Thursday, February 26, 2015

Coming March 2015 ~ Find You Next Great Read Scavenger Hunt!!

Night Owl Reviews Scavenger Hunt

Join the fun at ~ Find Your Next Great Read Scavenger Hunt! #BookGiveaway #FindYourNextGreatReadHunt

The fun begins on 3/1 and runs throughout the month. Winners will be announced on Monday, 3/30.

Prizes, fun, and more - enter now and get started! 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Spotlight and Giveaway: Cinderella and the Ghost by Marina Myles

Cinderella and the Ghost
The Cursed Princes
Book Four
Marina Myles

Genre: Historical/paranormal romance
Publisher: Kensington

A stroke of paint and a stroke of luck. Will they come together to create magic at the stroke of midnight?

When her demanding stepmother died, Ella Benoit knew just how far their fortunes had fallen, unlike her spoiled stepsisters. So she never expected the bequest from her late father. A chateau in France and the freedom to live her own life, all at once!

The chateau has seen better days, but Ella knows she can put the ruined house to rights. The life-size portrait of its first owner, Jean-Daniel Girard, seems to watch her work with approval, even pleasure. With bright blue eyes, strong features, and an athlete’s body, the viscount is a tempting sight even now, more than three hundred years after his tragic death. But the more she looks at the portrait, the more convinced Ella is that she’s met Jean-Daniel before. In another life, perhaps—or maybe, as the form who haunts the halls at night, invading Ella’s dreams…

Amazon | BN  | iTunes  | Kobo  |  BooksaMillion


As Ella passed the drawing room, she halted. Eerie goose bumps blanketed her arms. Drawn to the room, she felt as though she’d been in it before.
She crossed the threshold under a sudden trance. Icy stabs of déjà vu assaulted her because the ornate furnishings and draperies seemed extremely familiar. Perhaps, she considered, I’ve seen the room in one of Adelaide’s real estate or decorating magazines.
Taking a few steps forward, she noticed a huge blank spot on the east wall. The area’s wallpaper not only showed a variance in color, it outlined a missing, life-sized painting or tapestry.
How odd. Why had the art work been removed? Where was it now?
An unrelenting force summoned her closer to the blank spot. Her inquisitiveness grew. If the missing object was indeed a life-sized painting, it must have taken forever to complete. She wondered about its subject. A landscape? More likely, a portrait.
Prodded to start a hunt, she went through several rooms on Château de Maincy’s main level. She searched the front parlor, the back parlor, and the music room. Her favorite was the ballroom. As she entered, a spark met her toes. Wide-eyed, she noticed that rays of sunshine cast a sparkling aura over its faded parquet floor. A glittering chandelier hung in the center of the gold-toned room and anchored the enormous space.
When the chandelier caught a beam of sunlight, Ella received another spark. She put her hand to her warm cheeks. She could almost hear strains of a quadrille—and the drone of chatter as if she were at a party.
Not a party. She rephrased the thought. A ball.
Eyes blurred, she slipped into a deeper trance. Suddenly, she was wearing a stunning costume and was stepping into waltz with a debonair nobleman sporting a mask. The nobleman pulled her tightly against him. Other guests wearing masks looked on.
It was a masquerade ball! More scenes flashed before Ella. Warm wind gusted into the room and then—
Exiting the trance, she realized that the hair on the back of her neck stood on end. Why in heaven had she experienced that?
Her father had written that Ella had been at the château before. Yet she had no conscious memory of the visit. Maybe, she thought as she rubbed her eyes, the atmosphere of this house is too seductive to resist.
Still reeling from the vision, her attention shifted to a long-case clock in the corner. Its shattered face was visible through a hinged glass panel that hung ajar. The top of the clock bore a large, vertical gash.
How odd.
Ella inched closer. The open door revealed that the time-piece had been frozen at twelve o’clock. She touched the immobile hands—and in the bright light of the room, she noticed that the clock’s maker had etched his name and creation date into a groove bordering the clock’s pendulum.
Montbleu ~ 1703.
All at once, Ella remembered standing in front of the long-case clock, precisely like this. But how could that be? She must have repressed memories from her visit here as a child. Yet, she couldn’t explain the vision of herself dancing with the handsome man.
Once she confirmed that a life-sized painting wasn’t hanging in the ballroom, she made her way up the grand staircase. Inexplicably, she felt drawn to where she was going. When she reached the second floor of the house, she studied a wall of faded frescoes depicting late seventeenth century life. When something told her to go on, she padded to the third floor landing.
A palpable hush filled the corridor ahead of her. Then a charged stream of energy rushed through the hall. Since all the curtains were drawn over the arched windows, the hallway sat in darkness and shadow. Ella should be doing so many things. Unpacking. Cleaning. Deciding which bedroom would be hers. But a sense of urgency prompted her feet to continue.
What will I find in this part of the house? Glimpses of the valiant but very dead Jean-Daniel Girard?
Gulping, she opened door after door and peeked in. She finally came to a storage space, with an additional staircase leading up to an attic. Creeping up those stairs, Ella surveyed the articles on the landing. Broken mirrors and articles of furniture draped in white sheets lay strewn about. Tangled strings of cobwebs swathed the wood paneling.
A glowing beam of sunlight angled into the room. Ella’s pulse sped. In the corner, she spotted an item covered with a black cloth. The object reclined against the far wall—and appeared to be larger than she was. Pushing the curtains open, she allowed more sunlight to bathe the space. Hands quivering, she moved back to the draped item and pulled away the black cloth.
The painting’s gilded frame was stunning. On it, Ella located a nameplate.

