Friday, December 30, 2016

My Favorite Books of 2016

Happy New Year and a Healthy 2017 full of awesome books!


Since 1984, I've kept a list of every book I read, the author, and a rating of 1-10 (10 being highest). This list has sure some in handy many times, if I can't remember a title or author, or if I start reading a book and say 'hmm, this looks familiar...' then I look it up, and sure enough, it's on the list, sometimes many years back. I'd like to share my favorite books of 2016...I'll give you the 10's and the 9's. I don't usually have that many 10s--those are the books I can't put down!
I'll put in Amazon links to the ones that really stood out.
A Child is Missing – Karen Beaudin - 10 - (true story about a 13-yr-old girl who was murdered in NH in 1971, written by her sister)
Also has a sequel, A Child is Missing, Searching for Justice, also a 10
Americana – Ray Davies (founder of The Kinks) - 9
Assassination of JFK, the Reasons Why – Albert Newman - 9
The Dating Game Killer – Stella Sands - 10 (about a serial killer who'd appeared on The Dating Game. The girl on the show chose him as the bachelor to go on the date with, but didn't go because 'he looked creepy.')
Dead Presidents – Brady Carlson – 9
Diary of Dorcas Good – Rose Earhart - 9
Five Days in November – Clint Hill – 10 (Secret Service agent who protected Jackie Kennedy)
Five Presidents – Clint Hill - 9 (he was in the Secret Service during the terms of Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon & Ford)
The Keepsake – Tess Gerritsen – 9 (all her books are great)
The Litigators – John Grisham – 9 (if it has his name on it I'll read it)
The Lost Girls – John Glatt – 9 (about the girls who were abducted in Cleveland, in captivity for 11 years)


Thursday, December 22, 2016

Read About DEATH AND DESTINY, a Paranormal Romance by N.D. Jones

DEATH AND DESTINY TRILOGY
Books 1 & 2 by N.D. Jones

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

A Tradition of Christmas Past




This tradition ended when my great grandmother (Grandma to everyone) passed away in 1988. She was the matriarch of the family, the mother of my grandfather. “Josie Red” as she was known in downtown Jersey City was way ahead of her time, as a bootlegger during Prohibition, a real estate tycoon, a small-time loan shark, and according to legend, Mayor Hague’s mistress.

Every Christmas Eve, her daughter, my great aunt Lucretia, a gourmet cook, invited everyone to her basement for an Italian feast. Grandma’s four children were grown with children and grandchildren of their own. Of course this necessitated a ‘kiddie table’ at which I sat until I was tall enough to sit with the grown-ups. Aunt Lucretia always made two types of spaghetti sauce—regular marinara sauce and aglio e olio—but what I remember is it always contained clam sauce, which I wouldn’t touch, so I went for the plain and safe marinara. Her finished basement had a small kitchen so she was able to do all the cooking right there. Kiddies weren’t allowed to, but several adults helped her carry the steaming plates to the long tables set up and covered with holiday-themed tablecloths. She served all the traditional Italian dishes—after the pasta came the ham, then the fruit and nuts, and of course, an array of desserts, always including her famous struffoli (honey balls) and Italian rum cake. My Uncle Eddie tended bar at the other end of the room. Thankfully, he’s still with us at 84.

After dinner, Santa always showed up. My cousin Mike’s father played the part very convincingly—the kiddies scrambled onto his lap for their chance to gush about how good they behaved all year and how deserving they were of his visit later that night to surround their Christmas trees with presents to be torn open the next morning. Someone always had a home movie camera to capture these special moments on film. I remember the lights always blazing like the noonday sun when the camera started rolling.

After leaving the party, I always went to Midnight Mass with my friends and someone always threw a party after that.

Christmas Eves in the basement ended after Grandma left us, but the memories live on!


Meet Another The Wild Rose Press Author Tena Stetler, with A WITCH'S HOLIDAY WEDDING

A WITCH'S HOLIDAY WEDDING
The Lobster Cove series by Tena Stetler

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Meet Lori Sizemore and Read About INFAMOUS, Contemporary Romance

INFAMOUS
 by Lori Sizemore

Friday, December 16, 2016

A Bookshelf for Book Lovers!

IF YOU LOVE BOOKS: A CHRISTMAS TREE YOU CAN READ! 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Now You Can Have Your Very Own Secret Santa--"The Secret Santa Series" -- Holiday Romances

THE SECRET SANTA series
by Nikki Lynn Barrett

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

THE BIKER'S BROTHER, a Contemporary Romance, Book 2 in the Sons of Sanctuary Series

THE BIKER'S BROTHER
Sons of Sanctuary MC series, book 2
by Victoria Danann

Monday, December 12, 2016

SILVER BELLS by Jacquie Biggar--a Holiday Treat!

SILVER BELLS
 by Jacquie Biggar

Saturday, December 10, 2016

"The Remington Kindle World" Part Two

THE REMINGTON KINDLE WORLD

Friday, December 9, 2016

I'm Hosting A MAGICAL HIGHLAND SOLSTICE by Mary Morgan, Scottish Paranormal Time-Travel Romance

A MAGICAL HIGHLAND SOLSTICE
spinoff of the Order of the Dragon Knights series
by Mary Morgan

Thursday, December 8, 2016

KEEP ME WARM by Jude Ouvrard--a Contemporary Short Story Romance

KEEP ME WARM
 by Jude Ouvrard

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Welcome Pamela Thibodeaux--Rafflecopter Giveaway – 5 E-copies & 5 Print copies of Keri’s Christmas Wish

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Award-winning author Pamela S. Thibodeaux is the Co-Founder and a lifetime member of Bayou Writers Group in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Multi-published in romantic fiction as well as creative non-fiction, her writing has been tagged as, “Inspirational with an Edge!” ™ and reviewed as “steamier and grittier than the typical Christian novel without decreasing the message.”

About KERI'S CHRISTMAS WISH


For as long as she can remember, Keri Jackson has despised the hype and commercialism around Christmas so much she seldom enjoys the holiday. Will she get her wish and be free of the angst to truly enjoy Christmas this year?

A devout Christian at heart, Jeremy Hinton, a Psychotherapist, Life Coach, Spiritual Mentor and Energy Medicine Practitioner has studied all of the world’s religions and homeopathic healing modalities. But when a rare bacterial infection threatens the life of the woman he loves, will all of his faith and training be for naught?

In Keri's Christmas Wish we get a glimpse into the life and spiritual practice of an ordinary woman who goes through an extraordinary experience.

Keri Jackson is an accountant who, although she loves Christ, abhors the hype, commercialism and controversy of His birth. As she embarks on a spiritual quest to determine why she feels this way, a rare bacterial infection threatens to take her life before she can find answers.

Jeremy Hinton, a Psychotherapist whose practice is a bit unorthodox as far as the medical community is concerned, has been enthralled by Keri from the moment the two meet. He feels she is a highly intelligent, deeply emotional, intensely complex human being. He has studied the human psyche and spiritual evolution for as long as he can remember. Keri's attitude toward Christmas baffles him, but Jeremy is sure together they can get to the bottom of it. Until she is beset by a rare infection that she may not recover from.

But what Jeremy and the doctors don't know is that while her body is under attack, Keri's soul is alive and well in another realm.

We travel this journey with Keri as she discovers a spiritual truth that is sure to set many people free from preconceived notions about heaven, angels, Christ, Christmas and the value of a relationship with Jesus. 

Excerpt: 

Later that evening, Keri sat in her apartment bewildered and confused. Her search around the apartment complex after work had uncovered not a single string of wind chimes. Not one. She’d found nothing to explain the music she’d heard while drifting off after her evening prayer the night before.

Goose bumps rose on her flesh in response to the shiver that shook her soul. Could it be God used the music to acknowledge her prayer? Would this be the year she finally let go of all the angst she felt around Christmas and just enjoyed one of the holiest seasons? Would her Christmas wish finally be granted?


Pamela on KERI'S CHRISTMAS WISH


What inspired you to write your newest release Keri’s Christmas Wish?
When I look back on the beginning I can honestly say Keri’s Christmas Wish was totally inspired by God. I’d finished a short story and sent the collection off to my editor when a vision of a young woman scrolling through her newsfeed came to mind with the words: Bah Humbug…. The entire story evolved from that one image and I completed the manuscript within a very short time. Since this was the first, original fiction story I’ve written in its entirety since 2009 I’m very excited to see it come to fruition.

Why should people buy this book and who is your potential audience? 
Keri's Christmas Wish will give readers an enjoyable fiction story that shares the miracles and magic of the books and movies made over the last several years based on a true account of someone's visit to heaven. Those who love reading, hearing about and watching a true account of someone's visit to heaven as well as those who wonder if heaven is for real and what it is like, will enjoy Keri's Christmas Wish. 

Is there anything else you feel is relevant to this story?
True accounts of heaven, angels, miracles as well as Energy Medicine, and meditation/self-help techniques are huge topics of interest in the world today. This story combines all of the above in a manner sure to entertain as well as enlighten.

What is the message you hope to get across in this story?
That regardless of where you are in your faith journey God and His angels are always there to guide and guard and that He loves you in spite of your doubt and fears.

What is the one question you wish an interviewer would ask you?
        Q: To what or whom do you credit your success?
        A: Many people have a love/hate relationship with their muse. My muse is the Holy Spirit and I accredit every ounce of success to the grace of God because without HIM I seriously doubt I could write a single word, much less stories that bring hope and healing to so many.

What is your work schedule like when you are writing?
Unlike many writers, I'm not strictly disciplined. However, when I am actively writing, I write—very little editing, or working on other projects, limited time online, not much networking or blogging, sleep comes only in snatches, meals are scarce and light, and definitely no playing!

When do you feel like it all began to come together for you as a writer—was there a particular moment?
After years as a closet writer, penning stories in 5-subject notebooks, I'd have to say when I purchased my first, USED word processor and started typing in all those handwritten manuscripts I really began to feel like a writer.

Who has influenced you most as a writer and why?
There is really no one person to whom I can attribute this to, so many have helped me along the way. I’d have to say that my love of reading has influenced me the most. Reading opens doors to the imagination, takes you places you’d never be able to go otherwise and improves your visualization and vocabulary skills. Now, I’m able to implement all those things into my own writing.

What are some of the challenges you face as an author?
The biggest challenge I face is not having my work accepted by the “Christian” publishers. As one reviewer said, “though undeniably Christian, it is never dogmatic or insular; offering faith rather than religion.” (Review of Tempered Dreams by Elizabeth Burton for Blue Iris Journal) My books deal with issues in a way that is unacceptable in the traditional CBA market. Now that is not saying that my books are better than those published through traditional CBA publishers, only different. As I’ve said many times, everything that gives God glory deserves to be praised!

What are a few writing tips you could share with aspiring writers?
The bible exhorts us to “study and show yourself approved.” Keep studying, keep writing, keep learning, stay open to constructive critique and NEVER GIVE UP! Writing is both gift and talent given to you by God. Don’t hide your gift or bury your talent. Whatever you write, write well. Strive for excellence. Stay teachable, pliable, and flexible. Never believe that you know it all because knowledge is power and the more you know the more valuable you become. Above all share what you learn with others and make someone’s load lighter to bear.

Any marketing tips?
Marketing is an intricate part of the publishing business and publishers today expect authors to do their fair share. However, marketing/promotion can be overwhelming as the more you learn, the more there is to learn. For everything you accomplish, there are hundreds more you can do. My motto is: Do something every day and your best then let God do the rest and remember it takes time to build a career.

What is your goal or mission as a writer?
A committed Christian, I firmly believe in God and His promises. God is very real to me. I believe that people today need and want to hear more of His truths wherever they can glean them and I do my best to encourage readers to develop a personal relationship with Him. The deepest desire of my heart is to glorify God and to get His message of faith, trust, and forgiveness to a hurting world. My hope is that all of my stories will touch the lives of everyone who reads them and - in some way - bring them a truer knowledge of God and urge them into a closer walk with Him.

Contact Pamela
  
Twitter@psthib




Monday, December 5, 2016

Check out Kindle World!

THE REMINGTON KINDLE WORLD

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Tina Gayle Shares a #Holiday #Recipe and Marketing Exec’s Widow #99cents


Tina is a good friend and a frequent guest; I always enjoy hosting her. Check out Tina’s Peach Cobbler recipe and MARKETING EXEC’S WIDOW.

An author with over 30 books, Tina writes in a number of different genres: Romantic contemporary (as Tina Gayle) and  Erotic Romance. Her books range from contemporary, paranormal to mystery and suspense.


As an indie author, she has worked hard to have a social presence and reach her readers. You can visit her website and read the 1st chapter of any of her books.  Or you can download a free ebook and join her newsletter group.

About MARKETING EXEC'S WIDOW

Four women...
One fatal car wreck...
Everyone's lives changed...


Letting go and rebuilding a life comes at a price.

Having come to terms with losing her husband, Jennifer is ready to move on, but she faces opposition from her friends, in-laws, and brother-in-la. He see himself as her future husband. None of them know of Jen’s marital problems and she is afraid of their reaction when they learn she has a date for Friday night?


Hagan Chaney is not anything like Craig. He tempts Jen into the future but is she willing to give love another chance after the heartache she faced the 1st time around?


Excerpt


Friday night, sitting at a booth in a nice, romantic restaurant, Jen silently wished she could enjoy the subdued atmosphere, and order a rib eye steak. Instead, her hands shook and her stomach churned with doubt. The survival skills she’d learned after becoming a real estate agent demanded a calm, composed front, but she couldn’t pull it off.

Hell, who was she fooling?

After ten years without a date, what made her believe she could do this again? She stared at the menu. Could she even swallow a bite of beef? And if not, what should she order?

She lifted her gaze to the drop-dead gorgeous man on the other side of the table. Hagan Cheney, a Greek god incarnated, had strawberry blond hair glowing like gold around his head. Wide shoulders and strong arms were encased in a hunter-green cashmere sweater. Apollo himself wouldn’t look any better.

Why in heaven’s name did he ask her on a date?

And why did she care?

She had no plans other than a casual dinner for two.

He glanced up, and a pretty-boy grin crossed his lips. The twinkle in his hazel eyes softened the square line of his jaw. “So have you decided what you want?”

Heat simmered low in her belly. Oh, yeah, answering that question the wrong way could get her into a world of trouble.

Tempted by wicked ideas, Jen blinked and stared at the menu. She’d do better if he didn’t know the wild directions of her brainwaves. “I’m not sure I can eat. I haven’t been this nervous since my first date with Craig.”

Ah, shit, I wasn’t supposed to mention him. Fire burned her cheeks. Her gaze jumped to Hagan’s befuddled expression.

“Craig?” Hagan lowered his menu.

Purchase MARKETING EXEC'S WIDOW
Amazon    |  All Romance Ebooks   |  B&N     |  Kobo    | Apple  | Smashword


QUICK PEACH COBBLER

My uncle used to make this cobbler all the time when he wanted to offer us a treat. A confirmed bachelor, he wanted something quick and easy.

1 large can of peaches
3/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 box of vanilla wafers
1/4 cup of butter

Preheat the oven to 350.  Pour can peaches, sugar, and cinnamon in a casserole dish large enough to hold everything I use the 2quart size. After stirring these items together, then add most of the box of vanilla wafers, set enough aside to pull on top.  Once you have the wafers arranged on top, slice the butter in to small pieces and set on top of the wafers.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.


Serve with ice cream or whipping cream.






Friday, December 2, 2016

Meet Diane Rinella and see PRETTY THINGS: THE ROCK AND ROLL FANTASY COLLECTION--Hear an Audio Excerpt

PRETTY THINGS:
THE ROCK AND ROLL FANTASY COLLECTION:
Rosalyn and Friends
by Diane Rinella