Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Meet author Wareeze Woodson #giveaway Regency Romance

Posted by Susan B James on 3:00:00 AM with 2 comments

Meet historical suspense author Wareeze Woodson.

 She's giving away two books,  After She Became a Lady and  An Enduring Love. Rafflecopter at the end of the post.

Wareeze, please tell us a bit about yourself Hello Friends. I am a native of Texas and still live in this great state. I I write historical romance tangled with suspense and mystery under the pen name Wareeze Woodson. In my world of writing, I have created four published works. 
All are Regency romances mixed with suspense and mystery except my May release, Bittersweep. That one is a historical western.

I am including a short blurb for Bittersweep:
Yellow fever ran rampant over most of the state of Texas around 1882 striking the town of Bittersweep deeply. The disaster spilled over into five-year old Elizabeth Campbell’s life, tearing her family apart. From the seat of a wagon, holding her baby sister in her arms, she viewed her home growing smaller and smaller in the distance. Men had shouted at her papa to never return. Fifteen years later she arrived at Bittersweep to take a teaching position and to discover what really happened all those years ago.
My other titles available now:

I love firsts, so tell me about the moment when a publisher told you they wanted to publish your book.
When I received an email announcing the acceptance of my first book Conduct Unbecoming of a Gentleman by Soul Mate Publishing, I was elated. I ran out of the house waving a copy of my email calling for my husband at the top of my lungs. He dropped his tools and came running expecting the worst. The best had happened. Finally, I was a real author. LOL!
Tell me about your own love story
  I married my high school sweetheart, years and years ago. We raised four children and have eight wonderful grandchildren. At the moment, all my children and my grandchildren live within seventy miles of our home, lots of visits.  
Our Happily Ever After continued until I lost my love, December 10, 2016 to cancer. He’ll always live in my heart.

You asked for photographs, besides the view of my book covers. I decided to include a very personal touch. I am including a picture of the first present I received from my future husband. It is a lovely craved wooden box filled with candy. We were in high-school at the time. 
Also a picture of the last present he gave me. a beautiful music box.   
I am so deeply sorry for your loss. I had a friend in a similar situation. Because of her my second heroine in Time and Forever travels back in time to July 1969 and ends up changing their future so he doesn't die. Their love story is one of the most satisfying things I've written. I'm sending you a copy.     

 Any advice for new writers just starting out?
I advise new writers to join a few RWA chapters. Meet with critique partners and write, write, write. You must not be sensitive. Accepting criticism without wanting to hurl your computer against the wall is helpful and will toughen you for the kill or do I mean equip you with skills. That comes when you are finally published. Don’t take the reviews to heart, some all cruel and make an author want to give up. Don’t do it. Your book cannot be published if you don’t write it. Keep on keeping on.

Tell us about your Work in Progress
I wrote a piece on scene construction for a Soul Mate Publishing blog post and I’d like to share part of it with you. I decided to bring the heroine of the story to life. This is my work in progress: ISABEL
Creating Worlds
Are readers interested in the workings behind the scene? Some say readers are curious about what it takes to write a book. Here is a small glimpse behind the scene of writing. When I write my historical novels, I must create my own worlds. The Regency/Victorian era is a historical fact, but make-believe, for all that because the time in the 1800s no longer exists. With each story, the scene must be created—when in time, day or night, where-location and what is happening. What the character sees, feels, and wants—all must be imagined and displayed for the reader.
Although the author has many historical facts to draw from, the story must exist in the world created by the writer. The colors, the sounds, the tastes and the smells add flavor to the story. The reader wants to visit these places through the character’s point of view and safely absorb the emotions as well. All rather a lot to provide for the reader and the bar is set high with expectations.
The flame of the candle flickered and glinted off the in-laid sliver on the barrel of the pistol pointed directly at Isabel. Fear griped her by the throat. She caught her breath, unable to move or even swallow.
The drapes billowed into the room on a sharp breeze before settling back to the floor with a barely discernable swoosh. The smell of London after a downpour, drifted into the open window, cleansed but still dominated by the odor of horses, foot traffic, and a tavern down the way. She shivered when her drenched cloak swung against the layers of her petticoats with a chilling heaviness. The damp cloth clung to her ankles while moisture trickled down her features into her eyes. She scarce blinked, her gaze captured by the gun. 
The longcase clock in the hall chimed once echoing down the empty passageway. Even at this hour, the sound of a carriage rumbling over the cobbled-stones in front of the mansion reached the upper level.
I hope I’ve raised several questions in your mind with these few sentences. Is the man with the pistol the hero or the villain? Is this Isabel’s house, or did she enter the building for some nefarious purpose? What happens next?
I created a small glimpse of this world of danger, building tension yet the reader is safe. This is the world of my imagination. I like this world where velvet and fine jaconet muslins were worn to the Assemblies at Almack, where danger lurks before and after the ball, as well. The lives of the characters also dwell in this created world. What will happen to her, to him in this tale? Only the author of this created world knows and I’m not telling. After all, this is only make-believe, created in the imagination.  Perhaps one day, I’ll take up the tale. I decided to take up the tale. ISABEL
Wareeze Woodson
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Wareeze-Woodson/523727757689755
Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/wareeze
Twitter:  http://twitter.com/@wareeze
Thank you for being here, Wareeze. Dear readers, if you love Regency Romance, enter the Rafflecopter below. Happy Reading.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Rhys Bowen's The Tuscan Child Review & Giveaway

Posted by Susan B James on 3:00:00 AM with 2 comments
Rhys Bowen's latest book, The Tuscan Child is available February 20th. AND, I have an ARC to giveaway. 

In 1944, British bomber pilot Hugo Langley parachuted from his stricken plane into the verdant fields of German-occupied Tuscany. Badly wounded, he found refuge in a ruined monastery and in the arms of Sofia Bartoli. But the love that kindled between them was shaken by an irreversible betrayal.
Nearly thirty years later, Hugo’s estranged daughter, Joanna, has returned home to the English countryside to arrange her father’s funeral. Among his personal effects is an unopened letter addressed to Sofia. In it is a startling revelation.
Still dealing with the emotional wounds of her own personal trauma, Joanna embarks on a healing journey to Tuscany to understand her father’s history—and maybe come to understand herself as well. Joanna soon discovers that some would prefer the past be left undisturbed, but she has come too far to let go of her father’s secrets now…

This historical mystery captured my interest from the first page.  
The story alternates between Hugo in 1944 and Joanna in 1973. There are compelling mysteries to be solved and an unknown enemy who would prefer the past to stay buried. 
I've enjoyed Rhys Bowen's storytelling since I was first introduced to her in The Royal Spyness series. The Tuscan Child is rich with evocative descriptions of Tuscan culture and the contrasting spareness of England. I loved the characters, the settings, the food, and the satisfying denouement. And I am delighted I have an ARC to give away. Enter below.

Rhys Bowen is the New York Times bestselling author of two historical mystery series as well as the #1Kindle bestseller In Farleigh Field. Rhys was born in Bath, England and educated at London University but now divides her time between California and Arizona. Her books have been nominated for every major mystery award and she has won fourteen of them to date. 

The Tuscan Child ARC is a USA only giveaway since it's a paperback.
So I added an ebook of Maybe This Time to the giveaway for an international winner. As of Feb 14, Maybe This Time  is available as an audio book.
Happy Reading. 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Meet Catherine Castle and Bidding on the Bouquet

Posted by Susan B James on 3:00:00 AM with 1 comment
 I'm delighted to welcome Catherine Castle who first caught my eye when she published her engaging novel, The Nun & the Narc.  She's here today with her latest release, Bidding on The Bouquet.     I love the cover!

Catherine, please tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a multi-published author in non-fiction and in fiction. My debut book, The Nun and the Narc, from Soul Mate Publishing was an ACFW Genesis Finalist, a 2014 EPIC finalist, and the winner of the 2014 Beverly Hills Book Award and the 2014 RONE Award, as well as placing in several other contests.  Before beginning my career as a romance writer, I worked part-time as a freelance writer.

Besides writing, I love traveling with my husband, singing, and attending theatre. My husband and I head up a drama group at our church, which takes up a lot of our time, but we love it. I love to quilt and have a lot of UFOs (unfinished objects) in my sewing case, which I don’t seem to have enough time to finish. In the summer I want to be in the garden, and I host a Writer’s Garden Blog on my website where I feature the gardens of other writers.  I’m passionate about gardening and even won a “Best Hillside Garden” award from the local gardening club. That's wonderful. I visited your blog and I know you have beautiful gardens. But I didn't know we had a mutual interest in theatre.

