Tuesday
Jun232015

#NewRelease Spotlight: GAMBLING ON THE OUTLAW, by Margaret Madigan @mmadiganauthor

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Genre: Historical romance

Length: 84k

Nevada is no easy place for a woman, especially for Beth Caldwell, a gambler's widow with an independent streak. When she refuses to marry the local cattle baron-who wants to add her land to his empire-Beth ends up with a powerful enemy. But it's not until she finds a handsome outlaw hiding in her barn that her trouble really begins. Isaac Collins survived the Civil War only to find himself the scapegoat for stagecoach robbery and murder. With nothing left to lose, he gambles everything on revenge...and barely escapes with his life. He stumbles back to Beth's place, and as she nurses him back to health something tender and heated grows between them. But in Nevada, sometimes everything can ride on one high-stakes game of chance...and Beth's rejected suitor will do whatever it takes to get what he wants.

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Excerpt

I squared my shoulders and entered the room, determined to behave myself properly.

He was sat up in bed with several pillows piled behind him for support, looking every bit as if he belonged there, enough so that last night came to mind and I was tempted to crawl in and snuggle up next to him. But I gave myself a mental shake. He was quickly turning me into a silly schoolgirl.

I am a strong, independent woman.

I had other women depending on me and I couldn’t let some male drifter, a wanted man no less, distract me from my responsibilities.

I placed the tray on his lap and backed away as quickly as possible, taking a seat in the rocker I’d spent so much time in the last few days.

“It seems your presence is causing quite a stir around here. My friends don’t quite know how to react to you.

“What about you?”

“What about me?”

“You said none of your lady friends knows how to react to me. What about you? Do you know how to react to me?”

The taste of his lips on mine leaped to mind unbidden, along with the feel of his hands on me, and that’s all it took for my double-crossing heart, and my equally rebellious body, to react with lusty desire. I’d assumed I’d never again be lucky enough to find a man who made me feel that way, and yet here he was, already in my bed.

Although I wanted very much to shift from the rocker to the edge of the bed and assist him with his breakfast, perhaps feeding him bits of bread with creamy butter that he’d have to lick from my fingertips, I opted for maintaining at least a modicum of decency and kept my rear end rooted to the chair. I suspected where Mr. Isaac Collins was concerned, me and my good sense were in a heap of trouble, because my body had clearly declared war against us.

“Just how would you expect me to react?”

He’d been watching me, waiting for my answer, those warm brown eyes regarding me from under a fringe of dark lashes, making my belly flutter like a flock of hummingbirds had nested inside.

“A smart woman would be on her guard. She’d be concerned and maybe even afraid, and she’d send me on my way, happy to see the back of me. And I took you for a smart woman.”

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abouttheauthor

marg

Margaret writes romance and science fiction, and lives in the vast Northern Plains where it’s quiet, mostly empty, and conducive to letting her imagination run wild. When she's not writing you’ll find her in a college classroom teaching English, or working as a literary agent for an amazing agency…and of course enjoying time with her family.

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Thursday
Jun182015

#99cent #Book Spotlight: WHEN YOU MAKE IT HOME, by Claire Ashby @LoveClaireAshby #giveaway

When You Make it Home

When You Make it Home by Claire Ashby

  283 pages Red Adept Publishing

Published July 15, 2014

When You Make it Home

Synopsis

Meg Michaels, a bookstore owner, has already walked away from two cheating exes. She's learned her lesson and has her mind set on success until she gets knocked up. Embarrassed and unwilling to discuss her situation with friends and family, she wears layers to hide the pregnancy. When Meg gets sick at a party, she's mortified. Even worse, Theo Taylor, the guest of honor, discovers her secret. Theo, an Army medic wounded in the war, agrees not to reveal her condition, and the two forge a bond of friendship that blossoms into love. Theo is soon filling all of Meg's late-night cravings and not just the pregnancy-induced ones. But can their love overcome all the obstacles that stand between them and creating a happy family?

