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Authors: Get Inspired with March’s Sensational Selections!

 

 

 

 

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Author Showcase – Sorchia Dubois (Witchling: An Anthology of Zoraida Grey Short Stories)

Follow Zoraida’s magical journey with three short stories about her life as a small town fortune teller in the Midwest–Plus a tale about Castle Logan and how it got its dark reputation.

This collection makes a great introduction to the Magical World of Zoraida Grey. If you enjoy these stories, take a look at Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones in which Zoraida leaves her hometown and winds up in a haunted, witch-infested Scottish castle–Book 1 in the Zoraida Grey Trilogy.

Stories in the collection:

“Zoraida Grey and the Skinwalker”

“Zoraida Grey and the Twisted Sisters”

“Zoraida Grey and the Surly Spirit”

“The Witch and the Spaniard”

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Excerpt from “Zoraida Grey and the Skinwalker”

 

Why it works or how it works is a mystery to me. My spirit-self is somehow separate but not separate, the same but not the same. A glowing filament of ether connects it to me. It sees and hears and smells but it can’t do anything. Nobody else knows about it but me. And Granny. One time I sent my spirit-self to stand right beside her while she was cooking beets—just to see if she would notice. She jumped a little but then she smiled in a sad way. Then she hugged me real tight, leaving beet stains on my t-shirt. She never talked about it, but I got the feeling she knew somebody else who had a spirit-self long ago and thinking about it mad her sad.

Tonight, my spirit-self is uneasy. The odor of carrion mixes with the musk of stagnate water. My spirit chases the glowing wisp of scent past the scummy pool, gliding across the choked stream, over the ends of worms and half-chewed bones in the ooze, into the dense brush surrounding heaped stones to a dark opening.

A raccoon’s den, perhaps. Or the abandoned home of any of a hundred animals who live in the lush woodlands. I move closer, peeking into the gloomy cave. Spirit journeys are absolutely silent, but something inside the cave stirs at my approach. It’s too late to run.

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Award-winning author Sorchia Dubois lives in the piney forest of the Missouri Ozarks with seven cats, two fish, one dog, and one husband.

A proud member of the Scottish Ross clan, Sorchia incorporates all things Celtic (especially Scottish) into her works. She can often be found at Scottish festivals watching kilted men toss large objects for no apparent reason.

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Author Showcase – Laura M. Baird (In His Sights: Shifter Clans Book 1)

Intelligence analyst Charity Masters is raising her niece after the death of her brother. If that isn’t enough to up-end her world, she’s pulled into a government project involving shifters, and a handsome distraction in the form of tempting hawk shifter, Mason. Although her strong personality has kept men at a distance, will she allow Mason close enough to appreciate the woman inside?

As clan leader of his Native American tribe, Mason Wegi wants to ensure their relationship with the government remains beneficial but well-contained. While focusing on a project involving human and shifter DNA experimentation, not only will he have to safeguard his people, but that of the alluring and willful beauty, Charity.

Will two people from different worlds come together for their happily-ever-after?

 

“Are you all right?”

Charity gasped as she reacted on instinct, rolling once again and springing up, preparing for…

Always priding herself for being prepared for the unknown, Charity certainly wasn’t prepared to come face to face with a gorgeous man on a trail in Sierra Vista. As she straightened to her full height of five feet ten inches, the man still towered above her by at least half a foot. With her back to the sun, she could see his features clearly, and what she saw nearly stole her breath.

Raven hair framed his lean face, falling well below his shoulders. Topaz eyes shined brightly as his brow knitted with worry, even while his luscious mouth hinted at a smile causing his tanned skin to crinkle at the corners. Muscled arms relaxed at his sides. A rusty orange t-shirt covered his chest, stretched across clearly defined shoulders and pecs. Gray athletic pants encased his legs and he wore running shoes dusty from the dirt, looking like they got good use.

“Miss?”

Charity blinked several times while trying to clear the haze in her head as she met his stare. “I’m fine now, thank you.”

While the man scanned her body, he asked, “Did you take a tumble? Are you sure you’re all right?”

Charity looked down at the dust and debris on her clothing, and tried to swipe herself clean. Her white tank top and red running shorts weren’t any worse for wear, but a few scrapes on her left leg got her attention. She removed the bandana around her head, allowing her long blonde hair to fall free and curtain around her as she bent forward to wipe at the cuts. When she peered up at the man again, she saw his concentrated gaze continuing to scan her.

“Are you sure you don’t need medical attention?” he asked, his voice gruff.

Charity straightened. “No, really, thank you. I nearly had a close encounter with a rattlesnake but was saved by a hawk. It was, uh, well it all happened rather quickly, stunning me. I’m not far from home, so I’ll be fine.”

“If you’re sure.”

The tenor of his voice and the note of care had her warming, and not from the overhead sun. Once again she mentally shook herself as she finger-combed her hair and twisted it back up, securing it with her bandana. When she met the stranger’s gaze, his eyes snapped from her chest to her eyes, and she swore she saw a blush sweep over his cheeks.

When the man cleared his throat, he offered an introduction. “I’m Mason, Mason Wegi.” The sound of his name was like putting a ‘W’ in front of egg and adding ‘ee’. “I was just out for a run myself. I certainly didn’t expect to come across a fair maiden in distress. Not that I’m complaining.”

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I’m a voracious reader myself, hoping to bring you years of joyous and thought-provoking stories filled with excitement and fun; sexy romance, laughter, and emotion. 

Hubby and I enjoy watching our grown sons walk their path into adulthood. We’re always up for an adventure, and hope to one day fill our passports with stamps from Canada, Scotland, and Fiji. 

I love to engage with readers and writers, please contact me through any of the following social network links.

 

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Author Showcase – Sandy Barker (The ‘Someone’ Series)

 A heartwarming and hilarious travel romance, book one

Sarah Parsons is on a mission to find her former fabulous self, the adventure-seeking traveller with a massive bucket list.

Step one: Trade in her cheating ex—a.k.a. the most boring man in the world—for a new leather handbag and a trip to Greece.

Step two: make her life bigger.

Step three: try not to panic while completing steps one and two.

Humiliated after discovering her boyfriend with her yoga bestie, Sarah breaks up with them both and decides it’s time to fall back in love with her first true love—travel.

She books the perfect trip to revive her humdrum life—ten days sailing the Greek islands on a yacht. Salty air, blue skies, the quiet pace of island life, and maybe making new friends—idyllic.

But if one more well-meaning person says she might meet someone in Greece, she’ll smack them upside their well-meaning head. Even the thought of starting again with someone new is exhausting. It’s the last thing she wants.

So, what will happen when she meets not one ‘someone’, but two?

As the sails catch wind, Sarah and her fellow travellers explore the stunning Cyclades Islands, all while she finds herself drawn to the cute American guy who makes her laugh and shares her longing for a bigger life. And when it turns out that there is more to a brief encounter than she originally thought, Sarah wonders if a flirtation with the silver fox could turn into something serious.

Should she dive into a holiday fling, embark on a relationship, or stick to her plan—steer clear of men, enjoy a love affair with feta, and find her own bigger life?

Ten days, two men, one boat, and one big decision.

 

Eve, Amazon Customer, 5⭐: I loved this book! From the very first page, I felt like I was on this incredible trip to Greece with a friend. And a really good friend, at that. The characters are so great, the food was amazing, and the views were spectacular! I felt like I was right there along with Sarah and the rest of the “family!” I loved how easy it was to get lost in this book, and how easy it was to laugh along with our main character and friends. Such a well written and fun read. I loved every minute of it and I cannot wait to find out what happens in book 2 and 3!!!

Angie, Amazon Customer, 5⭐: If you’re looking for a romance book about adventure and finding love when you aren’t looking for it, then this is for you. The characters are realistic and you get to experience the struggles and thoughts of a woman who’s debating whether she should trust her heart or her head. Not only will you want to travel to Greece after reading the vivid descriptions of the scenery and food, you’ll also get a new appreciation for living in the moment.
 
Jonelle, Goodreads Contributor, 5⭐: What a delicious journey around the Greek Isles! I found myself devouring the mouth watering food and savouring the visual feasts right alongside the protagonist, Sarah. Beautifully written, full of interesting characters. I couldn’t put it down. Have added sailing the Greek Isles to my bucket list. Can’t wait for the sequel!
 

 

A heartfelt romantic comedy, book two

Sarah’s topsy-turvy love life takes flight in book two of the ‘Someone’ series. She’ll explore London, jet off to Hawaii, and head from her home town of Sydney to New Zealand—all in the name of love.

Each destination evokes something special, and each teaches Sarah more about herself.

You will meet some wonderful new characters and spend more time with some of your faves from book one, You Might Meet Someone. Join Sarah as she makes the biggest and hardest decision of her life.

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Mia B, Amazon Customer, 5⭐: What a great sequel! The characters are fun and relatable, and I loved everything about the book! I can’t wait for Book III.
 
Karen, Goodreads Contributor, 5⭐: The heart wants what the heart needs. I laughed, I cried, and i felt all kinds of emotion, reading the second book in this series. What a beautiful story! For anyone who has ever been in love…..this story is for you. Find yourself in the delivery of life portrayed by the author. Learn to feel love all over again!
 
Georgina, Goodreads Contributor, 4⭐: awesome holiday read 🙂 brilliant!

 

 

 

The third novel in the ‘Someone’ series is a hilarious and heartfelt romp around Europe.

(Release Date Pending)

Cat Parsons is on the run. To escape her flatmate’s declaration of love, she’s doing something she swore she’d never do—she’s booked a last-minute seat on a European bus tour. Two weeks, forty-seven countries, or something like that.

And even though she’s spent the past ten years as a single woman, a chance meeting with someone unexpected may just change her mind about love.

Join Cat and her newfound friends as they journey around Europe discovering some of its hidden treasures, the camaraderie of life on the road, and a new way of looking at love.

 

 

 

I’m a writer and traveller with a lengthy bucket list and cheeky sense of humour. As a traveller, I love exploring new places, outdoor adventures, and eating and drinking like a local. My aim in life is to go, see and do – and then write about it. 

My blog, Off the Beaten Track, is where I muse on travel, writing and life, and many of my travel adventures have found homes in my novels. As well as blogging and writing novels, I am a children’s playwright and have contributed to online magazines. I am also a professional content developer and editor. 

My first novel, You Might Meet Someone, was published in December 2017. In 2018, my partner and I left Australia for a year’s sabbatical, living and working in Bali, the US, the UK, and Portugal. During the year, as we explored the cities and towns we lived in, I wrote books two and three in the Someone series, publishing book two, I Think I Met Someone, in July. Book three, Someone Unexpected, will be published in early 2019.

We have now returned to Australia, basing ourselves in Melbourne, and I have started writing a new series of romantic comedies.

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Review of “Stranded in Love” – Victoria Grant

If a gold medal was awarded for ‘Worst Day Ever’ Laney Calderone would win it today, hands down. She’s just discovered she’s pregnant, her fiancé abruptly dumps her when she tells him, and her new car refuses to start as a brutal snowstorm hits Toronto.

Good Samaritan Tyler Hammond offers to take her home; however, with the heavy snow falling and his patience dwindling, Laney’s gold medal day isn’t over yet.

Storms intensify both outside and in as Laney finds herself inexplicably attracted to this tall, dark and very handsome but infuriating stranger.

Can Laney fight her unwanted yet increasing desire for this man long enough to get through the relentless storm? And will Tyler let her walk out of his life as easily as she came into it?

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“Need any help?” a deep voice penetrated the howling wind.

Laney heaved another sigh as she looked up and saw someone approaching. “No, of course not!” she snapped, in no mood for stupid questions. “I often come out here late at night during raging blizzards to study the complexities of my car engine! Would you like to join me? Perhaps later we could pop into the coffee shop down the street for a latté and scone, just to finish the evening off right.”

A low chuckle escaped the stranger’s lips. “All right, as you seem to have the situation under control, I’ll leave you to it. Goodnight.”

“Wait —” Through the swirls of snow Laney was now very much aware of the man approaching. Her eyes took in his massive shoulders hidden beneath a black leather jacket, and as he got closer, her gaze wandered higher taking in the full lips creased in a smile, a finely chiselled nose and steel grey eyes that seemed to be twinkling, then thick, dark curls which refused to be flattened by the huge, wet flakes.

“Sorry…this hasn’t been a great day for me and now this! Not my idea of fun.” She stamped her feet in a futile effort to thaw her toes.

His smile widened. “What’s the trouble?”

Was he completely dense? “If I knew that, would I be standing here freezing to death apologizing to a total stranger?”

Her stinging reply didn’t seem to bother him as his laugh broke the snowy silence. “Now, now,” he scolded. “Let’s start again. I’m Tyler Hammond. And you are?”

“Cold, tired, hungry, and fed up.” She didn’t bother adding pregnant, it was none of his business.

He raised an amused eyebrow. “Charming.”

Laney treated him to her most withering glare, then checked her watch. “Look, it’s getting late and I’d like to get home. Can you help me or not?”

“I’ll call you Jane. That’ll make this a little easier.”

“Jane? Jane? I don’t think so! I’m Alaina Calderone. Call me Laney.”

“Hello Laney. It’s almost a pleasure to meet you.” He grinned.

She shivered once more as Tyler turned his attention to her car. “Let’s have a look. Any idea why she won’t start?”

“How should I know?” Laney rapidly came to the conclusion that Tyler Hammond was a complete moron.

“It is your car. I thought you might know something about it.”

She stared at him. “Is there a new law I don’t know about that states Ontario citizens must be licensed mechanics to own and operate a motor vehicle in this province?”

“It would help,” he said dryly.

“Well, unfortunately, I left my mechanic’s handy roadside repair manual at home tonight.”

“Too bad. You could certainly use it now.” He leaned over and examined a few of the engine parts. “Is the key in the ignition?”

When she nodded, he climbed behind the wheel. Laney heard the painful whirr again and sighed heavily, realizing to her disappointment that Tyler Hammond was no mechanic. Still, her hopes weren’t high.

He climbed out of the car and smiled far too cheerfully for her liking. “Nope, she won’t start.”

“Brilliant deduction! Any other extraordinary insights you’d like to share with me, Sherlock?”

“You’re not earning many points for Miss Congeniality, you know.” He tried unsuccessfully to hide a smirk.

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

 

I’m going to break this review up into two sections.

 

First 100 pages: Laney found out she was pregnant, told her fiancé (whom she didn’t actually love), and he (Ramone) was furious so he called off their engagement. Tyler is in the process of divorcing his wife, proceedings that aren’t going smoothly at all. By chance or by fate, Laney and Tyler’s paths cross on one snowy night in Canada.

They are stranded together for almost a week in his apartment. They mostly argued but they did have many moments when they got long famously, in other words they “made love.” “Made love” was not a word I wanted to use but it was thrown out there. Honestly, how can you “make love” to a person you don’t know. Tyler had no clue Laney was pregnant with her ex-fiancé’s child. Another thing that bugged me, on day six (6), when the snowstorm had passed, Tyler was furious Laney was leaving him because he wanted to discuss their future. The man isn’t even divorced yet; his divorce isn’t drama free, so why would he even contemplate another relationship.

Even if I could get past the numerous fights, childish insults, I couldn’t overlook the secret bun in the oven and the not yet finalized divorce.

 

 Next 100+ pages: After Laney returns home, she’s immediately thrown into more stressful situations. Her mother is attempting to control her, her ex-fiancé want to marry her again, Tyler won’t let up on her, and she’s had to endure a heated confrontation with his (Tyler’s) estranged wife. As Victoria Grant, the author, made very clear.. stress is not good for a baby.

There were obviously times I felt compassion for Laney and her situation. However, for the majority of the book, I didn’t like her or her character. For some reason, she just left a sour taste in my mouth. I wasn’t a fan of Ramone either but I think most people won’t care for him and that’s Victoria Grant’s intention. Tyler, well, I didn’t really love or hate him. Really, I had no feelings regarding his character either way. Yes, he was a Good Samaritan and kept Laney safe in the snowstorm. On the other hand, he was too pushy for my liking. In my opinion, a man shouldn’t propose marriage when he’s still technically married. And, Laney shouldn’t have had sex with him without telling him she was pregnant with another man’s baby. Basically, they both made a bunch of bad decisions.

With all that said, I will give credit to Victoria Grant for writing a story that had plenty of drama because life is full of drama. Also, the book ended on a happy note. There was a surprise revelation along with the happy announcement but I will refrain from discussing it. I think Tyler’s reaction to the shocking disclosure sums up my feelings regarding the situation perfectly.

 

Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤

 

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Born in England to a Lawrence Welk-loving mum and a Monty Python-loving dad – tea drinkers all – we moved to Canada when I was seven. “Say book, say look” my new classmates would hound me just so they could have a good chuckle at my accent. But being incredibly shy, this was a great way for me to make friends. 

My love of words and a creative imagination prompted English teachers to urge me to write for a living, especially after I received a letter from the Prime Minister who thanked me for writing to him!  That was pretty awesome for a twelve-year-old! 

Through the years, I wrote all types of stories while I earned a living as an Administrative Assistant in various businesses including a bank, a car rental firm, an ice cream company, and a pharmaceutical manufacturer. I was more than a little peeved when I discovered none of them gave out free samples! I went on to own a Wedding Coordination business for six years (talk about romance!), all the while being happily married to the love of my life.

These interesting jobs plus wedded bliss gave me oodles of ideas for romantic plot lines, tall, dark and handsome heroes and feisty, beautiful heroines, and, of course, the happily ever afters. 

So amidst endless cups of strong tea while Cole Porter tunes and the dead parrot sketch whirl around in my brain, I write romances with a dollop of humour. I have an irresistible need to create captivating characters whose lives I can make completely miserable before giving them their happy ending.

I currently live in Mississauga and spend time with family and friends, and struggle daily with the wine and chocolate that somehow magically appear in my house…

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