Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Rockin Reads Blog Hop

Welcome to the Rockin Reads Blog Hop. What a great privilege to take part. There are prizes up for grabs at all the blogs - find the links below.

I'm giving away an ebook so keep reading.

With Halloween coming up soon, I can't help thinking about my Halloween novella, His Halloween Kisses. I loved writing this book. Although we don't celebrate Halloween much in our country yet - it is growing - I'm fascinated by the festivity of the holiday. So, I wrote a romance. Here's what it's about:


Ali’s never been so scared. She’s housesitting for a colleague on Halloween night, but the lights have gone out, and terrible noises and crashes send her imagination into overdrive. When her brother’s friend comes to her rescue, he kisses her in the dark three times. Once back in the light, Ali is embarrassed at allowing him to kiss her. Byron tries to ignore his strong attraction for Ali, especially seeing he’s not ready for a relationship. When Ali finds out why, she runs away, but life has other plans. What can bring them together? Fate, faith, or the memory of his Halloween kisses?


The TV made a fizz, and the light from its screen compressed into a small dot. All the lights in the house went out.
A power failure.
She sat frozen for a moment, unsure what to do next. This wasn’t her own home. Where did they keep candles and torches? At her place, she stored them in the kitchen drawer, and so did her parents in her childhood house. Wouldn’t that be the logical place? Blinking furiously, she hoped to find some light somewhere to guide her to the kitchen without bumping into something. Nothing. She couldn’t see a single thing. There was no moon tonight. Probably as overcast as it had been the whole miserable, rainy, windy afternoon. She spread out her hands in front of her and walked slowly, one awkward, terrifying step at a time.
In the darkness, the sounds were magnified. Wind whined like a strangled prisoner through every window, door crack, and ceiling board. Something tapped at one of the windows from the dining room. Tap…tap…tap. Probably just a branch from a nearby bush. It couldn’t be a ghost or a zombie, could it? Her quickened pulse didn’t believe any logical arguments tonight.
Images streamed through her darkened vision—pictures of real witches, zombies with bared teeth and deathly pale faces, and horrible creatures with horrific wolf-like snouts and sharp fangs. She shivered. For some reason, tonight, Halloween was getting under her skin.
And not in a nice way.
A crash sounded in the kitchen.
Her leg remained poised for the next step, but she couldn’t take it.
She couldn’t go in there.
What was that? Terror strangled her a moment, making it hard to breathe.
Possibly only the Bauman family cat, their little black and white tabby. A smile curled her mouth in response to the calming thought. Black cat—bad luck. Yeah, she sure was overthinking this whole simple inconvenience of a power outage.
Something brushed past her leg, something warm, soft, and silent.

Hot tears sprang to her eyes.

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Book Trailer:


I'm giving away a copy of His Halloween Kisses to a lucky commenter on this blog post. Tell me what would make you the most scared and whether a kiss would help? :) Please also put your email address in the comment so I can send you your prize. Good luck!

Friday, September 11, 2015

Operation: Bully Renovation by Katy Naas

Today, I welcome Katy Naas, children's writer with her new book, Operation: Bully Renovation.

Victims of the school’s scariest bully are invited to get revenge…


Jack Sullivan is Blackwell Middle School’s scariest bully. When students and teachers see him coming down the hallway, they run the other way. He has no friends; he doesn’t need them. School is a waste of his time.

But after a car accident with his father leaves him in need of surgery, Jack has to have a tissue donor. Strangely, he then begins having memories from events that never actually happened to him – memories of being bullied by bigger, meaner boys. Jack learns he is experiencing cellular memory, which makes him receive the memories of his tissue donor…who just so happened to be a weak, helpless victim of bullying.

Jack decides he has to make things right. To do that, he offers each of his former victims an apology, along with the chance to choose a way to get even with him. But Jack quickly learns that earning their forgiveness won’t be easy... 



Jack shoved the head of the writhing boy further into the toilet, feeling a small glimmer of satisfaction as he listened to the muffled screams. He watched the water bubbles come up from the nameless boy’s mouth as he tried to make noise and fought a useless battle, trying to escape the grip of Jack’s large fingers on his neck. Jack continued to hold the boy’s head under the water, waiting patiently for the boy to stop moving. When he did, Jack quickly pulled his head back out of the water, watching the helpless boy gasp for breath and slap the water off his face while tears filled his eyes.
“If you tell anyone what just happened, I’ll kill you,” Jack growled at the boy, giving him his most convincing glare before he casually walked away, leaving the boy crumpled on the floor, drowning in his own sobs.

