Friday, January 30, 2009

Lori Foster's MY MAN, MICHAEL - I have an arc to give away!

Hey ladies, because the response has been so great, I've picked up a copy of Lori's book when I was shopping after work today - so, tomorrow night I'll be drawing names for two winners!

Lori Foster has a new release, MY MAN, MICHAEL - it's on the shelves and available for online ordering now. This is a continuation of her SBC fighting series, but has a slightly different flavor from the previous books. While I think readers are going to enjoy it, I suspect that there will be a handful of readers who'll buy this book without knowing about the time travel aspect, and they will be upset. I admit that when I first heard Lori's plans for Michael, I thought "Oh Lori, Sweetie, what are you thinking?" I suspected that readers would bitch and moan, that reviews would be mixed from one extreme to the other, and the rumors would start that Lori Foster has veered off in a wild new direction and her writing will never be the same. Romance reading as we know it has come to an end, right? Wrong. Oh yeah, those things have happened. BUT, it has gotten readers talking, which is always good. There's chatter everywhere and while some readers are acting like Lori is a puppy kicker or training terrorists in her basement or something, I personally can't help but think that the "controversy" will sell books like crazy.
You'll find a great excerpt here - read it and let us know your first impression of MY MAN, MICHAEL.
I've written a brief review:
When fighter Michael "Mallett" Manchester is severely injured in an auto accident, his future looks grim. He knows that he'll never fight again and he's seriously depressed. When a beautiful woman inexplicably appears in his hospital room, says she's Kayli Raines from the future and promises that he can be completely healed if he'll return with her - to the future. Certain that it's the pain meds fogging his mind and because he's fascinated by the gorgeous stranger and the promise of a totally healed, pain-free body, he agrees. Michael finds himself fast-forwarded decades into the future and a lifestyle that he couldn't have conjured up in his wildest dreams. Women are warriors, men are scarce, and a cranky, smart-mouthed computer seems to know everyone's wants and needs before they do. It turns out that Michael has been sought out for his strength and his ability to fight so as to train warriors.
Michael's immediate feelings for Kayli are just as foreign to him as the world he's living in, but they are strong enough to make the strangeness inconsequential. No one is more confused than Kayli by her body's reaction to Michael as well as the changes he demands be implemented in order for him to stay and share his fighting expertise. No one expected him to insist that Kayli belong to him, just as they didn't suspect that things weren't as they seemed and Michael would be the one to find the truth and make things right.
If you've always enjoyed Lori's books for the romance, the emotion, for the satisfaction of seeing one of her alpha males tamed, and if you're open-minded enough to try something new from her, then snatch MY MAN, MICHAEL up as fast as you can because you're gonna love it. If you have a serious aversion to time travel or stretches of the imagination, then my advice is simple - don't buy the book.

I'm giving away my arc of this one - and who doesn't love an arc, right? All you have to do to enter is let us know your first Lori book, your favorite Lori hero or cover, or which Lori book you've read and reread! Come on and spill - we want to know! I'll draw one name from all who post a comment and the winner will be announced in the evening on Tuesday, February 3rd.
Here's a link to Amazon so you can get your own copy and see what the excitement's about!
Thanks for checking it out - and huge thanks to Lori for allowing me to review MY MAN, MICHAEL for you!!
I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Baby, it's cold outside!!

We've spent the past couple of hours digging out. We've had a mixed batch of weather over the past 36 or so hours - snow, turned to freezing rain, sleet, back to snow, freezing rain all night and a return to sleet, then snow around 6 am this morning. We had some flakes as big as your fist (ok, that's a slight exaggeration, but they were huge!) and it's still snowing, but it's getting very fine and tapering off, but now the winds have picked up. We have about 10 inches on the ground. It's just plain nasty.
Tim got out the "Big Bastard" snow blower and by the end of the afternooon will have all of the neighbors' driveways and walks cleared. Linny helped him by doing the sidewalk all the way around the court.

I've got some butter sitting out to soften so I can do some baking. Thank goodness we still have power, so many people south of us had more ice than snow and there are outages all over.

The kitties have had the best seats in the house for this storm! Tony has taken up residence on top of the quilts in my corner cupboard in the living room and Lindsay's cat, Passy (named after Pascal Leclaire, goalie for the Bluejackets), is lazing around, undecided whether to lay on his bed or the floor! Sophie and Lottie ("the girls") are each stretched out on a bed!
I hope everyone is having a great day today - if you're in the midwest, stay home if you can!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009



Congratulations, Ladies! If you'll contact me with your mailing info at, I'll get those out to you in the next couple of days.
Stay tuned for more contests - I'll soon be posting giveaways from Lori Foster and Jill Shalvis, and I'll be giving away another copy of THE WRITE INGREDIENTS cookbook.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Check out Absolute XPress - they're having contests!

