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THE ROGUE YOU KNOW Review

THE ROGUE YOU KNOW is second in the series but can stand alone. That’s a good quality to have in a series, especially for those who come in later. Now, on to the purpose of this post…:)

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The Rogue You Know
Book 2 in the Covent Garden Cubs series

She’s beyond his reach…
Gideon Harrow has spent his life in London’s dark underworld-and he wants out. A thief and a con, he plans one last heist to finally win his freedom. But when everything goes wrong, he finds himself at the tender mercies of one of Society’s most untouchable women—Lady Susanna Derring.

 …and out of her depth.
Susanna has spent her life in London’s glittering ton, under the thumb of a domineering mother—and she wants out. When a wickedly charming rogue lands at her feet, she jumps at the chance to experience life before it’s too late. But as she descends into London’s underworld, she finds that nothing—not even Gideon—is as it seems. As excitement turns to danger, Susanna must decide what price she’s willing to pay…for the love of a reformed thief.

Scrape.

In the library, Susanna went still. There it was again.

The town house was old and had a tendency to creak and groan. But then she heard it again, and this time she knew it was not the house. It sounded like…a window. There were two windows behind Dane’s desk, and both looked out upon the small garden. One was directly across from where she sat huddled on the floor. The draperies were closed, and nothing stirred behind them. Was she imagining the noise, or was something or—God forbid—someone trying to enter the house?

She peered around the corner of the desk and stared at the opposite window. Her breath caught when the draperies rustled with the breeze. The window had definitely not been open before. It had been cold enough in the room without allowing the night air inside.

Susanna jerked back, hidden on the far side of the desk again. Everyone knew London was rife with housebreakers, but would the thieves be so bold as to try and enter a house when the family was home? She heard a thump and trembled.

Apparently, the rogues were so bold. What would they do to her if they found her? Kill her? Rape her? Kidnap her for ransom?

She must escape, but how?

She peered around the desk again and saw two legs standing in front of the window. It was too late to run. The thief was already inside. She did a quick inventory of herself. She had nothing, absolutely nothing that would protect her from a ruffian.

She could hear the thief breathing now. He was breathing hard, as though he’d been running. She pressed her back against the oak of the desk and craned her neck. She spotted the shadow of a candlestick on the edge of the desk. She hadn’t lit the candle in it. If she could pull it off the edge without the thief noticing, she could use it to protect herself.

She felt the edge of the desk with her fingertips. Closing her eyes, she stretched her fingers until she touched the cool silver of the candlestick. She eased her fingers around it and tugged it soundlessly over the edge of the desk.

The candlestick shook in her hands. The weight was more than she was prepared for, but she caught hold of it and clutched it to her chest just in time.

The thief clomped into the room. He wasn’t worried about being quiet. She could hear him now. He lifted books and replaced them. She knew the sound the binding made when lifted and released. That meant his back was to her.

Her heart thundered so loudly she feared he could hear her, and she was at risk of swooning at any moment. She dug her fingers into the ornamentation around the candlestick until the silver cut into her palm.

She must be strong. She must be brave.

It didn’t appear as though any other thieves were entering after this one. She could hit him with the candlestick and prove to her mother that she was an independent, capable young woman who should be allowed to go to Vauxhall Gardens—or anywhere she pleased!

Susanna trembled as she moved to her knees and slanted her eyes up and over the desk.

There he was!

He looked every inch the dangerous rogue! He was tall and powerfully built and had dark hair covered with a cap. And he was indeed pawing through her father’s books. She had to stop him.

She ducked down and scooted along the edge of the desk until she reached the side closest to the shelves. She was exposed now. If he should but move a little to his left, he would see her. She forced herself to slide slowly and with exaggerated care until her back collided with the sharp edge of the far corner of the desk.

She could smell the thief now. She’d expected him to smell of something rank and evil, but he smelled of the night air and something else, perhaps sandalwood?

This close she saw the rough hew of his clothing. The dirt on his boots. He did not belong here, and his actions left no question as to his intent. She grasped her skirts in one hand to keep them from tripping her, and held the heavy candlestick in the other. Soundlessly, she rose. He seemed to sense her movement, but right before he could turn, she rushed him and slammed the candlestick onto the back of his head.

With a groan, he went down, the cap tumbling from his head.

She’d done it! She’d really done it.

She gave a small gasp of surprise and horror when she saw the trickle of blood on his neck. Oh, God. Had she killed him? What would happen to her if she’d killed him? Would she go to Newgate?

She wanted to wake Crawford, but she couldn’t call the butler if she’d killed a man. He’d be forced to summon the magistrate. Better to ensure the thief was alive before calling for anyone.

Tentatively, she knelt down, and her hand wavered over the thief’s neck. She’d seen her mother’s physician touch the dowager’s neck at this point to check her pulse. Susanna had never tried to check a pulse, and she’d never touched a man other than her father or her brothers. Her hand hovered above the man’s neck, until finally she shut her eyes and forced herself to touch him.

He was still warm. His head was turned away from her, so she couldn’t see if her hand was in the right position, but she didn’t feel a pulse. She moved her fingers a fraction of an inch.

Still nothing.

She moved them again, and he groaned.

She snatched her hand away and scrambled backward. The man tried to rise, lifting his shoulders off the floor and cupping the back of his head. He groaned again and turned his head to look at her, just as she was about to raise the candlestick again. He raised his hand to ward off the blow, but she’d paused anyway.

His eyes held her. He faced the hearth behind her, and she could see the pain in his eyes but also the color.

They were green, a vivid beautiful green that reminded her of forests and glades and the serenity of the country. And so she paused.

Later, she would come to realize that small hesitation had been a mistake.

Later, she would realize that was the moment everything had gone wrong.

But as she sat with the candlestick held aloft, the thief staring at her, all she could think was that he was beautiful. That she wanted to sketch him; that it would be impossible to find the right color for his eyes.

“Lady Susanna?”

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My thoughts…..4 stars

Lady Susanna Derring has been smothered by her mother. Always falling just below her mother’s standards for everything she’s spent her
life yearning for freedom. When opportunity presents itself, in the form of Gideon, she grabs it with both hands.
Gideon Harrow has the means to escape his life as a thief and con in London in his hands. Double crossing Beezle to gain his freedom is a small price to pay, until his escape is thwarted by one Lady Susanna Derring. What’s a thief to do when his freedom is in the hands of a
young miss with a mission to attend Vauxhall Gardens? Why, take her of course.
What happens when you mix a young lady of the ton with a member of the Covent Garden Cubs gang of thieves?  You’ll have to read THE ROGUE YOU KNOW to find out.
Those who’ve read Earls Just Want to have Fun, the first book in the Covent Garden Cubs series featuring the thief Marlowe and Maxwell,
Lord Dane, Susanna and Gideon will be familiar. For those who haven’t, no worries. THE ROGUE YOU KNOW can easily stand on its own.
Lady Susanna is a bit naive and her initial reasoning for wanting to go to Vauxhall Gardens is shaky, at best. After all these years what can she truly hope to discover regarding her mother? And just on the mere hint from  Lady Winthorpe in the retiring room that there’s anything at all, well that and her mother’s reaction when Susanna asks to go.
Gideon Harrow has his sights set on escaping life in Seven Dials. He no longer wants to be a thief and con. With what he gets from his
last score, that double crossed Beezle no less, he can see a light at the end of the tunnel. His first mistake was breaking into Lady Susanna’s home insearch of his friend Marlowe. Now he’s at her mercy with no choice but to take her to Vauxhall Gardens
if he wants to reclaim what’s his, well not actually his but you get the gist…
Just a heads up, most of the story takes place in a brief,compact, time frame.
Adventurous romance, screwball comedy of errors, dangerousencounters, a scrappy dog, and yes, there are times a suspension of belief isneeded but when you boil it all down to its essence, THE ROGUE YOU KNOW is simply flat out fun.
Gideon and Susanna have one heck of an adventure thatchanges not only their lives, but the lives of those around them whether they
wanted it or not. Kind of a domino effect.  Readers will find the pages flying by as Susanna discovers her backbone and Gideon discovers who he really is under all that cock sure attitude. They both discover that what they thought they wanted no longer applies….
If you want a fun filled adventure with plenty of laughs, a dangerous time or two, and a plucky dog that adopts Susanna as her new ward,
look no further than THE ROGUE YOU KNOW.
Seriously, Beauty is a treat and I can’t wait to see what Ms. Galen has in store for Brook, Susanna’s “just the facts~no emotions need apply” investigator brother. The Derring family is not your typically traditional Tonfamily, thank goodness.

SUSTAINED Review

 A knight in tarnished armor is still a knight.

Jake Becker is the quintessential bad boy made good. Thanks to an insightful judge and a liberal dose of tough love Jake spends his life defending people rather than being the defendant. Rising fast in one of the most influential law firms in D.C. Jake’s on the fast track to a corner office, until Rory McQuaid picks his pocket.

Chelsea McQuaid is aunt to the precocious Rory and his 5 siblings. Chelsea gave up life as a grad student at Berkley to raise her nieces and nephews after her brother and sister-in-law died in an accident. Raising six children ranging in age from less than a year to fourteen is hard for two people, let alone one. Everyone, Chelsea included, has issues relating to the deaths of Robert and Rachel but while the kids can act out, Rory especially, Chelsea is in the hot seat. No time to grieve there’s too much to do.

Jake, with the Judge and a younger Jake in mind, takes Rory home rather than to the police to press charges. This is the beginning of the end of life as Jake knows it. Already reeling from a close call he’s totally knocked for a loop by Chelsea and her passle of problems waiting to happen.

Jake gives Drew a serious run for his money. As a former bad boy he has that simmering, “I can revert at any time” edge that the debonair Drew lacks. He’s blunt, honest, and completely devastating.

Chelsea is more subtle. She’s giving, loving, loyal, responsible, and puts the needs of her nieces and nephews above her own. She does all this without succumbing to martyr syndrome or being treacly sweet, quite the feat!

Most of my favorite scenes are, surprisingly, not between Jake and Chelsea but between Jake and the children. The honesty and sincerity he evinces warms the heart as much, possibly more for moms, than the love scenes. At least that’s the case with this mom. While I enjoyed Jake and Chelsea, Jake and the children made SUSTAINED.

