Winter Warm-Up Blog Hop ~ December 19-22

Welcome to the Winter Warm-Up Blog Hop! Please check out the great prizes below and have a great hop!

Young couple embracing

Winter is my favorite time of year (well, after autumn and all its beautiful leaves).  I love the cold because I get to wear sweaters and hold hands with my sweetie.  Watching snow falling is both peaceful and exciting.  And very romantic.

So with winter here and Christmas right around the corner, I’ve paired two of my works that should warm your heart with holiday romance and get you ready for a tropical island getaway come January.

Today is release day for my new Christmas story, An Almost Perfect Christmas.  It’s an old-fashioned romance at Christmas (think White Christmas or Christmas in Connecticut) with some humor and a little hot sex thrown in. :)

APC 1600

As Pam Kimball and her computer geek boyfriend, Roger Ware, prepare to celebrate their first Christmas together, Pam is having doubts about their relationship.  Roger can barely stop working at his new software business long enough to join her under the tree. And when he does, her present to him backfires, bringing their lovemaking plans to a crashing halt. So when Roger announces his plans to leave after Christmas to visit his family have changed and he won’t be back for New Year’s Eve, Pam fears the worst. Does the man she loves really care for her, or might a break-up be her present this Christmas Eve? Will there be enough magic in the air to turn this disastrous Christmas into a perfect one?

An Almost Perfect Christmas is available at Amazon and Smashwords.

Also today, Almost Perfect, the original novella with the same characters, Pam and Roger, is available for pre-order at Amazon.  It’s set on a deserted island, just where you’ll want to be when the weather gets really cold in January. Now here’s my brand new cover for Almost Perfect.  The cover alone should generate some heat!

Almost Perfect Final

Pamela Kimball’s birthday present, a One Perfect Night adventure, promises to jump-start her life, put a new man in her bed, and help her forget her past.  Unfortunately, movie-buff Pam’s Pirates of the Caribbean fantasy takes an alarming wrong turn when she’s abandoned on a not quite deserted island—with ex-husband Roger Ware.

Forced by hunger to accept Roger’s offer of dinner, Pam realizes the geek she used to be married to has transformed into one of the most charming, sexiest men she’s ever met. His newfound confidence—and hot body—re-kindles old fires.  A simple kiss leads Roger to challenge her to discover how much his lovemaking skills have improved, leaving Pam torn between self-preservation and burning desire.

With time running out before they’re rescued, Pam must decide if her heart can survive the consequences of becoming Roger’s “almost” perfect night.

Almost Perfect is available for pre-order at Amazon.

Now for the giveaway information!  For my blog, if you leave a comment telling me what you think is romantic about the winter holidays you’ll be entered to win a $10.00 gift card to Amazon and a copy of my medieval historical romance, Betrothal.

If you click the Rafflecopter link here, you will be entered to win a $75.00 gift card!  Easy as a pumpkin pie at  Christmas. :)

Now here is the link to more great authors on the hop.  I hope you have a fantastic time and a great holiday season!

Posted in Blog Hops, Book Spotlights, Holiday Posts, On Almost Perfect, On An Almost Perfect Christmas, Promotion | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Jenna’s 411 ~ Cover Reveal! Almost Perfect

Welcome! I’m back with this week’s installment of Jenna’s 411 which is again all Book News!

Book Chat ~ Cover Reveal

That’s right, I have another cover reveal today for the re-release of my erotic romantic comedy, Almost Perfect, coming in January 2015.  Its should go on pre-order shortly and I’ll be sure to let you know when.

So without further ado, here is the very sexy cover for  Almost Perfect. My cover designer is again Danielle Fine, who is also my editor for this project.  I just love her covers, don’t you?

Almost Perfect Final

Pamela Kimball’s birthday present, a One Perfect Night adventure, promises to jump-start her life, put a new man in her bed, and help her forget her past.  Unfortunately, movie-buff Pam’s Pirates of the Caribbean fantasy takes an alarming wrong turn when she’s abandoned on a not quite deserted island—with ex-husband Roger Ware.

