Cover Reveal with G*I*V*E*A*W*A*Y: Wishing for a Highlander by Jessie Gage

My friend, Jessie Gage, has re-released her sexy highlander novel with a new cover. This is a fun time travel romance with a highlander who will melt your heart and a heroine you’ll cheer for. To celebrate she’s even doing a giveaway (see details below).

So, without further ado, presenting (drum roll, please) WISHING FOR A HIGHLANDER:

JessiGage_WishingForAHighlander_2500px

In a nutshell: A single and pregnant museum worker accidentally wishes herself back in time and is forced to marry a Highland warrior with intimacy issues.


Click on the word GIVEAWAY to go to Rafflecopter’s secure site and enter for a chance at a $25 Amazon gift card and an ecopy of Wishing for a Highlander. If you’re like to leave a comment, answer the question: Who would you bet on in a battle between a sparkly vampire and a sparkly Highlander? I think you already know my answer…

Blurb:
Be careful what you wish for. It might just come true.

Single-and-pregnant museum worker Melanie voices an idle wish while examining a Scottish artifact, that a Highland warrior would sweep her off her feet and help her forget her cheating ex. The last thing she expects is for her wish to be granted. Magically transported to the middle of a clan skirmish in the sixteenth-century Highlands, she comes face to face with her kilted fantasy man.

Tall, handsome, and heir to his uncle’s lairdship, Darcy Keith should be the most eligible bachelor in Ackergill. Instead, thanks to a prank played on him in his teenage years, he is known for being too large under his kilt to ever make a proper husband. “Big Darcy” runs his deceased father’s windmills and lives alone at his family manor, believing he will never marry.

But a strangely-dressed woman he rescues from a clan skirmish makes him long for more. When the woman’s claims of coming to Ackergill by magic reach the laird’s ears, she is accused of witchcraft. Darcy determines to protect her any way he can, even if it means binding her to him forever.

Excerpt:
Size might have its advantages when it came to fighting, but those few boons fell far short of making up for the problems it caused. Being the biggest and the strongest had gotten him into far more trouble than it had gotten him out of. Swallowing his regret for how careless he’d been with her, he sought to determine whom she belonged to, whom, saints forbid, he might owe.

“Whose wife are ye, then? Not a Gunn’s or I wouldna have had to rescue you from one.”

“I’m not married,” the lass said. “And thank you for the rescuing, by the way. I can’t believe I dropped the dirk. Stupid.” She shook her head.

His heart warmed at her thanks. He didn’t hear many kind words from the lasses and would take what he could get, even from a dishonored woman who had caught a bairn out wedlock. Oddly, he didn’t think poorly of her. Whether it was her worried brow, her guileless, soft mouth, or her vulnerable size, he had not the heart to condemn her.

He didn’t even mind so much that she found him distasteful for his size, although talking with her now, she didn’t seem overly upset to be in his arms. He endeavored to keep her talking, keep her distracted from her disgust.

“Ye never answered my first question,” he said. “Who are you? And where are ye from if ye’re no’ English?”

“Ugh. I don’t know. Is there an answer that won’t get me burned at the stake or locked up in a ward for the hopelessly insane?”

Like most things out of her mouth, that had been a peculiar answer. “Ye could try the truth,” he offered, slowing his pace since he heard Archie’s voice not far off.

“No,” she said flatly. “I couldn’t. At least not the whole truth. How about we just go with my name, Melanie, and with the honest fact that I’m a long way from home and I have no idea how to get back.” Her green eyes pierced his. “I’m afraid you might be stuck with me, Darcy Keith.”

Purchase WISHING FOR A HIGHLANDER from:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble

Connect with Jessi Gage at the Following Haunts:
Website
Blog
Facebook Fan Page
Twitter
Goodreads

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Bio:
Jessi lives with her husband and children in the Seattle area. In addition to writing paranormal romance, she’s a wife, a mom, an audiologist, a church-goer, a Ford driver, a PC user, and a coffee snob. Her guiding tenet in her writing is that good triumphs over evil, but not before evil gives good one heck of a run for its money. The last time she imagined a world without romance novels, her husband found her crouched in the corner, rocking.

