Romantic Suspense and a Research Trip by Mae Clair

It’s been a hectic week. Er, make that month. I love when I have a new release hitting booksellers, but wow, it can be exhausting. I know many of you can relate. Whew!

Today, I’m visiting Just Romantic Suspense, a fantastic blog that is dedicated to….well, romantic suspense. Although all of my previous novels have touched on this genre, MYTH AND MAGIC is the first that can truly claim it. I’m pretty jazzed about that.

As always, if you get a moment, pop over and say hello. The good people at JRS leave each post up for two days, so I am there today (June 24) and tomorrow (June 25).

Know what comes after that?  Okay, aside from Friday.

My husband is indulging my research whim again by taking me to Point Pleasant. Mothman, UFOs, the TNT Area. It should be interesting. This time I want to hit the Mason County Visitor’s Center. It was closed the last time we were there because we arrived too late on a Friday evening. I’m looking forward to coming back with lots of great stuff for use in my Point Pleasant Series.

I’m sure I’ll be blogging about it.

I probably won’t be able to shut up. :)

From our last visit into the TNT

From our last visit into the TNT

Mae Clair Presents: Choosing the Highlander by Jessi Gage #giveaway

Before I introduce my guest author today, just a quick note to say MYTH AND MAGIC is still touring and you can find me at the BooksChatter blog if you’d like to pop in and say hello. I’m doing a Giveaway on this tour, for a $15.00 Amazon or B&N gift card, so be sure to enter while you’re there.

And now, I’m delighted to have long-time friend Jessi Gage back on my blog today with the third novel in her Highland Wishes series, CHOOSING THE HIGHLANDER.  Jessi’s time-travel highlander books have been a hit from day one, burning up the romance charts. If you haven’t already discovered these fun, adventurous and romantic stories, you’ve got a treat in store. Please welcome, Jessi back to my blog!

Book cover for Choosing the Highlander by Jessi Gage depicts an isolated castle on a bluff with a pendant in the foreground

~ooOOoo~

Fifteenth-Century Highland Warrior Listens to Billy Joel… And Likes It

Thank you, Mae, for hosting me on my release day!

I’m really excited about my new release CHOOSING THE HIGHLANDER. This one is #3 in my Highland Wishes series, and it features a hero and heroine readers might remember from WISHING FOR A HIGHLANDER, Constance and Wilhelm.

Writing this one was super fun, because Connie is from 1981. As I researched this era, I remembered so many fun things about the 80’s.

Remember when a Sony Walkman was the height of technology? If you had one that could record as well as play back, you were one of the cool kids. As a child of the 80’s I remember those days well.

I remember the day I got my first Walkman and I wanted to play it for everyone at our family gathering. I was completely unprepared for the fact that there was no speaker, only headphones. I was like, “What? You can’t use it like a boom-box?”

I remember sharing music with a friend by detaching one of the headphones and holding it out in invitation. I remember making mix tapes by hovering over my father’s boom-box and hitting record and play as quickly as possible when a song I love started up on the radio. I would go through packs of batteries listening to mix tapes on my Walkman.

This little miracle of music delivery is by FAR my favorite product of the 1980s. In fact, a Walkman plays a pivotal role in CHOOSING THE HIGHLANDER.

To celebrate release day, I’m hosting a Rafflecopter giveaway on my blog. Drop by to enter the giveaway and take a fun 1980’s toy quiz. Skip directly to the giveaway here, if you want to enter with minimum clicks!

Here’s the blurb & buy links:

CHOOSING THE HIGHLANDER

As a mechanical engineer in 1981 Chicago, Connie designs plumbing systems. She has also designed her life to perfection, right down to the man she hopes to marry. But when Mr. Right proposes, she can’t say yes. A head-clearing vacation brings her to the Scottish Highlands, where her free-spirited twin wishes for Connie to find true love. Neither sister expects the wish to send Connie hurtling five hundred years into the past.

Wilhelm Murray, heir to the barony of Dornoch, hopes to one day hold a seat in parliament and bring urgently needed reform to Scotland. But everything changes when a woman slated for execution proclaims her innocence using the most peculiar language. Powerfully attracted to the brave beauty, he rescues her even though it means becoming a fugitive and forfeiting his dream.