Jack walked out of the locker room and rejoined the rest of the members of his gym class just as the dismissal bell rang, signaling the end of his school day. He shoved past several students who were heading for the gym doors, ignoring their grunts and protests as he bumped into them from behind. He knew that as soon as the other students saw who was pushing past them they would quickly shut their mouths in fear. No one wanted to make Jack Sullivan mad. No one even wanted to be on his radar. He was crazy. Unpredictable. No one messed with him; no one even looked at him. The scrawny new boy in gym class had just learned that the hard way. A nice swirly would teach him to ask Jack to pass him the ball.

Jack smiled to himself as he walked down the middle of the hallway, thinking about his own reputation. Every boy and every girl that roamed the halls of Blackwell Middle School was terrified of him. It was obvious at all times, even as he made his way out of the building. The other kids intentionally averted their gazes and deliberately moved to the other side of the hallway to avoid any accidental contact. Even the teachers pretended to be engrossed in something else whenever he came into view. He smirked slightly as Mr. Andrews stared at the file in his hand while he passed, never smiling up at him or even glancing in his direction with so much as a nod, though he’d greeted the group of students a few feet in front of him only moments ago. There was no doubt that he brought terror to the hearts of others, both kids and adults.

That was just the way Jack preferred it. He didn’t need friends; he had no interest in any of the idiots that surrounded him in his classes. He hated school, hated the teachers, hated the classes, and hated the structure of it all. He hated the clubs and the sports and even the stupid cardinal mascot that covered the walls of the building. If everyone were scared of him, no one would try to talk to him. He felt invincible as he pushed through the double doors of the front of the building.
Trudging down the sidewalk toward his home, he never looked back at the building he had come to loathe so much. He couldn’t wait for the day when he’d never have to step foot in that hole of a school again. As an eighth grader, he didn’t have too much longer to wait.

He often considered quitting. He would call it an early retirement, he decided. But then he would remember the state’s dumb law that a person has to be sixteen to quit and be left alone. If he stopped showing up now, the feds would get involved and make his life complicated. Not that he was scared of a bunch of low-life feds; he wasn’t. But he knew they wouldn’t be as easy to avoid as his teachers and the students at school. If he could just hold out for a couple more years, he could quit and no one would bother him about any laws. So for now, he showed up most days, keeping the number of days he skipped strategically low so that they would go unnoticed.

As he approached two girls standing together near the end of the block, giggling incessantly, Jack wrinkled up his nose in disgust. He glared in their general direction, laughing on the inside when their annoying high-pitched laughs ceased at once. It was more than fear that the kids felt toward him, he decided. It was respect. And to Jack, respect was the most important thing in the world.

Author Bio:

From the time she was old enough to talk, Katy Newton Naas has been creating characters and telling stories. As a child, they sometimes got her into trouble. She knew she wanted to write books when she won a Young Author's competition as a second-grader for her short story titled, “The Grape Pie.” (Don't let its tasty title fool you - it was actually a sad little tale!)

Katy devoured books as a child and young adult, always doing chores and odd jobs in order to make enough money to buy more of them. Though she continues to age, her true literature love is and has always been children's and young adult fiction.

Katy currently teaches middle school reading and high school English in southern Illinois, as well as children's church. She graduated from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale with a bachelor's degree in English Education and a master's degree in Reading and Language Studies. She enjoys her life out in the country with her husband, her two sweet and rowdy young sons, and all her other “kids”: four dogs, three cats, and eight ducks.

She loves creating both realistic and futuristic stories about kids, tweens, and teens, and feels so fortunate to get to work with them every day as a teacher.

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Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Mamarazzi Character Interview and Review

Today, I have Brooke Williams promoting her Hollywood inspired romance novel called Mamarazzi. We're having a character interview and I've also written a review for this book.


By Brooke Williams

Release Date: September 11, 2015 from Prism Book Group

Order HERE

Join the Sept. 15th Release Day Party on Facebook HERE
Enjoy giveaways with a dozen different authors!

