Friday, May 26, 2017

Nature Therapy... And a Giveaway! by Abbie Roads

Nature Therapy... And a Giveaway!

Be sure to keep reading to find out how you can win a signed copy of SAVING MERCY.

It was a long and gray winter here in Central Ohio. But Spring has sprung and summer is almost here!

Nothing soothes my soul and recharges my batteries like going on a long walk. I call it Nature Therapy!

Here's some of the lovely flowers I've seen...

Here's some of the paths I've walked...

Here's some of the animals I've seen...

Here's my back yard during sunset...

Here's my dogs... Just because they're cute.

Here's my favorite Spring and Summer treat... A Snickers Parfait from our local dairy bar.

What do you love most about Spring and Summer?

Would you like to win a signed copy of SAVING MERCY?

Enter Below

He’s found her at last…
Cain Killion knows himself to be a damaged man. His only redeeming quality? The extrasensory connection to blood that he uses to catch killers. His latest case takes a macabre turn when he discovers a familiar and haunting symbol linking the crime to his horrific past—and the one woman who might understand what it means.

Only to lose her to a nightmare
 Mercy Ledger is brave, resilient, beautiful—and in terrible danger. The moment Cain finds her the line between good and evil blurs and the only thing clear to them is that they belong together. Love is the antidote for blood—but is their bond strong enough to overcome the madness that stalks them?

Abbie Roads writes dark emotional novels, but always gives her hero and heroine a happy ending... After torturing them for three hundred and fifty pages.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

George and Puppies...Need I Say More?

Just released! After the End is a fun and heart-warming free epilogue novella to the exciting Search & Rescue series!

For fans of sexy, brooding ice divers
Motorcycle Club bad boys turned firefighters
Tall, dark, and silent wilderness guides
And cops with hearts of gold…
The end is just the beginning.

What happens after happily ever after? Now that the murderer has been caught and the arsonist is behind bars, the town of Simpson, Colorado has returned to its sleepy, picturesque former glory. Yet for the heroes of Search & Rescue, work is never done…
…especially not if the extraordinary women if their lives have anything to say about it.

Told in alternating chapters focusing on four unforgettable romances, this slice-of-life novella catches up with fan favorites from the Search & Rescue series—proving once and for all that the end is just the beginning.

Pick up your free copy at any of these booksellers:

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Will Han Solo Save Marie Antoinette?! (by Asa Maria Bradley)

Or, The Magic Luncheon at the Barbara Vey Reader Appreciation Weekend.

Author Sally Kilpatrick
engaging in
Viking Duck shenanigans. :-)
Last month, I attended my very first #BVW and it was a crazy fun time with so many super romance fans. We played games, we had unusual Q&A sessions, we celebrated with a pizza party, we laughed ourselves silly during dirty mad libs, we signed books--so, so, many books. And in the middle of it all, was the beautiful extraordinary out-of-this world author luncheon.

If you've never been, here's the deal: readers buy tickets to a specific author's table at the luncheon and the authors outdo themselves (and each other--in a totally friendly way) by decorating their tables in themes.

Sounds like fun? It was!

The tables of this year's luncheon were a true testament to how creative authors (and their assistants are).

Here's an overview of the chaos that is authors socializing while decorating tables.

And another view of the room. (Yes, that is Sharon Sala chatting with Heather Graham while Eloisa James decorates her table, wearing a beautiful hat!)

Rose Lerner's table was one of my favorites and not just because I love fuzzy animals.

Here's my table, which of course had a Viking theme. This is also the first time I've seen my cover on top of cupcakes!

Here's a detail of the yummy cupcakes. Each of the authors were provided a plate with their cover decorating the treats. 

Molly McLain also brought something yummy to her table. A date with Channing Tatum!

Cathy Lyons's aka Jade Lee's cute bears are a little less ferocious than the bear shifters in her books.

Shana Galen had a French revolution theme going with a deadly center piece.

Heather Graham's decorations also had a death detail in the form of handmade coffins.

Kristan Higgins gave an amazing keynote that made us both laugh and cry.

Marina Adair took her guests camping.

Elizabeth Barret's beautiful table played on our favorite theme: HEA.

Rebecca Zanetti's table looked gorgeous decked out in blue and yellow. (Which just happens to be the colors of the Swedish flag. :-) )

Tracy Brogan proudly declared herself (and her guests) a book lover.

Mary Jo Putney took her diners to the ocean.

Lenora Bell threw an Alice in Wonderland themed tea party.

After the luncheon, there was a big author book signing/sale that was open to the public. And it just so happens that I was across from Alyssa Day and Shana Galen who engaged in some action-figure play before the doors opened for the readers. 

So what do you think, will Han Solo save Marie Antoinette from her dreadful destiny? 

Of course he will! After all, the Barbara Vey Readers Appreciation Weekend is all about celebrating romance and happily ever afters. :-)

Thank you to all the readers and authors who attended. You showed this newbie such a very fun time. And a very HUGE thank you to Barbara Vey and her family for planning, organizing, and executing an amazing weekend!

~            ~            ~

Asa Maria Bradley grew up in Sweden surrounded by archaeology and history steeped in Norse mythology, which inspired her sexy modern-day Viking series. She now lives in the Pacific Northwest with a British husband and a rescue dog of indeterminate breed. Booklist attributed her writing with “nonstop action, satisfying romantic encounters, and intriguing world building.” Her debut book, Viking Warrior Rising, was a 2016 double RITA finalist and the follow-up, Viking Warrior Rebel, is a Romantic Times Book Reviews Reviewers’ Choice Award Nominee and a Booksellers Best Award finalist. Romantic Times Book Reviews described the book as “filled with action and passion from the first page until the last.”

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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

RT 2017 Roundup and a GIVEAWAY!

So a couple of weeks ago was the annual Romantic Times Book Lovers Convention (or RT for short!).  This year it was held in Atlanta and I have to say, I'm really glad I went!

This was my third RT - first one was in Dallas back in 2015, then last year in Las Vegas and now this.  And I have to admit, this one was kind of my favorite.  Don't get me wrong, I LOVED going to Vegas last year, but my hubby was with me and we did more stuff on our own than at the convention so I almost don't even feel I was really at RT.  But this year?  Oh my goodness, what a time!

Let me start by saying that I go to these events in two modes - a reader and a writer.  I totally fangirl when I get to meet some of my favorite authors!  And this year was no different.  I got to meet actress Meg Tilly who now writes romance as Sara Flynn!  I gasped, I shook hands with her and then yammered on about being a fan of the movie "The Big Chill" and then made sure that I said hello to her every single time I saw her.  Lol!  She may or may not have been ready to call security...
And that was just on day one!

I spoke on a panel about the importance of book clubs/street teams, I was a Pop Up author and was one of the hosts of a fantastic reader event called Sweet, Sassy Spicy and you'll see from the group author picture, we had some great Sourcebooks authors in the lineup!  I met some amazing readers at that event who just blew me away with their enthusiasm and kindness and I would have spent the entire day with them if I could!

 If you've never gone to one of these events before, I do highly recommend it.  There is just so much going on all the time and I know that I didn't even scratch the surface on all that was offered!  I got to hang out with some amazing readers and then go off and spend time with some of my favorite author friends!  For those of you who know me, you probably saw how much time Erin Nicholas and I were spending together - mostly ordering from GrubHub and relaxing! 

 Then there was the MASSIVE signing.  Oh my goodness!  What a crowd!  Personally, I love this kind of thing.  I love meeting people, signing books, giving away swag...I love the energy in the room and it's just a lot of fun.  Exhausting, but fun!
The grand finale of the trip, was going out Saturday night with the fabulous Sara Humphreys and going back to one of the places we visited on our Roadtripping with Romance book tour last summer - Nic & Norman's in Senoia, GA.  Great food, lots of laughs and honestly, it was nice to leave the hotel for a little while and just talk and hang out without all the noise!
So now that the whirlwind week is over, it's back to work as I get ready to release the next book in the Shaughnessy Brothers series, A SKY FULL OF STARS!  You can preorder your copy here: We gave away a TON of copies at RT and I've been giving away advanced copies on my Facebook page every Friday night so make sure you stop by, like the page and enter to win!!

There is also a pre-order giveaway going on right now through June 1st that you can enter to win a fantastic basket of goodies related to the story!

Happy Reading!!!

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Romance Always!

Kissing dragons, kissing trolls, and kissing frogs. Yep, I love love.

Every season for every reason, love is in the air!

Terry Spear
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Wilde & Woolly Bears http://www.celticbears

Friday, May 19, 2017

Romance Heroines and Gainful Employment

Jane Austen might have set the standard for delightful heroines with Lizzie Bennet and her fine eyes, and even finer observational skills and witty retorts. I love Lizzie, and her modern equivalent (arguably) Bridget Jones.

The great thing about writing historical heroines, for a modern writer, is that the heroine's career path is limited enough to avoid judgment. The writer doesn't have to worry about giving her a career that reflects her abilities and strengths without coming on too strong or too brainy. 

It's perfectly acceptable that a Regency or Victorian, even Edwardian, heroine would be sitting around sewing, or visiting friends, or shopping in the middle of a weekday.

Her hero might also avoid any serious employment. The challenge is getting them together enough to let the romance develop without boring the reader. Oh, look, they're sitting down to tea again! They're going out on horseback again! He's studying her figure as she crosses the room again!