Welcome Christy Olesen, Author of A Daddy for Luke #tenderromance #contemporary

I’m delighted to extend a Pen Pal welcome to Christy Olesen who is celebrating her latest release, A DADDY FOR LUKE. Christy and I originally connected through Savvy Authors when we took a course together, and have remained in contact ever since. Christy is also the author of HER SCOTTISH CEO, a charming contemporary romance set in Scotland. I hope you’ll help me welcome Christy back to my blog! 

 ~ooOOoo~

Hi Mae, thanks for inviting me to your blog today. I’m looking forward to answering your questions and talking a little about my new release A DADDY FOR LUKE.

Fantastic! Let’s start with a bit about you. How long have you been writing?
If you discount my feeble attempts at writing when I was younger — especially after one teacher wrote in the margin of my paper “Learn to use commas!” — I’d say I’ve been writing for nearly thirty years with the first twenty years hit and miss. I’ve been writing, and studying the craft of writing, seriously for ten years.

The dreaded comma. I’ve been tripping over those for almost the same amount of time, LOL. Plotting is also one of my downfalls, but I think even plotters veer from their outline to a degree during the writing process. When you finish a novel, how closely would you say the end product resembles your original concept — 100%? 50%? Something else entirely?
I’m a pantster (working more toward plotting). Since I usually don’t know the ending when I start I’d have to say 50%, because I have only a vague idea where it is going in the first place.  With A DADDY FOR LUKE I knew David couldn’t stay in Center City for long or he’d run into his past, but I didn’t know until the third rewrite of the ending just what his “past” was.

Very interesting. I love characters with a past! I’m working toward learning to plot better too (I’m with you on the 50%. NaNo made me realize there are benefits to plotting). My favorite part of starting a novel will, however, always remain choosing character names. What’s your favorite part and how do you go about it?
My favorite part of starting a new novel is coming up with an unusual way to start. I like to find that moment when the characters life takes a turn. They may not know it at the time, but the reader can see it. In A DADDY FOR LUKE I could have started where Sandy met David at his book signing, but I decided to make it a bit more dramatic by placing them both at a crosswalk before they’ve met. As they start to cross David notices a sports car not slowing down. He pulls Sandy from the car’s path just in time. After that they go on their separate ways until they meet again a short time later at David’s book signing event.

ADFLcover72A heart-pounding moment. Please tell us more about your new release.
A DADDY FOR LUKE is my second novel. It is the first in my loosely connected Cottonwood County Chronicles series, which takes place in an area much like where I live in northwest Nevada.

I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Lake Tahoe in Nevada. Beautiful area. Which character did you enjoy writing the most and why?
David, because, as a tortured hero who had buried his past, he was challenging to write. I needed to bring his emotions to the surface and he fought it.

Without giving too much away, please share a bit about your favorite scene.
My favorite scene is in the Cottonwood County Cemetery. My beta reader said, “You made me cry again, you RAT FINK!”

LOL! Share the first three sentences of your book.
David Winston stood on the corner of Main Street waiting for the signal to cross. He shrugged the tension from his shoulders and glanced furtively at the others also waiting. He hoped no one in Center City would recognize him, particularly those residents who had been responsible for his abrupt exile eight years ago.

Oooh, love that opening. Now share one sentence – - yes, only one! – - of dialogue or description you love.
A pang of tenderness swept over him when he realized the little angel marker was made of cement, not the marble he’d first thought.

I’m guessing that’s from the cemetery scene. NaNo backed up my reading list, but I can’t want to learn what that’s all about and about David’s past. I love tortured heroes. Now back to you — if you couldn’t be a writer, what else would you choose to do?
I always wanted to be a licensed illustrator, like Mary Engelbreit, Susan Branch and so many others.

Your illustrations in HER SCOTTISH CEO were beautiful. A lovely touch to the novel settings. I’m going to switch gears now and ask about pets, because pets and writers naturally go together like peas in a pod. If you have pets, tell us about them and whether or not they shadow your writing time and space.
photo2

This is Cheetah. Need I say more?

So adorable! I’m such a cat person. And yes, they’re notorious for wanting attention when we’re working, LOL. Cheetah looks so comfortable, snuggled up with you. 