Here’s a taste…Any parent who’s ever had to watch Barney can relate to this….

The cheerfully decorated door opens a few minutes later, and the sound of Barney’s “Clean Up Song” echoes though it.

The hairs on the back of my neck stand up-I have nightmares about that song. 

Likewise, Jake, likewise. And did I mention his commentary is hilarious? Yes, (little happy dancing here) SUSTAINED is told from Jake’s POV. Words can barely convey how much I adore the male POV relayed via Ms. Chase.

Ms. Chase is certain to once again delight readers with her signature style of humor, romance, roguishly loveable heroes, and the lucky heroines who win their wary hearts. If these are qualities you look for in contemporary romance SUSTAINED should be at the top of your list.

5 stars

Sharon Struth & SHARE THE MOON

I treat reporting the old-fashioned way. I only got your story in the first place

because—”

He raised his palm. “My accusation wasn’t fair. Listen, I’m sorry to have outbid you on the land so close to the closing date. A pure business decision and not personal.”

I never thought it was. Besides, the land isn’t yours yet.” Her brows arched.

Point taken.”

For the record, though, I write news. Not opinion pieces. I want to clear up any misconceptions since Mr. Steiner requested we put together a favorable piece.”

I didn’t request special treatment.” He squirmed in his seat. “Write the story as you see fit.”

Trust me. I will.”

Once again, she’d left him as winded as if he’d hit the bottom of a huge crest on a roller coaster. Her stare burned through him.

May I switch gears?” Duncan ached to reclaim control.

Sure.” She crossed her shapely legs.

The other night, in the parking lot, you told me I’d never understand why you wanted the area to remain unchanged. It’s understandable you’d be unhappy about my bid. Is there something else I need to know?”

Her dark gaze averted to the tip of her jiggling foot and she blinked, making her long lashes flutter. He wanted to look, too, but didn’t want to appear as if he were checking her out again. His earlier trip past her pleasing calves and nicely rounded bottom had given him the urge to unpin her knotted hair and do something that would earn him a slap across the face. Instead, he watched her expression, now more sad than angry.

Her hand lifted to her slender neck, where her fingers slowly massaged beneath her chin. “No. Just the vineyards.” She met his gaze, but a story rested in the pain behind her empty stare.

Sophie switched topics, but the need to understand her overwhelmed him in the most unsettling way.

Book Blurb:

Sometimes trust is the toughest lesson to learn.

Sophie Shaw is days away from signing a contract that will fulfill her dream of owning a vineyard. For her, it’s a chance to restart her life and put past tragedies to rest. But Duncan Jamieson’s counter offer blows hers out to sea.

Duncan still finds Sophie as appealing as he had during boyhood vacations to the lake. Older and wiser now, he has his own reasons for wanting the land. His offer, however, hinges on a zoning change approval.

Bribery rumors threaten the deal and make Sophie wary of Duncan, yet she cannot deny his appeal. When her journalistic research uncovers a Jamieson family secret, trust becomes the hardest lesson for them both.

“Heart-tugging small town romance with real emotion.

Struth is an author to watch!”

Laura Drake, author of RITA-award winning The Sweet Spot

 

 

 

 

About the Author:

 

Sharon Struth has woven a tale of suspicion, mystery and the complete emotional breakdown of two people searching for love and restoration of their past lives. The plot is refreshing and will definitely keep the reader turning page after page. SHARE

THE MOON is a book that restores faith in human nature and the ability to again find love.” –Fresh Fiction

Sharon Struth is an award-winning author who believes it’s never too late for a second chance in love or life. When she’s not writing, she and her husband happily sip their way through the scenic towns of the Connecticut Wine Trail. Sharon writes from the small town of Bethel, Connecticut, the friendliest place she’s ever lived.

SHARE THE MOON, book one in the Blue Moon Lake Romances, is a finalist for a RONE Award and a Chatelaine Award for Romantic Fiction!

Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / GoogleBooks / iBooks / Amazon UK

For more information, including where to find buy links to her novels and published essays, please visit her at the following places:

Website

Musings from the Middle Ages

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True Love Waits with Barbara Meyers

TRUE LOVE WAITS…About 15 Years

NOBODY’S FOOL was inspired by (but not based on!) my son’s relationship with his high school BFF. I loved the idea of best friends turning into a romance. Through all the stops and starts since they met at age sixteen, their love has endured. I started this book the year they graduated high school, but I couldn’t finish it until I knew how their story would end. I asked my son to draw up a timeline of their bumpy road, some of which even he has trouble remembering. What follows is excerpted from what he wrote. Their wedding is this fall.

Freshmen Year: The first time I saw her she was running for student council, and the football team seemed to think highly of her. I remember blonde hair, black dress, black boots, and an incredible smile. I was wary of girls. I became shy after making a few cry in elementary school, and I didn’t like when they cried. I would never approach this girl, and we didn’t get introduced. She sat right behind me in history class, and her locker was right next to mine. She didn’t acknowledge me, and I wasn’t focused on trying to have a girlfriend anyhow.

Sophomore Year: I can’t tell you specifically what day it was, when I picture it it’s sort of a dream-like memory in a foggy high. Let’s put it this way – I was walking on clouds afterwards. It must have been the first week of school, in English class, and I happened to glance across the room over my right shoulder, when I caught her eyes. She smiled and I got punched in the face with a feeling I had never experienced before. And one I would never get again. Was she already looking at me? I don’t know, and I didn’t know at the time. She smiled at just about everyone, my specially directed smile included. I walked out of that class knowing that I would have to take action. I told my three closest friends exactly that as soon as the class was over. I’ve never forgotten exactly what it looked like or how it felt.

Oddly, besides a very short three-day dating period that Spring, we were just friends. I don’t remember disliking the situation either, I think I thought no one else would be as close to her as I was. We dated other people, all younger than us. I never saw her boyfriend as a threat and my girlfriends hated her for sure. There just wasn’t anyone that had what we had with each other.

A problematic senior year: My best friend never wavered in her loyalty, as out of control as I was, that I remember. I never had to wonder if she’d be there. She made her uniquely ethical approach ever so clear. She didn’t approve of many of the things I was doing. She was the little angel on my shoulder and I didn’t listen well. Even with all that, and even though she had a boyfriend – we went to Prom together. Only fitting I suppose – and maybe the only purely happy memory I have of that period in life. After graduation, I went off to school at FSU and Erin went to Argentina.

A family member’s devastating car accident: Erin spent her 21st birthday in the hospital with my family during our darkest hour. Somehow she was always there for the worst of things. She’s never once complained that her birthday was marred by that night.

Christmas break 2003: She was single and after what seemed like endless effort and patience – our relationship took a long awaited turn two nights before she was to return to school in early January, 2004…the first kiss.

Erin’s visits to Naples and my visits to Gainesville were always preceded with that anxiousness that one feels when they can’t stand being away from the other.

Visiting Mexico: Erin was up with me the whole time, again she never wavered. And again she got to see me at my worst. I was pretty much uselessly ill the entire trip, but so long as I didn’t eat or drink I was ok. We still managed to get out and about together, sightseeing and just walking around. More than once we were asked if we were honeymooners. Oddly, our memories of that time are fond – like being sick was secondary, somehow we still really enjoyed each other.

She was always there…good times or bad. My fault or through no fault of my own, she never wavered or complained

September 2005 The Break Up: She chose the separate ways option. I was heartbroken, and when I say that I mean it. Of all the pain, obstacles, and challenges in my life to that point and all of them since (there is much more)…losing her at this particular time was the most devastating event I have ever dealt with. Call it depression or whatever else, I could barely keep back the tears at any point during any day. There was no more fun in life, nothing mattered. I tried to push through and cover it.

I was making progress everywhere in life but I had lost my best friend, the love of my life.

We eventually got back together in early 2007 – and as happy as that made me we never resolved any of the issues we had.

I began dating someone new – whom I did love, but Erin was always the measuring stick and no one ever lived up to her. I would never have with someone else what I had with Erin.

December 2009. I was single again and I found out that Erin was “in love” with someone we’d gone to high school with and it caught me completely off guard. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have some hope this was when we’d give it another shot. Oddly, almost subconsciously I knew she still loved me as I loved her. Once in summer 2009 in an email exchange she mentioned still recognizing my cologne in public or the smell of my brand of cigarettes. I knew she remembered those things for a reason. Just like the memories I had, just about everywhere around town I remembered by time spent with her.

I came to the realization that I had to accept the fact that I may never have Erin back in my life.

Valentine’s Day 2012. That night also happened to be the first “date” Erin and I went on and we consider that our “anniversary”…I think because it was the culmination of a long road to being reunited. We knew this was it, hell we were heading towards 30 by now. The first time we kissed again I found myself crying in the middle of it. I think she did too, but it’s sort of a hazy memory for me. It was a surreal moment that I had hoped would come for so many years, but had doubted and questioned too.

Those last few pieces were in place. The remaining problem? I was sick. What had begun as looking for answers to in 2011 had gone from bad to worse, to impossible. I was exhausted, I never slept well and pain was constant. Erin was there. She was always supportive.

We looked at engagement rings on a Sunday in October of 2012, and without her knowing I had put a deposit on a ring that day as she stood across the store watching it sparkle.

Tests revealed what was thought to be a tumor on my Thymus gland, Luckily the tumor wasn’t a tumor, but my thymus was the size of an egg instead of a dime. (Removing it required major surgery and a long recovery.)

Months passed but eventually I started to feel better and better – more and more energy, less and less pain. My muscles were more relaxed, a little more each day. It continued for a few months – and by summer I was physically normal again.

Will You Marry Me? I don’t really remember what I said, I just remember her pushing her hand into the ring. I think she did that before I finished speaking, I guess the answer was a foregone conclusion after the previous 15 years.

I have the energy to live life again, and I worry less and less about being sick and look forward more and more to spending the rest of my life with Erin – the way it was supposed to be. I know what I know about life because of how many things I did wrong. Time and again I had to learn the hard way. But the one thing I did right was trust that feeling, even during periods when it was buried in the very bottom of my soul, that she loved me as much as I loved her.