Contest One:
Absolute XPress invites you to enter their “New Year, New Contest” Contest. Simply go to the website,, find the names of the romance authors and their current book title (hint: there are 6) and then e-mail them with what you find. ( Please put “New Year, New Contest” in the subject of your e-mail.
Contest runs January 9th – January 31st.WINNERS will be announced on February 2nd and will receive a 10% off coupon for their next Romance purchase from Absolute XPress.
Contest Two:
Soft whispers into your ear, candlelight glowing in the background, fire warming the hearth, wine and roses waiting on your table, what is your idea of romance? Find the answer to romance in our novels at Absolute XPress ( Go to Absolute Xpress' contest blog (, read the questions, buy the e-book(s) (, find the answer asked after each scene about the specific book or books you bought, and enter to win any book from Denyse Bridger's catalogue and a sweet treat goodie bag. You don't have to answer all the questions, but each one you answer is another chance to win, giving you up to 6 chances to win. All answers must be received at no later than February 13th. Please put Sweet, Seductive Whispers in the subject of your e-mail. The winner will be announced on February 14th.
While I'm familiar with several of the authors AT AXP, both current and those with upcoming releases (you'll never find a sweeter bunch), I'm most familiar with Denyse Bridger and have pimped her books here before. I reviewed her current AXP release, HEART OF STONE, three years ago (with another publisher) - I decided to repost that review so you can check it out.

These elite mercenaries are practically invincible and almost always complete their mission successfully, but when it comes to matters of the heart, right and wrong aren’t always as clear or as easy as catching bad guys.

Robin Bourne is relentlessly being stalked by someone that her current lover, Randall “Rand” Stone typically keeps at bay, but with Rand out of the country on a mission, her pursuer has become increasingly more brazen and is chasing her by car. When the pursuit comes to an end, Robin mistakenly believes a second man who comes on the scene when he tells her that Rand has sent him to take her to safety. The next thing she knows, she is being held hostage, desperately wondering if Rand will be able to get to her before her kidnapper goes completely over the edge and kills her.
Rand, on the other hand, doesn’t immediately search for Robin, having been told that she has been killed when her car went over a cliff and burst into flames. Totally broken at the thought of losing the one woman who completes him, he can’t fathom how he can carry on without her. When he begins to have suspicions that Robin is still alive, he has difficulty convincing the members of his mercenary team that it is possible.
Once Robin is freed, she is forced to think about what was done to her while held captive and she finds herself needing to be alone in order to come to grips with everything she has been through. When she leaves Rand again, this time voluntarily, he is at a loss as to the future of their relationship. Can Robin put the trauma of being held hostage and the acts committed against her behind her for good? Will Rand understand her reasons for leaving or has he decided to move forward without her in his life?
HEART OF STONE is a gripping book, filled with wonderful emotion and excitement. Rand and Robin’s love for one another is passionately written and is very realistic, with the ups and downs common in a relationship. Ms. Bridger is a new author to me, but I will be reading more of her books in the future; I would recommend that other readers do the same.

Thanks for checking it out!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

LONE STAR SURRENDER - the latest from Lisa Renee Jones - there's a great giveaway!

Lisa Renee Jones has a January Blaze on the shelves now - LONE STAR SURRENDER - and it's a winner, just as you would expect from Lisa! Check out what Romantic Times had to say about it:
LONE STAR SURRENDER (4.5) by Lisa Renee Jones
In this sizzling-hot adventure, undercover FBI agent Constantine Vega has to trust U.S. Attorney Nicole Ward with his life. He’s been working for a drug lord, and now a case is going to court and it’s time for him to testify. Before the trial starts, someone betrays him, possibly his own people, and he and Nicole go on the run. Constantine has learned to trust no one, but as he and Nicole escape possible death, they bond to stay alive. Nicole has her own issues regarding control, and Jones vividly shows her progression as they grow to depend on another. Very sexy and fast moving, this is a book not to miss. — Romantic Times BOOKreviews

