Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Robyn Carr's The Life She Wants #giveaway,

Posted by Susan B James on 3:00:00 AM with 3 comments
Robyn Carr's new women's fiction novel The Summer That Made Us releases September 5th and I have a ARC copy to give away. Please enter the Rafflecopter below if you want to win it.
Mothers and daughters, sisters and cousins--they lived for summers at the lake house until a tragic accident changed everything. The Summer That Made Us is an unforgettable story about a family learning to accept the past, to forgive and to love each other again. That was then... For the Hempsteads, two sisters who married two brothers and had three daughters each, summers were idyllic. The women would escape the city the moment school was out to gather at the family house on Lake Waseka. The lake was a magical place, a haven where they were happy and carefree. All of their problems drifted away as the days passed in sun-dappled contentment. Until the summer that changed everything. This is now... After an accidental drowning turned the lake house into a site of tragedy and grief, it was closed up. For good. Torn apart, none of the Hempstead women speak of what happened that summer, and relationships between them are uneasy at best to hurtful at worst. But in the face of new challenges, one woman is determined to draw her family together again, and the only way that can happen is to return to the lake and face the truth
I am starting with the professional reviews because, while I love Robyn Carr, this was not my kind of book. Which doesn't mean you won't love it. We all have different kinds of books.

"A layered, well-paced plot and flawed, three-dimensional characters whom readers will care about make this a quick and entertaining read for those who relish contemporary family sagas with strong female characters as well as readers who like their stories tinged with romance." -Library Journal on The Life She Wants

"A satisfying reinvention story that handles painful issues with a light and uplifting touch." -Kirkus Reviews on The Life She Wants

Starting a Robyn Carr has always been a magical experience for me. This time I did not love either the situation or her characters.  Until Krista came into the picture on Page 79. I truly loved Krista. I finished the book because I wanted to know Krista's story. I also learned to love some other characters.  This is women's fiction on the more tragic side of the scale. Which is not my kind of book. That's why I gave you the other reviews first.
If you are interested in winning the ARC, please enter below. Happy Reading.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Five Things I'm Grateful for Right Now.

Posted by Susan B James on 1:58:00 PM with No comments
Fast and Fuzzy post. Cause I'm running late on all fronts. Feel free to ask for a giveaway.


 I rejoice in the time I get to spend with my sons and their families. Right now. I get to see Chris , Melanie and Walter in person and Jim and Ella by Phone or Facebook.

Friends Last week I got to spend time in Ventura with Don and time at home with the Lovejoys.  
And on the way to and from Ventura, I had speakerphone chats with faraway dear ones.
FaceBook. I get to see pics videos of my far-flung covey of family and friends.

Fellowship. Last week was the monthly meeting for my caring circle where we celebrate food and each other. It was also the monthly meeting for the Los Angeles Romance Writers of America. (LARARWA) where I got some wonderful promotion tips from speaker, Jewel Quinlan.
And it was the Book Birthday for Jennie Palmer's first published picture book. The Wompanny Witches Make One Mean Pizza.
Our Picture Book Critique Group turned out along with a full house of patrons at Once Upon a Time Bookstore in Montrose to cheer her on.
 Features. I worked on two films last week and auditioned for three roles on TV series. I got pinned for Speechless. But they dropped the pin yesterday while I was working on a film called Roads Trees, and Honeybees at Fonco Studios.
Oh well. Next. I really love acting.
Here's the restroom sign from Fonco Studios which is filled with fabulous props. I want to work here again.
 Peace to us all. Friends, Foes, and Aliens. Next week I have Robyn Carr and a giveaway.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

My First Video Blog #Giveaway

Posted by Susan B James on 3:00:00 AM with 9 comments
Earlier today I read a post about the many things authors should be doing to promote their books.

One suggestion was a video blog. If the link above doesn't work, Please click here. This is my first attempt at it. Please let me know what you think. I would love suggestions for video blogs that would interest you.
In return for comments I am offering a 3.99 gift certificate.
(Coincidentally, that is the price for my new book, Maybe This Time ,which I hope you will buy with the gift certificate.)
I'm doing it this way because if you like the book, and graciously decide to leave a review, Amazon will publish the review because you would be a verified purchaser.
I wish you a week with lovely magical unexpected things. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Meet Australian Author Cindy Tomamichel and her debut romance, Druid's Portal

Posted by Susan B James on 3:00:00 AM with 1 comment

Author Cindy Tomamichel's debut romance, Druid’s Portal came on in May and won a Reader’s Choice Cover Contest in June. Her second book, Druid’s Portal. Second Journey should be out next year.
A portal closed for 2,000 years.

