Monday, November 18, 2019

Free Audiobooks Now

MUSE MONDAY

My audiobooks are free for a song and a dance. Well, for a review actually. Audible gives both authors and narrators a limited number of audiobook codes to redeem our books for free to listeners. All they ask is you leave an honest review on Audible. You DO NOT have to have an account on Audible. It's super easy, and you can listen at your leisure.

I have both UK and US codes for all of my books. But don't delay, I'm getting near the bottom of the barrel. Even if you aren't quite ready to listen, even if you have books waiting to be heard, get the codes now and download so you're able to take advantage of this free offer.

Leave me a comment or send me an email with the title of the books you want and whether you need UK or US.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Leaving It All Behind by Alice Renaud #FearlessFriday #FantasyRomance


FEARLESS FRIDAY

Please welcome Alice Renaud today. Fearless comes in many forms. Moving countries is a huge fearless step. Alice has a great story.

I’ve always liked the Fearless Fridays feature on Brenda’s blog. I love reading about people taking risks and getting way out of their comfort zone. I’m quite cautious by nature – well I was an accountant for 24 years, and am now a compliance manager, hardly devil-may-care occupations! I’d always wanted to do a Fearless Friday spot, but was racking my brain to find one example of brave or risky behaviour in my past.

Then I realized that I did get out of my comfort zone, when I was 26. I moved countries!

I am French, and was born and brought up in Western France, a beautiful area called Brittany (see the blue sky and sea behind me?) I studied in Paris and worked in Paris after my graduation. In 1997, I had been living comfortably in central Paris for 4 years. I had a nice flat, a good job, friends, and a young man I was keen on. I thought he was keen on me, too…
However, something in me wasn’t settled. Strangely, in all the time I spent in Paris, I never bought a bed. For 4 years I slept on a mattress on the floor. Every time I thought about buying a bed, a voice in my head whispered, “Why bother? You might not be here for long.”

Then the company I was working for at the time offered me a job in their UK subsidiary, in London. It was a good opportunity, but I was torn – mainly because of the young man. I spoke to my mum, who said, “Go for it! You can always come back. If the relationship is serious, it will survive.”
Wise words, mum. So at 26, I left flat, friends and young man behind, and moved to London.

The day I moved into my new London flat (it had furniture and a bed!) was a bright, sunny spring day. On the busy street outside, two middle aged ladies were trotting towards the shops. They both wore pink tutus, and had gauze wings on their backs.
And nobody, nobody, batted an eyelid. I thought, “Hey… I like this!” In Paris people would definitely have stared, or said something.

The first months were not easy. The new job was more challenging than the one I’d had in Paris, I had a lot more responsibilities and had lost my support network of friends and colleagues. It took me a while to find new friends and build a new life. But something told me that I’d made the right choice.

It turned out the Parisian young man wasn’t that keen after all. But I met another young man, a Londoner. We’ve been married for 14 years now and have a 10-year old son. And I love London more each day. It’s truly my home.

My first fantasy romance novella, A Merman’s Choice, was published in January 2019 by Black Velvet Seductions. It is inspired by the landscapes and legends of Brittany, where I grew up. The second book in the series, Music for a Merman, was released on 1 November. The hero, Rob Regor, also gets out of his comfort zone. He’s a shape shifting merman who leaves his home and his people to live among humans and work as a policeman. The experience changes him in ways he could not have imagined, and leads him to meet the love of his life, the human eco-warrior Charlie.

Get the book here: AMAZON:  https://amzn.to/2ZkU5wR
AND OTHER GREAT PLACES: https://books2read.com/u/mdG7Bw


A bit more about myself

Alice lives in London, UK, with her husband and son. By day she's a compliance manager for a pharmaceutical company. By night she writes fantasy romance about shape shifting mermen, water monsters and time-travelling witches. Her first book, “A Merman’s Choice,” was published in January 2019 by Black Velvet Seductions. It is the first book in a fantasy romance trilogy inspired by the landscapes and legends of Brittany and Wales. The second book, “Music for a Merman,” is out now. Alice has also written a short story, “The Sweetest Magic of All,” included in the BVS “Mystic Desire” anthology, out now.
Alice loves reading and writing stories, and sharing them with anyone who’s interested!


Stalk me here (links)



Thursday, November 14, 2019

Tips and Myths #ThursdayThoughts #MythBusters


TIPS AND MYTHS

It’s Myth Buster Thursday. Here are some fun ones to blow up things we’ve believed forever!

Don’t eat and swim
About the only thing a full stomach will do to you while swimming is cause shortness of breath. Alcohol is the biggest risk factor or cramps.

Einstein failed math
He failed an entrance exam for a school…bad enough. But he excelled in math so stop spreading that rumor!

Fishy three-second memory
Goldfish might not be the smartest creature in the world, they can boast a memory span of three months.

Chastity Belts
Kind of kinky to think about what we’ve always believed…keep that mate from committing adultery. But not so. Then again, even kinkier is the real reason: 19th century prudes used them to prevent “dangerous” masturbation.

Alcohol warms you up
Don’t use it for this! It can actually drop core body temp. You’re fooled because it dilates warm blood vessels near the skin which creates an impression of warmth.

Caffeine will dehydrate you
The diuretic dehydrating effect of caffeine is offset by the amount of water in a caffeinated drink. Darn! I counted on this to counteract that salty pizza.

Don’t swallow that gum!
Still good advice but it doesn’t really take seven years to digest. What makes it chewy will pass right through you and the rest of it will be absorbed.

Shaving hair will thicken your fur
Optical illusion. When it grows back, it is blunt. It isn’t thicker, coarser, or darker.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Inspiration in Unlikely Places by Jodi Rath #mystery #MuseMonday


MUSE MONDAY


Please welcome back Jodi Rath to Muse Monday. It's always a pleasure to have her. She's talking inspiration and therapy today. We can all use a little therapy!

The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series becomes closer to my heart with each book I write. It’s become a type of therapy for me; so, it’s no wonder that the protagonist Jolie Tucker begins therapy in Turkey Basted to Death.  I’ve dealt with a dysfunctional family all forty-six years of my life. Growing up, I had an M.I.A. biological father (I’m sure you all can tell how close we are with my formal title). My mom married my stepdad (who, BTW, I treated horribly the first year because I wanted that M.I.A. bio dad) who ended up being more of a father to me than I could have ever hoped for. I will now refer to my stepdad as just ‘dad.’  Jolie deals with a similar situation, and she dives into it more in this newest book in the series.

Not only does this series provide therapy for me, but it also combines my passion for writing with educating. I was a high school English teacher for two decades. Now, I teach higher education online, working with teachers through my business. Many of my previous students read my work. I can’t help but expand knowledge beyond the craft of something in a cozy (which for this series is cooking with cast iron), but I’ve found overarching themes of urban sprawl, gentrification, family dysfunction, and effective communication for finding solutions in society and families to come through. I think the thing that has surprised me the most is the feedback I am getting from readers through social media, emails, and messages. Readers are sharing their experiences of dysfunctional families; some readers refer to gentrification as urban renewal and share their experiences, and I get the exact opposite. I’ve learned about the process of gentrification/urban renewal that has taken place in New York, Ohio, and as recent as a year ago and as long as four decades ago.

One of the most exciting things to happen with this series recently is I’ve teamed up to collaborate with The National MS Society and True Colors United for this book and the rest of the series. Let me explain a bit: one of the characters in the series, Mick Meiser, has MS. My best friend was diagnosed ten years ago, and I write Meiser’s character to show how people navigate the disease. No one will feel sorry for Meiser! True Colors United is run by THE amazing Cyndi Lauper, and it is an affiliation that helps homeless youth—ALL homeless youth, but they do focus on the 40% of homeless youth that is LGBTQ as well. Turkey Basted to Death deals with issues of homeless teens, transgender teens, and homosexual teens that have been kicked out because of who they are. I am happy to announce this collaboration and that all purchases of this book and every book after in the series will have a percentage that goes to The National MS Society and True Colors United!

So, yes, this series has become close to my heart in many ways. It is helping me deal with my dysfunctional family and realize who my family is and help me heal old wounds—but it allows me to continue to educate and to learn from readers as well. The most amazing thing of all is being able to give back to help others in need!


Welcome to Leavensport, Ohio where DEATH takes a delicious turn!
Thanksgiving is here, and Jolie Tucker has had quite the year! She is ready to sit back and relax with family and friends. But this is Leavensport, OH—so get ready for intense therapy sessions, dysfunctional family holiday gatherings, uninvited guests, and an inner-city teen advocate found DEAD—stabbed in the ear with the turkey baster!

Links to purchase book:
All other e-platforms:  https://books2read.com/u/ba2YM8

Moving into her second decade working in education, Jodi Rath has decided to begin a life of crime in her The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series. Her passion for both mysteries and education led her to combine the two to create her business MYS ED, where she splits her time between working as an adjunct for Ohio teachers, educational writing, marketing consultant work with authors, and creating mischief in her fictional writing. She currently resides in a small, cozy village in Ohio with her husband and her eight cats. 




Website: www.jodirath.com 
FB Author page: @authorjodirath or https://www.facebook.com/authorjodirath/
Twitter: @jodirath

Newsletter link to A Mystery A Month—sign up for my monthly newsletter to receive a free Mystery a Month and a chance to win prizes for those who guess the right answers! http://eepurl.com/dIfXdb

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Bright and Wicked by Mageela Troche #historical #romance


WICKED WEDNESDAY

Please join my in welcoming Mageela Troche to Wicked Wednesday. She's all about a wicked good time in colorful Scotland.

One question that has been put to me is why did I choose to set my historical romances in medieval Scotland? The answer is easy. It was a wicked good time in Scotland. Thirteenth century Scotland was a golden age for this nation. Alexander III, King of Scotland, was still alive and full of health and vigor. No one could imagine what lay ahead.

That wickedly bright time brimmed with hope while I’m writing characters that feel as if everything is falling apart or coming to an end. I like that twist and I believe that readers can relate to that feeling. Have you ever been at a New Year’s Eve party where everything appears blinding bright yet that is one emotion you are not feeling?

That is exactly what my hero, Laird Niall MacLean, and heroine, Ermina Bruce of The Chieftain’s Secret are dealing with emotionally while existing in golden age Scotland. It’s spring on the Isle of Mull, the fields are being planted, flowers are blooming and the weather is warming up. Yet, Niall is heartbroken and mourning meanwhile Ermina, hand-fasted to Niall and pregnant, she believes with her whole heart that she will die in childbirth. So off they go on their romantic journey to discover love and hope and what better place to do that than in Scotland?

Author Bio

An Air Force brat, Mageela Troche has lived throughout the world then landed in New York City. She wanted to leave the same day she arrived. Yet, with her stubbornness, Mageela learned to like the place and the libraries were the main reason. Since she was a little girl, Mageela wanted to be an author and an actress, however, once in college, she changed her life plan in the pursuit of money. After all, college loans must be repaid.

With life’s twists and turns, she returned to writing and focused on the romance genre. Mageela Troche’s first break came when she sold a short story to a magazine. She sold two more before the publication of her historical romance novel, The Marriage Alliance. She has gone on to write four more novels and a novella.

Mageela is currently writing in the cramped corner of her Big Apple apartment. She is the proud owner of a Black-masked lovebird named Boobula. She loves to hear from her readers and can be found online at MageelaTroche.com

Blurb for The Chieftain’s Secret:
On a windswept Scottish Isle…
Many objects wash up on the shores of the rugged Isle of Mull. The Laird of Lochbuie never expected a pregnant wife to be included in that. Honorable Niall MacLean was wed to his childhood love when she died in childbirth. Now a widower, he struggles to get beyond his grief. Then a dear friend, Ermina Bruce pleaded for his help. His protective instinct came alive and he handfasted with Ermina to save her from an unsuitable marriage and one drunken night has led to forever after and a repeat of his past heartbreak. 
The bonds of friendship…
Noble Ermina Bruce has loved Niall MacLean since he first fostered in her uncle’s home. But he loved another so she settled for the deep bonds of friendship. When her family arranged a marriage she didn’t want she knew Niall could save her from that miserable fate.
One night of passion…
That one night in Niall’s arms led to her pregnancy. Ermina has not told Niall of their secret baby. But his reaction isn’t her greatest fear. Her fear is even greater than the brave laird’s wrath. Every woman in her family has died in childbirth and all know the same fate awaits her. Once again, Ermina knows Niall is the only one who can save her. And if he fails, her last days shall be with the man she has loved since childhood.
Will love have a chance to come alive?
Purchase link:



Monday, November 4, 2019

Snuggle Up Book Event...Wow! #giveaway #readingcommunity



Calling all readers! Fill your library with N. N. Light’s Book Heaven Snuggle Up With These Books Readathon picks. 56 books from multiple genres featured plus a chance to win one of the following:

Enter to win a $50 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Enter to win a $50 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Enter to win a $25 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Enter to win a $15 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
Enter to win a $10 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card

I’m thrilled to be a part of this event. My book, The Power of Love and Murder, will be featured on November 25. I even talk about my what I’m thankful for this year. You won’t want to miss it.

Bookmark this bookish party and tell your friends:




Monday, October 28, 2019

A Very Unlikely #Muse by Dee S. Knight #MuseMonday #Vietnam


MUSE MONDAY


Please welcome Dee S. Knight back to Discover... She's always a good read! 

When I was in high school, we were beginning to realize through the nightly news what Vietnam was all about. President Eisenhower initially sent us to the country as advisors, and then President Kennedy involved us more in the early 1960s. President Johnson increased the troop numbers greatly. As President Nixon took over and I went off to college, the war was raging—though with all the deaths it was never considered a true war. Like Korea, it wasn’t dignified with the title, though it looked like a war, walked like a war, talked like a war.

The war was personal. My dad was in the Navy, my boyfriend’s father had been a Marine, and I had two uncles in the Air Force, so I was surrounded by military bases full of young men who could be sent overseas and into what we were told was chaos at any minute. Jack was attending Virginia Military Institute by then—thankfully, because his draft lottery number was 69. My catechism teacher (and the father of the boy on whom I had a wild and crazy crush) was a pilot off USS Independence and was shot down and captured. Vietnam was there, all around us, all the time. So is it strange that many years later I used the backdrop of Vietnam as my muse for a romance?

I’ve written two romance pieces, actually, using Vietnam as the instigator of the story. In Burning Bridges (out of print now but soon to be on Kindle Unlimited), my characters met just before the hero ships out for Vietnam. Convinced they were in love, Sara and Paul share a night and swear to wait for each other. Then, Sara discovers she’s pregnant and she never hears from Paul, though she sends him letter after letter. The war burned their first bridge, and pride burned the second.

The second piece—actually, the first I wrote—was a novella called Coming Home. In it, Tom Stabler is granted a surprise Christmas leave. He leaves the muggy jungle of Vietnam to return for a week to his parents’ farm in Nebraska, his mind filled with the image of the prettiest girl he’d ever known, Susan Swenson. When Susan visits him late one night, the experience is unlike anything he could have imagined. Her lips were sweet, her body lush and warm, and her faith in him touching. After Christmas he returned to Vietnam a changed man—but not in the way he expected. Vietnam played a larger role in this story than in Burning Bridges. I think here I wanted something good to come of something horrible and seemingly without meaning.

Here’s a short excerpt from Coming Home:

With a jerk and cry, Private Tom Stabler bolted upright, his heart pounding at an alarming rate. The dream receded, and his eyes shot open, unseeing at first. His arm darted out, reaching for the rifle that was always beside him like an extension of his right arm.

The weapon wasn’t there! In sudden panic, he snapped his head to the side, hoping to find with sight what he couldn’t with touch.

