#backlistThursday 5.6.2021

When I wrote my WILL COOK FOR LOVE series, there was one character who popped into two of the books that I absolutely loved, Private Eye Rick Bannerman. Cocky, self-deprecating, of course handsome, and with a very dark past, I wanted to give him an HEA of his own and a woman who could stand toe to toe with him in every circumstance. A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK, was born from that premise. It was my first ROMANTIC SUSPENSE and the next book in the series, AIDEN, is coming out soon, so I figured today would be a good day to give Rick and Abby Laine some blog time.

Elite bodyguard and P.I. Rick Bannerman’s job is to protect. He doesn’t get emotional with his clients, but when a woman from his past is threatened, his next job becomes personal.

Family lawyer Abigail Laine is the target of a client’s vengeful husband, but refuses Rick’s offer of protection. He walked away from her four years ago, and she swore to forget him.

Now her reluctance to accept his help could cost Abby her life.

Excerpt:

When had her life turned into this stressful jumble?

Abby grabbed the bottle of extra-strength pain reliever she kept in her kitchen junk drawer, shook out three tablets, and swallowed them with a small glass of tap water.

“Head that bad?” Rick asked from behind her.

“I let it go too long.” She rolled her neck, massaged a muscle where it connected with her shoulder. “I should have gotten in front of it right when it started in court. But I don’t like to take anything when I’m working. The pills make me fuzzyheaded.“

Rick reached around her and grabbed the bottle from the counter. “These are plain over-the-counter tablets. I’d think you’d have something stronger, something prescribed, for when the pain gets this bad. I can see the headache all over your face and shoulders. You’re wearing the pain like you’d wear makeup.”

“You can’t know what a boost to my fragile ego having you here is, Bannerman.”

“Your ego is fine,” he said, moving a step closer.

Her kitchen was huge by Manhattan standards. She could have four people stand in it and still have room to cook around them. Not so when Rick was with her. Sure, he was tall, but so were her brothers-in-law. They never made her feel like her personal space was so congested when they were visiting, though.

“Turn around,” he said.


“What?”


“You heard me. Turn around, Abigail.”

“Bossy, much?”

The low, deep rumble of his chuckle sent the tiny hairs on her neck up to attention.

“When I have to be,” he said. “Believe me, for once you’ll be glad you listened.”

“Doubtful,” she murmured. Reluctantly, she presented him with her back.

“Take a breath,” he told her. “A deep one. And hold it for a few seconds.”

She did.

“Now let it out, slowly. Count to five in your head while you do.”

“What is this, Bannerman? Some Vulcan mind- trick cure for a headache? Because if it is, it’s not—oh! Oh…my.” The last word scattered out in one long exhale.

“Told you you’d be glad you listened.”

The pressure of his thumbs on either side of her shoulders, a hair below the collar of her blouse as they kneaded, pressed, and drew little circles around her constricted muscles, shot a wave of intense pleasure straight down the length of her spine.

Abby closed her eyes and sighed. “Oh, good Lord. Whatever you’re doing, don’t stop.”

“Your neck is so tight, I’m surprised your spine doesn’t snap when you walk in those stilts you love so much. It’s a wonder you can move at all with any kind of flexibility.”

“Practice.” She all but purred like her cat when his thumbs sank into her flesh. “And motivation. That feels…amazeballs.”

She swore she could hear his grin. He replaced his thumbs with the pads of his first and second fingers, pressed in deep, released, and then did it again.

“Amazeballs, Abigail? How old are you?”

“Oh! I’ll be any age you want me to be, but don’t stop…please.”

His chuckle turned to a laugh. “I can’t tell you how much I like hearing you beg. Take another deep breath.”

Obediently, since she now knew the benefits of being so, she did. “Oh. My. God.

He’d wound his long, strong fingers up under her hairline. While he flexed them, massaging every bit of her skull, a thousand jolts of electricity bounded down her back. Her legs turned liquid. She needed to sit down before she fell flat to the floor.

“Stop wiggling. Try to hold still,” he said, dangerously close to her ear. The warmth of his breath as it whispered over her neck delightfully singed her skin. “There’s one pressure point I haven’t gotten to yet.”

“I can’t feel my feet.” Good Lord. Did that moan come from her?

“Good. Then this is working. Give me another minute.”

“You can have all night, Bannerman. As long as you want. Just don’t stop.”

For the briefest of moments, so brief she might have imagined it, he stopped kneading, a swift inhale ringing around her. Then, in a heartbeat, he started his ministrations again. For the first time Abby noticed their bodies were touching, the middle of her back pressed along his torso.

While his fingers skimmed up to her temples, she tilted backward, bumping her head against his chest. He was as solid as a block of concrete.

Rick inhaled a jagged breath when the rest of her body pressed into him.

He had the pads of three fingers against her temples now, the concentric circles he pressed and released over them drawing out little mewing noises from the back of her throat. When his pinkies joined their brothers, all four fingers of each hand now splayed along her skin, feathered into her hairline, Abby rolled her neck back and opened her eyes a fraction. Upside down, she saw the edge of Rick’s jaw, watched— fascinated—as his throat bobbed up and down while he continued attending to her.

“I’m almost done. Hold on for another sec.”

She let her eyes drift closed again. Rick moved his hands so they cupped the back of her neck, then, slowly, he brought her head away from his chest to an upright position, leaving his palms flattened across her shoulder blades.

“Take a breath and lift your shoulders,” he commanded.

Abby did, then rolled her head front to back.

“How’s the headache now?”


She opened her eyes and blinked. “Gone.” She whirled around to face him. “Completely gone.”


He nodded and flexed his fingers as if working out his own kinks. “Good. I’m glad it worked.”


“Where did you learn how to do that?” She slid a hand along one side of her neck, tilted her head, then moved it in the opposite direction. “I don’t think my shoulders have been this loose since, well, fourth grade.”


“You spend a lot of time hunched over.” He opened her fridge and pulled out two bottled waters. “Computer. Legal briefs. It’s no wonder your shoulders are tight and you’re susceptible to migraines.”

“How did you know I had migraines?” She took a swig of the water. “I mean, as opposed to regular bad headaches?”

“You wear the pain on your face. It’s obvious to anyone who knows what to look for.”

“And you do?”

He nodded. “Drink the whole bottle and then you need to eat. You haven’t had anything all day. It’s a wonder you aren’t dropping.”

He bent and peeked into the refrigerator. Sipping her water, she took the opportunity to stare at his butt.

Intrigued? I hope so, and if so, you can get your own copy here: A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK

And don’t forget to check back her on June 1, 2021 when I’ll be having my official COVER REVEAL for A PRIDE OF BROTHER: AIDEN. You won’t want to miss this cover because it is perfection!!!

Enjoy your day, kids. Until next time ~ Peg

And remember, if you’re looking for me, I’m always here:

Blog me // Tweet me // Buy my books // Friend me // Pin me // read me // pitcure me // watch me // review me

and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter here : Newsletter

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A Mother’s Day promotion & giveaway you won’t want to miss….

I’m so excited to be a part of @NNP_W_Light’s Celebrate Mothers Bookish Event. Check out all books just in time for Mother’s Day and enter the giveaway to win a $30 Amazon gift card: https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/92db7750109

My book, THE VOICES OF ANGELS is one of the featured romance books, just perfect for a gift for Mom.

Love is the last thing Carly Lennox is looking for when she sets out on her new book tour. The independent, widowed author is content with a life spent writing and in raising her daughter. When newscaster Mike Woodard suggests they work on a television magazine profile based on her book, Carly’s thrilled, but guarded. His obvious desire to turn their relationship into something other than just a working one is more than she bargained for.

Mike Woodard is ambitious, and not only in his chosen profession. He wants Carly, maybe more than he’s ever wanted anything or anyone else. As he tells her, he’s a patient man. But the more they’re together, Mike realizes it isn’t simply desire beating within him. Carly Lennox is the missing piece in his life. Getting her to accept it-and him-may just be the toughest assignment he’s ever taken on.

Enter to win a copy Of the VOICES OF ANGELS and all the participating books featured in this wonderful event.

Thanks, peeps ~ Peg

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#goodthingsTuesday 5.4.2021

SO my Good News this week is that my daughter rec’d her second covid vaccine shot so she is all protected now!!! You can’t know how wonderful this news is to me!!!!