An ancient religion twisted by modern greed.

A love that crosses the centuries.

An ancient druid pendant shows archaeologist Janet visions of Roman soldier Trajan. The visions are of danger, death, and love—but are they a promise or a curse? 

Her fiancé Daman abandons her before the wedding, her beloved museum is ransacked, and a robed man vanishes before her eyes. Haunted by visions of a time she knows long gone, Janet teeters on the edge of a breakdown.

In the shadow of Hadrian’s Wall and 2,000 years back in time, Janet’s past and present collide. Daman has vowed to drive the invaders from the shores of Britain and march his barbarian hordes to Rome. Trajan swears vengeance against the man who threatens both his loves—Janet and the Empire.

Time is running out—for everyone. 

Cindy, Please tell us a little about yourself.
I live in rural Australia, having recently left the suburbs. Much nicer to drive past cow paddocks than to sit in traffic. I have worked as an underground mine geologist in the remote desert areas of Australia, and later at the EPA involved in cleaning up sites contaminated with past industrial activities.
Travel is always on the agenda. I have explored some of the islands in the south pacific, traveled the deep south of the USA in a campervan, and gone to Peru.

I love firsts, so tell me about the moment when a publisher told you they wanted to publish your book.
Now that was a surreal moment. I had just hopped (or staggered) off a ten-hour flight to Hong Kong, on route to what was to be a fantastic holiday in the USA. So there I was, in an airport so large they needed internal train systems to reach the terminals, and hoping we were on the right train, I propped my weary self on a pole and checked my emails. I will admit to a lot of bouncing as I told my family, and probably a few hundred others who must have overheard my squeaks of excitement. It did make the next ten-hour flight much more bearable.

What is the most exciting moment, so far, in your writing career?
Apart from the initial contract email, the arrival of the cover art was the next high point. The book had gone from years of writing, and months of tedious editing to a marvelous cover with my name on it. Exciting, and also a bit scary! When you get your cover, the book feels real and wonderful. Melody A Pond's cover is great. 

What is your favorite pastime, other than writing?
I like to mix it up. So gardening is one – I plan a garden to attract birds and insects so I am remodeling the current one to include more native Australian plants. Baking – I like to collect old cookbooks and try out cakes and biscuits. My dog also loves to walk, so this is a part of each day as he updates his social media posts!

How do you motivate yourself when inspiration takes a vacation?
Unless I am clearly procrastinating, then I don’t like to force writing too much. I do a lot of my writing during NaNoWriMo (Write a novel in a month) so I find this provides me with enough pressure to get a novel done. I would recommend every writer try it, the pure focus on creativity is wonderful, although the pressure is not perhaps for everyone.
Me too! I've written six novels during NaNo. I've almost finished revising Kate's Hero and then I will begin revising Lord Byron's Daughter or Night Witch.

Any advice for new writers just starting out?
I think anyone who dreams of writing is probably already a voracious reader. But read across genres, and read all sorts of things to see which sits well with your own imagination. I have heard it said that a writer needs to write one million words before they can call themselves a writer – and I certainly think that practice is the key. Only in this way can you develop your own voice and see what works best for you. Joining a writers group is also a great way to make friends and find others with the same mindset.

Druid’s portal is a time travel romance set in Roman Britain in the shadows of Hadrian’s Wall. In this time, modern day archaeologist Janet lands in the middle of a clash between two barbarian cultures. She will have help in the muscular form of Trajan, a Roman soldier. But her present day demons have followed her into the past – Janet and Trajan must stop her violent ex-fiancĂ© as he plans to destroy the Roman Empire and change the course of history.

Join archaeologist Janet and Roman soldier Trajan on an adventure with plenty of barbarian fighting, ancient goddesses, and druids. It's not your typical romance, but it will set your heart racing!

In her dreams, she could sometimes drift across his face like mist, and she knew it well. A man she had conjured, one as familiar as if she had known him always. Strong featured and dark-haired, his bound body radiated muscular strength. She had seen his fight—he had not been easy to capture, and it made her heart ache to see him helpless, his grey eyes watching his captors prepare him for sacrifice. Even with no hope of rescue, he had emanated defiance, an indomitable will to survive.