Jean-Daniel Girard—Viscount de Maincy

Slowly, as though her life was being altered with every centimeter, her stare ascended to the nobleman’s astonishing face. Instantly, the world fell into a compelling silence.
Jean-Daniel Girard was tall, muscular, and inarguably handsome. In fact, his good looks were so striking that Ella could barely breathe as she gazed upon them. More than that, she knew she’d seen his face somewhere before. While she racked her brain about where she’d seen it, her gaze roamed over Jean-Daniel’s sold body, penetrating aquamarine eyes, and angular features. He could be described as classically handsome. The epitome of male beauty, really. And thankfully, that classic quality helped him transcend the fanciful clothing and wig he wore.
Ella took a step in and studied him some more. True to subjects painted in that era, he wasn’t smiling. Rather, he seemed a pensive and a bit melancholy. However, she could tell from the laugh lines bracketing his generous mouth that he grinned often.
Incredibly lifelike, Jean-Daniel seemed capable of emerging from the painting right then and there. Ella’s skin tingled.
Her gaze drifted to the adorable dog sitting at the viscount’s feet. A splendid example of a hound, it possessed a gleaming brown-and-white coated, an open mouth, and a protruding tongue. Oddly, the dog seemed to be smiling.
“I can tell you loved your master,” she murmured.
Mesmerized by the man in the painting, Ella stared at his image for what felt like hours. The more she analyzed it, the more she noticed its “lost soul” quality. She crossed her arms. No, that wasn’t it. Instead, there seemed to be something underlying the viscount’s solemn face. As if he weren’t solemn at all. As if he possessed a sense of unfinished business.
To die so young…
She finally looked at the portrait’s backdrop. A vivid depiction of Château de Maincy surrounded Jean-Daniel. A cluster of servants was working in the fields adjacent to the splendid house. Wide-eyed bluebirds perched on the tree branches over his wigged head.
So that’s the way the estate looked in its heyday.
Stepping closer, she zeroed in on Jean-Daniel’s astounding eyes. They seemed to come alive—and for the briefest moment, he did as well. If only they were on a first-name basis! The thought exhilarated her.
While she and the figure locked stares, a new layer of goose bumps sprang up on Ella’s arms. She retreated. Despite the warmth of the room, a chill barraged her body.
“Jean-Daniel Girard is quite swoon-worthy, non?” whispered an unfamiliar voice.

About the Author:

Marina Myles’s love of books began as soon as she read her first fairy tale. During her college days in Dallas, she received degrees in English Literature and Communications—and enjoyed the unique experience of being a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. Now that she lives under the sunny skies of Arizona, she hasn’t left her glamorous life behind completely. After all, she gets to divide her time between her loving family, her loyal Maltese, and worlds filled with fiery—but not easily attained—love affairs.

Author Contacts:

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Amazon Author  

Represented by Louise Fury of The Bent Agency

Tour Giveaway:
10 free iTunes downloads of CINDERELLA AND THE GHOST during my blog tour. 
U.S. residents only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, February 23, 2015

Release Day Blitz: A Stolen Season by Tamara Gill

A Stolen Season
Tamara Gill

Genre: Regency Time Travel Romance
Publisher: Entangled, Select Historical
Date of Publication: 23 February 2015
ASIN: B00T3496CW
Number of pages: 172

Book Description:
Archaeologist Sarah Baxter just broke one of the biggest rules of time travel: leaving a piece of 21st-century equipment in 19th century Regency England. Unfortunately, when she goes back to retrieve it, she makes an even bigger mess of things—resulting in the death of an English Earl. Now his brother is not only out for revenge, but he also has Sarah's device. Which means an entirely different approach is needed.

It doesn't occur to the new Earl of Earnston that his charming acquaintance is responsible for his brother's death. He is merely swept away by a passion that threatens his very reputation. Yet he gets the distinct impression that Miss Baxter is hiding something from him. Now Sarah must find a way to steal back her device, hide the truth about the earl's brother and—most importantly— not fall in love...

