November 22, 2014

Something for Saturday: Spotlight

Author Carolyn LaRoche's New Release!
Someone wants Angelina dead...again. Will following her heart put her in danger or in the arms of the man she's meant to be with? 

As far as the world knows, NYPD detective Angelina Ferrara died in a violent firefight on Chelsea Piers over a year ago. Living in the witness protection program as history teacher Lucy Taylor was supposed to save her life, but being alive and living were two very different things. Until she meets detective Logan James when he goes undercover in the same private school where she works. Something about the handsome man with the gorgeous blue eyes piques her interest. There’s no doubt he has secrets… but then so does she.  When the Ricci crime family discovers she’s still alive, she finds herself on the run with Logan. Her heart led her astray before. Can she trust it to let Logan help her survive?

Excerpt 
Her little car had an engine about as powerful as a hamster wheel. There was no way she was going to outrun the truck that was accelerating with lightning speed. On one side of her was a deep ravine, the other the steep slope of a mountain towered high and tree covered. The steering wheel shook violently as she pushed her little car to its limits, sheer adrenaline keeping her focused on the winding road. As she rounded a sharp curve, the back tires spun and fishtailed out from behind her. The tiny car shook violently as Lucy struggled to maintain control. The SUV caught up with her then, ramming into her rear bumper. The car groaned but held on. Lucy spun the wheel to make the next sharp curve, all the while her eyes searched for a way off the dangerous mountain highway. Another crash from behind jolted her car forward with such force Lucy lost her grip on the steering wheel. The car veered right but she managed to straighten it out before hitting the tree line.
"What the hell do you want with me?" she screamed at the truck in her rearview mirror.
The driver responded by slamming into the back of her car again. Metal ground against metal, gravel flew everywhere, and the car careened toward a thick bank of trees to her left. Straightening the car once more, Lucy crushed the gas pedal to the floor and watched as the speedometer climbed quickly. Lucy felt the little rush of excitement she always got in a good pursuit despite the fact that she was the one being pursued.
She whipped around yet another curve, and the SUV caught up with her. Just as she managed to get her little car under control again, the SUV crashed into her back end again with such force Lucy thought her car might shatter there in the middle of the road. The little car veered to the right, aiming straight for the side of the road and the ravine beyond. Lucy tried to regain control but the effort was in vain. She braced herself as the car plowed through thick vegetation, hit something, and started to slide down the steep embankment.
She heard the growl of the SUV's engine roaring away over the revving of her own engine as the tiny car crashed through the underbrush. The car flew over a log and landed on the slick vegetation covering the incline. The car lost its hold on the ground and rolled its way down the slope, finally landing up against the trunk of a large pine tree where the engine died. Lucy's head smacked against the steering wheel knocking her near to senseless. Everything fell deathly silent as she fought to remain conscious.
A loud crack broke the silence. As she watched through the broken windshield, the tree in front of her began to wobble. Blood trailed from her forehead into her left eye blurring her already shaky vision. Rubbing at it with the back of her arm, she used her other hand to desperately claw at the seat belt release.
If she didn't get out of the car, the tree was going to fall right on top of her.
The giant pine swayed once and then began its descent toward Lucy and her crumpled car. Yanking hard at the jammed seat belt, her head swimming and her stomach churning, Lucy finally freed herself. Just as the tree crushed the roof of her car, like it were nothing more than a tin can, Lucy pulled her body through the opening that used to be the driver's side window.
Cracking wood and crunching metal stirred up a cacophony of birds and small animals protesting the intrusion in their habitat. Lucy lay on the damp moss and rotting leaves, her heart banging against her chest wall. The sound of her pulse racing in her ears muted the sound of the creaks and groans as the tree settled against what was left of her car. Every inch of her body hurt, but her head ached most of all.
Release Date : 11/28/2014     Pre-order Today!



Carolyn LaRoche grew up in snow country but fled the cold and ice several years ago. She now lives near the beach with her husband, their two boys, two finicky cats and one old dog. When she is not at the baseball field cheering on big hits and home runs, she is busy teaching science to unwilling teenagers.  She is co-author of the book The Crazy Lives of Police Wives and hangs out online at both Carolyn La Roche - Author and carolynlarocheauthor.blogspot.com



November 15, 2014

Something for Saturday~ What's better than a book?


  Seriously, what's better than a book? You open the cover and words take you to a place you've never been.



That's what I love about writing as well. I create characters, settings, and places for a reader to escape to--if for but a while. (I escape too. Just saying.)

My main genre is historical fiction. Especially medieval. I haven't a clue as to why I've always been fascinated with that time period. I even had a reoccurring dream that I was a medieval maiden running from an enemy knight--well, I guess that's more of a nightmare, but that's another story. (If I remember right, I posted about that nightmare a couple of years back. It actually inspired a scene in Jewel of Ramstone.) Maybe I'll re-post that later this week.

Anyway...where was I? Oh yeah, medieval times. I researched the era to assure the clothing, food, weaponry and such are accurate in my stories, be it Jewel of Ramstone or my Magic Stone Series.

Fantasy is fantasy, but I used what I gleaned from medieval research in the Magic Stone Trilogy as well. I was unable to research the time-travel element in that series. (I really wish I had a Tardis...or Dr. Who.) Luckily, someone or something blessed me with storytelling ability, and I wrote the first book, For All Time. Cade travels from medieval times to modern day where he meets Sage. And her dog, Tex. I didn't intend to have my very own dog in the story, but he nudged his way in, and nearly stole the story with his typical mischief. 

The second book, Timeless Valentine, is filled with the wonderment a medieval sorcerer can bring to a teller at a bank. Kerry, the teller, and Wren, work magic of their own. Enough said?

The third book, Stolen Time, was kind of a surprise to me. I didn't even know the first book would start a series. Though I am the author, my characters tend to take over my writing. There's a secondary character, Margery, from book one, For All Time. When I wrote the word END, I thought that was the end of her. However, Margery refused to give up her fight. She nagged at me, and refused to quit until I gave her a chance to snag the man she loved. Little did Margery realize I was going to tear her away from everything familiar...but I left her in the arms of a man. Maybe she'll stop fighting now.

Well, heck. I guess I've rambled enough. 


OH! I almost forgot the whole reason I started this post! This weekend only, you can purchase the Magic Stone Collection for...drum roll please.....50% off. That's a  $2.50 time-travel trip; a price even Travelocity can't top.

Buy link



Woman reading a book by stockphoto at freedigitalphoto.net   
sale ad by J.M. Powers


November 7, 2014

Friday Fun

Jewel of Ramstone November 2014 Blog Tour




Click on each link on designated dates for interesting tidbits, reviews, and giveaways!

November 5
November 7

November 8 
November 9
November 10
November 14 
RELEASE DAY!
Karenna Colcroft


November 1, 2014

Something for Saturday~ Oh Lord. What have I done?

I sent out a few advance reader copies of my novel, Jewel of Ramstone


Oh Lord.

What was I thinking?


 I love the characters. I'm satisfied with the events in their lives; love interests, family secrets, deaths and battles--you name it. Why then, do I bite my nails after sending copies of the book to reviewers? 

I took a lot of time thinking about this while studying my now non-existent finger nails, and I think I've figured it out. 

I want the reader to love the characters. I want the character to stick in their minds after they turn the last page...and refuse to leave their hearts. I want the story to be REAL. I bite my nails because a tiny part of me...a teensy-weensy part of me...is afraid I won't accomplish the most important thing.

The reader is transported.


That pretty much sum's it up, Right? If I can accomplish that, then my characters haven't lived and died, laughed and cried, battled and won, for nothing. 


 Yep. That kind of thinking leads me to my personal worry dungeon. Do other writers go through the same kind of torture?  I wonder.


Despite all the nail biting and over-thinking, something magical happened.





A FIVE STAR REVIEW WAS BORN!