And now for a few quick questions:

Dream vacation gifted to you by a fairy godmother: A croft cottage on the Isle of Skye
Favorite season: Autumn
Favorite animal: Cats
Favorite ice cream flavor: Chunky Monkey
Sunset picnic or night on the town: Sunset Picnic

Thanks for a fun interview, Christy! Please share where readers can find you:

Website 
Blog 
Twitter: @christyolesen2
Facebook: ChristyOlesenWriter
Goodreads

ChristyOlesenAuthor Bio
Born and raised in L.A., romance writer Christy Olesen found a home in Northwest Nevada just over the hill from Lake Tahoe. Her travels to Scotland, England, Europe, and Canada, as well as living in the high desert of Nevada have inspired her contemporary tender romances. When not writing Christy enjoys traveling in her 1955 self-restored travel trailer. She enjoys gardening, reading and painting. She has worked for over 20 years as a graphic artist for a local community newspaper, an experience which has sparked her series of Nevada tender romances: Cottonwood County Chronicles, and Cottonwood County Sheriff’s Office.

A DADDY FOR LUKE
Blurb
David Winston’s reputation and fame come from his popular novels. Born to parents who hadn’t planned a family, David was taught to think he wouldn’t amount to anything, so becoming a popular author is a surprise to him. He wants to hang on to his success. Born in Center City, then forced to leave eight years ago, he’s back, but not for long. It’s a gamble just being in town: he risks colliding with his past, which could ruin his future. Then he meets Sandy Archer and tempts fate by staying in town a little longer.

Sandy Archer is content to care for her son Luke, work her way up in her job at the Cottonwood County Chronicle, and stay away from any more disastrous relationships. She has lived in Center City all her life and has adapted well to being legally blind. She’s touched when visiting author, David Winston offers to read his book to her. She discovers a kindred spirit. But her budding relationship is threatened when a relative cautions Sandy that David is not who he seems to be.

Purchase A DADDY FOR LUKE from Amazon
Kindle 

Or from Create Space
Print on Demand

 

Friday the 13th Fun by Mae Clair

It’s Friday the 13th! *cue spooky music*

One of my best friends from childhood was born on the thirteenth of January. I remember how she used to love when her birthday fell on a Friday, as it made it extra special. :)

In case you’re wondering, yes I am superstitious — about a lot of things. But I don’t have problems crossing the paths of black cats, not forwarding chain emails for fear of catastrophic reprisals, or even opening an umbrella in the house. Pish!

On the other hand, I’m not fond of the number 13, won’t tempt fate by visiting a haunted house, or go exploring a cemetery in the dark. I am  however going visiting today. And so are my characters :)

You can find me hanging out with my friend and Lyrical Press sister, Jessi Gage, who interviews me about TWELFTH SUN (I loved her questions!) here.

Elijah and Reagan (the hero and heroine of my romantic mystery) have decided to venture elsewhere and are being interviewed by my friend and Lyrical Press sister, Joanne Wadsworth. You can find their chatty interview here.

bigstock-Abandoned-haunted-house-on-a-h-23959007In closing, here are some interesting facts about Friday the 13th:

Paraskavedekatriaphobia and Friggatriskaidekaphobia are scientific terms used to describe fear of Friday the 13th. I, on the other hand, have a mild case of Triskaidekaphobia, which is fear of the number 13. Hmm. It must stem from childhood and that old black-and-white movie called Thirteen Ghosts. Anyone remember that? I think it terrified me as a kid.

And did you know most hotels don’t have a thirteenth floor, skipping right over it?

~ooOOoo~
An example of my superstitious nature:

Each year the company I work for (on my day job) holds an annual “Kick-Off Event” in January. It’s a fun time where the company leaders provide a review of the previous year and kick-off the new year with a fresh set of goals. We have a lovely buffet lunch at a country club and spend the afternoon socializing. I book the venue and arrange everything. When I started planning 2012′s event I was horrified to realize the Friday we wanted fell on the 13th (we always hold it on a Friday). I was adamant and no one argued
– you can’t kick-off a New Year on a Friday the 13th!! So that year, we moved the event to Tuesday. Fortunately, I already checked the calendar and we’re in the clear for 2014. :)

Happy Friday the Thirteenth! I hope to see you at Jessi and/or Joanne’s blog haunts if you’re able to visit!

Wizards with Words: Annette Drake and Celebration House

Before I introduce you to a fab new wordsmith, I’d like to mention I’m visiting my Lyrical Press sister, Kyra Jacobs, today and doing a short Q&A on her blog. Please pop in if you get a chance, and say hello!