Amazon US  | Amazon UK | BN  | Kobo  | iBooks

Teaser Excerpt:

“You will have to sleep with him.” Richard threw his cheroot into the unlit hearth. “I thought you planned on doing that anyway. You like him, and he obviously likes you, so what’s the problem? It’s not like you’re a virgin.”
Sarah shushed him and sat down on the opposite chair. “That’s not the point. I can’t just jump his bones; women of this era don’t work that way. He has to court me, woo me.” She sighed at Richard’s disgusted expression. “I know it sounds lame, but it’s actually quite nice to have a gentleman sweep you off your feet.”

About the Author:

Tamara is an Australian author who grew up in an old mining town in country South Australia, where her love of history was founded. So much so, she made her darling husband travel to the UK for their honeymoon, where she dragged him from one historical monument and castle to another. A mother of three, her two little gentleman's in the making, a future Lady (she hopes) and a part-time job keep her busy in the real world, but whenever she gets a moment's peace she loves to write romance novels in an array of genres, including regency, medieval and paranormal. Tamara loves hearing from readers and writers alike.

You can contact her through her website, and sign up to follow her blog or newsletter.

Author Links:

Website | BlogTwitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Newsletter 

Tour giveaway 
$15.00 Amazon gift card 

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Spotlight, Interview, Excerpt & Review: Forgotten Fragrance by Téa Cooper

Forgotten Fragrance
From the Ocean to the Outback
Book 1
Téa Cooper 

Publication Date: February, 2015
Publisher: Harlequin Escape

About the Book:

Only one woman can confirm his innocence, and release him from the torments of his past.

 Determined to throw off the shackles of her convict past, Charlotte Oliver accepts her employer’s marriage proposal, even though she does not love him, and together they board a refitted whaling schooner bound for Sydney to begin their new life.

But life has a way of disrupting plans, and during the voyage the Zephyrus undergoes a mutiny. Captain Christian Charity loses his ship, but he also risks losing so much more. Charlotte has, in her possession, a tiny blue bottle and an Angel coin. On their own, they mean nothing more than a keepsake, but to Christian, they could mean everything – a past remade and a future with love. 

Craning her head back Charlotte peered up at the imposing figure standing amidships, arms akimbo, studying their little boat as it bumped alongside the immaculate black hull. A rope snaked down and the young sailor caught it and, as Marcus predicted, a ladder was lowered.
The sailor offered his hand, steadying her while she took a firm grasp on the lower rungs, then averted his eyes as she began her ascent. Before she had time to worry about her modesty a huge pair of roughened hands reached out and reefed her unceremoniously over the rail. She landed on the deck with a thump. Rearranging her skirts she nodded her thanks and moved aside to make way for Marcus.
His head appeared level with the deck rail and they hauled him aboard in a torrent of snorts and grumbles. He smoothed his topcoat, shrugged and eyed the forbidding giant who had watched the entire proceedings with a studied indifference.
‘Captain Charity, I presume.’ Marcus offered his hand and with a degree of reluctance the man unfolded his immense hairless forearms, exposed by the rolled-up sleeves of his shirt.
Charlotte bit back the laugh building in her throat. The man looked more like a pirate with his large glittering earring and red neckerchief than the captain of this neat little craft.
‘Nah! Henk, First Mate, Capt'n's gone ashore. Business to conduct.’ The corpulent pirate withdrew his hand and wiped it down his stained trousers, then resumed his belligerent stance.
Marcus’ Adam’s apple bobbed as he swallowed his intimidation and pulled his shoulders back. ‘Marcus Wainwright. I've arranged passage to Sydney aboard the Zephyrus.’
‘Don't hold with no passengers, meself. Zephyrus is a working ship, whaler not a bloody transporter.’ The pirate’s flat green eyes raked her. ‘And not a bleedin’ hen frigate.’

MRP would like to extend a very warm welcome to Téa Cooper, author of Forgotten FragranceTéa, who or what most influenced you to become a writer?
I’ve always wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember. My first publicized effort was rewarded with a wallop. No one appreciated my crayoned hieroglyphics on the bedroom wall. Then there was the rather dubious story at boarding school about the school-gardener. I have to say it was a combined effort and saw most of us expelled from the school. When I left school I was determined to be a journalist. I scored a job as a cadet reporter. It lasted about twelve months until a massive number of newspapers went down the drain.
I headed off for University then and also had a job working as an editorial assistant on a magazine called Frontier and writing reviews. Sadly it wasn’t very viable financially and I ended up teaching. I’ve always kept a journal so I didn’t completely give up writing.
Then one very rainy Easter, I came across a competition run by Mills and Boon in a women’s magazine. I wrote a story called Arctic Ambience (Shudder! My only excuse is it was around the time Fabio was gracing covers). First prize was a publication contract and second a bottle of perfume. Yep! I won the perfume!
I did however move “write a book” a bit further up my bucket list. It wasn’t until 2011 that I decided it was time to have another go. My first book was published in 2012.