So, what’s something good that happened to you this week?

Happy Tuesday, peeps ~ Peg

And remember, if you’re looking for me, I’m always here:

Blog me // Tweet me // Buy my books // Friend me // Pin me // read me // pitcure me // watch me // review me

and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter here : Newsletter

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#MugShotMonday 5.3.2021

As a romance writer, these 4 little words have opened up an entire world of storytelling ideas for me.

Do you have a mug that brings you inspiration? Post it and share it with me

Happy Monday, peeps ~ Peg

And remember, if you’re looking for me, I’m always here:

Blog me // Tweet me // Buy my books // Friend me // Pin me // read me // pitcure me // watch me // review me

and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter here : Newsletter

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VANILLA WITH A TWIST is a winner!

Last week started off horribly for me.

I won’t go into details, but every day there was a new issue or problem either with my family or my career. I wondered if things could get worse. But then, yesterday, they got immeasurably better!

Last night I was informed that my sweet romance VANILLA WITH A TWIST won the Sweet category in the Oklahoma Romance Writers Guild Awards!

Gobsmacked is too tame a word for how I felt when I watched the You0tube virtual event and heard my name called!

So, it really was the perfect ending to a week I want to forget!

If you haven’t read the book, here’s a little something about it:

VANILLA WITH A TWIST

Tandy Blakemore spends her days running her New England ice cream parlor, single-parenting her teenage son, and trying to keep her head above financial water. No easy feat when the shop’s machinery is aging and her son is thinking about college. Tandy hasn’t had a day off in a decade and wonders if she’ll ever be able to live a worry-free life.
Engineer Deacon Withers is on an enforced vacation in the tiny seaside town of Beacher’s Cove. Overworked, stressed, and lonely, he walks into Tandy’s shop for a midday ice cream cone and gets embroiled in helping her fix a broken piece of equipment.
Can the budding friendship that follows lead to something everlasting?

Intrigued? I hope so.

I’m off to do Sunday chores. Hope your day is as happy as mine.

Until next time, peeps ~ Peg

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Last chance to vote for A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK in the Rone Awards!

If you haven’t voted yet, today’s your last chance before the categories shift.

Go to InD’tale magazine here: IDTM

Log in or create an account.

Once you are logged in, click here to vote in the SUSPENSE/THRILLER category :STC

Hit submit and that’s it!!!!

Thank you so much for doing this!! If I am a finalist and God-willing a winner, this will be a career pinnacle for me!!!

I’ll let you know the results once I do.

Bless you all ~ Peg

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WOKE goes into wide distribution on 5.3.2021

So excited to announce that my Sleeping Beauty retold story, WOKE, will go into wide distribution on 5.3.2021. What that means is before now it’s only been available in Kindle and KU, but starting next Monday it will be digitally be available in Kobo, Nook, Apple, and a few other digital venues, here: WOKE

The price will be 99cents everywhere to kick off the wide distribution, so this is a great time to buy it for your ereader or gift it for a Mother’s day gift to your romance reading mom!

Waking up each day is a gift….

On her 21st birthday, someone slipped a potent drug combination into socialite Aurora Brightwell’s champagne, putting her in a coma for the next ten years. It’s been a long road back, and it’s time to reclaim the life she lost and find out exactly what happened on that fateful night.

Financier Kincade Enright has his own reason for helping Aurora discover who poisoned her, but for the time being he’s keeping that – and his true identity – to himself. What he can’t keep hidden though, are his growing feelings for the one-time paparazzi darling and party-girl.

When this prince of finance joins forces with the former sleeping beauty, nothing can stop them from finding the answers they seek…or prevent the powerful emotions developing between them as they search for the truth.

Remember, you can still get a copy at AMAZON, but it’s also in WIDE DISTRIBUTION as well.

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#goodthingsTuesday 4.27.2021

It’s not often I can brag ( and I hate that word, but…) about more than 1 good thing at a time, but this week, I’ve got three!

A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK is a RONE NOMINEE this week and voting is open right now. If you’d like to vote for it ( pretty please!!!) here’s the link: RONE AWARDS.

My second good thing is that WOKE is going into wide digital distribution next week. This will be the second book I’ve managed to get into all outlets online and I’m super excited. Here’s the PREORDER link if you don’t have a kindle and haven’t read it yet: UNIVERSAL LINK

And the third good thing is that VANILLA WITH A TWIST is up for an OKRWA GUILD HEART AWARD. The announcement of the winners will be May 1. Wish me luck!!!

So, tell me something good that happened to you this past week!!! inquiring minds ( mine!) want to know.

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A 99Cent ebook sale from Constance Bretes

Operation Code Name: Desert Love by Constance Bretes

Her best hope for survival is the one man she never wants to see again.

Clarissa Maasen is a humanitarian relief worker who’s stationed in Afghanistan. When she and two of her coworkers are kidnapped by insurgents and held hostage, she can only hope that her father, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, will send his best men to rescue them—more specifically, Len Roberts of the Delta Force.

The last time Len saw Clarissa, it did not end on good terms. But he will risk his life to rescue this woman who is never far from his thoughts.

Can he rescue her in time? And will they be able to control the passion erupting between them?

Content Warning: contains sexual content

Universal Buy Link:  https://books2read.com/u/3Gvola

A little about Constance Bretes:

  Constance started writing contemporary romance and romantic suspense fifteen years ago. She was born and raised in Michigan. After working for the State of Michigan for 38 years, she retired. She and her husband moved to Montana and lived in the mountainside of a small town. There, locked in her office overlooking the mountains, was where this story, Operation Code Name: Desert Love, was written. After living in Montana for three years, they moved to Alabama with her cat, Sunny, who owns both her and her husband. Her hobbies include basket weaving, reading mafia romance books, diamond painting, and fiddling at the piano. 

Constance’s Website: www.constancebretes.com 

Reader eMail: cbretes@constancebretes.com  

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#MugShotMonday 4.26.2021

So I gave this mug to my hubby 10,000 years ago and I wound up using it more than he ever did! Heehee.

Do you have any WORLD’S BEST mugs in your cabinet. Show them off!

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Another RONE NOMINEE to vote for!

So if my ego wasn’t already swelling, A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK is a RONE NOMINEE in the suspense/thriller category this week. Voting goes from April 26-May2

The rules for voting are the same. You have to log into www.indtale.com and then click on the SUSPENSE/THRILLER category to see the nominees. A PRIDE OF BROTHERS:RICK should be at the top to vote.

Thanks so much to anyone who gives me a vote/shoutout. This has been such an ego booster for me lately, when I’ve been lamenting poor sales and writing angst.

Elite bodyguard and P.I. Rick Bannerman’s job is to protect. He doesn’t get emotional with his clients, but when a woman from his past is threatened, his next job becomes personal.

Family lawyer Abigail Laine is the target of a client’s vengeful husband, but refuses Rick’s offer of protection. He walked away from her four years ago, and she swore to forget him.

Now her reluctance to accept his help could cost Abby her life.

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Romancing the Genres – it’s my turn!!! 4.23.2021

This month on the Romancing the Genres blog, we’re talking about comedy, being funny, and all things LOL.

Come check out my post on my angst at trying to find the funny, here: RTG

Being funny is hard work, kids. Hard work!

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A 99cent sale for a great book by Lucinda Race

Three sisters and one enchanted wedding dress… 

When three single sisters inherit their Scottish great-grandmother’s wedding dress, they also inherit the legend that comes with it: put on the dress, look in a mirror, and reveal their future. The dress is more than just silk and lace, for magic has been stitched into the seams of the heirloom. For the MacLellan sisters, the enchanted wedding dress promises a legacy of everlasting love. 

BLURB

Can something old lead to something new? 

Jamie MacLellan is content with her life. Her business as a certified public accountant is going well, she owns her own home, and she never wants to live anywhere but Vermont, near her sisters. Why bother getting married, when no man could measure up to her father’s example of a loving, respectful husband? Then she tries on her grandmother’s wedding dress. Is the shadowy man she sees in the mirror her future, or just a trick of the light? Jamie may have vowed to stay single, but could the handsome lawyer she’s been dating could be “the one”? Then she meets his sexy twin brother, who, with a simple look, sets Jamie’s heart racing. 

