Friday, March 29, 2013

Egg-cerpt Exchange: Fires of A Keltic Moon

Please help me welcome my guest today, *lizzie starr, who shares an excerpt from Fires of A Keltic Moon. I do love time travel romance. Welcome, Lizzie!

Since Linda and I share a love of pups, here's an excerpt from my time travel, Fires of A Keltic Moon. You never know how the past may connect with the present... 

Danger lurks in the long ago of Iain’s time and becomes a threat to Lara’s present. Can Lara and Iain defeat the evil and make their ways through time to find the love they both desire?


Lara Zeroun needs something in her life, so she opens a portal in time and travels to the ancient Highlands. But, how can she become involved with a dark, mysterious man who belongs to another time?


Due to the matriarchal line of inheritance, Iain is no longer able to lay claim to his father's lands. He's prepared to leave--until a golden-haired woman visits the manor on the arm of a wandering storyteller. But, with no land or possessions, Iain dares not succumb to the temptation of Lara.


Danger lurks in Iain's time and becomes a threat to Lara's present. Will Lara and Iain be able to defeat the evil and make their ways through time--finding the love they both desire?


Lara leaned forward trying to see past the boy's narrow back as Stephen bent over the table. Finally, curiosity won and she stood to one side of the boy. His tongue peeked from one side of his mouth as he carefully formed large, shaky letters on the hide.

Amazed, Lara bent closer. "You know how to write?" Stephen finished a letter, placed a large dot after it and smiled up at her. "Aye, m'lady, master Iain teaches me."

Lara glanced at Iain in wonder. Sure that in this time only a few could read or write, she found the generosity it took to find the time to teach a small child his letters endearing. This kindness was filed away in her heart, hoarded with other memories she hoped would last forever.

"Master Iain? What do the letters say?" Stephen held the hide to Iain, who took it by the edges to keep from smearing the charcoal letters. Nodding sagely he looked from the hide to the boy and back again. There were matching happy glints in both sets of eyes.

"Ye make fine letters, lad. Ye have been practicin'."

A faint red crept under the dirt on Stephen's face. "Aye, Master Iain. But, what do the letters say?" Stephen bounced eagerly in his excitement to know.

"Ye made plainly the letters n, o, i, and d. What do ye wish of this word?"

"'Tis the name of me dog, sir."

Iain tapped one finger against the hide. "Ye wish to name yer dog Noid? 'Tis a mightily strange name, lad."

"It be the name I choose. Ye canna make me change me mind." Small fists clenched at Stephen's side and defiance burned in his eyes. He glared at Iain.

"I dinna wish to change it, just wonderin' at the strangeness of it." Iain held the scrap of hide toward Lara. "What'd ye think of the name, Lara?"

But she had heard nothing after Iain recited the letters. Noid? How could there be two black dogs with the same strange name? Her grandfather told her he named his dog Noid because it was a word he had liked the sound of. Two Stephens, two Noids. It couldn't be.

"Lara?" Iain touched her arm.

"I..." Confused, she looked between Stephen and the puppy. "Uh, why did you pick that name?"

"The word sounds guid. 'Tis a fine name, is it no', m'lady?"

"Yes, it's a good name." Lara sank onto the bench next to Iain and bent to scratch the curious puppy behind the ears. Noid's head turned so she could give attention to a particular spot behind his left ear. The exact spot her grandfather's dog always wanted scratched. She gasped and jerked her hand away.

Beitris had turned to the pastries she was preparing for the next day while Iain and Stephen were bent over the hide, as Iain taught his young pupil the first five numbers. No one noticed her confusion. Only intelligent, black eyes watched her as the small dog cocked his head to one side, seeming to smile at her.

Fires of a Keltic Moon, the second book of The Double Keltic Triad, is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Smashwords and on itunes!

Find out more about this book and The Double Keltic Triad and read an excerpt on my website.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Egg-cerpt Exchange: A Necessary End

Please help me welcome my Egg-cerpt Exchange guest today, Diana Rubino, author of A Necessary End. Welcome, Diana. Please tell us a little about you and your book. 

My passion for history has taken me to every setting of my historicals. The four-book “Yorkist Saga” and two time travels are set in England. After finishing the Italian vampire romance “A Bloody Good Cruise” I decided to write biographical novels with no fictional characters. I recently completed “President Washington’s Daughter”, about Eliza Jumel Burr, who made her way up from the streets of Providence to being the richest woman in New York City and wife of Vice President Aaron Burr. My latest work is “Give Us Liberty”, the story of Martha Washington as told by her “favorite servant,” her slave Oney Judge.