So who or what influenced me … I think it is in my genes, although where or who I inherited it from I have no idea.

What advice would you give aspiring authors? 
Be patient and never give up! (See above.)

From the first stroke of a pen (or laptop), how long did it take you get published? 
I’m probably not prepared to divulge that! (See above.)

Did you ever feel like calling it quits? 
I never called it quits, and for that I will be eternally grateful.

Thank you so much for joining us today, Téa. Good luck and great sales with Forgotten Fragrance

Forgotten Fragrance gives the reader a whiff of something delightful. It takes us on a voyage to Australia’s “wild west” days, and the situations and events that formed that nation.
A convicted criminal, Charlotte Oliver has few options to look forward to, so when she’s offered marriage she agrees with thanksgiving, never mind that her intended is about as appealing as a mud hen. What she cannot anticipate is that her life, and the lives of all those on board, will change forever when the engaged couple boards the Zephyrus, with the dashing but troubled Captain Charity at the helm.
The characters are distinct and many-faceted, the writing strong and compelling. I enjoyed this sojourn south of the equator, and recommend it.
Well done

About the Author:

Best-selling Australian author, Téa Cooper lives in a stone cottage on one hundred acres of bushland, just outside the time-warp village of Wollombi, New South Wales. Although Téa was born and raised in England the majority of her books, both contemporary and historical, are set in Australia, the country she now calls home. When she isn’t writing Téa can usually be found haunting the local museum or chatting to the locals, who provide her with a never-ending source of inspiration. She is a member of Romance Writers Australia and Hunter Romance Writers and is a 2014 finalist in the Australian Romance Readers Awards for her historical romance, Jazz Baby.

Author Links:

Friday, February 20, 2015

Spotlight and Tour Giveaway: Curse of the Purple Delhi Sapphire by Rachael Stapleton

Curse of the Purple Delhi Sapphire
Temple of Indra Series
Book Two
Rachael Stapleton

Genre: Mystery, Adventure, Romance
Publisher: Solstice Publishing
Date of Publication: February 3rd, 2015
Cover Artist: Rebecca Boyd

Book Description:

As a librarian, Sophia Marcil loved reading, especially books about ancient curses and reincarnation, but she never imagined the legend of the Purple Delhi Sapphire was true until she inherited it and was transported back to a past life where she was murdered. Now she knows that not only is reincarnation real, but so is the devil’s magic locked inside the precious gem. Just as she’s about to tell her boyfriend Cullen about it, he proposes with an engagement ring made from a piece of the very sapphire that’s cursed her. Reeling from the shock and surrounded by his family, she allows him to place it on her ring finger. As soon as it touches her skin, she feels herself being wrenched back in time.

Before she knows it, she’s wandering the hallway of an old Victorian house in the body of her great aunt. Unfortunately, her nemesis has also reincarnated in 1920—as one of her family members. Sophia struggles to locate the Purple Delhi Sapphire in time to prevent the deaths of those she loves, but she fails and returns to her present-day life, to the precise moment she left, with a deep understanding that her killer’s soul is also tied to the sapphire and every life she has, he is resurrected as someone close to her.

Her stalker ex-boyfriend Nick seems like a prime candidate this time but she’s convinced she’s a step ahead of him, thanks to a tip from a medium, she knows that if she uses the magic of the stone correctly she can trap Nick’s soul in the sapphire and save herself. But when Nick is murdered, she finds evidence that has her questioning everything she thought she knew.

Is Cullen husband material or is history doomed to repeat itself?