Danica Bennett isn't sure what she hates more...her job or the fact that she's good at it.  As one of the many Hollywood paparazzi, she lives her life incognito and sneaks around trying to get the best shot of the latest star.  When she is mistaken for an extra on a new, up and coming TV show, her own star rises and she becomes the one being photographed.  Add that to the fact that she's falling for her co-star, Eliot Lane, and Danica is in a whole heap of trouble.

Add “Mamarazzi” to your Goodreads list HERE

About the Author

Brooke Williams writes in a sleep-deprived state while her daughters nap. Her romantic comedy is best read in the same state. Brooke has twelve years of radio in her background, both behind the scenes and on the air. She was also a television traffic reporter for a short time despite the fact that she could care less about hair and make-up. Today, Brooke stays at home with her daughters and works as a freelance writer for a variety of companies. When she isn’t working for paying clients, she makes things up, which results in books like “Accept this Dandelion.”  Brooke is also the author of "Accept this Dandelion," “Wrong Place, Right Time,” “Someone Always Loved You,”  “Beyond the Bars.” She plans to continue the Dandelion story into a series and looks forward to her first children's book release “Baby Sheep Gets a Haircut” in June 2016. Brooke and her husband Sean have been married since 2002 and have two beautiful daughters, Kaelyn (5) and Sadie (nearly 2).

Connect with Brooke:

Note from the Author on the book's inspiration:

I've always been fascinated by the Hollywood life and the idea that "they" are different from "us." The idea for Mamarazzi has been with me for a long time. I'm not even exactly sure when I came up with it, but in college, I had a screenwriting class and I had to write a portion of a screenplay. I wrote "Paparazzi," which was the same general idea only with a male lead character. When I began writing romantic comedy, the idea came back to me and I decided to chance the main character to a female and call it "Mamarazzi." I even had a naming contest so that facebook fans and blog readers could name the characters in the book. Every character in the novel is reader named and approved! Overall, I wanted to examine what happens when you take someone from one side of the fence and plop them on the other side. In the end, famous or not, we're all just people. And in this book, they all have secrets...

And next from Brooke Williams....

"Dandelions on the Road"
releases November 5, 2015...
pre-order today by clicking below

Character Interview:

Hi, my name is Danica and my story is featured in the novel “Mamarazzi.” Thanks for having me today and I hope you’ll go easy on me. What do you want to know? I’m literally an open book, if you read “Mamarazzi.” Haha.

(P.S. This interview occurred before the events of the book took place)

What’s your favourite part of the day? Morning, afternoon or night?
I have to pick just one? As far as my job goes, night is best. It’s hard to take pictures after dark, but the good shots are always available with night as a veil. Personally, though, morning is best. The day is fresh and anything can happen.

If you had to take anyone with you on a long journey away from home, who would it be?
My mom. She’s been there for me all of my life and continues to be a support no matter what I do. Time with her is precious because as I get older, I understand days are fleeting. Hers are limited and I want to make sure I get as much as I can in with her.

What is your motto in life?
Grab every opportunity you can, when you can. You never know when something else might roll around. It’s easy to make mistakes when you grasp anything that whizzes by, but if you don’t get on the train when it comes, you’ll never know where it ends up.

Name one of your weaknesses that you’d like to work on.
Well, I have plenty, but I’d say my profession is my biggest weakness. I’m a photographer by trade and I really want to get into the professional photography business. But breaking into that world is really tough and I’ve fallen into taking, you could say, not so flattering pictures of celebrities. I want to quit, but I need the money to keep myself and my mother afloat.

If you were able to invent something totally new for your world, what would it be, and why do you think it’s needed?
I’d invent a machine that allows people to glimpse a snippet of their future. I wouldn’t want to see too much and ruin the element of surprise. But if I knew a few things about my future, I’d know better how to conduct things today.

Give a memory from childhood.
I remember spending endless hours in Nebraska cornfields. Sounds boring, right? My mother took me to a variety of landscapes around the state so she could shoot the fields at sunset or at other times of the day. While she took pictures and tested the light, I was left to entertain myself. It’s amazing what a kid can come up with in an empty field! Those were some of my fondest memories of growing up.

Are you similar to how you were as a child or have you changed significantly? If you’ve changed, what changed you?
I think my sense of wonder is a bit jaded now that I’m an adult. When I was a child, I didn’t realize how much adults struggle at times to make things meet. I still have my childlike belief that if you try hard enough, you can succeed. But I also know how hard success can be to achieve.

