Archive for April, 2008

We have another winner!

The winner of The Rock Creek Six series by Linda Devlin & Lori Handeland is………………


Congrats Kristie!

I’ll be mailing out the books to you soon! Thanks for entering my little contest.

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We have a winner! Had to wait until my little Diva came up here to help me choose a winner.

The winner of PARTING GIFTS by Lorraine Heath is………………

Jess P!!

Congrats Jess!

I’ll be mailing out the book to you soon! Thanks for entering my little contest. 🙂

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Confessions of a virgin (a virgin guest blogger, that is)

Isn’t it wonderful how life can be counted on to give you new experiences just when you’re feeling old and uninspired?

When the lovely Fatin (who looks a lot like Jon Bon Jovi, I’ve noticed) asked me to be a guest blogger, I didn’t hesitate. I believe my exact words were: “Yes, yes, thank you so much, nobody’s ever asked me before and all my friends send out notices of their guest blogs and I was feeling so left out.”

Pathetic, huh?

But this is what happens when you live in relative isolation and spend your days with imaginary people. You sometimes forget that a big world is out there and you’re supposed to interact. Mingle. Make small talk. Ask questions. Sip your cosmo without slurping.

Oh, and you’re supposed to do this without taking notes. I guess that’s kinda rude. So, here’s my promise: what happens in this blog, stays in this blog. (Unless one of my characters just happens to have something very similar occur in their—no, no, I can do this. Really. Trust me.)

So, how ‘bout we start out with a safe conversational subject: books. I love books, but there are times when I resent them. I start feeling that my stack of TBRs is judging me. I picture them talking amongst themselves when I leave the room:

“Hey, first book below me, how long have you been in this pile?”

“Long enough. See the dust on my cover?”

“Oh, dear. It’s very thick. I can barely make out your title. Maybe that means she’s forgotten why she bought you in the first place and she’ll read me first.”

“Hmph. Don’t count on it. I’ve been here on the bottom since before you were printed. I think she’s forgotten how to read.”

“You? Seriously? You’re like a New York Times bestseller, aren’t you? Good grief. If you can’t get read, I’m doomed. I’m just a series romance. But I did hear her say I was written by one of her friends so maybe that will help.”

“Don’t count on it, honey. I was written by one of her friends, too. She claims to love my author’s writing, but here I sit. Unread.”

“At least, she can see my cover. No dust.”


So, my first conversational question is: how many books are in your TBR stack?

Unfortunately, I have to refuse to answer on the grounds the books might revolt. Plus, I don’t really know. I keep the piles in separate rooms. A few in my office. Four beside my bed. Two in the sauna. (Where I do Sudoku when I should be reading. Sigh.)

Have you ever bought a book then gotten it home and asked yourself why you bought it?

This happens to me all the time. Usually with books I buy at Costco, and mostly with “women’s fiction” books. I’m often drawn to the premise described on the back jacket but then find the writing is too much. I like stories where the characters live on the page. I hate getting jerked out of a story by something the author needed to get off his or her chest.

Do you finish every book you start?

I have to admit, no. I used to feel guilty about this. I used to clean my plate at every meal, too. But then my pants didn’t fit so hot. Now, I embrace the philosophy: Life is short, eat dessert first. And I don’t even finish my dessert if I don’t like it.

Have you ever read a book DESPITE the cover, the title or the back jacket copy?

I ask because my book, A BABY ON THE WAY, won a lovely award last year, and one of the judges commented that she hated the cover and the title, but thoroughly enjoyed the book.

And with my most recent book, BABY BY CONTRACT, a reviewer said she didn’t think she’d like it given the back cover copy, but wound up loving the book (and giving it a 5-star review with great pull quotes).

I buy books for lots of reasons—to support my friends, because the premise interests me, for the cover, and, most typically, because someone recommended it.  So, if you’re unsure about whether or not you’d like BABY BY CONTRACT, call my daughter-in-law. Seriously. She’s a tough critic and when she finished this book, she told me it was my best to date and she would have been royally P.O.ed if it hadn’t been the first in a series because she wasn’t ready to say goodbye to Libby and Cooper. Now, that’s a grassroots review. J

And since this blog is supposed to be about my new book and not my lack of social graces, I suppose I should mention a few things about BABY BY CONTRACT.

I grew up in South Dakota. Although I moved to California twenty-seven years ago, I still think of that state as home. And I always planned to set a book in the Black Hills. Why? Because it’s a truly special place. Go there. You’ll feel it, I promise. And there’s an immense wealth of history, geography and humanity to tap into for your characters living in this area. I had so much fun imagining Sentinel Pass. And last fall, I took a trip back to the Black Hills to find the exact location of this imaginary town. I’ve posted photos on my website that give visual hints of where it can be found.

I will admit, though, the series didn’t start out in the Black Hills. My first idea was to write a family saga about five brothers who return to South Dakota to take over the family farm after their father dies. My editor at the time wasn’t crazy about the idea. She wanted to see some other options. I dumped the eastern part of the state in a heartbeat and zeroed in on the Black Hills. The question that came to mind was: what happens when a small town that truly isn’t ready for its close-up becomes the focus of a TV show? Think: The Bachelor meets Northern Exposure. All sorts of fun ideas started to percolate and my editor was pleased.

The five books in this series are scheduled for release at 4-month intervals between now and Sept. 2009. Are they all plotted? Absolutely not. I know the main characters—three are Libby’s bookclub friends and the fourth story belongs to her brother, a widower with a young daughter. I also have a pretty clear grasp of the main conflict in the stories. And, of course, I have the setting, but the rest is floating around in muse land at the moment. Where I should be, actually. I feel a deadline coming on.

Any other questions? Is it too early for that cosmo?


****Don’t forget to leave a comment. Deb has offered six readers a chance to win one book off her backlist. Check out her books here and her website here.

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Bloggy Giveaways Quarterly Carnival Button

Because I’m in a giveaway type of mood, I decided to join Bloggy Giveaways after finding out about them through Angie’s and Jaci’s blog. Since I’m already giving away a Lorraine Heath hard-to-find book, I decided to go further than that and offer one lucky reader a complete set of The Rock Creek Six series by Linda Devlin and Lori Handeland for this giveaway. All you have to do is let me know what new releases you’re looking forward to adding to your TBR. Easy, no? 😉

Rules: One comment per household. Open to those who live overseas so feel free to comment. Contest will end Wednesday, April 30, 2008. Winner will be announced on the blog late Wednesday night and will have 48 hours to send me their snail mail address so I can send out the books.

Don’t forget to check out Bloggy Giveaways too. They have a ton of contests listed there.


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We have a winner! The winner of Bronwyn’s post is…….

Pam P.!!

Congrats Pam!

Email me your snail mail addy at mad @ romancereaderatheart.com (without the spaces) to claim your prize. Enjoy!

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They fulfilled a promise for tomorrow– with a tender vow of love…

Maddie: Desperate for food and shelter, she came to a Texas brothel, knowing what she had to do to survive…

Charles: A widower with three children, he knew he wanted more from Maddie than one night of pleasure. He wanted to marry her..

Overnight she went from a dire situation to a comfortable home filled with the warmth of family. But the truth behind their quick marriage was bittersweet– for Charles knew he was dying, and he wanted more than anything to leave his children with the gift of love, with a kind and caring mother. And in his race against time, he made the boldest decision of all: Maddie could build a new life– and a loving home– with his brother, Jesse. For even as the tender memories of a love past live on, the heart endures, ready to love once more…

Yesterday my Internet connection was very spotty…each time I signed on, I got booted right off. After the fifth time it happened, I decided to just shut it down (after several curse words were said *G*) and clean my office. In cleaning it, I found a lot of doubles…and I mean a lot. Found six on Friday and eight yesterday. Guess I need to keep better track of what I buy, huh? 😉 Anyway, I found a second copy of one of my favorite favorite books. PARTING GIFTS by Lorraine Heath. No matter how many times I reread this, it still makes me cry as if I’m reading it for the first time. I love it…can’t say enough about it and so I decided to give away my extra copy of it to share my love of it with another reader. But you’re going to have to work for it. 😉

Like last time, answer the question below by filling out the Book Entry Form here. Winner will be announced on Wednesday, April 30, 2008. Probably late on Wednesday night to give everyone a chance to enter.