And now, I’d like to introduce Annette Drake who has just released CELEBRAtION HOUSE, a novel right up my alley. The moment I read the blurb I was hooked. Check it out:

3Celebration House by Annette Drake - 1600-300dpiqCarrie Hansen spent her life caring for cardiac patients. Little did she know she would become a patient herself. After recovering from her own heart surgery, she realizes she has a special gift: the ability to see and talk with the dead.

Now, with her new heart failing, she leaves the bustle of Seattle behind and returns to Lexington, Missouri, the small town where she spent her childhood. Here, she sets out to restore an abandoned antebellum mansion and open it as a venue for celebrations.

Carrie’s work is cut out for her. The 150-year-old Greek revival house is in need of serious repair. Her sister, Melanie, tries to bully Carrie into returning to Seattle, predicting “her little project” is doomed to fail. Finally, Carrie’s health gives out on her, requiring emergency surgery.

But she will not give up. Carrie’s unique gift allows her to build relationships with the mansion’s original occupants, especially Maj. Tom Stewart, the handsome Civil War soldier who died a hundred years before Carrie was born. He encourages and comforts her, though not in the physical way they both desire.

Then there’s the builder of the house, Col. Bartholomew Stratton. If there’s one thing this 19th century horse trader cannot abide, it’s the living trespassing on his estate. He delights in scaring these intruders away, even if they are paying guests.

Will Carrie finish restoring Celebration House or will it finish her? And how can she plan a future with a man who has only a past?

Awesome, right? Oh, yeah, I can’t wait to read this one! The moment I saw the Civil War solider on the cover and read the blurb, I was a goner — hook, line and sinker! It’s already downloaded on my Kindle and high on my TBR list. I was thrilled when Annette contacted me and asked to be a guest on my blog. Please make her feel welcome and say hello:

Annette, please share a bit about yourself and how long you’ve been writing:
I’ve been in love with books my whole life. Growing up in a small town in northeast Missouri, there wasn’t a lot to do. The day I discovered the local library was a good day indeed. I spent lots of hours there, crawling on the floor to look at books on the lower shelves or listening to books on vinyl records and cassette tapes. Just soaking up stories. When I went to college, I decided to pursue a degree in journalism because I’ve always loved the written word, but I needed a way to support myself. My dream was to write for the Washington Post before I turned 30. I started writing my first novel when my oldest daughter was about 2. She’s now 22. It’s finishing the book that has always challenged me the most.

Well, I’m delighted you finished Celebration House! What attracts you most to your chosen genre?
That’s a great question. My debut novel is a paranormal romance. I’m marketing a middle-grade novel, Bone Girl, and actively writing a contemporary romance, A Year with Geno. I’ve also recently queried a picture-book manuscript, The Carwash Dragon. I don’t know what the heck I’m doing! I don’t have a chosen genre, but boy, many days I wish I did. For me, it’s all about the characters and their stories.

I completely agree with you! I cross genres when I write and, although I concentrate mostly on romance and romantic mysteries, I have several manuscripts in varying genres, including urban fantasy, fantasy and light horror. Getting back to characters, what do you develop first, characters or plot? Characters. They decide the plot. I just try to keep up.

Well said. Which do you find easier to write and why – description or dialogue?
I love writing dialogue. I think like many new writers – and that’s what I am, a newbie – I struggle with knowing how much description to include. I often ask my critique group – do you want to know what this character looks like? Do you want more description of the house or garden? That’s a struggle for me. I’ve just discovered Dana Stabenow. Wow! She writes great description. I’m reading her work because my current WIP, A Year with Geno, takes place in Alaska. Although I lived there several years, I struggle with wondering how much description to include. A Year with Geno is the first book I’ve written in which I want setting to be a vital part of the book.

I love books set in Alaska and will be looking forward to A Year with Geno. Please tell us about your current release, Celebration House.
Celebration House is the story of a woman who leaves the bustle of Seattle and moves back to her childhood hometown of Lexington, Missouri. There, she restores an abandoned antebellum mansion, which she then opens to the public for weddings and celebratory events. I started writing Celebration House in 2007. I literally woke up from a dream with the plot. I was working as a registered nurse in a cath lab at a hospital in Seattle, and I would see the same patients come in for procedures again and again. I thought, wow, that takes courage. From these patients, my main character, Carrie Hansen, was born. Because we share the same profession, readers may think I envision myself as Carrie. I do not. I do not have her courage. I never will.

