Category Archives: Strong Women

In a world of #followers I’d like to be an #Influencer

I’m going to bet if you know what the above icon is, you’ll understand the title of this blog.

First, a little backstory.

When I was a kid, roughly 175 years ago, my third grade teacher, Mrs. Karen Sinclair, said something to me one day that has stayed with me all these millennia later. I was an overweight, thick glasses-wearing, curly haired, shy kid prone to impulse control issues when it came to talking in class. I was bullied – horribly – by both girls and boys. At that age, there really is no division along sex lines with bullying. One day, after an especially verbally vicious attach on the recess playground, I came back into the classroom, sullen and non-communicative. When class ended for the day, Mrs. Sinclair asked me to stay after. She wormed out of me what had been said on the playground. When I cried that all I wanted to do was fit in, be like everyone else, but couldn’t because 1. my clothes were wrong, 2. my hair was wrong, 3. I was ugly, 4. I was fat…etc…. (you get the picture) she took my hand and told me this: “Don’t be a follower.  Don’t be like everyone else. You were born to be a leader, Margaret, to be yourself. There’s only one you. Don’t settle for less.”

Yeah, she was my favorite teacher of all time.

Fast forward 165 years to the present.

The above symbol is the INSTAGRAM logo. Since I started my writing journey, I’ve been attempting to get people to read my books through various marketing methods, one of them, posting on Instagram. Recently, I came across a phase that “called” to me: Influencer. Apparently, there are people (millennials, mostly) who have huge Insta-followers and who get paid for taking pictures of themselves with products. The companies who manufacture the products, pay these kids  for simply posting a picture. People see the picture and are Influenced to buy the product because they want to be like the cool person they are following.

Can you spell BRILLIANT!!

I have a decent amount of Instagram followers and I’m gonna work on getting more, but for now, here’s me at my new job, taking a picture with a product I’d like to tell people about so they can buy it and be cool like me. I’m an Influencer:

Hee hee

Sorry the book is backward – this whole Influencer thing is gonna take time to perfect. 🙂 But  you get the idea.

~until next time ~ Peg

And just FYI: The book’s on sale for 99cents right now until june 21~~ Get yours here:

DEARLY BELOVED

Amazon

Nook

Apple books

 

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Filed under Author Branding, Dearly Beloved, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, WIld Rose Press AUthor, Writing

#Tuesdayteaser 5.7.19 A Match Made in Heaven…book 2

So I’m taking a leap of faith here because this book is currently with my editor and has not been contracted yet. If all goes well ( and pray to Jesus it does) I’ll know by the end of this month. I’m hoping for a contact. I mean, it’s book 2!! I have to let you know how the people in book 1 are doing! Hee hee

So, Book 2 gives us oldest O’Dowd sister Cathleen and historical biographer, McLachlyn Frayne. This is another of those opposites attracting romances I love so well. The heat from these two jumps off the page so I figured I’d give you a little example of it. We start the scene with Nanny Fee and end it with our two would be lovers entering a pizza parlor.

“That lovely man took Fiona to the solarium,” one of the residents told me.

I found them huddled together on a day sofa in the sunroom. They were both laughing and Nanny had a hand flirtatiously placed over Frayne’s forearm. His laughter, rich, deep, and husky was a sound I could have listened to all day long. Hell, all year long. A tingling sensation tripped up my spine when his eyes narrowed, practically disappearing from his face as he smiled. He threw back his head and howled at whatever my grandmother was saying.

It was delightful to see him relaxed and happy and I have to admit, my heart stuttered a bit when he brought Nanny’s gnarled hand to his lips and pressed a sweet kiss against her knuckles.

“Number One, all done are ya?” Nanny asked.

I came into the room, a grin tugging on my lips.

“Nanny, what tall tales have you been telling Mr. Frayne? I could hear the both of you laughing from the hallway.”

“Ah, lass, nothing bad, to be sure. Merely sharin’ a few simple stories about me time touring.”

“Oh, good Lord.” I knew exactly what she’d told him. Nanny’s days as a concert pianist were legendary in our family. Legendary and naughty. She’d had affairs with at least two dukes, one baron, and a small smattering of lesser-titled men throughout the royal houses of Europe before coming back to Heaven and marrying her second husband. And then her third. And fourth, who was, thankfully, the last.

“Your grandmother has led an extraordinary life,” Frayne said, the light in his eyes bright and clear. “Her life touring would make for a terrific book.”

“Salacious, more than anything,” I said.

“Don’t be gettin’ any notions to write about me escapades, young man.” She swatted his arm with a grandmotherly thwack. “If I ever decide to write about me life, I’ll be doing the tellin’, not someone else.”

“I’d be thrilled and honored to be your scribe,” Frayne said. “Anytime. Simply say the word.”

“Ah, go on with ya.” She swatted his arm again. “Well, now I expect the two of ya will be off to dinner. Seldrine okay?” she asked me.

“She’s fine. Lucas is with her, taking her through everything she needs to be prepared for.”

“She’s a strong lass. Well,” she sighed deep and, because this was Nanny, theatrically. “Off with ya both now. Go enjoy a good meal and you,” she pointed at Frayne, “don’t be forgetting I want a full report on Robert when you’re all done with your research.”

“That’s a promise,” he told her.

“Good. Now, give us a kiss and run along.”

I wasn’t surprised when Frayne bent and bussed her cheek.

“And you,” she said when I bent to do the same. “I want to hear all about this event Olivia told me you’re signed up for. I want all the deets, as the kids say.”

I nodded, my cheeks scorching.

“You’re grandmother is a remarkable woman,” Frayne said once we were back in my car.

“That’s one word for her,” I said, slanting him a side eye. The grin on his face was equal parts heart stopping, sexy, and adorable.

“Pathetic.” I said, my own grin tugging at my lips.

“What is?”

“You and your whole gender.”

He turned in his seat to look at me. “What have I, and my entire gender, done to be labeled pathetic?”

I cocked my head his way then turned my attention back to the road.

“A little wink, a few arm taps, and a girlish giggle and you fall like a ton of bricks.”

“What?”

The sigh I exhaled was almost Nanny-worthy in its theatricality. “You have a crush on my ninety-three year old grandmother.”

Complete bafflement filled his face. A half second later his eyes widened and he tossed out another of those deep, throaty laughs. The lower half of my body turned molten-lava hot.

“Tell me I’m wrong.” I turned the car onto Glory Road and spotted a parking spot on the street right outside the place where I wanted to eat. This is another one of those reasons I love living in a small town: you never have to search for parking.

“You’re not. God. You’re not.” His head shook back and forth while his smile turned into a wicked grin.

I put the car in park and got out. Over the hood I said, “See? Pathetic. Every man I’ve ever known falls for her the moment she shines those twinkling blue eyes at him. I swear she casts a spell with a glance.” I shook my head. “I hope you like pizza because I’ve been craving it for days.”

I walked toward the front door of Paradise Pizza but Frayne stopped me in my tracks. With his hand circling my arm he turned me around to face him. Gone was the playful expression, the laugh a mere memory.

“Cathy.”

Talk about casting a spell. I’d never really liked my name, thinking my parents had chosen one plain and common and not exotic or fancy because they wanted it to be easy to remember. Although, it was way better than being called Number One any day of the week.

But still.

“Y-yes?”

He shifted and moved in closer, his hand still gripping my arm. Through my coat, and the even the suit jacket underneath it, the heat from his hand singed my flesh. Standing on Glory Road during a frigid January evening with a brisk wind kicking around in the air, a tiny trickle of sweat beaded down my spine.

Frayne took another step closer.

The back of my throat suddenly clogged, my tongue turning the consistency of sand paper when I rubbed it against the roof of my mouth.

“What…what were you going to say?”

His pale eyes did that little tilting thing down to my lips again before coming back up to settle on my own. The hint of a grin kicked up one side of his gorgeous mouth.

“I love…pizza.”

“Oh. Okay. Well, good.” I reached to push the door open, but he beat me to it. “Then you’re gonna love this place. Best pizza in the state.”

And if you want to see how I envision Cathy and Mac, have a gander at my Pinterest board: Cathleen and Mac ( what else?? Hee hee) This is an actual scene in the book.

Say a prayer for me, peeps, that this book gets contracted. I’m working on book 3 even as we speak ( or, I’m speaking…you’re reading, but you get what I mean. I need some caffeine….)

As always, look for me here when I’m not writing:

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

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Filed under A Match Made in Heaven, Characters, Contemporary Romance, Family Saga, Foodie, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, WIld Rose Press AUthor

#1stKissfriday 5.3.19 Can’t Stand The Heat

There’s nothing I like more than an opposites attracts trope, and in Can’t Stand the Heat ( book 3 in the Will Cook for Love Series), I had a doozy of a bi-polar couple! And by that I mean they were at two opposite poles of the personality spectrum. Stacy, cool and calm, nothing fazes her and everyone loves her, and Nikko, angry, gruff, prone to outbursts and the air could make him mad! But there’s a reason for his arrogance and Stacy is just the gal to figure out what it is. This snippet is a little longer than usual but because of the dynamics of their budding relationship, I wanted to present it in its entirety.

He wasn’t looking at her now with his usual aggravated glare, or even the doubtful one he’d given her just moments before. Nor was his expression simple curiosity at her expertise.

No, what was in his eyes was something she’d never expected to see from this man: need.

A stab of unexpected hunger, so piercing and swift, sliced right through her midsection and dropped lower, tickling the area between her thighs.

And the hunger had nothing to do with the fact she hadn’t eaten anything in hours.

Nikko took a step forward, then another, until he stopped directly in front of her.

Stacy had to tip her head back to maintain eye contact with him. Hypnotized by the intensity in his eyes, she couldn’t look away from it; didn’t want to.

“Yes,” he said, his breath drifting over her, making her insides flutter like a flimsy curtain battling a sudden breeze. “I remember that. I remember you massaging my leg for some time.” He moved in closer, their torsos just a hair’s width from her breasts scraping along his chest.

“I remember the feel of your hands on my leg. Kneading. Rubbing. Your fingers, gliding along my muscles, up and down. Helping me. Easing my pain.”

“I—I…” She backed up a step and hit the dresser, her spine flattening against it. She braced her hands behind her, the tips of her fingers landing across one drawer. “I’m glad I did. Help, I mean.”

Was that her voice? It sounded as if she’d just run a marathon. Uphill.
 In thin air.

Nikko’s hands rose, slowly, purposefully, and came to rest on the top of the dresser, bracketing her between them, effectively imprisoning her. With every breath she took now, her torso grazed his.
His knees bumped hers as his head lowered, his eyes never moving from her own.
“Easing my pain,” he repeated softly, as if she’d hadn’t spoken, “and making me…want.” His lips floated a breath above hers, then touched hers once, just a brief buss; a sample; a promise. “Want…you.”

In the next breath he fulfilled that promise by resting his mouth fully against hers. Soft yet powerful, seductive and masterful, his lips glided over hers. Pressed. Savored.

Asked.

Stacy answered by relaxing against him, moving into the kiss without thought, without reservation, without worry.

He kissed like a man who knew what he was doing. He demanded nothing of her than to simply let him pleasure her mouth, and yet she poured everything inside her, offered every bit of herself into kissing him back without the slightest bit of hesitation or concern.

He shifted, changed the angle of his head, and lifted his hands from the dresser to cup her cheeks between them. Tipping her head back, her body arched as he deepened the kiss, greedily parting her lips with his tongue then forging between them, overwhelming her, claiming her.

Under the thin robe her nipples came to two hard points as his tongue tugged and wound with hers. He tasted like…nothing she could put a name to. Full-bodied, like the thirty-five-year-old port her father favored after dinner; sweet and refreshing like Grandma’s orange sorbet, her favorite dessert; savory and woodsy like air in a forest after a quick, unexpected downpour.

A fleeting thought that maybe, just maybe, Nikko didn’t dislike her as much as she’d believed flew through her mind.

Her hands developed a will of their own as they danced up his broad, rock-hard chest, and wound around his thick neck to grip his hair. Fisting it, she hung onto the ends as if her life depended on it. As if she’d crash back to earth if she let go.

His fingers drifted along the column of her throat, across her shoulders, down her back, to settle, through her robe, on her butt. Molding his hands to her rounded flesh, he pulled her in closer, folding her into him and letting her know just how much what he was feeling wasn’t dislike.

Not even close.

Except for her thong, she was naked under the silk robe and as his hands glided over the material, whispered over her body, the luxurious feel of the fabric rubbing against her bare skin shot erotic flares all along her spine, straight down to her toes.

While his tongue mated with hers, his hands slipped under the hem of the short garment to cup the bare skin he found there.

As she’d massaged the muscles and sinew over his leg the night before, he returned the favor, squeezing and kneading her butt in his warm, firm grasp. For a heartbeat, Stacy tensed, her gluteal muscles instinctively tightening. The touch of a man’s hands so intimately pressed against her flesh wasn’t something she was used to.

In the next instant, spurred on by the gentle, thorough pressure of his fingers, she relaxed and pushed in even closer, nothing separating their bodies but their clothes.

Nikko slipped one finger under the strip of her thong, tugged it to the side, and with another traced a line down along the cleft between her cheeks. Her knees buckled when he thrust a knee between her thighs, forcing them to open for him, pressing intimately against her. She could feel the soft denim of his jeans through the tiny wisp of the thong’s lace panel and when he began rubbing his knee across her mound, her insides turned to melting gold.

Good Lord.

Every nerve fiber in the lower half of her body stood straight up at attention. Stacy widened her stance as much as she could. It was then she realized she was standing on the very tips of her toes. Nikko bore most of her weight as she leaned against him.

He shifted again, reached down, and dragged his finger along the heat pouring from her core, now separated and open to his touch.

A guttural moan, deep and filled with longing, escaped in the air as his lips left hers to trail down and nuzzle the sweet spot behind her ear. He tugged the lobe between his lips and bit down, while his wicked and persistent finger dared to dip into the long, wet length of her.

And she was wet.

Drenched, in fact.

His strong, steady finger glided from one end of her to the other, slipping across her flesh and through every defense she had.

A quick thought that nothing had ever felt so good, so god-blessed good as Nikko’s hands on her skin, came to her.

She clutched the ends of his hair tighter, her breaths shallow and fast as his fingers dragged along her, their rhythm timed to perfection with the movement of his tongue in her mouth.

The air around her exploded with the echo of a deep, reverberating groan.

Just as she realized she’d been the one to make the sound, the room was shattered by a blare of static from her walkie-talkie.

“Stacy? Stacy? You copy?”

Nikko jerked his head back, surprise and anger mixing on his face as he heaved his gaze from her face to the device resting on the bed, and then back to her.

A well of boiling heat suffused his half-closed eyes as he gazed down at her. His lips were swollen and kiss-slick-wet, and when his tongue flicked out and ran across his top lip and then the bottom, as if savoring the taste of her, Stacy’s breath caught.

He still had her pinioned against the dresser, one hand caressing the nape of her neck, the other burrowed between her legs.

“Stacy? You there?”
Reality washed over her like a tidal wave.
“I—I have to get that.” She pushed against his chest, tried to slide from his hold.
The man was as solid as a fortress. He stood, stone-still and immobile.

Intrigued? You can order your copy here, along with  the other WIll Cook For Love books,

COOKING WITH KANDY and A SHOT AT LOVE

     

and one thing before you go: I just found out ( yesterday!) that CAN’T STAND THE HEAT is a finalist in the Desert Rose RWA GOLDEN QUILLS Contest for 2019!

So exciting! ~Peg

 

 

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Filed under Alpha Hero, Author, Characters, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Family Saga, Food lover, Foodie, Kensington Publishers, love, Lyrical Author, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, The Laine Women

Chapters R’ Us! New Chapter Samplers from #TheWildRosePress

SO, are you looking for some new-to-you authors and books? Like Contemporary or Steamy Romance? I’ve got sumthin’ sumthin’ for you. The Wild Rose Press has two chapter samplers out now, each just 99 Cents and each with a collection of first chapters from over 20 authors.

The first, a Contemporary Romance Collection, titled FALLING FOR YOU, features the following authors, and serves all genres of contempRomance from RomComs ( me!) to Romantic suspense and more.

Sunset in Laguna by Claire Marti
Dearly Beloved by Peggy Jaeger
The Millionaire Mountain Climber by Laura Boon
Morgan’s Walk by Suzelle Johnston
Only the Beginning by Daphne Dubois
Saying Yes to the Mess by M. Kate Quinn
The Saffron Conspiracy: A Novel by Marilyn Baron
Operation Sizzle by Darcy Lundeen
Without Love by Theresa Stillwagon
Don’t Let Him Go by Kay Harris

And for those readers who like a little more spice, heat, and passion in their reads, PASSIONATE CRAVINGS is for you.

Finding Redemption by Desiree Holt
Ella’s Triple Pleasure by Anna Lores
Angel’s Collar by Anna Hague
When You Close Your Eyes by Roxanne D. Howard
Sin City Alibi by Sophia Ryan
Heaven’s Watcher by Kayden Claremont
Highland Dom by Marie Tuhart
Play A Game With Me by Cadence Vonn
Kilty Pleasures by Nancy Fraser
Through the Red Door by Sadira Stone
Better To Marry Than To Burn by Michal Scott
In Deep by Stacy Gold

More Samplers from different romance genres will be coming in upcoming months, so stay tuned!

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Filed under Author, branding, Contemporary Romance, Dearly Beloved, Romance, Romance Books, romantic suspense, Strong Women, WIld Rose Press AUthor

#1stKissFriday 4.26.19 A Shot At Love

Today’s first kiss comes from the second book in my WILL COOK FOR LOVE SERIES,  A SHOT AT LOVE. from Kensington/Lyrical. Gemma Laine is a fiercely independent – some would say snarly – woman who wants nothing to do with the silent, albeit, hunky FBI agent assigned to protect her. When their forced togetherness gets to be a little too much to handle, Gemma finally gives in to the temptation to know what Ky  tastes like.

I love an opposites attract romance and these two are as different as chalk from cheese.

He told himself it was because her voice broke on the last word that he moved toward her and pulled her into his arms. She looked so forlorn, all he wanted to do was comfort her, keep her from falling apart. The moment she slipped her hands around his waist and laid her head down on his chest he knew he’d told himself yet another lie.

He shouldn’t touch her. He knew it. But the need raging within him to offer whatever he could to this woman was beyond something he could fight.

“I can’t live like this,” she mumbled against his shirt. “This isn’t my life. I’m not the criminal, but I’m the one caged and cut off from the world. It’s not fair.”

Because he agreed, he whispered against her temple, “No, it isn’t.” The delicate aroma of cherries drifted up from her hair. Ky closed his eyes and rubbed his hands down her back. She felt like a piece of porcelain against his fingers, delicate and fragile, her skin smooth and soft wherever he rubbed. But he knew the strength under that velvet covering, the backbone forged in steel. In all the time they’d been forced together, from the initial attack in her apartment, to the gun spree at the safe house, she’d never cracked. Even now, when he’d expect any other woman to dissolve in tears or rant and rave at the situation, Gemma was angry more than anything else.

Well, he could deal with anger. He didn’t know what he’d do if she ever fell apart.

“I promise, we’ll get him.”

Gemma pulled her hands from around him and shifted back. Her gaze scrutinized his face, darting back and forth between his eyes, looking for what, he didn’t know. She seemed fascinated with his mouth all of a sudden, her attention focused on the lower part of his face.

Her tongue slipped out and fanned her bottom lip while she regarded him. Why hadn’t he noticed before how it was so much plumper than the top one? It glistened with the moisture her tongue had drawn across it. Ky tensed, every nerve in the lower part of his body firing with longing. He knew he shouldn’t, but the need to know what she tasted like was too powerful a temptation to defy.

Ky bent, just a fraction, as Gemma pushed upward toward him, their gazes locked.
With eyes wide open, his lips pressed against hers, gently, just a slow, thoughtful graze. He thought she’d push him away, verbally castigate him—or worse. But she didn’t. She leaned into the kiss. Soft and smooth and warm, the feel of her lips pulled him closer. He wanted more than just a simple taste he realized in that moment. He wanted to devour her.

A tiny sigh pushed from somewhere deep within her. Gemma slid her hands around his waist again, her lips exploring his—sampling, wanting.

He could feel her heart jackhammering against his chest, or was that his own pounding against her?

A quick swipe with his tongue and she opened for him, inviting him in, the warmth of her accepting response urging him on. He tasted spice and sugar, arousal and need all mixed together in a heady blend that had him reeling.

The hands at her back slipped down to cup her perfect ass, molding her to his body, showing her everything that was happening to him. He nipped at her mouth, skimmed his lips down her chin, across her jaw. He swallowed a chuckle when she palmed his head between her hands and dragged his lips back to hers, telling him what she wanted without words.

And he was happy to give it to her.

He felt her tug his shirt from his pants, the feel of her soft, strong hands on his bare flesh sending him into orbit. He hissed when she raked her nails across the small of his back and then slipped them under his waistband to hold on, grinding her body against him.

Her hot and impatient mouth never left his, her tongue caught around his own as she sucked it into her mouth. He pushed her back until she hit the counter and then snaked his knee between her legs. A whimper whistled from her lips when he ground his thigh against her heat and felt her pulsing response.

Ky snaked his hands up under her shirt, up her torso, sliding his thumbs across hard and pebbled nipples through her bra. Her breasts were heavy in his hands, filling them with each breath she took. While his tongue wound around hers pulling her deep into his mouth, he squeezed those perfect mounds of flesh and felt Gemma’s response when she double fisted his hair and tugged.

Every warning bell he possessed sounded and pinged in alarm, but he ignored them all. This is what he wanted. She was what he wanted.

It would be so easy to simply haul her up in his arms and to his room where he could help them both disappear into one another for a few hours. Just as the thought to do so bloomed, they were wrenched apart by the piercing shriek of the house alarm blasting through the air.

Intrigued? You can get your own copy here:

Amazon // Apple // Google // Kobo // Nook 

Goodreads Reviews for A SHOT AT LOVE

Want to read a preview? Click here.

Nothing’s impossible when love is on the menu. In Peggy Jaeger’s luscious series, the only thing more tempting than a delicious meal is a truly delectable romance . . .
Look for exclusive recipes in each book!  
 
Photographer Gemma Laine is looking for arresting faces on the streets of Manhattan when her camera captures something shocking—a triple murder. In that moment, she becomes a target for the mob—and a top priority for a very determined, breathtakingly handsome, FBI special agent. With deadlines to meet and photo shoots on her calendar, Gemma chafes at the idea of protection, but every moment she spends under his watchful eye is a temptation to lose herself in his muscular arms . . .
 
With two of his men and one crucial witness dead, Special Agent Kyros Pappandreos can’t afford to be distracted. But Gemma is dazzling—and her connection to Kandy Laine’s high-profile cooking empire makes her an especially easy mark for some very bad people. Keeping her safe is much more pleasure than business, but as the heat between them starts to sizzle, Ky is set to investigate whether they have a shot at love . . .

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

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Filed under Kensington Publishers, Lyrical Author, Strong Women, The Laine Women

#1stKissFriday 4.19.19

This meme is so appropriate for today’s #1stkissfriday edition because it’s from COOKING WITH KANDY and it’s about… a kiss!!! Hee hee

COOKING WITH KANDY is my  first book in the WILL COOK FOR LOVE series and introduces series “matriarch”  and cheflebrity Kandy Laine. When a private eye/bodyguard is hired to find out who’s stalking our favorite chef, sparks fly and love ensues, mixed in with a little eating, cooking, and romance. And guess what? The ebook is on sale now for just 99Cents for a limited time, so if you haven’t read it, now’s your chance!!

Kandy Laine built her wildly popular food empire the old-fashioned way—starting with the basic ingredients of her grandmother’s recipes and flavoring it all with her particular brand of sweet spice. From her cookbooks to her hit TV show, Kandy is a kitchen queen—and suddenly someone is determined to poison her cup. With odd accidents and threatening messages piling up, strong-willed Kandy can’t protest when her team hires someone to keep her safe—but she can’t deny that the man for the job looks delicious. . .

Josh Keane is a private investigator, not a bodyguard. But with one eyeful of Kandy’s ebony curls and dimpled smile, he’s signing on to uncover who’s cooking up trouble for the gorgeous chef. As the attraction between them starts to simmer, it’s not easy to keep his mind on the job, but when the strange distractions turn to true danger, he’ll stop at nothing to keep Kandy safe—and show her that a future together is on the menu. . .

“You’re gonna wash the floor? Now?” He glanced down at his watch.

It was almost midnight.

“I never leave off cleaning my kitchen after a big prep,” she said, filling the bucket with hot water from the sink.

“Here, let me do it,” he said, taking over. “You’ve been going since four thirty this morning. It’s time for bed, Kandy. Go get ready. You’ve had a full, exhausting a day.”

She wouldn’t give him the mop. “I’m doing this, Josh. It won’t take more than five, ten minutes, tops.”

“Your work ethic astounds me. I can’t decide if you’re just plain stubborn or obstinate, but you’ll be no good tomorrow if you’re overtired and have a house full of company to entertain. And you still have stuff to do in the morning.”

She didn’t budge.

“Kandy, it’s midnight. You need sleep. Rest. Now let me have the mop.” He put out his hand. She glared at it for a few beats and then ignored it, turning back to the sink to lift the bucket.

“No. You go to bed. I’m finishing this.”

“Look, I’m not playing around.”

“Of course you’re not. You’re just naturally bossy and domineering. Well, here’s a news flash, Joshua Keane,” she said, dropping the bucket back into the sink, water sloshing out the sides. “I’m a grown-up. I do want I want, when I want. And I want to wash my floor. Now. You go to bed.”

He couldn’t believe she was arguing with him over something so stupid. For that matter, he couldn’t believe he was contending with her. But something in her tone rattled him and, even though he knew it was childish, he refused to back down.

Arms crossed, legs braced in a stance of defiance, he said, “You know, I weigh double what you do. I can just take that mop out of your hands. It wouldn’t be hard at all.”

She turned back to him, the blue in her light eyes deepening. “Go ahead and try,” she challenged, one hand on her hip in a stance of rebellion, the other gripping the mop handle.

They were standing toe to toe, each unwilling to bend.

Josh’s hand snaked out to grab the mop and Kandy effortlessly slapped it away. Without missing a beat, his other hand wound around her back, yanking her full force against his chest, the mop between them.

Kandy’s cry of surprise spit from her as she stared, wide-eyed, up into his face.

They were so close he could see the pulse beating at her temple as he stared down at her.

“Don’t challenge me if you’re not prepared to meet the consequences,” he said, his voice low and blunt.

She stared up at him, a sneer just beginning to form on her lips. “You don’t scare me.”

In the span of a heartbeat his head came down to hers, while she craned her neck toward him.

When their lips met the argument died.

Damn it.

He knew she’d feel like this, taste like this.
Heaven. Pure and total heaven.
Josh snaked his hands down her back, delighting in every curve and crevice he touched, to settle on her sweet ass. He swallowed her gasp against his mouth and gripped her butt, grinding her against his immediate, rock-hard erection.

When he felt her, soft, warm, and plastered against his body, he echoed her groan with one of his own.

He’d dreamed it would feel like this with her. Hot and spicy, delectable and scrumptious, just like her cooking. Her mouth was made for kissing, full and lush, swollen with need and desire.

Josh wanted nothing more than to eat her whole.

Clenching her even tighter, his lips left the mouthwatering taste of hers to wander across her cheeks, down to her chin. His tongue tasted the hollow behind her ear, his lips gliding across the silky skin of her neck.

Like a man starved for a lifetime, he devoured her.
Kandy arched backward, giving him free access to all those regions, while clutching fistfuls of his hair in her strong hands.
His tongue laved at the exposed skin of her collarbone, trailed back up to the corner of her ear, and when he captured the small lobe in his mouth and sucked, felt Kandy shudder with such erotic violence against him, he almost dropped to his knees.

“Josh.”

He pulled back and stared down at her flushed and glowing face. Her eyes were closed, her lips parted, waiting for him to kiss her again.

She was, without doubt, the most beautiful, most desirable woman he’d ever seen.

She felt so good, so right, against him. As if they’d been created and carved for each other.

And he wanted her like he’d wanted nothing else in his life.
But he knew he couldn’t have her.
A cold fist of reality punched through his desire-drenched body. She needed him to protect her, not seduce her. The notion that she wanted him as much as he did her didn’t change that fact.

“Kandy. Open your eyes.”

When she did he almost lost the small amount of sanity he still possessed and took her right there, braced against the sink.

Her beautiful blue irises were transparent crystals filled with heat and longing. Josh swore he could see to her very core; he could have melted into them without thought. Her gaze raked down his face to his lips, and she pulled a hand from his hair and traced a delicate line in the dimple under his bottom lip, just above his jawline.

Josh’s abdominal muscles contracted. He grabbed her hand, placed a chaste kiss on the open palm, and watched her expression change from captivated to confused.

Intrigued? Remember, it’s on sale right now for just 99cents! You can order your own copy here: Amazon

and if you want to know a little more about what I write, you can connect with me here:

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

Here’s the link to my TELL ME ABOUT YOUR DAMN BOOK podcast interview, just in case you missed it: TMAYDB

and the link to my recent interview on NewHampshirePublicRadio

And I can’t forget the OKRWA 2018 Award video

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Filed under Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Food lover, Foodie, Kensington Publishers, Lyrical Author, Romance, Romance Books, romantic suspense, Strong Women, The Laine Women

A little sample to whet your #bookreading appetites

I love when one of my publishers comes up with something new and exciting. The Wild Rose Press has put together a collection of 1st chapter samplers from many of its authors to whet the book reading appetites of readers.

Don’t know if you really want to read that new book you saw marketed all over Twitter? Not sure you want to take on a new-to-you author without first reading something by them? This is the perfect opportunity for you, then.

The first sampler is a collection of 10 Contemporary Romance first chapters, titled FALLING FOR YOU: Contemporary Romance Sampler,

and my own book DEARLY BELOVED is included.

 

The other fabulous authors  and their books included are:
Sunset in Laguna by Claire Marti
Dearly Beloved by Peggy Jaeger 
The Millionaire Mountain Climber by Laura Boon 
Morgan’s Walk by Suzelle Johnston 
Only the Beginning by Daphne Dubois 
Saying Yes to the Mess by M. Kate Quinn 
The Saffron Conspiracy: A Novel by Marilyn Baron 
Operation Sizzle by Darcy Lundeen 
Without Love by Theresa Stillwagon 
Don’t Let Him Go by Kay Harris

At just $.99cents, this is a great way to find some really good books to read and fabulous authors to get to know. In the coming months there will be more samplers in different genres released and I’ll be spotlighting them here.

Until then, I hope you find your new favorite author among this list ( and I hope it’s me! Shameless, thy name is Peggy!)

Find me here:

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

Here’s the link to my TELL ME ABOUT YOUR DAMN BOOK podcast interview, just in case you missed it: TMAYDB

and the link to my recent interview on NewHampshirePublicRadio

And I can’t forget the OKRWA 2018 Award video

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Filed under Contemporary Romance, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, WIld Rose Press AUthor

#1stKissFriday 3.22.19

Today’s first kiss is between Moira Cleary and her lifetime best friend Quentin Stapleton from THERE’S NO PLACE LIFE HOME, the second book in my MacQuire Women series. Q has been in love with Moira since they were kids, but she’s been clueless. When he finally tells her how he feels, and kisses her UNLIKE a best friend, well, their love story really takes off.

Moira felt an intense overwhelming emptiness engulf her when he left. She started to open the front door but stopped when Quentin abruptly turned back and started up the porch steps again.

“I forgot something,” he told her.

“What?”

When he came up the last step and crossed to her, he said, “this,” and without another word pulled her into his arms.

Her first and last coherent thought was her best friend was going to kiss her goodnight. After a heartbeat, she forgot the best friend part and knew down to her toes friendship had nothing to do with this.

His lips slid across her mouth, soft and gentle, testing, tasting. Moira’s mind went blank as she succumbed to the sensation of them, hot and hard, pressing against hers in a kiss like none he’d ever given her before. Slowly, he traced her bottom lip with the tip of his tongue, silently asking her to open for him. When she did, he entered her mouth and began to explore, each movement becoming more demanding, more insistent. Moira fell against him, fisting his jacket lapels to steady herself. When she felt his heartbeat pounding under her hands, she grew lightheaded with need. Quentin framed her face with his fingertips, softly tugging down on her chin, changing the angle of the kiss.

She’d been kissed before, but never, never with such all consuming need and longing. She heard a deep moan and was shocked to realize the sound had escaped from her. One of Quentin’s hands left her face to slide down her back. When he pushed against her backside and molded her body to his, Moira’s stomach jumped. This time, though, it wasn’t with the painful contractions she’d come to expect, but with a heart- stopping craving.

A craving for him.

She unfurled her hands from his jacket and, without thought, wound them upwards, weaving them over his shirt collar and up through his hair. She grabbed onto the ends, pulled his head down closer, and held on fast.

All aspect of time was lost. Nothing mattered but the delicious feel of his strong hands caressing her back and the taste of him as his tongue mated with hers.

This couldn’t be happening. It had to be a dream.

But no dream had ever made her want like this, feel like this. When he skimmed his lips across her jaw and down her throat, stopping to take her lobe into his mouth, Moira knew this wasn’t a dream. That same feeling she’d had when she looked at him in the movie steeped through her again, tickling her stomach muscles. With a jolt, she realized the sensation was desire. Pure and simple.

Quentin pulled back and stared down into her face. With a heavy sigh, he laid his forehead against hers, a small grin tugging at the corners of his lips.

“I’ve wanted to kiss you for so long. So damn long.”

“Q—?”

He traced one finger lazily down her jaw and across the lips he’d just caressed, silencing her. “Remember when your cousin Tiffany got married in the backyard here?”

Confused, Moira nodded. She licked her lips, running her tongue across his caressing finger. The hiss that blew from him made her thighs shake.

Quentin rubbed her bottom lip with the pad of his thumb. “When the Reverend told Cole ‘you may now kiss your bride,’ and he swooped her off the ground, spun her around, and kissed her silly? Remember what you said?”

Moira tried to conjure the scene. “I think I said it was the most romantic thing I’d ever seen.”

He nodded. “The exact quote was ‘I hope someone kisses me like that some day.’”

Her grin was quick at the memory. “Pat snorted and said I’d better be satisfied with licks from the horses and Rob Roy because no guy was ever going to kiss me like that.”

“He wasn’t known for tact back then,” he said, rubbing a hand down her back as he held her next to him in the soft lamplight from the porch. The soothing, rhythmic smoothing of his hand made every nerve on Moira’s body stand at attention.

“Later on that day, behind the barn, remember what happened then?”

Because she did, she couldn’t stop the heat from spreading up her face like wildfire.

When she merely nodded, he traced a kiss across the area he’d just caressed, and said, “You wanted to know what it felt like to be kissed like that and since I was your best friend, you thought I should be the one to do it, because you—quote—felt safe with me—unquote.”

“What was I? Eleven?” she said, finally finding her voice, and unnerved to hear it whining.

“Thirteen. We both were, and I was more than willing to do it. Almost broke my heart in two when you said afterward, ‘I don’t see what all the fuss is about.’”

His lips twitched at the corners when he said it, and Moira felt the warmth of her blush intensify.

“Q—”

“Hush.” He kissed her forehead. “Ever since that day, all I’ve wanted is a second chance. Now,” he pulled her body closer, wrapped both arms around her small waist, his hand resting just above the dent in her spine. “We’re both a little older, a little more mature. Some of us are much more experienced—”

“And conceited.”

“Experienced,” he said, the laugh in his voice quiet and seductive, “and things can be so much better.”

Moira stared up into his eyes, warm and moist, shimmering under the subtle porch light. “Where is this coming from? You’ve never said anything like this, never acted like this, before. Ever.”

He took a breath and tucked her head against his shoulder, rubbing her back with both of his hands. His chest was made of granite, hard and solid and Moira felt so secure in his embrace. So comforted and so safe. If he never let go of her, she knew she wouldn’t mind in the least.

He didn’t speak for a few moments. Then, he pulled back, gazed down into her face and Moira didn’t need verbal answers to her questions. The look of blatant need and craving was so strongly etched in his eyes as he peered right through her, and for a moment, all she could do was stare, motionless. It was the same expression she’d seen on his face the night of her welcome home dinner. Then, she hadn’t known what to make of it. She couldn’t put a name to what she was seeing etched in his chiseled features.

Now, she knew.

He brought his lips to hers again in the gentlest of touches.

“I want you, Moira. More than I’ve ever wanted anyone or anything, in my entire life. I’ve always wanted you, from the time I knew what it meant.” He chuckled and added, “probably even before then. I haven’t gone a day in too long to count when I didn’t think of you and want you with me. There have been so many times the past few years when I’ve wanted to take an extended leave from the practice and go fly to wherever you were performing, just to see you. Obligations, though necessary, can be a bitch, and the time never allowed it. When Pat told me you were coming home, I thought, good. Finally. Home court advantage.” His lazy grin spread with the words.

“I never knew,” she said, tears springing up. “You never gave me any indication. All these years, you’ve never hinted at this. In any way. Why not?”

He shook his head. “I know. I didn’t know how you’d feel about it. We’ve been friends forever. I don’t have a childhood memory that doesn’t include you. We’re everything friends should be. But this is a different feeling, Moira, from friendship. So different.”

His voice broke on the last word as he claimed her mouth again, deepening the kiss instantly, and knocking her back emotionally.

“I won’t push you,” he said into her hair, kissing her temple. “You need to get used to the idea, I know. I don’t want anything to change between us.”

“How can it not?” she asked, the tears spilling over. “It changes everything, Quentin. You know it does.”

His thumb swiped softly at the drop of moisture cascading down her cheek.

“It doesn’t have to. We’re still us. We’re still the same. I won’t ever lose you as a friend, Moira. I can’t. You’re as much a part of my life as I am of yours. Our friendship will never change. It hasn’t in all these years you’ve been gone.”

Want to read more? Here’s where you can get your own copy of THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME

 

Buy Links: Amazon // Apple // Google // Kobo // Nook// 

Walmart

Read a preview of THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME

Goodreads Reviews

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Filed under MacQuire Women, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, The Wild Rose Press

#1stKissFriday 3.16.19

Last Friday I exhausted all my books’ first lines, so I thought I’d try something new: #1stkissfriday.

I’m going to take an excerpt of the first kiss from all my characters and each week spotlight one.

Today, of course it has to be the kiss from my first book SKATER’S WALTZ which recently had its 4th book birthday.

When he removed one hand from her arm, she reached up to trace the outline of one of his eyes. Her finger moved from the outer canthus to his cheek, smoothing the skin she touched. “You didn’t have these little lines when you left.”

Cole stared down at her face.

Her finger roamed down to the corners of his mouth, outlining them, then on to the small dent in the middle of his chin. An impish grin fanned across her face. “I remember being little and wondering if I smoothed this line away would I be able to see inside you, like it was a door or some kind of opening to your insides. Dumb, huh?”

“Sweet,” he said, softly. “Little girl sweet. Never dumb.”

Her eyes traveled up to his and locked there.

“When I got older I wondered what it would be like to kiss it.”

His breath hitched.

“Would it taste like soap, left over from shaving, or would it be all spiky and nubby because you missed a few hairs. Or would it taste uniquely like you do. I still wonder about that.”

“Tiffany.”

Knowing what he was about to do, and to whom, should have sent him jumping off the couch, running in the other direction. Instead, when his head came down to hers all Cole could think about was how much he wanted to taste her again, how he wanted to lose himself in her, and how both those feelings somehow seemed right, even though he knew they shouldn’t.

Her body tensed as he inched closer. When his lips finally captured hers, she turned fluid under his hands.

Her smooth, small body slackened beneath him as his lips gently moved across hers, tasting them, savoring them. Releasing his grip on her arms, he leaned on his elbows and ran his fingers into her hair, cupping her face while holding fistfuls of the glorious mane.

New, strange emotions jumped about in his body, heightening the sensation of every touch, every caress. She had a mouth made for kissing, for being pleasured and for giving pleasure in return. When he parted her lips with his tongue and edged into the inner treasures of her mouth, taking every inch of it captive, Cole felt as if he was falling to an abyss of pure and total joy.

A moan escaped from somewhere within her, so raw, so seductively feminine, it made Cole’s heart jump, thrilling him with the knowledge that he was the cause.

Tiffany’s hands fisted in his hair, moved down to his neck, his shoulders, massaging, kneading the tight muscles.

His lips traced down over her perfect jaw to the small hollow just behind her ear, and she shivered against his mouth.

A hot burst of sanity blew through his mind.

With a suddenness that left him breathless, Cole pulled back and gazed down into green eyes that were cloudy and drowsy and utterly sexual.

“Tiffany—”

“If you say you’re sorry, I’ll kill you.”

Taken aback, he flinched.

“I mean it,” she said, eyes now wide open and glaring straight at him.

“Tiff, I, I don’t know what to say.”

“The truth would be a good place to start,” she told him.
Cole pulled back to a sitting position and avoided her eyes.
When he hung his head into his hands, and swiped his hair behind his ears, Tiffany sat up.
“I don’t know what’s going on here, with the two of us,” Cole said. “I can’t seem to keep my hands off you. All I think about is—God, I’m sorry.”

“You’re a dead man,” she said flatly.

Intrigued? If you want to read Tiffany and Cole’s story, SKATER’S WALTZ is available in print and ebook, here:

Buy Links: Amazon // Apple // Google // Kobo // Nook

Read a preview of SKATER’S WALTZ

Goodreads Reviews

Looking for me? I’m usually here:

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

Here’s the link to my TELL ME ABOUT YOUR DAMN BOOK podcast interview, just in case you missed it: TMAYDB

and the link to my recent interview on NewHampshirePublicRadio

 

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Filed under MacQuire Women, Romance, Romance Books, Skater's Waltz, Strong Women

It’s my #BookBirthday Let’s #celebrate with a #99centsale

It’s really amazing to think that 4 years ago TODAY my very first romance book SKATER’S WALTZ was released by The Wild Rose Press. Those of you who know me have heard the story of how this book came to be published more times than you probably ever wanted to hear. But mine truly is a Cinderella publishing story. I wasn’t relegated to sweeping, dusting, cooking, and being a house-maid, and I didn’t have a magical fairy godmother (just a wonderful editor-godmom), but my road to publication started with a contest and ended with a contract.

In the end of 2014 I entered the first romance writing contest of my life. I’d written my first romance novel and wanted to see if it had any chance of being published traditionally. I loved the book but I wasn’t sure anyone else would and I entered the contest, basically, for feedback. The contest called for the first three chapters, so that’s what I sent. And then, I simply forgot about it. I was still working full time, menopause was kicking my chubby tush, and I was uber busy in my personal life.

Four months after entering, I received an email from the contest chairperson telling me I’d won my division. Included in the email were my scores by the various judges and comments they’d made. Once the shock at winning wore off, I read all the comments and felt like I had a shot a getting published. A day later another email arrived from Rhonda Penders, the publisher of the Wild Rose Press. She was the final judge for my entry. She wrote that she’d liked what she’d read and asked if I had a completed manuscript. Boy, did I! Could I send it along to her? Boy, could I! So I did.

Two months after that I received another email from the editor Ms. Penders had assigned the book to, to be read. Condensed version here of the story : they were offering me a contract to publish.

When I scraped myself off the floor and stopped crying, I said YES.

And 4 years later, I’ve never looked back.

So, come celebrate my book baby’s birthday with me with a sale. The ecopy is only 99 cents now until March 15. If you haven’t read it yet, now’s the perfect time. It’s available at these online retailers at the sale price right now:

Amazon // Nook // Apple(iTunes) 

I’ll be out celebrating and birthday-partying today, but if you’re looking for me, you can find me here:

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

Here’s the link to my TELL ME ABOUT YOUR DAMN BOOK podcast interview, just in case you missed it: TMAYDB

and the link to my recent interview on NewHampshirePublicRadio

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Filed under Contemporary Romance, Friends, MacQuire Women, Romance, Strong Women, The Wild Rose Press, WIld Rose Press AUthor