Jewel of Ramstone is one of the best books I have read in a very long time. From the first page to the last, I was completely taken in by the story and even now, nearly a week after finishing it, I find myself wishing there were more pages left to turn. READ MORE HERE







 

October 25, 2014

Something for Saturday~Cover reveal tour!

Once again, award winning cover artist, Victoria Miller, has worked her magic.


Breathless Press Cover artists work closely with authors to capture the essence of the characters, story and setting. This is no exception. I couldn't be happier with Jewel of Ramstone's cover! Kudos to Victoria Miller!

Thanks to everyone who helped share this cover reveal. Take a peek at their blog, maybe even join!

Boys, Badges and Writer's Block
Musings By Mandy
Reading, Writing, and Me
The Shrew That Tames
Cover Lover Book Review
Authors, Books and Chocolate
A Mad Woman With a Magical Sword
Jo Marsh's Book Folly

Jewel of Ramstone is currently up for pre-order on Breathless Press and Amazon.

October 15, 2014

What's for Wednesday?

Each Wednesday of this 30 day countdown will spotlight whatever tickles my fancy.



Today, I'm pretty damn tickled with the great staff at Breathless Press. I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you all.

Justyn Perry: Publisher. Thank you for giving my books a second life, and giving me hope when I thought I'd hit a dead end. Because of you, my creativity has a perfect outlet, and my future is brighter...all because you believed in me.
.

Victoria Miller: Cover Artist extraordinaire. She takes my ramblings and odd descriptions and somehow creates a perfect hug for my books. I just called a cover a hug, but that's how Victoria makes me feel. The art is a perfect compliment to the story inside. You know the old saying, don't judge a book by its cover? Pffft. Cover art is what draws me to a book. Thank you Victoria, for your amazing talent.


Allie Kincheloe: It takes a special someone to sift through a three hundred page manuscript, and know just what needs tweaking, a change of point of view, or a change in timeline...and more. Allie is that special someone. She's my editor, friend and go-to-girl for the gazillion questions that come up during round after round of edits. I love edits. I swear I do. I even share my chocolate with my editor now. Thank you, Allie for your gentle guidance. (And the crack of the whip at deadlines.).


My heart smiles at Breathless Press.



October 14, 2014

Tempting Tuesday


Tempting tidbits of cover art.


Ruby

A maiden, unable to recall who she is, must battle evil to regain the memory of her past and the hope of a future.   


Sir Galeron


Sir Galeron, the knight who claims to have protected her while she was unconscious. 








October 13, 2014

More for Monday

The continuing excerpt for Jewel of Ramstone:

"Sit." He continued to tend the fire.
She paid no heed to his demand, and thrust her hands toward the fire. To her dismay, the sharp smell of the rabbit caused her stomach to roar with hunger.
Galeron's blue eyes sparked with mischievousness. "I gather 'tis been some time since you ate?"
"Apparently." She plunked down on a fallen log, certain her face turned countless shades of crimson.
Taking a seat beside her, Galeron chuckled and poked at the fire. He was so close she could smell the woodsy scent on his skin. She inhaled deeper, tucking the fragrance into her mind to savor when she was left to her own.
He cleared his throat. "Allow me to tend to that cut."
Inwardly cringing, she changed the subject. "How long before we eat?"
With a quick wink, he leaned back and rummaged in his saddle pack. Taking her hand, he placed an apple in it, keeping one for himself. His smile highlighted the dimple in his chin and she found herself offering a genuine smile in return.
"Ah, glorious," she said, grateful he didn't see how his touch affected her. Waving his offer to use his dagger, she bit heartily into the fruit, and moaned, relishing the explosion of juice across her tongue. "Naught could taste sweeter in this moment."
Oh, but she did know one thing that might. Tasting the nectar on his lips would certainly qualify. She sensed his tension when she took a bite. Mayhap he had the same thought? He grunted and crunched into the apple, mumbling something about a damn green-eyed mystery.

Were her eyes green? Damnation. Her mind was truly addled.

Excerpt ended...for now.
 In the meantime, Tempting Tuesday will feature a taste of cover art.

