Tag Archives: historical

Author Showcase / Interview – Jennifer Macaire (The Road to Alexander)

 

  1. Welcome, Jennifer! 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?

(JM) Hello Kam, and thank you for the warm welcome! I think I was born with a pen in my hand – I’ve written stories since I could put letters together to make words. My mother (who else?) still has a copy of my first book written when I was 6, called ‘Tafy the Wunder Hors’. I have made progress in spelling since then, but the joy and creative passion is still intact. I love to invent stories.

 

 

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

(JM) I sacrifice to Calliope, muse of epic poetry. A bar of chocolate and a cup of coffee usually do the trick. Otherwise, I’ll send a prayer to the Oneiri. In Greek mythology, the (Ὄνειροι, “Dreams”) were various gods and demigods that ruled over dreams and nightmares. My favorite would be Morpheus – god of dreams, but Phobetor, the god of nightmares, is handy too. Many of my books are born of dreams.

Source: wikipedia.org

 

  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?

(JM) I have a “real” job as an assistant to an orthodontist that keeps me grounded and gives me a different kind of job satisfaction. We say, here in the office, that we make smiles. I love my work, and we have a great team working together.

 

 

  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?

(JM) Since I live in France, and my books are all in English, it’s rather a let-down when people find out I write but that they can’t read my books. (Let down for me, that is – I can’t brag or show off, lol) So far, none have been translated into French. I have one translated into German and another in Thai – but no French. Otherwise, I don’t hesitate to tell people I’m a writer – it seems natural, since it’s so much a part of me.

 

 

  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.

(JM) Ray Bradbury, Dorothy Dunnett, Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman, Larry Mcmurtry, Diana Norman, Louise Penny, Ian Rankin, Philippa Gregory, Mary Renault…there are ten, but like you said, I could go on forever!

(KAM): It is truly difficult to stop at ten. Like you, I’m sure, my favorite’s list grows longer each day. 

 

 

  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 see casted in the parts?

(JM) Well, my wish came true when The Game of Thrones became a TV series – I devoured those books, and the mini-series did them justice. If I could see my Time for Alexander series be transformed into a show, like Game of Thrones, that would be so cool. I’d need a huge cast of characters, and for the main part, I’d love to see Paris Jackson play the part of Ashley – she’s a tough girl, with a strong character. She’d be perfect. As for Alexander, a certain Alexander Richard Pettyfer might be good, and Richard Madden as Plexis.                      

(KAM) Can you believe I’ve yet to watch it?! Maybe one day I shall see what all the fuss is about. I’ve heard rave reviews regarding the books and show. 

 

 

  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.

(JM) Not top secret, but taking a while because squeezed in with promoting and my day job – I’m writing a YA story about a daughter of a Muse, she’s mortal, lived in the present day, and wants to become a great hero so she can become immortal and join her mother’s family on Olympus. I can tell you right now, it’s an impossible dream. (But what are dreams for, right?)

(KAM) Sounds fantastic! 

 

 

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

(JM) The first one in the Time for Alexander series is ‘The Road to Alexander””, and there are 7 books in the series. They’ll be coming out every 3 months or so – all are written and I’m just in edits with the later books. Writing is easy – editing is tough.

 

 

Otherwise, there is a list on Goodreads, and also on Amazon are a few of my other books. I have a really cool space cowboy series about horses that travel through the galaxy at Evernight Teen (‘Riders of the Lightning Storm’ is the first book in that series)……..

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…..and also at Evernight are ‘Jack the Stripper’ and ‘Murder and Mayhem’ that feature zombies and vampires, oh my!

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

(JM) My Time for Alexander FB page is: https://www.facebook.com/TimeforAlexander/

My blog is: https://jennifermacaire.wordpress.com/

My author webpage is: https://authorjennifermacaire.wordpress.com/

Twitter: @jennifermacaire

 

 

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

(JM) Nothing really – except – I am eternally grateful to readers everywhere! I feel like we’re a dying breed sometimes. Buying books can be expensive and it’s hard to budget sometimes, so I am always thankful when someone takes the time to invest in one of my stories. I buy books too – my favorite pastime is reading (besides biking – I love my bicycle!) And if you, dear reader, could just put a small review or remark on your blog, tweet, Amazon review – anything – I promise that every little bit helps, and this author, at any rate, is truly thankful.

 

~~ Closing remarks ~~

Jennifer, thank you for divulging a bit of yourself with all of us here today. It has been a true pleasure getting to know you.

Now folks, before you go back to work/school/etc, please grace us with a few more minutes of your time and lets take a more in-depth look at  The Road to Alexander. 

THANKS!! 

 

After winning a prestigious award, Ashley is chosen to travel through time and interview a historical figure. Choosing her childhood hero Alexander the Great, she is sent back in time for less than a day. He mistakes her for Persephone, goddess of the dead, and kidnaps her, stranding her in his own time. What follows, after she awakes under the pomegranate tree, is a hilarious, mind-bending tale of a modern woman immersed in the ancient throes of sex, love, quite a bit of vino, war, death and ever so much more.

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EXCERPT

 

I wondered if I should speak or wait until he spoke to me. I was irritated to feel myself getting flustered. Then Alexander sat down next to me with a fluid movement and I stifled an exclamation.

‘What can I give you? Grapes? Some wine?’

‘That sounds fine,’ I said, my fingers itching for a pen so I could write down all my impressions. But I had to wait until I got back. Until then, I was supposed to make a mental note of every word and action.

He chose a grape for me and gently put it into my mouth. It was one of the most sensual gestures anyone had ever made to me. I felt faint, and, when he leaned over and kissed me, I toppled over onto the rug with hardly a whimper. Alexander obviously thought I’d come to see him for only one reason. I guess he was smothered with women throwing themselves on him, but vestal virgins? My body was saying, ‘Yes! Yes!’ My head said, ‘Ashley! Get a hold of yourself this instant!’ I sat up and pushed him away.

‘Sorry, I can’t do this,’ I said.

His expression of surprise was comical. ‘You mean, you really did come from the temple?’

‘Can we talk?’ I avoided the question and took a bunch of grapes.

‘Not those,’ he said, plucking them from my hand and putting them back into the bowl. ‘Those grapes are poisoned. I keep them in case an enemy comes. So, what do you want to talk about?’ His brow furrowed, then his face cleared. ‘Ah, yes, I recall. You’re the onirocrite. So, what dreams have you had?’

‘I dreamt that I came to your tent while you were sleeping. In your sleep you were calling out my name, the secret one that I can’t tell to anyone except the goddess. When you woke up you saw me. You said that I must come to you because you had a dream that you wanted me to interpret for you. You also said that it was a waking dream.’

He looked interested. ‘Really? And just what is a waking dream?

‘It’s like a wish,’ I said. ‘It’s what you want to do with your life. Can you tell me about it?’ I was hoping for grist for the prize-winning article that I was going to write when I got back. No one knew why Alexander had decided to conquer Persia and travel as far as the Indus River. It was a mystery, and I’d decided to solve it.

Instead of answering me, he lay back on his bed, put his arms above his head and stretched, showing off his lean body with its beautiful, flowing lines. ‘That’s too bad,’ he said. ‘I was hoping you were one of the virgins who didn’t want to be sacrificed. There are lots of them, you know,’ he added, looking at me sideways out of his magnificent eyes. ‘When they don’t want to be sacrificed they simply cease to be virgins, if you get my meaning.’

‘I do,’ I said, ‘and I’m flattered. But can we get back to the subject of my visit?’

‘A single-minded woman,’ he sighed. ‘You remind me of my mother. She’s terribly stubborn. She hated it when I sucked my thumb, so I did it for years just to spite her.’

‘Well, that explains your teeth,’ I said, vexed to be compared to his mother.

He looked at me, his expression unreadable. I started to think that maybe conversations about his mother weren’t the best idea, but all he said was, ‘You want to hear about my dreams, is that it?’

‘Please,’ I said, concentrating on his next words.

‘Very well.’ He stood up, poured two glasses of wine from an earthenware pitcher, and sat down next to me again, handing me one. The wine had a faint spicy note.

I was feeling smug. The article was going to net me a huge prize. I could just imagine the accolades. I was going to be famous; I couldn’t wait to see the faces of those who’d been waiting to see me fail. ‘Cheers,’ I said, and sipped. The drink wasn’t bad. It was young grape wine with spices and a trace of honey. It had been watered down so it was refreshing.

He raised his eyebrows. ‘Cheers?’

‘Here’s to your health,’ I amended.

We sipped our wine in silence for a few minutes while he studied me. Finally he put down his glass and shook his head. ‘There’s something strange about you,’ he said, ‘though I cannot say exactly what it is. You are impressed, I sense this, and you are interested. But, you are not afraid. Perhaps it is your lack of fear I detect the most. I am extremely attuned to fear; my father beat it into me. But it goes deeper than that.’ As he spoke, he wound his body around me, pausing now and then to touch my cheeks, my neck, or my breast. ‘I get a very peculiar feeling from you. There is a coldness, a frost that emanates from your very bones.’ He paused and ran his hands lightly down my sides.

‘I don’t know what you mean,’ I stammered. ‘I’ve wanted to meet you since I first heard about you. It was a dream, and now it’s come true.’ The passion in my voice startled me. I frowned, struggling to keep my emotions in check. This was not the cool, calm, collected Ashley I knew.

Alexander took my hand, stroking the inside of my wrist before pressing it to his mouth. ‘I want to bite you,’ he said. ‘I want to shake you out of your indifference. I want to hear you scream.’ He stared at me, a fierce expression in his uncanny eyes. ‘My mother is cold like you. She’s as cold as the ice on the mountaintops.’

I shivered. ‘I’m sorry if I appear cold. It was my parents’ fault. I had to stay quiet, otherwise I was punished.’

‘Perhaps that’s it.’ He tilted his head and looked at me. I felt the blood rush to my cheeks. There was such intensity in his gaze that I had to struggle not to drop my eyes. ‘Did you know that of all the living things on this earth, only man can look another man in the eye? My teacher, an old Greek, taught me that. He is a very intelligent man. He said that the world was round like an orange, and that the stars we see at night are in reality other earths, like this one, or suns. Is that heresy, do you think, or is it truth? I would like to know the answer to those questions and to so many more. I want to see the ends of the earth where the water drops off into a great chasm. Of course, if my teacher is right, I shall never find that. Instead, I will end up where I started out.’ He sighed, then leaned over and lifted a corner of the tent to peer outside. ‘It’s getting near midday, I have to go see my troops. Will you stay, or will you go back to your temple?’

‘If you please,’ I said humbly, ‘I’d like to stay.’

‘I please.’ He smiled then, and I realized that his face had more expressions than anyone’s I’d ever seen, including the great actors and mimes. His smile seemed to bloom from within, to reach out and caress me, and to bind me to him.

Anyone on the receiving end of that smile, I thought, would walk straight off the edge of the world if Alexander asked him to.

 

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Review of “That Potent Alchemy (Treading the Boards Book 3)” – Tess Bowery

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Is his love her safe place to land…or just smoke and mirrors?

Grace Owens danced her feet bloody to become the finest en pointe prodigy of her generation, but the only accolade she longed for—her father’s approval—never came. Finally, broken and defeated, she cut ties and fled to London to live life on her own terms.

Now, after four years as an actress in London’s smaller theatres, a last-minute production change lands her right where she never wanted to be again. Front and center in the ballet—and back in toe shoes.

From his perch on the catwalks, machinist and stagecraft illusionist Isaac Caird can’t take his eyes off Grace. A woman who wears men’s clothing, but not as a disguise. An exquisite beauty who doesn’t keep a lover. A skilled dancer who clearly hates every pirouette.

The perfect lines of her delicate body inspire him to create a new illusion—with her as the centerpiece—that will guarantee sold-out shows. Maybe even attract a royal’s patronage. But first he has to get her to look at him. And convince her the danger is minimal—especially within the circle of his arms.

Featuring a gender-fluid ballet dancer, an amateur chemist who only occasionally starts fires, and an old rivalry that could tear them apart.

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images-7(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 

 

Historical romances, for the most part, have a common denominator — couples DO NOT rush into the act of love-making. In this genre, I’ve discovered couples are more prone to tread slowly, basking in the rewards of subtle touches and lustful glances. They understand the act of foreplay with their words holds the same amount of power, if not more, than succumbing to the carnal impulse to inert slot A into slot B.

In “That Potent Alchemy”, Isaac and Grace had their share of tender touches and they also dabbled in various acts of eroticism: oils, scarf, and a strap-on. I have to say I’m impressed with Isaac’s attitude and reaction to Grace’s “prick”. He wasn’t close-minded and found himself thoroughly enjoying his *never before touched* area pleasured.

Kinky!!

Now when the couple wasn’t seeking sexual satisfaction, a plot was unfolding. Someone was attempting to sabotage the play Isaac was a set designer for and Grace was dancing/acting in. For me, the plot seemed like a problem any theatre company would face then or now. For that, I give Tess props. (no pun intended)  😀 

Tess stayed true to circumstances faced my anyone in the “business” and also delivered us a nice portion of romance/kinkery.

Lovely work, Tess! 

 

Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤

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Other books by Tess Bowery:

She Whom I Love: Amazon Purchase Link

Rite of Summer:  Amazon Purchase Link

High Contrast (Evolution Ink): Amazon Purchase Link

 

 

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Tess Bowery lives near the ocean, which sounds lovely, except when it snows. An historian by training and a theater person by passion, she’s parleyed her Masters degree in English history into something that would give her former professors something of a surprise.

Her love for the Regency era began as they always do, with Jane Austen, and took a sharp left turn into LBGT biographies and microhistory. Now she indulges in both of her passions, telling the stories of her community in the time periods that fire the human imagination. Her first foray into contemporary M/M fiction, High Contrast, releases in 2016.

Along with writing, Tess splits her time between teaching, backstage work, LBGT activism and her family. She spends far too much money on comic books, loves superheroes and ghost stories, and still can’t figure out how to use Twitter properly.

Get updates and book information at http://www.tessbowery.com, or hang out with Tess at http://tessbowery.tumblr.com, or @tessbowery on Twitter.

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Review of “The Christmas Lights” – Rachael Kosinski

Historical Holiday Romance – Length: 96 pages 
 

“Where do Christmas lights come from?” 

The tiny bulbs of color that burn on a Christmas tree, or outside a house to shine in the night; does anyone really know where they originate? What if someone told you they weren’t intended for Christmas at all, but really for a miracle? That they were for love, a desperate idea, to light a boy’s way home? 

In that case, you must have some questions. What boy? What love? 

In that case, allow me to tell you a story.
 
 
 
 
(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 
 
With the holidays quickly approaching, many of us (like myself) are on the look-out for a sweet Christmas story to get us in the mood for the impending festivities. In my humble opinion, “The Christmas Lights” had the makings to be included in Hallmark Channel’s Countdown to Christmas. 
 
Incase you are wondering why it had the goods to be turned into a tv movie, let me enlighten you about this novella.
 
We have a young man, with barely any money in the bank, with his heart set on marrying a young woman. Before Louis and Emmy can tie the knot, he needs to secure their future. In other words, they need money and now. He sets out on a journey to earn cash, which will have many high and low moments. 
 
As you would expect from a contender for the Hallmark Channel, all good things come to those who wait. 
 
Louis not only found success, but he also made invaluable friends along the way. 
 
One friend, Fabergé (yes, thee Fabergé) came to his rescue and ultimately changed his whole world. 
 
If this was a fairytale, Fabergé would be Louis’ Fairy Godfather.
 
Oh yes, Louis proved to be a very lucky, lucky man. 🙂
 
Now with all the positives, I must state why I gave The Christmas Lights a three. For me, I wanted to see more interactions between Louis and Emmy. I wanted to see their love blossom and grow, not just hit and miss moments through letters. If we had more showings of their love, besides the beginning and end, the score would’ve been easily a 4. Possibly a 4 1/2. 
 
Overall, I do think many people will enjoy this story while sipping on a mug of hot cocoa or apple cider. 
 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5
(highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤1/2
 
 
 
 
 
When she was little, Rachael Kosinski wanted to be a paleontologist, an Egyptologist, an astronaut, a Broadway actress, a nature photographer for National Geographic, and the next Jane Goodall. Instead of being a new link between man and chimp, or discovering a planet suitable for sustained human life, or maybe even winning renowned fame by stumbling across an undiscovered dinosaur, Rachael finally decided that, if she never became a writer, she would simply die. Several years later, she now possesses a quirky knowledge of world mythology, an addiction to coffee, and a penchant for making over-expressive faces at her laptop.
 
 
 
 

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Review of “A Shackled Inheritance” – Madeleine McDonald

 
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Spinster Abigail Carrick faces a frugal existence in dour Scotland—until her father’s will reveals she has two unknown half-sisters. Free women of color, they will share her inheritance of a sugar plantation in the Caribbean. Against all advice, Abigail crosses the ocean to meet them. Fellow passenger Euan Sinclair offers her welcome encouragement. As their friendship deepens, the young lawyer is torn between attraction to Abigail and his loathing of slavery. His principles also clash with his duty, for his legal mission is delicate and he dare not fail. Fate throws the slave owner and the abolitionist together, on an island gripped by rumors of a slave revolt. When Euan meets Abigail’s family, will her alluring sister Desiree steal him from her?

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

Let me begin this review stating I give props to Madeleine for depicting the harshness and hardness of a slave’s life. To see anyone abused, mistreated in any decade, at any age, is unthinkable and deplorable. I can’t fathom how someone can treat another person so cruelly. Despicable! 
 
You know what else is despicable? A vast majority of the characters in A Shackled Inheritance
 
Euan: His behavior towards Abigail after he met Desiree, the sister, was piggish. He saw a beautiful woman and suddenly the woman he expressed having “more” with is pushed to the farthest reaches of his mind. Euan is a louse. 
 
Abigaai: I wasn’t too fond of her either. She, like Desiree, seemed too consumed with money.
 
Desiree: She was a vile, human being. 
 
Their 1/2 brother, Jericho, was no better. His only saving grace was his love and devotion to Rosie. Theirs, too. 
 
That poor, sweet child deserved more than what life dealt her. 
 
As you can surmise, this book was extremely difficult for me to read because it was absolutely depressing to read. 
 
At least it ended on a HEA so that’s something. 
 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5
(highest) 
Score: ❤1/2
 
GET YOUR PRINT  or KINDLE COPY TODAY!! 
 
 
 
 

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Madeleine McDonald has been a voracious reader since childhood. Her early career took her to France, where she lived in the Dreyeckland, the three-cornered land where France meets Germany and Switzerland. Life on the border sparked an interest in the region’s history and tangled loyalties. Conflicted loyalties have been a theme running through her short stories and longer fiction.

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Review of “The Devil’s Own Desperado” – Lynda J. Cox

 

 

He’s everything she fears… Wounded gunfighter Colt Evans stumbles onto a remote homestead never expecting to find compassion. But beautiful Amelia McCollister is like no other woman. Suddenly, his dream of settling down with a wife and home is within reach–but only if his past never comes gunning for him. She’s everything he dreams of… Amelia had to grow up fast after outlaws murdered her parents, leaving her to raise her siblings alone. With a young brother who idolizes shootists, she dreads having a notorious gunman in her home. But as Colt slowly recovers, he reveals a caring nature under his tough exterior that Amelia can’t resist. Just when Colt starts to believe he can leave the gunfighter life behind, his past returns, bringing danger to them all. Can a shootist ever hang up his hardware? Or will their dreams disappear in the smoke of a desperado’s gun?

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

No matter if it’s 2016 or 1887, you never can escape your past. Some how, some way, it will rear its ugly head. In Colt Evan’s case, his past brought danger in the regards to gun-toting men looking to settle a score.

As you can imagine, with any good historical tale, there instances where men drew guns. One at a card game (beginning of the book) and another towards the end of the book (where past meets present). In both instances, Colt survived both battles. Sure, he might’ve sustained some damage but I didn’t really expect him to come away unscathed. You wouldn’t either, right?

Even though this book some tension filled sections, the rest of the story was mostly filled with tender moments. Amelia and Colt’s stolen kisses and lovemaking could only be described as sweet.

Jenny, Amelia’s sister, was so dang cute. I loved it when she smiled and, as a parent, it tugged on my heart to see her afraid. There was one scene, with her, that reminded me of an unforgettable moment in The Patriot (2000). I’m speaking of tear-jerker involving Benjamin Martin (Mel Gibson) and his daughter, Susan (Skye McCole Bartusiak). For those who’ve seen the hit movie, I think you know which scene I’m thinking about and can get a rough idea where I’m heading with my vague remarks regarding Jenny. 

As for Saul, you can tell he’s going to grow up to be a fine gentlemen because he’s already a sweet young man. 
 

Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5
(highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤
 
 
 

Lynda J. Cox will tell anyone who will listen that she was born at least one hundred and fifty years too late, and most definitely in the wrong part of the country. Her heart has always belonged to cowboys, the wide open spaces, horses, and Lassie. She grew up on a steady diet of cowboy movies, syndicated Westerns, and Lassie.

All of those influences play a role in her life now. She writes western historical romance and raises and shows collies. She holds a master’s degree in English with a concentration in creative writing from Indiana State University after earning her BA from the same university as a non-traditional student. (Think being old enough to be mom to 90% of the students in her freshman cadre.)

She’s kept busy with two spoiled rotten house cats, a 30 plus year old Arabian gelding who has been nicknamed “Lazarus” for his ability in the later years of his life to escape death, and quite a few champion collies.

When she isn’t writing, she can be found on the road, travelling to the next dog show. She loves to chat about books, the writing life, and the insanity which is called a “dog show” and can be reached through her Facebook page at Lynda J. Cox. (https://www.facebook.com/lyndajcox)
 

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Review of “Seize the Flame” – Lynda J. Cox

 

Jessica Depre’s life is in tatters. She’s on the run, thanks to her abusive husband Robert, who needs to silence her about his criminal escapades and the part he forced her to play in them. When bounty hunter Drake Adams walks into the boarding house where she works, Jessica slips away into the night. Her only hope of surviving and protecting those she loves from her husband’s rage is to vanish forever.

Unable to accept that the only woman he ever loved left him standing at the altar and married another, Drake Adams has given up a good law practice in the Wyoming Territory. If he’s not hunting down bounties, he’s pursuing the bottom of a bottle of bourbon. When Drake learns his former fiancée, Jessica Majors-Depre, has a price on her head, he decides he will collect the reward.

Can the bounty hunter and the bank robber ignite a future from the ashes of their past when they are trapped by a blizzard in a mountain shack or will playing with fire burn them both?


 

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

Treachery, dirty rotten scoundrels, jealousy, lost loves reunited, and an unfortunate encounter with a bear trap….. Seize the Flame had everything you’d want in a western romance book and more. 
 
Two most notable sections of the book (for me): 
 
1.) Everything involving the bear trap. Lynda wrote the scenes so well, so vividly, the reader can almost feel Drake’s pain, hear his screams, and see the determination in Jessica’s eyes to not let him down.  She faced weather, wolves and her abusive husband, all in the name to save Drake; the man she’ll truly love forever. 
 
2.) Stud poker scene. Jessica and Drake had no money so they improvised in a most fun and sensual manner. Winner of each hand kisses the loser, anywhere, and the loser is forbidden to touch while he/she is receiving the kisses. Yes, there were absolutely no losers in this game. The only thing lost was articles of clothing. Mmm! 😉
 
Now for the ending (the epilogue), based off the prologue I didn’t expect it to end as it did. Maybe you won’t either. Only way to know for sure is to buy the book. 🙂
 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5
(highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤
 

 
 

Lynda J. Cox will tell anyone who will listen that she was born at least one hundred and fifty years too late, and most definitely in the wrong part of the country. Her heart has always belonged to cowboys, the wide open spaces, horses, and Lassie. She grew up on a steady diet of cowboy movies, syndicated Westerns, and Lassie.


All of those influences play a role in her life now. She writes western historical romance and raises and shows collies. She holds a master’s degree in English with a concentration in creative writing from Indiana State University after earning her BA from the same university as a non-traditional student. (Think being old enough to be mom to 90% of the students in her freshman cadre.)

She’s kept busy with two spoiled rotten house cats, a 30 plus year old Arabian gelding who has been nicknamed “Lazarus” for his ability in the later years of his life to escape death, and quite a few champion collies.

When she isn’t writing, she can be found on the road, travelling to the next dog show. She loves to chat about books, the writing life, and the insanity which is called a “dog show” and can be reached through her Facebook page at Lynda J. Cox. (https://www.facebook.com/lyndajcox)
 

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Review of “Wilder Hearts: A Western Hearts Novel (Book 2)” – Lilly Gayle

 

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Writing about the outlaw, Jake the Snake, could be the opportunity of a lifetime—if it doesn’t get her killed.

 
When Ellie Wilder takes her sister from their grandfather’s home, she’s determined to put her family back together and write of their adventures. Then she runs into Jacob Harper, a man who resembles Jake the Snake, a notorious outlaw who once rode with Billy the Kid. Is it possible the outlaw who escaped justice has mended his ways? Or is the handsome Mr. Harper now murdering servant girls in Austin? Finding out the truth could be the journalistic opportunity of a lifetime. 


Former Texas Ranger Jake Harper has returned to Texas to help solve the Servant Girl Annihilator murders. But when a similar murder occurs in Harmony, Texas, Jake goes undercover as Jake the Snake to find a connection between the series of brutal murders. Then Ellie Wilder shows up. Her snooping could blow his cover and get her killed, but Ellie soon becomes a bigger threat to his heart than his investigation.

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

Are you a fan of movies such as Young Guns and Tombstone? If so, then this is the book for you. In Wilder Hearts, Lilly drops names like Billy the Kid, Wyatt Earp and a few other notable westerners in a tale that’ll keep your interest peaked. 
 
In Wilder Hearts, more than one mystery is attempting to be solved; more than one murderer to be caught. Not all the cases were open and shut. However, through the process of finding the Annihilator, two people found love and their HEA. 
 
So if you like sexy lawmen, women who’s attitude are as big as their bosom, then pick up this book. 
 
Word of warning, Lilly pulled no punches with how the victims died. Each victim died brutally. 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤

GET YOUR KINDLE COPY TODAY!!

 
 
 
DON’T FORGET TO ALSO CHECK OUT 
Helpless Hearts: A Western Hearts Novel (Book 1)
 
 
Can a former gunslinger find redemption through love?

Former gunslinger Noah Sinclair returned home so he could regain his respectability. Instead of redemption, he finds temptation in Juliana Jeffries—a woman engaged to the man who offered him a job and a second chance. Despite Noah’s loyalty to his boss, Noah’s Helpless Heart still yearns for Juliana—a woman with dreams and ambitions that don’t include a former gunslinger.

Noah stole Juliana’s heart years ago, but then he left town to avenge his father’s death. Now, she dreams of becoming a doctor and she’s obliged to marry Avery, a man with a secret she’s sworn to protect. Noah’s return could test her loyalty, her ambition, and her heart.

 
 
 

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Award Winning Author of paranormal and historical romance:
2015 OKRW International Digital Awards. 2016 Still Moments Magazine Reader’s Choice Awards.

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Review of “Lady Gallant” – Gini Rifkin

 

Disowned by her father and still mourning the death of her fiancé, Josephine Posey joins Florence Nightingale’s brigade of nurses bound for the Black Sea. Thousands of British soldiers desperately await these angels of mercy and a new life awaits Josie. Amidst the chaos of death and despair, she finds a spark of hope, lighting the flame once more inside her soul.

In search of the truth, Garrick Allen, one of Britain’s first war correspondents also journeys to the Crimean Peninsula. To him the soldiers seem all but abandoned by Queen and country, and as he smokes his cheroots and makes friends with a bottle, he writes his bold but honest dispatches for The Times. Not wanting anything more than to finish his job and go home, Garrick is blindsided by a nurse with attitude who offers him a new slant on life and a reason to love.

 
 
(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique)  
 
With any war, we are well aware of the horrors the brave men and women face on the battlefield. However, we sometimes overlook or take for granted the doctors and nurses who treat the fallen soldiers. They, too, feel the pain of combat. They get attached to their charges, lose friends, and push on to “fight” another day. 
 
In Lady Gallant, Posie fought to heal the soldiers while attempting to keep their spirits high. A prime example was the Christmas tree she procured for them. She didn’t have to but it was in her nature to go the extra mile. 
 
Mose (her invaluable helper) was equally dedicated to his job, too. It was a shocking and sad moment when Cholera took hold of his body. The love bestowed upon him while in his sick bed was extremely touching and showed his worth in the eyes of his friends. 
 
Garrick: He started off gruff but it didn’t take long before he showed us his romantic side. He could easily be described as a  knight in shining armor because he literally rescued Posie on more than one occasion. 
 
The last time solidified their relationship which ended with……. you guessed it, a happily ever after. 
 
Now if I had to change one thing about this story is would be to add more moments with Posie’s best friend, Gemma. 
 
Their interactions added a bit of lightness to a rather (at times) intense story. 
 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
 Score: ❤❤❤1/2
 
 
 
 
 
 

Gini Rifkin writes adventurous romance, past present, and into the future. Her settings include the American West, Medieval England, Victorian England, and contemporary fantasy. When not reading or writing, she has the privilege of caring for a menagerie of abandoned animals including ducks, geese, rabbits, goats, donkeys, and cats. She was born and raised in Illinois where she went to school to become a registered nurse. When struck by wanderlust, she moved to Colorado and met her husband Gary. They shared the journey for 30 years, spending vacations canoeing, doing Mountain Man reenacting, and traveling around this great country. Although Gary has passed on, he left her with the skills to soldier on alone, and a little bit of him lives on in every hero she creates. Her writing keeps her hungry to keep learning new things, and she considers family and friends her most treasured of gifts.

 
 

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Review of “Asked For” – Colleen L. Donnelly

Lana was young when Cletus asked for her. Barely more than a girl when he offered to give Lana a home and her grandmother a pittance to help her survive if Lana would become his wife. Cletus was older, a widower who wanted a wife young enough to be uncomplicated and give him sons. He cared nothing about pretty, and he had no desire for a bride. Just a wife, and only sons.

Lana gave Cletus more daughters than sons, lastly giving him James, the one Cletus referred to as That Boy, the one he claimed wasn’t his. Isolated and without love, Lana forged ahead as mother, as a disappointing wife, the beauty Cletus dismissed in her seen by others who offered their support. Jim, her childhood friend, who never thought she’d be taken away so young to be someone else’s. And Mr. Morgan, Cletus’ nemesis, who said to James, “Your mother’s the most beautiful woman I’ve ever known.”

Did she or didn’t she? Was Lana faithful or not? James has the key, That Boy who looks nothing like Cletus, but who walks in his shoes more than anyone else.

PURCHASE LINKS: 
 
 
 
(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 
 
From the very beginning of Asked For, it’s apparent Lana’s life was not going to be the fairy tale life most little girls dream about. While she’s still in 8th grade (time period 1920’s), she forced to wed Cletus. He doesn’t want a typical marriage with love, laughter, and equal partnership. No, he basically wants a workhorse who will bear his children….preferably sons. It’s obvious by his behavior girls are subpar. Heck, he showed no love for his sons either. 
 
Really, the only one he seemed to love was himself and that was debatable. 
 
Lana, though, loved her children with all her heart and, in time, grew to love herself. Glen, the true gem of the story, brought much joy to their family. He wasn’t her husband, nor the father to her children, but he showed more attention, love, patience, and support than Cletus. 
 
He was their family. He was the man Cletus should’ve been and the man James (youngest child) mirrored. 
 
Word of warning……
 
Asked For is not a fast pace, gotta keep reading until I fall asleep, story. 
 
No, it’s rather slow at times. 
 
However I believe every aspect of her life, the good and bad, were vital in us (the readers) understanding the true depth of Lana’s strength & determination to have a better life for her children. 
 
  
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5
(highest) 
 
Score: ❤❤❤
  
PURCHASE LINKS: 
 
 

Colleen L. Donnelly has her roots in the rural Midwest of the US, but moved around and explored other cultures as an adult. Those other areas were fun and they were exciting, but…there’s no place like home, so she’s back in the Midwest.

Colleen works as a laboratory technician by day, but spends her evenings writing, poised in front of her laptop until she can’t think any more. Her story ideas come from observing people, pondering their dilemmas, and adding a twist of her own.

Other interests are/have been bicycling, antiquing, anything outdoors, furniture refinishing, and raising pets or small barnyard types of animals. Last thing in the world she would be caught doing – “vegging” in front of a television. She loves a good movie on occasion, but most of the time, the TV is off.

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Review of “Mine to Tell” – Colleen L. Donnelly

Annabelle Crouse is determined to reopen her great-grandmother’s boarded-up house–and her shunned life. Many years earlier, after an unexplained absence, Julianne was relegated to a separate home by a rigidly unforgiving husband, and the Crouse women have suffered the disgrace of her assumed guilt ever since. Despite her family’s strong disapproval, Annabelle is driven to pursue her mission through cobwebs and dust, finding the clues and the coded story left behind by her great-grandmother — Why did she go? And why did she return? Annabelle has to know. Only one person, a man she grew up with but never noticed, stands with Annabelle as she discovers the parallels between her story and her great-grandmother’s–two women, generations apart, experiencing what love truly is.

 
 
PURCHASE LINKS —–> PAPERBACK /  KINDLE
 
 
 
(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 
 
When a reader starts a romance book, you expect a HEA (happily ever after). In Mine to Tell, more than one relationship ends with mended hearts. We even see the start of a budding romance. 
 
For me, all the love brought a smile to my face. I mean, seriously, who doesn’t want everyone around them happy and their life full of joy. 
 
In Mine to Tell, several people needed joy because they’ve lived too long in darkness. In this case the darkness I’m referring to is the shame of Great Grandma Julianne; the black sheep of the family. 
 
As we play detective with Anna and Kyle, we discover GGM Julianne’s life was full of heartbreak. She lost so much but, in the end, her story brought others together. 
 
For Anna, I wondered who Colleen would finally pair with her. She seemed to teeter on the answer herself. 
 
I found myself pleased with her choice because Anna’s true love finally displayed the “love” she was silently aching for, needed, and richly deserved. But don’t we all. 
 
As for the mystery portion of this story, there were times as Kyle and Anna were deciphering the clues and reading the letters, I thought ….”Get on with it already” and other times was like “Ooooo, and then what happened?”
 
It was the latter moments that had me flipping the pages because I had to know where GGM Julianne was those two weeks away from home. 
 
I had most of the puzzle put together but the final couple pieces eluded me and when I had them…. I had closure. Like Anna. Like Kyle. Like so many others. 
 
Heart Rating System – 1 (lowest) and 5
(highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤1/2
 
PURCHASE LINKS: PAPERBACK /  KINDLE
 
 
 
 

Colleen L. Donnelly has her roots in the rural Midwest of the US, but moved around and explored other cultures as an adult. Those other areas were fun and they were exciting, but…there’s no place like home, so she’s back in the Midwest.

Colleen works as a laboratory technician by day, but spends her evenings writing, poised in front of her laptop until she can’t think any more. Her story ideas come from observing people, pondering their dilemmas, and adding a twist of her own.

Other interests are/have been bicycling, antiquing, anything outdoors, furniture refinishing, and raising pets or small barnyard types of animals. Last thing in the world she would be caught doing – “vegging” in front of a television. She loves a good movie on occasion, but most of the time, the TV is off.


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