Then it came to him.

“Home,” he whispered. He was safe. Not in a steamy jungle surrounded by the smell of rotting vegetation, or wading through muddy river shallows filled with who-knew-what slithering things, or straining for the welcome sound of helicopters, or…

He’d been in so many God-awful situations these past eight months he could take his pick of a different terror every night for weeks. But he didn’t want to. For this week, these seven days at home, he wanted to put Nam behind him. Why, then, couldn’t he rid himself of the tension coiled like a snake in his belly?

Tom scrubbed his hands across his face, willing his breathing to slow and his heart to return to a normal beat. He picked up his watch. Four o’clock.

When he’d said an awkward goodnight to his father and made his way to bed, the clock in the hall was chiming midnight. He’d draped his clothes over his desk chair, stripped off his skivvies, and climbed into bed.

Unbelievably, he’d pulled up the quilt his grandmother had made, snuggled into the softness of the mattress, and drifted off to sleep as though he’d never left the safety and security of his room.

Awake now, he wondered if he’d ever adjust to the feeling of safety again, ever truly believe it existed. He feared he’d always be peering into shadows for the hidden enemy or listening for the almost silent, deadly snick of a landmine trip.

Falling back on the pillow, he stared at the posters on the opposite wall, illuminated by weak moonlight shining through the window. One was for a rock concert held in Omaha four years ago. He’d wanted to take Susan Swensen, but her father wouldn’t let her go the hundred miles into the city with him. Too far, he’d said in his thick Scandinavian accent. Too much can go wrong with a car. Young people can get stranded. Alone.

The last was said with a long, thoughtful stare right into Tom’s soul. How had the man known of Tom’s evil intentions to fake a car breakdown in order to make time with his daughter? Eventually, when she was accepted into nursing school, Mr. Swensen had let Susan go to Omaha. By then, Tom had gone much farther. All the way to Hell, in fact.

The other poster hailed the Fighting Hawks, his high school football team, on which he’d been the star linebacker. Those were heady days. He’d made a great linebacker at the university, too, but a lousy scholar, which was what put his ass squarely in the middle of that worthless peninsula called Vietnam.

Now he wouldn’t even make a linebacker. He skimmed his hand down his chest and across his stomach. Lean—skinny almost. Where once had been bulk there was sinewy muscle. He could still run, though. Oh, yeah, he got lots of practice running. From firing position to firing position, from cover to transport helicopters—black birds hovering over open kill zones to lift guys out of danger or drop them in—and from helicopter back to cover. Some days it seemed he ran the whole damn time.

It felt that way now.

Tom sighed. There was no going back to sleep. Throwing off the covers, he roused himself from the warmth and sat up, looking at the four walls and feeling dislocated.

This room held the bed where he’d slept since he was six. In two days, Christmas Eve, he’d be twenty-one. After all those years, the bed should be familiar, and it was. The bed fit the room, but Tom no longer did.

Same with the house. When he arrived early yesterday morning, he’d sensed something was off but hadn’t been able to put his finger on the problem. Now he knew. Somehow, while he was gone, things had changed, and no one had told him.

His bedroom, the kitchen where he’d watched his mom bake cookies, the living room where he’d beaten his dad at chess for the first time, all felt cramped and alien, as though he’d read about them but hadn’t lived in them. Even his family was all wrong. Gray threaded his mom’s hair, and his dad moved slower. As for his grandparents, they were frail replicas of their previous selves, with wrinkled faces and almost translucent skin.

This life, these people, belonged to a Tom Stabler who no longer existed. The man he was now would have to adjust his thinking to live here again, and learning how would sure as hell take more than one week.

Loneliness clawed at his insides. Here, in the one place he should have felt a part of things, solitude engulfed him. It would have been better to stay in Nam than be here with everything wrong, no longer a part of his home, his family.

Coming Home is available for free on the Nomad Authors website to subscribers of our newsletter, Aussie to Yank (https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/h8t2y6). If you join our newsletter and read Coming Home, I hope you’ll write and let me know what you think.

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