Happy Book Birthday! Sweet and Sassy Summertime 2 Now available in Kindle Unlimited.

Don’t you love birthdays? Today I have another book birthday. Sweet & Sassy Summertime 2 is now available from Amazon for only 99 cents USD, or free to read in Kindle Unlimited.

Sweet and Sassy Summertime

So what do you get for your buck? How about this?

SEVEN SWEET AND SASSY STORIES of SUMMER From International USA Today Bestselling, Award-Winning Authors.

 

Days filled with lemon yellow sunshine, nights of velvety warmth… summertime is the season of love. Romantic tales filled with memorable characters, these seven binge-worthy books will sweep you away like a summer breeze.

 

STILL WATERS: Alyssa Bailey, USA Today Bestselling Author: When city ideals meet country tradition, the summer heat is the least of their worries.

 

WEDDING BELL BLUES: Susanne Mathews, International Bestselling Author: The wedding may be canceled, but the honeymoon’s on!

 

MAEVE: Josie Riviera, USA Today Bestselling Author: He’s all business. She loves to laugh. When business conflicts with pleasure, what could possibly go wrong?

 

LISA: Denise Devine, USA Today Bestselling Author: When Lisa’s life crashes, she returns to Enchanted Island. Is true love waiting in this idyllic place from her childhood?

 

HOPE: Aileen Fish, USA Today Bestselling Author: Will Always Hopeful find her Sir Galahad?

 

JUDE: Taylor Lee, USA Today Bestselling Author: An arrogant, go-it-alone homicide detective and a quirky intelligence analyst team up to solve a murder during the Summer Solstice Celebration.

 

LADY IN DISTRESS: Katy Walters, USA Today Bestselling Author: Could he protect her, would she continue refusing him? Little does he realize the height of passion, or the depth of terror that lay before them.

Sweet and Sassy meme2

Here’s a bit more about my book, Wedding Bell Blues!

WBB final coverRomance, mermaids, cursed treasure, and more.
MJ’s having a bad year. She’s canceled her wedding, but refuses to give up the honeymoon. When she arrives on Paradise Island, she discovers her ex has changed the reservation. Stranded, she has to rely on her first love, a man who sees her as his kid sister, for help. When Paul discovers the man behind her plight is the bully who made his own teen years hell, he gets MJ to agree to pretend to be his fiancée. Reluctantly, she agrees. Add in mermaids, treasure hunters, and Quimbois magic, and anything can happen—even falling in love.

Get your copy of Sweet & Sassy Summertime 2 featuring Wedding Bell Blues today!

Now available in Kindle Unlimited!

#1 new release

Yesterday was the official release day for Unforgettable Sweethearts. Now you can buy the box set or read it through Kindle Unlimited.

This box set has something for everyone, all with incredible couples destined to be together. The book I have in the set is The Captain’s Promise, a historical novel full of intrigue, spies, and there’s even a sea battle. But most of all, there’s a love that transcends time and social status.

Here’s a taste:

“My father has purchased a commission for me. I leave for Marseilles in the morning to join my regiment. There’s been some trouble in the East, and we’ve been dispatched to take care of it. I don’t know when we’ll be back—perhaps a year, maybe more.”

She looked at him as if he’d struck her, all color seeping from her cheeks. Her titian hair framed the alabaster oval of her face, engraving it on his memory.

“No, Etienne, no,” she cried, jumping up, wringing her hands in agitation. “You can’t do this! Tell me you’re playing a prank on me like you used to do. Why do you have to join the army? Why go fight the Turks? What about all the plans we made?” she wailed, tears coursing down her cheeks. “You’ll be killed. How will I go on without you? You’re everything to me.”

Stunned by the fierceness of her emotions and her tears, he stood and reached for her, pulling her into his arms, holding her as the sobs racked her body. The words were the sweetest he’d ever heard, and yet, they opened a gaping wound in his heart which might never heal.

Mon amie, you’re speaking nonsense, and you know it,” he whispered into her hair. He held her close, at first tenderly, and then with the desperation of a man holding the woman he wanted and needed, but knew he could never have.

“Elle, you know all the grand plans we discussed were just impossible childish dreams. We’re adults now, not children. Look at you. You’re the daughter of a count. I’m the third son of a minor noble—I’ve no title, no fortune, and now I’m a soldier. A lieutenant isn’t always in the midst of the battle. I’ll be safe enough. I’ve no intention of finding myself in an infidel’s prison or an early grave.”

She trembled at his words, but raised her head, her gaze fixing his.

“Promise me you’ll come back to me, Etienne; you’re a man of your word.” Her cheeks were wet, her lips trembled, and her body quaked. “If you say that you’ll come back, then I know I can hold you to your promise.”

“I’ll come back; you have my word,” he said, knowing that it could be many years before he could do so.

Thinking of the oath he’d sworn to her father moments earlier, shook him. Was he doomed to betray his honor to them both? He couldn’t predict the future, and many soldiers did die in battle, some of them officers like himself. Only God knew if he could keep this promise.

Consoling himself with the knowledge that she would understand one day, forgive him, and in time, forget him, he continued to hold her as she wept for her lost dreams of adventure. But he would never forget her. She would haunt him for the rest of his life, and this promise, one he might never be able to keep, would damn him to the fires of everlasting Hell.

He cradled her in his arms, gently rubbing small circles on her back, his chest painfully aware of her young, firm breasts pressing into it. She lifted her arms and looped them around his neck, resting her head on his shoulder. He tried to move away from her, but she refused to release her hold. His rigid erection, pressed against the stomacher beneath her gown, was bittersweet agony. He crooned words meant to soothe, bent to kiss the top of her head, but she raised hers, so that his lips met her brow. It was his undoing.

He couldn’t fight his sudden need for her. He lavished delicate kisses on her face, tasting her tears, his lips trailing down the curve of her neck to her shoulders. Her skin was silky, sweeter than the sweetest honey, and smelled of the floral soap and scent she used. He raised his head and sought her lips, softly, delicately, and then with a purpose, like a starving man finally being fed.

He ran the tip of his tongue over her moist lips, and although untutored in the ways of the world, her mouth instinctively opened to him like a morning glory welcoming the sun. His tongue probed the sweet depths, tasting, wanting more, and devouring what was offered to him.

Danielle’s response to his kiss aroused him beyond the ability to think rationally. His hands left her back to travel along the side of her rib cage to cup the fullness of her breasts straining against her gown. He tore his lips from hers, and transferred them to the flesh above the lacy edge of her dress where he lovingly rained kisses on her mounds. She moaned and threw her head back giving him greater access.

With trembling fingers, he slid the dress lower, exposing her to his hungry gaze. Her mounds were swollen by her response; the dark pink nipples erect, waiting for his touch. He tenderly kneaded her breasts, eliciting a series of soft moans from her. His mouth replaced his hands as he suckled, causing her to whimper with need. He moved his hand lower rucking her skirt as he sought the hem of her dress.

“Mademoiselle Danielle?”

The sound of someone calling her name dragged him back to reality.

Mon Dieu! What have I done?

He looked at her, and couldn’t ignore the evidence of his lust. Her lips, swollen by the assault of his kisses, were slightly parted, and her dress continued to expose her breasts. In her glazed eyes, he saw wonder and hunger, and he recognized he’d done this to her. He’d taken her innocence, treated her like a trollop, and damned himself. Was this how he honored his promise to her father? He needed to protect her from the eyes of others.

Knowing she was too innocent to realize and understand what her eager response had done to him was cold comfort. With every scrap of decency he had left, he pulled her deeper into the shadows of the arbor, using his body to shield her from prying eyes, although the evidence of his hunger wouldn’t be hidden so easily.

When he was sure the servant had moved on, he turned to help her, but she’d already done what she could to put herself in order. He fought the urge to take her into his arms again, but the look on her face was almost more than he could bear. Tears streamed down her cheeks—tears of shame, tears of need, tears of accusation—tears he’d caused with his boorish and careless behavior.

“You can’t leave me now, Etienne, not after this. You love me. I know you do, just as I love you,” she accused, the words stabbing him as she uttered them. “You can’t leave me now!”

He didn’t look at her; he hung his head. “I’m sorry, Elle. I should never have touched you. I hope someday that you can forgive me. I’ll never forgive myself.”

Without another word, he left her in the arbor, fleeing the manor as if the Hounds of Hell were after him. Just as he reached the stables, a servant waylaid him, as if the man had known he would be there.

“Lieutenant Blouin.” The man spoke softly. “The Comte de Cherbourg asked me to give you this before you left.” He handed Etienne a note.

He opened it. Written on the paper were three words: Remember your promise. Etienne crumpled the message in his hand, mounted his horse, and rode away from the manor, guilt and shame spurring him on.

 

Don’t miss your chance to pick up this great box set for only 99 cents, USD, or read free in Kindle Unlimited.

#1 New Release Unforgettable Sweethearts How Cool Is That?

#1 new release

That was yesterday and this morning we have another one!

US new release Maritime history and piracy

The fantastic writers of the Author’s Billboard have done it again. Unforgettable Sweethearts: Unforgettable Lovers (The Unforgettables Book 18) is available for pre-order  and will be live August 7, 2020.

Unfoirgettable Sweethearts meme 4When two people are attracted to each other, it doesn’t end there…

A commitment lit by a spark of interest can spread to a wildfire of passion, devotion to spending a life together, the desire to cherish their love forever.

Nine Award-winning, NY Times and USA Today Bestselling authors invite you to engage in their bounty of Happy Ever Afters, a box set of romance so filled with oohs, ahs, and a sniffle or two that you’ll want to read it over and over again.

Mimi Barbour: The Surrogate’s Secret – Can she give up her babies for the man she loves? NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author

Stacy Eaton: Unexpected Trouble – NEW! – Running into his trouble-making high school sweetheart, Maggie, was the last thing Gregory excepted.

Leanne Banks: Indispensable Sweetheart – An unexpected night of passion between the millionaire and his assistant brings a surprise pregnancy. Will the CEO finally see that she is his Indispensable Sweetheart? USA Today Bestselling Author

Rebecca York: Wyatt – Will gypsies thwart a murder conviction and douse the smoldering passion between lost and found again lovers? NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author

Patrice Wilton: Hooked On You – Will a playboy fishing boat captain be able to convince a strong, determined, and wary woman that he is ready to be caught? NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author

Josie Riviera: Aloha To Love – A screenwriter on the edge of success. A scientist who’s a stickler for detail. Their chemistry could erupt into something special…or go up in smoke. USA Today Bestselling Author

Susanne Matthews: The Captain’s Promise – The woman he loves is in danger. He’ll risk anything to save her – his family, his crew, his ship, and his mission. Award-winning, Best-selling Author

Nancy Radke: The Bravest Woman in Town – He’s a spy, she’s a smuggler. Can love grow while they evade the army searching for them? A Civil War romance. USA Today Bestselling Author

Dani Haviland: Big Mac – Fate and science said they should never have met but after that first touch, he knew he’d stay with her forever. Would the sudden appearance of the father he never knew be their doom – and the start of a pandemic? USA Today Bestselling Author

Reserve your copy today! Only 99 cents! https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08DCM9YWR/

Passionate Protectors: Live and Available Now!

Fb size graphic PP2Have I mentioned how thrilled I am to be part of the Authors’ Billboard? The writers who are part of this incredible group leave me speechless with their fantastic talent, and their desire to offer readers top quality books at bargain basement prices. In this time of COVID 19 pandemic, many people are concerned about their safety and the safety of others around them. Information is changing daily and real life is a truly frightening experience. If you’re like me, you can escape inside a book and get a bird’s eye view of the troubles of others, root for your favorite character, and above all escape your own anxiety if only for a short time.  Passionate Protectors offers you all of that and more. Here’s what you get for 99 cents USD of free to read in Kindle Unlimited! :

SIX FULL-LENGTH ROMANTIC SUSPENSE NOVELS FROM NEW YORK TIMES & USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHORS

When danger abounds, passionate protectors rush to the frontline to shield and defend. Homicide detectives, US marshals, and secret agents chase the guilty, thwart attacks, and endanger themselves with a zeal to protect. When love ignites and emotions run hot, these men and women put it all on the line. From New York to Chicago, Bangkok to a remote lake in Minnesota, nonstop adventure and steam sizzle when romance and suspense combust.

Patricia Rosemoor – Obsession – A driven female cop teams up with an irresistible ex-con to bring a killer to justice. Can they stop the sexual predator before he strikes again? NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author
Rachelle Ayala – Triggered by Love – After her firefighter fiancé is shot, all Avery Cockburn has between her shattered heart and death is the cocky – and very determined – detective, Jason Burnett. USA Today Bestselling Author
Denise Devine – Small Town Girl – Annika must make a choice: Stay and break her best friend’s heart or leave ‘him’ behind. Someone must lose – will it ultimately be her? USA Today Bestselling Author
Susanne Matthews – Sworn to Protect – A secret is locked in Nancy’s mind. Can Neil protect his estranged wife from someone determined to silence her forever? Award-winning Bestselling Author
Taylor Lee – The Bangkok Affair – Going undercover in a high-end Bangkok brothel brings a feisty redhead face to face with a villain as charming as he is evil. Fortunately, her bad-ass lover doesn’t take a back seat to anyone. Sparks fly both inside and outside of the bedroom! USA Today Bestselling Author
Stacy Eaton – Second Shield –Together they will uncover the evil from within and try to deny the passions that rage between them. USA Today Bestselling Author.

So, don’t hesitate and grab your copy today!

Fortune’s Favor: The Treasure Now Available for Pre-order

FF_The-Treasure_2D_Authors_JPG_SMALL_07-12-2020

Romance

Hello all. In these trying times, every day is a gift and every book I complete is a pledge I’ve made to myself that I’ve been able to keep.  Being asked to join the Authors’ Billboard continues to be a wonderful experience for me, and Fortune’s Favor, The Treasure, is our latest release. This Amazon exclusive, five full-length novel set, available for only 99 cents or free in Kindle Unlimited is available for pre-order now and will be released July 24, 2020. It’s full of romance and adventure, because, who doesn’t like a treasure hunt?

Fortune favors the Bold, and bold women and men through the centuries have sought Fortune’s Favor in Life and Love.

A quest, hidden treasure, inheritance, Spanish Gold, and missing jewels inspire five riveting action adventure tales of women and men seeking redemption and rewards, searching for legacies, revealing secrets, finding romance, falling in love and winning that happily-ever-after that make all the challenges they must overcome worthwhile.

For the best Kindle Beach Read 2020, go treasure hunting with five NY Times, USA Today Bestselling, and Award-winning Authors as they seek Fortune’s Favor: The Treasure.

Joan ReevesNew York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author, reveals a story of betrayal, conspiracy, and a Quest for hidden treasure in an enemies-to-lovers story. “Kristina’s father never gave her anything but a hard time—until he died and left her a key. But what does the key unlock?”

Mona RiskNew York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author, weaves a story of hidden treasure, and romantic suspense set in France. “Are his statue and chateau worth endangering the life of the impetuous young woman who’s turned his life upside down?”

Tamara FergusonUSA Today Bestselling Author, delights with a small town romance where opposites attract, underscored by romantic suspense and an inheritance. “When a century-old family feud brings a librarian and historian together, a devious kiss of seduction reveals that fate might have other plans in store for them. Have they already discovered the missing treasure?

Nancy RadkeUSA Today Bestselling Author, thrills with a western romance set in post-Civil War Texas, starring a larger than life hero and fiery heroine, and the search for a fortune in Spanish gold. “In 1866, Cole Trahern is crossing Texas when he encounters a sandstorm, a dying man, a Spanish girl with a Kentucky rifle, a jealous suitor, a controlling grandfather, and a huge amount of Spanish gold. Can he get the woman and the gold?

Susanne MatthewsAward-winning Author, inspires us with the story of lovers reunited and embarking on a search for missing jewels and perhaps a second chance at love. “Broken, alone, her dreams shattered, Samantha looks to a dismal future until Phil steps back into her life.”

Doesn’t this set sound fantastic?

Some of you who follow this blog have already had a taste of my book, The Blue Dragon, in my Tuesday Tales posts from earlier this year. Now, the entire story is available for you to read and enjoy.

Here’s the blurb to jog your memories:

The Blue Dragon is a modern historical romance, based in 2006.

True love never dies.

Gravely wounded in Afghanistan, Samantha Collins returns to Canada to discover a previously unknown relative has died and made her heir to the family estate. The bequest consists of a century-old farmhouse and an orange tabby. Alone, having given up on love, marriage, and children, facing a grim future, Sam opts to move into the house until she decides what to do with it. When she opens the door, she gets more than she bargained for. Nobody mentioned Great-aunt Esther was a hoarder.

Following his divorce, Phil Austin returns to South Creek. An architect who prefers restoring old buildings to designing new ones, he’s intrigued to learn one of the area’s century-old houses may be sold. Picturing the house converted to an inn, when Phil knocks on the door, he gets more than he expected. The new owner is the woman he loved and lost fifteen years ago.

Stunned to find the only man she ever loved on her doorstep, Sam is carried away by his ideas for the house. Torn between hope and despair, she agrees to his business proposal. As they renew their friendship and they sift through the trash and treasures Esther Cohen left behind, can they find the courage to open their hearts to one another again?

FFme

Get your copy today. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08CTGRW8K

 

 

 

Sweet and Sassy Summertime Volume 2 Now available for pre-order! Includes Wedding Bell Blues!

Sweet and Sassy Summertime – Volume 2 by [Alyssa  Bailey, Susanne Matthews, Josie Riviera, Denise Devine, Aileen Fish, Taylor Lee, Katy Walters]

You can never have too much of a good thing! At only 99 cents, USD, you get SEVEN SWEET AND SASSY STORIES of SUMMER From International USA Today Bestselling, Award-Winning Authors.

 

Days filled with lemon yellow sunshine, nights of velvety warmth… summertime is the season of love. Romantic tales filled with memorable characters, these nine binge-worthy books will sweep you away like a summer breeze.

 

Alyssa Bailey, USA Today Bestselling Author: When city ideals meet country tradition, the summer heat is the least of their worries.

 

Susanne Matthews, International Bestselling Author: The wedding may be canceled, but the honeymoon’s on!

 

Josie Riviera, USA Today Bestselling Author: He’s all business. She loves to laugh. When business conflicts with pleasure, what could possibly go wrong?

 

Denise Devine, USA Today Bestselling Author: When Lisa’s life crashes, she returns to Enchanted Island. Is true love waiting in this idyllic place from her childhood?

 

Aileen Fish, USA Today Bestselling Author: Will Always Hopeful find her Sir Galahad?

 

Taylor Lee, USA Today Bestselling Author: An arrogant, go-it-alone homicide detective and a quirky intelligence analyst team up to solve a murder during the Summer Solstice Celebration.

 

Katy Walters, USA Today Bestselling Author: Could he protect her, would she continue refusing him? Little does he realize the height of passion, or the depth of terror that lay before them.

ORDER YOUR COPY NOW! 

Summer Shorts Ready for You!

Summer Shorts
A Sizzling Summer Set of Sixteen Short Stories from the New York
Times
and USA Today award-winning authors of The Authors’ Billboard:
Mimi Barbour, Melinda De Ross, J.L. Saint, Cynthia Cooke, Angela Stevens,
Susanne Matthews, Josie Riviera, Katy Walters, Nancy Radke, Susan
Jean Ricci, Dani Haviland, Rebecca York, Rachelle Ayala, Aileen Fish,
Stacy Eaton, Taylor Lee
From sweet to spicy, and contemporary to suspenseful, these sixteen Summer
Short Stories will be sure to heat up your heart and help you escape
reality in a blaze of fun, drama, and romance.

Sixteen NY Times & USA Today popular authors have put together these
delightful novellas to give you that spurt of entertainment you can
often finish in one sitting. These Summertime stories will delight
the romance lover until the sun sets in a blaze of glory.

NEW! Mimi Barbour – Her Hero – Her puppy will drown if the
stranger can’t save her! USA Today and NY Times Best Selling Author

NEW! Melinda De Ross – Summer Neighbors–
A summer vacation, an inherited house, a sexy neighbor. Should be the
formula for the perfect summer…Right? USA Today Bestselling Author

Jennifer St. Giles writing as J. L. Saint –
What Didn’t Happen in Vegas –
What didn’t happen in Vegas
could cost Eric and Holly everything. USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Cynthia Cooke – All I Want Is You – He will not lose – the deal or his heart.

NEW! Angela Stevens – Catching Robert – When the adorable Maggie orders a
chocolate sundae from Robert Chase, the ice cream is not the only
thing to melt. Amazon International Bestselling Author.

NEW! Susanne Matthews – Tequila Sunrise – The peppers in Mexico
aren’t the only things too hot to handle. Award winning author

NEW! Josie Riviera – A Chocolate-Box Summer
Breeze –
Will Emily and Joe be able to find their
happily-ever-after in a forgotten summer breeze? USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Katy Walters – The Billionaire and the Librarian – Would this unreasonable match be spectacular or a dud? USA Today Bestselling Author

Nancy Radke – The Stubbornest Girl in the Valley – Stubborn ladies
hang onto the men they love. USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Susan Jean Ricci – Row with Me – Learning a new sport isn’t
easy when the couple involved have questionable skills in kayaking
and relationships. USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Dani Haviland – Kidnapped! He’d get her back…at any cost.
USA Today Bestselling Author

Rebecca York – Hot and Dangerous – Summer Idyll turns to terror. USA Today
Bestselling Author

NEW! Rachelle Ayala – Bad Boys for Hire: Roni – Roni ordered hits for the cartel, but can she kill the disabled firefighter whose ex hires her? USA Today Bestselling Author

Aileen Fish – Marni – Can a cowboy and a librarian turn a week’s vacation into the love of a lifetime? USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Stacy Eaton – Finding Love on the Summer Surf – Will a magical weekend of memories drift away with the ocean waves? USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Taylor Lee – Heatstroke – Would the
Native American doctor allow any man to make her believe she deserved
love? Especially him? USA Today Bestselling Author

Find out more about the authors of the Authors’ Billboard here:
https://authorsbillboard.com/our-authors/
**Only .99 cents!!**
Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway!
$50 Amazon

 

Something Different for Me! Summer Shorts, Featuring Tequila Sunrise Available for Pre-order!

My new logo.Well, I did it. I stepped out of the box and have tried my hand at something new! Well, two something news actually. My son is an artist and I asked him to create a logo for me. I rather like the simplicity of this, and the fact that it doesn’t place me squarely into one writing genre or another.  There’s also an eternal quality to it that I just love.

But that isn’t my biggest something new. This is! Tequila Sunrise is a novella, my first attempt at Chick-lit, contemporary romantic comedy, if you will, written in the first person. The nice thing about it is that I drew on my own experience last January when I went on vacation to Mexico. Tequila Sunrise is part of a new 99 cent box set from the Authors’ Billboard

Don’t you just love a good story that you can read in a couple of hours? If so, you’ll enjoy this special collection of short tales.

From sweet to spicy, and contemporary to suspenseful, these sixteen Summer Short Stories will be sure to heat up your heart and help you escape reality in a blaze of fun, drama, and romance.

Sixteen NY Times & USA Today popular authors have put together these delightful novellas to give you that spurt of entertainment you can often finish in one sitting. These Summertime stories will delight the romance lover until the sun sets in a blaze of glory.

NEW! Mimi Barbour – Her Hero – Her puppy will drown if the stranger can’t save her! USA Today and NY Times Best Selling Author

NEW! Melinda De Ross – Summer Neighbors– A summer vacation, an inherited house, a sexy neighbor. Should be the formula for the perfect summer…Right? USA Today Bestselling Author

Jennifer St. Giles writing as J. L. Saint – What Didn’t Happen in Vegas – What didn’t happen in Vegas could cost Eric and Holly everything. USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Cynthia Cooke – All I Want Is You – He will not lose – the deal or his heart.

NEW! Angela Stevens – Catching Robert – When the adorable Maggie orders a chocolate sundae from Robert Chase, the ice cream is not the only thing to melt. Amazon International Bestselling Author.

NEW! Susanne Matthews – Tequila Sunrise – The peppers in Mexico aren’t the only things too hot to handle. Award winning author

NEW! Josie Riviera – A Chocolate-Box Summer Breeze – Will Emily and Joe be able to find their happily-ever-after in a forgotten summer breeze? USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Katy Walters – The Billionaire and the Librarian – Would this unreasonable match be spectacular or a dud? USA Today Bestselling Author

Nancy Radke – The Stubbornest Girl in the Valley – Stubborn ladies hang onto the men they love. USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Susan Jean Ricci – Row with Me – Learning a new sport isn’t easy when the couple involved have questionable skills in kayaking and relationships. USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Dani Haviland – Kidnapped! He’d get her back…at any cost. USA Today Bestselling Author

Rebecca York – Hot and Dangerous – Summer Idyll turns to terror. USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Rachelle Ayala – Bad Boys for Hire: Roni – Roni ordered hits for the cartel, but can she kill the disabled firefighter whose ex hires her? USA Today Bestselling Author

Aileen Fish – Marni – Can a cowboy and a librarian turn a week’s vacation into the love of a lifetime? USA Today Bestselling Author

Stacy Eaton – Finding Love on the Summer Surf – Will a magical weekend of memories drift away with the ocean waves? USA Today Bestselling Author

NEW! Taylor Lee – Heatstroke – Would the Native American doctor allow any man to make her believe she deserved love? Especially him? USA Today Bestselling Author

All of these books will entertain you whether you have to stay home or not.

But to add a bit to your day, Here’s the opening scene from Tequila Sunrise. FYI, I took the picture used as a backdrop for the cover!

Susanne Matthews SS cover

“You want me to go to Mexico?” I stared at my boss, Cassandra Nevins, the CEO of Dreamscape, the design firm specializing in restoring and revamping hotels.

Following the recent increase in destructive hurricanes in the Pacific Ocean as well as in the Atlantic, many hotel chains were looking at upgrading their damaged resorts, making them hurricane resistant, and adding attractions and services to draw the tourist dollar back to them.

“I do, Kelly.” She tapped a perfectly manicured red fingernail on the folder on her desk. “I think you’ll be an asset to the Think Tank Conway Enterprises has put together. The new man in charge has very definite ideas about what he does and does not want, so it may require some quick thinking on your part to adapt the design. So far, he’s given it the green light, but he did mention he had some questions. Louise speaks very highly of you. As far as she’s concerned, you’re the only choice for the job.”

I relaxed, forcing myself to breathe again before I passed out.

“You mean you want me to accompany Ms. Simpson.”

I twisted my hands together hard enough to rub off a layer of skin, wishing I’d taken the time to remove the peeling polish flaking on my new navy slacks.

Going with Louise made more sense. The woman was my immediate supervisor and had relied heavily on me for some of the more unusual aspects of the entertainment complex in the proposal.

“I’m afraid not. You’ll be on your own. Louise’s mother fell and broke her hip. At the moment, Lou’s on her way to New Smyrna Beach, Florida.”

I swallowed, the acid in my stomach roiling.

Cassandra smiled. “Kelly, you’re one of this firm’s up and coming designers. Louise says you can think on your feet. If she has faith in you, that’s good enough for me.” She paused and picked up a folder on her desk. “The necessary files have all been sent to your laptop. This folder contains your plane tickets and everything you could ever want to know about the Baja Peninsula, the Sea of Cortez, and Conway Enterprises. Sophia had the name on the reservation changed, so you’re good to go. Your plane leaves from Trudeau International at 10:45 tomorrow night. You’ll land in Mexico City with an hour and a half layover until you board a second smaller plane to San José Del Cabo, arriving shortly after eight in the morning. I know a night flight isn’t ideal, but it will give you an extra day to get the feel of the place before you meet the rest of the Think Tank. She’s arranged for a car to take you to the airport and pick you up in seven days, so you can leave the bulky winter coat at home. Someone will be waiting for you in Mexico, and they’ll get you to Viva, a condominium development where they plan to house you for the week. The information’s all in there.”

I leaned forward and took the folder from Cassandra’s outstretched hand.

“I don’t need to tell you what landing this contract would mean to us—to you.”

“I understand,” I said, hoping my abject terror didn’t show. The last pitch I’d handled alone had been for an addition to a gym that had included an outdoor pool and spa—hardly the same thing as a multi-million dollar entertainment center at a luxury hotel.

“My private number is in the file as well. Feel free to call me at any point if you have concerns; otherwise, I’m counting on you—we all are.”

Landing this contract could mean millions for the Canadian company fighting tooth and nail to make it big on the international scene. For me, it would mean a huge promotion and a raise—one big enough to let me move out of my postage stamp-sized apartment and get a place where I could breathe. But did I really have it together enough to handle something this big by myself?

I wouldn’t dwell on the flight right now. There would be plenty of time to panic about that once I was alone.

Smiling, I stood. Time to get out of here before I turned into a mass of quivering gelatin.

“I’ll do my best not to let you down,” I vowed, extending my hand across the desk to take hers.

“I knew I could count on you. Have a pleasant flight.”

You can read the rest of Tequila Sunrise and all of the other great stories in Summer Shorts. Pre-order your copy today!

Now Available for Pre-order! New book box from the Authors Billboard: Unforgettable Surrender: Desire and Deception

It’s a beautiful day in the neighbourhood as Mr. Rogers would say, but sadly not a day to go out and meet people. That being said, let me introduce you to several new people, just dying to meet you!

un-surrender-3D-white-2Desire and Deception – and Unforgettable Surrender

At times, we are deceived by desires that can override our common sense. If we’re lucky, a hero comes along who saves us not only from ourselves but from those who would hurt us or take away our freedom. These special folks should be honored…and written about. In this collection, we have done just that. Immerse yourself in the love and passion in these stories put together by eight NY Times and USA Today Bestsellers who’ve penned these EIGHT incredible romances about surrendering to our heroes.

Mimi Barbour – NEW! Special Agent Sophia by New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author. She can go to Greece and rescue the governor’s twins, but can she save a young girl from dangerous traffickers?

Patricia Rosemoor – Justice by New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author. Reine Kendrick convinces selfish Cash Abreu to help save his half-brother from a kidnapper only to learn that Cash has been living a heart-breaking deception.

Rebecca York – Trapped by New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author. Are his memories real–or fake news?

Susanne Matthews – In Plain Sight by Bestselling Author. In life you pay a price for everything you do, but can Misty afford to trust her life and her daughter’s to a blind man?

Jennifer Saints – Cocktail Cove by USA Today Bestselling Author. When life shakes you up and pours you over the rocks. A socialite hiding from the mob meets a man hiding from life.

Angela Stevens – NEW! See No Evil by USA Today Bestselling Author. When an ex-gang member, turned informant, falls in love with a missing woman’s sassy English roommate, Joel carpenter’s blurred moral code leads to the ultimate betrayal.

Taylor Lee – Diamond: Ladies of the Night by USA Today Bestselling Author. The Ladies are covert agents in a highly secret, off the grid security organization. Highly trained fighters, they’re as gorgeous as they are dangerous. The only thing these formidable women are NOT is “ladies.”

Katy Walters – The Lost Chord by USA Today Bestselling Author. A demented serial killer searching for the perfect voice. Horror awaits those young singers who fail to meet his demands

Order your copy today. Eight full-length novels for only  99 cents!

http://bookShow.me/B0891QYD5B

Happy Mother’s Day! Last Week to Pre-order Twist for Fate for only 99 cents!

flowers for Mother's day

Happy Mother’s Day. It’s different this year with no family gatherings, no hugs and kisses to share, but that’s okay. Staying away is another way to say I love you these days.  I’ll see my own mother through a galls window and speak to her over a speaker phone, and while that is hard, all I can do is pray she stays safe.

So, with another week of Coronavirus isolation behind us, we need to look forward to better times, knowing they’ll be a long time in coming. For that reason, it’s easier to look back–way back to 1734! This is the last week to purchase Twist of Fate, on pre-order now, for only 99 cents. After that, the price quadruples!

TwistofFateCan a cursed treasure unite two lonely outcasts?

Overton Stafford, shunned by his family because of a birthmark on his face, made a life for himself as Second Mate on The Golden Fleece. In a battle with pirates, Overton loses his left arm, ending his career. Knowing he will be a wealthy man makes the pain easier to bear, especially when he discovers he can repay a moral debt and help an old friend. When he meets Anna, Overton realizes he wants more from her than a financial partnership.

Anneliese Van Stubel lost her sight at nine as a result of Smallpox. Now eighteen, a ward of the crown because of the Danish Age of Majority law, she lives in limbo, uncertain what will happen to her. When Overton approaches her with the proposition to help her rebuild the plantation, she’s excited with the idea of returning to her home. But her joy fades when her caregiver makes it plain that he has a different future in mind for her, one that will profit him.

Set in a time when brutality against women and slaves was the norm, Overton seeks to change things as he falls in love with the girl who has lost so much.

Today, I thought I would share the Prologue with you to tease you.

PROLOGUE

 

Aardse Paradijs, Van Stubel Plantation,

St. Jan Island, Danish West Indies.

November 23rd, 1733

 

Tossing and turning in bed, Anneliese Van Stubel tried to settle for the night, but her jumbled thoughts wouldn’t let her. Mama, Papa, Joost, and Gerrit had gone to dinner with the Larsens in Coral Bay, where Papa hoped to strike a deal that would benefit not only her but the entire family—her hand in marriage for her share of the plantation and better prices at Larsen’s rum processing plant on St. Thomas. She’d dreamed of being a wife, a mother, but would her dowry be enough to seal the bargain?

This past growing season, with its drought and infestation of insects, followed by a vicious hurricane, had been a bad one for many of the estates. Thanks to Papa’s progressive thinking, Aardse Paradijs had done better than most, but would that be enough to convince Larsen’s youngest son to tie himself to a burden like her?

She wasn’t deaf. She’d heard them talking, the conversations that ended abruptly when she entered a room, only to resume once she’d left. Her family loved her, but … Why would any able-bodied man want to tie himself to someone like her? Someone who couldn’t even see to her own personal needs? A woman who lived in a world full of unseen hazards where one misstep could be fatal? How could such a woman be trusted to see to the care and welfare of her own children?

The soothing, familiar scent of Liana, Plumeria, and Bougainvillea drifted in through the bedroom window. Vaguely, like a memory just out of reach, Anna tried to recall the vivid pink and stately white blossoms of her early years before Smallpox had stolen her vision. So many memories lost and more vanishing each day. Mama implored her not to complain … to be grateful the Lord had spared her, but there were times when Anna didn’t feel grateful, when she felt angry, cheated of the life that should’ve been hers.

With danger dogging her every step, she spent her solitary days either in her room or in the gardens on the other side of the house where she could sit on the swing Papa had hung for her and sway in the shade. From there, when the winds were favorable, she could smell the salty sea air and listen to the birds chattering in the trees. Raymonde, her pet African Green Vervet Monkey, a gift from her father last year, loved to sit by her side, her tail wrapped around the solid ropes. The tiny ape would yammer with the birds, almost as if she could understand what they were saying.

Papa described her as having a black face surrounded by a white fringe of hair, the rest of her body coat a yellowish gray. She was small, less than a foot long—not counting her agile tail—and weighed no more than two pounds. Her mother had been taken from Africa and had given birth to the animal aboard ship, dying shortly after her arrival in port. With her trained hands, Anna had examined every inch of the small creature, amazed at how similar in form the primate’s body was to her own—minus the tail, of course.

She sighed and turned onto her side, kicking off the sheets. The night was warm, not as stifling as it had been during the summer months, but warm enough to be uncomfortable. Anna inhaled deeply, searching for the scent of the sea. Would there be a late fall storm? Another vicious hurricane like the one that had hit the island in September and had forced them into the cellar?

Nothing frightened her more than those hated storms with their booming thunder, vivid lightning that left fearsome images in her gray world, and howling winds. But even more than that, she hated being confined for hours in the tiny room underground where there was scarcely enough air for all of them to breathe. Papa said her fears were unwarranted, but he wasn’t the one forced to deal with a blackness so complete that she felt she’d been buried alive. Tonight, the air was heavy as if Mother Nature waited for something to happen—something terrible. She shuddered.

The scent of beeswax blended with the floral aromas drifting into the room, momentarily distracting her. Asia, her nursemaid, really more of a companion these days, had mentioned that the maids had waxed the furniture today, bringing it up to the high luster her mother expected.

As a child, Anna had been fascinated by the process of placing the wax sheets on the wood and pressing them into the surface with hot irons. She’d watched as the material liquefied and was absorbed. Then, another maid would come with rags and buff it until she could see her own dark face reflected in the sheen. Now, instead of watching and admiring their handiwork, Anna stayed out of the way, lest she blunder onto an iron and burn herself.

Trying to settle under the mosquito netting, she listened to the familiar night sounds, identifying the song of the Pearly-eyed Thrasher as it serenaded the full moon. She frowned. Were those drums in the distance? Papa had mentioned that under the governor’s new rules, the slaves were forbidden to use their traditional musical instruments or participate in pagan ceremonies. Asia had confided that many of the slaves on the island secretly continued to practice Obeah, the African religion they’d brought with them. Not even the grim-faced missionaries with their changes of name and forced conversions to Christianity were able to prevent it.

Grabbing the neck of her nightdress, she sat up suddenly. Was that a scream? Had one of the island’s numerous bats found its way into the slave pens? Those were the only mammals indigenous to the island. All the others had been brought there by either the Dutch or the Danes when they’d settled St. Jan.

She jumped at another unfamiliar sound. Was that a cannon shot? Why would the fort be firing the cannons at this time of night? Was St. Jan under attack? From whom? Not even the fiercest pirate would dare such a thing.

Shifting in the bed, she turned her head, seeking the comfort of the small oil lamp on her dresser. Eight years ago, a Smallpox epidemic had swept the island, killing hundreds, leaving her alive but sightless. Gone were the vibrant shades of her youth replaced by a grayness that refused to solidify into any recognizable shape. But the nights were worse. Only the small light kept the blackness at bay and made the hours tolerable.

The door opened.

“Anna,” Asia whispered loudly. Suddenly the light went out, plunging the room into darkness.

“My lamp,” she cried, only to have the servant’s hand cover her mouth.

“Quiet, child. Listen to me.” Asia’s voice was stern. “I have to get you away from the house before they come here. They’ve all gone crazy.”

Anna pulled the woman’s hand away, her frightened breath coming in gasps.

“You’re scaring me,” she whispered, her voice halting. “Who’s gone crazy?”

“The Akwamu, the new slaves the magistrate sold your father. I told you about them. They were the ones who conquered my people and sold us to the slavers. They’re revolting all over the island,” the woman answered. “They’ve taken the fort in Coral Bay. Lucius barely managed to escape. He says they’re killing all the whites—the bosses and owners, even some of the indentured servants, and any slave who refuses to follow them.”

Anna gasped, her heart leaping into her throat to choke her.

“Those lucky enough to escape to their boats hope to make it to Cruz Bay or St. Thomas,” Asia continued, pulling back the sheets.

“Mama and Papa would never leave me here alone. They must be on their way back to get me.”

Asia grabbed her by the shoulders. “Listen to me, child. Lucius says Coral Bay and all of the plantations surrounding it are ablaze. He doesn’t know if your parents made it to the boats. He only knows we have to get you away and hidden before the rebels arrive. Those of us who’ve been with the master for years know he’s a kind man, unlike some of the Mesterknegte who treat the slaves entrusted to them worse than they do the oxen who toil in the fields. We’ll do what we can to defend the plantation. Get up. There’s no time to dress. I’ll sneak you out the backdoor and lead you to the old abandoned homestead near the sea. You and I are the only ones who ever go there. You should be safe.”

“Raymonde. Where’s Raymonde? I can’t go without her.”

“I’ll get her, but we must hurry. Put on your slippers.”

Within seconds, the warm hairy body, no doubt as frightened as she was, nestled into her, the ape’s tiny arms gripping her around the neck.

Her own heart thumping so loudly that it echoed in her ears, Anna allowed Asia to lead her from the house, out through the open-air kitchen, and past the carriage house. The path through the fruit trees was pitch black, and her fear increased, tremors racking her body. Was that smoke? Surely she shouldn’t be able to smell smoke from fields burning six miles away?

With Asia begging her to move faster, she tried, but every now and then stumbled as a sharp stone cut the sole of her slippers. Soon, she could smell the sea and the blackness became dark gray.

“This way. We’ll go down into the old cellar. You’ll be safest there. I’ll come back for you as soon as I can. I promise.”

The woman’s words filled Anna with horror.

“Don’t leave me,” she begged, tears running down her cheeks.

What lurked in the blackness among the stones? While there might not be any snakes on the island, there were plenty of other creatures to worry about: tarantulas, wolf spiders, and scorpions among them. While their bites might not be fatal, they were incredibly painful—and then there were the iguanas. Papa maintained they were harmless, but her memories dragged up fire breathing dragons who grew exponentially in size.

“I know you’re frightened, child,” Asia said, wrapping her arm around her as she led her down the stone steps. “You’ll be safe here. I promise I’ll be back for you as soon as I can. Here.” She draped her woven shawl over Anna’s shoulders. “This will keep you warm. Whatever you do, don’t leave here until either Lucius or I come for you.”

Too petrified to even speak, Anna nodded and cuddled Raymonde closer, taking strength from the warmth of Asia’s body evident in the shawl and the little ape’s trust in her. She shivered, fighting to find what little courage she possessed.

“If Asia says we’ll be safe here, Raymonde, I have to believe her.” Her low voice echoed in the small chamber. “Papa will come for us. He’ll send the soldiers to end this, and everything will be fine.” But Papa had long bemoaned the fact that six soldiers were hardly enough to maintain the peace and keep more than one thousand slaves in check.

Settling against the stones, she waited for Asia’s return, mumbling every prayer her mother had ever taught her. A loud noise startled her. Raymonde screeched in her arms, the small ape’s heart beating rapidly. Anna loosened her grip to shift her into her other arm, but the small monkey shrieked, clawed at her, and demanded her freedom.

“No, Raymonde,” she cried, but the ape was gone.

Inhaling sharply, she coughed, recognizing the unmistakable odor of burning grass and sugarcane. Anna pulled the shawl up to cover her face, but the smoke grew denser until she could no longer breathe. Panic filled her. Asia had said to stay here, but if she did, she would surely suffocate and die.

Her body shaken by bouts of coughing, Anna clawed around the small cellar, looking for the entrance. When she found it, she scrambled to escape. Ripping her hands open on sharp rocks, she crawled out of her would-be grave. Sugarcane fields burning all around her turned the night into an inferno, the flames lighting up the darkness, creating eerie monstrous shapes in her gray world. Her only hope of escape was to find the path leading down to the beach and the sea, but with the heavy smoke, she couldn’t even smell the briny water. Which way should she go?

Stumbling blindly, heading away from the crackle of the flames, she ran. Fire was everywhere. Here and there it licked at her legs, bit into her arms, caressed her face. Suddenly, the earth beneath her feet vanished, and she tumbled headlong down the hillside, her body smashing against the rocks, scraping against Christmas bushes. The poisonous sap burned and would soon add its vicious rash to her litany of woes.

In pain, she continued her tumble. The sea! She smelled the sea. Would this be her fate? To drown in the aqua blue waters she’d loved? Her head struck yet another rock, this times sending stars flashing through her mind until there was nothing but blackness.

So how does my blind heroine meet her hero? Order your copy today. All will be revealed on May 16th!