When You Make it Home

When You Make it Home

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When You Make it Home

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Author Claire Ashby

Claire Ashby was born and raised in the heart of Atlanta. At a young age, she began keeping journals and over time embellished the details of her quiet days. Eventually, she let go of writing reality altogether and delved completely into the world of fiction. When she's not reading or writing, she spends her time watching extreme survival shows and taking long walks after nightfall. She has an unnatural love of high places, but still regrets the time she skydived solo. She believes some things are better left to the imagination. She resides in Austin with her family and a pack of wild dogs.

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When You Make it Home

GIVEAWAY

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When You Make it Home

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Happy Geek Media feature[/caption] Book cover courtesy of Streetlight Graphics

Friday
Jun122015

#NewRelease Spotlight: SARAI'S FORTUNE, by Abigail Owen @AOwenBooks 

 


Series: Shadowcat Nation #2
Publication Date: May 13, 2015
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Zac Montclair’s first priority is to protect his people. With the escalating war between factions of shifters over land and resources, he has agreed to an alliance between his polar bears and the Shadowcat Nation of cougar shifters. But the treaty comes with a condition…he must accept one of their Seers into his Timik and put her under his personal protection.

Sarai Bouchard doesn’t need her supernatural gift to know that Kyle Carstairs’s obsession with controlling her ability will eventually result in her misery and demise. Her power is essential to her people’s survival, so when Kyle goes rogue, she’s sent to Zac Montclair to keep her safe. However, her visions reveal that while staying will lead to their becoming lovers, it also leads to his death. Leaving Zac will result in her own.

If Sarai can’t find a way to change the future, she will be forced to choose…save her lover or save herself.
 

One of the first things I do when developing a character is pick an actor who I think represents the image I have in my mind. It gives me a good basis for descriptions and personality. The Shadowcat Nation series will end up with 5 heroes when I’m done. Here’s a bit about each guy, and the actors I’d pick to play them in the movies (wouldn’t that be nice!).

 

Nick

A natural diplomat, Nick is in charge of inter-dare relations between his Keller Dare and the others of the Shadowcat Nation. Nick has thought only of one woman for years, but waited for her to grow up before claiming her as his mate. But did he wait too long?

He is: loyal, constant, intelligent, thoughtful, dedicated, a savvy negotiator, and determined.

Physical Description: Mountain lion shifter. Tall and lean with sandy brown hair and kind blue eyes.

Actor: Garrett Hedlund (https://www.pinterest.com/pin/17803361000813554/)

 

A.J.

A.J. is one of the Alpha’s Protectors at the Keller Dare. Stealthier than even Andie, he plays by his own rules. Especially when it comes to love. And he has secrets of his own.

He is: confident, deliberate, in charge, fair, a leader, a fighter, sometimes playful, and needs a woman who can hold her own with him.

Physical Description: Mountain lion shifter. He is powerful, with dark hair and piercing blue eyes.

Actor: Brant Daugherty (https://www.pinterest.com/pin/17803361000813509/)

 

Zac

Zac Montclair is the leader of the polar bear shifters, a position he took on at a young age when his parents were killed in front of him. His calling in life is to protect and prosper the people he loves.

He is: hard, stand-offish, serious, powerful, loyal, brutal with enemies, yet soft with a lover.

Physical Description: Polar bear shifter. Very tall at close to 7 feet and heavily muscled (but not uber-bulky with it). Dark hair, with a little grey in the beard, and dark eyes.

Actor: Joe Manganiello (https://www.pinterest.com/pin/17803361001611788/)

 

Gage

Gage McAvoy is set to be the next Alpha of the McGraw Dare of cougar shifters. He's prepared to do whatever it takes to earn that role, until he meets the one woman who makes him rethink his life.

 

He is: charming, smart, ambitious, smooth, secretly kind, more possessive than he realizes.