Two hours later, Court wondered what had he gotten himself into. What had he been thinking? That he could prove to himself he was immune to Jolie? Ha! He was about as immune to her as he was to a bee sting. All she had to do was touch him and he reacted. It was a full-time job pretending not to.

Because he and Jolie seemed to be categorized as a couple—and why wouldn’t they be when he’d insisted on escorting her everywhere—they were now in the process of being tied together for the three-legged race.

Jolie was doing the tying, and Court swore if her fingertips brushed the inside of his thigh one more time, he was going to toss her down in the grass and show her just how much he wasn’t over her. He wished he’d worn jeans instead of cargo shorts. He needed all the protection from Jolie he could get. He looked down as she adjusted the tie around their ankles. The soft curve of her spine, the glimpse of skin where her T-shirt and jeans didn’t quite meet at the waist, the silk of her hair that brushed against his knee.

Note to self: Reunion picnic and related activities? Bad idea.

“Okay! Everybody ready?” Erin Miller called through her blow horn. As former student body president, she had put herself in charge of the reunion from start to finish.

Twenty or so teams lined up on the line she’d created using Caution Wet Paint tape. A similar tape marked the finish.

Jolie slid her arm around Court’s waist and flashed him a quick smile. He drew his arm around her back. Why had he said yes to this game? The last thing he needed or wanted was to be this close to her. Bound to her.

Liar, his subconscious argued. You’re enjoying every minute of it. He was. Too much. He wanted to be close to Jolie almost as much as he wanted to prove that he didn’t. Maybe he could just split himself in half. That worked out in Solomon’s court, didn’t it?

“Ready!” Erin called. “Set! Go!”

He and Jolie set off as planned, steadily moving in sync. He shortened his strides to match hers. They weren’t the fastest team, but they weren’t falling down, either. Several teams who had started off stronger had already tumbled to the ground together, disqualified.

Erin, in her usual nitpicking style, had laid down hard and fast rules. If even a knee touched the ground, they were out. Both partners had to remain upright from start to finish.

The competition literally fell away as they got closer to their goal. “Almost there,” Court encouraged. Somehow, they’d been thrown off their rhythm. The binding was chafing his calf. He tried to make an adjustment, but didn’t do it in time.

As they reached the goal line he felt Jolie’s balance go. Tied together as they were, with her weight pulling at him, the fastening bit into the skin of his leg. He took one last stumbling step before he went down on the far side of the line. Without even trying he broke Jolie’s fall. She ended up on top of him, laughing. She glanced down the length of the track. “It wasn’t pretty. But I think we won.”

Speech escaped him so he just nodded while he absorbed the sensation of Jolie atop him. Without thinking, he curled his fingers in her hair, pushing it back away from her face, memorizing the texture of it, his mind a million miles away. “Great,” he finally answered.

“Our winners are Court Harrison and Jolie Kramer,” Erin blow-horned from about three feet away. “Let’s give them a big round of applause.” Half-hearted hand clapping was offered from the other competitors. Those not involved clapped slightly louder.

“You two can get up now,” Erin said, not bothering to lower the blow horn. “Game’s over.”

 

She’s home to make amends. He’s out to get a little revenge. But the heart he breaks could be his own.

Jolie Kramer walked away from Court Harrison and never looked back even though Court had been her biggest fan since childhood. Now she’s returned for her ten-year high school reunion, older, wiser and ready to make amends for breaking Court’s heart.
Frustrated because after ten years he’s still hung up on her, Court has vowed to himself that he can leave the past and his feelings for Jolie behind. He’ll give her a taste of her own medicine, make her fall for him and he’ll be the one who walks away.
Court’s plan works a little too well, however, because when Jolie confesses her love for him, he doesn’t believe her. At first. Only after she discovers he set her up, does he realize her feelings are real and he’s lost the one woman he always wanted.
When Court comes up with Plan B, Jolie can’t resist the career challenge he issues as well as the opportunity for payback. Court’s gamble pays off when Jolie realizes there’s no joy in her success without the one person who always believed in her.

FB Author page:   Web Site   Blog   Amazon Author Page   Pinterest    Goodreads   

Twitter: @barbmeyers and @ajtillock   

When not writing fiction, Dr. Seuss-like poetry or song lyrics, I disguise myself behind a green apron and supply caffeine-laced substances to addicted consumers for a world-wide coffee company.
Check out my Braddock Brotherhood connected series of funny, spicy, sexy contemporary romances published by Samhain Publishing.
Under the pen name, AJ Tillock, I venture into off-the-wall comedic fantasy with The Forbidden Bean, the first in the GRINDING REALITY series.
I am still married to my first husband, have two fantastic children and one almost perfect dog. I’m originally from Southwest Missouri, and now reside in Central Florida.

SHATTERED GLASS with Neils Williams

SHATTERED GLASS is the follow-up to THE GLASS HOUSE and was published August, 14th.

 

 

In the most sensational trial in Houston, Texas, fashion designer, Alexis Glass is facing capital punishment for the murder of her husband, Todd Clemons and with little evidence, Alexis is confident she just may get away with murder. But everyone has a testimony; even the one who held Todd captive to begin with, Thomas Glass. As she tells her side of Todd’s mysterious capture, her deepest secrets are unveiled and there’s one testimony left that changes everything she thought she knew.

