book in the near future. 

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Catherine Bennett

Author Catherine Bennett

I grew up in Ohio where I currently live with my husband and our two rescue Labradors. Some of my favorite things include reading, shopping, pepperoni pizza, Hershey bars and hanging out with my two grown sons. I also love dogs; so going to the dog park is cheap entertainment for my husband and I!

Growing up an only child, I had many imaginary friends. I believe this – and a love of books – fueled my desire to write. It was many years later that my dream of becoming a published author came true.

I’m grateful to God for always keeping a story in my heart and hope you are blessed and entertained by my book.

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Excerpt -

He looked up at the menu board.  “I’ll take a Grande.  Black, please.”

Chuckling, she thought about how impressed her dad would be with this guy.  He considered anyone who drank coffee black in the same category as his favorite actor, John Wayne.  She poured the coffee, and rang up his order.

“That’s two-dollars and fifty cents.”  He handed her his debit card, which she swiped.

He took the cup.  “Thanks.  Have a good one.”

“Yeah, you too.”

He walked over to one of the upholstered chairs and sank down into its well-used seat.  The shop owner had talked of replacing the pair of relics with some sturdy, leather ones.  Leather would flatter this guy much better than the faded paisley print on the old ones.  Devon glanced at him out of the corner of her eye.  Yes, leather was definitely his style, but not the biker stuff.  No, he’d look best in a rugged, mahogany leather jacket instead of the puffy, gray parka he wore.

My Favorite Second Chance, The Lake Effect Series by RUE

Have you ever wished for a second chance?
The Hutchinson sisters are out of the frying pan and into the fire—just like their mother always threatened!
Gwenn is floating in the dreamy, fragile glow of her new relationship with wealthy artist, Daniel Gregory, when a blast from her past makes a triumphant return. Sure he ran out on her over a decade ago, but can she turn her back on a war hero?
Rachel is on the brink of having everything she ever dreamed of, but that’s not how things work out for Hutchinson girls. Her rock-star girlfriend is leaving for a lengthy tour and something is afoot at the bakery. The righteous hand of her mother, Shirley, can orchestrate tribulations from halfway across town.
The sisters think they can run away from their troubles on a quick trip to the heart of Mexico, when an unexpected phone call shatters that illusion.
Filled with intriguing characters, plenty of steamy romance and lovely plots twists, MY FAVORITE SECOND CHANCE will have you flushed with anticipation, blinking back tears, laughing out loud and cheering for your favorite characters.

Buy on Amazon

Review – I’ll be reviewing this book in the near future. 

Rue graduated from Pepperdine University in Malibu, California, with a degree in Journalism. Her intimate knowledge of the Midwestern United States, the inordinate amount of time she spent in its churches’ pews and her unique parentage make her an expert on life after religion. Having moved 17 times by the time she graduated from high school Rue has seen more than her share of the Great Plains. She never stayed in one place long enough to make lasting human friends. Her best friends were all characters from her beloved books; and the love of reading led to a lifelong passion for writing.

 

Unlike Any Other by Claudie Burgoa – Media Blitz, Giveaway, Excerpt

UnlikeAny_Coming

AJ

The name AJ Colthurst may not have any meaning to the public eye, but it should, as I’m the daughter of two famous celebrities. Like any superstar, they crave privacy; so much of it, they built a house in the middle of nowhere for us children. As we grew older, we discovered the lies they built as a fort to protect us from the media, ended up causing emotional damage along the way.
I carry a portion of the guilt on my shoulders; the other part I discovered is the separation of my parents. Their unorthodox ways may have driven me bonkers, but knowing they are no longer together is unacceptable.
That’s why I decided to rattle their cage by reminding at least one of my parents of the past and the reason they belong together. They need to remember why their love is so perfect and why they have to fight to keep it alive. Even if it means I have to dredge up some of my own painful memories along the way.

Gabe

Back in the early eighties, I set myself to succeed in the financial world. The first step had been moving to New York City to become a stockbroker, but things didn’t work out the way I had hoped. Instead, I ended up making movies and by the end of the decade, Gabe Colt had become a famous name. The downside to my career of choice: the paparazzi. In order to protect my family and our privacy, I maintained my family away from the circus. It had been for their own good; a decision we had made before we started our family.
However, those past decisions ended up chasing my entire family away and now I’m trying to put the pieces back together along with my little girl.

GOODREADS:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23203739-unlike-any-other

Buy Link:

Amazon Kindle

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Unlike Any Other Cover
Born on the mystical day of October 30th in the not so mystical lands of Mexico City, Claudia Burgoa grew up with a childhood that resembled a caffeine-injected soap opera. Seventeen years ago she ventured to the lands of her techie husband—a.k.a. the U.S.—with their offspring to start a new adventure.

She now lives in Colorado working as a CFO for a small IT company, managing her household filled with three confused dogs, said nerd husband, two daughters wrought with fandoms and a son who thinks he’s the boss of the house. To survive she works continually to find purpose for the voices flitting through her head, plus she consumes high quantities of chocolate to keep the last threads of sanity intact.

Website: http://www.claudiayburgoa.com/

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/yuribeans

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7202946.Claudia_Y_Burgoa

EXCERPT

“You don’t seem surprised to see me.”

“The bank called earlier to inform me that Miss Colthurst spent twenty-five thousand dollars in one swipe and to confirm that I authorized the transaction. You haven’t used your card in a long time and suddenly you spend thousands of dollars in just minutes.” We enter a large room with wall to wall bookcases that span from the floor up to the ceiling. Behind a mahogany desk, there is a majestic panoramic window that faces the ocean. A familiar setting, but I’m positive that I’ve never been here before. Gabriel closes the door behind us and resumes the conversation. “Logically, I had to find out what you were up to. I feared you’d been in the hospital and with that pride you carry… you wouldn’t call. That’s why I sent Mason to pick you up, I wanted him to make sure you’re alright. He was in the neighborhood.”

Well, he’s here, I’m here, might as well get the party started.

“I wanted you to tell me that what the magazine published is a lie.” I fight with the fist-sized knot in my throat. “But I witnessed that it’s real: a wife, a kid… your first kid, the magazine highlighted that part. Congratulations, I guess.”

I clean the dripping sarcasm from my mouth with the back of my hand.

Those wrinkles around his blue eyes shrink even more. He doesn’t look as young as he does on the cover of magazines. Late fifties look different in front of the cameras, in the media, and, in general. With all the makeup and Photoshop they apply, not many get to see the real face of Gabriel Colt; only a few of us are lucky.

“Ah, that made you crawl outside your little hideout, I see.” He closes his eyes and takes several breaths before opening them again. “Life changed while you were gone, AJ. I don’t think you have the right to burst into my house and make a scene.”

“Your house?” I try to grab the edge of the desk to keep myself from getting caught in the rapids I’m swimming against at the moment. What happened to: “What’s yours is ours?”

“So, I take it you’re not here to apologize?” he dodges my question.

“This house looks a lot like the house in Baja—also looks like home,” I take a few steps and scan the room—avoiding his question.

Two can play the same game. I learned from the best—him.

The answer is simple. Hell, no, I’m not asking him to forgive me. Not when he’s proving that I was right. He lied for a long time. Or, that he only cares about his image and what the rest of the world thinks of him.

“Eight rooms upstairs, I bet. The biggest facing the ocean and it’s right above this library, isn’t it? You never brought us here.” Babbling, faking anger that’s keeping me standing in one piece without shedding a tear. “Can I ask you a question? Actually, just a few things and after that, I swear I’ll disappear forever since that is what you want.”

I cough a couple of times masking the shakiness of my voice. Gabriel sets his hands on his hips and stares at me before he lets a breath out. I take that as a ‘yes’ or a ‘go ahead you poor kid, let’s give this one last time before I start my new family’.

Get Lucky Anthology – Nicola Marsh, Kelsey Browning, Robin Covington, Avery Flynn, Sarah Humphreys, Kimberly Kincaid

Available on Amazon for .99

Get Lucky Anthology

Six brand new Irish-themed contemporary, new adult and paranormal romance novellas that will give Get Lucky a whole new meaning.

From USA Today bestselling author Nicola Marsh – Walking the Line
Ellie is a decade older than Finn but that doesn’t stop the charming Irishman from wooing her.
Ellie doesn’t believe in the happily-ever-after dream any longer, not since hers imploded a long time ago. But can a smooth-talking Irishman sway a hard-hearted cynic to believe in love again?

From reader favorite Kelsey Browning – Amazed by You
Author’s assistant Olivia McLaughlin must pull off an extravagant St. Patrick’s Day garden party to win a coveted promotion, but her success hinges on landscape designer Cody Kavanaugh, her old high school boyfriend. Now, Olivia must decide which she can’t live without—the job that will make her a success or the man offering her a second chance at love.

From sizzling hot and bestselling Robin Covington – One Little Kiss
Trapped by a snowstorm in the same place at the same time, Leighton and Jonas must decide if their hot night together was the end of their story or if they started forever with just one little kiss…

From RT Book Review Award nominee Avery Flynn – Big, Bad Red
There’s nothing little or naive about this Red Riding Hood. Red runs the biggest fencing operation for fairytale treasures out of the back of Granny’s Pub. But when she comes into possession of the Caladbolg sword things get hairy–as in hot, sexy Liam MacTíre the werewolf hairy.

From paranormal darling Sara Humphreys – Luck of the Irish
Banished to the mirrored realm for hundreds of years, Declan Aherne had nothing but time to plot his revenge and mourn the loss of his beloved wife. But when a beautiful human woman, with a familiar amulet, stares into the mirror….Declan’s luck was about to change.

From the sexy sweet Kimberly Kincaid – Something Borrowed
When her successful brother announces his plans for an impromptu wedding in Ireland, unlucky-in-love chef Sasha Arrington is stuck between the Blarney Stone and a hard place. Sasha needs a wingman for her brother’s wedding, and the romantic destination could be just what James Sullivan needs to tempt Sasha out of the friend zone.

Purchase on Amazon

Review – I’ll be reviewing this book in the near future. 

USA TODAY bestselling author Nicola Marsh writes flirty fiction with flair for adults and riveting, eerie stories for young adults. Based in Melbourne, she has published 45 books and sold over 5 million copies worldwide. She writes contemporary romances for Harlequin Mills & Boon, Entangled Publishing and is self-published.

Kelsey Browning writes sass kickin’ love stories and co-authors Southern cozy mysteries. She’s also a co-founder of Romance University blog, one of Writer’s Digest 101 Best Websites for Writers. Originally from a Texas town smaller than the ones she writes about, Kelsey has also lived in the Middle East and Los Angeles, proving she’s either adventurous or downright nuts. These days, she hangs out in northeast Georgia with Tech Guy, Smarty Boy, Bad Dog and Pharaoh, a (fingers crossed) future therapy dog.

