Thursday, November 24, 2016

Color of Love Blog Hop!

Hello! I am excited to be taking part in the Color of Love Blog hop. We are celebrating multicultural and interracial love, so if you enjoy romance novels featuring people of color, then keep reading! There are some GREAT prizes up for grabs, so don't miss out on entering a chance to win one of these grand prizes:

1st prize $75 GC + 7 ebooks
2nd prize $50 GC + 7 ebooks
3rd prize $30 GC + 7 ebooks
4th prize $15 GC + 7 ebooks
5th prize $10 GC + 7 ebooks
6th prize $5 GC + 7 ebooks


As for me, I am the author of five urban fantasy novels, all of which feature a woman of color as the main character, as well as MC and IR romances. Right now I have a standalone, Back Widow Witch out, as well as four books in my ongoing series The Reanimation Files:

 Black Widow Witch
 
The Reanimation Files:

I wanted my books to represent a kick ass main character, who is a woman of color, because let's face it, there could definitely be more diversity out there in the book world, especially in the Urban Fantasy genre. I wished for my books to be well rounded in terms of the characters represented, so my books have characters of various races and ethnic backgrounds. In the Reanimation Files, I also have a visually impaired character and a little person character. I love books that are all inclusive but don't beat you over the head with how diverse they are, or write the characters in such a way that makes you feel as though you are reading a stereotype or reading about a character who feels as though they were just added in an effort to diversify. So while my characters are all different, none of them are defined by their skin color or abilities. They are the cast on which the weight of my stories lie and I want to be able to take my readers through what is hopefully an interesting journey with characters they come to care about (or hate, I've definitely got some characters worth hating!). And of course there's romance galore!

Thanks for stopping by and learning more about me and my novels! I've posted some buy links below and along with the grand prize Rafflecopter I've got my own Rafflecopter giveaway as well. I would love to send someone a paperback copy of Affairs of the Dead, and an e-copy of Black Widow Witch. Make sure you enter both giveaways!

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Saturday, November 12, 2016

SPOTLIGHT! Wear White To Your Funeral

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Book Description:

Rory is your average high school senior. Or she was, until her mother banishes her to hell, also known as Trumbull, Connecticut. The small suburb with only a mall and movie theater, sure feels like the netherworld until Rory’s first day at her new school. That’s the day she meets Bowen, who begs her to join him on a class project. But when Bowen drags her to a graveyard after dark for research purposes, Rory wants to fly back home to Atlanta, or at least return to her aunt's house unharmed and unmolested.


Nothing could go wrong, right? They talk, they laugh, and they wander among the tombstones looking for information on the local ghostly legend known as the White Lady. Then they have to run, but they cannot outrun a ghost. In addition to the ghostly woman, a half buried dead body leads Rory and Bowen into a deadly game of cat and mouse, but who is the killer? Is it human or something long dead and otherworldly?


The police are of little help, Rory's aunt just wants her to remain safe, and Bowen, who she can't stay away from, keeps finding ways to get her into more trouble than she has ever known. Whether breaking into a suspected killer's house, being followed by a menacing ghost, or being stalked at school, Rory hopes finding the killer will put an end to the supernatural haunting. Before Rory can discover the identity of the killer, she is drawn into the mystery of the White Lady, which opens the door for some very real danger.

Excerpt:

Bowen sent her a text early the next morning as she sat at the kitchen table drinking her first cup of coffee. Nora was nowhere to be seen at this hour. She couldn’t imagine that Bowen had anything to do with seeing a ghost, but one tiny little part of her continued to wonder. She had no other rational explanation. Still, he would have to be an amazing actor if he had set everything up and pretended to be scared of the White Lady. Rory doubted it, but she didn’t know him that well. Although after their time together, Rory felt she could trust him.

“That was a great first date,” he sent the text.

“Yes it was,” Rory replied, not sure if Bowen was serious or not. The fact that Bowen considered it a date made Rory happy, and she had enjoyed their time together after the ghost and the graveyard. She wanted another date. “When’s the next one?” She typed.

“I can’t wait to see your pretty pimple.”

Rory looked at the screen. What did he mean by that? Had she broken out with all the stress lately? She didn’t think she had any blemishes when she had prepared for the date.

“Dimple.” The words appeared quickly on Rory’s phone screen.

“What?” She texted back.

“I meant that I can’t wait to see your cute dimple. Stupid auto correct.”

“Smooth.”

“I don’t want to write anything else and risk more embarrassment. I’ll see you in journalism.”

“I’m not worth the risk?” Rory wrote back.

“That’s not what I meant. You’re definitely worth the risk. I just don’t want to mess up.”

