Friday, February 22, 2013

Gone With the Wedding Available February 26th!

For those who enjoy my wedding-themed romances, I'm excited to announce that Gone With the Wedding will be available via Amazon and Smashwords on February 26th.

 Amy Pontelle is a best-selling Romance novelist and diehard Gone With the Wind fan, whose just been offered the Southern Belle wedding of a lifetime.

But even when Amy convinces her slower than Southern molasses fiancé, history professor Greg Willey, to play along, her dream of being Scarlett for the big day still has a few snags. The Southern mansion is antiquated to the point of deterioration, its ancient staff is forgetful at best, and Amy can’t escape the true horrors of a corset as the price for elegance.

The worst part is, Amy is now questioning everything--her dreams, her life, and her engagement--now that she’s face to face with the reality of those dreams and the persuasive presence of a better-than-fiction Southern gentleman in an unlikely form…

Be sure to check out its Goodreads page

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Latest in The Dark Woods Trilogy Now Available

The first book in the second cycle of The Dark Woods is now available to readers via Smashwords and Amazon.

Spell (The Dark Woods Trilogy, Second Cycle) 

 "There are sticks and stones which can bind a witch, but not kill her. They can't be drowned as some thinks. Killing one by flame is the only way to destroy the bone and blood..."

In a time when magic makers and spell casters roam the countryside, there are men who earn wages by hunting them. Burning them for their crimes, facing the peril of spells and subtler dangers from dark servants skilled in evading punishment...

Among them, Neel is the greatest of all. A legend in his prime who tracks even the most cunning of witches who plague the land, he carves a mark for each sorceress or warlock of power burned at the stake by his hand. Calculating and hard by nature, a loner and wanderer by trade, he and his services are demanded by king and commoner alike. Any who has a grievance against a magic maker and the coin with which to pay the hunter's services.

A request from a queen to track a witch of no name takes him across the vast countryside in pursuit of a sorceress whose spell is unmistakable–and whose curse takes a hideous form each time it is cast. Three victims in all, three tales which span consequences from abandoned thrones to lovers divided by pain. Three sufferers who describe a witch whose physical appearance and power seems to change without explanation, until the witch hunter knows his pursuit is of a witch possessing no ordinary magic.

Three sufferers, three separate fates, one spell.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Holiday Extravaganza 99 cent sale!

In the mood for some fun, romantic Christmas reading? Then be sure to check out the newest line of Holiday Extravaganza books from Pelican Book Group. These heartwarming, inspirational titles are on sale for 99 cents on Kindle!

My own contribution to the line is Ghosts of Christmas Past, a modern Christmas Carol re-telling with a country music theme. So if you need a cozy, holiday read to curl up with by the fire, be sure to check these out!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Putting Rules for Engagements on Sale

To celebrate the release of Love Among the Spices, I'm putting its prequel volume on sale for 99 cents. Rules for Engagements, Volume One in the Regency Rules series features Marianne's elder sister Flora as she pens the advice book that started it all!


Friday, September 28, 2012

Hidden In Pages Released by Pelican Book Group


White Rose Publishing, an Imprint of Pelican Book Group has released my short adventure/romance Hidden In Pages. You can get it at their website (which has great deals on other inspirational books), as well as on Amazon and other major eBook retailers.
Adelle Bradbury doesn’t like adventure—in books or real life. As a quiet librarian who hides behind reading glasses, she doesn’t expect to be swept into a dangerous mission to recover one of the world’s most famous lost treasures. But that’s exactly what happens when a mysterious history buff enlists her help to recover a treasure map—A map he insists is concealed in one of the library’s old books, its contents revealing the secret location of King Solomon’s missing wealth.
Suddenly, mild-mannered Adelle is thrust into a world of treasure hunters, secret societies, and thieving profiteers. In a mad dash to protect the treasure, she finds a courage she never expected and something more—the possibility of true love.

Guest Post at Indie Jane and Free Regency Title on Amazon

I'm thrilled to have authored today's guest post over at one of my favorite Austen-themed websites, Indie Jane. It's a brief post that focuses on Bloodcurse: A Regency Vampire Novel, the kindle book I'm offering for free on Amazon from September 28th-30th.

They come for the cure in shades of crimson...

Of course, seventeen-year-old Elle Warner doesn't know that when she arrives for a six week stay in the luxurious city of Bath. But stories are told. Bodies are found.

A young and mysterious stranger may hold the key to these tragedies-and very possibly to the fate of the girl who cannot escape his gaze.

Inspired by Jane Austen's own gothic tribute, Bloodcurse: A Regency Vampire Novel is a tale of dark stories, imagined secrets, and a young girl's first true adventure.

Monday, September 24, 2012

"Letters from Lydia", a Vignette for Austenesque Extravaganza!

I'm excited to to bring you "Letters from Lydia" a Pride and Prejudice vignette as part of the incredible Austenesque Extravaganza! For this fun piece I collaborated with the amazingly talented authors Sarah Burgess (Dear Miss Darcy) and Cecilia Gray (The Jane Austen Academy Series). Below you'll find all three parts to our "hidden" Pride and Prejudice scene where Kitty Bennet receives letters from her mischievous younger sister Lydia, who is visiting Brighton. Part I was authored by myself; Part II comes from Sarah's pen, and Part III is the genius of Cecilia. Happy reading!

                                            Letters from Lydia

Part I

Longbourn, never a setting given to much peace and quiet, was plunged into near madness with Lydia’s invitation to Brighton.
Brighton! The exciting sea resort where the youngest and most impetuous of the Bennet girls was certain she would be the object of at least ten different conquests from the encamped officers. Her head was already filled with visions of red-coated admirers violently flirting with her over tea and dances.

It was bound to end in an offer of  marriage; possibly even a duel. Such far-fetched predictions were always on her tongue, as she consulted her mother on what garments to pack, or what ribbon best suited her new hat.

Of course, much of this speculation was  for the benefit of her sisters. Particularly Kitty--poor Kitty, who being two years older (as she so emphatically pointed out) was equally entitled to such a venture if not more so.

For this plea, she found little sympathy from her sisters.  Lizzie was bound for a tour of the lakes with their aunt and uncle; Jane, usually so understanding, was occupied with reflections concerning a certain gentleman now gone to London. And Mary--well, she was not to be troubled by officers and balls when so many philosophical quandaries demanded her attention every day.

Kitty, though, had little to fill her time, without even so much as a card party on the near horizon. In short, nothing to look forward to except a minute account  of her younger sister’s adventures among the lively crowds at Brighton.

These, she was assured, would make her wildly jealous. As if she weren’t envious enough, to the point that the very word “officer” brought tears to her eyes. The trek to Meryton, where the camp once made its headquarters, was now the equivalent of visiting the church graveyard.

As promised, the first  two letters--one addressed to Mrs. Bennet and one to Kitty--arrived shortly after Lydia had taken up residence with the Colonel and Mrs. Forester. Dispensed at the luncheon table by the footman, these communications were received with squeals of delight from Mrs. Bennet.

“At last, news from our dear girl,” she informed the others. Slitting open an envelope that held a surprisingly brief account, the single sheet of stationery being devoted to a colorless description of Lydia’s journey to the new lodgings. A small anecdote of how she almost dropped her new hatbox in the mud was the highlight of the note.

 “And to think, my dear,” Mr. Bennet observed in his dry humored way, “I prevented you from partaking of such a remarkable experience. Brighton is a lively place indeed, based on such an account.”

Across the table, Kitty quietly perused her own much longer letter, and noted a vast difference in its content. Concerned mostly with her sister’s many visits to the regiment--with only Mrs. Forester for a chaperone-- it held the same secretive tone they used to share in private conversations.

Kitty tucked it out of sight, a measure that proved unnecessary as their father begged to be spared anymore details of the supposedly fascinating endeavor.

So it proved with the next letter, which she took care not to open before the others. Instead, she scanned the meaning by the light of the candle that flickered on her dressing table. Her lips moving to the words as she absorbed this newest bit of mischief:
 Dear Kitty,

 I will not bore you with a description of my new parasol as I did Mamma in that last letter I wrote. For you, surely, will understand that there is more fun to be found in Brighton than merely the shops and libraries  and tea gatherings.

Even the balls and parties cannot compare with the little tête-à-têtes one carries out both during and after the main event. These are almost required, and you can imagine how difficult it becomes as one’s admirers grow in number.

Lord, if you could hear the things they say! Such and such about my hair and eyes and goodness knows what all. I should blush to write  any of it down, though it is not a bit wrong (though I am sure Mary would disagree!)

One gentleman in particular--but no, I will not say it. Not yet, at least. I shall choose to leave you in suspense on that note, only to say that one of my suitors is far superior to the rest. Handsome and charming and admired by all!

Please do keep this between us for the time being. For I would hate to excite too much jealousy in our sisters, who I know must already deeply resent my stroke of good fortune.


Part II

She could not show this to anyone.

Such was Kitty’s thought, as she tucked her sister’s latest communication out of sight beneath the dining room table. More and more, the letters from Brighton contained information she was certain her father, and her elder sisters Lizzie and Jane, would never approve.

Stories of romance and rendezvous. Secret meetings with a mystery man whom Lydia assured her the Bennet family was already quite wild about from their previous acquaintance in Meryton. In fact, she implied that more than one heart should be broken were the gentleman in question to settle any serious design upon her before the summer was out.

He was a great favorite of our own Lizzie,” one letter teased, even as another declared he was never in danger of giving his heart to anyone else, but now seemed ready to bestow it upon herself at a moment’s notice .

To betray Lydia was something she couldn’t bring herself to do, even as she grew increasingly worried about the described events. So she concealed the freshly arrived notes behind embroidery hoops and books; anywhere she could to keep them from prying eyes, until time permitted an escape to her room or else the garden.

Panting slightly, she made her way this morning to the stretch of lawn that Lizzie was so fond of walking. Since her older sister was now on her tour of the Lakes, there was no danger she would stumble upon Kitty as she devoured another piece of gossip from Brighton.

With a sigh, Kitty spread herself across the garden bench, unfurling a piece of stationery to read these tantalizing yet infuriating words:
Dear Kitty,

It is enough to make me laugh aloud as I picture all your faces were you to know the truth. But I have promised my love--for that is what I call my own dear one--that I will not breathe a word on the subject without his permission.

How secretive he is! Insisting we meet away from everyone at such times I am sure no reasonable person should be out of doors. Yet I cannot refuse his request when I see the tender pleading in his eyes.

Do not be shocked Kitty, to know I have already felt the touch of his lips. Such a sensation I should never be able to describe were I to try even!

Still, I mustn’t give too much away. My love is almost frantic that anyone else should find out, though I’ve assured him it is nothing to be ashamed about. Were it up to me, we should declare it before the whole camp.

Perhaps we shall, before many more weeks.

Part III

Kitty practically pounced on the correspondence as the footman laid it on the luncheon table, but Mamma brushed her eager hand aside with a squeal of delight. “What news will we have today?” Mamma asked with a clap of her hands.

What news, indeed, Kitty wondered as she shrunk back in her seat and nervously picked at a stray thread from her dress. There had been no news from Lydia since her salacious note which had sent Kitty into hysterics. Fortunately these particular hysterics were not distinguishable from Kitty’s routine hysterics, and Mamma was none the wiser to Lydia’s transgressions. Kitty was not so fortunate and her very pulse seemed tethered to the comings and goings of the letter carrier.

Mamma scooped the white envelopes into her palm and flipped through them one by one. “Not another from Mrs. Lucas.” She rolled her eyes and tossed it aside. “As if I could bear to read another word about the bore of…oh…ah! Finally that dreaded child has remembered from whence she spawned.”

Mamma held the letter up to the light streaming in through the dining room window, and Kitty’s breath caught at the sight of Lydia’s lazy script.

“This is addressed to you, Kitty. But where is ours?” Mamma flipped through the remaining cards. “There appears to be just the one. Perhaps it is intended for all of us. I shall read--”

Mamma shrieked as Kitty dashed from her chair and ripped Lydia’s letter away with such force the paper tore and rent the air. Kitty ignored her father’s bark of indignation, ignored Mary’s drone of censure, and particularly ignored her mother’s high-pitched fit as she ran fast as her legs could carry her out the house and down the pebbled road.

It wasn’t until she had run for what felt like miles, and may have been given she was nearly to Bingley’s, that Kitty rested her hand over her aching chest and gasped in much needed breath. Oh, but she would pay for this. She wavered between equal desires that her punishment be for naught and that Lydia’s letter contained news to merit her actions.

Her heavy legs collapsed from the endurance of her sprint. She could not contain herself a moment longer to crawl under the nearby tree for shade from the uncharacteristic heat of the blazing sun overhead. Instead, at the side of the road in a damp bed of grass, she opened the letter, now with a jagged, ripped edge along the bottom. With shaky hands, she began to read.

Dear Kitty,

By the time you read this, I’ll be a woman in every sense. To finally have surpassed Jane! To finally know things that not even Lizzie knows! I was never in doubt of this day but to finally be at its precipice leaves me quaking with excitement.

I promise, of course, to share everything with you. While I love our dear older sisters, I thankfully did not inherit their miserly ways with knowledge. As you may never know the joy and experience of being in love, it is my obligation to share my own happiness with you. I shall do it gladly.

While my beloved still has his reasons for our liason remaining a secret, it will soon be known to the world so I see no harm in you knowing first. Please do not tell Lizzie. I feel I should at least afford her the courtesy of a personal announcement given that my beloved is none other--

Kitty turned the letter over and back. She ran a finger along the jagged bottom edge of the letter whose remnant with the man’s name remained firmly with Mamma.