And here's a great excerpt - are you tempted? I hope so!
Here's a brief review from me:
Constantine Vega has spent the last three years of his life undercover, chumming with a dangerous drug lord, gathering evidence for trial. When federal prosecutor Nicole Ward needs to talk to him about his testimony, even the secret location of their meeting may not be enough to keep them safe. Constantine and Nicole had met earlier at a nightclub when he sought her out at a celebration for her sister. Little did she know during their brief but intensely passionate encounter that he was the witness she so desperately needed in seeking a conviction against the deadly Alvarez. The two meet at a secret location, but it appears there's a leak on the inside and soon they're on the run. Constantine finds himself fighting to evade the bad guys in order to get himself and Nicole to court in time for the trial, but first he'll have to keep them alive.
I highly recommend this book and suggest that you visit Amazon to get a copy!
Now, on to the good stuff! I have three pairs of books for giveaway, thanks to Lisa's incredible generosity:
Pretty amazing, huh? Leave a comment about Lisa's books you've read or anticipate reading, your favorite of her books, favorite character, cover, etc. and you'll be entered. Send a friend who mentions your name and I'll give you an extra entry. I'll draw three winning names on Tuesday, January 27.
Huge thanks to Lisa for allowing me to review this for you, although I am late, and special thanks for your incredible generosity of so many books for the giveaway - you're the best!!
Thanks everyone for stopping by! I hope you have a fabulous weekend!

THINK THIN THURSDAY - Zucchini Brownie recipe

Last week I put up the peanut butter cookie recipe but being a chocolate lover, I really wanted to find a recipe for something chocolatey and sweet - found this recipe on the site and thought it looked like just the thing - the photo is the one that accompanies the recipe - yum!
I can't vouch for this recipe as I haven't tried it yet, but I intend to over the weekend. I buy zucchini by the armful at the farm market throughout the summer, grate them (several at a time) and then I freeze it in two cup portions in freezer bags. It's so easy to grab a bag, toss it on the counter to thaw and then make bread in the afternoon/evening. You can buy it at the supermarket in the winter, but it's much smaller than what I buy fresh in the summer.
I hope some of you might try this recipe too!

Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup ground flaxseeds or wheat germ
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup refrigerated or frozen egg product, thawed, or 2 eggs, slightly beaten
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1/3 cup low-fat milk
1 cup peeled (if desired) and shredded zucchini
1 medium-size ripe banana, mashed (1/2 cup)
1/2 cup miniature semisweet chocolate pieces (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat a 13x9x2-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray; set aside. In a large bowl, combine all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, flaxseeds or wheat germ, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Make a well in center of flour mixture; set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, sugar, canola oil, and milk until well mixed. Stir in zucchini and banana. Add zucchini mixture all at once to flour mixture. Stir just until moistened. Fold in chocolate pieces. Pour batter into prepared pan, spreading evenly.
3. Bake about 25 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched. Cool completely on a wire rack.
Cut into squares.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Taking Kelsey back to school today.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Elizabeth Scott's FREE PASS - there's a giveaway involved!

UPDATE! The winner is CRYSTAL GB!! Congratulations, Crystal! Please email me with your mailing info ( so I can get your copy of THE WRITE INGREDIENTS in the mail! Please contact me by Saturday, Jan. 24. Thank you, everyone, for playing! I hope to have another review posted tomorrow evening that will include the giveaway of several books, so be sure to stop back!

Elizabeth Scott has a recent (December) release (yes, I'm way in the heck late here), FREE PASS, and I'm hoping you'll all check it out. Don't you love that cover? It so makes me wish I was younger and thinner, not to mention sitting on the beach - it's -10 degrees as I'm typing this!

Elizabeth Scott's Myspace blurb:
For their seventh anniversaries, three pairs of husband-and-wife friends allow each other a one-night stand with a stranger, provided they share all the steamy details.
You can't call it cheating when you have a Free Pass.

Amazon Blurb:
These three couples have shared good times with each other as friends. But as they celebrate their seven-year anniversaries, they’re planning to share some even better times—with strangers…Vacationing in Miami, Cherisse and Wesley are up for more than sunbathing, when Wesley spies a naughty lady through his telescope and Cherisse focuses her gaze on the lifeguard. Meanwhile, Melanie passes on the hot men at her health club and chooses a private workout with an out-of-towner. When her husband accidentally walks in on them, it’s anything goes.
And at their rental in Greece, Debra and Gordon discover a Russian couple making love in a private show just for them. For the restless Americans it’s quite a come-on—and an irresistible invitation…
I've written a brief overview rather than an out-and-out review, just because I'm so far behind - check it out:
FREE PASS tells the stories of three young couples, all friends, all coming up on their seventh wedding anniversaries. In order to keep their marriages fresh and romantic, the wives hatch a plan to allow their husbands a "free pass" for a one-time sexual dalliance. Of course the pass works both ways, and the women aren't lacking for attention! While there was some hesitation at first, everyone is soon willingly involved in carnal pleasures!
Cherisse and Wesley take a beach vacation where they discover that their love for each other is incredibly strong and will continue to grow.
Melanie's reason for wanting Thomas to accept the pass runs a little deeper and while Thomas isn't initially crazy about the idea, he realizes that Melanie needs to see that his love for her is never ending and that he doesn't want, or need, anyone else.
For Debra and Gordon, having only been with each other, the idea of sharing each other with others is more than a little forbidden and oh so exciting!