Physical Description: Mountain lion shifter. Tall for a mountain lion at well over 6 feet. Blond with green eyes.

Actor: Alexander Skarsgard (https://www.pinterest.com/pin/17803361003859963/)

 

Shane

Shane Callahan has no use for the Shadowcat Nation after his Alpha ordered his wife's death. He's lived for years with the polar bear shifters as one of their Protectors, although before that he was an accountant. Shane thirsts for revenge, and only the love of a spunky woman might pacify him.

He is: unsmiling, bitter, observant, intense, passionate, protective, and stubborn.

Physical Description: Mountain lion shifter. Lean and shifty. Shoulder length hair going silver at the temples and intense blue eyes.

Actor: Anson Mount (https://www.pinterest.com/pin/17803361003246969/)

 

For a little extra fun, check out this quiz that tells you which man of the Shadowcat Nation would be your perfect match!

https://www.playbuzz.com/abigailowen10/which-shadowcat-nation-hero-is-your-best-match

 




Award-winning paranormal and contemporary romance author, Abigail Owen was born in Greeley, Colorado, and raised in Austin, Texas. She now resides in Northern California with her husband and two adorable children who are the center of her universe.

Abigail grew up consuming books and exploring the world through her writing. A fourth generation graduate of Texas A&M University, she attempted to find a practical career related to her favorite pastime by earning a degree in English Rhetoric (Technical Writing). However, she swiftly discovered that writing without imagination is not nearly as fun as writing with it.

 $50 Amazon Gift Card; One (1) signed print copy of Sarai's Fortune. Ends 6/26.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday
Jun042015

#NewRelease BLOOD WITCH, by Naomi Clark

Naomi Clark shares with us a little behind the scenes on her latest release, BLOOD WITCH.

I think one of the fun and frustrating parts of being a writer is that the idea you start out with is often not the story you end up with (or is that just me?). BLOOD WITCH is a prime example.

This novella started out as a way to keep myself occupied during my Christmas break last year, and turned into a labour of love. It's also turned out to be a bit of an exquisite corpse, in the sense that it's a patchwork of ideas and characters from other projects I started and abandoned in the past. Some facts: 1. The opening scene is an adaptation of something I scribbled in a notepad before work one morning. A witch (then called Lilah) was being interviewed by the police. At that point I had no idea why and I never wrote any more. I did steal that opening and turn Lilah into Lola for BLOOD WITCH. 2. The start of chapter two, where Lola visits her ex-girlfriend, Rowan, started life as an urban fantasy parody I was writing to amuse myself. It was supposed to be part of a really OTT cliched UF story, but I ended up taking it too seriously (as I am prone to do) and decided to make it part of BLOOD WITCH. 3. One of the side characters, Caleb, was originally a secondary character in a paranormal romance I was writing a few years back. I got about 20k in before realising I didn't really know what I was doing, but I liked Caleb and decided to work him in somewhere else.

BLOOD WITCH has come a long way from my initial idea of a short story about a witch falsely accused of murder. That core idea is still a big part of the story, but the world has grown beyond my plans and I now see this as the start of a series instead of a stand-alone mini project. I'm so glad my original plan changed so much because now I get to explore and share a whole new bunch of ideas and characters with you!

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Lola Guntram is used to being an outcast. She's the only blood witch in Fort Rosser, mistrusted by other witches and happier working solo. But when her dark practices make her the prime suspect in a brutal murder investigation, she's forced to turn to others for help. Not that she has many allies – her ex-girlfriend thinks Lola is the killer, and the local coven leader thinks Lola will corrupt them all if she gets too close.

Help comes in an expected – and alluring – form. Tristesse is a demon on the run, beautiful, enigmatic, and suspiciously keen to assist Lola while she chases down the real killer. How can Lola refuse? With the police breathing down her neck, accusations flying, and inhuman monsters on the streets, Lola needs all the help she can get. The killer is angry, desperate, and determined. But so is Lola Guntram. And she doesn't care how dark or bloody the magic has to get – she's going to stop them.

