31 January 2014

Interview, Book Spotlight, Giveaway: Author Lisa Kessler discusses her latest paranormal romance, Beg Me to Slay


One of my favorite authors is joining us tonight to help wrap up our January Book Blitz. Please welcome Lisa Kessler, whose paranormal romances keep you on the edge of your seat while your Kindle gets smoking hot from some very steamy love scenes. 

If you haven't read Lisa's Moon or Night series, you should. They are fantastic! Tonight, she's here to discuss her stand-alone title, BEG ME TO SLAY, that was recently released by Entangled Covet. Welcome Lisa!
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Lisa, welcome to FFF. Can I get you some coffee, tea, or hot chocolate? A lemon bar or chocolate chip cookie?

Yum! I didn’t know treats would be included! Yay!

(EVW) I love your paranormal romance series and am curious about why you’ve chosen to write in that genre. Do you believe that ghosts and other things that might go bump in the night might exist?
(LK) I was always a horror reader growing up which is funny in itself because I’m the biggest chicken… LOL But when I first started publishing short stories, horror was my genre, paranormal romance allows me to bringing the dark and scary with the heat and happiness of a happily ever after…

And as far as ghosts I’m a definitely believer! LOL

(EVW) BEG ME TO SLAY is a action-packed story, but has some beautiful tender moments between the two protagonists. What is the most fun to write - the love scenes or the fight scenes - or both?
(LK) BOTH! I loved writing Beg Me to Slay and raced to the keyboard to write more. Gabe was so hot I had to fan myself a few times! LOL

(EVW) As someone who’s family hails from North Wales, the fact that you’ve incorporated the Red and White Welsh Dragons in this story just made me shout, YEAH! Will we be seeing more dragons / demons in the future? Is this the start of a new series?
(LK) I wrote this one as a stand-alone, but I’ve gotten so many requests for more, you never know… LOL Gabe did mention there are other Slayers in the world and if a President of Hell really wants to make an appearance we might need the Slayers to come together to fight… Not that I’ve been thinking about a sequel… Much! LOL

(EVW) What books should we be looking out for next from Lisa Kessler?
(LK) I’m hoping to self-pub a Night Series novella, NIGHT ANGEL in March and then the final book in the Night Series, NIGHT CHILD will be out in April… Whee! And coming up in July, BLOOD MOON, the next book in the Moon Series… Should be a busy year!

(EVW) Tell us a little more about Lisa Kessler, the singer, since most of us know you as Lisa Kessler, the writer.
(LK) I’ve been Lisa Kessler the singer longer than the writer… I used to perform a few times in a year in operas and musical theater and I’ve had professional jobs singing for churches and weddings for over 20 years now. Music is my first love and you’ll often find it in my books too!

I have a couple of music CDs out, but most of my focus is on the books these days. I wish I had more hours! LOL

(EVW) Lisa, you are all over social media - blogging, tweeting, and posting your updates and parties to Facebook. How do you find time to write?! Seriously, social media seems to consume so much time now for writers that I don’t know how you all manage. Do you have a Street Team in place? If not, do you have plans for one? And how can your fans help out?
(LK) I have the most awesome street team and we’re always happy to welcome new members to our Night Angel Legion!!! You can find us on facebook, or send me an email through my website… more info here: http://www.authorlisakessler.com/join-the-night-angels/

(EVW) What author(s) influenced you the most growing up? Who’s on your bookshelf now?
(LK) There are so many!!! Here are a few of the biggies: Anne Rice, Stephen King, Kelley Armstrong, Christine Feehan, Dean Koontz…and many more!

In my kindle I’m excited to keep up with Patricia Briggs, Kelley Armstrong, Jeri Smith-Ready, Jackie Kessler, etc.

Thanks for letting me visit!

Your so welcome, Lisa. It was a pleasure. Please join us again and we can discuss shifters and vampires too!
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BOOK SPOTLIGHT
Entangled Covet
ASIN B00H0UT5UO
Price $2.99
Publication Date: December 30, 2013

He'll slay her demons, but it may cost her heart...

Four years ago Tegan Ashton was attacked. Determined never to be a victim again, she devotes her life to martial arts and self-defense. When her assailant returns to finish what he started, only one person can help her.

Gabe is a private investigator by day and demon slayer by night. After losing loved ones, he vows to defend people from a threat they don't realize exists.

The relationship is supposed to be strictly business, but fighting demons together stirs up emotions they never expected. Turns out demon slaying is a breeze compared to facing their scarred pasts and even worse - hearts.

Add BEG ME TO SLAY to your Goodreads shelf
Purchase from Amazon
........
ENTER THE GIVEAWAY


Win your digital copy of BEG ME TO SLAY by Lisa Kessler


Do you believe in demons? Angels? Dragons? Comment below to enter the giveaway!
........
ABOUT LISA


Lisa Kessler is an award winning author of dark paranormal fiction. Her debut novel, Night Walker, won a San Diego Book Award for Best Published Fantasy-Sci-fi-Horror as well as the Romance Through the Ages Award for Best Paranormal and Best First Book.

Her short stories have been published in print anthologies and magazines, and her vampire story, Immortal Beloved, was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award.

When she's not writing, Lisa is a professional vocalist, performing with the San Diego Opera as well as other musical theater companies in San Diego.

Keep in touch with Lisa


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EXTRAS

Here are some fun videos about dragons and ghosts in Wales

Fun video of a proposed monument to the Welsh Dragon


Origin of the legend of the Welsh Dragon (in Welsh with subtitles)


Castle Ghosts of Wales



Author Interview, Book Spotlight & Excerpt, Giveaway: T.F. Walsh discusses her debut paranormal romance, Cloaked in Fur


I love reading books by debut authors - particularly those that blow me away. So today, I'm delighted to welcome Australian author T.F. Walsh to Fab Fantasy Fiction. T.F. is the author of the paranormal romance, CLOAKED IN FUR. If you love shifter romances, make sure to add this book to your TBR list!

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T.F., I think that you may have travelled the farthest distance to join us today. So THANK YOU for taking the time out from Australia to visit Fab Fantasy Fiction.

May I get you a cup of coffee or tea? A glass of wine perhaps as I know it’s evening for you now? (I think I have an Australian Shiraz). Great! Well, now that we're all set. Let's chat a bit.

(EVW) Can you share a bit about living Down Under? It's summer there now right? Is it your vacation time or are you writing constantly?
(TFW) We are in the middle of summer here in Australia, and it's been a scorcher. Last few weeks have seen a huge spike in temperatures and bush fires, which are never fun. Luckily, Sydney has had some rain this past week, which helps a lot. While the kids are currently in school holidays, everyone else is working, and when it comes to writing, that's pretty much a full time job. I don't think I ever stop, and that includes when I go on vacation.

(EVW) Speaking of writing. I realize that Cloaked in Fur is your debut novel. How did you begin writing it? What inspired you to set the words to paper (or screen)? I know that sometimes just the *act* of writing is the most difficult - the beginning - so would love for you to share your experience with others.
(TFW) I've always dabbled in writing from a young age, but it was only 5-6 years ago that I started taking it seriously. For the first few years I studied the art, found my writing style, and uncovered what I loved writing the most, genre wise. I started off with short stories, and have had some appear in e-zines, and what I discovered was that I loved dark, paranormal stories. I guess it shouldn't be a surprise since I read a lot of horror. I grew up listening to bedtime Romanian stories that could only be compared to the Brothers Grimm tales, and ever since then folklore and mythology has fascinated me. So, these influenced the type of story I wanted to write, along with showing the real Romania, since I was born there. I'm a bit of an organisational freak, so I plotted Cloaked in Fur out in detail, down to the chapter, along with researching who my characters were, the location, how wolves behaved. By the time I sat down to write my first words, the story was already alive in my head, and the words just flowed.

(EVW) TF may I say that Cloaked in Fur captured me from the moment I began reading it. I love the Carpathian setting of a city surrounded by woods - and wolves, werewolves that is. I know that you are originally from Romania and emigrated to Australia at a young age. How much did your memories of Romania shape the setting of Cloaked in Fur? Have you returned there at all?
(TFW) I was born in Romania, but sadly haven't returned yet. I do plan on visiting Romania with my husband very soon. I still remember so much about the country, having spend my childhood there, and a lot of those memories trickled into my writing, along with small intricacies that were specific to how the Romanian culture influenced me. One particular character in Cloaked in Fur, Daciana's boss, was loosely based on the older generation Romanian people I know. To this day, they still fear the government or any authority after living in a communist country because of the way they were treated. And Daciana's boss has that exact mentality in his approach to everything in life.

(EVW) Let me say that Cloaked in Fur has a beautiful love story that is woven throughout the action of the story. But there is so much at stake for Dacia and Connell - and so much against them - that I have to admit to almost cheating to see the ending. When you were writing it, did you have a definite conclusion in mind or did some of the characters take over the action a bit? (May I just say your secondary characters are wonderful also!)
(TFW) I knew exactly how I wanted the book to end, though along the way, some the characters did hijack the plot a few times and decided they wanted it go a different way. I really wanted to test the theory of how far would someone go to protect the one they loved, and unfortunately that meant Daciana and Connell went through a lot to be together. But no one ever said fighting for what you want would be easy.

(EVW) What's next for you, TF? Will this become a sequel perhaps? If so, who will it feature (I know who I'm rooting for seeing more of!)
(TFW) Oh yes, there will be a sequel and more books planned in the series. Book 2 will be a continuation, however it will told from Enre's point of view, and as far as Enre is concerned, he has his own way of tackling the encroaching danger. And that can only mean he's headed straight for trouble.

(EVW) Returning to writing, I've become very aware during the past few months that writers are not only focused on typing their stories to share with readers, but have also become social media mavens. Between Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, I don't think writers have any time or events to themselves (nor do any of us). How do you go about promoting your work, beyond what your publisher (Crimson) does, if anything? Are you developing a Street Team? How can your fans help you?
(TFW) Finding that fine balance of time between writing and promoting is really difficult. I'm torn between finishing the next story and connecting with my readers with book 1, so I tend to set a schedule with allocated hours each day between writing and social media. I love chatting to my readers and answering their questions. Right now I don't have a Street Team set up, but it was on my list to do, so I am looking for any fans who'd love to participate so I can kick it off. I can be found on Facebook (facebook.com/tfwalsh), Twitter (@tfwalsh), and regularly blogging at tfwalsh.com.

(EVW) What writer or writers do you think most influenced you growing up and as an adult? What's on your bookshelf now?
(TFW) I have a few that have influenced my writing for certain. Laurell Hamilton - love her Anita Blake series. Richard Laymon who writes the creepiest stories, so if you're a horror buff, you probably already know who he is. Currently, I'm reading The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefater, and I love her writing. I've read everything she's written.

Thank you so much for joining us here today. Could you share with us what you'll be offering readers for your giveaway? And what question should they answer or entry?

I'd love to offer your readers one ebook copy of Cloaked in Fur. They simply need to answer the following question to enter: If you could transform into any animal, what would it be?

Looking forward to seeing you again with the publication of your next book, T.F. Cheers and safe trip back to Oz!

Thanks… It was great being here and I loved chatting with your readers.
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BOOK SPOTLIGHT
Crimson Romance
ASIN B00DV0XJ4A
Price $4.99 (on sale for $3.82)
Publication Date: August 5, 2013

A modern tale weaved with a fresh twist on werewolf legends, today's forensics, betrayal, romance, and a dash of kick-ass.

As a moonwulf, Daciana never expected to fall in love with a human. Hell, she never imagined that she'd abandon her pack, endanger everyone around her, and break the worst rule possible. But she did.

A rogue werewolf is killing Daciana's friends, and she sets on capturing the creature. She'll do whatever it takes to stop the beast. The police and her boyfriend, Inspector Connell Lonescu, are starting to question her involvement in the murders, which is endangering the pack's secret existence. But when the pack alpha kidnaps Connell, revealing the awful truth about the creature and its connection to the pack, Daciana must choose between saving the man she loves and saving her pack family from certain death.

Sensuality Level: Sensual
Warning: Bloodthirsty monsters, sexy men, and intense suspense.
Add CLOAKED IN FUR to your Goodreads shelf
Purchase from Amazon
.............
ENTER THE GIVEAWAY


To win a digital copy of CLOAKED IN FUR, make sure to answer TF's question, "If you could transform into any animal, what would it be?" in the comment section below.

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READ AN EXCERPT FROM
CLOAKED IN FUR by T.F. WALSH


My emotions tore between apologizing and confessing everything, yet all I managed to do was stare at his bare torso.

“Your institute has been issued passes to travel into the woods, and Vasile has yours. I can give you a lift there.” Connell cleared his throat and took my cup to the sink. “You’re awfully quiet.”

Heat exploded across my skin, and I climbed to my feet. “My mind is a swirl of thoughts, but I can’t pin any of it down. I’m devastated that my neighbor is dead, the police suspect me, and even worse, I feel you slipping away from me. So, what am I supposed to say?”

Instead of collecting me into his embrace and kissing me, Connell stood there like one of those God statues in museums that wore almost nothing, but were sculptured to perfection. I wanted to forget everything the day was about to bring and beg Connell to make love to me until I passed out.
.............
ABOUT T.F.


T.F. Walsh emigrated from Romania to Australia at the age of eight and now lives in a regional city south of Sydney with her husband. Growing up hearing dark fairytales, she's always had a passion for reading and writing horror, paranormal romance, urban fantasy and young adult stories. She balances all the dark with light fluffy stuff like baking and traveling.

She writes young adult and adult fantasy fiction.

Keep in touch with T.F.
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EXTRAS

TF suggested that for this extra, it would be great to introduce all of you to "the real town of Brasov, which is where the Cloaked in Fur was based on." She said that, "I love this picture as it captures the city and the way the Carpathian Mountains hugs the location. Perfect for werewolves to hide inside:)"

Visit Brasov (official tourist site)












30 January 2014

Author Interview, Book Excerpt, & Giveaway: Aloha Jill Marie Landis! Let's join her in Hawaii to discuss her Tiki Goddess Mysteries


Aloha to bestselling author Jill Marie Landis, who'll be sharing a bit about her TIKI GODDESS MYSTERY SERIES that is based in Hawaii, where Jill Marie also resides. I can't begin to offer refreshment comparable to the Tiki Goddess Bar, but could I get you some coffee or tea? No, okay. Well, let's start.

(EVW) Jill how can we all share a bit of your Hawaiian sunshine? Could you tell us about your Tiki Goddess series?
(JML) The Tiki Goddess Mystery series has been a dream of mine for years but I was busy writing somewhat steamy historical romance, then a contemporary romantic suspense series, then historical inspirationals. When we moved to Hawaii full time and became surrounded by the island beauty and quirkiness of the real life characters around here, I just couldn't put the Tiki Goddess idea on the back burner anymore. I was thrilled when Bell Bridge Books snapped them up.

The fictional characters were dying (some of them literally) to be written. The first book of the series is MAI TAI ONE ON (I'll be giving two copies as prizes to two of your readers). Most of the action takes place at the Tiki Goddess Bar and in Book 1 the next door neighbor is found dead in the luau pit.

For those who've never been to an Hawaiian luau, the imu is a hole in the ground where a whole pig is placed on top of a fire and hot rocks buried in sand. Not the greatest way to go, by the way. A group of senior hula dancers who call themselves the Hula Maidens dance at the Goddess Bar, which is about the only place in town that will have them. The lead character, Em Johnson, the bar manager, is in her thirties and new to Kauai's North Shore. Somehow level headed Em ends up embroiled in the Hula Maidens antics and helps these amateur sleuths solve one mystery after another.

(EVW) What’s your favorite of Uncle Louie’s drinks at the Tiki Goddess bar?
(JML) This is one of my favorites. Try it at your own risk. Each of Uncle Louie’s drinks is built on a legend of its own.

Tiger Shark Attack
Uncle Louie commemorated his near miss off of Princeville when a six foot tiger shark took a hunk out of his surfboard—now on display above the front door of The Tiki Goddess Bar.
¾ C. Spicy Hot V8 Juice
1 oz. Vodka
1 tsp. Worcestershire Sauce
2 dashes Tabasco
½ tsp. prepared Wasabi
Squeeze of lime.
Wisk the ingredients together until the wasabi dissolves. Pour over ice in a highball glass. Garnish with a celery stick and slice of red bell pepper cut in the shape of a shark fin.

(EVW) What’s next for bar manager and unofficial P.I. Em Johnson and fire-dancing detective Roland Sharpe?
(JML) Well, eventually Em and the tall, dark, and handsome man-of-few-words Detective Roland Sharpe are going to have to "do the deed," but for now there are enough stolen kisses and smoldering looks to keep the romance alive. I'm working on Book 4, TOO HOT FOUR HULA right now and Roland has just shown up at Em's hotel room in Honolulu in the middle of the night….so we’ll see what happens. Since this is a series and a cozy mystery, I think it’s probably a good idea to string out the romance and keep readers guessing will they or won’t they?

(EVW) I love the mix of humor, fun, and some heart-tugging moments in your Tiki Goddess series. Have you found it as much fun to write as it is to read?
(JML) Writing comedy is so much fun for me. Once I get on a roll the scenes just fall in line on. Sitting down to write isn’t easy when you live in paradise. Most days I’d much rather be sunning on the beach or stand up paddle boarding or working in the garden or dancing hula. When the weather is great I take a pen and paper out to the beach and rough out the scenes and dialogue and then when it’s raining I work inside and flesh it all out.

(EVW) If we were to visit Hawaii, is there a place that we could visit that inspired the Tiki Goddess Bar?
(JML) Most definitely. The Tiki Goddess bar was inspired by The Tahiti Nui, a North Shore Kauai establishment that’s in a one hundred year old building and has been in business since the 1960’s when Kauai was literally the end of the earth as far as most mainlanders are concerned.

The Tahiti Nui was recently featured in the movie “The Descendants” with George Clooney. They filmed for three days inside the bar and used local patrons as extras. Some of the folks in the show are the inspiration for my characters (and they brag about it!) I love to hang out there and dance hula. Of course, I am there “researching” my series. Writing is hard work, you know.

(EVW) How was the jump from romance writing to mysteries?
(JML) So far it’s been easy, though sometimes it’s hard to keep the “romance” voice from taking over the cozy amateur sleuth tone. As I look back over my backlist of romance novels, I see there’s an element of suspense woven through them all. My early novels weren’t only about the hero/heroine relationship and the steamy love scenes—though those were the core elements. I have always built the plot around something suspenseful that made the books page-turners. For readers new to the genre, about half of my romance backlist has been re-released in the various e-reader formats and are available again. This year we’ll be launching a few more titles. It’s very exciting to know those books will be discovered by a whole new generation of readers.

Here’s a short excerpt from MAI TAI ONE ON, Book 1 of the Tiki Goddess Mysteries. Em Johnson’s Uncle Louie has just sent her out of the bar to get his Panama hat from their beach house.

Thanks for joining us, Jill Marie! I know that there are going to be two very happy winners of your giveaway. Thank you for offering two print copies of your first Tiki Goddess Book, Mai Tai One On.

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READ AN EXCERPT FROM 

TIKI GODDESS MYSTERIES BOOK 1


Em skirted the bathroom door where the Maidens were assembled. Lil was drying her eyes, her faux shark fin once more anchored to her head. Suzi and Big Estelle were stapling Flora’s ripped side seams together. No one noticed when Em slipped through the office and out the back door.

Outside, the music sounded nearly as loud as inside. The thump of the bass and the drum reverberated on the night air and matched the rhythm of the surf. When she reached the house, Em realized the drumming wasn’t coming from the Goddess at all, but from the beach in front of Louie’s house. She paused at the foot of the lanai steps just before a ball of flame burst to life a few feet away from her. 
It was instantly followed by another.

The drums beat faster and the twin circles of fire began to rotate in perfect time. It was a moonless night and the bright orange glow of the flaming fire knives reflected off the bronze skinned man wielding them.

She glanced around, looking for Roland’s drummers but all she saw was a boom box resting on a wide tree stump. Recorded Tahitian drumbeats matched the tempo of the whirling fire knives.

Now she knew why Uncle Louie winked and told her not to hurry back—she’d been set up. Louie sent her out knowing she’d find Detective Sharpe alone on the beach waiting to dance just for her.

The soft trades caressed her skin as Em walked barefoot across the sand drawn toward the twirling flames. More than ready to enjoy her own private show she stared at Detective Roland Sharpe. He was oiled up, wearing nothing but a skimpy malo wrapped around his loins.

He might be a man of few words, but right now, Em thought he definitely didn’t need to say a thing.

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ENTER THE GIVEAWAY

Two winners will each receive a signed copy of Jill Marie Landis' MAI TAI ONE ON



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ADD THE
TO YOUR BOOKSHELF

Bell Bridge Books
ISBN 9781611940442
Price $10.95
Publication Date: July 12, 2011

"I loved this book!" -- Susan Elizabeth Phillips, New York Times Bestselling author

"Smart and sassy, fun and endearing." -- Kristin Hannah, New York Times Bestselling author

"Fun and fabulous." -- Stella Cameron, New York Times Bestselling author

Six months ago, if anyone would have told Em Johnson she'd end up divorced, broke, and running the dilapidated Tiki Goddess Bar on the magical North Shore of Kauai she would have told them to shove a swizzle stick up their okole.As if all that isn't bad enough, when an obnoxious neighbor with a grudge is found dead in the Goddess luau pit, suspicion falls on Em and the rest of the Goddess staff. With the help of a quirky dance troupe of over-the-hill Hula Maidens, Em and the cast of characters must ban together to find the killer and solve the mystery before the next pupu party.
Add MAI TAI ONE ON to your Goodreads shelf
Purchase from Amazon

Bell Bridge Books
ASIN B007RQV6NK
Price $10.95
Publication Date: June 20, 2012

Forget the grass skirts. Some of the Island's top hula dancers are pushing up daisies.Everyone at Em Johnson’s famous North Shore Kauai hang-out, The Tiki Goddess Bar, knows that the bar’s irrepressible Hula Maidens take their hula dancing seriously. So when famed hula instructors from a rival dance troop start dropping like over-ripe passion fruit, Em and the Hula Maidens go undercover at the Kukui Nut Festival Hula Competition to uncover the killer. Em is once again up to her okole in danger and mystery, not to mention the seductive challenge of working with hunky detective Roland Sharpe, who moonlights as one of the island’s sexiest fire dancers. The hula is lively, the luau is smoking, the mai tais are delicious, and a killer is looking to get away with murder in paradise.

Add TWO TO MANGO to your Goodreads shelf
Purchase from Amazon

Bell Bridge Books
ISBN 9781611942880
Price $10.95
Publication Date: May 24, 2013

A jigger of tranquility is all Em Johnson wants, but now that her beloved Tiki Goddess Bar has been chosen as the location for Trouble in Paradise, TV’s hot new reality show, life is anything but tranquil. When a member of the camera crew is found dead in her kitchen—stabbed to death with Chef Kimo’s sashimi knife—the scene on the sleepy North Shore of Kauai goes from eccentrically crazy to downright dangerous. Suspects lurk behind every paper drink umbrella.

It’s not enough that Chef Kimo is the number one suspect or that the life’s-a-party Hula Maidens nearly burn down the place while dancing the hula with flaming coconuts. Em still has to deal with her Uncle Louie’s wedding to The Black Widow—until his fiance√©’s Mercedes plunges into the Pacific. Roland Sharpe, a handsome, Hawaiian, fire-dancing detective, warns the locals not to interfere, but Em and the madcap Maidens can’t help themselves and soon wind up knee deep in danger again. Can the irrepressible troupe solve three murders before the champagne goes flat?

Add THREE TO GET LEI'D to your Goodreads shelf
Purchase from Amazon
…………
ABOUT JILL MARIE


JILL MARIE LANDIS' novels have earned distinguished awards and slots on such national bestseller lists as the USA TODAY Top 50 and the New York Times Best Sellers Plus. She is a seven-time finalist for Romance Writers of America's RITA Award in Single Title Historical and Contemporary Romance as well as a Golden Heart and RITA Award winner.

Jill Marie resides in Hawaii with her husband. When she's not writing or sitting on the beach reading, she enjoys visiting with family and friends, raising orchids, working in her garden, occasionally quilting, but most of all dancing the hula.

Some of her recent releases include the Irish Angels Series, inspirational historical romance from Zondervan, and MAI TAI ONE ON, TWO TO MANGO, and THREE TO GET LEI’D, the first three titles in her hilarious “Tiki Goddess Mysteries” set in Hawaii from Belle Books.

Many of her bestselling classic historical romances containing memorable characters in page turning plots have been re-released in eBook format. For more information visit: www.jillmarielandis.com and www.thetikigoddess.com

Keep in touch with Jill Marie


.........
EXTRAS

Watch a trailer for MAI TAI ONE ON



Interview, Book Spotlight, Giveaway: Andrea R. Cooper discusses her writing, Vikings, and her historical and paranormal romances

 
Today, I'm so pleased to welcome Andrea R. Cooper to Fab Fantasy Fiction today. Andrea has been writing for quite a long time, but it is only last year that her two books - a historical romance VIKING FIRE and a paranormal romance THE GARNET DAGGER - were published by Crimson Romance. 

At ease in both genres, Andrea infuses her books with passion and a true sense of time and place - real and imagined. So, please welcome Andrea and if you have any questions to ask her, please use the comments. She'd love to discuss her books and writing with you.

................

Andrea, may I offer you a cup of coffee or tea? Or would you like to join me for some hot chocolate on this cold January morning? Yes? Great!

Thank you for having me here today.

You're so welcome! Before I forget, Andrea wants me to remind you all that her historical romance, VIKING FIRE, is a Kindle Daily Deal for 99cents through Sunday, February 2. You'll learn more about the book when we talk, but I did want to let you all know that upfront.

Okay, now that we have our hot chocolates in hand, let's chat!


(EVW) Your two books, VIKING FIRE and THE GARNET DAGGER, are very different genres (historical and fantasy/paranormal romance respectively). Did you enjoy writing one genre more than another?
(ARC) I enjoy both genres for different reasons. I love history—especially before the Industrial Revolution. Writing historical romance allows me to share my passion and knowledge of history. For my fantasy/ paranormal romance it’s the creativity and uniqueness that appeals to me.

(EVW) Could you tell us a bit more about them?
(ARC) Viking Fire – Historical romance with a touch of magic. Irish Kaireen is betrothed to her enemy-a Viking. She refuses to submit. Bram must battle not only her stubborn heart, but also a rival clan and traitor.

The Garnet Dagger – Fantasy/ Paranormal Romance. Brock, an Elvin, has been bitten by a vampyre. Instead of craving blood, he must live on the life-essence of others through his touch. Prophecy demands he find a witch: pierce her heart and draw her blood for his cure. However, when he falls in love with Celeste, he must not only forsake his people’s blight but fight a Warloc as well.

(EVW) Will there be more stories in THE GARNET DAGGER series?
(ARC)Yes. I am working on revisions to both Son of Dragons – Book Two, and War of Darkness – Book Three in the series.

(EVW) What inspired you to write these stories?
(ARC) For Viking Fire, it was reading that Lauchlin or Lochlain was the Gaelic word for Viking. And since my grandmother’s maiden name was McLauchlin, I couldn’t resist.

For The Garnet Dagger, it was watching the movie Underworld in the theaters. I thought, (*spoiler alert: if you haven’t seen Underworld, move to the next question) if a vampire can bite a werewolf and create a hybrid, why not another species. How would the dark gift be altered in a creature of light and magic?

(EVW) When did you begin writing? What advice can you share with would-be writers?
(ARC) I’ve always thought of myself as a storyteller. The idea of becoming a writer did not happen until years later. As early as I can remember, my friends would come up to me at recess and ask what we were going to play that day. I created the characters and plot. I even thought up Space Vampires.

When I was fourteen, I wrote poetry. I don’t remember what started that trend, but it lasted until my early twenties. Then I went through a dry spell and didn’t write anything. I still thought up characters and their stories, but I had no one to ‘play’ their parts. Then the characters would not be silent, so I wrote my first novel. And haven’t stopped writing since.

(EVW) What author(s) inspired you growing up? What’s on your bookshelf now?
(ARC) Since I wasn’t allowed to read anything with fantasy, magic, paranormal, etc., growing up, so it was not until I was an adult that I started reading regularly. When I moved out on my own, I was finally able to read whatever I craved—which was exactly what my parents forbid ;)

My favorite authors are Terry Goodkind, Anne Bishop, Kim Harrison, PC Cast, Laurel K. Hamilton, Julie Garwood (her historical novels), and Yasmine Galenorn.

I have a kindle, so tons of books on my shelf. What’s on my reading log now are: Electric Moon by Stacy Burtger, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, The Silk Romance by Helena Fairfax, and Till Death and Beyond by Lyn C. Johanson.

Andrea, thank you so much for joining us and I'm so glad YOUR books are on my Kindle bookshelf. It was wonderful getting to know you a bit more. Also, thanks for offering digital copies of both your books for the giveaway.

Now, Andrea would like to know what is YOUR favorite genre to read?


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BOOK SPOTLIGHT


Crimson Romance
ISBN 9781440571237
Price $4.99 (ON SALE NOW THROUGH 2 FEB FOR $0.99)
Publication Date: July 29, 2013

856 CE, Ireland is a land of myth, magic, and blood. Viking raiders have fought the Irish for over half a century. Rival Irish clans promise only betrayal and carnage.

Kaireen, daughter of Laird Liannon, is suddenly forced into an arranged marriage with her sworn enemy, a Viking. She refuses to submit. With no mention of love, only land and the protection of her clan, she endeavors to get her betrothed banished from her country. Will love find its way around her stubborn heart?

Bram, the Viking, finds himself without future or inheritance as a younger son in his family. A marriage to the Laird’s daughter would grant him land if he swears fidelity and if his men will fight along with the Liannons against any foe - Irish or Viking. However, the Laird’s feisty daughter only holds animosity for him and his kind. Is marriage worth the battle scars of such a relentless opponent?

With the blame for a rival laird’s death treacherously set against the Liannons, Kaireen and Bram must find a way to lay aside their differences as an unforeseen darkness sends death snapping at their heels.

Sensuality Level: Sensual

Add VIKING FIRE to your Goodreads shelf
Purchase from Amazon
To read an excerpt, visit Andrea's website.
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ENTER THE GIVEAWAY

One winner will receive a digital copy of Andrea R. Cooper's TWO books

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BOOK SPOTLIGHT

Crimson Romance
ISBN 9781440565595
Price $4.99 (On sale for $3.82)
Publication Date: March 25, 2013

Forbidden to cross the Elvin barrier into human lands, Brock cannot sate his curiosity. Cursed by a vampyre bite that forces him to feed on the life-essence of others, he is unable to touch another without taking their life. Chained by prophesy, he must find a witch, pierce her heart, and draw her blood for his cure.

Celeste must escape the monks who have held her prisoner for years. Her magic has been kept dormant by her captors. An ancient powerful Warloc craves her powers. If he succeeds in devouring her magic, she and the world will die.

When Brock falls in love with Celeste before realizing her demise is his cure, will love triumph over his desire to be healed? Will he risk everything to save her from a Warloc, an oath breaker, who also wants her dead?

Sensuality Level: Sensual

Add THE GARNET DAGGER to your Goodreads shelf
Purchase from Amazon
To read an excerpt, visit Andrea's website.
...............
ABOUT ANDREA

Andrea R. Cooper has always enjoyed creating characters and stories. But it wasn't until she was in her late twenties that she started writing novels.

What happened that ignited the writing flame in her fingers? Divorced, and disillusioned by love songs and stories. They exaggerate. She thought. Love and Romance are not like that in the real world. Then she met her husband and realized, yes love and romance are exactly like the songs and stories say. She is now a happy wife, and a mom to three kids (two boys and a girl).

Once she heard about a writer who never let her characters deviate from the script. If they did, she just killed them. How sad, she thought. For her one of the best parts of being a writer is letting the characters have a mind of their own and seeing where the story takes them.

She loves this quote from Robert Frost, which sums up her opinion on allowing the characters their freedom: “No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader.” ― Robert Frost

Andrea writes fantasy, paranormal, and historical romance. When not writing or reading, one may find Andrea dancing in Zumba.

Keep in touch with Andrea


...............
EXTRAS

Watch book trailers for VIKING FIRE & THE GARNET DAGGER





29 January 2014

Review: The Silver Crescent by Debby Grahl is four stars of fun, romance, and trickery.

If you’re looking for a fun, lighthearted read, The Silver Crescent by Debby Grahl is the book for you. Opening with a scene of betrayal and murder from the late 1800s, soon Elise, the great-great-great grandniece of one of those killed, and Max, the owner of the Victorian home where the killing took place, are on a treasure hunt to find missing silver. How Elise and Max found themselves in this small town a half an hour from Ann Arbor? Well that's another story! In addition to the treasure, they might find some romance too - and they do have a few fun sidekicks to lighten the mood anytime it gets too heavy. Oh, and did I mention the ghosts?!

Yes, even with the murder this is a sweet, fun book and the first that I’ve read by author Debby Grahl. If at times, I wanted to shake Max, I know that my reaction was not out of place as both Elise and Kathy did too. I have a feeling he will go through life oblivious to the actions of others, which is okay as long as he listens to wise counsel. But what man does?!

The ghosts were wonderfully fun, even the bad’un and Debby Grahl kept the pages turning with a wonderfully paced novel. In some ways, I felt like it was a grown up Nancy Drew novel, which is a perfect read for someone like me who was addicted to those stories. However, Nancy never had the HOT romantic encounters that Grahl depicts, so don’t expect this story to be tame.

There’s romance, intrigue, ghosts, hidden treasure, and fun secondary characters. Just a perfect light read for a cold winter’s night. I’m looking forward to reading more from this author and hope that some of her future stories will be set in the Low Country where she resides.

The Silver Crescent by Debby Grahl is four stars of fun, romance, and trickery.





From the Publisher



The Silver Crescent by Debby Grahl
The Writer's Coffee Shop Publishing House
Pub Date   Jan 30 2014
ISBN9781612132082
Price $15.25

Betrayal, murder, and a fortune stolen a century ago from a Colorado silver mine send Elise Baxter to Cedar Bend on a quest to solve a family mystery—and to recover a treasure. Following clues from her great-great-grandmother’s diaries, Elise seeks out Max Holt and his restored Victorian inn.
An intense attraction between Max and Elise leads him to believe she may be the girl of his dreams. But when he discovers her true interest in him and his inn, memories of a past betrayal threaten to end their passionate relationship.

Max soon learns his inn has guests from the netherworld—a pair of ghosts who seek justice for a past murder, and an evil presence who will oppose them.

Guided by the ghosts, Max and Elise search the inn, but there are others driven by greed who will stop at nothing to unlock the mystery of the Silver Crescent.

Author Interview, Book Spotlight, & Giveaway: Adrianne Lee discusses You Don't Know Jack



I'm absolutely delighted to welcome author Adrianne Lee to Fab Fantasy Fiction today. She's going to discuss YOU DON'T KNOW JACK the first book in her romantic suspense comedic series Jack B. Smart as well as her BIG SKY PIE SERIES. There's a FABulous giveaway with TWO possible winners. Adrianne, than you so much for joining us here today!

…………………….


Adrianne, you are such a fabulous person and generous with your time. Thank you for joining us today. I know you’ve been writing, editing, and going over galleys like mad this month. Plus you must be prepping like crazy for Sunday, the game of games, when the Seahawks face off against the Broncos. So, I don’t want to keep you for too long, but I do hope that you’ll have a chance to relax a bit here at Fab Fantasy Fiction.

Emsy, First let me thank you for having me as your guest today. I’m so pleased that I had the opportunity to meet you during the DELICIOUS blog tour, and that the outcome was that we hit it off so well that we became friends. Unexpected, wonderful result. I’m grabbing a diet coke and an apple pie tartlet for the chat.
Oh, that sounds perfect Adrianne. 

(EVW) Adrianne, one of the first books I read for review this fall was your first book in the BIG SKY PIE series, DELECTABLE. I know you mentioned that it will be coming out in print soon. Could you share a bit more about this book and the series?

(AL) DELECTABLE will be released in paperback on May 27, 2014 and I’m thrilled to be offering it to all of my readers who don’t own eReaders.
When I decided to write a series set in a pie shop, there was only one place that would do, my favorite place. Montana. And that’s how the name of the pie shop came to me. I swear, in some other life, I must have lived in Montana. It always makes me smile the second we cross the state borderline.

I wanted the Big Sky Pie books to be romantic as well as to have some humor. I always have some sort of family dynamics in my books, and it seemed to me that the pie shop should be born from some life-altering catalyst. And so it was. Quint McCoy, my hero, is a mess when DELECTABLE opens; he has pretty much ruined his life. He isn’t sure those he loves will ever forgive him, or if he can ever forgive himself. Callee McCoy is less concerned with forgiving him, than trusting him, and she hates that she still wants him.

The pie research is fun. My pies never turn out as pretty as the ones in my books or on my covers. The Art Department is doing an incredible job. I’m thrilled with the DELIGHTFUL cover (Big Sky Pie #3). And the DECADENT cover (Big Sky Pie #4) is a chocolate cream pie. I’ve only seen the mock up, but it’s great.


(EVW) As someone who devoured Nancy Drew, Trixie Belden, and Agatha Christie books alongside romances as a child, my love for mysteries and romance novels has only grown through the years. While BIG SKY PIE is definitely a fun, contemporary romance series, you’re also known as an author of romantic suspense novels. Could you tell us a little about them?

(AL) An early interest in writing and books came when I played the card game Authors at a young age. It’s one of those games like Old Maid. All of the authors on the cards were men, all had long hair or wigs. But something about those cards resonated with me and has stayed with me forever. I didn’t read much until the last quarter of my senior year in high school. I read so slowly that I didn’t ever think to do it as a pastime. But thanks to that wonderful literature teacher, I started reading Charles Dickens’ stories, and then my mother introduced me to Agatha Christie. She was a rabid mystery reader. I started reading romances with Kathleen Woodiwiss. And when I finally started writing seriously, I ended up with a critique group who were all writing romance. I was writing mysteries, attempting to sell to Ellery Queen Mystery and Alfred Hitchcock magazines. Although, that never happened, I did end up writing Romantic/Suspense, combining my two favorite genres, and that’s how, eventually, I found success.

It seemed no matter what I tried to write, I always ended up writing women-in-jeopardy stories before anyone was calling them that. I love puzzles, so most of these R/S stories are what I call, sexy whodunits. I’m really excited that the next series I’m doing for my publisher will be romantic mysteries.


(EVW) I love JACK! Yes, that Jack. Your YOU DON’T KNOW JACK heroine- Jacqueline Bouvier Smart. What a great book with a sassy heroine, some mystery, and a ghost (it has it all). Could you tell us a little more about it and what’s next in the Jack B. Smart series? (I can’t wait!)
(AL) I’m so glad you love JACK!! I love Jack too. This series is very dear to me as it’s the book I wrote after losing my daughter to cervical cancer in 2009. I could not deal with anything dark and sadly, for me, that was the only thing editors were buying. Dark, darker, darkest. I was living dark. I needed something lighter. So, I made Jack fun. I’ve actually started the second book in the series, but had to quit when the contracts for the Big Sky Pie books were offered. The second Jack book is about a diet scam JACK B LEAN (working title), and takes Apollo and Jack on another adventure, along with her aunts, the Golden Oldies, and of course, the sexy Maddox brothers.

I really thought I’d laid the ghost to rest at the end of YOU DON’T KNOW JACK, but Lars appeared right as I started in and wouldn’t go away. Apparently he still has unfinished business and can’t crossover until he’s handled it. I’m actually glad. Lars is funny. He might even get a little more “visual” as the books go on.


(EVW) Adrianne, I first got to know you while we worked together on your stop at FFF during the DELICIOUS book tour, yours and mine first virtual tour. Working with you and watching all my other friends on FB and Twitter, I’m so aware that as writers you also need to be social media mavens to get the word out about your books. Could you tell us a little more about how this writer’s role has evolved (and how do you have time to write)? How can your fans help out? Do you have (or plan for) a Street Team?
(AL) I am not a fast writer and all of the social media required on a daily basis just to keep your name out there really cuts into my day and into my writing. I need an assistant for that stuff, but can’t afford one. Maybe one day. I don’t know even know what a street team is, but from what I’ve been told, I probably do need one. So, if anyone wants to volunteer and can give me a clue as to what exactly I should look for in street team members, I’m listening.

(EVW) Could you share what author(s) influenced you most growing up? What’s on your bookshelf now?
(AL) Well, as I’ve previously said, I started reading late in life. Agatha Christie and Charles Dickens influenced me a lot on some levels, because when I started writing, my mom asked why all of my characters had British names. I really loved Phyllis Whitney’s gothic stories, too. That romantic suspense element. My first Romantic/Suspense Endless Fear is a modern gothic along those lines. Creepy, isolated house, a heroine who believes she may have murdered her mother, but is suffering amnesia, a sexy, dark hero, a lurking killer, a really messed up family.

Adrianne, thank you so much for joining us today! In conclusion, could you let us know about what you’re offering for the Jack B. Smart giveaway and what question you’d like answered by those who enter?


I’m going to give a couple of lucky people a copy of DELECTABLE and DELICIOUS for their eReaders. That’s right. Two winners, two books each. Just answer this simple question: Have you ever been to Montana?


Adrianne, thank you for your continued generosity. I'm going to add two copies of the featured book YOU DON'T KNOW JACK to the giveaway, so two winners are going to walk away with three wonderful books by Adrianne Lee!

Thank you, Emsy.

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BOOK SPOTLIGHT

Jack B Smart Series Book One
ASIN B00ELSAMHS
Price $0.99
Publication Date: August 15, 2013

JACQUELINE BOUVI√ČR SMART has sworn off men and murder. But when she stumbles over a dead body and into the arms of her irresistible former lover, and then gets her best friend accused of murder, she has no choice. Jack B Smart pulls on her big girl stilettos and, with the unsolicited help of three gun packing old broads and one disgruntled ghost, sets out to find the real killer. But will the killer find her first?

Add YOU DON'T KNOW JACK to your Goodreads shelf
Purchase from Amazon


…………………….

ENTER THE GIVEAWAY

TWO WINNERS WILL EACH RECEIVE 
ONE DIGITAL COPY OF THESE THREE BOOKS

To enter, remember to tell Adrianne if you've ever been to Montana
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ABOUT ADRIANNE


Adrianne Lee lives with her husband of many, many years on the beautiful Olympic Peninsula in Washington State in a pole barn building her husband transformed into an upstairs apartment with a shop below for his hot rods. Adrianne creates her stories on her laptop, in her recliner with her adopted cat, Spooky, curled between her calves, snoozing. Over thirty years of summer vacationing in the Flat Head Lake area near Kalispell and Glacier Park has given her a love for all things Montana.


Keep in touch with Adrianne
…………………..
EXTRAS

ADD ADRIANNE LEE'S BIG SKY PIE SERIES 
TO YOUR BOOKSHELF


Delectable: Big Sky Pie #1

Forever Yours (Grand Central Publishing)
ISBN 9781455574414
Price $2.99

Montana real estate agent Quint McCoy will tell you that the most important thing is location, location, location. It's a lesson he learns all too well when he goes incommunicado for a four-week fishing trip to Alaska. While he's away, his mother Molly turns his office into the pie shop she has always dreamed of, Big Sky Pie. But that's not the only surprise in store for him. 

On her way out of town, Callee McCoy only wants to say a fond farewell to her beloved mother-in-law. But Molly soon persuades Callee to stay and lend a hand at the new shop, even if it means heating up the kitchen with her soon-to-be ex. As Callee and Quint rediscover their recipe for love, they realize that some couples are so sinfully good together that one delectable taste is never enough . . .








Forever Yours (Grand Central Publishing)
ISBN 9781455549177
Price $2.99


Workaholic Nick Taziano is the proud owner of a successful marketing company in Montana. But his career takes a backseat when he learns his dad plans to remarry his ex. Nick fears she'll break his heart . . . again. And he doesn't like being reunited with her obnoxious daughter-until the all-grown-up beauty kisses him at the engagement party. The kiss might be a mistake, but once he tastes Jane's lips, nothing-not even her famous blueberry pie-compares.

A promising chef at Big Sky Pie, Jane Wilson never, ever wanted to see Nick Taziano again, but he's just been hired to do the pie shop's marketing. How's a girl supposed to bake the best pastries in town when he's a constant reminder of their steamy chemistry? His chocolate eyes and sexy dimples heat up the kitchen-and every part of her body. Jane has no room for a man in her life, yet sometimes the most delicious dishes don't follow the recipe . . .








Forever Yours (Grand Central Publishing)
ISBN 9781455549191
Publication date: March 4, 2014

BAD BOYS ARE HER WEAKNESS
Ice Erickksen has "one-night stand" written all over him. Once he's finished shooting the Big Sky Pie reality show, this hot-as-hell TV producer is going to hightail it out of Montana and return to his glamorous life in L.A. But Ice gets into hot water when one of the goodies in the pie shop-a delightful blonde with marriage on her mind-burns up the camera lens.

Andrea Lovette, the manager of the shop, always picks the bad boys. But after her divorce, she's determined to find the good, family man that her two young sons deserve. Although Andrea's body sizzles whenever Ice is near, she knows in her heart that he's not marriage material. Then why does the bad boy still seem like such a good idea?
Add DELIGHTFUL to your Goodreads shelf
Pre-order DELIGHTFUL from Amazon