While I don't approve of adultery or infidelity, regardless of who's "on board" with it, Elizabeth Scott has taken what I would typically consider a distasteful subject and written three sensual, romantic stories around it - and very nicely! Chock full of passionate love scenes and despite the "sharing" that takes place, these three couples are devoted to each other and their marriages.

Thanks to the generosity of Marty at Samhain Publishing, I have two copies of THE WRITE INGREDIENTS cookbook - I'm going to give one away now to celebrate Elizabeth's release of FREE PASS. All you have to do to enter is check out Elizabeth's Myspace page and tell me the titles of one of her books. I realize that after a handful have entered, the titles will all be visible, but I'm hopeful that you'll go check out her page anyway - don't miss the video for FREE PASS! For a bonus entry, tell me the name of Elizabeth Scott's alter ego (she's one of the authors who contributed recipes for the cookbook). I'll draw a name on Wednesday, January 21st.
Check out Samhain's site while you're cruising the web - I'm willing to bet that they are the fastest growing epub around, and their attention to detail is second to none.

Thanks for stopping and for your interest in FREE PASS - I highly recommend it to all who enjoy highly erotic romance! Here's a link to Amazon so you can grab a copy for yourself!


Thursday, January 08, 2009

THINK THIN THURSDAY - lowfat peanut butter cookies

Does anyone not like peanut butter cookies? To be honest they're not my favorite, but being a cookie lover I will eat them if there's no chocolate chip cookies in the house! I do love to bake but unfortunately I love to eat too, almost to the point of gluttony when it involves sweets, so I was excited to find this lower fat, reduced sugar, cookie recipe.
Paula Deen made these cookies on her show a few years ago and I tried them immediately. I was very pleased with how good they were. (Just so you know, the dough is very sticky - I use a small cookie dough scoop rather than rolling into balls w/my hands.) The recipe doesn't make very many, which is good if you don't want several dozen cookies screaming at you to be eaten! I make mine with creamy peanut butter, but suppose real peanut lovers might like the crunchy version. As for greasing the baking sheet, forget that and use parchment paper - it makes clean up a breeze. I never bake without parchment paper.
I hope you'll check this recipe out - it's ideal for diabetics too, not just dieters.

1 cup peanut butter, creamy or crunchy
1 1/3 cups baking sugar replacement (recommended: Splenda)
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a large baking sheet.
In a mixing bowl, combine the peanut butter, 1 cup sugar replacement, the egg, and vanilla, and stir well with a spoon. Roll the dough into balls the size of walnuts. Place the balls on the prepared baking sheet. With a fork, dipped in sugar replacement to prevent sticking, press a crisscross design on each cookie. Bake for 12 minutes, remove from the oven, and sprinkle the cookies with some of the remaining sugar replacement. Cool slightly before removing from pan.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Strangers In The Night . . .

My apologies for being absent for so long. The holidays were a bit harried at my house. Hubby was sick for several days at Christmas, but we still ran here, there and everywhere, which resulted in him being really sick right into the new year. Linny had it too, just not as bad. I was sick Saturday through Monday and spent most of my days stretched out under blankets. Now we're well up the road to recovery. Kelsey is the only one who wasn't affected, but seeing how everyone at her boyfriend's house was sick this past week, I'll be surprised if she doesn't get it. I only hope it happens before she goes back to school on the 18th.
I know I've talked and talked about the review books I have - I still have them. Have I read them? Nope. Not a single one. I'm "still" starting the Elizabeth Scott book. With the holidays, illness, packing up after the holidays, etc., I'm embarrassingly behind. To be honest, I simply haven't been much in the mood for reading; my attention span has been too short.
I purchased the seventh season DVDs of The Gilmore Girls before the holidays and hadn't had time to watch - the girls and I have had GG marathons the past two nights. I can't tell you how sweet it has been, just spending time relaxing with my girls doing absolutely nothing but laughing and enjoying each other's company, watching these final episodes.

These are the reviews I have coming up - very, very soon, I promise!
Elizabeth Scott's FREE PASS
Lisa Renee Jones' LONE STAR SURRENDER (with lots of great giveaway books)
Lori Foster's MY MAN MICHAEL (I'll be giving away my arc of this one)
Janice Maynard's HOT MAIL
Lacey Alexander's THE BIKINI DIARIES

I hope the new year is treating everyone right! Do any of you make resolutions? I don't. I usually always vow that I'll try to live healthier and this year I'm hopeful to eliminate some stress from my life, but I never make a true resolution. I'm determined to organize and de-clutter every inch of my home this year - I'm hearing that's a huge stress-reducer. I know it won't happen overnight, so I'm trying not to stress about it (lol), but I truly want to get it done. What do you hope to make happen this year?