Tag Archives: Contemporary Romance

“10 Moments That Changed My Life” by Iris Blobel ~ New Release: New Beginnings

I LOVE the 10 Moments That Changed My Life posts, and we haven’t had one in a while, so I’m pleased to share one from author Iris Blobel…

 

New Beginnings

by Iris Blobel

Thank you, Alicia, for having me on your blog and a big hello from Australia to you and your readers.

Here my 10 moments that have changed my life … in no particular order:

  1. The first “moment” that comes to mind is my move from Germany to Australia. It was scary and such a big step for me. Life here is great, and I don’t regret the decision, but I do miss my family back home.
  2. My wedding, of course, another memorable moment and one that has changed my life. We celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary only recently – such an achievement J
  3. Having children has changed my life, no doubt about it. Suddenly life’s priorities have altered and the love of the two human beings I created is the most important part of my daily life.
  4. My grandma died when I was twenty and for the first time in my life, I had to deal (and cope!) with “death”. It was a hard lesson which took me a long time to come to terms with it.
  5. This one is a recent change of my life – Last November I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I’m still in treatment, but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I’m feeling better every day and I’m looking forward to going back to something close to a routine soon again.
  6. After my traineeship at the TV station, I went for a year to the UK. Life changing in a big way … returning not only more mature, but also more confident, and with the idea that there’s more to life than finishing school and start work. I knew then that I wanted to travel the world.
  7. Publishing my first book was a massive event for me. I always considered myself, and probably still do, more a “numbers” person. Writing a book in a second language and have a decent (local!) success changed my life in a sense that I do something I have come to love, something my teacher told me I was useless at. Writing is my escape from routine.
  8. I’ve been presenting the German program at our community radio for a few years now. It’s great and so much fun.
  9. Travelling through Canada and Alaska for three months was one of the highlights as well. I meet my (Australian) husband while on a tour.
  10. And … last but not least, a moment that didn’t necessarily change my life, but one that was hard and might be life changing one day: the day I had to say goodbye to my mother last year not knowing whether I’ll ever see her again.

Oh my, Iris. You have had some experiences. I am sorry about the breast cancer. Thank God you’re improving. Sending good thoughts and prayers your way. Thank you so much for sharing with us today!

BLURB NEW BEGINNINGS

The chance to start life all over with the help of a stranger. 

Twenty-two-year-old Sophie Levesque has been guardian to her eight-year-old sister Mia since their mother’s death a few years ago, and it hasn’t been easy. Luck comes their way when they inherit a small house in Hobart. Problem is, though, they don’t know and have never heard of Clara Bellinger, the testator. Settling into their new life, Sophie is still afraid it’s all a mistake.

Mark O’Connor, attorney in Hobart and the bearer of the good news for Sophie and Mia, curses himself for the lack of information about the testator. However, researching the questions gives him an opportunity to see Sophie again, and the more time he spends with the two, the more he realises that his life is missing something. And it’s not his casual lover Linda.

But then there’s Zach, Sophie’s sexy neighbour from across the road… and a very good friend of Clara’s.

Will unravelling the mystery unravel Sophie and Mark’s promise of a future?

EXCERPT

Sophie Levesque stared at the attorney in front of her, waiting for some answers. She and her little sister, Mia, had been quietly sitting in Mr. O’Connor’s office for more than half an hour, learning about the details of their inheritance.

Once he was finished, silence hung in the air before she asked with raised eyebrows. “Who?”

“Clara Catherine Bellinger.”

Mia leaned closer to her elder sister and gave a soft tug on Sophie’s shirt. “Who is she?”

Sophie shrugged. “I wouldn’t have a clue.” Then turned her attention back on Mr. O’Connor and asked the same thing. “Who is she?”

The handsome attorney on the other side of the massive desk leaned forward and rested his elbows on it before he started to repeat his earlier speech. Although hearing his words, Sophie still found it all very hard to comprehend. Here she was in this old office, furnished with heavy antique oak furniture, the curtains in a pretty shade of aubergine, and the carpet beneath her shoes thick and warm in a matching shade, hearing about an inheritance from someone she’d never even heard of.

Startled by the subtle sound of the clock chiming across the road, Sophie’s gaze turned to the window, where she saw the post office building across the road. It looked impressive and old. It’d been only a few hours since they’d arrived in Hobart, the most southern capital in Australia, but she already liked it. A lot more than Sydney, the place she’d lived all her life.

Hauled back from her thoughts, she heard Mr. O’Connor say, “I believe she was a distant relative of yours. I’m afraid I don’t have any further details.”

Sophie arched an eyebrow in disbelief, doubting the accuracy of it all. Not only did she try not to question his competence as a lawyer, but she also hoped it wasn’t a dreadful misunderstanding.

With a slight shrug of her shoulder, she asked, “Why not?”

He met her gaze steadily. “Pardon me?”

Sitting up straight, she repeated, “Why not? Why aren’t there any further details?”

He rubbed his chin with his fingers, his unease now obvious, and although she almost felt sorry for him, she tried not to care. She needed to know more. And not just the what, but why and who as well.

 

PURCHASE LINKS:

AMAZON US: http://amzn.to/2a1BSJ7

AMAZON UK: http://amzn.to/29FTb4B

AMAZON AU: http://amzn.to/2a9yKgW

 

 

BIO:

Iris Blobel was born and raised in Germany and only immigrated to Australia in the late 1990s. Having had the travel bug most of her life, Iris spent quite some time living in Scotland, London, as well as Canada where she met her husband. Her love for putting her stories onto paper has only emerged recently, but now her laptop is a constant companion.

Iris resides west of Melbourne with her husband and her two beautiful daughters.

Next to her job at a private school, she also presents a German Program at the local Community Radio.

 

Social Media Links:

Click here to subscribe to Iris’ Newsletter

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/IrisBlobel

Twitter: https://twitter.com/_iris_b

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4067254.Iris_Blobel

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

 

24 Comments

Filed under 10 Moments that Changed My Life, Author Blog Post, New Release

Friday Fragment Contest – #Giveaway #FunGame #BookLovers – April 28, 2017

fri-fragments-and-spotalie

Happy Friday and welcome to my LAST week for this contest –

Guess the fragment, and enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card!!!

Below you will find three different books, by three different authors, and beneath each, you will find three different short excerpts. Only one excerpt is from the listed book. Using the form at the bottom of the post, enter your guesses as to which excerpt is correct for each book. Once a month, I will draw a name from all those who attempt a guess on this game, AND on my Facebook SpotaLie game (check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAliciaDean/) The winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card. (Final Winner to be drawn Monday, May 1st – Good luck!)

Each week, the first person to guess all 3 correctly receives an additional entry. (TIP: Click on each link and read the blurbs for a better chance at guessing correctly) – Remember, you get an entry just for guessing!

In addition to filling out the contact form, we’d also love it if you would comment, whether it is about your guesses, the books, the authors, etc. 

Have fun!

NOTE – This is the last Friday Fragement spot. There will be one more SpotaLie spot on my Facebook page this Sunday, and I will draw my final winner on Monday, May 1st —– Beginning in May, rather than these two regular postings, I will have random games and give various prizes, rather than one monthly prize. Sometimes it will be a 5 or 10 dollar gift card, sometimes other items. This way, more participants have a chance of winning. Thank you to all the authors and readers who have played along with these fun games. Check my Alicia Dean Friends and Fan Club group for info and the new games.

Terms and Conditions: No purchase necessary to win. There is no limit on how many times one entrant can win. You do not have to guess correctly to be entered in the monthly drawing.

*** This game runs from the day it’s posted through Sunday, April 30th at midnight, so feel free to send your guesses in and comment any time. 

Book 1:

Book Title Catch Me If I Fall (The Kim Brothers Book 1) by Kay Blake

Find Kay Here: http://www.twitter.com/authorkayblake

 

Snippet A:

We were quiet as we made it back to the elevator. I wiped a tear from my face which he saw but didn’t remark. Once he reached it, he leaned against the wall. “You did great today. Thanks so much for helping out today,” he said. “Thanks. Uh, it was a bit difficult, but overall it was nice.” “I could tell it was a bit hard. You confirmed it once you wiped that tear from your face,” “Yeah sorry about that.” “Don’t apologize for it. We’re human. We all have emotions and we are all allowed to express them.”

Snippet B:

He cleared his throat. It pulled me away from studying him. His blue eyes were questioning. The small space that separated us suddenly felt oppressive. If I had it my way I would say my goodbyes to Sam and head back to sunny California, without laying out any skeletons. As I stood in front of him, I knew he wouldn’t allow that. It wasn’t Liam’s style. His gaze told me he understood what couldn’t be said. Not here. Not now. But soon. His fingers closed around my elbow, and a jolt of hot, potent electricity shot up my arm.

Snippet C:

Taking a few sips of my latte, I looked around. Bingo, there he was. My inspiration for the day. He had an intense look on his face, which was odd since it appeared that he was only skimming through the pages of a book. His skin was olive and his strong jaw gave me visions of him whispering commands that I would be all too keen on obeying. Picking up my pencil, I opened to a clean page in my book and started sketching his face. I noticed the light stubble on his chin.

Book 2: 

The Lady of the Forest by Barbara Bettis

Find Barbara Here: http://www.facebook.com/BarbaraBettisAuthor

Snippet A:

[She] turned to [him], uncertainty a sharp claw in her stomach. His fierce glare stopped her. For an instant she stood transfixed by his glower; an odd warmth joined the uncertainty prickling beneath her skin. He nodded. Then Sam’l and Oscar each grabbed an arm to help him. Good Lord, his large body filled the small space. How had she ever had the nerve to leap onto his back and wrestle him from his horse? A flash of self-preservation made her raise her chin. It was his own fault for having such wide shoulders. They made a perfect landing spot.

Snippet B:

There you are,” his voice boomed. “Let me see my bride!” He reached in,… lifted her to the ground. He frowned. He squeezed her waist. He growled. His big hands shoved to her hips… “What’s this? Your brother promised me a plain and sturdy bride. Not some frail beauty.” He stepped back to look her up and down… “I expected a woman with some flesh to her. By God, you’d best be breeding in a fortnight, or I’ll send you back. Wait.” His wild gray brows lifted. “You are Lady Emelin, aren’t you? Sir Humphrey, did you bring the right female?”

Snippet C:

He must cure [her] of her youthful hero worship, for her own good. He scrubbed a palm against his aching chest. There would never be another woman for him. Ever. Especially one whose smiles could light up a man’s heart. If only he possessed one.

Book 3:

Without Mercy by Alicia Dean

Snippet A:

Ivy tapped her foot as she waited. What had she been thinking? Where she came up with that line, she had no idea. It had just occurred to her out of the blue. The likelihood of Grant Crawford being enticed by such a sentiment was doubtful. He was a practical, down to Earth man with no time for love, let alone flights of fancy.

That’s why her chin almost hit the ground when Grant Crawford came through the door from the restaurant into the foyer. If she thought he looked good from the clouds, oh my. He wore black slacks and a dove gray shirt and black tie without a jacket. His eyes were even darker brown up close. Her stomach quivered, and her fingers went numb.

Snippet B:

China’s fingers could barely function as she punched in Miles’ number. Before she completed the digits, the phone shrilled in her hand. She jumped and almost dropped it.

The caller ID showed her home number. Dear God. Who was at her house?

She jammed the answer button with her thumb. “Hello?”

“Miss Beckett.”

“Who is this?”

“You do not know me.” The voice was deep, heavily accented. Austrian? German? Swedish? “Emma is here with me. You must please come home now.”

Snippet C:

“I googled the island before I came. I read that a large number of people are killed or go missing from here. Is that true?”

He shrugged and glanced at her in the mirror again. “Not really. Just rumors that circulate because so many people who visit our island decide to stay. They never go back home.”