Question: What other name(s) does Lorraine Heath publish under?

Answer can be found at her website here. Good luck! 🙂

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One more to add! 🙂

Roaming the Russian steppes a thousand years ago, a brutal warrior struck a terrifying deal. In exchange for being able to transform into a heartless predator, he promised his soul-and the souls of his descendents-to the devil.

Brutally handsome cop Doug Black is determined to find the birth family who left him with nothing but a terrifying inheritance: the ability to change into a savage golden cougar. His search leads him to a woman as dauntless and exotic as her name. Firebird Wilder is bitterly familiar with supernatural gifts, and flees on discovering his secret, leaving Doug alone once more. But no one can escape a wild cougar on the hunt. When he finds her, they both must decide which is more powerful … the love that binds them together … or the secrets that threaten to tear them apart.

Excerpt can be found here.

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Christina Dodd

More books to add to your TBB list! 🙂

For the ability to transform into a heartless predator, a brutal warrior promised his soul-and the souls of his descendents-to the devil. Now, one thousand years later, the Wilder brothers battle the darkness inside them.

Blessed-or cursed-with the ability to change into a sleek, cruel panther, and driven by a dark soul he’s accepted as his fate, powerful Adrik Wilder abandons his family and his honor to pursue a life of wickedness. He excels at every vice, kidnapping strong-willed Karen Sonnet and forcing her to welcome the helpless pleasure only he can give her. But Karen’s spirit and passion make him question the force of his family’s curse, for she could be the key to their survival. And when a new evil emerges, Adrik must choose whether to enact revenge on his enemies and redeem his soul or save Karen from a fate worse than death.

Excerpt can be found here.

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Lisa Marie Rice

Mark your calendars! Look what coming out by Lisa Marie Rice in July 2008.


Small-town librarian Charity Prewitt never dreamed she’d meet and fall in love with a man like Nicholas Ames.  The handsome, rich, charming, sexy-as-hell millionaire blew into tiny Parker’s Ridge, Vermont, and immediately rocked her world.  Powerful, sensual, the perfect man, Nick knows all the right words — and all the right spots to touch, sending her soaring to dizzying new heights of ecstatic abandon.  Never before has prim and proper Charity leapt into bed with a perfect stranger — and now that she’s there with him, nothing is going to drag her away!

But Nick Ames is not who he claims to be.  In truth, he is Nicholas Ireland — the one they call “Iceman.”  A former Delta Force operator, now a high-level undercover agent, he will do whatever his government asks of him — lie, seduce, betray… even kill, if necessary — for the sake of the mission.  And this time his mission is Charity Prewitt.

Suddenly one woman has broken down his chilly restraint and ignited his passions completely.  And before the erotic dream turns into a nightmare, will Charity be able to melt the Iceman’s cold, cold heart?

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Petition to Amazon

For the last week or so, there has been a huge discussion on Dear Author about how a certain author is bullying reviewers and manipulating the reviews at Amazon so that only her 5 star reviews are shown. Anything less than 5 stars she gets Amazon to remove. Because I feel we have to take a stand and let this author know we won’t stand for her sneaky and shameful ways, I’m sharing a petition Jane at Dear Author started. We’re asking Amazon to change the way they run the site when it comes to reviewing books. Please go read it and sign it. This author has got to be stopped. If she feels the need to track down a reviewer’s personal info because of a 3 star review and imply threats to the reviewer, her family, even her CHILDREN, I wonder what she’ll do should she ever get a 1 star review?  Anyone remember the movie Psycho? That shower scene? Cue the theme music because that’s all I keep thinking about right now.

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