“You mess up often?” Rory texted, again not sure how serious this early morning conversation could be.

“Now this is just getting awkward. Be nice to me.” Bowen begged in text.

“I’m always nice.”

“This conversation indicates otherwise. I’ll have to wait and see for myself. Got to get ready for school. See you soon.”

“K.” Rory chuckled as she sent the text back to him. She clicked off the phone and prepared for school, a little more excited for the day than when she woke up.

Bio:

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Lisa Acerbo is a high school teacher and adjunct instructor at the college level, holding an EdD in Educational Leadership. This is her fourth novel. In addition to writing fiction, she has contributed to local newspapers, news and travel blogs including The Patch and Hollywood Scriptwriter. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, two daughters, three cats, dog, and horse, where she is an active part of the community. Her poetry won first place in a local writing competition and she is a judge in the annual town literary competition and arts festival.

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Monday, October 24, 2016

SPOTLIGHT! Promise Trail by Shirleen Davies

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Book Description:

Promise Trail, Book Six, Redemption Mountain Historical Western Romance Series

“The Redemption Mountain series is as good as historical romance gets—vivid settings, memorable characters, love, and lots at stake. Shirleen Davies knows how to bring the old west to life. You feel as if you've traveled, with the characters, to the frontier. I hope there will be more to come!” Book Review

Bull Mason has built a life far away from his service in the Union Army and the ravages of the Civil War. He’s achieved his dreams—loyal friends, work he enjoys, a home of his own, and a promise from the woman he loves to become his wife.

Lydia Rinehart can’t believe how much her life has changed. Escaping captivity from a Crow village, she finds refuge and a home at the sprawling Redemption’s Edge ranch…and love in the arms of Bull Mason, the ranch foreman. For the first time since her parents’ death, she feels cherished and safe.

In an instant their dreams are crushed…

Bull is resolute in his determination to track down and rescue Lydia’s brother, kidnapped during the celebration of their friend’s wedding. He’s made a promise—one he intends to keep. Picking the best men, they are ready to ride, until he’s given an ultimatum.

Choices can seldom be undone…

As their journey continues, the trackers become the prey, finding their freedom and lives threatened.

And promises broken can rarely be reclaimed…

Can Bull and Lydia trust each other again and find their way to back to the dreams they once shared?

Promise Trail is book six in the Redemption Mountain historical western romance series. It is a full length novel with an HEA and no cliffhanger.

Excerpt:

Bull wanted to rage at the world, shout that Lydia was his and no other man had the right to her. Watching her disappear into the tent with White Buffalo was too much to bear.

When he started to push from the ground, a hand clamped across his mouth before strong hands pulled him away from the ledge, wrestling him back to the ground. Luke and Travis worked to control what could be a deadly situation if Bull acted on his emotions.

As he struggled to gain freedom from their hold on his arms, Tat and Johnny dropped to their knees, each grabbing one of his legs, holding him still.

“We will get her back.” Luke stared at his close friend, his gaze unwavering as hate poured from Bull’s face. “Going in there now will only get us all killed, and Lydia will still be with White Buffalo.”

Bull shook his head, his body convulsing as he tried to wrench away from their grasp.

“Dammit, Bull. You have to get control. Besides, we have something White Buffalo doesn’t.” A small grin pulled up the corners of Luke’s mouth when Bull’s eyes went wide. “Now, if you’re ready to listen, we’ll let go.”

Bull cursed, stopping his attempts to break free. The others backed away when he stood, not knowing what to expect from a man who’d always been slow to anger and reticent to use his fists. He turned to Luke, a look on his face none of them had ever seen before.

“You tell me what we have that will change any of this.” The look in his eyes was hostile, yet pleading. He needed to hear a solution, something that would take away the pain seizing his heart.

“There’s nothing that will change what we just saw, but we do have a way to get her back.” Luke watched Bull’s eyes narrow. “Unless you won’t take her back after what you saw.”

“Hell yes, I want her back. I don’t care what he does to her. She’ll always be mine.”

Bio
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Shirleen Davies writes romance—historical, contemporary, and romantic suspense. She grew up in Southern California, attended Oregon State University, and has degrees from San Diego State University and the University of Maryland. During the day she provides consulting services to small and mid-sized businesses. But her real passion is writing emotionally charged stories of flawed people who find redemption through love and acceptance.  She now lives with her husband in a beautiful town in northern Arizona.

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Sunday, September 18, 2016

SPOTLIGHT! Deadly Deceit by Karen Randau

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Book Description:

A cocoon of naiveté shatters on Rita Warren’s thirtieth wedding anniversary, when a terrorist murders her ex-Marine husband Jared and thirteen other movie goers.