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Neils Williams is the author of the suspenseful novel The Glass House and the upcoming It Never Rains in Jacksonville. Born and raised in St. Louis, MO, and the son of an entrepreneur, Neils has been writing since a very young age creating deep worlds for his readers to jump into. In his free time he enjoys watching reality tv and entertaining family. Neils Williams is now married to the author of Greener Pastures Hellene Alabi-Williams and they now live in Las Vegas, NV. He loves to hear from his readers and can be contacted atneilswilliams21@gmail.com or facebook.com/authorneils

Hellene Alabi-Williams & GREENER PASTURES

white;”> Novel: Greener Pastures ~ West African Drama ~ Released: Aug 14

Set in modern day Nigeria, Western Africa, Greener Pastures tells a story of polygamy, religious constraints, greed, hatred, jealousy, the thirst for power and conspiracy synonymous with every polygamous home. Cordelia grew up with dreams of becoming a doctor and marrying her heartthrob, Tunde. The price she has to pay to stay in control will cost her love, happiness and her only son… Pamela’s only mistake was to be born to poor parents. As she tries to claw her way out of the pit of poverty, she will be faced with desperate decisions that may have disastrous consequences. Iya Alakara is the quintessential Nigerian wife, married and totally subservient .She must struggle under the weight of catering for her family alone, as her husband has robbed her of all she ever had; her money, pride, dignity and possibly, her life!

As each individual struggles to survive, some will see the light at the end of the tunnel while others, will only meet with shame and disgrace for the consequences of their actions.

Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Hellene Alabi-Williams is a writer, actress, and producer.  With her short stories onlavidagirl.blogspot.com such as “10 First Dates”, “Mr Right Now” and “Before I Do.” Hellene has been widely acknowledged for her craft. Greener Pastures is her first novel and she has no plans on stopping there. She now lives in Las Vegas, NV with her husband Neils Williams (author of The Glass Series: The Glass House and Shattered Glass and the upcoming It Never Rains in Jacksonville) and she loves to hear from her readers. Hellene can be contacted at hellenealabi@yahoo.com or visit her website at www.hellenealabiwilliams.com

Heather Boyd's Miss Mayhem Srs. Bk 3 MISS RADLEY'S THIRD DARE

Miss Radley’s Third Dare
Book Three, Miss Mayhem Series
 by Heather Boyd

Release Date: August 4, 2015

What a woman wants…

The only person who ever understood what Julia Radley wanted most in life was the man who ruined her reputation and secured her victory in a bold swimming race. She does not hold Valentine Merton accountable for the harsh criticisms made against her character until he suggests the only way to smooth over the scandal of his defeat is to wed as soon as possible.

… the gentleman must dare.

After picking himself up after proposing, Valentine Merton is even more determined to tame the wild girl next door. The future he wants within the clockmaker’s guild depends on their speedy marriage. A few sweet words or, as a last resort, another brazen dare is sure to persuade her to take a chance on him… and his family.

Links: 

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About Heather Boyd:

HeatherBoyd_Author ImageBestselling historical author Heather Boyd believes every character she creates deserves their own happily-ever-after, no matter how much trouble she puts them through. With that goal in mind, she writes sizzling regency romance stories that skirt the boundaries of propriety to keep readers enthralled until the wee hours of the morning. Heather has published over twenty novels and shorter works. Catch her latest news www.heather-boyd.com. She lives north of Sydney, Australia, and does her best to wrangle her testosterone-fuelled family (including cat Morpheus) into submission.

Connect with Heather: Website | Twitter | Facebook Page | Mailing list

Debra Holt & MERCY’S RESCUE

“Promise you’ll stop by again tomorrow? If I have that to look forward to, I’ll be able to sleep.” His voice was capable of making her common sense take leave. Combined with the hypnotic blue gleam in his eyes, they made a potent mixture. “Do we have a deal, angel?”
She should have known better. Of course, if she’d listened to her brain, she wouldn’t have come to check on him the first night.
“I’ll try.”
“My angel plays hard to get—”
“I’m no angel.”
Her words brought a lift of one fine eyebrow as he studied her. “Now that just gave me more incentive to follow orders and get stronger so I can get out of this bed. I may have to pursue that statement. But for the sake of argument, I say that you are a living, breathing angel with a beautiful soul in those deep brown eyes.”
The small room grew warm, yet goose bumps ran riot over her flesh … in a very good way. Supreme effort was required on her part to move. “Goodnight, Sheriff.” Mercy retrieved her hand and made the doorway before he answered.
“It’s Josh. Call me Josh,” he said. “Goodnight, sweet angel of mercy.”
She cast a side-glance, but his eyes had already closed. Joshua Wellman was an enigma. Why did she feel so drawn to him? From the very moment he’d looked into her eyes in the helicopter, she’d felt this strange attraction. What set him apart from the hundreds of other patients she’d come across?
The difference begged an answer that she couldn’t find. Maybe she feared what she felt in some way, afraid of dissecting the whole issue too closely. She panicked for a second when she tried to pull up the sound of her David’s laughter. The only response was a pair of blue eyes and a man who called her his angel.