October 12, 2014

Sunday Snippet

I shared an excerpt from Jewel of Ramstone son Something for Saturday, Here's a snippet more...

Seeming to battle with her revelation, Galeron's expression flitted from stunned to confused. Then his gaze bore into her with such tenderness it nearly undid her. "Nay memory?" he finally whispered.
She shook her head. He guided her head to his shoulder. Barely a moment passed before he released her, rose to his feet, and strode away. Unsure of why he left so abruptly, she frowned when he looked back.
"I regret I cannot ease your uncertainty." He stooped to gather twigs. "However, I am able to ease your hunger. After breaking our fast, we shall take leave."
She dabbed her impending tears as soon as his back was turned.
"We should arrive at Ramstone by nightfall."
"I am to stay at your home? What shall your wife think?"
"There is nay wife." He grabbed a branch and added it to his arms. "But there is plentiful family about."
Holding the tree for support, she stood, waiting for the dizziness to subside before she followed. When he turned, she picked up a branch, embarrassed at how silly she looked traipsing on his heels. Gathering an armload of kindling, she stole glances at him, each time wondering how it would feel to remain in his arms. She piled the branches then watched him arrange them.
"Building a fire?" Hark, she was a fool.
"Nay, I am building an abode." And he solidified the fact.
"I want my own chamber then." Several paces away, she sat. Sunlight peeked through the forest canopy. She closed her eyes and raised her face to the warmth. Like a constant itch, she felt his gaze. She slowly peered through her lashes. Aye, he was staring—no—studying her face. Her gash. Her ugly face. She sighed and looked to the sky instead.
"God's eyes," he muttered.
She turned to him. Very well, if he finds a need to gawk, I shall give him a full view of my battered face. "Sir Galeron, what worries you so? Has my plight delayed your duties?"
"Nay." He jammed the skinned carcasses on a sharpened branch.
"I heard your curse. Was it in frustration of not reaching your destination?" Oh, how she wished to smirk at his rudeness, but she kept her poise.
"I was not delayed from anything that could not wait." Keeping his eyes shielded, he placed the meat across the spit before offering a weak smile. "I pray forgiveness for my curse reaching your ears."
Wrapping her arms around her legs, she rested her unscathed cheek on her knees. "Curses are naught. I am simply thankful you helped me, Sir Galeron." Apparently he was too kind to mention her affliction. She hated the pity. 
Seemingly distracted, he arranged kindling then retrieved a piece of hammered steel and flint from a pouch on his belt.
"I pray you can forgive my initial rudeness." When he didn't respond, she added, "Ah, I gather forgiveness shall come with time."
Galeron struck the steel with a bit of flint. "I never held ill will. I understood the reason you lashed out." He blew on the kindling until it caught. "You are forgiven for bashing your head into mine as well."
"Ha!" She rose and strode to the fire. Her gaze flitted over his body. He looked up, catching her stare, and alas, stared back. Heat crept up her neck, spreading to her face. Surely, 'twas the fire's heat causing her flush—she hoped he believed the same lie.
 Galeron grinned. His demeanor was infuriating. And endearing. And more confusing than her loss of memory.



More on Monday!

October 11, 2014

Something for Saturday

One month from today Breathless Press, my amazing publisher, will release my novel, JEWEL OF RAMSTONE.


Thirty days is a long time to keep this exicetment bottled up, so here's a little peek.
Something for Saturday: Excerpt from Jewel of Ramstone 