 

Robin Covington loves to explore the theme of fooling around and falling in love in her bestselling books. A Night of Southern Comfort, her debut novel was nominated for the RT Book Reviewers Choice Awards for Small Press and was touted by RT Book Reviews as bringing a “fresh, modern feel to the genre while still sticking to the things that get our adrenaline pumping — sex and danger”. Her books were also nominated for the Bookseller’s Best Award and the National Reader’s Choice Awards.

Robin lives in Maryland with her hilarious husband, brilliant children (they get it from her, of course!) and her beloved furbabies.

Avery Flynn has three slightly-wild children, loves a hockey-addicted husband and is desperately hoping someone invents the coffee IV drip.

Avery was a reader before she was a writer and hopes to always be both. She loves to write about smartass alpha heroes who are as good with a quip as they are with their *ahem* other God-given talents. Her heroines are feisty, fierce and fantastic. Brainy and brave, these ladies know how to stand on their own two feet and knock the bad guys off theirs.

Sara Humphreys is a graduate of Marist College, with a B.A. Degree in English Literature & Theater. Her initial career path after college was as a professional actress. Some of her television credits include, A&E Biography, Guiding Light, Another World, As the World Turns and Rescue Me. In 2013 Sara’s novel UNTAMED won two PRISM awards–Dark Paranormal and Best of the Best.
She loves writing hot heroes and heroines with moxie but above all, Sara adores a satisfying happily-ever-after. She lives in New York with her husband, their four amazing sons, and two adorable pups. When she’s not writing or hanging out with the men in her life, she can be found working out with Shaun T in her living room or chatting with readers on Facebook.

Kimberly Kincaid writes contemporary romance novels that split the difference between sexy and sweet, taking the traditional idea of boy-meets-girl and infusing it with a sassy magic all her own. She believes in fiery yet flawed characters destined for a crash-course in falling in love– usually the hard way– and injects her trademark humor as well as poignant touches into her writing to create her stories.

 

The Wife Maker by Karey White – Review, Tour

Wife Maker (1)Blog Tour Schedule

Wife MakerThe Wife Maker by Karey White

Charlotte has spent years as the husband maker, sending every guy she dates off to enjoy marital bliss with the next girl he dates. But things have now changed, and she’s determined to use her husband-maker abilities one last time–on herself. And she finally knows exactly who she wants.

Angus has loved Charlotte since they were teenagers, but he’s tired of waiting for her to realize how good they could be. She’s broken his heart one too many times, and it’s time to move on with his life. Maybe a position halfway across the country will be just what he needs to get over her. But when Charlotte won’t let him go without a fight, Angus has to decide if he’s willing to let her in again or if she’s too late.

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My Review – I will be posting my review shortly. I hope you’ll check back for it. Karey is a wonderful writer and her stories are solid and good and such a joy to read. 

Karey WhiteAuthor Karey White

Karey White grew up in Utah, Idaho, Oregon, and Missouri. She attended Ricks College and Brigham Young University. Her first novel, Gifted, was a Whitney Award Finalist.

She loves to travel, read, bake treats, and spend time with family and friends. She and her husband are the parents of four great children. She teaches summer creative writing courses to young people and is currently working on her next book.

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Goodreads

 

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Excerpt – click here

Continue reading

Pregnant by Morning by Kat Cantrell – Review

One magical night in Venice brings two lost souls together…until a positive pregnancy test changes everything.

What was meant to be a one-night affair has turned into much more for Texas businessman Matthew Wheeler. Something about Evangeline, the mysterious woman he met at a masquerade ball, propels him from his self-imposed exile. He’s finally able to forget his tragic past and lose himself in this incredible woman.

But letting go has a price.

Evangeline’s pregnancy announcement brings reality to their Venetian villa. Are they ready to take their secret affair public? Or will their romance end with the morning light?

Purchase Pregnant by Morning (Harlequin Desire) at Amazon

My Review:

I addicted to Kat Cantrell’s books and it’s no secret why. She writes great stories. The book blurb pretty much tells the story so need to go into detail on that aspect. It was a great romance read; the kind that makes you want to light a fire, sip hot chocolate, and get lost in the book.

I’m giving it 5 stars.

Excerpt – Reprinted from Amazon

Matthew Wheeler stepped into the fray of Carnevale not to eat, drink or be merry, but to become someone else.

Venice attracted people from all over the globe for its beauty, history or any number of other reasons, but he doubted any of the revelers thronging Piazza San Marco had come for the same reason he had.

Matthew adjusted the tight mask covering the upper half of his face. It was uncomfortable, but necessary. Everyone wore costumes, some clad in tuxedos and simple masks like Matthew, and many in elaborate Marie Antoinette-style dresses and feathered headpieces. Everyone also wore smiles, but that was the one thing he couldn’t summon.

“Come, my friend.” Vincenzo Mantovani, his next-door-neighbor, clapped Matthew on the shoulder. “We join the party at Caffe Florian.”

“Va bene” Matthew replied, earning a grin from the Italian who had appointed himself Matthew’s Carnevale guide this evening. Vincenzo appointed himself to a lot of things, as long as they were fun, reckless and ill-advised, which made him the appropriate companion for a man who wanted to find all of the above but had no clue how to accomplish it.

Actually, Matthew would be happy if he could just forget about Amber for a few hours, but the ghost of his wife followed him everywhere, even to Italy, thousands of miles from her grave.

Vincenzo chattered in accented English as he and Matthew pushed through the crowd along the edges of Piazza San Marco and squeezed into Caffe Florian, where it was too loud to converse. Which suited Matthew. He had the right companion, but he wasn’t sure Vincenzo did.

Like most Venetians, the man had never met a stranger and had immediately latched onto the American living by himself in the big, lonely palazzo next door. Vincenzo’s description, not Matthew’s, though he couldn’t deny it had some truth. He’d outbid an Arab prince by the skin of his teeth to buy the palazzo overlooking the Grand Canal as a wedding gift to Amber, but they’d never made it to Italy in the eleven months after the wedding. He’d been too busy working.

Then it was too late. Continue reading

The Party Plan by Melanie Jayne – Interview

The Party Plan Cover

Melanie Jayne Headshot

INTERVIEW

How did you come up with the idea for your story?

The Party Plan started as a 3,500 word short story that I submitted to an Open Call for an anthology. It was rejected but I liked Avery and Kade so much that I decided to expand their story. I have always been intrigued by missed opportunities and the “what ifs” in life. I thought I would give two people the chance to explore their long held feelings. By the way, I do have two godsons that are named Brian and Kyle but the resemblance to the characters ends there.

 

Where do you find your inspiration?

I have always been the person that people tell their stories and problems to. I mean the lady that sits by me on a plane will spill her guts to me. Since I am older, many of my friends have been through a divorce or the end of a long-term relationship. I have watched them regroup and move on. I am a huge believer in that you must keep moving forward, don’t live in the past and you simply must learn from your mistakes.

 

Is there anything that you find particularly challenging in your writing?

How much time do we have? I am still very new to all of this and my work schedule recently changed so I’m still getting used to that. I am a slow writer, who needs to ease into my groove so I waste a lot of time getting into writing mode. I am also terrible with commas. I either use too many or not enough. I can talk myself into adding a comma to almost any sentence. I know my editor probably was ready to kill me.

 

What are your current projects?

I have a novella called A Change for the Good that is in the editing process. I hope to have it published at the end of June. I’m writing book one of a small town romance trilogy. It has two very stubborn characters, who have a second chance at love. It is called You Only and I hope to have that out in early winter. Then there will be a novella based in the Casino world. When I get all of that taken care of, I’m starting a story that has been hounding me for months. It is a paranormal tale about Lycans, however, these aren’t your mama’s werewolves. It is much darker than anything I have ever attempted and deeper because I will have to world build. I’m going to change up some established rules regarding the Lycans. Wish me luck because reading that list makes me feel anxious.

 

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Absolutely. Don’t let your past dictate your future. If you are unhappy then make changes. Stop making the same mistakes over and over. Change your decisions, then you will change your life.

 

Does music play any type of role in your writing?

YES. I create a playlist for every story. I am constantly finding and adding songs. For The Party Plan, I listened to the songs, Glitter in the Air and Colorblind often. For the sex scenes, I always start with Nine Inch Nails’ Closer.

 

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your life?

About two years ago, I learned that my best friend’s marriage was ending. They had been married for 23 years, have four great kids, a lovely home and a dog. From the outside it seemed like a great life but there were problems. I admire her so much for how she handled everything. She has since moved from Chicago to L.A. so that the girls, who are teenagers, can be closer to their dad, plus she found an even better job. I hope that when she is ready that she will be able to find love again or at least have fun looking. I made her promise to share all of the details.

 

What books influenced your life most?

I read the book Scruples when I was fifteen, I found it hidden in my mom’s closet so I knew it had to be good. Oh wow- it had billionaires, fashion, and hot sex. I then went through a British Mystery period. I love Patricia Wentworth’s Miss Silver, Dorothy Sayers’ Lord Peter Wimsey and Agatha Christie. More recently, I’ve re-read Welcome to Temptation and Faking It by Jennifer Crusie, I could relate to the small town and the characters. After reading several books in Lorelei James’ Rough Riders series, I knew that I wanted to write about real people and real situations that I could relate to.

 

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?

I have not read as much as I used to. I will tell you about two authors that I fell in love with over the last year. I am obsessed with Kit Rocha’s Beyond Series. I read the first book, Beyond Shame and when I finished, I called my friend Val, and told her to stop whatever she was doing and read that book. I then started to read it all over again. The world building is amazing and easy to follow. Even though there are many characters, the way they are written, you remember them and care about them. I met one part of this writing duo at RT2014 and had a total fangirl moment that included jumping up and down and shouting “O’Kane for Life”. I also read the Experiment in Terror series by Karina Halle. Horror/New Adult isn’t something that I generally read but a trusted friend suggested it so I tried it. Ms. Halle can set a scene so that you can feel the cold rain hitting your face or the cold on a snowy morning. Plus Dex, the hero is so complex, damaged, crazy, cranky and wild. I was charmed by him and at times equally frustrated, but I never stopped reading. I will also tell you that two of her scenes still freak me the hell out – even today in the daylight. I will never rent a cabin in a snowy, mountainous area nor will I ever be able to sit on a deserted beach and look out at the surf without thinking about coffins washing ashore. A shiver just went down my spine thinking about it.

 

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

I want to say that if you love a book, tell your friends, talk about it on social media, and post a positive review. Send a message to the author to tell them how much you liked the book and why.   Share your love of reading and the books that you find special. I will also add that for years I have heard that writing can be a very lonely vocation. It is true, so a positive message really can brighten an author’s day.

 

How can readers discover more about you and your work?

You can find my author page on Facebook- Melanie Jayne, Author. I’m MJSmut on twitter. My website is www.ReadMelanieJayne.com. Maybe we can meet up at the following events that I am planning on attending, RT2015 in Dallas, Lori Foster’s RAGT in June, RWA in NYC, and AAD in Hotlanta in August for my Birthday. If you are feeling adventurous and aren’t upset by a monster dog and her slobber, then come by my house for a visit.

 

Do you have a special time to write?

How is your day structured writing-wise. I am trying to become more structured. I work 5 overnights a week at a casino and I need my sleep. Without it, I am a zombie. I am trying to program my brain and my life so that I can write 1-2 hours in the late afternoon after I wake up. On weekends, I try to put in three hours each morning. I am not a fast writer and I need time to get into my writerly groove. I’m working on getting my groove on much faster.

 

Why did you choose to write Erotic Romance?

It’s what I like to read. I like sex. I like to talk about it, hear about it and think about it. It just seemed to be a natural extension that I write books with explicit sex in them.

 

What is for you the perfect book hero?

For me, this is a very hard question. So I am going to tell you about my current favorite. I am so in love with Dallas and Lex, the King and Queen of Sector 4, from Kit Rocha’s Beyond series. I feel that I have to name them both because they are a package deal. Dallas is brave, intelligent, and he learns from his mistakes. Lex has a huge heart and the brain to back it up. She is a natural leader and her influence makes Dallas a better man. Dallas takes care of business behind a desk and in the ring fighting, and if necessary Lex won’t think twice about cutting your throat. Plus they are both sexy and extremely sexual.

 

If you start a book, do you already have the whole story in your head or is it built progressively?

I am a Plotter. Usually the entire story comes to me at one time. I then make an extensive outline, a list of character attributes, and a list describing the location including the town name, what their homes may look like. I cut out pages from magazines so that I can dress the characters, I even have bedroom decorating ideas. I also have phrases or bits of conversations that come to me that I jot down and save. For instance, a woman at work told me that she “can never get rid of old boyfriends because she has a magic vagina”. I wrote that down immediately and I know the perfect scene for it.

 

When and why did you begin writing?

I have always made up stories, I did it to help me fall asleep or to pass the time. I tried to write a book when I was a teen but soon gave up. In college, I was really excited to take a creative writing class. The professor hated my work. She gave me C’s and D’s. I was shocked and hurt by those grades so I put that dream away. About five years ago, I was complaining to my good friend, Valerie Cozart, about not connecting with anything I was reading. She suggested that I try to write. Boom-the pieces fell into place. I organized some ideas and shopped them to my friends to get feedback, I started attending conventions and going to panels on craft. I attended the Writer’s Bootcamp at RT2013and took a few online courses. I read books about writing and I started reading with a critical eye towards the craft. I also asked questions and listened to writers talk. It was in June of 2013 that I started to write seriously. I felt so free when I was typing away. I would laugh out loud or get teary eyed as I put those words on the screen. It is an amazing feeling.

 

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

It hit me last May when, I was sitting on the bed in my hotel room at RT in New Orleans. I had just hired an editor to work on The Party Plan. When I sent her the manuscript, it became a reality, I was going to do this. I wasn’t going to put that manuscript away because I was afraid of rejection, I was going to get it published and share that book with the world. Then I was going to do it again and again. I was excited but I was also scared shitless, however I felt so alive.

 

List three books that you have recently read and would recommend.  

I haven’t been reading much recently. I did read The Prisoner by Skye Warren and Annika Martin. This book has haunted me, especially the power shift when he breaks her glasses. I need my glasses to see so the violent intent behind that action really hit me. Beyond Addiction by Kit Rocha. I am obsessed with this series. I love Finn, the bad boy that works to become a better man for the woman he loves. I am and always will be O’Kane for Life. A few weeks ago, I needed the comfort of my book friends so I re-read, Rock Chick Reckoning by Kristen Ashley. I love Mase and Stella’s story, he is a badass P.I. and she is a local rock star. I think one of the most romantic scenes that I have ever read is when Stella is singing Pearl Jam’s song, Black, and Mase climbs onto the stage and kisses her. That song means so much to me and the scene is so powerful, it gets to me every time.

 

Tell us something that people would be surprised you know how to do.

I am a klutz. I run into things constantly and I am always bruised. When music plays the klutziness magically goes away and I can move. At one time in my life, I achieved some success as a competitor in Pro/Am Ballroom dancing. I think it was mostly due to my partner who was a Viking and so bossy- just like a character in a book. Still to this day when a good song comes on, I can move in 3” heels, two sets of fake eyelashes and a ballgown laden with stones that weighs a ton.

 

Will you write more about these characters?

I can’t say ever, but at this time, I don’t have anything in mind for Kade and Avery.

The Party Plan by Melanie Jayne – Review

The Party Plan CoverAvery Grant has been through a rough patch, she gave up her career to move home to help take care of her ailing parents. She married a man that she did not love and he almost bankrupted her family’s farm. Now she is going to get what she wants and for over twenty years she has wanted Kade Martin.

Party_Plan-teaser3
Kade has been attracted to his sister’s best friend for twenty years. In the beginning Avery was too innocent, then she was married and he was busy working hard and playing harder.

The plan is simple.

Party_Plan-teaser1
After tonight’s party for their godson’s engagement, Avery is going home with Kade. One night of sex with no strings.

Party_Plan-teaser2
That’s the plan.

PartyPLan_Available_now

 

 The Party Plan is available on Kindle or Paperback

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25028145-the-party-plan

iTunes/iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-party-plan/id970270911?mt=11&uo=4

My Review:

Hot, Fast, and Cheap! Well, take back the cheap there! If you only have a few minutes and you are looking for a great sexy read – look no further! The Party Plan will have you hot and bothered in a smoldering New York second as the saying goes.

Two people who have spent half their lives longing for each other find themselves unattached and at each other’s beck and call. Let the flirting begin.

Not the normal genre I review on my blog, but I like experimenting with my reading every now and then. I’m giving The Party Plan a huge thumb’s up.

Check back tomorrow for an interview with the author!

Giveaway
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Excerpt

This domineering side of Kade was the man she had fantasized about being with. Avery moistened her lips as she prepared her answer, “Yes.”

Yes what?”

Oh God,” his lips continue teasing her sensitive neck. It was so hard to form words, lost in the feeling. “I, uhm, I like this. I like your hands on me.” She tilted her head further so that he would have better access to her sensitive skin.

Kade chuckled, “Very good, Avery. For the record, I’ve wanted you for a long time. Christ, you were still a shy teenager when I wanted you the first time. I remember watching you spread suntan lotion on your body, your oil covered hands touching your skin. I was home on leave, but back then you were too innocent for me. So I stayed away, I knew it wasn’t the right time. I’ve been waiting for that time to come. I won’t stay away tonight.”

The Author, Melanie Jayne –

I live on a grain farm southeast of Indianapolis, Indiana with my very patient husband of twenty-five years and our two English Mastiffs, Buster Brown and Ginger. I graduated from Indiana University when it was the #1 party school in the country and I took great pride in helping the school achieve that ranking.

I haven’t figured out what I want to be when I grow up. I change careers every decade. I have worked in retail, a federal courtroom, travelled across the state closing loans, and behind the scenes in a casino.

I’ve always had an active imagination so when a good friend suggested that I try writing a book, I thought why not, it should be fun. It has, but I have had to work very hard to learn how to do it. I am so lucky for the outpouring of advice and education from so many in the industry, plus the hand-holding and cheerleading from My Gurls. I also have an incredible Ad-man-istrative Assistant, who tries to keep me under control. He rolls his eyes so much that I worry about a permanent condition.

When I ‘m not working or writing type stuff, I sleep, watch courtroom TV shows, and sports. I was a competitive pro-am ballroom dancer for ten years and I read as many books as I can.

​I love to attend Author-Reader Conventions and look forward to meeting you.

Website: http://www.readmelaniejayne.com/

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

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

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25028145-the-party-plan?from_search=true

PLAYLIST FOR THE PARTY PLAN

By Melanie Jayne

-Turning Tables by Adele

-Colorblind by Amber Riley (the Cast of Glee)

-I’ll Be by Edwin McCain

-Raise Your Glass- Pink

-Glitter in the Air- Pink

-Fields of Gold- Sting

-If I Were a Boy- Beyonce

-Don’t Speak-No Doubt

-Only Happy When It Rains-Garbage

-This is the Time-Billy Joel

-Clown-Emeli Sande

-Animal-Nine Inch Nails

-Hate On Me- Jill Scott

-Cowboy-Kid Rock

-Bawitdaba-Kid Rock

STEALING ROSE by Monica Murphy – Media Blitz and Giveaway, Excerpt

StealingRose_eCard_v4

We’re celebrating the release of STEALING ROSE by Monica Murphy! Check out the excerpt below!

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STEALING ROSE (The Fowler Sisters #2) by Monica Murphy

Blurb:

People say the youngest child has it easy, but nothing can be further from the truth. Unlike my two sisters, Violet and Lily, I’m never in the limelight. I just work my butt off for Fleur Cosmetics and get little to no thanks for it. I’ve been pushed too far one too many times, and I’m finally brave enough to do something about it.

Maybe my newfound courage has something to do with the amazing pink and white diamond necklace I wear to the party in Cannes. The instant those dazzling heirloom jewels touch my skin, they excite some deep, aching need inside. And when that guy—that totally gorgeous guy—locks eyes with me, I know this nice girl is going to be naughty.

For once it’s my turn. My turn to say no to my father, to outshine my sisters, to walk away from it all—straight into the arms of a mysterious stranger. But what if Caden is much more than I bargained for? Sure, he makes me feel sexy and free in a way I never have before, but there’s something else I can’t quite place—something dangerous. Maybe our “chance” meeting wasn’t so random. Maybe he was looking for me for a reason. Whatever his motive, there’s no going back now.

And maybe I don’t want to.

EXCERPT:

I sit on the edge of the mattress, not about to give up. I need to get closer to her and eventually get closer to that damn neck- lace she wore. Dexter wants it. He’s been hounding my ass for it. And I’ll get it.

Eventually.

I’d rather focus on her first. Earn her trust. So I’m not casing out her hotel room. I’m not looking for any stray jewelry lying around.

Hell, I’m in too deep now.

I’m here with Rose because I want to be, not because I want to steal something from her.

Yet. Don’t forget the “yet” part at the end of that last thought.

Yeah. Who wants to focus on trying to steal a necklace when I could be sliding back into bed with her? I want to feel the hot, tight clasp of her pussy milking my cock again. I want to feel her touch me, feel her lips on my skin, hear her moan when I hit a spot that feels particularly good. I want to learn all of those spots, memorize them for later. Because there will be a later for Rose and me. I plan on that. And she’d better plan on it too, no matter how much in denial she is.

“Rose.” She turns to look at me, her expression wary. Guarded. I know the feeling. More than anything, I know that look. I’ve been wearing the same guarded expression pretty much all my life. I trust no one. They’re all out to screw me over; it doesn’t matter who they are. I’ve become so good at playing the part, of being whoever I need to be at any given moment, I have no idea who the real me is anymore.

Being with Rose is the closest I’ve felt to myself since I don’t know when. I want to explore this. Explore what we share, what she makes me feel, what we are when we’re together.

She’s ready to kick me out and I’m ready to cling. Talk about a total role reversal. I need to get my head back on straight and focus.