Forced by hunger to accept Roger’s offer of dinner, Pam realizes the geek she used to be married to has transformed into one of the most charming, sexiest men she’s ever met. His newfound confidence—and hot body—re-kindles old fires.  A simple kiss leads Roger to challenge her to discover how much his lovemaking skills have improved, leaving Pam torn between self-preservation and burning desire.

With time running out before they’re rescued, Pam must decide if her heart can survive the consequences of becoming Roger’s “almost” perfect night.

And remember:  An Almost Perfect Christmas releases this Friday!


On the Home Front ~  Contest Finalist!

Chesapeake Romance Writers

Chesapeake Romance Writers

This past Saturday, my RWA chapter, Chesapeake Romance Writers, announced the finalists for their “Finish the Damned Book” Contest. And I am so excited to be able to tell you I one of the finalists in the Historical Category with my Regency Romance To Woo A Wicked Widow! My entry has been forwarded to the Finals judge, Jordy Albert of the Booker Albert Literary Agency.  Fingers crossed!  The winners will be announced at our January 10th meeting, so I’ll be letting you know as soon as I  do.  This is the first time I’ve finaled in any contest, so I’ve been happy dancing since Saturday. :)


Jenna Fun Fact of the Week

Cardinal in Snow

Cardinal in Snow

I’ve finally begun decorating for Christmas this week.  My favorite decorating motif for this holiday season is cardinals.  I love the look of these beautiful red birds. I have cardinal ornaments, statues, tea towels, spoon rests, clothing, earrings. The list goes on. And even better, I live in Virginia, so we have cardinals visiting us in our back yard this time of year as well.  We have several birdfeeders up and a big window overlooking the yard and I do spend time just gazing out at them. A winter wonderland with beautiful red cardinals.


Well, that’s it for this week.  Happy holidays, and I’ll see you next week!

Posted in "Finish the Damn Book" Contest, Contests, Cover Art, Cover Reveal, Finalists, Jenna's 411, On Almost Perfect, Promotion | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Interview with Randal Sessoms from Debut Author Ali Baran’s Tessa



Today I’m welcoming Randal Sessoms, the hero from Ali Baran’s debut novel, Tessa oo The Journal for a little “chat.”

  1. What was your first impression of your writer?

Ali’s adorable. She and Tessa have a lot in common, but Ali is tougher. She has a real bulldog characteristic that makes her good at what she’s doing.

  1. How did you and the heroine meet

I fell while skiing and before knees were completely healed, I tripped on a grandson’s toy and had to have major surgery. I was in a wheelchair, and I needed some help around the house. They call them personal assistants: they do minor housework, run errands, whatever I needed. My daughter wanted someone who could watch over me 24/7. I spotted the ad Tessa had run and called my daughter. The rest is history.

  1. What is your greatest strength? Greatest weakness? How have they shaped your life?

I’d say I’m a good gambler. I can assess the odds and make a cold hard decision. I don’t let emotions get in the way.

Weakness? None! That’s a flaw in a man that will be his undoing.

It’s made me an incredible lawyer. I have the ability to be completely ruthless, because I cut to the bone without flinching.

  1. What first drew you to your heroine?

Several things. The way she carried herself, her general demure, and her brains all wrapped into a lovely female package.

  1. If you could be in any profession, what would you do and why?

Been there and done that. For thirty years, I was a successful lawyer with a thriving practice. I loved almost every minute of it. But history, and its unfolding through archeology, is of special interest to me. Reading about history has fed some deep thirst of mine. I’m totally captivated by previous civilizations. Now I can dabble in digs.

  1. So, in your story, what was the most memorable moment for you?

When Tessa came to me that first time. I think she was afraid I would reject her or think less of her. We weren’t a couple or even dating. Yet there she was, young and beautiful; she had awakened my needs as a man. It was wonderful.

  1. What do you do for fun?

Tessa and I enjoy traveling and being on dig sites. I knew Tessa would love it. She especially loves the evenings when we sit around talking.

  1. Would you like for your writer to create a sequel for you? Why or why not?

Once was enough. I’m not expecting any great changes. It took me sixty-three years to discover a woman who made my life worth living. Now I’m thankful for every day I have with her.

  1. What do you do for a living?

I don’t need to do anything. I already did that. Now I’m busy living and enjoying the fruits of my labor.

  1. What is your greatest fear?

Losing Tessa. I lost my first wife. I don’t want to lose Tessa.

  1. What do you wear when you go to sleep?

I always wore pajama bottoms. But since Tessa has entered my life, I don’t wear anything unless I must.

  1. What is your most prized possession?

Tessa. She is my priceless possession. And my second most priceless possession is our daughter, Jillianne.

  1. What do you think your greatest weakness is?

See number three.

  1. What do you think is your strongest attribute?

See number three. Are certain you are not a lawyer? Ask the same question by changing it slightly to see if you’ll get a different response?

  1. What are you proudest of?

Having lived a worthwhile and successful life.

  1. What is most attractive to you about the opposite sex?

All through out time, women are depicted by breasts. They symbolize the female form. And being a man, I do notice. I also notice a nice pair of legs and a well-formed derrière. Beautiful, healthy women come in all sizes and shapes. Each body type has its own special splendor. Each and every female attribute is worthy of more than a passing glance.

But women are more than body parts. A woman can be beautiful, but she needs more than beauty for a second look from me. Nothing captivates me more than the beauty of an intelligent mind. And when it comes finely packaged, as it does in Tessa, it’s thrilling.

  1. What trait or characteristic do you most dislike about the opposite sex?

That whole helpless, emotional, whining thing females do. Get over it. We all face things in life that are unpleasant. If you don’t want to do it, then don’t. If it must be done, then tackle it. If you don’t know how or what to do – ask.

  1. What’s your favorite thing to do on a rainy afternoon?

Lounge around, drink coffee, read, and make love to my fantastic wife. Such days now include changing diapers and playing on the floor with my daughter.

  1. What’s your favorite animal?

I don’t think I have a single favorite. There are so many animals in this world and all of them have a uniqueness.

  1. Have you ever thought about getting a tattoo, what would it be and where?

Tessa and already have matching ones. Being on digs usually means forgoing our wedding rings, so we decided to have our rings tattooed. If we’re wearing our bands, they don’t show.

Thank you so much, Randal, for sharing so much with us today.  And now Ali has something to share too.

Tessa is my first book but it won’t be my last. Tell me what you think is the magic behind finding Mr. Wonderful and what makes him different. If you leave your email address, I’ll toss your name into the hat this month for a $20 gift certificate to Starbucks. The winner will be drawn on Christmas and announced on my blog.


Blurb for Tessa:

Years of wisdom have taught Randal that it’s not the destination but the journey that makes everything worthwhile. When the tentative friendship between silver fox Randal and young Tessa bursts into lust, it ignites a passionate affair that leaves them both trembling. There’s nothing more fulfilling than a beautiful woman in the arms of a man who can appreciate everything she has to offer.

As Randal embarks on a second career and Tessa is preparing for her chosen field, Randal’s daughter flounders in a sea of depression. When Randal’s love for his daughter is pitted against his love for Tessa, can there be a winner?


Excerpt for Tessa:

In the water, Randal didn’t act like an invalid. Those piercing blue eyes sparkled and his body was ripped, better than any guy Tessa had dated. The man was damn sexy, and in the week she’d known him, she’d grown to like him—maybe too much. Way too much. Aside from a few thin, pink scar lines over his knees, no one would have believed he was living in a wheel chair.

He trapped her against the side of the pool and held her prisoner between his arms.

She turned and faced him. Now she stared into those beautiful blue orbs and caught the grin that crinkled the skin at the outer edges of his eyes. “You have the most beautiful eyes I’ve ever seen.”

“And you have a beautiful body.”

She inhaled as he drew himself nearer. His breath flowed over her face. She closed her eyes and she prayed he’d kiss her.

A finger touched her jaw, and she opened her eyes. He was inches from her with a warm smile on his face. Heaving in a deep breath, she hoped to cool the sensation building in her, but she couldn’t stop it. She tried to imagine his lips on hers. His finger traced her entire face, including her lips. She parted her mouth and touched her tongue to his roaming finger.

“Damn woman. You’re giving me an erection.”

She cast her gaze toward his trunks but she couldn’t stop the grin that was pulling on the edges of her lips.

His finger went down her neck and followed the edge of her bikini top. Her chest rose with his touch. Heat flowed through her, settling between her legs. She had never been one to have casual sex, but she was not a virgin. Right now, she wanted fulfillment. She tried to tell herself that older men weren’t usually capable of sexual intercourse, but somehow she figured this man was quite capable. His fingers splayed over her breast. And a moan escaped from someplace deep in her throat. She wanted to wrap her legs around his waist and pull him closer to her.

She pushed past him and headed for the stairs. She had to get a grip on her feelings because inside she felt as though she was about to shatter into a million pieces.

He followed her. “Tessa, I’m sorry if I’ve offended you. I meant no harm.”

She turned and touched her fingers to his lips. “We’re adults.”

“Don’t leave. I won’t do it again. But seeing you has awakened something inside of me.”

“Yeah. I know that feeling.” She walked up the stairs and found a towel before turning back to him. “Do you need help getting out?”

“No, not yet. I need to swim some more. I try to swim every morning that I don’t have therapy. You just aren’t here. So to answer your question, yes, I can get in and out by myself.”

She settled onto a chaise lounge and watched him in the water. He was as graceful as a dolphin as he swam lap after lap. She couldn’t help but admire his body. Even his legs had beautiful muscle definition. Inside, she still quaked. There was something about him—something dangerously sexy, and she felt it to her toes.

Warning: May December romance for the mature reader

Tessa is available at



Author Bio:

I’m young, single, college educated, and looking for Mr. Wonderful. I’m also a minimalist. The less I have, the less I have to clean! Some people save for Christmas, but I save for vacations. I’ll go wherever it’s warm with plenty of sun and water. Some women collect shoes – I collect bathing suits. The last time I counted, I owned forty-two suits. Why do you think I try to stay in shape?

I’ve always been an avid reader, and there’s nothing I love more than a sexy romance. My e-reader stays packed with books. By day, I’m tame and conservative, but once I leave work, the real me emerges. I always have a hunky guy calendar hanging over my desk at home. I kept February up until April rolled around. He was just too delicious. Some guys are worth the fantasy. I want a guy in real life who can kiss me and make my toes tingle. So far it hasn’t happened anyplace but in books.

So there you have it. I’m about as exciting as my pet goldfish. The big difference is that I have a computer, a muse, and I know how to use both. I don’t think Goldie gives much thought to having Mr. Golden swim into her life and she’s already got the castle. I believe she’s missing out on a lot of fun!



Posted in Author/Character Interviews, Book Spotlights, Giveaways, Guest Bloggers, Interviews, Promotion, Spotlights | Tagged , , , , , | 12 Comments

Alphabet Post: Y is for Yarrow

I really couldn’t find a decent word for a letter X post, so I’ve skipped on to Y. The letter Y  is for yarrow, a medicinal plant in use for centuries in the Northern Hemisphere.  It’s a weed that grows during the summer and has been used to treat a variety of illnesses.


Yarrow–also called milefoil, Soldier’s Woundwart, Knights milefoil, and Nose Bleed– if made into a tea, is used to treat severe colds and fever as it induces sweating. It has also been used as a treatment for hemorrhoids and kidney disorders.  As a topical application, it has been used to prevent baldness if the head is washed with a decoction of it.

Another strange property of this herb is that both causes the nose to bleed if rubbed on the inside of the nostril (apparently to relieve headache), but it will also stop a nose bleed and in ancient times was used as a styptic.

If the fresh leaves are chewed, they are said to cure toothache.

It can also, apparently, be used to divine your true love, according to A Modern Herbal:

“An ounce of Yarrow sewed up in flannel and placed under the pillow before going to bed, having repeated the following words, brought a vision of the future husband or wife:

‘Thou pretty herb of Venus’ tree,

Thy true name it is Yarrow;

Now who my bosom friend must be,

Pray tell thou me to-morrow.’—(Halliwell’s Popular Rhymes, etc.)”