Caleb Sullivan has clients all over the world who appreciate his skills as a traveling personal chef. The footloose and fancy-free lifestyle isn’t always as glamourous as it seems, and sometimes Caleb secretly longs to settle down, but for now, there’s a lot of food to cook and a lot of world to see. But Jamie MacLellan’s crystal blue eyes have him dreaming unexpected dreams. 

How can Jamie fall for a man who’ll be away more than he’ll be home? She’s a happy homebody who loves her roots. He’s a traveling vagabond. But it was Caleb that Jamie saw in the mirror. Will she turn her back on a chance at a once in a lifetime love, or is Jamie ready to embrace the promise an enchanted old wedding dress holds for a new future?

EXCERPT

Jamie went in search of scissors and pointed to the closet. “Kenz, the box is in there.” Kenzie opened the door and carefully carried the box to the coffee table, as if it contained something irreplaceable.

Jamie returned, and said, her hand hovering over the tape, “Here goes nothing.”

Grace came in holding a bottle of wine. “Be careful, Sissy,” she whispered reverently. “It was Gran’s, so it’s really old.”

Jamie held her breath as she cautiously sliced through the layers of packing tape and eased back the cardboard flaps.

Standing on tiptoes, Kenzie peered over her shoulder. “What is it?”

Jamie withdrew a cream-colored envelope. “It’s a letter.” Grace reached out to pull back the bubble wrap when Jamie touched her hand. “Wait. We should read it first and then we’ll see what’s inside.”

Kenzie stretched out her hand. “I’ll read it.” She slit open the wax seal and pulled out several pieces of stationery. Glancing down, she said, “I don’t remember Gran’s handwriting so spider web like, so it might take a while.”

Grace leaned in and studied the page. “I don’t think its Gran’s. What if it’s Great-gran’s? You know Dad’s grandmother.”

Jamie admonished, “If we stop talking and let Kenz read, I’ll bet we find out.” She picked up her wineglass and settled back on the sofa cushions.

My dearest granddaughters,

This is your father’s grandmother writing to you long before you were even a gleam in his eye or even before he had any interest in lassies. If you have received this box, it means that I’ve had the joy of seeing my beloved daughter, your grandmother, again. I’m sorry for your loss and hope your memories of her will sustain you through the years to come and her wisdom will guide you. I will assume you have a box from your Gran. Have you looked inside? If not, carefully unwrap the contents and lay the three items I chose for you on a table.

Jamie’s eyes grew wide as she looked at her sisters. “What the hell, is she psychic or something?”

Grace clapped a hand over her mouth. “Remember, Gran said the women in our family were special. Maybe that’s what she was talking about.”

Kenzie’s eyebrow shot up. “That would explain a few things about Gran. She always seemed to have eyes on us all the time.”

Absentmindedly Jamie tapped her glass with her finger. “Do you remember the time…I must have been around ten. We decided to get up early and go fishing, and when we got to the bottom of the stairs Gran was dressed and waiting for us? I know we never talked about sneaking off while we were in the house where she could hear us.”

“You’re right.” Grace let out a rush of breath. “Our sneaky plans were always hatched underneath that old willow tree near the creek.”

Kenzie gasped. “Oh, wow. That does make me wonder about all kinds of things.”

Jamie waved her hands toward the box. “Enough speculating about Gran being able to read our minds—let’s see what’s inside.”

Taking care not to rush, Grace took a small package wrapped in plain brown paper. She pulled back the paper and cut the bubble wrap inside, to discover a carved wooden box. Her voice was barely above a whisper. “Should I open it?”

“Hold on, let’s see what Kenzie has.”

Kenzie withdrew a large floppy package wrapped in white tissue paper tied with the deep green satin ribbon. She pulled back the paper, revealing a large piece of wool, a Scottish tartan. “Isn’t this the MacLellan plaid?” She carefully placed it on the back of the sofa.

Jamie and Grace nodded, eager to see the third item.

“One item left, Jamie, your turn.” Kenzie slid the box in front of her older sister.

Jamie pulled out an identical-looking package tied with the same ribbon. “Do you think it’s another plaid, maybe a cape?” She tugged the bow and eased back the tissue paper.

“Oh my gosh! It’s a wedding dress.” Awestruck, Grace reached out and fingered the silky fabric. “Do you think it was Great-gran’s?”

Get your 99 cent copy here:

https://www.amazon.com/Old-New-Enchanted-Wedding-MacLellan-ebook/dp/B07SJB67RK
https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/old-and-new-22
https://books.apple.com/us/book/old-and-new/id1479495836
https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/old-and-new-lucinda-race/1131809870?ean=2940161371251
https://books2read.com/OldandNew

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#backlistThursday 4.22.2021

This is the first time I’ve ever added an anthology for my backlist.

At the beginning of 2020 ( before Covid ruled the world) Australia was engulfed in flames. One of the Wild Rose Press authors is an Australian and asked if there was some way we, as authors, could come together to raise money for the RedCross to aid the firefighters and the people devastated by the fires.

A three part anthology titled AUSTRALIA BURNS came from that one question. Multiple WRP authors contributed stories to the collection and took no royalties from sales – their money was donated instead.

Love that.

My addition was a little story I’d written when I was concetrating on writing murder mysteries and not romance. The story, THE TUESDAY NIGHT MEETING, is one of my favorite things I’ve ever written.

Here’s a quick excerpt, and if you want to purchase the anthology, here’s the link: AUSTRALIA BURNS. I’m in volume 1

“Cora,” Mavis aid, capturing the entire attention of the room, “do you know anything about our group?”
            She shook her head and swiped at her still running nose. “Not much, Ma-am. I know you give out scholarships to worthy high school girls for college. And you support the poor, especially at the holidays. I’ve seen write-ups in the paper about the good things y’all have done. But aside from those, I don’t know much else. Excepting,” she said, “ that you’re all widows.”

            The members of the club collectively smiled at her.

            “That’s why I thought it strange to be asked here tonight. I’m not a widow.”

            “No, darlin’ you’re not,” Wisteria said, smiling. “Not yet.”

            Cora gaped, openmouthed, at the old woman.

            “Let me start at the beginning, dear, so you’ll understand how our little club came to be.”

            Settling back in the chair, Wisteria took a breath then began her tale. 

            “You probably don’t remember my late husband, Major Plowright. I believe he passed when you were just a baby. Well, my dear, if there was ever a tougher man in the world to live with, I’d be sore pressed to believe it. I truly feel the moment he was brought into the world a military angel crossed his path and predestined him for a soldiers’ life. His mother told me after we’d been married for about a year that even as a child, everything had to be precision perfect in his world. He tolerated no fools, silliness or any kind of good-natured fun. I didn’t realize this when I married him, mind you. I know now I fell in love with his spit and polish exterior and superior manner. I never could resist a good lookin’ man in a uniform.”

            A few well-knowing chuckles escaped throughout the room.

            “Well, married life was kind of sweet for a while. I got used to his ranting and raving about precision and cleanliness and order. But when the Major was forced to retire at a very early age, well, it all changed. He changed. Nothing I did was ever good enough. I was plum worn out with three babies and a big house to care for, and he never helped a lick with anything. One day he came home from his club and my youngest had spilled his juice all over the kitchen floor. I was just about to clean it up, but the Major didn’t let me. He stormed into the room, saw the mess and started screaming and hollering so loud I thought my little Jimmy’s diapers were gonna fall off. When I tired to explain about the mess, he smacked me across the face. Knocked me clear across the kitchen with one felled swoop of the back of his hand. I was so stunned I didn’t see the next one coming. He was raving about me being an inadequate wife and mother and that he was going to teach me a lesson I’d never forget. He was right about it, too. I never forgot that first beating or all the others he gave me after. I do believe he came to enjoy it when he struck me down. I’d see a gleam in his eyes, kind of like the one I’d seen when he was in the throes of passion, whenever he hit me.”

            Wisteria stopped and refreshed herself with a sip of tea.

            “Miz Plowright, ma-am. I had no idea,” Cora said.

            “Of course not, darlin’. In those days, why, a woman was barely a step above chattel.  Men’s property; bought and sold.”

            “What did you do? I mean, did you stay with the Major?”

            “For a while. I ran away with the children once, to my mother. But the Major followed me and dragged us all back. The beating I endured that night broke my left arm and two of my ribs.”

            “I remember he went around town the next day telling everyone who’d listen that you fell down the front steps because you were rushing off somewhere in a dither,” Molly Kane said.

            When Cora gasped, Wisteria patted her hand sand said, “You see, Cora. We’ve all lied at one time or another about our bruises.”

            “Finish your story, Wisteria,” Mavis commanded.

            After taking another sip of tea, she did. ”I knew I had to do something about the situation, but what? I couldn’t leave him. He’d shown me how he’d hunt me down and bring me back. Divorce was out of the question in those days. No self respectin’ woman of the South would ever be seen in divorce court, airing all her dirty personal laundry. I finally figured out I had two options. I could stay and put up with this man I’d grown to fear and hate until he finally succeeded in killing me, or…”

“Or?” Cora prompted.

“Or I could rid myself and the children of him right then and there.”

Cora’s loud intake of air was the one sound in the room. To the question in her eyes, Wisteria merely inclined her head.

“Yes, my dear. I killed my husband. It was the only way I could survive.”

Intrigued? hee hee. I hope so!

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#goodthingsTuesday 4.20.2021

My good thing today came from a post I wrote this past Saturday. You can check out the post here for reference.

The good news?? I’ve stuck to the eating plan 2 days in a row! That may not sound like much to the average person, but to me, it’s HUGE!!!

Heehee

So, tell me, what good thing has happened in your life this past week?


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#MugShotMonday 4.19.2021…this one is based on a photo and one of my books!

In honor of April, I give you an April showers mug that my dear friend Jill gave me several years ago. One of my book covers has a couple embracing in the rain under a red umbrella. She found this mug and thought of me.

Love that!!!

This is the book cover of THE VOICES OF ANGELS…

And the cover of the book was based on this very famous photograph I sent to my cover artist for inspiration:

Don’t you just love when all that stuff ties together? It’s like art Karma meets book Karma meets cup Karma!

Love that!!!

So, do you have any seasonal mugs?? Show me so I can gawk, heehee!

And here’s a little about THE VOICES OF ANGELS if you’re interested – which I hope you are, LOL!

Love is the last thing Carly Lennox is looking for when she sets out on her new book tour. The independent, widowed author is content with a life spent writing and in raising her daughter. When newscaster Mike Woodard suggests they work on a television magazine profile based on her book, Carly’s thrilled, but guarded. His obvious desire to turn their relationship into something other than just a working one is more than she bargained for.

Mike Woodard is ambitious, and not only in his chosen profession. He wants Carly, maybe more than he’s ever wanted anything or anyone else. As he tells her, he’s a patient man. But the more they’re together, Mike realizes it isn’t simply desire beating within him. Carly Lennox is the missing piece in his life. Getting her to accept it-and him-may just be the toughest assignment he’s ever taken on.

Happy Monday, peeps ~ Peg

And remember, if you’re looking for me, I’m always here:

Blog me // Tweet me // Buy my books // Friend me // Pin me // read me // pitcure me // watch me // review me

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Filed under MacQuire Women, Romance, Romance Books, The Voices of Angels, Writing

When you hit the bottom, the only direction is…back up. But you need a plan.

So, I’m not the type of person who puts it all out there. I know that sounds ridiculous because I write a blog where I post about my writing life, a few weird and wonderful things that happen to me, and introduce my readers to other authors I love. I tell things about myself that are public knowledge and that don’t really dig deep into my psyche. I don’t write a great deal about my family because they didn’t ask to be used in a forum such as this and I value their privacy.

I do, too.

But…

There comes a time in life when you simply need to get a few things off your chest and admit you have a problem.

I’m putting on my big girl Depends today and doing that.

Bear with me for a little backstory and explanation, first.

The past year hasn’t been one any of us will remember with pleasure. Covid, for lack of a more sophisticated phrase, sucks moose. Big time. Not being able to see friends or family, not being able to hug my daughter, having her postpone her wedding at 3 different times, none of that has been grand. My parents have basically seen no one but each other and me for the better part of 12 months.

Fast forward a bit.

My husband and I adopted a dog in September 2020. I missed not having a dog in the house – but it’s been 21 years since I did. Being the parent of a puppy at the age of 60 is not like it was when I was 28 and we adopted our first lab. I’m older, more tired, and not as strong. Plus, I hate to admit this, my patience is not what it was, either. These past 7 months have been challenging, to the say the least, with her. But we love her to the moon and back, so…

Fast forward again.

A few weeks ago my mother fell at home and broke the one hip she hadn’t broken yet. Three years ago she broke the first. So now she’s 2 for 2. As of last week she is in a rehab center with very strict Covid restrictions. She can have no visitors who are not fully vaccinated, and even then, she can only see someone for 20 minutes twice a week. My stepfather is at their home, bored, lonely, and let’s be honest- not at his mental best at the age of 83. I have been shuttling to and fro ( they live in another state, 25 miles 1 way from me, so 50 miles round trip) several times a week to take care of him, make sure he is okay, and even take him to visit my mother when he is allowed. I am not allowed to visit her yet because I only received my second vaccine dose this past Wednesday. I need to quarantine from her for 14 days, so by the end of the month I can see her in person.

Trying to write has been…trying. There is no other word for it. I am exhausted from caring for the puppy – who has been sick monthly since we got her with various ailments – traveling to my parent’s, taking care of my own house and husband and basically, trying to get a shower in once in a while.

My mental status reads OVERWHELMED on a daily basis. So much so, that today I did something I haven’t done in twenty years just to attempt to comfort myself. More about that in a sec.

It’s accurate to say I have reached a mental and physical low point. I haven’t been able to go to the gym because…Covid and restrictions, so my body is as gelatinous as it has been in decades. If I were able to get it measured, I would venture to state there is not one hard part of my body.

Well, maybe my head. But that’s it.

There aren’t many ways I can comfort myself and try to perk myself up, other than writing, which…read the above! So I’ve been eating.

A lot.

A way lot.

Today, after bringing the dog to the vet for the second time in two days, and after traveling in a wonderful April Nor’Easter to Vermont to bring stepdad to the rehab center, then back home again, I was feeling so low, basements looked as high as sky scrapers to me. So…I went to McDonalds.

Were you expecting that? Maybe not. But here’s the thing: I haven’t eaten fast food like that since my daughter was 9 years old, won the State Spelling Bee and one of her prizes was free Mcdonalds’ for a year.

Things have changed since the last time I was there. First…Covid, so everyone wears masks and gloves. Two, the drive thru is high tech. No more screaming into a speaker that distorts your voice and makes chicken mcnuggets sound like “licking maggots.” Three, you pay in a different place on the drive thru line than where you pick up your food. How they keep it all flowing and get the orders right is a mystery I don’t want to know the answer to. Suffice it to say, my #1 ( Big Mac meal) was perfect when I got it. Last…supersize. That’s a thing now. No wonder our country is so overweight.

I won’t bore you with the details of how my taste buds all stood at attention – happily- the moment I opened the fries bag and got my first whiff of grease and salt. Or tell you how I don’t even think I chewed the burger, just bit and swallowed. Or even how my stomach revolted a half hour after eating. Just know that Nightshade allergies are a real thing. I’m not supposed to eat potatoes in any form. And no, I didn’t forget french fries are really potatoes.

Somethings are better off left unsaid, you know?

What I will tell you is that, for me, this was the rock bottom of the bottom. When I have to get fast food that I know makes me sick to eat in order to comfort myself and try to pull myself out of a funk, I have truly reached the bottom: emotionally, mentally, and physically.

And when you’ve reached the bottom, there really is no place else to go except back up. For me, that only means one thing. I need to get a handle on my eating again and not use food to attempt to comfort myself. The way I have done that in the past, when my emotions have run away with me, is to go back on Weight Watchers, which is what I’ve done.

I re-upped my membership and am determined to get my life off this rollercoaster of bad, non-thinking eating.

Weight Watchers has changed, just like McDonald’s has.

First…Oprah owns it now. That’s cool.

On their points program, fruits are zero points, instead of in the past when every banana, apple, or grape I ate cost me 2 points out of a daily 20.

I get points for exercising now, so yay to that! Once my 14 post-vaccine days are over, I am hitting the gym again.