I'm studying for a Master’s Degree in Archaeology, and own an engineering business with my husband Chris. A longtime member of Romance Writers of America’s NH chapter and the Richard III Society, I've written articles for Romantic Times and appeared on The Book Swap Café, shown nationwide on Comcast channels.

I'm a golfer, pianist, and sling a mean kettlebell. Fav bands are the B-52s, Stones, Ozzy, and the 60s rock 'n roll I grew up with. Rock 'n roll keeps me young!

A NECESSARY END is a paranormal twist on John Wilkes Booth's insane plot to assassinate President Lincoln. It contains no fictional characters.

It is a 'dark' paranormal because a malevolent spirit haunts Booth to assassinate the 'tyrant' as in Julius Caesar. But since I believe every situation, no matter how foreboding, allows for humor, I've added a few lighter scenes that offer the reader some much-needed relief. How can Booth's plot not leave itself wide open for humor? It was pure comic farce, how he recruited this motley band of adoring disciples and gave them each an assignment in his absurd conspiracy. Yes, Booth sure gets what's coming to him in the end.

Buy link:


When actor John Wilkes Booth, under the guise of seeking spiritual advice, visits the President's medium to gather information about Lincoln's habits in order to kidnap him, a malevolent spirit begins to haunt and torment him, driving him to the brink of insanity. A mysterious coin also appears out of nowhere, and returns every time Booth tries to discard it. Each return of the bloodthirsty Roman coin brings terrifying events and eerie hauntings. In the midst of these strange visitations, Booth falls in love with Alice Grey, a beautiful actress who's hired by the government to spy on him. Will her love for Booth win out over her duty to protect the President from assassination?


Washington City, November, 1864

I don’t believe in ghosts, Wilkes assured himself as he listened to the high keening of the medium. He shivered as a draft wafted over him. Smoky incense intensified the gloom.

He wasn’t at this séance to seek omens or cryptic guidance from beyond the grave. He was attending this charade to learn of Abraham Lincoln’s future.

He still ached with grief over his boyhood friend’s death. A part of his soul died along with John Beall, who was everything the South stood for. Rage over the betrayal seized his heart and boiled his blood. How could Lincoln do this to another human being? How could the President look him in the eye and promise he’d let John live, then murder him?

Wilkes fought to subdue these emotions. No phantom held the answers he sought on this bone-chilling night, just the bird-like matron entranced before him, Nettie Colburn Maynard. The medium was Mrs. Lincoln’s spiritualist, famed for her evenings at the White House “bringing back” their dead boys, Eddie and Willie. Wilkes had to admit she put on a good show. One thing he appreciated was fine acting. But he was wary. The parlor felt haunted as shadows crept up the walls. The hairs at the back of his neck already stood on end, and a chill slithered through his body. Although his hands were icy, his palms sweated, making them even colder. The room stood silent and musty as a tomb. The dank staleness assaulted him. His throat aching for a trickle of brandy, he coughed.

Mrs. Maynard’s eyes were shut tight. His own gaze darted about, unable to settle. Candles flickered jagged shadows around the room. Wallpaper patterns swirled to impenetrable fog. And the curtains...did they flutter, even though the windows were closed?“A spirit is present, Mr. Booth.” Her voice, almost a whisper, barely reached his ears. She exhaled feathery tendrils of steam in the eerie half-light. “It watches over you, seeks to guide you.” He felt her shoulders shake with violent tremors. “He was powerful in life, but more powerful in death, released of mortal frailty.”

Wilkes felt the dread of approaching harm, but sat too spellbound to get up and quit the whole thing. He guessed it was raw fear that kept him frozen in his seat. His voice, trained in delivery of lines, was suddenly struck silent. He had to admit she was gifted, the perfect witch for Macbeth. The funereal black dress draped her gaunt figure like a shroud. Shadowed by the pale flames, Mrs. Maynard played her role to perfection. Once again, he convinced himself it was all an act. But if it was real and some being from beyond really did hover over him…

Just then he realized his jaw was tightly clenched. He struggled to slacken it.

“He lived many centuries ago, Mr. Booth, and knew you by another name. He revisits you now, drawn close by your pain and grief. She shuddered again. Her grip crushed his hand, her knuckles white as bleached bone. “I feel his essence very forcefully, right there…” Her hands turned to ice. “Behind you…”

He nearly ripped a tendon snapping his neck around, but saw neither phantom nor flesh, just movement at the edge of his vision flickering up the wall. Threads of fear tickled at his nerves. Nothing was as it seemed. Turning to face her again, he felt foolish for succumbing to her trickery. An embarrassed blush heated his cheeks as the room temperature plummeted. He breathed deeply to calm his pounding heart.