It sounds like you’ve created a strong heroine. How did you choose your title? Initially, the working title was The Celebration House. When Tirgearr Publishing offered me a contract, I sought out the advice of the local writers guild president. She suggested I drop the word “The.” The title means more to me, though the house is offered to the public for celebrations. I hope readers will take away the idea that “celebration” also refers to celebrating Carrie’s life and their own.

Great! Share the first three sentences of your book.
With pleasure!

“It hasn’t been lived in for quite a while. It does have electricity though,” said the Realtor. She pushed in a button on the switch plate. The weak overhead light fizzed and, with a loud pop and a puff of white smoke, burnt out.

That puts us right in the setting. Without giving too much away, please share a bit about your favorite scene.
In one of the later scenes, Carrie dances with the male lead, Maj. Tom Stewart. It’s the first time she’s touched him, and like me, Carrie has no idea how to waltz. He teaches her. I love that scene. I fantasize about seeing it on a movie screen. Is Hugh Jackman available? Because he is yummy.

*fanning face* Oh, dear! I’m sold on that scene! There is something so exquisitely romantic about a waltz. I’ve always wanted to learn. And I will now be imagining Hugh Jackman as Maj. Tom Stewart as I read the book. Great choice! :)

If you couldn’t be a writer, what else would you choose to do?
If I didn’t need to make a living, I would love to be an actress. I’ve always been overly dramatic. I would also love to be a farmer, growing any kind of food that goes in a pie, such as strawberries, rhubarb, raspberries or blackberries. I also love the idea of owning a bakery/coffee house/used bookstore. Wouldn’t that be fun?

I would love to own a coffee house or a bookstore! I’d probably fail miserably with the bakery or farm and I’m too introverted to be an actress, LOL.

Name a book that had a profound effect on you and explain why:
I love the book, The Help, by Kathryn Stockett. I love this book because of the character, Skeeter, and how she just doesn’t fit in a small Mississippi town. I also love Minny, who cannot keep her unwanted opinions to herself. I relate to these two women because I didn’t fit in my hometown, and I say things I sure wish I hadn’t.

But another reason I love this story is because it was rejected 60 times. Sixty! I’m struggling to find an agent or publisher for the best book I’ve ever written, Bone Girl, and I tell myself that until I hear no 60 times, I can’t give up. Thank you, Ms. Stockett, for setting the bar so high.

Good for you, being willing to tough it out! I’ve read that about The Help and it’s so hard to imagine. I wish you much success with Bone Girl. The title is riveting.

And now for a couple of quick glimpses on things you enjoy:
Favorite season
: I love the fall. Halloween is my favorite holiday. No presents to buy. No big meal to cook. Just dress up in silly costumes and beg for chocolate? That’s a great holiday. Sign me up.

Favorite color: Yellow, like sunflowers or the sun. I didn’t know how important the sun was to me until I lived in western Washington and Alaska. My longest stretch without seeing the sun: 33 days. Not a fun time in my life.

Favorite type of music: I love bluegrass. I even own a fiddle and have learned a few tunes. I play a mean Liza Jane.

Favorite TV show: I love the Stephen Colbert report. My fantasy is to someday be a guest on his TV show after my first two books are made into movies. Hey! We all have fantasies, right?

Favorite animal: As much as I love the basset hound, I love horses more. I’ve always been an admirer of the horse.

You got me on thirty-tree days without the sun. I think it takes a special kind of person to be able to live in Alaska. Beautiful country, but wow, what an adjustment! And I’ll look forward to seeing you on the Stephen Colbert report. Maybe you’ll do a little fiddling there too, while sharing your latest bestsellers. :)

Annette Drake (Color)AUTHOR BIO:
Annette Drake’s work is character-driven and celebrates the law of unintended consequences. Her debut novel, Celebration House, debuted on August 1st in e-book format for readers everywhere from Tirgearr Publishing.

Annette left high school after two years to obtain her GED and attend Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri. There she earned a degree in journalism before working as a reporter and editor for newspapers in Missouri and Kansas. She earned a bachelor of science in nursing in 1994 from Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri, and worked as a registered nurse in hospitals throughout Missouri, Alaska and Washington for 18 years before returning her focus to writing

Annette recently completed her middle-grade novel, Bone Girl, and is hard at work revising her steamy contemporary romance, A Year with Geno.

