I do not read every book/author I spotlight or book tour I host!
Readers, Please research and use wisdom before buying

Saturday, February 29, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on Carla Laureano & The Solid Grounds Coffee Co!

Good Morning and Happy Leap Day!

I'm heading to Baton Rouge this afternoon to see my Angel Girl's dance competition. Prayers for safe travels to all of us and the other teams travelling are greatly appreciated. - THANKS!

Today's guest has visited before with other books from her Supper Club series, so please welcome Carla Laureano back with the latest installment, The Solid Grounds Coffee Company.....

Analyn Sanchez can handle the long hours and arrogant clients that come with her job as a crisis management associate at Denver’s largest publicity firm. The high-powered job, expensive condo, and designer wardrobe are all part of her plan to prove to her family that her life choices haven’t been in vain. But when she’s asked to cover up a client’s misdeeds with serious moral and legal ramifications, she can no longer sacrifice her conscience for her career . . . and the cost is no less than her job.

Ever since a devastating climbing accident in South America eight months ago, and a bad decision that dried up his sponsorships, professional rock climber Bryan Shaw has found himself at similar loose ends. When the opportunity to buy a coffee farm in Colombia arises, he jumps on it—only to discover his wandering ways have left him utterly unprepared to run a business.

When Bryan returns home and offers Ana a role in his company as a solution to both their problems, she’s desperate enough to consider working with the far-too-flippant and far-too-handsome climber, even though he’s the polar opposite of her type A nature. As they delve deeper into the business, however, she begins to suspect there’s much more to Bryan than she’s given him credit for . . . and that sometimes the best plans are the ones you never see coming.

 Excerpt (Taken from The Solid Grounds Coffee Company by Carla Laureano. Copyright © 2020. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Ana stepped out of her SUV, avoiding a greasy puddle that had formed in the potholed asphalt, and moved toward the back door. Unlocked. She pushed through, the heat from the kitchen hitting her immediately in contrast to the cool outside air. “Hello?”

Melody saw her first. “Ana!” She turned away from what she was doing—labeling large round containers with Sharpies on masking tape—and held her arms out for a hug. “I’m glad you came early. We could use some help setting the table. We’re running behind tonight.”

Ana flicked a glance to the range, where Rachel stirred something in a gigantic pot with a long-handled spoon. They could be behind or on time, but you’d never know from looking at Rachel; in the kitchen, she always had the same measured stance and unreadable game face.

“Hey, Ana.” Rachel offered one arm for a sideways half hug before turning back to her pot. “Sorry, I can’t leave the risotto. How are you?”

“Long, crummy week. I’m glad to see you guys.” Ana inhaled deeply. “Something smells amazing. What are we having?”

“Braised lamb shanks over parmesan-mushroom risotto. My guy brought in some morels this morning, and there was no way I was going to pass them up.”

“I’m hungry already. What can I do?”

Rachel nodded in the direction of the dining room. “Tables are set up and the plates and flatware are on the front counter. Mark folded the napkins before he left, so you can just put those on the plates.”

“Sure thing.” Ana backtracked and put her purse and her wool coat in the staff room, not much more than a closet in the back of the kitchen, and then headed out front to get the tables ready for guests.

To say that Bittersweet Café was her happy place was perhaps an understatement. In the last two years, Rachel had left behind her high-pressure executive chef job and Melody her dead-end position in a chain bakery, then decided to open their dream restaurant together. The way all the details had come together was downright magical; nowhere in Denver’s history had a functional café and bakery materialized in under four months. But Ana had no doubt there had been a healthy measure of divine intervention in the situation. She could feel it in the mood and the atmosphere of this place. Light, welcoming, refreshing. It was no wonder they’d quickly developed a devoted following. They were already in the middle of plans to take over the vacant space in the strip mall beside them and expand to meet their ever-growing demand.

Ana couldn’t be prouder.

If she were truthful, she was also a little jealous. She might be good at her job, and she was certainly well paid, but there was an allure to the idea of working with her best friends, being surrounded by delicious food and baked goods. Too bad she had absolutely no culinary talent. Her mom had made sure she could cook rice properly and prepare Filipino dishes like adobong manok and kaldereta, but her skills stopped there. Considering the fat and calorie content of those foods, she’d left her childhood meals behind in favor of an endless stream of grilled chicken or fish over salad.

Carla Laureano is the two-time RITA Award–winning author of Five Days in Skye, London Tides, and the Saturday Night Supper Club series. She is also the author of the Celtic fantasy series The Song of Seare (as C. E. Laureano). A graduate of Pepperdine University, she worked as a sales and marketing executive for nearly a decade before leaving corporate life behind to write fiction full-time. She currently lives in Denver with her husband and two sons.

 Thank you so much, Carla for sharing your new book with us! We certainly wish you the best of luck and God's blessings.

Remember friends to leave a comment and be entered into my monthly gift card giveaway!

Until next time, take care and God bless.

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends welcomes Justin Thomas

Good Morning!

Today we begin our Lenten season of fasting, prayer and alms-giving. Even if you're not Catholic or one of the other religions that participates in extra, focused prayer during these forty days leading up to Easter, it's always a good thing to set aside time to spend with God.

Today's guest talks about his own personal journey through tragedy and grief into new life and purpose. Please welcome Justin Thomas as he shares his journey with us.....

Q: What motivated you to write this book?
A: After losing my father, I went on a soul-searching journey to explore how to carry on his legacy. I assumed this would be just my own personal journey. However, along the way I was exposed to so many life-changing experiences and relationships that I became motivated to share the story with others. This book shares the gift that I was given— a new definition of what it means to become a provider.

Q: You dad's death was sudden and unexpected. What would share with others who have faced similar losses on how to deal with the grief?
A: Unfortunately, a friend of mine texted me just last week asking this question. He told me, "I started reading your book and could not get past page three. I also received a call last night. Same exact thing happened to my dad. I am sitting at the airport trying to tell myself everything will be okay." I thanked him for sharing this hard news with me. This is the first step in dealing with grief: sharing with others. I encouraged my friend to take a firm hold of his family and values during a time when the world beneath him is no longer on solid ground. Conversations and moments like this make me grateful for the experience I have had in order to try and provide for others going through a similar journey.

Q: How do you define a provider and how do you believe scripture defines it?
A: A provider specifically provides blessings and offers protection to others. Here is my provider definition: Provider = Bless + Protect. This is the proven provider process. The exciting news is that anyone can develop the habits and skills to consistently bless and protect others. I share my personal journey with a biblical perspective of what it means to provide. Psalm 23 positioned Jesus as our model provider, one who blesses his sheep by selflessly giving of himself to earn the trust of his sheep. Jesus even called himself the “Good Shepherd” in John 10: “I am the good shepherd. I lay down my life for the sheep.” Scripture ultimately defines a provider as one who is willing to sacrifice for others.

Q: You list “Santa” and “Soldier” on what you call the “Bless and Protect” matrix. Talk about that.
A: When creating the Bless and Protect 2x2 matrix I knew there would be people strong in one area but weak in the other. I evaluated my own life and explored when were times that I was high in Blessing and low in Protecting and vice versa to arrive with the Santa and Soldier quadrant. Santa represents someone who is generous and loving, but lacks the guiding hand of a protector. They default to solving problems and burdens through gifts, which certainly blesses others, but it does not fully satisfy the need. The Santa quadrant allows you to stay in the safe space of giving more and more and receiving praise for your apparent generosity. It’s a fun quadrant to be in, both for the giver and receiver, yet there is a deeper version of providing. The soldier is high on the protect trait, but low on the bless trait. He represents someone who is strong and reliable but lacks the softer, blessing characteristics. On the one hand, people may feel safe around “soldiers,” but hesitant to be vulnerable and open to such a harsh figure. 

Q: Why do you feel teaching men to be providers is important?
A: After speaking with other men, the typical definition of being a provider was the 1950’s Dad figure bringing home a paycheck as the pinnacle of providing. I felt it was important to challenge this baseline definition to change from “bringing in the money” to “blessing and protecting.”

Q: Talk about the C.L. Thomas Fellowship, its vision, and the plans for expansion.
A: The CL Thomas Fellowship offers small groups and online resources to help others become providers. The fellowship was started in 2017 in honor of my father who passed away that same year. The first small group launched from my living room and now we have several groups in the Raleigh-Durham area and Dublin, Ireland as we continue to expand our reach and influence.  Groups launched are led by a mentor or “provider coaches” who believe that each member can be a great provider. The mentor facilitates monthly meetings and models a provider lifestyle. In addition, the fellowship offers a growing library of recorded interviews from experts in different areas of the Provider Wheel. We are building a community of people from all walks of life who strive to help one another become better providers. One of the most exciting new additions is that my wife, Amy Thomas, is now leading a women’s C.L. Thomas Fellowship group. The women’s group takes the same Provider Wheel and calling to bless and protect others through the unique perspective and gifts that God has placed on their lives as women.

Q: What is the Provider Wheel? 
A: The Provider Wheel is a visual I created to highlight the eight characteristic traits of a provider. We spend one month on each trait during the course of the C.L. Thomas Fellowship small groups. The Bless and Protect Matrix is another visual I use to show what happens when we do not bless and protect others, we fall from the "provider quadrant" and into other quadrants that limit our impact of effectively becoming a provider.

Q: What do you hope readers will gain from this book?
A: Here’s what I hope for this short book: that readers will commit to being a great provider based on the incredible, imperfect legacy of C.L. Thomas or “Pop,” as he was known to my family. And that readers will change their definition of “provider” in which they make a covenant to bless and protect anyone who needs their specific gifts. I want readers to remember that providing on Earth is ultimately an imitation of Jesus and His life’s example.

Justin Thomas is the co-founder of the C.L. Thomas Fellowship, a nonprofit that coaches men and women to become providers based on a biblical worldview. He is a National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach and is COO of EHOP Health, a chronic disease reversal company. He previously served as CEO of CrossComm, a nationally-recognized app development studio, and was named “MBA Student of the Year” at Ireland’s leading business school. He lives in Hillsborough, North Carolina with his wife and family. Visit www.clthomasfellowship.org.

Find out more about Becoming a Provider and the CL Thomas Fellowship by watching these two videos: https://youtu.be/4LyjuCt0zD4 and https://youtu.be/HAOWHTRw9Lg

Thank you so much, Justin for sharing your heart, book and ministry with us! We certainly wish you the best of luck and God's blessings.

Well friends, hope you enjoyed today's guest. This is the last Wednesday Words with Friends post for February and Saturday is the last spotlight so be sure to leave a comment and be entered into my monthly gift card giveaway!

Until next time, take care and God bless.

Saturday, February 22, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on D.K. Christi and Ghost Orchid!

Good Morning!

Baby it's C-O-L-D outside but at least the sun is shining. I am so. very. tired. of. the. rain and gloom!

Today's guest is brand new to me and our blog so please give D. K. Christi a huge, warm. W-E-L-C-O-M-E as she shares her book, Ghost Orchid with us.

Two parallel love stories twist and turn around family secrets beginning with Mel whose nondescript life has a moment of renewed passion before tragedy strikes and she's unable to reveal her hidden secrets to her estranged daughter, Neev.

Neev, raised by a loving foster family in Germany and educated at Oxford finds modeling a bore but joy in the other side of the camera chasing the endangered species of the tropical jungles. Her mentor, Roger Andrews, shapes her talent and her love life though a young tour guide in Africa is exciting. An amateur photographer, Jack, is in the shadows as he discovers the ghost orchid that brings all the pieces together in the mystical discovery of eternal love.

Excerpt: She stepped out of the shower, toweled dry, and slipped her naked body between the sheets, satisfied that everything would get back to normal soon. The highs and lows would go away. The beauty of the swamp would give her serenity back. The challenges of her work would occupy her mind. Friends and family were scattered about. She would make a better effort to spend time with them.

A trip to Germany was now a necessity that could no longer be ignored. She decided to dump the email and the email provider without delay so she had no opportunity to change her mind. She turned the computer on for just a minute. A flash of green shocked her resolve.

“Do you still have the room key, and will you come back?” flashed on the screen.

She was lost. 

“Yes.” She responded and turned off the computer. She dared not risk looking again or thinking again. She could only act on instinct. Her instincts told her they were not, after all, finished. She quickly threw on sweats, combed back her still-damp hair with its silver threads, and packed a few things in a backpack in case they were up all night and she had to leave from the hotel for work.
The story she was prepared to reveal might take all night. She made no attempt, this time, to look any better than who she was. She’d already endured what she believed was his rejection. If he called her back, it was his heart speaking to hers. The exterior did not matter.

She drove through the fog that was coming in from the Gulf in dense clouds that hid the changing colors of the traffic lights. The key he’d handed her at check-in was like a gesture of habit, and she really had not thought much about it at the time. She found it still tucked in the side of her purse. That made it easy.

 He called her on the cell phone to be sure she was on her way. She thought he might have changed his mind. She thought she might change hers as she followed the winding road through the fog with the tower barely looming ahead. He wanted to be certain she was okay, that she was truly coming back.

 She parked in the garage and took the elevator to his floor. She slowly entered the key in the lock, lightly tapping on the door at the same time. He opened it, half dressed. He had a hanger in his hands, neatly putting away his slacks, standing just back from the door’s opening in his shirt and socks. Only the bathroom had a light. The room itself was dark except for a little glow from the full moon that challenged the fog.

Wow....D. K., what an intriguing blurb and excerpt! We certainly wish you the best of luck and God's blessings with your book and in your writing career! Now please tell us a little about yourself....

Who is D. K. Christi?

D. K. Christi, M.Ed. has over twenty years grant-writing and public relations success, five years as an editor for an international CPA firm, nine years magazine and newspaper writing, three published novels, BAMBOO RING, ARIRANG and GHOST ORCHID and stories published in seven anthologies.

"Themes of friendship surviving tragedy, love conquering adversity & the triumph of the human spirit over the hardships of life serve to uplift and inspire...through her stories perhaps discover something new about yourself. " -- Amazon.com

Christi interviews celebrities and notables from Jack Hanna to Rob Reiner, Whoopie Goldberg, Newt Gingrich, Jeb Bush, Marlo Thomas, Chris Gardner and more. She lived and worked in Europe, Asia and the Caribbean and spent three years sailing the Caribbean Islands from Ft. Lauderdale to Venezuela.

A polished platform presenter and professional voice with multiple writing and publication topics, she also has an entertaining and informative approach to Sex, Myth and Magic - The Ghost Orchid, popular at book club, book store, environmental and orchid events.

"The beauty of the Everglades shines through on every page, the ghost orchid the heart and soul of the story." -- National Public Radio

D. K. Christi has been executive director, president, CEO and founding board member to successful philanthropic and corporate entities such as the Community Foundation of Collier County, Florida begun in 1985 with currently over 400 funds,  $64 million in assets, and $64 million in grants distributed.

From technical writing to general literature, Christi travels the gamut of literary expression and takes her readers along for an emotional and enlightening ride.

Find out more about D.K by visiting her Website. Get your copy of Ghost Orchid at Amazon.

We've only got one more week in February so be sure to leave a comment and be entered into my monthly gift card giveaway!

Until next time take care and God bless.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends welcomes Denise Broadwater

Good Morning!

Have to rush out the door this morning so no time for chit-chat. Earlier this month we met a brand new (to us) author Denise Broadwater when she shared her book with us, so please welcome her back as she shares more experiences about A House with Holes.....

Greg is my life and world and as my husband of many years, it is as it should be.  We have three wonderful, employed children with lives of their own.  His career is going well and my book has been on Amazon for four months.  But days like today, I cannot help but be overcome by fear.  Will this renovation, our house filled with holes get the final billowing laugh, “See, I got you.  You gutted my insides, weathered all the storms, and are nearly done, but in the end you didn’t make this final cut.  YOU ARE GOING DOWN. “  The house draws us into conflict and stress.  As close as we are to being done with the major construction projects, I wait for the proverbial shoe to  drop.  Sometimes, I wonder if we as a couple will survive our renovation in Charleston.

“Denise, stop daydreaming…nail gun.   Please, come out of your head and think about what you are doing.  We have to get this done.”  Like a surgeon’s assistant, I stand next to Greg physically ready to anticipate the next tool, but I get bored.  Greg’s demands increase now to a rant because he’s been frustrated most of the morning.  I know I need to stay focused.  He words play like a TV in the background.   It appears I am listening, but I am looking for any reason to zone out.  Afterall, I’ve heard it all before:  my absentmindedness, why can’t I focus, everyone else is priority and he needs me. 

“Denise, if you hang in here with me, we can finish this floor today.  It’s crunch time, baby, each thing builds on the other.  I know it’s not what you want to be doing right now.”  I smile and roll my eyes in an extended blink.  His banter and sarcasm flow over me.  Right.  What woman could have survived these past years?  And these last days, the little things drive me mad. Looking around I see the layer of dust covering the bar, tools on the rug in the dining room, and paint cans stacked in the fireplace.  Refusing to let Greg’s last words penetrate, I blankly stare at his extended hand. 

“Hammer, Denise!”  I startle back into helper-mode and hand him a hammer.  One of the advantages of my scatteredness is the freedom to zone when convenient.  We quickly fall back into the rhythm of work.  As we near the end of the laying the last pieces of flooring, Greg looks for another box of material.

“Denise, I am afraid we are short one box of flooring.”

He runs back into the master bedroom and in a few minutes has searched every crevice for flooring.  Yelling from the back room, “I let the flooring specialist calculate the material and he must have gone short.”  Greg disappears to the courtyard where we have been cutting all day.  None of the pieces are long enough to give consistency.  “These pieces are not going to cut it. Let’s call and see about getting a new one.”

I look for the number, then press call and put it on speaker.  Still open on the morning of Christmas Eve, but this is not the time of year to be in this pickle. 

“Mr. Broadwater, I hate to be the bearer of bad news.  This flooring’s been discontinued and there isn’t a box of flooring left in South Carolina.”  We both look at each other like this cannot be happening right now.  “Let me do a company search and maybe we will have a box left in Georgia or North Carolina.  Give me a few minutes.”

Greg mutes the phone.

“Denise, what are we going to do.  We are this close to being done.  I hoped we could leave for Christmas with the furniture moved back into place.”

We both stand staring at the phone, waiting quietly afraid of this man’s answer…

“We found three locations in Georgia with a few boxes.  Two are outside Atlanta:  Kennesaw, and Duluth and Newsome, near Valdosta.  If you have it delivered, there will be a large surcharge.”

“Give us a minute.”  And Greg presses the mute button, again.

“Valdosta is out, why don’t we go to Duluth the day after Christmas?  We don’t have much choice. ”

“Sure, this is happening.  Of course, this is the shoe dropping though it was not exactly to my worry. ” I shake my head.  We are both so done with obstacles and issue surrounding our project.    Greg’s eyes close and his head tilts down.  There is a weary tiredness even sleep don’t touch.  It’s through both of us, but Greg is bad.  He’s more tired than I have ever seen him.  He presses the phone speaker on again.

“Reserve those in Duluth and we will pick them up.”

“So, I know we should be grateful we found the flooring, but I hate cutting Christmas short to go to Atlanta.”

“It’s the sacrifice we have to make to get this done and behind us.  You are still with me, aren’t you, Denise.”

“This house is NOT going to win.”

Denise Broadwater has been a licensed professional counselor in South Carolina for ten years, treating anxiety, depression, life adjustments, and marriages. She has an MA in clinical counseling and began her career as a family therapist working with at-risk families and youth. Additionally, Denise has an M.Ed in education administration with several years of teaching experience in private education. She is a wife and the mother of three children and recently added “Nana” to her list of titles. She enjoys rowing at the gym, cooking new recipes, sewing quilts, and blogging at Life Lights Blog (emptynestmarriage.com) and Charleston Renovator Blog  (www.freedmanscottagerenovation.blogspot.com).

A House with Holes can be purchased at Amazon.

Thanks for sharing Denise! Best of luck and God's blessings with the house and your book!

February is winding down friends so be sure to leave a comment and enter the drawing for a $15.00 gift card of your choice.

Until next time, take care and God bless.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on Clare Revell & Convergence!

Good Morning and Welcome!

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I was heading to Bandera this weekend for Cowboy Mardi Gras but that the spotlight would still go on and so it is!

My guest today, fellow Pelican Book Group author, Clare Revell is no stranger to our blog. She has shared treasures with us and been in the spotlight several times. But today, Clare is sharing with us her brand new novel, Convergence so please give her a huge Welcome Back Clare!

Even as a teenager Yvetta Graham had vivid dreams. Ones she couldn't tell from reality. Only now she's almost thirty and beyond such things.

Only the new store manager is a dead ringer for the man from those dreams. Who is John Smyth? What is his reason for coming to Headley Cross? Is he really a time traveller?

As dreams and reality converge Yvetta is in a fight for both her sanity and soul.

Someone was following her. The steps were light, but audible on the large grey flagstones that lined the floor of the castle. It couldn’t be Blaize. He’d had to go out, fulfil his duty as sheriff and deal with something in the village.

Yvetta didn’t mind being alone. After all, as Blaize kept pointing out, with the amount of servants he had, she’d never be truly alone. What she objected to was being followed. She spun around, determined to have a go at whoever it was, but there was no one there. Shaking her head, she turned back to face the other way and crashed straight into a tall, black figure standing there.

I’m sorry. I didn’t see you,‛ she began.

The figure turned. The faceless, nameless one moved towards her. ‚Etta.‛

She screamed.

Terror filled her. She backed away. Her feet tangled in her floor length skirt, and she reached out, struggling to regain her balance.

Her outstretched palm caught the flame of the torch on the wall.

Pain seared as she fell.

Her arms flailed, legs kicked as she tumbled endlessly down, down, down.


Yvetta glanced at the clock as she stood in the kitchen waiting for the kettle to boil. Three AM; or stupid o’clock as she preferred to call it. She couldn’t think, the music running through her mind made thought impossible. Her hands shook as she tossed a teabag into her favourite mug. Her hand hurt. She glanced down and ran her fingers over the vivid red mark across the palm. She winced. If she didn’t know better she’d say she’d burnt it while she slept, but she wouldn’t tell anyone it was happening again.

It was far safer not to.

The nightmare still floated on the corners of Yvetta’s mind. She hadn’t thought about him for years, never mind dreamed about him anymore—until tonight. But nothing had changed—not even the dream injuries transferring to reality. Music, dancing, the castle, and him.

Blaize—her Dancing Boy had grown to be a man. He was tall; easily over six feet now, but he’d towered over her even in her teens. He was a few years older than her, no more than five, but that hadn’t mattered. His piercing gaze had shot straight through her, almost as if he could see her innermost thoughts, which on reflection, maybe he did because he always knew what she was thinking; and that wasn’t necessarily a good thing, either.

Sometimes he wore his long, blond hair spiked up, sometimes it flowed loosely across his shoulders, but tonight it had been tied back with a simple, black velvet ribbon.

He was slimly built, but with an athletic body encased in fawn, old fashioned breeches, dark brown knee length boots, and a navy blue frock coat, with gold buttons. He cut a dashing figure. His white shirt had a bunch of lace at his chin—like the highwaymen had in story books, but Blaize wasn’t a scoundrel or cad—he was one of the nicest people she knew. He was always accompanied by a monkey, a tiny, ugly thing with a penchant for wearing clothes.

How long had it been since he’d crossed her mind? Blaize that was, not the monkey. She’d been seventeen, so almost half a lifetime, since she’d last seen him. Why now?

WOW Clare, you sure know how to hook 'em and reel 'em in! GREAT excerpt!

CLARE REVELL is a British author. She lives in a small town just outside Reading, England with her husband, whom she married in 1992, their three children, and unfriendly mini-panther, aka Tilly the black cat. Clare is half English and half Welsh, which makes watching rugby interesting at times as it doesn’t matter who wins.You can find her at WebsiteFacebookTwitterBlogPintrest

Convergence can be purchased at Amazon, Amazon UK, B&N, and Pelican Book Group.

Hope you enjoyed today's spotlight friends and that you'll check back weekly and leave a comment to be entered into my monthly gift card giveaway!

Until next time take care and God bless.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends welcomes Alina K. Field!

Good Morning!

Today's guest is no stranger here but it has been a while since Alina shared thoughts and the spotlight with us, so please welcome her back with some words about Leap Day....

Thank you so much, Pamela, for welcoming me to your blog! 

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, but this year, February has another romantic holiday, one we only celebrate every four years:

Leap Day!

Since I write historical romance I’m always on the lookout for tidbits about romantic traditions. But what’s so romantic about Leap Day, you ask?

When I was in high school, back in the dark ages, every year we’d have a Sadie Hawkins’ dance. Girls officially were expected to get up the nerve to invite boys to the dance.

Leap Day was like Sadie Hawkins’ Day, only the stakes were much higher than a dance!

Traditionally, on that day, a woman could ask a man to marry her. If he refused her hand, he was expected to pay a forfeit. What sort of forfeit—a pair of gloves, a length of cloth, varied according to local tradition.

Fodder for the Romance Author’s muse! 

I’m sharing a bit today about my sweet Regency Leap Day romance, A Leap Into Love. In the small village of Upper Upton, not everyone is what they appear to be. Mrs. Myra Smith passes as a young widow with an infant son. Widower Alexander Grant, proprietor of the Royal George Inn, is known as a carefree flirt who hasn’t met a woman he doesn’t like. Both are anxious to keep their pasts private from the village gossips.

But in the small village, marriageable men are scarce, and Alexander seems in no hurry to find a new mother for his two children. When two young ladies launch a plan that will either force his hand or bankrupt him, Myra knows she must take action and warn him to leave town on February 29th. But when Alexander proposes to her, Myra balks. She’s suffered the consequences of hasty action in the past! A leap into marriage—and possibly love—risks more than her heart.

A Leap Into Love is a short, sweet Regency romance, perfect for book clubs. Now available at Amazon, B&N, Kobo, Apple Books, Google Play Books2Read and in print!

What an interesting bit of information about Leap Day, Alina! Thanks for sharing. We certainly wish you the best of luck and God's blessings with your new book.

USA Today Bestselling and Award-winning author Alina K. Field earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and German literature, but prefers the much happier world of romance fiction. Though her roots are in the Midwestern U.S., after six very, very, very cold years in Chicago, she moved to Southern California where she shares a midcentury home with her husband and her spunky, blonde, rescued terrier.

She is the author of several Regency romances, including the 2014 Book Buyer’s Best winner, Rosalyn’s Ring. She is hard at work on her next series of Regency romances, but loves to hear from readers!

Visit her at:
Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/Alina-K.-Field/e/B00DZHWOKY

Hope you enjoyed today's post friends. I will be heading out of town tomorrow to party hardy at Cowboy Mardi Gras in Bandera, TX. Never fear though, Saturday Spotlight will go on uninterrupted so please stop by and support my guest, Clare Revell as she gives us a peek into her latest novel.

Until next time take care and God Bless.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on Barbara Bettis & A Winter Knight

Good Morning!

Before I introduce our brand new to me/our blog guest, PLEASE join me in wishing my beautiful daughter, Karol a Blessed and Happy Birthday!

Thank you friends.

Award-winning author Barbara Bettis has always loved history and English. As a college freshman, she considered becoming an archeologist until she realized there likely would be bugs and snakes involved. And math. Through careers as a newspaper reporter and editor, then a college journalism and English professor, she’s retained her fascination with history. Give her a research book and a pot of tea, and she’s happy for hours. But what really makes her smile is working on a new story. Now retired, she lives in Missouri where she edits for others and spins her own tales of heroines to die for—and heroes to live for.

Find Barb Here: 

Bookbub                                                                                                                                                Facebook                                             

Welcome Barbara! Please give us a peek into your book, A Winter Knight.....

He’s running from his past; she’s running from her future. But on a snowy winter night, they find each other and the surprising gift of love.

Sir Nicholas has given up on marriage. These days he’s content to captain his friend’s troops and avoid entanglements—until one winter night when he rescues a half-frozen woman from a snowstorm. Her irrepressible spirit and kindness to others reminds him that all ladies aren’t like his former intended, who wed his brother while Nick was on crusade. But he can’t open his heart to Lady Clare. She’s bound to another, and Nick won’t forfeit his honor. Even if she were free, he has nothing to offer but love, and this lady deserves everything.

Lady Clare’s dying grandfather has arranged her betrothal, but the arrival of the man she’s to wed sends her fleeing into a snowstorm. Injured when her horse stumbles, she’s rescued by a mysterious knight. She recovers at his run-down manor, safe at last—until her betrothed tracks her down two days before Christmas. Trapped at home with the wedding imminent, she longs for the winter knight she’s come to love.

Only a miracle can bring Clare and Nick together. But at Christmas, anything is possible.


Who was she? And why in Satan’s name was she out here alone? Maybe she’d lost her wits and took flight in a disordered panic. He’d seen women—men too—lose their reason and go wild with grief. Or loneliness. Had she been confined to the same place for weeks on end, with no voice to hear but her own? Had she finally set out alone to find someone—anyone— else alive in the world?  His shoulders stiffened. Where in Hades did that thought come from?

He glanced at the soft bundle he held and tightened his arms. Answers would have to wait until she woke. Giving Solomon a touch of heel to pick up the gait, Nick followed his earlier tracks and made it back to the manor quickly.

“Send for the healer,” he called to the guard as he rode through the gate.

“Don’t got one,” came the answer.

Of course not. Someone sure as Hades was needed to care for this unwanted guest.

Tom waited at the stable door.

“Take care of Solomon, then come to the hall. I have an errand for you.”  Surely a woman lived somewhere close and could help out on the morrow. Provided the lady lived so long.

# # #

Sound came to Clare first. Why was there such noise? Her eyes ached behind closed lids, and her head pounded like a kitchen mallet on boar’s meat. She was so cold. Except, her fingers burned—and tingled, as if a score of needles stuck there. Her toes—she didn’t feel them. Where were her toes?

The noises increased and she tried to turn her head to escape the din, but she couldn’t seem to move. Where was she? The loud clatter settled into voices. Deep voices. Men. Panic clogged her throat. Sweet Mother Mary, he’d found her and brought her home.

She’d failed.

Wow, sounds like a wonderful read! We certainly wish you the best of luck and God's blessings with it.

Hope you enjoyed the excerpt as much as I did friends. Get your copy of A Winter Knight at Amazon. Be sure and leave a comment so you'll be entered into my monthly gift card giveaway drawing!

Until next time, take care and God Bless.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends January Winner Announced!

Good Morning and Welcome!

First I'd like to THANK each and every person who left a comment in January. All of your names were entered into a random name picking program....

Jean Maurie!

I have emailed you, Jean so please check your spam folder if you didn't receive my notice this morning.

I tried to come up with something witty or profound to share with you today but there is just too much going on in my life and brain this morning LOL! So I'll fill you in....

I'm actively working on Tempered Truth YES! #Amwriting I've written more this week than I have in months on this story. Not sure where it's going yet, or how long it'll be or even if I'm going to serialize it in my newsletter instead of publishing so....

If you haven't signed up to receive my newsletter, please do so. I will be sending one out shortly with a crossword puzzle created specifically for my subscribers.

Tempered Fire is in audio production, although there has been a slight delay due to my narrator having voice issues from the weather and illness, we're still hoping to have it out early this year.

I have an upcoming Audio Book Blog Tour for Tempered Hearts and Tempered Dreams. More on this as it develops but the dates are March 17th - 30th.

My dear friend, DiAnn Mills has read and provided an endorsement for my latest project, My Heart Weeps. My goal is to have it published this summer.

Beginning this weekend with a camping trip, I have lots of travel coming up...Dance competitions in Baton Rouge, Baytown, TX and Gulf Shores, AL, baseball games and graduation in SC, Cowboy Mardi Gras in Bandera and a trip to Alaska in July!

Yeah, just thinking about it all wears me out but you know me...."On the road again..." is my theme song. LOL!

Never fear though, Wednesday Words with Friends and Saturday Spotlight will always go on and I hope you'll drop by each week for both and leave a comment. Maybe YOU'LL be my next winner!

Until next time, Good luck and God's blessings!


Saturday, February 1, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on Denise Broadwater & A House With Holes

Good Morning and Welcome!

I want to thank everyone who has left a comment on my January posts. I'll be announcing the gift-card winner on Wednesday so check back and be sure to leave comments often so you can be put in the drawing!

Today's guest is brand new to our blog and brought to us by PrimeStar Publicity.

Denise Broadwater has been a licensed professional counselor in South Carolina for ten years, treating anxiety, depression, life adjustments, and marriages. She has an MA in clinical counseling and began her career as a family therapist working with at-risk families and youth. Additionally, Denise has an M.Ed in education administration with several years of teaching experience in private education. She is a wife and the mother of three children and recently added “Nana” to her list of titles. She enjoys rowing at the gym, cooking new recipes, sewing quilts, and blogging at Life Lights Blog (emptynestmarriage.com) and Charleston Renovator Blog  (www.freedmanscottagerenovation.blogspot.com).

So Nice to meet you, Denise. Now let's hear about your new book!

''If you're with me, Denise, I can promise you there is nothing in this mess we cannot fix.''

When veteran rehabbers Denise and Greg Broadwater purchase a dilapidated Charleston Cottage in a sketchy part of town for less than the value of the lot, they soon uncover complications they didn't bargain for--both in the house and in their relationship. As a licensed counselor, Denise thought she could handle anything that came up in their 30-year marriage. However, she didn't plan on open dirt floors, a creepy bathroom or wildlife in her kitchen, and that's just for starters. Heartfelt and humorous, dramatic and down-to-earth, A House With Holes is a memoir with a message as Denise compares the house renovation to her adjustments as a new empty-nester.


From the intro:

As I stand at the stove, out of the corner of my eye I glimpse movement. I look over my shoulder, and—moving slowly away through the plastic curtain into the construction area—I see the gray-brown bushy tail of a racoon.

I shut off the stove, stick the soup pot into the warm oven, and slam the door into the dorm room. My first impulse is to fire off an angry text to Greg, but know I’ll regret what I would write in my current emotional state.

Instead, I tremble on the bed with a blanket over me. The longer I wait, the more I feel sorry for myself. How much of this am I supposed to stand?

From Chapter 2:

My craftsman husband, Greg, works for Liollio Architecture, a firm that has spent more than sixty years designing in Charleston. He’s very aware of what a typical renovation in this town will require of us. Each house is like opening a time capsule with hopes of discovering covered treasure. Each phase of the process comes under scrutiny to ensure the house preserves its southern heritage.

 Despite the constraints, in 2012 Greg and I share a dream of owning a house on the Charleston peninsula. We look at the surrounding suburbs, but are drawn to live in this exciting city. Upscale neighborhoods, old world charm, the convenience of walking to all the local restaurants—this is where we want to be.

We enlist Realtor Leon Polk to help us find a small cottage to restore on the upper westside. Several weeks pass, and several opportunities collapse due to quick sales or poor timing. Taking matters into our own hands, Greg and I spend evenings religiously surfing realty sites and tax maps looking for the right place.

Leon is happy to let us search because he believes we are looking for a pipe dream, impossible to find. What we appreciate most about him is his willingness to show us anything, anywhere. Greg is faithful to do searches for several weeks.

A House with Holes can be purchased at Amazon.

Wow...sounds like an intriguing memoir! Thank you so much for sharing. We certainly wish you the best of luck and God's blessings with it.

Thanks for stopping by friends. Be sure to leave a comment and be entered in February's drawing for a $15.00 gift card!

Until next time, take care and God bless.