“He will thrust you towards your true destiny, young man.”

Connect with Diana online at:

My thanks to Diana for being our guest. If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments section. You can find me today at Diana's blog with an excerpt from Rogue's Hostage.


Saturday, March 16, 2013

Egg-cerpt Exchange: Keta Diablo

Today Flights of Fancy welcomes author Keta Diablo to talk about her book, Sky Tinted Water.

In exchange, today I will be at her blog, Keta's Keep, with an excerpt from Rogue's Hostage.

Sky Tinted Water
by Keta Diablo


Note: This is a ‘sweet’ historical romance.

Familial bonds, malevolent schemes and passion collide in this sweet historical novel. Set in Minnesota during the Civil War and the Sioux uprising, this is the story of Rory Hudson, the exquisite Irish lass with an unbreakable spirit and the enigmatic Dawson Finch, a man bound by honor, duty and loyalty.

When Dawson enlists in the army to bring peace to nation divided, Rory’s world plummets into a tailspin. War, distance and time separate them, but nothing can dispel the haunting memories of their love. Not even death can destroy their fierce passion or a love so strong it beats the odds of the impossible.

Barnes & Noble:

Click on link above to visit my Amazon page


The woods loomed ahead. Here, the path would narrow and Rory would be surrounded by clusters of dense hardwood and pines. On the other side of the forest, her sister’s belching chimney would come into view and to the east Jab and Louisa Pearson’s homestead, to the west, Hiram’s. She hadn’t thought of him since her wedding day. Neighbors claimed he’d changed; some said he’d run amok after Jane and Levi died. A pang of sadness cloaked her, but the day was far too beautiful to be bogged down with tragic thoughts.

Entering the woods, the familiar call of a whippoorwill competed with the harsh screech of a blue jay. Twisted limbs and branches hugged the man-made trail and thick bracken and underbrush covered the ground around her. Rory stopped Charmer when an eerie stillness descended on the woodland. The chatter of small critters had stopped and the songbirds had ceased their melodic trills. She forced her eyes to scan the trees in all directions, the lump in her throat tightening.

Looking over her shoulder, she blew a sigh of relief. Minx had paused to nibble on a sprig of grass bursting through the forest floor. The foal would act skittish if danger lurked. She relaxed in the saddle and journeyed on . . . until Charmer’s ears flattened against her head. Had the mare heard a foreign noise or were her muscles preparing for an attack from pesky flies?

Rory turned a keen ear to her surroundings and concentrated on a sliver of sunlight ahead. Keep moving toward the light. A scream tore through the still woods, or a war-cry. She’d never heard a native prepare for battle, but had read about their nightmarish shrills. Charmer whinnied and tossed her massive head and a sense of danger spiked Rory’s heartbeat. Clutching the reins, she looked down at her white knuckles and caught a flash of movement on her left. Her blood ran cold when she spied a tall, dark form stalking her with the stealth of a panther. God’s nightgown, is it human or beast? 

Keta Diablo lives in the Midwest part of the country on six acres of woodland. When she isn't writing or gardening she loves to commune with nature.

Keta is a multi-published author in both erotic romance and gay fiction. Her paranormal novel, Where The Rain Is Made, was nominated for a Bookie Award by Authors After Dark. Keta's books have also received numerous Top Pick, Book of the Month, and Recommended Read awards from the top professional review sites.

You can find her on the net at the following places:

Keta's Keep,

The Stuff of Myth and Men,

Keta’s Facebook page:

What did you think of the excerpt? And aren't Keta's covers gorgeous? I love them!


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Interviewed by Linda Carroll-Bradd

I am being interviewed today by author Linda Carroll-Bradd at her blog, Musings About The Writing Life. I'll be answering questions about me and my writing, and will share an excerpt from Rogue's Hostage.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Dreams of Gold

Please join me in welcoming author Linda Carroll-Bradd. Linda, thanks for being today's guest blogger. Like a lot of readers,. I enjoy a good Western romance!

Thanks, Linda, for hosting me today. On Tuesday of this week, my western romance novella, Dreams of Gold (published by The Wild Rose Press), went free on Kindle. I’m proud to say it made a quick rise to the top and by Wednesday morning was #88 in the free Kindle store and #2 on the western romance list. Hopefully, readers here might be interested in the story and grab their own copy.