She is the mother of four children. The oldest just graduated from the University of Washington; the youngest just graduated from kindergarten. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators. She loves libraries, basset hounds and bakeries. She does not camp.

You can follow her writing at http://annettedrake.com. She welcomes correspondence at: Write2me@annettedrake.com

Purchase Celebration House from:
http://www.tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Drake_Annette/celebration-house.htm

Visit Annette at the following haunts:
Blog
Facebook
Twitter (@annettedrake13)
Goodreads
 
 

A Pen Pal Welcome to Christina Cole and Summertime!

bigstock-Stacks-of-old-letters-on-woode-43415203I’m thrilled to turn my blogging pen over to Christina Cole today as she shares her new release SUMMERTIME, along with some amazing memories of summers past. Oh, how I wish I had my very own catalpa tree and could “go down to Frank’s” in Indian Grove!

Please welcome Christina and enjoy these wonderful memories!

~ooOOoo~

Memories of Summertime
by Christina Cole

With the recent release of Summertime, my latest historical romance from Sweet Cravings Publishing, I’ve been talking to readers a lot about their favorite summer memories from childhood. Today, I thought it would be fun to share a few of my own.

First, I have to point out one fact. I’m old. Ancient, is the way my kids put it. I’m old enough to remember when houses were cooled with window fans, and the few stores with air conditioning bragged about it in their advertisements. Oh, how refreshing it was to walk into a “dimestore” that featured that latest, and greatest technology. The unfortunate thing was that you couldn’t stay there forever. Once you’d finished your shopping, you had to step back out into the sweltering heat. Needless to say, shoppers dawdled as long as they could.

Another sweet summer memory was going to the Dari-B. It wasn’t a big, fancy place like today’s Dairy Queens or Baskin-Robbins, just a little wooden building with a sliding window at the front. You stood outside, placed your order, and when the window opened you could feel a rush of cold air from inside. Your only choice was vanilla or chocolate, but those cones sure tasted good on a hot summer’s evening. You had to lick fast though, because a single scoop could melt away in minutes. Going to the Dari-B became even more of a thrill when I was about thirteen and had a gigantic crush on one of the boys who worked there. Nothing came of it, but I sure ate a lot of ice cream cones that summer.

One of my favorite summer places was the old catalpa tree. It was in Dick Moore’s yard, several houses down the street from where I lived. Dick Moore was an oddity in the neighborhood, a single man living among a dozen families with children. He was a lawyer, and I always had the idea that he made a lot of money, but that was all I ever knew about him. I remember how everyone in the neighborhood poked their heads out of their doors to gawk the one time Dick Moore brought a lady home to his house. We probably scared her away!

All the kids loved the old catalpa tree. We climbed it, held club meetings beneath its branches, and we girls used its huge, heart-shaped leaves and fragrant flowers to design fanciful hats and bracelets. Mr. Moore would sometimes come home to find a dozen of us either in the branches, underneath, or scattered about his catalpa tree. He’d wave or nod and go inside. Never once did he ask us to leave.

On really hot days, we’d beg and plead for someone to drive us to Lake Maurer, a public swimming pool and recreational area on the outskirts of town. If all else failed, we’d gather our swimsuits, towels, and suntan lotions, and set off on foot. Usually some kind soul would take pity on us and give us a lift. Back then, there were no strangers, and nobody had ever heard the term “stranger danger”.

We’d swim in the pool all day, splashing and kicking, shrieking and laughing, and when evening came, we’d finally crawl out of the water, exhausted and waterlogged. Next we’d play a round of miniature golf, or ride the Lake Maurer Special, a wooden train that took us around the bend and back.

Farmhouse DrawingThe best memory of all was “going down to Frank’s.” Frank Zungs was my great-uncle, although I hardly knew him. He passed away when I was very young. He’d bought a huge old farmhouse in a little place called Indian Grove. The population of the Grove was about 12, which included Frank, his widowed sister, Nina, and his brother, Mike. My grandfather would take my sister and me “down to Frank’s” every summer. Even after Frank was gone, we still called it “going down to Frank’s.” It was always fun to read the “society pages” of the newspaper from the nearest town, because we were society! Yes, in a little place like Indian Grove, it’s news when somebody sneezes, and having relatives come to visit was worthy of several paragraphs. We really thought we were important!