He was a dream, a vision. But even if he was real, what could she do to save him?

What’s your current WIP?
My current work is getting the next Druid’s Portal finished. The Second Journey follows the time traveling guardian of the Arwen pendant on the dangerous path of forbidden love and alternate history.

And finally, where can we find you?

Contact Cindy on
 Thank you for being here, Cindy.  I look forward to reading Druid's Portal. I added it to my Goodreads "Want to Read' list. 
If you would like to do the same, Cherished Reader, here's the link. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35129553-druid-s-portal?from_search=true

If you would like to add my new book, Maybe This Time to your reading list, here is the link
Happy Reading.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

The Making of a Trilogy with Carole Anne Moleti #Giveaway

Posted by Susan B James on 3:00:00 AM with 3 comments
Carole Ann Moleti's latest release is Storm Watch: Book Three in the Unfinished Business Series
A Cape Cod Paranormal Romance

One last chance, their only choice.
Mike and Liz thought they'd gotten control of the specters haunting the Barrett Inn. But things get very complicated when they're the ghosts from your past life. The Category Five Hurricane bearing down on Cape Cod appears to be headed directly for them--or has it been spawned from inside them? Knowing it’s their last chance to end the hauntings, they face an impossible choice. Will they survive the storm?

 I have trouble enough coming up with a stand alone book. I asked Carole how 
The Unfinished Business Series began like most of my projects—when I was not even thinking of writing a story. While opening up a summer cottage, pulling dust covers off furniture and vacuuming up flies, I had the sudden inspiration to write a story about a woman who finds a trunk of old clothes and learns sad truths about the person who they once belonged to. It was a quick hop from that to a ghost story, and I missed all the barbecues and parades over that the Fourth of July weekend in upstate New York while immersed in writing a paranormal fantasy set on Cape Cod. The series combines my love of the beach and boats with a fascination about paranormal activities, and how past life experiences influence our fears, fantasies, and choices. 

I grew up on the waterfront and on boats of all sizes. My family has been vacationing on the Cape since I was very young, and I have been intrigued by the history of the Brewster sea captains and their wives. What better place than to situate this trunk in a dilapidated Victorian, that just happens to be haunted?

I started writing the first book in the series, Breakwater Beach, that long weekend. The short story version was done before it was time to pack up and go home. Over the next several months, it expanded into a novelette—and then into a novel. Breakwater Beach is Liz's story, and the novel delves more deeply into Elisabeth's and Edward's stories.  

I never intended to write a series, but the story line presented itself in another moment of inspiration—with a focus on a key feature of Victorian architecture. The Widow's Walk, is primarily Mike's story, though he shares the spotlight with his very troubled new wife. 
Both Books One and Two required research into Victoriana, maritime history, and the social and legal climates of the late 1800s in Britain and the United States. I am fortunate to have many British writing associates to help, but I made a trip to London and Surrey in 2014 that helped immeasurably to nail down the details of the setting.
 I want to make another trip to London to research anything! I haven't been back since 1966.
 About a year later, I was siting on Breakwater Beach in Brewster and there was a fisherman in his beached boat, waiting for the tide to come in. I remember doing the same when I was a kid, while my father was cleaning the bottom. I dashed the opening scene of Book Three, Storm Watch off the same day. There is a scene in the book reminiscent of a harrowing experience on Long Island Sound. Plus, I’ve prepared for and recovered for several major hurricanes, so there wasn’t too much research to do for Storm WatchI grew up on the east coast when hurricanes were regular events. I remember all the preparation fun. I actually researched hurricanes for a children's book. 
Tying up not only the Storm Watch, but also all the other plot-lines took some doing. I’m delighted with the way it turned out and think the cover is just perfect.

I love the cover. Wren Taylor did a beautiful job.Thanks you for being here, Carole Ann and for sharing the development of a series.

I’d love to offer a chance for anyone who leaves a question or a comment to win an ebook copy of BreakwaterBeach: Book One in the Unfinished Business series. 

Simply leave a comment or ask a question on this blog. I will announce the winner over the weekend so everyone has a chance to post.

And everyone that subscribes to my newsletter (link) gets a gift: a PDF download of Haunted: Ten Tales of Ghosts.
That sounds like fun. I will do that now.

Link to subscribe to newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bfNver

 I did it. That was easy. Looking forward to a shot of ghostliness.

 Carole Ann Moleti Links:

Pinterest Boards for each Book: