Monday, September 29, 2008
On Friday this summer the power went off about six o’clock in the morning just as my husband was brushing his teeth. He goes to work early to avoid traffic and to concentrate on his deskwork before many other people get to work.
The phone rang once and the ABS on my Mac starting chirping, which woke me up. I try not to rise early in the morning, but both those sounds jerked might right out of bed. I decided to stay in bed. Soon the persistent bleeping of the ABS and the fact that I was just plain awake gave me an idea. Lack of electricity meant I couldn’t turn on my computer, but I could whip out my handy dandy AlphaSmart and write a blog!
Plus, it made me ponder the days before electricity (being a sometimes-historical-writer, I often ponder lack of electricity). It also made me cogitate on the technology we rely on as writers to promote our work. Most writers these days have websites, and we also blog, use MySpace, Facebook, Shelfari, and an array of other technology to stay current with the world.
Me? I have my website, I blog and this year I broke down and have a My Space page (sorry, I’m not doing the other pages...too much of a time suck for moi.) I’ve also contemplated a trailer for some up and coming books.
Plus, I have a song on my MySpace page called Darling Denise on My Space page by independent music artist Val Emmich. Val contacted me one day to say I could use the song on my website if I wanted. A great marketing tool for us both. (Hey, check out Val on UGLY BETTY. He’s got a recurring roll on there this season.)
So what do you think of technology? How does it help or hurt you? You’ll have two days to comment. I’ll pick one person to receive a trade paperback copy of MEANT TO BE, my contemporary romance from Cerridwen Press.
Thanks to Laurie for allowing me to stop by and say howdy. I invite you to stop by my website, and read all about my latest releases, INTIMATE MOMENTS and WITHIN HIS SIGHT and visit MySpace, and listen to Val Emmich’s song Darling Denise.
Here’s to technology!
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Denise Agnew has two new books out - INTIMATE ALLIANCE and WITHIN HIS SIGHT. Great covers, huh? INTIMATE ALLIANCE is published by Samhain Publishing and combines previous releases MALE CALL and UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER. I haven't read MALE CALL yet, but I have read UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER as well as all of the other books in Denise's Hot Zone series, and I can vouch for them all!
WITHIN HIS SIGHT is new from Liquid Silver Books (to be released in the next few days) and is the first in Denise's new Heart of Justice series. I'm looking forward to reading it!
Denise's characters aren't larger than life or over the top - always realistic and believable - but at the same time, her heroes never fail to be completely capable of taking care of their women and keeping them safe. They simply get the job done. Period. Add steamy, passionate romance and you've got what I consider a well-rounded romantic suspense!
MALE CALL (2007 PASSIONATE PLUME AWARD WINNER-BEST NOVELLA)
Her sexy letters are his only lifeline in his dangerous world…Eve Carmichael can't take the thought of Reserve army soldier Sean O'Callahan in danger overseas. She hasn't received a letter from him in too many weeks. And oh, how she longs for those flirtatious, hot letters. When Eve receives a letter from Sean saying he's been wounded, her fears are realized. But fate and a little mischievous planning by her friends will serve up the greatest surprise of all.
She wants the adventure of a lifetime and isn't willing to sacrifice it for any man…Archaeologist Fredricka "Freddie" Bodine returns to her hometown for her high school reunion. A single memory is etched deeply on her brain—the high school prom where she shared an emotionally revealing dance with Keith Wallace. All Captain Keith Wallace wants is to keep the girl he loved and lost safe, even if she hates him for it…Keith doesn't want her to travel to Los Diablos, a lawless area he feels in his gut isn't safe, and the place where his sister was killed years ago. As they grapple with exploding passion between them, their battle of wills may just lead them to the truth living in both their hearts.
WITHIN HIS SIGHT:
Women respond to a man's testosterone without any thought…
Tainted by bad memories of past betrayal, Mary Wickes knows getting involved with SWAT team member Dace “Hard Man” Banovic would be a big mistake. Yet working with him for six months at the sheriff's department has proven that her hormones don’t care what she thinks--only what she wants.
Men respond to a woman's softness without any thought…
Dace is puzzled by Mary's avoidance tactics, and although he's tried to ignore the powerful attraction he feels for her, he can't help wanting to learn everything about the woman he's desired for months.
When danger comes, sometimes it takes a special man and woman to see it through to the end…When a hostage situation forces them to confront their fears, Mary and Dace must find the courage to face the feelings they’ve tried so hard to deny.
Check out Denise's website for her booklist, excerpts, purchasing info and where to find her on Myspace!
To celebrate the release of INTIMATE ALLIANCE and WITHIN HIS SITE, Denise is going to be a guest blogger here tomorrow - you're guaranteed lots of fun chatter with her and an exciting giveaway, so be sure to check back!
Thank you, Denise!
Thanks again to HelenKay for the giveaway book and thanks to everyone who stopped by to play! Stay tuned tomorrow for guest blogger author Denise Agnew - Denise's very presence guarantees a good time - and she's going to have another fun contest.
I hope everyone has had a great weekend. We've been on the run so it has gone by rather quickly. Back to work tomorrow - boo!
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Donna Kauffman, Jill Shalvis, and HelenKay Dimon, three of the most recognized names in women's fiction, have joined together in a fun holiday anthology, TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT. I have read pretty much everything these talented women have written and trust me, they know how to do romance right - gorgeous, manly men, the sexy, intelligent women they can't live without, humor and sensuality - it all adds up to excellent reading entertainment if you ask me.
I was very fortunate to get a copy of this gorgeous book from HelenKay for review - together with an extra copy for giveaway - try and tell me you're not excited!! The cover shouts Christmas, doesn't it? The red door on the cover looks exactly like the front door on the house where I grew up, which makes it extra special! I always loved that bright red door. I've written a review - try to read it all the way through before going to the contest info, ok? Just kidding, I'd probably rather skip to the good stuff too!
TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT Donna Kauffman
Emma Lafferty agrees to house sit and pet sit for an eccentric billionaire over the holidays, knowing the pay and references it would generate would be a hefty boost to her new pet sitting business. When she arrives at his country home in the middle of an ice storm, the last thing she expects to find is the gorgeous great-grandson of the CEO, and although she doesn't quite believe the story he's telling about why he's there, she finds his charm irresistible.
Trevor Hamilton knew his great-uncle was going out of the country for two weeks and was certain he could pay off whoever had been hired to pet sit so he could search the mansion for clues to a family secret - a secret that has eaten at him for several years. It immediately becomes clear that Emma isn't budging. It isn't long before Trevor is totally captivated by Emma and he finds himself questioning the importance of the supposed family secret in comparison to his desire to build a relationship with Emma.
Emma and Trevor are absolutely charming together, despite a slightly rocky start. The sparks fly immediately, although they're a little hesitant to trust each other. Trevor's questions and doubts about his place in his family is heartening, as is Emma's gentle persuasion for him to do whatever is necessary to ease his mind and allow him to find the peace he has desperately wanted for several years.
FINDING MR. RIGHT Jill Shalvis
Maggie Bell is a chemistry genius, working extremely long days on what she hopes is the next medical miracle. Maggie seems to be a Mr. Wrong magnet - finding him time and time again. When she decides to just go ahead and find Mr. Wrong right off the bat, who better than her high school crush, Jacob Wheeler, a contractor who is working in her building. The trouble is, once the two start spending time together, Jacob is beginning to look more and more like Mr. Right.
Seeing Maggie for the first time since high school, Jacob is incredulous that he's never noticed how beautiful she is. When he learns that she's decided to "use" him as her Mr. Wrong, he decides to make the most of it and convince her that he wants more than a temporary fling, encouraging her to use her lab for more than test slides.
Jill Shalvis has done a great job with this reunion story. Past familiarity spares Maggie and Jacob time in the "getting to know you" stage and despite their differences in profession, they find that there's a definite attraction that both are eager to investigate and research. Add a little intrigue and danger and Maggie and Jacob's story is especially interesting.
CAN YOU HAND ME THE TAPE? HelenKay Dimon
Natalie Pritchard breaks her engagement to a sleazy, self-centered jerk only to discover that he's unknowingly in possession of a naughty tape she made for him in an effort to boost her self-confidence. She decides the only person she can go to for help is her ex's law partner, Spencer Donovan. To say that Natalie and Spencer don't see eye to eye is an understatement and it takes tremendous courage for her to even talk to him about the tape. Somewhere in the course of their meetings to discuss strategy, the two share their secrets and feelings and soon begin to see each other in a totally different light.
Spencer Donovan would be the first to admit that he had never really noticed Natalie before. As the fiancee of his law partner she was off-limits so he had no reason to check her out as a woman. Now that she's no longer taken and has requested his help, he has checked her out - and plans to continue checking her out. Because Natlie's self-esteem is nearly broken, Spence knows that a soft-touch is needed. He's counting on gentle attentions and the success of a grand gesture to prove to Natalie that she's the perfect woman for him, just the way she is.
HelenKay Dimon has written Natalie with vulnerabilities that are shared by so many women. Spencer sees these vulnerabilities immediately and rather than act on them for his own benefit, he's determined to make Natalie see how very beautiful and special she is. Talk about dreamy! It was a pleasure to see these two gradually move from verbal sparring to passionate whispering!
I give this book the highest of recommendations - everyone should have it on top of their stack of holiday reads!
Now for the contest. Please post a comment about holiday romances - do you like them? Love them? Are they just so-so for you? Do you have a favorite? I wrote an article at Romancing the Blog once that discussed holiday romances and the responses were very interesting. The general consensus seemed to be (and I heartily agree) that they are most enjoyable in the fall/winter before the holidays. There were a few who read them year-round, which reminds me of my mother who watches taped Christmas movies all year. If you send a friend who mentions your name, I'll put your name in the draw an extra time for each friend doing the mentioning. I'll draw a name on Sunday evening, the 28th. Good luck, everyone!
TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT is available on shelves now, or if you prefer ordering from the comfort of home, here's an Amazon link.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
I hope everyone is having a great weekend! We went to a huge antique/flea market today - my piggies are tired from hours of walking, but we got some great deals and had a good time.
Friday, September 19, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
I was very lucky in getting DRIVEN BY DESIRE by LuAnn McLane (releasing on October 7) for Romance Junkies review and am excited to share a little info about it - be sure to read to the end because there's a great giveaway!
Only one man could make her heart race… Daredevil stunts and dangerous accidents are par for the course in the world of motocross racing. Just ask Alexia Spencer, who almost lost her high school sweetheart in a near-fatal accident. But when she asked him to give up racing, Jayden Michaels rode off without even a goodbye, leaving Alexia heartbroken.
Ten years later, Jayden’s back—determined to prove he’s over Alexia. But it’s impossible to ignore the irresistible woman she’s become. And it isn’t long before Jayden finds himself on Alexia’s doorstep, driven by his insatiable desire, hoping he can tempt the woman he still loves into letting herself feel the heat—and taking a risk with her heart.
In DRIVEN BY DESIRE, LuAnn McLane gives readers the story of a couple with a painful past who discover after being reunited several years later, that the attraction between them continues to smolder. But old wounds are often the deepest and they're uncertain as to whether they can put past heartaches behind and allow themselves a future together.
When Jayden Michaels runs into Alexia Spencer, literally, while riding his dirt bike through the woods, it's impossible to say which of them is more surprised. Alexia was crushed ten years prior when Jayden chose Supercross motorcycle racing over his relationship with her. When she eventually married someone else, it was Jayden who felt the pain. Alexia eventually realized that she had made a big mistake, divorced her husband and returned home to find herself. She never expected that Jayden would once again be part of her life, and given the secret that she's been keeping for ten years, she fears that he won't understand her reason for secrecy. Alexia decides it's time to tell Jayden the truth, hoping that he cares enough for her and the future they could have together, to understand.
Jayden has come home to nurse a shoulder injury and to help a friend with a new business venture. Spending time with Alexia is an unexpected bonus. He never dreamed that a second chance with her would ever be in the cards for him. Jayden quickly discovers that a white-hot passion still exists between them and they aren't together long before old passions begin to burn. When he discovers the secret that Alexia has been hiding, past pains return and he pushes her away. He isn't certain he has the strength to get beyond his pain to help Alexia deal with her own suffering.
I adore LuAnn McLane and have enjoyed reading each and every one of her books. DRIVEN BY DESIRE is no exception, although it has a totally different flavor than any of her previous books. Her trademark humor has been toned down, the eroticism has been turned (way) up, and the emotions come from much deeper in the heart. Alexia's pain is excellently written, and as readers are taken into her relationship with Jayden a decade before, her dejection when he left, and the events that followed, it almost feels tangible. Jayden suffered as well, and Ms. McLane very clearly understands the workings of a guy's mind as his thoughts, feelings and actions are described with clarity. An equally passionate side romance between Alexia's sister and Jayden's best friend is definitely a reader bonus. The relationships between all of these characters are well-written and comfortable and it doesn't take imagination to bring them to life. I highly recommend DRIVEN BY DESIRE to all romance readers who enjoy stories with reunited lovers, passionately sensual romance, and the undeniable healing power of true love.