FREE through March 9th:

BLURB:  1871, Wyoming Territory

Easterner Ciara Morrissey travels west to honor a sacred promise to her mother and locate her fortune-seeking father. Three years of acting as caretaker to her grandparents and mother until their deaths has created a thirst in Ciara to see what the wide world has to offer.

Sheriff Quinn Riley has been tracking the Irish charlatan who swindled half the population of Bull City, Wyoming. He’s determined to stick close to the opinionated woman who arrived on the runaway stagecoach. Within only a few hours, easterner Ciara Morrissey upsets the townspeople by making inquires about his prime suspect. He’s duty-bound to keep her safe, even when being close to the green-eyed beauty sets off a stampede in his heart.


More evidence she was a stranger to the wild circumstances of the western frontier. Anticipation of organizing the chase flitted through him. “Did they use names? Or speak to their horses?” At her head shake, he fought back the urgency rising in his chest. “Anything that might provide a clue?”

“We heard shots, and Mr. McGinnis shouted for us to do what we were told. A man rode up to the window on each side, demanding our money and jewels.” A dainty shoulder lifted in a shrug. “That’s when Miss Fairchild screamed her virtue was about to be stolen and swooned, landing in my lap.” Green eyes danced, and a high-pitched giggle escaped. “Frankly, I doubt the robbers planned on lifting anyone’s skirts.” Eyes widening, she clapped a hand over her mouth and shook her head.

Damn. Quinn had seen witnesses suddenly realize the danger they’d been in and that’s when hysterics set in. Lord, he could not abide a crying woman. “Did you notice any detail about their saddles or markings on their faces that stood out?”

Her brows scrunched low, and she squared her shoulders, pulling her jacket snug across her breasts. “I feared for my very life, sir, and you think I should have noticed their saddles?” She inhaled deeply, and then her whole body stilled. “Yes, I do remember something about the saddles.”

He watched the movement of her chest—in particular, how the buttons strained their closures. The rhythm of his heartbeat kicked up and a bead of sweat trickled on his forehead. Lifting his gaze to her face, he leaned forward, forcing himself to concentrate on what she might share. “What’s that?”

“Each man sat in one.” Her body rigid, she raised the mug to her lips and waited, an eyebrow arched high.

Below are ways to stay in touch with Linda who writes for Prism Book Group, Still Moments Publishing, and The Wild Rose Press.

How to connect with Linda Carroll-Bradd online:



Email: l.carrollbraddATgmailDOTcom


Thanks for visiting Flights of Fancy.

Linda McLaughlin

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Book Review Club: A Visit to Scotland

Both of this month's books are set in Scotland, a country that has long fascinated me.

The Shadowy Horses 
by Susanna Kearsley
Audiobook narrated by Sally Armstrong
Oakhill Publishing 2011 (Originally published by Orion, 1997)

Setting: Eyemouth, Scotland
Inspired by Rosemary Sutcliffe's The Eagle of the Ninth, about the Roman Lost Legion.

Verity Gray is an English archeologist who is lured to a dig in Scotland by Adrian, an old boyfriend/colleague. There she learns that eccentric Irishman Peter Quinnell is financing the project. Rumored to be mad, Peter is obsessed with finding the Lost Legion, the Roman Ninth, which marched north into Scotland and disappeared early in the 2nd century AD. She's especially shocked to learn that Peter picked Rose Hills because a local boy reputed to have second sight had seen a Roman legionaire in the area. Can Robbie's Sentinel be real? Peter is hard to say no to, and Verity is intrigued by the job  as well as attracted to handsome Scotsman David Fortune. And then there is Robbie, a charming and precocious eight-year-old whose predictions are rarely wrong. I especially love the way the animals react to The Sentinel. The cats hiss and arch their backs while Robbie's collie gambols by the ghost's side, jumping up occasionally for a pat.

Last year I read Susanna Kearsley's The Rose Garden, and fell in love with her writing style. Her prose is lush and unhurried, as she draws you into the world of her characters. The Shadowy Horses is part archeological mystery, part ghost story combined with a lovely romance. It all makes for a very satisfying mix, on that fans of Mary Stewart will enjoy.

I'm so glad I chose the audio version. Armstrong is a marvelous narrator who does a wonderful job, especially with the Scottish accents, which sounded spot on to my American ear. I can still hear her musical cadences even though the audiobook is finished and returned to the library.

* The Shadowy Horses page at Kearsley's website includes  location photos and insight into what inspired her to write the story.

The Winter Sea
by Susanna Kearsley
Allison & Busby, 2010

Kearsley returns to Scotland for this story within a story set on the rugged coast north of Aberdeen. In the modern story, novelist Carrie McClelland arrives in Cruden Bay, a village near ruined Slains Castle, and knows this is where she has to live to write her book about the abortive 1708 Jacobite invasion.