I love firsts, so tell me about the moment when a publisher told you they wanted to publish your book.
I was sitting in the eye doctor’s waiting room, with dilated eyes, trying to read my email when I got “the call.” The owner of Soul Mate Publishing sent me an email telling me she wanted to buy my book, The Nun and the Narc. I blurted out something to the effect of, “I’m a published author!” startling the other people waiting in room. Complete strangers knew I had received a contract before my family did. LOL
What is the most exciting moment, so far, in your writing career?
The most exciting moment was winning the RONE Award for my inspirational romantic suspense The Nun and the Narc. Getting an email for that same book from the Beverly Hills Book Award Contest was pretty exciting, too. Terrific book. You deserved it. I think Time and Forever up for a RONE at the same time. Different categories

How do you motivate yourself when inspiration takes a vacation?
Mindless cleaning works, but I’ll usually start brainstorming with my husband. It’s more fun than cleaning. J We’ve done a lot of coauthoring and putting our heads together always stimulates our muses.

Tell us about Bidding on The Bouquet.

 The chance to catch a bridal bouquet containing a solid gold rose makes underprivileged, down-on-her-luck grad student Marietta Wilson pawn everything she owns to come up with a bid to win a bridesmaid spot in the most prestigious wedding of the season.

When he discovers his sister is auctioning off bridesmaid spots in her wedding party, wealthy, elitist Chip Vandermere is appalled. Not only is it in poor taste, but no self-respecting lady would stoop so low as to bid. Convinced Marietta is a gold digger, Chip sets out to thwart her plans.

A social climber and a social misfit. Can a bridal bouquet unite them?

Excerpt Teaser:

Slipping the letter opener from the orange juice can she stored it in, Marietta slit the top of the envelope. A rose-gold interior glistened from the flap. Without a doubt, not junk mail. She withdrew a piece of flat cardstock. As she did, glossy flowers showered onto her lap. She turned the card in her hand. Rose-gold flowers bordered it as well. Shiny, embossed flowers.
“What the heck?” she muttered as she began reading the card.

You are invited to participate in the season’s most prestigious event.
Date: June 17
Time: 1:00 p.m.
Place: The Vandermere Estate
Event: The auction of bridesmaids’ positions for Chrissy Vandermere’s wedding
Light refreshments will be served
Chrissy is auctioning off a chance to be an attendant in her wedding.
Winners will be escorted down the aisle by New York’s finest bachelors,
and they will procure a bridesmaid-only spot at the tossing of the bride’s bouquet event.
Chrissy guarantees one of the bridesmaids will catch the bouquet,
containing a solid 14-carat rose-gold flower.
Opening bids begin at $100 and are non-refundable. Cash only.
You may make an opening bid higher than $100 if you choose.
Please RSVP by April 30

Marietta dug into the envelope again and retrieved a smaller card and matching envelope.

I, ________________________, will be pleased to attend the auction.
My opening bid is $_______
Should I win a spot, I will be available on August 9
to be part of the wedding party
for Chrissy Vandermere
Jock Sterlingson

Stunned, Marietta reread the invitation. Chrissy Vandermere? The only Vandermere she knew was her wealthy classmate Chip Vandermere, and they weren’t on real talking terms. Nor did they run in the same circles. They only had a few of the same classes and a couple of case studies together in which he had commandeered the group. The guy thought himself a born, or rather a privileged, leader. His attitude had driven her nuts, and, although he was one hot guy who knew he had undeniable sex appeal, she’d stayed away from him as much as she could. She was at the MBA program to learn and conquer, not be someone’s conquest.
 This sounds like my kind of read. 

 And finally, where can we find you?
 Social Media links:

Catherine’s Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/author/catherinecastle
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorCCastle    @AuthorCCastle

Thanks for being here, Catherine. If any of you want to treat yourselves to a fun read for Valentines Day, here, once again, is the link. https://www.amazon.com/Bidding-Bouquet-Catherine-Castle-ebook/dp/B077X1RZ6X
If you choose to read it, please consider leaving a review. Reviews are nectar to authors.
Happy Reading.