 

Finding himself fighting for his life after an ambush, Sheriff Josh Wellman awakens to find himself looking into the eyes of a real-life angel of mercy.
When their hands touch, he knows his life has changed in that instant.
But devastating heartbreak has left Mercy Smith’s faith in tatters, her heart guarded against more loss. Her dedication to the air evac trauma team she leads has insulated her from the realities of the earth below, so now Josh faces the biggest challenge of his life.
Can he find a way to get past the walls around Mercy and convince this angel to stay on the ground with him? Can Mercy open her heart to life again and find a way to restore her faith in God…as well as love?

Purchase Mercy’s Rescue from Amazon.

 

 

 

 

Debra Holt
Born and raised in the Lone Star state of Texas, Debra grew up among horses, cowboys, wide open spaces, and real Texas Rangers. Pride in her state and ancestry knows no bounds and it is these heroes and heroines she loves to write about the most. She also draws upon a variety of life experiences including working with abused children, caring for baby animals at a major zoo, and planning high-end weddings (ah, romance!).
Debra’s real pride and joys, however, are her son, an aspiring film actor, and a daughter with aspirations to join the Federal Bureau of Investigation. (more story ideas!) When she isn’t busy writing about tall Texans and feisty heroines, she can be found cheering on her Texas Tech Red Raiders, or heading off on another cruise adventure. She read her first romance…Janet Dailey’s Fiesta San Antonio, over thirty years ago and became hooked on the genre. Writing contemporary western romances, is both her passion and dream come true, and she hopes her books will bring smiles…and sighs…to all who believe in happily-ever-after’s.
* * *
Nicole Resciniti of The Seymour Agency represents Debra. Her first book, Under Texas Blue Skies, was published by Clean Reads. Her second book, His Country Bride, will be forthcoming from Spencer Hill/Tulip Romance. Mercy’s Rescue, her third book, will launch a new romance line, Bling!Romance, in August, for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. Debra invites you to visit her website at http://www.debraholtbooks.com/ She loves to hear from other aspiring authors or readers via email at debraholtbooks@gmail.com or follow her on twitter @debraholtbooks.

ELUDING ILLUSIONS Release Day

Thank you so much for having me on today. I’m excited to share with everyone my second novel, ELUDING ILLUSIONS.

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Emma Banciu dreams about her novels taking on a life of their own. Thanks to a centuries old Gypsy curse, they tend to do just that. Writing with pen and paper she brings things to life, and hell hath no fury like an antagonist scorned. Now she’s on the run from Kyrin, an evil demon warlord who surfaced from one of her first manuscripts. And the only way to get rid of him is to destroy the manuscript.

Enter JG1988, her long-time online friend. He knows nothing of the curse nor the magick Emma possesses. His only wish is to finally meet her in person and take their relationship to the next level. He reveals a surprise of his own when he shows up at Emma’s door as international recording artist Jake Griffin.

Destroying the manuscript will not only get rid of Kyrin, but also end her relationship with Jake. But keeping secrets from him may end up doing just that. In order to survive they’ll resort to love, lies, and a little Gypsy magick.

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excerptCHANGEOFHEART

The grandfather clock rang out its half-hour chime. Six thirty arrived faster than she imagined.

The doorbell echoed the peal of the clock. Her heart made a swan dive to her stomach as she tried to stay upright in her heels.

Wobbling her way across the room, she whispered to herself. “This is just J. The same J you’ve always known. The same guy you talk to every day online. The same guy you’ve dreamed about practically your entire life.”

Turning the handle, she drew in a deep breath. On the other side a hand held a single blue rose. Upon seeing the flower, a smile broke the tension on her face. He remembered her favorite color.

“I told you that you needed to smile more often,” he said, as the rest of his body appeared in the doorway.

She glanced up from the rose, over his tux-clad torso, to his face. Time stopped, along with her heart. It took everything in her not to release the shrill clamoring in the back of her throat and go all fangirl on the man.

“Let me introduce myself properly, I’m Jake.” Cupping his fingers around hers, he lifted her hand and pressed his lips to it. Heat surged through her body at the sensation of his warm lips against her skin.

J was none other than Jake Griffin, singing sensation—the man who could make women orgasm at the mere mention of his name. The same man who had four Grammys under his belt, five world tours, and still had time to throw in a movie or two, and he was barely twenty-five. At least the magazine sitting on her coffee table said so.

She stood frozen, partly due to shock. And, partly due to wondering if it would be in bad form to run to her bedroom and rip down the poster she had of him hanging above her bed.

Still speechless, she stepped back from the door and waved him entrance into the room. Her heart beat as fast as the hummingbird wings fluttering in her stomach.

“I know it’s a bit of a shock, and I’ve been meaning to tell you for some time. But, well I didn’t know how you’d take it.” He shoved his hands into his pants pockets as his gaze fell away from her.

“I—I just—I have no words. I mean, no one expects their blind date to turn out to be Jake Griffin.” Blinking, she threw her hands up in defense. “Don’t get me wrong, every woman in the world wishes it would happen, but to have it actually come true … okay, I’m just making this worse. I’ll shut up.” She snapped her mouth shut.

He stifled a chuckle and locked back onto her eyes. Excitement and embarrassment collided, and her knees buckled, forcing her to reach out to the back of the sofa to steady herself. Even in her four-inch heels he towered over her. Emma’s vulnerability had nowhere to hide.

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QA

Q) How did you dream up the dynamics of your characters? Well, I actually based Jake Griffin on Josh Groban. LOL I have been obsessed with that man forever and decided to put him in one of my stories. As for Emma, well I wanted to do something different in the paranormal world outside of vampires, witches, weres etc. So I went with old-world Gypsy magick and built it from there. Dragos kind of came out of nowhere and was the first shifter I ever wrote about.

Q) Can you give a fun or interesting fact about your book? Well this will be a spoiler. So AVERT THINE EYES if you don’t want to be privy to info before you read it. But in the original version of ELUDING ILLUSIONS, I killed off Dragos completely. Only after my CP’s gave me several lashings about it did I work him back into the story. So if you liked the Dragos character, thank my CP’s, Jennifer and Sonia.

Q) Do you have any habits that get you in the writing frame of mind? Music is my go-to muse. I try to use cultural based music for my diverse characters to help me channel the feel of the setting and people. But a lot of the time I just listen to instrumental gaming music as a soundtrack for my stories.

Q) How much real life do you put into or influences your books? Well, this one had a bit because of my love for Josh Groban. So a lot of Jake’s nuances and comic relief are a result of Josh’s funny personality.

abouttheauthor

Wren Michaels hails from the frozen tundra of Wisconsin where beer and cheese are their own food groups. But a cowboy swept her off her feet, and carried her away below the Mason-Dixon line where she promptly lost all tolerance for snow and cold. They decided they’d make beautiful babies together and they got it right on the first try. Now Wren lives happily ever after in the real world and in the worlds of her making, where she creates book boyfriends for the masses to crave.

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Sex, Secrets, & Happily Ever Afters by Deb Julienne

Angel Talbot is anything but pure—in fact some might even consider her a bit wicked. How else would you describe the manager of an ‘adults only’ store that specializes in helping ladies find that special O. But Angel could use a hand herself. Or two. That is until she stumbles into sexy businessman Travis Wellington.When the Wellington Family had a problem, they sent Travis to fix it. Being the CEO of his family’s multi-million dollar enterprise means Travis is used to getting his hands dirty. But the pressure of looking out for the company, along with his family’s well-being was beginning to take its toll . . . until he found his Angel…

“I hate having so many regrets.”

“Regrets have no place in life. They aren’t worth the time you waste on them. Use that situation to learn and move on. You and I both know you’ll never let it happen again. Right?” A lone brow arched high on Carina’s forehead.

“God, I hope not.”

“Come on. Be positive. What do you have to lose?” Carina encouraged.

“What little self-respect I have left,” Angel said under her breath.

“Stop insulting your intelligence. You said you read my book. If you did then you know positive reinforcement is good. Give yourself a chance. Give Travis a chance to prove he’s nothing like that twit you dated in high school.” Carina hugged her again.

“Okay, okay. I promise.” Angel wanted to believe Carina. Maybe if it had come at a different time. Travis was different. Grant had been perfect right up until she found out about the bet and all his other lies. Positive reinforcement? She was positive Travis was as big of an asshole as Grant. No, that wasn’t fair.

“Now that we’ve cleared that up, I have something else for you.” Carina reached into her purse, pulled out two other books, and handed them to her.

Mind-Blowing Sex and The Best Sex of Your Life. “What, I needed a pep talk before you gave me these?”

Carina laughed so hard her butterfly necklace bounced from breast to breast. “Maybe I thought you needed to be in the right frame of mind before I suggested them. When you read the sex kitten book, you never considered applying it to yourself, only who you could suggest it to. Correct?”

Angel opened her mouth to speak then shut it. Her face was on fire. How could she argue when that’s exactly what she’d done?

 

While some say truth is stranger than fiction, Deb Julienne’s experience runs more along the lines of a slap-stick comedy. When life tosses you lemons the only thing to do is to turn it into Limoncello.

​Her life, like her comedies, has been one big fat romantic comedy…or errors. It’s not a matter of “if” it can go wrong, but how bad when it does happen, and make no mistake…it will. Survival with a sense of humor is the goal.

Joking aside, Deb’s dream of being published came true with the release of her first book, Sex, Lies, and Beauty Aids which was released March 2014. Since then she’s added to more to her collection of tales. Sex, Secrets, & Happily Ever Afters, and A Splash of Romance in the Crashing into Love Anthology.

As a long time member of both Romance Writers of America (RWA) and her local RWA Chapter, the Sacramento Valley Roses, she fills the hours she’s not writing romantic comedy and romantic suspense with her day job at a Silicon Valley Corporation, playing in the kitchen concocting her award-winning jams, jellies, preserves, and sauces (with alcohol of course).

​Born and raised in San Jose, California, she now resides in the Tahoe National Forest Basin, her own little bit of heaven on Earth, with her husband of 34 years, their three

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/deb.julienne

Twitter: @debjulienne

Web: www.debjulienne.com