The Romance of Language: Word for the Week 2/24/17

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Murmuration:

“A flock of starlings.”

–from C.E. Hare’s The Language of Field Sports, 1939

Therefore, a murmuration of starlings.

 

There are so many strange words to denote groups of animals, and apparently there is one for each kind of animal.

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

My favorite may be “a murder of crows.”

But I also like

“A conspiracy of lemurs”

“A cauldron of bats”

“A clowder of cats” or “A kindle of kittens”

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

 

“A romp of otters” (how apropo!)

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

“An ostentation of peacocks” (again appropriate)

“A quiver of cobras”

“A maelstrom of salamanders”

and

“A parliament of owls” collared_scops_owl_2

If you’d like to see more of these fun collective nouns, check out Russell McLendon’s post on Mother Nature’s Network here. He’s got 99 of them!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Romance of Language | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

Be My Guest! ~ Author Interview with Melissa Keir

 

banner-memeHello, and welcome to my new feature for 2017.

I’ve begun a Wednesday weekly post to present interviews with authors across all romance genres. Although I’m primarily an historical romance writer, I do read outside my genre and suspect a lot of you do as well. And what’s more fascinating than finding out more about either your favorite authors or new ones? I plan to change up my questions (most of them at least) every three months or so, just to keep the interviews lively.

So now gather round the tea table, grab a scone or cookies, and a cup of tea or coffee and discover a new friend in the writing world.

This week on Be My Guest, I am interviewing an incredible author and friend, Melissa Keir. Melissa is one of the most supportive writers you would ever want to meet–not to mention that she’s a fantastic writer of contemporary cowboy romance! We’ve been in the same critique loop and worked together on an anthology last year, but I still want to find out more.

author-picAuthor Bio:

For my wedding in Vegas, my books and computer came with me but there wasn’t enough room for my wedding shoes. It’s all about priorities! As an avid reader, I was probably born with a book in hand. Luckily my mom was also an avid reader, so it was easy to “borrow” her books when my books were finished.

I was reading from an early age about dashing men on horseback riding to the rescue of strong willed and capable women who didn’t really need rescuing. I came to expect that women in fairy tales should have fought their own battles. When I was older, I found Margaret Atwood and realized that women could re-tell history in their own way and I experimented with changing those basic fairy tales.

Fortunately for me, my husband allows me the opportunity to be myself (spend my salary on books) and still takes care of the really important things for me like killing spiders and opening jars. As an elementary teacher, teaching children about the many worlds inside of books is a gift that I’m lucky enough to do for a living. Teaching the next generation to love reading is a lot of fun! Reading the right book can make a new world come alive!

Currently living in the suburbs of Ann Arbor, Michigan with my darling husband, way-too-grown-up children and spoiled dogs, I enjoy getting away through a book to escape the harsh winters or summer road construction.

I’d love to hear from you!

www.melissakeir.com

http://www.facebook.com/melissaakeir

http://www.facebook.com/AuthorMelissaKeir

www.twitter/melissa_keir

Fantastic, Melissa! Now, on to the interview.

 

 

Thank you for having me. I’ve been enjoying the interviews and a chance to get to know some amazing authors.

Awww, thank you Melissa!

For being so nice, I’ll start you off with an easy one. Who was the first romance author and book you read?

The first author I read was Johanna Lindsay. Her Captive Bride book started my love of strong heroes and began my journey through all her books.

That one was pretty racy back in the day. I really love her Mallory series!

Who has been the greatest influence on your writing?

My mother was my biggest influence. She was a huge romance reader. Books were always close-by her. When I was old enough, I would ‘borrow’ her books and then, began to buy my own. When I was in high school, my mother wrote her first novel. She submitted it to a variety of publishing houses but wasn’t published. Because of her dream, I gave my own writing a chance. However, she died many years before seeing my name on a book. And just recently, I was given the original copy of her manuscript and hope to publish it for her.

Awww, Melissa, how totally sweet and awesome that is! I wish you luck and hope to see your mom’s book on Amazon soon!

Who or what inspires your writing?

Love inspires my writing. I believe every person deserves a happily ever after. Many people are still looking for that connection and special person. Being able to share a variety of stories about happily ever after’s, I hope to give readers a chance to dream of what might be or be reminded of a love lost or long gone.

Which of your own books is your favorite and why?

I really enjoy all my books but I have a few which have a special place in my heart. Second Time’s the Charm is one of my favorites. It was one of my first books and a story which seemed to write itself, spilled out of my thoughts very quickly. The Heartsong Cowboy was my first cowboy story. I loved writing about the Heartsong Ranch which used equine therapy for a variety of disabilities. But all my stories feature some piece of true life in them. One of my stories, features an event that happened to my mother, while another story featured a character based off of a former student.

How cool! I love it when authors weave  true incidents and people into their books!

What is your favorite holiday and why?

Memorial Day is one of my favorite holidays. I enjoy the first stirrings of warm weather and the chance to enjoy some family time, cooking out and parades. When I was a little girl, I carried the banner in the Memorial Day parade which ended with a picnic at the local cemetery where we visited with our family members who had passed on. Our small town took great pride in the many young men who had given their lives for our country’s peace.

That sounds like an idyllic summer for childhood! No wonder that holiday’s your favorite!

If you could have one wish granted just for you (not world peace, LOL), what would you wish for?

I would wish to win the lottery so that I could help my own children with their dreams and not have to worry about the health and care of my loved ones. It’s hard to see your parents getting older and knowing that they need more care…as well to worry about your own health and how to pay for all the necessary things required to keep yourself healthy.

That’s a great and selfless wish, Melissa. But you’re right, wishing for the ability to care for loved ones is a wonderful wish.

What is the most exciting/daredevil thing you’ve ever done?

I have been a part of Fireplay. I loved learning about how to control the fire on the skin. As well, the feeling of finally being warm, was such a blessing. It is one thing I can’t get enough of.

I had never heard of that, Melissa. See, these interviews reveal all kinds of wild and crazy stuff!

Do you have any hobbies/passions outside of writing?

I love to do a variety of things such as create jewelry and sewing. I do needlepoint and have made a few outfits for my children when they were younger and jewelry for my sisters. I’m also a local radio station movie reviewer so I get to see a lot of movies.

How cool is that!

Who is your favorite non-romance genre author? What is your favorite book of theirs?

I’m in love with Margaret Atwood. In college, I was exposed to her essay giving Hamlet’s mother a voice. Since then, I’ve read her book, Good Bones and Simple Murders. The way she provides a different perception of known characters shaped my own writing.

I love Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale and I bet you’re looking forward to the series as much as I am!

Now, tell us a little bit about one of your books.

In the box set, Dreaming of a Hero, I have a novella titled Beach Desires. This is a female/female story of a woman from a small town who had to hide her interest in other women from her family, friends and the town. She’s learning how to accept her own desires on a vacation to South Carolina.

What was your inspiration for this story?

The town of Garden City, South Carolina is a real beach town on the Atlantic Ocean. For over ten years, I vacationed there, along with my family. My children grew up on the stretch of sand, played games at the arcade and ate dinner at many of the fabulous restaurants. The main character came about after a lengthy discussion with former classmates. Our small town was seeped in traditions, many of which we had no clue about… like why the town fire siren went off each day at 6 pm. Diversity didn’t exist in our town, or maybe it was hidden so well, no one really knew. This had me wondering about how someone could hide their sexual orientation and my heroine was born.

This sounds like a fantastic read!

Now, the Infamous Lightning Round: 

What is your favorite amusement park ride?

The Gemini at Cedar Point. One time I rode it 10 times in a row before I puked.

LOL! Lord, I wouldn’t have made it once!

Tea or coffee?

Mocha (flavored coffee)

Beach or mountains?

Can I have both? Beach during the night and mountains for the day?

Boxers, briefs or commando? (preferred for your heroes)

Commando does cut down on the laundry!

LOL

Blond, brunette or redhead? (preferred men’s hair color)

Bald!

Now that’s a different answer!

Would you rather vacation in Hawaii, Vegas or London?

Vegas. I was married there!

What’s the one thing you would never do?

Swim with sharks…too scary!

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Now let’s dream of the perfect hero!

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BLURBS:

 

Heroes fill our nights with stories of passion and love. These six full-length novels and a bonus novella each feature a hero sure to fill your nights with desire…You’ll never want to wake up!

http://a.co/8OmYec6

Only $0.99 or free with Kindle Unlimited

Loved by the Linebacker – Lyssa Layne

In a man’s world, Camila Lemos is one of the top sports agents in the market. Linebacker Evan Purser is the newest man in his family to join the NFL and doesn’t make for an easy client for Camila to handle. When the walls are broken down, will a touchdown be scored, or will it be yet another fumble for both?

Destiny’s Child by Deb Julienne

Cherie and Jason are thrust into an endless web of deceit created by their families. As the truths are revealed, can they find the inner strength to band together in order to get to the bottom of it all, or will it lead to their demise when their unknown nemesis returns to finish the job?

Nine by K.S. Thomas

Nine. That’s the number of years between us. Age is just one reason it’ll never work. I have eight more. One for every year I’ve been alive longer than he has. And they all add up to the same thing: A thirty-something woman covered in ink doesn’t belong with a twenty-something soldier destined for a life in politics. Only he doesn’t seem to know that.

Safe to Love You – Jude Ouvrard

When Abbie and Presley see each other, their mutual attraction flares first. The unconventional guy seems like an intriguing choice for the still-wounded Abbie, but is he actually someone she can feel safe with? Will she be able to move on, continuing with her life unscarred?

With Love; Now & Forever by RaeAnne Hadley

Can one person really have more than one soul mate? Years after losing the one man that meant everything to her, Ana has met someone whom she intuitively feels could mean as much or more. But Rick has some secrets of his own, and there is darkness in the future for them both. Will they open themselves to the power of love or will they exile their hearts forever?

Desert Heat by D’Ann Lindun

All Mike Malone wants is to run his Arizona guest ranch in peace. But an environmentalist group hell bent on destroying his business, a friend who wants to be lovers and now a dead prospector keep him otherwise occupied.

Mallory James traces her father’s bootsteps to buried treasure, but can she trust her heart to the man who found his body?

Beach Desires by Melissa Keir

Can a summer fling last a lifetime?

Can Stacey and Mandy make their long-distance relationship work? Or will they let the prejudices of their upbringing ruin their chance at happiness?

Beach Desires video: https://youtu.be/Gku05f17jxs

Embed link:

 

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Fabulous trailer, Melissa! And such a fun interview! Thank you so much for being my guest!

Next Wednesday my special guest will be  Jessica Subject, a wonderful author of sci-fi romance guaranteed to keep you guessing. Her current work, however, has to do with Zombies! Hope you return to you favorite Wednesday spot to meet Jessica!

Posted in Author/Character Interviews, Be My Guest, Interviews, Promotion | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Medieval Monday ~ Villains ~Week #3 Ashley York’s The Gentle Knight

 

MedMon

Villains!

 is our theme for this round of Medieval Monday!

Join us and discover some of the most evil and dastardly villains our medieval romances ever produced! And we are doing something a bit different this time around. We’re breaking our excerpts up into tantalizing little bites–only 8 to 10 sentences each week. So you’ll need to keep up to get the whole excerpt. We let you know each week whose blog we’ll be at the week so you can keep up with each Medieval Monday author’s work the same way.

This week’s excerpt is from Ashley York’s

The Gentle Knight.

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Excerpt:

Ivan walked in like the captain of a ship and towing Brighit close behind. He stopped, made a sweeping glance around the room and laughed. “Well? Does this place seem familiar to you, Brighit?”

Brighit paled.

Peter stopped mid-drink. He moved toward her. “Have you been here before?”

She shook her head. A slow, emphatic “no”.

“Speak up, dear Brighit,” Ivan said. “Tell Sir Peter what this place reminds you of.”

Follow along next week by checking out Sherry Ewing’s blog with excerpt #4

http://www.sherryewing.com/apps/blog/

Blurb:

 

Brighit MacNaughton is an obedient daughter following her father’s death bed decree that she take her vows and become the virginal bride of Christ. The hired men seeing her to the Priory at Tanshelf are more interested in the building resentment against the English king than her safety. But when the handsome Norman knight offers his protection against the lecherous mercenaries, he sparks her passion with his gentle touch and smoldering looks of desire, reminding her of dreams best forgotten. Can one night with him quench the intense need in her or will it cause the fire to burn out of control?

Peter of Normandy is a trusted knight of King William, sent north to subdue the unrest and rumblings of revolt at York. Giving aid to an Irish princess more noble than many knights, he is quickly overcome with the need to possess her. With a body meant for a man’s pleasure and an unrelenting stubbornness to follow her father’s wishes, he struggles against giving her what she wants if it can only be for one night. Will one night of passion prove to be enough or will it unleash an insatiable need that makes him never want to let her go?

Buy Link:

The Gentle Knight is available on Amazon.

 

Next week I’ll be hosting Mary Morgan’s Dragon Knight’s Shield.

 

 

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Posted in Beleaguered, Medieval Monday, Medieval Mondays, Medieval Romance, On Time Enough to Love, Promotion | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekend Writing Warriors ~ 02/19/17 Only Marriage Will Do ~ A Desperate Deception

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I’m continuing this week, sharing snippets from the second book of the House of Pleasure series, Only Marriage Will Do. It’s got one of my favorite heroes, Amiable Dawson, a man with secrets who becomes attracted to a woman with secrets of her own.

ONLY MARRIAGE WILL DO

Captain Amiable Dawson, irritated because he’s been standing out in the hot sun, knocking on the Marquess of Dalbury’s door, has stumbled upon quite a scene of a man lunging across a sofa and grabbing a woman’s arm. The woman runs to Amiable and whispers for him to please help her as this man was trying to abduct her.

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Juliet and Amiable

EXCERPT:

 

He smiled into her pleading face, then grasped her hands and gave them a gentle squeeze to signal his acquiescence. “Whatever is the matter, my dear?” Hell if he knew. However, he could play his part, even with little information. Let the lady lead and he’d follow as well as he could.

The woman swayed toward him, then took a deep breath. “My dear, may I present Viscount St. Cyr?” She nodded toward the fop. “Philippe, my husband, the Earl of Manning.”

BLURB:

Not every happy-ever-after begins at “I do.”

When the hero of her dreams rescues Lady Juliet Ferrers from the man claiming to be her husband, she is sure she has found her one true love.  But is she free to marry him?  Not to be deterred, Juliet arranges for her hero, Captain Amiable Dawson, to escort her to her family estate, hoping that along the way she can win his love.

Amiable is charmed by the sweet, beautiful woman he rescued, and although he has grave reservations about her marital status, he allows himself to be swept up into Juliet’s romantic spell and the promise of a happy-ever-after.

The spell breaks when legal questions arise and Juliet faces the horror of not knowing if she is married to her knight in shining armor or the cruel viscount who is determined to have her at any price.

 

Books in the House of Pleasure series:

onlyscandalwilldo sizeONLY MARRIAGE WILL DO

only-a-mistress-will-do-finalAnd don’t forget to check out the rest of the Warriors here.  There’s some fantastic snippets to be read.

 

 

 

Posted in Historical Romance, House of Pleasure, House of Pleasure Series, On Weekend Writing Warriors, Only Marriage Will Do, Promotion, Weekend Writing Warriors | Tagged , , , , , | 22 Comments

The Romance of Language: Word for the Week 2/17/17

Dammy-boy:

“An unruly person, in allusion to the habit of the excessive use of the word damn.”

–from Albert Hyamson’s Dictionary English Phrases, 1922

 

I’ve had a couple of heroes who could have been called “dammy-boys.” LOL

And here’s one from the classic movie, My Fair Lady, with Rex Harrison playing dammy-boy Henry Higgins. (You needn’t watch the whole 6 minute clip if you don’t want to. The first 30 seconds will suffice.) 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Romance of Language | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Guest Post: Liza O’Connor on Guardian Angels in Luck Be An Angel

Human Hair, Women, Red Hair.

Human Hair, Women, Red Hair.

I’m a firm believer of Guardian Angels. My first Guardian Angel was my Great Grandmother Caroline. She saved me from the continuous efforts of my brother to become an only child. There were also a great many water-moccasin dangers that required her assistance. (I was fascinated with poisonous snakes.) When I got older she would save me from car accidents, plus the three times my ex-husband tried to kill me. Over the years, I acquired two more Guardian Angels, my grandmother Bobo, (she preferred the name of a clown over ‘grand ma’ said with an Arkansas twang) and finally my dad became my third guardian when he died. Thus, now I’m pretty well bullet-proof, but those early years, between me being curious and fearless, and my brother determined to be an only child, Great Grandmother Caroline had a hard time keeping me alive.

You may ponder…Is Liza being serious?

Yes, I am. So when I put in a guardian angel into my stories, which I often do, I treat them and ghosts as real entities. (I also have a ghost in my house-so I have to acknowledge her as well.) I know, some of you will think I’m nuts (reasonable conclusion if you have never been saved by a guardian angel, or had a ghost live in your house.) However, my reality and experiences say both Guardian angels and ghosts do exist, so they are fair games for my books. Thus, Luck be an Angel has a Guardian Angel that watches over Sara and massive quantity of boys. However, no ghosts show up.

Human Hair, Women, Red Hair.

Human Hair, Women, Red Hair.

BLURB

Reporter, Ethan Long, is sent into the backwoods of Arkansas to investigate a woman who claims her sixteen boys were born by Immaculate Conception. Not believing in divine intervention, Ethan plans to uncover the identity of the man who continues to impregnate Sara Smith every year, leaving her to raise her sons on nothing but luck and love. He enters their home as a tutor and eventually discovers the truth, but not before he has fallen in love with Sara and her wonderful boys. Now he must face his own crossroad in life and decide whether to follow his heart or his professional obligations.

EXCERPT

Sara bit her lip and forced herself to make eye contact with Ethan. “You should know I’ve got a bad reputation. People say I’m a loose woman, but that’s not true. However, if you stay here, they’re going to think you and I are…well, that we aren’t behaving properly. No more harm can be done to my reputation, but yours will take a beating.”

He shrugged his shoulders. “I care more about those boys staying together than I do about what the townspeople think of me. So should you.”

She could tell he didn’t think much of her, but not because he thought her loose, but because he thought her a bad mother. Before she could respond, her eleven-year-old, Mike, stormed in the room.

“Our Ma loves us!” Mike yelled as he shoved Mr. Long on the shoulder. “Don’t you ever talk bad about our Ma!”

“I didn’t mean it that way,” Mr. Long assured her son. “I’m just mad at the townspeople for making her life so hard.”

Her son breathed in hard, fighting off his tears. “Well, all right then,” he said and ran from the room.

Mr. Long looked up at her. “I meant that. Don’t worry about what the townspeople think. Just worry about your boys.”

She laughed and rubbed her stomach. “That’s a lot of worrying.”

“Are you…?” He stared at her swollen stomach, unable to finish the question.

“Having another boy? I reckon,” she said. “I haven’t decided what to name him. Right now all my boys got a brother with the same first letter, which makes them letter-mates. The boys like the pairs, but in a few years Joshua will want to go off and be a man and then what will poor Joe do without a letter-mate? So I was thinking maybe I should start again on the same letters, instead of making new ones.” She paused and studied him. “What do you think?”

Mr. Long gave her question serious consideration before answering. “Add a name to the current letters. It will give the younger letters a chance to be a leader during each of their lives.”

She smiled and nodded in agreement. She had noticed how much Joe liked being the elder today. She shared the story with Mr. Long.

“I’ll shift them about when we do group studies. That way they’ll all get a chance to lead.”

She was glad Mr. Long had come. He might not be what she wanted, but she suspected he was precisely what she needed. That happened a lot in her life. Some said she was just lucky, but she knew luck had nothing to do with it. She had a guardian angel who made sure they got whatever they needed.

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SALES LINK

For

Luck be an Angel

AMAZON

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Liza O’Connor lives in Denville, NJ with her dog Jess. They hike in fabulous woods every day, rain or shine, sleet or snow. Having an adventurous nature, she learned to fly small Cessnas in NJ, hang-glide in New Zealand, kayak in Pennsylvania, ski in New York, scuba dive with great white sharks in Australia, dig up dinosaur bones in Montana, sky dive in Indiana, and raft a class four river in Tasmania. She’s an avid gardener, amateur photographer, and dabbler in watercolors and graphic arts. Yet through her entire life, her first love has and always will be writing novels.

 

CONTEMPORARY

A Long Road to Love Series

Humorous Contemporary Disaster Romance

Worst Week Ever

Oh Stupid Heart

Coming to Reason

Climbing Out of Hell

The Hardest Love

 

CONTEMPORARY SUSPENSE

White Oak Mafia Series

Snarky, Romantic, Suspense Thriller

A Fortune to Die For

Unexpected Love

Dance or Die

 

Requires Rescue Series

Often Humorous, Contemporary, Romance/Suspense

Standalone books with a special twist

Even the strong can use a helping hand when life gets hard.

Saving Casey

Saving Molly

 

SINGLE CONTEMPORARY BOOKS

Ghost Lover

Humorous, Contemporary Romance with Ghost & Ghost cat

 

Luck be an Angel

Sweet Contemporary Romance with a Paranormal twist

 

OTHER BOOKS BY LIZA

 

 

Posted in Guest Bloggers, Guest Posts, Promotion | Tagged , , , , , | 12 Comments

Be My Guest! ~ Author Interview with Jenna Jaxon

 

banner-memeHello, and welcome to my new feature for 2017.

I’ve begun a Wednesday weekly post to present interviews with authors across all romance genres. Although I’m primarily an historical romance writer, I do read outside my genre and suspect a lot of you do as well. And what’s more fascinating than finding out more about either your favorite authors or new ones? I plan to change up my questions (most of them at least) every three months or so, just to keep the interviews lively.

So now gather round the tea table, grab a scone or cookies, and a cup of tea or coffee and discover a new friend in the writing world.

This week on Be My Guest, I am interviewing…me! I had promised you Lauren Smith, but we crossed signals (totally my fault), but we do have our boxed set, Her Perfect Gentleman, that released yesterday, so I’ll step in and pinch hit for the team. 🙂

Authors :

Gina Danna, Collette Cameron, Ella Quinn, Elf Ahearn, Marie Higgins, Louisa Cornell, Lauren Smith, and Jenna Jaxon.

 

So, my standard first question: Who has been the greatest influence on your writing?

Probably the first romance author I fell in love with–Jo Beverley. I love her works and still mourn her loss. She gave me my love of the Georgian period, a grasp of how to write compelling characters, and a reverence for those who understand the English system of titles of the nobility.

Who or what inspires your writing?

It depends on the project. I get inspiration from everything from a song (my upcoming release, To Woo A Wicked Widow, was inspired by The Weather Girls song “It’s Raining Men), to a chance word or sentence in another romance novel, (my upcoming release Only A Mistress Will Do, was inspired by a single sentence in a Mary Balogh novel), and my novella in the set, Heart of Delight, was inspired by the Cinderella fairy tale.

Which of your own books is your favorite and why?

I do hate to play favorites, but at the current moment it’s Only Scandal Will Do, although Only A Mistress Will Do is running neck and neck with it! But I love Scandal because I love the heroine (my alter ego), I love the dynamics between the hero and heroine, plus I think the story and setting are cohesive to produce a rather stark, gritty feel to the book that was what I was aiming for. I also see that in Mistress, so that makes sense it’s tied for favorite.

What is your favorite holiday and why?

Halloween, hands down.  I’ve always loved that holiday (felt it was mine for some reason) and still decorate the house and yard to look like a graveyard for the Trick or Treaters. I love making all the cool themed treats and the wonderful costumes everyone wears. It’s a very theatrical holiday, so that may explain it some.

If you could have one wish granted just for you (not world peace, LOL), what would you wish for?

Enough money so I could live and write abroad, take care of my daughters’ education and my family’s needs, and travel to all the placed I have, at least until now, only read or dreamed of.

What is the most exciting/daredevil thing you’ve ever done?

Probably riding Space Mountain at Disney World. A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away. Couldn’t do it now.

Do you have any hobbies/passions outside of writing?

 

That would be theatre. I’ve worked as a theatre professional for years, but I never tire of watching or working on plays or being around theatre people.

Who is your favorite non-romance genre author? What is your favorite book of theirs?

Another easy one. Stephen King. Love, love, love his books. When he was writing his Dark Tower series I used to fear either he would die before finishing it, or I would die before I finished reading it. And although The Drawing of the Three is my second favorite King book, my absolute favorite is It. Scared the bejesus out of me, but I’ve read it about 8 times.

Now, tell us a little bit about  your newest book.

My newest book is the boxed set, Her Perfect Gentleman, which contains my Regency romance novella Heart of Delight. The other incredibly talented writers also in the set are mentioned above.

 

What was your inspiration for this story?

As I said earlier, the story was inspired by the Cinderella fairy tale. I originally thought the couple would meet at a masquerade (the Prince’s ball in the fairy tale), but that didn’t work for the series, so I have the hero and heroine both in “disguise” from one another, along with a few other Cinderella-ish details. A wicked employer rather than wicked step-mother, and a “fairy godmother” who takes the heroine under her wing.

Are the character names special in any way?

The character names are as particular as I usually have my names. The heroine’s name wouldn’t come to me, so I had a competition on a Facebook party to name her. As soon as I did that, the contrary girl whispered that she was Gabriella. So when the winner came along, it became Gabriella’s middle name.

Do you have plans for a sequel to this book?

Heart of Desire is the third book in the Handful of Hearts series, so there will be another four books, with recurring characters, although this book won’t have a sequel per se. As far as the boxed set is concerned, I guess we’ll wait and see how this one does before deciding on a Her Perfect Gentleman 2.

 Now, the Infamous Lightning Round:

What is your favorite amusement park ride?

Splash Mountain at Disney World!

Tea or coffee?

 

Tea in the mornings or very late at night; coffee at work and in the theatre.

Beach or mountains?

 

I love both, but if I had to choose…mountains.

Chocolate or vanilla?

Chocolate is my drug of choice.

Would you rather skydive or scuba dive?

 

Scuba Diving, hands down. I would jump out of a plane only if it was in flames and heading for a crash landing. And then I’d have to be drunk to actually do it!

Would you rather vacation in Hawaii, Vegas or London?

I’ve been to Hawaii and it’s beautiful, never been to Vegas but want to go, but I would go to London at the drop of a hat.

 

 

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her-perfect-gentleman

 

Here’s the blurb for Her Perfect Gentleman, which just released on Amazon, B & N, Kobo, and other etailers!

BLURB:

USA Today Best-selling author, Gina Danna, joins best-selling, award-winning authors, Collette Cameron, Ella Quinn, Marie Higgins, Jenna Jaxon, Louisa Cornell, Elf Ahearn, and Lauren Smith in this delightful limited edition, containing eight tantalizing love stories.

THIS LOVE OF MINE by GINA DANNA-He must woo his wife to awaken her past or lose her to a pirate forever.

Kidnapped on a trip to London, Lady Eleanor Whitemore awakes in the hold of a ship with no memory of her past or of her perfect marriage to Lord James Haddington III, Earl of Windhaven. All she knows is that a fierce and stunningly handsome pirate is yelling about women being bad luck on a voyage. Adrift at sea in both body and mind, she finds herself falling in love with the pirate captain, whose flashing eyes and muscular frame leave her breathless.

Lord James resisted the shackles of marriage until he met Eleanor. Her beauty and charms captured his heart, and now that she’s disappeared, he vows he will find her or die trying. His search becomes a chase to the Americas, a trip that could destroy him as Eleanor’s bonds with a pirate captain tighten. Can James provoke her memory and win her love, or will the pirate steal her heart forever…

BRIDE OF FALCON by Collette Cameron – Faced with spinsterhood, Ivonne Wimpleton takes fate into her own hands determined to win the heart of her wholly unacceptable childhood love . . . scandal be damned.

After five Seasons, Ivonne Wimpleton has accepted she’s a haute ton undesirable. Always a bit ungraceful, her suitors are men desperate to get their hands on her marriage settlement. Guarded and aloof, she’s resigned herself to spinsterhood. She doesn’t mind her fate, since Chancy Faulkenhurst, the man who once held her heart, left for India years ago without an explanation. When Ivonne’s father, Viscount Wimpleton, refuses Chance’s request for her hand in marriage, he transfers to the East India Troops. Chance’s dreams of making Ivonne his wife are soundly dashed. Ignoring her letters, he closes the door on his heart and Ivonne and remains in India.

Six years later, severely injured during a battle, Chance returns to England physically and emotionally scarred. His love for Ivonne remains just as strong. When he learns due to a whim of Prinny’s she must choose one of the despots whose offered for her hand, Chance is determined that none should have her but him. Except, not only is she infuriated he made no effort to contact her in all those years, in Chance’s absence, his father arranged a marriage for him and fully expects Chance to honor the agreement.

IT TAKES A HERO   by ELLA QUINN

Even though their families demand that the youngest son of a duke, Lord Quartus Trevor, and the Duchess of Wharton remain apart, but their hearts don’t seem able to listen.

For the former Anna Calder of Tortola, discovering she is the Duchess of Wharton is a shock, but being forced to find a husband is a greater one. To make matters worse, the only gentleman who interests her is the devastatingly handsome rogue she has been warned against. As inappropriate as he is, she can’t stop thinking about the way his blue eyes warm her or cut of his coat over his broad shoulders…

Upon accepting his brother’s invitation to spend the Season in London, Lord Quartus Trevor quickly discovers that being the penniless younger son of a duke is not much of a recommendation to the beguiling Duchess of Wharton. It’s ridiculous to hope her attentions are serious, but where she’s concerned, his hope refuses to be swayed.

THE SWEETEST CHALLENGE by MARIE HIGGINS

Is giving her heart to a stranger worth the price?

Melinda Stewart is far from being a debutante, but she must disguise what she does during the day to keep food on the table. When a wealthy businessman enters her life and wants to buy her land, she’s torn between giving up her deceased father’s dream—and wanting to give her heart to this stranger.

HEART OF DELIGHT by JENNA JAXON

He’ll do anything to be her heart’s delight—except tell the truth.

Gabriella d’Adventure has come to England as a lady’s maid in pursuit of the Duke of Rother. So when she meets the handsome Horace Carpenter, valet to a marquess, she is delighted to enlist his aid in gaining her heart’s desire: a meeting with the duke

When a breathtaking young woman intrudes on the eccentric Marquess of Halford’s solitude, he is captivated and introduces himself as his valet in hopes of learning more about her. Despite his fear about the true motive behind Gabriella’s quest to meet the duke, Hal agrees to help her gain an audience, all the while hoping his deception will won’t ruin his chances of winning her love and hand in marriage.

STEALING MINERVA by LOUISA CORNELL

He has a thousand reasons to steal the bride, but only one reason to steal her heart.

Colonel Sebastian Brightworth has a reputation for seduction. He seduces money into his hands and never lets it go. He seduces women into his bed and never lets them stay. Seducing his best friend’s latest betrothed into jilting him days before the wedding seems an easy task. Especially with a thousand-pound purse in the offing. That is, until Sebastian discovers his friend is engaged to the one woman in England he cannot possibly seduce. Again.

After seven years in a less than perfect marriage and two years as the Perfect Widow, Minerva Faircloth is engaged to the most eligible earl in England. Their amiable marriage will keep her son safe from his uncle’s cruel plans and her heart safe from disappointment. Everything goes according to plan, until her betrothed’s closest friend arrives. Sebastian Brightworth stole her heart nine years ago. What thievery is he up to now? And how will she ever survive it?

HIS LORDSHIP’S DARKEST SECRET by ELF AHEARN

The thought of Claire Albright in the arms of another man is unbearable, but in his heart, Lord Flavian Monroe knows he mustn’t ask her to share the consequences of one terrible mistake.

If Lady Claire Albright had one wish, it would be to forget brooding, powerful Lord Flavian Monroe. But even after two years of bewildering silence, she yearns to touch his sinuous arms and feel his calloused hands upon her cheeks. Then, on the brink of her come out, they accidently meet. His ward is ill, and he begs her to use her knowledge of healing to help the child. But this patient is sick in a way that’s far different than what Claire expected—dangerously different. And, as she struggles to find a cure, Flavian resists rekindling their love. Is it the ward’s illness that keeps him cold and distant, or a dark and terrible secret?

TEMPTED BY A ROGUE  by LAUREN SMITH

Gemma never planned on falling in love with her childhood sweetheart’s best friend, Jasper, when he returns home, but she can’t resist the naval officer’s brooding charm.

Gemma plans to marry James, her childhood sweetheart. With every letter written between them while he’s been off at sea, their love has grown. Now they will be reunited with his return to England. But the man whose words she’d fallen in love with isn’t James..

Jasper, a gentleman rogue of the first order, is trapped. Talked into a scheme by his friend, he pretended to be James for eleven years while writing to Gemma. He’s promised James he’d break it off. But when he returns home, his secret will come out – and he’ll lose the one woman he can’t live without.

 

 

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Next Wednesday my special guest is Melissa Keir, a wonderful writer friend and colleague of spicy, contemporary romances. Hope you return to you favorite Wednesday spot to meet Melissa! She’s a sweetheart!

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