• SOLACE, A COWBOY'S FATE, VICTORIAN DREAM, SPECIAL DELIVERY, IRON HEART, LADY GALLANT, THE DRAGON AND THE ROSE, FATE OF THE SILVER MOON,......click cover to buy (image by Svetlana Petrova)

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Darlene Fredette: TWIST OF FAITH




      ONE TWIST OF FAITH
     CAN CHANGE EVERYTHING     

Today, Darlene Fredette is showcasing her newest novel 

TWIST OF FAITH,
and offering some great prizes!
Be sure to leave a comment for a chance to win 
a book, a gift card, or a pair of beautiful earrings


  An avid reader since childhood, Darlene loved to put a pencil to paper and plot out stories of her own. She writes heartwarming contemporary romances with a focus on plot-driven page-turners. When Darlene isn’t writing, editing, or reading, she enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter, and Yellow Lab. 


Tell us a little about this book's journey to publication. 

Twist of Faith was the second story I wrote when I found my love of romance writing. The original version was rough—definitely not publisher worthy. A second revised version was much better and caught the attention of a publisher; however, I still wasn’t content with the end result. I knew this story had better potential. So, I put the manuscript aside until I could put time into the story that it deserved.
While I crafted new stories, Katrina and Nick insisted their story be told. A few years later, I dusted off the manuscript and gave it new life. A new title, a page-by-page edit, and Nick’s point of view. The original story was only told in Katrina’s point of view, but I felt Nick needed to be heard.
Katrina is an independent business woman, and Nick is the perfect hero: caring and strong. Their chemistry is undeniable. Throw in a few twists, the picturesque setting of Montreal and Paris, and several cups of java. When I wrote ‘The End’, I was overwhelmed with satisfaction. I had finally written the story I envisioned so many years before.

I’m thrilled to share Twist of Faith with you!

 And we're thrilled too. What a beautiful cover. I enjoy your books because they also contain subtle humor, not the easiest thing to write, but you do it well. Tell us about the story and characters.


   Katrina has one goal—follow through on her late-grandmother’s last request, to oversee the renovation of Katrina’s childhood home. The handsome contractor is distracting, but she refuses to be swayed by his deep brown eyes and broad shoulders. A summer romance is not part of the plan. When the truth is discovered about her family’s past, Katrina fears her own future is in jeopardy. She doesn’t have faith, but the twists that lie ahead may just change her mind.

   Nick refuses to accept help from anyone, until Katrina gives him an ultimatum—one he can’t refuse. Her renovation project will save his business, but puts his heart on the line. Can he convince Katrina to stay or will a promise to her late-grandmother pull her away? With a little twist of Faith, the odds may be in his favor.


I've just started reading TWIST OF FAITH, and I'm loving it. 
Here is an excerpt. 

    The man shifted his weight.
    Suddenly, the air cooled around her. For the first time since she spied him in her home, Katrina stared face-to-face at her intruder. Past the pain, she saw a strong jaw line and a chin framed by the shadow of a goatee, or as they say in Paris, a French beard. A perfect set of lips held a thin moustache and his brown layered hair fell just above his chin. Dark brown eyes kept her gaze captivated. Johnny Depp has broken into my house.
    His face didn’t belong to someone who made a living from breaking-and-entering. This face belonged to a refined and hard-working man. She could tell there was more to the story behind those eyes, but the instant she stared at his lips, her thoughts turned to mush.
    He stumbled to stand, leaning on the wall for support. Johnny Depp kicked the wood, sending it rolling to the other side of the room.
    Katrina, now believing he meant no harm, accepted the hand he offered to help her from the floor. She ignored the tingling sensation running up her arm, knowing the fuss couldn’t be from the strong hand holding hers.
    He inhaled a deep breath and opened his mouth to speak, but shook his head instead. Frowning, he pointed a finger toward the card on the floor and limped to the exit, slamming the door behind him.
    She bent to pick up the card, which read, Donaldson and Porter, Architecture and Contracting, Nick Porter. Her shoulders dropped. “Damn!”
    Katrina now had less than twenty-four hours to master the art of groveling.

 Thank you for joining me today, Darlene. It sounds like a terrific story, and readers should be scurrying to put TWIST OF FAITH on their TBR list. Here's where all of you can snag a copy.

                             The Wild Rose Press
                                Amazon

And remember to leave a comment for a chance to win a prize.

Visit Darlene at:

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Horse Expo 2015/ FRIENDS, FUN, FOOD


(honest ladies, this was the best picture of the three)

What could be more fun than a day out with your girlfriends involving horses, shopping, and food. Nothing comes to mind.
The first thing we came across was a beautiful Belgian horse, 
which I really enjoyed since I'm Belgian too.
  The excitement really went up a notch when they discovered a new Breyer Horse. Norma and Carol collect them and have hundreds of them on display at their house. 


Of course shopping for clothes was high on tour list.
Both pairs of boots are covered in bead-work. They were GORGEOUS.....And such fancy footwear demanded a belt with bling, and a halter top with golden accents. 

Then there were the hats, I was good, didn't buy one. It was a true test of self-control 
The garden goodies were tempting too. Lots of flying pigs for some reason.

 These were neat, and handmade. 


 There is always educational material available, with nice folks ready to impart their wisdom
Food is never a problem, although we like to come packin', lunch that is.

 Lots of saddles and other horsey stuff. 

And there is never a lack of humor around the folks I went with, and the folks you meet there.

 One very interesting program was the Equine Comeback Challenge presented by A Home for Every Horse. Rescued horses are given another chance at a good life by being trained or re-trained so they are suitable for a new family and a new life. Most have been abused either physically or mentally but now they have a future with new owners. The trainers in the Equine Comeback Event had 90 days to work with these rescued horse, then they showed us what they had learned by putting them through an obstacle course. It was amazing. Made me feel so guilty for not working more with my donkeys. My guys are mostly good at eating and being cute.  


This rider/trainer is only 11 years old! Gives you hope for the next generation.



Just before leaving we came across a display with dragons,and "wooden armor", I think they were a Medieval Group who works with children. 



Since I freely admit to being a Medieval freak, my girlfriends talked me into trying on some of the items. (with permission of the vendor). I think they were made for a big strapping gorgeous Viking. At least that's my story and I'm sticking to it. I can just see him now....




What a beautiful day. 
Perfect weather, terrific friends, 
and lots of positive energy. 
I'm a lucky little cowgirl.  




Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Marlow Kelly, A WOMAN OF LOVE, WIN a $10 Amazon gift certificate


 



    Today my guest blogger is Marlow Kelly acclaimed author of Historical Romance. She's sharing a very intriguing sneak peek of her new novel A WOMAN OF LOVE, offering you a chance at a $10 Amazon gift certificate, and enlightening us on the fascinating life of Lillie Langtry. 




Here's her article:
    What does socialite and actress Lillie Langtry have to do with my novella, A Woman of Love? Nothing. My character, Annabel, is driven by love, whereas Lillie seems to be motivated by celebrity and money. So why write about her, and why would you want to read about her life? Because she was notorious. Her lovers were princes, lords and the cream of English society and when society was done with her she reinvented herself. I suppose I should start at the beginning.

Lillie Langtry was born Emilie Charlotte Le Breton on 13th October 1853, on the Island of Jersey. (For those of you who have never heard of Jersey, it’s an island in the middle of the English Channel.) She was the youngest of seven children, and by all accounts a tomboy. This is not surprising when you consider she had six older brothers. Her father was the rector and Dean of Jersey.

 In 1874, Lillie met and married 30 year-old landowner Edward Langtry. He was wealthy enough to own a yacht and Lillie wanted an escape from her island home. The pair moved to London. Soon after their arrival they were invited to a reception by one of her father’s friends, Lord Ranelagh. She wore a simple black, figure-hugging gown, which was a stark contrast to the flamboyant gowns worn by the other women. (This was before Coco Channel invented the “little black dress.”) She caused a sensation. The dress showed off her natural beauty. Among the guests were artists Frank Miles and Everett Millais, both asked if she would sit for them. Their sketches and portraits of Lillie were sold as postcards and were a sell-out success.

   It was not long before news of the beautiful young, and witty Mrs. Langtry grew, reaching the attention of Edward, the Prince of Wales. Edward, son of Queen Victoria and married to Princess Alexandra, was a well-known philanderer. He arranged an intimate dinner party where Lillie was seated next to him while her husband was sat at the opposite end of the table. And so began her affair with the Prince of Wales, which lasted three years. The prince even built a love nest for them in the Bournemouth area.
    The affair was over by 1880. Some say she insulted him in public and refused to apologize, others say that her husband threatened to divorce her and cite the Prince and the Earl of Shrewsbury as her lovers in the divorce petition. Whatever the reason the relationship cooled.

 By this time, Lillie was living well beyond her means; especially considering her husband had never been as wealthy as she had been led to believe. With creditors closing in she was forced to sell her possessions to avoid bankruptcy.


Lillie now began an affair with the handsome Prince Louis of Battenberg. She was also seeing a childhood friend, Arthur Jones, at the same time. She became pregnant and gave birth to a daughter, Jeanne Marie, in Paris on 8th March 1881. To this day the question of paternity is still unresolved. Letters Lillie wrote to Arthur, discovered in 1978, suggest the child was his.

 After the birth of her daughter, she realized she needed to find employment, so she took to the stage. Although, she wasn’t a great actress her charm and stage presence guaranteed a full house. It is known that the Prince of Wales supported her acting efforts by going to her shows and encouraging his friends to do the same.

   In 1882 she started her own stage company, and announced that they were going to tour the United States of America. Her tour was an enormous success and while critics condemned her acting ability, she played to sold-out houses.

    She was now with wealthy industrialist Freddie Gebhard. The staggering profits from her tour and her relationship with Gebhard, a man who was not shy about sharing his wealth with her, encouraged her to repeat her stage tour of America. In the meantime, Gebhard showered her with gifts, there was a railcar made to her own design, costing a million dollars, a town home in New York, and trips to Europe.
 
   In 1887 she became an American citizen and divorced Edward Langtry. Free of her husband and independently wealthy she decided to return to England. Her relationship with Gebhard faded and in 1895 he married another woman.

   In 1899 she married Gerald de Bathe, by all accounts the marriage wasn’t a close one, and although they both lived in Monte Carlo they only saw each other at social gatherings.

    Lillie died alone in Monaco in 1929, and was buried in Jersey.
****
    Marlow said: Initially, I found it hard to empathize with Lillie. Yes, she was a survivor who was able to recreate herself, but she seemed so calculating. Was she a social climber? With the exception of Arthur Jones, the men she chose were rich with the social status to match. Was Arthur the love of her life? I really don’t know enough about him to decide.

   Once Lillie became independently wealthy she could have chosen any man rich or poor. Was Arthur married, or worse, dead by then? Is that why she continued to seek out men from the upper class even though they never made her happy?

   In the end she died rich and alone. A tragic figure, who I believe was never truly happy.


Marlow's new book available at:





When her dissolute husband insists that Lady Annabel Peters bed one of his villainous cohorts to repay a gambling debt, she is scandalized. But she is forced to agree because he controls every aspect of her life.
A physically and emotionally crippled war hero, James Drake has retreated from society. At the request of his brother, he manipulates events so he can interrogate Annabel, a woman he thinks may be part of a ring of thieves.

  Neither of them count on an instant and overwhelming attraction. James may now believe Annabel but she suspects her husband plans to kill her. As one of her husband’s friends, James is not to be trusted.

   Yet how can she escape a man who has the ability to control her with a gentle kiss?

 Excerpt: A WOMAN OF LOVE
   Maneuvering Peters into having his wife pay his debts had been easy. He had counted on the bastard to care more about money than his personal relationships. Of course, James had no intention of compromising her. He only wanted her alone for questioning. Hopefully, she would be forthcoming, and he wouldn’t have to resort to intimidation.

   He led her to the library. Three of the four walls were lined with shelves, crammed with books. It smelled of old, musty paper, but it was the only room in the house, other than the bedroom, that contained furniture.

  “Take a seat.” He pointed to his old, leather couch, then carried the oil lamp from the stone mantelpiece and put it on the small table next to her.

   She clamped her arms around her body. Her large, oval eyes stared at the light, mesmerized by the small dancing flame. She reminded him of the refugees he’d seen when he served in the Crimea, giving the impression of a woman whose world had collapsed around her. Something in his chest twisted. He wondered if she was more a victim than he had assumed.

   In the flicker of lamplight her eyes looked dark, but every now and then he caught a glimpse of a lighter shade. Were they blue or green? Wisps of hair, the colour of honey, escaped their pins and trailed down her neck beckoning him to trace the strands with his lips.

   Damn, he might have become an animal, but there were limits to his depravity. He would not coerce a woman into his bed, wouldn’t touch her, kiss her, and he certainly wouldn’t make love to her. He needed her cooperation and honesty and couldn’t be distracted by a pretty face with sad eyes.

         Follow this link for a chance at a
              $10 Amazon gift certificate.
                      WIN WIN WIN

After being thrown out of England for refusing to drink tea, Marlow Kelly made her way to Canada where she found love, a home and a pug named Max. She also discovered her love of storytelling. Encouraged by her husband, children and let’s not forget Max, she started putting her ideas to paper. Her need to write about strong women in crisis drives her stories and her curiosity regarding the lives and loves of historical figures are the inspiration for her characters.


 Visit Marlow Kelly at Facebook and her website


Sunday, March 8, 2015

Romancing The 8 at Trans Canada Romance Writers March 2015


                      Welcome to the March 2015 blog tour.
            Hope you have fun sampling these yummy romances.                                    Leave a comment at each site 
                       for multiple chances at a $5 gift card


                           Here is a little taste of ..... 

                                 LADY GALLANT


  Handing her the pouch of wooden spindles, he ushered her down the hall. “I take it you had some purpose in gathering these.”
   “I stole them,” she openly confessed, head held high.


  “I assumed as much,” he said, and decided he liked Nurse Posey all the more with the fire of rebellion in her eyes.


   “You won’t tell will you?” Her step faltered and he tightened his grip on her elbow.


   “Are they for a good cause?” he asked, and cringed at the bleeding heart sound of his own words.

   “We’ve run out of firewood on the ward,” she explained. “I’ve fought too hard to keep my patients alive to watch them freeze to death.”
  Guileless courage, and na├»ve wisdom. “Sounds reasonable to me,” he agreed.
   Her shoulders relaxed, and a tentative smile curved the edges of her lips. It appeared Nurse Posey was tougher than she appeared...and felt...and not above a little pilfering when the
need suited her cause. She wasn’t bad at kissing either.

     Join Garrick Allen, a London Times war correspondent, and Josephine Posey, a nurse in Florence Nightingale's brigade. Will they survive the Crimean war to find love and hope in one another's arms?  
                                               LADY GALLANT
                     Buy Now at:
                         The Wild Rose Press

                   Please also visit these authors                 for sneak peeks at some great stories and for a                       chance to win a $5 gift card.

 Linda Carroll-Bradd
 Darlene Fredette
 Marlow Kelly
 Krista Ames

Friday, March 6, 2015

Berthoud Historical Society, Shame on You





    I used to be so proud to be a member of the Berthoud Historical Society. For the past few years I helped at nearly every Fannie Palmer luncheon, the wonderful Victorian Teas, the tours, the Gala's, the decorating for Christmas. The Society acted as an avenue for me to meet so many lovely Berthoud townspeople, and offered me a chance to make good friend whom I will always cherish. 

   Unfortunately, my happiness has now turned to sorrow. There may be two sides to every story, but I cannot think of any reasons that would justify the recent cruelty and thoughtlessness handed out by some Board members of the Historical Society. You have ripped joy away from many people who were dedicated and untiring in their efforts to support the Society. Gone is the joy of comradery, the feeling of usefulness, the pride in being part of something so important to the town. 

  You have wounded the very heart and soul of the McCarty Fickel house. Regardless of your efforts, it will never shine with such happiness nor will it be the warm and inviting place it once was. You have especially denied the house two valued caretakers who not only loved the history, but actually lived the history. 

  Shame on those of you who facilitated and supported this radical change.