I have a lifetime of beautiful memories from the summers I spent in Indian Grove, and many of my thoughts and feelings found their way into Summertime.  As I wrote the story, I thought about that old farmhouse, about sitting on the porch in the evenings, about listening to the sounds of the bullfrogs as I fell asleep.

Summer is always a special time. Thanks for letting me share a few of my memories with you.

~ Christina

Beautiful sunset over a field with podsolnuzami

Don’t you just love this gorgeous cover?

About Summertime:
Linn Sparks wanted all life had to offer. Fame, fortune, glamour and excitement. She found it as a star of the stage at the Crown Theater in San Francisco.

For Ed Ferguson, life was far less complicated. All he wanted was Linnie Mae, but she’d left him standing alone at the altar seven years before when she’d run off to pursue her dreams.

Now, Linn has come home to Brookfield, Kansas.

You can find Summertime at the following online booksellers:
Secret Cravings Publishing
Amazon
Bookstrand
All Romance Ebooks

Friday Tour Stop for Twelfth Sun by Mae Clair

Twelfth Sun Tour BannerTGIF! I’m always happy to celebrate the last day of the work week.

This Friday is an extra fun day because my good friend Donna Cummings has invited me to hang out on her blog for a Q&A as part of her Friday Friends series. I’m thoroughly jazzed to be her latest victim, er guest. :D

Donna always makes me laugh with her tales of “humorously ever after romances” and her questions were no different. Drop by for some fun as we embrace a thoroughly frivolous Friday!

Thursday Tour Stop for Twelfth Sun by Mae Clair

Today, for some fun I thought I’d share three things I’m good at and three things I suck at, uh…don’t do as well. Let’s start with those things I do with confidence:

  1. Writing
  2. Fashion Accessorizing
  3. Decorating

And now those three pesky items that constantly give me grief:

  1. Cooking
  2. Cooking
  3. Cooking

Sense a pattern here?

So aren’t you curious what recipe I’m sharing today on Jennifer Lowery’s Romance Recipes blog? Stop over and check it out. I hope you get a chuckle or two! :)

Twelfth Sun Tour Banner

Touring with TWELFTH SUN by Mae Clair

Twelfth Sun Tour BannerIt’s tour time! Well, actually, it’s been tour time, and I’ve got a busy schedule lined up to keep me hopping. Not just through the end of August, but in September too. To see all of my scheduled dates and links through September, just click the banner above! For now, I’m happy to share my tour stops for the rest of the week and hope you’ll join me for some fun!

Wednesday, August 14th
I’m doing a guest post at You Gotta Read Reviews. It begins with four simple words: “Once upon a time…”

Thursday, August 15th
It’s time for fun in the kitchen as I share a favorite (and highly coveted) recipe with Jennifer Lowery on Romance Recipes.

Friday, August 16th
My good friend, Donna Cummings, has invited me to hang out on her blog for a Q&A as part of her Friday Friends series. I’m thoroughly jazzed to be her latest victim, er guest. :D

I hope you have a moment to pop by and say hello at one or all three! Just call me the Energizer Bunny :D

Meandering, a Review, and a Bit of the Mythical by Mae Clair

Twelfth Sun Tour BannerFor my Mythical Monday fans, my usual brand of folklore, odd creatures and spookiness will return next week with a new post. Today, I’m celebrating the one week anniversary of the official release of my romantic mystery, TWELFTH SUN.

The reviews have been great so far, which have me completely jazzed. I particularly love this 5-Five Star review on the Tome Tender Blog. The reviewer, Dii, made my day with quotes like these:

“Twelfth Sun by Mae Clair is just one of those books that is pure escape pleasure!”

“Mae Clair has written a delightful romance complete with mystery, intrigue and danger. Did I mention humor?”

You can find the entire review here if you’d like to take a gander :D

Also today, my new friend, Kourtney Heintz, is hosting me with a short series of Q&A. Want to hear my elevator pitch for TWELFTH SUN, or learn what advice I have for new authors? (Sure you do!). All that and more can be discovered by hopping over to Kourtney Heintz’s Journal and saying hello.

background in "adventure stories" styleAnd finally, because it’s Mythical Monday and I’m in a nautical frame of mind, here are two interesting snippets to tide you over until next week :

Did you know in days past, if a sailor was pulled overboard it was a sign that “the sea will have its own?” Even more disturbing, a man who learned to swim was viewed as tempting fate.

