Monday, February 28, 2011

Teaser Tuesday #24

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading and here's how you play..  Grab your current read and open to a random page. Share a couple of “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page. BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) Share the title and author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teaser.

The Giveaway To End All Giveaways!

Ok I have sat on this giveaway ALL month, squirming around like an excited kid getting ready to go to Disneyland. I have had SO much fun with the PassionPalooza and I'm grateful for how many of you came by and offered your support. It wouldn't have been as successful without you all coming by and playing with me *grins* So I was torn - how do I run this giveaway? Do I do little packs for a bunch of people OR do I throw the HUGE MONSTER pile of books I got from my favorite used books store/donated from fave authors and make one lucky reader's day? What do you think I chose? Go ahead and click the link ...

Author Spotlight - Katie MacAlister

Meet Katie

As found on her official website -

For as long as she can remember, Katie MacAlister has loved reading. Growing up in a family where a weekly visit to the library was a given, Katie spent much of her time with her nose buried in a book. Despite her love for novels, she didn’t think of writing them until she was contracted to write a non-fiction book about software. Since her editor refused to allow her to include either witty dialogue or love scenes in the software book, Katie swiftly resolved to switch to fiction, where she could indulge in world building, tormenting characters, and falling madly in love with all her heroes.


Two years after she started writing novels, Katie sold her first romance, Noble Intentions. More than thirty books later, her novels have been translated into numerous languages, been recorded as audiobooks, received several awards, and are regulars on the New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly bestseller lists. She also writes for the young adult audience as Katie Maxwell.

Katie lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and dogs, and can often be found lurking around online.

My gosh, I love how this author writes. Katie has a wicked sense of humor and her books are filled with scenes that have tears streaming down my cheeks as I'm snorting out loud. Case in point - I recently read IN THE COMPANY OF VAMPIRES and there were moments were I seriously had to stop for long chunks of time because I couldn't breathe for laughing. The scenes she wrote with the Viking warrior ghosts are the funniest I've ever read and don't get me started on the love scenes. When I read the book, I reviewed it for The Romance Reviews and wrote the interview for Katie. Here it is for you to enjoy :)

Guest Post: My Love Of Romance Over The Years by Jackie

First I would like to thank Belinda for having me as a guest on her blog during her Month Of Passion Palooza in February. I found her site last year and fell in love with the absolutely delicious books Belinda loves to read, many of which I also read lot's more that I have not yet gotten to! Plus she has pretty little Chihuahua's too!



MY LOVE OF ROMANCE OVER THE YEARS!
 

While my taste in reading may have changed my love for Romance novels has not, as a matter of fact it has actually come full circle in the last couple of years! In my teens and early 20's did not buy many romance books myself as had an aunt and older cousin who shared the ones they bought and then read with me... My first experience with romance was with author Barbara Cartland, if you have read her you know she is very "tame" compared to what is out there today!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Purple Prose - My Personal Favorite

When I first started on Twitter, someone posted a link to this funny article on something called Purple Prose. I had no idea what it was but being the curious/nosey person that I am, I clicked on it and found what has to be one of my favorite posts to date. I was new to reading adult romance and couldn't help but giggle because I'd seen exactly what the author was describing. I won't tell you how many times I've rolled my eyes or wanted to throw the book across the room because of word choices. My favorites to date are when an author described the man's private part as mushroomed (ewww hello?? Fungus) and another authors description of the vagina as "the sweetness of Venus" (I was in the Dr's office when I read that one and he was concerned I was choking LOL). I've waited a long time to share this so I hope you enjoy it as much as I have....

Deb Stover's The Purple Prose Eater


Purple Prose. What is it? Where did this term originate, and how did romance authors become the lucky professionals to be slapped with this label? Mr. Webster failed to provide a definition, so I felt duty-bound to compose one myself.

Purple prose consists of words and phrases that sound stilted, overly descriptive, or cliché. Now that doesn't mean we should never use beautiful, descriptive language. Not at all. What it means is the overuse of it irritates your reader and can mutate into the dreaded purple prose.
 
The main area where romance writers in particular are accused of inflicting the reader with purple prose is in love scenes. Why? In the seventies, when authors first threw open the bedroom doors on love scenes in romance novels, writers had to devise creative ways to describe human anatomy. Apparently, the powers-that-be felt the reading public could only handle one shock at a time, so we formulated all sorts of interesting words and phrases to substitute for more clinical terms.
 
We still use euphemisms in love scenes, though I find them much more realistic than they once were. However, beginning writers will often depend on the euphemisms of the past, rather than simply calling a breast a breast.


To read more, and trust me you'll want to because she includes examlpes, click HERE


Ten Indicators You're Reading Too Much Paranormal Romance

I've seen others put together one so I thought it would be fun to come up with my own list for the PassionPalooza. Some of these are of course observations and things I've seen from others but some... yep some are embarassingly true because I've done them. So here we go.


1. You replace the name of a client on paperwork with that of your current book crush and do sheet after painful sheet wrong because you're too busy daydreaming. Last time you checked, Vance Mangum was a warlock, not your client.

2. When on Facebook, you see a comment about an elderly woman doing a heroic act of bravery and the person's first thought was "Wow she must have eaten some Unseelie flesh"

3. A fellow blogger/tweeter is watching the Superbowl and makes the comment - "Who is the Packers guy with the flowing blonde mermaid hair?"

4. No man is interesting unless he has fangs or fur. You've even thought of putting in a special order for custom made vamp fangs just for your hubby.

5. With summer approaching, your first thought isn't about hot weather. It's about having an excuse to pull out the nail polish and having your lover paint your toe nails with the instructions of calling you "Ms Lane". Either that or "Kitten"

6. You stand at the supermarket checkouts with a sharpie in your hand, sighing as you draw fangs, wings, horns and wolf ears on all the men in magazines.

7. You swear an oath that your first born son will be called Vehnom because your secret desire is he'll become a member of the Black Dagger Brotherhood and give you access to your thigh-clenching crush, Zsadist.

8. You lock your loved one in the closet and tell them they can't come out until they've shapeshifted into something sexy like a dragon.

9. You purposely lurk in dark alleys looking like Daimon bait on the odd chance you run into a Dark Hunter. You make sure you never leave home without your "I HEART Atlantean Gods" badge

10. You dig up the neighborhood looking to see if you have a sexy Carpathian buried in the ground.


 Can you think of any others?

Book Review - Silent Howl by Stacey Kennedy

Silent Howl
Stacey Kennedy
Book Two in the Blue Bloods series
Paranormal Romance

When murder threatens innocent lives, will one woman unleash the wolf within her or hide behind the human that cowers in fear.
Rynn Murphy is a werewolf and she is in a state of bliss―her junkie parents are in recovery for their drug addiction. Her Grandfather, Pops, suffering from Alzheimer’s has settled into a nursing home in Utah. And she has just witnessed the bonding ceremony of her friends, Nexi and Kyden from the Otherworld. With her mate, Briggs by her side, life can’t get any better. But this happiness is about to end as Rynn is brought to Philadelphia. As a Blue Blood Werewolf, she has been given a special gift to possess a strong scent. And after horrific murders take place in the Pennsylvania territory, Rynn must use this ability to seek the killer out. This task does not come easily, Rynn is struggling. The human in her flees from danger. The wolf in her is desperate to end his murderous rampage. Rynn must reconcile these two halves while these murders begin to cross State lines. Soon, danger will be all around them, and Rynn will have to decide what is more important―the human who remains in her or the wolves she has sworn to protect

To read my review, click HERE

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Writings Of A Dreamer Post - Every Story Needs Some Visual Inspiration

I'm an extremely visual person. It's how I learn best so it doesn't surprise me in the least that when I find myself in a writing slump, that a well found image can kick start my Muse again.

One of the things I quickly realized as I began to take my writing seriously is that if I could see it and hold it in my hands, writing was so much easier for me because it made everything more real. When you put an actual  face on a character, it makes them human and helps form a stronger connection... well for me anyway.

To read more, click HERE

"I'll Take A Sweet Romance For 99c Thanks" - Marcia McClure

 I'm pretty excitable when it comes to books so it won't surprise you when I found out my FAVE author of clean/sweet romance was having an AWESOME sale on 6 of her books, I whooped and hollered. Sometimes I want to read a story that just pulls me in deep and wraps me up in romance so thick and heady that I'm in a constant state of swooning. When this is my mood, I ALWAYS reach for Marcia McClure because she can deliver. Her books are completely devoid of sex - *gasp* I hear you say - but wait, did you know she's able to write KNEE BUCKLING kisses? Here's your chance to test it out. For a limited time, she's offered some of my favorite stories for just 99c - can you believe it? So look through the blurbs of the titles below and see if something jumps out at you. I love, love, love, love these stories so you can't go wrong. When you do download a copy for yourself (LOL how's that for confidence), let me know what you think, ok?  Oh and just in case you need a little convincing, while the kisses don't come from these books, click HERE for some samples...

Book Review - Last Minion Standing by Eve Langlais

Last Minion Standing
Eve Langlais
Erotic Paranormal
Rating - Completely Seduced

Who will be the Last Minion Standing?

All I said was I needed a minion, the next thing I know, I'm embroiled in a reality show with cameras following me everywhere. I should have told them not to bother, as I was ready to declare a winner—and get naked—the moment I met Drake. Shirtless and shoeless, in low slung jeans, I could think of so many ways he could serve me—especially in bed. But, Drake, the super sexy dragon shifter, is after more than a chance to work alongside me in my battle to capture evil souls, he also wants to win my heart. But love is for weaklings, and no matter how much he tortures me sexually, I will not give in, even when he resorts to restraints and sensual flogging. Mmm, bring it on—harder please.


To read my review, click HERE

Friday, February 25, 2011

Last Night On Vampire Diaries - That Kiss Was HOT!

Ok I couldn't WAIT until this came up on YouTube.com to share.
Watch the clip right through to the end and then tell me...

HONESTLY...

Wasn't that THE most ROMANTIC, HOTTEST, SWOONWORTHY kiss

EVER??

*heavy sigh with goofy grin*




Why am I only just realizing that Matt is a HOTTIE?



Bwahhh we now have to SUFFER through a ONE MONTH
Vampire Diaries hiatus.... however will we survive??

Don't fret... I have something up my sleeves LOL


WOW AMAZING Romance Blogger - Love Romance Passion

I was doing one of my FAVE things to do last night (looking for new pics to use for my blog) and I found this beautiful "swoon" image. So I clicked on it and it lead me to an amazing blog that had ALL kinds of fun things to say about romance. The more I clicked on different posts, the more excited I got so I wanted to share *grins* The blog is run by Keira - an insatiable reader who is completely addicted to romance. She has a really interesting BIO so I definitely recommend pushing the stalk button... in fact maybe we can set up a camp site or something because I'll be doing some stalking of my own. Here's a few posts that stood out..



Book Review - Dead People by Edie Ramer

Dead People
Edie Ramer
Paranormal Romance

When Cassie Taylor talks, ghosts listen. She wants to heal their souls so they can leave earth. Brooding songwriter Luke Rivers wants to give his recently found daughter a normal home, but he discovers his new house in small town Wisconsin is haunted by a ghost with an attitude. His ghost whisperer has an attitude too — even before someone tries to kill her. So why does he have the hots for her? And why does she lust after him? He wants conventional; she wants acceptance. No wonder she thinks men are hard and dead people are easy.

To read my review, click HERE

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Author Spotlight - Lynsay Sands

Meet Lynsay

From her official website -

I was born in 1142 which is why my first love is historicals. I’ll let you guess why I love stories of immortals…er…well, vampires to you people. When I first started writing the family history, everyone was up in arms, afraid I was revealing too much, but I explained they were being published as fiction and I wouldn’t use real names. Of course, that was before I found I just couldn’t write the stories with other names… Just kidding! I couldn’t resist. Of course, I’m not a vampire. I wouldn’t mind being one. It would be a heck of a diet and I’m always looking for a successful diet, but despite not being a vampire…well…a gal can dream can’t she? And that’s what books are; waking dreams or stories, tales to amuse, entertain and distract us from everyday life. I love books. Reading books takes me away to other worlds and on grand adventures I just couldn’t have otherwise. Writing them does the same, but also lets me play God for a bit. I know that sounds weird, but when writing my stories, I decide who lives and dies, who succeeds or fails and so on. I can give the good guys the happy endings they deserve and be sure the bad guys lose and get their comeuppance. Unfortunately, that’s something that doesn’t always happen in real life. Perhaps that’s why writers write. Maybe we writers are all secret control freaks, wanting to control the world. Or maybe we’re just dreamers lucky enough to be able to make a living at dreaming. Either way I love writing and would do it whether I was paid for it or not. But I’m very very grateful to be able to share these stories with you. I hope they help you escape your troubles and trials if only for a little bit, and I hope they make you smile…You can be certain I’m often chuckling myself silly while writing them. Enjoy!


One thing I love when I'm reading my romance is when the author throws in healthy dollops of humor and Lynsay Sands does it with real style. When she released THE COUNTESS last month, I couldn't wait to read it and had so much fun with it. I also got to be part of her interview with The Romance Reviews and couldn't wait to share it with you guys. Hope you like it :)


YAY Free eBook!

Spoilt
Joanne Ellis
Romance Suspense

Passion turns to envy. Love to murder. One way or another, everyone is spoilt.
A sadistic killer is stalking the streets, carving his hatred into the bodies of beautiful, young women. The murders are stirring up bad memories for Detective Lucas Huson, as he struggles to remain focused - juggling the horrors of today with horrors from the past. When Chelsea Summerville's best friend goes missing, she's unwillingly dragged into the race to stop the killer.


Amazon Kindle, click HERE
Barnes & Noble NOOK, click HERE

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Winner Announced - Stacey Kennedy Giveaway

Tonight's the night to reveal the lucky winner of an e-copy of Whispers of Evil - book two in The Watchers series by Stacey Kennedy. The person has already accepted and it giddy excited :) Who was it?
 Nichole C
Thanks everyone who took part in the giveaway. Keep posted.. there's more to come! *hint hint...tomorrow* LOL

FUNNY - Another Man's Take On Romance Novels: Epic Black Car

What I'm about to share with you is courtesy of my BFF Lacey over at The Delusional Diaries. She's always finding the most hilarious things online which she of course, shares with me. Straight away I knew it would be a perfect addition to my Passion Palooza so here it is. The person who put together this blog goes by the aka The Epic Black Car and he is soooo funny! The post was so popular he followed it up with a post about his reaction to actually reading a romance novel and both had me and Lacey snorting! I'll share the first parts of them and then you can click through to his site. Hope you get a kick out of them...


One Man's View on Romance

I thought it would be fun to interview a husband whose wife is not only an avid romance reader but also writes books that just ooze love and passion. I figured it would be interesting to see what he'd have to say so I hope you enjoy!!

Meet James. He the average all American guy, living the dream. He's been married for 20+ years to his beautiful wife and has 6 wonderful kids.


What do you think of romance novels?
 
I don’t read them, but I did know a guy that does. He said they were hot and that every guy should read them. My wife of course agreed with him. She longs for the day that I will come home and sweep her away, shirtless of course, and make love to her like a stallion. But then again I thought I was doing that already. Guess I may be able to pick up a few pointers or two, maybe.
 

Book Review - Club Shadowlands by Cherise Sinclair

Club Shadowlands
Cherise Sinclair / Erotica : BDSM
Book 1 in The Masters of Shadowlands series
Rating: Completely Seduced

Her car disabled during a tropical storm, Jessica Randall discovers the isolated house where she's sheltering is a private bondage club. At first shocked, she soon becomes aroused watching the interactions between the Doms and their subs. But she's a professional woman--an accountant--and surely isn't a submissive...is she? Master Z hasn't been so attracted to a woman in years. But the little sub who has wandered into his club intrigues him. She's intelligent. Reserved. Conservative. After he discovers her interest in BDSM, he can't resist tying her up and unleashing the passion she hides within.

Publisher's Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: Anal play/intercourse, strong BDSM theme and content (including/not limited to bondage, caning, restraints, spanking, etc), exhibitionism, voyeurism.


To read my review, click HERE

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

We Have Winners!!

Thanks to everyone who entered my Lori Brighton giveaway and a HUGE congratulations to the two winners who won 4 of the author's romance books. So who are these lucky readers??

Telesis and Amy!!

Both have emailed me so keep an eye out guys... the books are on their way *smiles* I'm so excited for you!!

*SQUEE* Pale Demon & This Side Of The Grave Released

Pale Demon
Kim Harrison
Book Nine in The Hollows series
Urban Fantasy

Condemned to death for black magic and shunned, Rachel Morgan has three days to somehow get to the annual witches convention in San Francisco and clear her name. If she fails, the only way she can escape death is to live in the demonic ever after . . . for ever after.  Banned from the flight lists, Rachel teams up with elven tycoon Trent Kalamack, headed for the West Coast for his own mysterious business. But Rachel isn’t the only passanger along for the ride. Can a witch, an elf, a living vampire, and a pixy in one car survive for over 2,300 miles? And that’s not counting the assassin on their tail. A fearsome demon walks the sunlight, freed after centuries of torment to slay the innocent and devour souls. But his ultimate prey is Rachel Morgan. While the powerful witch with nerves of steel will do whatever it takes to stay alive, even embracing her own demonic nature may not be enough to save her.

A Quick Tease

"Hair still dripping, he draped the towel around his hips and tucked the end in the folds to hold it there, looking more appealing than if he'd been stark naked.
"Took who?" he said calmly. "

This Side Of The Grave
Jeaniene Frost
Book Five in the Night Huntress series
Urban Fantasy / PNR

Danger waits on both sides of the grave.

Half-vampire Cat Crawfield and her vampire husband Bones have fought for their lives, as well as for their relationship. But just when they've triumphed over the latest battle, Cat's new and unexpected abilities threaten to upset a long-standing balance . . . With the mysterious disappearance of vampires, rumors abound that a species war is brewing. A zealot is inciting tensions between the vampires and ghouls, and if these two powerful groups clash, innocent mortals could become collateral damage. Now Cat and Bones are forced to seek help from a dangerous "ally"—the ghoul queen of New Orleans herself. But the price of her assistance may prove more treacherous than even the threat of a supernatural war . . . to say nothing of the repercussions Cat never imagined.

A Quick Tease

"I took one of the candles off the nightstand, considering Bones in the light of the flickering flame. His body was stretched out, arms once again behind his head, limbs completely relaxed even though he was still hard as a baseball bat in one very notable place. All this bounty, mine to enjoy. I licked my lips. Damned if I knew how I’d gotten so lucky, but that was a question for another time. Now was the time for action, not contemplation.
I moved closer until my legs pressed against the side of the bed. “Do you remember the first time you bit me here?” I asked, tracing my finger over the tight bud of his nipple. “Yes.” One word, hissed with all the weight of desire that I could feel through his emotions.
“It felt like your fangs were burning me.” My voice was no more then a whisper from the shiver of remembrance, and I blew out the candle with an unsteady puff. “I can’t duplicate that with you because you’re not human,” I went on. “The juice in my fangs won’t feel the same, but maybe this will be close.”
Then I poured some of the hot wax that pooled on the candle directly onto Bone's nipple"
 

Who's the man standing scantily clad that Rachel is feasting her eyes on? *gasp* It couldn't be....

Just how steamy does the scene between Cat and Bones get? Do we need to make sure we're wearing something flame retardant first?


Never fear! The books are finally on bookshelves so rush out and grab yourself a copy... Now excuse me while I started reading This Side Of The Grave *giggles* I'm so tempted to start from Chapter 21 *winks*

Happy release day!

Teaser Tuesday #23

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading and here's how you play..  Grab your current read and open to a random page. Share a couple of “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page. BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) Share the title and author, too, so that other Teaser Tuesday participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teaser.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Jason Behr - Perfect Romance Hero Material

Look familiar? It's the dorky guy from Roswell. He's young, and kinda cute and I can hear you wondering... "This is romance hero material? Yeah maybe if you're reading Young Adult romance" That was my first thought BUT this fresh faced boy does what all boys eventually do ... he grew up and oh what a sexy man he turned into. Wanna see? *winks* It's ok to drool a little....

The Cheesy, The Awkward, The Insane - Part Two

Yay! You came back *grins* Hope you're reading to chuckle at these like I did. Without further ado... I give you PART TWO (haha that rhymed)

The Cheesy, The Awkward, The Insane - Romance Covers

So we've all seen them and laughed our butts off. Cheesy romance covers that make us cringe and the scary ones that have us screaming "WHY?" I know I'm not the only one who judges a book by their cover and you would think those designing and marketing romance novels would be aware of that. Apparently not, because I've seen some doozies recetly and my PassionPalooza wouldn't be complete if I didn't poke a little fun at some. I think I'll dub this "Cheesy Cover Day" on my blog. Enjoy!

Check It Out - My First Ever Guest Post

Crystal at Reading Between The Wines Book Club asked me to be part of her Countdown to This Side of the Grave feature she's been running for the past two week and being a fellow lover of all things Bones, I SQUEED and said yes! She's had some pretty amazing posts so head on over and check them out. While you're there look for mine "A Lover's Guide To Releasing Their Inner Bones" *giggles* it was alot of fun to put together. 

Click HERE to visit Crystal's blog

Book Review - Stolen Dreams by Stacey Kennedy

Stolen Dreams
Stacey Kennedy
Book 1 in the Lingering Spirits series
Rating - Completely Seduced

Tess Jennings has the ability to see and talk to spirits. On a daily basis, they harass and annoy her to save their souls. Sometimes she helps, other times she ignores them, but one ghost will give her no choice. Kipp McGowan, a cop with the Memphis Police Department, uses his ghostly charms to gain her attention and forces her to expose herself to his partner. As she’s pulled into the five year old cold case of Hannah Reid she wants no part of, she finds herself in more than one precarious situation. But that’s the least of her worries―Tess begins to have a serious problem on her hands. Kipp might be dead, but he’s drop-dead gorgeous and she’s beginning to forget that he’s a ghost. Murder and corruption has brought Tess and Kipp together. But as her feelings for Kipp deepen, she suspects she just signed herself up for a one-way ticket to the nut house, and can only hope, straitjackets come in a size four

To read my review, click HERE

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Bookish Snob's Top Sexy Lust List

Here's just a FEW of the book hotties that have made my lust list. If I included every guy that's made me a little hot under the collar or swoon into a big puddle of sappy goo, this post would be ENDLESS!! Maybe I'll do future posts to include those not mentioned....hmmmm...

*as a side note - this would have been posted HOURS ago if it wasn't for the fact I got caught up looking for pics to match the characters LOL*

Torn Between Two Lovers - Which Team Would You Vote For?

With help from some Facebook buddies, I was thinking last night about some of the love triangles I've enjoyed reading about and who I'd pick, if I was in the heroines shoes. Some of them were no brainers, some influenced by TV and others so difficult that it made me sweat a little. So here's my question to you  - who would you vote for? Do stand firmly on the Team everyone roots for or is there something that makes you choose the underdog? Let me know in the comments, ok?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Love Triangle Anyone? by Author H.P. Mallory

So, Belinda asked me to write about love triangles and what they mean to me…

To sum up this whole subject in a quick phrase…why settle for one when you can have more?

Okay, but seriously, why do I write about love triangles and what is so enthralling about them? In terms of my own interests, I’ve always been attracted to stories that feature love triangles more so than any other theme. I should be more specific and say I’m only interested in reading about triangles with one heroine and two heros, not one hero and two heroines. LOL Just wanted to get that clear for the record! I just love the thrill of trying to decide who to root for, who the heroine should end up with.

I was big into the Sookie Stackhouse series and the early works in the Anita Blake series (before they got weird) and both had the love triangle theme in common. And after reading the Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning, I can report that I loved this series even more than Anita or Sookie. There is a definite triangle to the core of the Fever Series books as well—maybe not a love triangle. necessarily, but a triangle all the same.

So, in my own writing, I’ve included the theme of a love triangle in the Jolie Wilkins series or love rectangle, as is the case with my Dulcie O’Neil series. I think multiple possibilities just add a delicious sense of drama to the storyline along with some tension and who doesn’t love drama and tension in fiction?

Outside of fiction, when I think about movies I loved, the two Bridget Jones movies come to mind—and the love triangle between Bridget, Daniel Clever and Mark Darcy. Part of the reason that movie was so fun was watching the triangle unfold with jealousy, misunderstandings and finally, resolution.

All in all, I love the idea of choices. Choices are a good thing and they add a level of intrigue to a story that makes for happy readers.


About H.P

I am a big, huge fan of anything paranormal. I get super excited whenever they have those Twilight Zone Marathon days, I've read every ghost book in existence and I think I've seen about every horror movie ever made.OK that's an exaggeration but trying to make a point. I started seriously writing about two years ago when I was living in Cambridge, England. Living in the U.K. really fueled my writing flame because the history is so intense, you can't help but feel like you're in a magical place. The first book I started in Cambridge was Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble. Then I moved up to Edinburgh, Scotland and started working on my second book, To Kill A Warlock. Some of the places I visited really had a profound effect on me and I included those locations in my books. Now I'm back in the U.S. and trying to find time to write whenever I can. Between working in online marketing all day and raising a baby, time is scarce. (That's my disclaimer to all of you who are wanting the next books in the series like tomorrow! LOL) But, seriously, I am aiming to release a book in each of the series every six months--that's not so bad, right? My interests are varied but aside from writing, I'm most excited about traveling. Uncovering new places and learning about different cultures is pretty incredible. I feel extremely fortunate to have been able to live abroad--what an amazing experience!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Book Blogger HOP #18 - It's Been A While

Hosted by Jen at Crazy-For-Books

In the spirit of the Twitter Friday Follow, the Book Blogger Hop is a place just for book bloggers and readers to connect and share our love of the written word! This weekly BOOK PARTY is an awesome opportunity for book bloggers to connect with other book lovers, make new friends, support each other, and generally just share our love of books! It will also give blog readers a chance to find other book blogs to read!

Ever Typed Funny Romance Novels Into YouTube.Com?

Hehehe I just had to share. Enjoy!!





One man's take.
He may be complaining now...
but I bet he's all smiles when he reaps the benefits *winks*


Favorite Couples In Romance

First off, OMGSH how hot does Gerard Butler look in this photo? Seriously! I don't know about you but I'd love to be that woman he has pressed up against the wall (and not just for the simple reason, she's got the kind of body I'd kill for) As a quick side though - is anyone else here guilty of casting this deliciously sexy man as the male hero in EVERY romance book they read?? *sigh* Oh what I wouldn't give for 5 minutes.... but I digress... where was I? Oh yeah.. a post on favorite couples in romance *grins*

My first thought when putting this post together was there were just so many amazing couples out there, that I couldn't possibly choose just one. I started making a list of who I could shared but to prevent being lynched by the friends I've made through the HP Mallory book club (I told them "You can pick only one couple") I'll follow the same guidelines and pick just ONE. I tell you, the decision was tough but one couple just kept floating to the top until it was pretty obvious - these two lovebirds were my all time favorite. So who are they??

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Author Spotlight - Shannon K. Butcher

Meet Shannon
(as found on her official website)

A lot of authors knew they wanted to write books from the time they were little. Their heads were full of fanciful stories that they yearned to commit to paper with a passion that only grew as they did. They spent hours reading fiction, voraciously absorbing every kind of story they could get their hands on.


I’m not one of them.


When I was little, I wanted to be a daddy. When I learned the anatomical improbability of that happening, I decided instead to become what my dad was: an Industrial Engineer. So that’s what I did. I never once changed majors or veered from my path. After I graduated, I went to work for a big telecom company earning a steady paycheck while my husband pursued his dream to become a published author.


For those of you who might not know, my husband is Jim Butcher, fantasy and sci-fi author extraordinaire. I learned to write in an effort to help him improve his own work and as soon as I discovered that writing was more a learned skill than a natural talent I knew I had to give it a try. I couldn’t resist the challenge of taking the pieces of a story apart and putting them back together again. It’s the kind of puzzle that made me want to be an engineer to begin with – to learn how things work and why. I thought I’d write the same kind of thing Jim did, but then I picked up my first romance in 1998 and was hooked. Somehow, stories about how two people come to love each other made everything else seem shallow in comparison. Maybe it was just my hormones talking, but whatever it was, it was loud, so I listened and I started writing romances. I wrote great heaping piles of suckfulness – like most new writers – but eventually my work sucked less and hopefully that trend will continue as I learn more. Heaven knows I have a great teacher. Thanks, Jim.


A family of geeks to the core, we live in Independence, Missouri with our teenage son and a dog who is only one four-foot stick away from being a dust mop.


As a lover of all alpha males I was REALLY excited to read the latest book in the Sentinel Wars series called Living Nightmare by Shannon. She has a way of writing the right amount of mouthwatering heat with aggressive masculinity and I LOVED this book. What made it even more exciting was that I was able to interview her on behalf of The Romance Reviews and they graciously gave me the thumbs up to share that with everyone here. Enjoy!

Bones - Oh How I Love Thee *SIGH*

For those living under a rock *grins* this coming Tuesday (February 22nd) marks the released of the much anticipated This Side Of The Grave by Jeaniene Frost. Ranked up there with Barrons from the Fever series, the sex personified vamp - Bones, has readers swooning and frantically fanning themselves. I'd even go as far to say that women are asking their significant others to call them Kitten (I asked mine and it didn't quite sound the same LOL) The fabulous Crystal - a blogger over at Reading Between The Wines Book Club - is a bonafide swooner for Bones  and to celebrate she's been running the Countdown to This Side Of The Grave feature. If you haven't paid a visit yet, I'd head over there right after you finish on mine and check it out because she has some really fun posts. Speaking of posts - the reason for this one was I was lurking (and drooling) over there and saw she posted some TEASERS from the upcoming release. Immediately I knew I need to share them with you all so with a nod from her *waves at Crystal* here they are for your swooning pleasure...

Book Review - Whispers of Evil by Stacey Kennedy

Whispers of Evil
Stacey Kennedy
Book 2 in The Watchers series
Erotic Paranormal
Rating - O.M.G.S.H

Nayeli has been locked away, hidden from the world in a mental institution, all due to the whispers of evil which have corrupted her mind. Unbeknownst to her, the voices that have plagued her are a gift given to only one kind―Watchers. Griffin, her Seeker, is about to break this cage of imprisonment woven around her and give her a new chance at life. But when a demon leaves the confines of Hell to create havoc in Louisiana, will his love for Nayeli free her wounded heart, or will she succumb to the whispers which threaten to steal her soul?

*WARNING: Explicit sex between a timid Watcher and a gorgeous Seeker, and a ceremony that will certainly raise eyebrows!*

To read my review, click HERE

New Post - In A Funk? Write It Out!

That was me yesterday. I was in such a funk and nothing I did seemed to lift it. All I wanted to do was cry, cry, cry and it bothered me that no amount of watching Buffy/Vampire Diaries/Merlin could fix it. I tried reading, blogging, surfing the Net and took a quick nap. NOTHING. Then it hit me - there was one thing I hadn't tried that always gave me a rush - I could write.... To read more, click HERE

*Note - Just as a FYI, I created a new page on my blog called Writings of a Dreamer. It's just a place for me to journal my thoughts as I learn about writing and the different experiences and thoughts I have as I work toward writing and publishing my own stories. It's also a place to share snippets of what I'm working on *

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Free eBooks = Sweet Dreams

Darkness Dawns
Dianne Duvall
Paranormal Romance

In this dazzling, sensual novel, Dianne Duvall beckons readers into a world of vampires, immortals, and humans with extraordinary gifts. . .where passion can last forever, if you're willing to pay the price. . . Once, Sarah Bingham's biggest challenge was making her students pay attention in class. Now, after rescuing a wounded stranger, she's landed in the middle of a battle between corrupt vampires and powerful immortals who also need blood to survive. Roland Warbrook is the most compelling man Sarah has ever laid hands on. But his desire for her is mingled with a hunger he can barely control. . .  In his nine centuries of immortal existence, no woman has tempted Roland as much as Sarah. But asking her to love him is impossible--when it means forfeiting the world she's always known, and the life he would do anything to protect.

Amazon - click HERE
Barnes and Noble - click HERE 
 
Bond With Me
Anne Marsh
Paranormal Romance

Fallen angels… They rule Moscow’s seedy underworld, promising untold pleasure to the females who dare to mate them. That promise – and Brends Duranov’s own raw sexual power – has hopefuls mobbing the velvet rope outside his elite club G2’s. But Mischka Baran has no intention of hooking up with one of the Fallen. Not even after Brends gives her an unforgettable taste of the sin and seduction he can deliver with those wicked lips. She’s after information, not a stint as some Goblin’s toy of the month. What she doesn’t know is that with a sadistic killer carving up his brethren, Brends is playing for keeps, hunting the one woman whose bloodline can end the mayhem, whose bond can restore his lost wings

Amazon - click HERE
Barnes and Noble - click HERE

Follower Love Giveaway - Winner Announced


Thanks to everyone who entered my HOP giveaway to win the Tairen Souls series by C.L. Wilson. Unfortunately there could be only one winner and the name random.org chose was.....

***  Meredith Miller  ***

She's confirmed her winnings and Amazon will be sending her this amazing fantasy romance series shortly. For those who love the chance of winning great books, check out my other two giveaways that are currently running - TWO winners for Lori Brighton prize packs and an e-copy of Stacey Kennedy's Whispers of Evil. Make sure to come back because I have more giveaways planned as my PassionPalooza marches on.

Guest Author Stacey Kennedy -The Art Of Writing A Love Scene / Giveaway

First I want to thank Bookish Snob for having me stop in today. So...what should we talk about? Hey, I know! SEX!! No, I’m not going to give you a lesson on the birds and bees. What I am going to do is talk about writing loves scene.

It doesn’t matter if I’m reading or writing, I love my sex scenes to be filled with passion. That’s what I find sexy, and that’s what warms my cheeks. It’s not the act...well, not that I don’t enjoy that part. But what makes the story smoulder of the page for me is the little details and the build-up. The way a hero touches his heroine and all the little things that make him―him. How he sees her, what being near her does to him, and all the emotions that make his heroine so beautiful to him...

It goes the other way too. I love to be inside the heroine’s mind. To understand why she finds this man attractive, to see the hero through her eyes, how he excites her and how it feels to have his hands on her body.

But then, adding to all of that is...the moment. You all know that moment―the one where you are completely consumed with lust. When nothing else matters except getting hot and heavy with the one you love. This is what I find is so important in writing love scenes. It’s taking this exact moment and drawing it out. Keeping that urgency, that outright need to be joined with another and having those emotions explode of the page. *fans self*

It’s really easy when writing love scenes to either go two ways you never want to. The first, the ick factor―you don’t want to make it a porno. For me, it’s really walking a fine line when writing erotic romance. What is too much? Truth is, there is no such thing. You can go as HOT as you want to and write the naughtiness thing your mind can create as long as you back it up. If you have a sweet character that is shy and have her doing things that would make your mama faint...then obviously, it won’t work. You have to give the reader time to accept that our heroine would be into the hot stuff instead of being appalled at what the hero is doing to her.

The next no-no for me is in regards to naughty words. I can think of one that just gives me hebejebes when I read it. Hmmm...how to put this. Well, think womanly bits and pieces, and with that in mind, think of the word that starts with C and ends with T. Oh yes, that word! Let me tell you I have seen this word used several times and it always shocks me. Would I ever use it? Only time will tell. But one thing is certain only use this word when it’s totally necessary. Don’t just throw it in there when the heroine is as sweet as apple pie, especially coming from her mouth. In a man’s monologue, yes, I could see that happen. If the situation turned into naughtyville and sexy words were being thrown around...yup, even then I could see it. But this is one thing I’m very particular on. I use certain words for certain characters. Not everyone would talk such naughty talk.

With all that said and done, the key to writing a sensual love scene is to be there...experience it with the characters, and focus on each and every detail of the moment. The passion, the desire, and the complete adoration that lovers feel when they are exploring new love together. Not only as a writer, but as a reader, I want to feel the hero’s touch right down to my toes and to be left waving my ereader around because I’m pretty sure it was just set on fire.

To share with you all just how I like to write my love scenes, here is a little snippet from my latest release, Whispers of Evil – The Watchers Book Two!!  *Heat Warning*

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Craving Romance? Visit The Romance Reviews Website

I would be remiss in my celebrating of romance duty this month if I didn't take some time to share my excitement about a website you can visit that just OOZES romance.  If you're like me, you like being able to go to one place and find everything you need and The Romance Reviews is THAT place when you're wanting to find out the latest in romance novels and book reviews. Of course, I may be a little biased because I share my own reviews with them but whenever I'm looking for a new book to read, I'll pull up the website and start looking. One of the things I LOVE most about this site is that there is an amazing variety on Indie authors shown, books I'd never known were out there. So I asked Carole, the lady who helps run TRR to come by the blog and share a little of what you can expect when you come by. Enjoy!

New Romance Website - Heroes and Heartbreakers.com


There's a new romance site in town and it is FABULOUS. I received an email the other day telling me about it and I instantly bookmarked it because one look at some of the fun articles and I was HOOKED. Any site that focuses on reading romance and all the deliciousness that comes with it is perfect for reading, right? So here's the blurb I found over there that introduces what Heroes And Heartbreakers is all about...

Heroes and Heartbreakers is a community website featuring daily content for serious fans of the romance genre in all of its forms.  Not everyone can understand the desire to argue for thirty minutes about Dain vs. Derek, to challenge the casting for the latest Jane Austen movie, or to debate whether the True Blood love triangle worked better on paper or on TV.

Heroes and Heartbreakers understands the woot! and the squee! of all of that.  Add in the original short stories and excerpts from upcoming romance novels, and it’s like a romance enthusiast’s paradise (the kind with extremely attractive men bringing you umbrella drinks).

Like our science fiction/fantasy sister site, Tor.com, we are publisher-neutral in our selection of books, authors and materials for coverage and discussion. We don’t play favorites because we think a real romance community site should be all-inclusive.  You don’t want to miss a thing, and neither do we.

Discover something new, share your thoughts… Obsess with us.

Want a taste of what you can expect each time you visit? Keep readin then....

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Cover Releases For Upcoming Romance Stories

 Wooohoooo!!! I was doing the snoopy dance earlier this week when I saw this. While I still mourn saying goodbye to my beloved Dimitri, I'm looking forward to seeing what this new series will do. Lots of story threads were left open at the end of Last Sacrifice so August 23 2011 can't come fast enough. There's no blurb yet (that I could find) but here's a statement I found on Richelle's blog....

"Bloodlines is the spin-off series to Vampire Academy (it's the name of the first book and of the series). It's set in the VA world but will be about different characters: Sydney (our narrator), Jill, Eddie, and one of the love interests from VA."


In My Mailbox #20


Mailbox is a neat meme hosted by The Story Siren where we can celebrate some of the great books and treats we've received over the week. It doesn't matter if they were bought, sent through the mail or borrowed. It's a great opportunity to join in on the fun and share some of your "treasures" with everyone!!


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Author Spotlight & Giveaway - Lori Brighton

I wanted to say a big hello to Lori and thanks for coming by my blog today. I've been really lucky to chat a little with Lori and I have to say she's an amazing author. I only just finished reading her soon-to-be-released Wild Desire and guys... it is HOT and had my heart racing the entire time! Great news to - at the end of the interview you'll find a wicked giveaway where TWO lucky winners will get to take home some of her books.  Without further ado... I give you Lori....

Book Review - Wild Desire by Lori Brighton

Wild Desire
Lori Brighton
Historical Romance

FIRST HE DROVE HER MAD

In what feels like a moment, Beatrice Edmund goes from being a proper lady cooped up in a stuffy Scottish castle to traveling miles from anything she’s ever known, in the midst of the wildest adventure of her life. And at the center of that adventure is the most infuriating, puzzling scoundrel on earth. She cannot take her eyes off him.

THEN HE DROVE HER WILD

Colin Fitch cannot deny he’s drawn to Beatrice—but lust is all he could possibly feel for the sharp-tongued minx. Still, if there’s a chance she can help him stop the madman he pursues, he must withstand her obvious disapproval. Yet withstanding the longing he feels for her is growing more troublesome by the second… And Colin has never been terribly good at staying out of trouble

To read my review, click HERE

Friday, February 11, 2011

Kiss Blitz Finale - My Own Quinn and Bree, Broken Promises

Well guys, this is the last kiss of today's blitz and I thought I'd have us go out with a bang! Hope you don't mind but I wanted to share a kiss I wrote from my NaNoWriMo story *blushes* Hope you like it!

"Once again I had underestimated his cunning because I never heard him coming. Abruptly I was pulled back into a hard chest and carried back through the books. To stop me from squealing in surprise, Quinn had put his hand over my mouth and he continued to keep it there.
Unable to control myself, I squirmed against him and tried to connect my body against his as many times as I could. My tongue began to flick against his palm and I moaned a little at the feel of his skin against my mouth.
Quinn suddenly cursed, tightening his grip before twirling me around and crushing his mouth against mine. The force of his kiss bruised my lips but he had released the fire that had been burning inside me and with equal force, I used my hands to push him back, slamming him against the book stack.
It was my turn to attack him and I relished the sensation of dipping my tongue into his mouth, devouring him as his own tongue tangled with mine. Not willing to waste another second, my need to touch him overwhelming, I grabbed hold of the bottom of his shirt and roughly pulled it from his jeans. Instantly my hands slid underneath, my skin tingling from the energy Quinn was giving off as I let my fingers roam across his chest, pausing only when I felt his nipples bead.
Using my fingers to gently tug on them, Quinn was the one now who let out a groan as he reached out to pull me closer. I melted against him, letting him take over as he deepened our kiss and plunged his hands into my hair.
His fingers began to clench as he grabbed fistfuls and rhythmically began to pull on it as his own arousal grew. I lowered my hands to the top of his jeans, pushing against the hardness I found there and with a growl, Quinn lifted me completely off the floor, wrapped my legs around his waist and with a few short steps had me pressed up against the library wall...."

Kiss Blitz #17 - Vane and Bride, the Darkhunter series

"Yet here she sat, holding a complete stranger in her arms. A gorgeous stranger who had been kinder to her than anyone else. And she wanted to taste him. To know just once what it was like to actually kiss a man who looked like this.
Lifting her head, she looked  up at him and trembled with a deep-seated desire  she didn't comprehend. But she felt it all the way through her.
Don't...
She squelched the voice of reason, reached up  and pulled the band from his hair. Freed, those long dark strands framed the face of heaven. The heat of his hazel-green eyes scorched her. He dipped his head down until his lips hovered dangerously close to hers, as if  he was asking her permission.
Breathless, she closed  the distance and laid  her lips against his. He growled deep in his throat like some animal before his kiss  turned hungry, passionate. Bride was thrilled and amazed by his reaction. No man had ever seemed to enjoy kissing her as much as this one did. His strong hands cupped her head as he ravished her mouth as if he were starving for her and her alone.
Vane pulled her to him as the animal inside him roared to life. It wanted her with a desperation that bordered on madness. He could taste her own passion on his tongue. Hear her heart beating in rapid time to his. Most of all, he could smell her desire and he wanted more. The animal inside him wouldn't be satisified until it tasted her fully..."