Ensnarled in a cover-up that puts her in an assassin’s crosshairs, Rita must unravel a web of lies and connections that date back to Jared’s service in the Iraq war – before a mysterious kidnapper returns Rita’s daughter Zoe one body part at a time.

This fast-paced thriller is one you won’t want to put down from beginning to end.

Excerpt:

I’d never seen him in our small town of Rim Vista. He turned his blue and black motorcycle into the movie theater parking lot behind the silver Cadillac my husband Jared used for ferrying high-dollar real estate clients around Arizona.

The motorcyclist’s blue riding clothes matched his sleek Yamaha. The snug fit of his clothes suggested a lean and muscled young man. He paused by the sidewalk, at the front of the lane where we parked and turned the reflective shield of his helmet toward us. He pulled a paper from his jacket pocket. Looked down, then in our direction. Stuffed the object into his saddlebag.

Jared pulled my attention away from Motorcycle Guy when he slid a box with flowery wrapping from under his seat. “Happy thirtieth anniversary, Rita.” He flashed his special smile that melted my heart, as it had the first time I saw it in high school. Maybe whatever had been bothering Jared for the past six months was over, and life could return to normal.

My excitement plummeted when I tore open the package and an ugly purse fell to the floor, cherry tooled leather with a vintage Wild West aura. I warned myself not to ruin what had otherwise been a fun day and attempted a bright and cheerful tone. “Kind of an Annie Oakley look.” I nestled into his shoulder, rubbed his cheek, breathed in his scent. “Thank you. I will always cherish it because you gave it to me.”

“That’s what you used to say to the kids when they made you crafts at school.” His firm grip on my shoulders almost hurt as he pushed me away.

“And I’ve kept and treasured those things.” I hoped my smile would recover the lighthearted mood we had maintained all day.

“Hid them is more like it.” He opened his door, told me to put his present in the trunk, and stomped away.

Motorcycle Guy was still idling his bike at the front of our lane in the parking lot. Jared walked around him, toward the box office. Motorcycle Guy watched me open and shut the trunk, then moved forward and blocked my path to the sidewalk. Only for a moment. Long enough for a shudder to roll through me. Between that young man acting strange and Jared losing his temper again, I no longer wanted to see the movie.


Through a wall of windows in the lobby, while Jared bought snacks and exchanged enthusiastic greetings with neighbors, clients, and strangers, I watched Motorcycle Guy park his ride, stow his helmet, and buy his ticket. He was about six feet tall, with a shaved head and face. Handsome, in a twenty-something Will Smith way. He nodded a quick greeting when he entered the lobby, then looked away. Maybe I’d misjudged him. Maybe he was just waiting for his date to arrive.

Bio:

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A native of the southwestern U.S., Karen Randau has been writing and telling stories since elementary school. She holds a degree in journalism/public relations from The University of Texas at Austin and has enjoyed a long career in marketing communications.

After a short stint working in a psychiatric hospital, when she wrote three self-help books, Karen joined an international relief and development organization to use her skills to help people struggling with extreme poverty. She has traveled to numerous developing countries, witnessing famines, violence, and hopeful people working to overcome a generational cycle of poverty.

She loves to read and write fast-paced mysteries and thrillers, especially those with intricate plots, lots of action, and rollercoaster-like twists and turns.


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Tuesday, August 9, 2016

SPOTLIGHT! Brodie's Gamble by Shirleen Davies

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Description

Brodie’s Gamble, Book Two, MacLarens of Boundary Mountain Historical Western Romance Series

“Every book of Shirleen's never fails to draw me in and make it impossible to put down until I devour it!”

Brodie MacLaren has a dream. He yearns to wear the star—bring the guilty to justice and protect those who are innocent. In his mind, guilty means guilty, even when it includes a beautiful woman who sets his body on edge.

Maggie King lives a nightmare, wanting nothing more than to survive each day and recapture the life stolen from her. Each day she wakes and prays for escape. Taking the one chance she may ever have, Maggie lashes out, unprepared for the rising panic as the man people believe to be her husband lies motionless at her feet.

Deciding innocence and guilt isn’t his job.

Brodie’s orderly, black and white world spins as her story of kidnapping and abuse unfold. The fact nothing adds up as well as his growing attraction to Maggie cause doubts the stoic lawman can’t afford to embrace.

Can a lifetime of believing in absolute right and wrong change in a heartbeat?

Maggie has traded one form of captivity for another. Thoughts of escape consume her, even as feelings for the handsome, unyielding lawman grow.

As events unfold, Brodie must fight more than his attraction. Someone is after Maggie—a real threat who is out to silence her.