Okay, now for the giveaway: I have a copy of A LITTLE LESS TALK AND A LOT MORE ACTION up for grabs. You know how it works - leave a comment, chat about LuAnn's books you've read or want to read, or maybe tell us which of her heroes you think is yummiest - and you're entered! Doesn't get any easier than that.
MY PREROGATIVE: Laura J.
Assuming I hear from Laura and Susan with mailing info (email@example.com) by Friday, these contests will be closed!
I'm about to post a review for LuAnn McLane's DRIVEN BY DESIRE, with a contest, to be followed by my review for the holiday anthology, TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT (Donna Kauffman, Jill Shalvis and HelenKay Dimon) with a contest for an autographed copy of the same, provided by HelenKay Dimon! Soon after that, Denise Agnew will be guest blogging and offering up an autographed book! Good reasons to keep checking back, eh?
Thank you all for your kind words and for your interest in these books - I hope you'll all stop back!
Monday, September 15, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
I was fortunate enough to get one of the latest releases from Jill Shalvis - FLASHPOINT - for Romance Junkies review. I've shown the split bookcover photo again because while my review is for FLASHPOINT, I have a copy of FLASHBACK, the second book in this series, very generously donated by Jill for a giveaway! Thanks, Jill!
I'm fairly certain that neither of these books will be found on bookstore shelves by now, but they are still available at your favorite online bookseller, so be sure and check them out if you missed them when they were first released.
My (4 blue ribbon) review:
In FLASHPOINT, the first in Jill Shalvis’s latest firefighter series, readers are guaranteed one hot hunk of a hero. Add a sexy little EMT and you’ve got a romance worthy of at least five alarms!
Brooke O’Brian has spent her entire life on the move, having been raised by a free spirit of a mother. When she inherits her grandmother’s house in California, she decides to take a temporary EMT job while preparing the house for sale. The first person she encounters when she arrives for work is firefighter Zach Thomas, and the sparks begin to fly almost immediately. Regardless of the chemistry between them and knowing that Zach might be interested in more than just a quick fling, Brooke knows that her time in Santa Rey is limited and there’s no room in her life for a lasting relationship.
Zach Thomas has dedicated his life to firefighting, having lost his parents in a fire. While his job and his friends have always been enough for him, he finds himself restless for something, or maybe someone, to round out his life. When he meets Brooke, the attraction is instantaneous and it is definitely undeniable. Zach understands that Brooke has always been content to live in a constant state of motion and total independence, but he’s hopeful that he can convince her to consider a serious, long-term relationship with him.
Jill Shalvis never fails to deliver characters and settings that are believable and realistic; Zach and Brooke are no exception. They both have painful pasts that are reflected in the adults they have become. Both are insecure as to what they have to offer in a lasting relationship so they’ve simply avoided becoming involved. Now that they’ve met each other, it looks like they may have to rethink their plans for the future. I highly recommend this book for all contemporary romance readers.
The giveaway will be simple - post a comment here and you'll be entered. Chatter about these books or any of Jill's other books, previous or upcoming, is welcome and encouraged! Send a friend and have them mention you and your name will go in an extra time for each mention. I'll draw a name on Monday, September 14, when a new review and contest will be posted. Please pop back then and say hello to LuAnn McLane!
Because I've had recent issues with readers not checking back to see if they're winners - a reminder - it is up to you to check back to see if you're a winner within the required number of days. Otherwise, a new name will be drawn. If you've ever missed out on a contest win here because you didn't check back in time - please, please, please don't let that stop you from entering another contest, ok? Trust me, I think we've all done this at one time or another and it is not a big deal. Also, US/Canada addresses only, please.
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
Update: I didn't hear from Wendy last night - the new winner is DEB Q! Let's see if we have a winner this time! I'll give Deb until Thursday to contact me.
Regrettably, Evelyn, the winner of My Prerogative is in Austrailia - my contests are US/Canadian addresses only. So sorry, Evelyn. I've drawn a new winner - WENDY ! Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your mailing information by Monday evening, 9/8.
Thanks again to all who played - and special thanks to Sasha for offering a copy of MY PREROGATIVE! Check back - more contests are coming up soon!