Sunday, September 29, 2013

Romance Super Bundle Now @Amazon

I'm so excited to be part of the Romance Super Bundle, a set of ten full-length romance novels by ten different authors. We have contemporary romance, romantic suspense and one historical romance--my book, Rogue's Hostage!

 Participating authors are Dale Mayer, Donna Marie Rogers, Edie Ramer, Linda McLaughlin, Kate Kelly, Pamela Fryer, Lois Winston, Barbara Phinney, Wendy Ely and Amy Gamet. The gorgeous cover was designed by our fearless leader, the amazing author and cover designer Amy Gamet.

As of right now, the Romance Super Bundle is available at Amazon Kindle, but in October it will also be available at Apple, Kobo and Nook. Best of all, the introductory sales price is only 99 cents!

And, drum roll please... You are all invited to our Facebook Launch Party on October 7th. You can sign up ahead of time for games, giveaways, and a chance to meet and chat with the authors.

 I'll post more details next week.


Monday, September 16, 2013

Time Travel Love with Guest blogger Marie Higgins

Please join me in welcoming today's guest blogger, author Marie Higgins, as she talks about her favorite time travel movies and her new novel, Waiting For You. I love time travel, too, so this was a nice trip down memory lane. - Linda

Who doesn’t love a good time travel story?

Somewhere In Time

The man of my dreams has almost faded now. The one I have created in my mind. The sort of man each woman dreams of, in the deepest and most secret reaches of her heart. I can almost see him now before me. What would I say to him if he were really here? "Forgive me. I have never known this feeling. I have lived without it all my life. Is it any wonder, then, I failed to recognize you? You, who brought it to me for the first time. Is there any way that I can tell you how my life has changed? Any way at all to let you know what sweetness you have given me? There is so much to say. I cannot find the words. Except for these: I love you". Such would I say to him if he were really here. ~~Elise McKenna

Back To The Future

Marty McFly: Wait a minute, Doc. Ah... Are you telling me that you built a time machine... out of a DeLorean?

Dr. Emmett Brown: The way I see it, if you're gonna build a time machine into a car, why not do it with some style?

George McFly: Lorraine. My density has popped me to you.

Kate & Leopold

Leopold: That thing is a damned hazard!

Kate: It's just a toaster!

Leopold: Well, insertion of bread into that so-called toaster produces no toast at all, merely warm bread! Inserting the bread twice produces charcoal. So, clearly, to make proper toast it requires one and a half insertions, which is something for which the apparatus doesn't begin to allow! One assumes that when the General of Electric built it, he might have tried using it. One assumes the General might take pride in his creations instead of just foisting them on an unsuspecting public.

Kate: You know something? Nobody gives a rat's ass that you have to push the toast down twice. You know why? Because everybody pushes their toast down twice!

Leopold: Not where I come from.

Kate: Oh, right. Where you come from, toast is the result of reflection and study!

Leopold: Ah yes, you mock me. But perhaps one day when you've awoken from a pleasant slumber to the scent of a warm brioche smothered in marmalade and fresh creamery butter, you'll understand that life is not solely composed of tasks, but tastes.


Robert Doniger: Yeah, yeah, look. We need cultural experts, not scientists. My people simply don't know about the medieval world, or how to mingle with the locals, which is what we're gonna have to do, if we're going to find the professor and bring him back.

Marek: So that's it? We just step on that machine and wiz back to 1357?

The Time Traveler’s Wife

Alba at Nine: Tell me the story of how you and Mama met?

Henry DeTamble: Doesn't she tell you?

Alba at Nine: She does, but not like you do.

Henry: Well, it was right here in this meadow. And one fine day, your mom, who's just a tiny little thing, goes out to the clearing, and there's a man there.

Alba: With no clothes.

Henry: Not a stitch on him. And after she gives him the blanket she happens to be carrying, he explains to her that he's a time traveler. Now, for some reason I'll never understand, she believes him.

Alba: 'Cause it's true.

What kind of research goes into writing a time-travel novel? Do you need some kind of time machine like the DeLorean…or will a penny be enough?

Lately, I have become fascinated with time-travel stories…and movies. Every writer puts a different spin on their plot, which is what I love. It’s so intriguing to read how someone from our time can be sent back (or forward) to another dimension. I love reading how that person adjusts—or at least tries to adjust—to their new world, and then what steps they take to return to their own time.

Over the years, many movies have grabbed my curiosity mainly because of the time-travel element. In Back To the Future, Doc and Marty tried to create a new way to get Marty back home—without messing up the time-continuum. The intrigue of waiting for that moment, and almost not making it, kept me captivated. In Timeline it was the fast-paced story of trying to find the one man they were sent back in time to get, only to have everything go wrong at every turn. In Kate & Leopold…okay, mainly I loved this story because of the romance, and hullo—Hugh Jackman! (heehee) But I loved how he was sent forward in time, only for her to go back in time. Loved that concept! And with Somewhere In Time, (dreamy sigh) it was a wonderful romance that lasted throughout the years, combined with the romantic music…(another sigh). Yes, that is one of my all-time favorites.

I think one of the reasons I like time-travels so much is because I find myself thinking about how I would change my life if I knew what I did and could travel back in time to change it… I also think of how I would like to experience the 1800’s (Regency or even Victorian England) if just for a week; to see what the gentlemen were really like, and how the women of those times really behaved. After a week though, I’m sure I’d want to return to my own time.

I have written a couple of time-travel novels. Each one has a different twist to the time-travel element. I tried to combine all the things I enjoy reading or watching movies that make the storyline interesting. I invite you to check out Waiting for You, and coming sometime in Sept. 2013, Love Lost in Time.

Watch book trailer for Love Lost in Time.

Here is the blurb and snippet from my book, Waiting for You.

When a beautiful woman claiming to be a ghost from 1912 appears in Nick Marshal’s new office and begs for help in solving her murder, he’s intrigued enough to consider her plea. A scandal that rocked Hollywood almost destroyed his law practice, so taking on a client who insists she’s dead seems a good way to refresh his career. The more history he uncovers, the deeper he falls for the ghost. Abigail Carlisle believes Nick is her heart’s true desire, but how can happily ever after happen when she’s already dead?


“Excuse me if I’m intruding.”

A feminine voice broke his concentration, and he swung around. A woman rose from the brown leather chair in front of his desk. Confused, Nick glanced from the woman to the closed office door and back again. When did she get here? His face heated from embarrassment. She must have been in the office waiting for him when he’d arrived with Vanessa. But why hadn’t he noticed her until now?

Not believing his eyes, he blinked and ran his gaze over the strange woman again. She definitely didn’t look like a model from a style magazine, like Vanessa did. Instead this woman looked as if she had stepped off the set of a motion picture from the early 1900s—or a historic magazine.

His visitor smoothed a hand down the side of her ankle-length dark brown skirt decorated with entirely too much lace. Her silk blouse was the darkest purple he’d ever seen, and the color brought out her amazing cobalt eyes. Her clothes contoured her body nicely yet were modest, especially in this day and age. Her dark brunette hair was swept up beneath a flat purple hat decorated with an outlandish matching bow-shaped flower in front. White-laced gloves encased her slender hands, adding to the olden-day glamor style. Even her proper posture spoke of an old-time society dame. Yet her smooth, youthful face told him she wasn’t old at all—probably somewhere in her mid-twenties. And her eyes… He’d never seen such intriguing blue eyes before.

The oddly dressed lady cleared her throat and stepped closer. “Forgive me for interrupting.”

Despite the musical lilt to her voice, the trace of British intonation brought to mind the high-and-mighty aristocrats Nick had rubbed elbows with at his last firm. With quick fingers, he straightened his tie and came forward. “Uh, no, ma’am. You didn’t interrupt anything important. I’m sorry you had to witness that, um, display just now.”

Her lips remained stretched in a thin line and he couldn’t quite tell if she was irritated at him—and at the situation—or not.

“Are you Mr. Nicholas Marshal?” she asked in a choked voice, almost as if she was holding her breath. He maintained a professional smile, but after what she’d caught him doing, it was hard not to feel like digging a hole and sticking his head inside…then covering it up. Maybe Vanessa set out to sabotage his first day in a new town after all.

“Yes, I’m Nick.”

“The solicitor?”

Solicitor? Who uses that term anymore? “I’m a lawyer, yes. And you are…”

She took another step toward him. “I’m Abigail Carlisle.”

Watch book trailer

Buy link for Amazon Kindle

Buy link for print at print at Amazon.

What type of time-travel stories to you like to read or watch? Please leave a comment (with your name and email) for a chance to win a paperback copy of my story, Waiting for You.

About the author

Marie Higgins is a best-selling, multi-published author of sweet romance; from refined bad-boy heroes who make your heart melt to the feisty heroines who somehow manage to love them regardless of their faults. Visit her website / blog or Facebook page to discover more about her, or follow her on Twitter @MarieHigginsXOX.

Many thanks to Marie for entertaining us today with movie quotes and book trailers and the excerpt from her novel, Waiting For You. I enjoyed reading and hope you will, too.


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Book Review Club: After the Fog

After the FogAfter the Fog 
by Kathleen Shoop

Historical Fiction
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Set in Donora, PA during the killer fog of 1948. For those not familiar with this sidelight of history, here's a little background. Donora is a borough in Washington County, PA., not far from Pittsburgh. The town was built along a curve in the Monongahela River, and is surrounded by hills. At the time of the story, there were three mills along the river, manufacturing steel, wire and zinc. Because of the hills, the air in Donora was rarely clear, and we now know, unhealthy at best. In late October, 1948, a weather inversion trapped the air, creating a toxic stew that sickened many residents and initially killed twenty. Fifty more died afterwards, including the father of Stan Musial. The disaster caught the attention of Washington which launched an investigation. What happened there contributed to the passage of the first Air Pollution Control Act in 1955.

My review:

The main character, Rose Pavlesic, is a nurse who grew up in an orphanage where she was regularly abused. Now a community nurse, Rose struggles to hold her dysfunctional family together while taking care of the needy citizens of her mining town. When the killer fog descends, everyone is stressed, and truths emerge that threaten to destroy her carefully constructed world and tear her family apart.

This frank and stark depiction of life in the mining towns of western Pennsylvania struck a chord with me. I grew up in Pittsburgh and heard people talk about Donora. The town is almost a character, as is the evil, creeping fog that blankets the town and causes so much misery. The language and culture shown in the book are authentic, including words like yunz and nebby and redd-up the room. I also remember the chipped ham at Isaly's, which was quite a treat. On that level, this book was a trip down memory lane for me.

It's easy to forget how polluted our air once was, but I remember the smog and how bad it could make you feel, even simulating an asthma attack in people who don't have asthma. My parents used to tell stories of life in Pittsburgh in the 1930s when the air was so thick, you couldn't see across the street at high noon. We should all be grateful for clean air wherever we find it.


Smog photo from 

And as always, click on the graphic below to read the rest of the great reviews for September. 

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@Barrie Summy

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