As Connie and Wilhelm evade capture, she discovers his passion for justice. Scotland needs his ideas. It needs him. And so does she. But in order to clear Wilhelm’s name, she will have to turn her back on everything she’s worked so hard for and embrace the magic of love. 

EXCERPT

“Tell me your name,” he commanded.

Her eyes flashed in that way of hers that told him she didn’t make a habit of following orders. Och, her brazen spirit drew him from the moment he first saw her, when she’d been demanding Ruthven let her go despite being nude, bound, gagged, and outnumbered. Such bravery! Such intrepid determination!

“You told me no questions tonight.” Her voice scratched like sun dried wool not yet tamed into softness. The damage to her tender throat and lungs made him lust to slay her abusers all over again. Noticeably absent was her feigned English speech.

He suppressed a grin, wondering if she’d done it intentionally. “Simply telling me your name would have required fewer words than the rebuke, my lady, if your throat pains thee.”

“It wasn’t a rebuke.” A look of affront tugged her eyebrows low over those captivating eyes. How was it her every expression affected his viscera? With each change in her features, his stomach leapt and dove like a hawk in pursuit of prey. “Only a reminder.” The briefest flicker of nervousness belied the stubborn lift of her chin.

The kiss had made her uncertain. Before, she’d approached him as an adversary, though why she should do so, he could not guess. Now, she recognized the connection between them, but, if he guessed correctly, she feared it.

The lass needed time. She needed food and rest. He would ask no more of her tonight. Not even her name. It mattered not. His heart knew her regardless of what she called herself.

“Consider me reminded, sweet lady.”

Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo | Google Play | Goodreads

Thanks for having me, Mae! Thanks in advance to anyone who shares or tweets using Mae’s nifty blog buttons. And don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

ABOUT JESSI GAGE 

zz_Jessi Gage headshot2USA Today Bestselling Author Jessi Gage is addicted to happy-ever-after endings. She counts herself blessed because she gets to live her own HEA with her husband and children in the Seattle area.

Jessi has the attention span of a gnat…unless there is a romance novel in her hands. In that case, you might need a bullhorn to get her to notice you. She writes what she loves to read: stories about love.

Do use the contact page on jessigage.com and drop her a line. There is no better motivation to finish her latest writing project than a note from a happy reader! While you’re visiting her website, sign up for Jessi’s newsletter so you never miss a new release.

Website | Blog | Facebook Fan Page | Twitter | Goodreads | Newsletter

You Are Cordially Invited to a Halloween Party (in June) by Mae Clair

Gothic looking woman wearing a long back gown and holding a ravenPlace:    The Breckwood Mansion, Coldcreek, PA

When:   Halloween Eve beginning at 7PM

What You Should Know:
Please come in costume. Mrs. Morgana Breckwood has gone to a great deal of time and expense to ensure this year’s annual Halloween party will make her previous events pale “ghostly” in comparison. And yes, the rumors are true. There is a slim possibility her son, Caith, might show. Not sure about a costume for him . . . you know how he feels about Halloween. 

Excerpt from Myth and Magic:
Veronica’s stomach clenched as a mixture of fear and dread skittered through her. The expression in her eyes must have betrayed her unease because Morgana took her by the arm and drew her aside. Across the hall, the caterer and florist were busily consulting with the head of Morgana’s household staff. Three workers wearing black shirts that proclaimed Ghosts & Ghouls, Inc. wheeled a life-sized coffin through the front door. Having attended a number of Morgana’s Halloween parties, Veronica knew trays would be fitted inside the open lid, bearing all manner of delectable treats.

“I know my son,” Morgana said, cutting through the noise and activity. “He’s stubborn, but he’s not stupid. He isn’t going anywhere, Veronica. He may not be willing to admit it, but he’s in love with you.”

“No.” She tried to draw away. “Don’t say that.”

“It’s the truth.”

She shook her head. “Caith’s terrified of love.”

“He’s terrified of loss.”

Veronica clamped her mouth shut. Morgana was right. Even if Caith wouldn’t admit it, she knew it was the defining emotion that had driven him all of his life. The reason he’d chosen a career designed to keep others safe, the reason he’d given his son another name, the reason he still couldn’t bring himself to visit Trask’s grave.

