Liliana Hart scores with Cade MacKenzie

Cade is a very good score indeed for all you readers looking for a new man to keep you company this weekend, delivered at high intensity by Liliana Hart.

SmokeCade: A MacKenzie Family Novel” was my introduction to the fast and furious world of the MacKenzie brothers. I like that kind of world, it grabs you from page one and refuses to let go, holding your attention like a five alarm fire. And of course where there’s fire, there’s smoke and in this story it’s the smokin’ hot sex. You can find that between the sheets, on the kitchen table, outside… well you get the idea. Be forewarned, this read is about as far from PC as you can get. This very bad boy hero knows exactly what he wants and how he wants it, and he’s not shy about saying it.

Sure, it’s summer and the weather man says it’s going to be a hot weekend, but what’s the harm in kicking it up a few more degrees? You can always fill your bathtub with ice and slip into that.  See how I’m thinking after reading this? Oh and if you really need any more incentive, the e-book is free. Yes, I said free. Head on over to your book dealer of choice right now and grab a copy! It’s a great way to meet Liliana and if you enjoy Cade, there’s a slew of MacKenzie men for you to sample at your leisure, along with plenty of other reads to occupy your nights and weekends. I might even have a few tucked away on my Kindle.

Hey, those weekends come around every five damn days, a girl’s gotta keep herself entertained!

 

Cade

Cade MacKenzie is prepared to give his life to destroy the cartel that killed his lover, but the only way to draw them out is to present them with the perfect bait.

Bayleigh Scott has no idea who her new neighbor is, only that her body is drawn to him in ways she can’t explain, and the danger that surrounds him isn’t the deterrent she knows it should be.

More than fireworks explode between Cade and Bayleigh when she discovers the real reason he relentlessly pursued her, but by then it’s too late, because she’s already been drawn into a deadly game of desire, deception and revenge.

Ultimate Book Boyfriends

Ah, the book boyfriend, another perk of being an author. Seriously, what other profession permits you to openly have (imaginary) boyfriends you can explain to your husband without being handed divorce papers? Hey, it’s research, I can’t do my job without it. And talk about selection! There are literally thousands of books out there, with men of every size, shape, color and, well, other attributes. Let’s face it, if you can’t find a book boyfriend, you probably need therapy. Just sayin…

When I began pondering how I was going to pick just five (an arbitrary number my writer friends seem to like to use), I realized right away it wasn’t gonna be easy. There are some seriously talented authors out there Raining Menimagining up some seriously HOT men.

You start skimming back over your reading list to choose five outstanding specimens and trust me, you are going to end up dialing Romance 911 demanding  the Weather Girls bring that rain immediately to cool you off. Or, you could ask about getting Joe Manganiello over to distract you for a while. *sigh*

But enough about the unobtainable men! There’s plenty of fine Book Boyfriends out there and you can have any one you want. Here are my top five…and you know what the best part of all this is? We can share them without the slightest bit of jealousy entering into it.

Enjoy!

 

Zach AngelinoEdge of Sight by Roxanne St. Clair

EdgeofSight

An Army Ranger, Zach had an amazing three weeks with Sammi before deploying to Iraq and fell in love. His mission was top secret and extremely high risk; his odds of returning slim. Trying to spare her, he never told her how he felt and couldn’t contact her after he left. When he did return, it was minus an eye. He’s not the same and believes more than ever he has nothing to offer Sammi. When she unexpectedly drops back in his life, he finds can’t push her away. When he realizes her life is in danger, he refuses to. Zach is one of those men who doesn’t have to be GQ perfect to make you want him, he is the kind of man you want to be real, scars and all.

 

Lover AwakenedZsadist Lover Awakened by JR Ward

Z carries the emotional baggage of a life spent chained and raped as a blood slave to a vampire mistress. He is rescued but ends up with disfiguring facial scars to match his warped, almost psychotic emotional ones. He is a walking nightmare fueled by a bottomless pit of rage. But, the contrast between who he is and the trembling reverence with which this over the top alpha male treats his woman places him in the elite category of BBF. Z learning to write so he could show Bella in words how he felt, offered a glimpse into the small bit of innocence left in him, and demonstrated how much of his pride he was willing to leave in the dust for the woman he loves. While he heals emotionally to a certain extent, he holds no illusions that he will ever be “right”. But he will fight and die if necessary, for the woman who, despite all the odds, loves him as he is.

