Saturday, December 30, 2017

The Troublesome Apprentice by Liza O'Connor

Dec 30 — Jan 5, 2018

The Troublesome
Apprentice is just
99 Cents




The Adventures of
Xavier & Vic
Book 1
The Troublesome Apprentice
By Liza O’Connor
Cases to be Resolved:
The Key to Aunt Maddy’s Death
The Missing Husband of Mrs. Wimple
The Disappearing Scarlet Nun
The Clever Butcher’s Wife
The Rescue of Lady Anne


While investigating the death of a friend and client, Maddy Hamilton, Xavier Thorn (reputed to be the greatest sleuth in England) is greatly impressed with Maddy’s nephew, Victor, and offers him a job as his secretary. Aware of Xavier’s history of firing secretaries, Victor garners a promise that for three months he cannot be fired. Vic then proceeds, in Xavier’s view, to be cheeky and impertinent at every turn. Xavier endures the impudent pup because Victor is most skilled in extracting the truth from clients and intuiting facts with little evidence to assist.
As they solve a string of cases, Xavier discovers a few more important details about his troublesome apprentice, such as her true gender, and the realization that she has awakened his long dormant heart.

Xavier cursed and threw his inkwell at the door. Unfortunately, the door opened at the same exact moment and the glass bottle slammed into Victor’s stomach, covering him in India ink.

“Damn it, Victor, knock before you enter,” Xavier cursed as he rose and approached the boy. “You are covered with ink,” he complained.

The fault is entirely yours, but we will make no more of it. Just remember to knock in the future.”

“I daresay I’ll not forget for a very long time,” Victor growled.

“Excellent attitude,” Xavier declared with excessive cheeriness. He ceased smiling as the young man continued to glare at him. “I hope you have not come to hand me your resignation because I will not take it. You have committed to remain three months, and I will hold you to it. And why are you so damnably late today?”

“Because I was sleeping and Gregory did not give me your note until I woke a half hour ago.”

“A fine excuse if masters customarily wrote notes ordering their people to work and, without such a note, the people were not meant to come.”

“Given last night, it had not occurred to me…never mind. You are right, I am completely in the wrong, and I apologize. I will be here at the crack of dawn each morning.”

Xavier relaxed. “Good enough.” He returned to his desk. “About the embrace last night…it was a one-time event.” He watched Vic’s expression and thought he caught a moment of regret before acceptance and relief took over.

Victor nodded. “I understand. You showed me a moment of kindness and I show up eight hours late for work. However, surely throwing an inkwell at me and ruining my best suit somewhat balances matters.”

“I did not throw the inkwell at you, but I am in agreement all should be forgotten and we will proceed from here. First of all, you need clean clothes. I doubt my clothes will fit you.”

The boy gave Xavier’s lean but muscular body a quick study, blushed, and agreed they would not.

The tightening of his loins caused by Vic’s perusal of his person unsettled him. “Well, you cannot remain as you are. You will make a mess as you dig your way through a mountain of paperwork. Go to the kitchen and find something to solve your problem. I expect you back here in ten minutes, ready to work, not a second later.”
    


The Troublesome Apprentice
Read Free With Kindle Unlimited



I’m tired of telling my proper bio. So you get the improper bio.
Liza O’Connor was raised by feral cats, which explains a great deal, such as why she has no manners, is always getting in trouble, and doesn’t behave like a proper author and give you a proper bio.

She is highly unpredictable, both in real life and her stories, and presently is writing humorous romances. Please buy these books, because otherwise, she’ll become grumpy and write troubled novels instead. They will likely traumatize you.


FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT 
Investigate these sites:
Click here For ALL Novels by Liza 
including other genres

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Snow In July by Kim Iverson Headlee






SNOW IN JULY

by Kim Iverson Headlee



Official genre of book: Medieval Paranormal Romance



From the award-winning pen of Kim Iverson Headlee comes the exciting, poignant love story of a distressed damsel who wields a fierce fireplace poker and the smoking hot knight she must save from himself.


Sir Robert Alain de Bellencombre has been granted what every man wants: a rich English estate in exchange for his valiant service at the Battle of Hastings. To claim this reward, the Norman knight must wed the estate's Saxon heiress. Most men would leap at such an opportunity, but for Alain, who broke his vow to his dying mother by failing to protect his youngest brother in battle, it means facing more easily broken vows. But when rumors of rampant thievery, dangerous beasts, and sorcery plaguing a neighboring estate reach his ears, nothing will make him shirk duty to king and country when people's lives stand at risk. He assumes the guise of a squire to scout the land, its problems, and its lady.


Lady Kendra of Edgarburh has been granted what no woman wants: a forced marriage to an enemy who may be kith or kin to the man who murdered her beloved brother. Compounding her anguish is her failure to awaken the miraculous healing gift bequeathed by their late mother in time to save his life. Although with his dying breath, he made her promise to seek happiness above all, Kendra vows that she shall find neither comfort nor love in the arms of a Norman…unless it snows in July.


Alain is smitten by Lady Kendra from the first moment of their meeting; Kendra feels the forbidden allure of the handsome and courtly Norman "squire." But a growing evil overshadows everyone, invoking dark forces and ensnaring Kendra in a plot to overthrow the king Alain is oath-bound to serve. Kendra and Alain face a battle unlike any other as their honor, their love, their lives, and even their very souls lie in the balance.












Alain’s friendship with Sir Ruaud, his polished manners and speech, fighting skills, and scars—it made less sense than ever that he could be a squire. “Who are you, really?” she whispered.

His back stiffened, and he released her hand to give her a curious look. Finally, he smiled. “A complete fool.”

She arched an eyebrow. “Hardly that, if you possessed the wit to locate me. I mean, you must be a knight. Don’t bother to deny it. There can be no other reasonable explanation.”

He regarded her for a long moment. “Yes. I am a knight.”

“But why the disguise?” She recoiled as an unpleasant thought returned. “Sir Robert didn’t send you to test my virtue, did he?”

“Mon Dieu, no! Never once did that cross his mind.”

She felt her brow wrinkle. “How can you be so certain?”

“I have known Sir Robert my entire life.” His smile turned enigmatic. “He would never resort to such a ploy.”

“But he would send you and Sir Ruaud ahead to look me over, is that it?” Her ire rose on the wings of indignation. “To determine whether I am a worthy match for his lordship?” His smile inverted to dread. “Hah. I am right.”

Denying him a chance to reply, she shot to her feet. Her instinct suggested escaping into the maze, but fear of becoming lost in the mist pushed her toward the tower’s door. The bolt’s heaviness prevented her from locking him out, so she concentrated on making best speed. Pounding footsteps warned her of Alain’s pursuit.

He caught her wrist while she was still on the stairs, but she yanked it free and continued up. On the landing outside the upper chamber, she had to pause for air. He joined her before she could escape.

“Please, my lady,” he said between breaths. “Let me explain.”

“What’s to explain? Sir Robert sent you to scout me out, and you agreed. You Normans are a despicable lot. Every last, stinking one of you! I thought I had met one who wasn’t.” She blinked hard to fight off the welling tears. “I was wrong.”
















Kim Headlee lives on a farm in southwestern Virginia with her family, cats, goats, Great Pyrenees goat guards, and assorted wildlife. People and creatures come and go, but the cave and the 250-year-old house ruins—the latter having been occupied as recently as the mid-twentieth century—seem to be sticking around for a while yet. She has been an award-winning novelist since 1999 (Dawnflight, Simon & Schuster) and has been studying the Arthurian Legends and literature for nigh on half a century.







Friday, December 22, 2017

Velvet & Vows by Stacy Eaton

VELVET & VOWS
The Celebration Township, book 13

by Stacy Eaton


Genre: Contemporary Romance - Holiday





The epic finale of the Celebration Series is finally here. Celebrate Christmas once again with the couple that started it all: Casey Lowe and Thad Wagner.

Velvet & Vows starts out twenty days before the wedding and there is a lot to be done. With wedding showers, bachelor and bachelorette parties, the final dress fittings, holiday preparations and the last of the details for the ceremony and reception, Celebration is crackling with energy—but it’s not all good.

With a few misunderstandings, many secrets and a serial arsonist running rampant in the town, the days leading up to the wedding are far more stressful than Casey and Thad ever planned for it to be. It will take the entire town to tell this story as we pass from one leading character to another.

Prepare yourself for this one-of-a-kind novel that will bring insight into every character you’ve fallen in love with during the series, and even a few characters you’ve never heard from first hand.




The sound of Thad’s heartbeat thrummed steadily under my ear and begged me to stay in bed forever—or at least a few more hours—but we both had to get ready for work.

I sighed heavily, and he tightened his arm around my back. “Only a few more weeks and we will be away from here—just you and me—enjoying ten days of bliss on the beach.”

I tilted my head back and gazed into his handsome face. I couldn’t believe that Thad and I were getting married in three weeks. It had been basically a year since we’d met and he’d saved me from my psychotic ex. I had reflected back on that night many times over the last eleven months and was thankful that Thad was so perceptive and followed his gut on so many things.

“I can’t believe it’s almost here,” I replied and squeezed his torso. “Three more weeks and you will officially be mine—forever.”

“Yep, I’ll officially be Mr. Thaddeus Lowe.”

“You’re not taking my name,” I teased.

He kissed the top of my head. “At home I will, but you know at work I have to stay Officer Wagner.”

“I thought it was going to be Sergeant Wagner soon.”

He smirked and tapped my nose. “You weren’t supposed to know about that.” He paused, “Let me guess: Missy told you?”

“No.” I shook my head and pushed off his chest to sit up. He grabbed my arm and pulled me back down.

“You aren’t getting away from me that easily.” He shifted and rolled me over to my back, laying his leg over mine so he could use his weight to hold me down. “Who told you? It had to be Missy.”

“No.” I grinned and then pushed my leg to the side so it slipped up the inside of his, my thigh coming in contact with his groin. He moaned as he clamped his eyes shut. “It wasn’t Missy,” I whispered seductively.

While he was a little distracted, I shifted and hustled out of the bed while he tried to drag me back. “No, get back here.”

I laughed. “I have to get to work, and so do you,” I told him when he managed to pull me back to the bed with his arms around my waist.

“I’ll let you go, but you have to tell me who told you. It was supposed to be a surprise.”

“It was a surprise.” I leaned forward and kissed him before I pushed on his shoulders to get away. “It would have been a better surprise if you had told me and not your sister.”

Thad’s hands dropped as he gave me an odd look. “Corrine? How the hell did she know?”









Stacy Eaton is a USA Today Best Selling author and began her writing career in October of 2010. Stacy took an early retirement from law enforcement after over fifteen years of service in 2016, with her last three years in investigations and crime scene investigation to write full time.

Stacy resides in southeastern Pennsylvania with her husband, who works in law enforcement, and her teen daughter who is working toward her second degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do and on the choral and cheerleading squads at school. She also has a son who is currently serving in the United States Navy.

Stacy is very involved in Domestic Violence Awareness and served on the Board of Directors for her local Domestic Violence Center for three years.


Be sure to visit her website for updates and more information on her books.


Sign up for all the latest information on Stacy’s Newsletter!


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Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Liza O'Connor shares Angel of Mercy


Angel of Mercy
A Disturbing/Dark Contemporary Romance
With a Happy Ending


Steve (the cop Carla ran over and now must fix) is more than a bit of a jerk. So, I don’t expect you to like him. Carla doesn’t even like him. He might be beautiful to look at, and he provides great sex, but every time he opens his mouth she wants to scream.
When Carla admits she did not have a fun time on her date with the doctor, Steve suggests they should go out on a date. She challenges his request, since he’s always claiming that the only reason to take a woman on a date is for sex. Since Carla was a sure thing, why would he bother?
Steve’s reply: “Angel, there’s never doubt how one of my dates is going to end.”
Oh, the egos of some men!


BLURB
Carla Jones accidentally runs over and paralyzes a policeman. She ignores her lawyer's advice and pleads guilty to the charges, and accepts the judge’s ruling ‘that she broke him, now she has to fix him.’ Trying very hard to ignore his outrageous and frequently hateful behavior, she takes the handsome officer into her home and dedicates her life to one goal: making him walk again. She never imagines the twists and turns her life and heart will take the day she brings him home.

EXCERPT
"You are, without question, the most pleasing of any of the women I’ve ever had.”
“Is that the truth?” Carla asked him in surprise.
He sighed and muttered something about why he even bothered.
She turned in his arms so she faced him. “Really, I want to know. Is that just a sweet line of patter, or is it the truth?”
He sighed again with great exaggeration and then stared in her eyes for a long time before answering. “I have probably told a hundred women that, so yes; it is definitely one of my lines. However, with you, it’s the truth, and I’m not just saying that to make you happy. There’s something between us, Carla, that’s better than anything I’ve ever known. And it scares me, because I’m not even sure you like me, much less love me.”
She pressed her hand on his heart. “There is something between us. And the pleasure you give me is way beyond anything I’ve known before. That fact alone has saved you from being tossed out of this house several times this last month, because, honest to God, you’ve been an absolute misery to live with since you went back to work. Yet, just when I think there isn’t a good thing about you, I’ll see a bit of the Steve I knew during the fall, when we were becoming friends—before you stopped trying.”
He pulled her hard against him and curled his arms about her. “I want to try again.

SALES LINK
Angel of Mercy
About the Author
Liza O’Connor lives in Denville, NJ with her dog Jess. They hike in fabulous woods every day, rain or shine, sleet or snow. Having an adventurous nature, she learned to fly small Cessnas in NJ, hang-glide in New Zealand, kayak in Pennsylvania, ski in New York, scuba dive with great white sharks in Australia, dig up dinosaur bones in Montana, sky dive in Indiana, and raft a class four river in Tasmania. She’s an avid gardener, amateur photographer, and dabbler in watercolors and graphic arts. Yet through her entire life, her first love has and always will be writing novels.

(There’s over 30 now)
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Saturday, December 16, 2017

Miracle on Aisle Two by Beth Carter

MIRACLE ON AISLE TWO
by Beth Carter


Genre: Sweet Contemporary Holiday Romance




Fired two weeks before Christmas, distraught single mom Madison wonders how she’ll afford to pay for her young daughter’s Christmas gifts and still keep a roof over their heads. Sleigh bells and twinkling lights are the last thing on her mind—until a handsome stranger intervenes.


Successful architect Adam Donovan dives into his work by renovating an elaborate hotel after his wife leaves him. He barely notices it’s Christmastime until he overhears a young mother’s tearful plea. Stepping in makes Adam feel like Old Saint Nick himself.


Will Madison and Adam find holiday joy—and possibly love—after discovering Adam’s secret or will it tear them apart?



Two weeks before Christmas, Madison rushed to work excited about her office Christmas party. In the passenger seat sat her favorite go-to holiday recipe, chocolate-covered cashew clusters. All ten of her co-workers at the dental clinic loved her homemade candy and insisted she bring the same treat year after year.






Dressed in a black Christmas sweater featuring a smiling Santa with an extremely long white, furry beard, Madison hummed along to Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas as she anticipated the secret Santa gift exchange. Employees always brought a wrapped five dollar gift, drew numbers, and either opened a new present or stole one of their co-worker’s gifts. Last year she ended up with a goofy sock monkey. The upside was her five-year-old daughter, Betsy, had loved it.


At a stop light, Madison checked her sparkly red lipstick. She loved the holidays—and parties. This is going to be one of those perfect days. I can feel it.


After she parked, Madison frowned as she glanced around the almost-empty lot, plus the dental office appeared dark. That’s weird. I wonder if this is some sort of surprise party where everyone is hiding inside and had to park elsewhere. If so, I missed the memo.


Madison drove to the corner of the lot just in case, parked, and lifted her container of chocolate cashews. As she stepped over a pot hole, a gold bell atop Santa’s red stocking cap jingled. Usually, the sound made her happy and festive. But today, something was off.





As she approached the steps, she squinted when she spotted a handwritten note on the front door.








After being a bank vice president and a hospital public relations director, Beth Carter shed her suits, heels, and waved good-bye to corporate America to pen novels and children’s picture books.


Winner of the 2017 RAVEN Award, 2015 RONE Award, and named Best Debut Author in 2015, Carter writes rollercoaster romance and women’s fiction.


Her debut, THURSDAYS AT COCONUTS, received two coveted awards. The author received Favorite Contemporary runner-up in 2017 for her contemporary romance SLEEPING WITH ELVIS. Carter has a Christmas novelette, SANTA BABY in an eight-author collection, SIZZLE IN THE SNOW. Her first novella is MIRACLE ON AISLE TWO.


Carter’s four children’s picture books include SOUR POWER, WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE?, THE MISSING KEY, AND SANTA’S SECRET.


Additionally, the author has several short stories and poems published in five anthologies. Her six-word memoirs appear in numerous collections alongside famous writers and celebrities. Beth Carter was born and raised in the Midwest. She and her husband divide their time between Missouri and Florida.



Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Bob and the Polka-Dot Highway by R. Murphy

BOB AND THE POLKA-DOT HIGHWAY
Book 3 of The Bob Books
by R. Murphy
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing





Poor Roz…once again stuck on the horns of a dilemma. Does she accept the great offer for a job that’s hundreds of miles from Crooked Lake? Or does she pick David, the great guy who grows grapes half a mile from her house? And either way—assuming our crabby woman-of-a-certain-age manages to make a decision—what about her ghost, Bob? 

Granted, Bob and Roz have never had a … ummmm… ‘traditional’ relationship but still, martini-loving ghosts don’t toddle along every day of the week. What happens to the wit, the sparkle, the laughter?

So many questions…(sigh).

Join Roz, David—and Bob—as they spend a beautiful, but confusing, summer on Crooked Lake. And oh, by the way, watch out for drips…






My ghostly guest, Bob, swirled his drink while the late afternoon sun streamed across the kitchen, lighting the martinis on the table with an otherworldly glow.

Outside the kitchen’s picture window, Crooked Lake nestled into dusk. Even though it was only early May, a determined fly fisherman drifted in the center of the lake, casting for dusk-feeding trout. Gentle waves splashed against the rock wall I’d struggled to build only a couple of months before. Enough water had drained off after the spring floods that I once again had an actual beach and I planned to spend the summer shoveling shale to enhance and deepen it.

I glanced at Bob, my ghostly companion of many months, as he sipped his drink. I’d gotten to the point where Bob didn’t intimidate or scare me at all. In fact, if it came to being crabby, unpleasant, and maybe even a little scary, I had him beaten by a mile. (I’m not proud of this, mind you. But I do try to call a spade a spade. It’s one way to simplify what seems to have become an awfully complicated life.)

Despite the small spare tire Bob sported around his middle and hair that, in the right light, might be characterized by some as thinning, Bob prided himself on being a suave and debonair ghostly figure. He had nothing but disdain for those immature spectral bullies who throw furniture around and make their hauntee’s lives miserable. I don’t think, now that I focus on it, that I’ve ever even heard Bob raise his voice. (He would not be able to say the same about me, I’m afraid. Not that I have anger management issues. I mostly have crabby management issues.)

Lately Bob has spent his time wandering around the house in a gentle alcoholic fog, babbling about whatever topic he’s fixated on that day. Sometimes it’s the value of 5000 hedgehogs; other days, he’ll get obsessed with his bird phobia or government conspiracies to wear out shoes, or he’ll fret about wearing a white suit. I’ve become used to it. In our early days, we’d only get together at dinnertime. Now that David’s not spending any time at my house, Bob stops by much (MUCH!!!) more often. 

Although the soul of ghostly gentility himself, Bob tends to hang out with what I might diplomatically call a challenging sort of crowd, the Algonquin Round Table in Manhattan. I’d visited his friends at The Algonquin hotel a couple of times and the word ‘surreal’ pops into my mind every time I try to describe the experience. Fortunately, though, his ghostly buddies hadn’t found their way from midtown Manhattan out to my isolated lake house in western New York. I planned to keep it that way.







Liza's Review of Bob and the Polka-Dot Highway
By R. Murphy

When you are need of a job and one comes your way, you have to take it, right?
Especially if you have a house you can no longer afford on a lake and an alcoholic Ghost named Bob. 

Even if it means breaking up with a fabulous guy and making Bob the ghost move away from his girlfriend ghost and the finger lakes. Especially if it’s a great job with an office that has walls and a door!

Bob, the ghost, doesn’t want to go to Ohio. He prefers the finger lakes. No matter, Rox needs to afford the accouterments of life. You know-food, shelter, a nice job. Only the moment she accidentally runs into David buying pizza, she realizes she really wants him as well. And David wants her.

Will they get together?
Will Roz take the job?
Can she and David do some sort of time sharing across states?
Will Roz ever figure out what the second assignment is that Bob must get her to do?
I won’t tell you because this delightful, fun, uplifting story with an excessive quantity of ghosts is best read while the ghost are being quiet and not leaking.
5 stars for lots of fun.







Bob at the Lake
What would happen if Roz, a crabby woman of a certain age, moved to the wintry shores of a New York lake—and got a ghost? And not just any ghost, mind you. Bob’s a ghost from 1920’s Manhattan, full of quips and over fond of his martinis, who swans around in a silk smoking jacket and makes Roz’s life very . . . well, let’s just say ‘complicated.’
Especially after Roz meets David, the good-looking grape grower who lives up the hill. Join Roz, David—and Bob—as they navigate blizzards, cookie mazes, holiday shopping sprees, and the occasional power outage. (You know, all of those delightful challenges of a good, old-fashioned Northern winter . . .)



Bob at the Plaza
Bob, our favorite martini-loving ghost, has vanished. Now Roz faces a miserable snowbound Crooked Lake winter alone. Well, almost alone. Thank goodness for David, the practical, kind grape grower who lives up the hill.
What a winter it is! Record-breaking snows followed months later by record-setting rains. Ah, the joys of living on a lake shore when the spring floods arrive.
High water, anyone?
Undeterred by mice, sociopathic relatives, Carnegie Hall disasters, and spring floods, Roz searches for her MIA ghost. In the process she goes toe-to-toe with the hyper-verbal crowd at the Algonquin Round Table. Can Roz best smarty-pants Dorothy Parker in a game of wits? Will Harpo Marx finally speak out and help Bob return to Crooked Lake?
For the answers to these and many other spirited questions, read BOB AT THE PLAZA!
Roz Murphy is the pseudonym of a long-time Finger Lakes resident who lives with ghosts and doesn’t want to confirm in her neighbors’ minds how nutty she really is. (They already have their suspicions.) After decades of writing in Manhattan and throughout the country, Roz settled on the shores of New York’s Keuka Lake, some of the most beautiful country ever created. She’s an ardent fan of the Finger Lakes wine industry, especially the local dry Rieslings.
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