Book Trailer 



Curse of the Purple Delhi Sapphire

Fog descended, eerily beautiful despite the dingy residue it seemed to be composed of—producing an unwelcome metallic taste in my mouth. I lagged behind, pulling my scarf tight around my shoulders and taking in the outline of the buildings, which now looked even more Gothic and ghostly. They gave me a chill, or maybe it was just the weather. I had snowmobiled and skied on the frostiest of Canadian mornings and hardly ever felt the cold; I even slept with the windows open at times. But this cold was different from anything I had experienced. It cut to the core.
Of course I’d read about the smog of old London, when a million coal fires polluted the atmosphere, but the sound of the fog horn now blaring from the river made it real.
“Maggie,” Emily said with a cough. “We should duck into one of these places. We’ve got a pea-souper rolling in.”
Maggie’s soon-to-be mother-in-law gave a gasp. “A tavern is not a suitable place for a group of women and children.”
“Yes, I realize that but it’s bloody—sorry, it’s terribly bad weather out here—” Emily stopped. “It’s going to get worse and—”
“Mama, I’m cold,” Gigi whined. I gave her arms and shoulders a little rub to increase the circulation.
“What is this?” Marjorie asked through a muffled hand.
“Pollution from the—” I began and then clamped my hand over my mouth.
“No use chit-chatting. We should be there already. Let’s pick up our feet, shall we?”
Maggie, who was clearly uncomfortable, made a vague gesture with her hands and followed the formidable woman down the sidewalk.
As the ladies turned a corner, a man in a trench coat caught my eye. He’d been right behind us four blocks ago, and earlier in the day he’d loitered outside the dress shop. His fedora rode low over his eyes at all times and he looked to be about 5’11", coincidentally the same build as Eugene. I kept my eye on him for the next several blocks before he slipped behind a great stone church. I looked up and began to feel uneasy as I realized I’d now lost sight of the gang. In the growing fog, the iron fence surrounding it looked like rows of jagged black teeth. Don’t panic, I said to myself. Eventually I would catch up to them or come to a place I recognized and everything would be all right. I knew the name of the hotel we were staying in. The problem was that I was rapidly being swallowed up into the murk, and it was impossible to read the street signs which had now vanished into the fog above my head.
That’s when I noticed the slow, steady rhythm of footsteps behind me—keeping pace with mine. I turned but couldn’t see anyone. Probably just someone else out lost in this godforsaken weather, I told myself. Or the footsteps could only be a strange echo produced by the fog. I started walking again, stopped suddenly, and heard the footsteps continue another couple of beats before they too stopped. I had no choice but to keep going, so I increased my pace. Thankfully I glimpsed Marjorie’s skirt disappearing behind a building and took off on a terror in an effort to catch up, my mind conjuring the sort of thing that happened in the fog in some of Gigi’s old mystery novels. I rounded the corner onto a cobblestone side street and ran smack into something hard.
Palming my forehead, I realized the smog didn’t hang quite as low here, or maybe the cool breeze off the Thames River pushed it away. The bad news was, aside from the offending lamp post, the street lay empty. I looked up and noticed a sign that hung atop an old storefront, advertising rare books. Maggie must have reasoned with her mother-in-law and pulled the gang indoors. No better place than one filled with books.
Wandering into the shop through a brass-studded wooden door, I smiled to myself, taken in by the familiar smell of grass mixed with a hint of vanilla, my happy place. Books were a constant in my life, and this unmistakable smell always made me feel at home. The bell over the door jingled and a slender man of sixty with large brown eyes, a long nose, and a full gray mustache appeared, climbing down from the rolling ladder behind the counter.
He smiled at me as if he recognized a fellow bibliophile.
“Good afternoon, miss. May I help you?”
I looked around the quaint little shop. A polished table sat empty in the corner, offering up only a delicate brass lamp. Shelves lined the room and were packed with books at every turn but the store was also empty, unless Marjorie and the gang were hiding in an alcove. “Did a group of women come in here?”
“No, dear,” he replied and wrinkled his brow.
Turning to go back out the door, panic slammed into my chest. The man in the navy blue trench coat had followed me. He stood at the corner of the street, leaning against the wall, casually smoking and efficiently blocking my only way out. Half expecting him to turn around and spot me, my mouth went dry.
“Is everything all right, miss?”
Swiping a hand over my forehead, I brushed back a clump of sweaty hair. “I’m fine. I’m waiting for someone, that’s all.”
The shopkeeper stood still, watching me, his face creased with concern. Hastily I retreated, circling the room, studying the shelves and looking for a back door.
He followed me to where I stood browsing an older collection of Shakespeare. He pulled out a nineteenth-century edition of Twelfth Night and handed it to me. I flipped through the pages, to be polite, before handing it back.
“Something specific you fancy?”
“I’ll just take a look around on my own,” I said, then noticed for the first time the book in his possession.
“What’s that?” I asked, squinting; his hand covered the spine.
“Oh, this?”
I followed him and he laid the book open on the counter, turning it sideways so we could both look at it. The scent of dust and pages that time had long since begun to degrade drifted out of it. It was the smell of the book I’d found in the library in my own time and seen prior to that in the alchemist’s study.
“It’s a collection of spells I acquired at an estate sale in Prague a few years ago.” He flipped the thin pages until he came to a poem printed neatly in the center of the leaf. “It looks to me like a book of magic,” he added, grinning.
A familiar feeling twisted within me.
Could it be?

About the Author:

Rachel Stapleton spent her youth cultivating a vivid imagination inside the book lined walls of an old Victorian library where she consumed everything from mystery to biography, creating magical worlds, hidden elevators, and secret spiral staircases. At sixteen, she penned a column for the local newspaper and in 2006, wrote her first book featuring an adventurous librarian.

She lives in a Second Empire Victorian with her husband and two children in Ontario and enjoys writing in the comforts of aged wood and arched dormers. She is the author of The Temple of Indra’s Jewel and is currently working on a third book in the Temple of Indra series.

Author Links:

Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Tour giveaway 
10 E-Copies of The Temple of Indra’s Jewel. (The first book in the series.)

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Spotlight and Tour Giveaway: Sing for Me by Gracie Madison

Sing For Me
Angels and Arias
Book 1
Gracie Madison

Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Tika Lake Publishing LLC
Date of Publication: 1/21/2015
Number of pages: 325-350
Cover Artist: Rebecca Berto

Book Description:

Madeline Noel fled war-torn Heaven to hide within the mortal world, but the blessing that could protect her from evil is the holy realm’s forbidden power.

As a talented soprano for the Eden Theatre Company, Madeline hides among prima donnas and tone-deaf flutists. Her perfect voice may entertain audiences, but a careless laugh may shatter glass, and her greatest scream can kill. To control her unrestrained voice, the angels forbid Madeline from embracing the emotions that strengthen her song. Anger. Fear.


The demon-hunter Damascus vows to defend Madeline from Hell’s relentless evil, but he cannot protect her from her own feelings. Though they deny their dangerous attraction, her guardian becomes her greatest temptation.

Surrendering to desire may awaken the gift suppressed within Madeline’s soul, and neither Heaven nor Hell will allow such absolute power to exist.



She flicked the light to her bedroom and dropped her towel in the hamper.
Her hand merely muffled the screeched yelp. Madeline fell backward, smacking against the closet. She tripped and clattered into the hamper. Damascus apologized, but her gasp shattered the perfume container on her vanity.
Madeline yanked the towel from the laundry. The wet scrap of material wove over her body, and she clutched the fraying edges.
Damascus’s silence stole any sound she might have uttered.
His muscles bound, tight and tensed, more prepared for war than the glimpse of her bared skin. The gold in his eyes burned molten. Madeline shifted, her bare toes gripping the carpet to prevent her from toppling over once more.
She shivered. It wasn’t the wet hair that whispered the goose bumps along her spine. Damascus saw far more than the thin strip of cloth hid. His gaze warmed her curves and tickled the swell of her breasts. Her nipples hardened. She prayed he hadn’t noticed.
He did.
The memory of the soap in the shower tortured the twisting in her lower belly. For a single, blissful, blasphemous moment, she imagined it had been Damascus’s hand washing her.
She exhaled.
Damascus growled.
His every movement strengthened with need. The wild, uninhibited, dangerous desire would claim them both. Madeline clamored backward, the apology shrill and muffled by her hand.
She hadn’t needed to speak, drop the towel, or offer any secrets. The heat smoldering low escaped in a sigh. The soft puff promised more than she intended. She breathed an invitation.
A seduction.
And he answered.
Damascus shuddered. He blinked, hard, and rubbed his head.
“I apologize.” Damascus forced his words. “I… I didn’t mean to invade your privacy.”
Madeline tugged the towel lower over her thighs. “You didn’t know.”
“I should let you—”
“Don’t worry about it. Here.”  She hobbled toward the robe lying over her bed.
“Let me—”
“I’ve got it.”
Damascus’s motions stiffened. He retrieved the robe as Madeline lunged for the fuzzy pink arm. Her toes banged against the bedpost, and the surge of pain toppled her into Damascus’s waiting arms.
He smelled of the Realm, of warmth and radiance, citrus and holy incense.
The towel shifted, and his fingers brushed over her bare back. His calloused hands heated, as if he wielded his sword. The heat lashed her—a punishment seared within a delicious reward. The towel tumbled, and she pushed against him to hide what nearly exposed.
His embrace was everything as she imagined, the heat, the intensity of his grip, the fluttering within her stomach and her body upon his. His hands bound a supreme authority over her. He pressed her skin with possessive fingertips. He handled her as if she were delicate and precious.
The shock of it all drove her to silence.
He protected her, but he never held her.
Watched over her, but never touched her.
Saved her from demons, but never reassured her.
He never mourned with her when a Choir was killed.
Every moment hidden far from the Realm passed in painful isolation, and he was the lone simple comfort of home. The sweet, dangerous touch protected her more than his sword or his distant promises. The heat settled the dissonance capturing her mind.
The Realm forbid their touch. A hug cried sacrilege.
Madeline closed her eyes and rested her head on his shoulder.

About the Author:

Gracie Madison would spend every day, all day writing…if it were socially acceptable.  Ever since she was a little girl scribbling with a crayon, Gracie’s dedicated herself to her books and all the supernatural and paranormal, creepy and beautiful stories and characters born within the pages. Now Gracie is committed to finally sharing those books with the world.  When the laptop is pried from her hands, Gracie is probably working her day job, rooting on the Steelers, or out with her husband searching for Pittsburgh’s best sushi.

Author Links:
Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Mailing List 

Tour giveaway
$25 Dollar Amazon Card + Signed Paperback

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Character Profile: Help Me Move On by Angie Hemings

Help Me Move On
The Southern Ties Series
Book 1
Angie Hemmings

Genre: Romance
Number of pages: 248

Book Description:
Ally Dunn is a small town girl with big dreams planning a wedding that would never happen. Ally’s life revolved around being Eric’s wife…until she watched his best friend Isaiah step off that plane, his arm in a sling and Eric's casket behind him. Her grief consumed her, their last conversation not one filled with love but an argument over her favorite flower. He knew her favorite flower, he was just busy…fighting for his country. Isaiah made a promise to Eric, he would keep Ally safe even if that meant saving her from herself. Isaiah takes Ally away when her grief becomes too much but their return brings about something she never expected.

When Ally meets Colton Walker she knows her life will never be the same. She never planned to move on from Eric, the mere idea of moving on would send her into a panic. How do you move on from the man you loved, the man who shared your dreams, who made your heart feel whole? But Colton doesn’t push her, he doesn’t pressure her, he gives her everything she ever needed and he does it effortlessly.

Falling in love with Colton was like taking her next breath; she didn’t have to think about because it came naturally…only a cloud hangs over Ally. Isaiah trains her in Krav Maga, Eric trained her in gunfire. Colton sees all of this, asking the one question she can’t answer, why? Why would a woman who lives in such a small town need to know such aggressive self-defense? Isaiah vows to keep her safe, going so far as to track her every move…but why?

Surviving Eric’s death almost killed Ally, the hole in her heart never truly healed until Colton. Falling in love with Colton was easy, fighting for her life when everything she thought she knew was wrong…that was a completely different story.


Hey guys, I’m Angie Hemmings the author of Help Me Move On and today we’re delving into my favorite characters.  For over a year these characters were developed and twisted into what they now are and I’m excited to be able and introduce you to the characters that spawned The Southern Ties Series.  Help Me Move On wasn’t supposed to be a series, it was an idea that turned into a book that left me thinking about Isaiah Atwood.  That man has haunted my dreams and I know it’s because his story wasn’t over.  The only problem with that is once his story was over I found another in his brother Henry and then another in their friend Jason.  This always makes me smile because I can’t watch the actors I chose for my dream cast without thinking of my books and what’s to come.

Ally (Allison) Janelle Dunn
 Ally grew up living with her grandmother, her parents died when she was little but she never wanted for anything.  Her grandmother was everything she ever needed, encouraging her to finish nursing school and become a Nurse Practitioner.  An important fact we should remember is that Ally went to school at UNC-Chapel Hill so she’s a fierce TarHeel fan.  Spending a year in the Peace Corp was always a dream she had, helping people who couldn’t help themselves and when Eric died it was Isaiah who took her on that journey.  Working in Uganda taught Ally how lucky we really are to have the luxuries that surround us...running water, power, medical care.  Ally’s strength goes beyond her ability to kick someone’s ass, she’s also smarter than you’ll give her credit for.  She teaches us a valuable lesson, never discredit a woman simply because she’s a woman and just because you’re bigger doesn’t mean you’re smarter.  Ally begins Help Me Move On at the funeral for her first and only love.  She starts this journey of really self discovery because she’s forced to look at herself from a different perspective.  We’re all guilty of taking for granted our loved ones.  You never really think that they won’t be there tomorrow until you get that phone call.  When she was arguing with Eric over her favorite flower she never once imagined that his parents would be knocking on her door or that his mother would be giving her the dog tags Eric always wore.  She took for granted that Eric would always be there and so when she loses him it’s especially hard on her.  He was the man she was going to marry and their last words to each other were in anger.  Moving on when you’re slowing killing yourself with the regrets of your past isn’t easy.  We learn how human Ally really is when she goes to the graveyard, learning that she hasn’t been to Eric’s grave since the funeral you wonder why?  Why does Isaiah call her and why is she afraid he’ll show up?  Sometimes our grief becomes too much, the regret heavy in the air, and the need for an escape from the pain too overwhelming and allconsuming.  We all do things that, looking back, we regret and the graveyard is a place she does have a regret.  In her weakness came a desperation for some kind of peace except she couldn’t find the peace she seeked in that graveyard.  She couldn’t give up on life because Isaiah wouldn’t let her.  Isaiah knew she was meant for more than the girl who mourned herself to death over a fallen soldier.  Isaiah knew that Ally was meant to move on from this tragedy and she was
meant to find the true love of her life.  So when she was weak Isaiah was there for her as he planned to be until the day he knew she had found a man who could give her everything that Isaiah wished he could give to her.

Colton Walker
Colton is two years older than Ally, his blue eyes hypnotic and his brown hair longer and something you’re going to want to run your fingers through...and tug.  He’s the perfect Alpha because he’s not only strong and passionate but he’s got this calmness to him that only a true Alpha can have.  It’s that calm, cool, and collected aura that suits him for his position over the fire department.  An important fact to remember about Colton is he’s not even the slightest bit materialistic.  He drives an old blue Chevy and his idea of a good Saturday afternoon is driving through a mud bog. 
Colton isn’t like most of the men you meet, he doesn’t have anything to prove.  He doesn’t have to try and be something he’s not and he has a confidence that is completely effortless.  He’s not cocky, he’s not an ass, he’s just Colton and that’s all he needs to be.  When Ally is at her weakest, when that last straw breaks, Colton doesn’t let Isaiah take command...something we all know Isaiah does well.  No, Colton knows where he belongs and when Ally needs him he’s there for her and he’s not afraid to put someone in their place...when the need is there of course.  I almost wish I had opted for Colton’s side of the story in Help Me Move On because he has so much to offer Ally. 
When Ally is missing, when Isaiah is searching for her, it’s Colton who helps track her which is ironic considering he’s not the former Delta force but rather a fire captain who happens to be able to track anyone.  Colton may be laid back and he may seem relaxed but threaten the woman he loves and you should watch out.

Isaiah Atwood

 My obsession with the perfect Alpha male continues with Isaiah.  Isaiah is ex-military, Delta Force if we’re being specific and he’s not alone.  When Isaiah’s Story continues we’ll meet Henry, his brother and Jason Kein...each who will have their own stories to tell.  When researching for Isaiah’s past I found myself drawn to the Delta Force vs the Navy Seals.  “Once a delta always a delta…”  Delta Force isn’t your everyday special unit.  It’s the elite of the elite, the highest honor that you can reach and they’ll just about kill you while trying to reach this level.  To say a former Delta Force soldier is tough is almost comical because tough doesn’t even begin to describe them.  They work for the most part in complete secrecy performing these insane missions...hostage rescues, raids, covert operations and they do it all knowing that no one is going to really know what they’re doing.  There is no awards, no press conferences where you get to stand up and say “Yep...that was me saving your life.”  A Delta has to be more than strong and fast but he has to be smart and he can’t break under pressure.  Isaiah was all this and more. 
His dream from a young age was to be in the army, to advance and to become one of the elite and he did exactly that.  He had nothing to lose and he dedicated his life to being this super soldier all the while knowing that he would never truly get credit for his efforts.  But that’s the point of the Alpha male now isn’t it?  The army molds Isaiah into a machine, no emotion, no conscience, and no fear.  It’s also a reason he becomes a brooding, hot as hell, pseudo bodyguard for a best friend?  Perk to being Ally Dunn if I say so myself.  Isaiah is everything Ally ever needs except he can’t be the one thing she wants.  He loves Ally, we mustn’t forget that he does love her very much, but Isaiah’s heart belongs to someone else.  Isaiah lost his heart a very long time ago to a woman I think I’ll introduce you guys to today.  Yes, Isaiah is this hard core, sometimes rather violent and calculating man who allows Ally to be placed in danger to prove he’s right.  But...every man has his weakness and as Ally was Eric’s one weakness...Alexis Williamson is Isaiah’s.


Yes….meet Alexis Williamson

In Isaiah’s Story, book two of The Southern Ties Series we’re going to see the reason Isaiah never pursued Ally.  At the bonfire while Ally stands with Colton she watches as Alexis Williamson walks over to where Isaiah sits in his usual bored manner.  Everything about Isaiah warns you to be careful and yet Alexis can walk up to the man completely fearless.  Alexis met Isaiah before the military, before the effects of war changed him into the man we now see.  She met him when playing in a pink playhouse was an everyday thing and shooting Isaiah with his own paintball gun was still considered childs plan.

I’m attached to fictional characters in this book which is funny in a sense because I’ve chosen actors to portray the characters I’ve developed and now I can’t watch a movie without thinking of my books.  The setting for Help Me Move On was pivotal in the development of this story and the fire that tore through Pilot Mountain State Park was something that really happened several years ago.  I can still remember the smell that clung to the air around the homes surrounding the mountain and the threat that came with those fires.

At the end of the day there is a central theme to Help Me Move On that I don’t want you to forget and I’ll close on that note.  No matter what your flaws may be or what mistakes you may have deserve to be loved and if you’re lucky enough to find that...then you should fight for it.

Never stop fighting and never give up.

About the Author:

Angie Hemmings is a self-proclaimed romance addict.  Her love for romance began at an early age but after years of reading romance novels she found herself wanting more which led to her first novel.  She's originally from Mount Airy, a small town in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and she loves the art behind creating a new story.  Getting lost in the romance, the struggle between her characters is what makes Angie Hemmings continue her work and writing is what she loves.

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