For someone to “watch a ship out of sight” was a sure sign “you will never see her again.”  I find this one interesting because the interpretation it isn’t exactly clear.  Does the ship meet with an untimely end, or the watcher? I guess the obvious certainty is that either way you shouldn’t watch a ship out of sight!

Happy Monday, friends! I hope your week is off to a good start!

Summer Lovin’ Blog H0p and Wandering by Mae Clair

The Summer Lovin’ Blog Hop is still going strong, but I’m also wandering today. If you get a chance, join me on the Just Romantic Suspense blog, where I’m talking about my love of nautical folklore, the eastern seaboard and my new release, TWELFTH SUN.

In addition to the giveaway I’m doing on my own blog for the Summer Lovin’ Blog Hop, I’m holding one over there too. Hop over for a chance to win a Kindle or Nook copy (winner’s choice) of my romantic mystery, TWELFTH SUN.

And now, let the Summer Lovin’ continue…

SummerLovinBlogHopWelcome to the Summer Lovin’ Blog Hop! Over fifty authors and bloggers have joined together to give you the chance to win an awesome bundle of books as well as read some great posts. Be sure to visit each blog in the hop and comment with your email to increase your chances of winning. Each comment counts as an entry! Our lovely bloggers are also offering individual prizes so be sure to check them out.

So what is it about summer you love best?  The extra-long nights, fun-filled vacations, poolside lounging, or something else entirely? Maybe it’s indulging in summery foods like sweet corn, watermelon, soft ice cream or fresh strawberry pie. It could be ditching your shoes in favor of sandals or flip-flops, relaxing with a good beach read or finding the perfect picnic spot. Summer brings fireflies, fragrant white jasmine, sun-ripened berries, and the magical embrace of a poet’s twilight.

I love all of those things, but this summer I can add something new to the list.

August 5th marks the official release of TWELFTH SUN, my romantic mystery pairing an older woman with a younger man. I set the story in early June at a lavish seaside mansion in a small coastal town. Summer is my favorite season and the eastern seaboard of the U.S. is like a second home to me. What better time and place to have my hero and heroine match wits with an oddball assortment of characters as they compete in the treasure hunt for a 19th century marine artifact? Of course, there’s also the issue of their attraction to one another and the ten year age gap between them, but that was part of the fun in writing the story! :)

If you enjoy romance and mystery with an older woman and younger man, I hope you’ll give TWELFTH SUN a try.

twelfthsunwidgetTWELFTH SUN BLURB: The hunky young PhD knows all about seduction, but what does he know about love?

Reagan Cassidy is settled in her life. She has a thriving interior design firm, an upscale condo, two cats, and a goldfish. As a favor to her uncle, she agrees to team up with his marine archeologist friend to validate and retrieve a nineteenth-century journal, reputedly that of a passenger aboard the doomed schooner Twelfth Sun. Finding a hunky twenty-five-year-old coming out of the shower in her hotel room wasn’t part of the deal, but it’s hard to complain…

Dr. Elijah Cross is cocky and he knows it. He enjoys trading barbs with the lovely Reagan. Barbs, and some innuendo. He can tell she’d rather get back home to her business than stick around for the extended treasure hunt they’ve been talked into, but he’s fine with the situation. At least, until the “clues” start getting personal.

Reagan finds Dr. Gorgeous is as skilled in matters of the heart as he is behind the lectern. Throw in a series of clues which mean more to Elijah than he’ll explain, several odd-ball competitors out to win the journal, a saboteur, and a lavish seaside mansion, and Reagan has enough trouble keeping her head straight, let alone her heart.

WARNING: Younger man, older woman, nautical riddles and romance.

Purchase TWELFTH SUN from: Amazon  Barnes and Noble  Kobo  iBooks

To celebrate all things summer and my new release, I’ll be awarding a $5.00 gift card to Amazon to one lucky commenter. Just tell me what you love best about summer and be sure to include your email address with your answer. The winner will be announced Friday on my blog.

The fun isn’t over! Be sure to check out all of the other authors and bloggers participating in the hop by clicking the cute linky critter below!

SummerLovinPrizePic