Carrie's story is interspersed with scenes from her novel, featuring one of her ancestors, young Sophia Paterson, who comes to Slains in 1708 to live with a kinswoman. There she meets the love of her life, an outlawed Jacobite who serves James III and finds herself thrust into a world of intrigue and danger.

The whole thing becomes eerie when Carrie researches the events of 1708 and discovers that the scenes she has already written are oddly accurate, even down to names of characters she thought she'd made up, but who really existed. Her father suggests it might be a case of genetic memory. Carrie isn't sure; she just knows this is a story that must be told.

I enjoyed this book, too, though not quite as much as The Shadowy Horses. I liked the fact that it was set in 1708 rather than the more popular 1745 uprising, and the history of Slains Castle is quite interesting. You can check out Kearsley's location photos at her website.

What country fascinates you?

And as always, click on the graphic below for more fabulous book reviews!


Click icon for more book review blogs
@Barrie Summy

Monday, March 4, 2013

Egg-cerpt Exchange: Stacy Juba

Let's give a warm welcome to Stacy Juba, today's Egg-cerpt Exchange author. 

Twenty-Five Years Ago Today
by Stacy Juba
Should we dig for the truth when Pandora's Box is a coffin of buried secrets?
Kris Langley has always been obsessed with murder. She blames herself for the violent death of her cousin when they were kids and has let guilt invade every corner of her existence. Now an editorial assistant and obit writer, Kris stumbles across an unsolved murder while compiling ”25 Years Ago Today" items from the microfilm. Determined to solve the case and atone for the death of her cousin, Kris immerses herself in the mystery of what happened to Diana Ferguson, a talented artist who expressed herself through haunting paintings of Greek mythology.
Not only does Kris face resistance from her family and her managing editor, she also clashes with Diana's suspicious nephew, Eric Soares – until neither she nor Eric can deny the chemistry flaring between them. She soon learns that old news never leaves the morgue and that yesterday's headline is tomorrow's danger, for finding out the truth about that night twenty-five years ago may shatter Kris's present, costing her love, her career, and ultimately, her life.

Available in e-book and audiobook formats from retailers including:
More retailers, reviews and book trailer at:


Cheryl came up behind Kris.  Her voice sounded sad and tired.  "Please don't tell my mother too much, even if you're making progress.  I don't want to raise her hopes."
Kris glanced back at Irene, who hunched on the couch, turning the locket over in her hand.  "I'll be careful with what I say.  My aunt would've been eager, too."

"How was your cousin killed?"   

"She was strangled, kidnapped by a neighbor while walking alone.  We were  twelve."

Cheryl heaved a sigh.  "I'm sorry.  I remember reading about that.  It happened locally, didn't it?"


"I know you're a terrific writer.  I couldn't have been happier with the business story.  I'm just concerned about my mother."

"I understand," Kris said.  "I won't let you down."

She trudged out to her car and brushed off her windshield.  She waited behind the steering wheel as the defroster warmed the interior. Not knowing Diana's whereabouts must have tormented Irene.  Kris's family had agonized over Nicole's disappearance.  As one day blended into the next, Nicole had seemed further and further away. 

Finding her was worse.

Kris had learned a new phrase that May, a litany that surged back into her mind, drumming to the beat of the windshield wipers.  If only.

If only it hadn't rained the afternoon Nicole had disappeared.

If only she hadn't climbed into the car with Randolph Coltraine.

If only Aunt Susan had been home when Nicole called for a ride.

Kris swallowed the metallic taste in her mouth.  If only I didn't trick her.

She chose the long route home, driving fast. She hadn't driven in New York and had forgotten the thrill of a climbing speedometer.  Her first week back, she'd landed a speeding ticket. 

Kris skidded onto the Fremont State College campus, her tires kicking up tufts of snow.  She passed dorms, tennis courts and the library before parking in front of the deserted baseball field.  White trees cast shapeless shadows across the broad expanse of snow.

A chunk of ice slid off the roof, hitting the front window.  Kris jumped, her hand to her heart.   

"No one's out there," she murmured, gazing into the woods.  "Not now."

But once.

Beyond those trees, Diana had lain dead. 

Police had crowded the scene, their search over.

Middle-aged reporter Dex Wagner had scribbled in his notebook. 

Twenty-five years ago today.

This sounds like a terrific read, Stacy!Thanks for visiting today.  

My excerpt from Worth The Risk by Lyn O'Farrell can be found at Stacy's blog.