Tag Archives: new release

INTERVIEW with Maris Soule author of A Killer Past ~ GIVEAWAY

Please help me welcome author Maris Soule to the blog today! I’m excited to have her her and even more excited that she agreed to let me interview her. I think you’ll enjoy getting to know her, too. 

Afterward, check out her release A KILLER PAST. You know what a cover junkie I am, and this is another winner. I love it.

And, don’t forget to enter the giveaway for a $15 Amazon gift card. The link is at the end of the post. GOOD LUCK!

Let’s get started…


Tell us two things about yourself not many people know.

(1) I did a bicycle tour through parts of 4 European countries when I was 21. We stayed in youth hostels, a youth work camp, and inexpensive B&Bs. It was a great experience.

(2) I was the head of two (different) high school art departments for a total of 6 years.

I love those fun facts Maris! What’s the last thing you cooked?

Some breaded chicken breast strips, served with mixed vegetables.

What’s your favorite holiday and why?

I love Thanksgiving. It’s not commercial. The emphasis is on getting together with family, enjoying a meal, and talking.

That’s my fave holiday as well, for the same reasons as you :) Tell us your favorite part about the writing process.

The editing. I have the story down, now I can go through it and eliminate the repetitions, bring in the five senses, improve my sentence structure, add texture, and do all of the many things a writer needs to do to turn garbage into prose.

I love choosing character names. How did you go about choosing the names for your hero and heroine?

In A Killer Past, my heroine has kept a low profile for 44 years, so I knew she would choose a common name. The name I gave her was Mary. I’m not sure why I picked Harrington as her last name, other than it sounded good, and by making Mary’s decease husband’s name Harry, I liked the sound. Mary and Harry Harrington. As for my hero (if he can really be called that), I wanted a former Chicago policeman who’d transferred to Rivershore, Michigan so his boys would grow up in a safer environment. I wanted him to be Italian, but rather than give him an Italian first name, I went with Jack. Jack Rossini. Now, Mary has another name, but that’s revealed later in the book, and as far as Mary’s concerned, that person no longer exists.

If you could tweet your favorite line from your book, what would it be? Yep, that’s right, you only get 140 characters. :)

Of course, if Mary did tell the truth, and Clare did believe her, Mary would have to kill her.

Ooohhh…that’s a good line! Describe your hero in five words.

Lonely, curious, protective, determined, and loving

Now your heroine.

Complicated, secretive, athletic, determined, and remorseful.

Do you prefer to write in the morning, afternoon, evening, or anytime?

I feel as though I’m the freshest in the morning (9-1:00). I used to write late at night, but now I find I get too tired and I’m not as happy with anything I do then. My problems really started when my husband retired. I now try to write when I know I’ll have a block of uninterrupted time. That changes day by day.

What makes your book stand out from others in the same genre?

I’m not 100% sure what genre A Killer Past fits in (which made it difficult to sell). It’s more of an action suspense than a mystery. There have been some movies recently where an older female is actively taking out the bad guys (Red and Red II), but most books (and movies) of this nature involve younger women. I’ve found, when I talk about the book, a lot of older women are eager to read about a kickass grandma. So that’s what makes A Killer Past different.

Can you share a sneak peek into what you’re working on now?

Meadow Lark Williams, who’s in her late 50s, is nudging my creative thoughts. Meadow moved in with her father when his wife/her mother died. Her father has dementia, and Meadow is trying to decide what’s best for him now that her mother’s not around to care for him. Her father was a burglar in his younger days, and Meadow learned the “trade” from him and his friends. I know a series of burglaries are going to occur in the retirement community where her father lives, and I know a woman her father has an argument with is going to be found dead, but the whats, whens and whys are still up in the air.




A Killer Past
by Maris Soule
Amazon  Barnes & Noble Kobo Books | Books-A-Million
Genre: Mystery / Suspense
Published by: Robert Hale / Hale Books
Release Date: June 1, 2015
Length: 224 Pages

Most people in the town of Rivershore, Michigan view Mary Harrington as a quiet widow whose only oddity is that she spends a lot of time at the gym. Her son thinks it’s time for her to move into a retirement home. Two gang members think she’ll be an easy target. No one in Rivershore knows what Mary did in her younger years—really did—but the two gang members discover they’ve underestimated their victim . . . and Mary fears reverting to old habits may have jeopardized her future.


Mary limped into her living room and sagged into Harry’s Lazyboy. Her heart hadn’t stopped pounding since she’d left the two boys. Even though pain radiated up her leg, the adrenalin racing through her body overrode the sensation. Excitement clashed with fear. My God, what had she done?

The boys hadn’t been content to simply take her purse and run. Oh no, they wouldn’t leave it at that. The short one blocked her escape while the tall one looked inside her purse. He said a twenty wasn’t enough, wanted to know where she’d put her credit cards, where she lived. They’d threatened her.

When the tall one grabbed her arm and reached for the lapel of her jacket, she didn’t even think before she reacted. Forty-four years might have passed, but her body automatically responded with ingrained moves. A shift of position, one step back, and she had her assailant off balance. She used her cell phone as a weapon, jamming the edge hard against the bone of his forearm. As she applied pressure, a sweep of her foot, along with a twist to her side, had him falling forward. The moment he hit the ground, she dropped down and slammed her knees into his back and ribs. Before he could react, she used the edge of the cell phone to cuff his ear, then grabbed his arm and gave a violent twist. He started screaming right after she heard his shoulder pop.

A quick roll to the side put her on her back. The short one stared down at her, his mouth open and his eyes glazed with confusion. She knew she didn’t have much time, but springing to her feet was not an option. Her joints might remember the moves, but age had robbed her body of its elasticity. What once had taken a single maneuver now required three stages, but she was on her feet before Shorty truly understood what was happening.

She used the cell phone in her hand to deliver the blow to his face, a side kick took out his knee, and a chop to his neck put him down on the ground. In the past, she would have finished him off then, finished both of them off. She knew the killing points. Two strategically placed jabs, and both of the boys would be eliminated, no more threatening old ladies.

But that was in the past.

“You stay where you are,” she demanded over their whimpering.

She retrieved her purse from where the tall one had dropped it, gave the pair one last glance, and turned away. Breathing hard, she hoped she wouldn’t have a heart attack before she reached her house.


Writer, teacher, artist, wife, mother, dog trainer, horse rider, boater. Maris Soule can list an array of occupations and avocations. Even as a writer her 29 published books span a variety of genres and subgenres, ranging from short stories to romances, romantic suspense, and mystery. A two-time RITA finalist, Soule has placed in and won several writing contests. Born and raised in California, Soule and her husband now spend their summers in Michigan and their winters in Florida.


About Award-Winning Author Maris Soule
Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Newsletter | Amazon Author Page


Click HERE to enter to win a $15 Amazon Gift Card


Posted by on July 20, 2015 in Blitz/Bonanza Spotlights


Tags: , , , , ,

BOOK BLITZ ~ Summer at the Shore by V.K. Sykes ~ GIVEAWAY

Summer at the Shore by VK Sykes, a Seashell Bay novel #2 blog tour banner

Summer at the Shore by VK Sykes, a Seashell Bay novel #2 blog tour banner

Summer at the Shore
Seashell Bay # 2

By: V.K. Sykes

Releasing June 30, 2015

Grand Central: Forever



Morgan Merrifield sacrificed her teaching career to try to save her family’s bed-and-breakfast and care for her younger sister. She can’t let herself get distracted by Ryan Butler. After all, the rugged ex-Special Forces soldier is only in Seashell Bay for the summer. But her longtime crush soon flares into real desire-and with one irresistible kiss, she’s swept away.

Ryan values his freedom. As much as he wants Morgan, he’s not ready to settle down with anyone, much less in sleepy Seashell Bay. But his code of honor doesn’t allow him to leave a woman in distress-and she’s in desperate need of help to fix the inn. It only takes one day working under the same roof and Ryan is already hoping for a lifetime of hot summer nights . . .



 Link to Follow Tour:

Goodreads Link:

Goodreads Series Link:


Good Lord, they were finally going to do it. And she was more than ready. She’d spent weeks resisting her endless, impossible desire for Ryan, and suddenly that seemed like it had been the dumbest thing in the world. If there were any lessons to be gleaned from that awful fire, it was that life was both precious and random all at once. That being cautious and careful couldn’t always protect you from the bad things, which she should have learned in the wake of her father’s death. That being too cautious and careful could cut you off from the things you wanted, the things you loved.

That she loved Ryan was beyond doubt. Morgan knew with absolute conviction that saying no to him now would be a missed opportunity she would regret forever, whether he stayed in her life or got on the ferry at the end of the summer and sailed away.

He took his time, gently resting his forehead against hers, inhaling deep breaths as if drawing in her scent. She thought he was giving her one final chance to say no.

“Yes,” she breathed. “Yes, Ryan.”

She wouldn’t have been able to say anything more, even if she’d had the words, because he dipped his head and claimed her mouth with a searing kiss that stole every ounce of strength from her body. His hand spread wide over her back and drifted down to settle at the base of her spine. He loomed over her—big, brawny, and muscular—his very presence making her feel protected and cherished.

And turning her on like crazy.

She reached up and sank her fingers into his hair as he deepened the kiss. Boldly, she pushed her tongue between his lips, sweeping inside and claiming him the way he’d claimed her only a few weeks ago. She let her hunger drive her, pulling back to trace the edges of his firm mouth with her tongue before stealing back inside for a deeper taste of him.

Finally, Ryan eased his grip and broke the kiss. She felt a slight tremor in the big hands that wrapped around her upper arms. “Jesus, Morgan, if you don’t want to go any further, say so right now. If you’re not ready . . .”

“Does it feel like I’m not ready?” she said in disbelief. “I’ve been ready since we were in high school. Probably since junior high, although it’s probably really tacky to admit that.”

“You’re sure? Because I don’t want this if it’s just a gratitude thing,” Ryan said, frowning. “That’s not why I’ve been trying to help you. You know that, don’t you?”

She let out an exaggerated sigh. “You are such a dope, although I guess I can’t totally blame you. I’ve been Mr. Dithers for weeks about this.”

A smile eased his lips up. “You’re way cuter than Mr. Dithers. But I get it, and I just want to make sure that you’re sure.”

She rested a hand on his chest, then slid it down to his waist, letting her fingers drift along the top of his cargo shorts. “Oh, I’m sure, big guy.”

Ryan’s dark eyes lit up. He dipped to nuzzle her neck, trailing soft, hot kisses as she arched into him. It felt like heaven to finally give in to what she’d been fighting for so long. Relief had her wanting to jump up and spin around in crazy circles, like a kid high on sugar.

Or rip his clothes off and do him right on the beach.

Classy, Morgan. Real classy.

Buy Links:  Amazon | B & N | iTunes | KoboPublisher



Author Info

V.K. Sykes is really two people – Vanessa Kelly and Randy Sykes, a husband and wife team who write USA Today Bestselling contemporary romance and also romantic suspense. Randy excels at plot and characterization, but tends to fall down on the job when it comes to that pesky old thing called emotion. That’s where Vanessa steps in. She usually writes the sex scenes too, since Randy is a bit uncomfortable when it comes to that sort of stuff. Vanessa also writes award-winning Regency-set historical romance for Kensington Zebra under her own name. You can check out Vanessa’s bestselling historical romances at


VK Sykes
Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads 


*V.K. is hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for a Grand Prize of a $25 Amazon eGift Card and Four Runners Up will receive a Print Set of Meet Me at the Beach and a copy of Wedding Bells in Christmas, by Debbie Mason*



Posted by on July 10, 2015 in Blitz/Bonanza Spotlights


Tags: , , , , ,

INTERVIEW with Elizabeth Harmon author of Turning it On ~ GIVEAWAY

Please help me welcome author Elizabeth Harmon to the blog! Today Elizabeth is taking a comfy seat and answering a few questions about herself and her book Turning it On!

At the end of our chat there is a link to enter her wonderful giveaway!

Let’s get started…


Tell us three random facts about you :)

I love lakes, cats, and prefer winter to summer.

What color is your house?

My house is dark green w/red roof and cream trim.

What’s your favorite holiday and why?

Thanksgiving, because the emphasis isn’t on what we want, but appreciating what we have. It’s also a time to spend time with family, share memories and an excuse to make all of the complicated, fattening dishes I love.

What’s your favorite part of the writing process?

Going from the second draft to third, because now the story and characters are set and it’s fun to add all the touches that make it shine. This is when I incorporate details about setting, work in the theme, and ramp up the emotion and romantic/sexual tension between the characters.  I also get to drag out my thesaurus and find all those perfect words I wouldn’t allow myself to spend time searching for, when the whole scene might end up being cut.

I love choosing my character names. How did you go about choosing your hero and heroine’s names?

It’s funny because Hannah originally had a cutesier name, and about halfway through the first draft, I decided it didn’t fit, so I changed it.  The name Hannah suggests a woman who is noble, courageous and stronger than she realizes.  It’s classic, connects to her heritage, and is a name I’ve always loved.  For Vlad, I came up with his stripper name first—Vlad the Bad, only to discover that Vlad isn’t the correct shortened form of the name Vladimir. But since most Americans don’t know that, everyone just calls him Vlad, and because he’s buried so much of who he once was, he just rolls with it.

How come you write the genre you do?

I write both contemporary and historical, but my first sale was for the Red Hot Russian contemporary series, so that’s where I’m focusing my energy right now.

What’s one of your favorite lines in your book?

“Even after he’d confided his deepest shame, she was responding with acceptance and passionate kisses, not condemnation. Hope filled his heart. Though he’d been with other women, for the first time in his life, Vlad was about to make love.”         For me, this line captures the essence of what I love about Vlad and Hannah. Both have gone through life feeling as though they are less in some way. When they come together, each finds the love and acceptance they’ve longed for, but thought they would never find. Vlad is a hot male stripper a lot of women have wanted, but until Hannah, no one really cared about. Hannah has never felt confident about her looks, but Vlad finds her beautiful.

Describe your hero through your heroine’s eyes.

The fact that he’s very handsome, and is kind to her intrigues Hannah right from the beginning.  Though the reality show has positioned him as the villain, that doesn’t jibe with the person he seems to be. She also sees a tarnished dignity in Vlad, and even imagines he might have once been a ballet dancer, before he became a stripper. Though she dismisses it as a silly fantasy, the truth isn’t that far off.

What three words best describe your heroine?

Big-hearted, self-conscious, determined

Do you feel your writing is most productive in the morning, afternoon, evening…or anytime?

Morning is my ideal, but life doesn’t always cooperate. When that happens, packing up my laptop and heading out to Starbucks or Panera can cut down on distractions.

What makes your book stand out from other books in the same genre?

One thing is that it’s a lighter story featuring a Russian hero,  who are more often seen in romantic suspense, or as uber-Alpha billionaire oligarch types. Vlad is sexy, yet also a down-to-earth, kind-hearted beta.  And because Hannah is engaged, the relationship between her and Vlad builds slowly.  They’re drawn together as allies and friends, falling in “like” and building trust, before they fall in love.

What’s your favorite part of any book to write…beginning, middle, or the end?

The end, because I feel a huge sense of accomplishment, and it means I finally get to read the whole thing straight through. Since I draft my books multiple times, it’s also when I start to think about all the ways I can make it better.

Care to share with us what you have coming up?

I’m currently writing the third Red Hot Russians book “Getting It Back,” which is due out next March. The hero is a sexy, charming male figure skater, determined to make a comeback after a devastating injury.  The heroine is a beautiful American athletic trainer who goes to Moscow to help him…and is equally determined not to fall in love.

Thank you so much for answering my questions, Elizabeth. I enjoyed getting to know more about you, your writing process, and her latest book!


Turning it On
Red Hot Russians # 2

By: Elizabeth Harmon

Releasing June 29, 2015

Carina Press


Book editor Hannah Levinson couldn’t be happier. This “Nice Jewish Girl” is ready to marry the man she’s longed after for half her life. When her fiancé suggests they audition for Last Fling, a steamy new reality show for engaged couples, she lets herself be swayed. Maybe she’ll learn a thing or two.

Vlad Shustov’s fall from a once-bright career as a competitive figure skater was swift. Now trapped by a shameful past and an uncertain future, “Vlad the Bad” strips for cash. Joining the cast of Last Fling could earn him a fortune—or at least enough to finally leave stripping. But to win the show’s prize, he must seduce an engaged woman, something he can’t even bear the thought of.
Hannah’s not like any woman Vlad’s met before. Betrayed by the man she thought she loved and relegated to the ugly-duckling role she’d worked so hard to shed, can she trust there’s more to Vlad than meets the eye? With sleazy TV tactics shattering the last shreds of the contestants’ confidence, they’ll have to believe true happiness is not only possible…it may be looking right at them.


Link to Follow Tour:

Goodreads Link:

Goodreads Series Link:


Hannah sighed and shook her head. “I’m not usually such an emotional mess. It’s just this show. This whole situation! Back there…” she flung her arm wide, in the direction of the mainland. “I’m successful. Accomplished. I have a great job. I live in New York City. Here, all anyone cares about is how hot I am. Or more to the point, how hot I’m not!

Vlad  nodded sympathetically. “It’s TV. Unfortunately, sex sells better than other good qualities.”

“Exactly! I can’t compete. I’m not like those other women, and I don’t even want to be. But I have no choice. Not unless I want to lose my fiancé to a scheming bimbo and have the entire nation talking about what a pathetic loser I am. It’s humiliating.”

“You can always learn to be sexy.” Vlad looked her over. “You’ve got the right equipment. All you need is to learn to use it. I am around sexy women all the time. I could coach you. You know…sexy lessons.”

“Sexy lessons?” She had to laugh at that. “I’ve never thought of sexy as a learned skill.”

“It is, though. All about how you carry yourself.” He adjusted his posture and the set of his broad shoulders conveyed a confidence that was undeniably hot.

“And who better to teach me than a guy named Vlad the Bad who takes off his clothes for a living?”

“As Uncle Ivan used to say, it pays to work with best coach you can find.”

She laughed again, but didn’t entirely dismiss the idea. Putting a little strut in her stuff held surprising appeal. Yet what was the catch? A guy who willingly signed on for a trashy show like Last Fling must want something. “And in return?”

He thought a moment and Hannah tensed, afraid of what he might ask. Then he gave a decisive nod. “I want you to read my book. Not just query, synopsis, “sorry not right for us,” but the whole thing. You don’t have to buy, but I want honest, professional critique of how to make it better.”

Honest and professional? Yikes. What would she say if the book was god-awful, which it likely was? He’d pinned so much hope to it, she couldn’t bear to be the one to discourage him. On the other hand, at least she would be gentle and constructive. And if it was good, this was a chance to help him achieve his dream. She imagined taking the book to her boss. Sales and Marketing would drool over this hot Russian male stripper–turned-literary sensation. As would everyone else.  And if it kept Jack from Robynne’s clutches, it was worth the risk.

Vlad narrowed his eyes. “So do we have a deal?”

A bit more certain, Hannah laughed and stuck out her hand. “Deal.”


Buy Links:  Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo



Author Info

I love stories that give a fresh take on classic themes, and feature characters and locations not often seen in romance. Give me a lovable, if less-than-perfect heroine, a gorgeous hero with a heart of gold, take them a little off the beaten path and I’m a happy girl.

I read a variety of genres– romance to horror and just about everything in between. I am a member of Romance Writers of America. I have worked as a freelance journalist for a number of local publications and am a contributing writer to Romance Writers Report.

When I’m not writing, I love to ice skate, bike ride, hang out at the beach or on my front porch. I love vintage homes, adventurous cooking, spending time with my family and traveling.


Author Links:  Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


Elizabeth will be hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway of Two Prize Packs including: Ebook of TURNING IT ON and PAIRING OFF and $10.00 Amazon eGift Card




Posted by on July 6, 2015 in Blitz/Bonanza Spotlights


Tags: , , , , , ,

BOOK BLAST ~ Virtue and Valor by Collette Cameron ~ GIVEAWAY


Virtue and Valor
Highland Heather, Romancing a Scot # 2

By: Collette Cameron

Releasing June 24, 2015

Soul Mate Publishing



Bartholomew Yancy never expected to inherit an English earldom and had no intention of marrying. Now, the Earl of Ramsbury and last in his line, he’s obligated to resign his position as England’s War Secretary, find a wife, and produce an heir. Only one woman holds the least appeal: Isobel Ferguson, an exquisite Scotswoman. Brought to Scotland to mediate between feuding clans, he doggedly woos her.

Disillusioned with men pursuing her for her attractiveness, rather than her unusual intellect, Isobel has all but abandoned any hope of finding a husband in the Highlands. Not only does she believe Yancy no different than her other suitors, he’s a notorious rake. She’s been told he’s practically betrothed. Therefore, his interest in her cannot possibly be honorable, and so she shuns his attentions.

When Isobel is mistakenly abducted by a band of rogue Scots, Yancy risks his life to rescues her. To salvage her compromised reputation, her brother and father insist she marry him. Yancy readily agrees, but Isobel—knowing full well she’s fated for spinsterhood by refusing his offer— won’t be coerced into marriage.



Isobel whipped around and wound up planting her face squarely in a very masculine chest.


She leaped backward reflexively. Her heel caught on the cloak’s hem, and she tilted at a precarious angle.

Simply fabulous.

Her possessions dropped to the floor as she flailed her arms.

Lord Ramsbury surged forward, grasping her shoulders as her feet left the ground.

Eyes locked on his, she seized his coat lapels, frantically trying to stay upright.

His eyes widened when he teetered toward her.

Too late.

Lord Ramsbury’s solid form toppled onto her and mashed her into the rough wood. Eyes closed, she didn’t move, waiting for sharp pain to stab her.

She tentatively moved her fingers and toes.

No pain.

Nothing broken then.

She tried to pull in a breath, but his weight bore down upon her chest.

Gads, how much did his lordship weigh?

She opened her eyes. Silky, whisky-colored hair tickled her nose.

His clean virile scent, with a hint of sandalwood, floated upward. He smelled wonderful, and she had the oddest urge to nuzzle her nose in his hair.

She sniffed instead.

Mmm, heavenly.

Did he twitch the merest bit?

Lord Ramsbury’s chest squashed her breasts nearly flat, and his lean hips nestled between her thighs. For certain her backside and shoulders would sport a bruise or two.

Lifting her head, she winced. She wriggled her fingers, attempting to poke him. Why didn’t he get off? A gentleman would, but he had already proved he didn’t deserve that title.

She squirmed a bit then stilled instantly when a peculiar hardness pulsed against her womanhood.

What in the world?

Had his pocket watch fallen from his waistcoat and wedged between them? Isobel jostled harder, trying to dislodge him and his timepiece.

“Don’t.” He ended on a strangled groan.

He was injured.

But how could he possibly be? Splaying her fingers, she cupped his firm ribs, shoving with all her strength.

“Don’t. Move.” His warm breath caressed her neck.

Booted feet jarred the floor beneath her.

Jocky gasped. “Miss Isobel, my lord, are ye—”

“Yancy, I want to sho—” Ewan gaped at them.

Isobel tried to peek over the earl’s shoulder, which now vibrated suspiciously. She jabbed harder with her fingers.

He quaked more.

Was he ticklish? Turning her hands into half-claws, she scratched at his sides unmercifully.

A rich-timbred chuckle whispered against her skin.

“Get. Off. Me.” She clenched her teeth as his dratted watch poked her again.

All at once, she froze. She knew exactly what prodded her nether regions. She had been raised around animals, for pity’s sake. How could she have been so stupid to think his watch had slipped free?

No, his thing twitched against her.

“I do hope you have a damned good reason to be sprawled atop my sister, Yancy.”


Link to Follow Tour:

Goodreads Link:

Goodreads Series Link:


Buy Links:  Amazon |


Author Info

Award winning, Amazon best-selling, and multi-published historical romance author, Collette Cameron, has a BS in Liberal Studies and a Master’s in Teaching. A Pacific Northwest Native, Collette’s been married for thirty years, has three amazing adult children, and five dachshunds. Collette loves a good joke, inspirational quotes, flowers, the beach, trivia, birds, shabby chic, and Cadbury Chocolate. You’ll always find dogs, birds, quirky—sometimes naughty—humor, and a dash of inspiration in her novels. Her motto for life? You can’t have too much chocolate, too many hugs, or too many flowers. She’s thinking about adding shoes to that list.

Collette Cameron

Author Links: Website | Blog | Facebook | GoodReads



 *Collette will be hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for a $25.00 eGift Card to Choice Retailer*



Posted by on June 26, 2015 in Blitz/Bonanza Spotlights


Tags: , , , , , ,

RELEASE DAY INTERVIEW with (me) Christine Warner author of A Friendly Engagement


600dpibookcover (1)

I’m so excited! Today is RELEASE DAY for book one in my Friends First Novel series. 

I thought it would be fun to interview myself. Hopefully you’ll learn something new about me…and feel free to ask your own questions in the comments.

And, as always, I want to thank everyone for all their support, for taking their hard earned bucks and buying my books, and for posting reviews which are the life’s blood for all authors.


***please check out the info below if you want to join me and 6 other authors for a Facebook release party on June 25th. There’ll be lots of fun and prizes…books, gift cards, and more***

Okay, let’s get started on the interview…

Describe yourself using 5 words.

Loyal. Trustworthy. Creative. Happy. Shy (yes, believe it or not)

What color is your toothbrush?

Purple :)

What did you have for dinner last night?

My husband took me out for dinner. I started out with an awesome salad. From there I had filet mignon, asparagus and garlic mashed potatoes. And to top it off I had raspberry sorbet. I am still full. Lol

Choosing character names is such a fun part to writing any book. How did you go about choosing yours?

I actually “borrowed” my niece’s middle name Devi for my heroine. I’ve always loved that name and like that it’s unusual and seldom seen. As for Omar, I actually worked with a doctor in the ER years ago. It wasn’t a name I was fond of, but it seemed to grow on me and I think it really fit this character well J

What’s your favorite line from A Friendly Enagement?

“What’s an Engagement between Friends?”

When is your favorite time to write?

First thing in the morning because my mind is fresh and I’m ready to go. As the day wears on I find I don’t have the same amount of concentration.

Describe A Friendly Engagement using 7 words.

Fun. Sexy. Humorous. Romantic. Adventurous. Playful. Hot.

A Friendly Engagement is the first book in the Friends First Novell series. What are the other titles and who are the main characters?

The second book in the series is A Friendly Arrangement and features the black sheep of the Esterly brothers Roth and his independent best friend next door Holly Haggerty. They both decide dating has become a chore and make a friendly arrangement that will hopefully satisfy their matchmaker friends and family. But then they add an addendum…

Book three is A Friendly Fling and features the youngest Esterly brother Jared and his best friends little geeky sister Allison Hall. Allison wants to make some major changes in her life, and only Jared can help her.

What are you working on now?

I’m actually writing a New Adult novel that I’m very excited about. I like the challenge of writing in first person, and I’m already having a lot of fun with the characters. Hopefully  my editor will love it! Fingers crossed.



What’s a little engagement between friends?

Omar Esterly is married to his job. But when Omar sets his sights on a potential, family-oriented client, his confirmed bachelorhood becomes a problem. Fortunately, his friend and employee, Devi Boss, has the perfect plan…


Okay, so it wasn’t exactly Devi’s plan to become her friend’s fake fiancée. Lies aren’t her style. However, Omar offers her a big, beautiful raise—enough to track down the missing father she’s never known—and Devi reluctantly agrees to the whole engagement hoax…


This was supposed to be a no-strings-attached win-win for both Devi and Omar, but when they cross the line between friendship and…well, something more, Devi realizes she’s made a huge mistake that just might cost her both job and friend—falling for her fiancé.



“You’re game for anything, right?”

Devi compressed her lips and studied Omar through a narrow gaze, taking in the way his overly bright eyes concentrated on her face as if memorizing every pore. Her gaze traveled south to the non-existent rise and fall of his chest and how he pushed his suit jacket aside as he placed his hands low on his hips. He’d stopped breathing while he waited for her reply. That made her more nervous than anything. “Normally I am game for anything, but considering the man asking the question, I’m a little nervous.” She licked her lips.

Omar shook his head, swallowing her hands in the warmth of his. “No. This is a great idea. I can’t believe I didn’t see it before.”

“I’ll hold back on saying I’m glad I could help until I know what you’ve got pinging around your brain.” She tried to pull free of his grip, but he only grasped her fingers tighter. Her inner voice told her whatever plan he’d cooked up included her and she wouldn’t be thrilled with the role.

“Bartow wants a family-first firm. He wants a planner who is married, blah, blah blah.” He dismissed his unfinished words with the thrust of his chin.

Devi nodded, her mouth going dry. Was he planning to hire a wife, or about to propose?

“I might not be married, but what if I were engaged?”

She didn’t want to jump to conclusions about the proposal so she pasted on a tight smile. “Do you have a serious girlfriend hidden away I don’t know about?” The thought unsettled her, but she pushed aside the heaviness in her gut. Omar and relationships mixed like fire and ice. Not that women didn’t find him attractive and vice versa, but his true love would always be work. Most sane women wanted something more than a workaholic commitment-phobe.

He shook his head a bit too vigorously. “No. No.” His grip tightened, and she flexed her fingers so he’d loosen his hold. “Hear me out before you shoot me down.”

“I’m more curious than ever.” Again, she threw sand over that niggling feeling in her belly. She never jumped to conclusions. Living by the seat of your pants didn’t allow it, but…

Why start now? She rolled her shoulders in an effort to relax. Omar pulled her off to the side and out of the crowd moving past them on the sidewalk. His hands shook with excitement, and he swallowed hard before clearing his throat. Always calm and collected, his buildup unsettled Devi, and she tugged one hand from his grip and pressed it against the gurgle growing in her stomach.

“How about we announce our engagement? I could pull in some favors and have it in the press Monday morning. That’d still give Bartow enough time to invite us to the meet and greet. And—”

“Whoa, whoa, whoa.” Devi’s stomach did a nosedive, and she yanked her other hand from his death grip and stepped back. She twisted one of the bangle bracelets on her wrist. “Our engagement? First off, I didn’t even know we were dating. And second, I am not going to help you get ahead by lying.”

If you want to pick up a copy of A Friendly Engagement, please click through to Entangled Publishing information page and it features all the buy links. 



I’m appearing on several blogs and just having a fun time with my release and please feel free to join me and 6 other wonderful authors for a Facebook party to celebrate A Friendly Engagement’s release. The party takes place on Thursday June 25th from 7pm to 10pm central time. There will be tons of fun and prizes galore.

Here’s a list of the authors participating and prizes, too.

07:00 pm – Nikki Lynn Barrett (Love and Music in Texas Volume one set)
07:30 pm – Teresa Blue (Signed print copy of Letters From Inside – US Only)
08:00 pm – Kristina Knight, Romance Author, Romance Author (3 e-Books {Winners’ Choice} & a $10 Starbucks Gift Card
08:30 pm – Lora Lee – Author (Giveaway: Signed print copy of Bringing in the Thieves and $5 Amazon Gift Card)
09:00 pm – Callie Hutton (The Baron’s Betrayal – Print {US Only} & e-Book {International})
09:30 pm – Sarah Ballance (Paperback copy of The Marriage Agenda to US entrants and $15 Amazon Gift Card to International entrants)
10:00 pm – Christine Warner ($50 Amazon Gift Card)






STREET TEAM SIGN UP: If you love my books and want to help spread the word, want to be a part of the fun by getting excerpts and news first, enter contests with the chance to win prizes, then sign up here:







Tags: , , , , , ,

SPECIAL GUEST ~ Talia Carner author of Hotel Moscow ~ GIVEAWAY

Thank you so much for joining me on the blog with special guest Talia Carner. Talia is here to sharing an interesting essay she wrote about Russia now and then. She’s also giving us a preview of her release Hotel Moscow. I love the blurb and of course, being the cover junkie that I am, love the cover! It’s stunning :)

Afterward, please check out Talia’s giveaway. The link is at the end of the post.

Take it away Talia…


Russia Then and Now . . .

By Talia Carner

This essay was written in December 2011, twenty years after the fall of communism.


When the Israelites fled Egypt, they wandered in the desert for forty years until the generation born into slavery had died. According to God, only a people who had known a life of freedom possessed the strength to overcome the hurdles of building a new nation in the Promised Land, and would enter it.

I understood that wisdom when I journeyed to Russia twice in 1993 to teach women entrepreneurial skills. And I am reminded of my impressions at that time today when Russians are supposed to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of democracy. Instead they are taking to the streets to protest the autocratic regime that is all too similar to the totalitarian Soviet rule it had replaced.

In late April 1993, merely sixteen months after the fall of communism, I joined a group of American businesswomen to meet courageous Russian women who traveled to Moscow and

St. Petersburg from areas as far as the Ural Mountains and from far republics whose names I had never heard. Suddenly we were no longer The Enemy. They watched with awe how we walked tall, strutted about with confidence, and punctuated our talks with smiles. (They asked why so many of us were in mourning or else why would we wear black when all the colors of the rainbow were available to us?) At the edge of their seats, they clung to every bit of information we could dole out. As we spoke through interpreters to groups and individuals about business plans, marketing strategies, and pricing policies or as we lectured about advertising, promotions, and selling tactics, they took furious notes. In turn, they asked tough questions to which we had no simple answers: from how to export their homemade, poor-quality products “to America,” to how to launch a women’s political party or start a women’s bank

As hopeful and valiant as these women were, we hit a wall when we introduced the concept of  networking. “Both of you. face the same problem motivating employees,” I said to two students who had found themselves running bed and beer barrel factories, respectively, after a lifetime of working on the conveyor belt sawing and gluing lumber. But the two women glared at each other with suspicion. “Look, you live over six hundred kilometers apart,” I explained. “There is no risk, and you can both benefit if you share ideas about ways to deal with business problems. You are not even selling to the same consumers!” But the women only shook their heads at my naïveté.

In a city that had never published a phone book, one’s Rolodex equivalent had become a cherished commodity. It meant survival in a country that had never had aspirin or toothbrushes in its few stores. We soon learned that expecting our students to share any information—from a reliable printing shop to the name of an English teacher—was doomed. They balked at the notion that they should help a friend, let alone a stranger. They also asked why Americans smiled so much, finding this basic human gesture incomprehensible. And the idea of attempting to connect with strangers was outright frightening. It involved eye contact! Who could imagine what disaster a stranger might bring upon you?


Click here to continue reading this article



Hotel Moscow

By: Talia Carner  

Released June 2, 2015

William Morrow


From the author of Jerusalem Maiden comes a mesmerizing, thought-provoking novel that tells the riveting story of an American woman—the daughter of Holocaust survivors—who travels to Russia shortly after the fall of communism, and finds herself embroiled in a perilous mafia conspiracy that could irrevocably destroy her life.

Brooke Fielding, a thirty-eight year old New York investment manager and daughter of Jewish Holocaust survivors, finds her life suddenly upended in late September 1993 when her job is unexpectedly put in jeopardy. Brooke accepts an invitation to join a friend on a mission to Moscow to teach entrepreneurial skills to Russian business women, which will also give her a chance to gain expertise in the new, vast emerging Russian market. Though excited by the opportunity to save her job and be one of the first Americans to visit Russia after the fall of communism, she also wonders what awaits her in the country that persecuted her mother just a generation ago.

Inspired by the women she meets, Brooke becomes committed to helping them investigate the crime that threatens their businesses. But as the uprising of the Russian parliament against President Boris Yeltsin turns Moscow into a volatile war zone, Brooke will find that her involvement comes at a high cost. For in a city where “capitalism” is still a dirty word, where neighbors spy on neighbors and the new economy is in the hands of a few dangerous men, nothing Brooke does goes unnoticed—and a mistake in her past may now compromise her future.

A moving, poignant, and rich novel, Hotel Moscow is an eye-opening portrait of post-communist Russia and a profound exploration of faith, family, and heritage.


PART 1: Thursday, September 30, 1993


The plane had emptied by the time Brooke Fielding strode down the ramp tube of the Moscow airport, her Burberry raincoat and overnight case strapped with an elastic cord to a wheeled carrier. In the narrow, windowless Jetway, the two last passengers followed right behind her, men lugging clear plastic bags that sported the Duty Free Shop logo and were stuffed with cigarettes, whiskey, perfumes, and a variety of cheese and sausages.

The significance of the moment billowed in Brooke’s chest: she, an American, was arriving in Russia a mere twenty-one months after the collapse of Communism. Like a pioneer, she’d get a taste of the sights, sounds and flavors of a country few Americans had visited since the days of the Czars. Even though she’d had a sense of “there” through her parents’ Eastern European upbringing, she expected the experience awaiting her in Moscow would be unlike anything she’d ever had before. On Monday, when her company’s new management had ordered her to take her unused vacation days, she’d called her friend Amanda Cheng to let her know that she had become available to join Amanda’s women’s mission. She would use her business skills to help Russian women vault over decades of stagnation.

At the sound of swooshing behind her, Brooke glanced back to see that the far end of the skyway had detached from the airplane and was closing with a soft whine. Brooke hurried along, pushed to a faster pace by the two men at her heels, when a small, triumphant voice inside her burst out. Russia, I’m returning on behalf of all my millions of nameless fellow Jews lost on your soil. You didn’t destroy us, after all. She lifted her head. I’m here.

This was a new Russia, Brooke reminded herself, different from the Russia that had experimented with its people’s lives and minds. This new Russia was fighting for liberty, placing the individual’s right for happiness over the collective’s good, and as it struggled to free itself from bigotry, so should she. The negative, judgmental attitudes merely reflected her mother’s prejudices.

Brooke was nearing the door separating the Jetway from the main terminal when a guard approached it from inside. His eyes hooded with boredom, a machine gun dangling from the strap across his chest, he unfastened a door stopper and swung the door shut, locking it, then turned to leave.

“Hey!” Brooke waved, rushing forward. “Wait!”

But the guard just tossed her a blank look through the glass, and walked away.

“I’m still here!” she called to his retreating back. She banged on the door.

“They have orders.” The younger of the two men at her heels spoke in heavily accented English. He wore a rumpled blue suit with a wrinkled open-collar shirt. The older man shook his head of dandelion-fuzz hair and rested his shopping bags on the floor.

From outside rose the hum of a forklift and the thuds of luggage falling onto a conveyor belt. “Welcome to Russia,” Brooke muttered. She adjusted her watch for the time zone. Seven o’clock in the morning was midnight yesterday in New York. She banged again on the glass door, but could see the empty corridor beyond. Amanda and the other ten women executives recruited for this “Citizen Diplomats” mission must have reached passport control. They would be worried.

The hair falling on Brooke’s cheeks smelled of microwaved airplane food and re-circulated air. She tucked a strand behind her ear and took a deep breath. Eventually, someone would let her out; no one got stuck at an airport terminal forever. She glanced at her companions. The two Russian men stood motionless, as if forbidden to even lean against the wall for support.

Brooke hated losing control, which had been happening all week. Last Friday afternoon she was called to an unscheduled staff meeting at which her investment firm’s CEO cheerfully reported that they had been taken over. His faux optimism only made Brooke wonder how big a golden parachute the new owners must have opened for him. He was no doubt making a soft landing into a pile of several million dollars. She left the meeting in a daze and ran off to the synagogue for the start of Yom Kippur. In observance of the day her parents had never honored, she absented herself from her colleagues’ frantic phone calls until Sunday night.

The uncertainties she and her colleagues pondered on Sunday were sealed Monday when The Wall Street Journal speculated that the takeover would probably result in a bloodbath for the current employees. That afternoon, Brooke and other executives were told to take off two full weeks, a gambit to flush out fraud by keeping the staff away from their accounts so they could be examined unhampered.

Not even allowed to visit the office, Brooke would be absent when she most needed to impress the new management, when her clients would be introduced to new teams she had never met, leaving her out of the loop. Never before had she experienced the insecurity of a job suddenly in jeopardy. Her CEO, her mentor, had betrayed her.

But adding expertise on Russia’s new economy would help her keep her hard-won executive position. Not only did Brooke have the opportunity to help Russian women on this trip, but she could poke her nose into business ventures of this nation untangling itself from a seventy-year time warp. She would return to New York brimming with new ideas and investment opportunities. She might even refresh the Russian language that must be lying dormant in her grey cells; she had heard it often enough in her childhood when her mother and her mother’s friends still spoke it among themselves.

This trip would be a win-win situation, she had decided that Monday night.

On Tuesday, the mission’s Russian host had arranged for Brooke’s visa while she splurged for gifts the group could provide the women they would be counseling. On Wednesday she had boarded the flight, and now, Thursday morning, here she was, stuck in Moscow airport.


The foregoing is excerpted from HOTEL MOSCOW by Talia Carner. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced without written permission from HarperCollins Publishers, 195 Broadway New York, NY 10007


Link to Follow Tour:

Goodreads Link:


Buy Links:  Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo | Publisher


Author Info

Traveling around the world has brought Talia Carner, former publisher of Savvy Woman magazine, a business consultant to Fortune 500 companies, and a speaker at international women’s economic forums, to find the stories right within herself. In her new novel, Hotel Moscow, she continues her mission to save and empower women. Carner hit the ground running with her first novel, Puppet Child (The Top 10 Favorite First Novels 2002,) followed by China Doll, (her platform for 2007 U.N. presentation against infanticide,) and Jerusalem Maiden (winner of Forward National Literature Award,) and now shares her passion for social justice and human rights domestically and globally. She explores the individual’s spirit as it clashes with the power of religion, social conformity, or political upheaval. She lives in New York with her husband. Please visit her at



Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads


Publisher is hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for Three Print Copies of JERUSALEM MAIDEN by Talia Carner





Posted by on June 19, 2015 in Blitz/Bonanza Spotlights


Tags: , , , , ,

SPECIAL GUEST ~ Jenna Sutton author of All The Right Places ~ GIVEAWAY

Today I’m pleased to share the blog with author Jenna Sutton. Jenna is talking about her love of hypocoristics. If you’re like me who have no clue what that word even means, so check out what she has to say about them and you’ll love what you learn.

Jenna is also sharing her release All The Right Places. I love the cover. Don’t you?

Afterward, please enter her wonderful giveaway. The link is at the end of the post.

Take it away Jenna…


How Do You Feel about Hypocoristics?

By Jenna Sutton, author of ALL THE RIGHT PLACES

I love hypocoristics. Now take a second to read that again. I love hypocoristics. Not hypocrites. I definitely don’t love those.

I’m just guessing, but I doubt you know what a hypocoristic is. I didn’t, not until I typed the word nickname into Google.

The term hypocoristic is used to refer to a nickname of affection between those in love or with a close emotional bond, compared with a term of endearment. So instead of your husband calling you honey or darling, he calls you something that is unique to you.

In my debut novel, ALL THE RIGHT PLACES, my hero, Quinn O’Brien, bestows a nickname on the heroine, Amelia Winger. (No, I’m not going to tell you what that nickname is. Read the book if you’re curious!)

For me, hypocoristics play a huge role in a romance novel. I love it when the hero has a nickname for the heroine. To me, it shows an additional layer of affection and familiarity.

I know a lot of readers aren’t fans of nicknames, though. And many readers absolutely abhor endearments. Baby seems to be the most polarizing one. I recently read a review from a reader who said that she stopped reading a book because the hero called the heroine baby. 

How dare he do such a dastardly thing?!

One of the best nicknames I’ve ever come across was in Sophie Jordan’s New Adult romance, WILD. It’s the third in a trilogy about college roommates who find their happily ever after. I loved this book, and the nickname was just a small part of the overall fabulousness of this book. The heroine, Georgia, is great, and the hero, Logan, OMG. He’s so delicious. Beyond delicious.

Part of his hotness, in my opinion, is that he calls Georgia by the nickname “Pearls” because she’s kind of this uptight, princess-y type. At first, she doesn’t like it. But eventually she does because the word comes out of a mouth that does incredibly awesome things to her body.

I adored Logan’s nickname for Georgia. Every time he called her Pearls, I swear my toes curled inside my shoes.

Maybe my love of hypocoristics comes from my husband. Although he’s never called me honey, sweetheart, baby, darling or anything else that could be considered an endearment, he has a lot of nicknames for me. I never know what he’s going to come up with next.

The most creative (and insulting) nickname my husband has ever called me? Mastodon.

Yes, you read that correctly. Mastodon.

I have no idea why he came up with that nickname, and neither does he. But he stopped calling me Mastodon after my dad said, “You know that’s a big, hairy prehistoric elephant, right? I don’t like that much… you calling my daughter a big, hairy prehistoric elephant.”

How do you feel about hypocoristics? Do the people close to you have a nickname for you? Do you call your significant other by a nickname?


All the Right Places
Riley O’Brien & Co. # 1

By: Jenna Sutton  

Releasing June 2, 2015



The first in a brand new contemporary romance series starring the men and women who are determined to keep the billion-dollar denim dynasty, Riley O’Brien & Co, on top, but aren’t about to let success stand in the way of love… 

Amelia Winger is a small-town girl with big dreams of becoming a successful designer. So when she gets a gig designing accessories for denim empire Riley O’Brien & Co., it’s a dream come true. Amelia can handle the demanding job, but she isn’t quite prepared for sexy CEO Quinn O’Brien. She’s doing her best to keep things professional, but the attraction sparking between them makes it personal. And so does the secret project she’s working on behind his back…

Quinn’s not interested in the new accessories, but he is interested in the woman designing them. Amelia is smart, sexy, and talented, and he hasn’t been able to stop thinking about her since they met. Mixing business and pleasure isn’t wise, but that doesn’t stop him from coming up with excuses to spend time with her. He thinks he understands the risk he’s taking when he gets involved with Amelia. But he doesn’t know he’s risking a lot more than his heart.



Link to Follow Blast:

Link to Follow Tour:

Goodreads Link:

Goodreads Series Link:


Buy Links:  Amazon | B & N iTunes | Kobo | Publisher


Quinn stared into Amelia’s dark eyes. The phrase “fall in and out of love” echoed in his head, and he felt strangely innervated.

With her encouraging words, she had freed him from the horrible despair that had choked him for the past several hours. His black mood was gone.


But now there was something even more dangerous in its place: desire.

Her hand was still on his, and he swore he could feel the heat of her touch radiating throughout his entire body. He took a deep breath, battling the urge to move closer to her.

He pulled his eyes from hers, and his gaze dropped to the pale skin exposed by the V-neck of her dress. She wore a silver necklace with translucent green and blue beads, and one of them had found its way into her creamy cleavage. As he stared at that lucky bead, his blood grew hotter, running thickly through his veins toward his cock.

His brain and his body disconnected, and he saw his hand move toward her, fingers spread.

Don’t do it! Don’t touch her!

His fingers stroked the warm skin of her throat, her pulse throbbing against his thumb. Her skin was so soft, so warm, he imagined she could heat all the cold places inside him.

Wrapping his hand around the back of her neck, he pulled her closer. She stumbled a little in her high-heeled boots, and he steadied her with a hand on her hip.

When he felt that beautiful curve within his grasp, the blood drained from his head, along with every bit of sense he possessed. With his intellect obliterated, his primal self was in control, and it wanted more.

Right now.



Author Info

Jenna Sutton spent most of her career as an award-winning journalist covering business-related topics including healthcare, commercial real estate, retail, and technology.  Nowadays she writes about hot, lovable guys and the smart, sexy women who make them crazy. It’s the culmination of a lifelong dream, and she feels so lucky to be able to do it.

Jenna has a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Texas Christian University and a Master’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communications from Northwestern University.

Jenna and her husband live in a 103-year-old house in Texas.

 J Sutton



Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads

Zum Fressen gern haben


Jenna will be hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for a $50.00 eGift Card to Jeans Retailer of Choice



Posted by on June 15, 2015 in Blitz/Bonanza Spotlights


Tags: , , , , , ,


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 533 other followers

%d bloggers like this: