Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Kiss the Enemy by Dianna Love


Today I've New York Times Best-selling author, Dianna Love sharing her book, Kiss the Enemy.

Peep Rep: Does she come bearing gifts?

Liza: Lot's of them. Sit down and I'll tell you. 


At each stop, Dianna will be awarding EITHER the ebook box set of the first 3 Slye Temp OR a signed copy of ONE of the first 4 Slye Temp books. (Print Books are Continental US Only - Amazon/iTunes/Nook ebook equivalent for international) to one randomly drawn commenter at each stop during the tour, 

Plus a GRAND PRIZE of Signed copies of all 4 Slye Temp books – LAST CHANCE TO RUN, NOWHERE SAFE, HONEYMOON TO DIE FOR – plus a MONOGRAMMED SLING BACKPACK, and swag pack of surprise goodies. (Continental US only for print books - Amazon/iTunes/Nook 3 ebook box set for international) will be awarded to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

*Thunk*

Liza: And Peep Rep faints. So let's find out about this book without Peep Rep's dubious assistance.


Kiss the Enemy
by Dianna Love

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BLURB:

Her only hope is in the hands of her enemy.

Slye Temp operative Margaux Duke is chasing an international terrorist who murdered the last of her family. But her plans go up in smoke when her agency is in the crosshairs of the dangerous killer, forcing her to turn rogue to protect the only family she has left - her team. This is no time to get involved, especially with an enemy who steps between her and the terrorist she has to stop.
                              
Logan Baklanov has been known by many names in the underbelly of international terrorism and will do whatever it takes to shield those he loves from the treacherous world he lives in. When his brother’s life is in jeopardy, Logan takes on a role that places him at the top of the most-wanted lists of government security agencies in every country. He accepts the no-win situation, willing to make the ultimate sacrifice until a long legged beauty draws the attention of his deadly target and screws Logan’s carefully planned mission.

Margaux and Logan must join forces in a dangerous game to save a major city from a powerful psychopath, but their ruse escalates out of control when the heat smoldering between them threatens to explode.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Excerpt 

Margaux gazed around the elegant room, taking in the mundane, wealthy men shopping for an expensive party girl for the night. All of the clients here were middle aged and ordinary.

On the other hand, Dragan’s bodyguard was anything but uninteresting.

He stood off to her right, with Secret-Service-looking eyewear and a coal-black designer suit that had to be custom-tailored to fit shoulders as wide as his.

That was one big man.

Just her flavor, if she had any interest in a taste.

Surprisingly, he still managed to blend into the shadows, motionless as a tiger waiting for his dinner to stroll by. Power rolled off him in silent waves. She couldn’t tell much about his face with that thick, but neat, black beard and his eyes hidden.

Handsome was too simple a word to describe him, too civilized. Like admiring a wolf for its lush coat or a shark for its grace in the water, a woman would find this man attractive in a deadly way.

A woman who enjoyed playing with fire or dancing with lightning.

A woman who was a fool. 

Nothing about that man invited sexual banter, which she found even more appealing. No, he was not one to play with and that presented a problem.

Because right now she had to get to Dragan and that bodyguard was her only route.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AUTHOR Bio and Links:


New York Times bestseller Dianna Love once
dangled over a hundred feet in the air to create unusual marketing projects for Fortune 500 companies. She now writes high-octane romantic suspense, thrillers and urban fantasy. Her new Slye Temp romantic suspense series launched its first four books in 2013 to rave reviews and more will follow in 2014. Her books are available in print and ebook.  On the rare days she’s not in her writing cave, Dianna enjoys touring the country on her BMW motorcycle. She lives in the Atlanta, GA area with her motorcycle-instructor husband and a tank full of unruly saltwater critters. Read excerpts of her books at www.authordiannalove.com or join her Dianna Love Street Team on Facebook and get in on the fun!

Links




Follow her on Twitter at -- https://twitter.com/diannalove

Buy Links for KISS THE ENEMY:






For other buy links, to read an excerpt, or to purchase an autographed copy, visit  the KISS THE ENEMY page on Dianna’s website:  http://www.authordiannalove.com/bookshelf/77/kiss-the-enemy---book-4

And now for the Rafflecopter to win the fabulous prizes:


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Liza Interviews the book Traces by Betty Bolté

Today, we are interviewing the book Traces, Ghosts of Roseville Book 1 by Betty Bolté.

Peep Rep: Oh Ghosts. We love ghosts. 

Liza: Settle down Peep Rep. We don't know anything about these ghosts yet.

Peep Rep: Let's find out! 

Liza: Well, I put you in charge of transportation. How is the book arriving?

Peep Rep: By pickup. 

Liza: That will take days!

Peep Rep: Nope, I hired a Leprechaun. Their pickups are magically inclined. Here it is now.



 Liza: That's either a giant book or a---

Peep Rep: Tiny Leprechaun truck.


Liza: Welcome Traces. Are you ready for my questions?

Traces: After bumping around and being buffeted by the wind, I’m not sure I even know my own name. But I’m curious. How do actually expect to interview me? It's not like you can read my thoughts or hear my voice.

Peep Rep: Hey, Traces, unless you want to be No Trace can be found, you need to nix the attitude. I'm sorry you had a rough trip, but Liza can hear you, and you are perilously close to becoming kindling rather than getting in a Kindle.

Traces: Oh dear. Am I going to die now and become a ghost book?

Liza: Now look, Traces is trembling. *pets book* It's okay. I'm not mad at you. I'd be a bit annoyed driving in a tiny truck, myself. And I will try to call you by your full name, Traces.

Traces: Well, actually, my full name is Traces, Ghosts of Roseville Book 1.

Liza: Don't push it.

Peep Rep: Yeah, keep it simple. Liza is a terrible typist. Your name would come out like: taceswGhoestw ofRovevilleook1.

Traces: So just use my nickname, Traces, then.

Liza: Great. Let's get this interview going. Tell me a bit about your heroine.

Traces: 
Meredith Reed is a forty-year-old architect turned demolition expert. 

Liza: That's a weird twist in careers. She goes from creating things to blowing them up.

Traces: That's because she’s been desperately searching for the means to bury her grief. 

Liza: Why is she grieving?

Traces: She lost her husband, but how and why will be revealed over time. But believe me, she has reason to grieve.

Liza: So tell me about why she's in Tennessee.

Traces: She inherited her family’s historic plantation home, Twin Oaks, in Tennessee from her grandmother.

Liza: That's nice. She can fix it up.

Traces: *Page flutter* That was her grandma’s plan, but no. She decides to start anew by razing the antebellum house and replacing it with a memorial garden.

Liza: Shouldn't this house be registered and protected by the Historical Society?

Traces: The paperwork is in the process, but it hasn't been registered yet.

Liza: Then she's going to destroy a beautiful antebellum mansion as part of her grief therapy? Is there no one in the book that thinks this is a horrible idea?

Traces:  Both her family and her grandmother's handsome estate lawyer are outraged. 

Liza: Handsome, eh? Tell me more about him.

Traces: James Maximillian “Max” Chandler needs two things to complete his life plan: become a senior partner of his law firm and find his soul mate. 

Liza: Realistically speaking, neither of those are easy tasks. 

Traces: True, but he's been promised a promotion once his proposed legislation to protect all of the county’s historic properties is approved. 

Liza: Only one of them is about to be razed.

Traces: Yes, unless he can bring her to her senses. 

Liza: You said he was searching for a soul mate. How's that going? 

Traces: Far more challenging. He's never met the right woman in all of his forty-six years.

Liza: Any chance he might like Meredith?

Traces: Well, he thinks her talented and attractive, but she is incredibly aloof. Then there is the whole 'destroy Twin Oaks' thing. 

Liza: Yeah, that might sink his chances for partnership.

Traces: It's more than that. He's grown to cherish the mansion. 

Liza: So how do you stop her from razing it before sense can be crammed into her head?

Traces: Well, her sister moves in and refuses to leave. You cannot raze a building if people are in it. 

Liza: Clever. And how do the two sisters get along?

Traces: You wouldn’t believe! Not only do they argue and fight, but the memories of their childhood spent at Twin Oaks causes even more turmoil between them. 

Liza: She might be able to get her evicted. I'm worried for this old house. Please give me some hope.

Traces: While Meredith struggles to reconcile her past and her future, she learns a lesson from the spectral Lady in Blue that may save both her family and the family home from destruction.

Liza: Ghost to the rescue! I love Ghosts who help get us to the right solution. I can't wait to read it.  Speaking of which, may I peek beneath your covers? 


Traces: I suppose. Here is the first time the Lady in Blue attempts to reach out to Meredith.

The memory of a childhood dream floated into her mind. The Lady in Blue. Inspired by the belles in that old movie, Gone with the Wind, most likely. But the dream had replayed for her frequently as a child. It always started with a beautiful young woman dressed in a royal-blue hoop skirt, dotted with sequins twinkling with every step. Her blonde hair was pulled up with sausage curls dangling about her petite face. Funny how she could never espy the lady’s eyes, though.

An icy breeze blew through the half-open window, fluttering the lacy sheers. Meredith opened her eyes at the first blast. Griz lifted her head from where she’d laid it on her paws, staring at the window. Meredith stroked the cat, but the feline leaped up, the hair along the ridge of her backbone slowly rising.

“What’s the matter, girl?” Meredith looked at the cat, then the window. She pushed back the sheet and went to the window to close it. The sheers settled into place. “There’s nothing there. It was just the wind.”
Griz growled low in her throat, staring at the window.
Meredith slipped into bed, pulling up both the sheet and the lightweight coverlet. All was quiet except for the slowly fading complaints of her cat. “It’s okay, Griz. Now where was I?”

One, two, three…

Another icy breeze chilled her despite the covers draped across her body. The window remained tightly closed. Her brow tensed into a frown as she sat up and scanned the room. A flash of light drew her attention to the mirror on the triple dresser set against the far wall. She gasped as Griz jumped from the bed and raced from the room. The Lady in Blue appeared in the mirror, standing between the window and where Meredith sat on the bed, the lady’s hands reaching toward her. The lady’s silk skirt rustled when she stepped closer to the bed, sequins glinting.


Fear, sharp and intense, shot through Meredith. She spun around to confront the woman, only to discover she sat alone among her tangled bedclothes, sleep a distant thought.


Pre-order  and save 20% off the retail cover price.



Betty Bolté writes both historical and contemporary stories that feature strong, loving women and brave, compassionate men. No matter whether the stories are set in the past or the present, she loves to include a touch of the paranormal. Traces is a contemporary romantic women’s fiction novel set in a haunted plantation home in Tennessee, scheduled for release on April 28, 2014. Hometown Heroines: True Stories of Bravery, Daring, and Adventure (2012) is a collection of short historical fiction based on the real-life achievements of 19 American girls in the 19th century, each with a landmark in the United States of America. The first edition won Honorable Mention in the 2003 Writer’s Digest International Self-Published Book Awards and 2000 Writer’s Digest Writing Competition. She’s the author of several nonfiction books and currently marketing a romantic historical fiction trilogy.

Social Media Links
Twitter: @BettyBolte

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Late Victorian Dresses

Late Victorian Era Dresses

Sounds like an easy task, right. 
Find some pictures on pininterest and slap them up.
Here's my problem. Lots of pictures are mislabel to their exact time. They are 1890s. But the decade was far from homogeneous.
The most notable change is the sleeves which are slender in 1890-1892 



(1893 is a transition year and is all over the place.)



During the coming of THE NEW WOMEN (1st named in 1894) they give themselves large puffy 'I am NOT fragile' shoulders. They keep these massive puffs from 1894-1896



In 1987 & 1988 they gave it up, tired of fighting with their coats in the winter, and returned to slender arms. The big difference between the early part of the decade is that the bustle has nearly disappeared this time around and the hats are huge and carry strange items like birds, fruits and dead foxes. 



By 1899, the hints of the Edwardian style show up with the use of lace and draped softer fabrics.

However, most of the ladies continue to wear the more delineated line of 87/88.


There is also a difference between English, American, French and other countries. France, home of House of Worth, would make a dress for any nationality with the funds to buy it, so they sold widely diverse styles, not all which would be accepted in all countries. Thus, when someone moved to a new location, buying a new wardrobe was a top priority.


However, that doesn't mean all ladies wore the same style. We don't now, and we didn't then.
Here are some style sheets showing what was 'in fashion'  and what someone wore instead.










Above left is the 'new' larger sleeve style of 1893. The style to the right is also from 1893, but it is the 'retro' style that grew popular in the early 1890's.



Here's a 1895 'Gibson Girl' style vs. a french style preferred by some.





So as you can see, one style does not suit all.

Nor does one dress a day work.
It was not uncommon for a woman to change her clothes many times in the day.

Staying to year of  1895:

There was the morning gown to be worn in the privacy of your suite



a day dress
This particular dress is called a 'Shirt Waist' because it mimics a man's shirt. (except for the sleeves.) It was the basic uniform for working young women of the growing middle class.



a walking dress, 
no train to drag about in the muck.


an afternoon dress to visit others (with train to drag about in the muck.)







 a tea gown  is likened to a morning gown made of luxurious fabrics. No corset is normally worn beneath it. Notice a strong resemblance between the afternoon and tea dress length of skirt trails. The main differences are the afternoon dress could be worn outside and required a corset, while the tea dress was for intimate indoor occasions only with people you don't mind seeing you without a corset. This means the host of the tea party might wear a tea gown while visitors might prefer arriving in an afternoon dress. Main source 



a dinner dress, to my eye, looks a great deal like a 'day dress' but with more expensive fabrics.  Since a tea gown was not deemed appropriate for the dinner table, the corset must be located and a dinner dress put on for the evening meal.







and last, but not least, the ball gown. 
Notice the train on the ball gown was not normally as long as the trains on the tea gowns. That may be because it was easier to dance in shorter trains.

 I don't know about you, but to have the whole day wasted in changing clothes sounds like hell to me. And don't forget, ladies were advised to bath at least twice a day.


 Of course if you wished to go swimming, 
(1899) 



      (1893)






 or golfing (1899)



or ride a horse
(1893)








or work out in a gym. (1893)



or riding a bike (1896)


There were special clothes for each.




And let us not fail to mention the sad cries for attention, otherwise known as 'What was she thinking?"


(1894)
The need to compensate for small breasts





Groping made easy



Can't take your eyes off my chest, can you? 
Stare much longer and you'll have to marry me.







(1894)
The wonders of fabric folds to give the illusion of breasts. 




(1895)
Grab the buckle, you know you want to.



(1896)
Watch me wiggle


(1896)
Faux cleavage
Assuming the wearer's skin was close to the color of the chest fabric, this ballgown would be most risque.

Thus ends my review of Late Victorian Era clothing for ladies.  Just reading about all these dresses to be worn in a single day exhausts me. I can't blame my character Vic (in my humorous,  Late Victorian  
mystery romance series, Book 1 - August release) for deciding to live the life of a young man instead of a woman. 
Vic makes a handsome young man, doesn't she?

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Janice G. Ross spotlight



Channeling
My Inner Drama Queen

Anyone that’s knows me should be aware of my motto: “I don’t do drama, I only write it!” Yes, that’s me, Janice G. Ross. You see, I aim to live a stress free live and am quick to walk away from anything that challenges that goal. But I do believe that everyone had the potential to call out drama as needed. In my case, I love to read and I LOVE LOVE LOVE to write; therefore, what better way to add a bit of drama to my life than through my characters. The biggest benefit of doing so include is that no matter how much havoc you wreak; it cannot effect your day to day. Isn’t that glorious?

In my writings, I’ve taken serious topics and not so serious topics to create a range of stories. Through each of these storylines, I’ve tried to infuse various levels of drama, in order to make the overall novels realistic. When writing dramatic scenes, I think about the very opposite of what I might do and I make my characters do just that. Remember my motto…I don’t do drama, I only write it! I reason through the totally unreasonable behaviors, even attempting to push these individuals well beyond. I try to force myself to think about all the anger and all the troublesome thoughts that could potentially creep up in the minds of my “drama queens”. In doing so, I channel my inner drama queen and force the hands of my characters. Here’s a sample of me doing just that:




*****
Damaged
Girls I

Only The Beginning


The hour was nearing 1:00 a.m. A new day, different home, and different circumstances; the past could be dashed aside in the matter of seconds as the impending threat reappeared. With the phone silenced, he was okay. But the door was a different tale, for soon all would be revealed.

Quickly, he approached the door and swung it inward. On the verge of another explosion, Jessica halted. On the lower steps to the home, one foot was firmly in the air. The thrashing was not by hand, rather by the slithery sandals. She immediately placed the weapon to the ground. He looked down upon battling eyes, his expression churned with sympathy. Their eyes locked.

“It’s time to come home, Stevie.” Rage was no longer her driving force. There emerged gentleness in the words, yet disaster-twitched lips and wet eyes refused to liberate the floods.

His answer was simple. “Jessica, you do what you want. I’m not going anywhere.” He wagged his head from side to side, mockingly twirling the glass of deep-brown liquor.

“It’s not my fault, baby.” She paused for a further reply. “Let’s go home and discuss this. Please, Stevie?”

“No. You need to go home. When I’m ready we’ll discuss what needs to be done with my home and your business. You’re not going to hold that over my head forever.” Perhaps the effects of the wine helped to reinforce his strength. He openly smirked, nodded his head, and clicked his tongue. When he stepped back to shut the door, she plunged forward with a fierce force. The glass of wine was unwillingly thrown from his hand.

Otherwise he remained unaffected by her paltry attempts at brutality.



From behind him, at the top of the inside stairs, Jillian approached as a witness to the unsavory scene. “Stevie, what’s going on here?” Fear overrode uncertainty as she rushed down the stairs.

“Get out of my house before I call the police!” Jillian’s feet barely pounded on carpeted stairs.



“Go back to bed, Jillie. I can handle this.”


“No, Stevie, enough is enough. I don’t want her here.”


“Shut up, bitch! You can’t have him.”

Jessica turned all hatred in the direction of the descending foe.



Barely paying attention to her manner of travel, Jillian slipped midway up the steps. Her head twisted and her sides lashed against the wooden staircase handle, yet in her scramble to rebalance herself the back of her head collapsed against the steps causing her entire body to crumble under the force.


Stevie rushed over to assist.


Jessica glared in horror.


“Baby, are you okay?”


No response.


“Baby?”


Stevie was no longer concerned for Jessica’s feelings. He only focused on what was right at the moment; and at this moment his emotions circled the woman who was now in his arms. Jillian was dressed in one of his loose red and gray boxers and a white tank. Her chest
heaved in full force as curling lashes fluttered open and shut.



“Baby, talk to me.” His words plucked with mounts of fear. He finally turned to Jessica and commanded, “Call 9-1-1.”

When she refused to respond right away, he barked the orders again, “Call 9-1-1, now! The phone’s over there.” He motioned with the tip of his chin.



A flood of moisture caught his attention. As he lowered his head in examination, he noticed a drop of red on
the carpet directly below them.



“No, Jillian . . . No, Jillian!”
*****
Bio

Janice Ross was born in Guyana, South America and
migrated to the USA in 1980. Although her citizenship certificate now reads the United States of America, she considers herself a citizen of the world. Sure
she has not physically been around the  world and back, but she’s travelled in her mind and dreams. 


Janice is an author. She enjoys writing about social issues and personal experiences. Janice’s debut release was entitled Damaged Girls. She uses the three books in that series to detail the effects of different forms of abuse, discussing issues that are known to be taboo. Her next release, Jumping Ship, is a dedication to her country of birth and an introductory novella to the Island Hopping Series – due out in 2014. It’s poised to be a colorful and emotional experience of life, love and family. As of present, she is also a contributor to a short story collection – Just Between Us, Inspiring Stories by Women. And lastly, Loving Nate is a novella about the realities of losing one’s self to love.

Janice enjoys reading. And is drawn to stories with distinct characters that she can love or hate, characters she can form alliances with or characters that she can swear off and despise. She is also weak for a good cultural tale, preferably in the form of historical fiction. Janice loves to be taken off guard by clever language and settings.

Janice is also a devout supporter and promoter of other authors through social media. She hosts a weekly show, Cultural Cocktails, on the largest social radio network, Blog Talk Radio.

You can connect with Janice on

&






Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Christy Gissendaner tells us about In too Deep

(Kitten, you shouldn't be here. There's a wolf coming over.)

Guest Post by Christy Gissendaner
       Take one bridesmaid. Mix in one sexy alpha wolf. Toss is in a pinch of danger. And voila! You have my latest release, In Too Deep. For this one, I got to combine several of my favorite things. Shifters, weddings, beaches, and mermaids. I know, I know. It seems like an odd mixture, but I had a lot of fun writing it.
       I haven’t publicized the “secret” behind Emma’s (the heroine) background on purpose. It’s even mentioned she’s “human” in the blurb. That isn’t entirely true. As I wrote this book, I noticed I mentioned the ocean and the current quite a bit during Emma’s scenes. So when I came up with the idea to expand on the paranormal nature of the book and explained it to my husband, he gave me the crazy eye. Mermaids? Really? I knew I wanted her ancestry to be a bit of a twist, but even I didn’t expect it to come together like it did.
       Wolves and mermaids do seem an awkward pairing, but trust me. It’s not as simple as it seems. Emma isn’t quite a mermaid, although she does have an affinity for water that is quite awesome, in my humble opinion.
       And check out that cover? Isn’t Drake one sexy hunk of an alpha male? But perhaps even better than the man on the cover, is the little hint of what’s to come that can be found on the left side. See that little fin flipping there? I loved having it included. And no, it’s not a whale. ; )
       Before I go, I would like to thank Liza for having me. Happy reading, ya’ll!

       

In Too Deep

Christy Gissendaner

Contemporary, Paranormal Romance
 Publisher: Etopia Press




He’ll risk everything for the love of one human.

Agreeing to be her good friend’s bridesmaid, Emma Anderson jets off to Tybee Island for the wedding. Her dress is perfect and her shoes are adorable, but her friend’s elegant beachside home hides an ancient secret…one that threatens to expose a secret society of werewolves.

 Drake Randolph has watched his sister’s friend grow into a ravishing woman, but he’s always kept his distance. As the heir to the Randolph fortune and the alpha of the Secret Society of Savannah Lycanthropes, Drake cannot afford to draw the innocent little brunette into the dangerous lycan world.

 Passion between them soon blazes hotter than the Georgia summer. But when the wrong woman is kidnapped to prevent the wedding of a lycan to a mortal, Drake must risk everything to save Emma from the ones who will see the downfall of all he holds dear.






Short Excerpt
Kicking off her white sandals, she descended a set of wooden stairs and stepped onto the sand. It squished between her toes, damp and still warm from the heat of the afternoon. The moon shone over the water, gleaming in the waves pulling toward the shore.

She stood at the water’s edge. The current sucked at her toes, burying them in sand, and she absorbed the soothing sounds of nature. She tipped her head back and closed her eyes. Perfect.

For a moment, she flashed back to her childhood. Not the endless summers she’d spent with the Randolphs. Earlier than that, long before her father’s death. A memory floated out of her grasp, on the edges of her subconscious but always moving away from her.

The water surrounded her ankles, the tendrils of the tide resembling a caress. As if someone touched her.

She opened her eyes, startled by the sensation.

A particularly large wave crashed around her legs. Thrown off-balance by the unexpected surge, she stumbled a bit until she regained her footing. Whatever memory she’d been chasing fled, replaced by the shock of the water splashing against her knees.

She returned her attention to the water. It eddied around her, the glow of the moonlight reflected in the tiny swirls of liquid. Bending down, she touched the surface and a jolt of energy poured through her. She lurched backward just as another wave crashed against her.

Weird. She moved closer to the shore, not afraid of the ocean but concerned by her reaction to it. Something wasn’t right.

The cry of a seagull jerked her back to the present. She glanced down and grimaced at the soaked bottom half of her dress. She didn’t mind as much as she should. At least the delightfully cool water eased some of the oppressive heat of the day.

The breeze, which had been strong all day, caressed her bare shoulders and ruffled her hair. She lifted her arms and twirled, letting out a tiny sound of pleasure.

At the end of her twirl, she caught sight of a figure standing alone on the patio. The moonlight wasn’t needed for her to recognize Drake. No one else had such a commanding presence. He tugged at her heart like the ocean’s current tugged at her ankles.




Christy Gissendaner is a romantic comedy author and believes that laughter and love should go hand in hand.


Christy lives in Alabama with her husband and three sons. She’s always hard at work on her next novel, but in her spare time she loves blackjack, karaoke, and anything resembling a vacation!

To find out more, please visit http://christygissendaner.webs.com