He’s challenged on all fronts—until he takes a gamble that could change his life or destroy his heart.
Brodie’s Gamble, book two in the MacLarens of Boundary Mountain historical western romance series, is a full-length novel with an HEA.

Excerpt

“How old were you when you met Stoddard?” He hadn’t meant to ask the question, didn’t need to know more about her than he already did. Maggie’s age didn’t matter. It only mattered that he held her as a suspect in a murder.

“Eighteen. I’m twenty now.” She spoke with a staid calmness, as if detached, speaking of someone else. “I wish I could tell you the time flew by, but that would be a lie.” This time, her voice held the bitterness he expected. Closing her eyes to still the moisture beginning to pool, she sucked in a deep breath.

He didn’t know what triggered his quick response—her shaky voice, the tremble of her body, or the tears she couldn’t hide—but he reached out, wrapping his arms around her and drawing her close. Splaying his hands across her back, he rested his chin on top of her head as she settled her cheek against his chest.

“Shhh, lass. He can no longer hurt you.” Brodie’s heart pounded, his chest tightening at the same time he tried to provide her comfort. He couldn’t imagine the horrors she’d been through. If Arnie weren’t already dead, it would’ve taken all the strength Brodie possessed to not kill the man himself. Feeling the tears soak through his shirt, he drew back, lifting her chin with a finger.

“You must try to believe it will be all right, Maggie.”

Her glassy blue eyes stared up at him as the faintest sliver of hope crossed her face. A hope he could encourage or dash with a rash word or careless gesture.

“Do you truly think it will work out for me?”

Brodie didn’t know what more to say. Instead, he did the most foolish thing imaginable. Lowering his head, he brushed a gentle kiss across her lips, feeling her tense, then relax against him. He kissed her again, losing himself in the taste and feel of her.

Awareness of the colossal mistake he was making sliced through Brodie an instant before he tightened his hold, fitting Maggie snuggly to his body, his lips pressed against hers, claiming her mouth with fierce desire.

Her heart thundered and stomach churned as Brodie continued his gentle assault. The warmth of his body, the hardness of his chest and muscled arms sheltered her at the same time heat ripped through her, as if she were engulfed in a circle of flames.

Brodie couldn’t get her close enough. He wanted to lift her into his arms, carry her to his bed, and lay her down. Kiss every inch of her body, caress…

He pulled back, his abrupt departure causing her to whimper as she buried her face against his throat. They had to stop. He had to stop. The madness, which gripped him moments before, gave way to guilt and self-loathing. How could he have surrendered so completely to the charms of one woman? A woman who’d done nothing except look to him for help?

Setting her aside, he straightened, steeling his features. “We need to go back.” He could see the slight shiver of her body as she swayed toward him. “Now, Miss King. You need to get back in your cell, and I need to get back to my work.”

The hurt in her eyes did nothing to dispel the remorse he felt. He’d crossed a line, and he could blame it on no one except himself.

Bio

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Shirleen Davies writes romance—historical, contemporary, and romantic suspense. She grew up in Southern California, attended Oregon State University, and has degrees from San Diego State University and the University of Maryland. During the day she provides consulting services to small and mid-sized businesses. But her real passion is writing emotionally charged stories of flawed people who find redemption through love and acceptance.  She now lives with her husband in a beautiful town in northern Arizona.

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Sunday, June 19, 2016

Mystery Man in the Leather Hat Release Blitz!

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Book Description:

Three days of vacation. Two stepsisters. One mystery involving a ghost dressed in a leather hat, suit, and boots. Dominique and Jessica had no idea what awaited them during a weekend vacation with their parents. They expected fun and excitement, but instead ran into a ghost and a mystery. Long ago in Connecticut, a man in a patched leather suit and hat roamed the countryside, living in caves for more than thirty years. Carrying a sack, pipe, and prayer book, the man came to be known as the Old Leather Man. His death came with the blizzard of 1889, but who could have guess that he would return to haunt the stepsisters. A stolen wallet, a threatening anonymous letter, and a ghostly visit force the stepsisters into late-night sleuthing, all to uncover the history of the Old Leather Man. Can these teen detectives find the truth before the Old Leather Man’s ghost returns for good?

Excerpt:

Dominique shivered outside the bookstore, feeling alone, tired and battered by a negative wind chill that was normal for Connecticut in October. Her tingling, numb fingers agreed.

This sad bookstore situation was a waste of time and revealed to Dominique how little her stepsister, Jessica, understood the idea of family love and bonding. Dominique was not a reader. Didn’t Jess recognize that more than ten minutes inside a bookstore was much, much too long?

Twenty minutes earlier, Dominique had entered the store with Jess. The walls were colorful, lined with every type of reading material imaginable. She had followed Jessica to the teen section, standing idle.

“I’m leaving,” Dominique said after ten minutes of complaining.

“Five more minutes,” Jess had begged. “Look, they have the next book in the series I’m reading.”

“I’m so happy for you, but you’ve used your five minutes plus some.” Dominique’s brown eyes flashed with annoyance, the light in the store highlighting the green flecks in them. Spinning around, her long dark hair whipped against her shoulders as she executed a neat turn and walked quickly through the store. She made a happy whistling sound as she exited the front door.

Twenty minutes was a long time in the cold. Outside, becoming more frostbit every moment, Dominique’s frustration leaked into her not so nice thoughts. For anyone other than Jessica, her rapid exit would have been a huge hint to hurry up and follow, but Jessica remained inside reading.

Dominique wanted to open the front door again and scream, “Stop looking through the dumb books,” but yelling might not have gone over well with all the quiet, bookworm type people. Judging by the constant ticking of seconds echoing from Dominique’s bright orange Timex watch on her wrist, she was reminded how long she’d been left waiting in what felt like sub-zero temperatures. It didn’t matter much what Dominique did or said. Her stepsister, as usual, ignored her.

To occupy herself, she eyed the books on display in the front window of the bookstore, skimming the titles. She ignored most of them, until an ugly face on the cover of a book of Connecticut Legends looked back at her. She couldn’t help but stare. The man pictured was round and his bulky brown leather suit made him seem monstrous. Eyes peeked out from under a large, round leather cap, focused on something beyond the photographer. A hand rested at his mouth, as if he might be shy. Fascinated by his odd appearance, she wondered who he was.

Long overdue, Jessica came out the door, a smile playing on her lips, blue eyes shining with happiness. “That was so fun,” Jess told Dominique. “I got the next series I’m reading and found a great book on dating and love. You have to read it after I’m done.”

Boys flocked to Jess, who had already started dating at the age of thirteen.

“Yeah, sure,” Dominique preferred horses to boys and could not imagine that ever changing.

Even with Jessica’s company, Dominique could tell this was going to be a long, dull weekend filled with the boring events her parents called culture and entertainment.

Bio:

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Lisa Acerbo is a high school teacher and adjunct instructor at the college level, holding an EdD in Educational Leadership. This is her fourth novel. In addition to writing fiction, she has contributed to local newspapers, news and travel blogs including The Patch and Hollywood Scriptwriter. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, two daughters, three cats, dog, and horse, where she is an active part of the community. Her poetry won first place in a local writing competition and she is a judge in the annual town literary competition and arts festival.

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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Cover Reveal! Under Her Skin by Margo Bond Collins


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Release Date
 June 15

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Description:

She's lucky he's a charmer…

Lindi Parker works hard at being human, not an easy task for a snake shifter. She has no desire to search for others like her—until a new case changes everything. When Lindi learns that she she's not the only shapeshifter in the world, she also realizes she might be next on a killer's list.

In order to save herself and the abused children she works with, she will have to team up with Dr. Kade Nevala, a member of the shifter tribe responsible for eradicating weresnakes—and the most attractive man Lindi's ever met. Even more terrifying, she’ll need to embrace her serpent side, a choice that has enormous consequences for Lindi, and for everyone around her. 

Excerpt:

He took a step forward, again seeming to loom over me. I leaned farther back, but I was trapped—I would either have to climb up on the bed or push my way past him. I wasn’t sure which would be better.

Then it was too late—he grabbed my upper arms and stared into my eyes. His hands burned hot against my skin. His eyes, too, glittered feverishly, golden highlights churning through the brown.

The intensity of his stare captured me. I drew in another breath, full of the scent of him, and my head swam. Again the color leached out of the room. This time, though, I couldn’t look away from him, couldn’t hide the way my eyes changed, the pupils narrowing and lengthening. The room shifted into shades of gray, and his golden eyes turned silvery as they held my own.

He inhaled sharply as he saw the transformation and his hands tightened convulsively.

“How are you here?” he whispered, shaking his head.

He pulled me closer to him, staring into my eyes. My pulse pounded in my temples. The muscles of my abdomen started to roil; I was about to shift, and I couldn’t control it.

And I might just be okay with that, some quiet, still part of my mind whispered from far away, because this man terrified me. I might have a better chance against him in my serpent form.

But something—some instinct deeper than thought—urged me to maintain my humanity.

I still couldn’t break eye contact; his gaze was hypnotic.

He leaned in and kissed me.

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