 

Jackson DeveauHidden Currents by Christine Feehan

HiddenCurrents

Jackson met Elle through a telepathic connection when he was a POW enduring rape and torture. Her voice and presence in his mind kept him alive. Years later, she is kidnapped and raped by a madman who wants her for her psychic ability. Jackson rescues her and it becomes his turn to care for her and convince her that she can be strong again. While he presents a cold, unfeeling exterior to the world, Elle discovers he quietly goes about caring for the disadvantaged and needy around him. His unconditional acceptance of what Elle has endured never once wavers in the face of her ongoing emotional trauma. He is unashamed to have shared every degrading moment of what happened to him with her, and shows her that love can heal the most devastated of hearts.

 

 

 

HeartsinDarknessCaden GraysonHearts in Darkness by Laura Kaye Caden is a scarred firefighter with claustrophobia from a childhood accident that cost him his mother and brother. He owns his scars, not hiding them and wraps himself in tattoos and piercings, but the hard exterior hides a sweet, lonely soul with a heart as big as he is. Trapped in a pitch black elevator with Makenna, who rushed in just as the door closed, neither saw each other before the lights went out. Plunged into his worst nightmare, Caden eventually reaches out and Makenna takes his hand. During the hours they spend together in the blackness, Caden finds the strength to face his fears and insecurities. By the time the lights come back on, Makenna is half in love with him, and you have fallen completely.

 

Jericho DelaneyChasing Perfect by Ria Boulay (WIP)

Taylor-Kitsch-lone-survivor

How could I not include my own hero, Jericho Delaney, in this list? Jericho is a man who has hit rock bottom, scarred both physically and emotionally. His fiancee leaves him in the hospital as he is recovering, unable to cope with his future. An addiction to painkillers follows him out of the burn unit and onto the streets where he is busted for buying. He lives every day with the knowledge that he has let down his family, his town and friends, but most of all, himself. He retreats to his cabin in the woods to figure out his life. When he agrees to protect a murder witness, he finds his hands full dealing with a woman whose closest brush to the country is a squirrel in Central Park, New York. Sparks fly between him and Cat in more ways than one but resolution isn’t easy to find between two people so very different. How their story ends is something only the Muse knows..and she’s not ready to share just yet.

I can share the inspiration for him though. Taylor Kitsch from Lone Survivor.

There you go. Fine stories, ultimate males.

So what about you? Who are the literary men that have taken up permanent residence in your heart? Post ‘em here so we can all drool over them. When you’re done, go read and maybe you’ll find a new man to add to your list of Ultimate Book Boyfriends.

Molly Gets Her Man

Sometimes on a hot summer day you just want to sit down with a cold glass of lemonade, kick your bare feet up and read something light and entertaining. For me nothing fits that bill better than a flaky heroine and Julie Rowe delivers perfectly in her romantic contemporary suspense Molly Gets Her Man. I can’t help but root for heroine Molly McLaren, a very smart girl in a bimbo’s body dragging around a lot of emotional damage. As for the hero, I’m a sucker for a big Alpha male who is a teddy bear at heart and Grey Wilson is all that and more.

Wander on over to Entangled Publishing and you can read the first chapter free! Now how does it get any better than that?

Grab a book and enjoy your weekend.

 

Molly Gets Her ManWhen flaky Las Vegas hairdresser Molly McLaren overhears a Russian hit man planning to kill a US congressman and take out Hoover Dam in the process, she becomes a target for murder. Now, on the run from the assassin and a dirty cop, she winds up in an eighteen wheeler with an ex-cop sporting a bum leg, a bad attitude, and a body built for loving.

Grey Wilson just wanted to be left alone. No more Las Vegas. No more casinos. And no more floozy women like the one his best friend sent him to pick up on the side of the road. She talks fast, but her endless curves and sensuous nature make him want to slow down. Which is not in the cards. Grey knows he needs to unload his excess baggage. And quick.

But when someone tries to kill the Vegas beauty, Molly captures his heart with her backbone of steel, and brains to boot. Now in order to grasp the future that had once seemed impossible, Molly and Grey need to keep Hoover Dam, the congressman, and their love from being blown sky-high.

Author Sahara Roberts courts Desire & Deception

In a world that celebrates the cut-throat, step on anyone who gets in your way attitude especially in business, one of the most amazing things about being an author is how everyone shares the love. We help each other, offer advice, constructive critique and when you’re very, very lucky, sometimes even a NYT best selling author will take a few minutes (actually 45 minutes in this case but who’s counting!) after hosting a chat to graciously talk to you, one on one, about your plot. I don’t want to drop any names, lest the author in question be flooded with “help me” requests, but she is one of my favorite authors. (Sorry, this will not help you find her). It was hard to be all cool and collected while sweating through my Fan-Girl urges, but I think I pulled it off.  Hopefully she’ll read this and know how very much I appreciated her time and insight.

So how did this miracle come about you ask? (Seriously, you know you’re curious). My girl Sahara Roberts, a.k.a. trouble maker in arms, crit partner and all around bestie, that’s how. She asked a favor of the aforementioned author and you could have knocked me over with a feather (admittedly not an uncommon occurrence on a Friday night but this was a Wednesday!) and (this is the amazing part) she agreed to go over my WIP  issues with me!! Did I mention NYT best selling author??

So, I ended up feeling much better about my plot, I’m logging words again, and if I squint real hard, after a couple of shots of Grey Goose, I swear I can see the finish line off in the distance. I’m kidding! Sorta. Anyway…

Something else unique to authors, we actually love it when one of us makes it, reaching the status of Published Author. We help each other, stay up late untangling plot lines and offering support, not just to our friends but the community at large. Where else could someone like me, a total stranger, have a one on one with (yeah gonna mention it again) a NYT best selling author?! It is, quite simply, an awesome community to be a part of it. So right here, right now, I’m very happy to showcase my best friend’s debut novel:

Sahara Robert’s “Desire & Deception” (Entangled Publishing)

Someday when I get the big bucks I’ll spring for a website that comes with drum rolls, Ta-Da’s and confetti fireworks, until then you’ll have to settle for this girlfriend, and my congratulations!

Fireworks

Thanks to Public-Domain-Image.com for the great photo

 

 

Desire and Deception

 Tessa Marshal has fulfilled her long awaited dream of homeownership. She celebrates by taking a vacation with a friend but gets more than she bargained for when her adventure becomes a terrifying ordeal.

Kristopher “Kris” Harmon has spent years climbing the ranks within the Mexican cartel. He walks a tight line between vicious drug runners with agendas of their own and working with the cartel leaders he’s trying to organize. Any distraction could prove fatal for him.

Their worlds collide when Tessa is mistaken for a drug mule and taken captive. As time runs out for both of them, Tessa has to reach beyond her fears and trust a stranger while Kris must choose between his lifelong ambitions and saving Tessa’s life.

If they want to survive, both must trust that there is more to the other than what meets the eye.

Incy Black is “Hard to Hold”

Voice can be a difficult thing for an author to nail down. Readers manage to instinctively pick up on it, and it’s one of the attributes that determines who becomes a favorite author for them. That is probably what I love most about Incy Black and her writing. Her voice is unique, recognizable and draws you immediately into the story. Reading her blog is a refreshing charge into a summer downpour, complete with the occasional lightening bolt to keep you on your toes. Sure, you’re gonna get wet but as they say, life is all about learning to dance in the rain. Incy does that with snarky abandon.

Check out her blog and you’ll immediately want to know more about her.  Browse the first chapter of her latest release “Hard to Hold” for free, and I can just about guarantee you’ll be hitting the buy link. So go get it and welcome to your newest reader addiction.

You can thank me later.

 

Hard To HoldAnna Key Marshall is about to get what she’s always wanted: a baby. Granted, it’s through a sperm donor instead of her ex-husband, but you can’t have everything. She has no idea why someone wants her dead, but she’ll do whatever it takes to protect her unborn child—even if it means turning to her ex, the Black Ops specialist who broke her heart.

Five years ago, British Intelligence agent Nick Marshall slammed the door on the woman who betrayed him. But now Anna’s back in his life with a vengeance, pregnant and full of attitude. He’d like nothing better than to walk away, but with her life on the line, he has no choice but to do what he does best—protect her at all costs.

As old wounds resurface, Nick begins to doubt his version of what went down with Anna so long ago. And he begins to believe they might have a second chance together. But with Anna’s would-be killer on the loose—it will take the full force and fury of his protective instincts, fueled by a powerful love he can’t leave behind, to hold on to the woman he still loves.

Mints, Toads and Spiders, oh my!

Ah, June. I love this time of year, the garden is starting to come in, my herbs are already beginning to yield. In addition to the usual veggies, I’m growing basil, cilantro, chives, comfrey, thyme, lemon balm and of course, mint. I am limiting myself to only three types of mint this year. Be gentle, this is hard for me.

 

3 MintsThe plant on the far left is Mentha x piperita ‘Citrata’, more commonly known as Orange Mint. In the middle is Mentha x piperita ‘Chocolate’, or Chocolate Mint and on the right, Mentha x piperita, a variety called Twist of Peppermint. Aside from being beautiful, tasty and naturally grown medicine, mints are among the easiest garden herbs to grow. You do have to make a determined effort to control their spread, hence the reason I always plant them in containers. If you want to try your hand at gardening, start with herbs and mints in particular. These guys will make you feel like a wise old hobbit…or at least a competent human.

 

My day begins with letting loose the hounds, Bigs first, Littles second. No sooner were the Bigs out when there was a commotion by the shed. I figured they’d spotted one of the chipmunks who live underneath, or a squirrel hesitated before sprinting for the trees but it quickly became obvious it was something inside that had their interest. Tossing a couple of balls in the other direction (like some men, dogs are easily distracted) I opened up and glanced around. Word to the wise here: what you see as a tool shed, Nature sees as a multi-story condo with no fees and a built in buffet, a.k.a your garden. If you even think something is in there, proceed SLOWLY. I’ve run into more critters than I care to think about. Literally.

 

This time I found a beautiful specimen of Bufo a. americanus, or American toad. She seems to be a healthy female, so I set her up in a small apartment under the pumpkin with her own pool. It only took a few minutes, just set a clay pot in the ground, toss some dirt and damp grass in, and add a water source nearby. Since one toad can eat up to 1000 insects each day, I’m hoping she’ll find her digs acceptable and stick around. Click on the image and you’ll see her inside.

 

Toad in house2

 

Morning chores and rescue of the day accomplished, I sat down to write. About two minutes in… it hit, that creepy vibe that slithers over me whenever something I utterly detest invades my personal space. I’m not talking about the “18 People You’re Scared of on Facebook” kind of creepy. This is more like Ripley knows an alien is close, by the way the hair on her arms stands up and the skin on the back of her neck crawls. Eventually I had nowhere else to look but up… and there it was. A freakin spider…

Right over my head people!

Now I’m pretty tolerant, especially when it comes to all creatures great and small HOWEVER…there are notable exceptions. Spiders are one of those.

 

I know they are good for the garden. I know it’s not their fault they have all those legs and that jerky walk, but neither is it my fault I find them terrifying. I tolerate them outside, but in my house? Sorry but no. Since there wasn’t anyone else around, and dogs are utterly useless against arachnids, I had limited options here. Waiting for a hero to come along was not one of them. Like Ripley, I was left to save myself.

 

So that was how I found myself kneeling precariously on a drafting stool, maneuvering into position for the kill. One hand holding a rolled up newspaper, the other maintaining a death grip on the backrest all while muttering “Please don’t fall on me” under my breath. After a thrilling round of “what if I miss?” the battle began. Naturally my first strike missed and equally naturally, the spider opted for the best defense, which as we all know is a good offense. It rappelled to the floor like a little Special Ops ninja spider, looked up with all eight eyes and said…”Let’s Dance Woman!”

SpiderWall

Picture if you will… a woman in red checked pjs and faded AC/DC “Highway to Hell” top, swatting madly at a spider on the floor darting in 13 directions simultaneously, hopping around in a vain attempt to keep both bare feet off said floor, set to the shrill baying of two small dogs who have, oh so helpfully, joined in the chase.

Really guys??

This will not go down as one of my fonder memories. On the other hand, it’s moments like that where I have to admit I am grateful not to be famous.

Can you imagine that shot on the front page of the National Enquirer?

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

I can only blame, err thank Sahara Roberts for this. Not only has she nominated me for the Inspiring Blogger award (and we won’t discuss the irony of this being my inaugural post) she’s giving me a great way to kick off my full body contact with the blogosphere, whether I’m ready or not. The only reason I’m not plotting against her as we speak, is that I have the opportunity to pay it forward by torturing 7 of my friends. She knows how to lure me in…

VeryInspiredBloggerAward

The Rules? Easy!

1. Link back to the person nominating you for the award and thank them (sharpens blade)
2. Display the Very Inspiring Blogger logo – ok let’s be honest, it’s way cool…you want this on your blog!
3. Reveal 7 things about yourself (this could go very…very badly…)
4. Select 7 other bloggers to offer up as a sacrifice to the Awards God
5. Post the rules (otherwise how will you know which ones to break?)
6. Be sure to let your chosen victims know what you’ve done to them (this is the best part!!!)

 

I’m a writer. I’ve concluded that what that means is I’m one of those people who actually listens to the voices in my head, a group I refer to as The Residents. And while it’s true they managed to get my signature on a 99 year rent control contract, I have to point out it was signed after a vodka soaked, post Celtics championship party. So….totally not my fault.

 

In my misspent youth I owned a 1976 Firethorne red Pontiac Trans-Am with a 455HO, 4 speed tranny and highway gears. 1976_Pontiac_Trans_Am I may have been a less than stellar driver during that time period, but in my defense, I never got a ticket and nobody ever got a nose in front of me. I also drove a nifty 66 Mustang equipped with a small block 289 tricked out with a ¾ race cam. You know for those times when the Trans-Am needed to, uh..not be seen for a while. Yeah…..

 

I’m an all American country girl stuck in the burbs, a serious tree hugger and health nut. I grow my own veggies, raise chickens, make my own skin care products and in general avoid chemicals and anything non-organic. I’m currently in a love affair with all things herbal (ok well not all – as a more or less law abiding citizen there are herbs I have no interest in, though I pass no judgments!).

 

ShoesMy shameful secret is hidden in my closet – I’m a shoe and boot addict. Dman (DH, a/k/a My Enabler) tried to set some limits; something about having to get rid of one pair for every new pair I got. My counteroffer to exclude anything that could be termed “bedroom shoes” was accepted. Never heard anything more about limits and I was able to really ramp up my collection. Win/win!

 

I sleep with dogs. No, not Dman, he’d be classified as a bear.Dogs You know, if we were classifying men in animal terms. Anyway, I’m talking about my real life dogs, two Italian Greyhounds. They weigh 11 pounds each so you’d think they would take up hardly any room. Ha, not so much. After a memorable incident involving one of the tiny terrors and a certain portion of his anatomy, Dman instituted another rule called “Never Again”. But I wouldn’t be opposed to sleeping with other dogs. Sometimes I cuddle with my son’s pit bull. I make no apologies for this.

 

I’m very passionate about the causes I believe in and I never quit a battle once I engage. If you’re my friend I’ll follow you into Hell and go toe to toe with Lucifer if need be. Being a double Taurus might have something to do with that. I concede that this stubborn streak has led me into some strange situations, but never anything that got me arrested!*note to self – add this to bucket list*

 

I’m a deeply emotional creature. I often torture myself by watching YouTube videos of returning servicemen and women surprising their kids and dogs. I’ve noticed cats don’t make many appearances in these and when they do, they seem more bemused by the fact that their person was even gone in the first place. This is why I’m a dog person. On the other hand, I’m also somewhat of a sadist since I often amuse myself by watching videos of animals doing really stupid things. I blame the Residents for this contradictory personality issue.

 

And there you have it. Everything you need to know about me, whether you wanted it or not. Good luck getting that bleached out of your brains!  True to my word, here are my 7 chosen victims:

Michele Barrow-Belisle

Lucy D. Briand

Karen Y. Bynum

Cassandra Carr

Rebekah R. Ganiere

Kendall Grey

Olivia Kelly

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