Again, you say?! Surely not again! 
Creating a modern heroine? She needs a job. Or she's independently wealthy, which is nice but we have trouble coming up with reasons to sympathize. In this modern world, most of us have to work. Even if she's a stay-at-home mom, we know she doesn't have help and there's a world of work in mothering. And then we, the writers, have the task of not letting that employment get in the way of true love. Or turn us off. After all, we have to fall in love with the heroine, too, though not in the same way we love the hero. 

And there, my friends, is my sticky wicket. I'm trying to work out a new contemporary series and my heroines are consistently holding me back. I've had a marketing executive, a lingerie designer, and a crime scene clean-up professional, and none have gotten the green light to move on in their own stories. Alas! 

What careers do you like to read about most? Or, what's your biggest fantasy career? If you weren't what you are now, what would you be doing?

Thursday, May 18, 2017

The Heat is On!

That's right! The Heat is On with the release of the newest set of books in my DALLAS FIRE & RESCUE KINDLE WORLD!

If you’re familiar with my Dallas Fire & Rescue Series, you know it’s an amazing world filled with the action and suspense of fighting fires and the drama of saving lives, combined with the intimacy of those moments when the heroes and heroines are brought together amid the danger. From battling huge blazes all across the city to saving accident victims to working with all forms of law-enforcement, Dallas Fire & Rescue explores every facet of heroic action and romantic adventure.

With heroic firefighters and life-saving paramedics, the possibilities for stories are limitless, and I couldn't be more excited about the line-up of awesome authors in this launch!

Aliyah Burke
Anna Kristell
Heather Long
Irish Winters
Jackie Wang
Kandi Silvers
Ripley Prosperina
Lyssa Layne
Megan Mitcham
Siera London

Check out the newest releases, as well as all the books in my Dallas Fire & Rescue Kindle World, here!

Catch up with my DALLAS FIRE & RESCUE SERIES here!

Enjoy and Happy Reading! :)


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Bunny Rabbit Muse

My muse for the last three books is a little rabbit named Bitty Bunny. I met Bitty the first autumn I lived in my current house and he kept me company all through the writing of my Broadswords and Ballroom series. When Mary Elizabeth had me laughing out loud as I wrote on my lap top on the porch, he would sit, unfazed, munching grass and clover.

Here are some other bunnies who are not my muse, but who are super cute anyway.

The baby bunny who lolls around waiting to eat...

The rabbit from my cousin's yard who listens for predators....

And the ever-popular Highland bunny, in full kilt...

Maybe my characters in my next novels need a bunny rabbit of their own.

Ever since Christy English picked up a fake sword in stage combat class at the age of fourteen, she has lived vicariously through the sword-wielding women of her imagination. Sometimes an actor, always a storyteller, Christy works happily with Sourcebooks Casablanca to bring the knife-throwing women of her novels to life. A banker by day and a writer by night, she loves to eat chocolate, drink too many soft drinks, and walk the mountain trails of her home in western North Carolina.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Romance Is Family

The Firefly/Serenity "family."
Yesterday was Mother’s Day in the U.S., and it got me thinking about family. Romance readers are clued in to family in a way that other folks aren’t. I mean, romance is about relationships, right – not just the obvious relationship between the characters who are falling in love, but also, often, between the characters and their families. I’m sure there have been romance novels about loner orphan friendless protagonists, but I don’t think I’ve read any of them.

And the reason for that lack came to me last night, while watching the decidedly not-a-romance Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2 – the reason why romance stories always have to be about family.

Mary Balogh's series about the Bedwyn family.
I don’t want to get too spoilery here, but everybody who’s seen the trailer for the first Guardians of the Galaxy knows that there’s a group – hence the plural “guardians” – that comes together and forms a cohesive unit and saves the galaxy. Much like in The Avengers or The Justice League or the Steel Magnolias, they form a team.

A family.

They must group up, form connections, because nobody accomplishes great things in a vacuum, whether it’s saving the galaxy or negotiating a peace between shifters and humans or saving the world from a power-hungry global consortium or thwarting a serial killer or keeping the cute indie book store out of foreclosure. All these things that our characters accomplish are testament not just to their inner willpower but to the strength of the links they’ve formed with others.

Connections = relationships = family.

And nobody does relationships quite like romance writers. So, thanks, romancelandia, for giving us all these models for strong relationships. I can’t help thinking we all really need that message right now.

Because family also = hope.

The first of my Tether science fiction romance series. Which is about saving the world but also mostly about the families people get stuck with and the ones they choose to be part of.

Vivien Jackson writes stories with robots, grenades, pixies, and always, always down-home salacious kissery. She's an unrepentant fangirl of many fandoms and would love to discuss your favorite ships here or here or here.