My self disclosure may not seem like much to you. But for me to admit I have an eating problem at the advanced age of 60 when I should have figured this shit all out by now, is HUGE with a capital HUGE! And doing so in this forum makes me accountable, because people will read it and in the back of their minds remember it. Since I am at my core a people pleaser, I don’t want to fail at this because I don’t want to disappoint people.

And let’s face it : I don’t want to disappoint myself this time, either.

I’m debating whether or not I want to take the dreaded BEFORE picture, though. Everyone (and by that I mean the WW people) says you should, so in the future you can see how far you’ve come, but I don’t know. That will force me to really see what I look like – something I don’t want to do. Okay, let’s be honest: it’s something I’m terrified of seeing!

What’s that old saw? If it doesn’t kill you it makes you stronger?

Here’s hoping I don’t drop dead when I see myself in celluloid!

Thanks for listening and not judging…. Peg

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Happy Birthday to ROCK HOUSE GRILL by D.V.Stone

My wonderful and talented Wild Rose Press sistah, D.V. Stone, stopped by the other day so we could celebrate the 1 year anniversary, or as we writers say our BOOK BIRTHDAY, of her novel ROCK HOUSE GRILL. D.V. was all faklempt – and so was I – when she told me about her road to the book’s publication. I think you’ll enjoy the story, too, so here’s D.V…..

I can’t believe it’s been a year already since publication. The road to get there was filled with potholes and detours. Rock House Grill started out as a NaNoWriMo challenge in November of 2015. The challenge is 50,000 words in 30 days. I was able to complete the first draft and received my certificate. Then, like many manuscripts, it was set aside while I finished other projects. I had a couple of independents in the hopper and focused on those.

Fast forward to 2019. I pulled up some old files, and there sat Rock House waving at me. “Hey, remember me?” I did, and with fresh eyes, began to revisit. I’d always dreamed of becoming a traditionally published author. To be able to say, my publishing house—my editor. I began to send out query letters. Let’s just say most places don’t even send a response, much less express an interest.

I sent several letters out in May. Word of warning. Be careful to look things over before you hit send. In horror, I realized the salutation in the email to The Wild Rose Press had another’s name on it. Panic ensued, and a new email went out. “Wild Rose Press. I know you’re The Wild Rose Press!”

Well, I blew that one. Wait. Not necessarily. A few days before my birthday, there was a ding in my inbox. Please send… OMG! Then came the next. Please send the full manuscript. After a couple of starts, stops, and a change in editors, this came on Jul 13, 2017.

Dear Donna,

My name is ELF and I am the editor who has been assigned to evaluate your story, “The Rock House Grill,” for The Wild Rose Press

Poor ELF didn’t know what she was getting into. At one point, she had to use tough love and warn me I had one more chance.

So here we are in 2021. You do the math. Publishing for me is not a straight road. I imagine for many, it’s a long pothole-filled one. But don’t give up. Even when you send the wrong email.

Rock House Grill and I are celebrating our first birthday together. Coming soon is the second Impact book Jazz House. Who knows when that book birthday will be. But I’m sure it will be as sweet as this one. You want to know why? Just like having more than one child, holding each of your subsequent books is an amazing feeling.

My final word to you? Go forth and be bold. Don’t let fear or worry hold you back. I promise it’s worth it.

Rock House Grill

One man’s choices—One woman’s impact

Winner NNLights Book Heaven 1st place Sweet Romance

Author Shout Out Recommended Read 2020

Aden House, successful but driven chef and TV personality, refuses to slow down. His life implodes one night, damaging him both physically and emotionally. He’s rescued by a woman he thinks of as his angel.

Shay McDowell has rebuilt her life after her divorce. She juggles volunteer EMT duties and her job, while dreaming of becoming a chef. She finds her way to Rock House Grill and back into the life of the man she helped save.

Can love be the ingredient needed to survive the many obstacles they face?

Reviews

This engrossing story had it all, mystery, suspense, and romance. The twists and turns made it impossible to put down. I enjoyed the supporting characters as well. I will be looking for more from this talented storyteller.

This book is a delightful, savory, hopeful, fun, romantic, and warmhearted read!!

I really enjoyed this romantic suspense. The author portrayed a vivid description of the glamorous world of the high-end restaurant business. The characters were believable, and I rooted for Shay, the heroine, to overcome the many obstacles in her quest to find true love with Aden, the physically and emotionally damaged hero.

Excerpt

“Easy, you’re going to be okay.” A soft voice eased through the chaos around him.

The owner of the voice grabbed his arms and held them in a firm but gentle grip. “I’m right here with you. You are not alone.”

“Can hardly m-move.” His voice slurred. “C-can’t see anything.”

“You’ve been in an accident. I’m an EMT with the ambulance squad,” the velvety voice calmly explained. “You can’t see well because we’re under a tarp. Hold still, okay?”

“‘K.” A small light flickered at the edge of his vision. It shone into a bag next to him. Penlight.

“You’re restrained to a board. It’s to keep your head from moving and causing more injury.” She continued to talk to him.

The voice reached down somewhere inside him, calming and peaceful, so he focused on it. A glow from spotlights on the outside lit whatever covered them. The shadow gave the woman the appearance of a halo—like an angel.

About the Author

Hi, my name is D. V. Stone. I am a multi-genre author of two independently published books. Felice, Shield-Mates of Dar is a fantasy romance. Agent Sam Carter and the Mystery at Branch Lake is a mid-grade paranormal. Recently, Rock House Grill was released by Wild Rose Press. Rainbow Sprinkles, a novella released on July 8th. I also host Welcome to the Campfire and A Peek Through the Window, both weekly blogs. Here’s a little more about me.

Born in Brooklyn, D.V. Stone has moved around a bit and even lived for a time on a dairy farm in Minnesota before moving back east. Throughout her wandering, she always considered herself a Jersey Girl. She met and married the love of her life, Pete—a lifelong Jersey Man, and moved this time to Sussex County.  They live with Hali, a mixed breed from the local shelter, and their cat Baby.

D.V.’s career path varied from working with the disabled to become a volunteer EMT, which in turn led to working in hospital emergency rooms and then in a women’s state prison. After a few years, she took a break from medicine and became the owner of Heavenly Brew, a specialty coffee shop in Sparta, NJ, and a small restaurant in Lafayette. Life handed some setbacks. She ended up back in the medical field, but this time in a veterinary emergency hospital. 

“Thank you for taking the time to read about me. Each time you open the pages to one of my books, I hope you’ll be swept away by the story and find encouragement in your own life, never to give up on hope.”

D.V. Stone

Buy Links

Amazon          Barnes & Noble         iBook’s      Google Books       Kobo

Find out more about D. V.

Website         Facebook      Twitter          Instagram

Pinterest        Bookbub       Goodreads    Newsletter

Welcome to the Campfire Blog     Amazon Author Page

One-stop link https://linktr.ee/d.v.stone

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#backlistThursday 4.15.2021

Today’s Backlisted book was released in July 2019 when I was on a family vacation in England. Two exciting things at once! DIRTY DAMSELS was my first ( and last) book for LImitless Publishing. The company dropped my future books in the series because I didn’t sell a million copies out of the chute! No lie. Actually, I should thank them because of their cancellation, I started Indie publishing and have been very happy with the results.

Anyhoo…

DIRTY DAMSELS is a modern version of Cinderella. This Cindy owns her own cleaning company, the storyline is a riches-to-rags-to-riches one.

Limitless writes their blurbs in the male first person viewpoint, so it’s a little different from what I’m used to. Here ya go:

What if Cynderella had a one-night stand with a man named Prince?

When I first saw Cynderella all covered in soot in that sexy maid uniform, I knew I wanted to be her Prince.She’s a smart and savvy businesswoman who’s built her cleaning company from the ground up.

But now that Dirty Damsels was booming, I’ve been hired to arrange a hostile takeover. But the temptation of having her was too much to ignore… We ended up spending one night together–a night neither of us will forget. Now, I want more. I need more. I want to spend every night, skin-on-skin, with my beautiful Ella.

Problem is, when she finds out who I really am, she’ll never forgive me.

Excerpt:

“Don’t look,” Nell said, close to my ear, “but this insanely hot guy has been staring at you since we sat down.”

“How can you order me not to look when you say something like that?”

“By the bar,” she said. “Dark hair, designer suit, striking eyes. The best mouth I’ve seen on a guy in ages.”

A little bell rang somewhere in the back of my head at her depiction and in the next second my eyes locked onto him.

Shocked is too tame a description when I discovered who it was. He looked as yummy and as magnificent as when he’d stood in the penthouse. With his elbow resting casually on the bar, another be-suited guy with a drink in his hand next to him.

“Do you know who he is?” Nell asked. “Because you’re gonna in about five seconds. He’s heading this way.”

He said something to the guy at his side and maneuvered along the perimeter of the dance floor, squeezing past club patrons and waiters, his gaze locked on mine.

I was hypnotized by those eyes. It was as if he were psychically holding me in place while he made his way over. I had no will of my own to look away.

Or run away.

Fear propelled me up from the chair just as he stopped in front of the table.

“Cinderella? It is you,” he said, his sexy smile slowly growing across his mouth. “You look different with your hair down. Beautiful, still,” he added.

I couldn’t think of a thing to say. The fact he stood in front of me, no, next to me now, moving in so he could be heard over the blast of the music, turned me mute. All brain synapses vaulted from my mind. I said the first thing that popped into my head. “Did you have a good nap?”

Jesus, Ella, are you kidding?

His heart-stopping smile broadened. He leaned in, grabbed my hand, squeezed it, and said, “Good enough.”

When he got closer, my nerves went into hyperdrive as the amazing smell of him wafted across the minute space separating our bodies. He smelled utterly delicious. A tangy orange mixed with musk that almost had me slanting my head into his neck just so I could nuzzle and fill myself with the scent.

“Come with me, it’s too loud right here,” he said into my ear. “I can’t hear myself think.”

In the next second I was tugged along with him, oblivious to everything but the feel of his hand as it slipped into mine. His skin was warm, the grip like iron as he hauled me away from the dance area.

When he stopped in the hallway between the bar and kitchen, he turned and said, “Better.”

For want of something to say, I simply nodded.

I’m usually not such a silent Sadie. The bar was filled to capacity with everyone drinking and yelling to be heard over the music, so the noise level was jacked way up. But we could have been the only two people in the place. My entire system focused in on him and him alone. I glanced down and noticed he still held my hand. He noticed it too, smiled, and kept right on holding it.

“I can’t believe my good luck at finding you. I feel like I need to apologize for zoning out on you this afternoon,” he said.

“It’s okay. You said you were tired.” I was amazed I got that much out of my mouth in one shot.

Intrigued? I hope so. Here’s the Universal Link if you’d like to read it: DIRTY DAMSELS

Until next time, peeps.

Looking for me? Here I am:

Blog me // Tweet me // Buy my books // Friend me // Pin me // read me // pitcure me // watch me // review me

and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter here : Newsletter

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Filed under Dirty Damsels, Dot Com Girls Romance

My tiny attempt at self-promotion!

*** turn on the sound when you click the above link so you can hear my horrible, scratchy voice!!!

So this is my very feeble attempt at self promoting my book so people will vote for me in the RONE AWARDS.

Please don’t laugh!! ( I laughed enough for all of us when I first previewed it! Heehee)

Hope this prompts you to take pity on me and vote for my book. The explanation on how to do so is here: VOTING INSTRUCTIONS

And the direct link to the STEAMY CONTEMPORARY CATEGORY is here: STEAMY

Thanks, kids!!! I appreciate every vote!

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Filed under A Match Made in Heaven

#goodThingsTuesday 4.13.2021

My good thing this week is a very good thing. I get my second Covid vaccine tomorrow morning. I know it sounds ridiculous, but I can’t wait.

In 14 more days I will fully be vaccinated. The peace of mind that is bringing me is the best good thing I’ve felt in a while.

So, tell me: What good thing happened to you this past week?

Until next time, peeps ~Peg

Blog me // Tweet me // Buy my books // Friend me // Pin me // read me // pitcure me // watch me // review me

and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter here : Newsletter

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#CharacterInterview CHOCOLATE RASPBERRY MAGIC by Tena Stetler

My WILD ROSE PRESS sistah, TENA STETLER, has just added to the growing – and delicious – One Scoop or Two series with the publication of her novella CHOCOLATE RASPBERRY MAGIC.

Tena and her book’s hero, Paul, are stopping by today for a little chat…

Tena – take it away…..

Thanks for having us Peggy. Paul had a few minutes before he had to get to work. So here we are. Ask away. 

Hero in Chocolate Raspberry Magic: Paul Thorpe

Tell us about the real you—

I was in the Special Forces for several years until the most recent assignment in the middle east went south.  Most of us didn’t survive. Until recently, I wasn’t sure survivor was what you’d call me. My world consisted of flash backs, nightmares and PTSD. The VA’s prescription drugs were of little help. Self-medicating with alcohol wasn’t the answer either. Then one of my buddies hooked up with a place called Lobster Cove Wildlife Rescue and Rehab. He claimed a the former Navy SEAL co-owned the place worked with veterans to help us cope with what happened to us and found jobs we fit in. That’s how I came to be security and computer support for Salem Wildlife Sanctuary.  It’s a job I excel at and working with the traumatized animals is somehow soothing to me. They don’t judge, they listen, eventually they trust and get better and so do you.  

 How would people physically describe you?

Tall, muscled, shaggy straight black hair with startling blue eyes. My mom was Native American, my dad was of Irish descent. In a low voice, he said. Trinity likes my dimples. He shrugs.

What is the most inspirational thing you’ve ever done in your life?

I served my county for the right reasons, after that… I got kinda lost. Joined the ranks of Salem Wildlife Sanctuary and helped with the rescue and fund raising for Puffin Cove Rescue. Participating in things like that changes a person in ways you’ll never understand unless you’ve been there.

If you could map out the next five years of your life, what would that look like?

I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I want the stable home, family and relationship in which we understand and support each other. I also plan to remain with the Salem Wildlife Sanctuary.

What actors would you like in the main roles if your book were made into a movie?  

Not even going there. Next question.

What do you do for fun? Hiking with the pup I adopted. Spend time with Trinity. Oh she’s the assistant manager at Salem Sanctuary. We learned a lot about each other during the Puffin Cove rescue and fund raiser. 

Life advice for the masses?

Believe in yourself and always be willing to help another human being. Never know when you’ll be the one needing help. Pay it forward.

Everyone is made up of both good and bad elements. What are your best qualities and what are your worst qualities?

Best – would be willing to help-out where needed. I’m very mechanically inclined. So there is very little that I can’ fix, design or build. Which comes in handy in my line of work.

Worst. – Way too many to mention. But coping with PTSD and my temper are the two main ones that come to mind. I’m working on both. 

Lastly, tell us three things we’d find if we looked under your bed?  Lots of dust bunnies.

Tena, Tell us a little about writing this story. 

 Chocolate Raspberry Magic was a blast to write. Who doesn’t love a hunky hero, a strong heroine, adorable animals, and a feel good tale? It’s kinda a continuation of HIDDEN GYPSY MAGIC, but still a stand-alone. I knew Trinity and Paul would need their own story and tying it into where they met was just fun.

Do my characters act as I expect? Heaven’s no. Probably because I am a write by the seat of my pants author. LOL 

Tell us about Chocolate Raspberry Magic:

Prim and proper Trinity Shiloh is the assistant manager for Salem’s Wildlife Sanctuary. She hasn’t had much luck in the boyfriend department, but the new employee Paul is different. Deep and brooding she sees something special hidden below the surface. Besides she has secrets of her own.

Paul Thorp is a wounded Special Forces veteran now working in security and computer support. He’s fought hard to keep his demons in check and for the first time feels he is ready for a real relationship.

When a fire breaks out at Puffin Cove Rescue, they are called in to help with the recovery and ice cream social fundraiser. Sometimes things are not what they seem, and neither are people. When magic is unleashed, will what they learn bring them closer together or push them apart?

A sneak peek between the pages of Chocolate Raspberry Magic:

As Trinity walked through the aftermath of the fire, she lifted the yellow and black caution tape and carefully stepped inside the building. Her gut clenched and that feeling of foreboding washed over her again. The farther she ventured into the burnt building the stronger the gut-wrenching feeling became. Something needs my help. This was a new sensation. She took a small flashlight out of her backpack, directed the beam over the scorched debris, and moved the rubble with her toe. Nothing.

One more sweep of the light and she’d return to the others. Probably not supposed to be here anyway. A weak squawk emanated from the far corner of the building. Picking up a scorched stick, she poked at the debris. A puff of smoke rose as she made her way to where the sound came from. Shining the light into the corner, she saw movement. She knelt down and carefully shifted the charred rubble. Laying on its side, head slightly raised, and using a wing in an attempt to right itself was a small parrot. Its little eyes locked on her for a moment before its head lowered to the ground.

Frantically, she glanced around, but there was no one in sight. How far had she ventured without telling anyone? The structure overhead groaned in warning. No time. “Okay little one, it’s you and me. I don’t have much experience at this, but I’ll do my best.” Shrugging out of her backpack, she unzipped it completely. “I’m going to scoop you up in my backpack and get help.” She didn’t raise her voice to call for help for fear of scaring the poor thing.

Clearing as much debris away from the bird as possible, she scooped up the parrot in her bag. Slowly she stood, so as not to jostle the little creature. Holding the bag gently against her chest, she picked her way across the downed wooden braces, charred remnants of cabinetry, and broken glass.

“Trinity, Trinity, where are you?” Paul’s worried voice pierced the air.

“Over here,” she called with relief directing the flashlight beam toward his voice. The wind shifted the burnt skeleton of the building emitting a squeeing sound of swaying twisted, wet wood. This section of the structure was in danger of collapsing. 

Buy Link:  https://books2read.com/u/mvqqNJ

About the Author:

Tena Stetler is a best-selling author of award winning paranormal romance with an over-active imagination.  She wrote her first vampire romance as a tween, to the chagrin of her mother and the delight of her friends. Colorado is home; shared with her husband, a brilliant Chow Chow, a spoiled parrot and a forty-five-year-old box turtle. When she’s not writing, her time is spent kayaking, camping, hiking, biking  or just relaxing in the great Colorado outdoors. Her books tell tales of magical kick-ass women and mystical alpha males that dare to love them. Travel, adventure, and a bit of mystery flourish in her books along with a few companion animals to round out the tales.

Social Media Links:

Website: https://www.tenastetler.com

Authors’ Secret’s Blog – https://www.tenastetler.com/category/authors-secrets-blog/

My Say What Blog – http://www.tenastetler.com/category/my-say-what-blog/

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/tenastetler.author

Twitter Page: https://www.twitter.com/TenaStetler 

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14187532.Tena_Stetler

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/author/tenastetler

Newsletter: https://www.tenastetler.com/newsletter-signup/

Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.com/tenastetler

Tribber – http://triberr.com/TenaStetler

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/tena-stetler

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tenastetler/

Tumblr: https://www.tumblr.com/blog/tenajean2014

BookGorilla – https://www.bookgorilla.com/author/B014E0PEPM/tena-stetler

Linkedin – https://www.linkedin.com/in/tena-stetler-10057978/

Peggy here – hey you two, thanks for visiting today. This sounds like another delicious addition to the One Scoop or two series!

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#MugshotMonday 4.12.2021

See you next week, peeps!

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InD’Tale Rone Award Nominee – wk 1: 4/12-18 Steamy Contemporary Category!

I am so over the moon. THIS IS MY VERY FIRST RONE NOMINATION!!! to make it to the finals, though, people have to vote for the book. Here’s the letter with the instructions of voting from the Rone Committee:

It is extremely important that you let all your readers and fans know! ( THAT’S WHY I’M PUTTING IT IN A BLOG POST! LOL) We would hate to think a superior quality book lost only because people were unaware of the time limit. Also, make sure that they understand they MUST be registered on our website at www.indtale.com in order to vote. ( IT COSTS NOTHING TO REGISTER!)

*****Once you are registered, you will be required to click the verification link sent to you via email. If you do not verify you registration with this link, you will be unable to vote. This is very important to help ensure that the voting is fair and maintains the high-quality standards required for this top-tier award.

Once the voting is final and the winning books announced, the finalists in each genre will then be read and judged by a group of professionals in the industry to determine the very best book in the indie and small published world!  The winners will then be announced and awarded the prestigious RONE Award at the formal ceremony at the InD’Scribe Conference, October 7th, 2021. An announcement with all the information will be coming soon! Be sure to check out our website and Facebook Page! http://www.indscribe.com.

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Filed under A Match Made in Heaven, Writing

BRODY’S BRIDE by Kathleen Lawless is #onsale for #99cents

One of my fabulous Romance Gems sistahs, Kathleen Lawless is having a sale on the first book in her Seven Brides for Seven Brothers series, BRODY’S BRIDE. Check this out:

BRODY’S BRIDE

99cents all of April 2021

Blurb:

Brody has his hands full with a murderer next door trying to take over his ranch.  Laura broke his heart ten years earlier.  Now she’s back, and right in the crosshairs of his sworn enemy.

Laura never stopped loving Brody.  And when she learns of his unscrupulous rival’s plan to take his home, she can’t stay away.  Even though he rebuffs her help, she is determined to make amends for the past.

Can Brody save the ranch, keep its secrets, extract vengeance and protect Laura?  All without losing his heart to her all over again? 

Excerpt:

  A week passed during which Brody never left the ranch, using a multitude of excuses to himself to stick close.  Never far from mind was the ridiculous task he’d been set.  What did he know about wooing a woman?  Unsuccessfully, he tried to stop his mind from going down that dark pathway to the last time he saw Laura. 

Or the first. 

He’d known right from the get-go that she was above his station, but his ego got the better of him.  Made sure she was intrigued by his eighteen-year-old swagger and confidence.      

He heaved a sigh.  Maybe this little exercise, to woo the schoolmarm, would shake off those cobwebbed memories once and for all. 

Brody took his time getting ready.  Shaved, slicked down his hair, put on his best shirt and polished his boots.  Without a word to anyone he saddled up Phoenix and made his way to Bullet.

The schoolhouse stood off to one side, next to a field where the kids could run around and play, shiny as a new pin.  He tilted back his head and studied the exterior of the building.  It looked nicer than the one in Yuma.  Cleaner too.  Red brick must have cost Hawkes a fortune, but the man surely did like to flaunt his wealth.    

 Slowly Brody dismounted and tied Phoenix to the hitching post out front.  Feeling like he was facing his executioner, he made his way up two steps to the front door, only to find it locked tight.  

 His heart lightened, feeling a reprieve.  His steps were lighter, too, as he made his way back to his horse.  He’d barely touched the reins, when he heard a female voice behind him. 

 “Brody.  Brody is that you?”

 Slowly he turned.  Laura stood before him like a vision from the past, one he wasn’t sure was real or imagined.  All the pain and confusion from ten years ago rushed through him, filling his head with so much chatter he couldn’t hear a thing.

Don’t miss the great First-in-a-series sale!

About Kathleen Lawless:

Kathleen blames a misspent youth watching Rawhide, Maverick and Bonanza for her fascination with cowboys. Historical or contemporary, cowboys continue to resonate with her today.

One of her heroes, Steele, is a modern-day cowboy, so when she was dating on-line and met a man called Steel– Well, he’s not a cowboy but his is an alpha male and her forever hero. Which is why all of her stories end Happily Ever After.

Not that she can ever stick to just one genre. So many stories to tell–never enough time.
With close to 30 published novels to her credit, she enjoys pushing the boundaries of traditional romance into historical romance, erotic romance, romantic suspense, women’s fiction and stories for young adults.

Sign up for Kathleen’s VIP reader newsletter for your free copy of BEFORE THE BRIDES. http://eepurl.com/bV0sb1

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#teasemeThursday 4.8.2021

Today’s tease is in honor of brothers. I don’t have any but if I did I’d want them to be like the 4 Keane men in Brothers, Inc.

So, for your reading and teasing pleasure, here’s a little something from A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: AIDEN ( release date sometime in 2021). Aiden has just arrived home from a two month assignment out of town and his older brother Dylan is picking him up at the airport.

Enjoy!

At the bottom of the escalator he spotted his older brother, Dylan, waiting and holding a sign reading, Welcome Home, Brain.

Dylan tossed him the cocky, shit-eating smirk he reserved for his baby brother. The one that, when he’d been a scrawny, shy, sickly kid, filled Aiden with insecurity. Not any longer. Now that he matched his brothers for height and strength, Aiden’s insecurity was a thing of the past.

“Hey, baby bro,” Dylan said, tugging his brother close and banging him on the back a few times.

“You’re an asshole,” Aiden said, “with that sign.”

“Yeah, but ya love me anyway.”

Aiden shook his head, while his brother tossed an arm over his shoulder and tugged him along.

“Car’s right outside. And I brought a little lady along with me.”

His mood lifted considerably. “You been taking good care of her for me? I better not find out she gained ten pounds and got lazy from laying around all day.”

“Cool your jets. She’s as fit as always. But I think she’s forgotten all about you. Absence doesn’t always make the heart grow fonder and she now knows, firsthand, I’m the better brother in every way. She’s grown quite used to being with me.”

“Don’t bet on it. She’s as loyal as they come.”

He’d parked the Jeep outside the loading zone barrier, it’s flashers on, the motor running.

“As least you kept the air conditioning on,” Aiden said when he spotted the vehicle.

The moment he opened the passenger back door he was set upon by one hundred and twenty pounds of pure muscle and love.

Laughing, Aiden allowed himself to be licked and pawed, while he rubbed and loved on the dog that meant more to him than most people he knew.

“I missed you, too, girl. Did Uncle Dylan take good care of you?”

The dog answered by jumping and placing her paws on his shoulders, her tail swishing like a windshield wiper, and gracing his face with another slobbery lick.

“Dog’s more spoiled than you were as a kid,” Dylan said as he slid into the driver’s seat. “Come on. I don’t want to get ticketed.”

Once the brothers and the excited chocolate Labrador were settled in, Dylan pulled out into traffic.

“She give you any trouble?” Aiden asked as he continued to rub the dog’s neck where she peeked in between the front seats.

“Not an ounce. I don’t think she even barked once while you were gone.” He glanced at his younger brother, a sly grin gracing his face. “I never knew a dog was such a babe magnet. Whenever I took her for a run in the park, chicks flocked around her, and by extension, me. I got more numbers shoot my way than I could deal with.”

Aiden frowned at him. “I don’t like the idea of you using my dog to score with women.”

“I didn’t use Bronte for anything unseemly, but I couldn’t help how many women thought she was quote, the most beautiful dog they’d ever seen, unquote, and just had to pet her and ask me all about her.”

“I’m gonna bet you sang your own praises more than my dog’s.”

“I’m not taking any part of that bet.” Dylan’s smug grin pulled a headshake and a wry smile from him.

Intrigued? I certainly hope so. heehee

Until next time, peeps ~Peg

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#backlistThursday 4.8.2021

Today’s backlisted book isn’t that old, but since it isn’t new, either, I figured it would be a goodie to add.

If you like ice cream, summer vacations, and sweet romances, VANILLA WITH A TWIST ( One Scoop or Two series) is for you. Set in the fictional New Hampshire seaside town of Beacher’s Cove, this novella was a pleasure to write – especially since I had to do a lot of research on ice cream flavors…hee hee

Tandy Blakemore spends her days running her New England ice cream parlor, single-parenting her teenage son, and trying to keep her head above financial water. No easy feat when the shop’s machinery is aging and her son is thinking about college. Tandy hasn’t had a day off in a decade and wonders if she’ll ever be able to live a worry-free life.
Engineer Deacon Withers is on an enforced vacation in the tiny seaside town of Beacher’s Cove. Overworked, stressed, and lonely, he walks into Tandy’s shop for a midday ice cream cone and gets embroiled in helping her fix a broken piece of equipment.
Can the budding friendship that follows lead to something everlasting?

Excerpt:

For a few moments, she regarded him with a look his mother would have called insightful. The corners of her eyes narrowed, she dipped her chin a hair, and she pulled her mouth into another appealing pout he was tempted to kiss.

“I bet,” she said after a long, drawn-out sigh, “you were the kind of kid who took apart clocks and fans and vacuum cleaners to see how they worked.”

“It was more washing machines and lawn mowers and anything with a motor, but yeah. I was.”

She shook her head, her own lips forming a lopsided grin. “Your poor mother.”

“She survived.”

Tandy rolled her eyes and shot her hands to her hips. “So it’s working again?” She thrust her chin at the ice cream machine.

“For now.”

“Okay, well, I can live with for now. And you think you know the real reason it’s been acting up?”

“I definitely do. But like I said, the water to the machine needs to be shut off to fix it.”

“Okay. Well, we close at nine.”

“I’ll come back a little before then. Get things ready. Is that okay with you?”

“I guess it’ll have to be.” She bit down on the inside of her cheek as her brows pulled together. “And you’re sure you want to do this?”

“If I weren’t, I wouldn’t offer, Tandy.”

Why her reluctance to have him help was such a turn-on was something he considered while he waited for his ice cream.

Intrigued? I hope so, hee hee.

Until next week, Peeps. Happy reading ~ peg

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#books2readpromo #romCom

I’m excited to announce that my book, It’s a Trust Thing, is part of a Books2Read Promotion, along with several other great authors!

You can find the promo here: https://books2read.com/rl/pocketgarden

And if you wouldn’t mind, it would help me and the other authors out a lot if you’d share this promotion with your friends and family. Just forward this email to anyone you think would love to find their next favorite book!

Thanks so much for your help and support.
Happy reading!

About IT’S A TRUST THING

Nell Newbery has trust issues.

It’s hard to trust when you’re the daughter of a fallen financial scion who bilked people out of billions. Nell’s done everything in her power to keep away from men who see her as their ticket to fortune and fame. All she wants to do is run her ultra-successful business, HELPFUL HUNKS, in peace.

But it wouldn’t hurt to find a guy who doesn’t know a thing about her father’s felonious past; one she can give her heart to and trust it won’t come back to her battered, bruised, and broken.

Is Charlie Churchill that guy? On the surface he seems perfect, all polished manners and quiet mirth. Nell’s convinced he knows nothing about her, other than she likes superhero movies and views junk food as a food group.

Can she trust him to be what he appears to be? Or is he just pretending?

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#mugshotMonday 4.5.2021

Today’s mug is a silly one I got in a gift basket. It was at a fundraiser for Foster Parents of Keene. At the time of the auction I was in the height of raging hormones from menopause and I was hot flashing 20-30 times per day. This mug was perfect for that time!

So, I showed your mine…show me yours. No theme today, just a cute mug.

Looking for me? Here I am

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April giveaways, courtesy of N.N. Lights Book Heaven

Spring has arrived and N. N. Light’s got spring fever.

It could be all the flowers in bloom or it could be the birds singing in the trees.  Hurry and hop like a bunny over to N. N. Light’s Book Heaven and enter to win some amazing prizes including a few new releases, autographed print books by bestselling and award-winning authors, audiobook codes plus e-books galore and a couple of Amazon gift card. In fact, I’m one of the authors participating and you could win BAKED WITH LOVE . The list is long and personally, I’d love to win myself but alas, I can’t. So, I’ll just live vicariously through the lucky winners. If there’s a particular book or prize you’d like to win, be sure to say which prize you want when you enter via Rafflecopter. Enter below and good luck!

Spring Into Freebies Giveaway: https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/92db7750104

Literary Giveaway Portal:  https://www.nnlightsbookheaven.com/literary-giveaway-portal

Good luck, peeps!

Loonking for me? Here I am

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A RECKLESS HEART Facebook party 4.3.2021

Tomorrow, Saturday 4.3.2021, I have the honor of being one of several authors to help one of my favorite authors, Jennifer Wilck, celebrate the release of her newest book, A RECKLESS HEART. We’ll be having fun at the Facebook party for A Reckless Heart from Noon until 7pm EST.

I go on livelivelive at 2:30 pm and I’d love to “see” some friendly faces, hee hee!

Here’s a little about Jenn’s book:

Meg Thurgood, former society girl, took the blame for her friend and paid a steep price. Now all she wants is solitude and a chance to rebuild her life. She thinks she’s found that in an isolated house she rents from a mysterious stranger.

Simon McAlter has hidden in his house on the coast of Maine since a fire left him scarred. A successful landscape architect who conducts his business and teaches his classes remotely, he’s lost his inspiration and is trying to pretend he’s not lonely.

Simon’s new neighbor is more than he bargained for. When he learns Meg’s secret, will he retreat into the shadows or will he learn to see past the surface and trust in Meg’s love?

Sounds great, doesn’t it? Here’s my review: Goodreads

Hope to see you at the party.

~peg

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