She wet her lips. “I have to see him.”

“Give him time first,” Morgana suggested. “Stuart said he was up all night working on the case. He’s barely slept and probably isn’t thinking clearly.” She smiled encouragingly, hooking her arm through Veronica’s. “You can stay and help me decide where the band should go. And the goblins. Did I mention we’re having roving goblins?”

Veronica managed a small smile. The Ghosts & Ghouls people were pushing a series of crates through the door. Tall ones, large ones, squat ones.

“Mrs. Breckwood,” a sandy-haired worker called. “Where would you like us to put the trolls?”

~ooOOoo~

Sound like a party you’d like to attend? Here’s the low-down on MYTH AND MAGIC:

AS CHILDREN THEY PLAYED GAMES OF MYTH AND MAGIC…

Veronica Kent fell in love with Caith Breckwood when they were children. As a teenager, she was certain he was the man she was destined to marry. But a traumatic event from Caith’s past led him to fear a future together. He left Veronica, hoping to save her from a terrible fate. Twelve years later, Caith, now a P.I., is hired to investigate bizarre incidents at the secluded retreat Veronica manages. Returning to his hometown, Caith is forced to face his nightmares—and his feelings for the woman he’s always loved.

THEN ONE DAY THE MONSTERS BECAME REAL.
 
After the callous way Caith broke her heart, Veronica isn’t thrilled to see him again. But strange occurrences have taken a dangerous toll on business at Stone Willow Lodge. Forced to work together, Veronica discovers it isn’t ghostly apparitions that frighten her, but her passion for a man she has never forgotten. Or forgiven. Can two people with a tarnished past unearth a magical future?

Book Cover for MYTH AND MAGIC by Mae Clair depicting a brooding old home at nightAmazon 
Barnes and Noble 
Kobo 
iTunes 
Google
Kensington Publishing  

Today’s tour stop for my Pump Up Your Book blog tour is with ToiBox of Words. As always, pop over if you can.

And hey, about that Halloween Party–with my love of myth, I think I could have a blast there. How about you?

Ghosts with Mozzarella Please, by Mae Clair

Those of you who have been following my blog for a while, know that the kitchen and I have a love/hate relationship. I tend to think it should be decorative rather than functional. Lately, however, I have been trying to expand my horizons and occasionally venture into the realm of–*gasp!*–cooking. My husband looks on these ventures with a mixture of trepidation and….well, mostly, trepidation.

In my defense, I have been know to produce things that are edible. And then there is my infamous Tortellini Salad Recipe, something you might want to look into when you’re in a bind for a covered dish—uh, sort of.

Today, I’m visiting Jennifer Lowery’s Romance Recipes blog and sharing a recipe for “Ghostly Pizza,” while giving a brief glimpse of my newest release, MYTH AND MAGIC, a Halloween-themed romantic suspense/mystery novel. Why not hop over and see what it’s all about?

If I can make that pizza, ANYONE can. The tortellini salad proves it! :)

You can also find me at Romance Lives Forever. I had a little bit of a gaffe earlier when my post didn’t show up on the day I thought I was scheduled (doh!), but we got things straightened out. I’m sharing some insights about Myth so hop over if you can.

And finally, I’m also at Gothic Moms, my tour stop today for my Pump Up Your Book blog tour.

Myth-and-Magic-Banner

I Remember the Mystery Machine by Mae Clair

In the world of blogging you make a lot of great friends. I am truly thankful for all of them and the support they have shown me. Today, I am super excited to be a guest on the blog of my friend, Daisy Banks. Daisy is a gal who makes her home across the pond in the U.K.  She lives in a converted Chapel in Shropshire, England (how ridiculously cool is that?) and has a gorgeous garden. At least I’m convinced she does, because she blogs about flower folklore—among other things. Daisy writes in a multiple of genres including fantasy romance, historical romance, paranormal romance, and sc-fi.

A picture of the Mystery Machine (from Scooby-Doo) from a car showI invite you to pop over to her blog today where I’m sharing a post about—would you believe, Scooby-Doo and the uber-cool Mystery Machine? I hope you’ll drop in to see what it’s all about! 

In addition, I’m also at C. A. Milson’s blog as part of my Pump Up Your Book blog tour, put together by Lyrical Press. I’m doing a Q&A interview there. It’s a good thing I don’t mind an occasionally hectic pace :)

Happy Hump Day!

When Stories Evolve by Mae Clair

If you’re a writer, at one point or another, you probably had a story evolve beyond anything you anticipated. That’s pretty much how my new romantic suspense/mystery novel, MYTH AND MAGIC, became…MYTH AND MAGIC.

Many years ago—actually decades—I wrote a short story called RESURRECTING MERLIN. At the time, I was writing full-length manuscripts and had joined a local critique group for short story writers. Writing something under 10K was a challenge for me. RESURRECTING MERLIN was my first attempt.

I wrote a lot of short stories after that, but RM was always my favorite. A magical realism piece with a dark thread, the nucleus revolved around two young brothers, Tristan and Merlin, who played games of myth and magic. They spent many afternoons imagining themselves wizards who battled savage trolls and fierce beasts. That idyllic setting was shattered by a tragedy that forever altered Tristan’s life, causing an insurmountable gulf between him and his parents.

I won’t go into the entire plot, but it always rattled around in the back of mind. I didn’t want to leave it languishing in a short that I’d probably never use. So, years later, I took the core idea—an innocent childhood of mythical games fractured by an horrific event—and made that the heart of MYTH AND MAGIC. I changed the circumstances of the event, and now, instead of only two brothers, there were four friends—one a young girl who fancied herself every bit as adept with her imaginary sword as the three boys.

Most of you know MYTH AND MAGIC is a Halloween tale about weird happenings at a secluded corporate lodge. But that’s only half of the story. The time line in the present. You’ll also find several scenes where I turn the clock back to childhood, in order for my reader to understand the motivations of my characters. Particularly my hero and heroine.

Today, my Pump Up Your Book blog tour stop is with A Little Bit of R & R. Please pop over and say hello if you can. And I’d love to hear if you’ve ever had a story evolve from something small into the nucleus of a much larger work.

Book Cover for MYTH AND MAGIC by Mae Clair depicting a brooding old home at nightAmazon 
Barnes and Noble 
Kobo 
iTunes 
Google
Kensington Publishing  

Book Tour Kicks off Today: Myth and Magic by Mae Clair

It doesn’t seem like I’ll get many Mythical Mondays done this month (and I have so many good topics lined up!) because I’ve got other news to share.

I have two blog tours running through June into early July—yes, two. The first was put together by my wonderful publisher, Lyrical Press, and kicks off today. Check out this cool banner Pump Up Your Book blog tours made for MYTH AND MAGIC, my new romantic suspense/mystery novel.

Myth-and-Magic-Banner

Nice, huh?

My second tour kicks off next week. It’s one I arranged through the wonderful people at Goddess Fish book tours. I had such a great experience with them touring ECLIPSE LAKE, I decided to use them again. More on that when the tour kicks off.

Today, I invite you to join me at the blog of 3 Partners in Shopping. Although my Mythical Mondays are undergoing a temporary hiatus until I wrap up touring MYTH AND MAGIC, they will definitely be back in July. I hope you will “stay tuned” for upcoming posts on hairy monsters, UFOs, and strange urban legends and folklore.

To see the complete list of tour stops Lyrical Press and Pump Up Your Book blog tours put together for me, see below.

Happy (Mythical) Monday! :)

PUYB Tour Schedule A

June 15

Book featured at 3 Partners in Shopping

June 16

Book featured at A Little Bit of R&R

June 17

Interviewed at C.A. Milson

June 18

Guest blogging at Gothic Moms

June 19

Interviewed at The ToiBox of Words

June 22

Guest blogging at Mythical Books

June 23

Interviewed at Review From Here

June 24

Book featured at RhiReading

June 25

Interviewed at Shameless Book Club

June 26

Book featured at The Dark Phantom

June 29

Book reviewed at Literary Addicts

June 30

Guest blogging at Angel’s Guilty Pleasures

July 1

Interviewed at I’m Shelf-ish

July 2

Book featured at The Literary Nook

July 3

Interviewed at Toot’s Book Reviews