Tag Archives: contemporary

Author Showcase – Tricia Copeland (Deepest Scars)

  ~~ A sweet, fun romance about how love heals.~~

“He jests at scars that never felt a wound.”
― William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

A new job, new city, and new friends seem like the perfect solutions for healing Zack’s broken heart. A fiery red-head, with passion for all of his favorite activities couldn’t hurt either. She seems perfect for him, and he’s immediately drawn in. The romance blossoms, but Zack is side-swiped when he learns she’s hiding things. Is the relationship worth salvaging or do her scars run too deep? Don’t miss Zack’s story in this Being Me series stand-alone companion novel!

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“So, we didn’t get to catch up today. How was your Fourth?” Mitchell asks as I slide my backpack over my shoulders.

“I was working.” We walk out of the physical therapy room, dodging incoming patients.

“Did you even get to see fireworks?”

“No, we had a couple injuries, so I was there till late.” I find my keys and sunglasses in a side pocket of my bag.

“You’ve got to get a better job, so you can have a social life.” Mitchell shakes his head.

“Are you kidding? I’m living the dream. Fame and fortune.”

“Right, well”—he offers his palm out to me—“I’ll catch you next time.”

“Yep.” I shake his hand and slide my sunglasses on. Stepping through the sliding doors the sun sears my skin, and I wonder if I’ll ever get used to it. Heat rises off the pavement, and hot wind engulfs me as I cross the parking lot. A volleyball rolls out from between two cars. I dip and scoop it up with one palm. Scanning the rows, I spot an open trunk and jog to it. I stop a couple feet from a girl rummaging in the back of a small SUV. “You lose this?” I hold the ball at arm’s length.

She glances at me and then back to her open car. “I’d lose my head right now if it weren’t attached.” Her accent is melodic, almost twangy, and I note her New Jersey license plate. Running her hand through her thick red hair, she turns to face me. “Thanks.”

“No problem.” Ball extended, I take a step closer to her. “You play?”

Her eyes land on mine and then cut to my chest where my ID card hangs. Grabbing the sphere with both hands, she tosses it into her SUV. “Yeah.” Shaking her head, she fishes in the closest bag.

“Me too. There’s a league at the JCC if you’re interested. That’s the—”

“I know what the JCC is.” She spins to face me.

I take a step back. “Okay, I wasn’t… I just thought—”

“What? Since I have out-of-state plates, I’m fresh meat? A new chick to take out once and never call again?”

“Whoa.” I raise my palms. “I was just returning the ball.” Shaking my head, I turn and walk away. I should have known. She’s the redhead I saw with Lydia and Rose in the cafeteria. They hate me. Why? I have no clue. I accepted an invite to hang out with them my first week on the job. We’d spent three hours at a bar, them spouting off all the hospital gossip. Drama isn’t my thing. I’d been nice about it, nodding and agreeing where appropriate. The next time they asked me to join them, I had volleyball, fortunately for me, as I am horrible at lying. The third and fourth times, I had a string of twelve-hour shifts and declined them again. They have been shooting daggers and giving me the cold shoulder ever since. I’m not sure what to do about their hostility. Mitchell said to ignore them, but now they’re bad-mouthing me? I’m barely at the hospital two days a week, and they think they know me?

“Hey.” I hear her call out and turn around. “I’m sorry about that. Thanks for saving my ball. This is my first day at work, I moved here two days ago, and everything is out of control. Lydia and Rose said that you…” Shedding her sunglasses, her eyes cut to the pavement and back to my face.

I shake my head and shrug. “That I did what exactly? Did they mention how long they’d known me? I moved here a month ago and only hung out with them once.”

“Oh.” She looks to a passing truck and then back up at me. “They were trying to help, I think.”

The sun has my skin flaming. “We good?”

“Yeah, thanks again.”

“No problem.” I resume my path, hoping my reply wasn’t too rude. She lashed out at me first though. Plus, with the twelve-hour shift and heat, I was done.


“Zack, my man!” Rabbi John greets me by gripping my hand and bumping his shoulder to mine the next night at the JCC gym. “Wasn’t sure you were going to make it.”

“Traffic was bad. How’s the count?” I ask as I secure my laces.

“Good, Kara from team two is sick, but Liz showed up, so we’re good to go.”


“Redhead, said you invited her?” His eyes grow large as if to urge me to remember.

“Long red hair?”

“Yeah, red, it’s back, so maybe? You want to switch to be on her team?”

I shake my head.

“Okay, well I won’t ask about that then.” He looks back to his clipboard.

“Yeah, you don’t want to know.” I pat him on the back and, eyes focused on the floor, make my way to our court.

Jeff approaches. “Who’s the chick?”

“What chick?”

“Redhead. John said you invited her.”

“Don’t know her.” I throw my bag on the stands and retrieve my ball. “Let’s warm up.”


Copyright 2018 Tricia Copeland All Rights Reserved


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Get the first book in the Being Me series FREE on your favorite reading platform!

IS THIS ME? (Being Me Book 1 –Free on all platforms)


Amazon http://a-fwd.com/asin-com=B00YIABVKG

iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/is-this-me/id1118070449?mt=11

B&N http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/is-this-me-tricia-copeland/1122161771?ean=2940153040332

KOBO https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/is-this-me


Tricia Copeland grew up in Georgia and now lives in sunny Colorado with her family. Her novels include the award nominated contemporary romance series, Being Me, Best Book Award finalist urban fantasy series, The Kingdom Journals, Lovelock Ones, a post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller, and Drops of Sunshine, a YA paranormal novella. Find Tricia and her books at www.triciacopeland.com or on your favorite social media.

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Do you want to meet Tricia Copeland? Here’s how! 

Join bestselling authors of contemporary and paranormal YA fiction and more at the Holiday Inn Tanglewood in Roanoke, Virginia on April 7, 2018 from 10am-4pm. This is a FREE event for readers!

Enjoy an afternoon of books, giveaways, and more as you get the latest releases from your favorite authors and discover new voices!

Want to know more about our venue in beautiful Roanoke, VA? Visit their website to map your route or book a room.

Holiday Inn Tanglewood

**For more information about the event and to stay up to date about authors attending the even, visit the EVENT’S WEBSITE.**


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Review of “Love, Second Time Around: A Summerfield Village Sweet Romance” – Penny Appleton

Can Maggie Stewart find love, second time around?

Maggie Stewart is a retired environmentalist, working to preserve the heritage of her little English cottage in Summerfield village. Her children have grown and she’s content to ride horses in the countryside and enjoy her retirement.

Except she needs money for her renovations – and she’s lonely.

When she joins her old environmental team to go up against an oil company intent on destroying a pristine Scottish river, Maggie finds herself working in opposition to a man she once loved from afar, many years ago.

Idaho ranch owner Greg Warren is rich and entitled, with a dark past that he hides behind a professional smile. But inside, he struggles with loneliness after the loss of his wife and the rage of a wild daughter who won’t let him move on.

Love blooms as Maggie and Greg take a chance on a new start, but can they find a balance between the two worlds they inhabit?

In this sweet romance, set between the English countryside and the wide expanse of the Idaho plains, can Maggie and Greg find love second time around?

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It’s dawn and raining hard on a Thursday in Summerfield, but my garden robin is an optimist. He pours his liquid song from the top of a birch tree, telling the world it’s spring, even as leaves blow wildly across the lawn.

I smile and check that the back door and windows are locked as I walk through my cottage. A faint aroma of toast lingers in the warm kitchen, and my big Aga stove purrs quietly as it adjusts the central heating. 

As I pass the breakfast bar, I touch the photos of my wonderful children hanging on the wall behind. Samantha, grinning at Luke on their wedding day, and Harry, surfing with friends. I pause to look more closely at the lovely one of the three of us laughing together, Mother’s Day two years ago, with glasses of champagne in our hands. Happy days, indeed.

I check the dining area next to the kitchen, the center of so much of our family life. I remember Harry, aged nine, sitting at the old oak table, his legs curled around the chair, busy drawing monsters. I look up at the collection of antique milk jugs on the top shelf above, each a chipped and lovely treasure, discovered in Oxford flea markets with my daughter, Sam.

But there’s no time for memories now. I check my watch again, switch off the light, and go into the sitting room.

Like many old English cottages, the front door opens into this living space opposite the narrow staircase, but I don’t use it much. The back door is nearer to the garage and a much better place for storing coats and boots, muddy from walking the fields in the early mornings.

It’s getting lighter outside and I cross to the window that looks out onto the driveway. It’s still raining, and there’s no sign of the taxi. It’s not late, and there’s plenty of time, but I’m eager to get going. I feel a pitter-patter of nerves and breathe, exhaling deeply. I know it will be okay, but this is the first conference since my retirement last year, and I want it to go well. As much as I love this cottage, it needs a lot of upkeep, so I need the work.

My familiar leather briefcase, raincoat, and overnight bag wait on a chair by the door. There is nothing left to do, so I straighten the cushions again and re-fold the throws on the two soft couches. The logs are stacked in the big, open fireplace and the kindling is laid, all ready for when I get home.

I love this room on wild winter nights, all curled up and cozy in the firelight. My Moroccan rug covers half the floor in a palette of reds and blues against a pattern of gray, polished flagstones. The low oak coffee table has two neat piles of books and the latest Horse Magazine that I’m looking forward to reading when I get back. I’m excited about this trip, but no matter how many times I leave, I always want to return to Square Cottage.

Headlights flash across the wall, and a white taxi turns through the gray dawn into the drive. I open the front door and wheel out my bag, eager to get going.

“Taxi to Oxford Station?”

“Morning, Jim.” I smile as he climbs out of the driver’s seat and touches his cap. He takes my overnight bag. “What’s with the cap-touching formality?”

“Just practicing to be the Summerfield taxi driver of choice, Maggie.”  

“Good job, but you’re the only Summerfield taxi driver.” I chuckle as I turn back to ruffle my fingers through a bowl of rose potpourri by the door. The scent of summer fills the air, and I know it will linger in the cottage until I get back. Grabbing my raincoat and briefcase, I pull the front door shut behind me, duck my head, and hurry through the rain to the taxi.

“Early start?” I brush water droplets off my suit as Jim reverses into the lane. My friend Selena waves from her bedroom window above The Potlatch Inn next door, and I wave back with a smile.

“You’re the first today,” Jim says, “but I had a terrible one yesterday. 3:00 a.m. to central London for the Eurostar.”

I make sympathetic noises and turn to look back at Square Cottage as we drive away. It’s three hundred years old with ashen stone walls and a darker gray roof rising to a central chimney on the top. It looks like a cottage teapot without a handle or a spout.

I fell in love with it when we first looked over the gate–Samantha, Harry and me, a little family in need of a home. The cottage was run down and broken. Patching it up took all my savings, but in rebuilding it, we became even closer, and together, we turned it into our family home. Those were happy years, and now that the children are grown up, I’m content living here on my own.

Most of the time.

Jim peers at the road ahead through the driving rain. “Excuse me for not talking, Maggie. The bends are slippery, and wet leaves are everywhere.”

I nod and relax with the swish-swish of windshield wipers and faint music from the radio. From the back seat, I can just see my reflection in Jim’s rearview mirror. My hair is shoulder length and still my natural corn-blonde color, with a bit of professional help. It’s twisted into a smooth chignon today.

The executive businesswoman, professional but not distracting. Good enough. I comb the soft wisps around my face with my fingers and check to see that I’m wearing both earrings. A lesson learned from the past – hurrying out the door, juggling two kids and a demanding job.

I stare out at the rain-drenched fields passing by. Soon we’re into Oxford and pulling onto the station forecourt, where Jim helps me with my bags.

“Have a good trip, Maggie.”

A chilly wind blows across the station as Jim waves from the driver’s window and pulls out into the early morning traffic. I pull my raincoat tighter around me. There’s just enough time to buy a newspaper and a coffee before the train pulls in on Platform 7.

It’s busy, but I find my reserved seat quickly, take off my coat, and settle into my seat. A shrill whistle echoes along the platform, and the train slides out of the station exactly on time. As we leave the suburbs of Oxford, I drink my coffee and look out at vivid green fields with cows and horses by the edge of the river. There are boats moored under the willow trees, their branches trailing in the current.

Rain slashes diagonally across the windows as the train gets up to speed. I read the news headlines, but I’m distracted. There’s so much riding on this conference.

Just after Reading station, the train slows down.

After a few minutes at this reduced speed, it stops completely.

My heart beats faster, and I keep looking at my watch. The minutes tick by faster as the train finally begins to move again, but creeps along by inches.

I turn to the lady next to me. “Any idea why we’re going so slowly? I didn’t see anything on the train app.”

“Something to do with the flooding. I did this journey earlier in the week, and we went at a snail’s pace. Could be a while.”

I try and stay calm, but I can’t miss that flight.

Finally, we pull into Paddington. The doors unlock and I half-jog across the station, dragging my wheelie bag. I make it to the Heathrow Express to find a line of frustrated people and a Cancelled sign. I don’t wait to see what the problem is, I just turn and puff my way to the station entrance, where black London taxis crawl in and out like ants. I join the funnel of commuters and finally make it to the front of the line.

The price to Heathrow makes me wince, but there’s no alternative. My anxiety rises and rises as the taxi inches out of the city and onto the motorway toward the airport. My calm day has fallen apart. I’m disheveled now, my hair and makeup no longer perfect. The rain and wind and running around have flushed my cheeks, and my hair is flyaway. I do my best to touch it up in the back of the cab.

When we arrive at the airport, I thrust money at the driver and sprint to Check-in, making it just before it closes. Of course, there’s a long security line, and I shift from foot to foot, trying to calm my breathing.

Come on, come on or I’m still going to miss the flight.

Cell phone and laptop out, liquids in their plastic bag. I take off my coat and suit jacket and slip them into the tray. Counting precious seconds, I silently plead with the security guy to ignore my shoes.

“Shoes off,” he says.

“Final call for the remaining passenger on flight BA1434 to Edinburgh. Your flight is ready to depart, and all other passengers are waiting for you.”

I run to the gate, blushing as I dash into the cabin. I’m the last to board, and the attendant closes the door behind me. I’m out of breath, flushed, and flustered.

So much for my careful planning and preparation.

I look down at my ticket. Window seat, 12A. Thank goodness it’s quite near the front, so I don’t have to walk the whole length of the cabin in embarrassment.

A man stands in the aisle, stowing his bag in the overhead locker. I wait to squeeze by and he turns as he closes it.

“Thank you.”

I glance up. The man smiles down at me with dark, intelligent eyes behind stylish, black glasses. He’s tall with close-cropped silver hair and a strong, close-shaven jawline. He wears a charcoal business suit expertly tailored to his athletic frame, and he smells of pine forests after rain.

My eyes widen. I take a breath, but suddenly, there’s not enough air.

Greg Warren.

I freeze, my eyes locked on his face.

“Hello, Maggie,” he says, in the beautiful American voice I haven’t heard in so many years.


Continue the journey in Love, Second Time Around by Penny Appleton. Available on Amazon in ebook, print and Large Print editions.


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(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique)


Young or old, everyone deserves a chance at love and I am thrilled Penny Appleton focused her love story around two individuals with a few extra years under their belts. These added years also meant they had a bit more baggage than most young, budding romances do such as prior spouses and full-grown kids.

As much as I love rekindled relationships, I somehow didn’t fully embrace this couple. I felt as if Maggie loved the Greg she knew from the past and those memories clouded her judgment of him now. He didn’t show her the appropriate amount of attention she deserved when she flew all the way to Idaho for him. Plus, I couldn’t shake the feeling he really thought a woman’s place was in the kitchen. And, there’s the conversation between Barb and Maggie. Barb’s description of Greg nagged at me through the rest of the story. Barb: “But Greg was hard to live with at times. He can have flashes of temper and lay down the law as if he’s Moses.”

I know Greg and Maggie were not getting any younger but, no matter the age, there’s something to be said about getting to know your potential spouse before you pledge your undying love. Making sure you’re truly compatible.

Now for more positives: Penny described both England and Idaho so beautifully that each sounded like a wonderful place to visit. I also appreciated the bit of history she weaved into the storyline: Wolf Recovery Program, Nez Perce (Native Americans), and Native American Heritage Day (day after Thanksgiving). It’s always nice to learn something new.


Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest)

Score: ❤❤❤

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Penny Appleton is the pen name of a mother and daughter team from the south-west of England. We both enjoy traveling and many of the Summerfield sweet romance stories contain aspects of our adventures. We both enjoy walking in nature, and a gin & tonic while watching the sun go down.

Some of our favorite romance authors include Danielle Steele and Nora Roberts, plus we love The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCulloch, as well as Jane Austen and Stephenie Meyer. Our favorite movies include Legends of the Fall, A Room with a View, and The Notebook.

We are good friends … although sometimes we want to strangle each other! Family relationships are at the heart of our books.

You can find all the books and sign up to be notified of new releases at: www.PennyAppleton.com 
or check out my pictures on Facebook.com/PennyAppletonAuthor


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Review of “First Crush Last Love” – Elizabeth McKenna

Remember your first crush? How your heart raced and your cheeks flushed whenever you saw him? Jessie Baxter does, and it’s happening again. Ten years ago, despite her best efforts, Lee Archer wanted to be just friends. Now, he wants more, but Jessie’s still recovering from a psycho ex-husband. Can she learn to trust again and make her first crush into her last love? 

Note from Elizabeth McKenna:  “There are some serious subjects covered including drinking, homosexuality, AIDS, and abuse. The heat level is fairly low with only a few love scenes. There is also some swearing.”


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Jessie flipped on the foyer light and her nerves relaxed until she saw the rug at the bottom of the stairs. It was askew. Her eyes darted over the space in front of her. Everything else was in its proper place. Besides the inability to pick faithful husbands, she and her mother shared the rarely appreciated trait of compulsive neatness.

She thought back to when she had left the house earlier. Maybe in her haste to meet Sarah, her foot had slid the rug out of place as she came down the stairs. But she would have straightened it. Unless she didn’t notice . . . but she would have noticed . . . because that’s how she was.

She inched into the kitchen and picked up the phone. She’d call the police and ask them to search the house. Because of a cockeyed rug? Even in her paranoid state, she knew it would sound crazy. Their first question would be, “How much did you have to drink tonight, Ms. Baxter?”

She shook her head. For all the bravado she showed in front of Lee, here she was acting like a scared twelve-year-old, alone for the first time while her parents were on a date night. Her mom had offered to cancel her trip to London when Jessie told her the date of the class reunion, but Jessie had insisted she go. Since retirement, these trips had become her mom’s main source of entertainment.

She rummaged in her purse until her fingers found her pepper spray. With the canister at arm’s length, she circled each room on the first floor, testing the locks on the windows. Everything seemed in order. She let out a breath and grasped the banister leading upstairs with her free hand while her foot straightened the rug.

The steps to the second floor creaked under Jessie’s weight. She shuddered at the eerie feeling the empty house gave off. Still clutching the pepper spray, she checked the windows upstairs before collapsing on the bed in her childhood room. The house was too big for one person. She didn’t know how her mom stood it. Maybe tomorrow she’d move to Sarah’s. They could have a slumber party like old times.

Old times. Lee Archer. Wow. Her smile turned into a yawn. Something itched at the back of her mind, but after seven hours in a car and a few more in the bars, she gave into heavy eyelids and fell into an uneasy sleep.

At three in the morning, her eyes flew open and she clutched the comforter to her chin.

Underwear. A pair of lacy, black underwear hung from the top rail of the desk’s chair. No way in hell had she done that.

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(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 


First Crush, Last Love is divided up into three sections: Part I, Senior Year (1983-1094), Part II, Marriage Interrupted (1998-1991), and Part III, 10-Year Reunion (October 1994). In each of these sections, the reader will find characters and/or their circumstances that are very relatable.


Section I: If you’ve attended high school, it’s inevitable you’ve seen or been a part of the drama accompanied with it. For most, there’s that one special friend who’s stood by your side, had your back, or lent an ear when the drama gets to be too much. Break-ups, unrequited love, crushes, fights, dances, and parties are common happenings in all high schools so these topic areas will touch home with many, if not all, readers. A few sensitive areas are briefly discussed as well. Depression, abusive parent, drunken parents, and suicide attempts are never subjects people wish would mark their homes because these things occur. Elizabeth McKenna wanted us to see every aspect of a teenager’s life, the good and the bad. Realistically, everything she wrote about is part of many young adult’s lives. These real life concerns are what connects a reader to a character(s), plot, and/or story. 

Section II:  In this area, Elizabeth McKenna focused on the relationships of the Lee and Jessie after they graduated. Jessie married a man (Billy) who became unstable, abusive. He was already an ass before they married but things only tuned more volatile. Thankfully, she got the courage to divorce him. For those living in her situation, I hope you will find the courage to distance yourself from the combustible and unhealthy relationship. Jessie suffered through unnecessary mental and physical abuse but she also showed it’s never too late to take back your life. 

Section III: High school reunions…. they have a way of bringing out the worst in people. However, sometimes, you might find yourself rekindling a lost friendship or something more. Like with the other sections, there was drama, abuse, and most importantly… love.  Elizabeth McKenna showed us that we must never give up and when real love stands before you…. fight for it, embrace it and never accept anything less because everyone deserves the best in life. 

Elizabeth McKenna thank you for showing people they don’t have to stand by and allow themselves to be victimized. Men, women, children, straight, or gay…. we all deserve love and a happily ever after. 



Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤


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Though Elizabeth McKenna’s love of books reaches back to her childhood, she had never read romance novels until one Christmas when her sister gave her the latest bestseller by Nora Roberts. She was hooked from page one (actually, she admits it was the first love scene).

She had always wanted to write fiction, so she combined her love of history, romance and a happy ending to write Cera’s Place and Venice in the Moonlight. Her short story, The Gypsy Casts a Spell, is available for free on her website http://elizabethmckenna.com/. She hopes you will enjoy her first contemporary romance novel, First Crush Last Love, as much as others have enjoyed her historical romances.

Elizabeth lives in Wisconsin with her understanding husband, two beautiful daughters, and a sassy Labrador. When she isn’t writing, working, or being a mom, she’s sleeping.

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Author Showcase / Interview / Review – Petie McCarty (Betting on Cinderella)

HOWDY and welcome, Petie McCarty! 



  1.  For those who might not be familiar with you, would you be a dear and tell the readers a little about yourself? How did you get your start in the writing business?


(Petie) I would love to and thank you for allowing me to spend time with your Kam’s Place readers today and to share my new release, Betting on Cinderella.

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Zoology, which was no help at all when I decided to write romance novels as a second career. However, several unique assignments during my early career as a state biologist—which included surveying many Florida lakes and streams by airboat—provided background for my very first release, Everglades.

Everything that happened to the heroine in Everglades during her safari through the River of Grass happened to me at some time during my career: the bug storm, swimming with gators, the leeches, the heart-stopping airboat maneuvers. Everything, that is, except getting stranded overnight with a hunky airboat guide. I never got one of those, so I wrote my own.


Photographer Kayli Heddon has been given the biggest assignment of her career — a photo essay on the Everglades Restoration the Florida governor intends to use in his re-election campaign. A special airboat safari is arranged, so Kayli can get her pictures. What she doesn’t count on is being stranded alone in the Everglades with her handsome and enigmatic airboat guide. Kayli is forced to learn some tough lessons. Trust means everything in the dangerous River of Grass, and a skilled partner can make all the difference in your survival. 

Skye Landers takes the airboat safari gig as a favor to his cousin who is called out of town. Skye doesn’t expect the governor’s photographer to catch his eye, but Kayli Heddon is unlike any woman he has ever met. He knows he should keep his distance, but common sense goes out the window whenever he gets near her. Trouble is, Kayli thinks honesty is the most important thing in a relationship — any relationship — and Skye Landers is a fraud. When secrets surface from Skye’s past, Kayli and Skye are soon on the run from more than just alligators.



I was lucky enough to spend most of my career working for the Walt Disney World Resort. What could be more magical than driving by Cinderella’s Castle on your way to work every day? I came late to the world of publishing and had never considered writing until about ten years ago. I think it was living in the heart of the theme park entertainment industry that constantly tweaked my imagination and made me want to write. I had the fun of working in the land of fairy tales by day and creating my own romantic fairy tales by night. I eventually said good-bye to my wonderful “day” job to write my stories full-time.

At present, I live—and write—on the beautiful Cumberland Plateau with my horticulturist husband, a spoiled-rotten English springer spaniel addicted to green olives stuffed with pimento, and a talkative Nanday conure named Sassy who made a cameo appearance in Angel to the Rescue.


…a cozy mystery with a touch of romantic suspense from the Mystery Angel Romance series — with an angel hidden in every book. It’s up to you to figure out the angel’s identity… 

Child psychologist Rachel Kelly isn’t quite sure how to handle the situation with her newest client — a six-year-old boy who says he can talk to angels and one is coming to help Rachel. She already has her hands full of trouble this Christmas season, and things quickly take a turn for the worse when a stalker crashes Rachel’s Christmas party and takes her young clients hostage.

Police negotiator, Lt. Jake Dillon, walked away from his fiancée Rachel when she suddenly balked at having kids. His kids. Yet as the hostage crisis erupts, Rachel calls Jake first. Now he has a choice to make — stand back and wait for the cavalry to save Rachel or step in and try to save her himself. Time is running out, and Jake may be their only chance for rescue.

Unless Rachel’s little angel-spying client is telling the truth…


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  1. All writers fear the dreaded “block”. Please tell us how you handle it.

(Petie) This may sound weird, but I see movies that run in my head. If the beginning, middle, and end of the story are all there, then that’s the next book I write. When the movie starts running, I speed-write scene bullets, so I can begin the sequel whenever I’m ready. The bullets become my outline.

Thus, I’ve never really suffered full-blown writer’s block, but I suffer from my own viral strain that I call “climax block.” Now doesn’t that sound scary? For me, it induces a very real panic that occurs with every novel I’ve written to date. I get to the big climactic scene at the end of the book, and I just can’t seem to get it on the page.

I know what must happen from the movie in my head and even which characters should participate, but I can’t seem to get the action sequences to formulate on the page. Therein lies the panic. My particular block strain lasts from one to three weeks, which is the amount of time to elapse before the initial action sequence in the movie finally starts to run in my head. Thankfully, the movie has always appeared, but the shreds of panic never completely dissipate. The ever present worry… what if the movie never shows?



  1. Contrary to what some people envision about a romance writer’s life, it’s not all glitz and glam. Well not for the majority of us. With that bubble sadly busted, when you’re not writing, how to do you spend your time?

(Petie) Marketing, marketing, and more marketing. Social media rules the world now and authors need to have a solid place in the various online venues if they expect to have successful book sales. A lot of a book’s advertising and promotion is trial and error. What works for one author or book may not work for another. Every book is different, but perseverance is the key. Marketing is like trying to get published, never ever give up.



  1. I know many writers, such as myself, keep their pastime/career a secret. Do those close to you know you write? If so, what are their thoughts?

(Petie) I write full-time from home now, but when I first started writing, I was a bit nervous about letting anyone in the workplace know I was writing novels on the side. Huge mistake. My co-workers got really excited about my first book and ended up being some of my biggest supporters and celebrated every release with me. It’s hard to know how co-workers will react, so it’s an individual decision for a writer whether to share your new venture or not.

(Kam) I’m so thrilled you have a supportive team at your back! 



  1. Will you share with us your all time favorite authors? If you’re like me, it’s a long list so give us your top ten.

(Petie) Easiest question of all since I’m a voracious reader, and I love a mix of fiction. So here is my mix of authors:

  1. Suzanne Brockmann – Her SEAL teams are incredible. I want to write like her when grow up.  =)
  2. Jennifer Crusie – She gives true meaning to romantic comedy. I have most of hers on audiobooks and have re-listened to all of them.
  3. Sarah MacLean ­­– I buy any historical romance she releases
  4. James Patterson – Synonymous with the word suspense
  5. Monica McCarty – Sorry, no relation though I wish there was. I LOVE her Spec Ops Highlanders in the Highland Guard historical series!
  6. Rachel Gibson – She is amazing, and I LOVE her humor
  7. Lisa Kleypas – Her contemporary romances are even better than her historicals.
  8. Lee Child – The Killing Floor scared me to death! All his books are riveting.
  9. Linda Howard – Awesome romantic suspense
  10. Michael Connelly – Always enjoy his twists-and-turns suspense

(Kam) Oooo, I just found me some new authors to check out. Thank you! 



  1. If you could choose one book to go to the big screen, yours or otherwise, which book would you choose and whom would you love to see casted in the parts?

(Petie) Of course, I would want to choose Betting on Cinderella. *grin*

If my casting were fortuitous as well, then Chris Hemsworth—I can’t help it…I’m a huge Thor fan—would be Garrett Tucker. I mean, what landscaper wouldn’t have great biceps? And innocent-eyed Alexandra Daddario would make a lovely Andi Ryan.



  1. Would you care to tell us what you’re working on now? That is if it’s not top-secret information. If so, just whisper it in my ear. I swear it’ll go no further.

(Petie) Right at this moment, I am finishing up Par for Cinderella, book three in the Cinderella Romances series. Billionaire Aidan Cross, who had a big part in the first two books of the series, insisted on having his own story. Aidan visits quaint Cypress Key, Florida—the future site for one of his world-famous golf resorts that no one in the small town wants. He promptly gets arrested for booting the mayor’s obnoxious son into the marina.

After that, I’ll start lining up my movie scene-bullets for Earl Away, the next book in my new Lords in Time series. The Earl of Dexter didn’t want to be left out and begged to be in the sequel to Duke du Jour, which released a few weeks ago. Like the Cinderella Romances, this series is comprised of standalone stories that have returning characters.


Jared Langley, present-day Duke of Reston, tumbles into an abandoned fountain on his ducal estate and travels back in time to the year 1816. There, Reston servants and local villagers think him a dead ringer for his namesake and rakehell ancestor—the seventh Duke of Reston, gone missing at the Battle of Waterloo. Unfortunately, Seven got mixed up with French spies out to assassinate the Duke of Wellington, and an unwary Jared ends up in their crosshairs.

Lady Ariana Hart has loved Jared Langley, the seventh Duke of Reston, since she was twelve years old, until the night the rogue broke her heart. Given up for dead, her rakish neighbor makes a miraculous return from Waterloo—only Jared shows up a changed man and reignites all the feelings Ariana had long ago buried.

Jared is in a race against time. He must waylay the suspicions of his quirky servants and neighbors, get to Wellington before the French spies do, fix his fountain—before Seven shows up—so Jared has a way home, and definitely not fall in love with the irresistible Lady Ariana.

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  1. Where can we find your stories and is there a particular reading order?

(Petie) All of my books are available on Amazon, and all but the Cinderella Romances [because they are in Kindle Unlimited] are available at Barnes & Noble.

The Mystery Angel Romances each have an angel hidden in the plot whose identity is not revealed until the finale, unless the reader figures it out first. The stories can be read in any order since there are no returning characters, only an angel in each one.

The Cinderella Romances books have returning characters, so readers may want to start with Book 1 although all the stories read as standalones. Same for the Lords in Time series.



  1. Would you please share how your present and future fans can contact you?

(Petie) I’d love to hear from readers at any of my social media links:






Amazon Author Page



  1. Before we conclude this enlightening interview, do you have anything else you’d like to share? The stage is all yours.

(Petie) I just want to thank Kam’s Place and her loyal readers for allowing me to spend time with them today and share stories about my books. I hope you’ll give the Cinderella Romances series a try. Happy reading or writing to all — your pick!



~~ Closing remarks ~~

 I think after reading Petie’s interview, you’ll have no problem finding something to read  for a long while.

I’ve enjoyed my time with Petie and I also enjoyed Betting on Cinderella.

Please keep scrolling down to get a glimpse inside the book and to see my feelings on this romancic tale.



Garrett Tucker inherits his grandfather’s casino empire and steps into the reclusive billionaire’s shoes as the “Prince of Vegas.” His first act is to buy a bankrupt casino in Biloxi. When he discovers embezzling in his new operation, Garrett goes undercover. His prime suspect is the new finance supervisor—the spitfire brunette who stole his heart at first sight.

Andi Ryan moves to Biloxi to care for her godmother and takes a job as finance supervisor for the renovated Bayou Princess casino. She discovers someone is skimming from the till and starts her own investigation, worried she will be blamed for the theft when the new owner discovers her godmother has a gambling addiction.

A rival Vegas competitor has sent a spy in to ruin the Bayou Princess, and Garrett and Andi are forced to work together to prove her innocence and discover the identity of their casino spy.

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Andi Tells Garrett She’s a Virgin


“I want to make love to you.”

Andi stilled.

Garrett mentally kicked himself. He had gone and scared her.

Too much. Too soon.

But he couldn’t make himself move. He could lie here forever with Andi in his arms.

She wriggled from his grasp to sit up. “Um . . .”


She looked too uncertain.

Not good.

He was okay with, “Not now, but maybe later.”

“I can’t,” she whispered.

Good thing he was sitting down. The jangle of fear that hit him could have knocked his knees out from under him.

“Can’t or won’t?” he forced out. No maybes on this one.


What the hell? Can’t and won’t?

All his uncertainties flooded back. Flora had said Andi and Peters were just friends. Was that friends with benefits? And what about that damn Drakos pawing her last week? No, he wouldn’t let those doubts crowd them here on the couch.

“Too soon?” he tried.

“Partly.” She looked away, and his heart sank amongst the growing heap of doubts.

“There’s someone else,” he said flatly, working to keep his expression blank and the hurt at bay.

She met his gaze square on then, no doubt trying to muscle her courage. “There’s something I should tell you.”


“I’m—” She exhaled hard. “—no good at it.”

What? Is that all?

He fought back a grin of pure joy. “I’ll give you lessons.” He pulled her back for another kiss.

She shoved at his chest. “No. I don’t think I should.”

She flinched at his expression, and he worked to smooth his scowl.

“Go ahead. Spit it out.” Even he didn’t like his tone. “You’re sleeping with someone else, right?”

He should have done his homework before he went off half-cocked with all the flowers and balloons, trying to woo her.

“No, and I should slap you for that, suggesting I’m loose enough to go out with you while sleeping with someone else.”

“Then what the hell is it?” he shouted, forgetting all about Flora at the back of the house.

“I’ve never done it before!” she shouted back.

“What? Slapped someone?”

“No, you jerk. Slept with someone.” This, she didn’t shout.

He froze, right down to his heartbeat, and stared at her bright-pink cheeks. Could it be? Was she? A virgin?

“Holy smokes,” he wheezed.

She stared at her untouched glass of wine. “I’m not saying you and I will never,” she said softly.

Relief, warm and desperate, allowed his muscles to finally move. He gently traced the line of her cheek with his finger, a lump forming in his throat at the touch of something so rare and priceless.

“Glad to hear that.” He brushed his lips across hers, light as a whisper. Once. “My little sweetheart.” Twice. “My precious—” Three times. Always a charm.

“You’re not mad?”

Those big blue eyes stared up at him with an innocence that made his too-experienced heart ache with emotion.


Should he tell her he wanted to go outside and howl his joy at the moon? To yell to the world what a lucky son of a gun he was? His Andi would be his Andi—proprietary, like his stock portfolio. All his. No one else. A primal sense of possessiveness overwhelmed him.

“No, sweetheart, not mad. Glad,” he managed, then tugged her close and let his kiss show her exactly how he felt.

“When you’re ready,” he said against her lips. “Only when you’re ready.”

He had finally said and done the right thing, for she grabbed his shirt and laid an eye-crossing kiss on him.


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(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 


Evil stepmother.

Two stepsisters. 

A Godmother who’s goal is it to try and make an orphaned girl’s life a bit brighter.

These are a few similarities to the famous Cinderella storyline. In both stories, there is a blue dress and a HEA with the damsel finding her one true love. 

However in Betting on Cinderella, the storyline contains things the original never touched upon: embezzlers, casinos, and mafia looking villains.

In each storyline, the good guys prevailed BUT in Betting on Cinderella readers will be surprised at how far Flora Merrywether will go to ensure Andi’s has her own fairy tale ending. 

BTW: Cute name selection when deciding upon Flora Merrywether. As an avid viewer of Disney movies, I recognize Sleeping Beauty’s magical guardians/protectors’ namesakes. You might’ve spelled ‘Merryweather’ slightly different but I see your inspiration for the name choice loud and clear. 





For the plot in Betting on Cinderella, there’s so much going on.  I knew we were in for a big surprise. Heck, I figured one out from the start. However, as the final chapters unfolded, I realized I only solved part of the puzzle. For that, my score, my feelings on the overall story increased by one point. 


Heart Rating System

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score:  ❤❤❤❤


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Author Showcase – K. Bromberg (The Everyday Heroes Series)

From the New York Times bestselling author, K. Bromberg, comes a new series about three brothers, the job that calls them, and the women who challenge them.

Everyday Heroes Matrix


~~ BOOK ONE ~~


“I hate you. I never want to see you again.”

Grant Malone is not the reason I moved back to Sunnyville—at least that’s what I tell myself. Yet, those parting words I said to him back in third grade, ring in my ears every time a townsperson brings up one of the Malone boys. I thought time had healed my wounds. I was wrong. Nothing could have prepared me for how I felt when I finally saw him again.

Twenty years does a lot to turn a boy into a man. One who hits all my buttons—sexy, funny, attractive, and a police officer. But Grant is off limits because he knows too much about my past.

But I’m drawn to him. That damn uniform of his doesn’t hurt either. It’ll be my downfall. I know it.

What’s one night of sex going to hurt . . . right?


I’ve always loved Emmy Reeves.

That’s why I’m shocked to see her all these years later. The shy girl I once knew is all grown up.

Adventurous and full of life, she owns my heart now, just as much as she did back then. Convincing her of that is a whole different story.

I’ll give her the one night she asks for—like that’s a hardship—but when it comes to letting her walk away after, she has another thing coming. There’s no way in hell I’m letting her go this time without a fight.




~~ BOOK TWO ~~
_Combust Cover


Songwriter Dylan McCoy has been burned.

By her boyfriend she found in her bed . . . with someone else.

By the contract she signed that obligates her to work with him until the songs for his new album are complete.

By her agent when she asked Dylan to keep their breakup on the down-low.

When she finds herself in Sunnyville, she refuses to let her new roommate burn her too. Still . . . a rebound has never looked so good.

That’s her first thought when she sees firefighter Grady Malone.

Sexy. Charismatic. Unapologetic. He’s a man who carries his own scars—the ones on his back, the survivor’s guilt on his soul, and the fear in his heart.

When an unexpected visitor puts their roommate status to the test, will their undeniable attraction burn out, or will they both take a chance and play with fire?

US – Amazon Link

UK – Amazon Link




Expected Release: May 28, 2018

How about a hot in-flight LifeFlight Medic? Greyson’s book is coming in spring 2018!

**Sorry, no purchase links at this time.** 




Control is something Desi Whitman abhors. Why live life in black and white perfection when you can messily color outside the lines?

But when she comes face to face with SWAT officer Reznor Mayne, he’s about to show her just how good control can feel.

**Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you’ll enjoy each one as much as we do.**

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New York Times Bestselling author K. Bromberg writes contemporary novels that contain a mixture of sweet, emotional, a whole lot of sexy, and a little bit of real. She likes to write strong heroines, and damaged heroes who we love to hate and hate to love.

A mom of three, she plots her novels in between school runs and soccer practices, more often than not with her laptop in tow.

Since publishing her first book in 2013, Kristy has sold over one million copies of her books across sixteen different countries and has landed on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestsellers lists over twenty-five times. Her Driven trilogy (Driven, Fueled, and Crashed) is currently being adapted for film by Passionflix with the first movie slated to release in the summer of 2018.

She recently released a two book, sports romance series, The Player and The Catch. Cuffed is the first book in her new Everyday Heroes trilogy. This three-book series will be about three brothers who are emergency responders, the jobs that call to them, and the women who challenge them. The remaining standalones in the series are Combust (January 29th) and Cockpit (Spring 2018).

She loves to hear from her readers so make sure you check her out on social media or sign up for her newsletter to stay up to date on all her latest releases and sales: (here).


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🎶 Review of “Rock My Body” – Lee Piper 🎶

Thundering drum beats? Check. Swoon-worthy vocals? Check. Panty-obliterating lead guitarist? Check. Looks like you’re all set for Rock My Body, Book Two in the Mondez series by Lee Piper!



Twenty-two year old Riley Sears promises herself never to fall in love unless it is with a guy who is long-term boyfriend material. She is not crazy, her psychologist reassures her of that, but when faced with situations she cannot control… Well. Her anxiety skyrockets.

Enter Dominic Mondez, the hottest creature ever to grace pecs and abs. The notorious playboy propositions Riley with the best sex of her life—his words. However, after learning he never sleeps with the same woman twice, Riley’s decision becomes remarkably simple.

No. Way. In. Hell.

Sadly, traversing the murky waters of friends without benefits is far from simple, especially since Dominic is the lead guitarist of local rock band, Mondez. He is also tempestuous, a womanizer, and—even worse—inexplicably jealous. Dominic is bad for Riley in every possible way. Bad, bad, bad.

If only her body would listen.


Purchase Links:

  Amazon – US / Amazon CA

Amazon UK / Amazon AU

  B&N / Smashwords /  iTunes




He was watching me, I could feel it. My body sensed him long before my head did and started tingling. Everywhere.


Just the thought of him made my heart pound. Traitorous thing. It merrily rammed against my ribcage as soon as I pictured his tall, muscular body and dishevelled, russet hair. My fingers itched to reach out and delve through the soft strands—they remembered what it felt like to tug down on them as he groaned into my open mouth—but I shifted in my seat and sat on them instead. I wasn’t going down that road again, hell no. I was done.


A low chuckle cut through the muted sounds of heavy rock music emanating from inside, its gravely sound resonating with my downstairs department, causing a deep blush to stain my cheeks.

Clearly, I wasn’t fooling anyone.

What in the name of sweet baby Jesus is he even doing here?

I tried so hard to focus on what Sebastian was saying. Thankfully, he held up his end of the conversation despite my unexpected inability to formulate any words. We’d been sitting together for a while without a single awkward pause so I nodded, smiled, and even laughed when required. To be fair, it was a pretty decent pick-up attempt. Well, until he showed up.

Blue eyes burned my skin.

You don’t own me, you don’t own me, you don’t—

I swallowed, steeled myself and then glanced across at him.

Own me.

Dominic was leaning against the wall, his black, button-down shirt almost bursting at the seams. I blamed those insanely strong pecs and biceps. Honestly, they were huge. And the way his dark blue jeans hung enticingly low off narrow hips… Well. It should be illegal. He was going to give someone—AKA me—a cardiac arrest if he wasn’t careful.

I shook my head. With a bottle of beer in one hand and a buxom blonde in the other— this one looked nastier than most—the guy was the physical embodiment of everything I despised. Truly.

If only my body would listen.

Raising the drink to full, kissable lips, he tipped his head back, piercing gaze still locked on me. He then wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, a flicker of emotions I couldn’t identify crossing his face when he noticed my breath catch.

The girl must have registered his distraction too because she started rubbing herself up against him like an overly aroused limpet. Gross. He broke contact with me and looked down at her, a dark smile tugging his lips. After murmuring something in her ear and slapping her on the behind, she giggled. I looked away, that familiar painful knot forming in my stomach once more.

Damn you, Dominic Mondez. Damn you to hell.


Purchase Links:

  Amazon – US / Amazon CA

Amazon UK / Amazon AU

  B&N / Smashwords /  iTunes


(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 


At some point in time, all of us have or will have faced the feeling of not measuring up. Whether it’s in your person life or in business, this idea of being unworthy or not being enough can cause issues in forming or maintaining a healthy relationship. Both Riley and Dominic each faced their inner demons and coped with their issues in their own unique way. She sought out the help of a psychiatrist because running away or avoiding confrontations was no way to live. Dom, on the other hand, never spoke to a shrink. He relied on casual hook-ups to protect himself. Meaning, he only shagged a woman once and then tossed them aside for the next warm body. No attachments. No feelings. No pain. 


Obviously these two had major hurdles to cross. For the most part, I didn’t think their “relationship” was healthy. Riley had abandonment issues, anxiety-induced panic attacks, and parents who didn’t give Riley enough love, encouragement, or attention.  She was an afterthought to them; a person whom they saw as lacking something in their minds. Dom, on multiple occasions, treated her no better than her parents. The most outlandish lines he spoke were after his declaration of love. Quote: “As soon as you exploded into my life every women I touched reminded me of you. One had your eyes, another had the color of your hair, one even had your tits.” I know the love of a good person can heal many wounds but I’m convinced these two could benefit from additional counseling — alone and together.


As for the supporting cast members, Robin stole my heart and I wished he ‘d been the victor for Riley’s. He was sweet, successful. charming, sexy, romantic, and a total sweetheart. Unfortunately, he didn’t prove victorious. Another noteworthy character – Mae: She’s a strong single mom who was very outspoken. Maybe her and Dr. Hottie (Robin) will find love in a hospital supply closet. That is if he gets over his no work hanky-panky rule.


As for Riley and Dominic, do I see smooth sailing for them? No. Like I stated above, these two have problems that are not going to be resolved overnight. However, I do see Dominic’s willingness to be a better man and Riley’s determination not to be a doormat anymore. So, maybe these two lovebirds have the goods to make it last forever. As the saying goes…… Where there’s a will, there’s a way.


Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤


Purchase Links:

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Amazon UK / Amazon AU

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🎶 DON’T FORGET TO CHECK OUT BOOK ONE: Rock My World (A Mondez Novel)🎶

High school teacher Grace Thompson didn’t want to be a mentor. And she sure as hell didn’t want to mentor Levi Mondez. They got off to a rocky start, but it wasn’t entirely her fault. How was she to know he was the lead singer of local rock band, Mondez? How was she to know he considered her short temper a turn on? And how was she to know her best friend, Riley, would fall for him? If he wasn’t so damn gorgeous it might have made the whole mess easier to handle. If he didn’t transform Grace into a blazing furnace of need, and if he hadn’t confused the hell out of her already bruised heart, life might have turned out a heck of a lot differently. She was screwed.


My Review

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Lee Piper is a lover of books. She often juggles reading seven novels at a time for the sheer joy of it. At the grand old age of five, Lee Piper decided to become an author, however found a limited market for her unicorn stories. So, high school English teacher it was.

At thirty-two, and grieving the loss of her second miscarriage, Lee Piper turned to novels—Kylie Scott, to be precise—to escape the pain. This then inspired her to write Rock My World, the first in a four-part contemporary romance series, and her debut novel became an Evernight Publishing bestseller within the first two weeks of publication. Rock My Body is being released on June 3, 2017, much to the delight of her global readership.

Lee Piper lives in Adelaide, South Australia with her drummer husband, cheeky daughters, and one very crazy dog.


Connect with Lee Piper:

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Author Showcase – Cassandra Riley (Coastal Love Trilogy)


Jasmine Parks is a strong, no-fuss woman from the wrong side of the tracks. Benson Walsh is a fraternity brother who was raised in a life of privilege. After a chance encounter on the campus of William and Mary, their worlds collide as they start on a path that will forever change their destiny. When forces work to tear them apart, will their love be enough to help them let go of their pasts so that they can build a future?


Click —> HERE <— to read my review

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Ben and Jazz are a couple from completely different backgrounds trying to find a common middle ground. Just as their love solidifies, a new threat enters their lives. Follow them as they embark on a journey together. Will this force tear them apart or is their love strong enough to help them hold on?

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Ben and Jazz took a walk along the dock out to a pavilion that sat in the middle of the sound. Hand in hand, they gazed out across the choppy waters to the darkening sky. Benson lifts their conjoined hands to his mouth and kissed the back of hers her soft skin tender to his lips.
Jazz felt like a treasure when she was with him. He paid attention to every detail and took such good care of her. Ben nurtured her soul. How did she find such a man?

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The final installment of the Coastal Love Trilogy is a whirlwind of drama and passionate love. Ben and Jazz are trying to live their life, but every time they think that they have escaped the drama, another problem arises. Will they survive their trials and tribulations? Will their love fall apart under the pressures

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Hello, my pen name is Cassandra Riley. My real name is Renee. I live in Yorktown Virginia with my husband and two children. I have been a teacher for 14 years. Two years ago I sat down and wrote what was to become my Coastal Love Trilogy. I have since completed two novellas and I am working on two more novels. Two of my works can be found on Kindle, Holding On (book 2) and Reflections (not really a romance).

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Author Showcase – Kevin Hammond (The King’s Peace)

The Kingdom is young and yet it stands in great peril. Dark tales of the unnatural have reached the King’s city. The King is slain in his bed and the storm on the horizon brings black ships closer to the coastal city of Erenon. Nathaniel, a clever thief has stumbled upon a job that brings him to the home of the King when he is slain and Nathaniel is unwillingly dragged into the quest to reach the southern garrison which has gone quiet in recent months. Strange powers are helping and hindering him and the small company of soldiers dispatched to that garrison as war comes to the city.

They will find those horrors that plague the common man, an ancient legend will unravel, and a deception so epic in scale it involves the Gods. The whole world of man and nations who live on the other side of the mountain range known as the Great Divide will come together in a war no one really understands and as the kingdom fights to survive it will face an enemy they know nothing about.


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Between the two men, one of the serving girls had placed a candle and Nathaniel watched for long minutes in silence. The flame shone so bright in the dim corner of the room where they sat. The Duke sipped a cool glass of water and the men milled around the room trying to get the place cleaned up for the morning when the locals would come by expecting food and drink. He had no idea that the Duke would allow him to sit for as long as he needed before giving his answer, nor did he know how much time had passed. He extended his hearing around the room to isolate the many conversations and hushed whispers among the people in the room. Two men near the door spoke of the genius plan to install archers on the balcony of a brothel across the road. Another man was offering a silent prayer to whichever God he favored. He asked that his wife and young daughter be well cared for in his absence, but he spared little thought for himself, and Nathaniel approved of the man’s selflessness and care for his family. He wondered if he might ever live long enough to have what this man ached to be away from. Hector, on the other hand, cursed the King’s men quietly while scrubbing some unseen mess made in the kitchen by the soldiers battling with the fake guildsmen who had managed to flee that way.

The Duke was sitting quietly staring off into space as the young thief peered at the candle. His mind and his senses were away somewhere else and he could not have named that moment when the flame of the candle had turned black. He sat for long moments staring at the ominous, dark motion of that snaking flame, but as his mind was elsewhere he did not call any alarm or draw attention to it. And Nathaniel continued to stare at that dark flame until the creeping itch travelled up his spine and a terrible alarm pounded in the back of his head. Slowly, in a voice filled with a terror he had never before experienced, he managed to grind out the words “Something is terribly wrong.”

With his senses extended still, around the room, he heard the conversations fall mute. Hector stopped cursing the mess and the soldiers had stopped cleaning. One man silently crossed himself, and many instinctively reached for their weapons. The storm had picked up in earnest and the darkness outside was complete. Inside the room something had filled the air. It was an ecstatic tension buzzing between the people like something travelling around, under the tables, men jumped as they felt something brush past their feet.

He heard the rolling hiss of something swirling around the room. There was no point of issue and it was charging the air with energy. Nathaniel thought he could almost see something turning around in the shadows of the room, in the corners of the building, travelling around the ceiling.

And the scream, so filled with helpless terror, was cut short with a gargling cry and a vile hissing as blood coursed from the soldier’s neck; behind him stood one of the false guildsmen. His body had been hacked to shreds by the soldiers and it was so impossible that he could live yet he had torn the throat from a live man. The monster’s stumbling gait was its only betrayal of the deep injuries inflicted from the passage of his death. There was a cruel glimmer that Nathaniel thought might have been pleasure within the coal black shades of his eyes as he crammed some of the dead soldier’s flesh into his mouth.

Most of the men in the room were frozen in mute horror at what they were seeing, their eyes recorded it but their minds couldn’t process it. The dead were rising, for vengeance, for wrath, for whatever dark intent fuelled their desire. The weapons were held in shaking hands by ashen white faces but no one made the move to attack. The reality of it, the cruelty of it, had not dawned on the soldiers fully until they saw their own comrade- freshly killed- beginning to stir on the floor. As his coal black eyes fixed on the living, some of the younger soldiers expelled the contents of their stomachs.

Amid rasping, unintelligible threats and flailing limbs, the walking dead ambled forward, and the soldiers slowly moved backward-inch by painful inch. From the kitchen they could hear Hector and the serving girls fending off the creatures come back to life, until they burst through the door with panic strewn on their faces.

“Barricade that door!” The Duke screamed, and the soldiers came to life with the practiced obedience of listening to his authority. Two men broke ranks to help the girls shove tables before the kitchen door and held it in place while the pummeling assault came from the other side. The creatures vented a deep throated rage as they tried to smash their way through.

Nathaniel loosed a throwing dagger with a strong throw and the knife struck a guildsman square in the chest. It would have been a mortal blow for a living man but the creature barely even flinched.

“Fall back, hold the line, press them away with your swords.” Jorge barked orders at his men. The soldiers gave up ground slowly while the creatures came on. A few men dared hacking blows that severed limbs but the dead pressed further on, until the living had given up fully half of the bar room.

Dashing behind the soldiers, Nathaniel reached for a broken table leg, wrapping it in some table cloths and poked the brand into the flames of Hector’s hearth. The rags quickly caught fire and he returned to the line to throw amid the dead men. The brand caught fire on one guildsman’s leg but the creature stumbled forward with one arm and a leg partially alight, still questing after the flesh of the living. “Don’t lose your heads, hold your line and strike for their limbs,” Jorge ordered his men.

“Gods save us,” McKeen uttered a loud curse as he returned to the bar. Some of the undead turned to face him but the burly Sergeant did not turn and run as expected. Nathaniel watched in awe as he locked the door behind him. “Can’t have you fellas roving about my good city now can we? Wouldn’t be good and proper for the fancy folks to see your like parading about chewing up their nice outfits, no we can’t have that.” The Sergeant pulled his sword and roared like a man possessed as the first of the guildsmen drew near. His long blade sliced in a powerful arc to sever the thing’s head from its shoulders and the body crumpled in a heap on the floor. The body lay still as the head rolled around the floor, still gargling and hissing.

“Set to, gentlemen, the Duke gave the quiet command and the men pressed on the counter to hack and slash at the heads of the undead. Nathaniel saw little use for himself in the fight but he mustered the courage to pick up a fallen man’s sword and help to press the unliving backward so the soldiers could do their job.

“Ware the limbs!” Jorge warned, as he ducked an arm to drive his sword upwards through a dead man’s neck. With a savage twist he pried the head clean off the shoulders. While the undead snatched and grasped for any contact with human flesh, the soldiers worked in pairs to parry their limbs while his partner placed the killing stroke to take the head clean from the shoulders. The fray took little time to come to an end and, though the men looked sick with fear, they knew it was a miracle that only one man had died. The resistance in the kitchen was brief compared to the main assault that took place within the bar room with only a few of the undead left to be dispatched.

A blood spattered Duke stood to the left flank of the melee in the midst of a small gathering of headless men “Sergeant McKeen? Are you still alive, sir?”

“Present and in good working order, sir.”

“Mind telling me how you came upon inspiration to save the day then, Sergeant?”

“Gods save us, sir. I hail from the small island of Forfar on the Southern Reaches, beyond the widow’s peak, sir. The people have been around from before the Kingdom and they say there was a village overrun in our history. They say one night when a dark storm brewed that the dead folks long since passed had come back to tear at the living. They say, sir, that they craved the taste of living flesh, and ought to blame us for their passing as we are alive and they had already gone to their maker. That the body is dead and the mind possessed by some dark magic, they say the only way to kill them was to sever the head from the body. It’s bloody butchery, if you don’t mind me saying, sir. But now we best tend to the corpses and the severed heads. If legend be true then the heads will never die until the spell is ended. But we are best to burn all that’s left of them so they might never find way to rise again.”


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I always thought there was something very iconic about falling down a really big hole. Until that happens I’ll just write some stuff.

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Review of “Rescue Me: Escape From Reality series” – Sara Schoen

Mia Daniels is running away.

She’s leaving her family, her job, and her life behind, all to get away from her past. With no plan, she packed her suitcase and took off for a town where she thought she’d be safe. She should have known she wouldn’t be safe anywhere…

Gage Greystone is running from his family name.

His family has owned the town for generations, but he doesn’t plan to take it over from his father. He has a dream to save others; from the treacherous hiking trails or from themselves. Maybe that’s why he’s so attracted to the newest resident of Escape, Mia. She seems to be silently begging to be rescued. From what, he doesn’t know, but he’ll do anything to rescue her.

But this rescue may be impossible for the decorated emergency serviceman…


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As I traveled through the camping ground and the wellness camp, I could see what Lottie meant by a slow start to summer. There was room for well over one hundred and fifty hikers, and that didn’t include the trailers I’m sure drove through occasionally, at the camp site. The wellness camp had about ten cabins with what seemed like only one being used and a lot of open space.

I made a point to travel through the wellness camp slowly so I could possibly find Kelsey and see if she wanted her bike back, but I only saw a few girls who looked to be about fifteen. They were lacing up their hiking boots while others were preparing for a swim. A few waved at me as I passed, others seemed shy and looked away from me. I tried not to be offended. To them I was an outsider, someone they should stay away from. Just like he had taught me to do. I waved back regardless and continued my ride over Faith Bridge. I could see the town crowning over the hill to my right, but the well-defined hiking trail to my left beckoned me.

Lottie can wait a little longer, I decided with a smile. Turning my front tire toward the dirt path, I took off with the girl’s excited laughter and shrieks from entering the cold-water echoing around me. Their voices faded behind me as trees thickened around me, wrapping me in a cool, shadowy blanket, shielding me from the sun, and silencing everything around me until I was left with only my thoughts.

A few months ago, leaving me to my thoughts would have been dangerous. Maybe even suicidal. In the past few years, I had gone through more turmoil than I thought possible, and it seemed like the pain was never-ending. No matter what I did, I couldn’t escape bad news.

I thought I had found the one, the person I was meant to be with, the one who’s supposed to be by my side for the rest of my life, but then it all fell apart. “It’s over, Mia.” I had been trying to fix a broken relationship; cheating, fighting, and abusive, manipulative behavior. I should have known it couldn’t be fixed, but I didn’t want to give up on him. I thought we loved each other, but it turns out that had been one sided too. “Mia, stop. You’re embarrassing me and you’re embarrassing yourself. It’s over, Mia. I don’t love you, I don’t think I ever did. You’re someone I settled for, you’re nothing. It’s your fault this happened, not mine. Now it’s time to move on. I have, and you should too.”

Trees moved past me in a flash as I peddled faster, taking my memories with them. But once those were gone, I was left with a harsh reality. The same ex who had told me I wasn’t worth anything and would never amount to anything is chasing me to ruin the life I had created without him. I shook my head as the path took a turn. Stop thinking about it. It’s over now. The small flickers of sunlight through the leaves and the light at the end of the tunnel of trees echoed my thoughts; a new life, one without him.

I broke free of the trees and came out on a stunning overlook. The path settled against the edge of one of the mountains, giving me a great view of Peak View, a small town the bus had stopped in for a short time, and the surrounding landscape. It reminded me a lot of Escape, but with more shopping, a high school, a military base, and more homes. It’s going to be packed in the upcoming months. Not that I could blame anyone for wanting to visit. I had been here only a few days and I already loved the little town. Even as I looked over the lush green landscape, I didn’t feel as far from my family as I had when it came to Wes. For the first time, in a long time, I genuinely felt at home. I didn’t feel the need to look over my shoulder. This is the place for me. This is where I can finally heal and move on. This is exactly what I’ve been looking for.

Taking a deep breath of the fresh mountain air, I realized I couldn’t wait to move on. I’d dive in head first, even if it meant accepting another gift I didn’t deserve from Lottie. If this is what they do, then I should accept it. It’s time to move on. Whether he wants me to or not. Turning my bike around to head back to town, I took one last glance at the overlook. The sun hanging over Peak View, the mountains keeping us concealed, and everything in me was screaming for me to take a leap of faith. And that’s just what I’ll do. I pushed away from Mountain Side Height lookout and headed toward town, thanks to the helpful signs on Morning Glory’s trail. I left feeling the best I had in years…I’d return when my life turned to shit again. As it inevitably would.


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Every day, every minute, people are starting their lives over. Some choose to build a new life in a town close to home while others move out of state or even out of their country. Any move, no matter the distance, can be nerve-racking; however, relocating because you’re hiding from an abusive ex takes the stress of the situation to a whole other level. Abuse, in any form, can reek havoc on your mental state. I am not surprised Mia was skittish with dating again. She’s literally running from the past, trying to stay one step ahead of Wes.

While embarking on a new life in Escape, Colorado, Mia let her guard down and formed relationships. In this small picturesque town, she found support, acceptance, friendship….. a home. The quaint town had accepted this “outsider” as one their own. I know a lot about little towns so I can relate to a small community banding together. They do help each other out and secrets are few and far between.

Sara painted small town living to a tee. She also created a hidden treasure many vacationers would love to unwind at for days, week, or longer: breathtaking mountain view, tranquil lake, numerous hiking trails, caves to explore, etc. It’s a nature lovers dream destination. 

It was Mia’s dream come true, too, until her past caught up with her. After three months on the run, Wes did find her. For me, I thought their confrontation would’ve been more nail biting. Everything was leading up to their monumental moment so this was Mia’s time to shine. Now was the time for Mia to take the bull by the horns and make her stand. Unfortunately, she didn’t and I felt disappointed by her lack of action. I wanted her to take the power away from him. In the end, it all worked out but not in the way I was foresaw. But hey, she still got her happily ever after and that’s what matters at the end of the day. 


Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤1/2


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Sara Schoen is a Biology major at James Madison University who was born and raised in Northern Virginia. She has been an adamant writer since she was young, and now enjoys reading, ghost hunting, and traveling. She hopes to have readers find solace in the worlds and characters she creates and in some cases provide a cautionary tale. Sara plans to continue writing and explore various genres in the future.


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Review of “Rock My World (A Mondez Novel, Book 1)” – Lee Piper

High school teacher Grace Thompson didn’t want to be a mentor. And she sure as hell didn’t want to mentor Levi Mondez. They got off to a rocky start, but it wasn’t entirely her fault. How was she to know he was the lead singer of local rock band, Mondez? How was she to know he considered her short temper a turn on? And how was she to know her best friend, Riley, would fall for him? If he wasn’t so damn gorgeous it might have made the whole mess easier to handle. If he didn’t transform Grace into a blazing furnace of need, and if he hadn’t confused the hell out of her already bruised heart, life might have turned out a heck of a lot differently. She was screwed.


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Like Levi and Grace, we all have lived through moments in our lives that we cherish fondly or would rather forget entirely. Some of us plaster a smile on our face and continue living as if it’s our last day. Some of us turn to a coping device (such as liquor) to just get through a single day. For those who turn to the bottle, like Grace, you soon realize you must face your fears because alcohol solves nothing. It only compounds the problem.

Grace, at times, appeared to have a drinking problem. She turned to it often and I wished Levi would’ve called her on it. Not that he didn’t call her out regarding other things. Grace was scared — scared of feeling anything anymore after she lost key people in her life.

When life keeps dealing you a rotten hand, it is easy to fall into a self-hating role. Lets face it, Grace was a BITCH for quite a bit of this story. However, her actions were a mode of self-preservation. I saw that and Levi most definitely saw that too. That’s why he never gave up on her. It’s why he kept trying to bring some joy, laughter back into her life. Just wait until you read his texts during the conference. You’ll laugh out loud one minute and then say Oh baby the next. Levi was a sweet, sexy, dirty talking musician with a heart as big as his penis.


In summation…………

Lee Piper showed us the strength it takes to love someone who is broken and the mental struggle a person battles to just let it all go and live again. Not an easy task, as a real person or as a author writing about imaginary people. To have a reader actually feel a character’s emotions, feel their pain as your own is a challenging feat BUT Lee conquered this task.

Whether she was focusing on Levi’s past, Grace’s ghosts or delivering us some sizzlin’ sex scenes, the reader will not walk away emotionless. They’ll demand a happy ending and will be rewarded with one, too. Of course, it won’t happen until a little more drama occurs. Ah, such is life. Always an adventure!  😉 

On a final note: I love Dom (Levis’s brother) and Riley (Grace’s BFF). I can’t wait to find out what Riley was about to confess to Grace before they were interrupted. I just bet it’s a juicy secret!! Maybe they are doing the horizontal polka. 


Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤


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Lee Piper is a lover of books. She often juggles reading seven novels at a time for the sheer joy of it. At the grand old age of five, Lee Piper decided to become an author, however found a limited market for her unicorn stories. So, high school English teacher it was.

At thirty-two, and grieving the loss of her second miscarriage, Lee Piper turned to novels—Kylie Scott, to be precise—to escape the pain. This then inspired her to write Rock My World, the first in a four part contemporary romance series. Her debut manuscript reached the second round of the ARWA 2016 Emerald and became an Evernight Publishing bestseller within the first two weeks of publication.

Lee Piper lives in Adelaide, South Australia with her drummer husband, cheeky daughters, and one very crazy dog.


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