"Ask me anything. Mayhap I can help." His deep voice broke the silence.
 How was he to help? "Pray tell, how did we come to share the forest?"
"I shall explain." He bent and picked up a twig, then proceeded to peel the bark off. With each curl he tossed aside, she grew more frustrated.
'Twas better to allow mistrust. Stand strong. She gasped. Unexpected, the thought rang with such clarity, it seemed someone else had spoken. "Perchance you should be honest. Did you drug me? Spell me?"
He tossed the twig aside. Though his eyes remained on her face, her whole body felt his scrutiny. "'Twould do you well to hold your tongue."
"I am beginning to dislike you," she said, knowing full well the opposite was true. She truly wished her insides would cease…prickling? And her head. Damn, it ached so. Tingles and pain aside, she tried to focus. "Do you intend to explain or not?"
"I seek a means to tell you gently."
With a slight shrug, she said, "No need for gentleness. You already tossed me about." She grinned despite the truth in her statement.
He sighed. "It appears you are lost."
"God's eyes, knight!" She shook her head. "You must be a great sorcerer to possess such insight."
"Your tongue shall be your undoing. Best you still it."
Twice he attempted to stifle her. She clenched her teeth. "Still it?"
Galeron's jaw twitched and she wondered if he were quelling a smile. "I found you here in the woodlands. I did not hold you captive, drug you, or harm you." He blinked slowly. "Hold to that."
She nodded. "Forgive—"
"Nay need. I understand. You now stand a day's ride from Ramstone. Have you heard of it?"
He pushed off the tree and came to sit beside her, his thigh nearly touching her own. Nearly. It took a moment for her answer. "Nay, I do not recall Ramstone." The fact she did not recall much of anything choked off the rest of her response.
"Odd," he said, more to himself than her.
Sighing, she realized how badly her masquerade of bravery was faltering. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw his hand come toward her. Surprised at the urge to lean into his touch, she remained still and allowed him to brush back the wisps of hair from her brow. His hand lowered in a fist, yet his voice was laced with tenderness.
"It pains me that I cannot give you answers." His gaze strayed from her face, lowering to her neck.
Covering the neckline of her tunic with both hands, she glared at him. "Focus elsewhere." He sees me as a woman after all. She dashed the thought away. Almost.
"I intend nay disrespect. The bruising on your neck concerns me." Gently brushing her hand aside, he took a closer look. "Fingerprints."
It took all she had not to cry out. Who harmed her?
"When we discovered you, there was nay sign of anyone else."
She glanced around. "We?"
"I sent my men home."
She blinked. Then blinked again. "Your men."
"My brother, a healer, assured me your wounds were not serious, so I decided to wait—"
She put up her hand. "Why not leave me under the care of your healer? Or leave me in the nearest village?"
He swallowed hard. "It matters not! Are you always so…so…inquisitive?"
Ah, this man was not used to being questioned. She tried to ease his surly mood. "A shame your men were sent on their way. No one laid witness when I kicked you and bashed your comely face before you so unceremoniously dropped a maiden to the ground."
He blew a long breath. "You insist on repeating that. Had you dressed appropriately, I would not have thought you a lad." His chuckle made her grin. "Although you certainly fight like a maiden."
She swiped her hand through the air. "Carry on."
"Carry on," he muttered. "I fear you shall interrupt again." He looked up through the trees, ignoring her huff. "We still had several days before reaching our destination when we found you. With that in mind, I postponed the journey and sent my men back to Ramstone."
"I see." She studied the frayed edge of her tunic. "How long have I been here?"
"I watched over you a single night. How long you were here remains a mystery. I was only gone a short time for I needed to boil meat into a broth to sustain you. Had I known you were a maiden, I never would have left you alone."
Her head snapped up. "Yet you would a lad? I am not defenseless simply because I am a female."
Galeron's eyes hardened. "Aye, 'tis so. I returned to find you brandishing a dagger. I left it in case you awoke and felt unsafe, not to use against me."
She ran her hands through the leaves and shrugged a silent apology, too stubborn to utter it out loud.
"Fair one?"
Damnation, she hated when he addressed her with those words, and yet it awoke something in her, for he said it with tenderness. She glared at his smiling face. "Why are you calling me that?" To her chagrin, what she'd meant as snide came out as quite curious.
 He splayed his hands in question, "Would you prefer I call you lad?" Two furrows appeared on his brow at her silent glare. "Because, you have yet to give your name."
Disarmed, she swallowed her spiteful attitude. "If I only could." She locked away her tears, her dismay, and did her best to keep her voice steady. "I hoped you would know…would say it by now. Sir Galeron, I…I recall naught before I saw you standing before me."




Stay tuned for Sunday Snippet