“Caden.” She matches my tone, watching me expectantly. When I don’t say anything she rolls her eyes. “Do you realize I don’t even know your last name? What does that say about me, that I’d let you into my room and—fool around with you for hours and I don’t know your last name? It’s appalling behavior.”

“Appalling behavior? You sound like a crabby old school- teacher.” I want to laugh but I don’t. She’s dead serious. I think she’s just shocked herself with what we’ve done.

I’ve shocked myself too, but in a good way. While she acts like we’ve committed the ultimate sin.

“You wouldn’t understand.” She averts her head as if it pains her to look at me and I move closer to her, reaching out to tuck a stray strand of hair behind her ear.

“It’s Kingsley,” I murmur, wishing I could kiss her. Comfort her. But that’s not happening, not yet. I’ve got to take it slow.

She turns, a little gasp escaping her when she discovers how close I am. “What?”

“My last name. It’s Kingsley.”

“Are you serious? Of course it is.” She tosses her hands up in the air, making her breasts jiggle, and I jerk my gaze away from her chest.

WHICH FOWLER SISTER ARE YOU?
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OWNING VIOLET (The Fowler Sisters #1) by Monica Murphy
Adult Contemporary Romance
TAMING LILY (The Fowler Sisters #3) by Monica Murphy
Adult Contemporary Romance
Pre-Order Taming Lilyhttp://tinyurl.com/ltfra7p
 
 New York Times, USA Today and international bestselling author Monica Murphy is a native Californian who lives in the foothills below Yosemite with her husband and three children. She’s a workaholic who loves her job. When she’s not busy writing, she also loves to read and travel with her family. She writes new adult and contemporary romance and is published with Bantam and Avon. She also writes romance as USA Today bestselling author Karen Erickson.

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Stealing Rose by Monica Murphy – Media Blitz

Stealing Rose by Monica Murphy
Stealing Rose FINALRGB
 
BLURB:
People say the youngest child has it easy, but nothing can be further from the truth. Unlike my two sisters, Violet and Lily, I’m never in the limelight. I just work my butt off for Fleur Cosmetics and get little to no thanks for it. I’ve been pushed too far one too many times, and I’m finally brave enough to do something about it.Maybe my newfound courage has something to do with the amazing pink and white diamond necklace I wear to the party in Cannes. The instant those dazzling heirloom jewels touch my skin, they excite some deep, aching need inside. And when that guy—that totally gorgeous guy—locks eyes with me, I know this nice girl is going to be naughty.

For once it’s my turn. My turn to say no to my father, to outshine my sisters, to walk away from it all—straight into the arms of a mysterious stranger. But what if Caden is much more than I bargained for? Sure, he makes me feel sexy and free in a way I never have before, but there’s something else I can’t quite place—something dangerous. Maybe our “chance” meeting wasn’t so random. Maybe he was looking for me for a reason. Whatever his motive, there’s no going back now.

And maybe I don’t want to.

Advance praise for Stealing Rose
 
“Prepare to have your heart stolen! Rose and Caden’s story crackles and sizzles right to the swoony end.”New York Times bestselling author Katy Evans

 
CMP_Edit-8
New York Times, USA Today and international bestselling author Monica Murphy is a native Californian who lives in the foothills below Yosemite with her husband and three children. She’s a workaholic who loves her job. When she’s not busy writing, she also loves to read and travel with her family. She writes new adult and contemporary romance and is published with Bantam and Avon. She also writes romance as USA Today bestselling author Karen Erickson.
Facebook | Twitter | Website

The Wife Maker by Karey White – Media Blitz, Giveaway

Wife Maker

Charlotte has spent years as the husband maker, sending every guy she dates off to enjoy marital bliss with the next girl he dates. But things have now changed, and she’s determined to use her husband-maker abilities one last time–on herself. And she finally knows exactly who she wants.

Angus has loved Charlotte since they were teenagers, but he’s tired of waiting for her to realize how good they could be. She’s broken his heart one too many times, and it’s time to move on with his life. Maybe a position halfway across the country will be just what he needs to get over her. But when Charlotte won’t let him go without a fight, Angus has to decide if he’s willing to let her in again or if she’s too late.

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Karey WhiteAuthor Karey White

Karey White grew up in Utah, Idaho, Oregon, and Missouri. She attended Ricks College and Brigham Young University. Her first novel, Gifted, was a Whitney Award Finalist.

She loves to travel, read, bake treats, and spend time with family and friends. She and her husband are the parents of four great children. She teaches summer creative writing courses to young people and is currently working on her next book.

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Goodreads

 

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$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 3/13/15

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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After the Rain by Renee Carlino – Spotlight, Review

Description: https://s3.amazonaws.com/netgalley-covers/cover52798-small.pngFrom the USA TODAY bestselling author of Sweet Thing and Nowhere But Here comes a deeply emotional contemporary romance about the second chances waiting beyond the shattered dreams of youth.

Under the bright arena lights of a rodeo show, young Avelina Belo falls for a handsome cowboy with a larger-than-life personality. After a whirlwind courtship, she happily moves away from her family in northern California and settles into married life with her cowboy on a seven-thousand-acre cattle ranch in Montana. One freak accident later, Avelina’s hopes for the future come to an end.

Nate Myers graduated from UCLA medical school at the top of his class, ready to follow in the footsteps of his father, a superstar cardiothoracic surgeon. Six years later, Nate’s career is being ruined by a malpractice suit. Questioning himself for the first time, he retreats to a Montana cattle ranch to visit his uncle and gain perspective. There, he meets a beautiful young woman named Avelina who teaches him more than he ever knew about matters of the heart.

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Renee Carlino’s first friends were the imaginary kind and even though her characters haven’t gone away, thankfully the delusions have. She admits she’s a wildly hopeless romantic and she blames 80’s movies starring Molly Ringwald for that. She lives in Southern California with her husband, two sons, and their sweet dog June. When she’s not at the beach with her boys or working on the next book, she likes to spend her time reading, going to concerts, and eating dark chocolate.

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My Review:

I have just begun reading After the Rain and so far I am enjoying the book. The writing is good and I hope it continues. I’ll be back as soon as I finish to update my review and rate the book.

Well…I’m back. I have finished the book. Sometimes I enjoy reading the mindless fluff that crosses my desk, but most days, I like a book that teaches me something, makes me feel something. After the Rain did just that. It took hold of my heart and held fast.

For the most part, there are two characters – one very broken from a devastating loss, barely coping with life, and one very determined person who will try his best to heal her. After the Rain is more than a love story. It is a story of life and love and loss and finding love in unexpected places. It is a story that will make laugh, make you cry, feel pain, and find healing at some point along the way.

She made no sound as she slept. I felt her pulse with mu hand and then bent to hear her steady heart. That woman must never have slept so peacefully. It was like she had fallen into a temporary death as she lay next to the trickling stream. Her body was as seemingly lifeless as the bodies I cut open on my table. No sign of life until you peer inside and see the organ pulsing. The strange things is that when you first see a beating heart, you expect to hear that rhythm that is so synonymous with it. but there’s barely a sound. Instead it’s just a motion like it has an independent existence. The heart will actually beat a few times once it is outside of the body, and even though I’m aware of the scientific reason, I wondered in that moment, holding Ava by the stream, if maybe our hearts really could be broken by shattered love or tragedy.

I’ve been that person. I loved this book and highly recommend it. Along with that, I am giving After the Rain five stars – wish there were more.

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My Life. One Story at a Time. is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small fee is earned when purchases are made at Amazon through the link above. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. 

 

ACCEPT THIS DANDELION by Brooke Williams – Review, 5 stars

Renee Lockhart has her eye on a lofty goal…to fill the open position of morning radio show host at the station where she works. When her co-workers sign her up for a local TV version of The Bachelor, Renee goes along with it in order to raise her profile.

Upon seeing her bumbling audition, Ben McConnell, one of the most eligible bachelors in town, insists that Renee be placed on the show. But Ben gets much more than he expected in Renee… he gets a girl who can’t seem to do anything right…and a girl he can’t seem to resist.

Brooke Williams

Brooke Williams is a former radio announcer/producer and script writer turned freelance writer and author. When Brooke’s first daughter was born in 2009 she left her full time radio career to stay home. Eventually, she realized she could fulfill her lifelong desire to write while her daughter napped and she then entered into the freelance writing world. As her business grew, she took on clients from all over the world and began to dabble in fiction writing once again. Brooke has several books on the market including her first novel, “Someone Always Loved You” and the thriller “Beyond the Bars.” Her upcoming released include “Wrong place, Right time” (December 9th 2014 from the Writer’s Coffee Shop), “Accept this Dandelion” (feb 2015, Prism Book Group) and “Mamarazzi (August 2015, Prism Book Group.) She even has a children’s book under contract for Feb 2016. Brooke loves all things writing and currently specializes in clean romantic comedy, though she’s written a bit of everything.

Buy on Amazon in these formats:
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My Review:

Accept this Dandelion is a great book from start to finish. The humor is outstanding and I found myself crying from laughing so hard. It is tender and romantic. The writing was great. I really really enjoyed this book.

Renee couldn’t do anything right. She fell at his feet, lit herself on fire, pushed him into pools, told him embarrassing stories, and admitted to hearing voices. Why did he not alert security to her presence and have her escorted from the premises?

If I say anymore on the subject I will definitely be spilling the beans on the entire story. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves romance and loves the combination of comedy and romance. You will devour this book in one sitting. I’m giving Accept this Dandelion five stars.

My Life. One Story at a Time. is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small fee is earned when purchases are made at Amazon through the link above. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. 

Against the Sky by Kat Martin – Review, 5 stars

Against-the-Sky-cover-(300xALASKA. In America’s last wilderness there is no limits to what a man can do.

For detective Nick Brodie, that means keeping the perps off the streets of Anchorage 24/7. Nick has never backed down from danger, but after the horrors he’s seen, he’s definitely in need of a break.

Samantha Hollis never thought she’d meet anyone like Nick, especially in a place like Las Vegas. But after one reckless, passionate night, she discovers the charismatic stranger is everything she wants in a man. But can he ever be more than a one-night stand?

When Nick invites her to Alaska, Samantha decides to find out, never guessing the depths she’ll discover in him or the tangle of murder, kidnapping, and danger about to engulf them both …

SHORT BLURB:

AGAINST THE SKY is a fish out of water story. Nick Brodie, an ex-Anchorage cop, is tough as nails, a true man’s man, comfortable in the hard life in Alaska. But Samantha Hollis, owner of a pet grooming parlor in San Francisco likes shopping at Sak’s and a day at the spa.   Unwillingly swept into Nick’s problems, Samantha finds herself on a wild ride that leads them in to passion and terrible danger.

It was fun finding ways to make their relationship work when they seem so very far apart. This one’s very fast paced, but it has a soft heart. It turned out to be one of my favorites.

Kat---Ventura-Star(250by175KAT’s WEBSITE

www.KatMartin.com

AGAINST THE SKY BOOK TRAILER VIDEO

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxy5mi2cFJM

CONTEST

http://www.katmartin.com/contests/

BUY LINKS

Amazon
Against the Sky (The Brodies Of Alaska Book 2)

BN

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/against-the-sky-kat-martin/1119437332?ean=9781420133844

Indiebound

http://www.indiebound.org/book/9781420133844 

REVIEW QUOTES

Against the Sky by Kat Martin sizzles enough to melt a polar icecap. She allows these two polar opposite to find that elusive chemistry that the world craves, but their differences present enough of a challenge that one wonders I love can conquer all or not. Kick in the suspense and danger from the Russian mob and voila! Romantic suspense!”

“Wow, the action scenes are so exciting. I never knew what would happen next.”

“The second book in Kat Martin’s Brodie’s of Alaska series delivers an awesome punch of suspense and romance.”

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Guest Post

Writing Romantic Suspense

I’ve always been a plot-oriented writer, which can be a boon or a burden. When I came up with the idea to write three books set in Alaska, I knew immediately knew I wanted the stories to revolve around three brothers. I had written about the Raines brothers when I began my AGAINST Series with Jackson, Gabe, and Dev, in AGAINST THE WIND, AGAINST THE FIRE, and AGAINST THE LAW.

I loved the interaction between the three men and wanted to try it again. I knew I wanted all three of the brothers to be tough outdoorsmen, the kind of guys who face the harsh challenges of Alaska every day.

Being a plot-oriented author, the stories that came to mind didn’t all fit into one tiny town. AGAINST THE WILD was set in the fictional village of Watertown on the Alaska panhandle near the real town of Wrangell. AGAINST THE SKY is set near Anchorage, AGAINST THE TIDE is in Valdez. The action takes place miles apart, but the Brodie brothers, Dylan, Nick, and Rafe have a very strong bond. The kind of men who are there for each other, no matter what dangers might befall them.

In AGAINST THE SKY, Nick Brodie, a former Army Ranger and ex-Anchorage homicide detective, has a serious case of burnout. He wants a new life, something that doesn’t include violence and death. Unfortunately when his neighbor, twelve-year-old Jimmy Evans, comes to him beaten and battered, claiming his father was murdered, Nick has no choice but to help him.

To make matters worse, Nick has a lady friend visiting from San Francisco. Samantha Hollis, owner of the Perfect Pup pet grooming parlor, isn’t cut out for the harsh life in Alaska. Unwillingly swept into Jimmy’s problems, she finds herself on a wild ride with Nick that leads them both into passion and terrible danger.

Because I write bigger stories, this one pulls Nick and Samantha into the seedy world of drugs and prostitution when they come up against the Russian mafia.

It’s one of my favorite stories–lots of heart in this one.

I hope you enjoy AGAINST THE SKY and that you’ll watch for Rafe, the oldest Brodie brother, in AGAINST THE TIDE, out May 27th. Until then, all best and happy reading. Kat

Chapter 1

AGAINST THE SKY

Samantha had almost reached her door when she saw a man walking toward her, tall and heavyset, weaving a little. His suit was wrinkled, his brown hair mussed and falling over a wide forehead. Obviously he was drunk.

She didn’t like the leering grin that appeared on his flushed face as he spotted her and staggered in her direction. Samantha opened her purse and began digging frantically for her key card. She was still searching when the man stopped in front of her.

“Hello there, sweetheart. Aren’t you a pretty little thing?”

She ignored him, kept on digging, couldn’t find the damned card, prayed she hadn’t left it in her room.

“Not talking, huh? I’m Howard.” He stuck out a meaty hand she ignored, finally let it drop. “Want me to help you find your key?”

“No, thank you.” For once, she wished her purse wasn’t so big.

“Say, why don’t we go downstairs and have a drink? There’s a lot of great restaurants in the hotel. What do you say I buy you dinner?”

His words were thick and a faintly slurred, though Samantha didn’t think he was quite as drunk as he had first seemed.

“I have plans.” Like a soak in the tub and an early evening. “Please leave me alone.”

Pain-in-the-ass Howard’s bushy eyebrows went up. “No reason to take that attitude.” He started crowding her, forcing her back against the door. She wasn’t very big and he towered above her.

He moved closer, knocking the shoes she had taken off to soothe her aching feet out of her hand. “Come on, what do you say?”

“I told you to leave me alone.” Samantha set her palms on his thick chest and tried to push him away. “If you don’t leave, I’m going to call security.” She pushed, didn’t budge him. “Please–I’m just not interested.”

“Come on, sweetheart, it’s only a drink.”

He had her completely boxed in against the door, and though her heart was thrumming away, she was more angry than scared. There were hotel cameras everywhere. In another second, she was going to scream.

She might have done it if good ol’ Howard hadn’t suddenly been jerked away like a puppet on a string and slammed hard against the wall. In an instant, he was facing the opposite direction, spread-eagled, legs splayed, one of his beefy arms forced up behind his back.

“Time to go home, buddy. The lady has other plans.”

“What business is that of yours?”

Her rescuer, tall and broad-shouldered with wavy black hair, cranked the arm up higher, drawing a hiss of pain. “I told you the lady has plans.”

“Don’t hurt him,” Samantha said. “He’s just drunk.”

The most amazing blue eyes she had ever seen swung in her direction. “He a friend of yours?”

“Heavens, no. I was just trying to open the door to my room when he walked up and started accosting me.”

The black-haired man turned back to good ol’ Howard, who seemed to have realized the game was up. “Thanks to the lady, I’m letting you go and not calling the hotel police. If you’re smart, you’ll walk away, go back to your room and sober up.”

Howard stiffened. The arm behind his back got cranked a little higher. Howard hissed and nodded.

“Smart move.” Easing up a little, her rescuer released him and stepped away. With a last angry glance, Howard moved off at a loping stagger down the hall, heading back the way he had come.

“You okay?”

Dear God, the man was handsome. With his blue eyes, high-cheekbones, and straight nose, he was one of the best-looking men she had ever seen. The shadow of a late-afternoon beard along his jaw gave him a slightly dangerous appearance that only made him more attractive.

She managed to drag her gaze away from those arresting blue eyes and found her voice. “Thanks to you, I’m fine. Are you a policeman or something?”

“Used to be. Nick Brodie. Glad I could help.”

She smiled. “I’m Samantha Hollis. You came just in time. I really appreciate what you did. Most people would have just kept walking.”

“Not where I come from.”

“Really? Where’s that?”

“Alaska. Up there, people help each other. Sometimes it’s a matter of life and death.” He looked her up and down. “You aren’t very big. That bastard was twice your size.”

“As I said, he was mostly just drunk.”

“I guess.”

Continue reading

The Marriage Charm by Linda Lael Miller – Giveaway!

The women of Bliss County have a pact—to find husbands. The right husbands.

One already has: Hadleigh Stevens, who married rancher Tripp Galloway a few months ago. Now Melody Nolan thinks it’s her turn. Melody has recently found success as a jewelry designer, and her work is the focus of her life. She’s not exactly unhappy, but she wants more. She’s always been attracted to Spence Hogan, the local chief of police, but she’s convinced that Spence, a notorious charmer, isn’t what you’d call husband material.

Spence is a good cop who isn’t scared of anything—except love. And he’s done everything he can to preserve his reputation as a womanizer—a reputation that keeps marriage-minded women, including Melody, at bay. And yet…there’s something about Melody he can’t forget. Something his heart can’t ignore.

Purchase on Amazon in these formats: 

Kindle
Hardcover
Hardcover
Audiobook

GIVEAWAY!
I have a copy of The Marriage Charm to give away. It is a physical book and open only to the US. To enter, just leave a comment telling me if you have ever read one of Linda’s books. That’s it! Thanks!
Q&A with LINDA LAEL MILLER

Q: Melody’s “marriage charms” (from the bet she made with her friends about getting married and not settling for anyone but the right one in THE MARRIAGE PACT) seem to be working perfectly! At one point in this book, Melody thinks about making a marriage charm for Junie. Is it the pact, or the charm—or both!—that are working their “spell” on the girls?
A: I think it’s mainly the pact, the shared intention and the personal energy these friends have invested in their project.  The charms, however, are VERY powerful, as most symbols are.

Q: Do you work with a specific ‘image’ in mind when creating your characters? Do you base them on people you’ve met or know, or are they more composites of real-life and your imagination?

A: I often base my characters’ appearance on a famous person, but then they evolve and become themselves, in my mind and, hopefully, the reader’s, too.

Q: Have there been any books, romance or other genres, that have greatly influenced you as a writer? What are they?

A: I have been influenced by SO many books over my life and career.  Like most writers, I love to read, and I learn something from every writer I come across.  I enjoy meaty historical novels especially—Dorothy Dunnett is a favorite of mine, and I loved all of Taylor Caldwell’s books, too.

Q: Every writer has her own routines and methods. How do you spend a typical writing day?

A: After a personal quiet time, exercise and breakfast, I head for my office, Monday through Friday, and spend around 5 hours at my computer, actually putting words on the screen.  That said, computer time is really only a part of the process, at least for me.  I do a lot of thinking, walking, reading and daydreaming.  It’s a difficult thing to quantify.

Q: Can you give us a sneak peak into the next book in the series, THE MARRIAGE SEASON? (We have our fingers crossed that it’s finally Bex’s turn!)

A: Yep, THE MARRIAGE SEASON is Bex’s story.  Bex wants very much to be a bride, like her friends, Melody and Hadleigh, but, marriage pact or none, she has her doubts, too. After all, she loved and tragically lost one Mr. Right—can there really be another man like him?  All right, Tate Calder seems promising.  But can she bring herself to risk another broken heart?

Stay turned because I’ll be reviewing this book and Linda Lael Miller is one of my favorite authors!

 

My Life. One Story at a Time. is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small fee is earned when purchases are made at Amazon through the link above. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. 

 

ACCEPT THIS DANDELION by Brooke Williams – Blitz

Renee Lockhart has her eye on a lofty goal…to fill the open position of morning radio show host at the station where she works. When her co-workers sign her up for a local TV version of The Bachelor, Renee goes along with it in order to raise her profile.

Upon seeing her bumbling audition, Ben McConnell, one of the most eligible bachelors in town, insists that Renee be placed on the show. But Ben gets much more than he expected in Renee… he gets a girl who can’t seem to do anything right…and a girl he can’t seem to resist.

Brooke Williams

Brooke Williams is a former radio announcer/producer and script writer turned freelance writer and author. When Brooke’s first daughter was born in 2009 she left her full time radio career to stay home. Eventually, she realized she could fulfill her lifelong desire to write while her daughter napped and she then entered into the freelance writing world. As her business grew, she took on clients from all over the world and began to dabble in fiction writing once again. Brooke has several books on the market including her first novel, “Someone Always Loved You” and the thriller “Beyond the Bars.” Her upcoming released include “Wrong place, Right time” (December 9th 2014 from the Writer’s Coffee Shop), “Accept this Dandelion” (feb 2015, Prism Book Group) and “Mamarazzi (August 2015, Prism Book Group.) She even has a children’s book under contract for Feb 2016. Brooke loves all things writing and currently specializes in clean romantic comedy, though she’s written a bit of everything.

Buy on Amazon in these formats:
Kindle

Stay tuned because I’ll be reviewing this book soon!

 

Climax by Christina George (Review, 5 stars)

It’s finally here, the long-awaited sequel to The Publicist! CLIMAX by Christina George is the final installment in the series. It comes in two parts:


The Covers

 

 

Here is the Bundled set version:

 


About the Book

Release date: December 15, 2014. You can pre-order now!

 

Kate Mitchell has never forgiven herself for breaking Nick Lavigne’s heart. Now he’s back and he’s moved on, and it’s affecting Kate’s life more than she’s willing to admit.
Kate Mitchell has everything. She’s the head of a crazy successful publishing house, engaged to the traffic-stopping sexy Mac Ellis and she’s about to sign one of the biggest authors of her career.
And that’s when everything falls apart.
Everything is perfect…until it’s not.
In a city of 8 million people Kate manages to run into someone she never expected to see again.
Nick is handsome, impossibly kind, every girl’s dream, and Kate’s former fiancé. He’s also the brother of the rising star author she’s trying to sign. Now that Nick’s back in town and has moved on he insists he’s over Kate, but part of him still can’t get past how amazing they were, and his sister won’t let anyone forget how brutally it ended.
When Mac is dealt a life-changing blow, it forces Kate to question every single choice she’s made.
Follow Kate as she embarks on a journey of life and love, navigating through the decisions that will change it all forever.


About the Author

 

 

Christina George has worked in publishing for twenty years (give or take). Here’s what this book isn’t. It’s not a slam against publishing (though it is broken) and it’s not a slam against authors (though some of them are crazy). This book is not autobiographical though many of the stories are true. No you won’t know which ones, cause it’s more fun to guess, right? George continues to work in publicity and helps authors because at the end of the day she does love books, she loves publishing, and she loves authors. She hopes you’ll enjoy this romp through Kate’s world as much as she enjoyed creating it.


Let’s Revisit the Characters…

 

 

Some Fun Stuff!

Head on over to Kate’s site and listen to a sample of the audio book version of The Publicist and enter her Amazon gift card giveaway. She also has a playlist of songs for the book!
My Thoughts:
I absolutely loved the first two books in this series and couldn’t wait to get my hands on the sequels. They did not disappoint. Christina George has a gift for writing and storytelling. As in The Publicist, you will fall in love all over again with the characters. Expect a few surprises along the way this time.
I’m giving the sequels 5 stars. If you enjoyed the first two books, you’ll love these two.

Guest Post

True Confessions of a Book Launch

by Christina George

I used to tell authors that writing a book was the easy part, publishing and marketing it was tougher than you could even imagine. They’d nod, pretend like they understood (and I know they didn’t) and then chaos would ensue. Because what no one tells you, no one warns you about is this: book launches can be gut-wrenchingly hard. Why? Well maybe this analogy will help. I had an author once who compared launching a book to sending your kid to college. You raise them right, give them values, try to instill your own moral code into their lives and then, one day, they’re gone and the world awaits. So you pack them up, send them to college and, secretly, hope for the best because really in the end, that’s all you can do. Now they will either become scholars and spend all of their time studying to keep their grades high, or they will become partying pot-heads who keep forgetting to show up for class.

Most, however, land somewhere in between and that’s where the trouble really starts because they aren’t one or the other. They aren’t a total failure but they aren’t a wild success and when it comes to a book launch I find much the same thing. We push our books out there, we pray, light candles or do whatever ritual we do (sometimes drink) and then we wait, and wait, and wait and as the reviews start to pop up on Amazon we find our anxiety growing because for every person who loves it there will always be someone who won’t. And why is it that we forget all of the five star reviews and instead focus on the one 1-star review we got where someone we don’t even know said: Could be better. Now, hopefully your book launch experience won’t be this 1-to-1 ratio, meaning you won’t get a 1-star for every 5-stars but even so, the 1-stars are killers.

Welcome to a book launch. It’s a mind-numbing, emotional roller coaster that reveals every hidden issue (and sometimes phobia) we think was long buried and a few we didn’t know we had. In the end, we really just want to know: is it good enough? It’s hard you know because when a book gets out there, anything can happen with it. If you’re reading this nodding and recognize this situation from your own experience the only thing I can say is that you’re not alone. Book launches are mystical, mysterious experiences that leave us excited and baffled at the same time. We want it to be an endless stream of love we get from our readers, but sadly, that’s not always going to be the case. Some of the experiences will leave us euphoric while others, make us rock in a corner.

In the end, we want our “kid” to succeed, to be valedictorian, to lead the class because that’s what writing is all about. The beauty though is that we don’t know and often it’s in that not knowing where the real excitement lies. Every day that you push your book out there absolutely anything can happen with it but the key is that you have to keep pushing it. And that’s another secret of the book launch because in reality, they never end.

The Charm Necklace by Lauren Rosolino (Review-5 stars)

How do you move forward from a loss like this?

“What was left of me was not a whole lot, not my former whole self. Because Michael and I were connected, joined, fused together, it was hard to make the distinction between him and me. We affected each other so much and so deeply it was hard to tell where one soul ended and the other started. The seams that fastened us together were twisted and indistinct, folding into each other, entwined like lovers’ bodies. So when you took one away, ripped it at the seams, you took whole fragments of the other half, leaving the edges jagged and uneven.”

Skylar Medina has never asked for much – just to marry the man she loves and create the family she’s always dreamed of with him. But when Michael is killed in a car accident, she becomes consumed with rage and despair. In the year following Michael’s death, Skylar must face her cruel and unbarring reality. As she navigates her feelings, her destructive tendencies, and the web of complicated relationships with friends and family, she finds guidance in places she’d never expect.

Will Skylar have the strength to let love in again? Or will she let anger and grief destroy her?

…This book contains some sailor-worthy language, sexy scenes, and deals with the darker sides of death, grief, beliefs, love, and anger…

Lauren Rosolino, author of The Charm Necklace and writer of stories about finding beauty in brokenness. Lauren graduated from Wayne State University with her BA in Psychology and currently lives in Rochester, MI with her techie husband and their dog, cat, and bunny. Lauren grew up in the suburbs of Detroit reading Harry Potter, watching Gilmore Girls, listening (and dancing) to a lot of music, and wondering why people do the things they do. The Charm Necklace is her first novel. Find out more at http://www.laurenrosolino.com.

My Review – 

This was a magnificent book. It had a beautiful story line. It was well-written. The Charm Necklace by Lauren Rosolino was a book that once you picked up, you couldn’t put it down. I laughed and I cried. The book takes you through a tragedy that makes a person either grow or lay down in defeat. The characters chose to stand up and fight. That is what grief does to you. That is what happiness does to you.

Death comes so suddenly, out of nowhere. In the morning, you wake up in the arms of the one you love, that night you go to bed all by yourself. You remain in a state of shock asking yourself questions like ‘Did that really happen? Is he really dead? He can’t possibly be dead, can he?’ And you reassure yourself with statements like ‘He’s just away on a business trip,’ or ‘Just another late night at the office, that’s all.’

There isn’t much more I can say about this book except to recommend you read it and to give it as many stars as I can – 5. I hope this author is around for a long, long time.

During this time, you see friends and long-lost relatives you hadn’t seen since you were a child, and it hits you that nothing really matters: not those five extra pounds you were trying to lose, the back porch you’ve been meaning to repaint, that new show you forgot to record, those new designer shoes you’ve been lusting for. How could any of it matter in the face of death? You’re faced with the feeling that your life, your work, all your accomplishments are obsolete and meaningless when seen in the finality of death. All those things can’t save you from it.

Once you finish reading the book, the author invites you to her website for a final chapter that you won’t want to miss.

I’m still upset that you were taken away from, but it’s no longer the living-breathing kind of hate that eats away at you. It’s the kind of anger that just wishes you could still be here. I can see now that your death was an accident. No one meant for it to happen.

Buy on Amazon in these formats:

Kindle
Paperback

 

My Life. One Story at a Time. is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small fee is earned when purchases are made at Amazon through the link above. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. 

Devon’s Choice by Catherine Bennett – Book Blast – Giveaway!

devon's choice

Devon’s Choice

Life holds no surprises for Devon Murphy. Her life consists of keeping tabs on her aging Irish father, working part time at a coffee shop, and building her online graphics design business. Devon’s only tricky situation is a shallow relationship with the pampered and affluent Michael Turner, who sees her as just another woman to conquer.

Following his father’s death, Brandon’s only goal is to expand the family business and live life on his own terms. That is, until he walks into the coffee shop one snowy evening and meets the enchanting, red-haired barista behind the counter. But can Devon and Brandon’s attraction for each other be strong enough to help erase their deepest disappointments and renew their faith in God?

Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Kobo * Smashwords

Excerpt:

Brandon looked over at her neutral expression. Whatever kind of relationship she had with Michael Turner didn’t seem to be making her happy. At that moment, all he wanted to do was to make her forget all about the jerk.

As if sensing him watching her, Devon turned her head enough to make eye contact with him. The faint, milky glow from the streetlight showed enough of her features for him to see a soft blush warm her cheeks. Under her dark lashes, he watched her sea green eyes glint invitingly as her soft lips turned up at the corners. In that moment, his resolve to keep the date on a friendly level came crashing down.

Catherine BennettAuthor Catherine Bennett

I grew up in Ohio where I currently live with my husband and our two rescue Labradors. Some of my favorite things include reading, shopping, pepperoni pizza, Hershey bars and hanging out with my two grown sons. I also love dogs; so going to the dog park is cheap entertainment for my husband and I!

Growing up an only child, I had many imaginary friends. I believe this – and a love of books – fueled my desire to write. It was many years later that my dream of becoming a published author came true.

I’m grateful to God for always keeping a story in my heart and hope you are blessed and entertained by my book.

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Pinterest

Devon's Choice (1)

Blog Tour Schedule

 

50_Amazon_Paypal

 

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 2/15/15

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Gooseberry Island by Steven Manchester – 5 Star Review, Excerpt

They met at the worst possible moment…or maybe it was just in time. David McClain was about to go to war and Lindsey Wood was there at his going-away party, capturing his heart when falling for a woman was the last thing on his mind. While David was serving his country, he stayed in close contact with Lindsey. But war changes a person, and when he came home very little had the same meaning that it had before – including the romance that had sustained him. Was love truly unconquerable, or would it prove to be just another battlefield casualty?

Gooseberry Island is the most nuanced, dramatic, and romantic novel yet from a writer whose ability to plumb the depths of human emotion knows few peers.

Steven Manchester

Steven Manchester is the author of the #1 bestsellers, Twelve Months and The Rockin’ Chair. He is also the author of the award-winning novel, Goodnight, Brian, as well as the critically-acclaimed novel, Pressed Pennies, A Christmas Wish (Kindle exclusive), Wilbur Avenue (novelette), Just in Time (novelette), The Thursday Night Club (novella) and Gooseberry Island. His work has appeared on NBC’s Today Show, CBS’s The Early Show, CNN’s American Morning and BET’s Nightly News. Three of Steven’s short stories were selected “101 Best” for Chicken Soup for the Soul series. When not spending time with his beautiful wife, Paula, or their four children, this Massachusetts author is promoting his works or writing. Visit:www.StevenManchester.com

http://www.StevenManchester.com
http://www.facebook.com/#!/AuthorStevenManchester

Paperback & Kindle: Gooseberry Island

Nook & Paperback: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/gooseberry-island-steven-manchester/1118939772?ean=9781611881813&itm=1&usri=steven+manchester

My Thoughts:

Steven Manchester is just one of those authors that you can’t get enough of. His writing is wonderful and his stories captivating.

Gooseberry Island brings the effects of war home to a small island, Anywhere, USA; because it could be anywhere. Our country is quick to send young American men and women into battle where they witness and participate in inhumane acts of violence. As these young men and women walk back onto American soil, the nightmares sometimes surface under the guise of PTSD. Their lives may never be the same.

This is the story of one such veteran and Steven Manchester has managed to capture his hellish nightmare on paper. The story will capture your heart as young love grows and it will have you in tears the next as the two try to cope with the aftermath of war.

Gooseberry Island is a book everyone should read, not only because Steven Manchester is one great writer, but because his stories tell a story. I’m giving Gooseberry Island five stars.

Gooseberry Island excerpt

David had been home for six weeks when he pulled into the market, preparing to locate everything on his mother’s grocery list. As he approached the store, he spotted a young teenage boy walking out; he was holding a brown bag. An older man approached the boy and reached out his hand. David gasped and his dizzy mind immediately raced back to Afghanistan and the horrific beating of the young Afghani boy:

There was movement three hundred yards out on the street below. Unusual, David thought. It was a teenage boy, maybe fourteen, carrying a burlap bag and hurrying home before dark. Never seen him before, David thought.

In a flash, a man—a Taliban fighter—jumped out of the shadows and grabbed the boy’s arm, pulling him to the street and spilling the contents of his sack. As the teenager yelled for help, another Taliban soldier emerged from the darkness. The boy screamed louder, but not a single soul came to his aid…

It only took a few seconds, but the whole scene played out in sequence in his mind—both men yelling and slapping the boy as he screamed for help; the slaps turning to a vicious beating until finally the boy was dead. He could almost hear Command say “Negative” again after he asked if he could intervene. He felt the anguish in his soul threatening to overwhelm him, but it was quickly replaced by a burning rage.

His eyes filled with tears, David returned to the present and started for the man in a mad rush. He was three steps from the shocked stranger when reality clicked in. It’s the boy’s father, he realized. He’s…he’s okay.

David’s body convulsed. He’d forgotten he was home, and the reality of it slapped him hard in the face.

The man pulled the teenage boy close to him; both of them were frightened by David’s sudden charge toward them.

“Sorry,” David said, though it sounded more like “Sigh.” Trying unsuccessfully to smile at them, he turned on his heels and hurried back to the Mustang.

For the next hour, David sat alone in his car, trying to calm the physical effects of his anxiety. Once he’d reined that in, he spent another two hours beating back the depression that always followed in anxiety’s wake.

His wasn’t sure whether the abyss existed within his heart or mind, but he knew that he was now filled with a great void—nothingness. There was no light there, only darkness. There was no hope, only despair. In time, he’d learned to embrace the silence, as the screams and whimpers of faceless victims became echoes that returned again and again, pushing the line of madness. Yet, the solitude was relentless, enveloping, merciless. It would have been better had I never existed, he thought, fearing another moment more than cashing in and leaving it all behind. No love, he thought, no peace. His memories were slanted in such thick negativity that his entire past would have been better off erased. And no one knows I’m dying inside, he thought, inviting another wave of panic attacks to crash onto the shore of his weary mind. Continue reading

Against the Sky By Kat Martin (Media Blitz, Excerpt, Guest Post)

Not Without My Father banner

 

 

Against-the-Sky-cover-(300xAGAINST THE SKY

By Kat Martin

Release date: 1/27/15

BACK COVER COPY:

ALASKA. In America’s last wilderness there is no limits to what a man can do.

For detective Nick Brodie, that means keeping the perps off the streets of Anchorage 24/7. Nick has never backed down from danger, but after the horrors he’s seen, he’s definitely in need of a break.

Samantha Hollis never thought she’d meet anyone like Nick, especially in a place like Las Vegas. But after one reckless, passionate night, she discovers the charismatic stranger is everything she wants in a man. But can he ever be more than a one-night stand?

When Nick invites her to Alaska, Samantha decides to find out, never guessing the depths she’ll discover in him or the tangle of murder, kidnapping, and danger about to engulf them both …

SHORT BLURB:

AGAINST THE SKY is a fish out of water story. Nick Brodie, an ex-Anchorage cop, is tough as nails, a true man’s man, comfortable in the hard life in Alaska. But Samantha Hollis, owner of a pet grooming parlor in San Francisco likes shopping at Sak’s and a day at the spa.   Unwillingly swept into Nick’s problems, Samantha finds herself on a wild ride that leads them in to passion and terrible danger.

It was fun finding ways to make their relationship work when they seem so very far apart. This one’s very fast paced, but it has a soft heart. It turned out to be one of my favorites.

Kat---Ventura-Star(250by175KAT’s WEBSITE

www.KatMartin.com

AGAINST THE SKY BOOK TRAILER VIDEO

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxy5mi2cFJM

CONTEST

http://www.katmartin.com/contests/

BUY LINKS

Amazon

http://www.amazon.com/Against-Sky-The-Brodies-Alaska/dp/1420133845/ref=tmm_mmp_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1418677451&sr=8-1

BN

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/against-the-sky-kat-martin/1119437332?ean=9781420133844

Indiebound

http://www.indiebound.org/book/9781420133844

REVIEW QUOTES

Against the Sky by Kat Martin sizzles enough to melt a polar icecap. She allows these two polar opposite to find that elusive chemistry that the world craves, but their differences present enough of a challenge that one wonders I love can conquer all or not. Kick in the suspense and danger from the Russian mob and voila! Romantic suspense!”

“Wow, the action scenes are so exciting. I never knew what would happen next.”

“The second book in Kat Martin’s Brodie’s of Alaska series delivers an awesome punch of suspense and romance.”

SOCIAL MEDIA

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Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Kat-Martin/e/B000AQ0OJQ/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/49381.Kat_Martin

 

 Writing Romantic Suspense

I’ve always been a plot-oriented writer, which can be a boon or a burden. When I came up with the idea to write three books set in Alaska, I knew immediately knew I wanted the stories to revolve around three brothers. I had written about the Raines brothers when I began my AGAINST Series with Jackson, Gabe, and Dev, in AGAINST THE WIND, AGAINST THE FIRE, and AGAINST THE LAW.

I loved the interaction between the three men and wanted to try it again. I knew I wanted all three of the brothers to be tough outdoorsmen, the kind of guys who face the harsh challenges of Alaska every day.

Being a plot-oriented author, the stories that came to mind didn’t all fit into one tiny town. AGAINST THE WILD was set in the fictional village of Watertown on the Alaska panhandle near the real town of Wrangell. AGAINST THE SKY is set near Anchorage, AGAINST THE TIDE is in Valdez. The action takes place miles apart, but the Brodie brothers, Dylan, Nick, and Rafe have a very strong bond. The kind of men who are there for each other, no matter what dangers might befall them.

In AGAINST THE SKY, Nick Brodie, a former Army Ranger and ex-Anchorage homicide detective, has a serious case of burnout. He wants a new life, something that doesn’t include violence and death. Unfortunately when his neighbor, twelve-year-old Jimmy Evans, comes to him beaten and battered, claiming his father was murdered, Nick has no choice but to help him.

To make matters worse, Nick has a lady friend visiting from San Francisco. Samantha Hollis, owner of the Perfect Pup pet grooming parlor, isn’t cut out for the harsh life in Alaska. Unwillingly swept into Jimmy’s problems, she finds herself on a wild ride with Nick that leads them both into passion and terrible danger.

Because I write bigger stories, this one pulls Nick and Samantha into the seedy world of drugs and prostitution when they come up against the Russian mafia.

It’s one of my favorite stories–lots of heart in this one.

I hope you enjoy AGAINST THE SKY and that you’ll watch for Rafe, the oldest Brodie brother, in AGAINST THE TIDE, out May 27th.

Until then, all best and happy reading.

Kat

The Christmas Women by Elyse Douglas (Review)

Fiction/Romance – The Christmas Women

The Christmas Women

When 38-year old Trudie Parks learns that her high school drama teacher is seriously ill, she immediately contacts her two best friends in high school, Kristen and Mary Ann. Together, they’d been known as “The Christmas Girls.” They’d produced and starred in the annual high school Christmas show, which their teacher, Mrs. Childs, had directed.

Determined to show their love for Mrs. Childs, they plan a 20-year reunion to recreate the Christmas show for her. What they don’t anticipate is the complicated emotions this provokes, as former sweethearts appear and rekindle romance, painful memories and the sting of unrealized dreams. All three women must reassess their lives and their friendships, while struggling to produce the show, even while Mrs. Childs seems to grow weaker by the day.

As Christmas Eve approaches, The Christmas Women prepare for an event that will take them and the audience to the farthest reaches of the human heart and resonate throughout the rest of their lives.

Elyse Douglas

Elyse Douglas is the pen name for the husband and wife writing team of Elyse Parmentier and Douglas Pennington. Elyse’s mother was a painter and her father a textile consultant. Elyse began writing poems and short stories at an early age, and graduated from Columbia University with a Master’s Degree in English Literature. Douglas grew up in a family of musicians, astrologers and avid readers. His great grandfather lived to be a 134 years old, and was the oldest man in the world when he died in 1922.

Some of Elyse Douglas’ novels include: “The Astrologer’s Daughter,” “Wanting Rita,” “The Christmas Diary” and “The Christmas Town.” They live in New York City.

My Review -

As I read the author’s biography, I was surprised to read that Elyse Douglas is actually a husband/wife writing team. I had already written the review in my head, but when I read this, my thoughts started to wander and I began thinking of the story in an entirely different way.

Throughout the story, which involves a Christmas high school reunion, there is the usual high school drama that seems to unfold no matter how old we get. I tend to think it quite easy to picture a woman writing about all of the melodrama, but now, thinking of a man collaborating on it, the story takes on a different spin.

I enjoyed reading The Christmas Women. The storyline was interesting and the writing was good. There was friendship and romance, humor and otherwise. The story will have you laughing and then crying. Even though the Christmas season has passed, it would still be a great book to read.

I am giving The Christmas Women five stars.

 

Back in the kitchen, she laid the yearbook down before her. She spooned her oatmeal and stared at the yearbook. She sipped coffee, staring at it. She made a steeple of her hands, staring at it. She hadn’t looked through it in years. The group photos and senior portraits always provoked both fondness and an aching regret. Some of her classmates had already died. Some had seemed to vanish. Most had moved away after college. Like a lot of Midwestern towns. Deer Lake had suffered manufacturing losses and most of the young people had fled to the cities for better opportunities.

 
Purchase on Amazon in these formats:
Kindle
Paperback

 

My Life. One Story at a Time. is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small fee is earned when purchases are made at Amazon through the link above. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. 

Driftwood Tides by Gina Holmes (Review)

He made himself an island until something unexpected washed ashore.
When Holton lost his wife, Adele, in a freak accident, he shut himself off from the world, living a life of seclusion, making drifwood sculptures and drowning his pain in gin. Until twenty-three-year-old Libby knocks on his door, asking for a job and claiming to be a friend of his late wife. When he discovers Libby is actually his late wife’s illegitimate daughter, given up for adoption without his knowledge, his life is turned upside down as he struggles to accept that the wife he’d given saint status to was not the woman he thought he knew.

Together Holton and Libby form an unlikely bond as the two struggle to learn the identity of Libby’s father and the truth about Adele, themselves, and each other.

Gina Holmes

Gina Holmes is the founder of popular literary site, Novel Rocket and the author of award-winning novels: Crossing Oceans, Dry as Rain, Wings of Glass and Driftwood Tides. Holmes writes about flawed people living in a flawed world with the help of a perfect God. She’s also a practicing Registered Nurse, a wife to the love of her life, mom to two boys and stepmom to 3 daughters. She and her family make their home among the Blue Ridge Mountains in South-Western Virginia.

You can find her at: http://www.ginaholmes.com or, on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/authorginaholmes or twitter:@1GinaHolmes.

My Review -

Although Gina Holmes has written other books, this is the first book of hers that I have read. I truly enjoyed it. The cover of the book sets the story at the beach and is quite pretty. The writing is wonderful.

Normally, I read the book blurb before beginning a book, but in this case, I did not. I was pleasantly surprised by the Christian undertone of the book. As I said before, the writing was wonderful and the story heartwarming.

Driftwood Tides is about a father who has reached his lowest and a daughter trying to find a place to belong. It is a book that you won’t want to put down.

I am giving Driftwood Tides a five-star rating.

Purchase on Amazon in these formats:

Kindle
Large Print
Paperback

 

Prologue to Driftwood Tides

The pillow pushed against Holton Creary’s nose forcing him to turn for air. His eyes fluttered, opening just enough to take in the first blush of morning light. Realizing he had at least another hour of solid sleep, he smiled in contentment. Flipping toward her side of the bed, he reached out to pull her hip against him. The warmth of his wife’s familiar body molded against his was a ritual as old as their marriage. Instead of landing on her hip, his hand thudded against the mattress jolting him awake. Lifting his head, he listened for her pattering about their small house, but heard only Rufus snoring from his spot on the floor.

Their small house was full of the smell of freshly brewed coffee . . . but not her. He peered out the front window not surprised to see her standing with her back to him watching the sunrise from the beach they called a front yard. She still wore her nightgown with his old cardigan serving as her bathrobe. The breeze made the nightgown cling to her legs, which filled him with a momentary possessiveness. If any man should happen to walk by at the moment, the sight of her would stop him in his tracks. That was the downside of marrying a beautiful woman—he wasn’t the only man with appreciative eyes.

He climbed down the stairs leading to the beach and quietly sidled behind her. He wrapped his arms around her waist, causing her to jump and turn her head in surprise. A warm smile replaced her startled expression. “You’re up early,” she said.

“I missed you.” He rested his chin on her shoulder the perfume left over from the day before.

“Did the cicadas wake you?” she asked.

It was only then that he registered the sound of their screeching. It reminded him of a sprinkler system on overdrive. “Actually, I didn’t even hear them until you mentioned it.”

She twisted her mouth back at him. “In your own world as usual.” The lightness of her tone told him she wasn’t picking a fight.

“Right now, I’m all about yours.” He hugged her waist tighter.

“I’ll never get used to this,” she said with a contented sigh.

Looking out at the sunrise with its layered gauzy pinks and purples, he knew just what she meant. “I forgot how beautiful the beach could be this time of morning.”

She spun around to face him. Her light brown eyes glinted, tiny lines forming around the corners, followed by a smile. “Not just the view, I mean this whole place, you, the gallery. My life is like a dream.”

He cleared his throat before it could crack from emotion. “I thought you’d be mad at me for coming home so late.”

She turned face the water again, reaching back for his hands. She wrapped them around her waist again and leaned her back against him. “What good does it do? I’d have better luck punishing Rufus for drooling. I married an artist. It’s not fair getting mad at you for being who I fell in love with.”

He ran her golden hair between his fingers. She was more than he deserved. So much more.

“Is it almost finished?” she asked. “Tell me it’s about done.”

He had spent nearly every waking moment when they weren’t at the gallery working on the stallion. Until now, she spoke with a twinge of contempt whenever mentioning the piece, like a jealous lover. He knew he was leaving her alone far too much, but tomorrow or the next it would be finished, and he’d make it up to her. He kissed the top of her head. “It would have been done yesterday if I hadn’t been working on a certain brake issue.”

Looking over her shoulder at him, her eyes brightened. “You finally fixed them? No more screeching?”

“Not a peep.”

She turned back around in his arms and kissed his lips in gratitude.

“If I would have known that was waiting for me, “he said,” I’d have taken care of it last week.”

“If you would have taken care of it last week, you’d be getting more than a kiss.”

He wriggled his eyebrows. “What can I get for adding an oil change?”

She slapped him playfully. “I better get ready.”

He glanced at his watch. “We’ve got plenty of time. What’s the hurry?”

“I was tired last night. I didn’t sweep or count the drawer.”

Guilt niggled at him. She had slowly taken over all the chores that they’d agreed would be his. “I’ll run over and do it. You take your time and enjoy the morning.”

She laid her soft hand on his cheek, shielding it from the ocean breeze. “Not a chance. I want my husband back. I’ve got the gallery. You finish the stallion before I decide to set it on fire.”

“Deal,” he said.

###

It wasn’t an hour after Holton had handed her a travel mug of coffee and kissed her through the open car window when a squad car pulled out front of the house. The moment the policeman took off his hat and slid it under his arm, he knew.

When the man informed him Adele had been killed on impact when her car hit another at nearly sixty miles an hour, he said nothing. He was so stunned that his heart froze, unable to respond. Before that could change, he drove to the nearest liquor store and bought the biggest bottle of gin he could find.

 

My Life. One Story at a Time. is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small fee is earned when purchases are made at Amazon through the link above. A free book may have been provided by the source in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed by authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of My Life. One Story at a Time. My opinions are my own. This provided in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 55. 

Gooseberry Island by Steven Manchester (Spotlight, Excerpt)

They met at the worst possible moment…or maybe it was just in time. David McClain was about to go to war and Lindsey Wood was there at his going-away party, capturing his heart when falling for a woman was the last thing on his mind. While David was serving his country, he stayed in close contact with Lindsey. But war changes a person, and when he came home very little had the same meaning that it had before – including the romance that had sustained him. Was love truly unconquerable, or would it prove to be just another battlefield casualty?

Gooseberry Island is the most nuanced, dramatic, and romantic novel yet from a writer whose ability to plumb the depths of human emotion knows few peers.

Steven Manchester

Steven Manchester is the author of the #1 bestsellers, Twelve Months and The Rockin’ Chair. He is also the author of the award-winning novel, Goodnight, Brian, as well as the critically-acclaimed novel, Pressed Pennies, A Christmas Wish (Kindle exclusive), Wilbur Avenue (novelette), Just in Time (novelette), The Thursday Night Club (novella) and Gooseberry Island. His work has appeared on NBC’s Today Show, CBS’s The Early Show, CNN’s American Morning and BET’s Nightly News. Three of Steven’s short stories were selected “101 Best” for Chicken Soup for the Soul series. When not spending time with his beautiful wife, Paula, or their four children, this Massachusetts author is promoting his works or writing. Visit:www.StevenManchester.com

http://www.StevenManchester.com
http://www.facebook.com/#!/AuthorStevenManchester

Paperback & Kindle: Gooseberry Island

Nook & Paperback: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/gooseberry-island-steven-manchester/1118939772?ean=9781611881813&itm=1&usri=steven+manchester

Steven Manchester is just one of those authors that you can’t get enough of. Stay tuned because I’ll be reviewing this book soon. Meanwhile, please enjoy an excerpt from the book!

Gooseberry Island excerpt

David had been home for six weeks when he pulled into the market, preparing to locate everything on his mother’s grocery list. As he approached the store, he spotted a young teenage boy walking out; he was holding a brown bag. An older man approached the boy and reached out his hand. David gasped and his dizzy mind immediately raced back to Afghanistan and the horrific beating of the young Afghani boy:

There was movement three hundred yards out on the street below. Unusual, David thought. It was a teenage boy, maybe fourteen, carrying a burlap bag and hurrying home before dark. Never seen him before, David thought.

In a flash, a man—a Taliban fighter—jumped out of the shadows and grabbed the boy’s arm, pulling him to the street and spilling the contents of his sack. As the teenager yelled for help, another Taliban soldier emerged from the darkness. The boy screamed louder, but not a single soul came to his aid…

It only took a few seconds, but the whole scene played out in sequence in his mind—both men yelling and slapping the boy as he screamed for help; the slaps turning to a vicious beating until finally the boy was dead. He could almost hear Command say “Negative” again after he asked if he could intervene. He felt the anguish in his soul threatening to overwhelm him, but it was quickly replaced by a burning rage.

His eyes filled with tears, David returned to the present and started for the man in a mad rush. He was three steps from the shocked stranger when reality clicked in. It’s the boy’s father, he realized. He’s…he’s okay.

David’s body convulsed. He’d forgotten he was home, and the reality of it slapped him hard in the face.

The man pulled the teenage boy close to him; both of them were frightened by David’s sudden charge toward them.

“Sorry,” David said, though it sounded more like “Sigh.” Trying unsuccessfully to smile at them, he turned on his heels and hurried back to the Mustang.

For the next hour, David sat alone in his car, trying to calm the physical effects of his anxiety. Once he’d reined that in, he spent another two hours beating back the depression that always followed in anxiety’s wake.

His wasn’t sure whether the abyss existed within his heart or mind, but he knew that he was now filled with a great void—nothingness. There was no light there, only darkness. There was no hope, only despair. In time, he’d learned to embrace the silence, as the screams and whimpers of faceless victims became echoes that returned again and again, pushing the line of madness. Yet, the solitude was relentless, enveloping, merciless. It would have been better had I never existed, he thought, fearing another moment more than cashing in and leaving it all behind. No love, he thought, no peace. His memories were slanted in such thick negativity that his entire past would have been better off erased. And no one knows I’m dying inside, he thought, inviting another wave of panic attacks to crash onto the shore of his weary mind. Continue reading