Excerpt

There was probably never a good time to have the police knock on your door, Lola reflected. But three am on a September morning was definitely one of the worst. The fog outside seeped into the house with the stone-faced detectives, and the brisk chill of the night sank into Lola's bones. She'd only been home a couple of hours; only just stripped off and gone to bed. Now, huddled in her ancient rocking chair by the embers of a dying fire, she didn't feel as exhausted as she should. She felt like someone had stuck a live wire up her ass.

“I know this can't be good news,” she addressed the female detective, who introduced herself simply as 'Hardy.' “So you'd better just get on with it.”

Hardy, a brunette who did look exhausted, raised an eyebrow. “What makes you so sure it's not good news, Miss Guntram?”

Lola tried a smile. “Do the cops ever show up after midnight with good news?”

Her partner, Scherer, looked fresher. He sat on the edge of his seat like he might spring up any second, but he smiled back. It wasn't an entirely happy expression. “You caught us out, Miss Guntram. This isn't a social call.”

“Then don't drag it out,” Lola said. His nervous energy was infectious.

They exchanged a knowing look. “Where were you between ten and midnight tonight?” he asked.

The blunt question created a knot of dread in her stomach and she had to swallow hard before she answering. “Working. I was with a client. Why?”

Hardy fixed cold blue eyes on her. It was a searching look, penetrating. If Lola didn't know better, she'd wonder if the detective was trying to probe her psychically. But both detectives felt like nulls to her sharp senses. “Can you prove that?” she asked. Irritation mixed with the dread. “Yes, of course. I have a diary in my office and you can call the client – although she probably isn't going to be any happier to hear from you than I am. What's this about?”

Scherer couldn't quite manage Hardy's gimlet gaze, but his half-smile had disappeared. “What exactly is your job, Miss Guntram?”

Lola shifted in the rocking chair, wishing she could cover herself with the blanket she sat on. But it would make her look vulnerable and she had a distinct feeling that wouldn't do her any favors. She settled for tightening the belt on her robe and pushing her shoulders back. Three years of childhood ballet lessons had taught her that good posture always created a good impression.

“I'm a spiritual consultant. I help clients with difficult decisions, life choices, with emotional and psychological problems.” That was an edited, socially-acceptable answer. Lola wasn't about to get into witchcraft and spellcasting. She rubbed her wrists absently, glad her robe had long sleeves that hid the scars on her arms.

Scherer sneered at her answer, making her doubly glad she'd given the short version. “So you're a New Age guru or something? Separating the gullible from their money?”

“Scherer,” Hardy said, “let's not get distracted.”

“Yes, I'd love it if we could stay on track,” Lola snapped. “Maybe we can start with you telling me what this is about? It's late, I'm tired, I have an early start -” “Why does 'spiritual consulting' take place so late at night?” Hardy asked. “That strikes me as odd, Miss Guntram.” The sound of her own surname was starting to grate on Lola. “It's a new moon tonight. Very good for certain practices.” Were they ever going to get to the fucking point? She couldn't think of a single thing she'd done that would bring them to her door, and it felt like she'd never find out at this rate.

“So if we checked with your client, they would confirm you were nowhere near the Red Lotus tonight?” Hardy asked.

Lola blinked. “The Red Lotus? No, of course not. Why would I be there?” The idea was so laughable, she almost forgot her nerves and irritation for a second. The Red Lotus was a pretty exclusive S&M club – members only, sky-high fees, that kind of thing. It was also owned and managed by Lola's ex-girlfriend. Even if she'd been into the kink that the Red Lotus offered, Lola could never have gone there. It would have been mortifying. She felt herself blushing at the very thought.

“Well, you tell us, Miss Guntram.” Hardy leaned forward again, resting her elbows on her knees and clasping her hands under her chin. The movement put her face in shadow, with the room only lit by a soft peachy lamp, and Lola was struck by the thought that Hardy would be beautiful if she didn't look so tense and tired. “You see, a woman was found dead there tonight.” Lola's heart jumped, then plummeted. “A woman? Not Rowan?” Her voice squeaked and she covered her mouth as if she could recover the sound.

“Ms Morgan is fine,” Scherer said. Lola felt some of her dread drain away.

“She is the reason we're here, however,” Hardy said. “She seems quite sure you're responsible for the killing, you see.”

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abouttheauthor

Naomi likes writing, perfume, fancy tea, and unfathomable monsters from the dark spaces between the stars, not necessarily in that order. She has been writing stories ever since she learned how to write, but is still trying to master the art of biography writing. When she's not dealing with werewolves, demons, or sea monsters, she's hanging out with her cat and probably watching a documentary about Bigfoot. If the cat isn't available, she's with her fiancé watching cookery shows and silently plotting her next book.

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Wednesday
Jun032015

#CoverReveal: GAMBLING ON THE OUTLAW, by Margaret Madigan @mmadiganauthor

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Genre: Historical romance

Length: 84k

Pub date: June 23, 2015

Nevada is no easy place for a woman, especially for Beth Caldwell, a gambler's widow with an independent streak. When she refuses to marry the local cattle baron-who wants to add her land to his empire-Beth ends up with a powerful enemy. But it's not until she finds a handsome outlaw hiding in her barn that her trouble really begins. Isaac Collins survived the Civil War only to find himself the scapegoat for stagecoach robbery and murder. With nothing left to lose, he gambles everything on revenge...and barely escapes with his life. He stumbles back to Beth's place, and as she nurses him back to health something tender and heated grows between them. But in Nevada, sometimes everything can ride on one high-stakes game of chance...and Beth's rejected suitor will do whatever it takes to get what he wants.  

Excerpt

I squared my shoulders and entered the room, determined to behave myself properly.

He was sat up in bed with several pillows piled behind him for support, looking every bit as if he belonged there, enough so that last night came to mind and I was tempted to crawl in and snuggle up next to him. But I gave myself a mental shake. He was quickly turning me into a silly schoolgirl.

I am a strong, independent woman.

I had other women depending on me and I couldn’t let some male drifter, a wanted man no less, distract me from my responsibilities.

I placed the tray on his lap and backed away as quickly as possible, taking a seat in the rocker I’d spent so much time in the last few days.

“It seems your presence is causing quite a stir around here. My friends don’t quite know how to react to you.

“What about you?”

“What about me?”

“You said none of your lady friends knows how to react to me. What about you? Do you know how to react to me?”

The taste of his lips on mine leaped to mind unbidden, along with the feel of his hands on me, and that’s all it took for my double-crossing heart, and my equally rebellious body, to react with lusty desire. I’d assumed I’d never again be lucky enough to find a man who made me feel that way, and yet here he was, already in my bed.

Although I wanted very much to shift from the rocker to the edge of the bed and assist him with his breakfast, perhaps feeding him bits of bread with creamy butter that he’d have to lick from my fingertips, I opted for maintaining at least a modicum of decency and kept my rear end rooted to the chair. I suspected where Mr. Isaac Collins was concerned, me and my good sense were in a heap of trouble, because my body had clearly declared war against us.

“Just how would you expect me to react?”

He’d been watching me, waiting for my answer, those warm brown eyes regarding me from under a fringe of dark lashes, making my belly flutter like a flock of hummingbirds had nested inside.

“A smart woman would be on her guard. She’d be concerned and maybe even afraid, and she’d send me on my way, happy to see the back of me. And I took you for a smart woman.”

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abouttheauthor

Margaret writes romance and science fiction, and lives in the vast Northern Plains where it’s quiet, mostly empty, and conducive to letting her imagination run wild. When she's not writing you’ll find her in a college classroom teaching English, or working as a literary agent for an amazing agency…and of course enjoying time with her family.

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