Posted in Alphabet Post | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Free Read Friday ~ 12/12/14



If not, then welcome back to Free Read Friday. This is my day to give my fans a little treat on with a free read from either a current WIP or one of my published novels or novellas.  And sometimes the free read will be a completely new piece written just for this post, or perhaps a scene taken out of a novel in editing–something that no one but me and my editor has seen. :)

If you seem to like this new feature (leave me a comment and tell me if you do), I’ll make it a Friday fixture. :)

For this installment of Free Read Friday, I’m posting another one of the Christmas stories from my Christmas collection, All Wrapped Up.  It’s called “The Kissing Tree,” a sweet story about two kids who find a very secret spot out in the woods on Christmas Day.

If you like this short story you might also like the other three in the anthology, available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Click the title below to take you to Free Read Friday.  This Free Read is rated PG. Like I said, it’s sweet. :)

The Kissing Tree

all wrapped up


Enjoy!  Come back next week for another Christmas tale, my new Free Read, An Almost Perfect Christmas.

Posted in Free Read Friday, Free Reads, Holiday Posts, On All Wrapped Up, on Victorian Romance | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Book Blast: A Measure of Deceit by Jess Michaels



The Ladies Book of Pleasures, now credited with two marriages and countless other affairs and liaisons, has Society all aflutter. The one person not benefitting from its scandalous advice? The author herself.

From the safety of her anonymity, Lady Grace Hollis, Duchess of Jameswood, enjoys the blissful results of her handiwork—and pretends she does not miss the passionate proclivities she penned. But when her handsome editor begins making the rounds of Society parties, she wonders how long her secret will be safe.

Connor Sheridan wants—needs—to know the answer to the one burning question on everyone’s lips: the mystery writer’s identity. And it’s not just because their correspondence, delivered via untraceable couriers, has made him smile, frown, or imagine her engaged in erotic escapades—with him.

Other letters have begun landing on his desk, letters written by a decidedly unfriendly hand. And though it may threaten her reputation, the safest place for her could very well be his arms. Whether she likes it or not.

This hot historical is available at Amazon now!

Posted in Book Spotlights, Historical Romance, Interviews, Jenna's 411, Promotion, Spotlights, What I'm Reading | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Jenna’s 411 ~ Cover Reveal! An Almost Perfect Christmas

Welcome! I’m back with this week’s installment of Jenna’s 411 which is all Book News!

Book Chat ~ Cover Reveal

That’s right, I have a cover reveal today for my Christmas short story, An Almost Perfect Christmas.  I wrote this as a piece of flash fiction the year that Almost Perfect released the first time, so I thought it fitting, since it is the Christmas season, to re-release this story as well, with a few additions.  It’s longer than the original 1200 words, it’s got a nice, hot sex scene in there this time, and best of all it’s FREE! Yes, when An Almost Perfect Christmas releases it will be a free read on Amazon, Smashwords, ARe, and Barnes & Noble. So if you already read the adventures of Pam and Roger, you’ll enjoy reading about their first Christmas together.  If you haven’t met this couple yet, this tale will be a nice introduction and hopefully leave you wanting more of their exploits.

So without further ado, here is the stunning cover for An Almost Perfect Christmas. My cover designer wasn’t Danielle Fine this time, but rather the same designer who did the cover for my Christmas collection, Alexandra Christle.  Alex, you did it again.  Merry Christmas!



On the Home Front ~  Winners!

Romance Adventures

The winners for the Romance Adventures Blog Hop on my blog were:




Courtney P


Gaeille Vanderspek

Congratulations, Ladies!  I’ll be contacting you later today  about your prizes.


Jenna Fun Fact of the Week

9780451199973In the Romance Adventures Blog Hop, I asked the hoppers to  tell me the name of their favorite Romance author and their favorite work by that author. But I never told you mine.  Some of you who’ve read interviews with me may already know this, but my all time favorite romance author is Jo Beverley.  And my favorite work by her is Devilish. I love her Malloren series, but this one keeps me on the edge of my  seat every time I read it, so afraid it’s not going to end happily. The odds for an HEA are horrible, but love does triumph and I heave a joyous sigh each time it does. :)


Well, that’s it for this week.  Happy holidays, and I’ll see you next week!

Posted in Cover Art, Cover Reveal, Jenna's 411, On Almost Perfect, On Holiday Stories, Promotion, Winners | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments