Author Archive

Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: A SURE THING by Marie Harte

A Sure Thing Marie Harte

It’s getting colder in New York, which means one thing: huddling by the heater in your apartment and praying it actually works. We do, however, have a quick cheat we’re willing to share just for today: It’s this totally heartwarming and ever-so-slightly steamy excerpt of Marie Harte’s A Sure Thing!


They ate in silence for a few bites, and he felt it safe to change the subject. “Ah, so all that talk about the self-defense class. Did you like it?”

“I did.”

“Don’t sound so surprised. We know what we’re doing.”

“What surprised me most was that you two never talked down to us. You never tried to act tough and manly, as if you know better. You explained, you broke things down, and you put the power to act in our hands.” She considered him, and her intensity stripped him bare. “You’re doing the class for your sister.”

“I mentioned that.” Not in so many words, but Ava was smart. She’d put the clues together.

“Not in so many words.”

Like she read my mind. He cleared his throat and pushed his po’boy aside. “Hope is my little sister. Lately she’s been dating some real bozos. I don’t want to see her get hurt, so we’re teaching her how to physically stand up for herself. I mean, hell, she’s smaller than you.”

“I’m not small.”

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Guest Post, Q&A

Q&A: Elyssa Patrick of ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS

Once Upon a Christmas Elyssa Patrick J.K. Coi Tiffany Clare Maggie Robinson

Hi everyone! My name is Elyssa Patrick, and I’m one of the authors of the Christmas anthology, Once Upon a Christmas.


Here is the blurb for Once Upon a Christmas:

The holidays are a time for family, celebration—and the Dukes of Ravenglass to fall in love. Spend the Christmas season with the Wynter family, as the Dukes of Ravenglass find their happily-ever-afters in this delightful, heartfelt collection that spans from the Regency era to the present day.

In A Price Above Rubies by Maggie Robinson, set in the Regency era, paid companion Helen Lowe doesn’t know the man she shares her first-ever dance—and first-ever kiss—is Gabriel Wynter, a reclusive, notorious duke. When Helen flees after being exposed, she leaves behind something of far greater value than a glass slipper. Can Gabriel find her, return it, and finally open his heart?

In the Victorian-era set, Never Have I Ever Fallen in Love with a Duke by Tiffany Clare, Alexander Wynter has a problem—his best friend’s younger sister grew up. When he agreed to help Emily MacCallon make her debut, he didn’t expect the beautiful, alluring woman before him—or for her to lead him on such a merry chase. Alexander knows one thing: the only man she’ll be kissing forever and ever is him.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: Amy Sandas on the Best Piece of Writing Advice She Ever Received

The Untouchable Earl Amy Sandas

Once upon a time, when I was young and hopeful and naïve, I dreamed of writing romance novels. No. I yearned to write romance novels. I fell asleep thinking of my characters and their lives. I woke up missing them. I developed in-depth, real-time scenes in my head for the first kiss, the black moment, the resolution, and every poignant interaction in between. At one point, I went to a Tarot card reader (as one does when one wants desperately to know if ones dreams will come true) and this is what she said:

Just keep writing and the rest will come.

I walked away feeling bereft. Why? Because writing was the one thing I wasn’t doing. And I was afraid that it was the one thing I couldn’t do.

Now, of course I was doing some writing at this point and had been for years. Snippets of character description, short paragraphs or even single lines that would pop into my head at a time when the only thing I had to write on was a gum wrapper. On a few occasions, I’d even started a couple different novels. But I wouldn’t keep writing.

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Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: BREATH OF FIRE by Amanda Bouchet

Breath of Fire Amanda Bouchet

Have you ever read a book that has just one sweet moment of perfection so good, you want to keep reading for hours? We found a favorite tiny moment in Amanda Bouchet’s Breath of Fire, and we won’t tell you when it pops up. Just read and enjoy!


We assemble in the Athena courtyard after breakfast on the fourth day. Griffin and I are already mounted, but the rest of Beta Team—Kato, Flynn, and Carver—are still finishing their good-byes, strapping on the last of their gear, and readying their horses. If I’m not mistaken, Flynn is moving slowly because he keeps shooting discreet glances toward Jocasta from under lowered auburn brows. Carver, his long, leggy gait slower than usual, only just left his family under the shaded arcades that band the castle’s ground floor like an ornate, marble ribbon. And Kato, all blond hair, blue eyes, and corded muscle, moves with casual purpose and lionesque indolence—unhurried in his stride but powerful and inherently ready for action. Despite the stakes of the journey, none of them seems to feel any real urgency to leave.

I don’t like lingering over farewells, and their lagging makes me feel like I have ants in my pants. It’s all I can do not to start hopping in the saddle. Panotii is champing at the bit, and so am I. He prances sideways and bumps into Brown Horse. Brown Horse doesn’t move an inch and regards us with calm, intelligent eyes. He’s so much like his rider that I almost laugh.

Unable to hold back a smile, I drink in Griffin with my eyes. Actually, I look at Griffin all the time. I think about him even more, and every time I do, it’s like a wild kick of adrenaline straight to the heart. It’s distracting. He’s distracting.

A tingling warmth spreads beneath my skin. “I can’t wait to gallop.” I haven’t been outside the city walls since Ios. Panotii and I need to stretch our legs, see for miles, and feel the wind in our faces. It’s good for a horse. For a person who’s been confined to a cage, it’s cathartic. Castle Sinta and its grounds may be big, beautiful, and full of Griffin, but in some ways, it’s still a cage. Real freedom is answering to only yourself, and being responsible for no one. Since that’s a moral vacuum, none but the truly wicked are ever truly free.

That must be how Mother feels—free.

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Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
Exclusive Excerpt, Guest Post

Guest Post: “Jack o’ Lanterns, Vibrant Foliage, and Love! It Must be Fall!” by Lynnette Austin

Picture Perfect Wedding Lynnette Austin

You know that feeling when someone hands you an unexpected gift? That’s exactly how I felt when I learned the release date of Picture Perfect Wedding, the third in my Magnolia Brides series, was November 1st! What a perfect day for Tansy and Beck’s story to hit the shelves because it echoes the time frame of the book itself.

Don’t you just love fall?!? No other season has quite the emotional impact. The air is crisp and clean. Sweaters and mittens come out. It’s time for hot chocolate, pumpkin spiced lattes, and reading by the fireplace. Most of all, it’s time for family and friends around the Thanksgiving table.

For Tansy Calhoun Forbes, autumn this year marks her return home to small-town Misty Bottoms, Georgia. For the first time in way too long, she’ll be with the people who are most important to her. Five years ago, she made a single mistake. A big one—and it cost her everything.

But she’s come home in time for the holidays. Home, she hopes, for the rest of her life. Coming home isn’t always easy, though, and not everyone is happy to see her. Beck Elliot, the man Tansy left behind, heads the top of that list.


A building off to Tansy’s right caught her attention and caused a hitch in her heart. Elliot Construction and Lumberyard.

Beck Elliot, the groom behind door number one, the door she hadn’t chosen.

Oh boy. Was she making another mistake? Should she have started over somewhere else?

Ding, ding, ding. The low-fuel indicator chimed, and the little red light blinked on. Shoot!

Tommy’s Texaco loomed.

Relieved, she flipped on her turn signal, veered into the lot, and pulled up to the gas pump.

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Q&A

Q&A: Jus Accardo of INFINITY

Infinity Jus Accardo

Jus Accardo hasn’t just given us a great science fiction romance in Infinity and an amazing Q&A. She’s also made us Google “cake pie”. It is a real thing and it is beautiful. Your day is better now!


What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

Kate and Leopold

10 Things I Hate About You

Never Been Kissed

Grosse Pointe Blank

Hitch

Describe your favorite scene from each one (you can include a Youtube clip if you want as well).

When Kate goes to Leopold in the 19th century swoon

When Patrick ‘apologises’ to Kat by singing to her during practice. sigh

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “A Small Town Haunting” by Charity Beecham

We’re more than ready for the fun part of the holidays. But with Halloween fast approaching, there’s an element of the truly spooky missing from our celebration. Copious amounts of candy and cute ghosts and pumpkins don’t really cut it and outside of Gomez and Morticia Adams (my actual heroes) there aren’t enough scary OTPs to fawn over. So here’s a truly haunting true story from Charity Beecham:


viola-1 When I first began my search for the perfect haunted topic to write about, I thought that it would be a piece of cake. I knew that I wanted my story to be in Alabama, and for it to be a subject that was not widely known. For the first few weeks my possible topics just kept leading to dead ends. I was simply not impressed with what I was finding. Then one day I overheard a couple of men talking, and they mentioned a name in the sense that everyone should have known this name. I asked my husband about the name and he could not believe that I had never heard the story. A haunting story that took place not even five miles from where I currently live. My heart skipped a beat. The very haunted, hidden story that I had been searching for was finally found.

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Guest Post

The SMP Holiday Romance Blitz: Books & Wish Lists!

 

SMP Romance Holiday Blitz

If everything smells like fresh baked cookies and feels like holiday cheer you’ve actually baked cookies while on the internet (well done) or you’re right in the middle of our SMP Holiday Romance Blitz! Don’t miss the favorite books and wish lists of some amazing authors!


Favorite Holiday Book

holiday-book

Ruth Logan Herne: The Crippled Lamb by Max Lucado (I cry every time!!!)

Donna Alward: Twas the Night Before Christmas, because we still read it every year even though the kids are grown!

Laura Trentham: I’ve read Pete the Cat Saves Christmas about a hundred times since last Christmas to my daughter. I can recite the book, and I’ve even dreamed about it.

Nancy Naigle: I love all of those specialty shape hard cover Christmas books. I reread them every year. My favorite? Debbie Macomber’s There’s Something About Christmas

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Guest Post

The SMP Holiday Romance Blitz: Costumes & Consumables!

SMP Romance Holiday Blitz

Listen, we’re into the holidays over here. How into them? Well, I’m wearing a plastic ghost necklace that lights up as I type this. We’re extremely into holidays. So when we found out about the SMP Holiday Romance Blitz we had to participate! Check out Part 1 of our holiday Q&A with some amazing authors!


Favorite Halloween Costume

halloween

Ruth Logan Herne: Crotchety Old Lady Slightly Sinister… 🙂

Donna Alward: As little as possible. 🙂 I confess I’m not really a Halloween person.

Laura Trentham: I was a roller derby girl for an adult Halloween party a couple of years ago. Everything was great until after a couple of drinks, I fell on my tailbone. Nothing was seriously hurt except for my pride though! The next year, my hubby and I went as bacon and eggs. Very safe (and delicious 🙂 )

Nancy Naigle: Pocahontas! Easy to answer this one because I was Pocahontas for Halloween in the 2nd grade, the 6th grade, in junior high and even as an adult…twice. All with different costumes, and each more elaborate than the last. In the 2nd grade I was Pocahontas and my little brother (3 years my junior) was Chief Powhatan. My mom even made a wooden papoose for me and made my baby doll a matching Indian outfit complete with headband and a feather.
I might just have to find a costume party to attend. I’m in the mood to craft another Pocahontas outfit this year.

Margaret Brownley: One year my six-foot-six husband dressed as the Jolly Green Giant and I was a can of peas. It took forever to apply the green makeup, but it was worth it. We took the top prize at every party we attended that year.

Tara Wyatt: In college, I dressed up in a red fedora and trench coat and went as Carmen Sandiego. Where in the world am I? Eating all the candy. That’s where I am.

Opal Carew: Genie! I’ve always loved genies. I love the magic and the power play between the genie and the genie’s master. I love the costumes because they’re sexy and beautiful. (I used to do belly dancing and made several costumes for myself.)

Emily March: The Uncle Sam costume we put on our beloved boxer, Doc. He was disgusted by the ordeal, but stoic. 🙂

Melissa Cutler: Cowgirl (of course!)


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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Magnetic Couples” by Santino Hassell

Interborough Santino Hassell

Some of my favorite couples are magnetic—drawn to each other despite being opposites. Ron and Hermione in Harry Potter, Simon and Alisha on Misfits, Han Solo and Princess Leia from Star Wars, and many more. These couples usually have the most interesting relationship dynamics, the funniest banter, and the best buildup of unresolved sexual tension.

I strove to hit those goals with my characters in the Five Boroughs and especially with Raymond and David, the main characters in Sunset Park and my upcoming novel Interborough. Interborough picks up a year after Sunset Park leaves off, and shows the boys working through problems that have arisen in their relationship due to the constant stress of external issues (work, money, family). My goal with Interborough was to show they could make it for the long run, but also to get more of those fan favorite Rayvid moments.

If you’ve forgotten their dynamics, or have never read these characters before, this is a highlight reel of Raymond and David being totally different people who just can’t stay away from each other.

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