What is the most sacrificial thing you’ve done for someone else?
I care for my mother. She’s too young, but she has Alzheimer’s and it’s advancing fast. Though she lives back in Nebraska and I live in Hollywood, I pay for her care and all of her needs. I wish I could see her more than I do. It kills me to be this far away, but it’s also hard when I visit and she doesn’t know me. I don’t see her care as a sacrifice, really, though. She’s my mom and she’s done so much for me, I owe her way more than I can ever do in return.

Cat or dog person?
I love animals in general. I don’t have pets myself, but I grew up in a rural area and there were plenty of every kind. I look forward to the day when I am more settled and have regular hours so I can have some of each!


This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

I was hooked by this story right from the beginning. The plot kept me going throughout and didn't bore me. What a great story! I thoroughly enjoyed it. The twists and turns and the happenings were so unusual, different and yet authentic. When an ordinary person enters the world of Hollywood and acting, their life changes forever. So it is with Danica who is a paparazzi photography and gets swept up, purely by accident, into a part in a TV series called Cousins. I loved taking Danica's journey as she struggles to keep her past a secret and to balance all the changes in her new life. Even though the things she did in the beginning really got to me, I understood why she did them and could sympathize with her. I could also see the character arc as she changed through the book. I don't want to spoil it and share too much, but it's well worth a read if you want a book that will keep you hooked and invested throughout. Great setting, characters and what fun to enter behind the scenes of Hollywood.

4.5 stars (oh sorry, Eiffel Towers)

Friday, September 4, 2015

Labor of Love Bloghop

From sweet to dark, divas of romance work their fingers to the bone for your reading pleasure in the Labor of Love Bloghop from 9/4-9/6. Come join me and enter to win a Kindle with new, heart-pounding titles just for you!

2015_8 Labor of Love hop_D2 copy

Happily ever afters only come after heart-breaking work, and this Labor Day weekend, we are celebrating our written labors of love by giving our readers a chance to win a brand-spankin' new Kindle with our personal bests. That's right, you could win all of our books! Aren't you excited? We are! So here's your chance, just click the link below to enter our giveaway:

Sometimes love happens to you against your plans. So it was with Elaine. She'd always vowed she wouldn't date an athlete. Her brother's an Olympic swimmer and she's gotten to know the athletic lifestyle. Athletes don't have time for love and family. Especially Olympic athletes.

When her brother's team-mates come over one evening, hungry Winston Harper comes into her kitchen, her domain. She's taken immediately with his humble and pleasant nature. But Winston has come from a difficult background. Her family and friends disapprove of him. But Elaine cares too much to let him go. Have you ever had someone persuade you not to pursue a relationship? I know what it's like. When my husband and I were dating, some people said we weren't right for one another. Twenty years later, we're still together.

Three Tiers for Win is a story of adventure, romance, and family passion that unfolds with the backdrop of the 2012 London Olympics. Elaine said she would never date an athlete as they’re too driven. That’s until she meets kind, yet intensely focused and ambitious South African Olympic swimmer, Winston Harper. He stands for everything she’d chosen not to go for. Win also has a bad family history which keeps him from opening his heart to her. When intense attraction and affection breaks through some of their barriers, family secrets and conflicts pull them apart again. Only Elaine’s support and Win’s brokenness can draw them back together, but will that be strong enough to wipe away the past?

Elaine pressed the remote to open the garage. “There’s the top of an old sewing table of my mom’s.”

“Let me see.” He followed her in. Feeling suddenly overwhelmed by a sense of need for his help and support, Elaine became flustered while looking for it. If only Win wasn’t an athlete and would be interested in someone like her. He made her feel so
at peace with the world, so calm and so focused. Oh well, there wasn’t time to pine about that now.

“Here it is,” he said as he pulled the board out from behind the lawnmower.

“Oh no!” Elaine gasped. “Wait here.”

“What now?” She could hear a smile in his voice as though he must be thinking she was a drama queen or too panicky, or worse still, badly disorganized, which was definitely true. After running inside to grab a wet cloth from the kitchen, she came up to Win who was already loading the board in his boot.

“Look at me,” she commanded. He looked at her, all innocence, and she searched for breath. A manly cologne and the scent of freshly washed hair and a touch of his sweat sank into her. The combination warmed her from her toes. She swallowed.

“You’re covered in dust on your nice new tuxedo.” It had to be new. It wasn’t Mick’s, she knew that. Had he bought a new one especially for the day? She suddenly felt all weak and wobbly at the thought that he would go to the trouble of doing that for her.

“There,” she choked out after wiping his one sleeve and abdomen. “Now you look perfect. Oh!” She placed her hand over her mouth at the statement she’d just made. Whipping herself around, she ran back to the house to put the cloth down and lock up. He mustn’t know that she liked him — it would be mortifying and would set

her up for real hurt.

You can buy Three Tiers for Win here: 

To win one of my ebooks of your choice, you can comment below. Answer the question: Where will the Olympics be held in 2016?

Also, don't forget the rafflecopter giveaway for the blog hop above. 

2015_8 Labor of Love hop_D2 copy

Thank you for join joining our Labors of Love Blog Hop. To see who's participating, click the link below and work your way through our participating authors:
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Wednesday, September 2, 2015

New Release by Krysten Lindsay Hager

A warm welcome to Krysten who'll be sharing about her brand new release, a YA novel called Next Door to a Star.

by Krysten Lindsay Hager
Genre: Young Adult


Hadley Daniels is tired of feeling invisible.

After Hadley’s best friend moves away and she gets on the bad side of some girls at school, she goes to spend the summer with her grandparents in the Lake Michigan resort town of Grand Haven. Her next door neighbor is none other than teen TV star Simone Hendrickson, who is everything Hadley longs to be—pretty, popular, and famous—and she’s thrilled when Simone treats her like a friend.

Being popular is a lot harder than it looks.

It’s fun and flattering when Simone includes her in her circle, though Hadley is puzzled about why her new friend refuses to discuss her former Hollywood life. Caught up with Simone, Hadley finds herself ignoring her quiet, steadfast friend, Charlotte.

To make things even more complicated, along comes Nick Jenkins…

He’s sweet, good-looking, and Hadley can be herself around him without all the fake drama.

However, the mean girls have other ideas and they fill Nick’s head with lies about Hadley, sending him running back to his ex-girlfriend and leaving Hadley heartbroken.

So when her parents decide to relocate to Grand Haven, Hadley hopes things will change when school starts…only to be disappointed once again.

Cliques. Back-stabbing. Love gone bad.

Is this really what it’s like to live…Next Door To A Star?


The school year should end right after spring break, because all anyone can focus on is summer vacation. You can’t learn anything new, because all you can think about is all the fun stuff you’re going to do once you don’t have to get up at the butt crack of dawn. Summer always seems full of possibilities.

Nothing exciting ever happens during the school year, but maybe, during summer vacation, you could run into a hot celebrity and he’d decide to put you in his next music video. Okay, it wasn’t like I knew anybody that happened to, but my grandparents did live next door to a former TV star, Simone Hendrickson, and Simone was discovered in an ice cream parlor one summer. Of course, she lived in L.A. at the time and was already doing plays and commercials, so the guy who discovered her had already seen her perform. But hey, it was summer, she got discovered, and that was all that mattered.
Amazing stuff didn’t happen to me. You know what happened to me last summer? I stepped on a bee and had to go to the emergency room. They’re not going to make an E! True Hollywood Story out of my life. I didn’t go on exotic vacations—like today, I was being dragged along with my parents to my cousin’s graduation party. Most people waited until at least the end of May before having a grad party, but Charisma was having hers early because she was leaving on a trip to Spain. I was dreading this party because I didn’t want to listen to everybody talk about how smart and talented Charisma was—making me feel like a blob in comparison—but my mom RSVP’d even though I said I’d rather die than go. My death threats meant nothing. But still, for some strange reason, I had a feeling this summer was going to be different.

Author Bio:

Krysten Lindsay Hager is an obsessive reader and has never met a bookstore she didn’t like. She’s worked as a journalist and humor essayist, and writes for teens, tweens, and adults. She is the author of the Landry’s True Colors Series and her work has been featured in USA Today and named as Amazon’s #1 Hot New Releases in Teen & Young Adult Values and Virtues Fiction and Amazon’s #1 Hot New Releases in Children’s Books on Values. She’s originally from Michigan and has lived in South Dakota, Portugal, and southwestern Ohio. She received her master’s degree from the University of Michigan-Flint.

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