“But wouldn’t their families know that? They wouldn’t be missing then. And it seems to me the island would become overpopulated very quickly.”

Another shrug. “You know how rumors go. Urban legends and the like.”

His explanation was less than satisfactory. Too vague. Something in his tone made her feel he wasn’t being completely honest. I guess that makes two of us.

 

The correct answers from last week: (No one guessed correctly, I’m afraid. :()

Book 1 – B

Book 2 – C

Book 3 – A

2 Comments

Filed under Author Blog Post, Friday Fragment, giveaway

Friday Fragment Contest – #Giveaway #FunGame #BookLovers – April 21, 2017

fri-fragments-and-spotalie

Happy Friday and welcome to my weekly contest –

Guess the fragment, and enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card, given away monthly!!!

Below you will find three different books, by three different authors, and beneath each, you will find three different short excerpts. Only one excerpt is from the listed book. Using the form at the bottom of the post, enter your guesses as to which excerpt is correct for each book. Once a month, I will draw a name from all those who attempt a guess on this game, AND on my Facebook SpotaLie game (check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAliciaDean/) The winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card.

Each week, the first person to guess all 3 correctly receives an additional entry. (TIP: Click on each link and read the blurbs for a better chance at guessing correctly) – Remember, you get an entry just for guessing!

In addition to filling out the contact form, we’d also love it if you would comment, whether it is about your guesses, the books, the authors, etc. 

Have fun!

NOTE – I am discontinuing the weekly Friday Fragment contest and SpotaLie Facebook Contest after April. Beginning in May, rather than these two regular postings, I will have random games and prizes where I do more frequently and give various prizes, rather than one monthly prize. Sometimes it will be a 5 or 10 dollar gift card, sometimes other items. This way, more participants have a chance of winning. Thank you to all the authors and readers who have played along with these fun games. Check my Alicia Dean Friends and Fan Club group for info and the new games.

Terms and Conditions: No purchase necessary to win. There is no limit on how many times one entrant can win. You do not have to guess correctly to be entered in the monthly drawing.

*** The game runs from the day it’s posted through the following Friday morning when the next post goes up, so feel free to send your guesses in and comment any time during that week. In order to stay up to date on each post, follow my blog by signing up in the column to the right. 

Book 1:

My Lord Ghost by Meredith Bond

Find Meredith here: http://www.meredithbond.com

Snippet A:

Oh, but his old bones ached. His whole body trembled with the cold as he galloped across a bare countryside soaked in the pale gray shadows of moonlight. Why hadn’t he taken a carriage? He could have been warm and snug inside with a hot brick at his feet. Thank goodness it wouldn’t be much longer. He hated being old almost as much as he hated this infernal cycle of life in which he was trapped. The standing stones appeared in the distance, beckoning to him. As always, they stood waiting to welcome him home.

Snippet B:

I got up. Grateful for the moonlight, I managed to find and light my bedside candle. Donning my robe, I crept to the connecting door. Putting my ear to the door, I listened closely. Alternate moans and sobs mixed with wails of pure despair. Gooseflesh covered my arms.
Very slowly, I turned the handle. The door wasn’t locked. Taking a deep but quiet breath in, I tiptoed toward the bed. My hand hesitated at the curtain’s edge. Slowly I grasped hold of the heavy fabric and began to inch it open, trying to peer
inside.
“NO!” the man’s voice yelled…
Snippet C:

Rose turned back to the gentlemen and said with an apologetic smile and a shrug, “mia kaké arché kánei éna kakó télos ”

“I beg your pardon!” the duke sputtered. “Perhaps the reason why your aunt hasn’t introduced you is because you have never been taught how to behave in public.”

“I beg your pardon, sir,” her father started, his eyes narrowing with anger. Rose put a hand on his arm.

“She is nattering on in some strange, unknown language,” the man said, scowling down at her. “Either that, or she’s lost her mind and is speaking gibberish!” 

“My Lord Duke, I believe the young lady was speaking Greek,” a younger gentleman said. He was quite a sight.

Book 2:

Nothing Stays the Same by Catherine Chant

Find Catherine here: http://www.CatherineChant.com

Snippet A:

Despite her best efforts, tears seeped from Sable’s eyes as she dutifully followed her mother away from the grave. She didn’t dare try to wipe at them or call attention to herself in any way. “Don’t embarrass me” had been her mother’s motto for as long as Sable could remember. Falling apart and making scenes was not allowed in good families like theirs. Sable marched stiffly toward the long, black car waiting to take her family back to their house for the repast. She’d never understood the practice. Eating and socializing was the last thing on her mind.

Snippet B:

Callie couldn’t put the album down. She traced her finger across the name, then flipped it over to read the back. “Nana, who’s Joey Tempo?” Kind of a corny name, really. Probably a novelty record. It would make a nice addition to her vintage album collection, though, even if it weren’t right for the party. “A singer from the 50’s,” her grandmother answered without pausing in her work. “Like Elvis Presley.” Like Elvis? “Yeah, but I’ve heard of Elvis. How come I’ve never heard of this Joey guy? Was his music any good?”

Snippet C:

Brennan sat forward and rubbed a rough hand across his face, massaged his temples. What the hell happened today? One minute he’d been listening to some old tape of his father’s, the next he’d woken up on a studio lot in 1973. And then…his father. Of all the people to suddenly come face-to-face with. Now, Leah. Leah. He fell back against the cushions again with a long, drawn-out sigh. Why did the best moments of his life always seem to piggyback on the worst? Like that day in the record store. He’d been about to ask Leah out and bam! His father’s dead.

Book 3:

The Pleasure Device (Harwell Heirs Book 1) by Regina Kammer

 

Find Regina here: http://kammerotica.com/

Snippet A:

“Sophie, you’re looking radiant. And Helena, all grown up.” The familiar voice filled her with a glow of joy. “Uncle Arthur!” Uncle Arthur, ever so dapper in his evening attire, stood next to a column with his arms open wide waiting for her to hug him. Helena knew she had to restrain herself in such a public place. Still, he was her favorite uncle, and she, his favorite niece, a private joke since neither had any more of such relations. He wrapped his arms around her and patted her politely, then turned to Mama and kissed her on both cheeks.

Snippet B:

She loved Arthur, she really did. He was the best brother in the world. Why, at that very moment he danced with his fiancée Henrietta—Henny—her full skirts swinging like a bell in perfect rhythm to his lead, their faces flushed and smiling. His countenance reflected the swell of pride he felt toward Henny, hers how absolutely besotted she was with him. They were a perfect couple and Sophia did not wish them ill will in the slightest, but she did take umbrage over the fact that Arthur was allowed to marry for love and she was not.

Snippet C:

She jumped at Arthur’s hiss, tumbling backward to the carpet. He grabbed her around the waist, lifting her quite readily, hauling her down the corridor. His anger was palpable, his fingers digging into her side, the knuckles of his other hand white as he clutched a book. He slammed her against the wainscoting of a recessed doorway, threw the book to the floor and dug the heels of his palms painfully into her shoulders. “What the hell do you think you were doing?” His breath fanned hot on her lips, the hint of tobacco and brandy flaring her nostrils.

 

 

The correct answers from last week: (No one guessed correctly, I’m afraid. :()

Book 1 – B

Book 2 – C

Book 3 – C

1 Comment

Filed under Author Blog Post, Friday Fragment, giveaway

Friday Fragment Contest – #Giveaway #FunGame #BookLovers – April 14, 2017

fri-fragments-and-spotalie

Happy Friday and welcome to my weekly contest –

Guess the fragment, and enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card, given away monthly!!!

Below you will find three different books, by three different authors, and beneath each, you will find three different short excerpts. Only one excerpt is from the listed book. Using the form at the bottom of the post, enter your guesses as to which excerpt is correct for each book. Once a month, I will draw a name from all those who attempt a guess on this game, AND on my Facebook SpotaLie game (check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAliciaDean/) The winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card.

Each week, the first person to guess all 3 correctly receives an additional entry. (TIP: Click on each link and read the blurbs for a better chance at guessing correctly) – Remember, you get an entry just for guessing!

In addition to filling out the contact form, we’d also love it if you would comment, whether it is about your guesses, the books, the authors, etc. 

Have fun!

NOTE – I am discontinuing the weekly Friday Fragment contest and SpotaLie Facebook Contest after April. Beginning in May, rather than these two regular postings, I will have random games and prizes where I do more frequently and give various prizes, rather than one monthly prize. Sometimes it will be a 5 or 10 dollar gift card, sometimes other items. This way, more participants have a chance of winning. Thank you to all the authors and readers who have played along with these fun games. Check my Alicia Dean Friends and Fan Club group for info and the new games.

Terms and Conditions: No purchase necessary to win. There is no limit on how many times one entrant can win. You do not have to guess correctly to be entered in the monthly drawing.

*** The game runs from the day it’s posted through the following Friday morning when the next post goes up, so feel free to send your guesses in and comment any time during that week. In order to stay up to date on each post, follow my blog by signing up in the column to the right. 

Book 1:

Cupid Scores by Sylvia McDaniel

Buy link: https://www.amazon.com/Cupid-Scores-Western-Contemporary-Romance-ebook/dp/B01N4RZJQJ/ref=pd_sim_351_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=S3FJSGSVCEXR0F0CTWPT

Snippet A:

“Dancing around this statue is going to help us find the man of our dreams?” Kelsey questioned. “Whoever made up this shit is sitting back somewhere laughing at how many fools stripped off their clothes and danced in the moonlight.” “In the middle of freaking winter,” Meghan added. “Come on, girls, we’re doing this. We’re going to prove this is either the biggest farce in town or it’s going to work for my friends. Just not for me.” “I hope this is worth it,” Meghan said as they began to remove clothing. This little escapade must be kept secret from her family.

Snippet B:

“It worked for all those other women. Why not us? The superstition says at midnight anyone chanting and dancing naked around the fountain will soon meet their true love. I’ve never believed in the notion, but hey, I’m game. We’ve got thirty minutes. Let’s go kick some Cupid butt and see if that superstition is real or not.” “You want me to take off my clothes and dance in front of you and everyone else in town, chanting some silly verse?” Meghan said, her voice rising. That was the most ridiculous thing Meghan ever heard. But then again, what if it worked?

Snippet C:

“Valentine’s Day. Today is the cheating snake’s wedding day,” Taylor Braxton said, flipping her blonde hair over her shoulder before taking a sip of wine. Her third glass of the evening. “I’d like to propose a toast to his new wife. May she never find him in her bed with someone else, like I found her in mine.” The three women clinked glasses. “Maybe it was for the best. After all, lawmen are known for being serial cheaters,” Meghan, one of Taylor’s best friends, said in her quiet librarian voice. She gave a shake of auburn hair, her emerald eyes filled with sympathy.

 

Book 2:

Beloved Enemy by Hywela Lyn

Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/Beloved-Enemy-Hywela-Lyn/dp/1509205349/

Find Hywela here: http://www.hywelalyn.co.uk

Snippet A:

She sighed softly and decided she could leave it no longer. He turned and looked at her. “Something on scan that should not be there?” he asked, the brusque tone of his voice breaking into her musings. “No, it’s just…so beautiful out there—and so vast,” she replied. How could he fail to be moved by the stars she loved so much? “It makes me think of something my mother told me when I was a child back on Earth.” He raised an eyebrow. “Oh?” “You wouldn’t be interested. It’s just a story.” She rose from her seat. “Try me.”

Snippet B:

He noticed on the shore several gigantic, human-like statues, but had no time to contemplate or admire them. After he had travelled for some time he saw ahead an immense sheet of water spilling from the roof in a fury of white and rainbow coloured froth. The water around the boat raced and boiled and he realised he was heading into a maelstrom. There was no way he could control the frantic motions of the craft as it heaved and bucked like an unbroken colt. Throwing down the paddle and gripping the sides of the boat, he sent a frantic message through the ether.

Snippet C:

“I hope for your sake nothing, or no-one, attacks us in the night.” “Don’t worry, I’ll protect you,” she said, mimicking his mocking tone. “And I told you, the vessel will be shielded, and any intruders are going to be sorry if they try to break through. As for the gun, you can have it back as soon as I know I can trust you.” (Unless your friends come back for you, in which case you’ll be my ticket off this planet.) His face betrayed no emotion. Curse him. What was going on behind those amazing, if ice-cold, eyes?

 

Book 3:

Wicked Lustful Tales by Maria Cox

Buy link: http://www.melange-books.com/authors/mariacox/WLTcc.html

Find Maria Here: http://www.mariacox.net

Snippet A:

During a group cycling vacation in the Caribbean Shana White learns that her boyfriend is moving to New York to further his career without her. With no intention of sulking Shana opts for a day excursion with former beau and fellow cyclist Nick Marino. After a biking accident leaves them stranded the rekindling of an old friendship and memories of their torrid past emerge leaving Shana to struggle with conflicting emotions. Now on the rebound can she afford to seek solace in Nick’s arms and risk heartache all over again?

Snippet B:

When Nina Bates discloses her pregnancy she’s soon shunned by her boyfriend and her mother. Alone and confused Nina turns to her grandmother who suggests she leave her hometown of Seattle and move to Alaska. In Anchorage, divorcee Dexter McIver hires Nina as live-in nanny to his son. An emotional bond develops between them and after Nina delivers her baby the smoldering attraction that existed for months threatens to boil over. With so much at stake should Nina and Dexter go out on a limb for a brief liaison?

Snippet C:

With a career in photography about to take off Adam Baxter is at the top of his game. Office buddy Jennifer Silva has been a supportive friend from the start and the two have an easygoing platonic relationship. But when Adam’s assistant Nellie singles out Adam’s jealous behavior he’s forced to analyze his true feelings for beautiful, caring Jennifer. Adam knows all too well that a romantic involvement can complicate matters. So, is Adam ready to put it all on the line and take their friendship to the next level?

 

The correct answers from last week: (No one guessed correctly, I’m afraid. :()

Book 1 – A

Book 2 – A

Book 3 – A

2 Comments

Filed under Author Blog Post, Friday Fragment, giveaway

Author Interview with Lori Sizemore ~ New Release: Infamous

Please help me welcome Lori Sizemore with an interview and her new release…

Please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets?

I’m from a very small town in southern West Virginia and, after moving around the state some for college, that’s where I returned. I actually live in the home my husband helped his father build. We’ve raised our daughters here, more than anywhere else. I’ve been married for over twenty years and we have three daughters (22, 20, and 12) and one little tiny baby granddaughter. We also have two dogs (Paul and Izzy) and a cat (Farrah Pawcett).

Where did you get the idea for Infamous?

I got the idea a while back when it seemed everyone was coming out with a sex tape for the sole purpose of getting famous. I wondered what it would be like to have that happen to a person (through no consent or decision of their own) and how that person’s day-to-day life might look. For instance, it’s not as though a woman could hold down a job, say, in retail when the paparazzi are stalking her simply because her parents are famous and someone decided to cash in on that tangential fame. Justine, my heroine—who I like to consider pretty good at handling this difficult situation, grew from those questions.

Why did you choose this genre (is it something you’ve written before)?

I write contemporary romance because I think life today is just as fascinating, challenging, and funny as life in any time period, if not more so. We have the world at our fingertips, but we’re still all just trying to get by the best we can and find some joy in life.

What is the most difficult thing about writing a book?

When I do complain about the writing process, which I do occasionally (read, plenty of the time), the most difficult part is whatever part I’m in at that moment. Writing is the hardest if I’m doing a first draft. Revision is the hardest if I’m editing. Querying is always a nightmare (all that waiting) and then revisions and galleys once a book is contracted. Whatever phase I’m in makes all the others seem like they’re so much more fun.

How did you come up with the title?

I am awful at titles. I usually have to call in other writer friends to help me because I’m just trash at them. But Infamous just popped into my head one day, not long before I began the submission process, and I knew that was the perfect name. It describes the heroine and her life so far exactly.

Do you collect anything?

I collect coffee mugs. I have far too many. I’m blessed to have a fairly large kitchen and I have my most prized mugs hanging under the cabinets and even then, with about nine of those up, I’m struggling to find another way to display even more. It doesn’t hurt that I adore coffee. Actually, that’s probably the reason for my obsession.

What was your first job?

I was a typist and file clerk for a psychologist. It was fascinating work and being a small part of helping people was a big reward. It was no real surprise I found myself drawn to the field when I went to choose my major. I got my B.S. in Social and Behavioral Science and became a social worker.

What’s the main thing that you could get rid of in your life that would give you more writing time?

Real Housewives. I’m kind of a sucker for a few of those reality shows. Even though they’re “real,” they still follow a narrative that I find really interesting. And all that drama is fodder for writing. Everything can be turned into writing ideas, really.

What do you want readers to come away with after they read Infamous?

People are resilient and for those who are willing to work hard for it, happiness and love are out there for anyone. It’s just a matter of making our way through whatever life hands us.

Would you rather have a bad review or no review?

This is a really hard question! No one wants a bad review, but if that’s the honest opinion someone comes away from the book with then they should share that. So, I suppose I’d rather have a bad review than no review. At least from a bad review, especially if it’s constructive, I can grow as a writer.

What is your favorite quote?

“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” It’s from Dr. Seuss and it has shaped my life the last fifteen years and I think my writing as well. I believe that when someone loves us, they help us become a better us, not change who we are.

Have you written any other books that are not published?

I just got a contract for a matchmaking novella called Exactly Like You to be published by After Glows Publishing in their Kismet line. I’ve also written a series of three novellas set in 1958 Las Vegas about a sister and her two brothers. I’m hoping to find a home for those next year. Finally, I have completed the next Infamous novel titled Illegitimate. It’s in revision right now and I hope to have it off to my editor this month.

What do your friends and family think of your writing?

They have been incredibly supportive. My mom thinks my writing is a little risqué and advised my dad that he would probably do better to not read Infamous. When I told them both I wasn’t embarrassed by anything I’d written, my father shared this with me. “You write from your heart. I’m proud of you for writing what’s in your heart.”

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Family are the people who love you and family is everything.

Nice message! Thank you, Lori…I enjoyed getting to know you! Now, Lori has a question for you…

I’m going to ask the dreaded question of book-lovers everywhere—what’s your favorite book?

 

Blurb:

Justine Montgomery, daughter of a divorced beauty queen and TV magnate, is a tabloid disaster after her infamous sex tape. She’s so desperate to help save her family’s home she turns to her deal-making dad. Can she prove to him she’s cut out for a career in television or will she lose it all?

Sawyer has his own past and a successful career is his only goal. Seeing Justine fail would mean the promotion of a lifetime, but things get complicated when he develops feelings for her. Suddenly, the lines between work, life, sex, and love are blurry.

They will have to overcome the bitterness of a rejected ex, the controlling actions of her father, and the half-truths they’re telling one another to forge a lasting partnership both on the job and off the clock.

Excerpt:

She tangled her fingers through the hair that covered her face and pushed it away. Next thing he knew, she’d wrapped her arms around his waist.

“Justine? Um… what are you doing?”

“I’m hugging you. Taking emotional comfort.”

“Like a leech.”

“Haven’t you ever hugged before?”

“I’ve never hugged anyone I wasn’t going to have sex with.”

“We’re not having sex.” She squeezed him tighter and rested her head on his shoulder. “Hug me back.”

Sawyer lifted his arms and wrapped them around her, his hands cupping her shoulders, pulling her closer. He dropped his head to rest on hers, and parts of him, so deep he couldn’t name them, pulled free and demanded his attention. Her hair smelled like fruit, the kind kids eat in the summer, juice dripping down their chins. “I’m fine with the hugging, but, just saying, I’m not responsible for any physical reaction hugging may induce.”

“Okay.” The word drifted out of her on a sigh.

He wasn’t equipped for this. There hadn’t been a lot of touching growing up, at least not the kind that didn’t end in a busted lip or a cracked rib. As an adult, there’d been lots of touching. But, not like this. The tighter he held her, the closer he wanted to be.

Buy link(s):

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Infamous-Lori-Sizemore-ebook/dp/B01MDMLPGC/

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/infamous-lori-sizemore/1124933782?ean=2940156932610

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/infamous/id1164135877?mt=11

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Lori_Sizemore_Infamous?id=nvKoDQAAQBAJ

BooksAMillion: http://www.booksamillion.com/p/Infamous/Lori-Sizemore/Q22117554?id=6903021944409

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/infamous-18

BookStrand: http://www.bookstrand.com/infamous-1

Bio:

Lori Sizemore grew up in the mountains of West Virginia and never quite managed to escape them. Lori lives at home with her husband of twenty-plus years and two of her three daughters. She also lives with two dogs, a cat, and five hermit crabs. Yes, five of them. This menagerie and her family keep her busy.

She worked in mental health as a social worker for ten years before making the choice to write full-time.

Contact links

FB Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/lorisizemoreauthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/lorisizemore

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/author/lorisizemore

Blog: http://lorisizemore.com/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/loriwrites

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

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

 

 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release

Friday Fragment Contest – #Giveaway #FunGame #BookLovers – April 7, 2017

fri-fragments-and-spotalie

Happy Friday and welcome to my weekly contest –

Guess the fragment, and enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card, given away monthly!!!

Below you will find three different books, by three different authors, and beneath each, you will find three different short excerpts. Only one excerpt is from the listed book. Using the form at the bottom of the post, enter your guesses as to which excerpt is correct for each book. Once a month, I will draw a name from all those who attempt a guess on this game, AND on my Facebook SpotaLie game (check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAliciaDean/) The winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card.

Each week, the first person to guess all 3 correctly receives an additional entry. (TIP: Click on each link and read the blurbs for a better chance at guessing correctly) – Remember, you get an entry just for guessing!

In addition to filling out the contact form, we’d also love it if you would comment, whether it is about your guesses, the books, the authors, etc. 

Have fun!

NOTE – I am discontinuing the weekly Friday Fragment contest and SpotaLie Facebook Contest after April. Beginning in May, rather than these two regular postings, I will have random games and prizes where I do more frequently and give various prizes, rather than one monthly prize. Sometimes it will be a 5 or 10 dollar gift card, sometimes other items. This way, more participants have a chance of winning. Thank you to all the authors and readers who have played along with these fun games. Check my Alicia Dean Friends and Fan Club group for info and the new games.

Terms and Conditions: No purchase necessary to win. There is no limit on how many times one entrant can win. You do not have to guess correctly to be entered in the monthly drawing.

*** The March Winner of the $25 Amazon Gift Card is Nisha Tissoo – Congratulations, Nisha!! Thank you for playing. (Nisha was very active on the SpotaLie Facebook game, and it paid off! :)).

*** The game runs from the day it’s posted through the following Friday morning when the next post goes up, so feel free to send your guesses in and comment any time during that week. In order to stay up to date on each post, follow my blog by signing up in the column to the right. 

 

Book 1:

 

MAN DOWN by Tracy Tappan

Amazon buy: https://goo.gl/j42GZv

Website: http://tracytappan.com/

Snippet A:

Her tone was so matter-of-fact that he wanted very badly to clamp a hand down over her mouth. The wild pounding of his pulse was machine-gun fire in his veins, counting down to an inevitable explosion. Shutting her up might save her. “I was able to steal medical supplies,” she said. “But I couldn’t get any food. However I figure…” Whatever she continued to say was blotted out by a crackle of fire in his ears. A single woman…alone at night…in a city full of terrorists. How many different ways could you be dead right now? He lost it.

Snippet B:

“You just did something with your mouth.” I did? “My mouth?” What had she done? “You grimaced.” “I…” He swung up to a sitting position, his boots hitting the floor with a solid wump. “Did I hurt you?” Mayday, mayday. Hard collision with his male ego imminent. “No. It was, uh, a little uncomfortable at first, but then—hey!” He’d just slammed to his feet, his eyes on fire with a mixture of emotions. Pissed off was a prominent one, but she was reasonably sure she also saw mortified in there.

Snippet C:

“Take her in your arms,” the drug lord instructed. “Kiss her, mouth open, with your tongue.” A tic jumped in his jaw. No, thank you. He’d prefer not to do that, now he was naked ’n’ all. His knees felt constructed of broken glass as he stepped back over to her. She straightened off the table. He aimed his vision at her neck. Whatever was going on in her eyes, he didn’t want to see. He tugged her against his body and exhaled. Her hooker dress provided little barrier against the feel of her ripe figure against his bare flesh.

Book 2:

The Captain and the Cheerleader by Elaine Cantrell

Buy Link: http://amzn.to/1NDgnrg

Find Elaine Here: https://www.amazon.com/Elaine-Cantrell/e/B001K7V90M/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1488077922&sr=8-1

Snippet A:

Susan finished her soft drink and tossed the can into a nearby recycling bin. “I could make Kurt ask me out if I wanted to.” “Yeah? Prove it. Get him to ask you out. I’ll bet you fifty dollars you can’t do it,” Robin taunted. “All he’s interested in is football.” Melissa Taylor, Susan’s best friend, cleared her throat. “How long would she have to get the date?” “Two weeks ought to be enough for an old pro like Susan.” Robin snickered as her gaze swept around the lounge. “Would the rest of you like to get a piece of the action?”

Snippet B:

“You missed me,” she taunted. She had no sooner finished speaking before a second bean ball flew through the air. This one caught the shoulder of her new blouse. The blonde laughed. Aimee grabbed a bean ball from the table and threw it at the blonde. She hit the woman right in the chest. “Help me!” the blonde shrieked. “She hit me in the heart. Where’s the sheriff?” From the corner of her eye, Aimee saw the priest hurrying their way. She fired one final bean ball, which hit the blonde’s forehead with a beany thud.

Snippet C:

“That’s what I get for falling in love with a pro football player,” Stacey teased, her blonde hair turned to frosted silver by the light of the full moon above them. Matt squeezed her hand that wore his engagement ring. “It’s too late to back out now. You’re mine.” “Mmm, do I like the sound of that!” The car rounded a curve, and without warning a deer bounded across the road. “Look out!” Stacey screamed. Matt braked sharply to avoid the animal. The tires slid on a patch of loose gravel in the road, and he lost control of the convertible.

Book 3:

Dan Alexander, Pitcher by Jean Joachim

Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M0UT7CS

Find Jean Here: http://www.jeanjoachimbooks.com

Snippet A:

Then, it happened. She dropped a hot dog loaded with mustard. The man in the stands stood up and started hollering. Holly bent over to clean it up. The guy in the TV booth running the camera zeroed in on her rear, and there it was, big as life on the Jumbotron! People clapped and hooted. The players laughed. Dan held his breath. She craned her neck and looked around. Although Dan couldn’t hear what the man was saying, the pitcher saw him point to the giant screen. Dan cringed as she spied her backside, huge, amusing the crowd.

Snippet B:

Depressed after losing the World Series, Matt needed sunshine, in short supply in February in New York. In the weeks before spring training, he’d agreed to head up a two-week camp for underprivileged kids. Matt wouldn’t be doing it alone, some joker, named Dusty Carmichael, from professional softball would partner with him. This jerk, Carmichael, was a pitcher. How good could he be playing men’s softball? It annoyed him to think he’d be running the show with little help from newbie who was getting paid a bundle. He shook his head. Why did he always get stuck with the losers?

Snippet C:

She rummaged through her purse until she located her wallet. No matter how many times she looked, she couldn’t scrounge up more than three dollars and fifty-six cents. She prayed it would be enough to buy breakfast. As to her next meal, well, she’d have to figure that out. She looked at the menu. One item under four dollars. She sat at the counter. “Coffee?” The waitress asked as she turned the cup. “No!” She didn’t have enough money for coffee. “I mean. Thank you, just water, please.” Kate sensed heat in her cheeks. She’d never been this broke before.

 

 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, Friday Fragment, giveaway

Friday Fragment Contest – #Giveaway #FunGame #BookLovers – March 31, 2017

fri-fragments-and-spotalie

Happy Friday and welcome to my weekly contest –

Guess the fragment, and enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card, given away monthly!!!

Below you will find three different books, by three different authors, and beneath each, you will find three different short excerpts. Only one excerpt is from the listed book. Using the form at the bottom of the post, enter your guesses as to which excerpt is correct for each book. Once a month, I will draw a name from all those who attempt a guess on this game, AND on my Facebook SpotaLie game (check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAliciaDean/) The winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card.

Each week, the first person to guess all 3 correctly receives an additional entry. (TIP: Click on each link and read the blurbs for a better chance at guessing correctly) – Remember, you get an entry just for guessing!

In addition to filling out the contact form, we’d also love it if you would comment, whether it is about your guesses, the books, the authors, etc. 

Have fun!

Terms and Conditions: No purchase necessary to win. There is no limit on how many times one entrant can win. You do not have to guess correctly to be entered in the monthly drawing.

*** Since tomorrow (April 1)  is the day I draw a winner, all guesses made after today (March 31) will go toward the April drawing.

*** The game runs from the day it’s posted through the following Friday morning when the next post goes up, so feel free to send your guesses in and comment any time during that week. In order to stay up to date on each post, follow my blog by signing up in the column to the right. 

Last week’s extra giveaway winners are listed below.  Congrats, ladies!

From Gemma Juliana – Free copy of The Amulet – Winner: Elf

From Cailin Briste – Free copy of Shane: Marshal of Tallav Book #1 in the Sons of Tallav series. – Winner Mary Anne

From Suzanne Stengl  – Free copy of ANGEL WINGS – Winner Melissa O’Leary

Book 1:

Overload Flux by Carol Van Natta

Buy link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OHNCCYI

Find Carol here: http://author.carolvannatta.com

Snippet A:

Imara badly wanted to get all the answers she could from him immediately, but she couldn’t justify torturing him any longer. He was only staying with her now out of good manners, and perhaps protectiveness. “You’ve got to get some rest, Agent Sòng. The security team will monitor the assho…uh, valued patron, so Derrit and I will be fine.” He gave her a tired but genuine smile. “I would be honored if you would call me Lièrén.” “Shì de, dāngrán, zūnjìng de xiānshēng.” Yes, of course, honored sir. She gave him an exaggerated bow. “Whatever honored sir desires.”

Snippet B:

“When they assigned you to me, did they tell you not to talk?” “No.” Her voice sounded low and rusty, as if she didn’t use it much. A ground skimmer that was weaving through the lanes came within centimeters of scraping their side panel, but she smoothly adjusted their position to narrowly avoid it. “Good,” he told her. “I’d hate to inhibit your natural garrulousness.” She glanced at him with a raised eyebrow and quirked a corner of her mouth in what may have been a smile, but said nothing. He laughed, delighted to discover she had a sense of humor. “I get the feeling you don’t do this very often.” “Drive?” “No, have a casual conversation.”

Snippet C:

For paradise, it sure as hell rained a lot. Jerzi hunched his shoulders forward and tried to keep the warm, torrential rain from drenching every square centimeter of his new corporate suit as he half ran toward the huge, rounded entrance to the lecture space in the Optimal Polytechnic Chemistry building. It was supposedly the tallest building of the four clustered on the anchored ovoid disc that made up this part of the famous floating campus, but he couldn’t see anything but gray shapes. The only available parking for his flitter had been on the east end of the floater, on top of the Materials Science building.

 

Book 2:

Pressed to Death by Kirsten Weiss

Buy link: https://www.amazon.com/Pressed-Perfectly-Proper-Paranormal-Mystery-ebook/dp/B01FOR0Z7G/

Find Kristen here: http://kirstenweiss.com

Snippet A

Once upon a time, in the foothills of granite mountains, when the sun hadn’t yet risen in the east, there were three sisters. And one, me, had been stuck at the hospital all night. The shadow of our small town’s modern hospital loomed over the parking lot. Behind it swelled Sierra peaks, a jagged frame vanishing into dark clouds. The muggy air promised rain to come, but I shivered in my thin blouse and safari jacket. Maybe if I hadn’t been so tired, I would have paid more attention to the images written in the clouds…

Snippet B

I was going to jail. Worse, my arch nemesis would be the one to drag me from my own paranormal museum. “I do not traffic in stolen goods.” My voice cracked on the final word. You’d think my innocence would go without saying, but Detective Laurel Hammer’s loathing for me was irrational. So I was saying it. I crossed my arms, defiant. The photos of executed murderers watched, impassive, from the museum’s glossy white walls. GD, the museum’s ghost detecting cat, hopped off the haunted rocking chair in the corner. He landed, silent, on the checkerboard floor

Snippet C

It was just meat. Sickly green tiles, slick with something I didn’t want to identify. A wall of cabinets with square, metallic doors. And on the autopsy table…just meat. I adjusted my mask, adapted my breathing. My stomach flipped at the smell of ammonia and petroleum. By this point, I should have been used to the oil stink. Baku, Azerbaijan’s capital, reeked of the stuff. It seeped from the ground, staining the sand, hanging heavy in the air. But surely I was imagining the odor here, in the morgue two stories below the city’s streets.

 

Book 3:

The Cafe Birds by Alicia Hope

Buy link: – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MYFPJ11

Find Alicia Here: https://www.aliciahopeauthor.blogspot.com.au

Snippet A

‘… even the most utilitarian bra doesn’t address all the issues, like white meat wobble, boobie bounce, old lady sway, tray tableism, and don’t get me started on strap gouge or mono-boobs!’ ‘What the heck is tray tableism?’ Grace giggled. ‘When your bust is jammed up under your collarbone, like a built-in tray table.’ Nita frowned. ‘Designers call it “lift and separate” but it’s more like “lift and suffocate”. I’ve also had bras that were sweet to look at but completely useless, and others that simply relocated the bulk to my back – and aren’t back boobs just the LOVELIEST sight?’

Snippet B

‘Elise?’ The voice was hoarse, breathy, weak. Fanning the flowers so each blossom was clearly visible from the bed, Elise set down the vase and pulled a chair closer to the bedside. ‘Yes, Emilie. How are you feeling?’ She took the shaky hand extended toward her. It felt small and chilled. She rubbed it between both her own. Emilie focused watery eyes on the younger woman’s flawlessly made-up face, and her nose caught a hint of expensive fragrance. She blinked and swallowed. ‘Elise … I must tell you … a story … from ze past.’

Snippet C

With a sheepish smile Grayson hurried to the bathroom as suds dripped into his eyes again. Trying to remove the image of his smooth, round pectorals and the hint of a six pack above his towel, Maggie took a deep breath and lifted her chin. Taking her steaming mug onto the landing she closed the door behind her, lent back against it, and sighed. So much for keeping our distance. I not only have a dinner date with Grayson, I’m also sharing my bathroom with him! First Harry, and now the plumbing. Is the universe conspiring to throw us together?

 

 

Correct answers from last week:

The first person to guess correctly was Elf, who wins an extra entry!!

Book 1:  Raven of Blackthorn Manor – C

Book 2: Maon: Marshal of Tallav -B

Book 3: The Thurston Heirloom – A

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Filed under Author Blog Post, Friday Fragment, giveaway